Draught vs. Lager

What's the Difference?

Draught and Lager are two popular types of beer that have distinct characteristics. Draught beer, also known as draft beer, is typically served from a keg or cask and is known for its freshness and smoothness. It is often carbonated and has a creamy texture due to the nitrogen or carbon dioxide used in the dispensing process. On the other hand, Lager is a type of beer that is fermented and conditioned at low temperatures. It is known for its crisp and clean taste, with a lighter body and a golden color. Lagers are typically carbonated and have a refreshing quality. While both Draught and Lager offer unique flavors and experiences, they cater to different preferences and occasions.


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Serving TemperatureCoolCold
Alcohol ContentVariesVaries
Flavor ProfileRich and maltyCrisp and clean
Popular BrandsGuinness, Murphy'sHeineken, Beck's
Photo by YesMore Content on Unsplash

Further Detail


When it comes to beer, there are countless varieties and styles to choose from. Two popular options that often come up in discussions are draught and lager. While both are widely enjoyed by beer enthusiasts, they have distinct attributes that set them apart. In this article, we will delve into the characteristics of draught and lager, exploring their brewing processes, flavors, serving temperatures, and more.

Brewing Process

Draught beer, also known as draft beer, is typically served from a keg or cask. It is unfiltered and unpasteurized, allowing it to retain more of its natural flavors and aromas. The brewing process for draught beer involves fermentation in a large vessel, followed by conditioning in a cask or keg. This process allows for a secondary fermentation, resulting in a smoother and more complex flavor profile.

Lager, on the other hand, is a type of beer that undergoes a cold fermentation process. It is brewed with bottom-fermenting yeast at lower temperatures, typically between 45-55°F (7-13°C). This slow fermentation process contributes to the clean and crisp taste that lagers are known for. After fermentation, lagers are usually aged for a period of time, known as lagering, which helps to further develop their flavors.

Flavor Profile

When it comes to flavor, draught beer often exhibits a wide range of characteristics. Due to its unfiltered nature, it can have a slightly hazy appearance and a fuller mouthfeel. The flavors in draught beer can vary greatly depending on the style, but they often showcase a balance between malt sweetness and hop bitterness. Some common flavors found in draught beer include caramel, toffee, citrus, floral, and earthy notes.

Lagers, on the other hand, are known for their clean and crisp taste. They tend to have a lighter body and a pale golden color. Lagers are typically less bitter compared to draught beers, with a focus on malt sweetness. The flavors in lagers are often subtle and well-balanced, with notes of bread, biscuit, grain, and a hint of hop bitterness in the background.

Serving Temperature

Another aspect that sets draught and lager apart is the recommended serving temperature. Draught beer is best enjoyed at a slightly warmer temperature, typically between 45-55°F (7-13°C). This temperature range allows the flavors and aromas to fully develop, enhancing the overall drinking experience. Serving draught beer too cold can mask its complexities and mute its flavors.

Lagers, on the other hand, are traditionally served at colder temperatures, usually between 38-45°F (3-7°C). The colder serving temperature helps to accentuate the refreshing qualities of lagers, making them a popular choice for hot summer days. It is important to note that serving lagers too warm can result in a loss of crispness and a less enjoyable drinking experience.

Popular Styles

When it comes to draught beer, there are numerous styles to explore. Some popular draught beer styles include pale ales, IPAs (India Pale Ales), stouts, porters, wheat beers, and amber ales. Each style offers its own unique flavor profile and characteristics, providing a wide range of options for beer enthusiasts to enjoy.

Lagers, on the other hand, have their own set of popular styles. The most well-known lager style is the pale lager, which includes famous brands like Pilsner Urquell and Budweiser. Other popular lager styles include Munich Helles, Vienna Lager, Dortmunder Export, and Bock. These lagers often showcase a clean and crisp taste, making them highly refreshing and easy to drink.

Food Pairings

Both draught beer and lagers can be paired with a variety of foods to enhance the dining experience. Draught beers, with their diverse flavor profiles, can complement a wide range of dishes. For example, a hop-forward IPA can pair well with spicy foods, while a malty stout can be a great match for chocolate desserts. Wheat beers can be a refreshing choice to accompany salads or seafood dishes.

Lagers, with their clean and crisp taste, are often a versatile choice for food pairings. They can complement a range of dishes, including grilled meats, sausages, pizzas, and lighter fare like salads and sandwiches. The subtle flavors of lagers allow them to enhance the flavors of the food without overpowering them.


In conclusion, draught and lager beers have distinct attributes that make them unique. Draught beer, with its unfiltered nature and wide range of flavors, offers a fuller mouthfeel and a more complex taste. Lagers, on the other hand, are known for their clean and crisp characteristics, making them highly refreshing and easy to drink. Whether you prefer the bold flavors of draught beer or the subtle nuances of lagers, both options provide a delightful experience for beer enthusiasts. So, next time you're at a pub or brewery, don't hesitate to explore the world of draught and lager beers and discover your new favorite brew!

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