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What's with all the Sierra Nevada Pale hate?

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I've seen Sierra Nevada's PA called "california piss-beer", "disgusting", and plenty of other things.

I think it's just fine. Now I'm not claiming it to be one of the better American PA's, because it isn't. And i'm not saying it isn't slightly overpriced, because it is. But it certainly isn't piss-beer, and as a standard PA I think it's just fine. And I don't see it claiming to be any more than it actually is.

Now granted, I live in Iowa, and we just don't get a very good selection here. But I'm perfectly satisfied with a 6er of Sierra Nevada when I'm not dead broke. But even when I lived in Colorado I still considered it an all-right pale.

Why does everyone hate it so much? Or have I just run into a select few people who hate it? I get the feeling most of the hate stems from the west coast...?
 

Parker36

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I think you will find that around here most people enjoy SNPA. You are probably right about the west coast slight issue, though
 

Yooper

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I like it. It's not my favorite beer, but it's a good standard beer to drink when there aren't any real craft offerings. I buy it once in a while by the 6er, but not too often!
 

humann_brewing

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Here is Cali it is hard not to turn the corner and find a place that has it and seems like the defacto standard APA for California.

I will certainly have one if I don't think there is anything better on tap and be just fine with that. It is a good fall back brew.
 

tireater

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I really like the hoppier versions like Harvest or Torpedo...
I have 32 cases of the bottles so I voted with my liver...
 

korndog

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Sierra Nevada is a world class brewery IMO. They continue to innovate,and through their pilot brewery are in tuned with the homebrewing community.
SNPA is a standard, and while not cutting edge, is certainly a very good beer.
 

McKBrew

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I haven't seen the SN hatred. I don't buy SNPA because I'm not a big APA fan, but I'd never turn one down. SN makes some kick ass beers and I swear their beers have the some of the most awesome head I've ever seen, even at a year plus.
 

c.n.budz

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With as many members as this forum has from all over the world, you can name practically any beer and you'll find a few people that that think it sucks. Just people's personal opinions...

I like SNPA, but it's definitely not in my top 10. If you like it, drink it and enjoy it:mug:
 

the_bird

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I can't recall ever seeing anyone talk smack about SNPA. I see dislike for Sam Adams (which I also think is mostly misplaced), but never for Sierra Nevada. It's a helluva good beer.
 

Boerderij_Kabouter

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I think SNPA is a great drinking APA. It is smooth and a nice size for drinking a ton of. No complaints here. I think if you are saying SNPA sucks you are trying to flex your beer snob muscles a little too hard.

It isn't supposed to be a huge crazy beer, it is just a darn good drinking beer.
 

Beerrific

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I can't recall ever seeing anyone talk smack about SNPA. I see dislike for Sam Adams (which I also think is mostly misplaced), but never for Sierra Nevada. It's a helluva good beer.
I agree. IMO, if you think SNPA is a crap American pale ale, then one of 3 things must be happening:
1. You don't like non-fizzy yellow beer.
2. You have gotten SNPAs that has been treated very poorly.
3. You are an EAC.
 

EdWort

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SNPA is a defacto GO TO beer in any restaurant. Good stuff and the bottles are great to reuse.
 

farmbrewernw

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Yep no problems with it here, is it the most remarkable thing I've ever had? No but it's a good representation of the style and it's a solid everyday drinkable beer.
 

llazy_llama

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I buy a fair amount of SNPA. It's good, it's reasonably priced, and I love the stubby bottles. Anchor Steam bottles are cooler, but I enjoy the contents of the SNPA bottles more.
 

rawkstar

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I have to say that I'll enjoy a nice cold SNPA anytime. I think it is a nice beer, and not too bad on the price either!
 

Laurel

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I bought a 6er after reading good things about it and being out of homebrew. I got it home and opened the first and was frankly disappointed. It's not bad, but it's not all that great. For the price (or $1 less) I would have preferred to have a 6 pack of Deschutes Mirror Pond, and next time I'll buy that instead.
 
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Those who call it piss are probably the same who drink BMC. Pot? Kettle? Black???

It leaves me with a bit of a funky aftertaste, but I do like the aroma and up-front flavor. I'll often order it at restaurants with limited selections.
 

944play

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And I prefer Red Seal, but SNPA is everywhere.

SNPA, from bottles at least, leaves me terribly dehydrated the next day. My guess is that the liquor is heavily Burtonized.
 

danorocks17

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drinking snpa always takes me back to when i first started to try flavorful beers. I love the stuff, it was my first introduction to real hop flavor
 

imaguitargod

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I can't recall ever seeing anyone talk smack about SNPA. I see dislike for Sam Adams (which I also think is mostly misplaced), but never for Sierra Nevada. It's a helluva good beer.
Well, now you can add one to the list. I hate....HATE everything by Siera Navada, even the Bigfoot Barelywine (although, I haven't had an aged one and apperently at the 5 year old mark it's amazing....but then again people say their Pale Ale is amazing to). Bigfoot was one of my first drain pours.

