Brian Boru
3 Floyds Brewing Co.

Brian BoruBrian Boru
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3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Indiana, United States
Irish Red Ale
Ranked #2
Ranked #9,536
4.03 | pDev: 11.41%
Oct 13, 2022
Mar 14, 2004
Brian BoruBrian Boru
Notes: Ireland’s first and last Ard Ri (high king) of the whole Gaelic race, Brian Boru was born in Munster, Ireland around 940. Brian Boru’s mother was killed by Vikings when he was a child. He spent his life uniting the Irish tribes to become the first king of Ireland only to be killed at Clontarf on Good Friday 1014 putting down a rebellion by the king of the province of Leinster. This one’s for him.

40 IBU
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Photo of dirkdigles
Reviewed by dirkdigles from Illinois

1.23/5  rDev -69.5%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1
This is not an Irish Red Ale.

This is not an Irish Red Ale!

This is basically a Red IPA. It should not be ranked #1 in Irish Red Ale because it is NOT an Irish Red Ale.

As a beer it's fine. But come on. A bunch of hops does not equal a good beer. Why is this ranked high? Do the reviewers know what an Irish Red Ale should taste like? Should it taste like a hop bomb?

BA States: "Irish red ale is known for its unique malty taste and is on the lower side of the bitterness and alcohol content scales. If you love American craft beer, the Irish red ale beer remains a great style for beer lovers to seek out and appreciate."

You can't even detect the malt in Brian Boru. It's highly bitter and highly hoppy. Gross if you're looking for an actual Irish Red Ale.

I love 3 Floyds but there's a problem with the rating system on BA if this is #1 in this category.
Oct 13, 2022
Rated: 4 by Taenim from New Jersey

Aug 25, 2022
Photo of Beersnake1
Reviewed by Beersnake1 from California

4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Poured at fridge temp. Pours a nice reddish orange. Opaque. White head that quickly disappears. Looks great. The nose is grapefruit, hops, wheat, grass, and caramel. Really interesting mix. Very inviting - can't wait to taste it.

The taste is really intense. Citrus peel is front and center. Pine needles, grass, leather, malts, a bit of toffee, and a peppery spice on the back end. Mouthfeel is fairly light and dry. Aftertaste is fairly bitter.
Aug 21, 2022
Photo of defunksta
Reviewed by defunksta from Wisconsin

3.88/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
Appearance: Pours a somewhat dark, dusky, amber, slight orange color with a large light tan head. SRM of 16. (4.00)

Aroma: Moderate aromas upfront of resinous orange citrus, and peach. Intense caramel and toasted sweetness. Pine mixes in as well. Ultimately sweet. Mostly caramel in the aroma. (4.00)

Flavor: The flavor follows with more caramel mixed with resinous orange citrus. An earthy pine bitterness follows. Sweet caramel malt finishes off the end. Some complex resinous fruit mixed with malt sweetness. Also some stonefruit here possibly. (3.75+)

Feel: Medium to heavier bodied. Moderate carbonation. Leans sweet, some pine bitterness lingers off the tongue. (3.75)

Overall: Certainly a hoppy Irish red as other have mentioned. Maintans the Irish Red malt profile, while giving a nice hop presence to provide a resinous and piney flavor addition. Actually reminds me quite a bit of Bells' Two Hearted or Founders' Centennial IPA. Yes that hoppy. Slightly more malty though. Enjoyable, certainly (Rating: 3.88+)
Aug 03, 2022
Rated: 3.57 by selekt0r

Aug 01, 2022
Photo of Bouleboubier
Reviewed by Bouleboubier from New Jersey

2.69/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5
(12 oz bottle, bottled on 02-10-22 4399; purchased single off shelf at Shangy's this week... poured into my Belhaven pub pint)

L: brilliantly-clear, garnet-colored liquid; orange-tinged tan foam holding steady... poured clear until the last 2 oz brought with it a fuzzy tuft of sediment, dispersed speckled throughout the glass... the cap remains till the end, lacing a little

