Columbia Free Times

Olde Mecklenburg Copper

By Gerald Jowers
Wednesday, December 11, 2013 |
what: Olde Mecklenburg Copper
ABV: 4.8 percent
cost: about $3.49 for a 22-ounce bottle
where: some major retailers

The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery is a very popular craft brewer in Charlotte that specializes in making traditional German-style beers — a rarity in modern American craft brewing. Olde Meck is finally distributing its excellent portfolio in the Columbia area. Copper, its flagship beer, is an exceptional example of the Dusseldorf altbier style (“alt” means “old” in German). This style is technically an ale, but unlike in the typical ale brewing procedure, this beer is lagered (stored) at cold temperature for an extended period of time before it is released. This lagering allows residual yeast in the beer to metabolize the sometimes harsh esters and phenolics produced during fermentation into less assertive flavors. This makes this beer smoother tasting than typical ales.

The result is an outstanding beer, somewhat reminiscent of a brown ale, that features a rich malt base balanced by pleasant hop bitterness with mild spicy and fruity hop flavor — a crisp, refreshing, anytime ale. Cheers!

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