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Otter Creek Copper Ale - Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's

Not Rated.
Otter Creek Copper AleOtter Creek Copper Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

774 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 774
Reviews: 404
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 13.81%
Wants: 14
Gots: 23 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Altbier |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
32 IBU

(Beer added by: pezoids on 03-17-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 774 | Reviews: 404 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.22/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Otter Creek delivers an authentic Dusseldorfer-style alt biere brewed in the good ol' US of A! It's clear, dark copper body is capped by a short head of white foam that holds fairly well and leaves some nice walls of spotty and splotchy lace about the glass. The nose is lightly fruity and peppered with leafy and spicy noble hops amidst a delicate, toasty malt base. It's fine-bubbled, restrained carbonation leaves it slippery-smooth across the palate with just a gentle caress on the tongue. The fruitiness is less apparent in the flavor than the aroma, but it's still there and it works exceptionally well to brigthen the maltiness and offset the grassy/spicy/leafy/floral hop flavors; and it's precision tuned bitterness is solid enough to balance it perfectly. Very well done!

NeroFiddled, May 06, 2005
Photo of TongoRad
3.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brilliantly clear dark amber with a one finger long lasting head, after a pretty aggressive pour.

Aroma is dominated by complex malts- some toasty munich, some caramel, and very slight roasted characteristics. There is a sweet smell underneath it all and a faint aroma of spicy hops. Very clean otherwise, but could be stronger.

Taste is bready and dry, although there is a pleasant creamy quality as well, with dark caramel flavors minus the sweetness. Bitterness is relatively high, though well incorporated. Again- a very clean, easy drinking beer.

TongoRad, Apr 29, 2005
Photo of optikon44
3.68/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer greets me with a medium foam that consists of large and small bubbles. It disipates rapidly, but leaves a nice one centimeter cap. As promised on the label, this beer is an attractive dark orange color, very clear. A bunch of steady bubble streams add some excitement to the appearance.

As for smell, the beer supplies a subtle mix of exotic hops mixed with roasty malt. Very nice.

Great taste! Starts off with sweet malt , then moves into the the robust roasted malt suggest by the smell. The finish is redolent of syrupy malt and hops, combined with a very pleasant bitterness.

Like other copper ales I've consumed, the mouthfeel is a bit thin and rough because of the carbonation. So while it tastes and smells great, it doesn't make me want to immediately have another.

optikon44, Apr 27, 2005
Photo of TinusTime
3.83/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear copper color with a smallish white cap that laces all the way. Aroma is nutty with some fruity notes. No real hop aromas. Taste starts malty and ends malty. Barely perceiveable hop, just enough to keep this in line. Nice nutty flavour with out being over the top. Mouthfeel is very smooth. A pretty easy drinking beer overall. Not exciting enough to merit Ohh's and Ahh's but overall a very serviceable ale that I would definitly drink again.

TinusTime, Apr 25, 2005
Photo of whynot44
3.48/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Medium bodied, nice clear copper color with a small off-white head that disappears quickly leaving only a trace of lace.

The aroma is mild caramel malt and grassy hops.

The taste is also fairly mild. Again, a bit of caramel, biscuits and a grassy, slightly citrus hops bite at the finish and in the aftertaste.

Nothing spectacular but a very decent drinkable ale.

whynot44, Apr 15, 2005
Photo of doerickson
3.93/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The color of a two-year-old penny, with a fine-bubbled cream-colored head. Leaves a fine lace on the glass. Caramel and raisin aromas.

This is a malty brew, with dominant earthy flavors. Bit of candy-like malt and some leafy hop to balance. Faint smoke which in my experience is characteristic of Otter Creek's beers. Finish is longer than average, with toasted/bready malts lingering.

My brother went to Middlebury College and I can remember hating this beer when I'd go visit him as an undergraduate myself ten or so years ago. At that time anything darker or more flavorful than Natural Light was too dark and bitter for me. Now I pick this up once in a while (glad they distribute as far south as Richmond) as a reminder of what I was missing. Seems to me this may have been watered/dumbed down a bit over the years; still, I have a soft spot for it as it reminds me of good times in Middlebury.

doerickson, Apr 15, 2005
Photo of Sycodrummer
3.25/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle into a standard American pint glass forming about a half finger head that quickly dissapated and left little to no lacing. An amber hued copper with streams of carbonation running up the side of the glass.

