Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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1,499 Reviews
Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop AleNorthern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale

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

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jmatthew on 10-15-2001

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Reviews: 1,499 | Ratings: 3,550
Photo of airheadmtrcycle
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Man, what great looking beer! Two fingers of rocky foam boulders. Dissipated a little quickly, but that's the only thing that kept the appearance from getting a 5. Tons of lacing were left behind. The ale is an opaque copper/orange that looks delicious.

I'm picking up some exceptional citrus aromas like oranges and tangerines, not the grapefruit and pine I was expecting. Perhaps a little sweeter than bitter. I don't think I've had the Yakima hops before. I really like the smell; I hope the flavor is half as good as the aroma. It's pretty close. The flavor is full of bitter hops but with this citrus sweetness that I'm lovin'. Perhaps a little caramel sweetness from the malts as well. Even though it features the fresh hops it's not out of balance at all. I can't imagine there's anything here a hop head wouldn't love. I don't think my description is capturing the wonderful essence that these fresh hops bring to this American IPA.

The mouth feel is medium with some fizzy, refreshing carbonation on my tongue. There's nothing about the beer that's tiring or cloying. Very reasonable ABV. On the surface it seems very drinkable, but I am going super slowly. I've been at it for at least 40 minutes and I'm not nearly halfway through my 24 oz. bottle. Tried to get my wife to share it with me but it was too bitter for her. I feel awkward rating its drinkability, but it is filling and satiating. It doesn't seem right to deduct points for qualities that make it so good.

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Photo of beveragesampler
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours a burnt copper color with three fingers white head. after the head disapates there is a nice amount of lacing.the aroma has subtile earthy and citrus characteristics about it. the taste is crisp, the light grapefruit notes from the hops dance off the toung. not too bitter. nice hints of smoke, almond, spice and citrus that all ballance well together. the aftertast of the hops lingers by the end of a glass. this brew drinks real nice. the ABV is just right at 6.7%. i find this brew to be very refreshing.

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Photo of Phatz
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Wow! What a surprise. I never expected a Harvest Ale from Sierra Nevada to completely awe me. I was floored. This is *great* beer!

Appearance: Served a clear amber copper with a thick creamy off white head.

Smell: Explosive west coast cascade hops fill my nose. It is rolling around around in hop meadow with sunshine on your back and a cool breeze. What does that smell like... this. Just take a whiff for yourself. Citrus floral fresh hop bitterness.

Taste: Fresh green zesty hops with a malt to balance creates perfect harmony in the mouth. Spices and sweet caramel and wood with the citrus herbal hops. Terrific!

Mouthfeel: Bitter and dry, with and overall zesty lively feel, and a medium full body to back it all up.

Drinkability: This is a nice way to get a hop fix in the Fall. Very easy drinking if you like your hops.

Hope this is helpful.

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Photo of jmbranum
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2007 Edition, from the 24 oz. bottle.

Gloriously good. It reminds me of a fresh hop beer I had while at the Bridgeport Brewpub in Oregon.

The dominant thing here is not surprisingly hops, however, what makes this special is that the hops are more floral and aromatic than bitter. I can pick up bits of resiny pine and something sorta herbal... well the only thing I know to compare it to is, well, the smell of an herb related to hops which will go nameless.

As far as drinkability goes, I don't think I could have too many of these. I love this beer but I could have only so many before my tastebuds are blasted to smithereens. There's a lot going on here and it truly is that good.

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Photo of donniecuffs
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Slightly hazy amber/copper color, with a decent head, and mild lacing. The best way to describe the aroma is Cascade hops on acid; super floral and citrus notes, which only became more potent in the flavor. Nice citrus and woodiness in the flavor, with a characteristic Sierra dry finish. Medium-bodied and decently carbonated. Fantastic sensation, spells a great session ipa. I will definitely be on the lookout for more 'wet-hop' ipa's.

