A new Cloudwater DIPA is always something to get excited about, so when I stumbled upon NW DIPA Citra Amarillo at a recent visit to Westhill Service Station - I threw it straight in my basket!
NW DIPA Citra Amarillo is a 8.5% ABV DIPA, and here's what Cloudwater have to say about it:
"Our third NW DIPA features the 4820th generation of our local JW Lees yeast. We added Huell Melon and Amarillo to the whirlpool, with Citra, Amarillo, Loral, and Huell Melon in the dry hop. The NW DIPA style showcases yeast from some of Manchester’s oldest family brewers and fresh harvest hops."
One of the previous iterations of this beer; NW DIPA Citra was a 5 out of 5 beer for me, so it's safe to say that I had extremely high expectations for this one.
It pours a murky golden orange, with a thin foamy white head that disperses quickly. Aromas are sweet, juicy tropical fruits; mango, pineapple and some citrus orange with a hint of pine - lovely!
Taste is again sweet, juicy and chewy from the bold tropical flavours. Finish is fresh, with a small amount of bitterness; overall the alcohol is hidden extremely well behind the flavours. Pure juice this stuff!
I loved this beer. I knew that I would from the minute I opened it. Cloudwater continue to outdo themselves with their DIPAs and this is yet again another outstanding beer. I feel like a broken record when it comes to these Cloudwater DIPAs - but it can't be helped, they are just that good.
4.75 out of 5 hops from me 🍻
Brewdog x Cloudwater
New England IPA by Brewdog & Cloudwater is arguably in my top 5 beers of all time. It was so good. It was up there with the best that Cloudwater have to offer; v12, v13 & NW DIPA Citra. So it’s safe to say I was rather happy when I heard that V2 was on its way.
New England IPA v2 is 8.5% ABV New England Style IPA. Here's what Brewdog have to say about it:
"A second team up with Cloudwater sees us brewing an 8.5% ABV New England IPA, hopped with a blend of hops known for their citrus, tropical and berry characteristics. Spicy, zesty and piney aromas give way to an effervescent, tropical IPA, backed up with a hints of clove and pepper. Hopped in the whirlpool with Mosaic hops, and dry-hopped with Citra, Mandarina Bavaria and more Mosaic."
If this beer is half as good as the original it would still be a great beer. However, I suspect it may just be as good, or even better...
When you open this beer, you'll instantly notice the BIG juicy flavours that we're used to with this style of beer; pineapple, mango & orange are complimented with a huge amount of pine. It pours a hazy amber with a thin white head.
The flavours here are excellent. Those juicy fruit flavours are at the forefront of it all backed by loads of piney bitterness. You also get that slight hint of spice at the end, coming from the cloves. This is such a great beer to drink, and the 660ml bottle ensures it's an extremely boozy drink!
Now this is one HAZY beer and it has A LOT of sediment. I'm
not sure if it was just my bottle, or that is how it was meant to be, but there was a lot of it. It didn't bother me, but if you don't like sediment in your beer, then this one might not be for you.
This beer is AWESOME. You simply have to try it while you still can. It will be interesting to see if Brewdog & Cloudwater continue this collaboration in a similar vein to Cloudwater's DIPA series. Overall I loved this beer, but I think the original just scrapes it for me; that was almost the perfect beer.
4.75 out of 5 hops from me 🍻
Back in my review of DIPA v13, I mentioned that Cloudwater were planning on launching a new line of DIPAs to replace the "v" series. Well NW DIPA Citra is one of these beers.
I had seen various posts on Instagram regarding this one. I knew it was going to be good. And I was delighted when Westhill Service Station got some in as part of a glorious beer haul this week.
Cloudwater also launched this beer in the new shop section of their website.
NW DIPA Citra is a 9% ABV special edition DIPA. Here's what Cloudwater are saying about this beauty:
"Introducing our new DIPA style which showcases yeast from one of Manchester's oldest family brewers and fresh 2016 harvest hops. Citra takes the lead backed up by Simcoe, with JW Lees 4792nd generation yeast."
The aromas that come from cracking open this beautifully designed can are wonderful! Big citrus fruits; orange, and pulpy mango are backed up with just a hint of pine.
New England style IPAs are the best looking beers around when poured into a glass, and there is no exception here; a cloudy, murky deep orange liquid with a foamy white head that disperses quickly.
