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Harp Lager | Guinness Ltd.

727 Reviews
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Harp LagerHarp Lager

Brewed by:
Guinness Ltd.
Ireland | website

Style: Euro 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

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Reviews: 727 | Ratings: 2,509
Photo of TempeBeerMan
3.08/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a pilsner glass.

A - Crystal clear pale yellow. Thin, fizzy one-finger white head. Leaves surprisingly stout rings of lacing.

S - Faint aroma of lager yeast, bohemian hop, and white flour.

T - Mild and inoffensive blend of slightly sweet cereal grains and mildly spicy pilsner hops. Balanced, and thankfully free of dextrin/corn sweetness common to so many pale lagers, but ultimately very boring. The kind of clean, crisp, finish that you would expect.

M - Light bodied and aggressive, stinging carbonation. But....it does compliment the style. Very grainy.

O - Cant say that pale Euro lagers are my thing by any means, but this one appears to be done well enough for the style. That said, it's nothing that moves me in any way, just a bland boring "beery" lager. A BMC without the corn and rice. But, any time a pale lager is free of adjunct "off" flavors, it's a bonus.

 904 characters

Photo of bambam2517
2.93/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Not remarkable in any way, the plain Jane of beers. Should come in the proverbial white can with "BEER" written on it in big black letters. It makes a decent quaffer when added to Guinness as a half-n-half, and it is not a bad beer, but I never care to drink this on its own. Macrobrew quality, import price.

 308 characters

Photo of mnrider
2.96/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. Brown bottle. Green Label, Brewed in Canada.

A: Clear golden color with an initially nice looking head. This quickly
turns to basically nothing. Watery lacing. Little carbonation.

S: Mostly clean with some sweet malts and a light hint of floral hops.

T/M: Crisp, medium bodied, malt sweetness, plenty of grains, some
hop bitterness. Dry with a light tingling on the tongue. The finish is
a mixture of both bitter and grainy.

O: This lager from Guinness is easy to drink but the taste is somewhat
plain and has an overall unflattering dryness. Not too bad for a session
beer if you can get past the taste. Just not that enjoyable for me to get


 672 characters

Photo of flyingpig
2.2/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Light, pale straw colour with a thin, white head not more than a couple millimeters tall. This turns to a patchy lacing almost instantly.

Clean and with some very light grassy hops that are pretty faint. There is some corn and a vague background sweetness along with some grain and a pretty watery aroma that smells pretty cheap overall.

Sweet malts and grain make up most of the taste along with a chemical crispness and cheap malts. There is a very faint hop taste too but nothing much.

Clean and crisp with a lot of grain. The body is light and almost watery with a bit of bitterness in there too.

As expected this one wasn't a great beer at all, it was drinkable but only just really and not one that I enjoyed at all. A very basic and cheap lager, probably not the worst out there but nowhere near acceptable either.

 825 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
2.32/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2

Pours a clear light yellow with a foamy bone colored head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, and some plastic-like aromas. Taste is much the same with a weird plastic-like, chemical flavor on the finish. There is a very mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty poor beer with aromas and flavors that make it hard to drink.

 546 characters

Photo of Stinkypuss
3.33/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Harp Lager

Pours a vibrant and clear gold, little soapy white cap and some lace. In the nose, clean bready smell and light floral accents. In the taste, bread and biscuit notes, fresh herbal hops and mild but complimentary bitterness. Muted citrus fruit, honey and grass clippings. Light bodied feel with a crisp carbonation. Overall this is a solid, yet average lager. A good session beer with a low alcohol content and very soft yet agreeable flavor.

 453 characters

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.55/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a clear, golden yellow with a white, finger width head. Fair retention. Lacing is spotty with decent stick.

Smell - Aroma consists almost exclusively of clean, sweet grain malt.

Taste - Just like it smells. Clean, crisp and sweet grain malt flavor, with a touch of honey. Finishes much in the way it starts. Very, very subtle grass bitterness near the finish after the beer warms.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium body, with good carbonation. Silky on the swallow. Very drinkable.

Overall - This is a classic, simple lager done right. Very sessionable. While it presents very little to think about, it's something I could drink all night while watching tv or hanging out with friends.

 702 characters

Photo of beergoot
3.11/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Crystal-clear, pale yellow body with a fat, thick and chunky, creamy, white head sitting atop; carbonation galore in the body; sticky, clinging lacing on the glass. Average aroma for a lager; no rich hop aroma for the style, more like a light malt character overall, comparable to American adjunct lagers. Taste comes across as bland and uninspiring; primarily very light malt character with a shade of bitterness in the finish. Decent mouthfeel; clean and dry finish.

