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Iceberg Beer - Quidi Vidi Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Iceberg BeerIceberg Beer

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
70
okay

24 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 24
Reviews: 15
rAvg: 2.75
pDev: 25.09%
Wants: 0
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Quidi Vidi Brewing Company visit their website
Newfoundland, Canada

Style | ABV
Light Lager |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Derek on 07-15-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 24 | Reviews: 15 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by spinrsx:
Photo of spinrsx
2.55/5  rDev -7.3%

341ml bottle poured into a pint glass - got a six pack of these when I was in Newfoundland

Appearance - dark yellow, small fizzy white head, that stuck around for a little while

Smell - smelled of wheat, and alcohol

Taste & Mouth - average carbonation, and a medium body. Tasted like wheat and yeast

Drink - I'm happy I tried it... 6 may have been too many

spinrsx, Jul 22, 2010
More User Reviews:
Photo of cam477
3/5  rDev +9.1%

cam477, Jun 20, 2013
Photo of jondeelee
2.65/5  rDev -3.6%

Of all the gimmicks I've heard of, this rates among the best-conceived: beer brewed with glacial water from icebergs. Beer is, after all, about purity, and what could offer a more pure source of water than a 12,000-year-old iceberg?

Unfortunately, I don't think this one worked out as planned. Even at the nose, this brew comes across as slightly stale and skunky (and I purchased my bottle directly from the brewery in St. John's, Newfoundland, so the problem wasn't age). While there is a lovely malty background, with promises of wildflower honey and caramels, there's also a definite sour note that, unlike a Flemish ale, shouldn't be there. This seems to me a fault of the bottling, rather than the brewing process: Iceberg is unfortunately only available in clear, Corona-like bottles, and the increased exposure of the hops to light degrades and sours the flavors.

The taste luckily manages to avoid most of that staleness, and focuses instead on the sugary notes present in the nose, as well as buttery toasted grains. Hops are kept to a minimum, adding only a slight background bite to offset the sugars. The aftertaste is a continuation of the sugary notes present in the beginning parts of the mouthful. Mouthfeel is very light, much like carbonated water.

Overall, while the flavors are good, the beer as a whole comes across as watery. Perhaps this was intentional, to display the clearness of the iceberg waters, but it also means the individual flavors tend to run together and get lost in subsequent mouthfuls. A few more handfuls of malt would have done this brew wonders.

jondeelee, Aug 08, 2011
Photo of ahugenerd
4/5  rDev +45.5%

ahugenerd, Dec 16, 2011
Photo of biboergosum
2.5/5  rDev -9.1%

Pure water from ancient sources - icebergs in this case - sounds like a good idea...

The cap has a proclamation for its being "Truly Local" - a nice sentiment, but loses something when shipped thousands of miles to my neck of the woods.

This beer pours a clear, light straw colour, with one finger of thin soapy white head, with leave spotty lace as it recedes. It smells of sour white grain, lemon, and cooked veggies. The taste is sweet adjunct grains - corn and rice, more skunky veggies, and a bit of grassiness. The carbonation is fairly muted, the body decently weighted, but cloying. It finishes sweet and skunky.

It's too bad that the absolutely pure water only makes up 95 percent or so of this beer. And, like the namesake iceberg, the remaining 5 percent that is perceptible does the hidden remainder a great disservice by mis-representing the true 'nature' of the overall entity.

biboergosum, Nov 15, 2009
Photo of Griffith
3.25/5  rDev +18.2%

Griffith, Jan 27, 2014
Photo of Sammy
2.98/5  rDev +8.4%

Thanks Derek for bringing back. Not as bad as suspected, it is watery. With an almost-watery colour and some lace and soapy head. A drop of hop, a bit more of malt. Not offensive in the least. It in fact could but drunk, the carbonation is understated probably because its been out for a few weeks.

