Otter Creek Copper Ale | Otter Creek Brewing

408 Reviews
Otter Creek Copper AleOtter Creek Copper Ale

Brewed by:
Otter Creek Brewing
Vermont, United States

Style: Altbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by pezoids on 03-17-2001

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 408 | Ratings: 865
Photo of UDbeernut
3.48/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the dutch, into a cheater pint

Amber color with a nice silkey off white head, good retention. Scent of light roast and noble hop. Nice malt body melded well with noble hop, slight chalkiness. Over all a good beer and a style I wish was more common.

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Photo of musicforairports
3.34/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A darker amber color, with a small head and some good lacing. Kind of bubbly.

Smell is faint and of nutty malts.

Taste is pretty simple but decent. Malty for sure--bready, nutty and only lightly roasted--before finishing with a sweet amber ale-like malt flavor. The flavors work together well, but there's nothing here that's very memorable.

Medium mouthfeel, and impressively creamy for the lightness of the flavor.

This one is tasty enough and something I don't mind drinking if it's around. But it's not something I'd seek out. Like much of Otter Creek's lineup, it's one of those beers that's perfectly adequate but nothing spectacular.

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Photo of BuxMontBeerLover
3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle was included in the Otter Creek variety Case.

Enjoyed in a DFH Pint Glass

A - Pours a reddish, amber color. Slightly opaque but not hazy. A one finger, off white colored head on the initial pour. Fades quickly to a light skim. Decent lacing on the glass.

S - A malty sweetness is the initial aroma I get. Nothing fantastic.

T - A good beer. Very malt forward with hints of caramel, hops and a lemon-like tartness. Slightly sour on the end. The alcohol is barely noticeable.

M - A medium consistancy. Nice tingle from the carbonation. Slightly sour & bitter aftertatse.

O - Another good beer from Otter Creek. This could very easily be a sessionable beer due to the low ABV although it's a tad sweet for me to enjoy more than a couple of these.


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Photo of jondeelee
3.95/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Copper Ale has a unique nose, smelling partly of sugary malts, partly of toasted rice, partly of good loam, and partly of spicy fruit esters (oranges and apricots with cloves and black pepper), which altogether create an intoxicating aroma.

On the tongue, the first taste is of roasted nuts, bringing a distinctly earthy quality to the brew. This is then joined by toasted grains and roasted malts, which add a semi-burnt flavor, as of slightly over-toasted artisanal bread. A small, but good layer of sugars rests beneath, bringing deeply caramelized brown sugar flavors. Toward the end of the mouthful the sugars die off, and the almost-burnt bread flavor shines through clearly, and lasts well into the aftertaste. Hops are barely noticeable beneath these roasted grain flavors, and are most noticeable late in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is a good copper ale, and grows on the drinker as the bottle empties: the flavors do not decrease, as happens in some beers, but become more noticeable and refined. The semi-burnt notes can get a little overpowering if the beer is drunk too quickly, making this an excellent sipping beverage.

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Photo of angrybabboon
3.85/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review adapted from notes taken 3/31/11

Appearance: Actually more of a deep orange than a copper, clear, small white head that fades too fast

Smell: Malty, kind of like stale, old biscuits - may not sound appetizing but it works pretty well - slightly nutty, some herbal/floral hops

Taste: Unexpectedly interesting - malts are somewhere between biscuits and bread crust, creating a flavor that makes me think of a non-sweet, dry bock - I definitely like the malt profile - some herbal hop spiciness - nicely bitter, nicely balanced

Mouthfeel: Medium body, very smooth, nicely carbonated

Overall: Way better than expected

I find it strange that both Otter Creek and Long Trail - two (relatively) big breweries in VT - have a year-round altbier. For my tastes, Otter Creek's offering is greatly superior. It is certainly not an exciting beer, but I would not mind having in my fridge more often.

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Photo of chugalug06
3.02/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Nice head builds... Head is white and brew is fairly clear copper color with lots of reds. nice Lacing!

S - Kind of smells like pool water... Some nice caramel scent, but not too much else...

T - Very basic. Nothing fancy. Perhaps there's some caramel and tobacco flavors..

M - Very thin and light. Great carbonation.

O - Decent, but nothing I would seek to try again. Thanks for the extra dsgolovin!

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Photo of MrOH
4.07/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear copper (surprise!) with a thin white head

Bready, clean germanic malts. Slight yeast fruitiness, but nothing crazy.

Bready, clean germanic malts, some toffee, nice slightly bitter finish.

