The Difference between Ale, Lager and Pilsner

Beer is a beverage that has been around for centuries, and it has evolved over time to become the diverse and delicious drink we know today. There are many different types of beer, but the main distinction is between ale and lager. Ale is brewed with top-fermenting yeast at warmer temperatures, while lager is brewed with bottom-fermenting yeast at colder temperatures. Pilsner is a type of lager beer that originated in the Czech Republic and is characterized by its light gold color and aggressive use of hops.

The main difference between ale and lager is the type of yeast used in the fermentation process. Ale yeast ferments at warmer temperatures and settles on top of the beer, while lager yeast ferments at colder temperatures and settles to the bottom of the beer. This difference in fermentation technique results in different flavors and aromas in each type of beer. Ale beers tend to have a more fruity flavor due to the presence of esters, while lager beers tend to be crisper and cleaner.

Pilsner is a type of pale lager beer that is light in color, from light straw to gold. It is known for its refreshing taste and its use of Saaz hops, which give it a light “touch” and a more hoppy flavor than typical Budweiser. Pilsner is also characterized by its aggressive use of hops, which gives it a slightly “spicy” flavor. The word “lager” comes from the German word meaning “store”, as lagers were originally stored in cold caves to mature.

Lagers span a variety of styles, including pale Pilsners and German Helles and darker American beers. Ales are also divided into subcategories such as Helles, Pilsner, Märzen and Bock. In today's craft beer market, ales are more common among craft brewers because ale yeast can produce beer in as little as 7 days, making it more convenient for small breweries that may not have room in the fermenter to produce beers on a regular basis. However, lagers are still popular among beer drinkers due to their longer shelf life and their variety of styles.