"Irish" ales

Despite the wave of decent new breweries in Ireland, some don't always get it right and today we have two breweries that reflect that well. I almost considered not bothering to write these up but people need to know what to avoid as well as what to seek out!

The labels of the first have already caused much controversy; so I won't dwell on it here though I'm not a fan of the "characters" and their associated paddiwhackery blarney. They're also curently brewed in England; so not even Irish! (BeerNut thoughts here)


First up Gravy Maevy's Pilsner...the controversially labelled one...also what kind of a name is Gravy anyway...just named that way so that it rhymes probably. As you can see it looks nothing like a pilsner, being closer in colour to a Vienna and tasting like neither. Sweet cereal grain nose. Sweet, 1 dimensional buttery biscuit base. This went down the sink after a few sips.
Granny Mary's Red Ale is another with style above substance. It all starts well pouring an attractive dark ruby with fluffy tan head collapsing to a lacing but goes downhill thereafter. Wet cereal grain and cardboard boxes, metallic mouldy berries. Medium body, sweet, caramalt and burnt toast, acrid finish...another drain pour.No one needs to brew red ales!

Next up a brewery who quite impressed with their lager but not so with the rest of their range. Again, strong branding but nout else.

The Liberties up first. Dusty caramel, sweet malt and butterscotch on the nose. Buttery biscuit, quite dry bitterness, touch of red berries. Another beer not given long enough for the yeast to mop up diacetyl...or just a poor choice of yeast.

Honor Bright is your typical Irish Red  - Slightly peppery cereal notes, malt led. More diacetyl and caramalt.Almost as bad as the McGargles and again straight down the sink.

Best of the bunch was Black Pitts Porter dark cola brown, roast barley and molasses on the nose. Medium carbonation, dry brown malt, some residual chocolate sweestness, very dry burnt toast, slightly astringent and red berries in finish. Its missing on the hop balance, being mostly malt led but at least it didn't end up being poured away.

5 Lamps


  1. 5 Lamps are 92.5% owned by C&C- they are not listed by Beoir as they do not fit the criteria.

    McGargles is the brainchild of an ex-Molson Coors employee (possibly two) who was also behind the purchase of the Fransiscan Well.

    If you want another "brand before beer" outfit- Baile Brew.

    1. hence the inverted commas ;)

      Baile Brew already reviewed on this blog but they got quite upset when their beer was aliased to Howling Gale on Ratebeer...

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