Sierra Nevada Pale Ale – a Classic Craft Beer
This home brew recipe mimics Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. Is it a clone? Yes! Taste it and see. Try it – you’ll like it. If you’ve never had Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, then get ready to enjoy! Taste this updated craft beer recipe for Sierra Nevada Pale Ale! I’ve edited this recipe clone to reflect the specs from Sierra Nevada’s web site.
The hops and IBUs were edited to reflect those that Sierra Nevada list. BYO magazine has the IBUs at 51 vs. Sierra Nevada 37, and uses Chinook instead of Magnum and Perle for bittering. Hey, we can do this brew right. You need great pale ale – and this is the West Coast Classic Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada. It’s as good as it gets!
This Pale Ale recipe is very close or spot-on to the original Sierra Nevada Pale Ale Recipe. Some of the info even came from Sierra Nevada Brewmaster Steve Dressler via Northern Brewer Forum. (circa 2004)
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale Clone
[Inspired by recipe from BYO Magazine
(Brew Your Own) Jan/Feb 2005 Issue]
Extract with steeping grains. I will add an all grain later. 🙂
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale Clone
Recipe makes 5 gallons/19 L
Uses extract with steeping grains
OG = 1.053
FG = 1.012
IBUs = 37
ABV = 5.9%
- 3 Gallons of pure water
- 1 lb. (0.45 kg) crystal malt (60ºL)
- 7 lbs. (3.17 kg) Breiss light dry malt extract (DME)
- .5 oz. (9 grams) Magnum pellet hops. Boiled for 60 minutes for bittering @ 14.4 % AA
- .6 oz (17 grams) Perle pellet hops. Boiled for 30 minutes for bittering @ 6.9 % AA
- 1 oz. (28 grams) Cascade pellet hops. Boiled for 10 minutes for flavor @ 5.6 % AA
- 2 oz. (56 grams) Cascade pellet hops. Added for aroma at flame out @ 5.6 % AA
- 5 oz. (140 grams) priming sugar
- 1 pkg. Safale US-05 dry yeast (or White Labs WLP001 California Ale liquid yeast) (use yeast starter for liquid)
- 1 bag for grain steeping
- 2 hop bags (for bittering hops)
- 1 hop bag (for flavor hops)
- 1/2 Whirlflok tablet
- 3 – 4 more Gallons of pure water
- “Extracts” are the fermentable sugars that come from malted grains. Available in either dry or liquid form.
- “Steeping grains” are grains that do not need to be mashed. They are steeped like tea.
- “Mashing” is the process of cooking the grains in water and allowing their enzymes to convert their carbohydrates into fermentable sugars.
- “Wort” is the water, grains, malt, and hops that have been boiled. It is your unfermented beer.
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale Clone Directions:
- Pour 3 gallons (11.4 L) of water into your pot.
- Place crystal malt grains into a steeping bag.
Note: Don’t fret if you’ve not done this before. It’s like making tea.
- Tie bag and place into pot.
- Bring temperature of water and grains to 155º F (68º C).
- Steep for 30 minutes, with water at 155º, dunking the bag several times to insure good extraction.
- Remove the grain bag from the steeping water and gently squeeze out excess water.
Discard bag and grains. Do not try to remove all the water as tannins may be released and cause excessive bitterness.
Note: Spent grains may be used with spent grain recipes that are in the Food/Beer > Spent Grain Recipes section of Black Bucket Brew.
- Bring the hot steeped liquid to a boil.
- Remove pot from heat.
- Add malt extract, stirring well.
Note: Do not add extract to brew pot while on hot burner. It may cause scorching of malt sugar and your brew will taste burned.
- Bring this mixture to a boil.
- Start timer for 60 minutes.
- Add bagged bittering Magnum hops directly into the pot.
Note: Using hop bags for bittering hops and aroma hops makes it far easier to create a cleaner wort.
- Allow the wort to boil for 30 minutes. (Be careful that it does not boil over!)
- Add the bagged .6 oz (17 grams) Perle (bittering).
- Boil for an additional 20 minutes.
- Add the bagged 1 oz. Cascade & 1/2 Whirlflok tablet
- Boil for final 10 minutes.
- Kill heat. aka “flame-out.”
- Add 2 oz. Cascade aroma hops (not in a bag).
- Place cover on pot.
Note: Air contains dust that mold and bacteria “travel” on. Anytime your cooled or cooling wort is exposed, try to minimize air flow. Turn off HVAC, fan, etc.
- Carefully move from heat to sink (if not using a “wort chiller”).
- Remove lid.
- Cool in an ice bath until the wort is 80ºF or less.
- Add wort to primary fermenter and top with cool water to the 5.5 gallon mark. The yield is about 5 gallons.
- Aerate wort for good yeast fermentation.
- Cool wort to 68ºF (20ºC).
Before the yeast is pitched, take your original gravity reading by taking some wort out with a “wine thief” or sanitized cup. Place in a tube or tall narrow glass and insert hydrometer – all sanitized.
Always be careful about sanitation!
- Pitch your yeast AFTER the temperature reaches 68ºF (20ºC).
- Put on the lid and insert airlock filled half way with sanitized water or Star San solution.
Keep the fermenter in an area, which will maintain as constant as possible a temperature of 68ºF (20ºC), but no lower than 66ºF. Fermentation should start in 8 to 48 hours. Within 3 to 5 days, the fermentation will slow or appear to stop.
This is a good time to use your hydrometer to test your specific gravity. When the hydrometer reading has reached the predicted FG of 1.010/1.014 and/or is no longer dropping for three days, consider your beer ready to transfer to a secondary.
- Condition your beer for 7 to 10 days.
Note: If you wish to create a clearer beer, then a fining may be used.
It is now time to bottle your beer. If not already clean, wash all bottles in hot water with dish detergent, and rinse well. Do not use soap! The oil in soap will prevent proper head formation.
Use the sanitizer of your choice to sanitize your bottles.
- Dissolve 5 oz. (140 grams) of priming sugar in 1 cup of water and bring to a boil. Allow to cool to room temperature.
Careful when boiling, as it can boil over very quickly.
- Place this in your sanitized bottling bucket. Use the siphon equipment to transfer your beer to the bottling bucket, being careful not to get any air in the beer. Oxygen in beer after fermentation causes oxidation and the beer tastes awful. 🙁
- Attach your tubing to the spigot on your bottling bucket and fill your sanitized bottles. Leave 1” of air space in each bottle. Cap all bottles immediately.
- Store your beer at 70 – 75ºF (20-24ºC) to carbonate and age in the bottle for at least 10 -14 days.
- Chill thoroughly and enjoy!
Note: The yield is about 5 gallons, as some beer volume is lost to trub.
Ales with a lot of hops do not retain their aroma well after many months of storage. They are best enjoyed in the first few months after brewing!
Enjoy your Sierra Nevada Pale Ale Clone. To get your own Black Bucket Brew delivered to your inbox – Subscribe Now for your free emailed copy!