Oakshire’s O’Dark:30 is a brew born of war. Like other beers of the newish style known locally as Cascadian Dark Ale, it represents an audacious plot to force an alliance between piney, resinous Northwest hops and the dark malts of a porter or stout. In theory, this will create an exciting beer that’s pleasantly hoppy with a toasty richness. But, on the ground, there’s an uneasy truce and things get messy. Most CDAs are volatile flavor-bombs full of tangled wires that can lay waste to your palate on the first sip. I found Eugene’s O’Dark:30 overly bitter, with an unpleasant astringency and too much smokiness. Then again, I have a similar opinion about Stone’s Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale, widely considered the style’s standard. Wonky brewers have waged battles about what to call the style—outside Oregon, they’re Black IPAs or American Black Ales. Before we settle that, I’d like someone to prove this quagmire is worth the trouble. Not recommended.