Sammy, Aug 08, 2008
Photo of joemcgrath27
2.9/5  rDev +5.5%

A - straw yellow, short head, plenty of bubbles
S - adjunct and not much else
T - adjunct, light grain and grass
M - light and highly carbonated, crisp but a little thin
O - a nice marketing choice given the local success of iceberg vodka, but it's your average mass guzzler

joemcgrath27, Sep 01, 2013
Photo of Phyl21ca
1.78/5  rDev -35.3%

Bottle: Poured a super light yellow color lager with a medium size bubbly head with light retention and some light lacing. Carbonation is quite strong with a spritzer kind of feel. Aroma of light adjunct and bland taste is pretty boring. Taste is also quite bland with light gross adjunct notes. Body is very light with Sprite-like carbonation. I’m glad I finally got my tick for NFL but quite a bland beer at the end of the day.

Phyl21ca, Nov 22, 2012
Photo of papat444
2.58/5  rDev -6.2%

Poured from a 341ml bottle with no #freshbeer info on the bottle but J 30 13 on six-pack. Unclear if that`s a bottling or best before date.

Pours a totally clear, barely yellow body with tiny bubbles racing up (only nice thing about it). Aroma is mild graininess. Grasping at straws for flavor, maybe wet malt. Finishes with a staleness. Lacks body, flavor and direction but not offensive so was able to finish the bottle. Still, not the best.

papat444, Dec 25, 2013
Photo of mrmanning
2.25/5  rDev -18.2%

Bottle- Pours pale yellow from the clear bottle with a fizzy white cap. Nose of grains and weak yeast, pale malts and grassy hops. Tastes of sweet pale malts, straw, cooked veggies, some grassy hop bitterness. Thin and slightly sweet finish with a slight bitterness. Just ok.

mrmanning, Nov 12, 2009
Photo of Erniehoppyhung
3/5  rDev +9.1%

Erniehoppyhung, Aug 26, 2013
Photo of PJT
2.25/5  rDev -18.2%

I tried this beer while visiting the Quidi Vidi brewery back in 2011.

Brewing beer from icebergs is a fun idea. During my stay in Newfoundland, I collected shored iceberg pieces for my morning coffee and the locals gathered them to cool their whiskey, so it seems appropriate to have the local brewery craft a beer from the same source.

The problem, however, is this beer tastes too much like water. Not any kind of water though, tasteless water that has been stripped of all its natural minerals.

This may be the result of the local beer culture. Newfoundland has a small population and the majority of the population drinks light lager. The brewery is thus forced to make beers with little taste in order to be sustainable, and there is no denying that this beer is made to appeal to the above-mentioned consumers as well as visitors who are not avid beer drinkers but who are intrigued by this beer.

In summary: A fun idea, but not a beer for me.

PJT, Jan 14, 2014
Photo of Derek
3.5/5  rDev +27.3%

Bottled June 30, 2008.

It takes a year for the iceberg to find it's way to the coast of Newfoundland and by that time the outside layer has melted, so the ice is over 15,000 years old. It's exceptionally pure.

A: Clear yellow, white head, very little retention, slight lacing.

S: Floral, grassy, spicy hops with hints of biscuity malt.

T: Light caramel & biscuit, floral hops with a peppery spice, balanced bitterness.

M: Light to moderate body is smooth with a dry finish.

D: It's like water (not very enticing).

Derek, Jul 15, 2008
Photo of notchucknorris
3.05/5  rDev +10.9%

First of all, my parents brought a bottle of this back from Newfoundland and I loved the idea of it. Seeing that it was in a clear bottle kind of tempered my expectations.

A: Extremely pale, almost greenish yellow in color with a head that sticks around a lot better than that of most light beers.

S: Some skunk, wet grass, grain and a bit of lemon zest.

T: Surprisingly smooth and really creamy. Tastes nothing like it looks. Familiar lager taste with a creamy finish that lasts a while. Not a beer I would rush out to get again, but one I'm glad I got the chance to try.

notchucknorris, Feb 25, 2011
Photo of lgmol
3.25/5  rDev +18.2%

lgmol, Jul 26, 2013
Photo of Howlader
1/5  rDev -63.6%

Howlader, Jul 20, 2014
Photo of ThatWineGuy
3.35/5  rDev +21.8%

Thanks to my wife for bringing some Quidi Vidi beer back from "The Rock". This is very pale yellow from the clear bottle, champagne-like in the glass with a one finger fizzy white head. The large bubble carbonation is very ginger ale-like. Head settled but did not disappear, good ring, lace is a bit soapy. Good regeneration throughout the tasting. Very skunky odour although not offensive.

