Cavatica Stout | Fort George Brewery + Public House

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Cavatica StoutCavatica Stout

Brewed by:
Fort George Brewery + Public House
Oregon, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
The Latin root of Cavatica is cave, crevice, abyss or a dark place. Just like a stout should be.

Added by RedDiamond on 07-15-2007

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Reviews: 74 | Ratings: 280
Photo of Mebuzzard
4.36/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Brought this back to Denver from my trek to Oregon/Washington. Kept it about 2 months before cracking it open

Darn! Great looking beer. Perfect! Dark dark reddish brown, almost black. Somewhat hazy, if you can make it out. Looks rich. Beautiful tan, creamy, rocky head. Nice lacing. Don't get much better, my friend

Aroma is great, too. Coffee, mocha, chocolate, chocolate milk. Some faint hints of sweet fruits

Great tasting beer. Nothing over the top, but it's close. Smooth chocolate and caramel coffee blended together. Hints of roastiness and toast. Dark fruit sweetness, but it's not much. Not as dry and tannin-y as a lot of Imp Stouts, but this makes it easy drinking. And that can be a good or bad thing.
For 8%, this is very drinkable. Great beer.

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Photo of rinhaak
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Inky black and very smooth, the Cavatica Stout from Fort George is surprisingly mellow given the ABV. A fruity nose with hints of bourbon (despite NOT being the version aged in bourbon barrels), there is a gentle roasted character to the mouth, in addition to flavors of oatmeal, cocoa, and molasses.

Perhaps my can is different than the others tasted by some of my fellow BAs, but I did not get a mouth full of burnt toast. Granted, my can is about 8 months old, and perhaps the time mellowed it out a bit.

I really found the beer quite well balanced and very enjoyable, with only a trace of a hint that it was almost 9%.

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Photo of Phelps
3.46/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed in a snifter.

Black as night, with perhaps the faintest hint of mahogany at the edges. The head is a thin, silky layer of tiny tan bubbles that fizzles away quickly, leaving a thick ring behind.

Sharp, burnt aroma. Scorched toast, anise, peanuts skins, soil.

The flavor is a little better, though it could also use some more sweetness to balance the torched malts. Sharp toast, damp soil, a touch of bitter dark chocolate. The swallow lends a little bit of smooth peanut to balance the bitter stuff.

The medium body has a nice, whipped feel and gentle, massaging carbonation. Holds together well as it moves.

Cavatica stout is the base to a lot of good variations made by Fort George, which makes sense, as they seem to fill whatever’s missing from this base. I imagine it would lend itself very well to barrel-aging.

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Photo of Viciousknishs
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- pours pitch black with a generous( when I say generous I'm talking three and a half fingers) tightly bubbled light tan head. Superb head retention. One of the best looking stouts I've seen in a long time,

S- Decadent Belgian chocolate with an undertone of stewed dark cherry and molasses. Sweet maltiness with the right amount of roast and gourmet coffee in the middle. Subtle hop on the finish with more chocolate characteristics begging one to take a sip!

T- big mocha flavor on the front end with a cream and sugar note. Chocolate cake like malt envelopes the previous flavor while including what came before. Strong roast and mild coffee tones on the finish with a good amount of bitterness and a dusty yeasty characteristic.

MF- slick expressive mouthfeel with a medium body. Very active carbonation.

D- drinkable indeed. A stout that transcends the average Choco/coffee stereotype.

P.S. thanks to Drew for this one! I enjoyed it very much.

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Photo of herman77
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Black with a large tan head that sticks around for awhile. Decent lacing.

S: Roasty malts, a bit of dark bittersweet chocolate, but what really stands out is some belgium yeast like spice. Kind of odd to smell that in this. If its from the yeast, I don't remember smelling that from their Vortex IPA. Their website says they use their house yeast in each of those two beers.

T: I pick out that Belgium like yeast right away, its got a bit of spice to it. Can really pick it up near the finish. Behind that, there is some roasted malt, a bit off bittersweet dark chocolate and coffee. The spice from the yeast and the roasted malt almost make it seem a bit minty tasting. Odd for sure, but it kind of works.

M: Medium-heavier body. Average carbonation. Not too creamy, but has a nice silkiness to it.

O: Drinkability is okay. Could be better, could be worse. A different approach to this style for sure. Again, a nice extra from Suncrust.

