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Irish Ale - Boulevard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Irish AleIrish Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

548 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 548
Reviews: 237
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 12.02%
Wants: 20
Gots: 45 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boulevard Brewing Co. visit their website
Missouri, United States

Style | ABV
Irish Red Ale |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-02-2002

Irish Ale, Boulevard’s early spring seasonal beer, is our Midwestern tribute to the legendary red ales of old Ireland. Our recipe combines six kinds of pale and roasted barley malts to provide a rich, toasty flavor and tawny reddish hue.

30 IBU
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 548 | Reviews: 237
Photo of kcillini77
3.4/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Coach's Kansas City during Illinois' loss to Wisconsin in the finals of the Big Ten Tournament.

Smells nice - a little fruity and hoppy.

Good taste, but nothing exceptional. More sweet than hoppy, but has decent complexity - some tart fruit notes balanced by floral hops.

A nice beer - definitely a good St. Patrick's Day choice far exceeding the traditional brews served up, but nothing to go out of the way for.

Photo of Gehrig
3.68/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I grabbed this from the sterling Sun Singer. A nice copper brown pitched from the bottle, with two fingers of white froth capping it. Modest whiffs of caramel malt exude from Irish Red, followed by hints of berry. The taste is smooth but lacks boldness and complexity. Texture carries the day for Irish Red, making it a nice, drinkable offering.

Yet this isn't the equal of Three Floyd's brilliant Brian Boru, not close. Nor is it close to Boulevard's Bully! Porter. A good, steady beer, certainly, and not one to turn down. Just not in the upper strata.

Photo of 1fastz28
3.76/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a dark reddish color with a big opaque head. smell isn't very strong, some malty characters and some biscuit aromas. taste is pretty good though, has a lot of interesting malt flavors, one of the better irish ales, most of them seem kinda bland, but this one is pretty good, and only a few days till st.pattys day!

Photo of JEdmund
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good inch head sitting on a raspberry iced tea color body. Nice show of carbonation. Love the label! Head settles slowly, leaving very little lacing.

Delicious sweet, tart fruit bread; almost like apricot bread; very inviting. I smell cranberries or maybe just berry in general. It's got a hint of hops, but more fruity malt (though no banana).

Taste & Mouthfeel
Zing of hops at first; the carbonation gives it a nice bite in my mouth, and the tangy fruit and sweet malts finish it off. I'm not picking up on a big "toasty" flavor like Boulevard suggests I will.

I'm really enjoying this style. It's like a sweeter pale ale and much more smooth with the malt presence. I easily enjoyed a couple of these one evening. I could also easily persuade myself to buy another six-pack. I keep coming back for a whiff; it's really pleasing.

Photo of goochpunch
3.11/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours out a rusty orange-red with middling carbonation and a pretty, thick head atop. Leaves some thick lacing. Smells of sweet malts and a good deal of toasty crystal. Lot's of fruity esters going on that I tend to associate with Boulevard. There's kind of a tinge of piny hops. Taste is sufficiently malty with a good bit of toastiness. There's the fruitiness here which reminds me of fruity bubblegums. There's a bit of that "beyond-toasted" malt character that I get from Fat Tire and much of the New Belgium line here which almost gives off the effect of cocoa powder. Slight medicinal flavors. Bit of pine hop in the finish. Mouthfeel is moderate to light in weight and extremely creamy. Drinkability is OK. I really didn't like this beer right off, but as I work my way through the 6 pack over the course of a couple weeks, I find myself liking it more.

Photo of tayner
3.41/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle with date stamped on neck. Festive label

Poured an amber hue with a tint of ruby color. 3/4 inch white bubbly head that left light lacing behind

smell was of sweet malt, and more hops than i expected, but they were sort of earthy smelling.

Taste was moderate sweetness from the malt with a slight punch at the finish of the hop presence. It was a surprise but not bad.

MOderate weight, plenty of carbonation.

With such a low abv you could drink this all day, but i would probably choose something else.. wouldnt turn it down if it was handed to me though. Decent brew, nothing extraordinary

Photo of scoobybrew
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was poured into a pint glass from the bottle.

