Twilight Of The Idols - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
Twilight Of The IdolsTwilight Of The Idols

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

870 Ratings
THE BROS
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 870
Reviews: 154
rAvg: 4.35
pDev: 8.74%
Wants: 427
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 870 | Reviews: 154
Photo of Dope
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Fall/Winter 2012 batch. About 6 months old.

A: Pours a very dark brown but not quite black. Tall and dense chocolate-milk colored head. Head fades slowly with great retention. Nice chunks of thick lacing left behind.

S: Creamy coffee and a little vanilla. Decent chunk of smoke to balance it out. Maybe a hint of bittersweet chocolate?

T: This is nice. Mild bitter coffee and dark chocolate up front. Sweetening vanilla gives it a milk chocolate flavor for just a moment. Kinda has a bit of toasted malt flavor in the finish, like a barely burnt slice of bread. Lingering spiciness in the aftertaste in the aftertaste - the cinnamon I assume?

M: Medium bodied, very smooth and creamy.

O: Perfect porter for a cold winter's day (though it is July presently). Very smooth, creamy and goes down nice. I prefer the beginning if this beer better, lots of nice coffee and chocolate and vanilla. The toastiness and spice in the aftertaste is a nice balancing point but prevents this one from being perfect. I'm being nitpicky of course, but I feel like I should given the brewer. Very flavorful and very complex. Nicely done.

Photo of Sean9689
3.95/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks, Bob! 750ml growler in Narke tulip.

A - Pours black, tan-colored head, thin ring, some wisps on top.

S - Sweet milk chocolate, light roast, caramel, lots of vanilla. All very sweet and rich...smells like dessert.

T - Vanilla is more pronounced here, chocolate, light roasty malts, some coffee and cocoa in there as well. Really digging the vanilla and chocolate sweetness, the roasted notes are light and subtle.

M - Light to medium, good carbonation, rich and smooth, creamy finish.

O - Drinks like a chocolate/vanilla milkshake. An excellent dessert beer and perfect for the winter months to warm you up. Another winner from HF!

Photo of ehammond1
3.41/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle (2012)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, mkabull!

A very appropriately pretty porter. Very dark brown, bordering on black, with a moderate-sized, and somewhat persistent dark brown head. Leaves irregular spiderwebs of stick down the glass.

Miscellaneous roast in the aroma along with definite cinnamon. Simple and straightforward, and the cinnamon definitely adds uniqueness, though I don't think it's particularly complementary.

The flavor follows the aroma: roast, mild chocolate, some definite cinnamon character that adds some licorice and spice notes, though could be confused with an acidity. I don't think it's complementary nor works very well at all with the base beer. I would prefer this without the cinnamon. Nice, lingering chocolate character on the finish, however.

Medium bodied with moderate-high carbonation for the style.

Different strokes for different folks. A rather ordinary beer made less appealing through the addition of cinnamon.

Photo of homebrew311
4.2/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is dark brown with barely any head.
Nose is dark bitter chocolate, earthy hop character in the middle with a little bit of of vanilla at the back. The coffee is present on the nose but much tamer than I would expect for a coffee porter. The taste features a stronger presence of vanilla, chocolate, a touch of cinnamon on the back. Very nice. Overall, tons of flavor and decent balance, coffee is more backseat than I expected.

Photo of koopa
4.2/5  rDev -3.4%
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 :)

Photo of harrymel
4.42/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 2012-13 winter. It's relatively fresh is what I'm saying.

It's black with a nice solid sheet of tan foam. Smells nice, coffee, cocoa, rich toasted graham crackers, bits of burnt toffee and a good dose of vanilla - but not overbearing. Flavor is rich with the tone of the nose and a little hint of pepper and almost a waxy crayon note. The bitterness is well matched with rich dark gooey chocolates and a little bit of dust. Full and smooth body with low carb and an off dry, but mucous producing finish. Nearly perfect mouthfeel for my money. nice beer as usual.

Photo of flexabull
4.18/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of cbeer88, thanks again!

Pours a dark brown almost black color with a very nice tan head. Great looking beer.

Aromas are of dark ripe fruits, brewed coffee, roasted malts, and a hint of vanilla.

Taste is sweet up front, milky and creamy, with notes of cocoa and vanilla. Finish is crisp, with a slightly earthy hop note.

