Harp Lager | Guinness Ltd.

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Harp LagerHarp Lager
2,636 Ratings
Harp LagerHarp Lager

Brewed by:
Guinness Ltd.

Style: European Pale Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-03-2001

User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 2,636 |  Reviews: 754
Photo of WesWes
3.56/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured a light golden color with a thin white lace. The aroma was not very impressive. I couldn't detect any malts or hops anywhere. The taste was much the same; very plain, filtered, and boring. The body was low and it was highly drinkable, although I don't think I'll be having another in the near future. I have had this beer before and remember enjoying it, but like a lot of beers, I find while reviewing them I just don't feel the same way. This is a good outdoors beer if you are in need of something light and watery. Me, I think I'll just stick with the water.

 578 characters

Photo of LarryKemp
3.43/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a beautiful, clear golden with a fine head. The lace clung to the glass to the very last sip. By far the presentation was the BEST aspect of this beer. The aroma was malty and nice. With each sip the malt filled my nose and made the lack of malt flavor more bearable. The flavor was mild in all aspects. I was not able to detect much malt and no hops. The mouthfeel was light. This was a good beer to pass an afternoon of eating etuffe with my family. It was a good session beer.

 496 characters

Photo of Reidrover
2.95/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Ok bought as a 12 oz single in the brown bottle..this beer is brewed in Canada not Ireland.
OK the look of the beer in my glass is just above average lager look..slightly more deep golden than some others and the head retention is better..but pretty run of the mill.
again the smell is just above average lager smell..can smell the strong hopping in this..smells fresh at least.
Taste is odd starts of sweet then the sweetness is overwhelmed by the massive carbonation..then i get a zingy slightly acidic taste..the slighly acidid taste stays during the after tatse..but over all the taste is ok.
Not too good on the tongue rather to spritzy for my liking.
Its drinkable enough ..I suppose.
Harps never been a favourite of mine even home in Scotland I prefered Tennents lager to this.

 790 characters

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

harp nowadays is basically an irish budweiser (though still a bit better, mind you) to me. it's lost any and all character i remember it having. both the body and flavour are lighter and less distinct. a bit more carbonated than i remember it, too. it goes down smooth and works well as a session beer, but why waste your time and money here when there are far better session brews that are just as readily available (is there a bar these days that doesn't have harp? it seems not.)? though not a bad brew, there is nothing at all special about this beer.

 555 characters

Photo of PatandDavid
3.38/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Actually, not bad. A beer I chose because there wasn't much else to choose from.

A rich golden yellow, with a bit of head, but nicely left lace through the whole glass. Definitely had the grainy taste that some lagers present, more malt character than hops.

Not a bad beer, but don't know when I'd choose it again.


 327 characters

Photo of lampkins
3.06/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Decent lager that poured a decent head. Smell was typical of lagers. Taste was a little bitter that I would have expected, reminded me of Pabst for some reason. The sting hit at the first sip and lasted until the beer was done. Kind of flavorless, with the exception of the aforementioned sting.

Consider this the "red headed" step child of all the beers Guinness distributes. Based on experience this beer appeals to the beer drinker who usually drinks the monster beers ala "Miller" or "Bud."

 497 characters

Photo of Tballz420
3.18/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is another standard lager. Crisp, clear, and bright gold color. White head with some lacing going on. The taste is grainy, with a hint of hops. Nothing spectacular, but not a bad lager. I got it in an international sampler pack, but normally i think it is almost 8 bucks a 6er around here. Not worth that price.

 316 characters

Photo of francisweizen
3.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled on tap in Montreal, QC at McKibbins Irish Pub. This beer makes one word come to my mind..'sharp!'. 'Harp stays sharp' until the bottom of the glass. Remember that slogan? This beer pours a nice golden colour with a small white head and it has the aromas of sharp hops and light malts. The taste is very sharp with a crisp mouthfeel and a full flavour. A pretty nice beer that is much better on tap than it is in the bottle. Ah yes, the drinkability is nice as well.

