Every time I drink something from Sierra Nevada, I always feel like their beers from one to the next don’t taste that dissimilar. Maybe it’s because everything I’ve had has been in the same general style vicinity…their Pale Ale, Celebration Ale, Anniversary Ale, and now the 12th Release Harvest Wet Hop Ale. It’s not that they make bad beer. I mean, give me a break. They basically started the craft beer revolution. On the contrary, all their stuff is usually pretty solid. But also pretty “safe”, in my opinion. Maybe I’ll change my opinion if I try some of their other stuff, like their Bigfoot Barleywine.

This one pours with an interesting orangey color. Pretty good head. Decent hop aroma, which is what I’d expect from a wet-hopped ale.

So what about this wet hopping…the 12th Release is one of three offerings in their Harvest Wet Hop series. Could I discern a noticeable difference from the wet hops? Not really. I was expecting a little more aroma and hoppy bitterness given the lengths they go on the bottle to describe how they fly in fresh hops from Yakima, Washington picked the day before, and dump them right into their awaiting kettles. Kind of like those over-priced sushi restaurants in the Midwest that make a big deal about exotic fish flown in on ice that were caught the day before somewhere in the Pacific. Because after all, who wants Walleye Sashimi?

Overall, pretty balanced taste with a prickly amount of carbonation. It’s fairly hoppy to be sure, but nothing that legitimately stood out compared to their year-round Pale Ale, despite their best hopping efforts. Sorry Sierra Nevada.

Rating: B

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