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Photo of TheodorHerzl
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer poured a nice amber/copper hue with a thick dense tan head that was a full three fingers worth. The head had good retention and left a decent amount of lacing on my imperial pint glass. This is one of the best smelling APA's I've ever smelled. Strong scents of grapefruit and pine with slight grassy overtones. The scent is very pleasant and never leaves throughout the entire beer. The taste is just like the nose.Good malty backbone that balances out the hops very well and doesn't let them overpower the beer. It is a well balanced beer that finished very smooth with very little bittering. The mouthfeel is very smooth and almost a little creamy. It coats the mouth very well and overall is very quaff able. Drinkability also holds very high for this beer. It's fresh, tasty, and it leaves you wanting another one. Well done.

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Photo of Mic-Lee
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Deep translucent amber color. Smells sweet and chocolaty. Hop forward, but malts are present, especially in the beginning. Earthy hops, but delicate and sweet. Reminds me of a raspberry truffle. Medium body with medium carbonation. Sierra Nevada carbonation. Floral and a little oily; perfumy. Mild ashy burnt flavor in the finish with a touch of bitterness.

Overall: A very interesting and delicate flavor from this “wet hop” brew. Sweet raspberries to start, floral notes in the middle and ashy tones to finish, this beer has terrific complexity and a depth of balance that indicates deliberate, knowledgeable construction. The mouthfeel isn’t as profound as the flavors, but otherwise, this is a hell of a brew, and a treat for the pallet.

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Photo of blackheartbilly
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

24 ounce bottle poured into a sailor jerry pint glass.

A - reddish-orange hue, which upon pouring had a 1/2 head. As you sip, the head fades and leaves a nice lacing.

S - hoppy, but not the normal hop smell you'd get from a IPA or even a DIPA. Closer to a fresh cut grass smell

T - the hops don't hit right away, so I will say malt up front. The hops follow with a very unique hop variety. I am a hophead and even I haven't tasted this kind of hop before. Fresh, and green come to mind as I sip. Dry in the finish, and not thick like a DIPA. Very refreshing and unique

M - Very carbonated, at least in my glass. Very smooth and drinkable. Bitter, but the good kind of bitter that a hophead seeks

Drinkability - Very drinkable if you can find it. Wish they had this on tap, wish they could make a six pack. I would make this a regular, but it is hard to find. A great brew, definitely try it!

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Photo of BeerImmediately
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Let me start by saying that this $45 case is one of the best "price-to-performance" ratios I've seen in a while... for all of you recently "affected" by our lovely economy.

Pours a clear, reddish brown color with a thick, foamy head and nice retention - but no visible carbonation.

Slightly smokey quality accompanies a sharp, piney aroma.

In addition to the notably fresh "wet" hop flavor, this is balanced nicely by a sweet, "12 grain" bready malt backbone.

So terribly smooth, and grabs the tongue just right.

Is it possible to be TOO drinkable (given that this is an alcoholic beverage)? If so, knocked it "down" to 4.5.

Buy it. Immediately.

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Photo of reebtaerG
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bomber to a tulip glass

A-pours an amber color with two finger white head great lacing even on the second pour

S-great aromas of hops, juicy orange citrus,pine,and sweet malt

T-flavor has a great floral citrus hops and resiney pine

M-juicy mouthfeel that is refreshing it start sweet and finishes with a great bitterness. Dry slickly oil on tongue. Very crisp medium body

O-great IPA I was quite impressed especially with the everlasting head. I can't wait to try the Southern Hemisphere harvest!

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Photo of Dmann
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I think it is safe to say that this beer is a more palatable and less floral version of their Pale Ale. It looks allmost identical and feels quite the same as far as mouthfeel goes, but the big difference is in the taste. The hops are a bit more bitter in this beer and there are also some spicy characteristics to it that I cannot put my finger on. The malt sneaks in and gives a peek but this a hoppy beer for sure. I will definantly come back to this one if I see it on tap again.

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Photo of generallee
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 24 oz bottle into a pint glass. The label reads 12th release 2008.

Appearance: The head builds up tall, thick and firm from the slow pour. . It is light tan in color and has excellent retention. A nice small cap of foam hangs on until the last sip and as it slowly slides its way down the glass it makes lots of cool lacing that sticks to the glass. Under the head lies a beautiful deep amber colored body with just the slightest protein or chill haze.