 486 characters

Photo of clvand0
3.9/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I love this beer. It pours somewhat yellow with a medium white head that dies off quickly. The aroma is nothing special. The taste is extremely enjoyable and I would drink this beer anytime. I think it is a great beer that is wonderfully smooth. This is yet another beer that doesn't have any extremely complex tastes or aromas, but it is just an overall enjoyable beer that I would drink anytime.

 397 characters

Photo of longpondbeerman
3.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Harp pours a light caramel with a big, frothy white head that looks like marshmellow fluff as it dissipates to a substantial residual lace. The smell is light and not terribly complex with just a hint of tanginess. There's lots of carbonation in this pale lager which makes for an effervescent mouthfeel. I found the taste rather bland--only the slightest hint of the tartness left over from the smell--and there is a powerful malty aftertaste.

 444 characters

Photo of kindestcut
2.76/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Harp was one of the beers that I consider a bridge beer for me. Along with Newcastle, Harp was a "good" beer that showed me the way to better ones. I've stuck by Newcastle (although it's not my favorite) but Harp has fallen by the wayside.

The pour is fine, a pretty lager "liquid gold." The head is substantial. I have no problem with its appearance for I am a lager fan. The aroma is of malts. A sweetness that hides any hoppiness. I like the aroma of a Harp although I prefer a more aromatic beer.

The flavor is good although the bitterness which is quite apparent fades rather quickly. Perhaps I am comparing this lager to my favorite bitter pale ales. I'm not looking for an IPA here but the flavor is not encompassing. There is a nice carbonated feel (I haven't had Harp on tap so I can't comment on that) and this, along with the lightness, translates to a good drinkability. However, the drinkability suffers a bit for me because I can't imagine having more than one at a time.

All in all, Harp is a good beer. However, it's not the beer I once loved. Perhaps it's destined to be a bridge...and that's not all bad.

 1,131 characters

Photo of AtLagerHeads
3.03/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Beautiful clear gold with a half inch white head that created great lacing throughout the glass. Very light hopping and a sweet grain sense. The smell was malty which carried over into the taste. There was virtually no carbonation present. Dry finish with a faint sense of bitters.

 281 characters

Photo of ThePostmaster
2.83/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours like a nice lager should, dark yellow with a decent head. taste is very malty. Definately, the malt is where it's at with this brew. Hops are there but not distinct to the maltiness. Overall, I thought this was a little disappointing, considering Guinness and all. I think this is a typical middle of the road Euro lager.

 327 characters

Photo of SaunaKing
3.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Harp pours a nice lager colour. A dark golden amber not to be confused with the pale stuff you often see. The head is creamy and forthy and settles down nicely.
There is a pleasant aroma of malt and hops. The sweetness more pronounced than the hoppiness.
A nice smooth malty taste, again not much hoppiness in the finish. A real nice brew, I would happily drink a pile of these. The bottle shows when it was made, in my case I have one not quite 4 months old. There was no skunkyness in the smell and this turned out to be a very solid lager. The taste has some character to it, overall a very good beer.

 606 characters

Photo of aaronh
3.26/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber lager pours with a fairly large head that displays good retention. As it falls apart into large bubbles of faom, it leaves a bit of clinging pseudo-lace at the top of the pint glass. Large carbonation bubbles are visible at the bottom of the glass. The aroma is the traditional "beer" smell, with some added hops spice. Perhaps just a hint of staleness is evident. Not skunky, but just a little too earthy. The taste is rather clean, but it does not taste like an all-malt brew. (Are there adjuncts in this beer?) A little bit of sweetness and some earthy huskiness appear, as well as a lingering peppered hop note on the finish. The mouthfeel is better than many lagers, but not great. The drinkability seems good, also better than many lagers. As I've noted before, I'm not a huge fan of traditional lagers, but this one isn't bad. I wouldn't turn one down if it was offered to me, although it will be a while before I buy anther one.

