Sierraveza, hailing from Sierra Nevada’s diverse lineup, presents itself in a crystal-clear straw hue, accompanied by a brilliant white foam that, unfortunately, doesn’t hold up for long. The packaging, a six-pack of 12oz cans encased in a convenient paper carton, earns points for practicality. A quick glance at the can reveals a packaging date of 12/27/18, placing it comfortably within the three-month freshness window.


Upon bringing the glass to the nose, a delightful surprise awaits. The aroma is a vibrant mix of pineapple gummy bear, lemon zest, and white grape juice concentrate. This lager proves to be fruitier and hoppier than initial expectations, setting a promising tone for the tasting experience.


Sierraveza doesn’t shy away from its fruity disposition in the flavor department. The bright and juicy profile unfolds with notes of yellow apple and hints of pineapple. The sweetness level sits at a moderate 5/10, while bitterness is predictably low at 2/10. Despite the fruity hoppiness taking center stage, the beer maintains a malt-forward character, featuring a substantial presence of cereal grains reminiscent of Frosted Flakes. The aftertaste is commendable – clean, refreshing, with a subtle touch of creamy wheat.


While the head retention may leave something to be desired, Sierraveza compensates with a well-balanced mouthfeel. The beer strikes a harmonious chord between its fruity elements and malt backbone, offering a satisfying drinking experience. The overall texture is crisp and refreshing, making it a strong contender in the session beer category.


Sierra Nevada’s Sierraveza successfully avoids conforming to the trend of rebranding Vienna lagers as Mexican lagers, a practice gaining popularity among American craft breweries. Although the beer cleverly avoids explicit labeling, the name subtly implies its inspiration. The result is a richly malty brew with vibrant yellow fruit notes, concluding with a clean and refreshing finish. Despite its deviation from the traditional amber lager, Sierraveza stands out as a modern and fruity pale lager, earning its place as a noteworthy addition to Sierra Nevada’s “easy drinking” repertoire. While comparisons with other offerings from Sierra Nevada are pending, for now, Sierraveza stands as an impressive session beer, challenging the expectations set by the Mexican lager marketing trend.