Twilight Of The Idols - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
Twilight Of The IdolsTwilight Of The Idols

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

155 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 155
Hads: 873
rAvg: 4.27
pDev: 2.81%
Wants: 429
Gots: 117 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kingcrowing on 10-28-2010

A Winter Porter brewed with Coffee and Cinnamon…Aged on Vanilla Beans.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 155 | Hads: 873
Photo of youbrewidrink
4.7/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

All I can say is Christmas in a glass. I had this on tap at both Three Penny & Blackback.

You start with a the darkest of brown color with with a minimal mocha head.

You follow that with a slight coffee/ vanilla nose with some roasty goodness.

Ok taste buds don't let me down, This tastes exactly as it smells and I loved it.

The carbonation was light, but appropriate for the style. The mouthfeel was rich and the proper viscosity in my book.

Once again Shaun has captured the essence of a place in your mind in an outstanding beer. (538 characters)

Photo of 05Harley
4.03/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased @ Hill Farmstead Brewery, Greensboro VT

Price - $16/growler

A Winter Porter brewed with Coffee and Cinnamon…Aged on Vanilla Beans.

This is one dark beauty with a thin red edge noticeable only under the light near the top. A delicious looking beer with a half inch creamy tan head and patches of lacing.

Aroma is perfect for winter with vanilla, caramel, gingerbread, fresh roasted coffee and cinnamon spices.

The flavor mirrors the nose with the addition of dark chocolate but the spicey cinnamon steals the attention and takes center stage. A definite sweetness is noted from start to finish.

Mouthfeel is silky smooth with a medium body and slightly sticky. The bitter/dryness is held in check keeping it very much a dessert beer. Very low in carbonation, pretty much nonexistent.

Overall this is a good example of the style and a perfect fit for the holiday season. An easy drinking porter and a candidate for a Christmas after dinner menu. (965 characters)

Photo of cbeer88
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 64oz growler into 20oz imperial pint glass.

Appearance: Color of the body is an extremely dark brown with a thin one fingered cappuccino colored head that doesn't last terribly long. Bit of similar colored lacing dots the glass as the beer goes down.

Smell: Coffee, chocolate, and roasted malts. It's very nice, but not as complex as I expected given what is in this beer.

Taste: The complexity very much is here in the taste though. In addition to the typical roasted malt, chocolate, and coffee flavors expected from a porter, there is also a good touch of vanilla throughout the sips, and a nice sweet and creamy taste as well. Vague winter spices dance around as well. A little something different with every sip, which is always nice to see.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth and silky. It's fairly full bodied, and the carbonation is on the low side.

Drinkability: Very high. The alcohol is almost nonexistent in the taste and even though it's a little high for a session beer at 7.5%, you could certainly throw back a couple of pints of this guy.

Overall: Another standout beer from Hill Farmstead. I think I like Everett better, but this is a very nice porter itself. Don't let the vanilla/spiced/winter angle scare you away - I'm not a huge "winter warmer" or sweet/vanilla fan but these additions are minimal and only add nice complexity in this beer. (1,369 characters)

Photo of Beerisheaven
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler provided to me by kelp, the undisputed heavyweight champion of trading from the New England area. This guy rolls out great beers in trade after trade like a production line. I am a lucky fellow to have him as a regular trading partner.

A - Pours a rich dark brown or lightish shade of black without much head but with a decent amount of bubbles that go snack, crackle, pop and then they're gone.

S - I get the coffee front and center with a nice compliment of good bakers chocolate. I don't get the cinnomon and the vanilla is in the closet as well.

T - Hill Farmstead is quickly becoming one of my favorite breweries. JUst about everything that kelp has thrown my way from them has been top notch. Great coffee, chocolate, toffee, taste to this one. I think that I poured this one a bit too cold. As it warmed, the profiles increased. I would suggest letting this one warm a bit when you take it from the frig.

M - Very pleasant for a porter. As rich and thick as you would expect from this type of beer category.

O - Really nice beer from a great brewery. Wish I was local and could hit them up on a regular basis. I have to remember to never piss kelp off. (1,172 characters)

Photo of yourefragile
4.27/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 mL growler served in a HF wine glass.

Pours a rich chocolate black with a quickly dissipating mocha head. Dots of lacing and wet legs line the glass. Aroma starts with mild smoke, bread and burnt malt, and turns mildly sweet with molasses, milk chocolate, vanilla bean and light cream. Flavor has a bready and coffee base, more roasted malt and a baker's chocolate finish that isn't particularly sweet. Vanilla and molasses subtly blend in and out of the body without ever being cloying. Biggest knock on this is the slightly thin body and watery finish. Nowhere as robust as Everett and too thin for the style and ABV for my taste. Regardless, an excellent, unique porter but I'll just stick to Everett. (709 characters)

Photo of JizackFH
4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on-tap at Sunswick 35/35 in Astoria, NY on 11/27/11.
Review taken from notes.

