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siiren

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I'm looking for a good recipe for Coopers Pale and Sparkling ale just to brew up for fun and because I enjoy it as a commercial beer.
Even a vintage ale recipe would be nice.
I did a search but there wasn't any recent discussion or recipes so thought I'd ask.
It's been a while since I've been here!
I will culture up some bottled yeast over the weekend in anticipation!
 
There are some recipes on Brewman's website, but you need to join to get access.
They're pretty simple recipes.
For the Pale Ale it is all Ale malt, Super Pride hops to about 26 IBU, and cultured Cooper's yeast, and a reasonably high calcium content is recommended. This is one of MHB's recipes.
For the Sparkling Ale it is about 4.9kg Ale malt, about 250 gr CaraMunich, and about 660 gr sugar, Super Pride hops to about 25 IBU, and cultured Cooper's yeast. This is one of BYO 250 recipes apparently.
I think the recognisable Coopers character really comes mostly from the yeast.

I've never tried to brew one, so others will certainly have better information.
 
If you can get hold of the book "6 O'clock Brews" by Peter Symons try the recipe for Coopers Sparkling Ale from 1953. Using some current Sparkling Ale cultured yeast it was a very good brew.
 
Thanks for the starting point.

I've found a few recipes on Beersmith that look ok but don't have any tasting notes comments.
Most use pale malt, wheat and crystal.

The 1953 sparkling sounds interesting too.

Vintage ale recipe would be good to try also.
 
I'm looking for a good recipe for Coopers Pale and Sparkling ale just to brew up for fun and because I enjoy it as a commercial beer.
Even a vintage ale recipe would be nice.
I did a search but there wasn't any recent discussion or recipes so thought I'd ask.
It's been a while since I've been here!
I will culture up some bottled yeast over the weekend in anticipation!
Here is the BYO recipe, when I make it I leave out the dark crystal and use Veloria Schooner malt pretty sure I read somewhere that Coopers grow Schooner malt. Or you can just get the Coopers Malt, Ale Malt for the Sparkling, and Pale Malt for Coopers Pale.
You must make a starter from Coopers bottles as philrob mentioned above, their yeast is what gives the unique flavour of Coopers ales.
https://byo.com/recipe/coopers-spar... kg) Coopers light liquid,and bring to a boil.
 
Here is the BYO recipe, when I make it I leave out the dark crystal and use Veloria Schooner malt pretty sure I read somewhere that Coopers grow Schooner malt. Or you can just get the Coopers Malt, Ale Malt for the Sparkling, and Pale Malt for Coopers Pale.
You must make a starter from Coopers bottles as philrob mentioned above, their yeast is what gives the unique flavour of Coopers ales.
https://byo.com/recipe/coopers-sparkling-ale-clone-2/#:~:text=Extract with Grains Recipe:&text=(3 kg) Coopers light liquid,and bring to a boil.
Thanks for the link. I have coopers ale malt so might give this one a try
 
Hi Siiren,

I'm looking for a good recipe for Coopers Pale and Sparkling ale just to brew up for fun and because I enjoy it as a commercial beer.

"Philrob" and "wide eyed and legless" are right on the money, with BYO. Both their references seem to based on an earlier comprehensive BYO article, strangely enough, by an Australian brewer from Melbourne.

Coopers Sparking has been my go to "bottle shop" beer for decades, there weren't many ales available when I first got onto them. But prior to pausing brewing, back in 2006, I'd never been even remotely happy with my attempts to recreate it. Then, after a sea change, the pandemic hit and 2020 provided plenty of "home time" with Coopers Sparkling as a clear target to help me get back into brewing and help hone my brewing skills. After lots of online research, while occasionally sampling the target to keep my aim straight and true, I settled on following this article from the 2009 March-April edition of BYO. This issue heavily features "Australian Brewing" with a sub heading of "Sparking Ale Secrets" and an article specifically on "Australian Pale Ales - Coopers Sparkling Ale" written by Tony Wheeeler, from Melbourne Australia.

Australian Pale Ale - Tony Wheeler - BYO March-April 2009

It's currently available for free download, once you have registered yoru email address with BYO. However, unless you subscribe to BYO, well worth it, your only permitted to download a limited number of articles per month. The article is complete, self contained, and the same as appears in the magazine issue, just without the pictures.

