Craft beer seems to be everywhere these days. Well, maybe not at the frat basement parties we all go to, but everywhere else.

With all of the different ways to add beer to your diet, differentiating the varying types can be overwhelming. Even if you’re not the world’s finest beer connoisseur, don’t sweat it. We’ve got a guide for all things craft beer so you can look hipster and impress all your beer-loving friends.


craft beer

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Craft beer is broken up into ales and lagers. Ales are much more common in the craft beer world. They are also older, having been developed thousands of years ago, which is pretty dope. Ales are fermented warm with top-fermenting yeast. Most of the time, ales are served warm or at “cellar” temperature, which is around 50°F. Listed below are the major types of ales:

Brown Ales

craft beer

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These beers are usually reddish or brownish in color. If you like caramel or coffee flavors, these beers are for you. They are also typically milder in taste.

Try: Downtown Brown by Lost Coast Brewery

Pale Ales

craft beer

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These are sharper in taste and are usually more bitter. Some popular pale ales that’ll most likely be on the beer list include Amber, American Pale (APA), Blonde, Irish Red and India (IPA).

Try: Pale Ale by Sierra Nevada


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Porters have a pretty thick taste, but are still thinner than Stouts. Again, if you’re a chocaholic or a coffee addict, this is definitely more up your alley in terms of overall taste.

Try: Dark Brewed Porter by Yuengling


craft beer

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Stouts are super dark and rich. Like veryyyy thick. Licorice and molasses will come to mind when drinking this beer. Stouts are not chuggable, so don’t even try.

Try: Bitches Brew by Dogfish Head


craft beer

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Lagers are a little less common in the craft beer world, but they still have a name among popular American beer brands like Budweiser and Miller. Lagers are brewed in colder temperatures and, unlike the ale, use bottom-fermenting yeast. While the ale can take a week to brew, the lager takes months. Lagers are also served cold for your sipping pleasure.

Pale Lagers

craft beer

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These babies are fizzy as hell, very reminiscent of the pale beer you typically funnel during football season. If you’re a novice to drinking nicer beer, this is probably a good place to start.

Try: My Antonia by Dogfish Head


craft beer

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Pilsners are similar to Pale Lagers. What sets them apart is their more bitter taste and distinct flavor. Again, this is a good way to break into the craft beer scene since it isn’t too intense.

Try: Pils by Lagunitas Brewing Company


craft beer

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Wanna transport yourself to Oktoberfest? Grab yourself one of these full-bodied beers that are dark copper in color. These beers are a bit maltier if you’re into that.

Try: Oktoberfest by Sam Adams


craft beer

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Bocks have a malty sweetness and a hoppy bitterness. These aren’t super common, but if you find yourself diggin’ the Marzens, there is a good chance you’ll be into a big ol’ Bock.

Try: Double Bock by Sam Adams