beer, ale

Ale is a type of beer brewed from barley malt with a top-fermenting brewers yeast that ferments quickly, giving a sweet, full body and a fruity, and sometimes butter-like, taste. Most ale contains some herb or spice, usually hops, which imparts a bitter, herbal flavour which balances the malt sweetness. As an appellative ale means any top-fermented beverage made from malt. The other major style of beer is lager, which is bottom-fermented.