Shift Pale Lager - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Shift Pale LagerShift Pale Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

1,325 Ratings
THE BROS
87
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,325
Reviews: 232
rAvg: 3.6
pDev: 14.17%
Wants: 47
Gots: 156 | FT: 1
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:
Beer added by: Jason on 03-14-2012

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,325 | Reviews: 232
Photo of quirkzoo
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Crystal clear golden amber color with 1.5 fingers of fluffy white head that recede to a thin cap.

Soft, floral hop aroma, honeysuckle, orange blossoms, oranges. Very clean pilsner malt profile with a dry lager yeast smell.

Decently bitter, especially for a lager. The hops are not as present on the palate which is a shame as I really liked the aroma (I am a suck for Nelson Sauvin hops).

Really light mouthfeel, very drinkable.

Overall this is a great beer, good to see New Belgium honing in a lager, I will definitely get this one again.

Photo of PicoPapa
4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16oz Tall Boy with a Best By Date of 23 SEP 12 on the bottom of the can. Lots of lacing. Pours a translucent amber color with over an inch of frothy head. Aromas of tropical and citrus fruits with some dank hop aroma as well. Taste is more of the tropical fruits. Some nice bitterness towards the end. Very flavorful. Nice mouthfeel with lots of carbonation. Had to wait for the head to fade to drink it but it wasnt too long. Overall a well made Pale Lager with alot of flavor thats worth having again.

Photo of soju6
3.45/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clean pale golden color with a good head that fades to nice lacing.

S: Aroma of fresh grain and mild citrus with some malt sweetness and herbs.

T: Starts with a nice bitterness and mild malt sweetness. Continues with a pleasant bitterness and a clean finish.

F: Fairly light body and smooth.

O: Easy drinker, quite enjoyable. Can put away a few of these with no problem

Photo of TheQuietMan22
3.89/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Serving type: 16-ounce can. The freshness date printed on the bottom of the can is “07 OCT 12.”

Appearance: Poured into a pilsner glass. The color is straw leaning to gold. Two fingers of dense-ish, off-white head dissipated to leave trails of foam along the glass, a rocky lacing, and a buttery ring around the edge.

Smell: Very reminiscent of a lighter pale ale; grapefruit/orange/lemon hop citrus offers an invigorating kick to what I expected to be a straightforward lager. As the beer warms, the citrus fades (a little) and light grains try to shoulder in. Caramel makes it itself known but otherwise all I smell is the citrus.

Taste: Though on the light side, the mouthfeel is smooth and a little creamy; it goes down easy — a big plus, as always. The hop citrus is evident: grapefruit and a little lemon, orange, and perhaps tangerine. It has a substantial hop bite for a lager, which I really like; it truly is a “shift” in a different direction. Beside the bitterness and citrus, the malts offer a light caramel and light toasted flavor. Otherwise, the malts give the beer a nice body.

Drinkability: This is lager for hopheads. I am impressed. At first I was miffed about the price but now think it is partly justified.

Photo of lnashsig
3.65/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

#BOTG 58!

I don't know how I have never had this one, but I haven't. So, here we go! I have been jonesing for sessionable beers this summer, with the wicked heat so far.

Poured from can into Karbach pint glass. Pours a nice golden pale color, nice head on the top of the beer. Looks like a lager. Smell- grassy hops, bread. Not much more there to describe, but the hoppiness of this is apparent. Taste- Nice grassy assertive hops, not much backbone behind it. Lacking a bit in balance. Really tight carbonation, borderline stingy. This is a nice, refreshing lager, full of hops flavor, and I could easily pound this beer. I'll be coming back to this one for sure again this summer.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.71/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

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.

Photo of Bung
3.67/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

16oz. Pretty much a clear gold pour, not quite a finger of white head.

Aroma, bready biscuit, lemon citrus. Some herbal hops.

Taste, more grainy like malt with a nice dose of herbal bitterness. Some citrus. Just a little dinner roll breadiness.

