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

very good
491 Reviews
Read the review
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:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 491 | Ratings: 1,496
Photo of KYGunner
3.73/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Very clean in appearance there was a swiftly fleeting and wispy head that set atop a bright rusty red hue.

The scent favors a caramel and toffee sweetness. Dry kilned barley couples with a pecan nuttiness and very faint chocolate malts.

The flavors are rich with kilned barley and an almost smoky taste. I catch touches of roasted malt with hints of nut and caramel sweetness, plus I get a finish of hop bitterness. The taste and feel are dry.

The bottle indicates its about three months old, which should not be old enough to lose its Pop. The flavors are good but I feel like if it were at its freshest this could be more robust.

 634 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

Photo of microbrewlover
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

This brew pours a red/brown color with a white one finger head which dissipates rather quickly; minimal lacing on the glass.

The smell is heavy with sweet and roasted malts, some carmel and a little orange also the smell is dank and earthy.

The taste quickly moves from malt sweetness, orange, carmel to tangy hop bitterness. The various tastes seem to hit all at once and that makes it hard to appreciate the individual flavors.

The mouthfeel is really tangy thanks to the high carbonation, there is also a cracker like feel to this brew.

Overall this is a good session beer, a little to tangy for my tastes. The sweetness in the smell does not come through in the taste and the whole thing has the carbonation level of soda. Not bad but this could be better.

 764 characters

Photo of TheSSG
3.38/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a big, soft, off-white head that collapses down nicely to a fine head. Aroma is biscuity, sweet, a touch of caramel, and a touch of hops. Nice light-amber color. Starts sweet with notes of caramel and hop bitterness. Builds to a medium-low bitterness, then the malt comes back with a vengeance. Smooth, slightly sweet biscuit in the finish, a touch a caramel, and a faint lingering of grassy/grainy hops.

This isn't too bad. It's a really excellent balance of sweet malt and hops. I'm not really digging the slight caramel aspect to it, but it's still well done.

 569 characters

Photo of Bills453
3.33/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - poured from bottle into chalice. Dark orange color with red tint. Nice one finger head, left pretty quickly but the lacing is real nice.

Smell - grassy, plant smell. Some wheat/straw. A hint of sweetness which smells floral.

Taste - ok. Seems to really be missing a strong flavor.

Mouthfeel - ok

Overall - not my favorite from Great Lakes, actually I think this one is my least favorite. Still an ok beer tho.

 426 characters

Photo of NiceTaps
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap in a pint glass.

A-Reddish copper color, vivid. About a 1-finger head, some lacing.

S- Raisin bread.

T- Dry toasted malt, dark fruit, cinnamon-raisin.

M-Good body and carbonation, long dry finsh.

O- A good beer that I'd drink again, this one may have suffered from sloppy barkeeping.

 295 characters

Photo of dpodratsky3
3.64/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass

A: Crystal clear very bright copper, small head doesn't last, thin foam around edges

S: Malty base with earthy hops, clean aroma, sweet but not heavy

T: Definitely malty sweet, but actually has a decent bitter backbone, unfortunately its a little too herbal for me, I'd prefer clean buttering, the herbal notes make the malt taste funky, not bad but it could be better, malt is caramel in flavor but not dark, doesn't ever get cloying but has a decent bready base

M: Just on the dry side, medium to full body

O: Solid, but not a standout

 578 characters

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.63/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is an easy drinking, if not very challenging Irish ale. Minimal amounts of that mildly fruity and leafy thing that seems prevalent in the style. Decent enough to drink, though not overly interesting or mind blowing. I hope this is an accurate sample of this beer. Really, I just tried it because it was one of the Great Lakes beers I had yet to check out. Next!

 366 characters

Photo of patpbr
3.94/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours reddish with a nice head. I rarely drink this style and bought because of the date. Malts and grain in the nose. The taste is malt and a strong hop presents. Overall it blends nicely. Medium carbination. It exceeded what I thought I would get in this style.

 263 characters

Photo of wac9
2.42/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

it took me 8 years fo find this beer it has a great beer smell , and it pour nice in a glass its not red maybe dark orange goes down smooth but it taste like im swallowing a flower big disappoint here for all of you who likes good for you but i cant wait for there other wonderful beers

 286 characters

Photo of NuclearSoAndSo
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured into a beer mug.

Appearance: Pours a not quite two-finger head which dissipates within a few minutes. Has a great golden-amber color; lots of bubbles on the side of the mug.

Smell: Has a decent nose; grainy and hoppy.

Taste: Plenty of hop bitterness with a malty presence, and just a touch of grainy sweetness to finish it out. Crisp.

Mouthfeel: Quite carbonated and sort of light in a good way. Not in taste but in the body; refreshing.

