There are so many variations on the stout: from milkshake stouts and oatmeal ones, to rich barrel-aged or imperial ones and big hoppy stouts

Milkshake stout anyone? – Irish craft breweries have plenty of interesting takes on the black stuff

Wilcklow Wolf’s Quincey Fennelly, Danish brewer Anders Kissmeyer and Wicklow Wolf brewer Pete Reynier.

Beerista: Danish brewer Anders Kissmeyer has teamed up with Wicklow Wolf

Brewtonic's new low/no-alcohol drinks list includes ginger beers, elderflower, lemongrass and other interesting soda waters, low-alcohol wines and cocktails made with Seedlip herbal gin

Brewtonic's new low/no-alcohol menu is for those wanting lighter beverages on nights out

Ayinger beers have become a bit of a cult hit in the US

Four quality brews worth checking out this weekend

While some breweries have a different beer out every other week, Five Points has focused mainly on their core range. Photograph:

Five Points brewery, based under a railway arch in Hackney, has just started stocking their range in Ireland

Trouble Brewing’s Last Crash Passion Fruit Lager has a light, delicate aroma with a little bit of passion fruit and graininess

Beerista: Appearance affects taste – so what happens if you don’t look? Two Irish beers are put to the test

MacNutty by the Lough Gill Brewery in Sligo is a good example of a balanced, easy-drinking brown ale

They have a bit of a bad reputation, but there's much to like about a quality brown ale

Harbour Bar, Bray

The Harbour Bar is a throwback, but not when it comes to its selection of Irish beer on tap

The Cask Ales and Strange Brews festival in Cork kicks off on January 25th

Real ale is a staple of British pubs - in Ireland it’s called cask beer and there’s an entire festival devoted to it

Kinnegar brewery founder Rick LeVert (middle) and his team at their brewhouse in Donegal. LeVert believes the misconception that craft beer is high in alcohol is a barrier to the industry

Beerista: Donegal brewery Kinnegar makes accessible beers and has big plans for 2018

In 2018 Wicklow Wolf will brew a brown bread stout, a gin beer, a kettle sour and some Brett ales

Beerista: For one Irish brewer, next year will be all about ‘having more fun’ with beer styles

Belgian brew: you can’t go wrong with Chimay, and many of its beers come in 750ml bottles

For something a bit special pick up a few 750ml beer bottles for offering around

In Lidl, the Crafty Brewing Company’s American Style Pale Wheat Ale is a real favourite

Get your beer fridge sorted for Christmas with some of the best discounter offerings

The Beer Club’s  beer hampers look particularly good and come in small (€49.99) or large (€79.99) and are stocked with six or 12 bottles or cans, some beer snacks, a glass and Kate O’Ds beer truffles.

A beer hamper, tickets to a beer festival or membership of the Beer Club – Christmas presents for beer lovers

Barry Walsh: co-founder of Find My Pint.

Wexford brothers have added two new features to their app which connects consumers to their favourite beers on tap

Most craft beers in Ireland are given a shelf life of about a year but really hoppy beers are best consumed within three months of their packaging. Photograph: iStock

Two Irish hoppy IPA beers for the weekend from Kilkenny and Howth

The cranky but lovable Netflix character has inspired a new double IPA

Ageing beer in barrels is labour- and time-intensive. File photograph: Getty Images

Many Irish brewers are barrel-ageing beer in whiskey and wine barrels for more complex layers of taste

The whole point of craft beer is experimentation. Photograph: iStock

The craft beer world’s obsession with IPAs rolls on – but is that a bad thing?

Westmeath brewery Dead Centre’s Marooned: a new 5.5 per cent IPA with an autumnal amber hue

Beerista: Two new tasty Irish beers – in cans – for the weekend

The summer of 2017 was – in case you missed it – the summer of socks and sandals

Lervig’s American pale ale has lots of lovely summery tropical fruit flavour

Fresh hops, an ingredient in the production of real ales, at a traditional brewery: the cost of these magical green plants was going up and they were becoming increasingly difficult to source

The global hop shortage that never was means that now there’s more than enough to go around

Choosing what beer to get in a keg will need a bit of thought

Go for easy-going pale ales and IPAs and stay away from anything too experimental if you’re having people over

Only beers brewed within the city limits of Munich are served at the festival, and all beers must be made in keeping with Germany’s strict reinheitsgebot or purity brewing law

