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Ephraim - Hill Farmstead Brewery

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207 Reviews
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Reviews: 207
Hads: 871
Avg: 4.52
pDev: 8.19%
Wants: 1,471
Gots: 25 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Kegatron on 09-28-2010

Ephraim (1823-1913) was our great-great grandfather; Hill Farmstead Brewery resides several hundred feet downhill from the land that he and his father settled. In his honor, this Imperial India Pale Ale is dutifully crafted from American malted barley, buckets of American hops, our ale yeast and water from our well. It is unfiltered, naturally carbonated, and double dry hopped. Intensely aromatic and saturated with resinous hop flavor, this is the ale that I dream to have shared with Ephraim.

280 Theoretical IBU

Pale Malt; Dextrose; Centennial, Chinook, Columbus, Simcoe, and Warrior hops, Ale Yeast, and our Well Water.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 207 | Hads: 871
Photo of Stevedore
4.68/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Doug generously bought this growler to share with me and Shaun #1 yesterday, 6/3/2013. Poured into a snifter.

Aroma: Fantastic. Smells like straight up citrus. Very explosive nose that's even more so than Pliny. There's tropical fruit and a hint of pine. Yet its all put together extremely well and explosive to boot.

Colour: Hazy gold body that pours with a nice 1cm white head that dissipates quickly into a thin film and collar. Some lacing, but not a ton. It looks very appetizing and refreshing.

Flavour: Follows the nose- its a well-done, complex combination of hops and malt. Lots of citrus, some tropical fruit, a bit of grassiness and a good bite of pine on the back end. Its also got a nice sweet malt backbone- a bit of candied sugar and honey. Incredibly pleasing to drink, and I had no idea it was 10.5% ABV at any point.

Mouthfeel: A nice surprisingly full bodied beer that definitely has substance more so than a lot of other DIPAs. Its well-carbonated and comes with a fizzly dry finish. Aftertaste is not too bitter which I really appreciated, but it does have a good bit of pine and grassiness to it.

Overall: Excellent DIPA, one of the best I've ever had. I would have been able to drink the whole bottle myself in a flash if I wanted to. And let me tell you, I wanted to. To me, it's much more on the Pliny end of the spectrum vs the Abrasive end, but it's just as flavourful if not more so than Pliny is with the same bit of quaffability it has. I'm very impressed and thanks to Doug for sharing this gem.

Re-review: Thanks to a very generous VT trader, I was able to repay Doug the favour of bringing a growler of Ephraim to a tasting, almost a year later. Thanks! Poured into a Hill Farmstead stemmed glass today, 4/13/2014. Basically, this is what I remember this beer as. It's a classic DIPA, compared to Abner, which I really realize is appropriately labeled as more of a double pale ale. Smells so complex, with a lot of citrus, pine and floral notes, and the palate is appropriately more so. It's such a complex, bitter DIPA with a great creamy mouthfeel that really satisfies any aspect of a DIPA that you could look for. Having had this on a fresh palate, this is up there with Double Sunshine for the most complex, drinkable and enjoyable DIPA that I've ever had. That includes Heady, Pliny, Kern Citra, King Sue, etc. that I've been able to try over the past year, and trust me, that's a lot of fantastic DIPAs. Ephraim and Double Sunshine is 1a and 1b at this point for me, and while I prefer Double Sunshine to this, you can't go wrong with this as far as double IPAs go.

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Photo of FosterJM
4/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1579th Review on BA
Growler to HF Stem

Thanks to Rudzud for this one

App- A bit lighter in the glass than Abner was. This was more yellow tinged in color. A smaller one finger head. This was still a bit hazy but less dense in the glass than Abner was. A couple dots of cling and lace. Falls quickly vs. the fluffy Abner.

Smell- A nice nose for a DIPA. Doesnt blow me away but its solid. A couple notches below Abner but yet better than 90% of other DIPAs. A small bit of creamy hops and a bit of citrus. Not sure what fruit combo this one is. More of a dense/dank aroma.

Taste- This was a good DIPA, not a great one. Better than 90-95% of whats out there. It was a nice creamy flavor with some good hoppy bitter behind it. This one on the others from HF was more dank/and dense on the zest behind it. A bit more grapefruit and peach flavors.

Mouth- A nice body similar to Abner with a bit of creamy hops and some creaminess remaining. A nice amount of bitter zest and fruits remain. Call this a solid medium body DIPA with a nice wet carbonation behind it.

