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Shelter Pale Ale - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Shelter Pale AleShelter Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

736 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 736
Reviews: 473
rAvg: 3.38
pDev: 14.79%
Wants: 26
Gots: 17 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed with a premium barley and northwestern Williamette and Columbus hops, Shelter Pale Ale has a fine malt backbone and a slightly nutty flavor. It's a versatile and quaffable beer.

We named this beer Shelter Pale Ale because we think of a shelter as being a place you come home to. It just made sense for this Dogfish original.

30 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-16-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Shelter Pale Ale Alström Bros
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Ratings: 736 | Reviews: 473 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Donsmitty


5/5  rDev +47.9%

12-06-2011 18:57:28 | More by Donsmitty
Photo of Gavini


5/5  rDev +47.9%

10-19-2012 22:29:52 | More by Gavini
Photo of klesniew


5/5  rDev +47.9%

03-23-2013 21:03:46 | More by klesniew
Photo of AtlasBrew


4.8/5  rDev +42%

Color: A gorgeous amber color with an off white fluffy head that stays for awhile and leaves lacy rings as it slowly fades. Crystal clear!

Aroma: Fruity and a bit floral with just a hint of spice and steely-ness (if that is a word, I don't think it is.) There is a very faint hint of caramel also. It's a lovely aroma.

Taste: A mildly sweet caramel flavor up front that melds ever so gently into a spicy, fruity flavor in the middle. A mild steely bitterness greets you at the exit door and bids you farewell with a pleasant semi-dry finish.

Overall: I've tried many Pale Ales in the past several years. Some are overly caramel flavored, some try to mask there poor quality with large doses of dry-hopping. Some just miss entirely. But, I can tell you this; I have not had a better Pale Ale than Shelter Pale. It is a fantastic example of what a session-able Pale Ale should be. Not too much alcohol, not too malty, and not too bitter. Just right.

04-23-2009 05:48:06 | More by AtlasBrew
Photo of Sipchue


4.65/5  rDev +37.6%

DFH never said that they're shooting for a particular style. You could argue that it's a Pale Ale, so it should act like one. It does, but in it's own, unique, refreshing way. The color is pleasantly light with good lacing. The aroma is fresh and round - not overwhelming on the malt or the hops. I rated the taste as exceptional, not because it fulfills any particular style parameters, but because it pleases me a great deal. In fact, the well-roundness of the flavor profile is what truly makes this brew stand out. The flavors coated my buds for a good 10-15 minutes after the last sip, with no regrets at both refrigerator temperature and at rest. Good job, Dogfish Head!

08-15-2011 23:53:42 | More by Sipchue
Photo of Tomdee74


4.58/5  rDev +35.5%

I read these reviews and I'm amazed this beer was ranked so low. This stuff flies off the shelves here. I think the color is great and it goes down like a softdrink. It's very drinkable. Very few beers make me do a backflip but this is one of them!

02-07-2009 19:57:21 | More by Tomdee74
Photo of schoolboy


4.58/5  rDev +35.5%

I had this both on tap and in bottle. The bottle does the tap justice. Unfortunately I can't normally get this, and I have consumed the supply I brought back from Delaware (to Ohio).

It's a very nice IPA/APA. A bit on the tame side (balanced), and thus extremely drinkable. One could consume a mess of these and not loose one's mind or palate (you could eat too!).

I need to find an excuse to go back to Delaware to get more.

09-09-2007 19:02:25 | More by schoolboy
Photo of Craftonly23121

Rhode Island

4.5/5  rDev +33.1%

11-07-2012 15:52:50 | More by Craftonly23121
Photo of ThePunisher1974


4.5/5  rDev +33.1%

08-31-2013 23:23:05 | More by ThePunisher1974
Photo of delawaaare


4.5/5  rDev +33.1%

03-10-2012 04:35:52 | More by delawaaare
Photo of VikeMan


4.5/5  rDev +33.1%

10-05-2012 17:51:13 | More by VikeMan
Photo of Erik-P

British Columbia (Canada)

4.5/5  rDev +33.1%

08-05-2014 06:46:03 | More by Erik-P
Photo of funkel81


4.5/5  rDev +33.1%

11-14-2011 15:44:47 | More by funkel81
Photo of Heatwave33


4.45/5  rDev +31.7%

Poured from a 12oz bottle to a Dogfish Head Snifter.

Color: Slighltly hazy golden orange with a white head.

Smell: Caramel malts, hops and citrus.

Taste: Caramel malts, citrus and hops.

Mouthfeel: Great carbonation, smooth with a mid dryness.

Overall: Finally the one that started it all! Well balanced, crisp and a nice citrus tone. A great subtle brew to relax with. Cheers!

11-15-2011 02:52:58 | More by Heatwave33
Photo of gbontrag


4.43/5  rDev +31.1%

Nice whiff of grain sack. Also fruity hops mingling with dry hop flowers. Smells like honey and weed.

Low key carb-bite balances nicely with dusty malt sugars, and lightly flowery, drying, bittering hops. Malt rises with each sip, stroking the back of my throat with a lust parting hug. Hops growing along the floor... This is a nice, sunroom kinda beer. Beautifully made.

tight froth, lacy, light clear orange. Fantastic!

