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Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes Conway's Irish AleGreat Lakes Conway's Irish Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,314 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,314
Reviews: 479
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 11.61%
Wants: 56
Gots: 158 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Irish Red Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: chilidog on 07-28-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,314 | Reviews: 479
Photo of Buggabeer
2.18/5  rDev -42.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A Very average nothing special. Pours to a light red color with a nice 2 finger head. Laces nicely around the glass

S Very bread like to me with a hint of hops and yeast. I also pick up a slight spice aroma

T This isn't very good : ( The more I drink it the less I like it. Very metalic finish to the beer. In my opinion not a good thing. I have it rated at a 2 but I wouldn't be affraid to go lower. I'm in a nice mood tonight.

M Well carbinated but it leaves a foul coating on my mouth.

O I will never drink another one of these! I'm almost ready to proclaim this thing as awful. Great Lakes is a hit or miss for me and this is clearly a miss. I would say the Cleveland Browns are better than this beer.

Photo of stimulus
4.26/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle (6 pack) into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear amber/red with a 2 finger cream head that slowly settles.
S: Toasted malts, toffee, and some light brown sugar.
T: Very much like the nose, this is big and malty, but nowhere near overpowering. Good for the style.
M: Light bodied, great carbonation, and a smooth finish.
D: I've been cherishing these, but they are definitely a sneaky session beer at 6.5% abv.

Photo of jsulko
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a shaker pint

Pours Reddish amber with an off white head

Not a lot to the smell You can smell some maltyness

Taste is smooth and slightly sweet with the maltyness in there. Finish is smooth with little afterbite.

One of the better Irish red beers I have had

Photo of beerdown77
3.7/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This pours copper with one finger of light head and active bubbles. The nose is sweet barley malts and fresh hops. The taste is light and grassy, but the sweet malty flavors come on strong. There is a nice bite from the bitterness. There is a graininess that sticks around on the aftertaste longer than I prefer. I would classify this as a crowd pleasing easy drinker, for those who like craft brews anyway. Great pick for a spring cookout.

Photo of micromaniac129
3.45/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A deep honey beer with ruby highlites. A thin foamy head from the onset. Just about average carbonation. There is good lacing though.
A malty smelling brew maybe from vienna malts.
This beer has a rich malt taste with hints of toasted malts and yeast.
Smooth and rich tasting.

Photo of veinless
3.63/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to Jesse13713 for this beer, got it in a trade with him - great box Jesse.

Pours a reddish orange, with a jewel like clarity and translucence. Head is one and a half fingers, dissipates quickly, and leaves not much lace. Good looking body, pathetic looking top.

Has a weak toasted aroma with a tinge of metallic character. Trying to get some more scents, but the smell really is quite weak.

Taste is better, as toasted biscuits come out. Flavored a bit like a snickerdoodle or sugar cookie with some bubblegum character as well. Slight sweetness throughout makes this a very pleasant drink. There is some spice here and there, cinnamon being the one that strikes me. Graham cracker also makes an appearance.

Mouthfeel is crisp and clean, and neither sticky nor dry. A bit watery, but it works for the style and beer in this case. Drinkability is where this beer makes a name for itself, as the sweetness is perfectly leveled to keep the beer going down easy swig after swig. Flavors go well together and the beer just works. Was shocked to see this one is 6.5% abv, as it goes down ridiculously easy.This is a case of a beer being more than the sum of its parts.

Photo of JunkYardJake
2.2/5  rDev -42%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

12oz bottle to pint glass.
First thing I noticed about this beer is the unique herbal smell as I poured it into the glass. I cannot fully place the smell but it's similar to some sort of vegetable or some less than fresh fruit. Either way, it's not something I want my beer to smell like. The same flavor is in the palate but is milder and at least there is a good malt base with toasted and caramel flavors to make it drinkable. As for appearance, the orange color is less than spectacular and the large amount of unexpained floaties is downright unappealing. Not one I'll drink again.

Photo of dmfrench
4.09/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Spiced apple flowers and sweet orange cream with a side of biscuit.

A: Clear, light amber body with a somewhat persistent one finger yellowed white head that produces minimal lacing

S: Acrid and almost salty, orange zest, slight semi-sour apple, floral, almost perfume-like hops, light spices, sweet cream, and a subtle dry biscuit malt foundation. All in all, delicious and original.

