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Murphy's Irish Red - Murphy Brewery Ireland Limited

Murphy's Irish RedMurphy's Irish Red

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

529 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 529
Reviews: 316
rAvg: 3.19
pDev: 16.93%

Brewed by:
Murphy Brewery Ireland Limited visit their website

Style | ABV
Irish Red Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-08-2001)
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Ratings: 529 | Reviews: 316 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Boto


3.38/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Draught: This one poured a clear amber color. It had a tight, white nitro head. Almost solid lacing down the glass. The aroma was lighter, but decent. Somewhat sweet, caramel, floral. The taste is OK. A bit creamy. Fairly neutral on the bitter/sweetness divide. Malts, faint fruits. Hint of roast. Drinkable.

Serving type: nitro-tap

08-24-2011 15:26:40 | More by Boto
Photo of PhageLab


3.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a standard pint. I double checked, and yes, it was nitro.

A - Clear amber coloration, thick, fluffy head, excellent retention and some visible lacing.

S - Mostly spicy with a hint of malty sweetness.

T - Grain and toffee shows up initially, followed quickly by a caramel sweetness, and then it all vanishes. Another sip bears the same burden. The flavor comes and goes so quickly it is hard to savor.

M - Clean and creamy medium body obviously, then a disappointingly watery finish.

D - Doesn't require much thought or effort to enjoy, because there simply isn't much here. Nothing bad, mind you, just nothing that sticks around.

Serving type: nitro-tap

05-26-2011 03:41:09 | More by PhageLab
Photo of Halcyondays


3.28/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On nitro-tap at Beachwood BBQ for St. Patrick's Day,

A: Pours a light red with a full creamy nitro head, nice lace.

S: Caramel, hint of earthy hops.

T: Good caramel/toffee malt type flavours. Light hopping. Solid beer, but I wanted more.

M: On the thin side, creamy, light-bodied.

D: A fair Red Ale. I liked it, but it's not a beer to wow you, just an easy drinking pint.

Serving type: nitro-tap

03-17-2010 22:43:21 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of TubaManJack


3.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nitro Tap to the rescue--> I honestly don't believe that I am the first to have it this way. Speak up people.

Appearance- A nice light tan cream head, which lasts to the end of the glass, what a nitro head delivers. The body is a pale red, but this is being generous.
Smell- A weak watery scent of roasted grains and slightly of caramel.
Taste- A soft grain feel with a hint of hops. Some toasted malt and nice roasted grain notes, much better than the nose indicates.
Mouthfeel/Drinkability- The Nitro helps reduce the body into a lighter creamer version of its former self and help smooth out the beer. It also has the tendecy to make it like water but sadly it does change this beer to much for the better.

Summary- The unloved child of the Murphy's family and for good reasons. Stick with other Irish Reds.

Serving type: nitro-tap

05-15-2009 02:18:09 | More by TubaManJack
Photo of sobuf

New York

3.23/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

St Patrick's Day weekend, so I figured I'd try at least one Irish beer. I've obviously tried the obvious culprits - Guiness, Harp, Smithwick's, Murphy's Stout, etc. So I saw a 6'er of Murphy's Red Ale and decided to take it down while working outside. I figured if I had to listen to the people partying up at the bars, I may as well be drinking while cleaning up my yard right?

It's not a bad beer - the malts make it sweet and smooth to take down - although there's definately a metallic after-taste that almost gives off an alcohol taste. Which isn't horrible, but gives it a bit of a harshness to it. I wasn't expecting much, and Murphy's didn't give much. I wouldn't buy it again, but I suppose if you want to get into a St Patty's spirit once a year and you happen to buy this beer, it's definately drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2014 19:12:01 | More by sobuf
Photo of Captain_Komamura


3.26/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance -It is a dark amber / red color, with a thick head.

Smell - It is a sweet malts and a bit of hops.

Taste - It is a bit sweet from the malts, with the hops adding a nice spiciness to it.

Mouthfeel - It is a bit weak-bodied, good carbonation though.

Overall - It is an OK beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2014 02:54:57 | More by Captain_Komamura
Photo of mjurney


4.11/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Copper color, clear. Good amount of rising carbonation. Thick frothy head.

Faint amoma. Caramel malts and earthy.

Deep caramel malts, bready, slight dark roast. Bright fruit character. Hop bitterness is mild, mainly leafy-earthy. Finish is very crisp, a little dry. Body is medium, crisp, refreshing, dry.

It's an excellent beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2013 06:57:33 | More by mjurney
Photo of Ryan_Graham


3.29/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Light Brown, Half a finger of head. Fades quick.

S: Light hoppy smell.

T: Deeper taste than a domestic beer but nothing spectacular.

M: Not too much carbonation. Very light on the pallet. Goes down smooth.

