Sierra Nevada Summerfest | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Sierra Nevada SummerfestSierra Nevada Summerfest
Liked This Beer
3.67 w/ 4,240 ratings
Sierra Nevada SummerfestSierra Nevada Summerfest

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: Czech Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
There's something about a warm summer day that calls out for a cold glass of great beer, and this classic Czech-style lager is sure to fit the bill. Crisp, golden and refreshing, Summerfest is the perfect choice for soaking up the sunshine. Summerfest is a Czech-style lager featuring a slight malt sweetness, a spicy hop flavor, and the crisp finish you want on a hot summer day.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-17-2001

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,240 |  Reviews: 1,610
Photo of cavedave
4.3/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This baby pours a clear, light yellow, nice fizz, with a pure white 1 finger head that relaxes to a lasting skim.

The aroma is classic pilsner, tart yeast, spicy hops, lemony, with a nice earthy bitter behind it, and an underlying bready sweetness.

It has a medium strength taste, which starts tart and bready sweet, picks up some complex spicy hop notes, and finishes clean, mildly bitter, with hints of floral hops behind the lasting spice. Best finish of any pilsner I've tried.

Mouthfeel is high carb., bright, clean, light in mouth, and frames an excellent finish.

Very easy drinking, tasty, and refreshing. I could drink these until the moon leaves earth orbit.

Impression: Lager fans, you need to try this if you haven't. Those who don't care for lagers may be surprised to like this one. A must try.

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Photo of obywan59
2.71/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pours a pale transparent yellow with a decent 1 1/2 finger white head.

Smell seems a bit "off". Mine may be skunked.Some light grassiness and a popcorn aroma.

Taste doesn't suit me either. I like a bitter beer, but this is bad bitter. Harsh, overpowering, out of balance.

Decent mouthfeel. Rather light and a bit drying.

The drinkability suffers here. It reminds me of a bad macro.,

Judging from the good reviews, I'm pretty certain my Summerfest must have been skunked. The beer I taste here can't hold a candle to Pilsner Urquell.

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Photo of wollybugger
4.88/5  rDev +33%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Sierra Nevada obviously knows what they are doing. Although still fairly knew in the beer world, Sierra Nevada Summerfest is clearly one of the top lagers I have ever tasted!

I will say that it is good consumed out of a bottle, but on tap it is money. The beer is clear in appearance with a creamy head (my kegerator CO2 regulator is set at 5Lb psi and pours a perfect head every time.) It has an easy entry with a slight hoppy after taste. Summerfest is only 5% abv, so this becomes a great social beer.

Sierra Nevada is always impressive and once again they don't dissapoint. Treat yourself this summer, and tap a Summerfest

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Photo of gatornation
3.92/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a light yellow color with a 1 finger head that recedes to a very white ring..smell is a floral citrus bouquet of hops and malts and a hint of spice,,taste is the same its a floral hop taste off set with some bready tastes good its crisp and clean..the mouth feel is medium/light crisp and refreshing..this is a good pils/lager..but will choose prima,noble pils and czechvar b4 this one for the style..SN makes great brews at affordable prices and this one is no exception to that

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Photo of micromaniac129
4.3/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours with big white head that fades to a nice straw color. A pretty good amount of carbonation is in there too. Clear
citrusy hops are very present with some spicy notes at the end of a good swill.
A good well rounded beer with some bit.
good for a hot summer day if you need a good thrist quencher.
First rate in it's style.
Drink well my friend.

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Photo of wahhmaster
3.92/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Pilsner Urquell pilsner glass.

Appearance: Pours a light straw color with a large, fizzy, white head. The head dissipates quickly and leaves minimal lacing.

Smell: Has that spicy, grassy hop smell typical of most European pilsners. Also has a slight buttery aroma in the background.

Taste: Bitter and spicy up front with a hint of citrus. Develops into a slightly malty, toasty flavor. Leaves a pleasant, grassy aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Exeedingly crisp and refreshing. I really don't know how this could feel any better.

