Otter Creek Copper Ale
Otter Creek Brewing

Otter Creek Copper AleOtter Creek Copper Ale
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German Altbier
3.63 | pDev: 13.22%
Otter Creek Brewing
Vermont, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Otter Creek Copper AleOtter Creek Copper Ale
Notes: Our award-winning flagship brew inspired by the beers of Northern Germany. Copper Ale is a complex amber ale handcrafted with six malts, three hops and the spirit of the Green Mountains.

25 IBU
Reviews: 410 | Ratings: 869 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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DangerousDanBrewery from Washington

4.9/5  rDev +35%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is just possibly my favorite brew of all time. Besides buying it in stores, my brother and I would make the 1-hour drive up to the brewery anytime he visited me in Vermont. When I left Vermont I had 6 empty Otter Creek Growler bottles. Very sad that they discontinued this beer as it was by far the best they have made.

First thing you notice is a nice slightly cream-colored head and a welcoming copper color. Then the roasted malt and somewhat nutty aroma draws you in. It has a very distinctive aroma from the Tettnanger hops used as aroma hops and for dry hopping. The taste, as you might guess is very hoppy to begin with, but just about the time the hops are about to get overwhelming, the malt flavors blossom and smooth it all out. This is a really nicely balanced brew. Finish is fairly dry with a slight lingering sweetness that makes you want to open another.

Sorry to see Otter Creek Copper Ale was discontinued when Long Trail bought them in 2010, but I have a good homebrew recipe for it, and I still brew it up myself from time to time.

Mar 18, 2018
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connecticutpoet from Connecticut

3.54/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Appearance – Pale reddish-amber clear beer with a thin layer of head.

Aroma – Light nutty malts.

Taste – Follows the smell, light nutty malts.

Mouthfeel – Medium-bodied, good for the style.

Overall – A solid beer, sorry they discontinued it.

Feb 27, 2018
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delta490 from Virginia

4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy copper with a ring of white head and a smudge across the surface. A little bit of soapy white lacing hangs on. Nice malted barley aroma, with some dark fruit and caramel notes. The taste is much the same, a nice balance of malt and hops, sweet and bitter. The body is a little lighter, but not watery, with just a little hint of carbonation. This is a great easy-drinking ale that isn't an IPA. That's getting harder and harder to come by.

Jul 05, 2015
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terwilleger from North Carolina

4.75/5  rDev +30.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is what real beer should be. A balance of malt, hop and yeast flavors. When I want to have a beer to drink or with just about any kind of food, I go for this. I was very disjointed to hear that. otter creek will be discontinuing this style, in order to make more IPA varieties. Haven't we seen enough of the super mega ultra hop beers? Beer is not supposed to be a bottle of fizzy hop bitterness. We need to save beers that feature a premium grain bill.

May 20, 2015
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predikit from Massachusetts

3.74/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark auburn, leaves a small off white head that dissipates fairly quickly as well as minimal amount of lacing on the glass.

Smells quintessentially like a beer. Some caramel notes and surprisingly present alcohol aroma. Slightly peppery.

Taste begins sweet, then comes what first thought to be some Munich malts, caramel notes present. Brown bread, hops add an earthy quality which show up for the finish, bitterness sticks to the tongue for awhile with a lasting aftertaste.

Light bodied, fairly low carbonation, smooth, leaves fairly clean, but wouldn't call it crisp.

A good copper ale, and one I definitely wouldn't turn away.

Mar 25, 2015
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Cavanaghty from Maine

3.12/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Lighter brown color with a thin beige head that lingered. No lacing on the glass.

Smell: Hops and malts with nutty notes.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Smooth medium bodied. Taste of malts with bitter hops, very bitter aftertaste.

Overall: Not a bad beer. Would not go out my way to buy another.

Aug 05, 2014
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Jwale73 from Rhode Island

3.57/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First time re-visting this beer in a long time - an early craft brew that I drank quite a bit of in the 90's. Served in a nonic. Pours a copper hue with a slight haze. Head quickly dissipates into a band around the edges and a soapy froth across the center. Nose expresses toasted malt with a little biscuit and a hint of sweetness. Taste consistent with nose with a slight metallic quality. Mouthfeel is light-medium with a crisp carbonation. Overall, an exemplar of the style, particularly from the American craft market.