O: A smooth bubbly beer with a light taste and smell. It's not terrible but not outstanding either.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2013 05:06:56 | More by Ryan_Graham
Photo of DavidS88


3.15/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Murphy's Irish Red ale is the second Irish red I've ever had; the first was Newcastle Werewolf, so I'm yet to try anything in that style that has completely blown me away. Nonetheless. Murphy's is a good ale overall. Poured on draft, Murphy's didn't have the red color that defines a true red ale. It was more a dark copper, with maybe a few hints of red. It had a nice creamy white head on top of about a finger and a half that stuck around the entire time I drank it. On the nose was hints of grass and some woody aromas; it lacked any strong hop or malt smells. The taste was pretty much the same as the nose, with nothing really apparent that was overwhelming but definitely some subtle hops and grass. The ale was crisp, clean, and refreshing. Not a bad brew at all, but nothing truly spectacular either. Cheers!

Serving type: on-tap

06-06-2013 16:35:57 | More by DavidS88
Photo of kvnstfrd


1.25/5  rDev -60.8%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.25

Appearance: Pours a copper color with a small, soapy head that fades quickly and leaves little lacing.

Aroma: An extremely faint smell of toasted malts with a stale musty odor.

Taste: The only detectable flavor is an astringent, metallic bite, especially in the finish. The aftertaste reminds me of Alka-Seltzer.

Palate: Over-carbonated with an extremely dry and puckering finish.

This is one the worst beers that I've ever had. A few sips and the rest went down the kitchen sink! I was shocked at how unpalatable this beer was.
(Funny, I see no mention of this beer at Murphy's website.)

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2013 13:39:50 | More by kvnstfrd
Photo of RaphaelSC


3.9/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pour a red amber color with a little with head and low retention.

S: woody and bread smell.

T: Watery in the beggining, but a mild bitterness came with a dry finish.

M: Dry and bitter afterfeel with a little floral feeling. Very drinkable and very balanced beer!

O: A good red beer that is worth what it costs.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2013 06:22:43 | More by RaphaelSC
Photo of abijen


3.33/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Aroma: some kind of woody smell. Appearance: Amber/red color, clear liquid. The head is minimal white/tan. Taste: light bitterness and light sourness which finish a bit salty. An average duration Palate: light body, oily texture and a average carbonation Overall: a nice pub beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2013 08:40:49 | More by abijen
Photo of IrishRacer


4.18/5  rDev +31%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This Dutch-Irish Red poors nice, but is a little lighter than I like my Red's. It gathers a well developed blonde head, though, and drinks smooth.
This is a nice Red, although if I close my eyes and think "Heineken", I taste a Heineken. I'd like to side-by-side with a true Irish pub-tapped pint...

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2013 00:56:08 | More by IrishRacer
Photo of beergoot


3.56/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Two+ finger thick rocky, creamy white head sitting atop a reddish copper body. There is a basic and pleasing malt/hop aroma; faintly floral. Very nice sweet, grainy taste with a nicely complementary, subtle hop bitterness. Body leans towards a light-medium feel; clean, crisp, and dry.

I get the "tea-like" flavor in the generic Irish red ale description posted on BA and find this to be very satisfying for the style. There is a nice balance to this subtle, understated beer. Probably not what a fan of US west coast-styled IPAs would like, but certainly for someone looking for a mild yet distinctive beer. I'd certainly enjoy knocking back a few more...

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2013 01:06:04 | More by beergoot
Photo of Fatehunter


3.33/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

It was pouring okay, then it just foamed up really quickly. The color is a amber to red.
The aroma is crushed grain and a mild caramel.
The taste has a watery start, mild bitterness in the middle, finishes with a mild sweetness. Unoffensive.
The texture is crisp with moderate carbonation.
Nothing special, but an easy drinker.

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2013 02:31:18 | More by Fatehunter
Photo of UCLABrewN84


3.54/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Thin foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, caramel, and a slight hop aroma. Taste is much the same with a toasted bread flavor on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a pretty good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is nothing all that special, but it is solid and easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2013 04:55:26 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of FLima


3.48/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice amber red color. Made a thin head with short duration
Predominant sweet malt aroma, caramel and toasted malts.
Taste is similar with toasted malts, caramels with some herbal and floral hops. Fairly sweet, but zesty at the same time. Aftertaste is mildly bitter, dry and astringent.
Light body with strong carbonation and medium size bubbles. Well balanced beer.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2012 23:33:44 | More by FLima
Photo of dictatorial

4.23/5  rDev +32.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pretty great beer. I got a single bottle and drank it from a large mug. The appearance was a beautiful red with vibrant carbonation, the smell was great and the taste was, to me, above average. It left no bad after taste and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I still don't know the exact alcohol content as it is not labeled on the bottle, but it is a really great beer. Overall, great beer and I would recommend it.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2012 00:29:14 | More by dictatorial
Photo of Bishop_Collar

3.43/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Beer poured a copper color with three fingers of fluffy off white head. Good carbonation was noted with some patchy lacing.

