Coopers’ Managing Director and Chief Brewer, Dr Tim Cooper, said the 10 vintage milestone was a special achievement for Coopers and would be welcomed by loyal Vintage Ale consumers.
“Coopers has spent many years carefully selecting not only the finest raw materials from Australia, but also from the world’s best hop growing regions,” he said.
“We have used four different cultivars of hops for the 2010 Vintage Ale, to achieve a full-flavoured, aromatic beer with the robust and complex characters consumers have come to expect.
“The beer can certainly be enjoyed now, but with careful cellaring will mature gracefully with age and develop rounded, rich toffee characters.”
The alcohol content remains at 7.5% alcohol by volume, retaining Vintage Ale’s title as the strongest beer brewed by Coopers and one of the stronger beers produced around the world.
Coopers’ Marketing Director and Chairman, Mr Glenn Cooper, said the release of 2010 Vintage Ale was timed to coincide with the onset of winter.
“We’ve made a deliberate decision to bring forward the release of Vintage Ale so it’s available through the cold winter months,” he said.
“Winter is the perfect time to enjoy rich and creamy ales like Vintage Ale, either with a meal or on its own as a warming winter companion.
“As in previous years, we expect that limited production and strong international demand will see stocks of 2010 Vintage Ale move quickly.”
Dr Tim Cooper said that the 2010 Vintage Ale is brewed from premium grade Australian malted barley and contains New Zealand hop variety Nelson Sauvin, combined with German bittering hops Magnum and Perle, and English aromatic hops Styrian Golding.
“The Nelson Sauvin hops give the beer a bold, upfront aroma with some crushed kiwifruit and citrus overtones,” he said.
“Typical of the German hop varieties used, there is a hint of spice and mint aromas, underpinned by a clean citrus note and smooth bitterness from the Magnum hops.
“Discerning drinkers might also detect the fruity ester characters of banana and pineapple, along with lingering floral notes and balanced bitterness.”
Dr Cooper said the 2010 Vintage Ale would be well-matched to hearty meat dishes, desserts or strong cheeses, or as a ‘cleansing ale’ after dinner.
Coopers Extra Strong Vintage Ale was first released in 1998, with further vintages in 1999, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009.
The 2010 Vintage Ale is priced from around $75 per carton, or around $20 per six pack of 375 ml bottles.
TASTING NOTES – 2010 COOPERS EXTRA STRONG VINTAGE ALE
(Supplied by Coopers. Brews News will review once beer available)
Coopers has used only the finest selection of raw materials. Premium grade malted barley was grown and malted under Australian maritime conditions during the 2009 season and the best portion of the crop was reserved and used for the 2010 Vintage Ale. Water was derived from the deep aquifers at the Brewery, with its mineral content adjusted using a unique process to provide the composition that is suited to strong ales.
The Coopers Ale yeast is top fermenting and was subjected to a warm fermentation to produce a robust ale with a complex flavour profile.
The hop varieties used span some of the world’s best hop growing regions: Nelson Sauvin (New Zealand), Magnum and Perle (Germany) and Styrian Golding (England).
When poured into your favourite beer glass, the beer presents with a deep to mid-orange hue and thick creamy foam which will last until the bottom of the glass. The cloudiness which may be evident is from the yeast used for secondary conditioning.
The initial aroma is due to the Nelson Sauvin hops and displays bold upfront hop aromas together with some crushed kiwifruit and citrus overtones which combine to impart a white wine fruitiness on the front palate. There is also a hint of spice and mint aromas which are typical of the German hop varieties used. The Perle hops also provide the “freshly picked” hop aromas that are detected.
The mid-palate displays a clean citrus note and smooth hop bitterness from the Magnum hops. The fruity esters of banana and pineapple are from the yeast used under the warmer conditions of fermentation and maturation.
The back palate has a floral hint with a lingering yet balanced bitterness from the Styrian Golding hops.
Overall, the 2010 Extra Strong Vintage Ale has complex and robust aromas which are specifically designed to match with the smooth and lingering palate sensations.
As the beer ages the stronger flavours mellow in an intriguing journey of taste development, with toasted and caramel characters.
At an alcohol level of 7.5% vol/vol, this beer is well matched to hearty meat dishes, desserts, strong cheeses, or as an after dinner “cleansing ale”.