Sawdust City Long Dark Voyage To Uranus Imperial Stout: Canned in February 2015, this almost one year old beer has one of the best names in the business. It’s brewed to a strength of 10.2% abv with 60 IBU’s worth of Magnum and Centennial hops and a malt bill showcasing about 10 different malts altogether. The brewery’s name “Sawdust City” just so happens to be a historical nickname of the town of Gravenhurst, Ontario where they are located.
Aroma and Appearance: It pours with one big finger of foam that sits on top of a dark ass coloured beer that lacks any visible carbonation bubbles. The aroma showcases nuances of blackberry mixed in with whiffs of smoke, tar, tobacco, dark chocolate and burnt marshmallow.
Flavour: There’s lots of soot and smoke in the front of the beer before it settles into a slightly sweet tobacco flavour. As the almost cigarette like taste dissipates, in the middle, you get some natural vanilla extract, very dark chocolate (95% cocoa) and bits of tar and asphalt that center on your palate. Finally, it finishes very dry and features hints of ash and cocoa powder on the aftertaste that linger for just a little bit in the back of your throat before drifting away.
Overall Impression: I’ve had a lot of top notch Imperial Stouts so the bar is set pretty high for me on these, but overall I enjoyed it for both the name and beer inside. In my opinion, it could have used a bit of toffee or caramel to balance out the ash a little more, but otherwise it very nice to drink. Also kudos to them for putting an easy to read canning date on the bottle of the can!
Rating: I give it a very good rating of 7/10, worth a try and one worth stocking up on for gifts to hand out whenever appropriate!
Food Pairing: This would pair perfectly with almost any charred meat, but I think some grilled smokies would be superb as the salt in the meat would enhance some of the beer flavours while lending some added smoke and soot notes to the smokies.
Here’s a great promo shot from the brewery’s Facebook Page, I really like the glassware they just brought in, that’s a great looking stout glass. Nicely done Sawdust City, if I ever get out that way I’ll be sure to drop in and say hi!