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Guinness Draught - Guinness Ltd.

Guinness DraughtGuinness Draught

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,732 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4732
Reviews: 1932
rAvg: 3.47
pDev: 20.17%

Brewed by:
Guinness Ltd. visit their website

Style | ABV
Irish Dry Stout |  4.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-02-2001)
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Photo of Sleepy_Conscience


3.1/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

When I was in high school, I had a friend whose dad thought Guinness was the Eighth Wonder of the World. He traveled to foreign countries on business a lot and knew a good bar to get himself a Guinness in every one of them, be it China, Germany, South Korea, Japan...you name it. He always said that to really get turned on to Guinness you need to have it at a bar in Ireland. According to him, it tastes significantly better there because it's closer to the source and the bartenders there know the proper way to pour it. Maybe that's true, although I suspect it might just be the placebo effect and the ambiance of being in a real Irish bar.

Whatever it is, American bottled Guinness is really nothing special. My girlfriend adores stouts, so I've tried a fair amount of them. My favorite is Founder's Breakfast Stout. I can honestly say that if it weren't for the fact that I use them for cooking, I would probably never buy another Guinness. It's not terrible by any means, but compared to some of the amazing stouts being put out today by America's craft brewing juggernaut, it is absolutely nothing special. I can see why, back in the day before craft brewing, people would think this is a great beer. Compared to the insipid pilsners produced by Bud, Miller and Coors, it's pretty damn good. But by today's standards it's bland and a little too bitter.

I also think it's funny how people think of this as a filling beer, too. I remember when I was a freshman in college I met a guy who drank an entire six pack of Guinness in one sitting and it blew my mind that someone could handle so much of a brutal beer like Guinness. That just seems silly now that I actually have a fair amount of beer drinking experience. Today Guinness seems like an easy session beer. I could put down six of these things like they were Keystone Light.

BOTTOM LINE: Meh. I would only recommend this beer if you've never tried it, just to add it to your repertoire. Manage your expectations though. The only good thing I can really say about it is that it looks pretty when you pour it.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

01-24-2014 16:57:31 | More by Sleepy_Conscience
Photo of shanenoel90


3.4/5  rDev -2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It have always been a fan of stouts, therefore, my opinion will be somewhat biased. Guinness Draught is just the standard irish dry stout, you know what you are getting before buying it and it does not go better or worst. For me Guinness is like McDonalds, you know that there are better things out there but for some reason you always go back and buy Guinness because it never disappoints.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

09-01-2013 02:20:04 | More by shanenoel90
Photo of ryan1788a5


3.13/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

11.2oz nitro bottle poured into a Guinness pint glass.

A: Pours black with ruby hues. Clarity looks to be very good. Three fingers of creamy beige head retain very well, as it should from the nitro bottle. Thick, clumpy rings of lacing form with every sip.

S: Milk chocolate, burnt malts, steely, slight acidity. a rather drab, muted nose.

T: Bittersweet chocolate, burnt coffee. Burnt malts lend an acidic kick; that token steely, sour-ish twang. Vague sense of fruit, but really it's very clean as a whole. Not much yeast character. The finish is clean and very abrupt, leaving only a faint sense of chocolate and roasted barley.

M: Light in body and watery. It relies heavily on the nitro to prop it up with a creamy, smooth texture. Mild astringency from the burnt malt.

O: As with many beer aficionados, this was my gateway beer. This and a handful of Irish stouts were, for the longest time, the only conception of beer that I had other than macro light lagers like Bud and Coors. Back then I thought this was head and shoulders above those light lagers. Now that I've come this far, I can see that it's really the same concept: brew a bland, uniform, inoffensive beer and rely heavily on deep pockets and marketing to spread it around the globe and make maximum profit, sacrificing quality along the way if necessary. I will go on the record as saying that I still enjoy a Guinness from time to time, and that my own personal preference would still lead me to drink a Guinness over a macro light lager. But when I look at Guinness Draught in terms of what's available and stack it up against some of the other Irish stouts on the market, craft brewed and otherwise, it falls well short of the mark.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

08-08-2013 14:04:20 | More by ryan1788a5
Photo of Hulk_Beer


3.41/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I'm a big fan of the Guinness masterpiece, the Foreign Extra Stout. That being said, this is not that. Let's begin:

App- Black in the glass. Against light, its a dark but clear brown. Head was beige and creamy with slight rocks in there. Lacing slides sexily down the glass.

