Ale beers go through a very fast brewing process that takes just a few weeks to complete. With ale beers, the yeast is fermented at the top of the barrel at very high temperatures. This produces beers that have a strong yeast flavor, paired with other complex flavors. There are a variety of different types of ales that you can enjoy.
#1 Pale Ale
The type of ale that many people are familiar with is pale ale. They get their name from their color, which is usually lighter than most other types of ale due to the types of hops used to create the beer. These beers are usually seen as being a little drier tasting than other ales.
#2 Indian Pale Ale
Indian Pale Ales or IPAs are a very popular form of ale beer. With IPAs, you can really taste the flavor of the hops in the beer. They leave an almost bitter taste in your mouth. They range from a light hop flavor to a very intense hop flavor. The color can range a lot as well, anywhere from a golden brown to a reddish color. These types of beers also tend to have a higher percentage of alcohol in them.
#3 Brown Ale
Brown ales have an entirely different flavor to them compared to their pale ale and Indian Pale Ale cousins. The main flavor in most brown ales is malty, with the hops being more of a secondary background flavor instead of taking center stage. Most brown ales fall somewhere along the lines of being sweeter with a more nutty-based profile, although some brown ales also have fruity undertones.
Porter is actually also considered an ale bear. It is made from unroasted barley. Porter is generally dark brown in appearance. It often tastes a little like chocolate with a bitter undertone. It's a sweet and dark beer that still has a little kick to it to remind you that it's a beer.
Stout beers are really dark and thick beers. They are often almost black in flavor. They differ from porters because they are made with roasted instead of unroasted barley. They generally have no hop flavor or even smell to them. They have more malt and caramel undertones. Coffee flavored stouts have become very popular in recent years, with coffee added during the brewing process.
#5 Wheat Beer
The entire class of wheat beers are also considered ale beers. Wheat beers are made using wheat malt. Due to the wheat used to make the beer, the beer has a yellow color to it. Wheat beer is light colored and has a lot of flavor. If you like fruit, wheat beer is the way to go. Wheat beer often has fruity undertones to it, such as vanilla, clover, and banana.
Many popular types of beers fall with the ale family. They range in flavor from extremely hoppy, like the Indian Pale Ale, to malty and caramel flavored, with the stout. You can most certainly find a type of beer you like in the ale family. Check out places like Art's Tavern for more information.