Overall: An all around good beer, I can dig it. I would buy this one again, always a fan of GLBC.

 548 characters

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

A- pours a bright copper color with some ruby-red hue, small fizzy white head that reduces quickly, leaving just a bit skimming the top.

S- very clean grain with some toasted nutty character, herbal tea-like hop aroma with some sweet bread

T- well balanced, sweet malty character matches well with the toasted grain, hop linger provides freshly steeped tea flavor, the finish is slightly sweet-yet-dry with a clean finish

M- medium body and medium carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel and fizzy finish

O- this is a simple, well made beer. Four ingredients that are finely balanced

 587 characters

Photo of bum732
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

S: Rich, toasty character, faint floral notes

L: Crystal clear, orangish red, white creamy head that dissipates

T: Toasty, fairly clean malt with a touch of herbal hop flavor. Medium low bitterness with some hints of fruity tea nearing the finish. Finishes semi-dry. Slightly herbal.

M: Medium bodied, medium low carbonation

Solid, quaffable beer. One of the better for the style.

 384 characters

Photo of dbrauneis
3.7/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Served on-tap at the Doubletree Cleveland Downtown Lakeside in Cleveland, OH

A: Pours a clear deep amber in color with some heavy amounts of visible carbonation and light ruby red highlights. The beer has a finger and a half tall dense light beige head that very slowly reduces to a thin film covering the majority of the surface of the beer with a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of toasted and caramel malts with a hint of toffee sweetness. There are some light fruit notes from the yeast and just the faintest hint of citrus/orange peel hops.

T: Upfront the malts really take center stage with some toasted malt flavors that have notes of caramel and toffee sweetness followed by a slight hint of breadiness (which still has a bit of the toasted flavors). There are light hints of fruit and just a touch of citrus/orange peel hops. Lightly bitter in the finish which does not linger.

M: On the lighter side of medium bodied with moderate to heavy amounts of carbonation.

O: Easy to drink and enjoyable for folks that enjoy the malt forward style (I do). Alcohol is well hidden and this beer is almost sessionable. Pairs well with food.

 1,209 characters

Photo of CurtFromHershey
4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a bronze amber with fluffy white head which recedes to a ring which is more stubborn than my wife.

Smell is of toffee, caramel, and almost a hint of coffee.

Taste taste is clean crisp, true to the nose. Hint of chocolate malt rather than the coffee on the nose.

Mouthfeel is pretty standard for a sessionable ale. Move along.

Overall a solid beer from Great Lakes which I'll likely buy again.

 402 characters

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – Pours a deep amber color with a one finger just slightly off white head. The head has a pretty good level of retention, slowly fading to leave spotty lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell- The aroma is heaviest of toasted malt and a sweet caramel aroma. Mixed with these are a light toasted bread and fruit aroma of apple and some spice.

Taste – The taste begins with a bready and toasted malt flavor with a lightly caramel sweetened flavor as well. As the flavor advances more the caramel fades more toward the middle with a light fruit flavor taking its place. The roasted malt flavor dwindles as well as the flavor moves on with a more doughy like flavor replacing it. In the end some light spice flavors of cinnamon and nutmeg as well as a light earthy hop come to the tongue. In the end a quite pleasant light roasted malt cider and spice flavor is left on the tongue.

Mouthfeel- The body of the beer is a bit on the thicker and chewier side with a carbonation level that is on the more average to just above average side. The slightly higher carbonation is nice for keeping the drinkability, but not too high to take away from the aspects the thicker body accentuates- the roasted and spiced flavors of the brew.

Overall – As should be of no surprise this is another good brew by Great Lakes. It has a nice blend of roasted and sweet flavors while still maintaining great drinkability but still remaining quite proficient in flavor.

 1,501 characters

Photo of wedge
3.99/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a copper-orange color with a fluffy head. Toasted malt and nuts aroma...gently sweet, bready, slightly fruity. Tasty malt, biscuit, toffee, graham cracker, and tea flavors. Medium bodied and smooth. Sort of chewy and dry in the finish. An enjoyable and easily drinkable take on a style that is oftentimes pretty boring.

 325 characters

Photo of Jimmys
3.76/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle. drink before 04/11/13.

A: clear, bright copper body. head starts bubbly and bright white. retention is minimal as is the lacing.

S: lots of sweet caramel malt. smells inviting. a touch of acetone. virtually no hop bitterness.

T: malty sweet to start. flavor develops as the sip goes down. slightly metallic. flavor is rich. lingers long into the finish with woody and sweet unfermentables. sweet tang.

M: carb is moderate, slightly mellow. light/medium body.

D: im glad GLBC took this style and made it bigger. a style that could definitely use the meat, this is well welcomed. lots and lots of caramel flavors and aromas. if you are a fan of irish red's, pick this up.

