Abner - Hill Farmstead Brewery

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Abner
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BA SCORE
100
world-class

313 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 313
Hads: 2,101
rAvg: 4.56
pDev: 6.8%
Wants: 1,758
Gots: 184 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kingcrowing on 05-12-2010

Abner (1867-1953) is our great grandfather; Hill Farmstead Brewery rests upon the land that was once home to him and his fourteen children. In his honor, this Double IPA is dutifully crafted from American malted barley, a plethora of American hops, our ale yeast and water from Abner’s well. It is unfiltered, naturally carbonated, and double dry hopped. Aromatic and flowery, bursting with notes of citrus and pine, this is the ale that I dream to have shared with Abner.

170 Theoretical IBU

Pale and Caramel Malt; Dextrose; Centennial, Chinook, Columbus, Simcoe, and Warrior hops; Ale Yeast, and our Well Water.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 313 | Hads: 2,101
Photo of mick303
4.79/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Poured from growler into a hill farmstead tulip. A couldy yellow colour with a really nice head retention and lacing, silky white head.

Aroma is full of citrus floral notes, lemony and some light piny notes, robust florals, peppermint, grapefruit, wildflower honey. So complex and inticing.

Taste is full with balanced hop character, creamy grapefruit, resiny wildflower notes, a touch of floraly lemon sweetness then a growing gradual resiny bitterness. Tons of rich orange citrus. Fantastic balance. Drinkability is crazy with so much depth and balance.

Mouthfeel is really full, gentle carbonation with a full bodied malt creaminess, maintains enough of a full dextrin complexity to balance the hop bitterness impecably. Alcohol is well hidden and such a fruity and hoppy body with a creamy upfront malt.

Lives up the hype as an impecable ipa. It balances itself so well between the strong citrus and floral hop character and a creamy malty body. It's is delicious and complex, fantastic. Certainly an impecable beer with a great complexity and warming beer, impressed by the great balance here and the ridculous quality from start to finish. (1,150 characters)

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
4.47/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Split with angrybabboon.

Appearance: Hazy dark gold. Head is bright-white and fluffy to start. Tiny wisp of a cap with a small collar. Some splotches of lacing. Moderate carbonation on the pour.

Smell: Stone fruit. Very vague notions of tangerine and grapefruit. Loaded with mango and peach and some pineapple. Slightly bitter pine needle. Juicy fruit. Malts are typically light and bready. Touches of pale malt sweetness with honeyed biscuits and some undercooked white bread. Slightly caramelized malt sugars. Deeply floral with some hints of hibiscus. Pine sap and some raw honey. Big and bold without being too aggressive.

Taste: Follows the nose closely with a touch more bitterness. Tons of stone fruit - mango, peach, and something like papaya. Tangerine with some touches of grapefruit and orange rind. Oily resin. Tons of floral elements. Fresh flowers, dried almost hibiscus. Bitter pith. Malts are lightly sweet with a combination of pale malts - offering bready elements and a touch of raw biscuit dough - and some slightly sweeter caramel malt. Bready. Bitter pine needle.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a moderate carbonation. Initial sip is slightly slick. What I want to see out of the style. A little sticky.

Overall: We can be friends.

A nice Imperial IPA. It's big but balanced and carries that drinkable quality every Hill Farmstead IPA has. (1,366 characters)

Photo of angrybabboon
4.45/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Split with Goblinmunkey7, growler filled about 5 hours ago

Consumed 11/15/14

A: Hazy tangerine - some copper at its core, some gold around the edges - pours with a medium, white head, fades to a nicely wispy cap, leaves some spotty lacing

S: Big, juicy citrus, with some level of sanity - juicy, fleshy, ripe orange, grapefruit, ruby red grapefruit - very fruity with peaches and apricots - tropical notes, pineapple and mango - resinous, with a big floral push - very flowery, with some herbal and grassy notes - light pale and caramel malts, with some light sweetness

T: So juicy, so fruity - juicy, ripe orange, tangerine, and ruby red grapefruit - to an extent, this tastes like a tropical fruit blend, with all the fruit flavors co-occurring here - ripe peaches, apricots, pineapple, and mango - lightly sweet throughout - pale malts with some caramel - pine, herbal notes, floral notes, and a light touch of mint - moderate level of bitterness - light touch of alcohol, but extremely clean overall (the norm for Hill Farmstead)