A - clear deep ruby color with a decent head that settles into a small collar

S - slightly toasted malty scent, faint trace of hops

T - rich toasted malt taste with a stronger than expected (for an Irish ale) hop finish, some fruitiness noted from the yeast as well

M - medium body, moderate carbonation

D - This is a tasty Irish Red and perhaps one of the better beers that I've tried from Boulevard. I'd certainly pick this up again 'during the season o' the Irish'.

Photo of MOShepp
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into tumbler. Dark amber with a 1" head that quickly breaks into a thin layer leaving some lacing. Smells of toffee and maybe candy corn. Not a lot of hops, malty and smooth all the way through, caramel, wood, sweet with very slight bitterness at the finish. Not the best red ale I've had, but pretty good.

Photo of hwwty4
3.41/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap in a Boulevard Pint Glass. Pours a dark coppery orange with a slight tan head that dissipates into a thin layer that leaves just a bit of lacing on the glass. Aroma isn't out of this world. Pretty basic with a big caramel sweetness finishing with citrus hops that gives it the sensation of smelling orange rinds. Taste is much the same with a malty presence the melds into the hops. It's not as sweet as the nose would have you believe. My biggest problem is that there is a slight metallic taste to it. Mouthfeel is a bit thin I think. I think that they could have done a bit more with the beer.

Photo of PaleAlien2
3.51/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A: Copper in color, good clarity, with a dense, tan head that never really dissipates.

S: Aroma has a rich hop character with a bit of a citrus and spices.

T: Hops dominate the flavor, leaving a lingering bitterness long after the swallow. Not sure if there's enough malt to keep it in balance. Hint of spices in the flavor as well.

M: Way too thin. Finishes dry.

D: This beer is good, but flawed. Good for someone who likes dry, hoppy ales--as I do--but lack of malt body and watery palate preclude greatness. Great session beer though.

Photo of joe1510
3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz Stubby

Best by 5/1/08

I got this bottle as an extra in a recent trade with Vancer, thanks again Vance! Boulevard's Irish Ale pours fairly clear amber but upon closer inspection there's some tiny floating sediment that takes away a bit of the clarity. A one finger white head appeared on the pour that fell to a thin cap and left spotty lacing on its way down.

A bit of caramel and toasty malts greet the nose upfront. There's a noticeable earthy spicy hoppiness throughout. Maybe my mind's plying tricks on me but every now and then I pick up a whiff of pineapple.

While not an exciting ale this is a good one. Irish reds seem to be a tough style to really make stand out and Boulevards version is no different but it is enjoyable. A solid helping of caramel maltiness is accompanied by a touch of toasted graininess. The hopping creates a nice balance and rings in earthy and spicy just like the aroma suggested. Boulevard's Irish Ale finishes with a touch of lingering bitterness.

This beer sports a medium body with a smooth velvetiness. The mouthfeel fits the style really well and keeps it an enjoyable drinker.

Drinkability is good. The balanced flavor, mouthfeel, and low abv all make for a truly quaffable Irish red.

This is a good example of the style from Boulevard. Irish Reds are a style I can't really get to excited about but this would be a good beer to drink if you were sitting down for a game or in a more social situation where more than a few would be consumed in a night. Thanks Vance!

Photo of BradLikesBrew
3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

"Best by 05/01/08"

a: Dark amber/copper body, thin white head with some lace.

s: Caramel with some fruit notes, maybe citrus.

t: Caramel malt upfront with some notes of cherry? Not sure, but there is definitely some fruit in there. Some nuttiness, light hops and a dry finish.

m: Medium to light body, appropriate carbonation.

d: A good brew from Boulevard, not one of their best, but its pretty good. Irish ale is an above average, though not spectacular, irish red.

Photo of Clockwork420
4.48/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A friend got me this sixer for a present.
I love to support Semi-Local brewerys so This was a beer I was really excited about.

The pour was amazing. I actually took a pic of it when I poured 2 bottles into a large glass Stein. Beautiful Ruddy brown color. Clear not cloudy, Pretty bubbles.

Smell is sweet, I cant say much more than that. I smelled good though!

Taste. Amazing, finished clean with no odd aftertaste.. in other words no notes of any negativity. All good. Overall a beautiful experience.

