Murphy's Irish Stout | Murphy Brewery Ireland Limited

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Murphy's Irish StoutMurphy's Irish Stout
Very Good
2,501 Ratings
Murphy's Irish StoutMurphy's Irish Stout

Brewed by:
Murphy Brewery Ireland Limited

Style: Irish Dry Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 12-17-2000

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Ratings: 2,501 |  Reviews: 1,018
Photo of Jinholic
2.83/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance - Black with some red around the edge and at the bottom. Very creamy head but only got 1 finger tan in color.

Smell - Coffee roasted malts and some bitter chocolate, hops are very weak as is the overall smell.

Taste - Very watery with the coffee and malts up front finishes with a sweeter chocolate note but still weak. Its kinda sad that the after taste is what I'm looking forward too when drinking this.

Mouthfeel - Light thin body, smooth but very watery. It finishes clean with no dryness, I could drink it all day but I really wouldn't want to.

Overall - Basic Irish Dry here in fact it couldn't get anymore basic, I wish this was more robust and had stronger scent to it. That said go grab one and see for yourself.

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Photo of stckhndlr
3.64/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a motor oil black. One inch head never goes away. Thick foam texture has the characteristics of eggs whites that are whipped to soft peaks.

S- Dark roasted malt and coffee. But nothing very strong. Scents are kind of weak.

T- Coffee and roasted caramel flavor. But again nothing fancy to it.

M- Watery feel typical of most stouts. A smooth finish of course.

O- The lack of flavor in this one was a bit of a disappointment but I could drink this one again.

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Photo of biegaman
3.69/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Ceili Cottage, in Toronto.

You can't ask for a much better looking stout. The body is firmly black, although it will admittedly relent a flicker of maroon at angles where the light is especially strong. And its head has a dreamy, lush texture that could put any latte or mousse to shame. Although chunks of it stick to the glass, the foam never seems to decrease in quantity.

Despite all the research and development Irish brewers have put into creating that trademark creamy texture, they've consistently neglected to put any consideration into aroma. Judging by its colour, the beer evidently has a good portion of dark and roasted malts, but you wouldn't know it from smelling it. It leaves a very faint impression, if any.

To many the Guinness vs. Murphy debate is a Coke vs. Pepsi situation: an issue of two nearly indistinguishable products that comes down to subjective taste and the persuasion of advertisers. It's not. For one, Murphy offers considerably more flavour. While the taste of roasted malts and bittersweet chocolate rule, the beer's develops a tawny-like sweetness as it warms and sweats distinct notes of red wine and currants.

Furthermore, the texture is much more full-bodied and not so smothered in creamy nitrogen that a good amount of distinguishing water minerals can't be impressed onto the palate. Its roast is properly tempered - not enough to incite thoughts of, say, coffee - and the synergism of bitter and sweet elements showcase a true, uncorrupted maltiness.

The two may share similarities, but there are reasons why I never order Guinness yet often jump at the chance for a pint of Murphy's where it's offered. I've added my two cents to the Great Irish Stout debate, citing flavour, mouthfeel and quality as my testimony. If anyone cares to rebuttal, I'd be happy to keep arguing over another few rounds!

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Photo of MoreThanWine
2.51/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

The can widget gives it an almost soap bubble-like foam but which only rises to about 1/4". Dark raw umber in color. Smell is malt and not much else. Taste is a very mild roasted malt. Quite possibly the weakest flavored stout I've ever had. Hey, this is an inoffensive beer which even people who don't like stout could probably handle, because frankly there just isn't much stoutlike about it besides the color. D+ folks.

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Photo of corby112
3.44/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep dark chestnut brown color with hazelnut/mahogany edges and tan foam cascading up the glass into a creamy, two finger white head. Excellent retention, only slowly fading int a lasting cap that coats the glass with chunks of soapy lacing.

Toasty roasted malt aroma with hints of toffee and caramel as well as some faint chocolate and hazelnut. Slightly smokey with faint hop and a subtle cream presence.

Medium bodied and a bit fuller than expected with a soft roasted malt flavor that is roasted without tasting acrid/burnt. Hints of toast, toffee and biscuit while being slightly smokey. Subtle notes of cocoa, toffee and hazelnut. Nice and dry but a bit watered down with a bit of lactic creaminess adding to the body.

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Photo of rsdaugherty
3.56/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nitro-can into pint glass
A - A nice coffee colored cascade upon pouring, settles down to a 1+ finger brownish-white head with very good retention, black enough I can't perceive a haze 4.5
S - Coffee and malts dominate, hints of licorice 3.5
T - A more bland taste than I had expected, slightly sweet malts with a crisp finish 3.5
M - Creamy mouth feel with a relatively light body 3.5
O - A good beer that has great drinkability with an overall mild taste. I really must do a side by side next time I'm able to get Murphy's and a Guinness on tap. 3.5

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Photo of ryan1788a5
3.45/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

16oz nitro can pored into a pint glass.

