Blue Paddle Pilsner - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Blue Paddle PilsnerBlue Paddle Pilsner

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BA SCORE
80
good

1,179 Ratings
THE BROS
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Ratings: 1,179
Reviews: 408
rAvg: 3.53
pDev: 13.03%
Wants: 21
Gots: 137 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Czech Pilsener |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 07-18-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,179 | Reviews: 408
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.05/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The Blue Paddle Pilsner pours from the bottle an opaque golden yellow with a half inch bubbly white head on top. Quite a nice hue with lots of active carbonation. Aromas of sweet crystal, pale malts along with a nice spicy, grassy noble hop presence with just a hint of lemon zest. Quite nice and refined.

First sip brings a nice creamy pale maltiness upfront a bit toasty with a light lemony citrus aspect. Mid palate brings a nice helping of spicy, grassy hops that impart a mellow bitterness on the way down. Flows down with a lingering toasted bread....quite a nice pilsner here IMHO. Enjoyable!

Mouthfeel has a solid body with a good creaminess that just flows down the back of the throat so easily. A well built pilsner that would be great for sessioning on hot summer days out by the beach. Ranks up there as one of my fave U.S. brewed pilsners. Thanks to mentor for the opportunity to sample this one!

Photo of theozag
3.11/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours and settles just slightly murky and yellow with a frothy white head that fades to a foam ing around the inside of your glass.

Shell is crisp, creamy, and sweet, but too faint for me to be specific about its components.

Starts sweet and clean with a bitter hop twinge (at the front it actually affects the lips as much as the tongue). Blue Paddle settles light bodied with a unqiue combination of sweet, sour, and bitter flavors. The overall taste of this beer is somethign akin to a subtle wheat and cream. Finish is fairly clean but with a notable aftertaste that dwells on the tastebuds.

Photo of Domingo
3.58/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Much like 1554, I'm starting to see this brew at a lot of local establishments. I'm glad to see NB distributing more of their brews other than FT/Sunshine.
Pours a nice golden color. Sort of like what a macro should look like in an ideal world.
Smell is definitely grainy...maybe with a hint of a corn finish, but it's just a natural trait of the grain (as this is adjunct free).
Flavor is super-crisp and refreshing. A really nice brew for a night when you crave a ligher brew but don't want to skimp on flavor.
This is a *perfect* brew to wean people off of macros (both domestic and euro). It's familiar, but so much better.

Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured into the glass crystal clear pale straw with an off-white and frothy head which rose very tall and fell slowly to lace the glass.

The aroma was lightly spicy with hops coupled with a low maltiness and light caramel. A very slight DMS, corn this time, was present and pleasant.

The flavor was nicely crisp with a noticeable maltiness balanced well with a hop bittering that balanced the beer. The bittering was substantial and lasting, but restrained and not overpowering. The bittering was also slightly grassy and spicy.

The finish was dry with a lasting hop bittering long into the afteraste and beyond. Not strong in hop flavor but a nice hop bitterness for sure. The body was medium light. A nice Pils. Could have a bit more bittering still and a smidge more hop flavoring for my tastes.

12 ounce bottle dated 30 Dec 05. Thanks mentor!

Photo of kgotcher
4.25/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Plue Paddle in a 12 oz bottle, Dec 05 date. Recommended temp is 38 degrees which is pretty cold, I think mine is a bit warmer.

Pours with good amount of carbonation but not too much. Foamy head disapears quickly but leaves nice thin lace on top and sides of glass. No overfoaming like some Macro Pilsners. As any pilsner should the look, this one is a very light golden color, extremely clear. Right away I can smell grains, without even trying. The taste is grainy also, not in texture but in taste. Light at first and then more noticable. Dry aftertaste with cracker flavor. Still very light overall. Some hop flavor comes out but nothing really jumps out at me, such as the sazz hops in a bohemian pils. This is not necessarily a bad thing but I would call it is a delicate flavor for sure.

Overall I would say a very enjoyable brew as a thirst quencher or when you just feel like something lighter. A must try as a malt only alternative to Macro Lagers that use adjuncts. A very good representative of what is possible with a style of beer that is commonly looked down on by people wishing to avoid this style only because it is so mainstream.