Much has been written of the iceberg water in previous reviews, I find all the QV beers have a similarly clean taste and thin body. More malt than hops, indeed the difficulty growing hops on the rock gives rise to a distinctive although understated malt bill in the QV beers I've had so far. Not overly complicated, this one has a low bitter profile and a sweet backbone that is never cloying. Crisp and refreshing, aftertaste also sweet, overall pleasant and easy drinking - much like The Rock itself. I'd make room for this in my fridge for those summer days when you just want the refreshment value and nothing too serious.

ThatWineGuy, Jan 31, 2010
Photo of D-HopSupreme
3.04/5  rDev +10.5%

Poured from 330mL bottle into pint glass.

Quickly goes to form an unimpressive head, that truly lacks any beer-like characteristics, looking more like that formed when pouring a soft drink. Body is straw in colour and fully transparent.

Scent is mild, yet crisp, seeming more timid than dull.

Following this, the taste follows with the same mild crisp flavour hinted at by scent, with a slight sweetness on the tip of the tongue, vaguely bland, light-beer type of taste in between, and a typical lager finish. Mouthfeel is as well pleasantly light.

Overall an alright beer, though certainly one I will not jump to drink. Certainly a must-try for anyone visiting Newfoundland at the same time, as the use of iceberg water in brewing definitely makes for a unique experience.

D-HopSupreme, Aug 05, 2014
Photo of biegaman
2.78/5  rDev +1.1%

The nice thing about clear bottles is that they allow you to see what you're getting yourself into before hand; its pale (and boring) yellow content gave fair warning: don't get your expectations up. Pouring procures cartoonishly thick bubbles and a large domed cap, neither of which shakes the idea that this resembles a very cheap sparkling white wine.

The bad thing about clear bottles is that they make for some rather distasteful smells. I may not fully understand the chemistry behind it but I sure as hell can recognize the effects. This aroma is weighed heavily by the stench of skunk spray (as if the scents of warm buttermilk and microwaved corn beneath it weren't unpleasant enough without it).

The taste isn't bad, per se. Let's put it this way: if you like the look of this beer then you'll likely like the taste of it, too. Reasonably on par for the style, the flavour profile consists of coarse grain, hay and corn and is accented with a slightly grassy undertone. As it warms, it begins to taste like ginger-ale. Almost uncannily so.

Indeed, the carbonation is also soda pop-esque. Although they don't prick the tongue, the (obviously artificially induced) bubbles sure make for a lot of burping. There is a strong sweetness - reminiscent of a honey brown - that, for me, detracts from the drinkability.

It'd be fine to consider this a hot weather thirst quencher... but I'm not so sure it ever get's hot enough in Newfoundland to rationalize it as such. It's a wonder to me how this sells so well in that province, especially considering that Quidi Vidi offers a number of other (superior) lagers. I wouldn't miss it if the brewery ever decided to sink the Iceberg.

biegaman, Mar 11, 2010
Photo of ZachT
3/5  rDev +9.1%

ZachT, Oct 11, 2013
Photo of bilbobrewer
1/5  rDev -63.6%

This is a terrible beer. If you poured it out of the fancy bottle into a glass, you'd assume you were drinking Coors Light or some other mass-produced swill. "QV" could just as easily stand for Quite Vanilla.
And at almost $20 for a 6-pk, this has got to be the least value-for-money offering in a place where all beer is egregiously priced. Seriously, whether there's iceberg water in this or not (!), there's nothing else in this beer to even notice, let alone appreciate. The brewery chose instead to focus on the marketing, putting it in a blue bottle....which has resonated VERY well with tourists. But between the taste, the price, and the iceberg 'shtick', this is offering an affront to craft brewing.

bilbobrewer, Saturday at 10:48 AM
Photo of muskiesman
3/5  rDev +9.1%

muskiesman, Aug 17, 2014
Photo of YamagamiTravis
3.25/5  rDev +18.2%

YamagamiTravis, Jul 07, 2014
Iceberg Beer from Quidi Vidi Brewing Company
70 out of 100 based on 24 ratings.