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Coopers Extra Strong Vintage Ale | Coopers Brewery Limited

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Coopers Extra Strong Vintage AleCoopers Extra Strong Vintage Ale
377 Ratings
Coopers Extra Strong Vintage AleCoopers Extra Strong Vintage Ale

Brewed by:
Coopers Brewery Limited

Style: English Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-07-2002

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 377 |  Reviews: 265
Photo of shadow1961
3.88/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cooper's Vintage Ale- (my first Australian beer) pours out
a creamy white head that breaks up into lace over a cloudy
brown brew. Carbonation is fairly active, and the nose is of
malt and fruit. Flavor is of molasses, mothfeel is tingly and
crisp. A sweeter brew, it's also nicely alcoholic, coming in
at a perfectly respectable 7.5% by volume. Yummy- very
good for after dinner to be sipped slowly over conversation.

 426 characters

Photo of Lukie
3.88/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: Small head which dissipitates quickly to a small outer ring of lacing. Rich bronze with still sediments, very appealing.

Smell: Strong sweet malts, raisins, apples, hint of sweet grape.

Taste: Sweet malt, little bit tarty in the finish. Caramel, Coffee, little bit of sweet green apple.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, good carbonation which lingers.

Drinkability: Great to drink on a cold winters night. Full flavoured, full of life. Strong tastes with warming alcohol.

 486 characters

Photo of getkrunkhoe
3.88/5  rDev +6.6%

Photo of WHROO
3.89/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice drop...poured a reddish brown colour with a fraction of a head & zero lacing...the appearance was very winey. It did leave a little ring of lacing around the glass (like champagne) lasted halfway down.
Smell had soy, plum & plenty of toffee malts
Taste had the sweet malts, also more plum fruitiness...nothing really at the back.
Little more carbonation across the palate would have added to this nice drop.
This is a really nice & strong full aussie Strong Ale, well worth the $$$.

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Photo of matt_duthie
3.89/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of yen157
3.89/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Coarse, fizzy head that had little staying power beyond a tiny bit of sticky lace. The body itself was cloudy amber with orange highlights. Chewy, toasted malt and toffee abounds in the nose, and those were mirrored in the taste. While there was no sign of hops aroma, there was a palate cleansing bitterness up front with the malt. The body was a little too thin and the finish cut short by seltzer flavor. It was a shame because it had so much potential. The 7.1% ABV did little besides warm the throat, so this beer would possibly get my vote for heavy hitting session beer of the month.

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Photo of Jeffo
3.9/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Got this at Bert's Bierhuis in Utrecht.

From a bottle into a snifter
Note: Bottle is 2008 vintage

APPEARANCE: Pours a two finger thicker looking off-white head with good retention. Partially clear with some carbonation evident. Dark burgundy red in color. A film remains until the end and leaves some nice lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Sweet caramel malt up front with raisins and other sweet red berries; some raspberries perhaps. Some floral hop elements in the background as well. Nice.

TASTE: Quite a malty beer on first impression with some caramel malt up front and then some butterscotch, raisin, and woody notes follow up. Nice floral hops near the end with some good hop bitterness to finish. Aftertaste is strong and long lasting with caramel sweetness and a good dose of hop bitterness. Quite nice indeed.

PALATE: Medium body with prickly carbonation. Not very creamy, but quite smooth. Goes down smooth and finishes slightly dry on the palate. Alcohol well hidden. A more impressive palate would be useful, as well as move the taste up a notch.

OVERALL: A tasty brew for sure. Another good offering from Coopers to go beside their fine Export Stout. Very enjoyable and drinkable, though the palate needs a little beefing up to really get it over the hump. One to try if you can find it.

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Photo of xylophonica
3.9/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Light caramel brown colour. Minimal head.

S - Sweet sugary syrup. Mild cheese & bread.

T - Very light and sweet at first. Heaps of sugary caramel flavours. Mild carbonation offsets sweeter tastes.

M - Carbonation as above is quite soft but couples well with a more bitter aftertaste.

O - So clearly this is the pick of the Coopers stable.. although it has a price to match. Very pleasant and easy to drink. Proof that Australians can make a decent beer when we try!!

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Photo of admiral
3.9/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

2013 vintage

nice aroma of malt and caramel with a hint of citrus

taste: malt and caramel mixed with candied banana with hints of raisin and spice

a good quality beer that is the best in the coopers range. Will be interesting to taste again in a year or two.

