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Schrödinger’s Beer (non) Review: Cloudwater DIPA V3

There are some beers about which it is practically impossible to express an opinion and be believed, one way or the other.

They’re so talked-about, so anticipated, so venerated, or so despised, that nothing we say can add much to the conversation.

The Westvleteren beers from Belgium are one example, Batham’s Best Bitter might be another. But they’re fixed points in the firmament; others blink into existence and generate great heat, perhaps only for a few months or years.

The word we’re avoiding here is hype, perhaps because it gets thrown around too easily — people talking with enthusiasm about a thing you’re not interested in isn’t hype. It might be justifiable in this case, though, which has seen online beer stores issuing would-be-panic-inducing Tweets in anticipation of a consumer frenzy, and launch events. (It is still in stock in many places, by the way.)

"Schrödinger's Cat" by the No Matter Project.
Schrödinger’s Cat” by ‘No Matter’ via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence.

If we say that we were anything less than wowed by version 3 of Manchester Cloudwater’s Double IPA, we’re surely just inverted bandwagon jumpers, contrarians and grumps. We’re fighting the hype and thus still failing to judge the beer on its own merits. We’re those people who say with a flourish that they don’t like The Beatles and make you think, ‘Really? Even “It Won’t Be Long”?’ If we say we didn’t especially like this beer not everyone will believe us or will question our motives.

But what happens if we rave about it? If we list this fruit and that. If we say it is like nothing else we’ve ever tasted and that it blows similar beers from other equally hip breweries out of the water, that it finds a truly distinctive flavour profile in a market already crowded with IPAs, that it made us swoon?

Then we’ll be sheep, sycophants, mindless zombie fans.

So, we’re just going to leave the box here, unopened.

10 replies on “Schrödinger’s Beer (non) Review: Cloudwater DIPA V3”

well I thought 1 and 2 were very good, might pick up a 3 when next in Exeter, never heard of the cat thing though, presume it’s like Occam’s Razor?

I am reminded of the words of Messr’s Chuck D & Flavour Flav.
Something about hyperbole.

If youre thirsty enough, any beers perfect, even my own homebrew.

I do think it is an excellent beer, but a word on the hype – the shop I normally purchase Cloudwater beers from didn’t get in V3. His reason was that he was required to put his name down to reserve V3 upon purchasing V2 some months earlier, something he considered madness, so didn’t bother. No doubt demand was high but still…

And yet something so ‘hyped’ still costs less than a fiver. (Well I got mine for 4 quid actually. And I just happened to notice it at the shop I go to I think a couple of weeks after it was released). We don’t seem to be at anything like the american level of ticketed release events and so on.

The release of Born to Die 14.05.2016 (Brewdog) appeared positively low key compared to the build/hype launch of this beer. I can’t comment on the Cloudwater v3 but the Born to Die was really good. Great clarity too – very little haze or murk (depending on your viewpoint). The Born to Die apart, I kind of gave up on this sort of thing a while ago as a result of the hyperbole around the release of beers like Un-Human Cannonball and Bloody ‘Ell.

I can’t comment on how it tastes compared to v2 but thought it was a step up to v1. Loads of mango and citrus but not nearly as bitter as I was expecting. It doesn’t taste nearly as boozy as the 9% suggests and is pretty drinkable as a result. Certainly doesn’t have the boozy edge of say a Jaipur X. One of the best DIPA’s I’ve had.

Thankfully the hype doesn’t seem to have made it down to South East London as I managed to get a half on keg for £4 and a bottle for under a fiver. It was far more expensive when I saw it in Manchester last weekend!

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