M: Medium body, nicely carbonated, smooth, finishes mostly dry

O: Stop living up the hype, please

Presently, I live about 80 miles away from Hill Farmstead. After now having reviewed a handful of their beers, I realize that I would drive 180 miles each way. Maybe 280. And I'm not entirely happy about this. Abner is among the best I've had from Hill Farmstead. The hop profile is excellent, and it's so clean that I just want to drink more. The fact that this is 8.2% ABV is actually dangerous. (1,536 characters)

Photo of vfgccp
4.55/5  rDev -0.2%

Nov 2014. Special thanks to Rachel for the haul.

A - Hazy, creamy peach nectar body. Creamy off-white head pours 2 fingers high with outstanding retention and lace.

S - Great nose. Passion fruit, fresh ferns, bright cilantro, mango, grape skins. Rustic edges. Incredibly fresh.

T - Fresh, bold, and herbaceous. Juicy center with orange and mango. Biscuity malt on the backend. Bitter herb and mineral water finish.

M - Outrageous mouthfeel. Smooth, perfectly weighted body - not too heavy and not too light - with perfectly balanced carbonation.

O - Fresh and rustic. A damn good IIPA.


------------------------------------------------------------------------
4.55 Abner
-- -Jay- -Jon- -Vin- -Avg- Weight Adj
A - 4.75 4.75 4.75 4.75 10% 0.48
S - 4.30 4.80 4.70 4.60 20% 0.92
T - 4.60 4.35 4.50 4.48 40% 1.79
M - 4.50 5.00 5.00 4.83 10% 0.48
O - 4.40 4.40 4.40 4.40 20% 0.88 (909 characters)

Photo of RaulMondesi
5/5  rDev +9.6%

On tap at Beachwood Brewing in Long Beach, CA.

Lush, creamy, dreamy... Beautiful textures like Princess Jasmine weaving a pair of silk skivvies.

I am at a loss. I am found. I am nothing, I am in heaven... Take me away. (222 characters)

Photo of bitterbeerguy
5/5  rDev +9.6%

Where do I begin about this beer. Enjoyed from the brewery in Greensboro.

Aroma is full of pine and citrus. Balanced nicely, without being overpowering.

Taste is perfect. Literally as good as it gets. A blend of lemon, grapefruit, pine, and tropical fruits. I get lots of passion fruit for whatever reason. The mouthful makes it easy to drink an entire growler alone.

As good as a DIPA gets. (404 characters)

Photo of Erockruns
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

Superbly balanced with an excellent blend of citrus and earthy hops. As with most elite IPAs....you enjoy it more and more with each sip and nothing takes a dominant role and the complexity unravels over time. Another fine drinking experience. Hill Farmstead has a collection of beers that will rival anyone in the world. (325 characters)

Photo of Goalcam
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

WOW, what a great double IPA. Goes down great without any bitter overly hoppy aftertaste. Great aroma and smell and fresh citrusy taste. Possibly the best beer I've ever had. (177 characters)

Photo of Adirondacks
5/5  rDev +9.6%

Best beer I every had. This means something since I had some amazing beers, like Heady Topper, Mastermind, Bourbon Stout from Goose before they were bought out..etc. The piney and citrus flavors linger on your taste buds like a fine wine. The complexity of the flavors is perfect. It takes me 4.5 hours one-way to get to their brewery. Well worth the travels!! (365 characters)

Photo of WreckedPalate
4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

I've never had a beer before that claimed it was so high in IBU, but so delicate on the palate.

Huge aroma bursting with citrus, pine, mango, and papaya undertones, maybe some evergreen as well. Perfect carbonation, nice white fluffy head with lacing that seems to stick to the side of the glass nicely.

The flavor was to follow suit with the aromas, but I would add hints of kiwi and pineapple to add a definitive tropical flavor.

Overall, one of my favorite imperial IPA's for sure, but not by means my favorite. Amazing stuff though, hopefully I'll obtain more in the future. (584 characters)

Photo of GentalmensRelish
2.75/5  rDev -39.7%

Meh. I'm not really sure what the hype is about.