Light bodied, very easy drinking. High side of carbonation, very very clean. Good, what it's supposed to be.

Photo of Arborescence
4.22/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear, golden, pours a nice and creamy ~1 finger head, which is even surprisingly persistent for a lager. Looks fairly carbonated.

Aroma: Fresh and hoppy, with citrus aromas and some spices; orange peel, grass, cardamom? Quite promising!

Taste: Hops are a bit milder than expected, there is also a strong malt background. Not as light and refreshing as I thought it would be, but there's certainly some flavour. Hop bitterness in the aftertaste. The spices in the aroma are not evident, but I'm reminded of freshly baked rolls.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, medium carbonation. Bready texture.

Overall: For a lager in a can, this is excellent. Not my favourite type of beer by any means, but it's great to see an inexpensive, easy drinking session lager with some originality and flavour. Hopefully it can convert some of the masses into better beer...

Photo of dbossman
4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pale, light copper hue with a really big 3-inch frothy and bubbly head

S: Nice combination of floral and citrus hops--even some weed and musty grass; sweet bready grains; this smells so good--I'm excited to dive into a a lager

T: Nicely bittered up front and though the sweet bready malts balance things out this stays nicely bitter and hoppy; grainy, weed, breads, citrus, mmm

F: Medium body and sticky and oily and really balanced mouth feel

O: This is such a good, drinkable, thirst-quenching lager--I'll sign up for the double shift

Photo of Phelps
3.56/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed in a shaker pint at the Mellow Mushroom.

Light orange with absolutely perfect clarity. The one-inch head is orange-white and sudsy, depositing big, sticky walls on the sides of the glass. A thin, soapy layer remains after minute, but goes nowhere after that.

Soft grain and a bit of spicy, grassy hops in the nose. Very light and spritzy.

Interesting flavor. The grainy bite of a lager met with the grassy hops of a pale. Maybe a touch of honey as well. Softly bitter, very clean, smooth and drinkable.

Medium-light in body. High carbonation pinches the tongue for just a second, then dies off. A little fizz as it moves. Super-clean.

Not the most flavorful beer, but great for a cheap lager. Nice hop presence, fantastic drinkability.

Photo of snaotheus
3.73/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pint can poured into a pint glass

Pours a clear golden amber with medium head on the pour, and low head retention, and lots of carbonation. Smell is very mild, slightly yeasty, some sweetness.

Taste is slightly hoppy, nice bitterness, some of the yeasty flavor, slightly sour aftertaste that I think is fairly common for lagers.

Mouthfeel is light and smooth. Overall, it's not a bad lager.

Photo of vkv822
3.95/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16oz can : tulip glass
from notes.

Clear golden yellow, billowy white head.

Floral hops as well as some fruity hops, sweet grassy, malty grains.

Light body overall, but medium for the style with prickly medium carbonation.

Hoppy, well done lager, prominent flavors, but still easy drinking.

Photo of Jimmys
4.18/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

16 oz can into hardywood park tulip. best before sept. 30 12.

A: very rich golden hued body. head is bright white with great retention and thick clumps of lace.

S: slightly sweet, slightly minty aroma. if i had to guess, i would say saaz was used in this brew. a very inviting aroma, even if it is one not typical of american pale lagers.

T: a little eggy. there is an underlying chalky, earthy noble bitterness throughout the entire drink that slightly reminds me of a german pils. the malt is there, but really as a backboard for the hops. smoooth.

M: moderate carbonation on a light/medium body.

D: i really like this beer. good flavor on a very drinkable lager. glad it is in a hogsleg.

Photo of MouthfulOfchris
3.53/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a nice golden color with with a creamy thick head that hangs around and leaves good lacing on the glass.

S: A nice combination of grain and a light grassy/pine aroma.

T: The slight taste of caramel comes though from the grains with a slight pine hop bitterness. Really well balanced with a dry finish.

M: A pleasantly medium body mouth feel with moderate carbonation tingle on the tongue.