Jul 07, 2014
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dacrza1 from New Jersey

2.82/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

DATE REVIEWED: May 24, 2014... GLASSWARE: Howard's Pub pint... OCCASION: a holdover from the last poker night... APPEARANCE: dark amber body that is lively and slightly opaque; off-white head is mostly creamy with a bit of rocky space; good open lacing... AROMA: sharp caramel malts with enough metallic clank to disturb the doughy biscuit that settles... PALATE: smooth yet slightly warm; mellow, swift and too light to hold attention... TASTE: nutty and caramel with the sweetness near to lip-smacking; hops are in check and not distinguishable... OVERALLL: serviceable and sessionable, but not a six-pack I'd seek to revisit; rather straightforward and predictable, with only the comfort factor working in its favor....

Jun 07, 2014
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Brenden from Ohio

3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Copper it is, and clear as well. Carbonation is fairly active and continues after a soft but large off-white head is fully established. It ultimately fades down to about half a finger but keeps strong there. Lacing is mixed, but mostly patchy and fairly plentiful.
As expected, toast and caramel come through. A bit of leafy hops make for some balance against the breadier malts and add a bit more dryness. Dark fruit notes off a whiff of alcohol sneak into the end of each sniff. It's a bit grainy, but not astringent.
The taste gets it right, keeping it malt-forward but adding enough hops to add flavor and balance. Bitterness is light, floral and leafy. Graininess cuts down to just an even toastiness. It actually gets quite earthy, and dark fruits come in though not as strongly as in the nose. It has an almost Noble hops-like spiciness to it.
Despite the tendency for the heavier grain bill and toasting to be less clean, this beer avoids that nicely. It's quite clean, in fact, as well as being smooth and offering a nice, solid crispness in a well-rounded medium body.

Apr 04, 2014
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u2carew from Massachusetts

3.97/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz longneck bottle
A) Pours with a finger thick, off-white head. Settles quickly leaving a thin lacing at the edge of the glass. Clear, copper colored body. Semi-sticky lacing on the drink down.
S) Aromatic malts - caramel, buttery, and slightly bready.
T) Classic German stylings. Rich caramel malts. Some dry grainy notes.
M) Low carbonation. Medium-light body. Dry in the finish.
O) A good all around brew. I'd drink another.

Apr 01, 2014
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NiceTaps from New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass.

A- Copper colored Copper Ale, what do you know! It is clean and bright with a thin white head that lasts, nice lacing.

S- Notes of bread, melted caramel sweetness, toasty. The alcohol aroma reminds me of an after dinner liqueur.

T- Big dose of grain with some malts, caramel, and floral hops.

M- Light and carbonated, slightly sweet. The long mellow finish reminds me a of a higher proof spirit, grainy sweetness with bite. Not as potent, of course.

O- Flavorful and balanced, worth a look.

Oct 13, 2013
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dwren89 from Virginia

4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: copper brown with tan highlights, thin off white head, good clarity

Aroma: toasty, biscuity, and very nutty with a slight bitterness in the aroma.

Taste: pronounced nutty flavor with a bready and sweet taste than is curbed by a solid bitter finish. Great balance as progression of flavor through the drink and finish.

Mouthfeel: crisp but with a little ale like thickness. Medium carbonation

Overall: A great drink that is balanced with good mix of sweet and bitter hitting at different points in the drink. Very nutty with a slight bready flavor as well.


Sep 06, 2013
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mtomlins from Canada

3.4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a stemmed tulip glass

A: A clear reddish brown color. 1-2 fingers of bubbly head, falling quickly to a thin collar with no lacing.

S: A mild nose, starting very malty followed by some dark fruit (raisins and prunes), a bit of molasses. No hops to speak of.

T: Some malt, but not super sweet; slight bittering hops. Molasses in the finish with some plummy notes. An odd taste at the end, a bit bitter (metallic?) and off-putting.

M: Light body, a bit thin. Medium carbonation.

O: Kind-of unimpressive. Hop flavor oddly absent for an amber ale and overly plummy.

Aug 09, 2013
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IchLiebeBier from Virginia

3.21/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: slightly hazy, effervescent, rich copper body; 2 finger head after aggressive pour; some head lasts long, with good lacing

Smell: not a lot, but what I get is sweet malts, some caramel, and some citrusy hops; malt dominates

Taste: very thin, juicy malt on start; zippy from carbonation at first, but finishes kind of flat; not picking up anything of note

Mouthfeel: thin; reminds me of an English Bitter

Remarks: good session beer, and not that bad; just not that great either

Jul 26, 2013
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DavoleBomb from Pennsylvania

3.69/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a pint glass.

3.25 A: Moderately hazed copper color. Not even one finger of head formed.

3.5 S: Big toastiness. Nuttiness to a lesser extent. Fairly dry, but sweet enough to be balanced.

3.75 T: Tastes like the nose. Toasty, nutty, grainy maltiness. Moderately dry with a touch of yeast.

4.0 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Nice creaminess in this.