I like hops, I really do, I can handle bitter in decent proportions as well. But there is something about SA that bugs me and it's the bitterness. They just cram it down your throat (and some how they came up with Torpedo which crames even more of that bitterness into it). It's absolutely disqusting and if that's the only thing on tap besides BMC, I'll actually drink the BMC (which is scary to even think about).

Now, I was a West Coaster for over 5 years (Los Angles) and yes, it's ef-ing everywhere. But my hatred does not come from that. Infact, I'm happy that's it's everywhere, not many micro brews get that distinction and that helps people break out of their BMC mentality when they realise the SA they've been drinking is a micro brew.

But I just can't STAND the stuff.....blegh!
 

DUCCCC

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Out west I prefer Mirror Pond, but I'm an SNPA fan as well.
 
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I can't say that I've ever heard any SNPA hatin', apart from BMC drinkers who aren't prepared to actually taste hops. It's probably my favorite, widely available beer.
 

-TH-

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I would definitely call it my "gateway" beer - in that it opened my eyes to (good) pale ales and that hop flavor that I now love. I tried a sixer recently and now I think it is just ok. But I haven't heard much negativity about it, other than a BMC'er saying "I don't like that beer because it is too hoppy". I would also add that its not super popular around here (michigan) with all the great microbrews here.
 

carnevoodoo

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I bought a 6er after reading good things about it and being out of homebrew. I got it home and opened the first and was frankly disappointed. It's not bad, but it's not all that great. For the price (or $1 less) I would have preferred to have a 6 pack of Deschutes Mirror Pond, and next time I'll buy that instead.
Mirror Pond is probably a better pale overall, and you get it reasonably fresh up there which helps a lot.

That said, I still do like SNPA a lot. It is a good pale for when you want to drink pale ale. I don't see a lot of hate when it comes to it either. There's that one guy up there who doesn't like anything from SN, and he's a lot like me who really doesn't like anything from Rogue. I swear that some breweries are just not to the taste of certain people.
 

remilard

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Well, now you can add one to the list. I hate....HATE everything by Siera Navada, even the Bigfoot Barelywine (although, I haven't had an aged one and apperently at the 5 year old mark it's amazing....but then again people say their Pale Ale is amazing to). Bigfoot was one of my first drain pours.

I like hops, I really do, I can handle bitter in decent proportions as well. But there is something about SA that bugs me and it's the bitterness. They just cram it down your throat (and some how they came up with Torpedo which crames even more of that bitterness into it). It's absolutely disqusting and if that's the only thing on tap besides BMC, I'll actually drink the BMC (which is scary to even think about).

Now, I was a West Coaster for over 5 years (Los Angles) and yes, it's ef-ing everywhere. But my hatred does not come from that. Infact, I'm happy that's it's everywhere, not many micro brews get that distinction and that helps people break out of their BMC mentality when they realise the SA they've been drinking is a micro brew.

But I just can't STAND the stuff.....blegh!
No offense but, when it comes to beer, LA isn't really on the West Coast IYKWIM.
 

heinz57

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Really? I've lived here my whole life and have great affection for the area, but it's not a good beer town.

I'd say it's a great homebrewing area though, with a few good shops and a number of large and active homebrew clubs.
Yeah, I think brewery count isn't the only discerning factor for me. The homebrew club/shop availability and pub selection hasn't given me a reason to complain. Also, so many breweries are within a stone's throw of LA, at least in terms of distribution (especially San Diego), that I've been more than content.
 

carnevoodoo

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LA really is a dark spot when it comes to breweries. They're starting to get better bars, but for a city of that size, it is kind of sad. There's so much good happening on this coast, and for some reason, all of LA is a wasteland.
 
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Yeah, I think brewery count isn't the only discerning factor for me. The homebrew club/shop availability and pub selection hasn't given me a reason to complain. Also, so many breweries are within a stone's throw of LA, at least in terms of distribution (especially San Diego), that I've been more than content.
Well sure, we have access to great beer here. It's just that virtually none of it is made here!

People are probably sick of me raving about it, but San Francisco: THAT is a great beer town! I love just drifting from brewpub to brewpub, enjoying a pint or two at each place. SF Brewing Company, Magnolia, 21st Amendment, Rogue Ales, etc. Furthermore, it's hard to find a bar or restaurant that doesn't offer a huge variety of microbrews, both local and otherwise...it's just part of the culture there.
 
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I'm confused - where's the "hate" on SNPA? Seems like most folks on this board not only like the beer, but respect the brewery...
 