A: Clear black with garnet hues, Typical cascading bubbles nitro pour yields a thick, creamy, khaki-colored head that doesn't budge.

S: Milk chocolate, roasted coffee, burnt malts, and some subdued hops. Pretty good, actually.

T: Milk chocolate and slightly acidic burnt malts, vague hop twang, faint woody taste. Burnt malts and a bit of coffee in the dry finish. Doesn't hold up to the smell.

M: Creamy nitro mouthfeel tries to mask a body that feels too light and watery.

O: Decent.

Notes: A slight step up from Guinness, but only slight. More to offer in taste than Guinness draught, but it is plagued by the same light, watery body. If you are looking for a Guinness alternative this is a step in the right direction, but there's still much better out there.

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Photo of scottchesterhall
4.13/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful head that sticks to the glass as long as you haven't washed it. Beautiful black beer with creamy tan head.

Smell is English hops and yeast--goldings? fuggles? one of those--with a nice chocolaty, buttery, even mild tea and cedar nose. Really nice understated smell.

Taste is simple: dry chocolate and espresso. Simple but pleasant with a substantial lingering hop presence on the finish. Totally out-kicks Guiness Draught...a lot more here.

Mouthfeel is silky nitro, but a very thin, clean, easy sip...I think I could sip 8 ounces of this each gulp. Very little carbonation.

Step aside, Guiness draft...Murphy's is a superior version of the same Irish session beer. I could quaff these all night. Glad I found the less known cousin from County Cork.

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Photo of projectflam86
3.8/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a jet black color with a thick creamy foam head that leaves really nice lacing.

S- Wow, this really smells nice! Very roasted dark chocolate malt aroma with some nice espresso beans and smoke.

T- A much more muted version of the nose. Some roasted flavor with a bit of chocolate.

M- The nitro helps make this relatively smooth but the body is quite thin.

O- Overall this is a very solid dry stout that I would most likely purchase over other more popular examples.

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Photo of Patrick999
4.08/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Some awesome cascading action from the nitro-can. Dark body, creamy head that goes nowhere ALL THE WAY DOWN THE GLASS. Love this look.

Could smell some good roast coffee as soon as I opened the can. Indeed, smells like espresso and steamed milk. At this strength, the aroma is very nice. With many under-5% beers you can't smell much, but not this one.

A little more flavor depth than you find in a Guinness Draught, but not by too much. While I think appearance and aroma are superior here, I think the taste is pretty much the same - a basic easy-drinking dry stout with malted-milk-ball overtones. This may be a bit more "dry" than GD, so I'll go ahead and say it's a better beer and give it a slightly above-average rating for taste.

Feel is your standard nitro - goes down free and clear, limp and easy on the palate.

At 4%, with a thin creamy feel, dry, with some decent flavor, you'd have to call this a consummate session beer. Great for when you want a stout, but don't feel like cracking open something big. There is certainly a place for beers like this in my drinking repertoire, and I rate it accordingly.

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Photo of ant5431
4.71/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Another great Irish Stout! Looks, smells, tastes exceptional! Was a little disappointed when one of my favorite bars stopped serving Guinness then They handed me a Murphy's and I had nothing to complain about I was all smiles! I now go out of my way for this great beer! I had some delicious corn beef & cabbage & 4 or 5 Murphy's on St. Patty's day nothing better made me wish I was Irish!

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Photo of womencantsail
3.21/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another old tick from the notebook.

A: Pours a thick dark brown, almost black, with a creamy and large khaki head.

S: Smells like roasted malts and coffee for the most part. A bit of bitter dark chocolate is in there. Maybe a bit burnt or charred on the nose, but otherwise it's pretty tame.

T: Flavor is sort of watered down, but you get a sense of creaminess from the nitro. Roasted malts and dark chocolate along with a moderate coffee character. Nothing too exciting, I must say.

M: The body is definitely thin with a smooth, creamy carbonation.

O: Not bad, and it is something different from the usual Guinness, but not something I'd necessarily go back to.