Photo of Beaver13
2.79/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle. Pours a crystal clear pale yellow with a good sized frothy white head that goes to a film that laces the glass.

The aroma is earthy grains.

The flavor is sweet malts then a grainy hoppiness and a crisp and lightly bitter finish. There are some sour notes in there too. The mouthfeel is on the light side...a bit watery but fairly smooth.

Overall, not too exciting but a decent brew.

Photo of Citadel82
3.8/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle courtesy of Henry Jones. I miss being able to get all the NB products. Best by 9/12/05.

Pours a light pale gold with one finger white head that left sparse lacing. Aroma is mildy malty with floral hops. Taste is biscuit malt, light and earthy followed by progressively drying hop bite with faint citrus notes at the tail. Short crisp, dry finish. Tasty and a nice summer beer.

Photo of malty
3.58/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Best before Nov 4th, '05

Beautiful clear gold in color with a nice white head that dissolves to a patchy layer with a multi-sized bubble halo. Exceptional lacing all the way down the glass.

Notes of crisp floral hops tease the nose with an earthy undertone.

An interesting prominent biscuit flavor with a herbal/skunky (in a good way) undertone ushers in the crisp dry hops. The flavor is there and gone pretty quickly.

Mouthfeel is great. Fine carbonation keeps the light body interesting. Somewhat dry, but too quick of a finish.

Drinkability is good. Very unintrusive and friendly.

Overall a finely crafted pils. I really dig the bready, earthy/skunky component but wish there was more in the hop dept. I suspect this beer is well received from people just entering the craft brew movement. Great for beginners and a great alternative to most 'pilsners' in local supermkts and liquor stores.

Photo of rsvlbrwr
3.78/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice initial thick head but doesn't retain long. Mild aroma of malt. SLight hop smell. Quite easy to drink but not as much hop as would be expected in a true pilsner. Enjoyable but would score better with more hops. Light bodied with dry finish. Fits well with the hot Sacramento summer. Goes down way to easy.

Photo of palliko
4.2/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is a lovely light amber with a very white foamy head that leaves a little lacing. Aroma contains an upfront dose of fresh mowed lawn, flowers and gingery hops that mellow out into some malty grains. Body is light to medium with little carbonation. Initially the flavor fulfils the promise of the aroma, but adds some bitternness that ends in a finish that is nicely dry and satisfying. Very nice to have on a hot day, with food or as a session beer.

Photo of whynot44
3.28/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A light bodied Pilsner. Clear gold color with a moderate white head that retreats with just a trace of lacing.

The aroma is light malt and herbal hops.

Very light malt flavor, definite hoppy bitterness and flavor, especially in the aftertaste.

Fairly crisp and refreshing.

Not a real premium Pilsner but very drinkable.

Photo of canucklehead
3.6/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a fairly tasty take on a German Pils that hits the right notes on both hopping and finish. Don't get me wrong this is isn't up there with the great German Pils but I would buy this in the Summer as a thirst quencher.I really enjoyed the pleasant semisweet finish which helps make it food friendly.

Photo of KoG
3.23/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Golden color with a rich white cap that leaves thin lacing.

Smell is a bit musty along with floral hops and not much else. Very clean.

Taste was somewhat sweet. Light malt character and not enough hops, but still tasty nonetheless. Sweet malt is more evident as it warms up with a bit of honey flavor as well as a hint of yeast.

Not a bad brew, but not something I would buy regularly.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.1/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've had an odd relationship with Blue Paddle over the years. Even though I've tasted it many, many times, I simply enjoyed it without going to the effort to write a review. Maybe it was that I felt it would always be available to review later; and maybe it was because I'd thought I'd already reviewed it (I actually think I did.... maybe my review got lost due to a bad computer connection); or maybe it was because it just didn't stand up and shout "review me!"; or maybe it was just too good to put down! In the end, I think it was a little bit of all of those, but I'll put the spin on 'it was just too good to put down'!

It pours a typical golden body beneath a full head of white froth that holds well and leaves some nice lace about the glass. The nose delivers floral, grassy, and lightly spicy hops atop a straight-forward, grainy malt base. The body is medium on the light side, and it's crisp but not zesty in the mouth with a slightly restrained carbonation. The flavor is a well-balanced blend of straightforward, grainy malt; floral, grassy, and lightly spicy hops; and a firm bitterness. It's more of a southern German style, and it's well-rounded and very drinkable; but at the same time nothing really stands out.

