Beer was a staple of the Irish diet, as much as bread, according to new research. Masons hewing stone at a Dublin quarry in 1565 were allotted 12 to 14 pints of ale a day, when doing extreme labor. That’s the highest amount. But the lowest daily amount is still pretty high: household staff at Dublin Castle, and Elizabethan soldiers stationed in Ireland, were drinking up to 8 pints of hopped ale a day.
In the 1500s, Irish beers had higher oat contents than English beers. Oat beer was reportedly thicker, and more bitter, than beer made predominantly with barley. They also have 400 to 500 calories a pint. You could drink nothing but beer, and get enough calories for your day!