Can’t make it to the Munich festival? Then grab yourself some German beers or head to an Irish Oktoberfest

“Mainstream” craft drinkers are put off by convoluted styles that all too often don’t work

 Stone Berlin’s World Bistro and Gardens, set on the site of an old gasworks, celebrates its first anniversary this month

A visit to Stone’s massive brewery and bar experiment in Berlin

You could pray  to Ninkasi, the ancient goddess of beer,  for guidance to what to drink at this weekend’s Irish Craft Beer Festival... or you could use our guide, below

There’s many fine offerings among the 200 beers and 40 breweries at the RDS this weekend – we pick five styles not to miss

Inside Urban Brewing, Vault C in the Chq Building, Custom House Quay, IFSC, Dublin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

O’Hara becomes a brewer/publican with launch of Urban Brewing docklands venue

McGargles Little Bangin’ Session IPA won in the World Beer Awards’ best styles category.

Beerista: has your favourite beer won any awards?

Beer works really well with food and has the added bonus of being a palette cleanser

While many places have impressive wine lists or cocktails and locally sourced produce, beer often seems like an afterthought

Aurosa beer, according to its website, depicts a woman’s strength and a girl’s tenderness

A Czech brewery has caused consternation with its new brew for women – but is it beer or bubble bath?

Southern Latitude by Fourpure, Peacher Man by Beavertown, and Body Riddle by Whiplash

These beers are packed with fruity flavour for easy summer drinking

I managed a seat at the bar in the Salt House in Galway

Galway’s Salt House bar is a good choice – with a great beer selection

From the Big Grill to Beatyard, there’s plenty of interesting festival offerings over the next month

Quality craft beer can make a great festival even better - here's a few to get to over the next month

At Kilkenny Craft Beer Festival you pay €20 entry, drink as much as you feel like, and pour for yourself

Kilkenny Craft Beer Festival takes an innovative approach to showcasing Irish beers

YellowBelly brewery have teamed up with electro band King Kong Company to make a collaboration lager with ‘Bucky’

The famous tonic wine has found its way into a lager, which is surprisingly drinkable

Unfiltered Lager comes in a strikingly straight-up plain white can

Sunlight can create off flavours in your pint when drinking outdoors

Carrig Brewing Co: the Drumshanbo business says it is the first brewery in Co Leitrim for more than 150 years

Beerista: Carrig Brewing Co has an accessible, easy-going range

Tasting line-up at Kinnegar in Donegal: the brewery are  hosting a  Big Day Out event as part of Indie Beer Week

Tastings, tours and special events are taking place across the country in a celebration of local breweries

The easiest solution to hangovers is just stick to a good beer or wine

Do the old sayings about mixing drinks really have an effect?

A summer state of mind: Hope Beer’s Summer Session IPA

Irishtown’s Dublin Blonde features a blonde woman pouting her lips while Hope paints the scene for an Irish summer

Clear, cloudy, session or fruity: the ever-popular IPA

From session ales to fruity or hazy ones, craft brewers are constantly finding new ways to change up and experiment with the ever-(...)

Glen Garioch oak whiskey barrels

From a hip brewery to a 200-year-old distillery, the port town has lots to explore

Big breweries are going to continue to muscle in on the micro scene.

Large companies are investing more in the craft beer market - but does it matter?

Crafty move: in some bars, the price of Irish craft beers seem to be hiked up just for the sake of it

In some pubs, craft beers seem exceptionally pricey. Who’s benefiting?

Two tasty beers – one from Ireland, the other from Spain – to drink while pondering how this wonderful beverage came to be

Hoegaarden was among the first imported alternatives to the mainstream offerings to hit Irish pubs in the early Noughties

Both of these beers claim to be the original Belgian witbier – so is there much difference?

Cloudy just for the sake of it? The New England IPA

Beerista: A new wave of craft beers are intentionally hazy – but is it just another fad?

Lambic is left to age and develop in big wooden barrels called foudres, then carefully blended and sampled. Photograph: iStock

Beerista: The Belgian sour style is a strange and wonderful drink

Easter treats: The World’s End Imperial Chocolate Vanilla Stout by Blacks; Export Stout No4 by Hope; and Buried at Sea by Galway Bay

Beerista: Put away the eggs and crack open one of these delicious Irish brews instead

Irish brewery Rascals’ Strawberry Vanilla Shake IPA has a smooth and milky body and pours quite hazy

Beerista: A round-up of the latest new Irish craft beer releases for spring

Don O’Leary of Cork microbrewery 9 White Deer. Photograph: Conor McCabe

Cork brewery 9 White Deer is shaking up the market with craft gluten-free beer offerings

London Pride: a traditional Best Bitter for either side of the Brexit divide

Beerista: Article 50 may not be good news for UK beers, so sample a few while the going’s good

Good for Mums: Yellow Belly has released its Citra Pale Ale in lovely bright cans.