Overall, it's a solid pils that's definitely welcome during the summer, but perfectly acceptable in any season; and also perfectly suited to almost any occasion (BBQ, wedding reception, bowling league, nightclub, late afternoon at the ski-lodge, dinner with mom & dad, fishing expedition, .... you get the idea!). Nicely done!

Photo of ElGordo
3.75/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly cloudy golden hue with a half-inch stark white head. Nice clean aroma of German yeast, light malt, and floral hops. Taste is nice, but kind of subtle. Very light malt, a touch of floral hops, some honey sweetness, and some nice German lager yeast. Not exactly a very complex palate, but decent. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied, about what you'd expect from a pilsner. Would be a great session beer if I had more than the two my brother brought back from Colorado.

Photo of OStrungT
3.64/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer pours a golden yellow with a white head. The head fades slowly leaving thick laces. It smells citrusy and hoppy. It has the smell of a flower. There is a very faint malt aroma present if you look deeply. Ot tastes hoppy. It has a crisp taste to it. It is just a little tangy also. This is a well balanced beer. It leaves a fresh floral aftertaste on the palate. This beer is carbonated nicely. Due to the low alcohol content, this beer would probably make a good session beer. I am not really a Pilsner fan, but I thought this beer was decent. This beer would be good to drink on a hot summer day. It is hard to get down here, and that makes it a bit pricey, so I probably wont buy it all that often, but it is worth a try.

Photo of neonbrown82
4.13/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

It has been so long since I last had a pils I didn't quite know what to expect. This is also the first time I had a real pils (you know, the non-adjunct lager kind). The all malt grain bill is definitely noticeable in comparison to a macro lager. It was quite refreshing after a long winter of hop monsters, malt monster belgians, and whatnot. Went well with the Famous Dave's BBQ.

The beer poured to a clear fizzy yellow, expected of the style, with a healthy frothy white head. For the style, this is actually quite an exceptional looking brew.

The smell was also quite surprising, as it is usually lacking altogether from any pilsener I've had (except for the piss/puke smell). It was kind of flowery. The real malts definitely produce a better aroma than adjuncts mixed with yeast!

The taste was classic pilsener, but somehow better. I can clearly tell the difference between this example of a pils and, say, a Budweiser. I was actually kind of pleasantly surprised. Doesn't leave my stomach uneasy after a decent chug like a macro. Surprisingly well balanced between malt and hops flavors, though the malts clearly show through moreso than the hops.

This beer has enticed me into trying other examples of REAL pilsener, such as Pils-Urquell and others. It was quite refreshing after a barrage of intense beer flavors through the winter months. So far, this is the only Pilsener I have had that is worthy of a review, and I hope to change that soon. Nonetheless, I still prefer an unbalanced hoppy brew. I can't normally get this at home in Iowa City, but next time I am "home" home (in Omaha), I will most likely skip this even though it has intrigued me. I will definitely try other New Belgium beers, though, since the brewery will always have a special place in my heart (regardless of whether or not I am as obsessed with Fat Tire as I used to be before I got into hoppy beers).

Photo of allengarvin
3.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Crystal-clear golden color, with a big head and a lot of clingy lacing.

Aroma: Grainy, slightly sweet malt aroma.

Flavor: Crisp malt flavor cut with moderate high bitterness. Hop flavor is prominent, mostly floral, slightly herbal. Finish is clean and dry.

Body: Fairly light body, carbonation a bit low.

Blue Paddle isn't a bad beer. It compares favorably with Belgian pilsners like Stella (pils in Belgium accounts for over 80% of the beer produced, I've read). New Belgium's other beers are more interesting, but this is a good example of a continental pilsner, with few flaws.

Photo of GClarkage
3.21/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12/07/04- Purchased at Piazza's Market in San Mateo, CA

Appearance- A darker bronze color of yellow, a nice billowy white head and light lacing along the glass.

Smell- Very little scent. Tired my damnedest to smell something and can only come up with maybe a corn and light miniscule hoppy scent.