I followed Tony's article and got pretty close on my first attempt. A quick look, sniff and a taste and I immediately recognised it as a Coopers Sparkling. Was it exactly the same, no, but close enough to know it was only a matter of tweaking to get very, very close. Subsequent attempts, got closer and closer such that in side by side tastings I could barely tell them apart, however, I was also often quite unsure of which one I preferred.

Some notes:

I followed Tony's article, including his unusually mash schedule - I used freezer bricks, pretty much to the letter. It's a simple grist, and uses only one hop addition, Pride of Ringwood at 90min. There isn't much to adjust regarding ingredients. I tried a few different brands of Australian Pilsner base malt, and while there was a difference the change didn't swing the resulting beer very far away from the original Coopers Sparkling. The Coopers malt seemed to come closest to the original, though perhaps that was because I knew it was Coopers in a Coopers. In the end it came down to personal preference.

The crystal malt is only for colour so brand and exact EBC don't matter. Simply compare the colour of your brew with the original Coopers Sparkling and adjust your particular crystal quantity up or down in your next attempt.

I prefer the taste of Coopers Sparking with the yeast mixed in but I also prefer to keg rather than bottle as kegging permits the carbonation to be tweaked. Having both at the same time, as I was chasing a target, I gently inverted and agitated the keg prior to each pouring, or the filling of bottles.

Is mentioned in Tony's article Coopers Sparkling owes its character to the yeast. If you like to consume some of the Coopers yeast with the beer then getting the right amount of yeast in the bottle, and the right yeast fruitiness proved the most crucial factor in duplicating Coopers Sparkling. Although a good healthy *clean* ferment is still very much recognisable as Coopers Sparkling, to get close to the original I had to push the ferment temp quite high, 23C air temp in the fridge, to get a suitable level of Coopers "fruitiness". Probably reaching 26C in the fermenter. I tried under pitching, poorly airating, and no yeast nutrient but didn't get enough of that fruitiness.

For water I followed Tony's guidelines:

Treat water to 115 ppm Ca2+ and 280 ppm S04

and using Brun Water came up with the following profile, which was easy to make from my soft tap water, balanced (pos ions = neg ions) nicely, and seemed to work very well:

Ca Mg Na SO4 Cl BiCar
115 20 25 280 74 35

Brun Water predicted a Mash pH of 5.3. If I remember correctly, I derived this profile from Brun Water's "Pale Ale" profile:

Ca Mg Na SO4 Cl BiCar
113 20 25 300 55 35

which I'm sure would also work well.

Happy brewing!
Rob
 
Thanks for the great info Rob.

I'm from Adelaide so it's a sin not to mix in the yeast to a coopers!
I'll be kegging this too and giving it a pre-pour swirl.

Interesting regarding ferment temps too.

I'm going to propagate some extra yeast so I've got some to play around with.

Do you know of any coopers pale ale recipes? I'm sure it wouldn't be hard to get close and tweak.

I also don't mind a the stout or dark ale this time of year!
 
Hi Siiren,

siiren I'm from Adelaide so it's a sin not to mix in the yeast to a coopers!


Thanks, I'll remember that next time I get a funny look when I ask the bar-person if I can pour my own, to ensure the yeast gets mixed:)

siiren Do you know of any coopers pale ale recipes? I'm sure it wouldn't be hard to get close and tweak.


It's been decades since I had a Coopers Pale Ale. From what I remember it could best be described as a small version of Coopers Sparkling. That is, very similar in taste but with lower gravity, less bitter, and lighter is colour, but please correct me if I'm wrong. The question would be how much lighter for each of those properties. It shouldn't be too hard to come up with a *reasonable*, but probably not exact, starting point. Looking to the Coopers website for the current version of these two beers:

Coopers Sparkling: ABV=5.8%, IBU=32 IBU, Colour = 11 EBC
Coopers Pale Ale: ABV=4.5%, IBU=26 IBU, Colour = 8 EBC

Comparing the two: 4.5/5.8 26/32 8/11
78% 81% 73%

Given they are similar beer, again please correct me if I'm wrong, we can simplify things by assuming the same ingredients, mashing profile, and fermentation profile, then, the attenuation should also be similar. This means that comparing the ABV should indicate the relative starting gravity (OG) of the beers. In the article mentioned earlier:

