February Means the Return of Stout Month at Fort George Brewery in Astoria

Fort George Stout Month 2013
Just because the winter holidays are behind us and spring seasonal beer releases are beginning to emerge on shelves and on tap doesn’t mean that winter is over. And since we’re still in the midst of short days, gray skies, and cold weather, there seems no perfect mid-winter escape than to immerse ourselves in the world of dark, robust, and hardy stouts. Fort George Brewery of Astoria returns with their renowned Stout Month, a month-long celebration of the widest scope of the biggest, darkest offerings to date. 
Fort George Cavatica Stout in Cans“We have gathered 14 House Stouts together to tap throughout the whole short month of February!” says Fort George’s Brian Bovenizer.  The recently expanded brewpub will feature 14 Stouts in 28 Days.  “As always,” says Bovenizer, “We will rotate some of our favorite Guest Stouts from all over the great northwest and beyond.”  
Throughout the Fort George Brewery and Public House, and the Lovell Taproom, there will be dark beer pouring from the faucets.  Bovenizers says “The boards will be changed, and the coasters will be dark to hide the stains.  Test your tasting abilities by participating in the “Blind Taster Tray,” an 8 stout sampler of Fort George House Stouts.  If you can guess them all, you win.  If you can’t, you also win!”  
“One of our favorites this year has been our Rye Barrel Aged Cavatica Stout.  Aged in Heaven Hills Rye Whiskey barrels, this beer will be released in Limited Edition 4-packs of 16-ounce cans.” say Bovenizer. This exclusive beer will be available in house only for the Festival of Dark Arts!
Festival of Dark Arts 2013
The culmination of Stout Month will be the Festival of Dark Arts on February 16th from 2 – 10pm.  Bovenizer tells us: “Here, we invite our stout friends to join us in tapping over 40 stouts for one day!  Along with over 40 stouts, we will have a host of other dark art.  How much?  You can expect a blacksmith forge, a glass blower, a tarot card reader, live music, dance, a Dark Art Gallery, old fashioned photo booth, tattoo artists, dancers, and more! “
Here’s a looks at the many killer dark beers that Fort George will showcase for 2013’s Stout Month. Don’t miss out!
The Fort George Brewery’s Stout Month House Stouts

Brewer Spencer Gotter of Fort GeorgeCAVATICA STOUT
An immense, bold, black as night, American stout beauty; Cavatica is no dry Irish anything.  One sip and you’ll surely take notice of what you’re drinking. The name honors this brewer’s affinity with arachnia. Be forewarned, this beer will stain your clothes. This is Fort George’s house stout that has gained a reputation for being mighty and contagious among the locals.  8.8% ABV

Not for the extremely lactose intolerant, but not extremely milky, we used a light dose of lactose sugar in the boiling process to add a delicate sweetness.  Long Dark Winter is a roasty stout that is lighter than most of the stouts in the Stout Month line-up, but much bigger than a porter.  The first recipe from our brewer, Packy Coleman, for his “Sweet Virginia Series” beer, it was made with a dash of oatmeal for earthy drinking during a long dark winter.  5.8% ABV

Our lead production brewer, Michal, aka Polish, put five pounds of walnuts into a secondary fermenter to give the beer a lightly nutty, woodsy taste. He then added one more pound of toasted walnuts in the bright tank for a toasty and roasty aroma. The body of this beer is light with a caramel smoothness that makes the savory walnuts come alive. This is a beer that makes you want to smoke a pipe next to a warm fireplace, wearing a velvet robe, while petting your black panther.
6.4% ABV

What does a revolution taste like? Smooth, creamy, and with a kick of cinnamon! Our Mexican Chocolate Stout starts off with a smooth chocolate taste and balanced body. The different chocolate malts give off not only a creamy dark roasted chocolate flavor, but also a bit of bitterness to help prepare you for the wonderful spices that come at the end. With cinnamon, vanilla, and almond spices blended into the chocolate that went into the kettle and the bright tank, this potent brew is great to enjoy before or after the revolution.  7.6% ABV

Fort George Brewery and Public HouseSPANK STOUT
With plenty of caramel and honey malts fronting this beer, plus roast and black barley forming the backbone, this brew is made to balance out the impending heat of four different types of peppers, namely Anaheims, Pasillas, Habaneros, and Jalapenos.  After they were pitted and roasted over open coals, we threw the 20 lbs of peppers into a rolling boil to impart a well-balanced heat to this un-characteristic stout. What starts off as a sweet heat on the tip of your tongue soon turns into a roasting revelation for the taste buds.  5.1% ABV

