Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale | SweetWater Brewing Company

757 Reviews
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Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale AleSweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale

Brewed by:
SweetWater Brewing Company
Georgia, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 01-29-2001

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Reviews: 757 | Ratings: 3,545
Photo of jasadewi
3.15/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A: Dark yellow color with nice white lacing down the glass.
S: Very faint hop smell.
T: Mildly hoppy, with little supporting tastes.
M: Light bodied.
O: Another decently good Sweetwater product.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.43/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Best before date of 11/23/16

Appearance - Pours slightly hazy and dull gold in color with a quarter finger, off-white head that quickly fades to a thin, broken layer of surface suds.

Smell - Kinda smells like lemon cake. Hint of soapiness too.

Taste - Fairly bland flavor. Mild lemon. Mild breadiness. Faint grain. Favors fade quickly and don't leave much of a finish, much less an aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied with fair carbonation. Slick, slightly silky texture gives this a smooth

Overall - Fair drinker, but mostly this is a pretty weak flavored pale. I know they can do better than this. It may be time to retire it and come out with an APA that has actual something that'll actually excite the taste buds, because this doesn't do it.

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Photo of grawp57
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Had it at Chili's, no idea what it was. Clear and light in the glass with a nice head. Aroma is pleasant, but nondescript. Smooth on the tongue and easy on the palate. Very tasty, one of the better pale ales I have had in a long time.

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Photo of TBoneJones
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this once or twice before when it was something out of the way to get, but now that I see it's in TX I'll try it again.
I recall it being a light pale ale with subtle flavor, and that's what it still is. Golden copper beer is on the thin-bodied side, light to moderately carbonated with a faint hop/ fruit aroma. Barely there.
Taste is basic pale ale, and not bad at all considering. It's just a hint of lemon/ citrus peel, and very light/ somewhat sweet malts. It is somewhat crisp.
Really it's like having a rough sketch-pad of a good APA before it's finalized. A good start, but lacking edits and necessary filling-in the blanks.
It's something I'd drink again after mowing the lawn, if it were in the fridge.
But aside from that, I'm not seeking it out for its flavor, which is lacking.

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Photo of PASTOR_at_DAChurch_of_IPA
4.64/5  rDev +27.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Sweetwater 420, brewed in the batcave, is the headiest of southern brews. The 420 has the feel of an IPA with a mildly extra sweet character and subtle headiness.

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Photo of ajm5108
2.75/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

What you'd expect from a shelf pale ale, it has a good balance between the hops & the malt but none of the flavors really stand-out beyond a little bit of grapefruit peel / citrus.

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Photo of dsa7783
3.39/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Single bottle copped at Total Wine and More. Basically, your average, run-of-the-mill pale ale. Nothing special. Pours a copper hue with minimal head. Faint notes of grapefruit linger here and there. Smooth, refreshing taste. Decent.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap. I enjoyed this beer. It is a West Coast Pale Ale. Plenty hoppy but not as aggressive as it's bigger brothers. Smells and tastes grassy and citrusy. It never overwhelms. Drinkable. I had several if these in Georgia. My preferred beer.

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Photo of Beerwithoutallthehops
1.22/5  rDev -66.5%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

I continue my tastings of hops-overloaded "beers".

This beer has all hops and no malts. Another reviewer wrote that the malt was noticeable.

No they are not. All I smelled and tasted was hops. Typical USA hopfest. Craft? Nope, just hops 24/7.

Another reviewer wrote that it tasted astringent. Excellent word choice. I could not determine the best description for the aftertaste, but astringent is more than close enough.

The aftertaste reminds me of how hospitals smell.

The hops batter your mouth until it is unconscious, then the astringent aftertaste kicks it into the gutter.

Typical USA "craft" - hops, hops, hops, hops, hops, hops and some hops. Hmmm, repetitive?


How did Germany ever learn to maker beer without all these USA hops geniuses???????????

Because they stayed with what works, not what is popular and the fad of the hour/month/year.

Germany also gives us BMW and Benz. Gosh, we better tell them that those "old" ideas will never sell today.

Really? MB just had their 10 or 12 th straight record year. I think they know what works.

Please, insert your WWII insult at this point. Great, thanks.

I will not be buying this hopsfest ever again. Thanks for the attempt Sweetwater, but it aint working for me.

All those who like this? Enjoy a few more. My hat is off to ya. This aint for me.

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Photo of omahawk
4.01/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A really enjoyable American Pale Ale. Crisp, yet subtle hop bitterness. Nothing but drinkable. A perfect sessionable pale ale reminiscent of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.

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Photo of OldSwampy
3.67/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Gold with a bronze cast. Off-white head that leaves some lacing. Mild fruity hops aroma. Mild hops flavor over a tasty if not extraordinary malt backbone, the malt perhaps more assertive than I expected in comparison to the hops. Not dominant in any aspect of the flavor profile, but a reasonably well balanced and tasty ale. Slightly astringent finish. Best by date on bottle 07/19/16, and I had it on 25 May.

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Photo of Jaypeajus
2.92/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Beer #3 of 3x6oz flight. Lookin for light flight for lunch on a long crawl today. Tap to small mini-me wheat glass. Looks light pils-ish in color. Not much smell here but dude next to me at bar didn't deodorize..powerful dankness, could be beer..hmm taste is fairly bitter compared to what I thought the smell would lead me to. In southern FL on vacation and this has warmed up a bit too much. My fault. Gives me lots of pils notes though. Not a favorite APA. But this was an exploration and I'm not disappointed in tryin this.