This beer pours a really dark brown color. There is a small finger of light tan head on top of it. The head sticks around for a bit, and it leaves behind a few specs of lace behind as it recedes. The nose is roasty and there are aromas of coffee, chocolate, and a bit of dark fruit. There is also a bit of vanilla and molasses that comes out. The taste starts off with a strong roasted malt presence. There are some good flavors of milk chocolate and coffee that stand out. Also, there are flavors of vanilla, dark fruit, molasses, and a bit of cinnamon. The finish leaves some lingering roasted malt, coffee, and chocolate behind on the palate. This has a medium body and good carbonation. It goes down easy and has a rich velvety feel to it. There a good amount of roasted malt bitterness here, as well a nice dose of sweetness. It coats the mouth nicely and really lets you taste all of it. The roasted bitterness and sweetness sticks to the palate and lingers for a bit. This has good drinkability. It is a really tasty beer, and I could easily have a few glasses of it in an evening. Overall, I think this is a good beer and a good example of the style. This is a solid beer, and I recommend trying it out. I would buy it again. (1,317 characters)

Photo of rowingbrewer
4.55/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a nearly pitch black color with minimal head. The smell is chocolately, roasty, with hints of vanilla and spice. The flavor is more roasty when cold, but as the beer warms you get wonderful notes of vanilla and chocolate with a good residual sweetness. The mouthfeel is full with low carbonation. I did sit on the full growled for a few days without opening. I wonder if it would have been more carbed if I had drank it fresh. Overall this beer is awesome, it really is one o the best porters I have had. (520 characters)

Photo of Satchboogie
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml growler poured into a hill farmstead glass

A: Pours black with just over a finger of fluffy brown head, fairly good retention, good lacing.

S: Big roasted malt character with chocolate, coffee, and a touch of vanilla and cinnamon. Just a little hop character.

T: Robust roasted malts (heavy roast without becoming burnt), bakers chocolate, lots of caramel and molasses. Fresh coffee upfront with a little hop character. The vanilla and cinnamon come out in the finish (mostly vanilla, just a touch of cinnamon). Very rich and malty.

M: Medium to slightly full body (for style), slightly low carbonation. Very smooth and creamy.

O: Like Clockwork, Shaun has managed to create another magnificent beer. Very rich and chocolaty with lots of depth and great coffee and vanilla highlights. As good as it gets for the style. (831 characters)

Photo of MasterSki
4.34/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler shared by Sean, to cap off a day of debaucherous drinking. Served in an unknown vessel - probably a Darkness glass.

A - Late-rising tan foam settles to a thin collar, leaving minimal lace. Black body.

S - Huge, rich chocolate cake aroma, with notes of molasses, vanilla, high-end coffee, roasted malts, and a touch of smokiness.

T - The taste is also heavy on the chocolate and roasted malts, with light coffee and vanilla bean notes creeping in from time-to-time. The cinnamon finally makes its presence known in the finish, but it's exceptionally well-integrated. I don't really like cinnamon much (particularly in beer), but it works in this case.

M - Medium body, pleasant medium-low carbonation, chewy and sticky texture, with a viscosity that implies a bigger beer. No perceptible alcohol.

D - Delicious stuff that I would gladly drink again on any occasion. I'd like to get another growler, as I don't think my mental facilities were quite up for the complexity and depth of flavor when we drank this beer. I'm extremely hopeful for Birth of Tragedy. (1,070 characters)

Photo of rudzud
4.63/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

From growler bought at the brewery. Shared with bpk59 that very night as I couldn't wait to drink more of it. This is a slightly different beast than from the tank.

A - Poured into my Duvel tulip a rich, oily black with a BIG dense two finger dark mocha head that hung around forever. Lots of thick, creamy side lacing. Stuff is masterful in a glass.

S - Deep, dark roasted malts and alot of oats. Powdered cocoa, bakers chocolate, milk chocolate, fresh coffee grounds. This is very, very good.

T - Again, wow. Its the aroma, on my tongue! Roasted rich malts, TONS of chocolate (powdered, bars, bakers) with delicious fresh coffee. Slight hop bitterness towards the end mingles with the coffee.

M - Mouthfeel is silky and smooth. Its creamy black velvet on my tongue.

O - Overall this beer is exceptional. This alone is practicly worth the drive up to Greensboro. A definate growler fill of this is needed again. Argh, I want to drink this every day! (956 characters)

Photo of oline73
4.35/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a growler into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours very dark, almost black with a layer of light tan head. The head fades to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Sweet and packed full or roast. Some mild dark fruit and chocolate in there as well.