Medium bodied good carb.

This beer seems absurdly drinkable and pretty much seems to me to perform its duties as an alt very well. Nothing spectacular, but a good beer for the sake of having a beer.

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Photo of PicoPapa
3.5/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle. Pours a murky, dirty copper color with a small amount of head. Zero lacing. Aroma is earthy and malty. Sort of sweet and sour smelling. Maybe a bit of caramel. Taste is bready. More of that tangy flavor I smelled earlier. Earthy flavor. A bit watery and thin but easy to drink and an alright beer. Not much else to say about this one. Decent mix pack beer but not worth grabbing on its own.

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.21/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. no date, instead an unclear lot #.

appears a dark copper color, with thin bright white head. smells a bit stale. tastes of mild malt with a bit of citrus and clean hop flavor. medium body and carbonation.

overall, an average easy drinkin' beer

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Photo of OldIronLungs
4.06/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pint glass. Pours a bright amber honey with a finger of white head that flattens out into a persistent disc.

Nose is sweet malt, bready, lightly toasty with a hint of alcohol.

The first part of the sip is akin to a light, clean finish; open and juicy. Big citric mouthfeel followed by a good malt body, earthy pine and grapefruit feel at the end.

This is really refreshing, yet bitter in a way that demands you draw another sip. For the style, I think this is excellent. It's called a copper and I think that's a perfect description for the sensation. Would love to try this on tap with some fish and chips.

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Photo of DrJay
3.6/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear orange amber colour with a thin cap of foam that settled quickly to a collar. Mild aroma, earthy, malty with some brown sugar sweetness, toasty with faint hops. Moderate bitterness that lingered. A little juicy, citrusy up front, malty mid-palate. Definite grapefruit character in the finish. medium bodied with lowish carbonation, fairly dry. Overall, pretty decent. Easy drinking with nice flavor, a little fruitier than I expected.

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Photo of LittleDon
2.95/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A pint at Daedalus in Harvard Square.

Copper colored, clear, no head or lace, plentiful carbonation. Muted malt aroma with a candy like characteristic. Medium carbonation feel. Flavor leans toward the malt side with the same candy like quality in the middle. Some bitterness in the back, but all in all, a mediocre brew with nothing descriminating it from the thousands of other pale ales.

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Photo of koolex11
4.5/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is an excellent attempt at an altbier. Unfortunately there aren't enough alts out there to compare to. I wish there were more.

I feel that too many beer enthusiasts focus on--depending on taste--either excessively hoppy beers or the overly sweet Belgian style. The subtle joys of a robust beer with good balance and less sugar is forced to carve a niche in the shadows amidst micro-brewing extremes.

Thank you otter creek for showing your sophistication! I hope others will follow.

Great bold malt flavor, but didn't forget a good dose at the end to keep the hopheads happy.

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Photo of mattjv
4.05/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

As the name suggests, pours a clear copper color with 1 finger head that dies down quickly.

Smell is light toasted malts with a bready yeast character. Herbal hops complement the aroma. Pleasant toasty malt character also highlights the taste, with prominent nutty/woody notes. Piney and herbal hops highlight the finish, with a moderate bitterness. Slightly drying on the finish, bitterness lingers into the aftertaste. Fairly light bodied with mild carbonation, goes down easy and finishes pleasant.

Overall: A well rounded, easy drinking brew of a style that I haven't had many of. I found the bitterness moderate but it may be a little too much for those very sensitive to it. Recommend trying this one.

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Photo of mdaschaf
3.47/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours clear light copper color, a very small head formed, but was gone quickly, leaving a very small ring around the top and small bits of lacing.

S: Lots of bready malts, some grains, and a touch of caramel on the end.

T: Starts of with an earthy flavor, and some grains, but there is a nice, fruity sweetness on the backend, a combination of melon and strawberries almost, but its hard to say exactly.

M: Medium bodied, very smooth. Leaves a slightly chalky mouthfeel.

O: It was ok, nothing amazing. Liked the fruit flavor, but the chalky mouthfeel wasn't great.

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Photo of lechroy
3.59/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Love the caramel aroma here on this one. I can smell the sweet sugar maple essence dabbled with some warm cloves. Great for the nose although the aroma is notably malt dominated.
Tasted warm going down, makes me think this would be nice for autumn. I was missing the hop presence on this one. Dry finish which I liked, but otherwise empty and tasting watery in the middle. A decent copper, but nothing exceptional.