Drink- Well the fearsome twosome from HF have been taken down. I liked Abner more but wont say no to this again.

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Photo of Holland
4.62/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: golden color, minimal head, very cloudy

S: citrus, grapefruit, peach, pine

T: amazing combo of citrus, sweetness, bittertness, and pine. None are overwhelming but it is bursting with flavor

M: thick and sticky with low to medium carbonation.

O: beats abner for me. Just delicious. If it had bwttwr carbonation I'd put it ahead of heady.

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Photo of Reagan1984
4.03/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to mtardiff for providing this gem in trade. Marc is an excellent trade partner.

Pours with a finger of thick tight bright white head that shows excellent retention. The beer is a bright clear brass color with no visible carbonation. Some nice lace clings to the glass. At times the deposits are quite thick.

Bright sweet juicy aroma. Not quite as floral as I would have guessed. A touch of grapefruit, but much more juicy sweet thick fruit. A slight whiff of the alcohol to come.

Lots going on here. The flavor is as thick as the aroma. Initial sweetness, flips to thick fruit and then a moment of alcohol. This then melds into a nice finish that is part light malt and resin like bitterness from thick green hops. No doubt a nice beer, but the alcohol is a bit too present for my liking. A pretty thick dose of mango comes through as I drink this. This mixes well with the alcohol flavor.

Pretty thick and sticky DPA. Again the word juicy applies.
I am surprised that this beer is getting some of the highest scores from Hill Farmstead. It’s good, but does not reach the heights of some of their other brews. Having said that, this is rarified air since most of their beers are quite excellent.

Thanks Marc

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Photo of DavoleBomb
4.77/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Here is the DIPA that rocketed from unknown to superstar at breakneck speed. This has a lot of hype behind it and thus my expectations are appropriately very high. Now for the judgment. Poured into a snifter.

4.0 A: Lightly hazed medium orange color. Two fingers of creamy off-white head. Half the head fell after a short time, but the remainder stuck around for a while. Spotty lacing covers the glass.

4.5 S: Really wonderful aroma! Tons of tropical fruits in this. Pineapple, mango, lots of papaya and orange. Secondarily piney and floral. Fruits combine for a sugary sweetness. Malts are pretty well hidden.

5.0 T: Holy shit is this tasty! I can't believe how wonderful this is. I'm pretty sure a pallet of various tropical fruits had been compressed and molden into the shape of a .50 caliber bullet, then overpacked with powder and shot into my tongue. Pineapple, mango, orange, papaya, and peach are incredibly strong. So fruity, but not too sweet. Malt is easily overshadowed by the hops, but it does well enough to keep the taste balanced. For 280 hypothetical IBUs, the bitterness is quite low and only manifests in the aftertaste. Alcohol is extremely well hidden.

4.5 M: Medium to heavier medium body. Good carbonation, especially for a growler. Very creamy (but could be a bit moreso) and incredibly smooth.

5.0 D: I never thought this would live up to the hype, but instead, it has surpassed it. There isn't a damn thing I would change about this beer. It's about as close as you can get to a perfect taste. Absolutely fabulous. Worth whatever you need to trade for it.

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Photo of anteater
4.66/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

750 ml growler

A: Golden yellow, fizzy white head

S: Lemon, grass, earth, herbs, cat pee

T: A lot of the same as the nose. Citrus fruits, lemon, grapefruit, grass. This tastes like a 6-7% beer in my opinion, not a 10.5% one. I'm pretty blown away by the lightness of this beer and how it also contains such a huge and unique yet not overbearing hop punch.

M: So light and easy to drink

O: Hype met. I am thoroughly impressed with my first Hill Farmstead IPA!

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Photo of Resuin
4.88/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750 mL growler (filled about 6 hours ago) into a HF stemmed glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy orange/light amber and leaves behind a couple fingers of light, very fluffy head behind. A beautiful pour.

Smell: Citrus, grapefruit, earthy, grassy tones. Definitely the most citrus I've ever smelt from an IPA.

Taste: Citrus! Light grassy notes, mango, pineapple, peaches. Extremely balanced and delicious. As tasty as the hops are they aren't overwhelming - this beer has a great malt backbone. Finishes with grapefruit. Supremely smooth - no alcohol flavor to it at all - I don't know where the 9+% ABV is. Mind-blowing. I've never tasted a beer like this.

