Beer For The Top Shelf
Off Color Brewing

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Off Color Brewing
Illinois, United States
Vienna Lager
Ranked #28
Ranked #13,670
4 | pDev: 2%
Apr 01, 2023
Oct 12, 2022
Very Good
Notes: Vienna Lager with maple syrup. Grandma's peanut butter best make room on the top shelf for this classic Vienna style lager dosed with a hefty amount of late harvest maple syrup sourced from southwest Michigan. The maple syrup sugar ferments out almost completely, leaving the lager surprisingly dry with a mild woody note and slight mineral character derived from the maple trees. Melanoidins similar to light brown sugar remain to compliment the sweet nutty flavor of Vienna malt.
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Ratings by imperialking:
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Rated by imperialking from Illinois

4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Oct 21, 2022
More User Ratings:
Rated: 4 by shelby415 from Oregon

Apr 01, 2023
Rated: 3.83 by West_Chester_Ale_Tester from Ohio

Feb 13, 2023
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Reviewed by bluejacket74 from Ohio

4.04/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
16 ounce can, looks like the 4 pack holder said this was packaged on 9/12/22. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a somewhat clear dark gold color with about an inch off-white head that stuck around a while. Good amount of lacing. The brew smells like grainy malt, maple and some caramel. Taste is similar to the aroma, but there's also some corn, nutty and earthy/woody flavors noticeable too. Maple is definitely there but doesn't overpower the other flavors/aromas in this beer at all. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a nice easy drinking brew with a moderate amount of carbonation. I liked this brew, wouldn't mind buying another 4 pack of this one!
Jan 20, 2023
Rated: 4.08 by uncleotis from Illinois

Jan 13, 2023
Rated: 3.99 by dexterk1 from Illinois

Dec 09, 2022
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Reviewed by Beginner2 from Illinois

3.98/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
What I expected is not what I got. But, I'm still satisfied ! And I hope OCB releases this decent Fall lager again.

I expected a sweet Vienna; my palate trained by the generous maple syrup I put on my morning oatmeal. Instead, I got a clean Vienna. While pale, Top Shelf otherwise stays true to style all the way through; including the ever so slight drying in the finish that chases away any cloying sweet. This is difficult to brew when working with syrup (I speculate.) But coming from a world-class saison maker who is only ten years old, Top Shelf is well done.

For next year's release, not many improvements are needed. But to overcome the difficulty of working with additives like the maple, see if you can leave some more lace in the nice OCB tulip I use regularly.

OCB is the perennial candidate as my favorite brewer and certainly gets more of my money than any two others combined. (But that is convenience of the brewpub being 2 miles away.) I also love OCB's humor. But Top Shelf may be over my head: give me a clue about the joke on the can because mice really don't play ice hockey... just so you know.

12/18/22 I just bought a 4-pack and will drink two myself and two for holiday gifts.
Dec 03, 2022
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Reviewed by mfnmbvp from Illinois

4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
16 fl oz. can, no date. Excited to have finally spotted this 4pk at the local beer spot. "Vienna lager with maple syrup added". I remember trying this last year and being impressed, and considering the source, I'm expecting good things.

Poured to clear stemless snifter glass.
Clear-ish amber orange body; finger of frothy khaki / off-white head that lingers, leaving good spotty lacing.
Immediate aroma of breakfast waffle cereal, super authentic maple syrup aromas. Soft & grainy.
Super clean flavor, which is definitely a pleasant surprise considering the strength of the maple syrup on the nose. Grainy, husky, with flavors of corn and grape both present. Maple is not particularly jumping out at me through the taste at all, but it accentuates the nose greatly. It definitely smells like it would be much more roasty or nutty, more Oktoberfest-ish, but the taste as it is is wonderful. A crisp sort of earthiness does emerge, but the main player here seems to be grape seed / white grape flavor.
Smooth, crisp, clean, medium-light, super easy-drinking. Modest 5.50% abv. An excellent vienna style lager from Off Color, as I've said, these guys consistently put out top notch beer, and they are probably easily in my top 5 Illinois breweries. Keep it up, guys.

Off Color Brewing Beer For The Top Shelf -----4/5.
Nov 06, 2022
Rated: 4.06 by soarinsteven from Illinois

Oct 17, 2022
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Reviewed by GuyFawkes from Illinois

3.9/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Released 9/16/22; drank 10/16/22 @ the Yarchives.

Cloudy dull orange appearance.

A rough pour yielded a big off-white head; decent lace.

Fresh corn, maple & mild acorn notes in the nose.

Creamy medium mouthfeel.

Creamed corn, mild maple & faint acorn flavors.

Better than it has any right to be; a nice fall lager! Not too sweet, but one is enough.
Oct 17, 2022
Rated: 4.14 by emerge077 from Illinois

Oct 13, 2022
Beer For The Top Shelf from Off Color Brewing
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 11 ratings