Mouthfeel is smooth and silky, with nice full body.

Overall, a very nice beer. Leans a little too much to the sweet side for my tastes, but still well crafted and enjoyable.

Photo of Jeffo
4.12/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this from jbeatty and hotpipes a while back. Cheers for the bottles gents!

From a 500ml bottle into a snifter
Fall/Winter 2012

APPEARANCE: A clear, dark pour yields a two finger, medium looking, fluffy, light tan head with great retention. Black body with lower amounts of carbonation evident. Head fades to a full foamy cap and sticks to the sides of the glass. A half, swirly wisp remains leaving some good lacing down the sides of the glass.

SMELL: Dark malts, caramel notes, coffee and hints of vanilla as well. Quite a bit of vanilla with some lactose and milk chocolate as well. Pretty big nose for sure.

TASTE: Dark and roasted notes with coffee flavors, espresso and sweet cream. Lots of flavor here. A big finish with vanilla, sweet cream, milk chocolate and roasted espresso bitterness as well. Flavorful and enjoyable.

PALATE: Medium body and medium levels of carbonation. Very velvety and creamy smooth on the palate, goes down smooth and finishes a touch sticky. Nice stuff.

OVERALL: Surprising that this is the base beer to Birth of Tragedy actually, as the abv difference is quite large. Nevertheless, this is an excellent beer and quite drinkable for it's size. Perhaps a little more bitterness at the finish would make this perfect, but it is a really tasty and enjoyable treat as it is. Another great porter/stout from Hill Farmstead. Cheers again for the bottles guys!

Photo of Resuin
4.33/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 500 mL bottle into a HF stemmed glass. This was bottled 11/2013.

Appearance: Pours a deep hazelnut/brown and leaves a finger of tan head.

Smell: Coffee leads the way with some mild cinnamon, cocoa, roasted malts and vanilla right there. Also some mild dark fruits.

Taste: Plenty of cinnamon, roasted malts, coffee and dark chocolate accompany a nice, rich vanilla profile.

Mouth-feel: Low carbonation with a medium body, slightly creamy.

Overall: A very nice holiday porter. Very well balanced with a really nice, smooth flavor. Very drinkable.

Photo of WanderingFool
4.02/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Twilight of the Idols pours dark brown/black into the glass with a small, creamy brown head on top. The foam dissolves quickly to a ring around the surface leaving behind only a couple spots of lace on the glass.

The aroma is malty with notes of chocolate, coffee and roasted malt.

Each sip of this medium to full bodied beer is creamy on the palate, somewhat dry with moderate carbonation. The flavor is roasty with tastes of chocolate and coffee blended in. Hints of vanilla and a touch of spice at the end are also present. An earthy nuttiness is also present. Once gone the chocolate and spice lingers on the palate.

This is a very tasty, easy drinking beer. The flavor really improves as the beer warms.

Photo of sirsteve42
5/5  rDev +14.9%
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

Photo of nickd717
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
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.

Photo of MDDMD
4.19/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A-dark brown black color with a decent tan head and some lacing

S-chocolate, coffee, dark malt, molasses

T-dark roasted malt, chocolate, espresso, molasses, hint of cinnamon, vanilla,slight char, mild bitter finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, smooth and creamy

O-very nice porter, good flavor and balance, not as smooth as Everett

Photo of DaveHack
4.05/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a growler into a HF tulip.

Pours pretty typical for the style. Very dark, virtually black. Mocha colored head rests nicely on top.

Smell is very roasty. I can catch a hint of bitter chocoalte as well.

Taste is in line with the smell. It's very roasty up front along with a little bitterness.

Considering the smell and color, I would've expected this to be much heavier and thick. It isn't a light beer, but it's certainly not heavy. It's really a smooth beer.

Not my favorite of styles, but I enjoyed this.

Photo of PorterLambic
3.75/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Arrives in a snifter with a big ring of foam over a very dark brown liquid. Retention was quite good considering what little there was to start with.
Smell is malt, cocoa, spice that appears coffee at first glance and wet cardboard.
Taste is malt, coffee, cocoa, wet cardboard. Balance is good.
Somewhat smooth while still having a drying finish. Light effervescence with a fairly full body. 7.5% ABV is really well concealed. Not sure if that is a good thing. Overall, a pretty good beer considering my aversion to coffee.

