Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPA | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPASierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPA

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

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
ABV: 6.7%
Beginning gravity: 14.7 Plato
Ending gravity: 3.9 Plato
IBU: 66
Malts: Pale and Caramel
Yeast: Top-fermenting ale yeast
Bittering hops: Pacific Halertau
Finishing hops: New Zealand Motueka and New Zealand Southern Cross

Added by Todd on 05-07-2008

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Reviews: 1,344 | Ratings: 3,092
Photo of rightsideways
4.64/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

pours a nice clear copper w/ a good amount of head that clings to the glass nicely as it subsides. the first thing i was looking for with this beer was the smell which struck me as really similar to cracking a vacuum sealed hop pellet bag two seconds before dropping it into the kettle. Obviously it was a bit more subtle than that, but i'm really impressed w/ the freshness of the smell. it tastes hoppy as hell as well but is balanced nicely with the malt. This is one of the best beers i've had in a while! I've always been a fan of the trusty old Sierra Pale but after this I'm going to have trouble going back...

almost makes me want to buy a plane ticket for later this summer when their own Chico hops go into the next Harvest Ale...

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Photo of BatsforBeer
4.64/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 Harvest 2nd release, poured into English pint.

Two finger, khaki, frothy head dissipates slowly to an island of foam; cloudy, golden straw body with glints of orange. Except for the bits of sediment floating around which are probably my fault for a bad decant, this beer is beautiful!

Nose consist of strong floral and grapefruit notes with hints of strawberry

Hint of caramel biscuit malt upfront and way in the back no discernable sweetness, fades into a wonderful fruity, floral, tad spicy hop flavor with fruity esters that finish with notes of floral grapefruit

Beer is medium bodied in the mouth, slightly sticky and creamy

Wow what a beer! Probably one of the best APA's I have had to this date! Very refreshing and with such a wonderful taste and smell I could easily kill a couple of bombers. I cant wait to get my hands on next years!

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Photo of hooliganlife
4.63/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

i have no clue why i did not review this last year. it was hands down one of my favorite releases.

pours copper in color, very clear. huge white head that takes its time going away although turns quite puffy leaving behind intricate lacing. magnificent!

huge hop scents, primarily pine and citrus. very light malts

first taste is an absolute hop assault. huge bitterness from primarily pine and citrus notes. light earthy and grassy flavors emerge through out. malts are fairly hidden by the overpowering fresh hop flavor.

carbonation has some bite and adds some body. overall feel is pretty full and smooth.

i love this. one of my favorite releases of the year. i am quite happy they decided to release this again in 09. at under $4 for a 24oz bottle, there is no better deal! 5.0 all the way.

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Photo of labattblueribbon
4.63/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

great hop foundation with fruity mouth and aftertaste. prefect balance of hop in the finish. incredibly easy to drink, i loved this one. sierra nevada can hit and miss but this is up there as one of my favorites recently. similar maybe to ithaca flower power if i had to compare. bottom line, MUST TRY for any hophead or beer enthusiast.

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Photo of cdizinno
4.63/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a growler purchased at Green's - Piney Grove location in Columbia.

A: Clear, dark orange amber with a nice light tan head and moderate lacing.

S: Sweet malts. Floral and mild piney hops.

T&M: More malty sweet than I remember from last year's bottle that I reviewed. Very well balanced though. Mild citrus and floral hops that finish semi-dry.

The malts really mellow the bitterness to make this a really drinkable IPA.

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Photo of stewart124
4.63/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This pours a light copper color that looks almost apricot. The head is a off-white color and looks extra sticky. Huge head and lots of lace on this bad boy.

Smells is fairly big for an APA. Sweet notes but that general undertone of big fresh hops. There is also a spicy/earthy aroma.

My first thoughts are...delicious! Smooth, creamy and it packs a bite. Lots of citrus and spice that is coupled with a nice caramel maltiness. There is almost a butterscotch feel. My tastebuds are tingling here.

I'm very pleased with this Southern Hemisphere Fresh Hop Ale. The spice lingers in the back of my throat while the citrus is biting the tip of my tongue. All the while there is a sweetness from the malts. Really a nice beer.

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Photo of ccrida
4.62/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

24 oz. bottle poured into my Samuel Smith's Imperial pint glass, the 2008 Southern Hemisphere Harvest is a clear copper with very dense tan head that's long lasting and rocky, leaving chunky lace.

Smell is fantastic, big sweet, floral, spicy noble hop aroma, toasted malt.

Taste is very good, wow, a nice freshness, big Saaz like flavor that I love, nice citrus finish, sweet and tart, clean malt and lingering bitterness, minty belches. Very tasty!

Mouthfeel is dry and crisp, lending a lighter body.

