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Beer Categories

Split between ales and lagers, all beer falls into one of those categories. The difference is determined by the yeast behavior during fermentation. Ales use yeast that ferment at the top, while lagers ferment at the bottom. In addition to the yeast type, brewing process, and ingredients, the region is a key component in the type of beer produced. Each beer type has a unique character and specific glassware to express it– ranging in size from goblets and pints to boots and yards.

Blonde Ales

With medium to high carbonation levels, Blonde Ales have low malt and bitterness. Known for its smooth and rounded characteristics, it pours as a golden or pale yellow color. Brought to America from the English countryside, Blonde Ales are also referred to as Golden Ales. Their crisp and lightly refreshing flavor allow them to be easy to drink– making it the most popular beer on the market.

India Pale Ales

Also popular, India Pale Ales, or IPAs, are more hop-heavy compared to the pale ales they originated from. Famously brewed by British voyagers traveling to India, additional hops were included to allow the beer to last on long trips at sea. Ultimately, the increase of this ingredient creates higher alcohol content and a rich bitter taste.


Born out of London England, Porters have a full mouthfeel with bold flavors and rich aftertaste. Known for their dark color and roasted aromatics, Porters are unique to the type of malt used. Some malt variants produce fruity or dry flavors, while others are smokier. The combination of dark malted barley and additional hops creates a delicate balance between the sweet and bitter.


Although Stouts evolved from London Porters and share similar characteristics, they are heavier-bodied. However, most Stouts globally produced today are famously Guinness brewed in Ireland. Aside from the bitter aftertaste, they are known for their thick foam top. Some stouts incorporate lactose in the brewing process– producing a creamy, sweet foam. Uniquely, unmalted roasted barley is the key ingredient in the brewing process.


Different from an Ale, Pilsners are a type of lager. First brewed in 1842 Czech Republic, this refreshing beverage has a complex brewing process. Pilsners use specific kilned malt, spicy hops, and bottom-fermenting lager yeast. Pale in color, they produce a refreshing, and crisp flavor.

Niagara Craft Brewery Tours

With all the different ales and lagers available, Niagara Craft Brewery Tours offers great opportunities to try them all. Partnered with local Ontario breweries and wineries, our packages offer guests unique educational experiences. Book your next intimate or company-wide event with us today for uniquely crafted flavors and a plethora of industry knowledge.