Sunday, 24 July 2016

DIPA Battle #3 - Cloudwater v4 vs. v5

The latest double IPAs to hit our shelves and the latest bit of canny marketing by the chaps over at Manchester Piccadilly; two very similar beers but which works best? Cloudwater DIPA V4 and V5 are both 9% monsters made using the same hops for bittering and aroma and the same malts too. However, V4 is dry-hopped during fermentation whilst this occurs after fermentation with V5. Citra and mosaic are two of our favourites and they`re both in the mix somewhere so bound to be good......?


Never judge by appearances they say but, if you did, these two are more like half brothers than fully-fledged siblings. V4 is fairly clear and there is quite a lot of visible carbonation to start with whilst V4 has a beautiful peachy summer haze.

Aromatics are key with this style and usually a signature of Cloudwater`s seasonal agenda and so the IPAs abound with tropical fruits. V4 has a fresh, alpine, resinous hit alongside pineapples and grapefruits but the taste cannot quite live up to the aromas. Balance in both brews is good as the hefty alcoholic backbone is filled out by all the bitter sweet fruit flavours. V5 has a more pungent nose and we meet over-ripe peaches and maybe apricot in there too. The bitterness lasts alongside a boozy warmth in the mouth. V4 just tastes fresher, but maybe with less complexity. After prevaricating and pontificating, we need a winner.


After all that, I have to say that there isn`t much to choose between these two. Both good beers and at a decent price (about £4 from the ever-improving range at Mitchell`s) but I have recently had better DIPAs. In fact, you know what,  I`m calling it a draw and, I`m afraid to say, I actually preferred V3! Give them a go though. 7.5 / 10 from me.

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