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

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very good
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

For Trade:
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Reviews: 489 | Ratings: 1,476
Photo of Pauly2X
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Solid clear amber with a half finger head.

S- Rich malty aroma with roasty/toasty notes.

T- Full caramel malty flavor that increases in complexity as you go to include some toasty notes along with a light hint of roasted malt. Toward the end there's a very light floral hop note right before the smooth sweet finish.

M- Medium boby with a nice light level of carbonation.

D- These are going down great.

Sometimes Red's can get boring but this is very full flavored while maintaining the approachability that reds are known for.

 535 characters

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this brew in a trade with drgonzo3705, Thanks Paul!

12oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

L - clear amber color with a fluffy beige head that left good lacing.

S - toasted malt aroma with a hint of earthiness.

T - rich malty flavored brew with a light hoppy bite right before a sweet finish.

F - medium bodied with good carbonation.

D - it would be easy to drink a few of these.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Gorgeous, yeasty, duskyrustic orange. There's a faint reddish blush perhaps, but not enough to include the word red in the description. The head is the usual from this brewery; that is to say: quality. It's light orange-influenced parchment in color, semi-firm in consistency and a splendid lace maker. While it isn't the stunner that other Great Lakes beers can be, it's lovely to look at nonetheless.

The nose is nicely aromatic and consists of sweetish, lightly toasted malt and fruity-herbal British hops. It doesn't jump out of the glass, but then show me a beer of this style whose nose does. Again, not the best that this brewery is capable of (I sense a trend), but still good and plenty nose pleasing.

I knew that the flavor would come through in the clutch; it always does. Conway's Irish Ale possesses a perfect combination of toasted bready malt and orangefruity hops; sweetness and bitterness. I use the word balanced a fair amount, but this beer is the epitome of balance among all of its various attributes. It's amazing how so many flavor elements can interact so seamlessly and can combine to create a wonderfully delicious ale.

It's my understanding that the typical Irish red ale is dry, but such is not the case here. The understated sweetness asserts itself more on the longish finish (as do the hops!), but stops well short of too sweet. The mouthfeel is on the light side of medium; something of a surprise coming from Ohio's best brewery. It fits the beer perfectly though and makes quaffing multiple bottles a breeze.

Conway's Irish Ale isn't one of my favorite Great Lakes brews, but then most of the rest of them live in the stratosphere. A pretty good GL beer is extraordinarily good when judged against the offerings of all but a handful of breweries. This is, by far, my favorite Irish red to date and is a beer that I heartily recommend. Thanks Mom for a terrific belated birthday present.

 1,932 characters

Photo of nicholas2121
4.29/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale brewed by Great Lakes Brewing Co. This Ale has an ABV of 6.50% The ale pours out a nice light brown color, with a nice white head. The smell of Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale is rich, with flavor. You pick up on grains, malts and hops. Now for the taste it bold with flavor. You pick up on malts and grains in this brew. Conway's Irish Ale has a nice balance to it, there is nothing overpowering in this brew. The mouthfeel is nice clean and rich. There is a nice smoothness to this brew. It is hard to pick up on the 6.5% in this brew, not saying that it a bad thing. Great Lakes Brewing Co., did a nice job with this one. I would buy this brew again. Overall I'm giving Conway's Irish Ale a 4.5 out of 5.

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Photo of frazbri
4.29/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured crimson-golden and clear with a short creamy white head, good lace. Floral, citrus and bread aromas. Malty, bready, with a citrus tang and mild bitterness. Medium-light body, moderate carbonation and a dry finish.

Conway's is another solid brew from Great Lakes. It stands on the sweet side of the balance scale. This would be a great selection for your St. Patrick's Day celebration. I've also gotta say this might be a good transition beer for your buddies. It is an easy drinking beer. If it was a tad lower in alcohol, it would be an ideal session beer.

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Photo of Clydesdale
4.28/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep, clear copper-orange. The tall, similarly-tinted head has a densely frothy texture and very strong retention. Sticky curtains of lace cling to the glass very nicely as the head slowly fades.

S: Firm caramel-sweet aromas are prominent. Strong toasty notes as well - some crusty breadiness is definitely going on here. Measured hop aromas are mostly herbal. A bit of fruitiness is also present.

T: Big, sweet, almost chewy caramel flavor up front. Toasted malts add a nice character that keeps an overall sweet beer from becoming overwhelmingly so. A bit of honeyish flavor. Some tealike flavors are also available, but they're relatively minimal behind the robust malt backbone. Subtle fruity notes persist throughout. Herbal hop presence provides a mild bittering balance.

M: Fairly full-bodied. Some moderately chewy sweetness. Carbonation is smooth and medium. Overall mouthfeel is a bit creamy and silky.