Drinkability: A great pilsner and a superb summer seasonal. I could see myself easily drinking several of these on a warm day. While it reminds me a lot of the pilsners I used to drink in Europe, SN has added enough of its own touch to make this a unique and highly enjoyable beer.

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Photo of djwilson
3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

poured from a bottle into a pilsner glass.

pours a nice hazy yellow fizzy beer color. Just what is expected for a beer labeled as a summerfest lager!

pick up quite a bit of hops in the aroma, lightl grass, a little biscuit, and a slightly bready yeasty quality.

taste is pretty much what I expected, light, very crisp, with a light hop finish, with a light taste of caramel.

I could drink this beer all day. Goes down smooth, especially on a warm muggy, June night. Nothing special from Sierra Nevada but hit the mark for a good quality, easy drinking summer lager with enough hops to keep you interested.

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Photo of magnj
4.01/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Very pretty yellow beer, super clear, 1 finger foamy head drops quickly.

S - Quit clean but mildly grainy and vague butter aromas that play well with the mostly grassy and somewhat floral hop nose.

T - Like it smells it is very clean, and despite looking like BMC I can actually taste it. Butter comes through in the taste too a bit, then that Pilsner malt body; a kind of raw grain thing. Slight hops near the end balance it out.

M/D - Flavor lingers and its good. A little bit of grainy flour type feel as well as some slightly spicy hops. Overall a really clean beer that a newcomer can drink and not thing about it and an advocate can dissect and find impressive.

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Photo of GilGarp
4.29/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 Summerfest. 24 oz. brown bottle served cool into a tall pilsner glass.

Summerfest is a very pale yellow color with good clarity and thick head. The head settles fairly quickly leaving a bit of lace. Bubbles are like that of pop.

Aroma is nice and spicy with those german (saaz?) hops. This has a great pilsener smell.

Flavor is solid as well. A nice crisp malt backbone helps support a strong hop presence. Spicy, clean, and well balanced, this flavor is really pretty hard to fault.

Mouthfeel is light in body and moderately carbonated.

Overall, a very nice example of the style. I just can't figure out why it scores so low.

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Photo of aepb1
4.28/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A- Golden with a white head that stays for a while

S- Malts and some citrusy hops

T- Great light pilsner feel. Dry and crisp. The taste really excels and I can't wait for it next year. I just purchased the last 6 pack from my local packy...

M- Light bodied, crisp finish

D- GREAT summer beer and an excellent example of a pilsner!

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Photo of LuthersMug
3.26/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this beer on a warm spring night after a softball game. The beer poured clear and golden with crisp carbonation bubbling up. A nice crisp head lasted for the first few minutes and then disappeared. Very little aroma coming from the beer. The beer was crisp with slightly spicy hops. A decent beer for my palate.

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Photo of jampics2
2.83/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a tasting glass.

Looks OK, filtered as all get-out. Pale in color, a little head, but doesn't look like a knockout beer.

Smell is light Saaz hops providing earthiness. Malt doesn't make it, it's just that weak. Everything is bland and subdued. I thought Sierra was making beers with some personality, but this is the most vanilla thing I've had in a while.

My notes say "this beer = water, drink it to hydrate in between beers". I was just really not impressed with the flavors here. After having an excellent Czech Pils from none other than Gordon Biersch a few weeks ago, this is just too bland. Mild sweet malt, no real spicy bitterness or grassy qualities from the hops. Just plain Jane vanilla.

Mouthfeel was nice, best mouthfeel I've had for a glass of water. And, sure drinkability was good. After all, we're like 60-70% made up of this stuff.

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Photo of Ryan011235
4.29/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass on 5/17/10

Very clear goldenrod yellow in color. Poured 1/2 inch head that dissipates to a thin layer fairly quickly. Marginal retention & ok lacing.

It smells of pilsner malts, offering a mild toastiness. Hop spiciness punctuates the malts, most notably with overtones of lemon zest. Grassy notes are present as well.

Summerfest tastes impressive, especially in regard to hops. I find it to have a nice Saaz kick upfront; dry & spicy with a few hints of lemon. Pilsner malts are well-situated with the hoppiness. Some grassiness is woven in, too.