S: pine, roasted barley, pineapple rind, grapefruit pith, hint of rosemary?, toasty caramelized (bbq'd?) malt... sweaty, dirty wool... the lack of a distinct, firm malt-forward scent is a let down, though it smells great for what it is

T: malty at it's core, but not nearly as sweet as the aromas suggested, but definitely as toasty and roasty... after a minute, the hops, which were pungent and woody-bitter at the start, begin to show more dried citrus rind and borderline dried apricot and papaya-like (but very faint) notes... too aggressively hoppy to be an Irish Red, sorry; but it's also not quite an American amber as it's too dry for that... that piney, wintergreen hop bitterness just won't go away

F: light-bodied, but with a subtle roundness which may be attributed to hop resins creating a subtly oily texture... its feel is essentially pleasing, though a bit too cut dry... the pungent bitterness and cooling ethanol pretty much snuff out the ability to sensualize any malty depth and contour

O: don't get me wrong, this is a fine beer, and something I would drink at a bar just hanging out... but, please, what a lame ploy to spin this as an Irish Red, which it simply is not - as a Red IPA, I'd give it a 4.25 at best, not quite the quality of a HopDevil... kind of reminds me of the 'Kolsch' I had at Lagunitas back in 2013... yawn, moving on... (1968)
Jul 31, 2022
Photo of hman43
Reviewed by hman43 from North Carolina

4.06/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Look: It pours dark amber with an off white head. Head retention is good.

Smell: It has strong malty aromas that feature toffee and low bread. There are also piney notes with some dark fruit elements.

Taste: In the flavors the hops and fruits are up front feature pine and citrus with some dark fruits. There are some low toffee notes.

Feel: It has a medium body with some dryness in the finish.

Overall: The beer drinks like an American amber with the hoping. With that said, nice combination of hops.
Jul 19, 2022
Rated: 4.05 by beersampler6 from Michigan

Jun 29, 2022
Rated: 4.21 by zotzot from Vermont

Jun 26, 2022
Photo of iBeGuRGaRDeN
Reviewed by iBeGuRGaRDeN from Tennessee

1.4/5  rDev -65.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1
First offering I've had from this brewer. I want to sue them, lol

They've intentionally mislabeled this or they've drank so much hops their palate is wrecked and they can't detect them anymore.

This plainly isn't an Irish red, it's an IPA. I like IPAs but to me, in any other industry, mislabeling a product so grossly is grounds for lawsuit.

This beer tastes like hops, which if that's what I'm buying, is great. But this has zero chew, it's not toasty, there is very little malt, just citrusy hops and a little carbonation. It's not even a good IPA.

In a vacuum, this beer is a 2.5-3. As labeled, this deserves a negative 5. I'm stunned and embarrassed by the reviews on this site. I've been really, really gentle with this review. Please pay attention.
May 24, 2022
Rated: 3.73 by aprabhu from Kentucky

Apr 30, 2022
Rated: 3.06 by cabsandking from Ohio

Apr 18, 2022
Rated: 4.1 by Metalgod666 from Michigan

Apr 17, 2022
Rated: 3.98 by Giggy from Michigan

Apr 08, 2022
Rated: 4.12 by miwestcoaster from Michigan

Apr 03, 2022
Rated: 4.25 by cryptichead from Illinois

Apr 01, 2022
Rated: 3.92 by Boone757 from Virginia

Mar 29, 2022
Photo of MNAle
Reviewed by MNAle from Minnesota

3.28/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25
Has an orangish-red color (bright orange glow with a backlight), a bit murky, with good carbonation. A ¾ inch head from a fairly aggressive pour (i.e. once I realized the head was not going to be big, I went from down to side to down the middle pouring). The head is thick, slightly off-white, with good retention. Strings of lacing from tipping the glass.

The aroma has a lot of citrus, some pine even. If I work at it long enough, I do pick up the malts behind (way behind.)

The flavor is primed by the citrus in the aroma as I start to take a sip. The flavor itself follows with citrus, pine, fruit, and just a touch of the bready malts. Not too bitter in the beginning, but the bitterness does start right away, and intensify toward the finish to result in a quite bitter finish, especially after half-way thorough the beer. The aftertaste has the citrus and bittering lingering in the mouth. It's not bitter in the WCIPA category, but this is definitely brewed for IPAmerica, and not Irish-America.