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Photo of stewfnrocker
3.38/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I drank this straight from the can, soooo I wont be able to tell you my experience of the appearance, but from memory it pours dark/black with a decent creamy head.
When I popped this open after the nitrous fizz cleared I gave it a good sniff and got hints of roasted malts and grain. I took the first sip and it was nice and creamy mouth feel, like a good irish stout should feel. I let it sit out to warm it up a little, because I do hate having a stout to cold and it masks the flavor. So during that first sip I got the flavors of roasted malts and grains, something sweet along the lines of maybe a little caramel or syrup, but for the most part a milky malty beverage. This beer is definitely a fullbody almost milkshakey like beverage. When I drink these I like to enjoy a few, so the drinkability is there, either a sipper or a kick back and drink type of beer as well.

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Photo of aepb1
3.83/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Stubbies, notes from phone

A- Black body with a small creamy tan head

S- Roasted malts and some sweet milk

T- Creamy sweetness and nice dry roastiness.

M- Creamy, full-bodied. Moderate carbonation. The dry finish is really nice

D- Very easy to drink, not overly complex but still good and quite solid. A nice session beer!

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Photo of scottbrew4u
3.81/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from can a pitch black color, with creamy tan head half inch high and no light coming through. Great lacing on the glass.

S: Smell was of burnt and roasted malt mixed with a touch of coffee and bitter chocolate. Hops are slight but earthy and adding bitterness.

T: Robust malt, coffee and burnt chalky flavors, slightly acrid. Hops are hard to taste but add bitterness and no real sourness like in a Guiness. Finish is on the dry side

M: Creamy full body beer with great smoothness from nitro gas.

D: Easy to have a few but then the taste overwhelms and dries the tongue. Overall a tasty beer that is above other Irish stouts in my opinion. Had this many times but glad to give it another run.

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Photo of lawlerj
3.04/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from a nitro can into a pint glass.

Nice head, great cascading effect from the nitro ball in the can. Head lingers, good lacing.

Not much smell - I get some of the coffee/chocolate/maltiness off the top, but not much else at all.

I enjoyed the taste - strong chocolate and coffee flavor w/ some malt mixed in there Chocolate milk anybody?

Mouthfeel is by far the most disappointing part of this beer. It feels very watery; not enough body to support the strong flavors going on here.

Overall, a mixed bag. I enjoyed the look and flavor, while the aroma and mouthfeel were lacking for me. Not bad in a pinch on St. Patrick's Day.

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Photo of webbcreative
3.66/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Pours black, with 2 finger head and the sweet cascade we know and love from the nitro can.

Smell is just an ever so slight roasted malt, but just barely. Not much else.

Taste - I love it when my lips hit the creamy head on this, but them im let down once the beer hits my tongue - not much flavor going on at all, all I really get is just a little bit of roasted malts.

Mouthfeel - is awful, extremely thin, This would be a really good beer if it had a fuller body.

Overall this is a decent beer, and I would take this Irish Dry Stout over Guinness any day of the week. But it is too thin and water and not enough flavor to fully enjoy, although on the plus side it is light enough that I can drink several in one sitting.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.1/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a can into a pint glass, the beer pours a jet black coloring with a solid, thick, creamy, two fingers beige head. The beer has a creamy nose, with mocha highlights. Flavors of coffee and dark chocolate are first into mouth, with a dark coffee bittering effect. Creamy and smooth in mouth, the beer has a semi-sweet aftertaste that draws you back for repeated drinks. Very smooth and creamy in mouth, and the light finish allows for repeated drinking. Delicious! Very easy to drink, and very easy to consume in mass quantities.

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Photo of SFLpunk
3.52/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Happy St Patrick's Day! 16oz nitro-can. Bottom dated "31 12 U, L0348 10 14" whatever that means.

Pours with lots of thick cascading light tan head that settles out to about 1.5/2 inches. Body is black with some cherry brown around the edges and looks like good clarity.

Nose is really muted with some generic "beer" like aromas - smells a little like aged hops and iced coffee with creamer.

Palate is medium bodied and crisp on the midpalate, but the edges are soft and round from the nitro. Great tension on the texture! Flavors are light and like molasses and creamed coffee. Finish is dry-ish and creamy.

Notes: Would pick this every time over Guinness nitro-cans. It's richer in the mid-palate, where Guinness seems to have more acidity.

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Photo of Brianjames16
3.89/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My choice of St. Patrick's Day brew.

A- Pours a very dark brown with a big beautiful tan creamy head. Looks very delicious.

S- Not much from the aroma. Bready malty characters come through a bit. Some woody tones in the back.

T- Great alternative to Guinness. Nice flavors and very drinkable.

M- Smooth velvety full bodied Irish stout. Not carbonation.

D- Great drinkability! I am going to have a couple of these tonight no problem.

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Photo of SeussMD
3.32/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It's St. Patrick's Day. Am I hoisting a Guinness? No. Today it's Murphy's, a lesser-known Irish stout. Pub can, so it's Pasteurized -- you can't have everything -- but I'll toast to the Mahers and Mulroneys anyway.

