Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

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

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop IPANorthern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop IPA
3,675 Ratings
Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop IPANorthern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop IPA

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

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Formerly Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale

Added by jmatthew on 10-15-2001

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,675 |  Reviews: 1,529
Photo of pdoran10
3.71/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada Northern Hemisphere pours out a clear but light brown color into a snifter. I get two fingers of off white head that have some legs and leave amazing lacing.

The smell is big fresh cut grass and herbs.

The taste does not follow the smell closely at all. I get a big dose of caramel sweetness up front with some slight resin and grapefruit citrus hops flavor in the finish. Malty and slight with the hop profile.

...Break for a sad face about the flavor :( ...

Mouthfeel is moderate to slightly heavy, but dry. There is moderate to slightly high carbonation going on here, which I like.

Overall a solid offering at a reasonable price, but the hops are a bit outweighed by the malt profile here which I do not like. Not how I would do a wet hop beer.

 771 characters

Photo of ReelBigwigFish
4.12/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into chalice glass, no freshness date, just 2011 on neck label.

A: Deep orange amber color with a fluffy white head. Lots of sticky lacing.

S: Oily pine hop aroma, herbal and floral. Smells pretty darn fresh. Bits of spice and a malt that makes itself present, but it's all about the hops here.

T: Blast of oily hop bitterness that doesn't quit (not a problem!). Bready malts play a bigger role than in the aroma, but still don't quite balance it all out.

M: Medium body, pretty creamy for how much hop flavor is going on.

O: I really enjoyed this beer, I'm anxious to compare the estate organic ipa to this one. Definitely try this if you have the opportunity.

 675 characters

Photo of Avantyawn
3.88/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Woah dude, this looks amazing! Deep amber brown with a ridiculous huge frothy head. Tons of lacing and fluffy multi layered goodness on top.

S: Fresh piney hop spice. Very spicy.

T: Bitter, very bitter. Numbing bitterness, smooth and creamy. Unbalanced, slight malty sweet finish, but the hops are front and center here.

M: Smooth and creamy as mentioned before. Medium mouthfeel, light carbonation. Almost drinks like a fresh german lager it is so creamy and fresh tasting.

O: Wow, I have to admit I am a hophead, and this is so bitter I am intimidated by 24 ounces of this beer! This is NOT a balanced beer! This is hops, hops, hops, and bitter as hell. An impressive ale, but so extremely bitter I am having a hard time really laying into this. Needs cheese pairing to balance out astringent lingering.

 812 characters

Photo of agomega
3.83/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a bottle in a pint glass.

Appearance: clear copper cooler with a super thick white head. The head looks almost like the head on a root beer float.

Smell: A pleasing hop aroma. Primarily citrus aroma although there are some subtle piney hints as well.

Taste: on the tongue the beer is actually surprisingly malty. I was expecting a lot more hops up front. They are definitely there but they show up primarily as a lingering, slightly astringent hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Moderate body. Overall very smooth.

Overall: An interesting and enjoyable beer. Worth picking up if you see a bottle around.

 612 characters

Photo of orangesol
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at The Fridge into a standard pint.

A - Pours deep amber orange with a nice two finger tall white head leaving concentric rings down the entire glass.

S - Smells of toasted caramel malt, citric and grassy hops, and some dulled citric fruit. This one is pretty malty already and it doesn't seem to be dieing down...

T - Starts off with quite a bit of sweet caramel malt slowly giving way to a mix of dulled citric hops, light fruit, and some light spice. The sweetness is really starting to take over but the hops are still trying to hold on. The finish is a mix of sweetness and light hop bitterness, lingering on the pallet for some time.

M - Medium body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Sweet, slightly bitter, malt that clings to the pallet.

O - I have always enjoyed this beer but when it goes down hill it goes down quick. Luckily this one was still teetering off the cliff so it was still pretty good. It is still a little too sweet for me but, when fresh, it is a very good beer.

 1,010 characters

Photo of TwelveOunces
4.26/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 22oz poured into Duvel Tulip

A- Dark amber/Orange with a thinly laced everlasting head, Shes a beauty.
S- A less then impressive smell, not very strong. This beers smell may not be its strong suit but it still isn't bad.
T- A Great taste, but I wouldnt expect anything less from a Sierra Nevada IPA. Slightly more malt taste then a typical IPA but its all in good balance here. Leaves a pleasant bitterness.
M- A more syrupy feel then their Torpedo or Celebration IPA's. Good carbonation and fairly easy to drink. I never know how easy a beer served from an intimidating 22oz bottle is going to go down so I was pleasantly surprised.
O- A great special occasion seasonal beer that I may get again before they are all gone. I will definitely be back next year, nicely done again Sierra Nevada.

