Dec 14, 2015

Sierra Nevada Otra Vez

Wild, sour and tart beers have been making a steady climb in popularity in recent years. The examples that I have purchased in that time are usually one-offs or limited release products. I can’t think of another brewery, especially one as large as Sierra Nevada, that has added any variety of tart brew to its year-round line-up. That, however, is exactly what the California stalwart has done with Otra Vez.

Otra Vez — Spanish for “one again” — is a 4.5% ABV gose-style wheat ale that’s been brewed with prickly pear cactus and grapefruit. The brewery tosses in a little Lactobacillus for a moderate touch of lemony tartness that goes surprisingly well with the earthy cactus and citrus notes. It’s that playful tartness that makes this brew ideal for warm Summer afternoons — light and refreshing.


The beer pours a pale, hazy straw in color with a rocky cap of white foam.

Sierra Nevada Otra Vez photo


There’s a solid amount of grapefruit wafting from the surface along with distant cactus, a tingling tartness and soft wheat notes.


The initial, split-second impression I got with the first sip was that of a radler. The grapefruit is right there up front and the brew has a lightly effervescent carbonation. That mental image was quickly washed away as the wheat and tongue-grabbing tartness file in. The level of tartness was surprising at first, but it settles in nicely as it fades gently and slowly. Prickly pear cactus and a twinge of salinity linger for a good long while after each sip. The light body of Otra Vez re-enforces its refreshing nature.


Otra Vez is a tasty, little brew. The cactus lingers wonderfully from start to finish as the tartness awakens the tastebuds with an invigorating presence. I’m not sure what it is about wheat-based beers and cactus, but they just seem to go hand-in-hand with one another. And Otra Vez is another solid example of the combination. Still, surprising that Sierra Nevada has added a beer of this nature as a new year-round offering.

Rating: 4/5

This is a review of a promotional sample.

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