Taste- Not a huge fan of Pilsners, and that's only because I haven't found a real good one yet. Alot of pils taste like Coors Light to me. This one taste a bit better than that, but still not a great taste.
Corny taste with some decent hops mixed in. A bit sweet like expected.

Mouthfeel- Highly carbonated, which made it go down less than perfect.

Drinkability- Not a real bad beer for me, but I'm still searching for a pils that I like. It looks like most people enjoy this, so I guess I would give it a go. Just not for me.

Photo of yemenmocha
4.2/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

beautiful transparent gold color. simply beautiful.

Nose - lemon zest, overal citrusy, fresh and clean.

Palate - Assertive (but not overly so) Saaz tangyness right away. Smooth. Dry, with some malt sweetness to round out.

Certainly not a Saaz monster but balanced.

Finish is an expected clean, crispness. Very appetizing, drinkable.

Photo of Mitchster
4.6/5  rDev +30.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Brewed with Pale, Munich, Carapils, and Aromatic malts. Hopped with Saaz, Liberty, and Magnum hops. 33 IBU.

Pours out to a brilliantly clear pale golden, forming a tall rocky white head with excellent retention and beautiful lacing. Carbonation is moderate. Aroma is very nice with very fresh, wonderfully bready malt complex, delicately balanced by spicy noble hops and grain husk. Very crisp and clean ferment. Mouthfeel is excellent with a nice spicy and spritzy start but then followed by a very smooth finish and medium-light body. Taste starts with Saaz hops, with floral and slightly leafy character, followed by that wonderful trademark NBCC bready malt complex...the grain husk is at a perfect level, and the bitterness is exactly where it should be...providing a nice counterbalance to the malts, but adding a spicy and thirst-quenching finish. Very cleanly fermented with no perceptable off-flavors or alcohol.

This is an outstanding pilsener, equaling some of the finest European pilseners on tap. Probably the best American pilsener I've ever had, and it's only better on tap at the brewery. At $6.99/6'er, this is an absolute steal. Highly recommended!

Photo of MobBarley
4.19/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Straw colored with a weak head. Smells hoppy and tart and tastes the same. A little maltiness lurks in the finish. Mouthfeel is fantastic and makes this a fine hot day brew. Combined with the hoppy nature of the beer, it makes for a beer that certainly earns the title: "Crisp and Refreshing". Drinkability is likewise high.

Photo of WesWes
3.65/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a pale gold color with a thick frothy head that quickly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a typical pilsner scent; pale malts and a dry lager yeast finish. The taste is decent as well. It has a plain pale malt base with a slight bitterness. It has a grainy flavor and a dry finish. It goes down smooth and finishes clean and crisp. The mouthfeel is good. It is a low bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a fine pilsner. It doesn't throw anything new at you, but it drinks well.

Photo of GreenWBush
3.3/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of the myriad things I appreciate about NBB is that most all of their beers seem like different animals. There's none of that uniformity I find comforting (and at the same time dismaying) in companies like Rogue and Sierra Nevada. It has to be the yeast, and as a Belgian step-child, NBB makes sure everything is an original creation. This is no Fat Tire Lite organization.

This beer is straw against the harsh flourescent light of the brewery's tap room. The nose is very worty and not particularly appealing. The best lace of the line, easily.

There's a little funkiness here. I love the finish of the beer, in its light cheery, hoppiness. I love the middle point of the beer, where the malt really excels and tastes very Czech. The beginning of the beers is where I ran into trouble. The original review denotes "hints of urinal cake." Ouch.

My palate grew tolerant to this beginning after a certain point and I did truly find the beer pretty tasty after awhile. Probably wouldn't get it again unless I was sure that sulfury taste wasn't there again.

Photo of Gagnonsux
3.78/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Blue Paddle pours an attractive golden color with a large, thick head. Head retention is excellent, lacings are left all along the inside of my glass. Smell is what you'd expect from a pils, mildly hoppy with some grassiness. This is quite tasty, very crisp and refreshing. Slightly sweet lemon finish is very enjoyable. Drinkability is very high, I could easily see myself spending an afternoon with Blue Paddle.

Blue Paddle Pilsner from New Belgium Brewing
80 out of 100 based on 1,179 ratings.