Archive for the ‘Irish Ale’ Category

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Day #165 – Kilkenny

June 15, 2011

I was out in Dallas today for a convention so I thought I should check out a new pub I’ve never been to. Near to one of the rail stations was an Irish pub called Trinity Hall. Though I’ve yet to travel to Ireland, I would imagine that this is fairly close to being authentic.

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Rustic feel with dark wood decor; bookshelves stuffed with dusty leather bindings and a crazy bearded man sitting in the corner. I think he’s missing teeth. Haha just kidding. I figured as long as I’m here I should sample an Irish Ale.

Kilkenny

Kilkenny is an Irish ale that is brewed by Kilkenny located in Kilkenny. Easy enough right? I’m pretty sure this brewery was bought out by Guinness but still maintains production at the original brewery. I’ll have to double check that. ABV 4.3%. The first time I tried this I was at a pub with some friends in Calgary, Alberta. I took a really cool picture back then an I think I still have a copy of it on my computer back home. If I can find it I’ll upload a copy here:  (never mind, it wasn’t as cool as I thought it was.)

On to the beer…

This was served on Draught over a nitro tap so it began with a milky tan-orange color with lots of movement inside. This eventually settled out into a fairly clear reddish orange with a super creamy white head.

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The aroma is dry malts, caramel sweetness with cream and nitro.

The flavor is a bit of what was expected. Milky smooth mouthfeel with a light sweetness balanced over a bitter approach. Finishes smooth.

It certainly feels like I’m in ole Ireland; all I need now is a drenching rain.

Cheers!

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Day #123 – Wexford Irish Cream Ale

May 4, 2011

Wexford Irish Cream Ale

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An Irish Cream Ale from England??? At least it’s in the same corner of the world right? Wexford is brewed by Greene King and is based in Bury St. Edmunds, England. They have a few other things that are distributed to the US but for the most part remains a locally UK brewery. This particular beer is classified as an Irish Ale and comes in right at 5%. It comes in a can with a nitrogen widget inside so expect this to be creamy!

Well I was sure right about the creamy part. The nitrogen widget really adds a lot to this beer; appearance wise. The color is a brilliant amber orange color with a VERY creamy white head. You can see in the picture that when the beer is first poured it resembles something like billowing storm clouds that cascade up from the bottom. This is the nitrogen working its way through the beer and escaping as carbonation. After a time this cloudiness fades into a solid line of heady foam at the top. In the picture it is about halfway up to this point. Very cool indeed.

The aroma reminds me of tea leaves and plant roots. You can obviously smell the nitro touch but it also remains very malty as well.

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Super creamy and thick mouthfeel that coats the tongue. Bitter flavor upfront that has lots of grains and malts. It remains pretty bitter and malty dry even through the end. Coating and heavy.

May the Fourth Be With You!

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Day #64 – Murphy’s Irish Red Ale

March 6, 2011

Murphy’s was originally brewed by Magor located in Wales. At some point it was bought out by the Heineken corporation which is owned by InBev UK.  InBev is one of the largest beer companies in the world which very recently purchased Anheuser-Busch making it the largest producer of beer in the world.  It is also not classified as a craft brewery, so while Murphy’s more than likely began as a craft beer; due to it’s ownership it cannot be labeled that.  Too bad as Murphy’s makes some decent beers.

Murphy’s Irish Red Ale

This beer is classified as an Irish Ale and rings in at 5% ABV. It is being served in my Murphy’s English Pint glass.

It appears a clear dark reddish color with a very creamy looking beige head. It was served on a nitrous tap with adds to the creaminess.

The aroma is very malty. Lots of caramel sweetness and dry leaves on the nose. Very earthy smelling indeed.

It has a creamy mouthfeel which we were anticipating with lots of sweet malts and grains. It has a hint of a cherry-like fruit that disappears quickly leaving you with just a feeling that it was once there. Caramel malts fade into a medium dry finish with small amounts of bitterness.

Certainly smooth and fairly refreshing but not terribly interesting to say the least. I’ll review their stout eventually (which is a little more well known) but not tonight.

Cheers!

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Day #28 – Smithwicks Ale

January 30, 2011

Day 28 is coming in just a tad late.  I was quite busy today and am just now finding time to write a review.

Smithwicks Ale

Today is a classic beer, Smithwicks Ale.  It was originally brewed by the same company that started Guinness but now is brewed by Dundalk out of Ireland.  This company split from the original Guinness Brewer St. James Gate and now concentrates on Smithwick’s and Harp.  This is classified as and Irish Ale, and is considered by many to be the end-all of Irish Ales.  We’ll see how it turns out.

This beer pours a clear orangish-red and has a nice, tall white head atop it.  It forms well inside this Guinness English Pint, which is the appropriate glassware for the style.

The aroma is lots of sweet malts, dry grains and a bit of mossy tendencies.  It smells sweet, but also has a briny character to it as well.  Interesting.

The flavor is fairly nice.  Starts off with a dry grain and semi-sweet malt that morphs into a bitterness that prevails throughout the end to the finish.  There are some sweet notes in this but they pale in comparison to the dryness that edges out the end.

Interesting and not bad, but I would liken it to a very quick drink to get you to the next beer.

Cheers!

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Day #15 – Samuel Adams Irish Red Ale

January 16, 2011

Samuel Adams Irish Red Ale

Samuel Adams again, and I still have plenty left to review.  Being the largest craft brewer in America also means that you make a crap-ton of beer.  They make several styles which are distributed in DFW.   I’ll do my best to spread them out in the future so that you don’t get burned out on the same company.

Irish Ales originated in Ireland (duh) and are characterized by their malty flavor, reddish tint and gently hopped nose.  The reddish appearance comes from the slight use of roasted barley and caramel malts.  They are typically session ales, although this one today is slightly high on the alcohol content.  They should be served in an English Pint or a really cool Samuel Adams glass.  Lucky for me I have the latter.

This beer pours a very clear, ruby orange appearance with a foamy beige head.  When the light shines through it the ruby notes are very pronounced.

This beer is quite malty on the nose.  Lots of malts and dry grains with caramel tones with crushed autumn leaves.  There is also a bit of a mossy quality to the aroma, very typical of an Irish Ale.

The flavor is sweet upfront, with a heavy malt backbone.  After the initial sweetness fades, there is a dryness that comes through, similar to how your mouth would feel after crunching on a dead leaf.  Don’t take that in a bad way, it’s just how it is.  It has a bit of mossy flavor that finishes with a touch of hopped dryness.  This doesn’t finish quite as dry as the Boston Lager from yesterday, but it still contends with it.

5.8% ABV; this Irish Ale isn’t a bad try at the style, but there are much better entries out there.  I will try my best to find some!

Cheers!