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Fear And Trembling (French Oak Cabernet) - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
Fear And Trembling (French Oak Cabernet)Fear And Trembling (French Oak Cabernet)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

78 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 78
Reviews: 46
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 8.35%
Wants: 145
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  9.30% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Fear and Trembling is Hill Farmstead’s first collaboration – a Baltic Porter brewed with malt that was hand smoked over maple wood by our Danish friend, and former colleague, Anders Kissmeyer. This bottled version was aged in French Oak Cabernet barrels. As a student of philosophy and former resident of Copenhagen, it is fitting that our brewer named our first collaboration after Denmark’s great thinker: Søren Kierkegaard. All three contemplated absurdity, faith, and salvation while wandering the shores of the Baltic Sea…

“…continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling…”

(Beer added by: 6DaysBottomOcean on 10-09-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 78 | Reviews: 46 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by brydeen:
Photo of brydeen
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark brown, reminiscent of dark coffee. Thin khaki colored head. Quickly dissipates.

S: Smokey, charred woody aroma. Smells like meat cooking on a smoker. Perfect to pair with the brisket and pulled pork for dinner.

T: Taste mirrors the nose, especially as it warms. Tastes very meaty and smokey. Slight charred flavor, but has a smoothing sweetness as well. The flavors blend together well, with no one aspect dominating the next. Has a hearty richness to it. Definitely a slow sipper.

M: Creamy and full bodied. Very smooth carbonation, with the alcohol very well disguised for a 9% brew.

O: Very nice beer to have with some smoked meat. A treat to drink, and maybe my favorite of the 3 barrel aged versions. It certainly has a lot going on, but they all tie together wonderfully. I certainly hope they choose to make more barrel versions of this beer, because they're all deliciously unique.

brydeen, Jun 03, 2013
More User Reviews:
Photo of Mora2000
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to thirdeye11 for sharing this bottle. Drank alongside the other two Fear and Trembling beers.

The beer pours a black color with a tan head. The aroma is pretty nice. I get some oak and caramel notes, as well as some smoked malt. I don't get any real wine notes in the aroma.

The flavor is similar. I get some smoked malt, peet, oak, chocolate and roasted malt. I also get some dark fruit notes, which may be from the wine barrel aging. There is little detectable alcohol. Easy to drink.

Medium to thick mouthfeel and low carbonation.

Mora2000, Feb 12, 2011
Photo of olradetbalder
4/5  rDev -4.5%

olradetbalder, Nov 13, 2014
Photo of kingcrowing
4.68/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

500ml bottle poured into a tulip.

Pours a very dark brown to almost black with a small dark brown head that's really light and creamy. Nose is very smokey and oaky, very nice.

Taste is smokey and oaky, the cab flavors are light but there and subtle. Mouthfeel is really creamy, a bit sweet but not too syrupy. Really tasty slow drinker.

kingcrowing, Feb 05, 2011
Photo of glid02
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Grant - thanks! Tasted side-by-side with the other two in the series.

Pours black with a one-finger brown head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of smooth roasted malts with equal amounts of smoked malts and dark chocolate. Also present are faint dark grape aromas and spicy tannins from the barrel.

Tastes very similar to how it smells. Roasted and smoked malt flavors kick things off and are joined shortly thereafter by moderate amounts of dark chocolate. Midway through the sip lightly tart red grape flavors come into play. Near the end of the sip the flavor profile dries up a bit with the addition of spicy oak, carrying through to a moderately bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a smooth thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have any problems finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this was my least favorite of the three, the cab influence was nice but it was too mild. Additionally, I'm not sure the base beer was one that could integrate well with the barrel type. Still, it's a very good beer that's worth a shot.

glid02, Feb 14, 2011
Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -10.5%

acurtis, Jan 13, 2013
Photo of jh1982
4/5  rDev -4.5%

jh1982, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of Photekut
5/5  rDev +19.3%

Photekut, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of Kegatron
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle into a couple of glasses.

