Dismiss Notice
Get 12 monthly issues of BeerAdvocate magazine and save $5 when you select "auto-renew."

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join our email list →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.

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.
BA SCORE
86
very good

471 Reviews
THE BROS
80
good

(Read More)
Reviews: 471
Hads: 1,374
Avg: 3.81
pDev: 19.69%
Wants: 65
Gots: 207 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States | website

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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 471 | Hads: 1,374
Photo of BlindPig
4.4/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- About a 1/4" just off white head on a crystal clear dark orange amber body.
S- Big caramel and roasted malts. Dry hops comes through too.
T- Light caramel malts mixed with some nice roasted ones too. Well balanced with some dry hops. Has a nice dry feel to it. Lingering hop bitterness in the aftertaste mixed with a light caramel flavor.
M- Medium body with medium carbonation.
D- It is a very nice and drinkable. Very well balanced and the best Irish red ale I have tried. I think they hit the nail on the head with this one.

 536 characters

Photo of cueball52
4.4/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

It pours a deep copper/red with a nice frothy head that dissipates quickly. Minimal head and lace to the bottom of the glass.Not a lot of aroma, just a mild sweet smell. The taste up front is sweet, carmel, with a touch of spiciness. Nice carbination, very refreshing with a dry pleasant after taste. Great balance and probabaly one of the better Irish ales out there. This ale is remarkably drinkable!

 402 characters

Photo of Jesse13713
4.38/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Sampled from a six pack as well as on tap at Ray's Place in Kent, Ohio.

Appearance - A very frothy and rich look encompassing the surface. Pours a cloudy ambery red with average lacing. Little head accompanies the surface.

Smell - Smells of slight hops and spices. I get a hint of light cherries as well. It is quite a unique smell that I haven't quite experienced before.

Taste - A very, very light and crisp carbonated start dwindling to a cherry and fruit like finish. Perhaps a sweet caramel note on the finish as well. Tangy on the tongue. An absolutely delicious red ale. I could see this being paired with carrots and potatoes, as described on the bottle.

Mouthfeel / Drinkability - This beer is dangerously addictive and is hard to stop drinking. It is an impressive red ale that I will be sad to see go out of season.

 831 characters

Photo of nlmartin
4.37/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer was poured from a bottle into a pub glass.

Appearance: The beer was amber almost scarlet in coloration. The head was a honey tinged coloration two fingers thick. The head quickly resolved. Faint traces of lacing remained on the glass.

Smell: The beer has a very nice grainy malty smell. There is a bit of floral hops present in the beer.

Taste: Small peppery spicy bite up front. This gives way to a very nice biscuity bready sort of maltyness.

Mouthfeel: This is a meduim bodied beer. The beer has an awesome creamy character to it.

Drinkability: This is a very nice drinking beer. I am glad I have a six pack more to drink.

 651 characters

Photo of bnuttz
4.37/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours a caramel copper color with a nicely lacing off white head. Smells of sweet caramel malts and a hint of noble hops. Taste is very balanced. Bicuits and caramel are the most prominent malt flavors here. A nice hop bite to keep these malt flavors in check. Mouthfeel is very nice, medium and well suiting for the style. I would love to put quite a few of these down as is with any great lakes brew.

 402 characters

Photo of pschul4
4.36/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into my mini snifter

A- Looks insanely red. Nailed the red ale part

S- Lots of malt in the nose. Tiny bit of hops. Pretty good stuff going on here

T- Delightfully sweet malts and just a pinch of tasty hops. Very well done

M- Nice combination of smooth on the front and prickly on the back.

O- I don't really like reds so this was a big surprise. Well done GLBC!

 387 characters

Photo of Rennpferd
4.36/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

It was poured clear with a deep red hue. It had a nice one finger head that held during the entire sitting.

It had a lite scent, malt was present.

It had a nice clean malt taste that was accompanied by a slightly bitter hop taste. It was medium bodied with a clean finish.

It was a great beer. Excellent for a session.

 321 characters

Photo of neenerzig
4.35/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had a glass of this on-tap last night at a concert I attended at the Jigsaw Saloon in Parma. Served in a clear plastic cup. This beer is a fairly dark amber red/copper color. I don't remember the beer looking this dark the times I poured from the bottle and drank it, but maybe the beer looked darker because of the dim lighting inside the Jigsaw. Had a good head about an inch thick when drawn from the tap. Settled to a decent film layer covering the surface with a nice white ring lining the inside of my cup. Aromas of malt, a bit of roasted caramel, fruit, alcohol, and bits of spice and hops can all be found here. Tastewise the beer is fairly sweet upfront with flavors of malty bread, some fruit and spices, and a trace of hops. Has a good crisp and full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Easy to drink in the manner that good beer should be. This beer does the winning!

Eric

 896 characters

Photo of MadCat
4.35/5  rDev +14.2%
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.

