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Daybreak - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
DaybreakDaybreak

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

60 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 60
Hads: 313
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 7.88%
Wants: 198
Gots: 47 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

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

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: bark on 09-28-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Imperial Stout brewed with Citrus at Hill Farmstead Brewery with the company, hardwork, and input of our good friend Mikkel Borg Bjergsø of Mikkeller.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 60 | Hads: 313
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.55/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle pour at Woodshop 8 held at The Hermosillo in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, citrus, earth, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with char, cocoa, and slight citrus flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but there is an odd earthy quality in the taste that isn't to my liking. (653 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of aapp. Served in a Hill Farmstead long-stem tulip.

Pours near-black with a good, frothy tan head and nice lacing. The nose carries quite a bit of citrus along with some backing roast and a bit of chocolate. Orange comes through well in the flavor with stout backing. Medium body and a good slightly-dry finish. Very solid brew. (346 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
3.78/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Sweetwater mini-snifter.

For whatever reason, this beer makes me think of bad vampire novels or something... Anyway, it pours a deep dark sienna topped by a finger of light brown foam. The nose comprises candied orange peel, dry roasted malts, buttery toffee, and dusty lemon zest. The taste holds notes of mandarin orange syrup, roasted malts, light dark chocolate powder, and candied orange peel. The body is a light-leaning medium, with a very light moderate carbonation, a smooth feel, and a dry finish. Overall, a pretty nice stout, one that shows that a stout can indeed be blended with fruity elements without the latter taking over and ruining things, but it wasn't entirely my cup of tea: While the elements didn't actually clash, they didn't seem in complete cooperation and harmony, either. Still, it didn't turn out all that badly... (858 characters)

Photo of oline73
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a fairly thick looking black with a finger of tan head and decent retention. There is a mild amount of lacing left on the glass.

Smell: Really roasty from the malt right off the bat. There is also some sweetness from the malt along with mild citrus notes, but the roast dominates.

Taste: The citrus shows up more here, but the roast bitterness dominates the taste as well. I'm picking up a little sweetness and some dark chocolate as well. The finish is bitter and roasty.

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

Overall: This is a good one, but I would have liked it to be a little smoother. (707 characters)

Photo of Kegatron
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle into a couple of glasses. This is another one courtesy of Stakem.

Pours black with a thin frothy head of milk chocolate foam that flares up quite nicely when swirled, dotting the sides of the glass with a good bit of spotty lace. The aroma smells of bitter orange citrus, roasted coffee, cocoa and a ripe herbal feel. The orange probably has the strongest presence here.

The taste has a bitter orange rind character to it that stands out against a backbone of flavorful coffee and sweet notes of chocolate and caramel. The finish is dry and burnt with some lingering pithiness. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied, with a slick and creamy feel that dots the tongue a bit with a touch of crispness. This is extremely smooth feeling overall for 11% ABV and I probably never would have guessed that it was that high without looking at the bottle.

I dug this. It’s got a pretty nice Double Stout base to it as is but then that orange zest added an interesting dynamic to this that worked rather well with those other flavors. And I still can’t believe that this is 10.5% ABV. This is a smooth, flavorful and quite unique sipper for sure. (1,152 characters)

Photo of jlindros
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice fluffy 1 finger head of darker color, fades slowly with nice lacing, over pitch black colored beer and some yeast chunks swimming at the bottom.

Nose is an imperial stout alright. Nice dark malts, not really any roast, but some darker crystal, and a bit of chocolate. There is plenty of caramel and milk chocolate with a hint of darker baker's chocolate, and a candy bar like essence. Light hops, bringing hints of floral and grassy earthy hops, and a bit of citrus. Just a hint of booze as well.