 693 characters

Photo of RoamingGnome
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Conway's Irish Ale

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into an English dimpled pint glass. This was served chilled.

A) Medium amber in color. There was a finger of off-white head which slowly dissipated. Not much lacing.

S) A little caramel sweetness and some toast. It's a bit fruity, with a touch of earthy hops.

T) Malty for sure in the taste department, at least upfront. Light toffee sweetness, perhaps a bit nutty. The hint of fruit on the nose is detectable as well. This gives way to a earthy/grassy finish and aftertaste.

M) A nice medium bodied brew with pretty light carbonation. This goes down smooth and is quite easy to drink. Absolutely no complaints from mouthfeel standpoint.

O) A pretty solid session beer to enjoy this time of year. No wow factor, but quite enjoyable. Glad to recommend.

 806 characters

Photo of falloutsnow
3.74/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From: Binny's, Champaign, IL
Date: Best by 03/21/2013
Glass: US pint glass

A solid Irish Ale, interestingly malty and hoppy, easily appreciable by those able to enjoy beers in the maltier spectrum.

Pours a 1cm tall mass of foam, composed of small to medium-sized bubbles, slightly off-white in color, with average retention of a bit less than a minute. The head leaves very small bits of lacing along the sides of the glass, a few dots and thick lines scattered here and there. Body is a dark orange-brown-red color, transparent, with light bringing out orange and yellow hues. Carbonation is visible, though modest and not particularly vigorous.

Aroma is sweet, toffee-like, with lightly toasted malt and dried leaf-like, earthy hops.

The flavor of the beer is generally sweet with toasted and toffee-like malt components that verge on nuttiness as well. Some choice hop additions add what comes across to me as dried leaves, furthering the complexity. Opens with modest sweetness from toasted malts with hints of toffee. Mid-palate of sweetness from toasted malts, caramel malts with hints of faint cocoa, then balanced by faintly dried leaf-like hop accents. Back of palate picks up continued toasted malts and toffee-like sweetness with mild bitterness and dried leaf-like hops. Lingering aftertaste of toasted and caramel malts with slight bitterness and dried leaf-like hops.

Beer is medium-bodied, with carbonation of moderate intensity, leading to a mouthfeel that is somewhat fizzy at first, then foamy, then a mix of creamy and slightly watery mouthfeels. Closes dry, with moderate stickiness lingering across the palate.

 1,636 characters

Photo of CloudStrife
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a tulip. Freshest by 03/20/13.

A: Pours a clear reddish amber with a 1 finger off white head. A little bit of visible carbonation. A spot or two of lace.

S: Carmely malt notes are the first thing to hit my nose. Has a mild sweetness and a touch of earthiness.

T: Good malt forward taste. A hint of sweetness, a decent roastiness and certainly some carmel.

M: Light to medium body with a fairly crisp finish. A real easy drinker.

Overall a great beer for those who love the lighter yet maltier brews. Great Lakes makes some very tasty brews and this one fits perfectly in their family.

 617 characters

Photo of TheMultiYeast
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This Irish Red pours clear amber with a small white head and some lacing.

Smell is pleasant, soft, grainy, toffee sweetness, biscuits.

Similar to nose with a hint of hops for balance. Grainy biscuits dominate with light sweetness, just enough flavor development, clean finish.

Very drinkable, very tasty, smooth sessionable feel.

Just another solid offering from Great Lakes.

 379 characters

Photo of keithmurray
3.72/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - clear copper color with white head

Smell - this is faint, picking up caramel, green apple

Taste - green tea, caramel, green apple

Mouthfeel - smooth, medium bodied, high carbonation, sweetness upfront and some bitterness on the back/finish

Overall - good beer to have during a session, I am drinking this as I get ready for the SuperBowl

Price Point - $8.59/6pk 12oz bottles

 392 characters

Photo of tdm168
3.49/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - light caramel amber with a thin white lacing of head

S - caramel, some faint apple

T - apple, caramel, fruity esters, faintly bitter, some sweetness

M - medium bodied, smooth, well carbonated

This is a rather simplistic beer. The esters from the yeast provide most of the flavor offering some fruitiness. The malt is prevalent, but it really only adds caramel. This was a nice beer to try once, but this isn't something I would seek out again.

 451 characters

Photo of BierStein711
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Toasty Irish Ale poured from bottle into pint.

Two finger head, amber body!

Smells of toast and bread

Tastes of malt, toast, bread, and floral hop at the finish.

Tastes of malt, bread, smoke, floral hop, and more bread at the finish.

Smooth mouthfeel!

Overall, this is not a bad beer. But, I'm not too fond of the style.

I'd have this again!

 348 characters

Great Lakes Conway's Irish Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
3.81 out of 5 based on 1,496 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.