Palate Shifter Imperial IPA
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

Palate Shifter Imperial IPAPalate Shifter Imperial IPA
Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
New York, United States
Imperial IPA
Ranked #1,108
Ranked #4,638
4.14 | pDev: 10.63%
May 11, 2021
Feb 13, 2006
Palate Shifter Imperial IPAPalate Shifter Imperial IPA
Notes: Hops, and lots of them. The aroma is bursting with the classic citrus and pine aroma of American-grown hops. The flavor is dominated by a hoppy bitterness, with just enough malt to make you want to take another sip. (Formerly known as "Captain’s Reserve Imperial IPA.")
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Rated: 4 by robebo44 from Virginia

May 11, 2021
Rated: 3.69 by BeerRay from Rhode Island

Apr 10, 2021
Rated: 5 by doctorgary from New York

Mar 06, 2021
Rated: 4.16 by Dougwillhike from New Jersey

Oct 04, 2019
Rated: 3.68 by Curt3 from New Jersey

Jul 12, 2019
Rated: 4.5 by rugbyallen11 from Massachusetts

Jan 09, 2019
Rated: 4.25 by BallsDeep from Florida

Nov 04, 2018
Rated: 3.98 by eddiefl from New York

Sep 10, 2018
Rated: 3.8 by artrocity from Massachusetts

Aug 12, 2018
Rated: 3.54 by VeganUndead from Virginia

Jul 15, 2018
Rated: 4 by bluehende from Delaware

Jun 10, 2018
Photo of VoxRationis
Reviewed by VoxRationis from New York

4.37/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Decanted from a 12 oz (355 ml) bottle into a conical pint glass; bottle 09/29/2017.
A: Pours a hazy, dark golden to amber color with a greater than one inch, foamy white head, good, if spotty retention, and modest lacing.
S: Aromas of grapefruit and peach predominate with toast and pine in the background. Spicy.
T: Lemony zestiness predominates with a light, nicely balanced bitterness.
M: Light to medium bodied with solidly strong carbonation.
O: Really a solid Imperial IPA. A real winner.
Jan 30, 2018
Rated: 4.18 by NickFry9 from New York

Jan 17, 2018
Rated: 4.54 by Wesmaze from New York

Dec 19, 2017
Rated: 3.77 by scxcrunner from Massachusetts

Nov 24, 2017
Rated: 4.23 by ER527 from New York

Nov 01, 2017
Rated: 4 by calcnerd from Pennsylvania

Oct 17, 2017
Rated: 4.25 by bigred89 from Maryland

Sep 09, 2017
Photo of tillmac62
Reviewed by tillmac62 from South Carolina

4.24/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
BOD 3/31/17. Pours a cloudy amber a bit darker than a dirty golden. World class head volume, lacing and retention.

Quite outstanding nose of bright citric and tropical hops over a slightly sweet base that is both bready and biscuit. Orange and light tangerine provide the citric element while pineapple and soft mango take center stage. There is a very soft spruce/pine element but you have to look for it.

The body is almost medium and quite smooth with a bit of oiliness to the texture. The carbonation / body balance is borderline outstanding. The middle is nicely effervescent and really opens the flavors up just past the middle. The finish isn't rollicking but does yield a nice prickly effect.

The flavor profile is quite outstanding. The rich nose doesn't quite follow through. The citric and tropical elements are there and shine in the middle. Orange and mandarin lead then shift to the sweeter tropicals (soft pineapple, light mango, then big pineapple). Like the nose, the world class balancing sweetness is bready then shifts to cracker biscuit near the end. Bitterness is surprisingly moderate yet ample and the balance is again world class. The bitterness is a combination of zest and spruce. Near the end, alcohol becomes slightly uncovered and fosters the spicy pepper element of spruce. The finish lingers and is mostly a blend of zest and spruce coupled with that nice alcohol burn at the back of the throat.
Aug 23, 2017
Photo of Wi_brew_bud
Reviewed by Wi_brew_bud from Connecticut

