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Holger Danske - Hill Farmstead Brewery

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Holger Danske
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BA SCORE
92
outstanding

196 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 196
Reviews: 43
rAvg: 4.12
pDev: 10.19%
Wants: 37
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Smoked Beer |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Smoked Brown Ale

(Beer added by: Thorpe429 on 11-14-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 196 | Reviews: 43 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev -2.9%

t0rin0, Oct 14, 2012
Photo of spycow
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

spycow, Jan 13, 2013
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -2.9%

djrn2, Oct 18, 2012
Photo of Thorpe429
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Hill Farmstead on November 4, 2010. Served in a Hill Farmstead wine glass. Thanks to Shaun for his incredible generosity for spending a good deal of time with us.

The pour is a moderately-dark brown with a light tan head. A good dose of lacing as the brew goes down my glass. The nose is really nice with a combination of some smoked malt as well as a bit of light malt and bread. The smoke pervades the entirety of the beer, but isn't a complete takeover. A really nice balance of that in the nose, and it lends itself well within the flavor as well. Feel is of a medium body with a nice smoky presence. A really nice beer that I was glad to try.

I thought I'd add this as an American Brown Ale, as I didn't know if it quite rose to the level of a rauchbier.

Thorpe429, Nov 14, 2010
Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev -2.9%

acurtis, Nov 23, 2013
Photo of Knapp85
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Knapp85, Dec 05, 2013
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

westcoastbeerlvr, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of largadeer
3.5/5  rDev -15%

largadeer, Jan 29, 2013
Photo of jlindros
4.08/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Light 1/2 finger creamy head fades at a med pace with decent lacing, over dark molasses colored beer with a ruby hue.

Nose has a big smoke, not much campfire smoke but more smoked cheese like, a chewy smoke, with a bit of wheat I think, some caramelized sugars, caramel, slight burnt toffee, light roasty quality, some earthy hops somewhere under that, and a touch of cocoa.

Taste starts a little creamy, but quickly turns to smoke, again not really campfire smoke more like a smoldering log smoked cheese, light toasted quality. Again light caramelized molasses like sugars, smoked wheat, light bitter roast and some earthy hops, light creme brulee with a bit of sweetness, and a light creamy cocoa. Finish is a bit drier, long lingering tasty smoke with a bit more dark chocolate, smoked cheese, little creaminess feel, and a big bitter kick at the end with more earthy slight grassy hops.

Mouth is med to slightly fuller bodied, decent carb, no booze.

Overall interesting, a decent smoked beer without over bitter or campfire, nice flavors, long tasty finish. Despite being a good beer, not quite as high caliber as most of the other Hill beers.

jlindros, Oct 16, 2012
Photo of drabmuh
4.6/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. At the time of this review, this is #1 on the "Top Beers - Smoked Beers" list on beeradvocate.com. Served in a Hill Farmstead stemmed tulip. Growler shared by yourefragile. Thanks. Long time want, finally obtained. Loved it too.

Beer is brown and mostly clear with a wispy tan head of small and large bubbles.

Aroma is smokey but also sweet, hickory or something similar if I were to guess.

Beer is medium in body, a nice balance of smoky and sweet on the palate with a really great finish. The roast and smoke lingers in the mouth / palate for several seconds, making the beer seem dryer than it is. Definitely smoke forward without being over the top, by far the best smoked beer I've ever had.

drabmuh, Nov 13, 2012
Photo of Rifugium
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Hill Farmstead

Dark brown pour with a small beige head; minimal retention and lacing. Obvious smoked malts in the nose, ash, toasted bread, dark sugars. More of the same in the taste, smoke and charcoal, toasted bread, roasty malts, toasted grains, caramel and brown sugar, hazelnut candy. Pretty well-balanced for the style, though the smokiness is still fairly large and in charge. Medium body, lower carbonation, quite good overall. Snagged a liter growler for my buddy. Cheers!

Rifugium, Oct 13, 2012
Photo of mendvicdog
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

mendvicdog, Oct 01, 2012
Photo of mdfb79
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 10/01/12 notes. Had 2 8oz. pours of this at Pony Bar in NYC on the UES.

a - Pours a dark brown color with two inches of medium tan head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of smoke, roasted malts, toasted malts, coffee, cream, vanilla, bacon, and bready malts. As first I didn't find it too smoky, but by my second glass of it I found it extremely smoky. Very nice nose; the coffee and cream/vanilla add something nice to it.

t - Tastes of of roasted malts, caramel malts, smoke, bacon, toasted malts, burnt malts, light coffee, and light cream. Taste doesn't have as much smoke as the nose; still very good, but a slight step down for me.

m - Medium body and low to moderate carbonation. Nice body, pretty easy to drink.

o - Overall a very nice smoked beer. Not my favorite HF beer but good for the style. Nose is super smokey, while the taste isn't quite as heavy on the smoke. Worth checking out, especially if you liked smoke beers, and I'd certainly have it again.

mdfb79, Oct 01, 2012
Photo of DrunkinYogi
4/5  rDev -2.9%

DrunkinYogi, Sep 22, 2012
Photo of Rochefort10nh
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at the brewery and then again out of a growler a few days later. Once again Shaun has taken one of my favorite styles and created a fantastic interpretation.

This beer is dark brown, borderline black, with a hazy appearance when held to the light. A moderate foam tops my pour. Another of Hill's beers that features a great Brussel's Lace.