Sm- Typical Guinness roasty notes. I got burnt toast, coffee and dark caramel. Not so much chocolate but it's there. Light for a stout.

Ta- Burnt coffee and chocolate. Not much complexity there. I almost got a dairy flavor but I could be confusing it with my mouthfeel, I still kinda suck at this. There's something missing here, though...

Mf- As stated, milky, dairy-like quality as it washes down. I guess it's the nitro, although the bottle is much more subdued than the can version, which I've had. So there must be something there. I'd call it a medium body.

I said there's something missing in the flavor, and I know what it is. The alcohol is so subdued it couldn't be said to exist at all. It has less ABV than a Budweiser! What are they doing here? The strong notes in the flavor are the reason stouts are usually so high in alcohol, it's balance. Either way, they're not going to see this review, you are and I'm saying it's good, but lessens the Guinness reputation significantly.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

06-27-2013 02:17:54 | More by Hulk_Beer
Photo of Mavigo


3.15/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Cracked open three of these suckers and poured them in my 1L stein for a thorough review.

A: Pours a deep dark brown, almost black color with a 1/4 inch tan head with medium amounts of lacing.

S: Smells water like watered down coffee, hints of oats, barley, grains, cream

T: Well this is disappointing, lacking the robustness that I expect from a stout, to me it's like water downed cheap coffee, limited flavors no complexity, it's not horrible but its not good either.

M: Carbonation is lower, so is the flavor, medium bodied, it's kind of thick, just has no flavor

O: Well this might be one of the worst stouts I've ever had. That's not to say this is horrible, it's ok but I'm used to stouts being rich and complex, not like this. I wouldn't have this again.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

04-19-2013 20:56:09 | More by Mavigo
Photo of JamesMN


3.2/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

From notes.

Appearance: Black but ruby red when held up to the light. Classic fluffy nitro-head which is light brown in color.

Aroma: Very light. Slight sweetness and a hint of molasses.

Taste: Despite the black appearance, Guinness is very light on taste. Hints of roasted chocolate and some dark coffee bitterness on the finish. A bit of a 'soy sauce' flavor. Not much to the palate, just a nice light stout.

Mouthfeel: Between thin and medium in body. Ever so smooth and creamy. High drinkability.

Final Thoughts: Guinness Draught is basically the classic session ale. However, without the nitrogen widget it would probably not be as popular. Would I drink it again? Yes, it's a classic that almost every non craft beer bar has on hand.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

03-07-2013 00:03:00 | More by JamesMN
Photo of DavidST


3.8/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

As often as I've had this, I'm surprised to realize that I've never reviewed it. Bucking the ice cold method this is sometimes served, I've left the bottle out for an hour to get a little more warm.

This is poured from a 33cl bottle into a Guinness mug, coded bottled date. This pours a nice black color with a large foamy mocha colored head (far larger than I'm used to on nitro bottles, perhaps this is due to removing the nitro widget). This has an extremely long retention time and leaves a lacing everywhere it touches. The smells are of dark roasted malts and a hint of the Guinness burnt smells. The feel is medium to thick and creamy. More warm this is better, the taste is light but smooth and easy to drink, you get the dark roasted malts, and a little burnt malt bitterness, more subtle than the traditional guinness. Not the greatest beer in the world but a great session one and I often order it with my meal.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

12-31-2012 01:21:28 | More by DavidST
Photo of MadCat

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours pitch black with thick tan head that stays around, leaving good lacing

Smell: Roasty malts with some caramel notes

Taste: Dry roasty malts, bitter hops, with a little bit of a cloying sweetness in the back. Coffee and chocolate flavors

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy, and thick

Overall: This is a classic. May not be the best stout, but it is a good staple that can be found many places. Overall a favorite of mine.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

10-26-2012 00:00:43 | More by MadCat
Photo of thecheapies


3.28/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Time to review Guinness Draught. Cracked open a nitro-bottle and now pouring it into a pint glass.