Poured into an Imperial pint glass.

Appearance: Black, with a light tan head that settles to about a half-inch and stays put all the way to the bottom of the glass. That's not stout on my moustache, that's "later snack value." Very strong lacing. Watching a pub can of stout settle is one of life's great joys.

Smell: Not a strong aroma, but I detect malt and slight hints of coffee and vanilla. A little more beer sourness as it warms.

Taste: Some coffee along with some roasted malt; slight hops at the back end. Not very strong, flavor-wise; not offensively bland, either; but it leaves me wanting more.

Mouthfeel: Very creamy.

Overall: Not as sweet as Guinness' pub can offering, but I'd like a little more roasted malt flavor to go with the lovely mouthfeel. You could slam back an entire four pack, if that's your thing, at 4 percent abv. It's a fine alternative to Guinness. But if you're looking for something a little more distinctive to challenge your palate -- well, Victory makes a fantastic Imperial Stout.

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Photo of goalie33
3.21/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from 16oz nitro-can into pint glass.
A) Opaque black with 2 inches of creamy light tan head that sticks around for a really long time. Cannot see anything regarding carbonation. Leaves lots of lacing in the glass.
S) Not a very robust aroma, but I can pick out roasted malts and every so slight hints of chocolate and coffee.
T) Very thin, watery beer with roasted flavor. Really not much more to say about this.
M) Feels like water.

Really not a whole lot to say about this beer. Feels and tastes like water with some roasted flavoring. Looks really good, but not much to it.

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Photo of malty
3.58/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bought a 4-pack draught style in cans last week. I'll probably be socially involved tomorrow (St. Patty's Day) so I thought I'd give this brew a formal, sober review.

Pfffttt goes my nitro can upon cracking open. Pours into my imperial Guinness pint a tumultuous, churning midnight brown, finally settling with a 1/2" creamy, ultra-dense light khaki head. Unbreaking, thick walls of lace all the way down the pint.

Smells like an intense chocolate malt made with hot fudge, instead of cheap chocolate syrup. Believe me, I know, as I used to work in an ice cream shop back in high school. Madagascar vanilla. Fresh from the oven Irish brown bread. Lush concord grapes without the tannins.

The flavor borders more towards the coffee side, but still rails close to the milk chocolate arena. The flavors are quick and settle back with a light leathery tinge.

Mouthfeel is between light and medium with a less than moderate amount of pillow soft ultra fine carbonation.

Drinkability is good. In a social setting, I'm sure this would go down like water.

Speaking of water, I can't believe how watery the texture is on this stout. I understand this is a pedestrian stout, but I do remember it being a bit more meaty and a bit hearty way back in the early 90s. Alas, my palate has been tempered with a vast array of beefy, bruising ales in the past 20 years, but I still can't help but think this stout has been 'wussified'. I still will quaff these when I return home after slinging back a few celebrating St. Patty's Day tomorrow, while watching my Spartans play UCLA in the first round of the NCAA tourney. GO STATE!!!

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Photo of AdamBear
3.84/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-very dark brown. has the cascade effect, but is a little quicker than Guinness. the head is thicker and is darker tan. The head stays and creates a nice lacing.

S-has a good dark roasted coffee scent.slightly chocolately. the strength is between low and medium.

T-comes in with a good hearty dark roasted coffee taste. its much more pronounced than Guinness. it then goes to a good chocolate taste. the after-taste is more of combination that resembles mocha. the tastes aren't strong but they sure are tasy. this is definitely my go-to dry stout.

M-this is very creamy with little carbonation. honestly, its awesome and smooth.

D-well the ABV and the taste make this a beer that i can drinker more of than almost any other beer. its just great. i first had this a long time ago and it always remains a beer that i occasionally fall back on.

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Photo of Homebrew35
3.38/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a small half finger head of tan creamy looking head. Deep black with some dark red coming through when held up to the light. Smells faintly of sweet malts, slight bit of alcohol, chocolate, iced coffee. Tastes initially sweet and malty, then some roast malts, coffee, dark chocolate, some bitterness and maybe some sourness. The finish is medium dry, roasty notes linger, and some hop bitterness. The lingering roasty, medium dry and sourness on the finish is kind of off putting. Medium full bodied, light carbonation. I think this fits the style buy not my taste buds. I won't have a hard time finishing one pint but would if I tried another one. Overall a descent beer, better than the more sour Guinness. $7 a four pack.

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Murphy's Irish Stout from Murphy Brewery Ireland Limited
Beer rating: 3.75 out of 5 with 2,501 ratings