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Photo of vkv822
3.06/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

16oz can into tulip snifter.

Pours black with a very thick, frothy light brown head.

Aroma is very unique, notes of roast and cocoa, but has a Belgian yeast character with some clove and earthiness.

More clove followed by light cocoa and roast notes.

Medium body with active, prickly carbonation.

Aside from the appearance I gave this an average grade, because while it wasn't an unpleasant beer, it certainly was not what I would expect in an Imperial Stout.

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Photo of Rutager
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance. Pours a deep black/brown with a half finger of dark tan head that lasts a while.

Smell. Dark roasty and lightly smokey malts, some licorice, molasses.

Taste. Roasty malts, herby hops, a little booze and molasses.

Mouthfeel. Medium+ body with below medium carbonation.

Overall. Good stout, maybe not so much an imperial besides the booze.

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Photo of grittybrews
4.11/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured near black with dark brown edges and three fingers of light mocha head. Mild roasty cocoa aroma with a touch of caramel.

Moderate carbonation and a thick, creamy mouthfeel. Dark cocoa up front followed by some roasty coffee, hints of molasses and vanilla, and some strong earthy/spicy hop bitterness on the long finish.

Tasty, nice balance, not too complaints here!

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Photo of flagmantho
3.64/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 16oz can into a pint glass.

Appearance: completely, entirely black with four (!!) fingers of tenacious, creamy dark-tan foam. Incredible.

Smell: big roasted-malt aroma with a little bit of a band-aid-ey Belgian funk to it. Not bad but not usually what I'm looking for in the style.

Taste: very much like the aroma. Nice chocolate notes in the malt, but with this definitely Belgian funk to it. Unfortunately, it doesn't really work in context. It's still tasty, after a fashion, but not wonderful.

Mouthfeel: big body with a decent carbonation. Not really creamy, but there's a silky smoothness to it which I really like.

Overall: this is a bizarre beer. Its primary flavor notes belong more to a dubbel or BSDA than to an American imperial stout. I don't dislike it, per se, but it's not my favorite flavor profile and definitely not what I'm looking for in this style.

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Photo of EgadBananas
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to msubulldog25 for the local can!

16oz can poured into a Stone nonic.

Appeared nearly pitch black. There were slight blood red hues near the glasses thinner bottom edges. Head was very creamy, almost mousse-like, light brown in color, with some pretty potent retention. The aroma was this medium pronounced, luscious, silky chocolate note. Slight pine wants to creep in, but it's very subtle. A light roasted malt note as well. The taste brings more of that chocolate, with an almost equal roasted quality and some finishing bitter hops. Not like a black IPA kinda hoppiness, but you can tell they wanted a little bit of polarity. The alcohol is well masked for nearly 9%, aiding in it's nice drinkability. The feel has a very creamy, upper-medium bodied feel to it. Not entirely viscous, but in no way thin.

As it warms and the more I sip it, the more the piny hops play a role here. Still not creeping to the over-the-top for the style, but I do like that kinda edge.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours an opaque dark brown appearing black. Nice fine two finger light brown head with good retention and lacing. Looks good. Decent aroma of dark roasted malt, chocolate, dried fruit and a faint hint of vanilla. Flavor of roasted malts, coffee and chocolate, a hint of char and vanilla, slight licorice. Finishes rather dry and bitter, like a dark intense coffee, but with a hop kick. Flavor is mellow and well integrated. Medium bodied with some creaminess. I liked this stout, but the finish is somewhat on the dry side for me. Will definitely try other beers from Fort George in the future.

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Photo of NWer
4.58/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured very dark with abundant chocolate foam. Chocolate notes up front aroma and taste. Wow factor kicked in. Enjoyable. Very tasty. To be savored.
Only picked up one can when I picked up some Vortex on impulse. Will definitely fill my stash next time I visit Oregon. Haven't seen it around here anywhere.
A shame. This beer is begging to get out more.

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Photo of Reidrover
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 oz can from Lifesource S.Salem. $2.99 Black,black as can be beer with a very nice tan head..big and frothy. Roasty,toasty malts,some demerara rum,dark chocolate nice aromas Toasty,fruity ,creamy ,rum laden stout,sweet candy sugar intertwines..slight resiny hop at the end. Nice thick satiny palate on this one Nice staout on the verge of Imperial territory

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Photo of msubulldog25
4.23/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16 oz. can (dated 12/02 on the bottom), cracked & glugged to a teardrop glass, pre- and post-dinner.

