Lagers are bottom-fermented under cold conditions and tend to have a cleaner, crisper taste than ales. They can be pale, amber, or dark.
The most popular style of ale, India Pale Ale (IPA) originated in England in the 1800s. Brewers added extra hops to preserve the ale for transport to India.
Flavor: Crisp & Hoppy
A type of ale made by top fermentation, porters are dark, almost black, courtesy of roasted malt. They tend to be sweeter and lighter than stouts.
A type of porter, stouts are very dark, nearly opaque, with creamy texture. Most are on the lower end of alcohol content, while the imperial stouts run high.
Sour beers are brewed with wild bacteria and yeasts. They are typically aged in wooden vessels, producing a distinctive, unique taste. Sours have a few styles.
A pale lager, pilsners range from light straw to warm gold and come in four styles: German, Czech, European, and American. Budweiser is an American-style pilsner.
Brewed in tiny batches near Brussels, Belgium, lambics use wild yeasts in an open fermentation process and are aged in oak barrels, making them more akin to wine.
Flavor: Fruit & Spice
Ales are top-fermented under warm conditions—the opposite of lagers. A huge category, styles include Belgian, brown, Burton, golden, IPA, mild, old, pale, scotch, and Barley wine.