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Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale | Great Lakes Brewing Co.

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489 Reviews
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Great Lakes Conway's Irish AleGreat Lakes Conway's Irish Ale

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States

Style: Irish Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by chilidog on 07-28-2002

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 489 | Ratings: 1,476
Reviews by mfnmbvp:
Photo of mfnmbvp
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, with enjoy by date of 03/25/2014, which happens to be today, so I am just in time! Another new beer to me from Great Lakes Brewing Co., acquired as part of a mixed six pack at the local beer store.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter.

A - Pours a nice coppery amber colored body with one finger of fluffy off-white head. Thins to a nice ring with some good scattered lacing. Some decent clarity. Looks pretty good.

S - Smell is pretty minimal, but pleasant. Roasted malty nuttiness, and some underlying hints of indistinct hoppy fruitiness.

T - Taste follows the nose - smooth crisp malt body. Roasty and nutty. Light yeast character is detectable. Subtle hop resins. Malt forward and lovely.

M - Crisp and smooth. Excellent drinkability. Light-bodied with perfect carbonation.

Overall, a simple but excellent and tasty beer. Most everything I've had from Great Lakes has been delicious, and this one is no exception. I would definitely have it again.

Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale ---4/5.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #37 (Feb 2010):

Brassy orange color, clarity is there, and a healthy head, too. Apple and plum fruitiness with caramel malt fill the nose. Inviting smoothness makes you want to take sip after sip; lush medium body. Caramel runs into a veggie herbal hoppiness. Ripe fruit runs hard with apples, plum and pear. Hop bitterness is subtle but seems to have an unmovable layer in the middle. Lemon candy? The alcohol does show its strength with some warmth. Bittersweet finish.

While not sessionable compared to the more mainstream "Irish" beers, it's good to know that if you are looking for that craft beer around March 17th that has a bit more depth, this one will fill that void.

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Photo of dacrza1
4.02/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

DATE TASTED: March 17, 2016... GLASSWARE:Brew at the Zoo pint.. OCCASION: St. Patrick's Day--observed with an appropriate Irishman... APPEARANCE: dark orange amber, almost browning, body that cascades bubbles in a balanced and full manner; the head is off-white creamy and thick, holding at a full finger... the glass drain approaches lacing appearing almost as webbing... AROMA: surprisingly hoppy, with tangerine and mango wafting with flowery scents to evoke a pale without the resin... oven-raised dough and caramel make for a balanced suggestion--hearty yet accessible... PALATE: immediate presence at the throat, kicking open the door with its maltiness and leaving a thick, toasted residue in its wake... the hops soften at the teeth, with little suggestion or staying power there... medium-bodied, warming (at 6.5%, formidable) and worth mulling over after each sip... lively...TASTE: the toastiness is overt, with toffee and caramel demanding attention... the hops are light and afford some fruitiness--apple, tangerine... a slight basement dankness is winning, as it adds strength to each sip... some nuttiness and buttery hints jam as many different angles into the profile as it seems possible... OVERALL: Great Lakes continues to impress, this time with a style that comes across as a workingman's ale braced for the month of March... flavorful, refreshing, bolstering...definitely worth the six I picked up just for the holiday...

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Photo of hophead723
4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Me and my brother grabed a quick six pack of this, Irish Red Ale has always been one of my favorite styles. The malts are Harrington 2-Row and Crystal 77. The hops are Northern Brewer, Mt. Hood, and Willamette. Poured into a classic pint glass.

Look: Stunning, crystal clear orange-amber color with a foamy off-white head. The carbonation rises slowly indicating a classic medium body.

Smell: Toasty and caramely aroma with hints of honey and mineraly Irish spring water. The aroma is subtle but rich with enticing character.

Taste/Feel: Caramel malts, lots of unfiltered wildflower honey, toasted cracker, and lemony hops at the end. Luscious and creamy at first but with an amazing crisp finish.

Overall: This particular beer is an exquisite example of the Irish Red Ale. I knew the moment I saw it on the Great Lakes website that it would be awesome. Can't wait to have it on tap, where it would be even smoother.

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Photo of TheNightlyPint
3.53/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Clear amber orange with a thin barm that doesn't hang out long. Some candied lemon on the nose. Flavors of apricot jam on toast. Smooth mouthfeel and clean finish. A viable option if you want to drink something slightly outside the mainstream this St. Patrick's Day.

 266 characters

Photo of kentuckyboy
4.08/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Let me start off by saying this brew is nothing less than anything id expect from Great Lakes! They really hit the nail on the head with this one! Currently enjoying my second of a 6 pack poured into a pint glass and served chilled.

