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

1,338 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,338
Reviews: 483
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 11.61%
Wants: 60
Gots: 178 | FT: 1
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: 1,338 | Reviews: 483
Photo of Thanby
4.33/5  rDev +14.2%
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.

Photo of UrbanCaveman
4.32/5  rDev +14%
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.

Photo of Brent
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
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.

Photo of AmberMan22
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
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.

Photo of BrewStoutMagic
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
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!

Photo of adams82
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
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!

Photo of Pauly2X
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
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.

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this brew in a trade with drgonzo3705, Thanks Paul!

12oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

L - clear amber color with a fluffy beige head that left good lacing.

S - toasted malt aroma with a hint of earthiness.

T - rich malty flavored brew with a light hoppy bite right before a sweet finish.

F - medium bodied with good carbonation.

D - it would be easy to drink a few of these.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Gorgeous, yeasty, duskyrustic orange. There's a faint reddish blush perhaps, but not enough to include the word red in the description. The head is the usual from this brewery; that is to say: quality. It's light orange-influenced parchment in color, semi-firm in consistency and a splendid lace maker. While it isn't the stunner that other Great Lakes beers can be, it's lovely to look at nonetheless.

The nose is nicely aromatic and consists of sweetish, lightly toasted malt and fruity-herbal British hops. It doesn't jump out of the glass, but then show me a beer of this style whose nose does. Again, not the best that this brewery is capable of (I sense a trend), but still good and plenty nose pleasing.

I knew that the flavor would come through in the clutch; it always does. Conway's Irish Ale possesses a perfect combination of toasted bready malt and orangefruity hops; sweetness and bitterness. I use the word balanced a fair amount, but this beer is the epitome of balance among all of its various attributes. It's amazing how so many flavor elements can interact so seamlessly and can combine to create a wonderfully delicious ale.

It's my understanding that the typical Irish red ale is dry, but such is not the case here. The understated sweetness asserts itself more on the longish finish (as do the hops!), but stops well short of too sweet. The mouthfeel is on the light side of medium; something of a surprise coming from Ohio's best brewery. It fits the beer perfectly though and makes quaffing multiple bottles a breeze.

Conway's Irish Ale isn't one of my favorite Great Lakes brews, but then most of the rest of them live in the stratosphere. A pretty good GL beer is extraordinarily good when judged against the offerings of all but a handful of breweries. This is, by far, my favorite Irish red to date and is a beer that I heartily recommend. Thanks Mom for a terrific belated birthday present.

Photo of nicholas2121
4.29/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale brewed by Great Lakes Brewing Co. This Ale has an ABV of 6.50% The ale pours out a nice light brown color, with a nice white head. The smell of Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale is rich, with flavor. You pick up on grains, malts and hops. Now for the taste it bold with flavor. You pick up on malts and grains in this brew. Conway's Irish Ale has a nice balance to it, there is nothing overpowering in this brew. The mouthfeel is nice clean and rich. There is a nice smoothness to this brew. It is hard to pick up on the 6.5% in this brew, not saying that it a bad thing. Great Lakes Brewing Co., did a nice job with this one. I would buy this brew again. Overall I'm giving Conway's Irish Ale a 4.5 out of 5.

Photo of frazbri
4.29/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured crimson-golden and clear with a short creamy white head, good lace. Floral, citrus and bread aromas. Malty, bready, with a citrus tang and mild bitterness. Medium-light body, moderate carbonation and a dry finish.

Conway's is another solid brew from Great Lakes. It stands on the sweet side of the balance scale. This would be a great selection for your St. Patrick's Day celebration. I've also gotta say this might be a good transition beer for your buddies. It is an easy drinking beer. If it was a tad lower in alcohol, it would be an ideal session beer.

Photo of Clydesdale
4.28/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep, clear copper-orange. The tall, similarly-tinted head has a densely frothy texture and very strong retention. Sticky curtains of lace cling to the glass very nicely as the head slowly fades.

S: Firm caramel-sweet aromas are prominent. Strong toasty notes as well - some crusty breadiness is definitely going on here. Measured hop aromas are mostly herbal. A bit of fruitiness is also present.

T: Big, sweet, almost chewy caramel flavor up front. Toasted malts add a nice character that keeps an overall sweet beer from becoming overwhelmingly so. A bit of honeyish flavor. Some tealike flavors are also available, but they're relatively minimal behind the robust malt backbone. Subtle fruity notes persist throughout. Herbal hop presence provides a mild bittering balance.

M: Fairly full-bodied. Some moderately chewy sweetness. Carbonation is smooth and medium. Overall mouthfeel is a bit creamy and silky.

D: A robust, very tasty Irish red from Great Lakes. Fairly heavy hitting for the style, but it manages to avoid being too sweet or too alcoholic at any point. No surprises here from Great Lakes - a polished, delicious spring seasonal.

Photo of evanackerman
4.28/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

finally found some of this at a local store.

Beer pours a beautiful amber with a thin head that dissipated quickly (this may have been due to my glass). moderate carbonation.

aroma is fruity hops and bready malt mixed with a tinge of alcohol.

taste is delicious toasted malt with a nice kick of hop bitterness. this would go great with a hearty stew.

mouthfeel is a bit thin but still pleasant.

drinkability is extremely high, a nice easy drinking ale here.

overall, i really enjoyed this beer, an all around well balanced winner, my favorite Irish Red to date. I'm not sure this brewery can do any wrong, hands down the best all around brewery in America.