Drinkability is high, wow. Nice price on this bigger then a bomber bottle, Sierra Nevada has the best special release IPAs in the biz, and this is my favorite of the bunch. The Southern Hemisphere Harvest is really brewed to my taste. I just had a bottle of celebration yesterday to refresh my memory, and as good as it is, I definitely like this one better.

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Photo of jsgpu90
4.62/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Premiere Gourmet in Buffalo for recommending this.

Displayed a nice clear copper color with a decent head when poured. Aroma was a very yummy (technical term) hop smell. Taste matched hop smell, medium carbonation bite, medium malt taste with slightly bitter aftertone. I really enjoyed this beer.

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Photo of CNeilP09
4.62/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

first i have to say "well done." once again, in typical SN fashion, a fine ale of monstrous hoppiness and subdued maltiness flourishes from this brewery.

rich amber red/orange beer with a taut cloudy off white head. almost looks like curdled milk at one point.

nose is similar to their 11th edition 2007 harvest ale. dry citric. sour dough bread loaf.

this ale is wonderful. not really voracious on the hoppiness, as would be expected from this brewery. but it's certainly muscular.

i must mention that there exists some unique hop medley in this one. there are some qualities in the hops that i'm not quite familiar with. yes, there are the typical dry grapefruit/citrus qualities, the ascerbic and almost caustic soft-burn of the dryness coming through in the finish, with the alcohol a distant second comer. forgot to mention a latent vegetal floweriness to it. juniper and a splash of some herb. guinea pepper, perhaps? come to think of it, this ale has many of the same flavors that are similar to the botanicals used in many high-end dry gins.

pick it up and try it.
sorry for the spotty and jumping review.

but i recommend this beer.

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.62/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought this yesterday...nice new label for the 2010 release. Pours a nice orangish amber color with a nice big head. This smell...This smell is amazing! All I get is fresh hop smell...It's the hoppiness you expect from Celebration, Anniversary, or Torpedo...but like all of them combined. This bottle is so fresh and it shows. The taste is like drinking the offspring of the beers I just wrote about above. The bitterness is not the slightest bit overwhelming and the taste is tasty as hell. I love this beer. The mouthfeel is great and my Russian River glass has some beautiful lacing on it. Great beer.

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Photo of ledemie
4.6/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

V-clear orange, nice and clear, nice medium bubbles
S-hoppy citrus/grapefruit, a hint of sweet , nice and mellow.
M-nice refreshing, medium body.
D- oh boy it goes down easy, a really nice crafted beer, I would recommend it.

Pairing - Spanish olives , Spanish Chorizo (not hot), fresh goat cheese.

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Photo of tmitch75
4.6/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

24oz bottle. Brilliant crystal clear amber color with huge white head. Sticky lace blankets the glass as the head slowly dissipates.

Powerful hoppy nose with resiny pine and mint. Smells a lot like a certain substance that some people might enjoy to smoke...

Strong taste too, fresh herbal and pine hop flavor. Sweet malt base is there but allows the hops to really shine.

Good medium body is just right.

High expectations for this one, and they were completely met. Bonus points for finding a way to bring us fresh hops in the Spring. I could drink this all night. Those guys at Sierra Nevada are damn geniuses.

Tasted on 5/28/08.

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Photo of beerdown77
4.6/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This pours a really nice dark copper color and has a fluffy head with some larger bubble on top. The lacing is pretty nice, but this beer really isn’t all that thick and sticky…which adds to its appeal in my opinion. The nose definitely does not come on strong, but the taste isn’t a crazy hop bomb either. This is really more of a perfect balance of tart/bitter hops, crispness, and smooth malt rather than a crazy kick in the tongue. Don’t get this expecting some flav-o-ninja to captivate your senses. This is just a solid medium bodied IPA that isn’t all weird and spitty. Drink this beer and you will say, “This is good…the taste is a good taste.”

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Photo of burnstar
4.6/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Clear copper with a long lasting rocky head. Nice lacing. Big piney citrusy hop aroma. Taste is thick resiny piney hops. Earthy. Very nice. Sweet malt backbone provides some balance. Pleasant bitter aftertaste. Full bodied coats the mouth nicely. Very drinkable even though it's big because it is so good. I'm surprised to find this classified as a APA instead of an IPA. Either way, an excellent beer.

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Photo of mdwalsh
4.59/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was very lucky to get this, I haven't been to the store in a while and just swung through to say hello, and low and behold...BAM.

Amber with an off white head, nothing wrong, but not particularly beautiful. A little hazy.

The smell is super dank, and not at all sharp. This might be one of the most weed-like IPAs I've ever smelled.

The taste too is not at all sharp. It's a bit vinuous, sort of sauvingnon blac like. It really reminds me of my first good experience with an IPA.

