Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017

Craft Beer Crosscut 2.22.17: A Flight of Mountains

Ron Swarner

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Think mountain climbing in Washington state and the mind naturally gravitates to Mount Rainier. No other mountain within the contiguous United States is as extensively glaciated or has as much prominence. Climb for Clean Air is an exclusive mountaineering training and fundraising program designed to give you the training, technical support and guide services you need to summit magnificent mountains safely, including Mt. Rainier. Famous Rainier Mountaineering, Inc. guide Lou Whittaker help create Climb for Clean Air, helping novices reach the top while raising money for the American Lung Association. The folks from Climb for Clean Air will hold an information session at Peaks and Pints at 6 p.m. tonight. In their honor we guided our daily beer sample flight toward the mountains — Craft Beer Crosscut 2.22.17: A Flight of Mountains.

Uinta-Golden-Ale-TacomaUinta Golden Ale

5% ABV, 12 IBU

Throughout 2017, Uinta Brewing Co. will salute the national parks with rotating Golden Ales, each release with a different national park illustration gracing the 12-ounce can. Rotating Park Series Golden Ale No. 1: Yosemite pours from our Western red cedar tap log, as well as sits in our cooler. Uinta chose a medium body, crisp, bready, malt-forward ale with outdoor recreation in mind.

Deschutes-Black-Butte-Porter-TacomaDeschutes Black Butte Porter

5.2% ABV, 30 IBU

Deschutes named its porter after a stratovolcano in the Deschutes National Forest near its brewery in Bend, Oregon. Black Butte Porter is slightly bitter in the first sip, but mellows out with a chocolate and roasted finish. As creamy and chocolatey as it should be, this is the porter all other porters want to live up to.

Black-Diamond-Peak-XV-Imperial-Porter-TacomaBlack Diamond Peak XV Imperial Porter

8% ABV, 42 IBU

Black Diamond Brewing’s imperial porter gives nod to Peak XV— the Earth’s highest mountain first measured in 1856, then renamed Mt. Everest nine years later. Subtle undertones of vanilla are brought forth using multiple sources of whole vanilla beans, followed by a stupendous nose of dark chocolate, provided by cacao nibs sourced near the Concord, California brewery. The flavor is massive chocolate, creamy vanilla, toasty and malty.

Grand-Teton-Bitch-Creek-ESB-TacomaGrand Teton Bitch Creek ESB

6% ABV, 60 IBU

Bitch Creek gets its name from a spring-fed stream in the breathtaking Teton Valley. Not too far from there, in Victor, Idaho, sits the Grand Teton Brewery, named after the highest mountain in Grand Teton National Park, not to far from the brewery in Northwest Wyoming. This rich American brown ale starts sweet with a hop bitterness that quickly fades into creamy, toasty malts that coat your tongue with rich caramel. Expect a pine resin hop finish.

Two-Beers-Wonderland-Trail-IPA-TacomaTwo Beers Wonderland Trail IPA

7.1% ABV, 84 IBU

No better way to end this mountain beer flight than Two Beers Brewing’s salute to the famous trail circumnavigating Mount Rainier. It’s the Seattle brewery’s first foray into the West Coast-style, a light bodied IPA complemented by 2-Row, Vienna and Munich malts while featuring a seamless blend of Washington-grown Amarillo, Citra, Mosaic and Cascade hops. Expect a slightly sweet aroma of tangerine followed by a wave of citrus and passion fruit.

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