Pours a black/deep brown, with a finger or so of frothy mocha head. This stays bubbly and rich, leaving back a decent amount of spotty froth down the sides of the glass. The smoke has been tamed a good bit and relegated to the background by the barrel here, especially compared to the bourbon version, with tones of fruit, oak and vanilla and more malty notes of chocolate and toffee helping bring that peat character down a notch or two.

The taste is similar, with that heavy smoke being cut by sticky notes of dark fruit, oaky vanilla, chocolate and caramel. Roast returns in the finish with a dry and lightly burnt feel, with some extra smokiness and barrel flavors lingering on the tongue. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with some prickliness on the tongue and then a mostly smooth and creamy feel as this works itself across the back of the palate. Like the bourbon version, the alcohol here is just extremely well hid, which aids in the overall accessibility of this.

It’s funny how this version took the exact opposite approach than the bourbon version, which much more of that French Oak barrel being on display here and much less of the smoked aspect of the base Baltic Porter. The dark fruit and oak flavor here actually gets fairly strong the more this warms. This was solid but isn’t quite there for me yet.

Kegatron, Sep 12, 2012
Photo of 6DaysBottomOcean
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black with a dark chocolate colored head that settles quickly to a cap. Aroma is big on the smoked malt, decadent smoked meats and mocha/chocolate, roasted malt character is also evident. Flavor starts out with sweet dark toffee which quickly gives way to multiple layers of thick smoked character. The smokyness is nicely balanced with oak/tannins from the cabernet barrel, really working well to complement each other. A solid but creamy texture holds the rich flavors together, very well integrated. Tough to say where the base beer flavor ends and the barrel character begins, to me thats always a good sign of a well crafted beer.

6DaysBottomOcean, Oct 09, 2010
Photo of thagr81us
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Review #400! Bottle shared by mikesgroove early on Christmas Eve in a gas station parking lot (hobo style!), thanks Mike! Served from split bottle into a Delirium Tremens snifter. Poured a deep murky brown almost black with a minimal very light tan head. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, caramel, brown sugar, smoke, and subtle alcohol. The flavor was of sweet malt, caramel, slight brown sugar, toffee, subtle spices, oak, and a touch of vanilla. It had a medium feel on the palate with low carbonation. Overall this brew was quite excellent. I could honestly see myself getting in trouble with this one at this ABV. Has an excellent aroma and great well balanced flavor going on here. This is a definite must try if you are fortunate enough to do so or track down. I'm sure Mike and I looked like a bunch of hobos drinking this one, but it was totally worth it, plus we had proper glassware. Thanks again Mike for sharing this rare gem!

thagr81us, Dec 28, 2010
Photo of GRG1313
4/5  rDev -4.5%

GRG1313, Jan 20, 2014
Photo of trappistlover
3.8/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(sampled from RBWG). Pours dark brown with a tan head. Aroma had a nice smokiness that imparted similar flavors including some savory bacon. Medium bodied with a dry finish. This was a nice beer and I'm lucky to try this. Thanks to whomever brought this.

trappistlover, May 18, 2011
Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle split and poured into a Duvel tulip. 9.3% ABV, no date.

Big thanks to Rochefort10nh for surprising me with this trio of awesome brews! Beerwolf and I gave 'em all a go at once to compare them.

A - Black in the tulip with nice clarity on the pour but almost no head generation. A thin foam of tan bubbles with a well-retained ring. Spotty lace left over.

S - Great peat-smoked malt aroma with notes of chocolate behind the campfire aroma. There's wood in the nose but no real oak stand-out or French Cabernet, that's for sure. While I enjoy the bold smoke, it overwhelms any chance for the wine nuances I really hoped to see here.

T - Tart French oak Cabernet peeks in the very finish with a bit of grape but it's almost all a one-dimensional brew, full of peat smoked chocolate malt.

M - Slightly dry, a bit tart on the finish with a medium-full-body and mild acrid bitterness. Nice feel on this one.

D - Good drinkability for a high ABV barrel-aged smoke beer! Not too strong but I really wish that the French oak Cabernet would have been more present.

