In 2016, James Dugan, Andy Miller, and Paul Reiter opened Great Notion Brewing and stunned Portland, Oregon with their New England-style IPAs and boundary-pushing culinary-style beers. The awards followed: World Beer Cup, GABF, Best of Craft Beer Awards, and Oregon Beer Awards, as well as the 2018 #1 IPA in America from Paste Magazine, Ripe IPA. Great Notion was the first Portland brewery to become known for hazies, and the controversial style, and traditionalists hated it. Now the traditionalists are all wearing Great Notion T-shirts. In addition to their hazies, the brewery’s barrel program offers award-winning American sour ales aged for 9-24 months in oak barrels with portion of their sour ales blended with Oregon fruit and freshly emptied bourbon barrels age their imperial stouts on ingredients such as roasted coffee, vanilla beans, chocolate, and maple syrup. Today, Peaks & Pints presents an in-house flight of Great Notion’s beers — a flight we’re calling Peaks and Pints Beer Flight: Great Notion.
Peaks and Pints Beer Flight: Great Notion
Fruit Monster is back to cause some mayhem, this time with a marvelously refreshing tart blend of pineapple, tangerine, and passionfruit. It’s scary good.
In addition to the bears and Sasquatches, Chad Eaton draws skeletons names “moss” on many of Great Notions IPA cans, include Ripe. Skeletons, our internal structure, are meant to be hidden, which makes them spooky to see — even if they’re playful on the Great Notion cans. Ripe IPA, a 100-percent Citra hopped hazy IPA, brings flavors of fresh squeezed OJ, dank papaya, and tropical mango, slowly fading into pithy bitterness.
Great Notion woke up. Their Sleepwalker dark tart ale has stumbled back to the market, but in a slightly familiar way. The last time Great Notion brewed Sleepwalker they left the chocolate out of the recipe and decided to brew it with maple syrup. “No more. We ended up messing with a good thing, so we went back to the first recipe,” states Great Notion in Sleepwalker hype. “Sleepwalker is staying put to keep you dreaming about dark sour beer and blackberry, blueberry, vanilla, and most importantly chocolate.”
First made famous by Stone Brewing Company with the brewery’s release of Sublimely Self-Righteous IPA, the black IPA — or Cascadian dark ale, or American black ale, or India black ale — combines light flavors of roast and chocolate along with the forward hop aromas and flavors one would expect from a traditional IPA. Essentially, the style is a classic IPAs that has been “stained” with debittered black malts to create a mind-bending mix of intense hop flavor crossed with a stout-like appearance. In theory, this will create an exciting beer that’s pleasantly hoppy with a toasty richness. But, on the ground, there’s an uneasy truce and things get messy. It’s a challenging beer. Go too light with the malt bill, and it’s just a mangled IPA. Too dark, and you get a viciously astringent beer with strong notes of burning rubber. With the help of Steeplejack Beer and Pink Boots Society, Great Notion Brewing has taken a foray into the dark side of hops. This black IPA is an unholy union of rye malts and Chinook, Cascade, and Citra hops. It’s a little more malt-forward than most beers of this style, but the pine notes and roasty bitterness is there.
Halloween October 1981, Tacoma native Robb Weller, the yell leader for the Huskies, invented “The Wave” during their game with Stanford led by Port Angeles native John Elway. Weller ran from the end zone … to the 50-yeard line and watched as the student section undulated as he passed. To his surprise, the movement didn’t stop with the undergrads; alums picked up the cadence and sent it around the rest of the stadium. The wave, as we know it, was born. Great Notion brewed Sports with Citra, Mosaic, and Galaxy hops paying homage to the ongoing college football rivals in Oregon, Washington, and California. Waves of Citra, Mosaic, and Galaxy Hops will flood your palate with enough lupulin-laced fruitiness to send the wave around multiple times. Expect notes of fresh orange juice, grapefruit, and tangy passionfruit with a piney finish.