4.75/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
I love imperial IPA and Dipa they are my life. I think that this is a master piece it is next to perfection. It caught me off gaurd cause I chose it at random when I did a Mix pick at the grocery store. I poored it and was watching a movie not even paying attention to the beer it was my second IPA of the night. I took a sip an Bam. I knew it was a 90/90 I was expecting a punch to mouth but was smooth as a 40/40. The abv on this is not there at all. Most thicker IPA's make you pay for it with strong boozy tastes. Not this one the alcohol is almost silent as the citrus and hops and an almost roast nut flavor just hugs your tast buds it was a tease that I only grabbed one cause Wow. I can definitely agree with Beer bros this is world class. You can really tell the a lot of hard time and effort was spent creating this amazing beer the best part is that it wasn't like a $20 bomber. But it could definitely earn a seat at the table. Definitely a must try for any pale ale enthusiast! I will definitely seek this one out in the future!
Aug 20, 2017
Photo of Kayakguy
Reviewed by Kayakguy from Massachusetts

4.41/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
12 oz. bottle poured into a Spencer chalace glass. Golden haze with 3/4 inch head. Nice citris smell that you would expect from an American Imperial IPA. The 9 ABV is deceiving and this beer drinks easy for an Imperial IPA. I am not a big fan of Doubles or Imperials but I really enjoyed this one. I will have this one again. I love their Hop Commander IPA.
Aug 13, 2017
Photo of ajm5108
Reviewed by ajm5108 from Pennsylvania

3.56/5  rDev -14%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5
I got a lot of odd lager yeast on this beer - a bit washed-out & adjuncty. Hops are strong, "dank", oily, a bit astringent, a weak diacetyl floating in the background. Not exceptional but not offensive
Aug 12, 2017
Rated: 4.12 by Jlabs from New York

Aug 07, 2017
Rated: 4.18 by Mai11oux from New Jersey

Jun 29, 2017
Rated: 4 by tuowl74a from Pennsylvania

Jun 25, 2017
Rated: 3.59 by baldy00 from Connecticut

Jun 09, 2017
Rated: 3.46 by Duff27 from Illinois

Jun 08, 2017
Rated: 4.5 by Chipotle from New York

Jun 05, 2017
Rated: 3.35 by John_Beeryman from Virginia

Jun 03, 2017
Photo of Robert17529
Rated by Robert17529 from Pennsylvania

4.56/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
love it.
May 23, 2017
Rated: 4.25 by Lobina from Arizona

May 18, 2017
Photo of clayrock81
Reviewed by clayrock81 from Florida

4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Poured a see-thru straw gold body with good head and lace. A slight skunky, dirty, earthy hop aroma. Classic west coast stuff from an east coast brewery (IMO) b/c it's an oily, bitter, earthy, dry beer with crisp and dry finish with just a touch of buttery sweetness to make sure the hop bite is great and not overdone.
May 09, 2017
Photo of cjgiant
Reviewed by cjgiant from District of Columbia

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
On tap:
Pours a vibrant gold that somehow lens both slightl orange and slightly yellow. Head isn't strong, but rushes when beckoned by a swirl.

Nose is sweet peach nectar, which really shines after a swirl (and is more subdued without). A not very ripe tropical fruit skin bitterness is sensed on a calm beer, and a sharper ripe spring onion after a swirl. I've never noted a beer be so different in sense and strength swirled and not.

Taste starts clean, allowing a lightly alcohol burning/biting note to hit me. It doesn't come alone, but strikes me more than the peach, pineapple, green pine cone flavor I also get. The latter is nice, the former doesn't work as well for me. A raw herbal bitterness and a clean, Pilsner malt-like maltiness close the beer (another nice aspect).

