International Pale Lager

Glassware: Shaker pint
  • International
  • Lager
  • ABV = 4.5 – 6.0% (Normal)^
  • IBU = 18-25
  • SRM = 2-6

A gold Pilsner-style lager that’s well-balanced and without strong flavours.

Less hop character and bitterness than German Pils. Less body, malt flavour, and hop character than Czech Premium Pale Lager. More robust versions can approach Munich Helles in flavour, although with more of an adjunct quality. Generally more bitter and filling than American Lager.


  • Colour^ = Straw to gold
  • Clarity = Very clear

Key Aromas & Flavours:

  • Malt = Low; grainy or slightly corny-sweet
  • Hops = Low to moderate; spicy, floral or herbal
  • Yeast = Clean fermentation profile
  • Malt = Low to moderate; grainy (may be neutral, bready-crackery, or corny/ malty-sweet)
  • Hops = None to moderate; floral, spicy, or herbal, if present
  • Yeast = Clean fermentation profile
  • Perceived Bitterness^ = Moderate
  • Balance = Relatively even; may range from slightly malty to slightly bitter

Crisp, dry finish


  • Body = Light to medium
  • Carbonation = High, can have a slight carbonic bite

Characteristic Ingredients/Processes:

  • Malt = Two- or six-row malt
  • Hops = Any hop varietals, low level
  • Yeast = Clean lager yeast
  • Other = (Optional: rice, corn, or sugar as adjuncts)

Historical Development:

In the United States, developed as a premium version of the American Lager, with a similar history. Outside the United States, developed either as an imitation of American-style lagers or as a more accessible (and often drier and less bitter) version of German Pils or Czech Premium Pale Lager. Often heavily marketed and exported by large industrial or multi-national breweries.

Tends to have fewer adjuncts than American Lager or American Light Lager. They may be all-malt, although strong flavours are still a fault.

Commercial Examples:

Asahi Super Dry, Birra Moretti, Heineken

^Sourced from the Cicerone Certification Program’s International Certified Beer Server Syllabus (Version 5.0)
All other information is sourced from the BJCP 2021 Style Guidelines.

Discovering Beer is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Cicerone® Certification Program.

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