Popped a growler. low carb, thin bodied, light aroma, seems like a standard IIPA. Not sure where they theorize 170 IBUs pretty sure this is a made up number.

I would have left out the Dextrose. This seems to have dried out the beer a little too much and left behind some fusil alcohol notes which are undesirable.

Shaun really missed the mark on the this one. (418 characters)

Photo of RichKent
5/5  rDev +9.6%

Abner is an incredible DIPA. I wish it were easier to get, but as it is, I feel blessed to have had 2 growlers full (2L & 750). They're doing a lot of things very right at Hill Farmstead.

Perfect color - bright orange and hazy and gets slightly lighter around the edges. It's easy to pour with a nice fluffy 3-4 finger head, and the lacing on the glass is thorough as the head dissipates.

The smell is a bit understated. I don't want to imply that Abner doesn't smell wonderful, because it does - it's just that it doesn't fill the room with hoppy smells like some beers I've opened. That said I pick up a huge array of fruit including pretty much all the tropical fruits (guava, papaya, mango, pineapple, passionfruit) as well as sweet citrus and orange/tangerines.

Taste follows the nose. This is an incredibly complex and flavorful beer. Just like the smell, the taste has all of the tropical fruits as well as citrus, orange, tangerine, and more. The malt takes a back seat to the fruit, and any pine or resin present is very understated compared to the fruit as well. If you love fruity, juicy DIPAs, then Abner is your holy grail. Don't be fooled by the 170 IBUs either. Abner is so incredibly flavorful, smooth, and balanced that it doesn't taste bitter at all. I've had beers with half the IBUs that tasted twice as bitter.

Mouth is soft, smooth, and amazing. For a DIPA it's perfect. I'm sure Hill's water has something to do with it. As others have said, I'd really like to know what's in Hill Farmstead water that makes all their beers so soft and smooth tasting.

Abner is a truly world-class beer. I confess that as of this review I haven't had Lawson's DS (but have had MBC Dinner, lots of Heady, Ghandi, etc..), and I've heard some people say they prefer DS - and others give the edge to Abner, but I think it would be nearly impossible to brew a better DIPA than this. Abner is the holy grail and well worth the drive into the NEK of Vermont, regardless of where you're coming from. If and when I do try Double Sunshine, I'll update this review. (2,065 characters)

Photo of huddyball
4.18/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served out of a freshly filled (9/20/14) Hill Farmstead 750ml growler and into a HF stemmed glass.

L) Pours a hazy, tawny/orange with a average size white head.
S) Smells of beautiful hops and a bit of yeast thrown in there. I prefer mine a bit more citrusy, but this is still an amazing beer.
T) This is a well balance DIPA. Not too bitter and not too malty. Again, I would like a bit more citrus, but I'm just nit picking.
F) Nice. A bit dry.
O) Not going to lie, this did not live up 100% to my expectations. When drinking DIPA's I have to compare to MBC Dinner, which I thought was spectacular. Would I drink it again, yes, but I would not go out of my way to acquire again. (684 characters)

Photo of papat444
4.1/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Very happy to have a chance to try this finally.

Pours a nice hazy, light orange body. Loads of juicy tropical fruit, lots of sticky lacing on the sides and very orange forward in flavor, but leans toward the fresh sweet ones. Lip smacking, well done. (253 characters)

Photo of dboon
4.25/5  rDev -6.8%

Swing top bottle provided by maltzilla. Clear yellow pour with a white head. Fruity/citrusy hop aromas. Really tasty with pleasant citrusy hop flavors supported by a sturdy caramel malt backbone... (200 characters)

Photo of gcamparone
4.72/5  rDev +3.5%

Poured from a 750 ml growler into a hill farmstead stemmed glass. Best by 9/19, purchased 3 days ago at the brewery!

Pours a super hazy golden body with a big frothy head that reduces slowly to leave thick lacing and chunks of white foam.

Smells amazing - super aromatic with heavy citrus, sweet resin, bursting tropical grapefruit, pineapple.