Appearance - 4: A beautiful ruby/amber hue when held to the light. A thick one and a half finger off white cream colored head when poured correctly from bottle to glass. Head dissipates relatively fast with with moderate lacing.

Scent - 4: A very pleasant scent to this brew! Sweet biscuit, caramel, and malt are most prominent.

Taste - 4: Thick and sweet biscuit with a sweet caramel and malty aftertaste with definite notes of roasted barley. Not too sweet though; just right! Thickness lighter than, but surprisingly comparable to a good dobbelbock.

Mouthfeel - 4.25: Absolutely phenomenal. Probably one of the main reasons i enjoy this beer so much. The malt and carbonation give this brew just the right thickness. Goes down creamy and thicker than you'd expect.(perhaps due to the served temperature)

Overall - 4.25: This beer is absolutely fantastic! Bready, thick, and sweet. The best of what you'd hope from a proper Irish ale! bout to grab another! Cheers! :D

 1,207 characters

Photo of oberon
3.91/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This along with Casco Riptide are my favorite red alse out there,pours a deep red/amber with a real nice creamy sticky head,the aroma is nutty and malty sweet with some bread-like aromas.The taste is slightly burnt with some real nice malty sweetness,very good roasted qualities with a ever so slight hop profile.A real nice beer to sit down and savor.

 352 characters

Photo of RoyalT
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- This one is more brownish-orange than red with a nice, off-white head that came up on an easy pour and showed some retention.

Smell – The European hops and laid back grainy malts were well balanced at the nose. I found the big, sugary sweetness quite pleasant and a good compliment to the bouquet.

Taste – Ah, the grain picked things up at the taste. They are very well done and heavily complimented with sugar. There’s some good Euro hopping in here as well. It’s grassy and bitter and mixes well with the overall flavor profile.

Mouthfeel – This one is just barely medium in the body with some live carbonation and a nice, lightly bitter finish.

Drinkability – This is a nice session ale that would go down well any time of the year.

Comments – Thanks to BuckeyNation for sending this GL beauty shop out my way.

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Photo of tectactoe
3.67/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.75

Rusty, sunburst orange throughout with an otherwise nice clarity that's obscured by a gentle, yeasty haze. The head grows quickly and recedes not quite as fast; eggshell colored and fluffy as all hell, it leaves a few sheets of lacing on the glass, though they are pretty fast to run down back towards the top of the beer.

Hmm, wow, the nose is just a bit different than any other brew I've smelled before; perhaps (and most likely) because I haven't had too many Irish red ales. Malty sweet with rich caramel and buttery toffee aromas at capacity, followed up by a lighter, yet integral proportion of lightly fruity and somewhat grassy hops. Toasted malt is the key player here, and I would assume that the hops may be more aggressive when this beer is a bit fresher; I'll admit that it's just a little bit past its prime now.

Well, the nose wasn't lying; Conway's Irish Ale is a malty bomb that lays the pipe as soon as it hits your palate. Coming out a bit more robust than the aroma, the flavor smacks you with some faintly metallic caramel malts - sweet, rich, toffee-like, and toasty. Lighter bready flavors bring up the rear; somewhat buttery and toasty with a touch of burnt grains and graham cracker.

The hops are there, and even for being a touch over-the-hill, they still balance the malty sweetness nicely; a nice round of slightly floral and grassy hops roll through the flavor profile, hand-in-hand with an orange-like fruit juiciness that can't go unnoticed. Mildly bitter, enough to counteract the sweetness, but not enough to scrape any enamel away or anything like that. The finish lends a hand to some slightly nutty and woodsy, toasted malt flavors for a warm, dry finish. Thicker bodied than you'd expect with a mild stickiness that adheres to the sides of my mouth; a little cloying and teeth chattering in this respect.

One of my first of the style, I enjoyed it a bit, although I know I'd get tired of it after one bottle (much like I did this time around). The intense caramel and toffee malts are nice at first but can be a touch overwhelming after twelve ounces. Tasty brew, no doubt, but one is certainly enough for me.

 2,152 characters

Photo of OhioBobcat
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of sgoodship
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My mother in-law gave me a few bottles of this on her last visit from Cleveland.

A: Poured from a 12oz bottle, it popped up a nice finger off-white head. It was creamy and instantly started to stick. Spotty lacing. The color is a nice brown red amber. Some large carbonation bubbles sit at the bottom of the glass and rise intermittently.

S: Nice simple, dry, sour malt smell. Very earthy.

