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James Black Ale - Hill Farmstead Brewery

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James Black Ale
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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

357 Ratings
THE BROS
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 357
Reviews: 56
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 7.57%
Wants: 31
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: SFLpunk on 06-27-2010

James was our Uncle (Edward James Hill Jr.). Hill Farmstead Brewery rests upon the land that was once home to him and his four siblings. In his honor, this Black Ale is dutifully crafted from American and German malted barley, American hops, our ale yeast, and water from James’ well. It is unfiltered, naturally carbonated, and dry hopped. Roasty and smooth, with accents of chocolate and a balanced hoppy finish, this is the ale that I dream to have shared with James.

Pale and Caramel Malt; Roasted Barley; Centennial and Columbus hops; Ale Yeast, and our Well Water.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 357 | Reviews: 56 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Pinknuggets:
Photo of Pinknuggets
4.19/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750 to HFS sniffer

A: Very dark but more brown then black and mostly opaque if the head was not light and fluffy tan colors then this thing could pass for a stout to the untrained eye but it does retain some IPA characters.

S:Dark malt smells mix with distinctively pine/resin line hop smells I am always thrown off by black ipas but this seems to have a nice balance though neither is too powerful of a smell and there is also a hint of alcohol.

T: A lot of fresh hops upfront similar to other HFS ipas and pretty powerful for a black ipa as they are resinous. though that said there is a presence of malt sweetness and a bit of smoked flavor in the aftertaste so there is some balance with the darkness but not perfect.

M: There is a oily resinous feel that clearly comes from the hops it is sticky but not overwhelming. There is a thick heavy body but it is very drinkable and the alcohol is completely hidden

O: I like this beer but it doesn't live up to most of the other hill farmstead beers as I feel like its too hoppy for a black ipa but maybe thats my taste. Its worth a try but would not be a go to for me as someone who gets to try a lot of HFS.

More User Reviews:
Photo of tectactoe
3.85/5  rDev -9%

Photo of lateralundertow
4.52/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of thetommo
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of olradetbalder
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of kingcrowing
4.12/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

64oz growler poured into a Hill Farmstead wine glass.

Pours dark, dark black with a small brown head that quickly fades, thin lacings starts to slowly form. Nose is awesome, it's hoppy and fruity, wild fruit and pine nots come through strongly. There's a bit of maltiness but it's not over the top which is good.

Right off the mouthfeel is really nice, it's light and sharp and quite creamy, very similar to a good American IPA, with a nice sharp finish. The taste is quite roasty and a bit grainy - I get this from all Black IPAs, and I'm not a big fan of it, but it seems to just be inherent in the style. There hop flavors are well balanced with the dark malts, and the citrus and mango flavors come through well. I think this is one of the best examples of a Black IPA that I've had to date.

Photo of doremite
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of williamjbauer
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of Bizoneill
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of SPRichard
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of stereosforgeeks
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of tugg407
3.5/5  rDev -17.3%

Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of roostor07
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of Dawkins
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of Sammy
3.92/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at the Black Back Pub. An IPA that happens to have a shwartzbier element,resiny,piney, chocolate stoutish and grapefruit. Dark body and some lace.Hops and some roast aroma. The roast was lightly done which was nice to drink. Average mouthfeel.

Photo of RyanOooh
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of HopsSlayer
4.52/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of CraigMack61
4.28/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of markcp
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.09/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 mL growler poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Big khaki head. Eternal retention. Great lacing. Very nice looking beer.

Smell - Really citrusy. Some of the roast comes through, but it's mostly citrus hop.

Taste - Bright citrus hop and roasted malt blended with the hops. Grapefruit hops. Roast is very strong, but the hops never let up. Lends a nice complexity. Slight bitter finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Very carbonated.

Overall - Excellent. Love how hoppy it is. Really impressive.

Photo of gr8zehaman
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of robgage
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of Kevincredible
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

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James Black Ale from Hill Farmstead Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 357 ratings.