 457 characters

Photo of Gritsak
4.35/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

noticed this at a local store and had never seen it before so i figured what the hell...i dont think its possible to get a bad brew from great lakes anyways.

poors amber color with an off white head that stays all the way through. laces really well.

mouthfeel is a little think and smooth..good blend of carbonation

taste is sweet up front and smooth on the way down with hints of malt

this is another hit from great lakes...i could be satisfied drinking this all night long.

 487 characters

Photo of ZAP
4.35/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

You know for a guy who apparently loves kickking back macro brews in his spare time, this brewer really does a bang-up job for Great Lakes (And nothing against having a few Macros, I just expect brewers to be pushing the envelope not dumbing things down on their spare time)....No dumbing down with this beer (or any of their beers I've tried)....a high quality red...great toasty aroma...body is medium....the flavor is surprisingly bready....It's great though....some caramel too....the hopping is floral and definitely sits quietly in the background but it clearly plays it's part in keeping thisfrom being too one-dimensonal..

I love this beer and am giving it's drinkability high marks because of that and because it seems very balanced for as swet as it is...This is probably the best red I've had...if not in the the top 5 for sure...clean, crisp, tasty, great nose...Now if only we could replace the 100 or so taps of Killians in my town with this I'd be happy...

 974 characters

Photo of Star80
4.35/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Described as a rosy copper color with a thick, two-inch beige head on initial pour. It has settled to a light covering with some sticking to the glass. Smell somehow reminds me of Irish soda bread, with some leafy hop. Tastes very toasty, and has a nice bitter finish. Not quite as hoppy as St. Rogues Red I've had at the same time but they are present. Mouthfeel is pretty smooth for a 6.5% a.b.v. red ale. Overall I found this beer enjoyable and will buy more next year.

 472 characters

Photo of letsgopens
4.35/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale pours to a dark amber bronze with a dense white head that holds well and leaves a good lace.

This Irish red ale has a sharp fruity aroma with a hoppy overtone. This ale is not terribly strong in the smell department, but its flavor more than makes up for it aromatic shortcomings.

At tasting you are greeted by a toasty sweetness early followed by hints of carmelization and hoppiness. A complexly flavored beer. The medium texture with a smooth malty finish.

As is the case with nearly all Great Lakes Creations, I never get tired on this beer (its even better on tap at the brewery) and I impatiently wait for its release each year.

 677 characters

Photo of sarahspat
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a shaker pint glass.

Very clear orangeish amber. Nice looking caramel-tinted, fluffy head. Good retention; decent lacing.

Nice roasted and caramel notes, with some tea thrown in for good measure. Pretty low key nose, but it smells great. The taste is consistent with the nose, with some fruity notes and sweet tea. There also is a subdued nuttiness in the background. This brew is mostly sweet-tasting, but there's a little kick of bitterness going into the finish, which is dry. Pretty much perfect for the style. Actually, I kind of feel like I just wrote the style description. This beer is light-bodied and slippery with a good amount of carbonation.

This is an amazing example of the style and a great beer all around. Nicely done.

 766 characters

Photo of Sdesenberg
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bought a six for around eight bucks. Pours a nice deep copper color with good thick sticky cream colored head. Smell is biscuity malt. Smells really good. Taste is also biscuity malt, deep and rich. Slight alcohol on the finish, but not enough to get in the way. A really good, malty substantial brew. If only all Irish Ales were this deep and flavorful. One of the few good things to ever come out of the state of Ohio!

 420 characters

Photo of kels
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is one of the first beers that got me interested in drinking craft beer. I wasn't reviewing back then, so I was excited when it came back out this week so I could get to it. This is from a bottle poured into my Great Lakes pint - how fitting!

Appearance: Pours a lovely golden brown with red highlights. Very clear with good carbonation running throughout and a 2 finger white fluffy head that quickly fades to a half inch skim and leaves behind good, sticky lacing.

Smell: Deliciously sweet and subtle malty smell with a bright, crisp hop presence. Very lightly detectable, as with most Great Lakes beers I've had.

Taste/Mouthfeel: The taste is a balanced and flavorful blend of crunchy, bready malts, and bright, crisp hops. A subtle sweetness comes from the toasted grains, and a very clean feeling comes from the medium-bodied, mildly carbonated mouthfeel. The only thing I'd like is a little higher CO2.

Drinkability: So high, and even better with food.

Just as good as I remembered. I'd love to try it on tap.

 1,029 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Arrives at the bar with a clear copper color and a fluffy white head that leaves great lacing

Smell: Graham cracker and light fruit aromatics

Taste: Starts out with a toasty graham cracker and light fruit flavor that continues to the finish; nothing fancy but very flavorful

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: This is not a style I would normally seek out but the Great Lakes version is a keeper

 439 characters

Photo of beergeek279
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in the 12 oz. bottle, into a pint glass. The color was amber, with a nice white head with good retention. The smell was a very nice sweet caramel malt. The taste was a very nice sweet caramel-flavored malt, with a good mild hop backing in the taste. Mouthfeel was average. As for drinkability, could definitely have a few of these.

Amongst the best Irish ale out there, and another fine offering from Great Lakes, and since I'm out of Cleveland pops, I won't say much other than I'll have this beer once again!