Australian Pale Ale - Tony Wheeler - BYO March-April 2009

Tony had a starting gravity for his version of Coopers Sparking at OG = 1.045, and 78% of 45 is 35, giving a starting gravity for a first attempt at a Coopers Pale Ale of 1.035. As the recipes are pretty simple with no flavour malts other than the base malts, and there is only one hop addition for bittering then ingredients should scale well, at least well enough for a first attempt. So, applying these ratios to all ingredients from Tony's article above give:

IngredientCoopers Sparkling QuantityRatio: (Pale Ale / Sparking)Coopers Pale Ale Quantity
Joe White Pilsener malt3.5 kgmultiplied by 0.78 gives2.73 kg
Joe White wheat malt300 gmultiplied by 0.78 gives234 g
Weyermann CaraRed (for colour)200 gmultiplied by 0.73 gives146 g
Pride of Ringwood 9.5%AA @ 90min25 gmultiplied by 0.81 gives20 g

These should be reasonable quanitities for a first attempt at reproducing Coopers Pale Ale.

As mentioned earlier, the Carared is *only* for colour so in your subsequent attempts you can compare the colour against the original and adjust as necessary, perhaps adjusting the base malts to keep the original gravity the same, though the adjustment would probably be very small.

I can't remember whether Coopers Pale's carbonation and mouthfeel is the same as Coopers Sparkling but would guess it's mouthfeel would be a little less as the gravity is less. As your kegging adjusting the carbonation to match the original is pretty easy. Once your happy with the carbonation, and your sure it's stabilized in the keg, you can compare your Pale Ale's mouthfeel with the original Pale Ale's mouthfeel. Match the carbonation first, then the mouthfeel as the carbonation affects the mouthfeel. If you find the beer is too thin then mash a little high or add more base malts, and if it's too high then mash a little lower or remove some base malts.

siiren I also don't mind a the stout or dark ale this time of year!


Not sure if I can help with Coopers dark beers. Decades ago I really enjoyed Coopers Stout, and combining Coopers Stout with Sheaf Stout, but I find the current Coopers Stout thin and one dimensional in comparison. However, I seem to have very similar taste buds to Jamil Zainasheff, as I almost always really like the beers I make from following his recipes closely. If you haven't aleady made any of his recipes I can suggest you try them out, there's almost always one for every style you might want to make. Threre as also some great recipes in this forum's recipe database :)

What commercial stouts and dark ales do you like?

BTW, did you manage to get hold of a copy of Tony Wheelers 2009 BYO article above?

Cheers!
Rob
 
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Hi Rob,
Yes I've read the Tony Wheeler article. It was very informative.
I've been a member on this site since the beginning and have made a lot of the recipes here.
But my brewing is on and off with time constraints.
I'll check out Jamil's stuff too.
Thanks for all the help mate!
 
I have wondered whether the Pale Ale and Sparkling Ale yeast are identical. I have cultured the Pale Ale yeast very successfully but would like to know if others have found the Sparkling Ale yeast better. Coopers state the Pale Ale is preferred for cultivation but don't say why.
 
With that said, do i assume you would get an even "less stressed yeast" if we cultivated from Coopers Mid Strength/Mild Ale?
Pale Ale is preferred simply because the Pale Ale is a lower ABV than the Sparkling Ale. It is thought this will give you a less stressed yeast, and thus a healthier yeast to cultivate.

Pale Ale is preferred simply because the Pale Ale is a lower ABV than the Sparkling Ale. It is thought this will give you a less stressed yeast, and thus a healthier yeast to cultivate.
 
Good point and quite logical, however I prefer the Pale Ale if I have to buy beer.
Another thought; if the yeast is stressed at 4.5%ABV then should I use it in a 5.6%ABV ale?
Does not matter if harvested from Pale, Mid or Sparkling ale you should have no problem. This yeast would probably ferment concrete slurry.
 
Good point and quite logical, however I prefer the Pale Ale if I have to buy beer.
Another thought; if the yeast is stressed at 4.5%ABV then should I use it in a 5.6%ABV ale?
It's not really logical, fresh yeast is added to the bottle. The beers are already fermented out, all the yeast in the bottle is doing is carbonating the beer so can be collected from any Coopers bottles regardless of the ABV.
 

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