Taste: This is a very smooth beer. Lots of roast, but it is smooth like silk. Dark chocolate shows up as well. The finish is a bit sweet.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the thick side with very mild carbonation. The finish is dry.

Overall: This is just a fantastic porter. Nothing I didn't like about it. (575 characters)

Photo of DaveHS
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours solid black with 1/4 inch of mocha head. Sticky lacing.

S-Fresh ground coffee, baking chocolate, banana peel, dulce de leche. A hint of star anise.

T/M-Smoky and roasty, with a rich, velvety smooth body and a lightly warming finish. A little anise bitterness up front, followed by soft, mellow notes of drinking chocolate and foamed milk. The finish shows delicate notes of bittering hop and cocoa powder.A little warming alcohol on the back of the throat.

O-First beer I've had from Hill Farmstead and it's impressive. Totally worth driving to the middle of nowhere to pick up a growler. (599 characters)

Photo of s1ckboy
4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - black with a small mocha head.

S - typical porter aroma. Anise etc

T - far different than the nose. Coffee, cinnamon, a touch of vanilla, anise, molasses in the finish.

M - medium, good amount of carbonation.

O - awesome, my favorite non barrel aged porter. wish I had gotten a second growler. (304 characters)

Photo of Gushue3
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Smaller brown head with some retention that leaves little lacing. Body is deep dark brownish and black

S- Nice combination of roast, chocolate and coffee. Theres a lighter sweet scent thats different.

T- Coffee beans take the forefront with some chocolate that make a full nice tasting porter. Theres some slight holiday spice notes hiding that comes out in the end. Great flavor.

M- Full body with pretty much no carbonation makes this smooth as hell. almost like a milkshake.

O- This stuff is fantastic. Awesome taste and feel which compliment each other nicely. I wish this stuff was bottled. (603 characters)

Photo of jlindros
4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tap at the Hill Farmstead tasting room.

Tap at hf brewery

Big fluffy darker head, lacing, pitch black beer with no light.

Nose lots of dark malts, roast, hint of cocoa, black patent, chalky powdered choc, caramel, lots of oats, espresso fresh coffee grinds.

Taste creamy malts , chocolate milk and milk chocolate, hint of dark, cocoa, then coffee grinds and espresso, roasted malts, oats, caramel, vanilla, deep bakers chocolate, flaked and powdered cocoa and coffee. Finishes a bit bitter, dry, lots more chocolate and roast.

Mouth is med to a bit heavier bodied, decent carb.

Overall really nice, great dark malt flavors without too much bitterness or any burnt flavors, nice and creamy and tasty, drinkable, a big time winner! (735 characters)

Photo of thirsty4beer
4.72/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap @ Mugs Ale House in Brooklyn, NY

A: Very dark brown pour - bordering on black - with a thin layer of light walnut head that dissipated quickly. Lacing is minimal but present.

S: The nose is dominated by freshly roasted coffee beans and vanilla extract. Dark chocolate and Christmas spices are detected (especially cinnamon) with a bit of roasted malt as well.

T: Amazing! Espresso and creme brulee just made love in my mouth. Bold espresso, vanilla beans, roasted cacao beans, freshly grated cinnamon, a pinch of nutmeg, and notes of dark fruit. Just a touch of burnt toffee. The flavors come together rather smoothly with just the right amount of creamy lactose sweetness. A very faint hop character comes through to perfectly balance this porter.

M: Very smooth, medium bodied, slightly dry with a gentle carbonation.

D: One to remember. Instantly one of my favorites. I could easily drink this all night and would be very tempted to have a few the following morning. Hats off to Hill Farmstead for this winner. Can't wait to get my next Twilight fix. (1,066 characters)

Photo of sirsteve42
5/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Mugs Ale House Williamsburg,Brooklyn,NYC

L-Very creamy tan head and a dark body. Great lacing on the glass.
S-Notes of chocolate,espresso,vanilla,cinnamon, and fruit.
T-Very rich in flavor. There is vanilla,chocolate,espresso and a definite presence of lactose.
F-Nice medium bodied mouthfeel
D-I could drink this guy all night. A truly amazing porter. I will have to continue to hunt down this one for some time.
Cheers (432 characters)

Photo of woosterbill
4.42/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the NYC Gingerman into a goblet. Reviewed from notes.

A: Black body with a finger of creamy light brown head; average retention and good lacing. Solid.

S: Rich roasted notes of espresso and dark chocolate, along with some oak, dark candied fruit, and spice - anise and cinnamon. Lovely.

T: Opens with huge, authentic-tasting cocoa, molasses, and anise. Vanilla oak and candied fruit come on strong midway through, leading to a smoothly bittersweet finish. Absolutely decadent.

M: Robust medium body with light, soft carbonation. Pleasant enough.