 520 characters

Photo of Thanby
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rich, clear, honey-amber with a finger of smooth tan head. Smooth malt dominates the aroma, with a tiny bit of citrus and some woodiness and caramel. A well-rounded mild hop scent draws it all together. For the first second the heavier side of the malt is present, but it is immediately followed by the hops and lightens up to a caramel, bread flavor. The citrus is present but fleeting, which is fine because I think too much would have ruined the brew. Overall very smooth and easy to drink. Perfect for an easy social drink or to have with a burger.

 560 characters

Photo of UrbanCaveman
4.32/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle, poured into a nonic pint at approximately 40 degrees F.

Appearance: Pours a quite clear brown-amber, just a shade or two lighter and redder than the bottle glass. A careful pour causes virtually no head, just a short-lived cap of slightly off white that leaves no trace behind. Bubbles stream continuously from the bottom of the glass.

Smell: Warm toast wafts out of the glass, bready and malty, with some vague hints of nuts and a faint shadow of something floral.

Taste: Toast and cracker spring to the fore of the flavor profile, and are met by just enough of a grassy, floral counterpart to balance from sweetness into a state best described as having swallowed the Little Book of Calm. Swimming through the mix is a faint tone of pecan, and there's also a soft, slight metallic tang to the beer, far off in the distance.

Mouthfeel: Full and nigh creamy, this nails the feel for a medium-bodied ale.

Overall: Quite possibly my favorite Irish Red, and one of the GLBC seasonals I looks forward to in the lineup. Easy to drink, and easy to savor and dissect.

 1,079 characters

Photo of Brent
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A red ale is sort of like a center in football - he never gets noticed as long as he does his job. The only time anyone pays attention is when he fumbles. Likewise, a good red ale seems to be a beer that happily slips into the background, solid and easygoing, and largely unnoticed unless it is bad. Consequently, this beer deserves being singled out for praise for doing quite well what it sets out to do. No screaming hops, no massive malt, just a well-balanced, easy to drink beer. Nicely nutty and smooth, with just enough hops to balance the malt. A tip on the scale toward the sweet side, but just barely. Would be a great session ale, but I fear the abv will sneak up on me.

 681 characters

Photo of AmberMan22
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

If anyone bothered to pour this out of the bottle, they'd realize immediately it's not ruby red in color.

Instead, it pours a more sunset-orange type color, perfectly clear. A 'slightly-singed' colored head adorns the top.

Smell is largely of sweet maltiness, caramel, toast, maybe a tang of bitterness at the end, alcohol comes through a bit...but tough not to, at 6.5%

Taste is where this one really comes to life. Wonderful balance of sweet caramel malts at first, followed by a hop presence that comes in to prevent Conway's from being too sweet.

Mouthfeel is a solid medium body, with excellent carbonation. Not too much to make it fizzy, but enough to help accentuate that hoppy bite at the end.

A very solid Irish Ale...the only thing I'd change is make the color more red, but I care about flavor way more than the appearance.
Good job, Great Lakes.

 864 characters

Photo of BrewStoutMagic
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one fine Irish ALe by Great Lakes Brewery. I've been drinking cases of it for almost two months. I still can't get enough of it. I saw some bad reviews posted on here,but all I can say is they must of had a bad batch or bad beer on tap.THis seems to be better out of the bottle. It has sweet taste of caramel,a slightly hop bitter after taste.A red color and white foam head. This is my favourite beer by GLBC. I look foward to drinking it next year. O-YEAH!!I like the label design as well.Rock on GLBC!

 512 characters

Photo of adams82
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a 12oz. bottle.

A: This beer pours a red/copper color, much like I expected from an (Red) Irish Ale. Not much staying power in the head, it looks nice and fluffy and shortly thins out.

S: Slightly floral and fruity but mostly sweet aroma coming from this one. Smells good! It begs to be sipped.

T: The evolution of taste: It starts a little spicy, some of the floral notes in the smell come out here as well but it finishes with a toasty and malty kick! Nice dry finish, very toasty, very good!

M: Good mouthfeel here. Carbonation seems right, rolls on throughout the mouth nicely, smooth.

D: Talk about quaffable! Easy to drink and a pleasure to do so! The 6.5% abv is not apparent here, one after another would not be a problem.

I have had limited experience with GLB Co., but they have all been very good. Conway's Irish Ale is a great beer to have any time of year and seems like it should go great with any meal. While not perfect, this is a great session beer to be enjoyed at any time!

 1,021 characters

Photo of Pauly2X
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Solid clear amber with a half finger head.

S- Rich malty aroma with roasty/toasty notes.

T- Full caramel malty flavor that increases in complexity as you go to include some toasty notes along with a light hint of roasted malt. Toward the end there's a very light floral hop note right before the smooth sweet finish.

M- Medium boby with a nice light level of carbonation.

D- These are going down great.

Sometimes Red's can get boring but this is very full flavored while maintaining the approachability that reds are known for.

 535 characters

Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 471 ratings.