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Shift Pale Lager - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Shift Pale LagerShift Pale Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

1,185 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,185
Reviews: 215
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 14.21%
Wants: 35
Gots: 82 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Lager |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Jason on 03-14-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,185 | Reviews: 215 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

Best by 9/9/12.

Pours a clear orange with a 2 inch foamy orange-white head that settles to a thin cap on top of the beer. Foamy patches of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of metal, grain, and some herbal hop aromas. Taste is of tangy malt and some herbal hop flavors. There is a mild bitterness on the palate after each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good lager but I was expecting a crisper level of carbonation.

UCLABrewN84, Apr 21, 2012
Photo of zestar
3.25/5  rDev -9.5%

zestar, Aug 21, 2013
Photo of nmann08
4.25/5  rDev +18.4%

nmann08, Apr 15, 2012
Photo of metter98
3.74/5  rDev +4.2%

On-tap at 12 Bones Smokehouse, Asheville, NC

A: The beer is clear yellowish amber in color and has a slight amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high creamy white head that died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface and lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light aromas of toasted malts and citrus hops are present in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell, except that the flavors of hops seem to be stronger; these also contribute a light to moderate amount of bitterness.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and clean on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very flavorful for the style and also easy to drink.

metter98, May 29, 2013
Photo of Texasfan549
3.25/5  rDev -9.5%

Texasfan549, Apr 14, 2012
Photo of kjkinsey
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

kjkinsey, Apr 01, 2012
Photo of womencantsail
3.8/5  rDev +5.8%

Golden in color with a white head. Nice clean lager aroma with floral hop notes and a hint of citrus. A bit of yeast and bread, maybe a touch of biscuit in there, too. Flavor is somewhat sweet with a touch of hop bitterness. Good floral notes, light citrus, and a bit of grass. Mild yeast and esters. Well done lager.

womencantsail, Jul 30, 2012
Photo of spycow
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

spycow, Mar 11, 2013
Photo of jaydoc
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

jaydoc, Dec 21, 2013
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.73/5  rDev +3.9%

12 ounce can - $2.29 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia. There is what appears to be an expiration date of 16 SEP 12 on the bottom of the can.

Appearance: Pours a crystal clear, deep yellow body with a lofty, foaming, whitish head. Copious amounts of coating lacing on the way down.

Smell: An aromatic base of pale malts with a small hint of toast and grainy-scented barley, then fragrant notes of spice and white grapefruit and, just lightly, some resins.

Taste: Pale maltiness, a bit of grain, a bit of lightly toasted bread. Citrusy, floral hops with a scant hint of savory spiciness and resin drip. Reasonably bitter. Just a bit more of the sweet maltiness (just a bit), then, the spicy, citrusy finish with a low hint of lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Medium carbonation.

Overall: A fairly fine, tasty lager.

ChainGangGuy, Jun 08, 2012
Photo of oberon
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

Poured into a pilsner a clear medium golden with a a thinner white head that didi leave a few broken rings of lace as it settled.Caramel sweetness,lightly toasted grain,and a decent shot of herbal hops in the back end.Caramel induced sweetness upfront on the palate with mild grainy notes,and again a shot of herbal/leafy hops in the finish.It's not a clean lager it's actually a little sweet but the hop profile is nice,above average but not great.

oberon, Apr 11, 2012
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.25/5  rDev -9.5%

westcoastbeerlvr, Mar 31, 2013
Photo of emerge077
4.05/5  rDev +12.8%

Can is dated "02 SEP 12" on bottom of can.

"Pale" bright orange with languidly rising carbonation. A sizable head of foam rises and leaves seafoam lace inside the glass. Retention is good, and it takes awhile for the skim to break on the surface.

Subdued aroma, but there is some hoppy grassiness and orange peel present. It's clean with a slight sweetness.