T: Reasonable mirror of the nose... apple up front, with drying earthy hops on top. Malt takes a back seat, though the dry biscuit and sweet cream very still part of the equation. As the beer warms, the dryer and more bitter it becomes, which is to me a welcome development.

M: High carbonation makes for a light yet substantial experience. Perhaps just a hair on the thin side for me, but I'm probably expecting too much for the style.

O: I could perhaps use a stronger foundation, but still, this is an original, floral, pleasant beer.

Photo of jlindros
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Perfect St Pattys Day Beer thanks to the great Noslenwerd.

Pours a frothy 1 finger head that fades at a medium pace, over crystal clear toasty honey orange with a slight reddish hue color.

Nose has some light toasty malts, a crisp ale aroma, slightly yeasty actually, light caramel malts, and just the slightest hint of a spicy hop addition.

Taste is different, starts with a corn like mash flavor, toasty and semi sweet malts, little crystal, sweet and vegetative, somewhat like dipping into a bourbon mash while it's fermenting (not that I did that at BUffalo Trace or anything), crisp ale flavors, lighter but a decent flavor, the slightest hint of floral hops. Finishes crisp and dry, light bitterness at teh finish, lingering malts and semi sticky sweet flavor.

Mouth is med to slightly lighter bodied, with good carbonation.

Overall, not bad, the corn flavor is really weird and unexpected, but it's still light and drinkable, a little sticky on the finish, but a crisp and dry ale.

Photo of GPHarris
3.82/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

a - poured a half-finger thick off-white head into a snifter that settled into a thin ring with some light sheeting and lacing. the body was a bubbly, dull amber color.
s - toasted bread, caramel with a hint of spice.
t - toffee sweet with some breadiness.
m - slightly thin and slick.
d - highly drinkable, a nice beer for St. Pat's Day you could have two or three of in a sitting.

Photo of Kelly88
3.53/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at the dilly deli, served in a pint/pilsner glass hybrid.

A- dark ambrosia with a dirty white dog head. Clarity is about medium and bird of lacing cling to the glass.

S- almost a sweet and sour type smell. Sweet malts and a sort of stout cream type smell. Not bad but different.

T- alcohol fuses with the malts to create a sort of sweet tannin type taste. Hops balance This at the end to make for a nice finish

M- a little heavier than expected. Low carbonation That weighs on the palate. A bit of tingle on the way down

Overall a good red ale that isn't very sessionable for me.

Photo of WYVYRN527
3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from a 12 ounce bottle.

A: Pours a clear amber with a centimeter-thick off-white head that has decent retention. Lacing is decent, as it sticks and dries on the sides of the glass.

S: Not a real strong aroma. Malt-forward, with caramel and some fruity ester, along with a grassy undertone.

T: Quite pleasant on the palate. The malts lend notes of caramel, dried fruit, and a nutty character. Grassy hop flavor rounds out the finish, and slightly dry on the tail end.

Notes: This beer is medium bodied, full-flavored, and quite easy to drink. The alcohol is only slightly noticeable. Irish Reds have not always been my favorite of styles, but Conway's is actually quite good.

Photo of MadCat
4.35/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: A nice amber red color, very clear, a decent white head that dissipates quickly, leaving some lacing

Smell: Caramely, nutty, malty smell with hints of biscuit

Taste: Sweet malts and biscuit, hints of caramel and nuts. A little bit of a hoppy bitter finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body, crisp carbonation

Drinkability: Great session beer, drinks super easy

Overall, another excellent beer from Great Lakes. Not easy to get in NJ, but its worth it.

Photo of BeerLover99
3.78/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: copper/orange body, 1 finger head, excellent lacing.

S: malt, biscuit, hint of toffee and nuts

T: sweet biscuit and malt up front, hint of toffee/roasted nuts, slow long bitter finish.

M: medium body, slightly sticky

D: Let me first say, Red Ales/Ambers are my LEAST favorite style. That being said, this is VERY good. I enjoy Great Lakes and this is just a mighty fine Red Ale. I could drink many of these, at 6.5 enough flavor for fun, but also not huge so you can't have more than a few.

Do your taste buds a solid and try this Irish Red Ale.

Photo of JLeege
4.15/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On draft, into a pint

Appearance- Pours a clear amber/copper color with a creamy just off white head. Good retention and lace left behind.