Smell: Picked up a minerally aroma off this one, like an iron smell.

Taste: Yeasty flavor with a nice malt character. The minerally aroma did not follow to the palate. Some sweetness noted when it warmed up.

Mouthfeel: Medium mouthfeel with noted carbonation.

Overall: I enjoyed this one. I recently tried the Newcastle Werewolf Red Blood Ale and was very disappointed. This one had more flavor and was not as watery.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2012 23:28:09 | More by Bishop_Collar
Photo of augustgarage


3.28/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Samuel Smith nonic.

An "Irish Red Ale" that is actually a mass market lager?

Pale, clear, rusty burnt orange body with no head. Virtually no lacing. Meh.

Clean vaguely toasty aroma with hints of kettle caramelization.

There is a pleasing maltiness on the palate. Initial sweetness is washed away by a toasted corn tortilla flavor - odd but not entirely unpleasant. Finishes clean and moderately dry. Very low bitterness throughout.

Brisk, light-bodied, albeit sort of flaccid feel.

A bit dull, and a poor value, but easy drinking and with a hint of character hiding in there somewhere.

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2012 06:34:05 | More by augustgarage
Photo of kylehay2004


3.13/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: single finger head on a copper-amber clear body and scant lacing.

S: very sweet aroma from the caramel malts. burnt toast notes.

T: less sweet than was expected from the aroma. otherwise this one is simple with grain, caramel malts and toasted notes.

M: slight bitterness affects the drinkability. medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: standard for the style but little that sets it apart from the mainstream irish reds.

Serving type: bottle

05-13-2012 14:47:53 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of DM1293


3.13/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tastes comes across as toasty malt, but its fairly light and leads quickly into a faint dry finish. A little bit sweet as well. Mouthfeel is a little bit sediment-y.

Overall, its an average, highly drinkable red. Nothing really makes it remarkable or bad, and it goes down easy. But its not a great stand-alone beer to drink with. Safe to try, but if you have a better red as your go-to, this probably won't convince you to switch to it.

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2012 02:50:22 | More by DM1293
Photo of Kendo

New York

3.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured - on Saint Patrick's Day, 2012 - from the funny-shaped bottle into a pint glass. Body is oddly coppery-amber and crystal clear. Small off-white head on top. Some lace.

S: Sweet malt and husky grain.

T: Sweet with some grainy malt. Slightly minerally bitterness and a fairly dry finish lead to a slightly metallic aftertaste.

F: Body is light, carbonation is modest.

O: Not a fan. Too sweet. Drain pour halfway through.

Serving type: bottle

03-18-2012 01:58:07 | More by Kendo
Photo of soju6


3/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a copper color with a small head that fades to bits of lacing.

S: Mild aroma of sweetness some grain and bit of malt.

T: Mild tasting beer with a light malt sweetness, no real bitterness and a fairly dry finish.

F: Light body, smooth and fairly bland.

O: A very non-offensive beer that goes down easy. Goes best with food.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2012 22:05:38 | More by soju6
Photo of biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

3.05/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A stickler might complain that Murphy's Red Ale is actually more orangey-brown in colour. Fair enough, considering there really isn't any red in it. There also isn't a trace of froth or lace to bear testament to the soundtrack of crackling bubbles that ensued from the pour, despite that carbonation is plainly visible in the body of the beer.

The nose is a tad syrupy with a cereal-y sweetness reminiscent of poorer (often Latin American) examples of Vienna lagers. Although generally clean smelling, it does have a bit of buttery popcorn note. Void of pretty much any toast, toffee, or hop character, it seems like this is more of a lager than it is an ale. It is painfully dull.

There's more body and flavor appreciated on the palate, but not a significant amount enough to warrant a higher score. A more bready (as oppose to corn syrupy) taste emerges and with it some of the toast and toffee elements so desired (only "some", mind you, not all). The light roasted grain flavor is glossed over by low levels of diacetyl.

It's either a bit of hard, copper-y water minerals or some English hop flavor, but something gives this a surprisingly refreshing finish. Good carbonation and lagering obviously help too. While I'm quite unimpressed by Murphy's Red Ale, it might not actually be a beer I'd hesitate to order if in the right social setting. It is, as the kids say, just "aight".

Some will argue Murphy's Red as a quintessential example of its style. That argument must surely be based on the merit of its lineage rather than its actual qualities (it's like a king ruling the country because of his genealogy, rather than his credentials). This very well may be how the Irish now brew their amber ales, but others nations do it much better.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2012 17:29:39 | More by biegaman
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Murphy's Irish Red from Murphy Brewery Ireland Limited
74 out of 100 based on 529 ratings.