Good mouthfeel, refreshing but full

highly drinkable, hides the booze, again refreshing but gives you something to taste and think about.

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Photo of bonbini26
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap the Blind Tiger 06-19-09

Pours a clear copper color with a one-finger light tan head. The head recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving solid lacing. Amora is rich with malts, caramel and a balancing, citrus and pine. The aroma is very similar to the taste, a malty start with a citrus/pine bitterness. Some spice , but mostly citrus, haven't had such a well balanced beer in a while, in the hop/malt department. Great mouthfel of creamy, smoothness, with a great bitterness. Easy drinking for 6.7% and could def. polish off a few in one session. I had this once before from the bottle and don't remembering being this good. My guess is a fresh keg?

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Photo of getalife2k5
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

bottle. the color of iced tea with a floral aroma. my girlfriend, who is Korean, said it smells like Korean barley tea. it seems to be very well balanced and easy to drink. there are certaily hints of apricot and grapefruit with a bitterness that lingers on the tongue. the hops are continuously present and actually a little spicy, just as the description indicates. somehow seems much stronger than 6.7%. i could drink this all night! i also like the rustic label with the map of New Zealand.

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Photo of Pittsburgh
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very good offering from Sierra Nevada, I am really feeling this beer, great pour, nice foam, sticks around for a while, and lightly coats the top of the beer from beginning to end. Nice reddish/golden brown color.

The hops are amazing, they are very strong, they blow up, but the taste is amazing. There is obviously some malt in here, but you can't taste it much, there is a fruity taste, and a sticky quality to the beer as well, which only adds to the flavor. Some hoppy IPAs have all the hops and nothing else, but this has the best of both worlds. Also, has a bitter and dry flavor as well.

Well done, very well balanced, I am getting more. One of the better IPAs I've had in a while. Goes down very easy as well. Both refreshing and flavorful at the same time.

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Photo of ralree
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Rather transparent, great reddish orange color with an orange-white head. Head is 1-finger, has great retention, and absolutely glorious lacing.

S: Rich hop flavor - grapefruit, pine hops, a hint of dark fruit, barley, and surprisingly brown sugar. It doesn't get much better than this.

T: Nice strong hop flavor hits the tongue immediately. Lots of piney hops. More barley background than many IPAs. Nice and fruity to boot - has a nice grapefruit taste. Not too sugary, but the brown sugar in the background sweetens it nicely. Aftertaste remains super-bitter, and has a hint of smoky barley. One has to LOVE LOVE LOVE hops to like this beer.

M: Really carbonated, medium body, mostly dry with a little oiliness.

D: Goes down quickly. I could definitely drink this in larger quantities, and often.

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Photo of foxbat2500
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I know what you're thinking, Sierra Nevada - they are just good session material now. Nothing a hop head should really focus on.

Wrong! How did I not drink this for this long. Its really great stuff.

A- Nice light amber color. Thin head that stays. Nice lacing

Smell - hoppy the good stuff.

Taste- lemon & orange with pine. Taste lingers.

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Photo of billshmeinke
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Honey/amber in color. Frothy billowing cream head. Lot's of lacing. Impressive looking beer.

S: Floral hoppy aroma. Honey malts.

T: Big/bold hopped up flavor. Floral and vaguely fruity with a nice honey malt backbone.

M: Medium bodied. Clean finish. Refreshing.

D: You could easily session this one all night.

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Photo of popery
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've always wanted to like Sierra Nevada beers, and now I've found two beers from them that I love in under a week. This beer isn't quite as good as the other fresh hop ale, but it's a fairly close call. I marked down drinkability by half a point most to denote my slight preference for the Estate Harvest version. I'm not sure that I quite understand how I found both of these beers at nearly the same time because there's a little description on the bottle about how they have to go to the Southern Hemisphere to get fresh hops at this time of year. I would guess that one of them is a bit older than it should be (I did find one in a random shop), but they both taste great so I'm not complaining.

The beer looks great. It has a big fluffy head, a bit soapy, in a good way, like other fresh hop ales. It looked a lot like the other version but I wasn't exactly comparing them side by side, so I'm not sure about that.

Also similarly, the nose is a bit weaker than I would prefer. For me, it was more grassy than floral, which was nice when it came through, but I had to wait for a taste to get the full impact.

The flavor is just great. It's almost entirely hops and they taste like your chewing them fresh from the fields. The beer is well-balanced for the deluge of hops present.

The mouthfeel is very good. I know that I mentioned it before, but you also get the feeling of extreme freshness from the hops. It's a bit like having fresh fruit after living on canned for your whole life. The carbonation is smooth and doesn't get in the way. The beer almost comes across creamy for me.