Mouth-feel: Medium carbonation, light to medium body. Amazingly smooth and a great juicy mouth-feel to it.

Overall: I am pretty blown away by this beer. It is hands down, the best tasting IPA I've ever had. The fruity, citrus notes from the hops just explode in my mouth and yet it is so smooth, I feel like I could drink a gallon of this stuff and still want more. Amazing.

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Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.82/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from tap at the Harvest Festival into provided tulip/wine glass. Very very thick foamy white head sits on top of this straw hazey color. This smell is so fragrant you can smell it well before you bring it to your nose. Strong candied hop aroma, vanilla, and more more more sweet hops. Taste is amazing! Very well balanced malts and hops. Citrus, mango, cotton candy, and a hint of sweet vanilla. This is the best Double IPA I ever had..hands down. Highlight of the Harvest Fest for sure.

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Photo of ffejherb
4.59/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Capone's on 4/23/11.

A - Poured a sunny golden liquid with a dried apricot haze and a wispy white head that diminished to reveal plenty of lacing reminiscent of cheese cloth.

S - Ephraim's pungent nose drips with juicy citrus and tropical fruits, a distinct herbal dankness and fresh pine. Wow! While there is a lot going on here with the hop character, this DIPA boasts one of the most unabashedly citrus aromas I've ever come across.

T - Intense hop character bursting with citrus, tropical fruit and pine, just as the nose forewarned. There is a malt presence, which adds support by way of sweet, grainy notes. Some alcohol heat poked its way through as the liquid warmed. Finish is well-balanced yet still retains a full hop character and aggressive bitterness without being over the top.

M - Medium bodied with an oily texture and crisp, zippy carbonation. Finishes with an assertive bitterness that lingers on the palate for quite some time.

D - Delicious hop bomb that is up there with the best of 'em. Would love to have this side by side with PIY and Dreadnaught in an ultimate DIPA throwdown!

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Photo of Sean9689
4.3/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler, thanks Jason.

A - Pours a clear orangish/yellow, white head that dissipates to a thin film, very sticky lacing all along the sides of the glass, and a thin ring around the glass.

S - Sweet burnt sugars, lots of malts, bitter citrus notes, dankness. Pretty damn solid combo of stuff going on here.

T - Sweet malts and sugars up front followed by an onslaught of bitter hoppy dankness. It's a transition from one to another, but holy shit, the hops are beating my palate into submission.

M - Medium bodied, syrupy feel, smooth, light carbonation.

D - Now on my second glass, I'm feeling pretty good. Really enjoyed this one and hopefully, I'll get to try some other offerings from this brewery.

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Photo of Tucquan
4.44/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on 2011-10-15 at Capone's in Norristown, PA at a HIll Farmstead event.

A - Clear golden-orange with a short white head and mild lacing into a 5.5 oz snifter.

S - A strong smelling brew with lots of pineapple, caramel malt, pine, mango and a boquet of hop floral scents. Wonderful.

T - Pineapple, grapfruit, big chalky-dry caramel malt, roasted nuts, which starts moderately sweet but thankfully mostly dries out. You can notice some alcohol, especially on the outbreath. It's very sticky and resinous, coating the mouth for a long time with great flavor and citric bitterness.

M - Medium body with light carbonation. Smooth, creamy, oily, prickly and resinous.

O - This is quite different from the Abner. This reminds me of Pliny the Younger and the Abner compares favorably with Pliny the Elder. I really love these big triple IPAs when they are so well done, but if I had to pick between the two, I'd go with the double IPA style for better balance and more focus on the citrus and hops than the big malt backbone. This beer ran out second at the event, right after Abner.

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Photo of koopa
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours goldfish orange with honey folds. The crown is 1 finger deep, white in color, displays moderate retention and good lace.

Smell: Dank pine/resinous hops, grapefruit, pineapple, a hint of grass and hay, plus a touch of caramel malt.

Taste: Everything in the smell but magnified!

Mouthfeel: Medium body, juicy, the slightest bit chewy, with moderate carbonation and a nice hop bite in the finish.

Drinkability: Very high despite the IBU's and ABV. It has a serious kick though and gets an alcohol / slight ethanol note as it warms.

One of my new favorites of the style. Home Run Hill Farmstead! I had heard rumors of this one being over 200 ibu's (I heard 230 to be exact) and while I'm not sure upon tasting, it is defintely more on the bitter side than fruity side.

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Photo of harrymel
3.9/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Oh, just one of six half growlers I received recently.