Smell: The aroma has a piney resin like hop character with some citrus notes as well. Under that are some light bready/malty notes with just a hint of estery/yeasty red apple skin notes as well as a touch of raw grain.

Taste/Palate: Like the Southern Hemisphere Harvest, this Harvest has a good sturdy base of bready malt sweetness with a touch raw grain. Hop flavor is also quit firm and assertive. The hop character is that of tasty piney hops with some resiny and juicy lemony/grapefruit citrus notes. The bitterness from the hops is more than equal to the malt sweetness and lasts well into the finish. The palate has a nice solid medium feel with plenty of lively carbonation.

Notes: Another outstanding selection from Sierra Nevada with big bold hop flavor and nice supporting malt.

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Photo of brewerburgundy
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

24oz bottle.

A: Ruddy copper, rich, beautifully carmelly. A true tan head, a yellowish tint. Amazing lacing. Bourbon-like coloring. A good cap of head for the whole glass.

S: Fresh leafy piney hops. You pick up the malt carmel that makes it look so good. Grapefruit peel. It sends your olfactory sense into a bit of shock with the intensity, some of the bitterness seems to be imparted to the nose.

T: A perfect grapefruit based bitterness journeys up the tongue. Pine needles freshly pulled from a bough and thrust onto the back of your tongue and throat. In the mouth the malt is present in layers that keep things in check, just.

M: Good and substantial. Subtle carbonation.

D: All night, for the rest of my life. I'll buy at least two of these bombers every year.

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Photo of bbqwalt
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Found a case of 22oz bottles at Costco Chico after leaving the brewery. Death asterisks at Costco. which means it will be gone soon. I recommend checking the selection at Chico Costco before stopping by the brewery. They usually have four to five offerings from Sierra Nevada. I love it, should have bought 2 but unable to taste at the brewery. Wonderful beer and a great value compared to the Pliny the Elder that I purchased last Tuesday. Both great beers but the huge price gap.

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

24 ounce bottle, 2007 edition, 6.7% ABV. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a copper/red color with an inch off-white head. Lacing and head retention are both excellent. Smells mostly like citrus (grapefruit) and herbal hops with a bit of caramel malt too, the aroma is very nice. The taste is very good. Herbal and grapefruit hops dominate, but there's enough malt to balance it out. Mouthfeel/body is medium, and it's creamy and a bit oily. Drinkability is very good too, it's easy to drink and has just the right amount of carbonation. Alcohol isn't noticable at all. I'm very impressed with this beer. I'll definitely have to pick up another bottle of this soon!

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Photo of blackie
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: A generous off-white head grows from a moderate pour into a small snifter, falling very slowly and showing nice retention and good lacing. The beer is a deep amber in color. Not anything to fault here.

s: Straight awesome hop aromas upfront, striking resemblance to red grapefruit and pine, with a light-moderate caramel grain presence considerably concealed by the hops. Obviously very fresh, and quite clean/crisp. Smells very "Sierra Nevada"...maybe the Cascades.

m: Carbonation on the high side of medium and comprised of small bubbles, with a medium body. Very smooth and cleans up perfectly.

t: Great, seamless progression within each sip and swallow. A hop-tilted balance of clean but grainy caramel malt and tropical pine hops leads into a crisp, piney hop flavor and very pleasing moderate-high bitterness in the finish. Hops dominate throughout, expectedly of the piney grapefruit PacNW variety. Can't say exactly what the wet hopping does, but everything seems very fresh and crisp and the beer carries one of the more pleasing hop profiles I've come across. I would like more malt, but I can't hold it against SN, as this beer is designed to showcase the hops.

d: Very easy, each finish well preparing me for another sip. Thinking generally, I believe a very slight increase or variance in the malting is all this beer needs for some easy 5s. On the other hand, this particular beer may be best as is, glorious hops way forward. I will definitely be purchasing another.

bottle from Whole Foods Raleigh

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Photo of VaterRoss
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 batch, 1.5 pint bottle into New Belgium snifter

Appearance is a orange/copper with a thick almost soupy off-white head that has some massive clingage and stays around for over an hour! Smell is lots of oily hops, primarily of the grapefruit variety but also some pine. In the taste hop tastes emerge similar to the SN Pale Ale but much more intense. Lots of bitter grapefruit and a bit of resin. Malt is light tasting but fairly assertive. Mouthfeel is medium in body and carb and a bit thick, but not syrupy.