Taste is again very imperial stout like. Dark fluffy malts, with plenty of caramel and a bit of toffee. Just a hint of a roasty malt flavor but not much. Then chocolate, not a huge chocolate kick, but enough, with some milk chocolate candy flavor, and some dark chocolate and cocoa powder. Bitterness is present, with a decent bitterness, some from the charred malts, but more from some light earthy, hint spicy hop, and a bit of citrus. The citrus seems more like it comes from the hops than actual citrus brewed in the beer, but there is a hint of orange peel. It also brings a light fluffy oat like taste, with a candy chocolate oatmeal flavor. Finish is smooth and drier but still semi sweet and sticky, bitterness ramps quickly on the finish with an earthy almost spicy chewy hop flavor, and light citrus, and a smooth chocolate caramel lingering flavor with the hops. The booze really isn't there, it's surprisingly drinkable.

Mouth is full bodied, creamy and smooth, rich, decent carb for the style, and barely any booze warmth.

Overall wow, very nice stout, drinks like a 7% instead of 10.5%. The bitterness and the hop flavor balance well with the light sweetness, dark malt flavors, and no overpowering roasty or burnt flavors. Just a hint of citrus which is good since I was worried it would taste like a chocolate covered orange peel. Another winner from HF!

Taste (1,891 characters)

Photo of Rifugium
3.79/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle from the brewery.
Shared with the group at a recent tasting.

Poured a dark black-brown-ruby color, with a small cap of chocolate head that receded to a wispy layer, dotting the glass with lacing. Dark malts in the aroma, moderate roast with some coffee notes, and not much else. Not bad, just really nothing out of the ordinary, and nothing in the way of citrus going on. Similarly in the taste, there were the usual suspects for a good imperial stout: dark malts, roast, coffee, cocoa, caramel, earth, light hops in the finish. I barely got any orange at all, and in a blind taste-test I probably would not have even guessed there was citrus in this brew, perhaps mistaking it for a subtle hop flavor in the background. Medium-full body, and a good drinker, with the higher ABV pretty well hidden. Good as a regular imperial stout, but ultimately a bit disappointing, as any orange that was present had either faded or was just too hidden behind the dark malts. (970 characters)

Photo of MasterSki
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle thanks to AshleyMiller. Served in a Bell's tulip.

A - A finger-plus of tan foam eventually settles to a solid cap, leaving behind spotty lace - nice retention here. Opaque dark brown body.

S - Intriguing - reminds me of citrus-glazed smoked meats. I also get some earthy and piney notes from the Galaxy and Columbus hops. I expected more orange flavor, but what I get is more of a zest/peel flavor. Plenty of baker's chocolate and a touch of caramel rounds things out. A very unique aroma, but not exactly what I was expecting from the description.

T - Taste is again quite smokey, with notes of dark chocolate, heavily roasted malts, chary, and a mixture of espresso and hop bitterness in the finish. There's some definite bitter citrus peel flavor in the periphery, but it's a complementary flavor. No alcohol presence - was a bit shocked by the 10%+ ABV.

M - Medium body, nice soft moderate-to-low carbonation, creamy texture, and well-hidden alcohol. Quite excellent on this front.

D - Not my favorite Hill Farmstead offering, but very interesting and quite drinkable considering the alcohol content. I'd happily drink this again, although I don't think I'd actively seek it out. (1,195 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
4.17/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thank you Michael, a nice beer to end the night with. Beer served in a snifter, beer is black with a thin tan head of small bubbles, lacing, some carbonation, nice retention.

Aroma is sweet and roasty, not much citrus in the nose.

Beer is nice, it tastes like a Mikkeller stout honestly, moderate mouthfeel, lots of carbonation, a nice bitterness, sweetness, almost all the citrus is gone in here, an interesting and good beer. I'd have it again. (448 characters)

Photo of stakem
3.61/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle into some snifters. The brew appears brown in color with some ruby brown clarity when held to the light. A finger of mocha head sits atop and slowly fades leaving spotty lacing on the glass. A swirl revives a finger back to the surface.