I liked a good number of aspects of this beer, but I also was not a fan of others. I can see why the ratingbis high for most. If the nose was more obvious or less hide-and-seek, I'd rate it higher individually. So it could inch higher, but my overall is decent n the verge of inching lower, so that may be a wash.
Apr 18, 2017
Rated: 4.51 by dpgrifs from Pennsylvania

Apr 01, 2017
Rated: 4.14 by Timfromthemainland from New York

Mar 27, 2017
Photo of Vetbidder
Reviewed by Vetbidder from Pennsylvania

4.21/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Nice look to this beer. Scent is of citrus with some fleshy tropical fruits and slight pine sweetness. Tropical fruity flavors to start with some pine bitterness to balance out the malty sweetness. Nice depth of flavor and decent carbonation on this beer with alcohol well hidden.
Mar 12, 2017
Rated: 3.5 by bacher468 from Pennsylvania

Mar 06, 2017
Rated: 2.02 by Sk8sean86 from Massachusetts

Feb 13, 2017
Photo of Jugs_McGhee
Reviewed by Jugs_McGhee from Louisiana

2.84/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75
BOTTLE: 12 fl oz format. Brown glass. Uninteresting label design. Branded black pry-off crown cap. Purchased at a Whole Paycheck in NYC as part of a 4-pack for $10.99.

"Imperial IPA." 9.0% ABV.

Served cold into stemware.

HEAD: ~3 inches in height. Off-white. Frothy and creamy to style. Retention is rather good for the high ABV - ~10 minutes. Leaves a thick coating of lacing on the glass' sides as it recedes.

BODY: Slightly hazy translucent orange-yellow of average vibrance. Nontransparent. Lacks any visible yeast/lees, but it doesn't seem filtered; definitely not a clean appearance.

Appears well-carbonated. It's a nice looking imperial IPA, but the appearance isn't unique or special.

AROMA: Fresh citrus jumps out of the glass, hitting juicy notes of fresh tangerine and evocative mandarin orange along with lychee, passionfruit, and papaya. Pale malt sweetness keeps any hop bitterness in check, but all the hop flavour is there, and this aroma is more expressive and vivid in terms of its fruity hop notes than any I've encountered this year. Though there's a blip of alcohol warmth, this is a rather inviting lively aroma that promises a balanced beer with loads of hop flavour. I'm eager to try it.

No overt yeasty notes or off-notes. Aromatic intensity is moderate.

TASTE & TEXTURE: Opens soft, welcoming the drinker with early notes of soft lychee, mandarin orange, and faded tropical fruits (papaya, tangerine), hitting the citrusy hop flavour nicely but not to the extent the aroma promised; it's not all that fresh, expressive, or juicy. Sharp zest intensifies as the flavour profile runs through its structure, culminating in a sharp overcarbonated zest-forward finish plagued by a warm alcohol undertone. Not boozy or "fusel" as the kids are want to to call it, but definitely warmer than would be ideal.

The result is a beer that evokes a booze-soaked tropical fruit profile akin to overpriced girlie drinks on some island resort, giving it a cheap taste. The shallow depth of flavour doesn't help.

Flavour duration and intensity are average. Not a balanced brew in terms of alcohol presence, but the pale malt backbone is enough to prevent the hop bitterness from really hitting the palate hard. It's not badly built all things considered, but the aroma promised so much more than the taste delivers.

Smooth and wet, but too boozy to be refreshing in spite of its relative softness. Certainly overcarbonated (sharply so in the third act), and a bit thick. Creamy, hinting at orange creamsicle when coupled with the citrusy flavours. A softer, juicier, cleaner mouthfeel would be ideal, as would less overt alcohol.

OVERALL: I've lived in New York six months and as much as I keep trying to get into these Captain Lawrence hoppy ales, I never seem to like them as much as everyone else. I commend the brewery for their sour ales, but this hop profile isn't great, the beer doesn't deliver on the promises of the aroma, and it's way too alcohol-forward for my taste, tanking its drinkability. Not a bad beer by any stretch, but far from world class. Won't dazzle the discerning drinker, and I wouldn't buy another 4 pack, but I'll enjoy polishing off the one I got. Decent at I just keep stumbling across old bottles from this brewery or something?

C (2.84) / AVERAGE
Feb 06, 2017
Photo of tone77
Reviewed by tone77 from Pennsylvania

3.74/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a deep golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of tropical fruits, pine, resin. Taste is dank, resin, orange peels, pine, considerable bitterness. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a solid beer. I like my hops, but this one may be pushing the envelope just a bit.
Feb 05, 2017
Palate Shifter Imperial IPA from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 1467 ratings