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Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

1,565 Reviews
Sierra Nevada Summerfest LagerSierra Nevada Summerfest Lager

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

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

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,565 | Ratings: 4,095
Photo of sauron681
2.96/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden with low carbonation, good head but dissipates very quickly. Lite lacing slightly fizzy.

Typical european hop aroma and aftertaste. Lightly sweet and tart, yet has a flat taste to it. Finishes harsh and bitter/dry. Crisp going down. Long linger in the mouth and light hints of malt.

This is your typical true pilsner

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Photo of AleMan66
2.98/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

I poured this from a bottle into a clear teardrop glass. It pours a clear golden with a one finger white head. The smell is a bit skunky. I'm not seeing that others have made that same observation. The taste is spicy and hoppy, very average. I'm not impressed.

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Photo of risendragon
2.98/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

From a 6 pack bought with surplus grocery money. I've tried Sierra Nevada's Extra IPA and Winter varietal in the past and was rather impressed with both. This one, not so much so.

A- Light honey color, head dissipated quickly.

S- Grassy, hay, some floral notes, some citrus. Not as bold as advertised.

T- Similar to smell but again, not as bold as advertised. I get a nice citrusy, hoppy note at the finish and that is quite frankly this beer's only redeeming quality.

M- Crisp, refreshing, the kind of brew I would drink after working in the sun all day (if it were not for the sub-par taste).

O- I was expecting more from this brew, thus the lower scores. As a fan of Sierra Nevada's IPA styles I think I will stick to those from now on. But, this is a good summer beer after a long day's work. I guess one could call it a "starter" beer for someone looking to get into microbrews.

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Photo of Sixpoint
2.98/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Without a doubt, this is the weakest offering I've ever had from Sierra Nevada. Was the goal with this beer just to make the least offensive beer as possible?

My sample poured a clear straw color that left a fizzy white head that lingered for about 20 seconds. No lacing.

The aroma was a dry maltiness with just a faint hint of hops, they seemed of noble origin.

The taste was balanced yet weak, not too much delight in the senses.

The mouthfeel was light to medium, and carbonation was high. Was intendend to be a volume beer, and although drinkable, the last time I ever try this one on-tap.

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Photo of feelmefoam
2.99/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Saw this at the local beer store still on the shelf, a single was only a dollar so I figured I'd give it a shot, even if it has been a few months since its best by date.

The beer pours a very clear lemon drop yellow with lots of lively carbonation running up the glass. The beer pushes up a nice one inch ivory-colored head that has a pretty long retention, then leads to some nice sticky lacing on the side of the glass.

This is where the age comes in a bit. I can smell a slight sourness/skunkiness in the beer, but beneath it I can still make out some pale malts.

Same thing with the taste. Where some nice clean, grassy hops might once have been (I imagine), I now taste a slight sourness that makes the flavor of this beer unfortunately similar to a Miller High Life with some pale malts added.

The mouthfeel is good, especially for a summer beer. It's nice and light with a refreshing amount of carbonation and a crisp finish.

I definitely need to get this when it's in season. I can see the potential now, because it isn't a horrible beer right now even when it's a bit skunky. I'll give it another shot and re-review later.

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Photo of dlcoblen
2.99/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Summerfest started with a decent head but recedes within minutes, still lacing is somewhat nice. The color is golden yellow which resembles straw.

S: The aroma is tough to gather any sort specific elements. To me there was a heavier yeasty smell, maybe some lemon but other than that Im not getting much from the smell.

T: Honestly all I really taste is a grainy/biscuit flavor through out the whole gulp. There a hop presence at the beginning but the rest is malt. For this reason I think the drinkability is easy, nothing complicated here and is quite refreshing.

M; Light body, carbonation is refreshing, not thick or thin it has a nice balance.

O: The name summerfest suits this beer perfectly. Its easy to drink, has flavor and is light. It was nice to try but I will stick with Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere for the summer season.

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Photo of slassy
2.99/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours a very light and marigold yellow. Hardly any foam, just some traces on the top that fade quickly.

S: Mainly malt mixed in with some floral tones...which almost smell like freshly mown grass.

T: Not as malty as I anticipated. Some mild sweetness, but no other flavors are too pronounced to this tongue.

M: Extremely light and 'fluid'. Carbonation level is perfect- enough at the beginning of a sip to be interesting and reminiscent of soda but not annoyingly strong like you get with many beers.

