Name: Crux Fermentation Project
Location: Bend, OR
Type: Production brewery
Available in DC Market: No
What you need to know: Not just *another* Bend, OR brewery, Crux was founded by Deschutes’ Larry Sidor, who left that *other* Bend brewery in 2011. Crux opened in 2012 to wide acclaim, which is fitting given that Sidor is responsible for some of Deschutes’ best and most sought-after beers like The Dissident, Chainbreaker White IPA, and The Abyss. At Crux there is a marked focus on barrel aging, and in 2013 the Seattle Post-Intelligencer declared it the best new brewery in the United States.
Beer #1: Half Hitch Imperial Mosaic (Imperial IPA / 10% ABV)
In Their Own Words: From their website: “Hops climb up twine that’s just loosely tied to the trellis with a half hitch knot— and this Imperial IPA is just loosely tied to tradition. The Mosaic hop imparts surprisingly floral aromas instead of the more expected grapefruit-y notes. On the palate, complex layers of flavors might remind you of guava, mango, stone fruit and lemon, unraveling your idea of what an Imperial IPA should be.”
Food Pairing: Brussels Sprout Cups with Miso, Green Apple and Cashew
Our Thoughts: This beer is 10% ABV and 80 IBU. Mosiac is not a bittering hop, but Half Hitch is going to destroy the food pairing. There’s so much Mosiac, this year’s “it” hop, that it’ll probably count as a vegetable serving if you skip the sprouts and drink the hoppy goodness. Our advice: eat the food first. SAVOR’s chef Adam Dulye writes “The apple and cashew help highlight the Mosaic hop and the Brussels sprout provides a gentle middle on the palate to pull out a slight bit of sweetness.”
Beer #2: Tough Love (Banished) (Imperial Stout / 11.5% ABV)
In Their Own Words: “Tough Love is bold but nuanced, an homage of sorts to the traditional Russian Imperial Stouts and the ruling style of Catherine the Great. We construct it with dark roasted malts, malted rye, and oak-smoked wheat, and then banish it in Kentucky bourbon barrels. The aging process smooths out the edges on an otherwise bold statement, and bitterness succumbs to tender strokes of vanilla beans, hints of dried cherries, and new layers revealing themselves with each sip.”
Food Pairing: Spice Cake (Rich spice cake soaked in cinnamon and fried French toast style.)
Our Thoughts: Crux isn’t messing around here, breaking out the big guns. The snap of rye, the roundness in the mouthfeel from the wheat, and those giant coffee, toffee, and vanilla flavors from barrel-aging a stout should play very well with the spice cake. Trust Mr. Sidor here. He knows what he’s doing.
This profile is a part of the DCBeer.com SAVOR Brewery Profile series. For more information, follow the link to see profiles of all 2014 SAVOR participants.