Beer Types – Cascadian Dark Ale / Black IPA

There has been some controversy or fuss let’s say about the naming of this particular style of beer. The style is known by three different names; Black IPA, India Black Ale (IBA), or Cascadian Dark Ale (CDA). The name is faintly seditious, derived from the Republic of Cascadia, a fantasy country that would be carved out of Oregon, Washington and the province of British Columbia through seccession from the United States and Canada. defines the style like this : An emerging beer style roughly defined as a beer with IPA-level hopping, relatively high alcohol and a distinct toasty dark malt character. Typically lacks the roastiness and body of a strong stout and is hoppier than a strong porter. Expressive dry-hopping is common. Also called India Dark Ale, India Black Ale, Cascadian Dark Ale, Dark IPA, and sometimes India Brown Ale.

CDAs have a unique flavor profile that you can’t duplicate merely by mixing a stout and an IPA. Brewers prefer such hop varieties as Cascade, Centennial, Simcoe and Amarillo, aromatic American strains with flavors often likened to grapefruit, lemon or orange. Hopping rates are often greater than in normal IPAs, and dry-hopping – adding hops during the fermentation or later – is a common practice. Brewers, however, usually avoid the heavily roasted grains that give stouts their coffeelike and burned-toast flavors. Instead, they rely heavily on de-bitterized malts such as Carafa, in which the husk has been removed from the barley kernels to provide a smoother, less acrid flavor.

Apperance is usually deep brown to black with ruby highlights. Head varies from white to tan/khaki. Mouthfeel is light to medium, hop bitterness and tannins from roast malts combine to create a dry mouthfeel. Flavour is a balance between citrus like and spicy Northwest hop flavor, bitterness, caramel and roast, chocolate, or Carafa type malts. This darker ale goes well with hearty fare such as hamburgers, sausages, stews, smoked fish, lamb, beef and game as well as other numerous foods such as fried seafood and highly spiced cuisine.

Picttured here is the popular & highly rated Netherworld Cascadian Dark Ale from the Flying Monkeys brewery in Barrie, Canada. Also popular are the Howe Sound Gathering Storm, Deschutes Hop In The Dark & Garrison’s Black IPA.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.