D: A robust, very tasty Irish red from Great Lakes. Fairly heavy hitting for the style, but it manages to avoid being too sweet or too alcoholic at any point. No surprises here from Great Lakes - a polished, delicious spring seasonal.

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Photo of evanackerman
4.28/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

finally found some of this at a local store.

Beer pours a beautiful amber with a thin head that dissipated quickly (this may have been due to my glass). moderate carbonation.

aroma is fruity hops and bready malt mixed with a tinge of alcohol.

taste is delicious toasted malt with a nice kick of hop bitterness. this would go great with a hearty stew.

mouthfeel is a bit thin but still pleasant.

drinkability is extremely high, a nice easy drinking ale here.

overall, i really enjoyed this beer, an all around well balanced winner, my favorite Irish Red to date. I'm not sure this brewery can do any wrong, hands down the best all around brewery in America.

 676 characters

Photo of Icedogs
4.27/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

My favorite Irish/Red Ale of them all. So smooth and easy-drinking. Yes, I am quite biased in favor of Great Lakes Brewing Company because one of my best friends worked there for nine years and I've spent many a fine afternoon/evening at the place. But my preference for GLBC beer is primarily because the beers are almost always outstanding. Cheers!

 350 characters

Photo of stimulus
4.26/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle (6 pack) into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear amber/red with a 2 finger cream head that slowly settles.
S: Toasted malts, toffee, and some light brown sugar.
T: Very much like the nose, this is big and malty, but nowhere near overpowering. Good for the style.
M: Light bodied, great carbonation, and a smooth finish.
D: I've been cherishing these, but they are definitely a sneaky session beer at 6.5% abv.

 433 characters

Photo of Jon_Hendricks
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours a light amber honey color.

Overall: The aroma is sweet with hints of roasted grains, bready yeast, light hops and some mild fruit notes. The taste has a sweet malty character and just enough hops for some balance. There are notes of bread, light caramel malt, orange marmalade and mild hops. This is a solid Irish Ale.

 337 characters

Photo of Brian_L-2056
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark orange/amber clear color. Has a nice malty caramel smell. The head is plentiful and off white in color. Initial taste is surprisingly pleasant, slightly malty, sweet and a hint of caramel. The flavor stays consistent to the finish. The lacing is very good and stays with you. This is only my 3rd Irish Red Ale so I'm still learning, but overall, I like this brew. I would definitely buy more.

 410 characters

Photo of Infamous7100
4.24/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thoroughly enjoyed this beer.
A: Poured a copper/light red from the bottle with very little lacing.
S: Malts, Malts and more Malts. You can smell the sweetness. Just a hint of a nutty scent as well.
T: Very sweet across the palate. The hops are detectable but blend very well. The malts win out. You can also pick up on the nutty flavor as well.
M: Smooth and satisfying! Thick and almost creamy, which I find impressive. Finishes clean and dry.
D: Once you have one, you want another. ABV a little higher than your typical brew, but you really wouldn't notice by the taste.

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Photo of chilidog
4.23/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A great looking ruby-red, medium bodied beer that pours to give a nice off white head and lace.It carries a stronger malt flavor with a fruity overtone, almost cherry-like. It drinks very smooth but leaves the mouth dry. The bottle credits a 1995 world beer champ on my 02 sample, I can't beleave im the first review. I got the end of this years run on this seasonal, Jan--March St. Pats, brew. It will be a good find next winter.

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

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass. Best before April 28th 2011, we are good to go baby!

A three finger head off a golden pour. Head is an off cream brown color with tiny bubbles that fall away at a good rate. Very clear body of a burnt orange with some visible carbonation. Leaves a good collar but no lacing throughout the drink.

Bouquet is an interesting airy toasty grassy malt. Man Great Lakes beers smell so dang good. Very unique smelling with some sweet caramel like smell hidden in the back.

Taste is a grass malt backbone, with a small hop profile. Herbal tea like in sensation with grass, but also a little carbonated too. Somewhat of a drying finish also.

Another win for the Great Lakes, it may not be my favorite Irish Red Ale but it's a good one for sure.

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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 PBRstreetgang
4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear bronze color. One finger head quickly falls to a thin but dense cap. Mild spotty lacing. Toasted amber malt nose with background spicy hops. Sweet caramel and dextrin taste, followed by a very evenly balanced german hop bitterness. Medium body and carbonation, very smooth and almost creamy. Finishes a touch sweet, with the hops more apparent; but mostly clean. easy to knock back a few of these. Once again, GLBC nails the style AND produces an outstanding beer.

 486 characters

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

Purchased from my local bottle shop, last two singles. A bit late in the season for it, let's see how it held up. Poured into a standard pint glass.

A: one finger of wispy carbonation that dissipates into a thin ring by mid-glass. Beatuiful light copper/amber color. Tasty looking.