Pours a hazy light apricot with a sheet of light white foam. Smell is juicy. Some pear, some tangerine, some melons and pineappel, and hints of resin, but mostly sweet juicy hops. This is an approach to hops and grain I've not really experienced before, this is really innovative - this does not really smell like an IPA/IIPA. More like a sweet biscuit with some preserves on it. Flavor follows suit, really unassuming for the style. Not overly syrupy sweet, like some IIPAs, but slightly sweet with lots more juicy fruit, biscuity malt and now some bitterness and a little more hop character as it warms. Full bodied with sharp carb and a semi dry finish. This is a really fine brew, I'm not sure I would go nuts for it, and would likely prefer a few cans of Heady Topper over this, or several others as well. i might argue the beer is a little too heavy on the Dextrose, like Hop Henge in the last couple years.

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Photo of WanderingFool
4.67/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a couple 750mm flip top bottles at the Hill Farmstead Harvest Fest. The beer was poured today.

Ephraim pours a clear, light amber color with a small, creamy white head on top. The foam lingers on the surface and leaves behind a fair amount of lacy spots on the glass.

The strong hoppy aroma is loaded with orange and grapefruit citrus, with a touch of lemon rind and pine.

Each sip of this full bodied beer is creamy, lightly carbonated and moderately chewy. The flavor is full of grapefruit citrus, pine and lemon rind. There's enough caramel and toasted malt sweetness in the background to balance out the hoppy bitterness. It finishes bitter, grassy and dry with a lingering grapefruit citrus when gone.

For nearly 11% abv this is a very drinkable beer. I just wish it was easier to find. Still, a trip to northern Vermont is always terrific.

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Photo of peensteen
4.64/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Shared by Liam back in May a day or two after he picked it up at the brewery

Lightly hazed pale orange colour, ring of white headwith a bit of lace here as well. The nose ihas a huge citrus to it, lots of tropical fruit, tangerine, orange, a bit of grapefruit with a bit of sugary malts as well, fantastic hop aroma here. Taste is equally amazing lots of juicy hops and sweet malt up front, followed by loads of citrus flavours, grapefruit and orange, good bitterness throughout, hoppy aftertaste. Lightly carbonated, fairly full bodied. Outstanding stuff, incerdibly drinkable and just an impressive display of hops here.

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Photo of DaveHack
4.8/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

5.5 oz pour at Capones.

Poured a gorgeous, clear, golden color.

Smells like a fresh bouquet of flowers with just a hint of pine.

It tastes slightly bitter upfront followed by a ridiculously citrusy and floral hop flavor. The theoretical 280 IBUs are definately there.

The hop oils abound. It is sticky and pretty thick. I just want to hold it in my mouth forever!

Overall, this shit is the real deal. I understand the hype...it is amazing.

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Photo of rjp217
4.76/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

750ml growler...

Orange yellow in color, nice sticky lace retention. Aroma is a dank, grassy lemon with a juicy grapefruit following. Taste follows the nose except you get so much orange, lemons, limes, a tiny amount of pine and malt finish it off, awesome. Mouthfeel is exceptional as always with a HF brew. Medium body, low carbonation, soft and incredibly smooth.

This is truly world class. Not perfect but incredibly close. So well rounded in terms of it truly being citrus forward with a very light pine/malt base. One of my absolute favorite beers of all time.

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Photo of wagenvolks
4.58/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to xpimptasticx for the share! Served in an unmarked snifter.

The growler unleashes a gorgeously bright, brassy body that supports a fluffy, crackling tuft of foam. Sticky lacing coats the insides of the glass. The aroma is tropical, with big notes of pine resin and pale malt in the background. Very assertive nose, and a delight to inhale.

The flavor is unmistakably styled after the West Coast IIPA's, as floral, citrusy, and incredibly piny hop flavors explode upon the palate with each sip. Malts keep up a solid, balancing backbone, however, perhaps a testament to the true East Coast nature of this hop monster. Mouthfeel is clean, crisp, and bright with bitterness. A joy to sip. Definitely a must-try for any hop lover.

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Photo of nickd717
4.47/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Finally a tick from Hill Fargstead! Growler (and hand bottle) shared by Arbitrator. Let's see see what these crazy homers are all yappin' about, shall we?

Pours a great bright golden color with a small white head that fades.

Big-time citrusy and herbal hop aroma with sweet malt to back it up. Really enticing.

