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Guinness Draught - Guinness Ltd.

Not Rated.
Guinness DraughtGuinness Draught

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,649 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,649
Reviews: 1,986
rAvg: 3.49
pDev: 20.06%
Wants: 45
Gots: 573 | FT: 1
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,649 | Reviews: 1,986 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JayQue
3.73/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had a draft Guinness on St. Patrick's Day. Nice creamy head that stayed for the whole drink. Good lacing on the glass. Nice dark (black) color. Some roasted malt smell. Taste was ok, malt taste...goes down smooth . Mouthfeel is a little thin, was expecting more richness. No bitterness or weird aftertaste. This is not an exceptional beer, but it is smooth and easy to drink. This is a good session beer.

JayQue, Mar 18, 2006
Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.48/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer goes down as one of the controversials. It was better in the past, it's better now, it's watered down, it's a classic, it goes on and on. Quite simply, this is my fall-back draft beer. It's available almost everywhere and with rare exceptions it's patronized enough to be consistent in quality. Forget the bashers and various odd comments. Enjoy it if you like. Here's my short review:

Classic black color with that fun to watch carbonation cascade and the nitro head that lasts the whole drink. Taste is not going to overwhelm most anyone and it's lighter than appearances suggest. Very easy to drink steadily (session beer?) and my tasting is based on hanging with a group at a pool hall last night. Very nice to quaff in a slightly smokey atmosphere.

barleywinebrewer, Mar 17, 2006
Photo of allergictomacros
3.58/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark, reddish brown. Creamy nitro-head and sticky lace.

S - Roasted, coffee aromas dominate, with some grainy notes.

T - Toasted bitterness and a slight tartness. Dry, slightly hoppy finish.

M - Medium bodied- maybe light for a stout? Could be I'm spoiled on that count.

D - Decent. I prefer this to the extra stout, although maybe it's the nitro and not the beer. Gimmick or not, the nitro-head is a goodthing.

allergictomacros, Mar 17, 2006
Photo of headlessparrot
3.7/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

St. Patrick's Day is nigh upon us, and I had yet to find a bartender in the Greater Toronto Area who knew the makings of a perfect pint of Guinness. So, naturally, I had to take matters into my own hands, and I purchased a 'grab and go' four-pack of Guinness nitro cans - actually brewed in Ireland, unlike the bottles and various other Guinness incarnations.

It's been a long time since my first sip of Guinness, at age fifteen (I loathed it), and every time I try it, I find myself liking it more and more. Let's see if this trend continues.

The pour, as always, is absolutely gorgeous. Not as good as a perfect pour on draught, but it takes significantly less than 118 seconds to get this baby out of the bottle and into my pint glass. The beautiful signature cascading bubbles, the black-as-night body with just hints of brown and ruby around the edges, and the beautiful, creamy looking substantial off-white head are all here. The head retains well, and leaves a spectacular amount of lacing. No problems here - this looks delicious.

The smell is also quite enjoyable. Usually my pints of Guinness are in smoke-filled pubs where it's hard to really get a handle on the stellar smell - roasted malts, creamy, cappucino, with burnt coffee and slightly chocolatey notes. Toffee, caramel, a little smoky.

Taste, however, isn't quite up to par with genuine pub draught Guinness. At the very forefront, quite sweet for only a couple of seconds (but a little metallic). Burnt flavours dominate quickly after; coffee, toffee, hints of chocolate, but all smokey, and with a bit too much burnt-ness for my personal liking. Bitter and dry on the finish, though not extremely so, and with an unusual, but not utterly unpleasant aftertaste. Would probably pare better with a food to match it then it does on its own (possibly why I recall liking it more, since I used to consume Guinness and wings by the plate). Nothing particularly impressive, but they're doing something right.

Mouthfeel is a mixed bag. The body initially feels rather thick and full-bodied as it passes the lips, but quickly reveals itself to be thin (a bit too watery) as it rolls over the tastebuds. I can see where the perception of Guinness as a 'heavy' beer comes from, but whoever believes this must have spit theirs' out before even tasting it. Carbonation, however, is top-notch - subtle, not too excessive at all. Almost, perfect even.

