Iron Maiden’s Trooper English Ale: Bruce Dickinson’s first crack at a growing industry

Photo+taken+by+Alex+Lindsay

Photo taken by Alex Lindsay

Paul Bagnall, Writer

The craft brewing industry has turned into a global phenomenon with experienced craftsmen pushing boundaries every year. Back in 2013, British metal band Iron Maiden’s lead vocalist Bruce Dickinson partnered with Robinson’s Brewery to create the Trooper Golden Ale.

Dickinson teamed up with the Robinson family’s head brewer, Martyn Weeks, to design and develop the look and taste of the beverage.  The Robinson family has been brewing English beer since 1838, according to the Trooper Ale website at ironmaiden.com. The Trooper Golden Ale is also brewed at the Unicorn Brewery in StockPort, England in a video that summarizes the creationDickinson jumped into the brewing industry, but didn’t want to hit the craft brewing market with a product  that had a high  alcohol by volume (ABV). Instead, the golden ale sides with rich flavors that gives off a warm and inviting smell when poured.

Iron Maiden’s mascot “Eddie” has served the band since formation in 1975; it was only fitting for the mascot to be printed onto the label of every bottle as the face of the Trooper ale. The label portrays him as an undead soldier, inspired from the song “The Trooper,” which describes the Battle of Balaclava during the Crimean War.

The English style ale has a light 4.7 percent ABV packaged in a pint bottle or a 500 milliliter can. The carbonation of the beer is also as light as the ABV that  settles comfortably in the glass. For a former rock and roller’s first attempt at brewing ale, Trooper is a solid start.

Iron Maiden’s Trooper ale doesn’t need a strong ABV for it to rock because the mixture of hops and malts, with a lemon twist, are sufficient for any beer aficionado. After filling the pint glass to the brim, the ale gives off the aroma of a lemon-flavored malt. This brew is an excellent pair with a hot dog hamburger at your favorite sporting event.

The English style ale has been well received in the international market, selling in more than 180 countries across the globe. With many choices of beer to choose from, Dickinson’s “Trooper Ale” stands out as a beer that will quickly rise to the top.

“What has been particularly encouraging, over and above the international sales success,” Dickinson said in Blabbermouth, “is how it has been so warmly welcomed by serious beer aficionados outside the Iron Maiden community.”

For our responsible legal drinkers, the weak ABV of the ale won’t leave you with a “buzz” after a bottle or two; the Trooper has about as much ABV as your standard bottle of Corona lager. That being said, when compared to Corona, the Trooper stands above the competition with its simple flavors.

This import can be found at Spirit Haus on College Street in Amherst, and is sold for $5.70 per pint, or at Liquors 44 on Route 9. The Trooper is an excellent beer to pregame with before heading out to the bars of Amherst, and can be a nice break from the cheaper standards of Budweiser and Natural Ice that college  students are so fond of as a standard lager.

Cases of the English golden ale can also be ordered online through Iron Maiden’s official website. The cases include eight beers per case for a little over $23.00. Up to four cases can be ordered, but Craft Shack only offers the bottles of Trooper for $5.99. The beer has already hit American shelves last month, and according to the Manchester Evening News, around 300,000 cans have been shipped to American shores.

If you have the money to spare on the weekend and you are looking for something new, choose the Trooper Golden Ale over your usual choice. Be sure to check out what other beer lovers had to say about it on ratebeer.com and beeradvocate.com.

Be sure to rock out to Iron Maiden’s hit song “The Trooper” while you are drinking their beer!

Paul Bagnall can be reached at [email protected]

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