TwoHeadsBrewing

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I don't drink SNPA that often, but then again I don't drink much commercial beer anymore. It must be the 40 gallons of kegged homebrew in my garage :D. But, back in high school it was THE beer...every kegger had at least one keg of SNPA, and usually a keg of stout or wheat to go along with it. The only people I ever hear that have a "hate" for it are the BMC crowd...but they aren't exactly the target audience for craft brew now are they?

The only complaint about Sierra Nevada that I have is that they don't put out ENOUGH of a variety. I know they have an insane amount of time and space dedicated to just producing pale ale to satisfy demand, but I wish they bottled more of their "specials". Their Saison, Dunkleweizen, Rauchbier, and Kolsch are some great beers that I wish they would have bottled. But, Ken is sticking with what works and what keeps the brewery not only running, but thriving. He's got a different MO than most micros, which is to widely distribute just a few very good beers. And in that I think he succeeds wildly. I just wish they would do more limited runs of some of the stuff from the pilot brewery in 24 oz. bottles.
 

heinz57

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LA really is a dark spot when it comes to breweries. They're starting to get better bars, but for a city of that size, it is kind of sad. There's so much good happening on this coast, and for some reason, all of LA is a wasteland.
Sorry to go off topic a bit, but I don't think it's as barren a wasteland as many think.

Skyscraper Brewing
Angel City Brewing
The Bruery (Ok it's Orange County, but it's a quick drive and damn fine beer)
Bootlegger's Brewery(Still Orange County, but close enough)
Craftsman Brewing Company
and while it's not quite open yet the Eagle Rock Brewery

I was able to try the offerings of several of the operational breweries listed above at the LA beer fest this passed weekend, and there is some good beer coming out of these breweries. Of course there is the good with the bad, but the point is that LA is developing local offerings. Granted, it is going to be extremely difficult for any of these breweries to develop the followings that so many west coast breweries have amassed, but I really enjoy the fact that there are some pretty good local options.

I'm definitely a fan of Sierra Nevada though. I think you might have run into a select few people who really dislike it. The common negative comment I hear about their pale ale has to do with the bitterness. I've never come across the piss beer reference though, that's pretty funny.
 
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Sorry to go off topic a bit, but I don't think it's as barren a wasteland as many think.

Skyscraper Brewing
Angel City Brewing
The Bruery (Ok it's Orange County, but it's a quick drive and damn fine beer)
Bootlegger's Brewery(Still Orange County, but close enough)
Craftsman Brewing Company
and while it's not quite open yet the Eagle Rock Brewery
While I'm not ready to include Orange County under the Los Angeles umbrella (that's a LONG schlep for a glass of beer!) I'll confess that I've never heard of Skyscraper or Craftsman. The Laurel Tavern is a new place not too far from my office, apparently they serve beer from both breweries. I'll have to check it out after work one evening. Thanks for the info!
 
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I love SNPA and ALL of the beers I've ever tried from that brewery. That's one outfit that's got beer figured out IMO.

Plus, best homebrew bottles available. Especially the short, squatty 24 ouncers that actually fit on the fridge shelf:mug:
 

heinz57

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While I'm not ready to include Orange County under the Los Angeles umbrella (that's a LONG schlep for a glass of beer!) I'll confess that I've never heard of Skyscraper or Craftsman. The Laurel Tavern is a new place not too far from my office, apparently they serve beer from both breweries. I'll have to check it out after work one evening. Thanks for the info!
Anytime Lars. Just doing my part to spread the word for the new guys.

That new bar of yours looks like a local beer extravaganza. I should stop in there myself sometime. I forgot to mention The Great Beer Company and their Hollywood Blonde Kolsch style ale. I've never had it, but I've heard it's pretty tasty.
 

korndog

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Anytime Lars. Just doing my part to spread the word for the new guys.

That new bar of yours looks like a local beer extravaganza. I should stop in there myself sometime. I forgot to mention The Great Beer Company and their Hollywood Blonde Kolsch style ale. I've never had it, but I've heard it's pretty tasty.
Hollywood Blonde was created by a member of Lars and my homebrew club. Her name is Maribieth Raines, and she is a legendary brewer and expert on culturing yeast and all things beery. Yes, Hollywood Blonde is pretty tasty, but she is not involved in quality control anymore so, Caveat Emptor.
 

heinz57

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Hollywood Blonde was created by a member of Lars and my homebrew club. Her name is Maribieth Raines, and she is a legendary brewer and expert on culturing yeast and all things beery. Yes, Hollywood Blonde is pretty tasty, but she is not involved in quality control anymore so, Caveat Emptor.
The club you speak is the one that informed me it was quite tasty. :D

I didn't know she wasn't involved anymore though, good to know.
 
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