 798 characters

Photo of abgba121
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: pours amber with about a half inch of head, leaves a strong and dotted lace down the glass.

S: fresh hops, and caramel malts. The hops are the strong point, piney, citrusy and resiny, Thick hop on the nose

T: Wonderful piney and resiny hop flavor start to finish, and finishes with a slight lingering bitterness

M: medium body, good carbonation levels.

O: great wet hop ale, wonderful hop notes perfectly paired with the malts.

 434 characters

Photo of wvsabbath
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type - 22oz bottle

Appearance - Copper tan/light brown, monster 3+ inch head, nice lacing.

Smell - Wet hops, carmal, fruity floral hops, oranges, lemon, pine, some sugars, slighty grassy, earthy, smells great.

Taste - Malty hop kick at first sip. Bitter and hoppy with lots of citrus fruits, and nice wet hop bitterness. Spices add more flavor, lemon orange and pine are a main flavor. Malts get buried at the end from the hops.

Mouthfeel - Medium thickness, hops coat tounge and leave it bittered. palette gets some malts but mostly get bittered from hops, and mouth is a little warmed from the alcohol.

Overall - Awesome, more bitter hoppy then southern hemisphere. Not quite as smooth either but very very tasty and hoppy. More malty then i expected, nice brew, will enjoy fresh every year.

 807 characters

Photo of Paymygasbill77
4.82/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a bottle into a standard beer mug.
Pours a crystal clear amber color with a thick, wonderful head that sticks around.

S: This beer smells of Lemons, oranges, grass and Pine. Plenty of a fresh hop armoma. Very few beers smell this good.

T: Sweet malt up front, strong, bitter hops and a finish of clean grass clippings. This beer has a very intense flavor that lures me into the next sip.

M: Heavy but not chewy. Fantastic mouthfeel. Not thin like an IPA.

O: This is one fantastic beer. I love it!

 522 characters

Photo of vandemonian
3.66/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Sierra Nevada Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop Ale is a darker IPA that emphasises the darker tobacco flavour of the hop. It's different, but I didn't love it.

A: Brown-orange colour and an excellent 1 cm head and excellent lacing. 4.5

S: Grassy hops with some chlorine. 3.5

T: Malty with woody hops. The finish is very earthy with some bitter tobacco flavours. 3.5

M: Foamy. 4.5

O: 3.5

 395 characters

Photo of whatthehull
4.06/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


A - Beautiful copper/red. Barely any head off white and creamy and minimal lacing

S - Very crisp fresh hops, deliciously sweet malts, smells of spring and fall. Crisp water, pine, leaves, citrus and again, yummy hops and malts!

T - Crisp, clean, refreshing water, very nice sweet malt, citrus, flowers, tree branches, pine, earth, grass, tons of hops and maybe a bit toasted?

M - Medium body, nice complexity, balanced, medium acidity and long finish

D - If you love hops and fresh, clean and crisp ale. This is your beer. I always enjoy this over the southern. This is a beer for hot and cold days. Reminds you of how vibrant ales can be

Final thought - The price is better than most seasonal releases and I think well worth it> not a beer to save, but to savor!

 778 characters

Photo of Spider889
4.46/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2011 Harvest.

A - Poured into a Duvel tulip. The head is very slow to rise, the type that can catch you off guard if you pour too quickly or into a smaller vessel. Slowly it grew and inched its way tot he edge of the glass, providing an ample dark sandy head of just more than 2 fingers in height. Leaves excellent speckled rings of lace, and retains a tall head for minutes on end.

S - Juicy resinous pine and floral grassiness. Beautiful and amazing to think that these bottles sit almost a month before seeing distribution.

T - Mild citrus notes of grapefruit and tangerine play well off of the stronger flavors of pine. The malt is still big in this IPA though - lending depth, body, and mild caramel sweetness. Grassier wet hop flavors are also playfully running in and out of focus. Juicy and spicy.

M - Thick and soft on the palate. Full bodied for an IPA with generous carbonation, though your palate will never be able to tell. Long lasting residual bitterness finishes each sip.

O - I love this series and have never been let down, even by older bottles. A perennial favorite.

 1,091 characters

Photo of ummswimmin
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I am always hoppy, er happy, to get a hold of a wet hopped ale. I knew that this one was rated pretty well when I picked it up.

When I opened the bottle, I could already smell the hops coming out of the opening of a bottle. You get that burst of citrus, pine, and floral hops. That was why I used a snifter glass to luxuriate in it.

The flavor was equally complicated, but it was pretty well balanced. You get all of the citrus and pine in each drink.