Has a moderate body with a nice bite from the carbonation.

Quite hoppy and quite flavorful and satisfying. But, style-wise, it is a Red IPA, NOT a Red Irish Ale.

I'm rating to style, and even so I feel I am overrating. It is NOT a Red Irish Ale. Not, not, not.

For this beer to be the #1 rated Red Ale - Irish on this site is embarrassing. BA members should be embarrassed.
Mar 28, 2022
Photo of milkshakebeersucks
Reviewed by milkshakebeersucks from Maryland

4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Appearance: Clear copper with a small off white head and very good lacing.
Aroma: Notes of caramel, toffee, herbal tea and just a bit of orchard fruit.
Taste: Hops a bit more prominent but earthy, grainy malts still prevail. Lingering finish.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, moderately bitter, decently carbonated.
Overall: Really like the way all the parts mesh
Mar 27, 2022
Photo of Rug
Reviewed by Rug from Massachusetts

3.88/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
Bottled 2/10/22

What an odd style to obtain the highest rated example of. Who’s even making Irish Reds anymore? It has to have been over a year since I’ve had one, but I’m certainly excited to tick this one. Let’s see how tou did, 3 Floyds

Pours a dark orange gold with 2 fingers of creamy off white head that slowly fades to a thin cap and leaves minimal lacing

This honestly just smells like a maltier red IPA, but I’m not complaining. I’m picking up on aromas of biscuity malt, rye bread, resinous hops, caramel, toffee, white pepper, and light orange zest

In taste it sadly feels a bit muddled, but it’s not really bad. On the front end of the sip I’m tasting caramel malt, toffee, orange zest, fresh pine, resinous hops, and white pepper. The swallow brings notes of red malt, resinous hops, rye bread, white pepper, pithy grapefruit, and light toast

A light medium body pairs with gentle carbonation, resulting in a oily yet crisp beer. Finishes mostly dry but a bit sweet

This is just a pretty average beer that’s overly hopped, but it’s not bad at all. I could probably throw a few back
Mar 27, 2022
Rated: 4.13 by kinmundy77 from Illinois

Mar 26, 2022
Rated: 4 by n2492004 from Michigan

Mar 26, 2022
Photo of Phoodcritic
Rated by Phoodcritic from Michigan

3.42/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
I agree with others who say this ale is too bitter for the style. It’s a red IPA.
Mar 25, 2022
Rated: 4 by paulish from New York

Mar 21, 2022
Rated: 4.21 by stanale from Illinois

Mar 19, 2022
Photo of teromous
Reviewed by teromous from Virginia

2.29/5  rDev -43.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2
Just like in the picture for this beer, the bottle date is located just above the paper label on the glass. Without the picture I never would have found it: "BOTTLED 01/25/22 4378"

Appearance: The body is a orange-brown to burnt-umber color and it is very cloudy, allowing only hazy shadows at the edge. The head is a tobacco stained yellow color which is creamy textured and frothy. It has good head retention and some nice sloped sheets of lacing.

Aroma: It has a big aroma of burnt rubber, garlic, and onions. Mostly the burnt rubber aroma dominates but when that seems to occasionally move aside all that is left is this over-the-top garlic and onion aroma. There is also this really odd aroma of freshly broken celery. It's just a really strange smelling beer that isn't appealing at all.

Taste: Up front there is garlic flavor and some grain flour flavor. Some rye comes through up front as well. Towards the middle of the palate it tastes like rye and onions. On the back of the palate it is bitter herbs.

Mouthfeel: Medium to medium-light bodied and overly bitter with an awkward drinkability. Even as its own thing this beer feels out of place and very unrefined.