The taste follows the nose with citrus being the dominant note, followed by tropical fruit, pine, floral hops, and creamy malt with raw hop oil sticking to the tongue, leaving a resinous pine bite on the tongue. Absolutely delicious, perfectly balanced. Medium carbonation with a rich creamy body.

Overall, does Abner live up to it's high regards? Drink it fresh (this was 3 days old), and the simple answer is a resounding yes. This is up there with heady, and with it's raw character and perfect balance, it's safe to say that it can give heady a run for its money. (916 characters)

Photo of Ready4aHeady
5/5  rDev +9.6%

Growler filled at brewery on 9/10, poured into HF tulip glass on 9/13.
Peach foggy color-- thick white head dissipates after a couple of minutes to thin white lacing
Aroma of citrus- orange and apricot, mildly dank hops, and vanilla
Taste is citrus, orange, apricot, slight mango, fresh hops and sunshine
Overall, a creamy smooth hop citrus bomb with just enough malt to balance---
The perfect beer! On par with Lawson's DS-- neck and neck, maybe better? Slightly preferred over Heady (my first love) and SS#7....
Sell your kidney for a growler if you must. (559 characters)

Photo of SebD
4.79/5  rDev +5%

Appearance: It has a beautiful deep hazy golden/orange color to it. It has a nice off-white head that dies down slowly and leaves nice lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of citrus, grapefruit zest, mango, light peach, bitter pine resins and some buiscuity malts on the back.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a loads of citrus fruit, grapefruit and orange zest, mango, peaches, some bitter pine resins and some buttery/buiscuity malts.

Mouthfeel: It has a low-med carbonation with a very nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied by great flavors and aromas. This is a fantastic DIPA. Shaun Hill is a genius with hops.

Serving type: growler (712 characters)

Photo of magictacosinus
4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

Poured out of a 750ml growler into a tulip glass. I seriously want to thank one fellow bottle share local who brought this and several other HF beers out to the Bay. It really was a one of a kind, special event.

Pours a cloudy, near murky amber color. Lots of frothy foam at the top, and definitely does its job to stick around. I no longer dock beers for their appearance, but it's definitely easy to say that this is quite rustic looking and not clear eye candy as "other" famous DIPAs are. Nevertheless, this is highly representative of the Vermont, home brewed styled aesthetic, and this beer can't be faulted for that.

The aroma is lovely - a combination of tropical fruit notes, citrus, herbal dank esters, and lots of complex yeasty and malt notes. Pineapple, guava, and mango are very evident here, as are lots of other citrus notes. Peppery and floral, with a lightly earthy and lightly wet and funky presence from the yeast. Very herbaceous from the hops - think green onions and you're on the right track. You can tell that this is ALIVE, and definitely delivers a punch that many hoppy beers of its nature strive for.

Tastes absolutely delicious, with no surprises based on the aroma. It's definitely bitter, with an enormous blast of citrus and tropical notes at the front, with a creamy, crisp characteristic that takes the profile that Vermont's yeast strains are known for to the next level. Notes of guava, peaches, and pineapple really hit point blank here, with a bittered citrus and spicy finish that is complimented by the fresh crisp toffee malt flavor and body of the beer. Could it be the water? The yeast? Regardless, all of the ingredients come together perfectly, and the finish is absolutely one of the most memorable I've had on a hoppy beer to date. Not only do the hops appropriately cleanse the palate, but the finish is clean and airy as any great beverage - or, hell, any great glass of water - is. The palate is immediately ready for the next sip, and the beer never becomes a chore to drink. I had two more beers from HF that night, and even though this was the best one overall (though not my favorite), the qualities of its body seem to be a common consistency among HF beers - and, arguably, I can see why people often claim they're the best in the US for that reason.

It was a true pleasure drinking this - the last of hyped beers I've ever wanted to try, and a perfect closure to my beer journey in the past two years. I shall gladly drink this again, but I'm glad I don't have to fly to Vermont to do so right away. HF beers are of world-class quality, and Abner is no exception. Sets the bar for what a good homemade recipe can be, and what it aims to define as to why we drink excellent beer in the first place. (2,759 characters)

Photo of spacebear09
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

Appearance- Hazy yellow, medium head with good lacing.