The mouthfeel was pretty bitter. Not really a surprise, but the bitterness was greater than expected for the style.

Overall I would recommend picking up a bottle. You should hurry because these beers go bad quickly and this beer is probably selling well.

 712 characters

Photo of DeltaGolfSierra
4.48/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A huge billowy off-white head sits atop a clear amber liquid. The head lasts to the last sip and leaves several rings of lacing down the glass. Wonderful citrus fruit cocktail scents (pear and green apple) are intoxicating; I can't stop sniffing. Taste buds are assaulted by a huge explosion of hops. Hop oils of grapefruit and pine grab hold at the start and never let go. Bitterness is high, and at bit harsh at first, but toned down a bit as my tongue adjusted. Smooth with perfect carbonation. Hop lovers must get a hold of this one.

 537 characters

Photo of tlazaroff
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark honey color, not quite orange or amber. The head is a cloud-like foamy goodness that is a very very light tan in color and offers a mix of tiny, small, and medium sized bubbles - lacing is generous.

S: Feint hints of citrus and floral hops coming through on the nose. There is a lingering background sweetness to it. As the beer sits and opens up the hop aroma really opens up with it, it becomes a wonderful combination of tangerine orange and grapefruit. This beer smells really, really good.

T: Upfront I get a nice firm bitterness, but nothing too overpowering, as the next flavor I get is the caramel that the malt delivers. The sweet caramel dominates the mid palate and the hops come through on the end to finish it out. Bitterness lasts well after the finish, but still I have remnant tastes of caramel and citrus to balance it out.

M: Medium body and lower carbonation than expecting, but it works really well. It drinks really smoothly.

D: This beer is only available in a larger bottle size (22oz? it doesn't say), and for me, one of these is plenty. It is a nice treat to have this beer and enjoy it.

 1,132 characters

Photo of philbe311
3.73/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Can't believe I'm just getting around to trying this one for the first time...

A - Two fingers worth of lively fluffy slightly creamy khaki colored head with lots of big chunky bubbles mixed in... Solid retention at the one finger mark as a slightly rocky top emerges... The color is a warm copper with lots of caramel undertones... Mostly still with only an occasional small stray carbonation bubbles...

S - A lovely but not overpowering hop forward nose... A mix of earthiness and pine dominate the bouquet... Perhaps some very faint citrus notes... There's an understated but sturdy malt backbone as well... The foundation is mostly dry biscuit and caramel...

T - There is almost no malt to speak of, just hops and more hops... There is an assertive pine character that dominates throughout... There are also some earthy tones mixed within... This one pulls no punches and doesn't attempt to achieve much in the way of balance and complexity... This one is all about the cascade and centennial hops...

M - Starts with a touch of lushness and finishes bone dry... In between this one displays a medium bodied and low but spry carbonation... A bit sticky with some resiny notes...

D - A solid straight forward wet hopped American IPA... Text book Sierra Nevada here... On the drier pinier side and definitely a worthy hop experience...

 1,345 characters

Photo of fsvan
3.79/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml into imperial pint glass.

A- Clear, slightly goldish orange. A full 5 fingers of stick head. Nice lacing.

S- Nose isn't as big as I remember on this one, but still nice. A decent mix of pine and citrus, with the citrus taking more of a lead than in most SN IPAs.

T- Piney hops. A really nice lingering bitterness that is just enough without being too much.

M- A little light of medium bodied. Easy drinking. Well carbonated.

O- A solid IPA that I enjoy a bottle of a year on release.

 495 characters

Photo of AleWatcher
3.68/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

reviewed from notes

Pours a bright copper with a creamy golden tinted head of two fat fingers. Very frothy and thick. Huge sheets of lacing forming nice rings as they settle.
Smells of some sweet malt with piney, spicy, floral, and grapefruit hop notes-- the grapefruit is less than I'd expected and hoped for. The floral and spicy are too predominant.
Sweet caramel malts with a light lingering bitterness appear on the flavor. Little citrus hop note hits, but then the spicey and floral notes take over.
As far as this goes, this is more drinkable than I had expected-- but it is just not good enough for the pricetag.
Feel is solid-- great carbonation. I was hoping this would be a little more bitter, but oh well.

As it warms, I get notes of toffee.

Overall-- this is a nice and enjoyable beer.

 801 characters

Photo of MountainBeagle
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Background: 22oz wet hop northern hemisphere from Sierra Nevada 2011, it's amber in color (6.7%)

First Thoughts: These hops are amazing, a very good IPA. They have definitely improved this beer!

The Good: Piney resinous hops take over this beer but not overpowering, a true gem of a beer. It is a lasting hop experience that will have you wishing for another one.

