Monday, June 7, 2010

Beer Review: Two from Sierra Nevada

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale was probably one of the first beers that I tried that started me on the road to beer geekery and homebrewing, to this day it is still one of my favourite American Pale Ale's and as my interest has widened and I have started to focus a lot of my attention on American micro brewed beers it is still a brewery that has a lot to offer. Two of the pale ale's stable mates for review tonight, the first a golden bock, the second an extra IPA.

Sierra Nevada Glissade is described as a Golden Bock and weighs in at an not insignificant 6.4%. Pours a beautiful golden honey colour, crystal clear with a small white head. The aroma is dominated by rich malt with a touch of noble hops coming through. It is light bodied with a pretty low level of carbonation. It coats your mouth which is an unusual texture for a light bodied beer and one I have to say I am not overly fond of. The strength really comes through on the taste along with the European noble hops. The complexity of this beer really comes through when it warms up a little bit. A beer that is definitely worth trying, however it is nothing to write home about.

Next up is Sierra Nevada Torpedo IPA, I knew before I opened the bottle that I was going to love this beer. Sierra Nevada do Pale Ales so well, and American microbreweries have perfected the art of balancing strong beers with a good measure of hops which is a necessity in order to make this kind of beer work. This pours a lovely rust colour with a large fluffy white head. The complex aroma gives off hints of sweet malt and a combination of cirtus and spicey hops. Very clean on the palate, extremely smooth for a beer of 7.2%. A beautiful tasting IPA, cirtus hops hit you up front and only after it has gone down do you get a nice level of background bitterness with a little alcohol kick at the end.

This is a hop profile I really like (and one that I try to emulate in my homebrewing), big American C hops up front with a nice high level of bitterness in the background. A beer I would highly recommend and a beer that epitomises what I love about American Pale Ales.

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