Sunday, 28 May 2017

Session IPA Simcoe Mosaic

I have seen this brewery all over the online craft drinking circles and never heard a bad word about them, back last year I saw a chance to get hold of their DIPA from a micro-pub that my father took me to visit for a fiver and turned it down. Well, my local bottle shop announced that they had a crate of Cloudwater's Session IPA Simcoe Mosaic in and so I had to bob down and get some in. I don't even remember the price, I'm sure it was pricey, but I was keen to try it.

It was a sunny day too so, with lunch in hand, I was able to get out and sit in the garden on the picnic bench to enjoy it amid the sunshine and warmth. Would you like to know more?

I loved the design of the can on this one and it does a pretty good job of calling out the spring/summer aspect of this particular session IPA. It was a murky pour with a big nose of grapefruit and pineapple, but heading more to the pineapple end of the spectrum. A bit sweet rather than bitter, with a big orange look to it like it had been adulterated with fruit juice directly - though a good look at the can tells me they don't say they did it - and it doesn't do so bad. Fresh and fruity, with an airy quality that fitted the lighter air after the rain of Friday and Saturday. Good tropical notes but mainly that pineapple, a friend of mine would be very impressed and I can imagine this going down a storm in some National Trust properties.

Onto the tongue and you are transported quickly into a fruity wonderland where the low-hanging fruits are all rather tropical and easily accessible. Bees and other insects flit about without landing or biting or stinging but leave a pleasant sensation in your ears and impression in the mind. For it is in the mind that this one does the big work. At 4.5% ABV it is no big hitter in the IPA stakes, but it is a big hitter on the taste front so that it does a good job with virtually any situation. Despite the delicate touches of floral elements and the hit of the tropical fruit - pineapple once more but softened by mango and with a velvety consistency that I have been more accustomed to in my stouts - almost like there's oatmeal in there. There isn't. Willow tried it and screwed up her face as it was too grapefruit again (she was referring to Lupuloid here) but I have to say that I feel her tastebuds were awry here - it is much softer and less tart than that offering. It is a soft and clever murky brew with a colour that belies the general cushion-feeling of the whole thing.

Ensconced by the rose bush and assailed by the smells and feelings of the garden, freshly mown grass next door and the pollen of flowers all around, I was struck by just how big this was on the tongue. It fills the mouth, flooding the cheeks and mouth with flavour and awash with the promise of the jungle fruits in a way that I haven't tasted for a while. It spills through the centre of the mouth and into the main rear area without pausing for breath. There is a power to this that just allows you to slip into it. Carbonation? Yes, there is definitely that but at no point does it become enough of a focus of the experience that I even form an opinion on it - it is more than the component parts. There is an aftertaste too, I can tell you that, and it is soft and tropical. Again, unusually for me, I don't really find the time to focus on this at all before I reach for my next sip. It is a sipper, not a downer, and it really pays you back for taking your time.

I had chilled this, overnight to be sure, and it was served at a lovely 6 degrees (I know, two degrees off being at its best but I am a rebel) and I had intended to have it on Saturday evening but didn't and had it Sunday lunchtime instead. It may be the first ale that I have not known the price of and enjoyed anyway. My local bottle shop only had a crate of them in! I can heartily recommend it and encourage you to have it in the garden. I shall be keeping my eyes peeled for more from this brewery and, if the opportunity presents, I shall be buying this one again! Enjoyed best whenever you can get it and as fresh as you can have it!

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