Flavor is crisp with a bit of hoppy bitterness, orange peel, and crackers from the pale malt. Light bodied and not sweet, it has a crisp bitter dryness that is perfect for hot weather. Supple feel, full flavored, and easy drinking. A lager with traces of IPA citrus, dry and crisp, a perfect summer refresher. Pretty hard not to "get" this... Simplicity is underrated these days.

Regretting not picking up more than a single now, but will get more soon.

emerge077, May 02, 2012
Photo of largadeer
3/5  rDev -16.4%

largadeer, Apr 06, 2013
Photo of zeff80
3.93/5  rDev +9.5%

A - Poured out a clear, golden orange color with a two-finger, egg-shell white head of bubbly foam. It left sticky patches of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled floral and grassy with some sweet caramel.

T - It tasted spicy and hoppy with a nice bitterness. Sweet caramel and grains add backbone.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied lager with a dry, clean finish.

O - This is a pretty tasty lager. I'm impressed. I could see people taking this good canned beer on camping trips, etc.

zeff80, Apr 17, 2012
Photo of biboergosum
3.91/5  rDev +8.9%

16oz glass at Craft Beer Market - I somehow missed out on grabbing a can of this at the New Belgium Denver Beer Week event last fall - oh well, now they've come to Alberta.

This beer appears a clear, pale golden amber hue, with a thin cap of weakly foamy and bubbly ecru head, which leaves some bleeding striated lace around the glass as things fall away.

It smells of lightly bready pale malt, a faint caramel sweetness, middling citrus and drupe fruit, earthy yeast, and soft leafy, earthy hops. The taste is semi-sweet pale malt, some grainy caramel, white wine, tame melon, fruity yeast esters, and floral, weedy hops.

The bubbles are fairly low-key, but supportive enough, the body an adequate medium weight, and generally smooth, with a mild tackiness. It finishes off-dry, the bready pale malt and floral, leafy hops squaring off for redemption.

A rather good amalgam of styles, very altbier-esque. Fruity, vinous, and pretty enjoyable - I hope to see the canned version available up here by summertime!

biboergosum, Feb 25, 2014
Photo of SocalKicks
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

SocalKicks, Sep 07, 2012
Photo of Jason
3.9/5  rDev +8.6%

16oz tall-boy can with a freshness date on the bottom.

LOOK: Healthy looking froth, bright golden color show a perfect clarity

SMELL: Bread crust, ripe peaches, biscuity, herbal, passion fruit, spice, clean

TASTE: Very smooth, medium body, crisp snap, biscuity, malt sweetness, herbal, spicy, mild fruitiness, dried grass, clean drying finish

Does this mean that 2013 will be year of the lager and New Belgium is just ahead of the curve on this one? The did get it right with opting for tall-boy size and at 5.0% it is still within the "sessionable" range. Very well balanced and great use of hops here which makes this one of the most interesting pale lagers on the market today.

Jason, Mar 14, 2012
Photo of nickfl
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

nickfl, Jun 20, 2013
Photo of WVbeergeek
4.03/5  rDev +12.3%

Pale golden fresh cut hay with a bit of an orange copper glow, brilliant white head forms thick and fills the chalice with love. Aromatics offer up biscuit malt, mild grassy citric notes crisp blend of malts, hops, water...almost a pungent tartness in the nose. Flavor perfectly complex drinking lager, all malted barley goes along way with flavor...biscuit malts bring a bready resilience with the herbal/mineral/citric notes coming from the hops very clean snappy finish. Those hops stick around more than the average end of shift lager that this country knows all too well. I saw it labeled for 16.99 a 12 pack, which I didn't jump on however I did grab about four cans for $1.69 just enough to wet the whistle. Crisp even carbonation perfect mouthfeel semi dry finish linger hops accent the breadiness perfectly it's a true American Lager thank heavens for New Belgium. Overall I will definitely grab more of this class expression of true drinking beer.

WVbeergeek, Feb 15, 2014
Photo of Kegatron
3.68/5  rDev +2.5%

16 oz can into a pint glass.