Photo of Icedogs
4.27/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

My favorite Irish/Red Ale of them all. So smooth and easy-drinking. Yes, I am quite biased in favor of Great Lakes Brewing Company because one of my best friends worked there for nine years and I've spent many a fine afternoon/evening at the place. But my preference for GLBC beer is primarily because the beers are almost always outstanding. Cheers!

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 Infamous7100
4.24/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thoroughly enjoyed this beer.
A: Poured a copper/light red from the bottle with very little lacing.
S: Malts, Malts and more Malts. You can smell the sweetness. Just a hint of a nutty scent as well.
T: Very sweet across the palate. The hops are detectable but blend very well. The malts win out. You can also pick up on the nutty flavor as well.
M: Smooth and satisfying! Thick and almost creamy, which I find impressive. Finishes clean and dry.
D: Once you have one, you want another. ABV a little higher than your typical brew, but you really wouldn't notice by the taste.

Photo of Johnwalker799
4.23/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Conway's Irish Ale has me feeling like I am running through the foothills of Ireland.

Photo of chilidog
4.23/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A great looking ruby-red, medium bodied beer that pours to give a nice off white head and lace.It carries a stronger malt flavor with a fruity overtone, almost cherry-like. It drinks very smooth but leaves the mouth dry. The bottle credits a 1995 world beer champ on my 02 sample, I can't beleave im the first review. I got the end of this years run on this seasonal, Jan--March St. Pats, brew. It will be a good find next winter.

Photo of smakawhat
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass. Best before April 28th 2011, we are good to go baby!

A three finger head off a golden pour. Head is an off cream brown color with tiny bubbles that fall away at a good rate. Very clear body of a burnt orange with some visible carbonation. Leaves a good collar but no lacing throughout the drink.

Bouquet is an interesting airy toasty grassy malt. Man Great Lakes beers smell so dang good. Very unique smelling with some sweet caramel like smell hidden in the back.

Taste is a grass malt backbone, with a small hop profile. Herbal tea like in sensation with grass, but also a little carbonated too. Somewhat of a drying finish also.

Another win for the Great Lakes, it may not be my favorite Irish Red Ale but it's a good one for sure.

Photo of PBRstreetgang
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear bronze color. One finger head quickly falls to a thin but dense cap. Mild spotty lacing. Toasted amber malt nose with background spicy hops. Sweet caramel and dextrin taste, followed by a very evenly balanced german hop bitterness. Medium body and carbonation, very smooth and almost creamy. Finishes a touch sweet, with the hops more apparent; but mostly clean. easy to knock back a few of these. Once again, GLBC nails the style AND produces an outstanding beer.

Photo of Scrapss
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased from my local bottle shop, last two singles. A bit late in the season for it, let's see how it held up. Poured into a standard pint glass.

A: one finger of wispy carbonation that dissipates into a thin ring by mid-glass. Beatuiful light copper/amber color. Tasty looking.

S: Unreal. So well balanced and exactly what I would expect from an Irish Red. Hints of tea, malt, sweet smelling flowers.

T: smooth earthy flavors with toffee maltiness, nary an overpowering hop to ruin the sweet party, but there's definitely something under there.

M: So velvety and mouthfilling. Liquid silk. Carbonation is spot on. Finish is a semi-sweet fading good-by.

D: It seems quite sessionable...but don't even think about it. Dangerously mild for 6.5%.

Overall, this ranks up there with my favorite Irish Red's, if only it were available year'round.

Photo of scruffwhor
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I see a bright yet deep ambery/copper. Very little head, but a cool column of tiny bubbles spewing from the bottom center of the glass. Very uniform. The aroma is a pretty inviting baked then quickly toasted, old fashioned white bread. It just smells warm and comforting. The first sip is great toasted malts, bread with a smooth light caramel finish. The palate is very upfront, nt a lot of stuff lurking in the shadows. No real nuances. Just great malt and a hint of caramel. Very easy to drink beer.

Photo of sliverX
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

poored a nice transparent copper color very little beige head that dissipated down to nothing but a ring around the glass
Smell is sweet caramel malts, some biscuit notes along with some toast notes
taste is perfect Irish red, big malts no hop presence just nice caramel maltiness
mouthfeel is light with decent carbonation, a string or 2 of bubbles constantly streaming towards freedom
drinkability is very high a good beer to session with

Photo of tedsox31
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. The color was red with a beige head of foam that was small.

Aroma was toffee and caramel, some toasted malt in the background and just the slightest hint of hops in the background.

The taste really matched quite well with what I smelled. Caramel and toffee flavors are present up front, followed by some complexity from the malt.

Mouthfeel is not too heavy, and carbonated. It finishes dry, inviting another sip.

Overall, a very good beer. I can have several of these in a night as they taste quite good, and they won't leave me unable to function.

Photo of PhantomVodoo
4.2/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear reddish copper color. Off white head that fades to a thin coating. Aroma dominated by sweet, grainy malts.

Taste filled with sweet malt flavor that is hard to describe. Caramel, grainy, candied-apple, and whiskey all come to mind, but none seem to quite fit just right. Very smooth. Touch of sweet alcohol with a slight warming effect. Well-balanced. Hops provide a clean finish. Malts coat the tongue and leave a slight, lingering malt sweetness after the finish.

Good mouthfeel. Medium body.
Very drinkable for a beer with this much malt character.
Overall, a very good example of the style.

Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 1,338 ratings.