The beer drinks extremely easily. Sierra Nevada knows how to make beer and puts their experience to good use here. I've never been a huge fan of their beers, but these two fresh hop ales are definite winners. I guess you have to like hoppy beers, but luckily, I do.

5/16/09 edit: 2009 version. Still an excellent beer. It's a punched up SNPA with the sort of mild bitterness that lacks any astringency that only seems to crop up in these wet hopped beers. The hops coat the mouth with the flavor of pine resin and a touch of grapefruit rind.

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Photo of sdmrtn
4.57/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Nice off-white head sticks to glass all the way down golden orange color.

Smells lovely citrus hops and malt

Tastes full and malty, bitter no sweet no bitter no sweet, bitter, sweet, bittersweet. I love the incredible balancing act. fresh hops are great

I would drink this beer any time any place any price... well maybe not any price

This a luxurious beer worthy to seek and find

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Photo of mempath
4.57/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

poured from the squatty SN bomber.

beautiful deep but bright apricot with a lively head that moderately clings and laces in slow motion. already looks world class.

nose has a hint of malt whiplashed with a stealthy hop pine/citrus focus. as the head settles into a denser sea of foam, the smell comes on a little stronger. not a hopbomb smell, but very balanced and a good indication of what might come.

whoa, more hops than the nose indicated. and simply perfect balance of hoppiness and malt. very similar to the Torpedo in looks and taste for sure. mouthfeel is what makes all this cohere with its perfect carbonation making it snappy yet keeps the potential cloying of rich hoppiness quick and refreshing.

this is, for anyone who appreciates hops, very drinkable. very.

interesting little story on the label, too.

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Photo of StephenRich
4.57/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

"Each fall, hops reach their peak flavor, bursting with aromatic oils that give ales layers of complex flavor that can only happen at harvest time. For us, fall comes twice a year - once in each hemisphere. This Harvest Ale features fresh hops from New Zealand - where fall occurs during our spring. These fresh whole hop cones are picked, dried and shipped to the brewery within days of the harvest."

So the genius minds at Sierra Nevada now take advantage of two harvest seasons, one that is their own, and one that is typically foreign to us. This is great stuff, and pure ingenuity. Great beer minds are at work here, and I have faith in this beer after enjoying both the Estate and the Wet Hop, two other of the four beers in this Harvest Series. The whole idea is the absolute FRESHEST ingredients. Who's going to complain about that? All have been pale ales, and so far all have been great. I'd be interested to see what happens if they bring other beer styles into this wonderful world of freshness.

This is a short but fat 750ml capped bottle coming in at 6.7% abv; pretty much where everything in the Harvest Series lands. I opened the Southern Hemisphere up cool around 8C (45F) and let it slide into a Sierra pint glass. The pour was smooth and very gentle. Only a small rumbling of foam built in the glass, eventually capping the beer with one inch of tightly pack, dense, yet airy soft white head. The beer was glistening in the light showing me a ballet of ruby pinks, rich oak reds, copper, golden browns and soft haze. Really a very nice stature.

The nose was gentle and soft, not really busting at me like I had expected it to. Light touches of sweet caramel, bright pale malts and a smoothly crisp hop sensation just barely tickle your nostrils. An inkling of floral, lightly spicy and herbal hops are there in the back. Even a bit of sweet tropical fruit makes its way in. But certainly not the rush of citrus and pine we have seen before from Sierra's Pale Ales.

This beer will effortlessly calm your palate in a smooth and elegant world of gently sweet malts, and aromatic fresh hops. The sensation here is pretty remarkable. All American Pale Ales should try to mimic this construction; it's just about seamless. Hops come through first showing more citrus than felt on the nose. A combination of zesty lemon and grapefruit blends with hayfields, pepper and spice to crisply refresh and entertain your tongue.

The malts here are definitely wallpaper in a beautifully furnished room. Its not what you are focusing on, but if not done properly if could ruin the whole experience. In such case, the malts are perfect. Soft and elegant, they flow in with light caramel, distinctly clean pale malts and a touch of brown sugar. All melting into a beautiful balance, and a creamy, sort of silky-lush mouthfeel.

The hops for sure play the starring role. This beer is more bitter on the palate than the other two of the series I have had, but it also shows confident restraint. What I mean by that is that you can taste the pine, hints of grapefruit peel, and touches of lemon grass. You can feel the elegant. Taste the flavor, and feel the elegance - this rather than feeling everything and being overwhelmed.

The finish is as you should expect; sensationally refreshing, somehow very smooth and calm, with a fresh ans short finish. This I would enjoy with anything grilled or fried, all sorts of pub food, big strong cheeses and beef stew.

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Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Hop IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
4.05 out of 5 based on 3,092 ratings.
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