Lighter in body with carbonation that is nearly flawless in relation to the flavor profile - lively, yet not overly vigorous. The finish is dry, crisp & clean. Very nice.

Sierra Nevada did a good job with Summerfest, in my opinion. This is an incredibly easy drinking beer. Recommended.

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Photo of Dodt
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

picked up a six pack , finally decide to review this brew

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass
appearance straw colored with a thin lacing,
smell light malty aroma with a bit of lemon grass
light body with a crisp finnish , it not that bad of a beer after mowing the lawn or enjoying a bbq.

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Photo of BricksandPorter
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured one 12oz into an American Pint.

Pour - golden straw with a light yellow, almost pastel hue and crystal clear. Thick, rocky, bone white, one finger head with small and medium bubbles that creates a soapy effect. Lacing was splotchy and turned to a scum-like film after a few minutes. Carb looks good - not too much.

Nose - sweet, almost berry out in front. No hops, but a good combination of corn and malt. Gave a hint of mineral or metallic water. I find this happens with SNBC - not that i mind it, its just distinct.

Taste - a delicate, but distinctive pils feel. Not overwhelming but different in character. Hops are up front and meld well with the dextrin and the munich, and i like the combination of perle and saaz. Notes of banana and a finish that is slightly earthy. Nothing very overpowering here. This is a well balanced and crisp tasting lager.

Mouthfeel - medium-full body with nothing jumping out to define the character. I like the balance in the taste, but the carb might make it too biting in that respect. The bittering makes this enjoyable but overall, its a nice average pils lager.

Drinkability - Defenitely a summer session beer to be paired with light seafood or salad. Better for the end of the day beer drink than the "just got done mowing the lawn" beer in the early afternoon.

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Photo of dogfishandi
3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottler at fridge temp poured into a pint glass. pours a straw yellow color with a pure white 2 finger head that faded in a minute or two to a small foamy layer. has just an ever so slight bit of sediment floating around, but for the most part its clear. a touch of lacing and some average head retention.

not too special of an aroma, just a little better than most macros. smells of corn, grain, some lager funkiness, maybe a little lemony citrus, and just a touch of floral hops.

the taste reflects the aroma quite a bit. similar to a macro. corn and grain are the main players. some lager yeastiness. a touch of lemon zest and floral hoppiness, but hardly any bitterness.

a very light light body. a fizzy bright carbonation thats a tad high. a smooth mouthfeel, goes down very easy.

this one drinks really good, good session beer, exspecailly on the hot summer days, but due to the lack of flavor, ill prolly avoid this in the future and i wouldnt really recommend this.

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Photo of CHickman
4.14/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours clear yellow in color with a massive 2 finger foamy snow white head with good lacing that slid down the glass; you could draw with your finger in the foamy head (which I did), it was that thick and stuck around a while.

Smells of grass, hay, corn husk, hops, lemon, light malt and some grains; basically smells like a good German lager.

Tastes of sweet malt, hay, grass, floral hops, grains, lemon and faint caramel; this beer is very light and very crisp that finishes very dry with a slight bitter pucker. The finish was bone dry and left the hop spices lingering with the malt sweetness - a really nice finish. This beer is simple and complex at the same time, and it's very balanced.

Mouthfeel is light and crisp with a smooth feel, a very light body, and very high champagne-like carbonation.

Highly drinkable and very enjoyable, will seek this out again as this is an excellent summer beer that went down very easy. It flows down so nicely and I've had several today and this beer was consistently good all day and into the night. Another fine Sierra Nevada product that I highly recommend.

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Photo of goldbot
3.86/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pale yellow, lots of carbonation, very clear. Tons of fluffy, white head.

Clean malty aroma; very light with a slight touch of spicy and floral hops. Smooth and clean taste - malty with good noble hop character. Floral, spicy hop bite on the back end.

Light body with smooth mouthfeel. Overall a clean, balanced beer. Very drinkable. Perhaps a bit light on the hop flavor.