Smoke is front and center in the nose. I believe the assistent brewer said the woods used to smoke the malt were beechwood and applewood which were handsmoked by Anders Kissmeyer outside over the course of a day. A sweet maltiness is also present as are distinctive notes of maple, caramel and stone fruits.

Taste is a full-on assault of maple cured bacon. A smoky breakfast beer that was perfect at 11:30 a.m.! There is enough malty sweetness to keep the smoke in check. Bitterness is well in the background and thankfully the malt used wasn't over roasted which can give a smoked beer an ashtray note that is terribly unpleasant.

Mouthfeel was nice with the slight sweetness giving it some viscosity.

Drinkability is high for a smoked beer that has a tinge of residual sweetness.

Overall a great smoked brew that gives Aecht Schelenkerla a run for it's money.

Rochefort10nh, Nov 18, 2010
Photo of Halcyondays
3.95/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours brown with a mild white head, no real lace, average head retention.

S: No kidding on the smoked beer aspect. Campfire, wood, an elegant but pungent aroma.

T: Smoke is dominant, but the caramel type malt flavour comes through, making it not as one dimensional as a lot of the smoked beers I've had. Not Schlenkerla, but good.

M: Medium-bodied, heavy smoke with a shaky but good balance of flavours. Long aftertaste.

D: One of the better smoked beers I've had for sure. I've never seen Hill Farmstead in the Southland before; I'll have to be on the lookout for more of their stuff.

Halcyondays, Jan 19, 2011
Photo of GClarkage
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

GClarkage, Jul 08, 2014
Photo of InspectorBob
4/5  rDev -2.9%

InspectorBob, Dec 22, 2013
Photo of yourefragile
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clearing out my HF notes. On tap at Capone's 1/7/11.

Pours an opaque near black with a thick mocha head. Nice retention fading to a thick collar and with clumps of lacing. Smokey, mild burnt aroma with balance coming from toast and chocolate malt. Thick, chewy body with a dry, ashy finish. Dark chocolate, licorice, roast malt, tobacco and faint dark fruit balance out the intense bbq and smoke of the flavor. Smoke in a glass? yes, but more complexity than typical for this style if you get past the initial "shock".

yourefragile, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of corby112
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on tap at Capone's.

Pours pitch black and completely opaque without even the slightest trace of lighter color when held to a light source and a 1.5 frothy mocha head. Decent retention, only slowly fading into a lasting ring that leaves streaks and spots of chunky lacing.

Smokey malt aroma with hints of charcoal, BBQ and bacon but the smokey character isn't too intense. There still plenty of chocolate, oatmeal, toffee and burnt toast in the nose.

Chewy medium body with a lot of roasted smokiness up fentanyl that lngers troughout into a long dry finish. Smokier than the aroma suggest with lots of charcoal, butane, BBQ and bacon but there is still a lot of silky chocolate malt as well as some oatmeal, toffee and hazelnut. The smokiness becomes more dominant as it warms but like the other beers ie had frm this brewery it is well balanced and very quaffable.

corby112, Jan 07, 2011
Photo of orangesol
3.75/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at Capone's into a sampler glass.

A - Pours deep, dark, brown with a strong half finger off-white head, dissipating to spotty patches of head, leaving streaks of lacing down the glass.

S - Lots of smokey darkness in this one for sure. A bit of chocolate and dark roasted coffee lend a bit of balance but the smokey ash permeates all aspects of the nose.

T - Lots of smoke up front giving way slowly to a mix of smokey ash and sweet roasty malt. Finish is, you guessed it, plenty of lingering smoke. I think this is what a beer would taste like if I brewed it in my fire pit. Soooo much smoke, if it was a little bit more balanced I think this could be an excellent smoked beer.

M - Heavy body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Nice soft feel on the pallet is a welcome addition to all that smoke. Finish is quite smokey becoming overpowering over the course of the glass.

D - Pretty good. I like smoked beers but this one was VERY smokey. I think I could still drink a few of these but the aftertaste would definitely get to me over time.

orangesol, Jan 17, 2011
Photo of Huhzubendah
4.23/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer appears dark brown with a small beige cap.

The aroma offers dark, roasted malts, Dense, crushed toffee, smoked malt. Different than a rauchbier for sure, this one is akin in some regards to a smoked porter.

The flavor offers smokey notes, but no meat, sauasage, or campfire character. Dense malt with a light BBQ flavor and brown ale tones. I like it. Whatever this is, it is tasty.

Medium bodied with fairly low carbonation.

A solid beer. Hill Farmstead can do no wrong it seems.

Huhzubendah, Sep 29, 2012
Photo of BARFLYB
3.95/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On Tap at Blue Dog.

Holger Danske comes to me looking the brown color but not deep dark and bold brown, just a simple brown with a nice sturdy amount of cream colored foam on top leaving some spotches on the way down, healthy looking beer. Smell is smoky but a nice amount of caramel, roasted malt, cocco, and earth pop through in the scent, not smoked to the max. Taste is pretty well rounded and I got more out of it with each sip. The smoke sort of surrounds the other flavors mentioned above and dont take over the show. Taste is decadent, body is rich and medium and the carb is not a tounge lasher, this went down rather smoothly, with no intrusion from the 7.5% I could of drank a lot more of this beer, it did not bonk me over the head with ash and smoke. Would get again.

BARFLYB, Sep 30, 2012
Photo of sendbeer
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

sendbeer, Jan 02, 2014
Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

iL0VEbeer, Sep 29, 2012
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Holger Danske from Hill Farmstead Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 196 ratings.