Smell- Strong bready/doughy malts. Some caramel.

Taste- Very smooth. Slightly citrus hop notes and caramel. A bit earthy even. With loads of bready/doughy/toasted/biscuit malts. It goes beyond your typical breadyness, like thick, chewy, fresh; not quite all the way baked bread. On the sweet side overall. A tad dry on the finish.

Mouthfeel- Medium body and carbonation, smooth.

Overall- Excellent beer, my favorite St. Pattys beer by a long shot. You will be hard pressed to find an Irish Red better than this. Highly recommended.

Photo of LacquerHead
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I got nothing but respect for this beer. It wasn't my favorite and I probably wouldn't purchase this on a regular basis, however, this beer was everything it claimed to be.

Over all I would definitely agree that this was a "meat and potatoes" type of beer. This could be enjoyed any time. There weren't too many standout flavors. This is not to say it didn't have some good things working for it. There was a toasted malt flavor with some light hops. This was just a good example of "less is more."

It wasn't as flavor full as other Irish Ales, but GL's did state this was a "medium bodied" beer. I would highly recommend this to anyone who doesn't need bells and whistles, and simply wants a beer that taste great and will get the job done.

Photo of ThePorterSorter
3.77/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reddish copper ale with a thin white head. A large amount of carbonation with what appears to be some fine floating sediment? Maybe it's just been a long day...
The beer appears thin and watery, I chose to serve it as cold as the weather (which is super cold).

The nose isn't too bad, a little fruit and malt (the malt predominates). Due to the beer's cold serving temperature, it's hard to pinpoint subtle aromas, but that's not the reason I'm drinking this beer in the first place.
As a whole, the beer provides delicate and balanced aromas that would probably cater to almost any beer drinker's senses.

The beer's neutrality translates to it's flavor profile. Nothing hits the palate too hard, just a mellow malty sweetness followed by a slightly bitter-sweet finish. In regards to other Irish ales I've had, this one is fairly well made and brings together classic barley and hops to form a smooth, drinkable beverage.
Summary: I suppose I'd rather be drinking this than....a coors...or water.

Soft flavors with a slightly bitter aftertaste, definitely a light bodied beer. Heavier barely/grain flavors, but the hops try and come through at the finish. Little to no aftertaste, carbonation runs flat towards the end.

The beer is light and drinkable, not really my type of beer, but still can be described as light and drinkable. I would lean towards gulping this one down, don't get your hopes up for a supreme sipper. Price-wise, this beer is of good value, but I'd still rather shell out the dough for something better...or bitter...or anything not so generic tasting! Maybe I'm just on my better-beer soap box, but I typically expect more from Great Lakes.

Photo of TheHoppiest
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this on tap at Mavis Winkle's in Independence OH in a pint glass.

Pours a reddish amber color, with a creme-colored foamy head.

Has a nutty, malty smell, with hints of caramel.

Very malty, even creamy, and quite sweet. Tons of toffee taste, the sweetness begins to wear on you after a while.

Medium bodied, this has no bitterness to speak of at all.

Drinkable enough, though sweet and malty to the point where one or two of these is about all I can handle.

Photo of BeerBuckeye
3.49/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a beautiful, bright amber color with small, 1 finger, creamy head that retains nicely with good foamy lacing. This is a beautiful beer.

S - A sweet bready smell, maybe even a bit of sweet spice in a deep smell. Not too distinctive, but not unpleasant.

T - Light roasted malt flavors with breadyness really sticking out. A little citrusy as the hops peek through near the end. To be honest, I felt the taste was just a bit bland.

M - Good thickness, actually, with a good amount of carbonation. Finish is a bit dry, but good.

D - Incredibly drinkable, a beer you can easily just enjoy throughout the evening.

Photo of steveh
3.46/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Didn't get to try this last year, so here's a go.

6.5% -- GL always likes to amp it up. Best by 05/10/11 right on the label. Best served at 45°F -- I could tell that from the first few sips.

A -- Nice, clear, orange-copper color with a creamy & cream colored long-lasting head.

S -- Hmm. Mild vegetal character in the nose -- cooked peas, rhubarb. Seems I've gotten this character from the GL Oktoberfest and Elliott Ness before -- yeast, old hops, malt strain? Not heavy, but not great since there isn't much else in the nose.