Cascading 'head effect' on the pour. That's what I wanted. Extremely dark brown to black. Looked dark brown out of the bottleneck. Bone-colored head stays for good. Excellent retention. A mark of rich proteins in this beer. 4.5

Dark roasted malts with higher bitterness levels. Not a whole lot else. Thought I might have smelled hops, but I could definitely be wrong. There is a minute fruit character, but it gets lost in the mix. Might be because the bottle is not entirely fresh. 3.0

Watery flavors of roasted grains, sod, wet log, and dried clay. Like sucking on a stone. Offers some minerally/metallic elements with moments of sharp, astringent bitterness and an effect of acidity without the flavor. Far-off voice in the distance whispers black coffee, but to tiny reception. But, hey, those roasted grains are the talk of the town, right? 3.0

Creamy as hell, despite a thin body. Light carbonation with the bottle widget in full-effect makes the rabbit come out of the hat, so to speak. Let's face it, Guinness Draught is all about the mouthfeel. 4.0

A simple, Humpty-Dumpty Irish Dry Stout with loads of character, but not many can explain why. A beer to drink and enjoy drinking for those who don't give two hoots about the style or the historical butchering of the recipe over the years. A beer to scoff at for those who have had better dry stouts. Tough to love for those who have had North Coast Old #38, Victory Donnybrook, Beamish, or Murphy's. Tough love is God's love, I suppose. And, for a man who has had all of the aforementioned brews, I can only exclaim "My Goodness, My Guinness!". C'mon, if you don't know what this is, you've got no business venturing off into the better options out there. Guinness IS Irish Dry Stout. Guinness IS the import on nitro. Guinness IS a classic. But, the truth is, Guinness is nothing special, and certainly not worth the $5 a pint some bars charge. It's a one-and-done-and-thank-you with a smile, or a fall-back and nothing else. When in doubt, have a Guinness. 3.5

Serving type: nitro-bottle

05-04-2012 04:15:55 | More by thecheapies
Photo of Swim424


3.28/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured into a bells pint glass

A-Awesome as always. Pours a dark black with the Brown falling head that foams into the nice creamy white thick head that stays with you the whole time you drink it. Leaves a nice residue as well.

S-lacking in this department. Smells like bland coffee, and bland oatmeal. I feel like there is real potential here but it hasn't quite reached it.

T-Again very bland, with potential but just doesn't get there. Has a hint of water-downed coffee and oatmeal, with maybe a hint of something else I cant describe.

Mf-very smooth and creamy. Nothing exceptional but very nice.

O-This is a very average stout. This is one I can almost always count on any bar having and is never bad. Also great when you don't want anything to overpowering but still want the stout experience. I feel like guinness could really add some more flavor and maybe less water and this one would be significantly better.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

03-19-2012 05:30:31 | More by Swim424
Photo of aranheaney

New York

2.98/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Enjoyed on St. Patty's Day at the Letchworth Pines in beautiful Portageville at my 6 yr. olds birthday party...

Consumed directly from the bottle as per Diageo's instructions in the previous e-mail.


S-almost nothing

T-meh, sorry, so much better on tap

M-some creaaminess

O-I'll stick to this when its on tap

Serving type: nitro-bottle

03-18-2012 01:37:37 | More by aranheaney
Photo of Acho


3.43/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A black opaque liquid topped by a small beige head that leaves some specks of lacing.
A quite good roasted smell that has some coffee to it. The taste also has some of the roastiness maybe some chocolate, but the mouthfeel is very bland for a 'black' beer, even bland for the Spanish average, quite watery if I may.

Overall a good appearence and smell but not well rounded with all that watery sensation.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

02-16-2012 20:26:55 | More by Acho
Photo of UDbeernut

New York

3/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

nitro bottle into a pint glass. Deep amber with purple on the edges, minimal tan head with little retnetion. Nose is bland, maybe some light roast. Taste is black coffee roastiness with slight very faint flower. A bit of chalk. Mouth is light bodied and deffiantly sessionable. Overall, not completly horrific when confronted with only BMC competitors.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

01-28-2012 23:39:59 | More by UDbeernut
Photo of BlurryVisi0n

New York

2.93/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured unto a nonic glass.

Appearance: Do I really need to let you know?, pours an an almost opaque brown, tan head coming off the body roughly a full inch to an inch and change.

Smell: You know what nothing smells like, that's what Guinness Draught does to you.

Taste: No it's not average, it is the beer that originally changed my direction when I started my beer adventures.