I'm running out of words to describe Cloudwater DIPAs. This beer is incredible. The flavour is absolutely out of this world. Those wonderful aromas carry straight through into the taste. BIG juicy fruit flavours lead the way; pineapple, orange & mango, followed by some slight grapefruit which rounds it all off nicely with some piney bitterness. Wow.
As seems to be the case with Cloudwater DIPAs of late, there is almost little to no hint of the 9% ABV in there. This beer is dangerously drinkable.
I am delighted I got the chance to drink NW Citra DIPA. It is another world class beer from Cloudwater, I'm just gutted I don't have more. Do yourself a favour and buy this beer if you get the chance! This is one of my top 3 beers of the year so far.
5 out of 5 hops 🍻
Well this is it. This is v end. After 13 iterations, Cloudwater have announced that v13 will be the last in the DIPA series. During my review of v12 (my first Cloudwater DIPA), I stated that I hoped to try many more editions of this DIPA series. How wrong was I?!
Safe to say that I was a little disappointed, yet also excited to try out the swansong in the DIPA series. Again, I was able to count on Westhill Service Station to come up with the goods; I was told they sold out of this in 10 minutes!
DIPA v13 is the 13th entry in Cloudwater's highly acclaimed DIPA series, coming in at 9% ABV. Here's what Cloudwater have to say:
"A revision of our Birthday DIPA recipe, v13 is similarly made up of 14% oats in the grist and a 25g/l dry hop. The combination of Citra BBC and mixed fermentation of a 50/50 pitch of WLP4000 and 4786th generation of JW Lees yeast, make v13 our boldest and fruitiest DIPA yet."
The good news is that Couldwater have announced a new range of three stronger IPA's that they are going to be rolling out in the future, including a New England Style DIPA. Now this has me excited...their collaboration with Brewdog; New England IPA is one of the best beers I've ever had. Here's a little excerpt from their blog:
We’re far from done with our love affair with New England style DIPAs. So from time to time we’ll rotate into our production plan the softest, juiciest DIPAs we can make featuring complex malt bills (designed for maximum mouthfeel), WLP4000 or 095 with all their stone fruit flavours, and the freshest new season hops too."
I already know I'm going to love this beer.
Straight from opening this wonderfully packaged can, I know that we are on to a winner. Juicy fruit smells fill your nose; pineapple, mango & grapefruit, followed by the familiar hoppy piney aroma.
It pours a beautiful murky dark orange with a thin foamy beige head, releasing more of the intoxicating fruity aromas as it fills the glass.
This beer tastes incredible. The sweet fruit flavours fill your mouth, almost reminiscent of a juicy fruit salad. The fruit flavours are so powerful, it makes this beer incredibly drinkable for one coming in at 9%. It's all rounded off perfectly by that familiar hoppy bitterness...safe to say I was gutted when I emptied my glass.
I can't fault this beer at all, and I can't recommend it highly enough. If you can get your hands on this beer then buy it, drink it and enjoy it.
This is up there with the best; standing tall alongside v12, New England IPA, Bloody Notorious & Tropigamma. It may be v end for now, however I have a feeling Cloudwatwer will come out swinging.
5 out of 5 hops from me 🍻
Cloudwater x Against The Grain
I have more Cloudwater for you! This time, they're tackling an iconic dessert in collaboration with Against The Grain from Louisville, Kentucky.
Make Apple Pie Great Again is a 6.3% ABV fruit beer. Bonkers. Here's what Cloudwater have to say about it:
"Sometimes your best beers are the ones you don't make. If this beer gets any stronger or tastier, it's literally going to cease to exist. An extremely credible source called our office and told us that this beer is a fraud. We love beer, and beer loves us! We have a great relationship! Make Apple Pie Great Again!
Brewed in Collaboration with our Louisville friends from Against The Grain, featuring apple puree, apple juice, cinnamon and nutmeg."
Sounds awesome right? Lets find out...
Now, this is one beer that does exactly what it says on the can. This is literally liquid apple pie.
Crack open the can, and boom...apple and cinnamon fill the air. Awesome start!