Mouthfeel was the same as taste. Darker but not reeeeal heavy. Amazing all the way through.

Drinkability, Put it this way. I wish this was all year round and not limited to a certain time of year.

Damn near perfect review.
I love this one, and its gonna hold a special spot in my heart. Gotta remember when I see this one... (next year most likely) To just cash im my change and get a sixer.

Who cares if you got bills?
Buy this six pack.

Photo of tronester
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark reddish brown color. The head is medium sized and fades away pretty quickly. Smells bready and yeasty. Taste is malty, buttery, and slightly toasty. There is also a nice earthy taste from the hops. The bitterness levels are nice as well. Mouthfeel is good, with smooth carbonation. Very drinkable, it would be easy to drink several of these.

Photo of cookin420
3.01/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to bort11 for the bonus bottle.

Bottle poured into a pubglass.

A beautiful red beer, deep reds and orange colors remind me of hot coals. Impressive head leaves a stiff, thick lace.

Smell is mostly hops with a faint caramel malt aroma.

Well hopped for an Irish red but no complaints here as it's balenced nicely with malt. The malt plays second fiddle to the bittering and flavor hop additions.

A descent body to this beer, heavily carbonated at first but it simmers down right quick.

Very drinkable I think. I could see this being a session choice with some frequency if it were sold here.

Photo of Boto
3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Draught: This one pours a fairly clear, amber color. there was a bit of a head on it, and it left some lacing down the glass. The aroma was a bit light. What was there was pleasant, with notes of roast and a bit of caramel. It does taste pretty good. Taste is slightly caramel malt sweet, with a hint of roastiness. Hint of hops providing a nice balance.

Photo of boblog
3.3/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Apperance: Dark brown color, small head which leaves a good amount of lacing.
Smell: A bit of roasted malt, and not much else.
Taste: Acidic hop taste is strong initially,followed by a roasted malt flavor.
Mouthfeel: Pretty light bodied beer.
Drinkability: Fairly drinkable, its a simple beer, not huge on flavor, and light on alcohol.
Overall: Not my favorite beer nor my favorite Boulevard brew, still this is a decent beer from a brewery which makes several good brews.

Photo of Metalmonk
3.28/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a caramel/amber with a creamy head that's big and retains well. Thick sticky foam clings to the glass.

Aroma is caramel, something sweet like candy sugar, and a lager-y lightness in the background.

Nuttiness and caramel prevail in the flavor. Mineral in the finish, which is also bitter and gives off a light hint of roasted malt.

Mouthfeel is too fizzy; less aggressiveness would help this beer out.

An easy drinker, but it's pretty average stuff, close in vibe to your everyday average brown or amber ale.

Photo of Bitterbill
4.3/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased at Liquor Shed in Casper

This ours from 12oz bottle(best by May 1 2007) a nice clear amber with a smallish head of foam that shrinks pretty quickly to some spotting near the edge of the glass with some lacing.

The smell has some sweet and roasted malt to it and it's nice.

The taste isn't as sweet as the nose would indicate and that's fine by me. This has a good roastiness to it with some sweet notes and some fruity hop goodness there as well that shows up mostly in the finish. Nice long lasting aftertaste that is very yummy.

A very smooth yet tasty drinker...I've had this many times before and I was surprised to find that I hadn't reviewed it yet. I think this is a top notch example of the style and I *believe*, my favourite to date. Very well done, Boulevard!

Photo of TexIndy
3.41/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Bort11 for the trade. Poured from a 12oz bottle with a best by date of 5/1/07 lasered on the neck into a pint glass. It was a clear reddish color. It had a couple finger head that settled into a thin film during the session. Good carb. The aroma was a little muted but had good malt backbone and slight toasted smell. The taste was good, not spectacular but nice easy drinking kinda beer. Mouthfeel was good. Overall, it's a good session type beer that quenches the thrist with above average taste. Recommend if you can easily get. (3.5, RB, T, O)

Photo of pmcadamis
3.16/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Hazy russet colored brew with reddish highlights, and a nice thick tan head that sticks around for a long time. Some nice creamy lace is left on the glass. All in all, this is a really good lookin' brew.

