a type of beer, which is an alcoholic beverage made from grain. in the case of ale malted barley and sometimes malted wheat are the key ingredients. ale is the world's oldest form of beer dating back before the advent of agriculture. ale and alcoholic beverages are likely the reason humanity settled down to cultivate grain and left the more efficient and enjoyable hunter gatherer lifestyle. before there was lager, which is a fairly recent type of beer, there was ale. ales use top fermenting strains of yeast and are brewed and often served at warmer temperatures than lager. ales generally have a more robust taste, are more complex and are best consumed cool (50F or a bit warmer) rather than cold.
common styles of ale include pale ale, brown ale, dubbel, witbeir, bitter, hefeweizen, stout, barley wine, lambic and porter. there has been a fairly recent resurgence of ales brewed in the US and around the world which rose out of the microbrewery / craft brewing revolution that began in the early 1980s
to hell with this light lager crap! i need an ale!