It’s been a holiday-rific week in Ketchum, Idaho, where I’ve been spending time with my family and skiing some of the best December conditions in Sun Valley in recent memory. While cruising from the car to the gnar to the bar, I couldn’t help but notice an unfamiliar tap handle that graced many of my favorite beer joints around town (Apple’s, Grumpy’s, et al.).
Opened in late 2011, Sawtooth Brewery seems to be in just about every bar worth visiting in Sun Valley, so I decided to drop in on the taproom and investigate. Tucked unassumingly into the side of the Clarion Inn, Sawtooth serves up a plethora of delicious brews and a few guest beers from well-known breweries from around the West. I tried a couple house-made concoctions including Freeheeler Rye IPA and Imperial Rye Saison, but I really took a liking to the Out Cold Winter Ale served from a cask.
Out Cold drinks exceptionally smooth with low carbonation (due to the cask storage) and silky flavors of molasses, chocolate, and caramel. It’s a malty and full-bodied beer with a pretty high alcohol content (8.6 percent) and mild sweetness. It’s an ideal compliment to dark nights and cold winter days, and it provides a noticeable amount of relief from sore muscles after a long day on the slopes. If you find yourself in Sun Valley this winter (Or better yet, if you find yourself winning a trip to Sun Valley this winter.), be sure to stop in to the taproom, and put back a few beverages.