Pours a clear golden copper, with a couple fingers of white head that has a bit of an off look to it. This retains with a thin creaminess that drenches the sides of the glass with a ton of sticky lacing. Nice look. The aroma smells fresh, grassy, and dank, with a smack of tart lemon in the nose and then some more green bitter notes. A tight grainy sweetness and a touch of eggy smelling protein sit along the back.

The taste is leafy and herbal in the mouth, with a crisp citric bitterness and that same smack of lemon that I picked up in the aroma. This melds into that tight sweet graininess of the Pils malts, which do a nice job of propping those hops up. The finish is dry and pithy with some lingering dankness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and sharp on the tongue which works itself into more of a smooth creaminess as this moves out in the mouth. An oily slickness from the hops really keeps this easy feeling.

This was a borderline IPL at times with those American hops really adding a lot of character to this. Maybe a bit too much though, as this got REALLY herbal feeling as things warmed up. I recommend having at this one while it’s still fairly cold, as it’s got quite a flavorful and crisp hop bite before things start loosening up. It’s nice to see New Belgium going with the tall boys now.

Kegatron, Apr 23, 2012
Photo of russpowell
3.68/5  rDev +2.5%

BBD of 24 Jun 2012

Pours a super-effervescent gold/bronze color with 4 fingers of fluffed up pearl colored head. Great lacing & above average head retention

S: Serious bready notes, grassyness & lemons as well

T: Grassyness, faint lemon rind, crackery notes along with some bready sweetness. Some mineral & soapy hoppyness as this warms along with more grassyness & some grainyness. Finishes grassy, citrussy & fairly crisp

MF: Medium bodied, crisp carbonation, alright balance

I'm sure a few of these will go down great out on the lake or chilling this summer; but this is a little too stripped down for me, give more hops & or malt please. I doubt this will even make my summer canned beer rotation this year...

russpowell, Apr 20, 2012
Photo of StonedTrippin
3.6/5  rDev +0.3%

definitely not my stlye of beer, but i appreciate this one a lot for what it is. it pours a mostly clear wheat beer color, with an active white head that lasts a few minutes before fading down to froth. it smells very malty, without much hops to speak of. the flavor is distinctly czech as far at the malt profile goes. its dry and biscuity, sturdy for such a light brew. it also has a touch of sweetness and a little more hops than the nose suggests, with a bittering conclusion. mouthfeel i like, it has more body than most beers from this genre, and the carbonation is just right. stays bubbly even as it warms, although this is a beer to drink quickly. refreshing and appropriate in any season. this is a pretty decent can of beer, although i liked the mothership wit that it replaced a lot better.

StonedTrippin, Oct 03, 2012
Photo of oline73
3.53/5  rDev -1.7%

Poured from the can into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: The beer pours a clear amber color with close to a finger of fluffy white carbonation that fades to a ring around the pour.

Smell: Sweet malt with some light citrus notes. Not overly exciting but nice.

Taste: Fairly light and easy to drink. Malt forward, but there is enough hop presence to keep things interesting. Some citrus and herbal notes mixed in with the malt.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with tingly carbonation. The bubbles are a bit large. The finish is quite dry.

Overall: This is a solid beer for the summer. Very easy to drink, I would have another.

oline73, May 28, 2012
Photo of mactrail
3.35/5  rDev -6.7%

Golden amber in the glass with the classic head. A little more substance to the body than the usual lagers. A touch of resins in the nose.

Pleasant touch of hops with a slight bitter aftertaste, but nothing like the usual hop-centric Pale Ales. Enough malt to give it a toasty taste. Kind of a winey touch. Not much to distinguish it, but comparing with some other craft lagers might be educational. Seems well made and clean in its modest way.

From the tall can. I'm always glad to see more variety in canned beers. If we can't have reusable bottles for commercial brews, maybe we can have less weight and easier recycling. This seems like a good choice for a picnic beer.

mactrail, May 07, 2012
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Shift Pale Lager from New Belgium Brewing
81 out of 100 based on 1,185 ratings.