 528 characters

Photo of tillmac62
3.02/5  rDev -17%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

BBD 5/29/16. Almost clear, light cloudiness, golden pour with a touch of amber and garnet. Quite outstanding head volume, world class lacing and retention.

Very light nose of mixed citrus with a touch of spice. With a name of 420, one would expect a dank nose. This one is not.

Light body that has a smooth element. Good carbonation for the body with just enough mid effervescence and a prickly finish.

The flavor profile is average - not bad, but not quite solid either. Intensity, complexity and balance are adequate resulting in a tasty pale ale but nothing really pops. It begins with a blended hop flavor that has subtle citrus notes then flows to a very mildly bittered middle. A hint of sweetness arrives to balance an equally weak bitterness. The finish is a slow fade of light hop flavor and bitterness.

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Photo of ordybill
4.25/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the tap into a pint glass. The appearance is a clear golden color with a small white head. The aroma is hop driven. The taste is bitter hops. A solid beer.

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Photo of dtumminelliob
3.29/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A relatively boring extra pale ale. Very little smell and taste. A slight hop, but nothing substantial. Not unappealing, but certainly not something I would go out of my way to drink again.

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Photo of Jayzilla513
1.88/5  rDev -48.4%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

Dank. Almost smells as dank as Newcastle. It's pretty bitter (apa). Nothing special. Light color, light head, bitter smell. Glad I tried it, won't go out of my way to drink it.

 176 characters

Photo of KABC
3.99/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark gold in color this Georgia brew is moderately hopped with a full mouthfeel and a bitter aftertaste. Not as hop forward as your standard IPA which makes it a good choice for those who like a bit of bitterness but not the full fledged IPA hop flavor. Easy drinking this is good for warmer weather and cook outs.

 314 characters

Photo of Squire123
3.52/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Solid choice. Hazy pale ale with a refreshing citrus aroma that announces you're about to experience something good. Hop forward as one would expect, underlying malt is there as a foundation but hops make up the visible part of the structure. Easy drinking.

Watch the bottling date, buy it fresh, enjoy.

 307 characters

Photo of mcgill7
4.1/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

420 is as much a part of Atlanta Culture as the Braves or Clermont lounge. An easy drinking, dank, tropical pale ale that has become the beer by which I judge all others. The fact that it can be had at almost any establishment in the metro area is the real appeal.

 264 characters

Photo of jjamadorphd
4.28/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

My very first offering from Sweetwater and it did not disappoint.

I have read much about Sweetwater's 420 and when I had a chance to pick two of them up as part of a build your own sixer at the local grocery store, I snatched the last two on the shelf. From the bottle it pours a light amber color, thick, frothy head, with nice lacing down the pint glass. What impressed me the most was the differences in hue and coloration when holding up the glass to sunlight. I had not seen that before in another beer. The scent is a beautiful mixture of hops, citrus, and some spice I just can't discern. The feel of the drink was nothing of true note, though I did enjoy the same mix of hops and citrus from the amber liquid itself. I can see (and taste) why this is one of Sweetwater's more popular beers.

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Photo of Billydoughnuts
3.54/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Perfectly fine when at Disney and the other choices are Bud Light and Angry Orchard. Thoroughly enjoyable when pitted against these foes but not one I'd choose over some better offerings. A decent beer

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Photo of Irbycp
4.2/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I'm from Atlanta and this is our "Budweiser": 420 is a staple. This has been around a long time and it's a solid hoppy pale ale. And these guys have brewing this beer since the mid 90s and they've been incredibly consistent. Highly recommend if you've never had as long as the date's good.

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Photo of kevINSIGHT
3.81/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a pale copper with very slight haze and a foamy white head that dissipates fairly quickly with vary few bubble trails. Hoppy aroma for a Pale Ale. Good balance of flavor to the taste. Subtle citrus hops, some bready malt, very drinkable. The aroma is better than the taste, but the taste is not bad. I like it for a drinkable beer lighter than an IPA and still having that hearty beer flavor.

 401 characters

Photo of beergoot
3.69/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle label info: BEST IF ENJOYED BY 11/01/15 - I'm a little late on this one...

Golden hued body, somewhat cloudy, with a thick, sticky, white head. Sweet, funky, grassy aroma; a twinge of citrus. Sweet and juicy flavors; orange; balanced bitterness. Medium-heavy body; wet and juicy with an edge of dryness at the finish.

For being enjoyed almost 4 1/2 months past the brewer's best-by date, this is still a highly enjoyable, hoppy ale. It delivers a mouthwatering juiciness with touches of orange flavoring with a deft touch of hop bitterness to round things out. I'll definitely re-evaluate this one if I come across a fresher sample.

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Photo of oldn00b
3.52/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

In this category I always compare to SN PA. This is nice and is a fine substitute but I still prefer SNPA. Had this again last night and that served to verify.

It falls off a bit faster than SNPA as well. That hop character lasts but a few months in and the malt that comes forward isn't as okay as SN does.

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Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale from SweetWater Brewing Company
3.64 out of 5 based on 3,545 ratings.
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