All too often the focus of this website has been on the West Coast portion of the Northwest, with Oregon and Washington dominating the headlines. Is this the fault of poor PR? Maybe. Who knows why it is that Oregon and Washington get the most mentions when it comes to what comprises a good Northwest India Pale Ale or Stout. Today we are drawing attention to a brewery, not from Washington or Oregon, but instead Idaho.
Nestled in Victor, Idaho; this brewery has been providing a source of inspiration to home brewers and brewers alike, since 1988. Originally founded in Wyoming, Grand Teton has been a source of local flavor for those who are looking for an India Pale Ale or Brown Ale. For us however, we often find it hard to track down a bottle of IPA, Stout, or ESB, let alone anything seasonal.
Fortunately though, resting at our doorstep, a seasonal favorite arrived and it did not disappoint.
Grand Teton Black Cauldron is an Imperial Stout, and like all Imperial Stouts, this beer pours black as night without a shred of light allowed to pass through it. As it settles an initial strong mocha off-white foamy head forms that recedes leaving behind little to to no lace inside the glass.
Rolling the glass around under our nose one cannot help but pick up elements of smoke, honey, mellow cocoa and minor citrus.
As we take our first sip, we are reminder of molasses, before this memory fades revealing dark fruits, raisins, and for some reason the memory olives from a jar (brine perhaps?), before it finishes with strong chocolate. Overall this beer produces a mild to medium weight on the tongue while finishing slight dry.
There are few styles of beer more flavorful than Imperial Stout. Our thick, rich version was brewed with plenty of caramel and roasted malts and subtly spiced with American Chinook and Styrian Goldings hops. We've accentuated the natural smokiness of the brew by adding a small amount of beechwood-smoked malt. At 22 degrees starting gravity and 8.0% alcohol by volume, this beer boasts flavors of chocolate and coffee, along with raisins and dried fruit soaked in sherry.
Black Cauldron is a strong ale, best enjoyed in moderation, and paired with full-flavored grilled or roasted meats or with dessert. Chocolate cakes, truffles, fruit tarts, caramel flan or crème brûlée are all excellent matches.
We've brewed our Black Cauldron Imperial Stout to recognize and honor the women in the history of brewing. Brewing has been women's work since the dawn of civilization. In all ancient cultures, beer was a gift from a goddess, and women maintained status and power through their skills as brewsters. This remains true today in indigenous cultures from Asia to Latin America, Africa to remote villages in Scandinavia. Around the world, women baked bread and brewed their own beer.
You Should Try. With elements not common to most Imp. Stouts, this beer sets itself apart from the others. For the gastro’ out there try this drink with Brie, Gouda, Havarti, Swiss. Or if you are grilling, then try it with some Beef, Buffalo, or Lamb.
About the photo’s author
Paul “Fruit Trees” Orchard, is an amateur craft beer enthusiast and amateur photographer. Throughout the many years in craft beer he is always carrying a camera (smartphone, digital, traditional) and is invites you to see that beer can also be exciting even if you can’t drink the photo.
In accordance with new FTC regulations regarding bloggers and endorsements, the aforementioned company has provided me a free sample that was used for research prior to writing this review.