Short's Pandemonium Pale Ale | Short's Brewing Company

Short's Pandemonium Pale AleShort's Pandemonium Pale Ale
543 Ratings
Short's Pandemonium Pale AleShort's Pandemonium Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
This blessed, coppered colored ale lends it’s hue to hearty pale ale malts and hand selected specialty grains. Glacier hops balance the wort resulting in  hoppy, and earthy flavors which compliment the core beer base.
49 I.B.U.’s
12.8 deg.  Plato
5.4% A.B.V.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-19-2004

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 543 |  Reviews: 229
Photo of nukem5
3.33/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a great copper/dark amber color with a creamy off white foam top about 3/4" which disappears somewhat rapidly. Sticky , clinging to the wall of the glass as the contents slide down leaving behind a nice thick film of beer foam.

S: Immediately the hops smack you in the face, and make the mouth water, while the malts hang out in the back and keep it tied together.

T: Grapefruit bitter hops suckerpunch the mouth, and a very balanced malt bill steers you to a second sip. The malt side you have some sweet caramel notes dancing on the tongue.

M: Medium bodied with a good level of carbonation, a slight bit of an alkaline taste in the back. Very delishious.

O: Very drinkable and would welcome another one of these at som time hopefully in the future.

Picked up some Michigan brews on the road with work and brought back 2 six packs to work thru that either I have never had or rated.

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Photo of alli4051
3.66/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a standard point.

Pours a bright, but murky, orange with a short white head. Head recedes quick leaving just a touch of lacing. Not much doing with the nose, some graininess and faint hop aromas but nothing to write home about. Taste is nicey balanced. Bready, murky malts mingle nicely with the earthy hop notes. Medium to light bodied and just about right. I actually had to have a couple of these for it to grow on me, not sure if that's a bad sign or an indication of a nicely unique pale.

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Photo of smcolw
3.71/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lumpy head that leaves a lattice of lace. The brew is orange-amber with a bit of haze.

A cross between soured milk and sweet caramel is the initial smell. Subsequent whiffs give a bit of floral hop.

Far more hoppy (peppery) on the tongue than the smell would lead one to believe. Good amber (crystal malt) flavors. The bitterness is biting but not overwhelming. The aftertaste lasts about half a minute. The body is richer than most Pales; the carbonation is low.

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Photo of pixieskid
3.35/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a nice dark orange hue with a decent white head and fair aromatics.

Notes of floral and citrus hops with a lingering graininess and caramel back. Mild bitterness throughout with a lingering grassy hop presence and slight floral hop note.

Overall; nothing impressive but a decent enough pale...

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Photo of Beaver13
3.05/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

12oz bottle. Pours a clear golden copper with a smallish off white head that quickly goes to a thin film that leaves some lacing.

The aroma is sweet bready toasted caramel malt with some fruity light resiny hops.

The flavor is sweet toasted biscuit malts and some rye(?) with a good sized grassy bitterness. The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with soft carbonation.

Overall, an OK pale ale. It has really good bitterness, I just don't really care for the toasted malts and grassy bitterness.

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Photo of pokesbeerdude
3.63/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle courtesy of RocPorterFanatic in the Chillin and Grillin II BIF. Into a SA Perfect Pint.

A: Nice pale amber colored beer, decent clarity, just the slightest bit turbid. White head that foams up to about half an inch and then dissipates into a small cap with a bunch of globs of lacing that are left behind.

S: Caramel malts, grainy malts, and a slightly floral hop profile. Slightly fruity yeast ester. Doesn't have a ton going on, but smells alright.

T: Nice grainy malts, a few flavors of honey and caramel and a nice bit of bitterness to even things out. Really a balanced pale ale. Just enough of everything to keep things put together. A little more of a hop profile would help it out quite a bit though.

M: Perfect on the mouthfeel, medium body, mild carbonation and a dry finish. Hits it exactly right.

O: Not a bad little pale ale, nicely balanced with decent flavors. Not over carbonatead, and not too dry or too sweet, hits a lot of things right on the money. Would definitely revisit this beer.

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Photo of prototypic
3.42/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pandemonium Pale Ale is copper in color. There’s a moderate amount of haze. More than I anticipated. Backlighting gives it a bit of an orange look. An off-white head covers it, but only rises to about a finger in height. It’s very quick to recede, leaving a very light coat of lace behind.

