Top Shelf Classic Lager | Lake of Bays Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
78
okay
15 Reviews
THE BROS
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BEER STATS
Reviews:
15
Ratings:
55
Avg:
3.24
pDev:
38.58%
 
 
Wants:
1
Gots:
8
For Trade:
0
Top Shelf Classic LagerTop Shelf Classic Lager
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Lake of Bays Brewing Company
Ontario, Canada | website

Style: American Pale Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by thehyperduck on 10-18-2013

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 15 | Ratings: 55
Reviews by dreamchaser:
Photo of dreamchaser
4.09/5  rDev +26.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

The aroma is striking in its authentic lager qualities - strong hops. Its appearance is also of a classic lager - fast dissipating thin head and a very, very clear, very bright yellow. The taste is solidly lager-like - thin, refreshing and very acidic with a corn-like sweetness that lingers. Unfortunately it lacks any originality.

 332 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of DannyBaldoni
3/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of MJ63
3/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of biboergosum
3.74/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

473ml can, with a name that could have two, equally flattering meanings here in the hockey nirvana otherwise known as Canada.

This beer pours a clear, medium golden yellow colour, with three fingers of puffy, tightly foamy, and somewhat caked bone-white head, which leaves some sparse tree branch lace around the glass as things evenly subside.

It smells of crackery, doughy pale and caramel malt, black pepper, a soft lemon rind sourness, a hint of dry honey, and tame earthy, grassy hops. The taste is more bready, slightly yeasty and doughy pale malt, a touch of honeyed caramel sweetness, subtle and muddled citrus notes, and more earthy, sort of weedy, and grassy hay-like hops.

The carbonation is moderate in strength, and mostly just cheekily frothy, the body medium-light in weight, and pretty smooth, no real interlopers to be found here. It finishes somewhat off-dry, the doughy malt persisting, alongside a fading fruitiness, and weakening earthy, floral hoppiness.

An enjoyable enough, well-made lager, nothing screams out adjuncts or any other cut corners. Maybe a tad sweet overall, but that's due more to the waning hops, than to any issue with the maltiness. Drinkable, and even recommendable - the NHL Alumni Association could do a hell of lot worse in choosing their official beer.

 1,303 characters

Photo of Sammy
2.53/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Photo of DaveBar
3.05/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Purchased at the LCBO for just over $2.00 for a 473ml can. Served at 4deg C in a draught glass

A- Opens well and pours a medium head that is gone in 30sec. Medium to darkish gold color. Filtered clear

S- Decent hops and malt. Nothing to write home about

T- Has a good malt backbone but nothing special or anything that will stick out at you. Touch sweet

M- Dry but a bit of creaminess. Typical lager

O- Pretty good but will not buy again. Typical lager really. North American mass produced beer. At least there is no metallic smell or taste.

Food Pairing

This ok beer went well with...... Fish and chips!

Enjoy

 620 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
2.74/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Can: Poured a light golden color lager with a medium size foamy head with minimal retention and some light lacing. Aroma of light sweet notes with very subtle cereal notes. Taste is quite bland with light sweet notes and some very subtle notes. Body is light with good carbonation. Bland tasting lager which might appeal to their target audience.

 346 characters

Photo of ThinkAgain
3/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of WillAndSarah
4/5  rDev +23.5%

Photo of CurtisD
3/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of the_rick0524
3.25/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of StoutHunter
3.13/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of mikecram
3.06/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of headlessparrot
3.77/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Fine: I'll say it. I *enjoy* this beer. It's an interesting take on the American "pale lager" genre, but goes a slightly different route by using wheat (rather than rice or corn) as its "adjunct" of choice. The result is a sweet, wheaty, soft, biscuity, and only slightly hoppy/herbal beer (quite orange and almost cloudy in appearance, with quick-dissipating head); some slight orange/citrusy notes also pop up.

It's not what I was expecting, and actually differentiates itself from many other pale lagers. Enjoyable, if not striving toward greatness.

 553 characters

Photo of spinrsx
3.25/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

473ml Can from the Ottawa LCBO for $2.50

Appearance - Clear amber/yellow colour with an average size white coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there isn't much lacing. The head lasted for around 2-3 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Bread/grains, corn, caramel

Taste & Mouth - There is an above average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, corn and caramel/toffee. There is also a light grassiness and some fruity notes.

Overall - Not a bad beer. A step up from basic macros for sure.. Kind of like a basic lager with a little more caramel malt tossed in. Refreshing and quite drinkable.. but forgettable.

 652 characters

Photo of Subliminal64
3.75/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of Mr_Rocca
3/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of RedAleMan
3.25/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of liamt07
3.5/5  rDev +8%

Photo of SebD
2.81/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Appearance: It has a clear straw yellow color to it. It has an off-white head that dies down fast and leaves no lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of grainy malts, light honey and a faint grassiness.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has some grainy malts, slight breadiness, honey and faint grassy hops.

Mouthfeel: It has a low/medium carbonation with a light and watery overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied by bland flavors and aromas.

 503 characters

Photo of thehyperduck
3.73/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

473 mL can picked up at the LCBO; best before March 2014. A new addition to the shelves at my local LCBO, this appears to be Lake of Bays' second attempt at brewing a craft lager, and I'm hoping for a better showing than the last effort. Apparently this is the new official beer of the NHLAA, with part of the profit being donated to programs for retired NHL players (in addition to whatever else the NHLAA does). Served ice cold.

Pours a lovely bright golden colour with a twinge of amber, and topped with one finger of frothy, bone-white head that slowly recedes over a period of minutes. Some nice, sticky lacing is generated during this process, with a thin cap being the final remnant. The aroma is pleasant, with hints of bready malts, toasted biscuits and caramel. There's a mild, grassy hop presence, too - so mild that it's kind of easy to miss. Oh well, the malt bill is still clean and enticing.

Pretty tasty stuff, with no real surprises. It starts off a little grainy, with bready malts and biscuits soon coming into the mix as well. Some caramel, honey-like sweetness comes through next, with the flavour finally finishing on a blend of toasted malts and caramel, with a light touch of the grassy, somewhat earthy noble hops mentioned on the packaging. Light-bodied, with moderate carbonation that gives this lager a firm bite without bloating. Fairly flavourful for a 4.5% lager, and extremely drinkable.

Final Grade: 3.73, a B. I could tell just from sniffing this stuff that it was a big step up from their last attempt at lagering. Top Shelf Classic Lager earns the right to call itself a craft-quality lager, and it is definitely not just an overpriced budget beer. Reminds me strongly of Railway City's Canada Southern Draft, another light OCB lager that uses noble hops on top of a quality malt backdrop. There's nothing groundbreaking here - it's just a pale lager - but it's a yummy one that would make a great staple at the cottage next summer, or even in front of the HNIC broadcast this winter. If I were Lake of Bays, I'd stop wasting tank space on Rock Cut and use this as their flagship lager.

 2,126 characters

Photo of Brody1714
3.5/5  rDev +8%

Photo of cfalovo97
3/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of WCW
3.23/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of Jotora
3.25/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

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Top Shelf Classic Lager from Lake of Bays Brewing Company
78 out of 100 based on 15 ratings.