Interesting label, ominously black and full of taxonomic facts regarding different forms of 'Cavatica' (spiders)... including the rare 'Cavaticus astorius' and 'Cavatica fortus Georgium'. A good couple minutes of reading here.

A: Black, pure black. Well, almost. Held to light, you get a lighter version of ebony. Each pour greets you with a healthy finger of tawny head, a little fizzy and slow to die. Lace is in speckles and fractured ribbons.

S: A dark chocolate nose, with a strange vanilla/caramel. An intoxicating cocoa powder, sort of musty and rooty, even a bit metallic and meaty-sweet, but altogether intriguing.

T: Lots of dark cocoa and a grainy/burnt finish.Coffee grounds and crushed spices that dance on the tongue, play nicely. Mint and vanilla, tangy wood and muddy fruit. Ashy bitterness, too. Licorice and fennel hints are a little odd, but are sordidly delicious. For my palate, this is a near-perfect stout - never one I can quite grasp, changing from sip to sip.

M: Creamy feel, medium/heavy body. About as velvety as I can recall any recent Imperial Stout. A thinly veiled mouthfeel that progressively coats; smooth is an understatement. A bit of dryness and brassiness in the finish, but i like those things in a stout.

O: OK, I don't just like this beer, I LOVE it. Take your OB Ten Fidy and shove it, because THIS is my lead beer for canned imperial stouts. Hell, it's among the best imperial stouts I've had, regardless of presentation, barrel-aging, whatever, as far as 'drinkability'. Every time I go to the grocery I want to pick up a single or two of this (reasonably priced at $2.99 for 16 oz)... and frequently I do. Oh so worthy.

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Photo of djbreezy
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

appearance - massive carbonation, 50% head in glass, some spots of lacing once dissipated, dark and opaque, tan head

smell - notes of roasty malts and chocolate

taste - chocolate up front followed by a nice a malt backbone, overall very tasty, some alcohol noticeable in the finish

mouthfeel - medium body and carbonation

overall - not a bad stout, good flavor, easy to drink

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Photo of boralyl
4.04/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A - 16 oz can poured into a tulip glass. This beer produces a huge 2 finger tan head that sits atop of a pitch black beer.

S - The aroma consists of sweet malt and chocolate. There are also hints of roasted malts.

M - Full in body with light carbonation. It's got a creamy silky feel.

T - Milk chocolate sweetness up front followed by some hoppy bitterness. There is some light roastiness and coffee towards the finish.

A nice chocolaty stout. Nothing outstanding but it's very good nonetheless.

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Photo of robwestcott
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

big thanks to my trading pal Kalton for this one.

poured cold and cola black from the can to a dogfish head signature glass with a full finger, fluffy tan, long lasting head leaving spotty lace after each sip.

aroma of great big dank hops(?) with a wee bit of chocolate and coffee in the wayback if you look for it hard.

wow - big bitter hops forward, its like a black IPA unsuccessfully masquerading as a big stout. on second sip, getting a bit of smoke and bitter coffee, but still, its a majorly hopped stout.

medium to light bodied, big carbonation, medium bitter to the middle of the tongue, if there's stout sweet, i'm missing it.

overall: interesting left turn from the stylebook, a good beer, but this is a stout ?

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Photo of velosuds
3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16oz can into a clear pint glass. Paid $2.99 - a great price compared to other brewery's imperial stouts when comparing the prize per ounce.

A-Pours a deep, dark brown almost black hue with a two + finger, creamy tan head with good retention that recedes into a blotchy lace. Slightly hazy.

S-Chocolate and roasted malts. Very simple malt bill of organic 2 row malted barley, black barley and Munich malt provide a great backdrop for the Cascade hops to assert their influence not only on the aroma, but the taste too. I wouldn't have expected Cascade, but the hops provide a nice citrusy aroma against the dark malts.

T-Rich malt and bittersweet chocolate with balanced hop bitterness. Very reminiscent of "chocolate orange" confection taste. Sufficiently hoppy, clean, and well balanced. A very straightforward stout.

M-Very smooth, full bodied, and nicely carbonated, but just a tad thin.