Mouth: This is the definition of light carbonation, whether tap, bottle or can and personally I don't think it helps it. It is definitely an acquired liking to this beer.

Overall: I thank you Guinness, I was first introduced this back in high school in the late 90's and will never forget my first glass. This beer is smooth and easy to love, but compared to what else is out on the market it is mediocre at best, but compared to who makes a better "Irish Dry Stout" don't bother looking else where. Salud!

Serving type: nitro-bottle

01-26-2012 07:14:31 | More by BlurryVisi0n
Photo of AmericanGothic


3.13/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz nitro-bottle into a Sam Adams pint.

A: Pours a dark, mahogany color with 1/2 finger of pale khaki head. Good retention but little lace.

S: Roasted malt. Not bad, but pretty timid.

T: Roasted malt up front, but no finish to speak of. Really not enough oomph for a stout, more like a dark mild.

M: Too light for a stout. Just average.

O: A lackluster beer. It seems to be "Guinness for people who don't really like stout." I guess I would drink it again if that's all that was available, but it's not something I would seek out.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

01-14-2012 01:09:25 | More by AmericanGothic
Photo of whendeathsleeps


3.68/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours black, two finger tan head. Great retention, great lacing.

S- Coffee, chocolatey, smokey, a little creamy, light in smell in general.

T- An easy drinking palatable stout, the usual roasted coffee and chocolate notes, bready malt.

M- Thick creamy head, the body is a little thin, light carbonation, smooth, dry refreshing finish.

O- Not complex by any means, still any enjoyable beer and a great intro for those wanting to try a stout. When you do step up, try a Siberian Night Imperial by Thirsty Dog, it's an excellent beer.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

01-02-2012 20:38:36 | More by whendeathsleeps
Photo of JizackFH

New York

2.2/5  rDev -36.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Found this beer review in some of my old beer notes.

This beer pours a dark brown color with some ruby hues. There is a big creamy 2-finger off-white head resting on top. The head has incredible retention, and it leaves behind a big coating of lace on the glass. The nose is pretty light. There are some weak notes of chocolate and coffee, as well as some nuttiness. There really isn't much going on here. The taste starts off with some light roasted malts, and some faint notes of black coffee and a touch of chocolate. There is some burnt bitterness and a bit of a metallic taste. This is just a pretty weak flavor overall. This has a pretty light body, especially for a stout, and creamy carbonation. There is some bitterness and some sweetness as well. I think the creamy layer of foam on top is the only thing that saved the mouthfeel. The drinkability here isn't so good. It goes down really easy, but it is definitely lacking in the taste and smell. There just isn't much going on, and the flavors and aromas seem quite muted. I really just expect a whole lot more in a stout. This beer just really isn't worth the money. You can get a much better 6-pack of a nice craft stout for the same amount of money. I recommend going the second route.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

12-05-2011 14:38:49 | More by JizackFH
Photo of jisom123


2.68/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer is the primary reason that people incorrectly associate "Dark colored" beers as "Heavy".

I don't know how many times I've head "It's too dark; I won't like it." When asked why, they always blame Guinness.

O: Smooth refreshing Dry stout with a very predictable taste.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

09-08-2011 22:11:39 | More by jisom123
Photo of sommersb


3.2/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Tasted On: 09-05-2011
Freshness: Not indicated
Packaging: 11.2 oz. nitro bottle
Glassware: Tulip pint
Purchased: Gift from a neighbor

This one was brewed in Dublin according to the bottle.

A: Tan, creamy head of 2 fingers sits on a black beer. There's a little bit of clarity revealing brown-red highlight on the edges of the glass. The head has good retention and lacing.

S: Clean aromas feature toasted malts, dark bread and chocolate.

T: Taste is pretty much all of roasted barley, that has a kind of burnt character which is a bit harsh, as in the bitterness of coffee.

M: Body is light-to-medium and carbonation seems low, possibly due to the nitrogen content. Finish is dry, with the roasted coffee flavors lingering.

O: Overall an OK beer.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

09-05-2011 23:27:31 | More by sommersb
Photo of tdm168

North Carolina

3.25/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep, dark brownish black with a reddish hue. There's about 1/2" of head with great retention. Smells of roasted malts. Tastes of roasted malts with a smokiness to it. There's also just a hint of chocolate. Mouthfeel is rather light, thin, and flat, but smooth.