T -- Starts off with lightly roasted malts, blends into sweetish and bready malts and finishes lightly citric, probably from hops. There is sweet toastiness then light bitterness in the aftertaste. Dry finish.

M -- Medium bodied with a slick mouthfeel.

D -- It's tasty and appetizing, though I like a little more sweetness -- the high ABV may have fermented out all the sweet malt character. And that vegetal character lingers in the aftertaste, not awful, but sort of distracting. I like Sam Adam's Irish Red a lot, might have to compare these side-by.

Photo of wvsabbath
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Ruby red with a very mild head. Some lacing. Nice looking beer.

Smell - Yeasty and malty. Some floral hops and spices. Sugar and bread like aroma also.

Taste - Nice kick of yeast and malts with carmael and hops start this off. Has a creamy floral taste. Hops add bitterness but not alot. Its a little sweet and helps cover up the bitter hops.

Mouthfeel - Its smooth, mild and thin, aftertaste is very mild and doesnt last long. For sure not a palette wrecker, can move on to anything else after this beer.

Drinkabilty - Very very high. So easy to drink, not real high in alcohol, i could rip through a 6-pack in no time. Honestly great lakes should make this all the time, not just seasonal. Cant think of a better beer for st. pattys day!

Photo of shoney
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is the only Irish "red" that I drink. I am not a huge fan of the style but I am a fan of this beer. A must for mixing in between Guinness's on St. Patty's day.

ST: Bottle, I bought a case of bottles from my local
A: Deep copper red appearance with a lingering slight head
S: Toasted sweet bread
T: Very malty as you would expect but not overpowering with a good amount of cut from the alcohol
M: Lightly carbonated and very soft
D: The best beer of its class and very drinkable despite it's higher alcohol content

Photo of LordAdmNelson
3.33/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not a bad little beer here from GL. Look is a little 'meh'--color is fine, though nothing special, and there's very little head, even with some swirling. Nose is paler malts, a hint of hops to it, but pretty much a straightforward ale... the red malts don't make much of a play in the nose. Taste follows similar to the nose, and the red malts make a bit of a stronger play, though they are weak at best. Overall, the flavor is a bit lacking, though not necessarily 'off'. Decent full mouthfeel, easy drink. Pretty straightforward ale--it's not going to knock your socks off, but its not going to make you wish you had a BMC.

Photo of brewdoc75
3.92/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a light amber color with a soft, white head. The head dies fast and lives on as a light, white lace. Carbonation is a bit on the stronger end.

S: Pleasant toastiness, light, honey like sweetness. A hint of a metallic aroma. Very little hop aroma, but I do detect some "Fuggle-like" characteristics. Finishing aroma is a little biscuty.

T: Beautiful, light malt flavors with biscut and toasty flavors abound. Almost nearing a graham cracker crust flavor. A light caramel-honey sweetness. Finishes with light bitterness to balance things out. Very nice,simple, malt flavors.

M: Light bodied. Crisp carbonation may be a bit too much for the style. Finishes clean.

D: A very drinkable ale. The flavors are complex enough to make this interesting, yet not so over the top you can drink just one. I expect this has a very broad appeal to the craft lover and non-craft lover. Quite enjoyable. I'll drink this again in a heartbeat.

Photo of farrago
3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Little below a finger's worth of light tan foam, full mix of bubble sizes and types, settles down into a decent layer across the surface, the lacing starts off in thin sheets before breaking into thinner sheets sliding down the glass. Immaculate red amber color that captures light very well, brightening as a result, the bubbles appear haphazardly, you can see some big ones glued to the glass bottom. The nose has a big malty profile emphasizing cocoa, toffee, scone and danish, more breakfast flakes than lunch bread, mix of pepper and pine, at best get generalized white citrus, the peach, apple, pear fruit scents hover in the background. Full-bodied with somewhat sloppy carbonation, foams through the mouth like a gregarious fat guy. There's a tart to outright sour element here which tempers any excesses in the foundational sweetness. More grain bread in play here, some rye too. Still, honey, caramel, chocolate and brown sugar discerned. Orange and lesser pink grapefruit take the baton without a hitch. Apricot, nectarine, peach fruit with a little pineapple for good measure. Finishing with even more chocolate on the scene. While very good not sure how many I could drink in one sitting.

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Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 1,314 ratings.