Pouring this one into a glass releases even more of the wonderful cinnamon apple aromas as the deep, dark, pulpy amber liquid fills the glass, leaving a thin, foamy beige head. Cloudwater aren't messing around here...this tastes exactly as it sounds; sweet apple puree, combined with spicy cinnamon & nutmeg result in an almost ice cold mulled cider taste...incredible! This beer is so drinkable, the apple & cinnamon mask almost all the bitterness of the hops & alcohol.
Another fantastic beer from Cloudwater here, with a little help from their friends. They can do no wrong in my eyes. If you can get your hands on this, then I highly recommend it.
4.5 out of 5 hops from me 🍻
Brewdog x Cloudwater
Before they conjured up Coffee & Cigarettes with Beavertown, Brewdog had released a collaboration with one of the UK's hottest breweries - Cloudwater.
Arguably the biggest name in UK craft beer teaming up with the brewery that seems to be the talk of the town right now is a hugely exciting prospect.
Released in 660ml bottles, New England IPA is a 6.8% ABV IPA. Acquired through Westhill Service Station, this was one beer that I was greatly looking forward to (especially after missing it first time round).
Here's what Brewdog have to say about it:
"North East Scotland meets North East USA in our BrewDog Vs Cloudwater showdown.
This New England IPA is low in bitterness but loaded with explosive fruit flavour. Redolent with tropical fruit notes, fresh squeezed orange juice, pineapple, fragrant cut grass, and hints of pine dust, the aroma is complex and alluring. On the palate, the bittersweet balance emphasises the sweet, juicy fruit character, while the addition of oats adds a silken mouthfeel, giving the beer a full and rounded finish. If it wasn’t for the subtle bitter edge and the slight hint of alcohol warmth, you’d swear you were drinking juice.
This beer is unfiltered and intentionally hazy. Very hazy."
This beer comes with a huge amount of expectations on its shoulders. To say I was looking forward to cracking this one open is an understatement...
Straight from popping the bottle you know that you're onto a winner. Sweet, juicy fruity aromas fill the air; pineapple, mango and a hint of grapefruit fill your nose, followed by that familiar piney/hoppy smell.
This is a HAZY beer! It pours a thick, pulpy hazy golden yellow, leaving a foamy white head on top.
The fruitiness comes back in play when you taste the beer; pineapple, mango & grapefruit all come flooding through before the piney hoppiness kicks in to finish it off wonderfully. These flavours, combined with the thick, pulpy texture off the beer all work together to pack a serious punch. This is a fantastic beer.
I certainly hope there's more collaborations between these two to come. This is up there with the best beers I've ever had - probably in my top 3, and if they can recreate anything like this...I for one will be happy. I urge you to try this beer if you are lucky enough to find it anywhere, it will not disappoint.
5 out of 5 hops from me 🍻
I've been drinking craft beer for what seems like forever now, and in that time I've only had one beer made by Cloudwater...two if you include Big Dipper; their collaboration with Magic Rock. Neither of these beers have been any version of their DIPA series, and for a brewery that's considered as one of the best in the UK - that is shocking on my part!
So when Westhill Service Station's weekly craft beer newsletter was sent out the day before I flew to New York, and the headline beer for the week was DIPA v12 - I immediately emailed and asked them to reserve a can for me on my return. Chris who works there was more than happy to so for me and after a brief mix up when trying to collect it...I was finally ready for my first taste of a Cloudwater DIPA.
DIPA v12 is the 12th beer in Cloudwater's highly revelled, and now monthly, DIPA series. Coming in at a hefty 9% ABV, Mosaic hops take the lead here, backed up by a combination of Nelson Sauvin, Chinook & Citra. WLP095 Burlington Ale Yeast is used with a small addition of Caramalt to give some fruitiness.
Well, I don't know what to say, apart from that I'm blown away. This is one of the best DIPA's I've ever had - it's certainly up their with Bloody Notorious & Big Dipper.
Opening the can, you are greeted with big fruity aromas - pineapple and mango especially. These flavours follow through into the flavour, with mango in particular at the forefront of the flavour bomb. Rounding these flavours off, is just the right amount of bitterness that makes this DIPA very drinkable - it is everything you look for in a DIPA.
v12 has also looks great, pouring a nice hazy golden colour, that is topped off with a nice white head.
Now I know what everyone has been raving about for so long! I wont be leaving it so long to have my next Cloudwater beer after this. On the basis of this beer, I can certainly see why the are gathering such an impeccable reputation. I'm not sure how long they're planning on keeping up this DIPA series, but I will definitely be keeping tabs on the next release.