I'm not a huge fan of this classic. I like the other stout offerings from Guinness better.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

08-13-2011 21:58:07 | More by tdm168
Photo of Mora2000


3.28/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

The beer pours a dark brown to black color with a tan head. The aroma is dry, light roasted malt and chocolate. The flavor is roasted malt and some chocolate, as well as a little bit of dark fruit. The mouthfeel is where I really have a problem with the beer. I am not a fan of nitro beers, which almost always taste watered down to me. The mouthfeel is thin to medium.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

07-28-2011 02:46:17 | More by Mora2000
Photo of spitInTheOcean


3.7/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

smell is mild. smells of roasted barley, but also a corn-like sweetness.

jet black color. opaque. tan-brown, thick, long lasting head.

tastes like roasted malts, an acidic sourness. thats about it. big roasty malt flavor. there is also a very subtle hop bitterness in the finish. the flavor of roasted malts lingers on the palate long after the finish.

this is a very soft beer with low carbonation, and the nitrogen does lend it some creaminess. overall though this beer is thin.

overall i know my scores suggest i like this beer, but i dont think i do. i buy and drink it because everyone i know likes this beer. i think its light. a stout should not be sessionable. thats just my opinion. and what is more sessionable than 4.2% abv? i say a stout should be a meal in a glass. the old liquid bread. this is not liquid bread.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

07-25-2011 03:09:08 | More by spitInTheOcean
Photo of DarthKostrizer


4.2/5  rDev +21%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Dark brown with reddish rings around the edges. Beautiful almost 1 inch tan head has amazing retention and beautiful lace. I still believe in all my years of drinking that this is the most beautiful beer I have ever seen

Smell: Roasted malt and coffee upfront with bitter chocolate on the finish

Taste: Pretty much the same as the nose. Roasted malt and coffee notes upfront. Flavors fade pretty quickly but leave a hint of bitter chocolate on the finish

Mouthfeel: wonderful buttery smoothness quality to it. Full body and light carbonation

Overall: This is still my go to beer when I dont feel like spendy a bunch of money on beer. I absolutely love this piece

Serving type: nitro-bottle

07-17-2011 03:42:01 | More by DarthKostrizer
Photo of tito42


3.45/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from new widget-less nitro bottle to an imperial pint, even though the label says to enjoy straight from the bottle. No freshness date.

A: Nearly black in color, a very dark cola color with a thick, foamy cocoa head. Great retention and lacing.

S: Roasted barley and coffee, a little weak in the nose.

T: Roasted and bitter barley with a slight coffee flavor and a hint of cola. Lightly hopped, clean finish.

M: Against its reputation in the States, it has a light-medium body that is creamy up front, a tad watery in the middle, and finishes smooth. More true to the style description than its legend.

O: This is a solid Irish Dry Stout. It's better in the nitro can, and I prefer the Extra Stout over the Draught (would love to try the Foreign Extra someday). Not a complex beer, but very drinkable. This was the first "dark beer" I ever drank on a semi-regular basis. There are many stouts I would prefer, but this is a classic.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

07-09-2011 02:28:49 | More by tito42
Photo of corby112


3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark chestnut brown that appears pitch black and opaque in the glass with a 1.5 finger creamy off-white head that slowly settles into a thick lasting ring. Large chunks of soapy lacing are left behind.

Roasted malt aroma with hints of toffee, chocolate, caramel and lactic cream. Slightly toasty but this beer really smells like sweet water until it warms up quite a bit and the malt notes emerge.

Medium bodied with a creamy texture from the nitro. I'm usually not a fan of this characteristic because it's really artificial but it somehow works with Guinness. Again, as in the aroma, the beer is really boring and watery until it warms a bit. Too often this beer is served at 35 degrees and loses all of it's flavor. When it warms it's pretty nice with a decent amour of dry, roasted malt. Hints of chocolate, toffee, nut and caramel complimented by the creamy lactic feel/flavor. Dry finish. Not the best of the style but underrated, possibly because of it's popularity.

Serving type: nitro-bottle

07-04-2011 21:57:23 | More by corby112
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Guinness Draught from Guinness Ltd.
79 out of 100 based on 4,732 ratings.