S: Unreal. So well balanced and exactly what I would expect from an Irish Red. Hints of tea, malt, sweet smelling flowers.

T: smooth earthy flavors with toffee maltiness, nary an overpowering hop to ruin the sweet party, but there's definitely something under there.

M: So velvety and mouthfilling. Liquid silk. Carbonation is spot on. Finish is a semi-sweet fading good-by.

D: It seems quite sessionable...but don't even think about it. Dangerously mild for 6.5%.

Overall, this ranks up there with my favorite Irish Red's, if only it were available year'round.

 849 characters

Photo of scruffwhor
4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I see a bright yet deep ambery/copper. Very little head, but a cool column of tiny bubbles spewing from the bottom center of the glass. Very uniform. The aroma is a pretty inviting baked then quickly toasted, old fashioned white bread. It just smells warm and comforting. The first sip is great toasted malts, bread with a smooth light caramel finish. The palate is very upfront, nt a lot of stuff lurking in the shadows. No real nuances. Just great malt and a hint of caramel. Very easy to drink beer.

 502 characters

Photo of sliverX
4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

poored a nice transparent copper color very little beige head that dissipated down to nothing but a ring around the glass
Smell is sweet caramel malts, some biscuit notes along with some toast notes
taste is perfect Irish red, big malts no hop presence just nice caramel maltiness
mouthfeel is light with decent carbonation, a string or 2 of bubbles constantly streaming towards freedom
drinkability is very high a good beer to session with

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Photo of tedsox31
4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. The color was red with a beige head of foam that was small.

Aroma was toffee and caramel, some toasted malt in the background and just the slightest hint of hops in the background.

The taste really matched quite well with what I smelled. Caramel and toffee flavors are present up front, followed by some complexity from the malt.

Mouthfeel is not too heavy, and carbonated. It finishes dry, inviting another sip.

Overall, a very good beer. I can have several of these in a night as they taste quite good, and they won't leave me unable to function.

 607 characters

Photo of PhantomVodoo
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear reddish copper color. Off white head that fades to a thin coating. Aroma dominated by sweet, grainy malts.

Taste filled with sweet malt flavor that is hard to describe. Caramel, grainy, candied-apple, and whiskey all come to mind, but none seem to quite fit just right. Very smooth. Touch of sweet alcohol with a slight warming effect. Well-balanced. Hops provide a clean finish. Malts coat the tongue and leave a slight, lingering malt sweetness after the finish.

Good mouthfeel. Medium body.
Very drinkable for a beer with this much malt character.
Overall, a very good example of the style.

 608 characters

Photo of sixerofelixir
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on-tap 1-29-10 at the only bar in town with GL on draft. Review from notes.

I've had many bottles of this as well, but Conway's is excellent as a draft. Pours a really nice clear copper color, nice small-foam tannish head. Smell is nice and airy, a bit on the bready side. Taste is malty, chewy, with an awesome sweetness that permeates. No tankard-taste. A sweet malt that blends perfectly with the mild hoppiness. Little hops to speak of, but the finish is smooth and drinkability is good. Imbibe with dinner... a "meat and potatoes" beer, indeed.

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Photo of lovindahops
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Conway pours a glowing red body with a clear appearance and thin head that disappear. A solid look that is spot on for an Irish ale

S- a light plum with some sweet caramel and oat scent. There is some dry scents as well

T- great toasted flavor that mingles with a sweet bready theme. Think apples with caramel followed by a crisp finish of grapes and plum. Very good flavor

M- crisp, refreshing, and tasteful. Furthermore it's the right body from the style

O- a perfect irish ale. I will make this brew always around for the beginning of spring

 551 characters

Photo of Ricochet
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's been awhile since I've reviewed one from my hometown. For a red ale, this one scores on all bases. Dark amber with little head and full, dark malt smell with hops to spare. Mouth seemed light, with little to no bite and smooth when swallowing with a creamy finish. You can taste the hop bitterness, with the roasted malt flavor and alcohol making a balance that only beers that really nail thier style. Very dry from the bitterness and a slight wine note.

So, what can I say, this is great stuff. Another homer from the hometown brewery.

 546 characters

Photo of tviz33
4.19/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz bottle, served in a nonic pint glass.

A- A good pour reveals a full inch and a half of frothy white head covering a transparent burnt orange body.

S- The aroma is bready malts with some saltine cracker notes. A lot going on here, from cashews, to caramel, to hops.

T- Surprisingly malty even though the nose was malty. This beer is very different as to how the taste arrives on the palate. The flavors comes in late and quickly, but the are fairly sweet and refreshing. Just barely enough hops to balance it.

M- I would absolutely love the feel of this one if it was just a bit more carbonated. Super drinkable, however. Silky smooth.

O- A great beer to keep you on your toes and awaken all your senses.

 729 characters

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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