Back in Black
The beer scene is always changing. Twenty years ago, there were very few microbreweries to be heard of, and you surely weren’t stopping by the local tap room for a pint or your constitutional three. Recently (and this may just be a Montana phenomenon) we have seen a lot of new, experimental, high octane brews. The latest craze, however, hasn’t seem to hit Montana: the Black IPA. There have been a few, I remember a great one from Blacksmith Brewing Company at the MBA Oktoberfest.
Luckily for us, the bandwagon has come, sort of. Deschutes Brewery has released the latest installment in their Bond Street Series: Hop in the Dark C.D.A. The “C.D.A.” stands for Cascadian Dark Ale, which is apparently a preferred nomenclature (instead of Black IPA) by many brewers in the Pacific Northwest. I really don’t care what they call it, just as long as it is available in Montana and delicious, which by all accounts it should be. Deschutes has been experimenting for over a year and brewed over 22 batches to get the perfect taste for this new addition.
“We’ve been serving renditions of this beer in both our Bend and Portland pubs for over a year, experimenting on our customers as we perfected the recipe,” said Brewmaster Larry Sidor. “This beer has subtle coffee undertones born from a blend of oats with dark, Munich and crystal malts. Classic IPA flavors and aromas are due to courageous additions of various hops.”
Hop in the Dark was just recently released so there is no telling when it will make it out east to Montana, but we can only hope it is soon.
Miles Anfinson currently lives in Helena, Montana where he was born and raised. A year ago, he graduated from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, where he spent four years tasting and drinking beer in the microbrew mecca of the United States. Aside from drinking beer, he enjoys collecting growlers and has a collection of over 120.