The nose is pretty good and interesting. The malt base is an interesting mix of caramel and toasted malts. The toasted variety smells like the stronger of the two. Hops are there, but aren’t your typical American Pale fare. They smell earthy and spicy with just a hint of citrus orange. Alcohol is very light in the mix. Smells different, but pretty good.

The flavor keeps the pace. The malt base is definitely a mix of toasted and caramel malts. Interesting choice. It’s a little sweet. There are interesting herbal and praline-like flavors that are prominent throughout. Very unique. Hops are noted and are a little stronger than expected. They taste a little spicy, herbal, with a touch of citrus orange. I have no clue what the hop bill is, but I’ve never tasted anything like it in an APA. It definitely has a bitter kick. I’d say it’s more hoppy than malty. Alcohol is blended well. Finishes with a spicy hop kick and just a touch of toasted malt and praline flavors.

Pandemonium Pale Ale has a light medium body. It definitely feels a tad thin. Carbonation is active, but doesn’t feel buzzy. For the style, it feels pretty average. Not bad though.

Pandemonium Pale Ale is definitely one of those releases from Short’s that veers left of center in terms of its consistency with the style. How so? Well, the strong presence of toasted malts and praline flavors are the biggest clues. The spicy and herbal hop flavors are further evidence. It’s definitely novel, but isn’t bad. It’s not my favorite formula for an APA, but it isn’t bad. Definitely one worth checking out.

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Photo of buschbeer
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle
Served in a pint glass

A - It pours orange/burnt orange in color with two inches of beige head.

S - I get some caramel malt with floral hops.

T - Solid malt backbone with mild hops

M - Moderate with some chalkiness

O - Not a hoppy pale ale. I guess it's a good alternative to an adjunct.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.06/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Got a bottle of this in a mixed sixer for $11. Bright yellow color, slight haze. Smells like biscuit and a hint of hops, citrus. Taste is more biscuit and a bit of hops but I honestly did not find this to be overly hoppy and wasn't too impressed. It was a decent beer but for $11 a sixer I would buy SNPA instead every single time. I think the trend of upward pricing really works against a lot of breweries if the beers aren't better than the benchmark for the style.

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Photo of rsdaugherty
3.65/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into pint glass
A – Light tan 1 finger head reduced pretty quick to a think layer with bits of lacing all around for the whole glass, a hazed moderate amber color 3.5
S – Grassy, mild hops, mild citrus, slightly sweet 3.5
T – Nice malt and hops all around balance. Doughy bitterness, with moderate citrus zest and mild malts, mineral quality on the finish 3.5
M – Moderate body, with nice carbonation, good overall mouth feel 4
O – Good drinkability with nice balance, stronger hop profile for an APA, a good brew I enjoyed but so comparable in the PA segment, mouth feel makes it a 4

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Photo of UnionMade
3.77/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

After hitting three stores, I got the last sixer I could find in Denver. Not cheap at $10.99 for six.
Dirty copper with a slim, finely bubbled head. A weak collar sticks around, but the head is all but gone after the first couple sips. Some spotty lacing, but nothing to write home about.
Smells of bready malt, doughy yeast and lemony hops. Pleasant and inviting, but maybe a little underwhelming for the price.
The flavor opens with mild malty sweetness. Quite a bit of doughy flavor, I'd guess from the unfiltered nature of the brew, which actually works really nicely with the bright hop flavors towards the finish. The malt flavors are blurred in the muddy yeast, but the hey-yall sunshine of the hops saves it from becoming a rainy day in your mouth. Tastes earthy, and kind of brewpubby, if that makes any sense. It's probably the stronger flavors of the yeast, which reminds me of the unabashedly unfiltered offerings from my favorite brewpub when I lived back in Connecticut. Light estery fruitiness, mostly a gentle suggestion of pear. A lot of citrus, finishing without a lot of bitterness, but a good bit of hop flavor. Really soft carbonation coaxing along the relatively full body. I like that quite a bit, and it's probably my favorite part about this beer. Feels almost cask-like, which equals supreme drinkability in my book. Leaves off with a rich, juicy mouthfeel, similar to the effect of orange juice.
I'm happy I got to try this, and it was really cool that Shorts distributed here, even for an incredibly brief amount of time. However, the only one I got to try that was close to being worth over $10 a sixer was the IPA, and maybe the brown. Tastes maybe a little unrefined, like something you'd sample from your buddy's garage homebrew system. I like it, but I don't know if I'd pay a super-premium price for that. When it comes down to it, all my complaints are related to what i got for the price. It's a good beer, but not worth paying $10. There's probably three dozen pale ales available in Denver that are way less expensive and at least as good.