Drinkability is also rather high. Guinness just begs to be consumed in two or three pints at a time. Beyond the bitterness, it's smooth, rich and just complex enough to be rewarding (but not too rewarding). American macros could really take a lesson from Guinnes Draught. And while its far superior on tap (but only especially so in the 'taste' department), I would never turn it down from a can - and in fact, I'll probably eventually buy more next year, when I still haven't found a bartender's who's mastered the Guinness 'perfect pour.'

headlessparrot, Mar 17, 2006
Photo of custardcb
3.98/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ah, who doesn't enjoy watching a glass of mother's milk build itself? This review is based off a nitro bottle but I can't tell if there is much difference between this and the nitro can.

Pours a jet black with a nice head that is sort of the color on a cappacino. The head is frothy and hangs around the whole time I'm drinking this. The nose is toffee, chocolate, coffee, and roasted barley.

The mouth is incredibly smoothe but a little water. All the essences from the nose are present in the taste. The finish is medium but builds up over time. While it isn't a very strong stout I can always do a session of these. Since it is so widely available it is one of my fall back beers when other hard to finds aren't around.

custardcb, Mar 12, 2006
Photo of Rob6852
3.63/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Bought from a local superstore.
Been meaning to review this brew but never seemed to get around
to it.
Appearance is spot on. Dark w/ ruby hues running through it if you
hold it up to the light. It has a one inch creamy head that thins as
it sits w/ no lacing.
Smell is toffie, mocha and burnt coffee aromas.
Taste....burnt coffee and toffie dominates and finishes dry.
Mouthfeel is watery and thin....other dry stouts offer a better
mouthfeel than this brew does.
Drinkability is rather good since this beer will not load you up like
other stouts will. It will make a good session beer but I have to
believe that Guinness you get from the tap or over the pond is
better than this export. All in all an avarage stout..nothing
remarkable but still a good beer.

Rob6852, Mar 09, 2006
Photo of mrasskicktastic
2.73/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Despite its other flaws, Guinness Draught is a gorgeous brew. The pour is amazing, the entire beer is filled with a wavy cascade of tan foam on black slowly settling to the thick head up top. The head is thick and creamy with eternal retention, the lacing is also thick and creamy. It had a dark red black color with little black impurities that look like ash.

S - Faint elderberries, toffee and very weak molasses.

T - Water with a bit of charred white bread mixed into it. There is a burnt lightly coffee flavored bitterness. The flavor is weak and lacking in depth.

M - Very thin, very watery, very smooth and refreshing.

D - Highly drinkable. The beer is easy to session, although the charred flavor gets old quickly. It is easy to wash down food as well. All and all, a bland irish dry with a bit too much burnt character for my tastes.

mrasskicktastic, Mar 09, 2006
Photo of Orrshow
2.85/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance - Pours black with a centimeter of light tan head which appears creamy. When poured from the nitro can there is an interesting effect as the bubbles move all about the glass and eventually settle to the top. This one leaves lacing all over the glass.

Smell - Not strong at all. Roasted malts present there. Somewhat sweet. This was very difficult to decipher.

Taste - A weak smoky flavor touches the tongue with very slight hints of chocolate. Ends bitter...but not that bitter. This beer lacks flavor and tastes almost watery.

Mouthfeel - Creamy for sure but at the same time somewhat watery. The carbonation is very low Needs a lot more body.

Drinkability - I find Guinness easy to drink. The lack of bite to it makes it easy to down but takes away from the enjoyment significantly.

I don’t plan to buy Guinness in stores any time in the near future.

Orrshow, Mar 07, 2006
Photo of jayc333
3.78/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Decided to try the nitro bottle because it's the only "take-home" Guinness product (most pubs have imported Irish Guinness on tap) that isn't brewed in Toronto.