Vegetable lovers rejoice! Our veggie stout has two, count ‘em, TWO types of delicious squash in it!  Both butternut and acorn squash had their parts in creating a truly unique beer.  The squash (squish?) imparts a rich, buttery taste to soothe the taste buds into the creamy realization that “I want to be squashed out with this squash stout!” Honey and caramel malts complement the squash by giving it a smooth and sweet body and pleasing mouth feel. Challenger hops balance out the sweetness and impart a floral and spicy bitterness.  6.7% ABV

Fort George Brewery founders Chris Nemlowill (left) and Jack HarrisCAMPOUT STOUT?
The Sweet Virginia series from Fort George has finally made it around to our wonderful sales team. From the combined brain power of Brian Alsbury and Kory Knutinen comes a beer that the people of Clatsop County were clamoring for. Inspired by their favorite camping friend, a goat named Steve, this stout gets its s’more flavor from dark chocolate malt, caramel malt, and a boil of organic marshmallows and coconut sugar crystals.  We know that you will be asking for s’more.  S’more what?  Exactly. 7.0% ABV

Right before we transferred this beer to the fermenter, we ran the wort through two bushels of Willapa Bay Oysters. We let the oysters sit in the wort until they started to pop open, infusing the beer with the briny oyster juice. The oysters don’t impart an overpowering flavor to this stout, but you can taste a hint of the salty goodness that lingers. Drinking this beer is truly like kissing the ocean.  6.9% ABV

This edition of Coffee Girl is conditioned with 10 lbs of Rwanda Huye Mountain Coffee roasted by the Stumptown Coffee Roasters.  The beans have notes of black cherry, blackberry, and blood orange, and characteristics of fudge, brown sugar, and salted caramel.  This is a perfect blend for our full-bodied Coffee Girl Stout, which has a strong roasted chocolate taste with hints of hazelnut.  The beans sat and aged with the beer for a week and, in that time, grew to evolve into something spectacular.  A must try for coffee lovers.
8.7% ABV

Fort George's Jack Harris pours a sample of his brewery's Badda Boom! Cherry StoutBOURBON BBL CAVATICA STOUT
What could make our Cavatica Stout even better? Bourbon! We let our house stout sit in Four Roses Bourbon Barrels for several months.  There in the dark, bourbon-enriched barrels, the beer soaked up as much bourbon quality as it could before we sent it off to the bright tank. With an up-front bourbon taste backed by our dark, malty stout, the Bourbon Barrel Cavatica is a deliciously potent brew that demands a taste.
9.1% ABV

During a trip to the Hair of the Dog Brewery in Portland, we came across a bounty of Heaven Hills Rye Whiskey barrels  delivered straight from Kentucky.  We couldn’t resist!  A quick brewery tour soon morphed into packing the van with as many of these barrels as we could. Cavatica ended up hanging out in these barrels for six months in the Lovell Building Brewery. While people were playing shuffleboard and tossing bean bags next to the barrels, the Cavatica was soaking up smooth, oak-aged, warming rye whiskey.  Available in Limited Edition 4 Packs of 16oz cans for the Festival of Dark Arts, February 16th!  9.2% ABV

This year’s Coffee Girl Stout was aged in Four Roses Bourbon Barrels, thus making her a “Kentucky Coffee Girl”.  Before adding our coffee, we aged an early brew in the barrels, allowing it to soak up as much of the bourbon as possible.  After that, we transferred the aged Coffee Girl base into another vessel, adding Stumptown Coffee Roasters‘ Rwanda Huye Mountain blend.  (See Coffee Girl description).  It’s unnaturally delicious.  9.2% ABV

Meeker’s Mark is a collaboration between two Fort George legends, Shannon Meeker, an original Fort George beertender, and Spencer Gotter, brewer at Fort George.  Shannon is a big Maker’s fan, and ironically has a partner named Mark.  Having the itch to brew an Oatmeal Stout, and the freedom of our “Sweet Virginia Series” of small-batch, brewer-created beers, Spencer and Shannon searched for flavor inspirations from various oatmeal stouts, and even some oatmeal cookies.  Meeker’s Mark has a light body to better represent the smoothness of the oatmeal and the robust flavor of the four Maker’s Mark Barrels that we let them age in. Hopped with German Hallertau hops, this beer is a great balance between bourbon and smooth oatmeal. 8.0% ABV

You may know the Three Wisemen a different way, but we know them as Mr. Jack Daniels, Captain Morgan, and Jose Cuervo.  We couldn’t get a hold of those guys so we called up the barrels respectively from Wild Turkey, Appleton’s Rum, and Cazadores Tequila.  We strategically aged different portions of this Oatmeal Stout in these barrels and allowed them to hang out for a while.  The brewers then blended them by taste to create a specifically boozy, yet light-bodied stout.  9.9%  ABV

For more on Stout Month and the Festival of Dark Arts, visit our website http://www.fortgeorgebrewery.com/stoutmonth2013