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Photo of denver10
1.2/5  rDev -66.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Cloudy orange in appearance with very little head from the get go, and almost non-existent retention. Has a sweet, citrus smell partnered with almost metallic like quality. Taste seems to follow up with the smell adding in a little bit of bitterness at the forefront and the mouthfeel is thin with some carbonation.

Overall, not happy that I wasted so much money on a beer I dislike so much. Wish I didn't have 5 more left in the fridge. If I had the extra money right now I'd head back to the liquor store and buy something else, leaving the rest for guests/friends when they come over.

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Photo of chugalug06
2.79/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Quite thin with foamy white head. Some slight lacing too. Brew is a cloudy orange color...

S - Slight bar-rag scent... Not your typical Pale. Some kiwi, orange, and lime.

T - Very unique. Doesn't quite fit the style... Not too much in the way of hops. Silky. But, doesn't overly impress.

M - Some nice Pale Ale bitterness... Very nice carbonation too.

O - Greatly disappointing with this Short's offering. Not recommended.

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

A nice PA from Shorts. Picked up a sixer in Denver while they lasted.

Light amber/golden pour, looks malty for what it's worth. Off-white head is splotchy and varied.

Aroma and taste sparkle with hops, but the malt carries the day. While sure not a malt bomb, this beer profiles the grains more so than the flower. A solid backbone, the malt first comes up as earthy, like dirty grass. Overripe backyard apples, with hints of caramel, provide a medium for more biscuit. Hops provide the sharpness and some more earthiness. A hint of nutiness as it finishes leaving a small sample of that caramel.

Overall a solid PA

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Photo of womencantsail
3.33/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks for this one, Thorpe.

A: The pour is a clear light amber color with a finger of sticky white head.

S: Sweet hop aromas with a nice fruit character to it. A little bit of floral hop character and maybe some herbal notes, too. Some bready malts and maybe a touch of apple.

T: There is an almost honey flavor to it. Very floral in nature with some minimal citrus peel hops. A little bit of a tea and herbal flavor, too. Sweet pale malts all the way through.

M: Light in body with a medium level of carbonation.

O: Not too bad, though splitting the bottle was more than enough for me.

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Photo of Stockfan42
3.25/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a medium orange body with a foamy white head that quickly thins out.

Smell is pretty much hoppy and malty, but well balanced. Small hints of some fruits.

Tasted mostly of sweet malts and a little bit of an earthy presence. The bitterness was kind of a let down, wasnt very bitter at all. Very smooth and easily drinkable.

Mouthfeel was creamy yet still light bodied, nicely carbonated. Leaves a nice earthy after taste as well.

Overall I was happy with this beer. I thought it would have been a bit more bitter as the label had lead me to beleive but its still a decent pale ale.

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Photo of jlindros
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a decent fizzy almost 1 finger head that fades at a medium pace with a bit of lacing, over semi hazy nectar orange colored beer.

Nose is light, hints of floral hops, a bit of earthy herbal hops as well, touch of sweet malts.

Taste starts with light earthy semi herbal hops, bittering almost U.K. style hops, with a light floral hop kick. Then sweet malts, semi sweet taste overall with a light reddish malt but not really caramel, more like amber malts and a touch of biscuit, and almost slightly oxidized. I get a hint of soap as well later on the taste. It finishes fairly bitter, with some spicy earthy and herbal hops, and hints of malt flavors.

Mouth is med bodied, decent carb.

Overall not bad, more bittering hops than flavor or aroma, light soapy taste doesn't help either, but not too bad, fairly drinkable.

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Photo of GilGarp
4.42/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle served cold into a pint glass.