O-This is a very drinkable stout. I just recently discovered Fort George and am very glad. Brewing some very good beers and available in cans.

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Photo of CaptainTripps
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served from a growler.

A: I wouldn't call it black but maybe a very dark brown. Can see reddish-dark brown hues on the edges. The pour came with about half a fingers worth of "soft" mocha head. Good amounts of lacing down the glass.

S: Slight roastedness to it, with hints of semi-sweet dark chocolate. Slight bitterness coming off paired with some alcohol.

T: One mellow beer. No flavor is really peeking out and hitting you. Everything flows very nicely together bringing together one complex brew. Roasted malts with maybe a hop bitterness on the back end. Dark chocolate and alcohol.

M: Almost milk chocolate, but I was hoping for it to be maybe a little bit more "thicker." Alcohol could tone down a little bit as well.

O: Great mellow beer for a rainy day in Oregon. Will be coming back to it. Can't beat 64oz for 10 bucks.

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Photo of czechsaaz
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I also had a pint at the brewery and decided to take some home.

Mildly roasty aroma with lots of fruity yeast character. Hops aren't really there which is all right for stout.

Deep black with no light getting through when held up to a bulb. Started out with a half inch layer of nice milk chocolate colored foam but faded to just a small ring around the glass. (The pint at the brewery had a long lasting solid head.)

Big chocolate taste. Sweet malt and roast chocolate malt combineto make a nice flavor profile with just enough bittering hops so it isn't sugary. It could maybe stand somemore drying from roast malt or hops but it's a good drinking sweet stout.

Full bodied with light creamy carb that reminds meof cask or nitro pour.

REally a nice beer. Easy drinking for a beer this big. Deceptively "sessionable."

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Photo of Docer
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had just a sampler of this on-tap at the brewpub yesterday in Astoria.. served in a snifter (to a friend).

- Rich dark complex brew... fuzzy mocha head.. lots of lacing..

- Grains, oats, sweet with light chocolate... bitterness.... earthy.. and more oats.

- Rich and smooth oats, grains, barley, chocolate malts... it's all there and in perfect harmony. The way a stout should be. Bitterness from hops without adding too much citrus or floral notes. Big fan of stouts that don't do that like this one. True Irish style.

- Slightly chalky, but surprisingly medium bodied and smooth. Just a bit chewy and dry.

- Overall this is a killer stout, and one that I will certainly have to get a bigger glass of when I go there.

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Photo of olmatty
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance-Pours a cloudy, brown, black beer with excellent lacing and a two finger tan head with reasonable retention.

Smell- Sweet roasted malts, some hop biterness and yeast.

Taste- Roasty malts, immediately followed by building sweetness of molasses. The base pale malt plays a huge role here. Notes of espresso coffee and some cocoa, even a touch of dried dark fruits. Very complex and unique.

Mouthfeel- Medium to full bodied, moderately carbonated with a great aftertaste.

Drinkability- Full bodied and delicious. Not heavy for the style and therefore very drinkable. Very surprising that the ABV is nearly nine percent.

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Photo of cjhofelt
3.49/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Because they serve their beers in canning jars which they fill to the lip, there's not any room for the head. Appearance suffers because of that. Otherwise, it's a common enough looking stout.

The smell was good, malty with a whiff of alcohol as the beer warms.

Very tasty. Malty sweetness with some raisin notes. A bit of warm alcohol in the finish.

Mouthfeel wasn't either too thin or too syrupy. Pretty creamy.

This is a pretty drinkable stout. You probably shouldn't drink too much if you plan on driving, though

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Photo of RedDiamond
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My server suggested this stout ranged upwards of 8% ABV. That seemed unlikely to my tastes, but Cavatica is certainly a hearty brew. It is opaque with a gentle roasted aroma and a taste that touches upon roasted barley, molasses, and a rooted woodiness akin to ginseng. It ultimately tips to the sweet side though I wouldn’t guess it’s a milk stout.

Apparently the name refers to a deep, dark place such as an abyss. It’s also Charlotte’s last name from Charlotte’s Web. Either way, the suggested reference to darkness compliments the beer, which achieves vigor, balance and a healthy show of lace. Try it with the oysters poboy.

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Cavatica Stout from Fort George Brewery + Public House
3.9 out of 5 based on 280 ratings.
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