 942 characters

Photo of BrewAskew
3.69/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

For a european "mass-produced"style lager, this is one of the better ones. Nice balance of malt sweetness and hop bitterness. No discernable hop nose, but that's okay. Nice finish with residual grain/malt aftertaste. It is not skunky or garbagy either. A good solid brew that simply tastes good. No intense hoppiness or maltiness. Just a nice crisp generic lager. The beer ie tried was contract brewed in Canada for Guinness, but no discernable "canalager" character evident. Great alone or as a "bottom" for a half-and-half (black-and-tan but with Harp rather than Bass).

 572 characters

Photo of slitherySOB
3.18/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Was expecting something much better from the company that brews Guinness stout. Perhaps they should stick with what they know. Golden, slighty clear appearance with a 1/2 inch head that disappears within seconds. Pleasant alcohol smell, not overbearing yet not weak. Kick of barley to the nose, with a minute amount of hops and malt. Average taste. Medium bitterness with a floral mouthfeel after swallowing. Definitely worth drinking, but not the best lager I've tasted.

 471 characters

Photo of AudioGilz
2.06/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance isn't that great, an ok head that dissipates quickly.
My first smells were of some skunkiness, but nothing outstanding plus or negative. Taste is pretty skunky again, some bitterness as well....both are not unbearable by any means, just noticeable. I'm being picky. This is a bottle review. If you drink harp on tap, it's a different story, a completely super smooth lager that is refreshing. But I have always been disappointed with the bottle offering.

 467 characters

Photo of ElGuapo
3.18/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a golden brew with a decent sized white head on top. it dies very quickly, but it leaves some lace on the glass. hard to pick up too much aroma in the bar, but it had a nice bready or grainy presence.

very smooth with mild carbonation and a pretty light body made it a very drinkable beer. it had a pretty good flavoring with some light malts and a good touch of hops. it was really nothing complex or special.

 414 characters

Photo of Morris729
3.55/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden color with a big frothy white head that fades into a nice sticky lace. Nose is sweet malts and floral hops. Taste is sweet bread and biscuits and is a bit grainy with a touch of spice. A husky hop bitterness comes through in a crisp finish. This is a nice brew from the bottle, but it is much better on-tap.

 328 characters

Photo of Gusler
3.42/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Harp is one of the beers that I tried some 20 years ago on my first trip to Ireland, along with my first pint of Guinness at St. James Gate, and what fond memories I have of those days.

The pour a translucent golden color, the head brilliant white and modest in size with a whip cream texture, the lace left behind is in fine sheets that cling to the glass. Malt dominates the nose, crisp, fresh and clean, as a well-made lager should be. Lightly sweet at the front, the top middling in mouth feel, the finish spicily hopped, daringly acidic, and the aftertaste dry as the Arizona desert. Maybe not as good as, I remember, but things seldom are these days, but a long time favorite nonetheless.

 697 characters

Photo of BitteBier
3.48/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear, bright golden color with reasonable carbonation that forms a tight but somewhat sparse head. Smell is muted; what nose there is comes through as bitter-crisp. Taste is crisp as well, with a rather monotonic hops bitterness prevailing. Some smoothness and a tad of dryness are present too. Mouthfeel is fine, somewhat superceded by drinkability.

 357 characters

Photo of doerickson
4.05/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Light golden color with a thin, pure white head. Grassy hop aromas. Active carbonation, pretty light body. Crisp in the mouth. A nice, clean, bitter lager that is easy to drink. Made me think of summertime.

 206 characters

Photo of Kwak
4.1/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice thick cakey head white lace around the glass.Nice refreshing bitter flavor almost creemy decent look and no real aftertaste.Nice
parnter with big brother Guiness,Anice bitter to the Guiness smooth

 210 characters

Photo of Jarod
3.41/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

When received at the table it has a light gold almost honey color to it. The head is white but does not stay very long like the lace. The aroma is of light malt and hops. The taste is a nice malt with hops that also leave a pleasant bitter after taste. A better then average beer. Drinkable.

 291 characters

Harp Lager from Guinness Ltd.
Beer rating: 3.23 out of 5 with 2,636 ratings