By James Atkinson

Coopers Brewery has released Artisan Reserve Pilsner, the second product in its Thomas Cooper’s Selection range of craft beers.

Joining Celebration Ale in the range, Artisan Reserve Pilsner is an unpasteurised, all-malt Pilsner crafted with hop varieties including Hallertau Tradition and Hallertau Hersbrucher.

“There’s a view amongst some of the brewers that you retain the subtle flavour volatiles by not pasteurising,” Dr Tim Cooper told TheShout.

“We thought that on this occasion, being a specialist product, we would like to try that, and see whether it added another dimension to the product and created some interest.”

“I had three of them last night and I think it is noticeable that you pick up the fruity floral characters that come from fermentation. They’re balanced by the aroma hops that are in the beer as well,” he said.

Cooper said the Thomas Cooper’s Selection Celebration Ale is still doing “well enough” to justify its permanent status, but sales have dropped back from the 100,000 cases achieved off the back of the brewer’s 150th anniversary in 2012-13.

“We’ll probably end up doing about 60,000 cases in this financial year, but that’s still a creditable volume for a speciality product,” he said.

Cooper said the brewery’s pre-existing pilsener product, Coopers 62, does a very respectable 120,000 cases a year and will be unaffected by the addition of the Artisan Reserve Pilsner.

He said the unpasteurised nature of the new product requires extreme diligence by the brewing team to keep the process as sterile as possible from the time of fermentation onwards.

“We’re used to doing that because of our naturally conditioned ales,” he said.

Artisan Reserve comes in 355 ml bottles and retails for around $55 a carton, or $18 to $20 per six pack. It is also available in 50 litre kegs at selected outlets.

The Shout Team

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