Melanzana is a company based out of Leadville, Colorado. They are most well known for their lack of available stock and of course, microgrid hoodie. The company is struggling to keep up with demand as popularity soars around their products specifically the Melanzana Microgrid Hoodie. I had the chance to get my hands on one of these hoodies so it was time to write a review and explain why there is so much hype surrounding them.
This has to be the number one feature of these hoodies. I have heard everything from “it feels like wearing a hug” to “that feeling after 3 glasses of wine.” I don’t know if I would go as far as these, but I must say it is incredibly comfortable. It has a weird boxy fit to it instead of an athletic fit like the Patagonia R1. As for sizing, I would have to say it fits normal. I have a small and that is normally what I wear, it is a bit tight in the chest and loose in the waist due to the box cut. I prefer to use this hoodie on day hikes and around the house just due to the comfort.
My small sized hoodie weighs right at 10 ounces. If you are looking at getting one of these as a one solution fits all for outerwear then you are out of luck. Though I found this hoodie incredibly comfortable. I wouldn’t take it on my next long distance backpacking excursion. Personally I find a puffy to be a better weight to warmth ratio. This hoodie is great active wear, if you’re hiking with a jacket this will be way more comfortable than trying to regulate temperatures with a down jacket on. Overall, this hoodie is pretty lightweight for a fleece. In the grand scheme of things I think it fits a very small niche, likely smaller than the market would let you to believe.
Fashion isn’t something that I am going to claim to understand, but one thing I know for sure is that within the ultralight backpacking community and other outdoor niches, these hoodies are IN. Given the comfort, being made in Colorado, lack of availability, and general quirky yet cool look these things are a huge hit. I think the lack of availability right now is making these even more popular than before (may be on purpose by Melanzana). Regardless, this cottage company is putting out some quality gear.
This is going to be a short section because these are very well made pieces of gear. I have seen hoodies that have been too close to a fire and get the usual types of holes in them like you might expect. So keep them away from the campfire! They seem to hold up well, mine hasn’t gotten any pulls or blemishes in it yet but I have seen a few that looked pretty beat up. I guess that is to be expected when you test them in extreme conditions. The fit is boxy as noted earlier, so keep an eye out if you are looking for more of an athletic fit.
The price point is extremely good if you are able to pick them up from the retailer but if you are looking to second hand markets don’t be surprised if you have to pay upwards of $200 to get your hands on one. Getting your hands on one of these might seem like an impossible task if you aren’t from near Leadville. If you keep an eye out on sites such as eBay you should be able to pick one up but you may have to wait a bit as certain sizes aren’t always up for sale. Expect to pay a high premium right now if you are buying on secondary markets.