O: Very refreshing, and not by bad by any stretch, but certainly forgettable. Wouldn't be a bad session alternative to drinking megabrews.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of Jeffreysan
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a golden yellow color with a finger and a half of white head that quickly dissolved into a thin lacing of foam that covered the entire top of the beer.

Aroma: Malty with some slight citrus notes as well as some floral notes of freshly cut grass and clover.

Taste: Like the aroma this beer is malty, with some slight citrus notes finished by floral hop bitterness, that’s balanced with some sweetness from candied sugar.

Mouthfeel: crisp and clean with some good carbonation to tickle the taste buds.

Overall: Nicely crafted beer with some good citrus and hops that provide a good, refreshing beer, but there are other summer beers that I like much better.

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Photo of MaGno
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: pours a light golden color with small to medium head.
Has medium to large bubbles present from initial pour to finish. The head pours to about 1/2" and dissipates within 30 seconds to a light lace.

Smell: Light smoky malts with herbal, grassy and citrus hops. Very clean smell. No alcohol smell to speak of.

Taste: As expected, grassy and citrussy with a slight alcohol finish.

Mouthfeel: Smooth light carbonation turns to a bitter dry finish. Almost a slight metallic taste at finish.

Drinkability: I enjoyed this lager for what it was, a nice summer seasonal. Good for a hot summer day although it may become too bold after just a couple of beers. I would probably have this one again but would not go out of my way to hunt for it. Just a nice average summer lager.

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Photo of SometimesIfart
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Sierra Nevada Summer fest.

A Sierra Nevada lager..? Guess we shall see how this one turns out eh.

Look - Pours a murky shade of yellow with a small head that disappears as quickly as it comes and only leaves a slight amount of cloud formation. Carbonation appears to be pretty low. 3.

Smell - Alright maybe I'm just not getting the joke here. It smells like a cleaner version of insert generic adjunct lager name here but there isn't anything else. 3.

Taste - Well it is certainly a clean beer. Bit of creamed cornyness with a very apparent and dominant grassyness and the finish is a touch bitter to my surprise. But overall it isn't much different than a typical lager. Rather boring actually. 3.

Feel - Body is fuller than expected with an extremely high dose of carbonation. No creamyness and feel predominantly watery. 3

Overall - With Sierra Nevada I at least expected some hop presence but I guess they couldn't pull it off. This would go over fine with an average beer drinker but from these guys I expected more. Would I have it again? Meh I guess, but a Budweiser product could do the same thing for less money. Where is the spicy hop presence the label promises? 3.

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Photo of abgba121
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: pours a very clear yellow, with thin head that is very quick to dissipate

S: clean malts, slightly fruity almost banana and very faint hops

T: Crisp, dry and malt. I do not detect any hops whatsoever, finishes dry

M: average beer and carbonation

O: decent beer, refreshing, crisp

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Photo of JWU
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a curved pint glass.

A- straw yellow, with a half finger of fizzy, slightly soapy head. Looks like an average pilsner.

S- smells like a middle of the road pils as well. Slightly grassy, some hay, and a hint of sweetness likely from the pilsner malt.

T- Follows the nose, but is quite heavy on the grassy hop notes, and not in a particularly good way. The bitterness just lingers a bit too much and gets a bit metallic on the end.

M- light bodied as it should be, and quite dry on the palette. Again, pretty middle of the road.

O- Meh. I wouldn't buy it, but wouldn't turn it down. Certainly many other pilsners out there I would rather have. One of the few efforts from SN that underwhelms.

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Photo of jettjon
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From a 12 oz bottle into my Sam Adams glass (thanks, guys!). Pale yellow color with minor head of tan foam. Nose of bready malt and a touch of crisp hops. In the mouth, a bit more bready than expected along with subdued hops yields ho-hum flavor. Crisp and quenching but nothing special. Drinkable? Sure, but after one there's little to bring me back for more. Discovering that this is a "Czech Pilsner" is even more off-putting; it's a rather weak interpretation of the style.

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Photo of MoreThanWine
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a 2" white head. Clear pale lemon yellow color. Really not much of a smell at all at first and as it warmed all I got was grass. Fairly standard BMC taste. In fact I don't even detect any of those common attributes of spice or citrus so often worked into summer brews, this really is just typical BMC. Crisp finish but not a standout. I expected more from Sierra Nevada.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 6/28/08. Bottle. Pours a clear golden yellow with a small white head. Aroma and flavor of light fruits, wheat, with a spicy kick in the swallow. A little skunkiness as the beer warms. Decent lager.
Aroma: 6/10
Appearance: 3/5
Flavor: 6/10
Palate: 3/5
Overall: 12/20

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Photo of DuncanIdaho86
3.01/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

After seeing this fly off my shelves at work I finally decided to take a step back from "researching" more esoteric beers and try one. Overall I was happy I did.