Photo of Arbitrator
4.22/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Chilled growler into a glass. I think this was shared by nickd717. From long-ago notes.

A: The growler was a bit cold, so the beer (black body) initially poured flat and eventually generated a tan head that lasted briefly before receding into a thin collar. No lace.

S: This is more chocolate-forward than Everett (which to me is primarily roasty). Vanilla, coffee, roasted grain, and some smoke are noted.

T: Again, chocolate-forward, but roasted grain is stronger here than the nose implied it would be. Coffee and vanilla are also weaker than the nose implied. There is a nice spice kick (cinnamon?); that and a nutty molasses flavor give the beer a wintry feel.

M: Medium-bodied, with low-medium carbonation. It has a little lingering stickiness, but it's not oily.

O: An outstanding porter. I think Everett takes the cake for me, but this is a fine entry in Hill Farmstead's recipe book...

EDIT: In retrospect, uploading this review maybe 2 years later, I realized that this must have been the base beer for Birth of Tragedy. Nice. No wonder that beer turned out to be so exceptional.

Photo of macrosmatic
4.39/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Big thanks to dujayhawk for this one. Reviewed from notes. Poured from 500 mL bottle into a CCB pint glass.

A: This one pours essentially black, opaque, with a one finger tan head, and a low level of visible carbonation.

S: Dark mocha, mild roasted coffee, dark leather that's almost dank, with hints of dark fruit sweetness.

T: Follows the nose, though with more dark fruit than I get from the aroma. Bittersweet roasty cacao, maybe a touch of smoke, leather, and tobacco.

M: Amazing. Velvety smooth. This is what a porter should be like on the tongue. Medium carbonation sensation, but the alcohol presence is a smidge hotter than it should be.

O: A solid, quite enjoyable porter, and another good beer from HF. However, I did not find it to be quite as good as Everett.

Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.08/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Couldn't wait any longer! 500ml bottle into a Cigar City snifter. Shared with schen9303.

Pours pitch black with a 1.5 finger mocha head with average retention. Lacing is stringy and thick with good cling. Oily legs coat the glass. Solid, but not great given a comparison to Everett.

Nose is burnt coffee beans, roasted malt, a very mellow vanilla presence and some cocoa powder. Aromatic. Decent but I wish this was a bit sweeter.

Opens big coffee notes upfront. Some bitter chocolate, roasted malt, and sweet liquorice in the back. A slight tartness from the coffee and roasted malt towards the back. Finishes sweet with a touch of vanilla and fudge. Cocoa and just a touch of booze on the aftertaste. Really good balance.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Some bubbles in the mouth but smooth, warm, and silky going down. Messy finish with a pleasant, lingering aftertaste that leaves my lips sticky. Perfect.

I much prefer Everett over Twilight but that's not to say this isn't one of the better porters out there. Exhibits great balance in flavor and as always, a perfectly crafted feel. Worth a try but if you're into sweet porters, the vanilla is very subtle in this beer and you'll likely prefer Everett over this.

Photo of jaasen64
4.42/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle purchased at the brewery. Poured into HF glass, served slightly below cellar temperature.

A- Pours a dark jet black with about a finger's worth of light mocha creamy head that has decent retention but fades to a very thin layer and leaves some spotty lacing. Nice consistent carbonation.

S- Coffee, vanilla, cinnamon, a tiny bit of nutmeg, nice aroma strength. Aromas are extremely well balanced with the coffee and cinnamon blending very well together and neither dominating.

T- Light coffee with creamy vanilla and a hint of subtle cinnamon on the finish. Very well balanced and nice level of spices without anything that dominates too much. Very flavorful.

M- Medium bodied, pretty average body for a porter, nice carbonation for a porter, very easy to drink.

O- This was another fantastic porter from Hill Farmstead. Twilight was very flavorful and extremely well balanced. In my opinion the subtle spices and vanilla were perfect in this beer and it was very easy to drink. Overall I like the chocolate and coffee that come out a little bit more in Everett (the vanilla takes a little bit of that away), but this is also a fantastic porter that I'm glad they are making a regular seasonal offering. I definitely recommend trying it out.

Photo of inlimbo77
4.47/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz, 2012
Hill Farmstead wine glass

A: Pours pretty much pitch black. Very dark brown color. Held up to light, nothing. Quarter finger of head. Light tan color. Faded quickly. Leaving lacing sheeting. Some reddish hues on edges.