Pandemonium is a hazy copper orange color with thick white head after a vigorus pour. It has fairly good retention and leaves nice lacing as it settles.

Aroma is hoppy but not overly so. It has a sweet candied orange peel smell which I really enjoy.

Flavor is also really well done. A little bit of caramel sweetness and a good dose of hoppy bitterness. Really well balanced with a lean towards the citrusy hops. As it warms, I start to notice more grassy and earth character in this beer.

Mouthfeel is medium-light in body and well carbonated. Balanced and drinkable.

For an American pale ale, this is one of the best.

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Photo of MoreThanWine
3.77/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 2" off-white head. Hazy apricot colored body. Smells mildly of malt and fruit zest. Taste a bit surprisingly took a different path than the smell - it was more of a moderate IPA, the hops beating out any malt or zest. There's a moderate heft to the body and a slight lager-like crispness to the finish. As a pale ale it's not particularly pale but yest it's certainly still acceptable.

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Photo of Metalmonk
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark coppery color with a thin snow white head, little circular flecks of lace left on the glass as the glass empties.

Delicate flowery/herbal aroma, with an even lighter cinnamon spice presence in the background.

Taste is a little more on the bitter green/leafy side than the aroma suggests, with little malt presence to add the depth I was hoping for. Bit of a metallic character too, with hints of apple and an almost astringent herbal facet. The label reads "behold the bitter hysteria," and I guess we get the "bitter" that is promised, although not sure about "hysteria."

The feel is tingly and well-carbonated, nothing special, nothing to complain about either.

A decent beer, though not outstanding. This is my third of a six pack over the last several days, and it seems to be missing a healthier malt presence.

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Photo of cbutova
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Part of the recent Shorts to hit in MA.

A- Deep gold body with a frothy white head. Nice size and decent retention. Lace drizzles down the glass.

S- Sweet caramel malt tones and general grains. A bit of earthy hops and butter as well.

T- Starts off with caramel, grains, apple fruits and slight nutty hints. Hops finish it out with floral and earthy hints.

MF- Light body and a somewhat creamy feel. Good carbonation and a slight bitter finish.

Solid pale ale with no off flavors or big flaws. Nice malts and hops.

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Photo of Dope
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: A clear golden pour with a nice fluffy white head. Good retention and decent lacing.

S: Very herbal with some nice bready malt in there. Maybe some earthy notes as well.

T: Very herbal indeed. Decent bitterness with a bready malt base.

M: Clean, good carbonation. Pretty typical.

O: Simple APA with some nice herbal hops and a solid malt base. Nothing amazing but if you like herbal hops, give this one a try.

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Photo of salvo
2.85/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a darker tan than expected: hazy red brown under thready lacing. Nose is mostly malt with hints of flowery hops.

Flavor unrolls sweet, then sour. Malt up front with floral and earthy hops. Ends sour and a little muddied.

Rich, full-bodied mouth feel.

I brought a number of Shorts back from a recent trip up north. I hope the next style is better.

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

a bit of a chill haze on a dull copper colored ale with a standard almost white head that sticks around for a bit and laces pretty well.

aroma of herbal tea, bitter citrus, flowers, and biscuity malts.

biscuity and caramelly malts give way to the herbal/floral hops that have a bit of an earthy quality as well. kind of an odd pairing that doesn't wow me.

light/medium bodied with subtle carbonation that gives way to a bitter aftertaste.

well, its not bad, but its not what I would return to either. not quite an english pale ale, but not in line with the hop-forward american pale ales either.

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Photo of birchstick
3.59/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - pours a cloudy, brownish copper color with a billowing head akin to a cumulonimbus pillow - a very impressive head.

S - smells of baked gingerbread and sugar cookies / cookie malts; not much hop in the nose

T - starts off sweet with the sugary cookie malts most dominant. A bit of biscuit enters as well, however is barely detectable. Ends with an earthy pine bitterness for which the label claims is so dominant.

M - really nice mouthfeel to it. Full bodied and creamy

D - this was a unique pale ale to say the least. More sweet than any other pale ale I have tried, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. It wouldn't be a Shorts beer if it wasn't interesting. Worth a try!

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Short's Pandemonium Pale Ale from Short's Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.62 out of 5 with 543 ratings
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