T: There's a creaminess to the taste. It is woody/nutty with a slight sweetness. The finish is characteristically very dry. A gentle hop balances it out. The dryness really makes you want to keep on sipping away. There's a breadiness which is a little tantalizing because I wish it were more.

M: Light body but there is a creaminess that makes it feel more medium body. There is a medium carbonation that keeps things lively.

D: A really nice, solid ale. Man, it's nice to drink something clean and simple in these days of big and complex. It's just a good beer. Nothing more, nothing less. Another nice brew to enjoy from Great Lakes. They really know how to make beer.

 1,066 characters

Photo of Dan_Bowman
5/5  rDev +31.2%

Photo of markmo
4.75/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of ROBORB
3.37/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle thanks to Mike B., thanks man!

Beer pours a reddish/brown hue with a short lasting head. I picked up lots of malts and toffee/carmel in the aroma. The finish improves as the beer warms as the carbonation is a little to prickly at first. Not a bad beer but nothing extraordinary.

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Photo of warnerry
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From notes. Best by 4/12/11; consumed 3/17/11

A - Pours clear amber with two fingers of head that has pretty good retention.

S - Mostly malts a bit sweet and a bit of toasted grain.

T - Similar to smell, taste is slightly sweet malts and toasted grains. Finishes pretty clean. Pretty tasty.

M - Nice medium mouthfeel. Coats the palate without being heavy.

O - An easy drinking Irish red. I wish I had gotten a bit more hops out of this, but not bad as is.

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Photo of Jpinoniemi
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of generallee
4.73/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: The body has light amber honey color with very good clarity. On top it forms a big creamy off white colored head. The head slowly fades but hangs on well and make cool rings of lace on the glass.

Smell: The aroma is mostly sweet with hints of lightly roasted grains, bready yeast, light hops and some mild fruit notes.

Taste/Mouth Feel: Its flavor has a good solid medium body with a sweet malty character that is tempered with just enough leafy hops for some balance. There are notes of bread, light caramel malt, orange marmalade and mild hops. The palate is smooth, slightly slick and easy drinking with mellow carbonation.

Notes: I love Great Lakes and this is one of my favorites. I also converted my mother and step father to craft beer with this Irish Ale! How cool is that!!!

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Photo of ValpoExpo
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of dditto2
3.66/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of SmellsofMahagony
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of Duster72
3.28/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear reddish amber with little head and no retention. Aroma is sweet malts with no hop character. Taste is very like iced tea with some roastiness and strawberry present. A fine beer but nothing remarkable -- I wouldn't be interested in having it again, especially when it sits next to Commodore Perry!

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Photo of BuckeyeSlim
4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a New Belgium snifter.

I was drinking this on draft earlier this evening and had a bottle in the beer fridge ready for tasting notes. Without being specific before opening the bottle, and working from memory, I found the drafts to be pretty tasty, with a nice balance between malts and hops. It was pretty easy to order another when the tall pint was empty.

A - 2&1/2 finger head of tight but loosely packed off-white foam that collapses quickly into pockets, leaving a cloud of foam on the surface and lace on the sides. Copper orange and clear.

S - Lightly toasted malts, soft sugars, and hints of citrus hops.

T - Very similar to the nose. Bready, toasted malts and caramels give way to a subtle but present finish of citrus hops that is nicely balanced. Toffee appears on the tongue in the finish as it warms. Yummy.

M - A tad creamy, but definitely not at all thick. Reasonable carbonation. Nice structure, although some might find it just a tad thin. Finish fades pretty quickly, leaving a memory of malts and hops on the roof of the mouth.

D - If this evening is any proof, several tall pints go down quite easily during games of trivia. Another very quaffable brew from GL. While the bottle is tasty, the drafts were even better. This is one drinkable beer.

 1,297 characters

Photo of orm56
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of Jason
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of merlin48
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: 12 oz bottle pours a chill hazed, ruby amber body with a tightknit, two finger beige head. Good head retention, and some sheets of lace are left on the glass.
Aroma: Floral and fruity hops mingle with malt notes of toffee and caramel.
Mouthfeel: Light medium body with medium carbonation.
Taste: Toasty and bready malts offer up a good deal of toffee and caramel sweetness, but floral European hops balance well with a moderate bitterness. Some apple peel fruitiness really hits the spot. Clean and even on the finish, with a dry and bitter hops aftertaste.
Drinkability: Probably my favorite Irish Red Ale, I prefer this one to Smithwick's. This would be an excellent session ale.

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Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
3.81 out of 5 based on 1,476 ratings.
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