BeerFMAndy, Feb 26, 2011
Photo of hoppymcgee
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%

hoppymcgee, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of EgadBananas
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nearly black, thought the pour appeared the darkest brown. Head was a nice tan color, with nice spotty lacing.

Aroma was lightly sweet, pleasantly smoky, with touches of tart wine notes fighting for a piece of attention.

Taste is fairly predominantly smoky, with some nice sweetness, chocolate notes and maybe some bitter espresso notes, and a slightly dry, tart wine-like finish. Intriguing taste, interestingly tasty.

The feel is medium in body, a bit creamy, smooth, and nicely carbonated.

Drinkability is good. Finishing the whole pint+ will be a breeze, but smoky beers are one of those things that make for challenging sessionables for me, despite my love for them.

EgadBananas, Mar 08, 2011
Photo of mikesgroove
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

stopped by on xmas eve and split this bottle with a good friend while standing around and just hanging out for a few moments for the holidays. his half in a snifter, my in nonic.

pour was jet black with a small tan head that kept a ring around the entire glass leaving a good bit of lacing up and down the sides of the glass that really looked to be quite nice to me. aroma is deep peat and smoke, much more then i really thought it would be, nicely done. warming brings up lots of oak and touches of vanilla in the flavor. the grape and vinous character from the cab barrels is not very noticeable until it really warms and by that time it is still quite light. rich and smooth, with a deep smoke flavor that leaves a long lasting oak note on the palate an a light, but enjoyable finish that really gives a nice rounded profile.

overall very solid and well deserved for the day. cannot wait to try the rest of the set.

mikesgroove, Dec 26, 2010
Photo of buschbeer
4/5  rDev -4.5%

buschbeer, Jul 21, 2013
Photo of largadeer
3.8/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This rare tick was generously provided by bring. Thanks, Barry.

Dark brown, almost black. The body is nearly opaque, and the head retains solidly for several minutes.

The nose is smoky, meaty and oaky. There's a mild vinous character, though the smoke is most prevalent.

It's more vinous on the palate, tannic and oaky, smoky, somewhat meaty. The body is medium, carbonation is moderate. The finish brings roasted malt and more smoke. This is very enjoyable for a smoke beer, fairly balanced and drinkable for the style.

largadeer, Dec 24, 2010
Photo of phingdong
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

phingdong, May 15, 2013
Photo of BrianTheBrewer30
5/5  rDev +19.3%

BrianTheBrewer30, Dec 12, 2011
Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -16.5%

ygtbsm94, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of Thorpe429
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a snifter.

Pours near black with a single-finger tan head with just a touch of lacing on the sides of the glass. The nose brings forward a good dose of smoke and oak barrel. The cabernet adds a really nice touch throughout.

The flavor pushes the cabernet barrels more toward the front with a really nice complexity. Smoke and oak combine really well with the fruit character. A bit of chocolate and roasted character sit there as well. Medium body with a really nice dryness in the finish. Just a bit of booze there. Drinks quite well. A really, really solid brew and I'm glad I got to brad some of these bottles.

Thorpe429, Dec 19, 2010
Photo of AgentZero
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beer provided by Mike, awesome contribution to the Bachelor Weekend tasting.

A - Nice black stout with a small off-white head on the hard pour. Faded to a ring, no lacing or drag on the sides.

S - Smells amazing. Great smoke smell in a roasty porter. The cabernet barrels ad a nice touch of balancing sweetness. Don't think you can get much better smelling than this.

T - The oak age comes across in the beer, and the cabernet definately makes it's presence felt with a nice sweetness. Great smokey taste on this porter, just a touch too sweet for me, but I love this beer and could drink a lot of it.

M - Solid, smooth, full, great.

D - Great beer, I recommend this to anyone. Easy to drink for something at this ABV and body.

AgentZero, Dec 05, 2010
Photo of drewone
3.75/5  rDev -10.5%

drewone, Jan 24, 2014
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Fear And Trembling (French Oak Cabernet) from Hill Farmstead Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 78 ratings.