A quick guide to selecting an unforgettable beer gift for your mother this Mother’s Day

On taproom evenings Boundary has up to 17 beers on, its core range and plenty of one-offs and small batch brews

Beerista: There’s a great range of beers at Boundary brewery evenings – just remember to wrap up

Wicklow Wolf’s Zoso is a single malt and single hop IPA with a lovely malty backbone, hints of tangerine, a decent bitter kick and pours as a lovely clear and fiery red

For some reason, taking home a branded glass isn’t really viewed as ‘stealing’ by most

Bergschloss: one of Berlin’s newest craft beer bars, located in a former lard factory on a quiet backstreet in Neukolln.

Germany is famous for its quality beers but can it adapt to changing tastes?

Make mine lager: liking something that doesn’t blast your palette to pieces or put you to sleep is cool again

Third and final in series on this style looks at how microbreweries are changing their tune when it comes to lagers

Strawberry Milkshake IPA or Thai infused Witbier? Plenty of options at the Alltech craft beer festival kicking off this weekend in Dublin

Ireland’s biggest gathering of brewers takes place in Dublin this weekend. Here's how to make the best of it

Pifko bar on Dublin’s Usher’s Quay: the pub’s  range of fresh, high-quality offerings will charm even the least enthusiastic lager drinkers – or certainly question their convictions

Pifko is the perfect bar to explore more interesting variations of the lager style

Lagers have a reputation for being rather flavourless, but international brands have slightly more flavour than their American cousins.

The first in this series looks at the traditional, mainstream versions of the style

Four for February: Pacific Secret from Rascals; Mac Nutty from Lough Gill; and Back Beat from Western Herd and Banished Sun by Galway Bay.

A few weekend beers from brewers Rascals, Western Herd, Lough Gill and Galway Bay

A cooked onion flavour in beer can occur as a result of using particular hops. Photograph: iStockphoto/Getty/

Savoury flavours are present in some hoppy beers but are perceived differently from person to person

The  Sunflower bar in Belfast has a great range of local beers, including Yardsman stout by Hercules Brewing

Hercules Brewing Company’s Yardsman beers among Sunflower pub’s craft offerings

Erdinger AlkoholFrei is one of a handful of non-alcohol beers – or more technically, less than 0.5 per cent which is the legal requirement.

A round-up of some of the - pretty awful - beer choices if you’re having a dry January

Change in legislation could provide huge boost to beer tourism in Ireland.

Proposed change in law could have huge and positive impact for growth of Irish microbreweries

Craft beer  encourages a more appreciative approach to drinking

Craft beer is not about getting drunk, it’s a way to savour something well made

Cheese and beer: Sorcha Hamilton (centre) with Donal Flynn, Food Hall manager at Fallon & Byrne, and Dean Mc Guinness sommelier Premier International Beers. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

For something a bit different this Christmas, why not host a beer and cheese pairing?

Christmas conundrum: many are concluding that perhaps Santa  has a more interesting and distinguished palate than previously thought

Make sure to leave out a bottle of something special on Christmas night

Fine Irish offerings: it’s good to have a selection of styles and strengths to keep all your guests happy

Stock your fridge with some fine Irish offerings for the party season

Special occasions: it doesn’t always have to be a bottle of bubbly does it?

Three of the best alternatives to the usual bottles of fizz for Christmas

In a traditional pub, you’d be lucky to find a beer menu. Photograph: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Why don’t pubs make it easier for everyone and have a drinks list – with beers included?

Beer for the weekend: Crafty Brewing’s American Style Pale Wheat Ale,  Galway Bay’s Althea and O Brother’s Bonita

Galway Bay's Althea, Crafty Brewing’s American Style Pale Wheat Ale and O Brother’s Bonita are three very different and very tasty(...)

G'way IPA is one of YellowBelly's latest releases

Yellow Belly is the latest craft brewer to stage a ‘tap takeover’ to get its wares out there

Amber ale: a good option for autumn

Autumn is a great season for colours, but how is it for beers?