08-11-2006 16:52:38 | More by gbontrag
Photo of korguy123

Ontario (Canada)

4.38/5  rDev +29.6%

12oz into DFH Signature Glass.
Special thanks to mdaschaf for both!
Bottle Date 8/25/10

A- Orange/copper pour. Finger and a half fluffy white head. Shrinks to a quarter inch cap across the top of the glass. Lacing is wonderful.

S- Faint grassy tones, toasted malts. Subtle strawberries, and sweet citrus notes.

T- Malts and grassy hops well balanced. very full flavored for a pale ale. Faint woody notes in the back end. Not bitter enough to make it very sessionable.

M- Creamy and juicy. Slight bitter aftertaste.

D- Super balance in this. Probably my new favorite pale ale. I think this is something I could by a case and enjoy the first and last equally as much if not more.

09-19-2010 18:14:27 | More by korguy123
Photo of Slatetank


4.35/5  rDev +28.7%

Served cold in a Nonic at the brewpub in Rehobeth.
A - A light amber w/ a small white head. Practically no lace is formed from this ale.

S - Sweet odors of malt and hops. Very herbal smells bordering on, but not getting into perfumy territory. Slightly citric scents w/ nutty malt and a slight tinge of spice if I sniff hard.

M - Mellow feel from hop bitterness. Light carbonation and fruitiness. Sweet with a subtle spiciness in the finish.

T - Floral hop tastes overwhelms the palate w/ light malty flavors adding substance. Mellow bitterness w/ a dry flavor in the finish. Very delicate, yet flavorful w/ hops from start to finish. Not overly bitter and a taste that made me want to take large gulps. Very smooth quaffing.

D - A good Pale ale w/ high drinkablility for me. Highly quaffable, pleasant bitterness and a lower abv add to the overall experience. I enjoy that you can taste the hops instead of just feel the bitterness. The english style is hinted at a the blend of hops is heavenly. I could drink this in sessions, I really love this ale.

09-04-2007 22:38:48 | More by Slatetank
Photo of tugdriver7


4.33/5  rDev +28.1%

On tap at the Gaithersburg Alehouse. Nice gold/orange color, slight hops with malt edge in nose, with a bit of head retention (others at the table seemed to have a bit more). Taste was wonderfully balanced malt with a nice APA hop bite that just lingered enough to lend drinkability to the beer. A bit slick on the downside, but a great fresh flavor that held right to the last bit in the glass. Nothing like the often fiery IPAs Dogfish Head is famous for, but for me that was a good thing. Great with their fish and chips, by the way.

02-10-2008 04:34:11 | More by tugdriver7
Photo of KickbacksSteve


4.33/5  rDev +28.1%

12 ounce bottle dated 7/15/09, poured into a Unibroue tulip. Finger thick head lasts for a few moments, then recesses into the golden body. Nice, citrusy hoppy aroma with some malt sweetness. Taste is also nicely hopped with some backbone to it. This beer needs to be reviewed for what it is. Dogfish's interpretation of a pale ale. It is unfair to review it against all of the other beers in Dogfish's portfolio. Yes, it pales (no pun intended) in comparison to most of their other offerings but it would be unfair to review it against anything other than pale ales. This one is delicious, and more delicious than the average pale ale on the market.

11-25-2009 08:58:44 | More by KickbacksSteve
Photo of HagueBrook


4.33/5  rDev +28.1%

Served in a pint glass (with Mayor Quimby etched into the glass!)

Appearance= Nice copperish color and a lacy head that lingered on the side of the glass.

Smell = A nutty sweet smell.

Taste = A light malty taste with a touch of sweetness. The hops come through right at the tail end.

Mouthfeel = Light body and little carbonation

Drinkability = Would have been better on a hot summer night (easier said than done with 4' of snow on the ground). Overall, I would say "quaffable, but not transcendent."

02-04-2011 00:35:16 | More by HagueBrook
Photo of vette2006c5r

South Dakota

4.3/5  rDev +27.2%

Dogfish Head Shelter Pale Ale poured an amber color, with a lacy head, that was of good size, and stayed with the beer. It had a eartly hoppy smell to it. It taste similar to the 60 min, but lighter. It was easy to drink, low abv, and one of the lighter dogfish head beers out there. Overall a good beer, not the best from dogfish head, but it was lighter and refreshing.

06-11-2010 01:26:45 | More by vette2006c5r
Photo of barleynvinebrew


4.28/5  rDev +26.6%

Pours a transparent light amber color with a 1" white head that leaves some lacing in my pint glass. Smell a light sweet malt and moderate hops. Taste starts with a touch of hops and some of that sweet barley malt, then finishes with a hop bitterness. Aftertaste is sweet though, I like that. Mouthfeel very good with light carbonation. Overall, it's a great beer. I really like beer because it doesn't really blow me away. If I was anywhere in the Mid-Atlantic states and stopped somewhere for dinner and they were serving DFH this would definitely be an option for me.

02-03-2011 06:49:33 | More by barleynvinebrew
Photo of shahn


4.25/5  rDev +25.7%

02-04-2013 20:45:51 | More by shahn
Photo of Kozality

4.25/5  rDev +25.7%

05-19-2012 04:05:59 | More by Kozality
Photo of jlenik

New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev +25.7%

10-13-2012 22:17:05 | More by jlenik
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Shelter Pale Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
77 out of 100 based on 736 ratings.