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Photo of BDJake
3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a clear golden hue with some light bubbles and a small head

S- spicy, floral hops, sweet yet grainy malts, a few yeast notes- good but not great

T- assertive hop presence, with a good malt backbone that all came together even more so than the aroma led me to believe

M- crisp, clean, and with a dry, hoppy finish

D- perfect for that trip to the rope swing, day at the lake or beach, bbq's, sporting events, etc.

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Photo of stewart124
4.42/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Carbonation is very visable. Straw in color with little head.

Floral nose with some grass and lemon in the nose.

Very crisp and refreshing. Finish is dry and oh so crisp. There is just a slight amount of lemon zest in character.

Super smooth and refreshing on a hot summer day. Lots of malt character and just a nice amount of noble hop bitterness. The zest and spice of the hops compliment the crisp maltiness perfectly.

A very nice example of the style and always something to look forward to in the summer.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
4.15/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle into Sam Adams sensory glass.

Pours crystal clear yellow, with a one-finger creamy white head, settling down to a soapy cap fairly quickly. Tons of effervescence coming up from the nucleation points on the bottom of the glass. Lots of nice lacing.

Nose is light - kiss of barely-there sweet pilsner malt with just a bit of grassy hops sitting on top.

Taste kicks it up a notch. Dry, grassy hops take center stage, with just enough pale malt sweetness to balance the big hop presence. Finish is firmly bitter, dry, grassy, prickly, crisp. No off flavors at all, very well-put together beer. Excellent.

Mouthfeel is crisp, light-bodied, dry, snappy carbonation with a bite that's just a bit coarse.

Drinkability is stellar. Perfectly balanced, no real flaws at all, just a great example. Top notch.

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Photo of grittybrews
4.2/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a pale gold into a Duvel tulip (how casual and summery, right?) with around a finger of loose white head that receded to a thin film.

Light grainy aroma with just a touch of lemon. Moderate carbonation and a nice light mouthfeel. Very smooth, crisp flavor with a further hint of lemon and a slightly sweet caramel malt profile. Very tasty, easy-drinking summer pilsner.

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Photo of DNICE555
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Nice calarity, lots of carbonation, frothy white head.

S - Citrus and floral notes.

T - Slight bitterness from the hops. A lager sweetness follows. Some nice citrus in there.

M - Very refreshing after a 5 miles trail run in the new kicks with zapps. Compliments a spicy jalapeno turkey burger, avocado, asparagus, and spicy brown rice very nicely. Zapps the chef.

D - Goes down very nicely. 2 of these after a nice run is perfect. A light 5 percent makes them very east to put down.

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Photo of MbpBugeye
3.51/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Super pale yellow with a perfectly white head. Lots of lacing is not hard to achieve with this beer. It throws sheets and sheets that cover the whole glass. Lots and lots of bubbles rising to the top, spawned by the laser etching in the Perfect Pint.

S- Mild nose. Lots of spicy hops. Plenty of lemon, fresh cut grass, wet dog and some cracker like malts. Lots of that classic Saaz stuff.

T- Loads of hops for a pils. They start out lemony, zesty and sweet. By the end they become piney and just bitter enough to give this a really nice bite. The only downside is that from time to time the finish becomes quite medicinal.

M- Light and sharply carbonated. Its just a totally clean feeling beer. Its somewhat dry but there are many pilsners out there that are much more dry. I think in this case this is a good thing. It helps this beer quench your thrist better.

D- Super easy to drink. I have some yard work to do so over the course of the day I dont think I will have any problem finishing the 6 of them.

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Photo of WJVII
3.33/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass this brew is a light straw color with a clean one finger white head. The aroma is full of malt, some breadiness, and slight floral hops. The taste is crisp and fresh. It is a hot day and as suggested this brew is fresh, crisp, and clean. Not too bold and there is a moderate bitter after taste but the overall feel is light and refreshing. I think there are better beers when needing your thirst quenched (as the bitter after taste leaves you needing to take another drink) but all in all a well balanced brew.

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Sierra Nevada Summerfest from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 52.1% out of 100 with 4,240 ratings
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