5 out of 5 hops from me 🍻
The Kings In The North
Lately, I have been enjoying lots of awesome beer from Magic Rock Brewing. They make some seriously awesome beer. Beer that rival some of my favourites by Beavertown & Brewdog. I'm gonna give you a little rundown of some of the beers I have tried.
They first came to my attention by seeing some of their cans in Brewdog's bottleshop. Thinking they looked quite cool, I decided to pick a few of them up. Cannonball & Inhaler were the first two I tried, and as my taste expanded, I tried more and more. They definitely provide some of the more interesting beers on the market, with High Wire, and Salty Kiss being prime examples. Magic Rock have a core range of 9 different beers, as well as a HUGE back catalogue of limited releases and collaborations.
My local bottleshop, Westhill Service Station do a great job of stocking the core line of beers, and have also managed to get in some of the limited runs & collaborations. So far, I have tried the following beers by Magic Rock:
Without doubt my absolute favourite is High Wire Grapefruit, followed closely by Big Dipper. High Wire is awesome. Grapefruit works excellently in a Pale Ale, with another awesome example being Elvis Juice by Brewdog. High Wire, however, takes the crown for me.
If you have never tried a beer by Magic Rock, I would recommend at least trying High Wire Grapefruit, and Salty Kiss...they are both packed full of awesome flavours, and I can guarantee, that will not be the only can of High Wire Grapefruit that you ever have. I have never had a bad beer from them yet.
They have also today, announced their first collaboration of 2017 - with The Wild Beer Co. These guys have been doing awesome things lately, and I cannot wait to see what they can do together.
Magic Rock were formed in 2011 by two brothers; Richard and Jonny Burhouse and their head brewer Stuart Ross. Within six months, they had built up and excellent reputation and were named 2nd best new brewery in the world, 2012.
In 2015 the brewery moved to a new Brewery in Birkby, Huddersfield, which increased their capacity to 10,000hl PA. Since then, The Magic Rock Tap launched and they did their first run of cans. In early 2016, their capacity increased by a further 100% to a total fermentation capacity of 70,000 litres.
You can find out more about Magic Rock in the following places:
I can't wait to see what they do next 🍻
Magic Rock x Cloudwater
Happy New Year beer drinkers! For my first post of 2017, I’m going to be reviewing the collaboration between Magic Rock & Cloudwater – Big Dipper.
Big Dipper is a 8.3% ABV Double IPA, that is a new recipe that is loosely based on the ‘Three’s Company’ collaboration they brewed together for Manchester Beer Week last Summer. This is the third Magic Rock beer to be packed in labelled 500ml cans that feature Rich Norgate’s awesome artwork and one of the first beers to be put through their new centrifuge.
Described by Magic Rock as: “A collaborative Double IPA brew with our friends from over t’hills Cloudwater Brew Co. Golden Promise, Wheat, Oat and Crystal Malt were used for a smooth, golden, malty body. A combination of Magnum, Citra, Simcoe, Eureka and Mosaic T90 hops were used in the whirlpool and dry hopping, with additional Citra – ‘Cryo Hops™ Lupulin Powder’ added in the dry hop. Fermented with US ‘Double IPA’ yeast the result is a massively fruit-filled DIPA with loads of Mango and Peach aroma & flavour and gravity-defying drinkability. Strap yourself in!”
Again picked up from Westhill Service Station, I was certainly looking forward to trying this beer...
Cracking the awesomely designed can, you are greeted with a big whiff of mixed citrus fruit...good start. The beer pours a light hazy orange with a small foamy white head. On taste you get dry, citrus orange flavours backed up by huge bitter hops. I think that DIPA's excel with a good amount of bitterness from hops (Looking at you Bloody Notorious!) so this beer was definitely too my taste. One thing for sure, this beer is FAR too drinkable for a DIPA at 8.3% ABV. Dangerous stuff!
You can buy Big Dipper online at:
Overall, I loved this beer, and it carries on the excellent experience I've had with any Magic Rock beer I've tried - I will definitely be doing a blog post about them as a brewery in the future.
Big Dipper gets a solid 4.5 out of 5 hops from me 🍻
An enthusiastic lover of all things craft beer from Aberdeen, Scotland.