S - Nice mildly floral hop aroma backed up by some sugary and syrupy smelling malt. Not a whole lot going on here.

T - Nice smooth and mild but hop-forward taste. Some lightly sweet malt notes remind me of carrot cake and spiced coffee cakes. It's gentle and easy going; quite likable really.

M - Moderately-carbonated and medium in body. Creamy and lush with a neutral but very slightly hoppy finish.

D - Good stuff. Nothing memorable or outstanding, but it's a fine lower-abv session beer. A good session choice for St. Patty's day if you are bored with Guinness, Killians, and Bud Light in green aluminum bottles.

Photo of hckyfn9999
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep, clear, reddish brown color with a small, quickly disappearing white head, and small amounts of lacing on the glass. Aroma is of sweet malt, and a bit of fruit. Taste has a nice sweetness, and a bit of roasted malt. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and this is an easy drinker. Nothing too spectacular, just a solid red.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.88/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"May you be poor in misfortune, rich in blessings, slow to make enemies and quick to make friends. And may you know nothing but happiness from this day forward."

--an Irish wedding toast

Dark coppery orange with bright Sunkist peel edges. I don't mind the lack of any real redness since the color is so fetching. Most brown ales aren't brown, after all. The pale caramel cap is large after a vigorous pour, looks like whipped mousse and leaves several sudsy streamers of lace.

The nose is pretty good for an Irish red, even if it doesn't wow me. It's primarily caramel malty with a modest fruitiness and a noticeable hoppiness. Magnum and Saaz comprise the hop bill, if such a thing matters in a beer of this style.

Irish Ale is a solid version. Unfortunately, like the nose, it doesn't grab me by the taste buds and convince me of its brilliance. This is one of those styles that needs to do something extra to stand out. In looking back, I've only had three Irish reds that were worthy of real, honest to goodness praise. Boulevard's take on the style doesn't quite join that select group.

I'm pleased at the sweet-bitter balance since I have it in my head that Irish reds are typically more sweet than bitter. The flavor profile follows the nose in that caramel-coated citrus fruit is the star of the show. There's also a sweet black tea character that adds an extra measure of flavor interest. At an ABV of 5.3%, this would make a good St. Patty's day session beer.

The mouthfeel is light-medium in a general sense and is entirely appropriate for the style as I understand it. It holds together nicely throughout each mouthful and finishes on an acceptably smooth, perfectly carbonated note.

I'm much more impressed with the final few ounces than I was with the first few. Whether the improvement was due to warming or to the goodies at the bottom of the bottle, I couldn't say. Boulevard Irish Ale still can't touch Great Lakes Conway's Irish or Three Floyds Brian Boru, but it's damn good beer all the same. I'll be sure to look for it again next March.

Photo of mynie
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep, dark red with almost no head.

Smells like sharp, tart Irish red grains, but there's no kick of hop. A good American Irish red's supposed to have some dry or flowery west coast hops to balance out the tart bread and butter grain, right?

Well, not really, and that's shown in the taste. The grain is nice and sharp, but it's also a little roasted and it does a good job of balancing itself out. There's still some light citrus hops in there, solidly backing everything up, but they don't need to be super strong.

A fine brew. If there's one thing Boulevard's good at, it's making palatable beers that even newbies can enjoy, and this is a perfect example. A great session beer and a great crossover beer.

Photo of BretSikkink
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tenuous two inch head mushrooms in a heavy-ish way around the rim of the glass. Beautiful dark red brown color topped by wispy lace that springs up a quarter inch after a sip. Toffee and/or caramel maltiness, and bread in the aroma.

The flavor is sweet malts, a nice complex blend. Just a little tiny bit of nuttiness. Distinctive yeast layered over twangy hops creates a relatively complex brew for the Irish red style. (addenda): The yeast produces an estery apple flavor which I love, it emerges close to chilly room temp.

Far from an overmalted watery brew it's a malt-driven but balanced brew, easy sipping for a German (Mai)Bock fan or any other malt-mouth, the funky apple yeast flavor that emerges will please Belgian fiends, and lovers of local/craft beer will appreciate the midwest TLC applied to this classic style. Cheers, KC, best beer brewed.

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Irish Ale from Boulevard Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 548 ratings.