Dismiss Notice
We're celebrating 10 years of BeerAdvocate magazine with $10 print subscriptions for US residents.

Subscribe now!

Very Special Pale Ale (VSPA) - Cognac Barrel Aged | Cameron's Brewing Co.

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
no score
Awaiting 10 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Very Special Pale Ale (VSPA) - Cognac Barrel AgedVery Special Pale Ale (VSPA) - Cognac Barrel Aged

Brewed by:
Cameron's Brewing Co.
Ontario, Canada

Style: English Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.70%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Cameron’s Very Special Pale Ale (VSPA) Cognac Barrel Aged is a unique, first time creation for the Brewery. Cameron’s VSPA is aged for six months in French cognac barrels. VSPA delivers a delicate fruity pear character, with an oaky flavor derived from long aging in toasted barrels. Cameron’s version of the pale ale style is brewed with warm fermentation with predominantly a British malt blend that is well balanced with specialty imported hops. Cognac is a variety of brandy that must meet strict legal production requirements to carry the name. The brandy must be twice distilled in copper pot stills and be aged at least two years in French oak barrels from Limousin or Tronçais. Cognac matures in the same way as whiskies and wine when aged in barrels, and most cognacs are aged considerably longer than the minimum legal requirement. The resulting flavor that resides in the oak barrels has contributed to Cameron’s VSPA Cognac Barrel Aged’s spectacular taste.

Added by TheSevenDuffs on 12-28-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 2 | Ratings: 4
Photo of peensteen
3.57/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Hazy golden orange colour, 1.5 fingers of white head, lots of lace here as well. Smell is a bit funky upfront, big barrel presence, a fair bit of fruit, vinous congnac notes come in, some spice with more oak and vanilla. Taste is a bit spicy up front, cognac is a little light on the pallate but the oak is pretty in your face, fruity in the finish with a bit of alcohol heat also. Lightly carbonated, medium light feel. This wasn't bad and actually quite interesting, however certainly not good enough for repeat purchases especially at the price point of this.

 562 characters

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
2.78/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured in to tulip.

A - Hazy medium orange, amber in the middle. Half a finger of dirty white head.

S - Big woody aroma up front that gives way to sweet caramel, pear and light citrus notes.

T - Huge oak/woody flavour up front from the barrels. the base beer adds caramel, pear, peach and a light citrus flavour. The finish is oaky with a big astringency and a touch of cognac coming through. After a few sips the astringency really becomes distracting. The barrel didn't really come together with the base beer well, perhaps this was meant to age? A little rough.

M - Light to medium body. Light carbonation.

O - My second experience with a Cameron's barrel aged beer. This was better than the last one, but still very rough.

 746 characters

Very Special Pale Ale (VSPA) - Cognac Barrel Aged from Cameron's Brewing Co.
3.24 out of 5 based on 4 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer Fest® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • Free Trial Subscription

    Reside in the US? Interested in a free 1-month trial subscription to the print edition of BeerAdvocate magazine?

    Yes! Sign Me Up!