Malmesbury Brewery’s Killer Cat Range

Believe it or not, but sometimes I find these reviews difficult to write.
Especially when I have been sent something direct from a brewer who wants my opinion. Malmesbury is a case in point.
Based in Wiltshire they do a range of “traditional” beers – the ones of which I have tried have been rather nice – and have recently started producing more “modern” styles with the range name of Killer Cat.
And this is the problem.
Grateful as I am for being able to try these new beers, none of the three that I’ve been sent are very good.
Actually that’s an understatement, look.

 

Double Seven (7.7%)Double Seven A double IPA with an almost undrinkable alcohol burn that cuts at your tongue and brings with it a weird and very unpleasant surgical/chemical/medicinal flavour that I can’t quite put my finger on but is absolutely awful.
Any malt or hops presence is totally killed off by it and left me feeling as though I just drunk a badly made alcopop.

 

Circus IPA (5.8%)Circus IPA More weird chemical flavours, though not nearly as harsh as the Double Seven, they still take over this drink and mask any hop and malt presence save for the merest lick of toffee.
It’s a real pity as there’s a decent enough aroma to Circus IPA, a gently sweet peachy grapefruit.
But even the long finish feels strangely fake as it curls your tongue up.

 

Manga (5%)Manga More alcohol burn.
The aroma of Manga is those little yellow bricks you find in pub urinals.
Where there should be malts and hops there’s yet more of this chemical tang that slices away at your palate like the enemy of beer.
All wrong.

 

 

Further to this, these are the first beers I’ve had in a long time that have given me a headache while drinking them.
Are there additives here?
Is there some chemical process to the filtering that’s doing all this?
If you see Malmesbury’s regular range of beer in a pub then please buy it and try it as it’s good honest fare.
But stay away from the Killer Cats.

Source: Malmesbury Brewery

About Simon Williams

Founder of CAMRGB. Member of The British Guild Of Beer Writers. Leftist bigmouth. Old and grumpy.
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12 Responses to Malmesbury Brewery’s Killer Cat Range

  1. Richard Auty says:

    Hi Simon

    Thanks for the honest feedback on these beers.

    The Killer Cat range was our first foray into sending our beers away for bottling, which included a sterile filtering process. This seemed a good idea given the time saved and that people could drink from the bottle if they preferred. However it’s fair to say that what we received back from the bottlers was not quite what we expected, with quite a lot of flavour and aroma having apparently vanished.

    However of more concern is the way these bottles seem to change quite quickly over time, and not in a good way as your review demonstrates. They all lost at least 1 star on your Untapped reviews over a period of 2 weeks, and I have noticed myself that whereas (for example) a month ago Manga was a fruity delight, it now frankly is not.

    So, this seems a salutary (and expensive) lesson in the pitfalls of giving control of part of our process to someone else. I’m at a loss to explain why the bottles deteriorate so quickly, but in future we will be bottling these ourselves, without any filtering. I hope you’ll see a marked improvement, more like the standard of our more traditional range.

    Cheers
    Rich
    MD, Malmesbury Brewery

  2. steve says:

    pasteurisation?

  3. Robert says:

    I’m drinking a Killer Cat Manga right now. Came as part of my Beer24 monthly delivery. It’s pretty much undrinkable but I am soldiering on as it’s the last beer in the fridge. Interesting that the brewery admits it’s crap but still lets it be distributed as part of beer delivery deals like beer 24.

  4. Alan Cooke says:

    Just had Circus Ipa on draft at Derby beer festival best drink there so unless their is a problem with the bottling you all need to go and get your taste buds checked
    Cheers Alan

  5. Toby Daniel says:

    I’d not heard of Killer Cat until yesterday when I tried Manga on cask at The Wellington in the second city. Frankly, it was fantastic! A real hop-led assault on the taste buds that reminded me of a number of Californian brews that seemed to spark our brewing revival a decade ago.

  6. Jeff Glasspool says:

    I’ve just had Manga on draught at the Beer Emporium in Bristol and it was really good. However, a few months ago at the Volunteer Tavern, also in Bristol, myself and some friends tried the Double Seven on draught and frankly we all agreed it was undrinkable – nasty chemical taste. So it’sd not simply a matter of bottle/bad, draught/ good!

  7. Pingback: Crate Brewery Pale (4.5%) | CAMRGB

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