The aroma includes a hearty inclusion of musty coffee coupled with pulp from oranges. It has a bit of a soapy feel before the onset of more citrus as fruity alcohol notes. There is am herbal aspect and a minor veggie element here that while not obnoxious, just doesnt totally work for me.

The taste is bitter like chocolate with some hebal hops and a strong flavor of musty coffee. Some orange zest brighten things up a bit and transitions the flavor away from stale coffee. More sips reveal an earthen flavor mixed with fruit and some catty to veggie hop quality.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is musty and bitter with zesty elements which is unique but not good enough to warrent the trouble acquiring again. Its not a terrible brew but its also something I really wouldnt be interested in again either. Old coffee plus orange zest just didnt pan out all that well together. (1,168 characters)

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.27/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Shared by yourefragile. Thanks Michael.

The beer is dark brown, nearing black. The beige head is nearly a half inch thick, fading to an oily thin layer atop the beer. The aroma is classic Mikkeller. Dark roast, oak, booze, chocolate. Roasty and smooth on the palate with a nice hop finish. Lots of chocolate and bitter roast in the flavor. Medium bodied with solid carbonation. A very good stout, I would definitely have this again. (433 characters)

Photo of yourefragile
4.58/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From notes, on draft at HF Harvest Festival.

Viscous black pour with a thick, dark brown head. Great retention. Aroma is rich blend of roast and chocolate malt with citrus peel and light citrus hops. Molasses, burnt sugar, citrus zest and pine also present throughout. Crisp, smooth and creamy body with moderate carbonation. Flavor is remarkably unique and unlike anything expected. Initially typical stout flavors of roast malt, ash, molasses, dark chocolate and brown sugar before finishing with a zesty and fruity orange punch (nothing like an IPA however). Somehow, it all works in perfect balance and this is one of the most unique and enjoyable stouts I've had recently. (678 characters)

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle poured into a CBS snifter. Thanks to Kirchhoff for this bottle!

Appearance - Pours with a nice mocha head. It settles into nice swirls of foam atop a black body until it finally fades into a ring. The foam clings to the glass.

Smell - I've been reading reviews where people are saying that the orange flavor is an afterthought, but I think it's fully integrated into the stout/porter aroma. Huge hop presence, which certainly blurs the line between what is hops and what is orange, but the orange is distinct from the hops. Smells like a black IPA with a giant chocolate backbone and a nice aroma of orange peels.

Taste - Huge hop profile at first. Citrus hops. This feels like it was dry hopped like an IPA. Chocolate in the background that eventually comes to the forefront. Distinct orange flavor throughout the drink. It neither fades nor becomes more prevalent. It adds to the flavor nicely. Really terrific.

Mouthfeel - It's got a bitter finish, but it's negligible considering the hop presence of this stout. It tastes nowhere near 10% ABV. I keep taking sips to wrap my taste buds around the citrus flavors and the alcohol never makes an impact.

Overall - This is great. Definitely something that needs to be consumed fresh. It has probably already faded, but it's still delicious. I could go for a touch more roasted malts to really bring out the complexity of the base stout, but the oranges are a great touch. Yet another exceptional HF beer. (1,472 characters)

Photo of corby112
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to koopa for sharing.

Pours pitch black and completely opaque with a one finger beige head that slowly settles into lasting ring. Spotty lacing left behind.

Intense aroma with a huge citrus presence along and a good bit of roasted malt. The citrus presence is really strong with lots of zesty orange peel/citrus rind.  The malts are underneath with hints of toast, dark chocolate and toffee.  At first it's all citrus but as it warms the nose becomes more balanced.

Medium bodied with a blast of sweet citrus and a subtle bitter hop presence up front. The citrus orange peel and hop flavor linger throughout but are nicely complimented by the dry roasted  malt notes. Lots of dark chocolate, toffee, toast and oatmeal providing a decent amount of bitterness without becoming acrid of overpowering.  At first there is a bit of a citrus overload but as the palate adjusts and the beer warms, the malt presence really comes through. When I first heard about this beer I was a little skeptical of how it would turn out but it was very well balanced and flavorful. (1,081 characters)

Photo of HopHead84
3.78/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

1/7/2012

Bottle courtesy of bring, thanks! Snifter.