 261 characters

Photo of wl0307
3.9/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My bottle is 2004 vintage, with a BEST AFTER date of 20/08/04. (suppose that's the bottling date?)

A: in a goblet it pours a very (Coopers-trademark) cloudy, dark and rusty-copper colour, with an off-white, foamy head settling fast to a thin layer of tiny bubbles lasting very well, against a constantly fine fizzy body.
S: quite refreshing malty nose plus mild aroma of candyish-orange, preserved-peach and a touch of light caramel; fruitcake's lightly buttery and dried-fruit (raisins) aroma sustains firmly at the back, along with a tinge of yeast, but not too much. In a sense it resembles the kind of very deep and flat raisiny aroma of a glass of semi-sweet Medeira wine left in the air for a while, yet I like it~~
T&M: first approaching is an overwhelmingly raisiny, almost madeira-wine like warm, alcoholic texture!!...the obviously creamy texture of malts is underlined by a quite floating dark-fruity and lively alcoholic, yeasty plus a bit woody feel lingering in the mouth, which turns increasingly dry and leaves a rounded but restrained palate of malts and more dark-fruits in the warm finish. The mouthfeel is very balanced, turning from a bit stimulating initially to soft towards the end, while in the aftertaste it becomes settled and dryish.
D: a quite strong beer, it somehow is quite restrained and simplistic in terms of overall flavour. Still, this is a nice beer to savour once in a while.

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Photo of Mavajo
3.91/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 vintage.

Pours a brown amber with a fluffy white head that has excellent retention - even after sitting a while, there was a nice half-inch foam on top. Minimal lacing, which is the only thing keeping this from being a 5. Depending on your pour, you may or may not have sediment in your glass.

Nose was nice, but I had difficulty distinguishing the individual characteristics - maybe some cherries, figs...some sweetness. Taste is good - cherries, figs, raisins, sweet with a bit of bitter follow through. Contrary to oher reviews, I didn't find the mild bitterness to be unwelcome at all.

Mouthfeel medium and smooth with fairly heavy carbonation. Alcohol presence becomes more pronounced as it warms. Drinkability is fairly good, but lends itself to sipping.

 770 characters

Photo of ADR
3.92/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Batch from Oct. 4, 2002...

Swampy ice tea appearance, with small chunks of yeasties. Head is minimal and lasts about 25 seconds. Aroma is of a Heath Bar, toffee-ish. Very candy-like flavors, some chocolate and buttery diacetyls, a touch of shortbread as it approaches the back of the mouth.. Hops do a good job countering any tendency toward over-sweetness. Well done, Coopers...not a killer but a fine and satisfying brew here.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.92/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured a dark amberish-brown with a slight creamy off tan capping that faded rather quickly.

S: caramel apple and dry oranges.

T: The flavor starts off with some dark fruit (raisins, dates) some figs, and burnt molassess. There was some light fruitiness from the yeast (apples) combining with alcohol to give this cidery hints.

M: smooth, a bit oily, with soft carbonation providing a decent malt lacing.

D: Good drinkability worthy of a try, pretty tasty and big for an Australian beer.

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Photo of Zorro
3.92/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured with care to leave the sediment in the bottle.

Pours a clear copper colored ale with a skimpy head.

First sniff is very fruity with a scent of rye and a bit of ethanol. Fairly spicy scent that is quite pleasant.

Taste is fruit and rye with a little butter. A little sweet it has a brisk bitterness in the finish. A little tartness in the finish.

Mouthfeel is good.

Nice drinkable beer here but I think I can find better.

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Photo of rickyleepotts
3.92/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I am not sure if I have had anything from this brewery, but my recent obsession with cellaring beers has me excited. The picture in the book shows a 2007, and while we didn't find that one at Total Wine & More, we grabbed a bottle from 2008. I can't imagine there is a huge difference. It was also interesting to learn that they have people tasting, expert tasters as it were, making sure that Coopers beers taste the same over time for consistency. This beer doesn't go through that, but I have a lot of hopes for this one. Let's start drinking, shall we?

In the Glass: It looks like syrup in the glass. That is exactly what I had expected, too. For the ABV and the price on a beer like this, most will light up a cigar and take his or her time enjoying this one. It's not a chugging beer, rather a beer you can sit back and relax with. There is practically no head, and a very thin, boring lace. Perfect!