The Wicklow Brewery has a  selection of craft beers, including Black 16 stout, the Wicklow Weiss and its award-winning  HopKnut Pale Ale

Located in the village of Red Cross, Wicklow Brewery has an impressive range of beers

Beavertown’s Stingy Jack Spiced Pumpkin Ale: has  clove and cinnamon on the aroma, a gentle sweetness and a slightly dark amber hue

It may be a bland vegetable but these two pumpkin beers are very enjoyable

Many flavours and aromas will become apparent only after swallowing a sip of beer

Just the one? Polygamy Porter by Wasatch brewery

There are plenty of mad cap names in the beer world – mostly from US breweries, it has to be said

Odells Brewery was born in 1989, founded by Doug, his wife Wynne and his sister Corkie

The founder of one of America’s original craft breweries has advice for newbies

The Microbrewed in Ireland and Independent Craft Brewers of Ireland (ICBI) logos that many Irish microbreweries carry on their bottles or websites

Craft is consistently growing its share of the beer market – and major breweries want a piece of the action

Brussels lace: the froth that gathers on the inside of a beer glass

The appearance of beer – and the glass it’s served in – adds hugely to your enjoyment of it

Weird Beard’s Little Things That Kill, Sligo brewery White Hag’s Little Fawn Session IPA, and Cloudwater’s DIPA V6

Holland’s off-licence in Bray has started a new sit-in service with a tasty menu and your pick of beers

Gordon Lucey, cofounder of 9 White Deer: travelled the world on tanker ships before becoming a brewer

9 White Deer, set in Baile Bhuirne, encapsulates the very concept of a local brewery

The Irish Craft Beer Festival, now in it’s sixth year, is at the RDS on Friday and Saturday

There’s a massive selection of Irish, and some international, beers being served up this weekend - Beerista recommends keeping an (...)

The best thing about a festival is that the beer you get is really, really fresh

September is a good month for festivals. Here’s how to make the most of them

Two very fine traditional-style beers: Anchor Steam and Porterhouse Plain

Eternal Session IPA by Northern Monk

Here are a few tips for when your pint is not quite as enjoyable as it should be

Stone Ruination Double IPA; Arrogant Bastard Ale; Stone IPA

Iconic and intense beers from the US Stone Brewery have arrived on these shores

Roscommon brewery Black Donkey does a tasty Irish saison called Sheep Stealer; Rascals Happy Days session pale ale is a summer seasonal; Juicebox Citrus IPA by  Fourpure has a grassy, hoppy aroma

In Germany they even have a word to mark this important juncture in the day – the feierabendbier

Mull over a few of these questions as you sip away some evening – only if you’re in the mood, of course

Aroma, carbonation, flavour, mouthfeel – mull over these when sipping your next beer

The best beer in the world? A  six-pack of Westvleteren 12 made by Trappist monks in Belgium. Photograph:  Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Three great Belgian ‘food’ beers to try

the pioneering Galway Hooker Irish Pale Ale is now seen as a kind of ‘gateway beer’ – not too bitter, not too strong

A lot has changed in the world of craft beer since this brewery started up a decade ago

Microbrewed in Ireland is a logo created by Beer Ireland  “to help drinkers identify beers that are brewed by microbreweries in Ireland and aren’t a macro produced imitation”.

The word has become so overused it’s losing its meaning

Brewers Cillian Ó Móráin and Bart Adons of Mescan in Co Mayo

The Mescan brewery is set deep in the foothills of Croagh Patrick in Co Mayo

Now you get many brewers within the craft world experimenting and adding the juice and zest to get a more intense burst of orange flavour

This fruit has varied and fascinating presence in the making of many beers

For years, hop-breeding programmes were driven by big brewers who were looking for high alpha acid hops (primarily for bittering purposes) and didn’t care too much about aroma.

Brewers want flavour and aroma hops, which is driving the development of new varieties

Geoff Carty and his wife Maire of The Headline bar, with a selection of their craft beers. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Regarded as 'complete eccentrics' at the time, the Porterhouse brew pub opened its doors 20 years ago. With host of craft bars now(...)

And while bearded men in lumberjack shirts may be stealing the limelight, you’ll spot a lot more women at beer festivals and in craft pubs these days.

You’ll spot a lot more women at beer festivals and in craft pubs these days

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