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Monday, January 12, 2009

Top 10 Irish Beers (Ales, Lagers, Cream Ales)

Irish beer offers two beer styles and a hybrid ...these are ales, lagers with cream ales being a hybrid of lager and ale brewing styles. Ales are "top-fermented" beers where the yeast thrives in warmer temperatures and withstands higher alcohol concentrations. The stout beers are part of the ale family. They are dense and dark and are brewed from a base of roasted malt. Lagers are "bottom-fermented" beers that are stored at low temperatures for longer periods of time (weeks to months—the word lager comes from the German word lagern, "to store") and are light in color. Cream Ales are a hybrid of ale and lager brewing techniques. They are ale-fermented at a lower temperature and then conditioned like a lager (low temperature). Cream ale coloration ranges from amber to red.

1) Beamish Stout (Ale) - dense,malty,dark,chocolaty; full-bodied

2) Guinness Draught (Ale) - roasted malt and chocolate; slightly bitter

3) Guinness Extra Stout (Ale) - strong coffee flavor; slightly bitter

4) Murphy's Irish Stout (Ale) - mocha flavor; very smooth

5) O'Hara's Celtic Stout (Ale) - mocha flavor; not bitter

6) Harp (Lager) - smooth, solid and bitter

7) Kinsale Irish Lager (Lager) - golden color, flowry flavor

8) Kilkenny Irish (Cream Ale) - toasted malt, sweet and creamy

9) Murphy's Irish Red (Cream Ale) - hoppy flavor touched by fruit and caramel

10) Murphy's Irish Amber (Cream Ale) - similar to Murphy's Red but slightly sweet

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