Another disappointing mass-produced beer that doesn't live up to what you'd hope for. It has a really nice appearance but falls flat with any distinctive malt or hop character. Certainly drinkable; certainly mundane...

 688 characters

Photo of metter98
3.08/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at Molly Pitcher's Ale House, New York, NY

A: The beer is crystal clear yellow in color and has no visible carbonation. It poured with a thin bright white head that took a long time to fade away and left a thin collar and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of cooked corn in the nose along with some hints of grainy malts
T: The taste has light flavors of cooked corn along with a light amount of bitterness.
M: It feels light-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is easy to drink but has a little too much flavors of adjunct malts.

 612 characters

Photo of Fatehunter
1.75/5  rDev -46%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Clear, pale straw color with almost a finger of head. Short lasting head though.
Smells like green apples and mildly grainy, faint overall.
The taste is an assault on the senses. A brutally bitter (not the good kind) and metallic mess from beginning to end.
Light and crisp body.
The taste was unexpectedly bad, much worse than I thought it would be.

 351 characters

Photo of FlyingBull
3.83/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this beer on tap at the Ould Soud in SD. It's a great, old school, Irish-owned dive bar. Many nights with live, realy Irish jam music too.

A: Had a bright, clear medium golden color with style appropriate visible carbonation; white 1 finger head; plenty of lacing.

S: Nice, subtle hop aroma, a little on the light side but good.

T: Unlike many standard American mass produced, it has a nice fruity front, dry, a notably nice bready middle, with a nice dry fruity finish.

M: Appropriate light body that's crip, dry, and refereshing.

O: Much better than your standard mass produced lager or ale. I really enjoy this beer on tap.

 637 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.19/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A pint glass on tap at McGee's Pub (SC).

A: Clear golden color with visible carbonation; white head; plenty of lacing.

S: subtle aroma of a weak and very plain lager.

T: has the flavor of a rather average light lager except it is more fruity (i.e., it has some touch of fruitiness, mainly orange) and has a notably nice bready/fruity finish.

M: light body; crisp; semi-dry

O: a wee departure from your standard macro-lager. {3.25]

 438 characters

Photo of oldirtycaffrey
3.62/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my favorite beers when I was first "going outside the Bud Light/Heineken" box when I began drinking beer as a youngin', Harp kind of fell off my radar these last five years or so. Picked up a six pack not too long ago and was pleasantly surprised of how good this beer is.

Its appearance is far from impressive, pouring a thin, medium golden with a slight, thin head that stays throughout, but never leaving much lacing along the side of the glass. Aside from malt and a slight hint of bread, there's not a whole lot to the smell. However, the taste is smooth with just the right amount of carbonation. Perfect balance of hops and malt. Refreshing and easy to like.

Glad I "re-discovered" this beer. It's a solid fall/winter session beer and looking forward to drinking more of it throughout the fall/winter.

 818 characters

Photo of 57md
3.02/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a light yellowish straw color. The body is light, the flavor is crisp and this offering is quite sessionable. However, this lager is only one step above the average AAL.

 177 characters

Photo of BakerMoore
3.95/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Upon pouring correctly, it leaves a one finger white fluffy head. The head dissipated within 30 seconds. It laces nicely and the lace remains. The body is a bronze orange color. The bubbles are everywhere with constant streams going up to the top.

The aroma is relatively strong but is present enough to be pleasant. The smell is of maybe noble hops, with malt and maybe grain. It has some water to it but not so much as the adjuncts do. The smell is real pleasant and invites the taste.

The taste is definitely of hops with some malts coming in as an aftertaste. The taste is kind of bitter but quite crisp. It is pleasing to the palate. An enjoyable beer to taste.

The mouthfeel is just as much carbonation as necessary. Its dry enough to be enjoyable and makes you want to take another drink.

 801 characters

Photo of bnes09
3.23/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pale color of white-grape juice and completely transparent. Weak head but some lacing.

Clean aroma of dry malts and rice. Hints of skunk.

Mild malty flavor with a white bread and honey character. Herbal grassy hop in descent balance. Clean in the end.

Light body. Over carbonated. Smooth in the middle with a crisp finish.

Just average. Not much else to say.

 362 characters

Photo of MrGaughran
3.86/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is my default Irish beer. I can order this without worrying about availability at pretty much any Irish/English pub.
Harp is right up my alley. I have accepted that I prefer lagers to all other beers, and Harp has the balance and taste that I enjoy. Not too heavy, and not too light. However, it has to come off tap if you're really going to enjoy it. I'm in Florida, so bottles don't exactly hold up here. Overall, very solid. Anybody that hates mass produced corn beer should enjoy a Harp.