Poured a solid black with ruby hues at the sides. There was no cascading effect like what you get from the tap or nitro cans, and there was only a lace of tan head. Not impressive, but it clearly states on the label to drink it from the bottle, so it shouldnt really matter.

Smells strongly of blended chocolate and caramel with a hint of coffee thrown in.

Taste is the opposite of the smell strangely. Strong coffee up front, with hints of chocolate and caramel. A tad watery, but without the brutal aftertaste I remember from my last experience with the nitro can.

Mouthfeel is perfect as always. Silky smooth, with the ability to drink these all night.

I personally enjoy drinking this one from the bottle. I believe the rocket widget for the bottles was a great idea. I'll be for sure picking these up on St Patrick's Day.

jayc333, Mar 05, 2006
Photo of TheRedScare27
2.98/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

wow. This beer really has changed since the last time I had it. The appearance was certainly nice, good head retention. I cant say too much about smell as my nose is a bit plugged, but it doesnt have anything worth noting. The taste is what dissapointed me most. I remember Guinness having a nice, strong dark taste, but now it just tastes like water. too smooth on the mouthfeel part, as many have said. Yeah you can drink it easily, but not for enjoyment.

TheRedScare27, Mar 05, 2006
Photo of pweis909
2.48/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Not sure which of the Guinness variants I had in draft form at the Minneapolis Airport. It was by no means my first Guiness, but the first one in many years, and the first since reviewing at BA.

As the bartender tapped it, it was black at the bottom, and brown at the top, right under thick finely beaded foam. This certainly looked like the Guinness I remembered. Besides looking the part, it felt like a Guinness. Milkshake-like texture.

However, there was little smell or tasted. It was smooth. So smooth that it lacked character. Quite a dissappointment, and not the way I remember it. It used to have some bite to it. Did my tastes change, did the beer change, or both?

I won't be shelling out cash for this one anytime soon.

pweis909, Mar 03, 2006
Photo of Vancer
2.53/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 1 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I had to try the nitro bottle - how overall disappointing! Man, ya can't start off and tell good beer drinkers to "drink straight from the bottle" and "serve extra cold".

No, no, no - not good at all. Big one for appearance.

So I poured it into a glass. Same black brew, but the aroma & taste just keep getting dumbed down for the masses.

Yeah, drink a bunch. It's really weak and watery. Just sad.

Vancer, Mar 03, 2006
Photo of acarroll413
3.48/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this at a restaurant this evening. When I originally tried this beer, the roof of my mouth was burned because of hot cheese, so perhaps just the coolness of the beer made me say it was so tasty. I'm not saying I don't like this beer, all I'm saying is that maybe that contributed to my previously high rating. I don't have anything else to add aside from the fact that this is a strong strong beer. Still very enjoyable, sipping, full flavored beer.

acarroll413, Mar 02, 2006
Photo of geexploitation
2.73/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

After trying and reviewing the draft-bottle version of Guinness, I'm now reviewing the nitro-can version. Appearance is good enough -- almost-black, with a tan, creamy head -- but I didn't get much of that famous Guinness "cascade" effect off the nitro can. The nose is pretty comparable to the tap version of Guinness, by my memory at least -- lots of roast malt/burnt carbon smells. A bit like dirty water. Taste is definitely disappointing, with a big, upfront metallic sweetness that then morphs into a burnt-tasting malt bitterness. Quite a different taste experience than the nitro-bottle version. Mouthfeel is very thin and watery, with none of the grittiness present in the nitro-bottle.

Overall, what can I say? I love Guinness when it's fresh, high-quality and poured correctly. I don't like it when it's none of those things, and that's what this can represents. Bleh. Tir na Nog, I miss you.

geexploitation, Feb 26, 2006
Photo of rustymoore
3.15/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Guinness Draught to me is one of the most mediocre stouts out there but here goes. Pours thick brown which slowly develops into a dark black. Smell has coffee and chocolate notes. The taste is very watery and milky. Doesn't have very much flavor at all....the coffee is there but it's not as pronounced as in some stouts. Overall is just a very average beer.

rustymoore, Feb 25, 2006
Photo of nathanho
3.7/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

14.9 oz. nitro can. Amazing cascading tan head settles to a thin creamy layer; tar black color. Smells malty and grainy with some smoke and coffee.