Smell was very hoppy up front (like an IPA) but with some more sublte fruity scents present in the background.

Taste was very hoppy and bitter. A plethora of flavors hit the palate ranging from sweet fruit to very bitter hops and malt character. The balance tasted a little off as the hops really came thru more that I expected.

Light to moderate mouthfeel with rather heavy (almost soda like) carbonation.

Not a bad beer but just not the right balance for my taste. I finished the sample and had no inclination to have another at the time, but something I will probably go back to here and there.

Sycodrummer, Mar 01, 2005
Photo of mmmbeer
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz., bottled on 1/10/05. Batch #1670. The pour shows that it is indeed copper and it delivers a 1 inch head that doesn't leave much lacing. Smell is grassy/metallic with a bit of caramel and fruit and floral hops. Taste is very bitter (considering it's only 21 IBUs). Flavors are roasted with coffee, earth, piney/floral/spicy hops, and metallic tones. With the exception of the roasted flavors, the hops dominate - I was kinda expecting more complexity from the malts (even though this is my first altbier...however the label says they use 6 different malts). Mouthfeel is a bit dry and tingly, and the metallic smell and taste was a little distracting. Not a bad beer but nothing great.

mmmbeer, Feb 22, 2005
Photo of twelvsies
2.95/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A decent beer. It's most certainly copper in color, with a nice poofy head, but it doesn't stick around all that much. Smell is a little non-descript, but does have a nice malty kick to it. Taste is pleasant. Malty, with a decent balance of bitter hops. One thing I like about this beer is the nutty flavor that comes through, like a good brown ale. However, I don't like how it tastes a bit watered down and fluffy. A little more substance and this would be a great beer. As of now, it's still just decent.

5/18/05 - got another sixer and I'm not noticing any of the characteristics I mentioned above. It tastes like metal. Like real copper. Gross.

twelvsies, Feb 17, 2005
Photo of sulldaddy
3.25/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I enjoyed a sample of this brew @ Eli Cannon's last nite.
Beer is served chilled in a pint glass. The beer is a clear copper color with small off white surface layer of head. Aroma is mild with some caramel and toffee and a hint of earth and grassy hop character. First sip reveals an average body and average carbonation. Flavor is fairly mild and similar to the nose, with caramel and a bitey grassy hop profile mixing nicely. The finish is slighty bitter but not overwhelmingly so. Very smooth crisp and easy to drink. Just rather bland/average in my mind.

sulldaddy, Jan 08, 2005
Photo of NEhophead
3.75/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz brown bottle.

Foamy 1/2" white head that fades to a few pools of bubbles after a moment. Some condensed and spotted lacing with above average strength. Clear and bright copper in color.

Semi-sweet malt character; honey, light caramel. Wheat and light biscuit as well. Faint floral hop aromas.

Moderate wheat and grain driven flavors with a hint of sweetness. A moderately high bitterness immediately followed by a wheat and bread-like malt character. Hefty wheat aftertaste.

Medium bodied; moderately grainy mouthfeel. A good balance of malt and hops.

A pretty drinkable alt with good balance and flavor. Not a great beer, but a good version of the style.

NEhophead, Dec 13, 2004
Photo of Shiloh
3.23/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

My first impression of this craft brew is "Oh No... the taste is empty"
As the name suggests, this is a copper coloured ale, mildly cloudy with thin carbonation and of medium body.
The head on arrival was a full finger but quickly disapated to a very light lace, full ring and a pleasingly high cling.
The nose is short of grains.
The taste has a roasted barley edge to begin to which the bottom falls out and leaves you wanting.
The bottom half of this brew needs to be addressed.
However, as this pint was consumed, the flavour did improve to the end...but not enough.

Shiloh, Dec 11, 2004
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.2/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Crystal clear tangerine-amber. The golden ecru head has the consistency of whipped butter and is beginning to lay down a decent amount of lace. Ultimately there are several thin, concentric rings that fatten as work their way down the glass.

