The Complete Guide to the 11 Most Popular Types of Beer

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What are the main types of beer?

Types of beer gives rise to more subcategories than drinkers know what to do with, from traditional lagers to robust IPAs to funky sour ales. alcohol.

This is a really good query. Finding the beer you enjoy the most will be much easier if you know the answer, which will also help you navigate the tap’s always changing selection. encompassing all of the principal beer styles and all of their variations

Despite the recent explosion in popularity of craft brewing, there are only a few fundamental varieties of beer. To feel more at ease and knowledgeable about one of the oldest alcoholic  beverages in existence, become familiar with the common types of beer.

To start, all beers fall into one of two categories: ales or lagers, depending on the type of yeast employed in the fermentation process.

Ales are created using yeast that ferments on top, whereas lagers are made with yeast that ferments at the bottom of the beer mixture.


Ale is a category of beer with a sweet, robust, and fruity flavour that is produced through heated fermentation. In the past, the phrase referred to a beverage that was brewed without hops. Ale often contains a bittering ingredient, like other beers, to counteract the malt and serve as a preservative. Gruit, a concoction of herbs or spices simmered in the wort prior to fermentation, was how ale was initially bittered. Later, the bittering agent was changed from gruit to hops. 
Beer is under the general category of ale, which includes subcategories like pale ales or brown ales. This beer’s history can be traced back to ancient times. An ale can be identified by its quick fermentation at a warm temperature, which also makes this type of beer accessible to home brewers. Top-fermenting yeasts are added by brewers throughout the brewing process; as the name implies, they ferment on the brew’s surface. What would normally be a barley and malt tea is transformed into an alcoholic beverage via the fermenting process.


Lager is a type of beer that has undergone low-temperature brewing and conditioning.  Lagers come in light, amber, and dark hues. The most popular and readily available type of beer is called pale lager. The word “lager” is derived from the German word for “storage,” as beer was originally preserved before consumption in the same chilly caves where it was fermented.
Lagers are a more recent type of beer that differ from ales in two important ways. Lagers require bottom-fermenting yeasts, which perform their magic by sinking to the bottom of the fermenting tank, to ferment for a long time at a low temperature.
Lagers are popular in Canada, where they account for more than half of all beer sales, as well as in European nations including the Czech Republic, Germany, and the Netherlands.


A type of ale, porter beers are known for their dark black color and roasted malt aroma and notes. Porters may be fruity or dry in flavor, which is determined by the variety of roasted malt used in the brewing process.

Dark beer of the Porter style was first produced in England in the 1700s. Porters are brewed with top-fermenting ale yeast, with the exception of Baltic porter. These brews are distinguished by their dark colour, ranging from deep red to nearly black, their well-balanced, meaty flavours, which frequently include chocolate and caramel.

Due to the use of brown malt, it had a dark hue and was heavily hopped. The name was given because it was well-liked by river and street porters.

Porter was extremely well-liked. By the end of the 18th century, manufacturing had started in Ireland, North America, Sweden, and Russia, making it the first beer style to be manufactured globally. 


Stout is a dark, robust beer that is popular in Ireland and Great Britain. Mild ales are strengthened with stouts. Oatmeal stout, milk stout, and imperial stout are just a few of the varieties. So-called dry Irish stouts, such as Guinness, have been well-liked stouts in the past.

Stouts are dark, roasted ales like porters. Stouts have a less sweet flavour than porters and frequently have a bitter coffee flavour from the addition of unmalted roasted barley to the wort. They have a big, creamy head that gives them away. One of the most well-known stouts in the world is perhaps Ireland’s Guinness.

Blonde Ale

Blonde Ale, often known as Golden Ale, is a straw to medium-bodied blonde ale with a mildly bitter and malty flavour. The style, which is closely akin to conventional mass-market lagers, was initially created to help mass-market consumers make the switch to craft brews.

Due to its gentle malt sweetness and traces of aromatic hops, this easy-to-drink brew is a summertime favourite. Blonde ales have a clear body and a light hue, as their name suggests. As opposed to being too hoppy or dank, they are often crisp and dry with little to no bitterness.

