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Irish Golden Ale Hunt 30th September, Bull and Castle

Want some information on a favourite craft beer or want to share your own thoughts with the community? This is the place to do it.

Postby a_friend_in_mead » Tue Sep 14, 2010 2:34 pm

Like Bigfoot, UFO's and Leitrim I claim this exists and no one believes me. If you want to find out come along on Thursday the 30th at about 7


I think Irish Pale ale is a new style of beer that deserves recognition as a seperate type of drink. I cannot nail down how to describe this style But the beernuts description is good
The beernut years ago said "The makers claim "Irish Pale Ale" is a new genre, which I was a bit sceptical about but now I can see where they're coming from. This has a touch of the caramel of the classic Irish red, but also a whole lot of the green, vegetal hops of the textbook IPA."

I think The following are Irish Pale Ales
Galway hooker from Hooker Brewery
Or, Trouble Brewing
O'Hara's IPA, Carlow Brewing Company
Copperhead Pale Ale, Whitewater Brewing Co.
Buckleys, in the Bull and Castle
Purgatory Pale Ale, The Franciscan Well

I think other breweries might be brewing this style
Helvick Gold Ale, Dungarvan Brewing Company
Scullion’s Irish (amber) Ale, The Hilden Brewery
Béal Bán, Beoir Chorca Dhuibhne


And I cannot think of one of these ales brewed by some of the big micros such as Messrs Maguire, The Porterhouse Brewing Co. or White Gypsy

So
1. Is Irish Pale Ale a style? Is this the right name for it?
2. How would you describe it?
3. What beers are in this style?
4. Would you be up for a Irish Pale Ale blind tasting? Not as a test to see if you can recognise them but more to put them together and taste if they really do form a style.
Last edited by a_friend_in_mead on Wed Sep 22, 2010 3:37 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby TheBeerNut » Tue Sep 14, 2010 2:43 pm

I think the same logic applies here as I think apply to India Pale Ale: if that's what the brewery calls it, that's what it is. The only other beers I can think of that call themselves Irish Pale Ale are Titanic Quarter and O'Hara's.

Going by the description you've quoted, I don't think Ór, O'Hara's, Copperhead, Buckley's and Purgatory have enough of a sweet malt base to qualify.

a_friend_in_mead wrote:1. Is Irish Pale Ale a style?
No.

a_friend_in_mead wrote:4. Would you be up for a Irish Pale Ale blind tasting? Not as a test to see if you can recognise them but more to put them together and taste if they really do form a style.
Always.
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Postby a_friend_in_mead » Tue Sep 14, 2010 3:43 pm

I would say Ór and Buckley's have the green, vegetal hops that seems characteristic to me.

Were these beers ever called 'Irish Golden Ale' or am I imagining that?
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Postby TheBeerNut » Tue Sep 14, 2010 3:45 pm

Buckley's calls itself a "Golden Ale", I think. Ór, despite its name, is usually described as a blonde.
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Postby sbillings » Tue Sep 14, 2010 4:01 pm

I'm not sure there really is an Irish Pale Ale style, as such but I am certainly willing to take part in a tasting of these beers.
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Postby silenus » Wed Sep 15, 2010 10:42 am

TheBeerNut wrote:Buckley's calls itself a "Golden Ale",

Buckley'swas nor created to be a Pale Ale, the flavour is there to give the beer a bite because of the low Abv.
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Postby a_friend_in_mead » Wed Sep 15, 2010 10:57 am

Buckley'swas nor created to be a Pale Ale, the flavour is there to give the beer a bite because of the low Abv.


I think it works really well. Would you put Buckely's in the same class as Or and Hooker or is it more a general ale?
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Postby silenus » Fri Sep 17, 2010 11:46 am

a_friend_in_mead wrote:Would you put Buckely's in the same class as Or and Hooker


No, Buckley's was created to allow drinkers a low Abv beer, and to pay accordingly €3.85. Hooker & óR are designed to attract craft beer drinkers.

Although it falls under the term Irish Craft Beer, that's not what people see in it. It's actually one of our best sellers because of the amount we sell during the daytime, down to the Abv most likely.
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Postby a_friend_in_mead » Fri Sep 17, 2010 12:05 pm

I don't think the low alcohol level precludes Buckley's from being craft beer or an Irish Golden Ale. I would say sessionability is one of the characteristics of the style.

If I handed a group of beer nerds some stouts and some porters and they could not say which was which that would imply that stouts and porters are the same thing? Say you blind tried tell Hooker, Or, Buckleys (maybe Carlow IPA) apart from two light English Ales. If you could would that not imply they were a distinctive style?

We get three Irish Golden Ales (which may be shown not to exist by this test) and two similar English ales. If we can tell them apart the Irish ales are different and maybe their own style if not the Irish ales don't exist and possibly we don't :? .
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Postby TheBeerNut » Fri Sep 17, 2010 12:15 pm

a_friend_in_mead wrote:If I handed a group of beer nerds some stouts and some porters and they could not say which was which that would imply that stouts and porters are the same thing?
Yes. and would confirm that they are the same thing. See Zythophile's comparative analysis of ABV and taste descriptors here.

a_friend_in_mead wrote:We get three Irish Golden Ales (which may be shown not to exist by this test) and two similar English ales. If we can tell them apart the Irish ales are different and maybe their own style if not the Irish ales don't exist and possibly we don't :? .
Fine in principle, it's not appropriate to limit the test to English ales only. You'll need some Americans in there too, as the Irish beers are based on those too. You'll also have problem with the noticeble differences between draught and bottled beers.
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Postby a_friend_in_mead » Fri Sep 17, 2010 12:23 pm

Fine in principle, it's not appropriate to limit the test to English ales only. You'll need some Americans in there too, as the Irish beers are based on those too. You'll also have problem with the noticeble differences between draught and bottled beers.


Good point if you went for three Irish draft golden ales you would need other draft ales for comparison which I do not think you will get.

Eh how about we just meet in the Bull and Castle and blindly taste Hooker, Or, Buckley's and see which is our favorite?
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Postby TheBeerNut » Fri Sep 17, 2010 12:27 pm

You could throw in some draught Sierra Nevada, if that's still around.
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Postby a_friend_in_mead » Fri Sep 17, 2010 12:38 pm

So who is up for the first annual "Try some beers that might be in the style of Irish Golden Ales if that style exists and maybe compare some foreign ales extravaganza"? And when suits?

I'll get working on the poster for this trip to the pub.
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Postby Irish Party Ale » Fri Sep 17, 2010 1:23 pm

Sounds interesting - I'd be up for this (any excuse eh?)
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Postby TheBeerNut » Fri Sep 17, 2010 2:02 pm

Yep: name the date.
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