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Photo of tzieser
2.65/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

served in a standard pint glass from a 12oz bottle.

a: pours copper (surprise!) in color with a thin white head that fades quickly. hoped for more head retention. nothing special at all.

s: pretty bland nose with notes of caramel malts and grassy hops. not much there. could use more dry hopping.

t: crisp, slightly sweet malty flavor up front balanced by notes of grassy hops. watery character that i'd expect out of a BMC faux-craft beer. i've had better.

m&d: smooth mouthfeel; okay drinkability.

nothing special here. move along. if there is one beer in Otter Creek's lineup that is in need of overhaul it's this one. since when does altbier mean "boring, uninspired ale"? that's the vibe i got with this one. will not have again.

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Photo of mikeg67
2.82/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle. Pours deep golden with a thin, white head and lively carbonation. Aroma is bready malt, caramel and grassy hops. Light-medium body is smooth. Flavor is of light grassy hops and caramel malt. Light, short finish. Nothing exciting about this brew.

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Photo of jsdunlop
2.96/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Orange-amber color, bit of sediment floating around and settling on the bottom, and a nice lookin fluffy white head that forms and hangs around. Good lacing so far
Faint spice in the nose, bit of sweetness, grainy
Very malt forward, bready malts with a sourdough taste to it. Slight caramel sweetness, light bitterness finishes up the brew.
Mouthfeel is moderate with matching carbonation, smooth feel to it.
Overall, this seemed to be a very, very plain beer. Flavors seemed meshed together, no defining characteristics noted at all. It drinks fine, but nothing stood out.

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Photo of Wamesit
4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a bright copper with a thick crisp white head that gives way to moderate webbing lacing.

S - Fruity nose with a hint of pepperiness underneath. There is an oily hop aroma that is the body of the experience, along with a bready malt scent.

T - A crisp flavor. Oily hops (spicy), bready and sweet malts. A good balance. A touch of alcohol in the finish.

M - Denser side of light. Appropriate carbonation.

D - Drinkable, esp. for those who enjoy the Altbier style.

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Photo of devinoconnor
2.98/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a rich brown color.

Smells like a Beck's or German beer. A little caramely too.

Taste was rather bland for me. Didn't notice a lot of hops or maltiness to it.

Goes down smooth and easy, but can't say I really wanted another pint.

Vermont offers many more superior beers than this one.

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Photo of vtblackdog
3.26/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - light copper, light head, not a lot of lace on the pint glass.

S - malty don't get much hops, but just as advertised.

T - good taste, like the a micro brew should be.

M - smooth, a good beer to enjoy on a winter or summer day.

D - very drinkable, goes down smooth

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Photo of beerdude63
2.54/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

I had this beer years ago and remember loving it. However I grabbed a six pack the other day and had a different experience. It poured out a beautiful copper color which was the only thing that seemed the same. The smell was graining and floral, but not awesome. The taste was pretty similar. Had a nice head on it but a little too much carbonation for me. All in all a half way decent beer but definitely the same as it was before. Not sure if its a new recipe or a off batch. Guess I'll have to pick it up a six pack again ina few months and find out.

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Photo of CooperEllis
3.4/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Was quite happy to realize this hadn't disappeared, it had just had updated packaging so figured it was time to review it.

12oz into .3l tulip.

I've always like how this looked. I just learned it's classified as a 'altbier'. Thanks, BA!

Lovely bright copper color; aggressive pour yielded a 1.5" head of billowy white.

Soft fruit and grain aroma, light apricot. It is a very clean smell, not antiseptic, but fresh/springy.

Certainly less agressive flavors than a lot of what I've been drinking of late. Mild malt flavors through the middle are bookended by a bit of grass.

Certainly drinkable. I suppose I'm a sucker for nostalgia and reviewing something you've had so many times is just another one of the many factors that may skew a review, but I certainly enjoy a couple Copper Ale's from time to time.


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Photo of ne0m00re
3/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Live review of a 12 oz bottle marked LOT2594110903.
A: Poured a reddish amber with a half-finger creamy head that died to a thinner film and collar.
S: A slight cinnamon and caramel and toffee with a banana biscuit and mild buttery consistency.
T: Creamy with a strange metallic brightness at the end. Mostly buttery biscuit with banana. It's not terrible, but there are much better altbiers.
M: Thinner with a mild carbonation. Not so great either.
D: Good. It goes down pretty easy. Overall, I'm not too impressed, though.

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Otter Creek Copper Ale from Otter Creek Brewing
3.61 out of 5 based on 865 ratings.
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