O: Nothing really stands out about this beer but that is not a bad thing. It is a really solid session beer when sitting out on a hot summer day. *edit* moved the taste and overall ratings up. The more I drink this, the more I appreciate the subtle balanced flavors.

Photo of Scotchboy
3.7/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Shift Pale Lager, tallboy canned Oct 2011, served in a Sam Smith nonic.

A: Pale yellow color with hints of gold, very clear; bright white head and modest lacing.

S: Hopping mixed with pale malts, bread crust, toasted grains, light citrus, lemon & orange peel, floral notes, with hints of spiciness.

T: Follows the nose. Flash of bright citrus and orange followed by lots of crackery biscuit malts and lightly toasted grains, light spices, clean finish, with moderate bitterness for a lager as the hops arrive on the back end ever so lightly.

Extremely enjoyable for a lager, of which I'm not really a fan.

MF: Light and refreshing and drinkable...watery? In a good way. Nice carbonation.

O: Solid drinker for the lager fans. Tallboy, low abv, modest hopping. I'd say this is a winner.

Photo of MattyG85
3.88/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 16 oz. can into a New Belgium Globe glass.

Appearance: Pours a bright and clear copper golden orange with lots of rising bubbles. Big four finger white head with decent retention. Leaves lots of lacing hanging on the glass.

Smell: A pretty crisp aroma. Bready pale malts with good hints of biscuit and cracker. Wheat grains and subtle hints of citrus orange and lemons. Pretty noticeable presence of floral and grassy hops lingering around. A laid back but well balanced aroma.

Taste: A taste that is pretty malt forward but has a nice hop profile in the background. Bready pale malts and wheat grains with good notes of biscuit and crackers. Light hint of a butter like taste. Subtle hints of lemon. Decent presence of grassy and herbal hops that add some bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a medium to high level of carbonation. Very crisp and smooth drinking. Fairly tingly on the tongue.

Overall: A nice beer for the style. Well balanced and very easy drinking. Good lawnmower or after "shift" brew.

Photo of Philousa
2.46/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Great clarity in this light copper colored beer with a metallic sheet. Head is barely there, but some does stick to the glass. Pale malt, possibly 2 row, but I would guess there isn't much pils malt in this. Some sweetness to it, not much hops in the nose. Taste takes a while to get going. Watery without much flavor, then slightly sweet pale malt and lingering bitterness that isn't very abrasive. Super drinkable, but not watery at all. Has substance. Balanced finish.

This would be good after a long ride or run, but without much flavor, I would reach for something else most of the time.

Photo of NuclearDolphin
3.85/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Pint Glass

Appearance - Clear Golden/Yellow color with some great foamy head retention and some good lacing.

Smell - Yeasts, Barley, Floral Hops and a slight malty scent.

Taste - Floral Hops, Yeasts, and Barley. Much like the smell, there is a slight malty characteristic in the back. Very simple and rich taste.

Mouthfeel - Very Light and crisp feeling. It does feel a little watery but it's easy to overlook. All things aside, this is very easy to drink

Overall - Perfect beer to knock back either after a hard day at work or while relaxing. I had this while having a picnic on the beach a couple weeks ago and found it to be absolutely perfect for such an occasion.

Photo of riored4v
4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in to a tulip. Frothy, 1.5 finger white head. Good lacing. Clear, golden body.

Aroma was surprising. Very bright and crisp with some good hop aroma. Floral and slight mineral aroma. Mellow maltiness.

Flavor was light, crisp with a moderator hop finish. Mild maltiness is first notice, slightly grainy as well. Good hop flavor of floral and light spiceyness. Very bright on the flavor. Slightly grassy in the finish with a hint of minerally flavor. Mild bitterness.

Mouthfeel was medium-light body, medium-high carbonation and a dry, crisp finish.

Overall this was very enjoyable and better than I expected. Very refreshing and good balance of flavors.

Photo of oline73
3.53/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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.