Overall: It feels like the kitchen sink was thrown at this beer in order to make it worthwhile and all you end up with is the contents of the garbage disposal. The burnt rubber character really killed this beer but also the under-attenuated body and the awkward bitterness. It isn't something I would buy again. I wouldn't recommend buying it.
Mar 18, 2022
Photo of REVZEB
Reviewed by REVZEB from Illinois

4.17/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4
This honestly reminds me of a lighter nugget nectar, which I am very pleased to have gotten a 6 pack of, but if you are looking for a traditional irish red, this is not it. Mostly opaque orangey amber body with a tan head. Piney and citrus hops lead the nose with amber malts and slight grains. Taste adds a pleasant toast component but has more hop resin. Feel is where I have to dock points as it is not traditional at all, super hopped, resinous, malt is there but not the star at all. Great beer but not really an irish red
Mar 18, 2022
Rated: 4.1 by uncleotis from Illinois

Mar 18, 2022
Rated: 3.96 by LunchMoney from Minnesota

Mar 17, 2022
Photo of WoodBrew
Reviewed by WoodBrew from Ohio

4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
I got a 6pck of bottles of this beer from my local meijer store. It poured a clear amber with off white head that is leaving some lace .the scent had nice mix of malt and finishing hops. The taste was nicely balanced and easy to drink with light sweet malt b!se and smooth bittering hop finish. The mouthfeel was medium in body and had good carbonation. Overall it is a great beer.
Mar 17, 2022
Rated: 3.95 by blissfulNemo from Michigan

Mar 17, 2022
Photo of HarlotBronte
Reviewed by HarlotBronte from District of Columbia

4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5
Bottled 2/10/22

L: Pours a beautiful ruby/copper. Off white head has good retention.

S: Fresh tropical hops. Doesn’t smell like an Irish red but smells good nonetheless.

T: Taste follows the nose with tropical fruit, grapefruit pith, and pine backed by toasted malt.

F: Medium bodied with good carbonation.

O: I’m torn since this is a good beer but not a good representation of the style at all.
Mar 16, 2022
Photo of roberthawkins
Reviewed by roberthawkins

2.72/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5
I rate this one on the lower side since I can't really go along with calling this an Irish red ale. It's just way too hoppy for that. The dominant flavor and aroma are that of citrusy American hops. It's a decent enough beer, I suppose, but if you're looking for a nice, toasty Irish red this isn't it. Go for a Conway's Irish Ale from Great Lakes Brewing instead. I'm kind of surprised Brian Boru has such a high average rating on here and suspect it has more to do with the strong reputation of Three Floyds than the beer itself. Seriously, how is this the top-rated Irish red on here?!!! Great name though.
Mar 12, 2022
Rated: 3.93 by Jsalz21 from New Jersey

Mar 12, 2022
Photo of Sludgeman
Rated by Sludgeman from District of Columbia

4.48/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Unbelievable aroma.
Mar 11, 2022
Photo of Treyliff
Reviewed by Treyliff from West Virginia

4.06/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
12oz bottle poured into a tulip

A- pours a deep amber with a ruby hue, one-finger foamy off-white head has great retention

S- malty nose up front with notes of toasted bread crust, caramel, toffee and dried leaves. Spicy hop aroma with notes of hemp, floral and grassy notes.

T- well balanced with malty notes of toasted bread, caramel and toffee, followed by hoppy notes of peppery and floral hops, with undertones of citrus peel. The finish is malty with a peppery hop kick on the linger

M- medium body with moderate carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel that continues into a creamy finish
Mar 05, 2022
Rated: 3.75 by DougT from Ohio

Mar 03, 2022
Photo of GuyFawkes
Reviewed by GuyFawkes from Illinois

3.73/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
Bottled 1/20/22; drank 3/1/22 @ the Yarchives.

Semi-opaque orange/red rust appearance.

An even pour yielded a nice khaki head; frothy, tree-rung lace.

Dry rye, grapefruit rind and faint copper notes in the nose.

Medium mouthfeel.

Dry rye & grapefruit flavors up front; pine needle notes on the finish.

Prickly & not my favored profile, but it's flavorful and interesting. Worth it in a pinch.
Mar 02, 2022
Rated: 4.23 by TerryG from Illinois

Mar 02, 2022
Rated: 3.75 by SSGCujo from Wisconsin

Feb 28, 2022
Brian Boru from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 1059 ratings