Ale might sound like an old-fashioned way to refer to beer, but don't let the name fool you. While it's definitely a type of beer, it's in a separate class because of its fermentation method.
What Is an Ale?
Think of ale as a slightly bitter beer with a slightly higher alcohol content. At least, that's the bottom line.
If you're into beer, however, you might want to dig deeper. In centuries past, brewers referred to any drink brewed without hops as an ale, but that's no longer the case. It's a distinct alcoholic beverage that you have to experience to understand.
How Does Ale Differ From Lager?
Lager and ale share similarities, but they're different types of beer. For one thing, ale typically gets fermented with top-fermenting yeast, while lager comes from bottom-fermenting yeast. Additionally, ale undergoes a warm fermenting process instead of a cold fermenting process. For this reason, some people claim that ale tastes sweeter and fruitier than lager.
What Types of Ales Exist?
If you're ready to take your first sip of ale, you have plenty of choices.
Now that you're more comfortable with ale, why not give one a try? You might find that it becomes part of your evening ritual.