The flavor is very nice and hop-forward. Sweet and caramel malt base, with huge grapefruity, orangey, pine, herbal notes, and big resin.

Enamel-ripping mouthfeel with fairly lively carbonation despite being from a growler. Medium-full body.

Really awesome DIPA, almost up to Younger level. So easy to drink at 10.5%. Man, never thought I'd become a Vermont hyper, but here I go. Do they put hallucinogens in these beers?

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Photo of CuriousMonk
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Traded big for this one as well - a '11 DL for a 750ml growler of this good stuff straight from Hill Farmstead. Pours a fairly golden yet murky orange appearance. Fluffy white head that holds well a bit. Aroma is potent with mango citrus pine and grapefruit bitterness. Somewhat sweet candy like malt a touch alcohol to smell as well. Taste is a load of resionous pine citrus mango citrus rind bitterness. Candy-like sweet malt lets the hops shine through. Smooth mouthfeel that complements well to a rich full body DIPA. Really want to try the Double Galaxy!

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Photo of philbe311
4.62/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Part of a very generous unsolicited package from fellow BA and good friend rfgetz.

A - Two fingers worth of frothy moderately fluffy head that has a slight bit of orange tinge to it... Excellent retention ultimately gives way to mostly full rich lacing... The color is a clean crisp medium color... Limited carbonation most of which is sluggish and rises along the sides of the glass with a couple of stray quick moving bubbles rising in the middle of the glass... A bit of chunky froth clings to the sides of the glass...

S - An absolutely stellar nose that is the best of all things hops... A mix a wonderful fruit aroma... Orange... Mango... A touch of pineapple... Some kiwi... Buried beneath the first layer of fruit is a nice mix of piney character... Earthy and outdoorsy... Faint evergreen... Buried way beneath the surface is a touch of malt backbone... Near perfection for the style...

T - The expected waves of hop goodness don't disappoint... Equal parts citrus and pine work together in harmony to create wonderful character and complexity... A brisk malt back bone emerges closer to the finish with lots of doughy bread and cracker notes... An ever so faint alcohol induced "burn" on the finish that lingers for a bit... Extremely complex with new notes detected after each and every sip...

M - Medium bodied... Surprisingly dense... Lightly carbonated... Sleek and smooth... Even and consistent... A slightly intoxicating alcohol induced warmth...

D - Exceptional all the way around... Very seldom to beers live up to the hype, but this one does... So much flavor, character, depth, and complexity loaded into one growler... This is why I love beer... This is truly work of art...

Kudos again to rfgetz again for the generosity...

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Photo of Arbitrator
4.12/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chilled growler into a glass. Thanks Kristin!

A: Pours a hazy golden peach body with not a ton of head. The growler has been in transit for a week and it was apparently filled right to the top; the paper towel wrapped around the neck showed that it might have leaked in transit, so I'm forgiving any carbonation issues in appearance or mouthfeel. This special is today only! Anyway, the foam is lightly beige in color; it slowly comes out of solution, then vanishes very quickly. Some spotty lace left behind.

S: Carbonation issues or no, it is not affecting the aroma at all. A nice, pungent blend of orange rind, candied grapefruit, pineapple, passionfruit, and a touch of mossy weed (I wrote this down as 'dank' to widespread mockery by the tasting group, but I stand by it). There's an expressive sugariness and booze.

T: Initially the taste is a rough bitterness. I'm unused to this, considering that I mostly drink West Coast IPAs with a lot of hop flavor but not necessarily a lot of hop bitterness. But the flavors come together pretty nicely: orange rind, passionfruit, pineapple. Grapefruit and substantial sugar cookie give the impression of candied grapefruit. The mossy, weedy flavors are particularly noticeable here; they pull into the finish with a sticky, resinous presence. This reminds me heavily of fresh Moylan's Hopsickle.

M: Full, expressive flavors abound. There's a touch of booze that I don't enjoy, but having had a 3-week old growler of Pliny the Younger that was boozier than the tap version, I'm attributing this change to the serving format. It's also low in carbonation, but again, I'm forgiving it. It has an enamel-peeling bitterness and stickiness that made it hard to taste anything afterward. I was a little stupid in opening it so early in the night.

D: I still find that Pliny the Younger takes the cake when you're talking about triple IPAs. I prefer the sweeter presence of that beer to the bitterness of this one. But I've also had the former under optimal serving conditions, and this one less so; I wouldn't be surprised if that makes a difference. This is a great beer. I'd love to have it again. But given most of the trade demands for it, I'd probably get some fresh Hopsickle on tap, instead...

