To take full advantage of a beautiful almost Spring day, we hopped in the car for a short drive over to the Brick House Tap & Tavern. The Brick features an eclectic menu and a stellar beer list. For my lunch, I opted for the Gun Show Burger since it comes with a fried egg and, well, everything is better with a fried egg. To wash down this delicacy, I chose a bottle of Coopers Best Extra Stout. Coopers Brewery Limited is an Australian brewery steeped in tradition. They are the last family owned brewery in Australia and are known for brewing fine ales, stouts and lagers in the natural, traditional way.
Here is what Coopers has to say about their BES:Now here’s a beer with punch. Coopers Stout is a beacon for lovers of a hearty brew. With its robust flavour comprising a blend of fruit, chocolate and hop bitter notes it’s everything a stout should be. Brewed naturally using a top fermentation method Coopers Stout’s unique rich, dark texture comes from specially roasted black malt.
I found the BES to have the following characteristics…
- Appearance: Black with ruby tinged edges and a mild tan foam and good lacing.
- Aroma: Sweet malt and roasted, dark chocolate.
- Taste: Sweet, chocolaty, with a hint of coffee or Baker’s chocolate and raisins followed by a faint hint of hops and a nice, if sweet, finish.
- ABV: 6.3%
This beer was a great complement to my burger. Of course, I am a fan of stouts so I might be a little biased. One caution, the beer is bottle conditioned so Coopers recommends that you lay the bottle on its side and roll it once. Also, the bottle has a best after date so you might want to beer that in mind when you check the date. Apparently under Australia’s food laws, any product that lasts more than two years in the bottle does not require a best before date. The best after date was introduced to ensure that the minimum two weeks required for secondary fermentation has expired before the bottles are distributed for sale. Coopers says their Best Extra Stout is at its optimum upon leaving the Brewery but will still develop and mature, for in excess of twelve (12) months if stored in cool and dark conditions. My bottle had a best after date of 09/12/2010 and, while well passed its two weeks for secondary fermentation, was very good.