The nose is earthy (loamy to be more precise), an odd aroma for a beer and not an altogether good one. It also reminds me of Bit-O-Honey candy, a description that I know I've used before, but it fits here too. Might it have been another Otter Creek beer?

Unfortunately, the flavor mirrors the aroma. I'm sure the beer hasn't gone bad because a friend hand carried it from Middlebury and the bottling date is a mere three months ago. That must mean that the brewers intended for it to taste like this. It certainly doesn't taste like the few other altbiers that have crossed my palate.

That earthy, loamy, mineral-like flavor dominants the flavor profile as it did the nose. The malt backbone seems sturdy enough and provides a somewhat pleasant, somewhat sweet, toasted breadinesss. Words that describe the finish include short, bitter, dry and mineral-like.

I loved Otter Creek (Cascade) Pale Ale, but the other two offerings haven't exactly floated my boat. This one just tastes odd to me, although it's drinkable. I'd still like to sample the entire line from these guys, but I've had enough Copper Ale to last me a lifetime.

BuckeyeNation, Dec 03, 2004
Photo of masterbruewer
3.23/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured an thin, dark copper color with an off-white head about a half inch thick. Sketchy, nice lacing.

The smell is malt, creamy with a hint of caramel.

The flavor is mild. A faint hit of malt flavor, a light hop bite and then a caramel/butterscotch finish. A little tangy undertone hangs on a bit afterwards. Interesting flavor, but not very powerful.

Mouthfeel is light and mellow, not much carbonation or hop bite.

A highly drinkable beer with muted flavor that won't offend. May be a good crossover beer.

masterbruewer, Nov 29, 2004
Photo of MuddyFeet
3.45/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

The beer poured a nice copper, amber in color. Also, there was very little head which became a thin film that would creat the slightest of laces on the glass.The beer's flavor was of slightly bitter hops, followed up fairly quickly with a sour citrus taste that left a crisp finish. The aroma was nothing out of the ordinary. However, the mouthfeel, with its ever so slight carbonation, helps make this a very drinkable beer.

MuddyFeet, Nov 25, 2004
Photo of brentk56
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Clear, light amber body with a decent head; nice lacing

Smell: Vaguely malty with a subtle smell of rotting oranges. Not as bad as you might think based on that comparison, however.

Taste: A little bit of malt is quickly overwhelmed by a metallic, grapefruit bitterness that is a bit like an American IPA mixed with an amber ale.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a refreshing carbonation

Drinkability: Refreshing but a bit too metallic in the bitterness to my palate.

At first, I thought this was going to be an Amber Ale, based on the name and I was shocked when I looked at it and tased it. Then, I read the label more carefully and noted that this is a Northern German Altbier, so the style became much more understandable. Not a bad beer, but I wonder why they didn't name it something else that would be less confusing to the beer consumer.

brentk56, Nov 20, 2004
Photo of clvand0
3.78/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a copper color with a tall head that dies off slowly and leaves decent lacing on the glass. The aroma has a nice caramel malt smell followed up by some hops. The flavor is surprisingly smooth. Taste is of caramel malts, grains, and sweetness. Finish is slightly bitter with a nice caramel character. Nice beer.

clvand0, Nov 08, 2004
Photo of SheepNutz
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle poured into a tulip-style glass. It pours a deep copper color (hence the name) with two fingers of head. There is good head retention and good lacing. The smell is a good balance of malt and hops. You get a sweet malty nose at first with bits of caramel. Then you get a nice little hit of hops. The taste starts nice and malty, little bits of sweet grain and brown sugar. The finish is crisp and hoppy. The mouthfeel is pretty thick, yet smooth. The drinkability is very good. A big shout out to kmpitz2 for this great brew.

SheepNutz, Sep 11, 2004
Photo of wailingwench
1.2/5  rDev -66.9%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Another product from Otter Creek that uses aluminum as an adjunct. For unknown reasons, the Copper Ale and the Oktoberfest initially taste as if they were cooked on Mom's stove in an aluminum saucepan.