Nose: This is right out of the fridge, but there is a malty sweetness to it that I love. It reminds me, from the look in the glass to the powerful aroma, of the Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA. Not the same by any means, but something you will take your time to appreciate and the experience will be worth every second. Let's see what this beer tastes like!

Flavor: Oh yeah, buddy. That's what I'm talking about! Again, super cold. And I will let it sit here for a little bit before I take another drink, but there is a smoothness to it, then you are hit with those malty flavors and you can almost taste the word "vintage" in the beer. You have to remember, this beer was brewed and bottled back in 2008. Each bottle has a "best after" date on it, and this one has been sitting in the bottle so long, the "best after" date has rubbed off. But according to what it said in the book, 2-3 years before you should even consider drinking this.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is boring at first, but as you take a second and third sip, you start to appreciate the flatness of the beer, and focus on the flavors and the overall complexity of the beer. Even when I tried swooshing it around in my mouth, there are hardly any bubbles. Looking at the website, and seeing Thomas Cooper's face makes me realize just how much work goes into making a good craft beer. This is a good craft beer.

Aftertaste: The aftertaste is sweet and malty, just as I expected. Maybe I drink too much, but I could tell you what the entire experience was going to be like before I even took my first sip! That's OK, it was fun proving myself right! I am sure there will be beers along the way that will surprise me. I hope so, or this will be a boring ride.

I was a little worried that the bottle/label didn't say "extra strong" on it. But upon further research, I found that it is in fact the same beer. I have this obsession with finding the exact bottle in the book, from the size to the label. I know we won't be able to do that the entire way, but when we can, I like to match the list. Big fan of the Coopers Extra Strong Vintage Ale. I might buy another one tonight at work! Bottoms up, people!

Coopers Extra Strong Vintage Ale - The bottle says: "Coopers Vintage has been brewed with choice malts and extended top fermentation to provide a strong flavorsome ale. Stored under cellar conditions the rig and full flavor of Coopers Vintage will become more complex over an extended period."

"Coopers Ales and Stout are brewed using the centuries old top fermentation method and natural bottle conditioning, resulting in a characteristic fine sediment forming on the base of the bottle. This sediment is completely natural and can be gently mixed before stinking or poured carefully leaving the sediment in the bottle."

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Photo of kegger22
3.93/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 Vintage

Coopers Vintage Ale was a deep copper color with tons of large, suspended particles. The head was about a half inch, beige with little retention.

The aroma was only vaguely apple. I got very little scent, which unfortunately, happens to me quite often.

The taste did have some caramel sweetness, but only after it warmed. My first impression of taste was hoppy bitterness, though I wouldn't describe the hops as citrus or pine.

The mouth feel was full bodied, I would almost say "heavily" bodied, and lightly carbonated.

Drinkability was fairly good. Respectable taste and 7.50 ABV, but I'd have another.

I enjoyed it, but believe it to be over-priced in my area of the country.

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Photo of soju6
3.94/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle-2012 Vintage-

A: Pours a cloudy dark copper color with a good tan head that fades slowly to nice lacing.

S: Aroma of rich roasted malt, dark fruit and spice.

T: Taste of roasted malt, bit of caramel sweetness, some dark fruit and spice. Nice bitterness and a clean dry finish.

F: A solid medium body, smooth and creamy, with a very nice balance. No hint of the 7.5% ABV.

O: Nice easy drinker, good beer the end the day with. Worth a try.

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Photo of coldmeat23
3.94/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

GLASS: Pint Glass
TEMP: Cellared @ approx 50 degrees
VINTAGE: ???(Says 'Best Before 10-09-06')

Hazy, murky light brown in the glass. Amber/red hints at the edge. Two finger creamy off-white head. Minimal retention, but good lacing.

Smells very good. Better than it looks. Sweet maltiness. Honeyed pears and grapes. Wheat and yeastiness.

Tastes of nuttiness and malts mixed with sweet fruits. Pear and apricot stand out. Buttery and perhaps a bit of maple syrup. A tiny bit of pepperiness from hops. This has mellowed out very well.

Loses points for being abit on the thin side. Other than that though, it is a tasty, tasty brew.