3.75 D: Not a whole lot going on, but it is tasty.

Jul 03, 2013
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oldirtycaffrey from Virginia

3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a solid everyday copper color with a nice one inch foamy head. Left a good amount of lacing along the pint glass. Smell is slightly sweet, a little starchy, with the faintest hint of caramel. Taste is a little bitter, but nice and complex. Full bodied. Good overall beer.

Jul 01, 2013
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brewcifix from Connecticut

2.37/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.25

A- Otter Copper pours slightly hazey, -but beautiful- golden-amber. The head is ample and fluffy. Lacing is good. This beer is great to look at.

S- The nose is caramel and malts.

T- A little caramel and malts is outshined by the metallic taste.

M- Low carbonation and light tongue weight pretty much sum up this beer.

Overall, this brew takes great pictures. It's great to look at, but, less rewarding to drink. It IS a good beer- I just don't love it. I'd drink it again- there just isn't anything distinguished or noteable about it.

May 25, 2013
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Utica_Brew_Review from New York

3.05/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Nice amber / copper color with decent head and mild to moderate carbonation. Mild fruity and caramel aroma. Bitter metallic and candy notes with a hint of caramel nuttiness and sweet alcohol in the background. It kind of falls flat a bit. Finishes with a bit more alcohol and floral notes.

Apr 02, 2013
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Flounder57 from Massachusetts

3.77/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle was poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger head that has reduced and left some nice lacing on the glass and a thin layer of foam. It is a crimson color with great clarity and bubbles coming up through the glass. Super lacing on the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: sweet caramel and bready malts followed by some mild hop aromas.

Taste: bready and grainy malts, caramel sweetness, and mild hop bitterness in the end.

Mouthfeel: a bit chewy, medium carbonation, medium bodied, smooth, and very drinkable.

Overall: I have loved this beer for years and so happy to have drank another again. Maestro, one more beer please.

Mar 22, 2013
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GreesyFizeek from New York

3.27/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

One of the first craft beers I ever had, so it'll always have a place in my heart, even if it's a little boring. Nice toasty malt backbone, but a bit thin, and ultimately, a bit uninteresting.

Mar 06, 2013
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Dodo2step from Pennsylvania

3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75


A_ nice pure clear copper color. no head and no lacing.

S- caramel malt and light dark candied fruit.

F- sweet caramel malt. anutty flavorfulness as well. simple yet good.

M- a medium bodied beer that has a nice little kick on the end.

O- Not a bad beer. I havent had too many altbier but this is something i would gladly relax with.

Feb 04, 2013
Photo of sarajayne

3.41/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This pours a dark copper amber color with a great foam. Its loaded with a toasted nutty flavor and strong hints of caramel. Its light on the hops, which makes it very drinkable and balanced.

collage girls drink GOOD beer:

Nov 27, 2012
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dbrauneis from North Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a slightly hazy dark copper in color with some reddish hints when held up to the light and moderate amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a half finger tall light beige head that slowly reduces to a thin film covering the majority of the surface of the beer and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light to moderate aromas of caramel malts with just a hint of sweetness.

T: Like the smell, the taste of this beer is primarily that of caramel malts with just a light amount of sweetness.

M: Light to medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Smooth.

O: Not the most interesting beer due to the single dimension to the flavor and aroma - don't get me wrong in that I like the caramel malts but I wish there was a little something else to add some layers or complexity. Easy to drink.

Nov 02, 2012
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DrinkSlurm from New York

3.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into NB Globe glass.
Pours a deep copper color with some white head. Smells of typical upstate NY (saranac) and VT (long trail/otter creek) sweet malts. Not much hop aroma, but didnt expect it either. Its flavor is your typical altbier sweetish malts, lots of backbone and body though. Its a very drinkable brew, some slight hops notes, but would like a bit more hops...I guess that would just be a Pale Ale then huh...

Oct 31, 2012
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tdm168 from Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - dark caramel copper with a thin lacing of off white head that fades quickly

S - sweet caramel with an underlying grainy aroma

T - caramel, grainy, mild hop bitterness

M - medium bodied, smooth, sticky, crisp

This is a simplistic beer. It's caramel sweetness throughout. It's easy to tip back a lot of these but it gets boring after just a few. I'll pass in the future.

Aug 18, 2012
Otter Creek Copper Ale from Otter Creek Brewing
Beer rating: 82 out of 100 with 869 ratings