There are better ales out there, in my opinion, this belongs in the adjunct lager category.

wailingwench, Sep 05, 2004
Photo of kmpitz2
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer pours a nice transparent reddish coppery color with a two finger head that falls to a quarter inch cap over the beer. The nose is a light sweet, buttered toffee to a very light caramel. There is a little hint of sweet floral/grapefruit hop in there too. The flavor starts off sweet malty, slightly caramel, toasted malts but finishes with the hops, which are sweet and a bit spicey. I like it, but it's nothing great. Theres no real thickness to the beer and there is a nice bubbly carbonation. Not a bad drinking beer, but I don't think I will seek it out again. Just sort of there.

kmpitz2, Aug 31, 2004
Photo of oxmasterscream
3.03/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Clear copper (go figure). Poured a two-finger head.
Smell: Mainly toasted malts with just a hint of fruit. I'm not that familiar with the altbier style but it smelled like many other German or German-style beers I've had.
Taste: The label speaks of 6 different malts but the predominant taste is a nutty, toasty caramel malt with a mild bitter and drying finish. Very Oktoberfesty, At one point, late in the tasting, I experienced a coffee-like aftertaste that really confused me but I figured I should mention it.
Mouthfeel: Crisp with fizziness and medium-bodied.
Drinkability: It's an easy drinker but I wouldn't seek out another. This just seems like a run of the mill beer brewed in the German style.

oxmasterscream, Jul 31, 2004
Photo of merlin48
3.6/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle pours a chill hazed, amber body with a skimpy, offwhite head that has a short lifespan. Patch lace is minimal.

Aroma is caramel malt, with floral and grassy hops.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with above average carbonation.

Taste is predominantly malty. Six malts are used, according to the label, but caramel is up front. Hops provide a nice balance, but are difficult to identify(three varieties are used acc. to label). This one nails the Altbier style pretty well, and is very tasty.

Pleasantly drinkable, with lots of Germanic character due to the malts.

merlin48, Jul 29, 2004
Photo of Hibernator
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I Served the Otter Creek Copper Ale in a pint glass. This beer was bottled on 5/12/04....batch # 1543. Nice label that shows the Otter Creek in Middlebury, VT.

The appearance is an amberish copper with a decent head. Very good lacings on the sides of the glass. I smell hops, grain, and some caramel.

Nice and refreshing brew from Otter Creek. The malt presence is right up front. The label states that this "medium-bodied amber ale brewed with six malts, three hops and our special yeast."

Very drinkable and pleasing to the palate. Great balance of sweetness and flavor. Solid beer. A staple session beer.

Hibernator, Jul 23, 2004
Photo of Ahhdball
4.25/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Copper like the name with a small, and a quickly disspersed head. Smelled faint hops possibly burnt nuts. This had an average taste, nicely flavored nothing spectacular. Bitter through the entire drink with a mild honey after taste. (05/27/03 Date of Birth)

I've changed my mind about this, I think the second time around I got a better brew.
The head was larger and full of citrus overtones. The taste was great hops and malty goodness. Citrus and honey, possibly a little more roasted than burnt nuts. The mix was flawless! Both flavors had just enough play.

Ahhdball, Jul 17, 2004
Photo of Shaw
3.6/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I got two bottles of this beer in my penultimate shipment from a beer of the month club. I see on the bottle cap that it won a gold medal for altbier at the 2003 GABF. There's a bottled-on date printed on the bottle. April 26, 2004. I'm probably drinking this near the end of its lifespan.

It certainly is appropriately named. It's a light copper in color with a slight head that quickly vanishes. Its smell is of multiple malts: roasty, sweet and biscuity.

Once again, I find that the smell is a good indicator of flavor. This is a good session beer. It's not that heavy, and there is a nice bitter twang that offsets the malt flavors. The biscuit flavor is the most noticeable of the malt flavors. The aftertaste is almost totally a roasted malt flavor.

It's been a while since I had a good altbier, Diebels on tap being an old favorite. Check out Otter Creek Copper Ale for a solid session brew.

Shaw, Jul 13, 2004
Otter Creek Copper Ale from Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's
82 out of 100 based on 774 ratings.