Something that most people don’t realize is that there are many types of beer. They have different percentages of alcohol content and different flavours. Let’s look at the types of beer and how they vary from each other.
Ale is one of the oldest and the most traditional forms of beer. It was a significant source of nutrition in medieval times with the exception of bread. It is brewed according to the warm fermentation method with top fermenting yeast. It has a sweet fruity taste and has a fuller body compared to most lagers. They also have a strong malt taste and are very aromatic.
There are many varieties of ale such as pale ales, browns, porters, wheats, stouts, and Belgians. Browns have a medium body and do not have much hop. Belgian beer is a blend of the rich and complex. They’re brewed mostly from Belgian yeast. Pale ales are identified by their characteristic bitterness. Sours are just as the name signifies with a tart flavour. Wheats can be quite flexible in their taste as they can be either medium bodied or light. Stouts and porters are quite similar with a few differences. Porters can be a little sweeter than stouts. Both big companies and independents brew ale; independently brewed beer is usually called craft beer.
The best craft beers can express a more traditional taste.
The term lager originates from the German word that means “to store”. The two defining characters of lagers are the use of bottom-fermenting lager yeast and their maturation period in cold storage. Caves were used as cold storage in medieval times. They have a lighter body and have a sense of crispiness in comparison with most ale. It is better to serve them while they’re cold.
Lagers are lighter in colour compared to ale but their strength of alcohol is pretty much the same. The many variations of lagers are dark lagers that are lightly hopped, pale lagers that are well carbonated with a lighter hop and finally, bocks with a medium heavy body without much hop.
There are specialty beers that contain strong ales, seasonal beers, fruit or spiced beer etc. There are also ambers that are named in relation to their colour. The colour variation is from amber to deep red. This type can include ales such as Irish ale and lagers such as smoked beers.
But at the end of the day, the choice of beer depends on your personal preference. Studies have shown that beer has positive health benefits when used in moderation. Some of these benefits are the reduction in risk when it comes to coronary heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. It also contains many nutrients including vitamins, minerals, and flavonoids.