The world of beer can be dizzying for a drink that appears tailor-made to help people unwind. There appear to be an infinite number of categories, subcategories, and styles: there are ales, pale ales, and Indian Pale Ales. Witbiers, Goses, and Saisons are all available. What, after all, is the distinction between an ale and a lager? All of these questions can leave newcomers perplexed about what beer is good for them. You can get multiple types of beer with your nearest alcohol delivery service.
Before diving into the different types of beers, one must look into the various terminologies associated with beers to fare easier through the blog below and so that your beer delivery service knows exactly what you want and you have an easy time choosing your beer!
What Are Hops?
Hops are the Humulus lupulus plant’s green cone-shaped flowers, or “inflorescence.” They’re a climbing perennial that’s a clear winner for craft brewers. Inside each cone are tiny yellow pods or glands known as lupulin, which is the source of bitterness, aroma, and flavour in beer.
What are IPAs
India Pale Ales (IPAs), which encompass a variety of beer styles, are distinguished by hops and herbal, citrus, or fruity flavours. They can be bitter and contain high levels of alcohol, but the final product depends on the type of hops used.
What is ABV
ABV, or alcohol by volume, is the international standard for determining the strength of a beer. The ABV scale is straightforward in that the higher the ABV, the more alcohol beer contains. Lighter beers have an ABV of 4-4.5 per cent, while heavier beers have a higher percentage. The right beer and liquor delivery service will label their beers with the correct ABV.
Types Of Beer And Their Taste Profile
These amber-coloured beers will have flavours like caramel, toffee, toast, sugar cookies, nuts, figs, and/or dark fruit. English styles, like their Pale Ale counterparts, tend to focus on sweet barley flavours as opposed to American renditions of the style, which centre on hops and have more pronounced bitterness. There are also German-style Amber Ales, such as Altbier, which are similar to English Amber Ales but made with German ingredients.
Typically, the colour ranges from blonde to orange. Pale Ales have a strong hop aroma and flavour, with noticeable bitterness to balance any sweetness from malts or fruitiness from the yeast. Pale Ale, IPA (India Pale Ale), and Imperial IPA (IPA >7.5 per cent abv) are the most common beers in this category, in order of increasing bitterness, alcohol by volume, and typically hop aroma intensity.
Lagers are lighter, more approachable beers that are friendly, crushable, and typically less boozy than your average pint. The beer is the foundation for keggers and day drinking. The operative words here are light and crisp, but if you’re drinking locally, most craft breweries make more malted lagers.
This beer family, popularised in Belgian Abbeys, ranges in colour and alcohol from 4% abv blonde table beers to moderate strength Belgian Pale Ales and Dubbels, to >9% abv Belgian Dark Strong Ales/Quadruples, to name a few. Flavours such as clove-like spice, orchard fruits (apples and pears), orange zest, and honey may be present. Brewers or Monks add simple sugars (like granulated table sugar) to increase alcohol while thinning the body of the beer, keeping the final product light bodied/”digestible”. As a result, many of these styles are extremely sneaky and offer good value for money!
Porter is a dark beer style that originated in England in the 1700s. Porters, with the exception of Baltic porter, are made with top-fermenting ale yeast. These beers are distinguished by their dark ruby brown to black colour, dark malts that frequently impart chocolate and caramel flavours, and well-balanced, hearty characteristics.
Stout is a dark, heavy-bodied beer popular in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Stouts are more potent versions of mild ales. There are several varieties, such as oatmeal stout, milk stout, and imperial stout. Dry Irish stouts, most notably Guinness, have been popular stouts.
What suits your palette is an extremely personal experience. While an expert has a refined vocabulary to pinpoint what they are tasting, they do not necessarily know what tastes good or bad to you. So, try everything and be your own judge!