 496 characters

Photo of Jamesthebrit
3.15/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Very light amber color. Little white head dissipates quickly.

S: Light. Dryness comes through a bit. A little sweetness...

T: Pretty good here. A little yeasty but there are some good hints of malt and dryness. Also a little hops as well. There is something there even though it is pretty light.

M: sits alright. Bubbly.

Overall a pretty average beer. Certainly better than any macro lager but certainly nothing to go crazy over. Perfect for after a long day when you want to take it easy.

 498 characters

Photo of TheBrewWhisperer
1.94/5  rDev -40.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: clear golden lager with some foam rising til the very end being a small amount nothing too surprising for a euro pale lager.

Smell: Predominant skunk which is odd for a brown bottle, but lingering hop and a hint of bitterness.

Taste: A Stella Artois type lager (not a green bottle taste surprising) very pale in hop and barley very watery at the same time mediocre in the most sense.

Mouth-feel: Terrible beer just terrible very very crisp but at the same time very dry mouth feel I thought this was an Irish pale lager!.

 536 characters

Photo of thecheapies
3.47/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Harp Premium Lager into a pint glass.

Pale straw color with a finger of off-white head. Lots of rising carbonation. 3.0

Musty smells of Euro hops, pale malts, and probably too much time travelling across seas and exchanging hands. Grassy with a tiny hint of green apple. 3.5

Grassy hops with stalwart bitterness and rough herbal notes. Lagered pretty clean with a crisp, cidery finish. Faint pear juice and spearmint. Husky grains that are very cereal. Not bad, at all. 3.5

Medium carbonation that starts off slow and peaks at the end. The body is light and flashing. A decent feel. 3.5

A nice lager that seems to fluctuate from bottle-to-bottle, keg-to-keg. This was a very pleasing experience. Definitely a harshly rough bittering hop character, but there are a few other nuances to pull out from the taste. Commendable. 3.5

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Photo of B967ierhunter177
2.73/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This beer pours a clear, bold yellow with a thin head and lace to the end. It's aroma is of lemons and dough with a hint of hay. The flavor is bready with malt sweetness and a note of cake. It's very smooth and the sweetness is not cloying even without a hop bitterness. The mouthfeel is light. Harp Lager is a good beer, a perfect match for Irish Potato Soup and Bangers and Mash. Recommended!

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Photo of bubseymour
3.14/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance - The pale yellow, clear beer looks decent. the problem I have is with the head. It was 1 finger thick but looked like soap suds and quickly disappears.

Smell - Some malt and perhaps a touch of noble hops.

Taste - If people are going to complain about BMC's lacking flavor they should be consistent and complain about this as well. With that said (avoidance of flavor) its an easy drinker with slight crispness in finish.

Mouthfeel - a little watery.

Overall - Definitely not worth paying import costs for. You can get similar beers in US for 33%-50% less cost.

 576 characters

Photo of CMUbrew
2.8/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

Imported...from Canada

A: Poured with less than half a finger of white dish soap foam. Pale straw color. Crazy amount of carbonation rising from the bottom.

S: Faint grains. Smells like a BMC but only slightly better.

T: Tastes like a slighlty better BMC too. Light grains, very faint hops. Not much flavor. Adjunct aftertaste.

M: Actually not bad. Light and crisp. That works for this beer.

O: A below average lager from a boring style. To be honest I'd take some Miller High Life over this any day.

 545 characters

Photo of blakelive784
3.27/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle served in a generic pint glass, reviewed live:

A - Pours a transparent straw golden color with a finger of thin white head and lively carbonation. Retention is bad. Standard fare.

S - Cereal grains, sweet malt and very light floral hops. Simple and clean. Mild strength and seemingly balanced.

T - Unrefined cereal grains comprise the majority of the body, with some light sweetness contributed by light pale malt. The hops are one note; floral and lightly bitter. It's definitely simple and well balanced.

M - Crisp, coarse and a little thick, probably thicker than it should be.

D - Highly drinkable, decently built and affordable. One of my standbys for session beers.

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Photo of jera1350
2.55/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Fizzy yellow beer best describes this.

Corn sweetness with some other light grain.

Clean and crisp up front with a light grainy sweetness, but the middle and back end drop off completely and leave little trace of any flavor.

The carbonation is actually decent. The body is lighter and the finish dry.

No need to have this one again personally.

 347 characters

Harp Lager from Guinness Ltd.
75 out of 100 based on 727 ratings.
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