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What is Ice Beer?

Ah, beer! The elixir of relaxation and good times.

But what is ice beer, who invented it, and how does it taste?

To answer all your questions, read on!

Definition of Ice Beer

Ice beer is a filtered beer that goes through a ‘freezing’ process. By freezing the beer, certain particles in the liquid are removed to create a clearer and crisper beverage.

The process makes the beer smoother, slightly stronger in alcohol content, and more refreshing for consumption.

History of Ice Beer

It was in the early 80s when Japanese brewer Kirin Ichiban took the lead in popularizing ice beers. Suntory followed one year later with their own version and since then, these two large companies have dominated the ice beer market in Japan. Afterward, this idea spread to other parts of the world such as North America and Europe.

Types of Ice Beer

  • Clear: Clear ice beers have a bright golden color with light carbonation. It has a smooth taste with hints of sweetness and maltiness that complement each other.
  • Dark: Darker types of ice beers are heavier in flavor but still light enough to be refreshing. They tend to have notes of roasted malts, nuts, and chocolate or coffee flavors as well as some bitterness at the back end of each sip.
  • Amber: Amber beers are usually characterized by rich aromas and the taste of roasted barley or caramelized sugars with moderate levels of bitterness that come from hops. They tend to be very balanced between sweet and bitter flavors while having ample malty notes throughout.
  • Flavored: Flavored ice beers can contain anything from spices or fruits to flowers or herbs for added flavor complexity and aromatic qualities along with their base malt profile. Fruits like mango or pineapple work well when combined with a smooth malt base for a truly unique flavor profile.

Brewing Process of Ice Beer

Ice beer production begins by making traditional brewing wort (malt sugar water) which is then boiled and fermented as usual until its alcohol content reaches around 5%.

Then things begin getting interesting – instead of going through secondary fermentation, brewers drop the cold temperatures to below zero degrees Celsius for about 24 hours before filtering out larger particles through an artificial freezing process.

This creates a stronger yet more balanced-tasting beer that is clearer than traditional brews.

Flavors And Taste Of Ice Beer

The extra filtering process creates an incredibly flavorful yet highly drinkable beverage which usually packs more punch than traditional beers at around 6% alcohol content. Its finish has less bitterness but still retains some hoppy notes that make it perfect for summertime drinking sessions

It also tends to have smooth malty flavors that make it great as an accompaniment to food dishes like barbecued meats or salads.

Health Benefits Of Ice Beer

Although ice beer has a higher average ABV than regular lagers or ales, it actually has fewer calories per serving than non-alcoholic beverages due to its additional filtration process during production. So if you’re looking for something lighter but still satisfy your thirst, you should definitely give this type of brew a try!


Ice Beer is nothing short of magical! What started out as an experiment by Japanese brewers has become an extremely popular style around the world today – offering drinkers an incredibly flavorful yet smooth and refreshing beverage whenever they want (and need) it!

Now you know why this type of beer remains so beloved – go ahead, take advantage, and raise your glass (responsibly!) And enjoy this summer’s sip!

Author Image Fabian
I’m Fabian, homebrewer and beer taster. I’m also the editor of Beer100. I love travelling the world and trying out new handcraft beer and different beer styles. I’m not an expert in brewing beer, but I know a few things about beer, which I share on this blog. If you need help or have a question, please comment below.

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