Monday, July 2, 2012

Shift Pale Lager

I've seen ads for this beer all over (Good job NB marketing team). But the lag of NB coming to Michigan has taken far longer than I'm willing to wait. Picked up a can of this at my old place of employment  - Binny's in Highland Park. I stopped by to say hello to everyone as I was in town for a dentist appointment and to see family. Binny's finally got a "mix-a-six" station and it made options easier (instead of debating over several six packs) as I was able to get 6 beers I've never had before that will be up on review soon. Anyway, tasted Monday afternoon after a brief run and a failed attempt at the DMV (forgot my SS card). NH imperial glass served.
5% ABV

Appearance: Sparklingly golden with absolute brilliant clarity but with little to no activity occurring from withing. The head is boastfully frothy, maintaining a spectrum of characteristics from soapy to puffy and cream white. Lacing is sticky with larger sized bubbles holding their shape against the glass.
Aroma: Floral and citrus notes perfume from the surface. Overall the beer has a lighter scent to it, but enough to let you know that it is still a pale judging from the lighter sweetness up front and the summer refreshing scent of light citrus aromatics.
Taste: A neutral sweetness carries throughout the beer, amplifying the other flavors that enrich this beers complexity. Much of the flavor lies right as the smooth frothy carbonation erupts in the second half of the taste, and in the back of the mouth. As this occurs, the sweetness is slightly altered to give of a honey like character with slight hints of cloves and outdoorsy florality. To follow, and more so into the finish, the floral character emerges as a dominant flavor, alongside whelming hints of orange peel. Finishing is bitter and refreshing with a short lived aftertaste, though phantom flavors of orange may still remain. Some faint grain tannic flavor begins to arise in the aftertaste as the beer warms.
The Proof
Mouthfeel: Light bodied, but deceptively heavier due to the well balanced incorporation of the carbonation. Standing at a higher than average, the carbonation either bites the tip of the tongue or froths up in the back of the mouth, depending on how one drinks it. Finishing crisp, very smooth and just the same refreshing.
Overall Impression: The name fits the beer just right, and they knew it when they brewed it. Light bodied and refreshing,boasting a lower sessionable alcohol and still a very ample amount of flavor, this beer is one to come back to at the end of any hard days work. Quite clean tasting. Some have said its just a light lager to compete with the macros, well perhaps, but it still has the great characteristics of a craft beer, who cares what size you are when it is made. Way to go NB.

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