D: I don't know the ABV, but I could drink tons. Very rich and yet supremely smooth.
[edit: I originally gave this a 5 for Drinkability, but in light of the change to Overall I've lowered the score to a 4.5]

Notes: This was just a fantastic porter. The spice, roast, and sweetness all worked together beautifully, making the whole package one of the most enjoyable and satisfying winter beers I've had. I wish this were more readily available, and count myself lucky to have gotten to try it.

Cheers! (1,065 characters)

Photo of largadeer
3.78/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks, Nick. Growler into a tulip glass.

Opaque dark brown with a black center. A small tan head forms and quickly recedes to a thin collar.

The nose is heavy on roasted malt, quite bready and bordering on burnt. It smells like a bar of bittersweet chocolate when it warms. Pleasant enough, but not terribly aromatic.

It's bolder on the palate, with flavors of anise and baker's chocolate, burnt bread, French roast coffee. I've read that this was brewed with cinnamon and vanilla, but I couldn't pick out those flavors above all the dark malt. The mouthfeel is dry, medium-light in body, perhaps a touch thin for the 7.5% ABV. An enjoyable beer, easy to drink, but not particularly special. (695 characters)

Photo of GatheringBrews
4.88/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap and in growler from the brewery, the flavors vary slightly between the two tastings in interesting ways.

It pours a rich, dark brown with a tan head, dissipating slowly into a nice thin foam. Aroma on tap is slightly sharper with a bit more coffee, while from a growler it was a little more vanilla balanced with the coffee.

Taste is outstanding both on tap and in growler, with medium sweet malt backbone, a touch of hop bitterness and coffee, vanilla and just a hint of the cinnamon in the finish, with no discernible alcohol or indication of its ABV. Carbonation is on the money for the style, and it's full bodied without being heavy.

Exceedingly well balanced, this is a wonderful beer. (701 characters)

Photo of nickd717
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler thanks to grassrootsvt.

Pours a very dark brown color with a one finger tan head that fades to swirls.

Big rich chocolatey aroma, along with vanilla and roasty notes. Some spice evident.

Chocolate - Tootsie Roll or Hershey's bar - is big on the flavor. Behind that is roast, coal, cinnamon, and vanilla. Tasty.

Medium-bodied and fairly dry on the mouthfeel with a good long finish.

Really good porter, impressive and easy to drink. (444 characters)

Photo of nkersten
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap, served into a tulip. Pitch black with a one finger tan head that settles to a cap, very creamy with amazing lacing. Smell is bourbon and raw vanilla beans, spiced cinnamon, coffee beans, dark roasty malts, spicy hops. Taste is very sweet malts and some roasted malt bitterness, vanilla, slightly hoppy, a hint of coffee and some cinnamon (a later batch I had was heavy on the cinnamon, i prefer this version). Medium/heavy body with a light carbonation. This beer drinks and feels more like a spiced stout then a porter, but an excellent Christmas beer either way. One of the most drinkable spiced beers I have ever had. Sadly, TSA smashed the growler I was attempting to bring back so I wont get to have any more of this for a while. (742 characters)

Photo of koopa
4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this one on tap at the Black Back Pub this past weekend.

It was explained to me that the recipe has been tweaked once as batch 2 sat on vanilla beans for an extra month.

This review is for batch 1...

Appearance: Pours a deep attractive brown mahogany with a brown crown that displays decent retention and lace.

Smell: Nice roast malt, cinnamon, and the tiniest hint of vanilla.

Taste: Same as nose but the vanilla doesn't make much of an impact.

Mouthfeel: Thick side of medium bodied with subtle carbonation...nearly perfect for the style in my opinion.

Drinkability: The abv and mouthfeel hold it back a touch but I definitely wanted more than one pour and had more than one....heck I had more than two :) (720 characters)

Photo of madorb
4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap @ Three Penny Taproom in Montpelier then followed up with a taster @ Hill Farmstead.

Truly delicious beer - lots of coffee and chocolate flavor but with a solid underpinning of vanilla and spice in just the right amount to be impactful but not overbearing. I could drink a LOT of this beer.

Big regret is leaving the brewery without a growler of this. I'll just have to make do with my 8 bottles of various other tasties. (431 characters)

Photo of tubacharlie
4.35/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Despite having been filled three days before, and mostly consumed by others in the previous two days, the beer still had a semblance of a head, with enough carbonation to keep a thin ring around the edge supplied.

Coffee and chocolate are evident in the aroma, with hints of anise and vanilla.

A mouthful of the porter delivers sweet vanilla flavor in the middle of the rich coffee and roasted malts with a slightly bittersweet, dark chocolate aftertaste. Balanced by select hop additions and muted carbonation, the overall taste is meaty, with good depth of character.

Excellent brew for winter consumption. Almost too rich for dinner, a porter for pleasure. (662 characters)

Twilight Of The Idols from Hill Farmstead Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 155 ratings.