Brown Ales

Brown ales can be amber to brown in colour and have flavours of nuts, citrus, chocolate, or caramel. Since the various malts used and the country of origin may significantly alter the flavour and aroma of this underappreciated beer variety, brown ales are a bit of a mixed bag.
A beer style known as “brown ale” has a dark amber or brown hue. Although it now has a somewhat different connotation, the term was first used by London brewers in the late 17th century to describe their goods, such as mild ale. The brown ales brewed in the 18th century included only a little amount of hops.
Today, brown ales are produced throughout a number of nations, most notably in England, Belgium, and America. Brown ales don’t taste all that similar to pale beers, other than the fact that they are top-fermented and are deeper in colour. The word “brown ale” refers to a variety of beers, including sweet, low-alcohol brews like Manns Original Brown Ale, medium-strength amber ales with mild bitterness like Newcastle Brown Ale, and malty but hoppy beers such as Sierra Nevada Brown Ale.


Pale Ale

A golden to amber-colored beer style called pale ale is made with pale malt. The phrase first originated for beers manufactured from malts dried with high-carbon coke around 1703, giving them a brighter hue than other popular beers at the period. Within the pale ale family, there are a variety of tastes and intensities due to various brewing techniques and hop dosages.

Pale ales are a type of English beer distinguished by its copper colour and fruity aroma. Do not be misled by the name; these beers are robust enough to go nicely with spicy dishesThe APA, or American Pale Ale, is a variant of the pale ale that is related to the original English pale ale and the IPA type. American pale ales typically contain American two row malt and are hoppier.

India Pale Ale

India Pale Ale, sometimes known as IPA, was first a British pale ale prepared with more hops. The beer was sufficiently stable thanks to high amounts of this bittering agent to avoid deteriorating over the protracted boat ride to India. Beers with a high hop content have a bitter flavour. IPAs can taste of resin and pine or have fruit-forward citrus notes depending on the type of hops used.
The hoppy beer style known as India pale ale (IPA) belongs to the larger category of pale ales. By 1815, the India pale ale style was common in England. It would go on to gain popularity, especially as an export beer shipped to India (which remained under the jurisdiction of the British East India Company until 1858) and other countries.
To fulfil American beer drinkers’ fondness of the IPA brew type, American brewers have taken the IPA style and run with it, including unexpected flavours and ingredients.
Types of beer


A top-fermented beer called wheat beer is made with a significant percentage of wheat in comparison to malted barley. German Weizenbier and Belgian Witbier are the two main variations, and other options include Gose, Lambic (a beer brewed with wild yeast), and Berliner Weisse (a hazy, sour beer) (a sour, salty beer). A type of beer called wheat beer has its roots in Bavaria. It is typically a top-fermented ale, brewed with at least 30% wheat, and available in a variety of varieties.
Wheat beers are a simple, light beer variety with a pleasant flavour and hazy appearance. Hefeweizen, or unfiltered wheat beer, is one of the most popular varieties. Wheat beers typically taste like spices or citrus.



A type of pale lager, pilsner is sometimes known as pilsener or just pils. It gets its name from the Bohemian city of Plze (German: Pilsen), where the Pilsner Urquell Brewery created the first pale lager in history in 1842, currently known as Pilsner Urquell.

Pilsner beers, a subspecies of lager, are defined by their water, which ranges from soft to hard. Pilsners are among the lagers with the most hop flavour and are often dry and slightly bitter. Pilsners are a well-liked summer beer due to their pale golden hue, clean body, and sharp finish.

Sour Ale

Sour ales are an old-fashioned beer style that has gained popularity recently. They are made from wild yeasts, much like sourdough bread. These brews are renowned for their acidic tang, which goes well with spices and fruit from the tropics. Sour beers include goses, a German sour beer prepared with coriander and sea salt, lambics, which are Belgian sour beers blended with fruit, and Flanders, a Belgian sour beer aged in wooden tanks. Beer that has been purposely made to taste acidic, tart, or sour is called sour beer. Traditional sour beer varieties include German gose and Berliner Weisse, as well as Belgian lambics, gueuze, and Flanders red ale.

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