Malty grainy smokey flavor has some sweetness, is very smooth and feels silky on the palate and tongue. Satisfying.

A great beer to casually sit, sip and enjoy, preferably in the appropriate pub atmosphere with your chums, but not required.

Check that, I'll veritably pound ONE, then sit, sip and enjoy a couple more in the company of friends.

nathanho, Feb 25, 2006
Photo of sammy44
3.05/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Atkin's Park Tavern in Smyrna, GA. Needed a session beer for a birthday/happy hour after work and the old reliable was on tap. Served in a pint glass.

Appearance was great with an opaque shiny black and a creamy off white head. A beer that cascades as the head rises has to be one of the coolest things on earth. The head stayed at about 1/4" and coated the glass on the way down. The smell was kinda weak, which is disappointing. The taste was mild coffee and chocolate. The mouthfeel is great at first as you get some of the creamy head in every mouthful but as the head fades the beer just feels watery. Creamy that changes to watery = Average.

A good session beer that you can easily knock back several in one sitting without getting shnockered.

sammy44, Feb 23, 2006
Photo of klewis
3.45/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Pours a very dark brownish black with a one finger creamy head that's not going anywhere soon. Lots of creamy lace on the glass. This is a great looking beer.

S: Not much aroma coming out of this. Sort of a charred malt smell.

T: Not much taste either. Roasted, earthy flavors up front followed by a slight bitterness.

M: If any beer is approiately labeled "smooth", it's this. Thick, creamy mouthfeel that finished dry.

D: Extremely easy to drink due to the mouthfeel, but the taste and aroma are a little lacking for me to enjoy this unless I'm in the right mood (i.e. St. Patty's day)

klewis, Feb 23, 2006
Photo of msubulldog25
3.38/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served into a pint glass, cold out of the 11.2 oz. nitro-bottle.

A: An impenetrable, inky black with one finger of ivory-colored head. The waves of bubbles initially after the pour are mesmerizing!

S: Mild, subtle roastedness.

T: Stout is not my favorite style but this is nice, delicate. Bitter tang becomes a nice semisweet finish.

M: Too thin for my liking. Leaves the tongue very quickly.

D: It's good to have every now and then. I actually like this bottled version as much as any draft pour I've had.

My office bought a 6-pack last Friday; this and Heineken were our import choices. Happy with what I chose... :)

msubulldog25, Feb 23, 2006
Photo of russpowell
3.4/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured almost black with a supertight offwhite head 1" deep. Great head rentention and lacing

Some graininess and maltiness in the smell. Not much else

Taste: graininess, bitterness and dryness on the finish

MF: Silky and good carbonation levels

Drinkable enough, just lacks the depth of the export, other in-country competetitors or numerous clones inspired by the "original"

russpowell, Feb 22, 2006
Photo of manofmanners
4.63/5  rDev +32.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

More filling than the stout, i believe. But it is the perfect beer. So dark light can not pass through, a almost pure white head (not a pimple). The problem is you have to let it settle to get the full taste. so be in a hurry of you want to drink it. Perfect beer to have with cheese and a burger, but not if you want hot wings or a salad!

manofmanners, Feb 18, 2006
Photo of Padron4KM
2.05/5  rDev -41.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

nitro bottle, poured into a guinness glass. I know you are supposed to drink this from the bottle, but I can't do it.

dark brown with ruby tones. Creamy nitro head.

Very light aroma, I have to vigorously agitate the beer to get anything out of it. Mostly light roastiness, with some sweet malt.

Flavor is slightly bitter roast, with a sweet and sour note on the finish.

Pallate is thin.
Not the Guinness I remember.

