The Surfacing of Narwhal

Monster beers define our new High Altitude four-pack series. The series is anchored by our long menacing Bigfoot<sup>®</sup> and the new school Hoptimum<sup>®</sup>. To complete the lineup we’ve just released an imperial stout we call Narwhal®. (It’s on store shelves and in a select few beer-centric bars across the U.S. now.)

We’ve gone big with other styles, and felt Narwhal deserved to be imperial. Ken Grossman has a particular affinity for stouts. The very first batch of beer he produced for Sierra Nevada in 1980 was a stout, and Ken’s experiments with more elevated versions have produced limited creations such as our 30th Anniversary Fritz and Ken’s Stout.

And now there’s Narwhal, a big stout that most of our fans will be able to find and try.

Narwhals are small whales with an imposing horn-like tooth that live in the Arctic Sea, feeding at depths where light cannot penetrate. Like its namesake, Narwhal Imperial Stout is so intensely flavored that light cannot penetrate the beer. The moment we began brewing Narwhal the color at our on-site water purification facility shifted like a mood ring. The malt and grain density challenged the system to turn muck into methane and treated water suitable for discharge. (Rest assured, it did. And maybe unfortunately the spent grain went to nearby cattle, not distant whales.)

Our entire brewing team lost sleep to tame this beast. But like a pre-dawn start to summit a peak, what you earn validates it all. We suspect you’ll find plenty to appreciate about Narwhal, just as we do.

Coffee fans may delight in Narwhal’s espresso notes, masters of the oven may detect cocoa, and avid campers may catch the subtle smoke of a fire. Whoever you are, don’t underestimate Narwhal’s power. Need to build your confidence? The beer will age well; keep it within reach to conquer.

Or maybe this will quell any fears outright.

December 7, 2012 - 3:18pm