Gigantic Brewing is one of the many new Portland breweries to come online in the last couple of years. Stationed in southeast Portland, they became one of the more talked about start-ups with the combined talent of Ben Love and Van Havig. They brew a mix of super experimental beers and some standard hop forward styles like IPA. The Black Friday Beer is an Imperial Cascadian Dark Ale. Normally, I’m not a fan of CDAs or Black IPAs (depending on which camp you fall in). I find the roasted malt bitterness clashes with the hop bitterness into what amounts to a hot mess. There are exceptions, and when they happen, they’re really quite good. This is one of those exceptions. In this case, the Black Friday Beer is actually labeled as an “Imperial Cascadian Dark Ale. This bottle was given to me by a friend who said “You got to try this.” He was right.
Appearance: Black with a tan head. Huge head retention. The head almost looked like a nitro stout it was so thick.
Aroma: Citrus, orange, smoke, dark chocolate, pine
Taste: Smoke, burnt toast, leather, tobacco, ash, with chocolate notes. Citrus finish with a smokey after-taste
Overall Impression: This is a really great beer. The mix of flavors really works well without clashing like most CDAs do. This is an exceptionally well crafted beer with a super silky mouth-feel. It’s definitely worth a try for the dark beer fan or the hop fan. Both can join together in liking this beer!
Availability: Oregon, Washington, Alaska, and British Columbia (check with your more interesting bottle retailers).