A: Resembles motor oil as it flows forth from the glass. The head is enormous, forming two fingers of dense light brown froth that recede in a haphazard fashion. Lacing covers the glass. A very nice looking Imperial Stout.

S: Strong roasted grain presence with a dash of blackstrap molasses. Dark chocolate is pronounced and I get a little coffee. Citrus is vibrant and fits well with the other aspects. It reminds me of orange flesh. I get a little smoke and caramel.

T: A firm roasted malt presence blends with molasses and dark chocolate. The malt borders on burnt. Citrus reminds me of orange flesh and pith, and it's well integrated. There's a general earthiness about the beer and a moderate bitterness. Alcohol is well hidden. The finish is bitter and chocolatey with a light astringency. It's somewhat burnt and acrid. Coffee is light but pervasive.

M: Full in body with upper medium carbonation. The mouthfeel is chewy, sticky, and silky.

Overall: A little more roasty (approaching burnt) than I generally like, but I still found this to be enjoyable. Still, there's a little too much Mikkeller in this one. The citrus is a nice touch, though. (1,210 characters)

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.77/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle opened on 2-10-12.

A - Pours a very dark chocolate brown with a dark tan-brown small head. Good retention.

S - Chocolate, roasted malt, citrusy - orange.

T - A unusual orange-chocolate mix. Unbalanced, but improves greatly as it warms.

D - Good carbonation, heavier body.

O - I like the thought, but doesn't quite deliver till it warms. (354 characters)

Photo of Brad007
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had this bottle for a while. It's the last of this beer that I have left and can't believe I've never reviewed it until now.

Pours a pitch black with a huge brown head into my glass. The head is the best feature here.

Sweet with hints of orange peel, cocoa and coffee in the nose. Someone who has never had a beer brewed with citrus may be confused about the lack of a "citrusy" essence. I'm not.

Coffee, cocoa and tobacco come to mind. The use of citrus adds some acidity and a touch of sweetness.

Mouthfeel is very rounded out. Coffee and cocoa shine more but I feel that the acidity is a little off-putting here. I'll chalk that up to my inexperience with anything other than the usual template for this style.

Very tasty, even if it takes some getting used to. The age has mellowed it out, allowing the alcohol to fade into the background and the flavors to come out more. Well worth it to age this beer. (920 characters)

Photo of rudzud
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at the Hill Farmstead release. Poured into a Hill Farmstead wine glass.

A - Pours like thick, viscous melted fudge with a rich, creamy one finger mocha head that leaves nice lacing and retention.

S - Lots of that dense fudgy chocolate aromas and slight roasted malts with light orange peel on the end along with some citra? hops.

T - More of that nice fudge chocolate and roasted malts. There is a lingering citrus (orange) flavour and bitterness on the finish. Doesnt quite taste like a chocolate orange, but, it gets rather close on the end.

M - Mouthfeel is so incredibly dense and thick and creamy, like liquified fudge.

O - Overall I really enjoyed this mellow style merger. Like a super fudgy light on the hops black ale. Good subtle citrus with strong rich fudgy stoutness. (801 characters)

Photo of DefenCorps
4.41/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle received from Aberration. Thank you for all the effort that went into getting me a bottle of this, Nick. I had to come out of my Mikkeller boycott to trade for this.

In my Great Divide tulip, this beer sits a picture perfect black with a dense, creamy dark brown head with excellent retention. The head slowly falls off to a disk, leaving nice, dense lacing. The nose is nice and robust without being ashy or astringent, which happens all too easily. Robust, mildly smoky, a little vanilla and some caramel are present. I guess this has been around for a while, the citrus peel is a little hidden in the mix, lending a brightening spritz to the nose quite unlike what a hop would add. A creamy note presents a base to tie the nose all together. Pretty excellent IMO.