A very well balanced DIPA that is surprisingly understated allowing lots of hops but not in a way that challenges you to do anything but sip. Super hopheads may find this weak but this is perfect for me. An absolutely beautiful looking DIPA that I would have more than one of.

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Photo of berley31
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured with a large, white, thick and creamy head that had great lasting traits and excellent lacing in sheets on the sides of the glass. Body is a nice, copper color and very clear.

S: Awesome, citrusy smell that is also very strong in hops. Definitely has that 'wet hop' aroma that is so indicative.

T: Lots of citrus in the beginning, with a very bitter, enjoyable finish. Long duration for the flavor. Doesn't let up at all as you continue to sip on it, and the bitterness does not get tiresome at all.

M: Creamy texture, with a medium-to-full body and average-to-lively carbonation.

D: I haven't been let down by a Sierra Nevada beer yet, and this is no exception. In fact, I'd go as far to say it's my favorite SN beer to date.

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Photo of EPseja
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served from a 24oz. fatboy bottle in my SABL glass at between fridge and cellar temperature.

A - Glowing, hop-infused orange-amber with some viscosity and action in the glass. Pushes up a one-inch light cream colored head; fluffy and odd-bubbled. Head retention is good, never revealing the surface of the beer, and lacing is sticky, coming in sheets, webs and rings. Lovely!

S - Crispy west-coast hops. More pine than citrus. A honeyed underbelly of malts. Fairly obvious without anything unexpected.

T - Sweet and inviting with a perfectly toasted malt character that lingers well into the back of the throat, dancing with the bitterness that starts to push through as soon as the beer passes the middle of the tongue. An excellent balance. Dominating hoppiness rules the back of the throat and the swallow. Aftertaste is dry, bitter and slightly astringent, with an air of fir-like greenery.

M - Thick coming in, providing a very tingly tongue-feel that surprisingly doesn't numb very much. Frothy and creamy like home-made whipped cream (well, hops-infused whipped cream). Swallow is throat-coating and full of body without being gassy. Excellent!

D - Dare I say that this beer smokes regular SNPA? Yes, I do. It's got it where it counts in all categories, and it's a breeze to continue sipping without stop; full of flavor and character. Well done, Sierra Nevada!

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Photo of orfeu
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tawny, crystalline amber. Steady, driving streams of carbonation. Ecru foam, all fat, chunky, pock-marked and sticky. Floral, citrus, and pine aromas are fresh and fully present, yet more understated than brash dry-hopping would produce. Bitter grapefruit pith and lemongrass. Slightly sugary background. Lightly toasted bread in the aftertaste, with grassy, piney, raw hop burps. Fuller mouthfeel than expected, with a medium-heavy slickness to it. Most certainly a fresh-hopped brew to be reckoned with, and by far the best I’ve ever tasted. Love the 24-ounce overgrown stubby bottle, too.

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Photo of Celtics76
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I wasn't planning on buying this today, but $4.99 for a 24 oz. bottle from a great brewery is a good deal to me. For those Rhode Islanders reading this review, Bottles on the East Side has it.

Pours a clear copper with a healthy half inch of head. Quickly reduces to a thin layer. Smells piney more than anything, but also very floral/citrusy. Very well balanced flavor - the pine/floral/citrus notes come out with a solid carbonated bite. Crisp. Good lingering hop bitterness. The bitterness is not overpowering though - quite easy to drink for a seasoned IPA drinker like myself.

Interested in trying other wet hop ales. Founders Harvest is up next - this one is a tough act to follow.

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Photo of shawnsmith1
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 Vintage

A: Pours slightly hazy, rich copper into tulip. Nice two finger tan head with impressive retention and lacing.

S: Spice. White pepper laced caramel. Just a touch of pine. The "fresh" wet hops attributes have definitely become subdued over the past year, allowing other attributes to take the forefront as the beer develops in the bottle.