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Photo of oglmcdgl
4.62/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at capones. Nuff said.

A- comes to me in a small snifter with a nice cap of bright white head that has a bit of hold before settling to a thin ring and a nice spray of lace. Lightly hazy golden yellow orange in color.

S- super bold tropical hops bust out of this one like you wouldn't believe with tangerines, mangos, pineapple, the grapefruit is in there as well. Light powdered sugar sweetness. Very impressive.

T- aggressive hop bite right up front with an astringent grapefruit and under ripe pineapple. Tropics are less then the nose but still play a roll. Malts bring a lot of dry biscuit and a bit of sweetness but very light up against the hopping. Unbelievably long bitter hoppy finish.

M- a bit above medium in body with a bright carb that really tingles all over. Super dry finish.

O- this lives up to the hype but that being said I like abner better. E is a monster hop bomb and a very good one at that. I hope this and many more hill beers make it down.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.85/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Finally caught this one on tap. 12oz. pour served out of a tulip at Bridge View Tavern. Reviewed from notes.

1 finger white frothy head with great retention. Beer is a cloudy grapefruit with patchy and stringy lace with good stick. Amazing save for the clarity.

Nose is citrus, papaya, grapefruit, cane sugar, and a creamy, sappy, hop presence. Aromatic and very enticing.

Opens papaya, citrus, grapefruit, and hop resin. More tropical fruit in the middle and end. Finish is cane sugar with a light citrus hop presence. Sappy hop aftertaste. Like an alcoholic tropical fruit smoothie with an added hop kick. Simply amazing.

Light to medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth and quenching in the mouth and smooth going down with a messy finish and a lingering aftertaste. How this could be 10.5% and this drinkable is unexplainable.

If you're a fan of IIPAs with a big malt and citrus presence, it doesn't get any better than Ephraim. A beer that's almost perfect in every way, this offering embodies the Hill Farmstead lineup. Hands down, the best in the style in my opinion.

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Photo of jegross2
4.94/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Reviewing Ephraim from the Hill Farmstead Brewery out of Greensboro Bend, Vermont. This imperial pale ale is one of Hill Farmstead's most sought after non-bottled release. Major thanks to Fitz for helping me acquire this gem!

Score: 99

Exactly one week old 750 ml growler served in a Perennial snifter and enjoyed on 05/21/13.

Appearance: Pours a hazy golden straw color with two-plus fingers of white head that settle to a thin layer atop the glass. A layer of lacing coats the side of the glass and lingers forever. Excellent appearance for the style. My second glass (not pictured) was laden with floaties, however, which is why the appearance only gets a four out of five. 4/5

Smell: Dank, resinously piney hops and grapefruit smack you upfront. Pine sap, peach, mango, lemon, pineapple, caramel and a little bit of what can only be described as "fresh potting soil" (in a good way). Some spice and "dirty hops" too. This beer smells like a raw and hoppy tropical citrus bomb that is aggressively rough around the edges -- I could smell this beer all day. 5/5

Taste: Super bitter and juicy tropical citrus and piney hops. The bitter pine flavor really lingers on the palate. A lovely medley of grapefruit, pineapple juice, lemon zest, bitter orange rind and tangerine soak the palate. A little spicy caramel malt kick of flavor towards the finish that blends nicely with the piney bitterness. I absolutely love the aggressive hoppiness of this brew! 5/5

Mouthfeel: Medium-light bodied with spot on carbonation to both give the hops life and let the bitterness linger on the tongue. Super oily, juicy and mouthwatering. If you let this elixir sit on the tongue for a few seconds, the bitter factor really kicks in. 5/5

Overall: A near perfect hoppy beer, which perfectly hit the spot after a long day of work on a perfect spring afternoon. This is much better than I recall it being back when I first had it at Darkness Day this year. Ephraim has all the juiciness and aggressively bitter hoppiness one desires in an IPA (er, imperial pale ale). Easily one of my top 10, possibly even top 5, pale ale/IPA consumed to date. If you have not had a chance to try this yet, I highly recommend you seek out a growler pour while it is still in season and available at the brewery!

Cost: $10 for a 750 ml growler (no 2L fills available this time around).

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Ephraim from Hill Farmstead Brewery
99 out of 100 based on 207 ratings.