S: Big roasted coffee character on the nose. Smells fabulous. But if you really dig in there you get that softness from the vanilla beans. Almost like it was a milk stout. Awesome!

T: Up front you don't get killed with that coffee. It's a beautiful roast character that isn't overpowering. Like I took from the nose, it's almost like a milk stout in flavor as well. Really mild on the bitterness, probably because of the vanilla bean aging. You do get that pronouced flavor meshing with the roast in the mid palate. Finishing wise, it's fairly dry. There is a lingering creaminess to it that I like.

M: That is a big medium or basically full bodied brew. Wow.

Photo of jvillefan
4.53/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: Almost no head was present over the jet black body after a vigorous pour.

S: The aroma was mainly coffee with a subtle smoked aroma throughout.

T: Heavily roasted malts are in thr front of this beer with coffee and smoke in the background.

M: Heavy body with great carbonation.

O: I disagree with the classification of this beer as a porter. It is more of a stout. Either way it is a great beer.

Photo of hooliganlife
3.7/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Sean

Pour was a deep black, cocoa head. Body looked pretty on queue for a porter.

Dark chocolate and espresso. Vibrant nose.

Flavor was very coffee forward, light chocate and strong roasted flavors. Vanilla and cinnamon were pretty muted.

Nice carbonation, full but easy body.

Overall, I was not that into this. Needed far more vanilla to balance the coffee.

Photo of socon67
4.27/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Black pour with a cream colored foam

S - Nice scent of chocolate, coffee, and rown sugar.

T - Hearty, robust porter with plenty of flavor. Malt tastes a bit more like an english porter, but the chocolate and coffee flavors are up front and consistent.

M - This one is very smooth for a hearty porter. Feels lighter than you would think.

O - Liked this one alot. Great example of a porter that could pass for a hearty stout.

Photo of BarrytheBear
4.39/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

500 ml bottle into a snifter. Courtesy, I believe, of Mike. Thanks buddy!

Holy gusher...this bottle would make Vesuvius blush. Big piping flowage just rises and bubbles and oozes and puffs its might chest. Once in the glass there's equal pars beer and head for quite a spell.

The initial scent of plastic tubing really pissed me off. I've had a flat Birth of Tragedy and was going to shake my paws at the sky in a vain attempt at remedying the situation if this beer had qc issues. Upon settling a light creaminess emerges. Smooth mocha mingles with the perfect cup of coffee where the half and half meets the roast and just copulates like the filthy bitches they both know they are. You dirty, dirty...I digress. The smell is quite enticing. Vanilla beans join the now gentle menage a trois, as the first two combatants lie in a sweaty embrace.

What we have here is an incredibly smooth drinking porter. Rather than suffering from waif-like body, as some porters are bound to disappoint, the body is both creamy and fluffy. The light creamed coffee, mocha, and vanilla beans are soft in their presentation. However, each delicately plays nicely together allowing one another to shine in their respective competencies. The finishes shows a spike of cinnamon and a flash of alcohol that belies a vanilla fade. Thank god this doesn't fall prey to that fake off putting extracty vanilla abomination that can absolutely piss all over an otherwise good beer.

I'm not sure what's not to like about this. Judge on its merits as a porter, this is an amazing beer. I enjoyed this far more than Birth of Tragedy.

Photo of Chico1985
4.08/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On-tap at Stoutfest 2013, Armsby Abbey. Served in a tulip glass.

Pour is black with about a half-finger of tan head. It retains as a mostly full cap leaving some good lace behind.

Solid, well-rounded scent with decent potency. Just about even distribution of chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, with a good amount of spices and vanilla.

Taste follows suit nicely. The cinnamon is noticeable but nicely restrained and unique, definitely gives it a 'winter' feel. Cocoa and coffee are just about equal, with vanilla and roasted malts there as well.

Nice, full mouthfeel with highish carbonation. No alcohol, fitting for a highish-ABV porter.

This was quite good, a very stellar porter with a wintery twist - loved the amount of cinnamon used here, just the right amount - though one glass would be enough for me I think. More well-rounded and solid than the bourbon-barrel aged treatment (birth of Tragedy).

Twilight Of The Idols from Hill Farmstead Brewery
96 out of 100 based on 870 ratings.