Right after the first hiss of popping the cap I poured it into an tall old fashioned pilsner glass. The silly tall one.

The Summerfest fell nice into my glass, complete with modest foamy head resting on an almost transparent golden yellow body. Anyone would be a happy camper seeing this on a summer day.

The aroma was muted - kind of smelled like a rolling rock or a pilsner.

The taste was something I admired. A surprising bitter bite rarely attributed to summer lagers. The aftertaste lingered but was enjoyable.
Enjoyable enough to crack open a second.

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Photo of dwarbi
3.01/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Looks real nice. Thick, creamy, bubbley, white head. Settles to a moderate size. Provides very good lacing. The beer itself is colored a plain yellow. Smells a little spicy. Also a little chemical. Similar taste. Feels a bit unpleasant on the mouth, but not too bad. A little chewy. Not the worst beer. Very mediocre.

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Photo of steve8robin
3.01/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz bottle...

A: A perfect crystal clear light golden color with a small 3/4 inch light white head that fades quickly to minor lacing. Light an airy head. Decent.

S: A nice traditional malty scent throughout. Eh.

T: A very light corn like malt upfront followed by a mild breadiness. Blends in a watery taste on the back. Ok.

M: Light body with a great carbonation. A malty backend. Good.

O: All in all, I'll start by saying, I'm not the best for judging these styles. I'm just not used to hunting for the subtle flavors that are characteristic of this type of style. I love bold flavors, so these subtle flavors kid of throw me off. I'm sure, according to stylistic standard, this is a great pilsner. However, according to my standards, I'm not really impressed. If you like lighter beers, you will enjoy this. You can pound this beer!

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Photo of Jericho7x
3.01/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

I am still considered a novice at beers, but I did not like this much. After the initial taste, I got kicked by a sharp peppery? taste. Did not even come close to the reviews I see listed. However, I tried this on 5/14/15, and most of these reviews are older. Maybe they changed the formula. They did change the look of the bottle. Notes on wrapper say it is a Czech pilsner, but it also says it is a lager. Don't know.

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Photo of mountdew1
3.02/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into shaker pint glass. Had a nice head, made of large bubbles, that dissolved very quickly. Color was a very light amber. Smelled slightly bitter, slightly hoppy, slightly grainy. Tasted a little like sweet rice. Tingled the toungue, but still went down smoothly. Made a nice summer beer on a hot night.

2007 Edition According to the Label

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Photo of Golden2wenty1
3.03/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a single at Woodman's West here in Madison.

Pours a crystal clear golden yellow with a few fingers of white foam that melt to a light skim.and spotty lacing. Nose is a bit off-puttingly musty/skunky/adjuncty with a hint of light fruit in the background. Taste starts of with the musty malt husk, a hint of skunk and spicy "fruit" bringing up the rear. Mouthgfeel is crisp and smooth, with a summer-like drinkability one might say. Nothing special here, a slightly above average micro/macro lager.

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Photo of moulefrite
3.03/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A rather average offering that pours a light goden and does proffer up a bit of head and some splotchy lace. Some freshness is noted on the nose, featuring citrus hop, and sweet malt, all way in the background. The mouthfeel is light and mildly brisk, yet not really that refreshing going down. Flavors mimic the aromas with lemony hop notes and a kiss of sweet malt. Not a bad beer at all, but I don't find it too Summery personally.

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Photo of anchie
3.03/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Poured into a pilsner glass

A) Golden yellow with two finger quickly dissipating head
S) wheat with a metallic note
T) Malts with bitter metallic finish
M) Dry, prominent carbonation
O) Uncharacteristic of Sierra, would not buy again, but overall a typical pilsner

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Photo of heygeebee
3.04/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

From Leura Cellars.

Pours pale straw, very clear and light, very little lace.

Lovely aromas of pineapple and floral hops.

Taste is in lager territory firmly, but an astringent aftertaste suggests poor transport.

Mouthfeel not quite carbonated enough.

Ok beer but not a great one - drink fast

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Photo of PSUDREW
3.04/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Meh, not a fan of the hype. Medium gold in color, some head, and moe then enough lace. smells is so so, something didn't seem right, dunno. This isn't overly malty, like most lagers, but something didn't seem right. I mean the hops were adding a pecular taste. It's mouthfeel is OK, but all in all, this isn't very special IMO

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Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 1,565 ratings.
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