Here at Beer is Your Friend, we have a bit of a soft spot for Coopers Celebration Ale.
Okay sorry about that. There is no ‘‘we’’ at Beer is Your Friend. It’s not some big blog staffed by heaps of writers. There’s just a ‘‘me’’. So sorry for being a bit wanky there.
So lets go again. I’ve got a soft spot for Coopers Celebration Ale. See, it was the subject of the second post on my blog and the first ever beer review.
It was a beer made for their 150th anniversary, which caused plenty of people to expect some sort of crazy-wow beer, like an imperial IPA with 17 different hop varieties that came in a bottle studded with cubic zirconias.
I didn’t, because I figured that Coopers simply doesn’t do crazy-wow beers. What they do – aside from recent miss-steps like their 62 Pilsner – is make good solid beers. Beers that, once upon a time, were thought of as an alternative to the like of VB but which have since been overshadowed by the raft of newer, brasher breweries who are likely to make crazy-wow beers.
So while the Celebration Ale disappointed the former, I was rather happy with it. Though the company’s claim that it was modelled on an IPA style seemed confusing. Yeah, it has three types of hops in it, but it ain’t no hop bomb. For me it resembled a English style of beer than anything from the US.
There must have been a lot of who liked it because Coopers have decided to make it part of their regular stable (I know one guy at work who will be stoked – he’s been buying cases of the stuff) It’s going to be the first in their Thomas Cooper Selection range, which would seem to imply Coopers is looking at cranking some limited release or seasonal numbers.
As far as the Celebration Ale goes, Coopers has said they’ve done some tinkering around the edges with the beer compared to how it first came to market. But I’ll be damned if I can taste anything different (mainly because I can’t really remember what the original tasted like – my taste buds’ memory doesn’t store things in that much detail).
This time around it tastes pretty much the same as before – it still tastes like an English ale than a US one. The dominant aroma and flavour is of the malt, with the hops playing a supporting role. But it’s still good – and a little bit different to the other beers out there.
Would I drink it again?: Yep, and it’s worth celebrating that it’s become part of the regular line-up.
My thoughts are its a funny beer, in that I dont love it, dont hate it I just think I was underwhelmed by it. Coopers know their stuff, hold the style guidelines on the true Australian Ale, and punch out some great beers. Why then could they now wow us with something awesome to celebrate their 150th?
I like that they stuck to what they do best when it came to designing a beer to celebrate their 150th. I think it would have been out of character for them to do an imperial hefeweizen or something like that.
I wasnt after anything crazy, just some wow, even a little would do it
There might be some coming. Seems like the Thomas Cooper range might be used for limited release stuff.
I’d love to see them having a crack at something a little our of the box, time for an Imperial Sparkling Australian Ale or an hopped up Coopers Pale?