I chose to drink a Black Cauldron Imperial Stout from Grand Teton Brewing in Victor, Idaho.
It is a small brewery that makes some pretty solid brews. They just released their Lost Continent Double IPA and have a lineup of really good brews, so I thought I would give this a try.
Unfortunately I didn’t have my camera with me so I have no picture of the pour, but suffice it to say it was black like an imperial stout, and had about a one finger milk chocolate brown head. It was really a great color, and I hoped that the brew would be full of chocolatey and coffee goodness.
This brew was very understated with the hoppiness of the imperial part dominating the nose. It smelled grassy and perhaps a bit piney. I also could smell a hefty backbone of malt and a touch of cocoa along with a grainy nuttiness that probably smelled a bit like coffee.
There was a lot going on in this brew. It had a kind of bitter chocolate flavor with some coffee nuttiness that was rounded out on the back end with some hop bite. I didn’t have the heavy malt flavor that you might expect, not a hint of licorice here, but it was a mellow base that the malt provided from which all the flavors swirled around. The mouthfeel was light, but not watery and was very drinkable. It kept asking me to drink it. So I obliged all the way until it was gone.
This is a very good, solid effort from a brewery in my home state. As I learn more about beer, and I have lived in Idaho for a long time now, I realize that many of the hops and grains are grown locally in the state that make some great beer, and a lot of Budweiser too. I guess I can’t control what the brewer does once he buys the grain. Oh well this was a very good effort from the Grand Teton Brewery, and who knows, Augie Bush flys into and out of this region about 10 times a year, maybe someday he will have one of these great local brews and decide to make better Bud too.