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Beer – #608 – 8 Wired – HopWired IPA – a redux

Back to the future, with a beer that made me smile first time around, and since. This is the standard version of  Hopwired. From the keg.

Who has ever smelled a gooseberry??

A  1000ml  growler of about 5.76 standard drinks as it’s 7.3% ABV. At 70 IBU it is at the higher end of IPA bitterness. 219 calories a serve size in this. 

8 Wired HopWired IPA. Brewed by  8 Wired Brewing , although brewed at Renaissance Brewing in the style that is: India Pale Ale (IPA) and that’s all the thing in Blenheim, New Zealand.

We believe HopWired is the first bottled version of a true new world India Pale Ale made with NZ grown base malt and 100% truly unique NZ hops.

Bearded man with a beer

Bearded man with a beer

We bet you’ll find nothing else like it on the shelves. Although the malty sweetness is there, this beer is all about the hops. Unlike an American I.P.A. which will mainly hit you with a grapefruity-citrus flavour and aroma, the unique NZ hops used in HopWired are more like a tropical punchbowl: Passion fruit, lime, oranges and Sauvignon Blanc to name but a few.

A local Marlborough winemaker said it smelled like gooseberries… Gooseberries? Who has ever smelled a gooseberry??

Decide for yourself or just enjoy it without further complications. Cheers!

So what could go wrong?

Aroma is nothing outstanding, dry grass, dusty, perhaps some tangerine orange?

Pour is lovely it’s a hazy orange brown, with a lovely decent firm and white head of some substance.  Aroma in the glass is still muddled.

Mouth explodes with a lovely toffee sugar richness, a lovely subtle bitterness, more caramel and a tang of a finish. Blink

HopwiredSecond sip has less of the sugar and more of the resin bitterness, then that big big caramel bash. It’s very interesting.

Focus. Aroma has begun to bloom, but the aroma and the full bitter mouth explosion aren’t matched. As it’s warmed just a little the grassy hop note is stronger, and I’ve lost that caramel thing, I miss the caramel thing, I’m going to keep sipping looking for it.

This is a lovely drinking beer, it has bits and pieces that are there if you look for them, and overall it tastes like its well balanced and behaved, draws you in and embraces you.  I really do like that caramel sweetness that is ever present and really does counter the bitterness. Really.

I don’t/can’t have grapefruit and it’s been so long since I had some, and I’m old, so any reference to citrus of course might mean grapefruit, today I chose tangerine as my go-to citrus. It’s a thing.

The pdubyah-o-meter rates this as 9 of its things from the thing. I might not be as much in love with this as I was the first time we dated I drank it. It is many layered and changes as it sits/warms, sometimes really bitter, other times a warm sugar punch, but it is a rewarding and easy drinking beer of some loveliness. The 7.3% ABV thing isn’t really apparent and you might get carried away and have more than you thought, enjoying it all, but end up tomorrow a little hazy on it.

The double dip review

Am I enjoying it? I am fully engaged with this great beer.
Would I have another? I am, and would and will, all versions and variants have been interesting and enjoyable.
Would I share with a friend on a porch and set the world to rights? I really would, this is more sipping beer though and not something to be quaffed away, but given the sweetness in it it’s hard to remind yourself that you’ve got a long night of telling stories ahead, and the more of this the better the stories.

Music for this. well The Darkness are an English rock band from Lowestoft, Suffolk, England. More Glam Rock really. This is ‘Barbarian’ from the new album ‘Last of Our Kind’ which is here on the spotify

Sort of demands to be played loud.


India Pale Ale gets its name and unique style from British brewers who were making beer for export to India. This style has an intense hop flavor which was used to preserve the beer for the long voyage. India Pale Ale has a golden to copper color with a medium maltiness and body. The aroma is moderate to very strong. IPAs work especially well at cutting the heat of chili, vindaloo or Sichuan cuisine.

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