Daily beer project

Full Sail IPA & Sierra Nevada Summerfest

Posted in American Craft Beer by dailybeerproject on June 14, 2010

Full Sail IPA: Given how much I liked the Full Sail Amber as well as how reasonably priced Full Sail beers are in general, I was anxious to try their other offerings. That said, I’m always a little tentative around IPAs, as some of them are too harsh to be enjoyable to me.

Not so with the Full Sail. It’s hoppy, to be sure. It’s strong, as an IPA should be. But nothing about it is unpleasant. For whatever reason, I was looking forward to something really hoppy before I cracked this open, and it delivered at just the right level. Along with the Trader IPA from Uinta, this is one of my favorite IPAs I’ve had. Awesome beer–look forward to drinking more.

Sierra Nevada Summerfest: One of the best reasons to buy seasonal beer is that it’s almost certain to be fresh, which is not necessarily the case with other beers purchased from our wonderful state liquor store. Another good reason is that it’s no accident that certain styles are brewed as seasonals–they just seem to fit that time of year.

Sierra Nevada Summerfest is a Pilsner-style lager, but certainly not a typical one, at least not for those brewed in the United States. It’s smooth and easy drinking, but also has a prominent and floral hop flavor, which adds a lot of character and balance to the beer. It’s an awesome beer for a hot day, but too good of a beer to just pound as a thirst quencher. If you’re really thirsty, have a glass of water first so you can slow down and enjoy this one.

With as much as I enjoyed the Summerfest and the Glissade, I think I need to revisit Sierra Nevada’s flagship Pale Ale. I tried it early on in the project, and stronger beers (in hops and alcohol) were a little overwhelming. I seem to enjoy stronger beers more now and wonder if I’d also like this one. The Glissade is 42 IBUs, while the Pale Ale is 37, so it could be I just needed more time to get to where I’ve embraced the hops and bitterness. I’m still less than six months into this beer drinking thing, after all.

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2 Responses

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  1. […] Lager: Given that I’ve enjoyed everything I’ve tried that’s come out of the Full Sail brewery, when I visited their website and discovered they also make Session Lager, I figured I […]

  2. Wreck the Halls « Daily beer project said, on December 7, 2010 at 6:58 pm

    […] winter warmer. It comes down closer to the IPA side of the equation, with a lot of similarities to Full Sail’s IPA. Hops are strong, registering 68 IBUs, drowning out some of the malt in the process. It’s […]


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