Smell- Mango, guava, pine, slight acidity.

Taste- Citrus backed by light pale malts. Resinous but also fruity. This is extremely light for a double IPA. Way too drinkable, almost scary.

Mouthfeel- Crisp, clean, highly carbonated.

Overall- Vermont double IPAs are a style that I don't quite understand. The ones I have tried have all been lighter than most single IPAs but pack a huge punch. This was a delicious, very drinkable beer but not what I look for in a double IPA. (534 characters)

Photo of flipper2gv
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

From a refillable bottle gotten at the brewery today.

A: Like all the other DIPA's, this pours a dark yellow color, hazy, with a strong pure white head that has good retention. Lacing is pretty good too.

S: First things I noticed are the lemon and clementine juice. Then, there is ripe mangoes and apricot followed by very ripe pineapples. I didn't expect this much sweetness from this beer to be honest. It is like powder sugar and a tiny tiny amount of caramel.

T: First off, you get the lemon/clementine attack. Then, you get assaulted by the hops. A quite impressive amount of dry-ness comes in the shape of citrus peels, just like biting into a bitter grapefruit peel directly, very strong. Then, you get the powdered sugar finale. What is weird with this beer, is that it seems to "echo". You go back to the lemon/clementine then hops then sweetness all over again. It's like the tastes are so strong by themselves that they all lingers on. Alcohol is nowhere to be seen. Very sour and dry, but also sweet.

M: Quite light but quite sticky too, which is not my preference.

O: This is quite unique I must say in a world of copycats. From a brewery that mastered the DIPA style, I get this, and it is quite different but I can't seem to describe how it is different (maybe it's the use of more "traditional" hops than what we are used to see in the DIPA scene). A must try for any hop-whores. This is very drinkable stuff too. (1,436 characters)

Photo of mjpolzin
4.18/5  rDev -8.3%

My brother in law got this in a trade. It was fun to try something that we normally can't get in Wisconsin. This beer was very crisp and hoppy and all around, a very superb DIPA. (179 characters)

Photo of VTLocal420
5/5  rDev +9.6%

A: Golden, hazy, single finger white head, medium carbonation, beautiful lacing.

S: Citrusfruit Zest (Grapefruit, Orange and Tangerine) Peach, Mango, Dank/Pine.

T: Grapefruit/Orange Zest, Pineapples, Peaches, Mangos, Bready Malt Middle perfectly balancing this beer in the middle and finishing with a Dry/Bitter Dank/Pine Finish with a hint of fresh grass.

M: Full-Bodied and Chewy.

O: 100/100, Amazing, Bar-Non the "BEST" APA I have had the pleasure of laying lips to.

Notes:

I don't know what else I can say about this delicious beer, other than this is the "real" best American Pale Ale in the world. This isn't about being a local either, Zombie Dust was and is one of my favorite beers that I have had the honor of sampling, but Abner is the real deal. As are his relatives, Edward and Ephraim...

All I can say is get some of this beer, this beer is going to be more common on Hill's Tap List in the coming future, so wait to see the response this beer will receive as more of a mainstay on the tap list like Edward... Come to Vermont and get some of this or hit up a trader with a growler. You won't be sorry. (1,129 characters)

Photo of PHBoiler
4.95/5  rDev +8.6%

Poured from a 750 mL growler at the Toppling Goliath taproom at the King Sue release. Really clean and bright yellow body. Huge green nose with spruce tips, grapefruit rind, and almost a dankness/ditchweed character. The beer has just enough sweetness and drinks like liquid hops. Minimal bitterness cold, while there's a bitter kick at the end as it gets closer to room temperature. Absolutely world class. The body is so clean, and the mouthfeel is so smooth. Nicely carb so it doesn't come across as sticky. (517 characters)

Photo of dank203
4.98/5  rDev +9.2%

This beer is exquisite, the hop flavors are so powerful yet blended and refined. It develops over the minutes that it spends in the glass. More flavors come out as I drink it. Definitely an IPA experience like none I've had before. I can't really think of any that are better than this right now (299 characters)

Abner from Hill Farmstead Brewery
100 out of 100 based on 313 ratings.