The Bad: can't find anything wrong with this one.

Bottom Line: Get it fresh, I would not buy this past February 2012 (unless it's a new batch) A top notch IPA.

 527 characters

Photo of kennylopez
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into a pint.

Appearance: a 2 finger thick white head floating above a clear copper orange hue color. the head faded two about a finger thick and left rings of layers of lacing.

Smells: a pine and citrus hops that has a sort of grapefruit hint.

Tastes: ultra sharp pine hop tastes. a citrus note is there but I can't really say what kind of fruit. A well balanced IPA and tastes fresh.

Mouthfeel: a fizzy carbonation with a pine and citrus stickness left in the aftertaste. the 6.7% is prevalent but smooth and enjoyable.

Overall: I like this IPA from S.N. and they never seize to impress me with there annual releases. I would like to see this in 12 oz bottle, but that's just being nit picky.

 717 characters

Photo of Gushue3
4.06/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. Really nice 2-3 finger head above an orangy amber body. Gigantic head retention that leaves tons of sticky lacing.

S. Big grassy and earthy hops. Sharp bitter hops in there as well as some citrus.

T. Big earthy bitterness thats grassy and piney. Big and bitter that gets me in the back under my ears.

M. Medium feel thats slightly syrupy. Medium amount of carbonation.

O. Nice wet hop beer here. Big piney hop taste that satisfies. Love fresh hops beers.

 462 characters

Photo of ehammond1
3.99/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On Tap

Pizza Port
Carlsbad, CA

A deep, glowing, beautiful amber with golden highlights near the edges. Thick, frothy, off-white head that lasts. Incredible lacing down the glass. Perfect!

Not particularly aromatic and actually relatively malt-centric aroma. I smell crystal and caramel malts predominately, followed by pungent and citrus hops, but the malts are certainly front and center here...
...though that all changes with the flavor! This is hop-centric! And so, so delicious! Rich, bitter, pungent, citrus, and piney hops! Oh my so good! Along with the perfect hop flavor is a nice balance of bready and caramel malts; it all comes together remarkably well.

Rich, creamy, thick, luscious mouthfeel! Sierra Nevada does this as good as anyone!

Great IPA!

 767 characters

Photo of OleJohnnieAle
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a rich copper color with a one finger foam that lingers a long while.

S: Fresh hop scent with minimal floural aroma. Slight citrus and carmel scents

T: Hoppy but not overwhelming, toasted malt warmth and mild bitterness.

M: Typical bittness with toasted malt ending

O: Great wet hop, really get the fresh taste of of it, for the price of a wet hop, can't complain!

Serving type: bottle into perfect pint glass 4.99 1pt8oz

 437 characters

Photo of danmouer
3.92/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

please excuse the typos in the following. i cannot type worth a damn on my iPad.

I have to admir that I am not a fan of the current mode of American IPAs. I love that SN is making a wet hop harvest ale from harvests of both the northern and southern hemispheres. That said, I really don't feel that an IPA is the best vehicle for showcasing freshly harvested hops.

On pouring this brew, the air and your nose will be filled with wonderfully fruity/spicy/earthy hops; especially thr American "C" hops. That is what I hope for from a good harvest ale.

It is a beautiful beer as well as a wonderfully aromatic one. Deep amber/weathered copper color with a persistent blanket of rich off-white foam.

But the taste bursts the bubble for me. The beer enters with a wonderful malt-caramel-fresf hop flavor that promises perfection, and immediately undermines itself with a big, oily, palate-numbing hit of maga-IBU bitterness. Yuk! How can you rnjoy a beer's fresh flaviors and aromas when yur mouth is being assaulted as though you had just let the bitterest medicinal pill desolve on your tongue.

I cannot grade the beer down as much as I'd like to, because it is to style. It is ehat most knowledgeablew beer fans expect. All I can realy say is that I believe the beer wuld have been far superior with a boxcar ful of fresh, wet LATE hops, and just enough bitteringv to reach, maybe, 30 IBUs at most.

I love allthe hope flavors and aromas, but I feel gagged by the bitterness.

 1,484 characters

Photo of manitouman84
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another solid brew by SN. Pours a clear golden amber with a thick satiating head. Gobs of lacing all over the glass as it is drank. Solid hop aroma, earthy, floral, more citrusy and fruit based than its southern hemipshere counterpart. Mango and citrus centered hop character, tangier and fruitier than its southern hemisphere counterpart. Bigger malt body as well, solid caramel flavor. Dry, crisp, descent amount of resin, solid medium bodied ipa that finishes clean.

 469 characters

Northern Hemisphere Harvest Wet Hop IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.16 out of 5 with 3,675 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.