Cloudwater DIPAs 6 & 7
I’ve been consistently impressed by the beers produced by Manchester’s Cloudwater Brewery (cask, keg, bottle) across a range of styles.
On Thursday 11th August as part of London Beer City my partner Megan and myself were at Mason & Co at Hackney Wick for a tap takeover by Cloudwater. That allowed us to try a wide range of the beers and beer styles they produce (in third pint measures obviously). The Olde Garde (for some reason I kept on thinking of Young Guard) Biere de Garde with Burning Sky particularly impressed and we didn’t fall in the River Lee Navigation when we left.
One of those styles is the DIPA (double IPA) and Cloudwater have made something of a name for themselves on this alone.
The latest versions 6 and 7 were released at midday on Saturday 13th August and Megan and myself were at the ever reliable Hop Locker to try both just after noon.
DIPA 6 and 7 are both 9%. Clearly these are sipping beers in small amounts. Something to savour.
Cloudwater have an interesting blog about the DIPAs, technical details etc (link below). To be honest though, I’m a drinker here. When as a union officer I advise a member I don’t (usually) say and you’ll find the theory behind my advice in Volume 2 of Marx’s Capital. It’s just the advice they want.
So to my taste DIPA 6 tasted quite sweet initially (less so on drinking more) and was fruity. DIPA 7, which I preferred, was to me more bitter and more hoppy. I was intrigued to note that 7 is brewed with a JW Lees yeast strain that has quite a history.
I tried a few weeks back (again along with Megan Davies) Version 3 from earlier in 2016 and Versions 4 and 5.
Version 3 which is (broadly) marmalade citrus is a favourite beer of this year so far.
Versions 4 and 5 on their own were a little different. Drinking them separately I preferred Version 5. That had a little more of the citrus character of Version 3. Version 4 didn’t have this but might be described as more hoppy in a sort of vegetable/cannabis plant type way (the hop and cannabis plants are related).
As suggested by Cloudwater I then mixed Versions 4 and 5 and that led to something quite similar to Version 3, though far from exactly the same.
The conclusion is that Versions 3 and 5 and a mix of 4 and 5 are robust and beard friendly. Version 4 arguably a little less so. Versions 6 and 7 are both beard friendly with 7 just edging it in the follicle favourite area.
I hear the argument that the way the DIPAs are marketed and released is more hype than anything. I agree capitalism still exists (unfortunately) so this will happen. The issue is, is the hype worth it?
Of course there are other excellent DIPAs around but it seems to me that Cloudwater are on an interesting journey (technically for those focused there and taste wise for drinkers) to explore the dynamics of the DIPA.
In short, excellent work. Try them for yourself if you get the chance
I tried 6 & 7 again at Masons, Hackney Wick on Monday evening 15th August. On the night I preferred 6 to 7. It seemed more of a fruity IPA than 7. The beers may well have been in slightly different condition and my palate may also have received them a little differently. This,to me,suggests the Cloudwater DIPA journey is well worthwhile, as noted above, exploring the dynamics of the beer in slightly different times and contexts is thought provoking