T: Malt forward. Bread crust and sweet caramel on a firm backbone of grapefruity bitterness.

M: Medium bodied, nice creamy carbonation. A touch resinous in mouthfeel, but even this seems to have mellowed over the past year. On the finish, cocoa nibs, toffee, cayenne and white pepper eventually fade, leaving a nice bitterness that lingers long.

O: Very enjoyable! This beer has in no way diminished with a little age. The aromatics and the resinous mouthfeel imparted by the wet hops have clearly faded, but only to give way to other characteristics which are equally enjoyable. Would be worthwhile tasting this against a fresh 2011 vintage.

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Photo of BradtheGreat7
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Large 24 oz brown sierra Nevada style bottle. Poured into tulip balloon style glass.

A - a gorgeous off white head sits on top. Very thick and fluffy with amazing lace. This head and lace are maybe the best I've ever seen. Simply world class.

S - well balanced aroma. Bready and grainy like scents with a good amount of fresh hops. Has a woodsy appeal to it. The wet hop aroma is very much there, but isn't a knock you out overpowering bite like some IPAs I've had. Hints of sweet caramel whiffs as well.

T - lots of pine and nice grapefruit like notes that give it some somewhat bitterness. Much more malt flavors compared to other citrusy IPAs which isn't a bad thing. A touch of caramel just before the finish. The finish was a bit overly bitter and seemed to linger, but the spices are nice.

M - upper medium to heavy bodied brew with a perfect dose of carbonation. Left my mouth wanting more.

O - id like to thank my local craft guru, Bob W, for pointing this one out to me, and to Sierra Nevada for shipping this seasonal to my area. This was a very good beer. It's more of a well balanced hybrid of sorts, but has enough hop character as the highlight to be considered an IPA. This brew really surprised me in the sense that I'll buy another one of these this autumn season. I rarely ever drink IPAs in the fall. A real winner here. Everything anyone could ask for in a good IPA. Wouldn't expect anything different from SN.

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Photo of magictacosinus
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a 709ml bottle (!) into a pint glass. This is the 2012 release.

Reveals a deep amber color, a large fluffy head, and in my view, looks kind of like a SN pale ale on steroids except with less carbonation. Looks exciting!

There are huge pine needle notes, fruity yeastiness, as well as a zesty aroma that is thoroughly present. Slightly malty, yet hop oil oozes through this thing. Sugary, and caramel and honeycomb aromas make it warm and vibrant.

Far yeastier than expected, yet SN really nailed making a semi imperial IPA here, if that's what they were going for. The yeasty astringency makes it wild and fully-flavored, and the hop aromas range from grapefruit to oranges to apricot tarts. There's a thick, juicy flavor throughout that gives the impression that this is not really beer but some kind of juice/hop nectar. Excellent, unnoticeable carbonation, although the alcohol really starts to kick in faster than expected.

A truly a sensational, flavorful beer, and proof that SN really knows what they're doing when they overload their hops. This is bound to become one of my favorite releases from any notable craft brewery.

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Photo of AmitC
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So excited to open this, and that too on a friday night.

Poured from the 1pt 8 fl oz bottle into my large snifter.

Clear red amberish color. One finger thick off-white head that dissipates and turns into a thin persisting head. Excellent lacing. Quite a large number of bubbles. Very clear reddish ruby tint. Perfect.

Aroma: Citrus upfront. Grassy and fresh hoppy aroma. Pine notes are abundant as well. Good, rich and complex aroma that fills your nose with aplomb. Malts take a backseat.

Taste: Bitter hops upfront. Very clear wet hopping. Malt just lessens the effect of hops and otherwise is non-existent. Dry bitter finish. Should not be very high on IBUs but is delicious. Lingering hop taste in the mouth that is very distinct from dry hopping. Some grapefruit after taste.

Mouth feel :Medium bodied. Oily feel. Very resiny and extremely smooth finish. Moderate carbonation.

This is a phenomenal beer. With SN, you never are disappointed. Good bang for the bucks. I just love it.

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Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
4.17 out of 5 based on 3,550 ratings.
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