Padron4KM, Feb 18, 2006
Photo of TheEclecticGent
4.03/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I poured this beer out of an 11.2 oz nitro “rocket-widget” bottle into a Guinness pint glass. I feel like I really get cheated with only 11.2 ounces, the beer only comes up to the label on the pint glass. It has that beautiful Guinness cascade and the lovely thick nitro tan head that is a rock solid 1” thick. The beer itself appears black as night but is actually very, very, very dark brown. The modern nitro Guinness in a can and bottle to me has very little smell. What smell there is a light hoppy dry smell that smells like brown paper. When I first started drinking Guinness in the standard bottles many years ago, it had a yeasty sludge in the bottom of the bottle and appeared to be bottle fermented and carbonated – a completely different drink. However, this is a classic as well. The mouthfeel is smooth and amazingly light for a stout. The taste starts with a sharp bite of carbonized grain, to a dry almost ethereal warmth, and end with a dry aftertaste. A bit of a very light chocolate overtone in the flavor and a bit smokey as well. Nothing quite like a Guinness. This is a very drinkable stout, although I couldn’t slam as many Guinnesses as say Sweetwater 420 or other lighter beers.

TheEclecticGent, Feb 14, 2006
Photo of nicksta
4.15/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

I am reviewing this from the nitro can this time.

The appearance is a jet black solid with brown edging. In the beginning the carbonation rises and rises, not as much as in a bottle though, and it finally settles in the form of a tan pancake on top of the beer.

The smell has faint hints of mocha ringing through and not much else. A little disapointing.

The taste is very much like the bottle. Roasted, creamy, hints of chocolate and toffee, and rounded out with black coffe bitterness. Always let it warm up a bit just to let you know.

The mouthfeel is still light, but not as light, like the bottled version.

The drinkability is better than ever! Chug, chug, chug!, or great as a session beer.

Not bad but I still prefer the nitro-bottled version.

nicksta, Feb 12, 2006
Photo of Phatz
4.2/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: Tall nitro-can loaded with the Rocket Widget. Nice touch (some people have called it a pointless gimmick but the appearance of the beer is a beauty so...). Served in my pint glass at 50 degrees. This review is the same as my previous review of the nitro bottle. I think it is just as good in the can as it is in the bottle and maybe more convenient IMO.

Appearance: Pours a great noble brown and sits in my pint glass looking very black. There are slight red hues as the light reflects, but it looks quite black. Awesome creamy off white head that lasted the entire duration of the beer. Substantial and lasting lacing is impressive.

Smell: A bit of dark fruit. It has a unique and surprising mild sweetness about it.

Taste: Some chocolate and some raspberries. On the first sip I am impressed by the Dry characteristic of the beer. It invades on the taste for only a moment though. After that the surprising sweet almost dry fruit flavor but not quite fruit (to dry to be fruit) unless you add a certain toastedness to the description. Evident dark malts. Very mild flavor but very enjoyable. The only bitterness is a very slight hint after the dryness in the aftertaste. Overall, very pleasant taste.

Mouthfeel: A bit thinner than I'd expect from a stout; somewhat lighter in weight and in body. DRY! This beer screams Irish DRY Stout from moment one. It is fantastically crisp with just the right amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: Very VERY drinkable. Nice and tasty, light weight (sits easy in your stomach) low ABV, no extreme characteristics; all make this an easy guzzler. There is a low quality bar down the street from my house. They carry almost nothing worth drinking but it is the only bar close to my house. Guinness Draught is the only thing they have that I am interested in; and that is the best thing about this beer. It's everywhere! For an easily accessible beer made by a 'Big Brewery' this is definitely one of the best 'Big Brewery' beers out there. The only Macro characteristic it has is that partway between the middle of your mouth and the swallow I noticed a small empty watery space that had a little gap in the flavor. Nothing substantial and certainly forgivable but characteristic of big breweries. I highly recommend this as a Bar Beer. When you are at a bar with limited selection it is likely they will carry Guinness Draught and it is a great fallback choice and a regular in my fridge.

Hope this is helpful.

Phatz, Feb 11, 2006
Guinness Draught from Guinness Ltd.
79 out of 100 based on 5,649 ratings.