In the 1800s, American brewers created a beer style that baffled drinkers past, present, and future: the Cream Ale. Despite its name, there’s no cream in the beer. And compared to many other styles, this type of beer isn’t even exceptionally creamy.
So what is a cream ale? Like the platypus, it defies definition. Somewhere between an ale and a lager, this strangely named, easy-drinking beer is one of America’s earliest mass produced styles, and still maintains popularity today. Even the Beer Judge Certification Program notes on its “Overall Impression” that Cream Ale is a “flavorful American ‘lawnmower’ beer”.