Photo of ThisWangsChung
2.94/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

16 oz. can poured into a Samuel Smith pint glass.

A: Pours a golden straw color with brilliant clarity and vibrant carbonation. The head is a three finger eggshell color with thick bubbles and solid retention for a lager. Nice spiderweb lacing is left behind on the glass, while a portion of the head still retains itself away from the glass edges. By lager standards, this one looks damn good.

S: There's a typical snappy grain smell of most lagers, but it's also backed up by strong lemongrass, pineapple, and breadier malt. On the other hand, I'm a little worried how the scent is slightly reminiscient of lemon Pledge.

T: Initially, there's a nicely crisp tartness from the lemony hops, backed up by a vaguely sweet grainy malt note. There's little else to this one other than light grain and tart citrus - even worse, the maltiness doesn't intermingle with the hoppiness as well as it could. Still, it's still an easy drinking, refreshing beer that hits the spot on a hot summer day.

M: Medium bodied with a crisp finishing bite. The lemon hops linger on the palate vaguely, due to its drier texture. Healthy carbonation.

O: Hardly great, but it's a good enough summertime beer nonetheless. As long as you don't go into this one with insane expectations, you'll find that it does its job quite well during this hot time of year.

Photo of FosterJM
3.56/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

1316th Review on BA
Can to NB Globe
16oz

Best By 16-Sep-12
Purchased a 4pk from Albertsons for 7.99

App- A big and deep orange color into the glass. with some golden yellow highlights in the center. A bit orbish looking. A big two finger white head with good cling.

Smell- It's got a ton of lager behind it. Grainy, lemony and even a bit adjunct. Has a small pale ale vibe going with a bit of malty sweetness.

Taste- Opens much more lager than I hoped. Slowly moves to a pale ale flavor for some dry piney hops and very malty with a touch of bitter.

Mouth- A medium body with a medium carbonation level. A bit of malts, orange juice and lemon on the finish.

Drink- It's just okay. Was really expecting more of a citrus hoppy explosion to this.

Photo of joecalderoni
4.68/5  rDev +30%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: pours a beautifull golden/yellow color! Good fluffy Head!

S: Amazing hop aroma well balanced by pilsner malt on the back of the nose!

T: Sweet grainy taste with a well balanced bitterness! Some amazing hop taste at the after taste!

M: Light to medium body! high carbonation that accentuates the hop bitterness!

O: an amazing pale lager! suit for every occasion! perfect presentation! Cans mean you can drink them everywhere!

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.22/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Poured aggressively from the can produced a big, frothy 3 finger white head. Retention was average. Color was a crystal clear and purely golden. Resulting lace is sparse, but gathers in cloudy chunks around the edges.

Smell - Hate to say it, but the predominant smell I get is light mildew. Hints of grass and lemon. One of the more unpleasant smelling beers I've put my nose to. Thankfully the aroma is subtle all in all.

Taste - Thankfully it does not taste in the way it smells. Lightly flavored, with notes of grass and lemon hops. Sitting beneath this you'll find a notes of New Belgium's classic malt profile; toasted biscuit with a touch of nuttiness. Finishes with the malt flavor coming on strong, but hops take the checkered flag.

Mouthfeel - Light in body, almost watery, but packs some serious bite. Tingles the lips like crazy.

Overall - Not a bad pale ale, but the smell is off-putting. I probably won't buy this again, but I'm glad I tried it.

Photo of LXIXME
3.03/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Big white head quickly settles into a decent lacing above a clear rich golden colored beer.

Light citrus to piney hops aroma with a little yeast and grass like hints.

A light soapy sour citrus hops with a a little bit of grain in the taste.

A dry aftertaste with a slight bitter almost soapy hops sticking around on the light to medium bodied beer.

This beer starts out looking really good with a very nice light nose and it seems to go down hill some with the taste and aftertaste.

Shift Pale Lager from New Belgium Brewing
82 out of 100 based on 1,325 ratings.