Brewery: Robinsons Family Brewers (Iron Maiden Beer)
Beer: Iron Maiden Trooper
Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter
Character: Trooper is a premium British beer inspired by Iron Maiden’s vocalist, Bruce Dickinson and handcrafted at Robinsons brewery.
Metal Connection: IRON MAIDEN – The Trooper
What better way to celebrate what BeerMetalDude.com is to me, than with a mighty fine beer that was created by one of the greatest Metal band in the world, particularly, their vocalist. I am speaking of Iron Maiden, and the all powerful voice, Bruce Dickinson, who actually created the recipe for this beer, which was then brewed by the Robinsons Family Brewers. Apparently, Bruce Dickinson can do it all, which includes fronting the awesome Iron maiden with his amazing voice, he is a pilot, an avid sports player (soccer, fencing, etc), a great showman, and now add beer recipe creator to his resume. I’m sure he does a hell of a lot more, like leap a building in a single bound, faster than a locomotive, and all that shit!
Since this beer hit American shores, I have seen an over reaction of beer bashers. My question is, is it for the right reason? Do all these people really hate this beer because they really hate the beer, or do they hate it just because it’s not from an American craft brewery that is right around the corner? I honestly think that people hate this beer because they associate most to all English beers to New Castle or the like. If this beer was really as bad as you all think it is, then why would the brewery pride itself on making such a beer for the masses in full production? I remember there being a time when I did not like ESB style beer, cause I found it to be crappy just like the rest of you, but over time, I have developed an understanding and liking to the style of beer.
Respectfully using an English-style nonic pint glass, this Trooper poured a clear amber color topped with a thin, cream colored head, which trickled down the glass as the beer went down, leaving a sheet of sticky lacing in areas of the glass.
The aroma of this beer was exactly as I expected it to be. Caramel, toffee, biscuit, some grains, and a hint of herbal hops fill the nose. There is a slight metallic smell that I usually pick up from English beers, but it’s not off-putting or overpowering. Its just something that is there every time I smell an English beer. In a strange way, I always associate English beers to iced tea, so I can find a hint of herbal iced tea in the nose as well.
The taste follows the aroma, almost identical. The taste of caramel, toffee, and grains hit the palate first, followed by some herbal tea, and a hint of metallic notes. There is a high bitterness to this beer that is the underlying theme, after all to a true ESB (Extra Special Bitter).
The body was light to medium in thickness. Mild carbonation. The mouthfeel has an oily slickness, which then finishes dry and bitter.
Overall, I will say, yes, there is nothing extraordinary about this beer, and it definitely is not exceeding limitations in creativity, but by no means, is that a reason to automatically hate this beer. Beers like this demand an expansion of the mind and palate. Maybe lower your craft beer guard a bit. Don’t worry, it won’t shatter your ego. Your craft beer pride will still be intact after drinking this beer. One way I really wish I could drink this beer, would be in a true English pub, poured from an beer engine. I bet this beer shines even more that way. Do yourself a favor and buy this beer, and really sip on it and enjoy all the flavors profiled in this beer. Trust me, there is something there that you just missed the first time having this because your mind was already clouded with bad expectations.
Metal Connection: Well, let’s see…. Hmmmm… I wonder what I would pick that pairs perfectly with this beer? Maybe something from Iron Maiden themselves? Maybe even the song, The Trooper, which was the song that this beer was named after? In my photo, I chose a picture of the cover from “Live after Death,” the band’s amazing 1985 live album release. I usually hate live albums, but god damn, does Iron Maiden do them right! I remember owning this cassette as a kid, and every now and then songs from this album are played at maximum volume levels while I mimic the movements of Bruce Dickinson in my house, car, work, wherever I may be. So go out, buy this beer, open it up, pour it into a nonic pint glass, jam out to Iron Maiden, and watch Shaun of the Dead at the same time. That sounds perfect!