The alcohol content is high enough, and although I don't taste it, I certainly feel it, that it gets docked a point in drinkability. Elsewise, this is an excellent brew that has aged exceptionally well.

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Photo of elricorico
3.95/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep amber in colour. Slowly poured but generated a finger of beige head. Lively looking carbonation.

Sweet and a bit earthy to smell. Flowery hops. Fruitiness like cherry and orange.

Taste strongly mirrors the aroma, well balanced between malt and hops. Alcohol well masked. Dry in the finish.

Slick bodied with fairly subtle carbonation. Decent feel.

Good beer, no quite the standout one expects from a vintage ale, but it is a bit more drinkable than expected as well.

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.95/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2008 vintage
12.7 oz bottle, stamped "best after 6.19.08"

cloudy deep amber color. thin white head. rich sweet malty aroma. as it warms, some fruity aromas.

following the taste, very malt forward, some toffee flavor, maybe some raisin. fairly complex. full bodied, medium carbonation.

nice to slowly sip and let it warm and expand.

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Photo of Big78CJ
3.95/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Typed from notes taken on Friday, April 13, 2007:

A: Very murky, tawny to amber sort of color. There is a nice short, but creamy, foam top. Around the neck of the glass there is a lot of built up carbonation. The beer is way too cloudy to change much from passing light.

S: Either there is some belgian yeast strain or all top-fermenting beers smell like this and I have never noticed. There's also a slightly sweet aroma but it could be from the malt.

T: Sweet malt and perhaps brown sugar are the first hints I notice. These are followed close behind by some hop bitterness, perhaps fueld on by carbonation. I can't put my finger on which but it tastes like there is fruit or candy sugar complimenting the hops.

M: I did not expect this beer to look or taste anything like a Belgian dubbel but the comparison is sound. What is a vintage ale anyway? This definitely has a creamy feel, though none of the thickness of a stout.

D: I am very impressed by this Coopers selection. I've had a few others in the past and have never been very excited. I'm still not running back to the store but it is a very refreshing beer.

Poured into Victoria Bitter pilsner glass.

 1,167 characters

Photo of ADZA
3.95/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is there 2009 vintage and it pours a deep mahogany,honeyish hue with nice carbonation that leaves a nice one finger head,it has aromas of freshly baked bread,yeasty malty notes and suprisingly some fruity notes too quite impressive for Coopers,it has an above average mouthfeel and from my first sip i know i have just found my favourite Coopers beer in their range without a doubt it has a strong malty yeast note first up followed by some light spicy,fruity hops and it finishes ever so smooth,i honestly cant believe its taken me this long to discover a true australian beauty.

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Photo of goatherder
3.96/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

serving - 375ml bottle, 2004 vintage

a: nice looking bottle - more upmarket than your standard Coopers fare. Foil cover on neck looks classy. Pours deep copper with a nice one finger head. The head remains tight and lasts well into the beer.

s: sweet malty aroma, a bit of floral hops in the background. the yeast is there. There's something that smells a little like dishwashing liquid - not offensive, just a little like artificial fruit smells.

t: nice sweet hit up front. The malty nose isn't so obvious in the mouth Quite smooth and a good bitter hops bite at the end. The higher ABV is obvious, especially in the finish.

m: big mouthfeel, just like I like em, complemented perfectly by a subtle carbonation.

d: Quite easy to drink and I'd definitely buy more. Not quite a session star - the high ABV makes this a one-or-two only affair.

 857 characters

Photo of midlifec
3.96/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of connecticutpoet
3.97/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best before 10-9-2006. The pack I took it from said it was vintage 2002, but there was no indication of this on the bottle itself.

This brew was a hazy light brown offering, with a two finger fizzy head. I was surprised that it was so bubbly and carbonated.

The aroma was VERY complex... sherry, white wine, raising, and figs, with caramel malts underneath. Quite nice.

Taste was not at all fruity, unlike the nose. I detected light roasted malts, coffee with cream, and some oak flavors. Tasty indeed.

Mouthfeel was pretty darn good... nice body to rhis one. Smooth and creamy despite initially seeming like it was heavily carbonated.

Drinkability... damn good. I will have to get another one and cellar it until the date on the bottle.

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Coopers Extra Strong Vintage Ale from Coopers Brewery Limited
Beer rating: 3.64 out of 5 with 377 ratings
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