The beer really shines on the palate. With a moderate roasty, dark chocolate malt character with some caramel and a little coffee and cream, this is quite robust and well-done. A touch of licorice root appears on the finish, along with a citrus oiliness . The flavor of mildly sweetened dark( ~70%) chocolate (this aspect is *perfect* IMO) is bookended by a little grainy bitterness and a creamy sweetness. Despite its relative youth, I the hops aren't as assertive as you'd expect, especially on the flavor, considering that the who's who of currently favored hops including Citra, Galaxy and Summit are on the bill. While I do wish there was a little bit more of a grainy bitterness (by way of either black patent or roasted barley), this beer is very enjoyable as is. The oats help keep the mouthfeel ridiculously smooth, and the carbonation is soft and creamy. This is a very creamy and smooth imperial oatmeal stout.

An excellent beer, a wonderfully executed hybrid between the more traditional imperials (of which aged Expedition and Abyss are my favorites) and the newer age stouts a la Eclipse or Black Tuesday. Highly recommended, though I'm not sure this beer necessarily needs to age. Drink fresh IMO. And if you can, please pair this with the Rogue River blue wrapped in pear brandy soaked grape leaves, you will not be left wanting. The combination of the brandy (especially!), the funk and the creaminess from the cheese and the flavors from the stout is simply marvelous. (2,263 characters)

Photo of tectactoe
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This one pours completely black, not much light passes through this one, even at the edges. The head is tan with a slight tiny of grey. Some wet legging and a bit of spotty lacing is left along the edges of the glass. The aroma pounds forward with a helping of creamy coffee and some light hints of cocoa nibs. Some faint vanilla sits quietly in the background somewhere, accompanied by an almost bourbon-like warmth and character. Overall, it's a bit sweet and grainy on the nose, though I'm not getting much of a citrus character. Maybe a very, very faint hint of orange peel, but nothing that really stands out or catches my attention.

Daybreak starts off with a pillow of some lightly roasted malts and immediately dives into a somewhat smokey character, with a campfire-like charred component and hefty helpings of ash on the back end. Halfway through, the citrus comes out, and in a pretty big way; a nice blast of orange zest and lemon rind rushes to the corners of my mouth and provides a solid sweetness that isn't quite strong enough to be "tart". As quickly as this citrus joined the party, it bows it head and ducks out just as quick, leading the way into an aftertaste that's a bit nutty, woody, and very roasty. Alcohol is tame, especially considering it's 10.5% ABV. Medium-heavy body with a creamy texture and a mild amount of carbonation.

Very solid stout here, with a nice, albeit somewhat strange, addition of citrus flavors. Very drinkable and smooth given the high alcohol content. This went down without a problem, although I don't know if it's worth giving up a lot to get your hands on it. Nevertheless, still a solid stout all around. (1,661 characters)

Photo of rfgetz
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rich, dark black with small cap of brown bubbles. Scent contains solid roasted and charred grain, light bits of dark bitter chocolate and a strong fresh squeezed orange note. Strong roast leads taste and chocolate, coffee and char accompany, big juicy fresh orange and orange peel, light bit of sugary sweetness with moderate bitterness join the profile, ends with a splash of dark fruit. Fuller side of medium bodied, smooth and creamy and finishes dry. What a unique brew... must be sampled to be appreciated, goes beyond a simple highly hopped stout with the strong orange notes. (590 characters)

Photo of Jwale73
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to jedwards for sharing this brew. Pours an inky black with a loose, mocha-colored head that quickly dissipates into a cluster of bubbles. Nose expresses citrus, dark malts (chocolate), char, molasses, a slight coffee character and some piny notes. Taste expresses a light charred quality and mocha flavors that slightly favor the coffee over the chocolate. The citrus present in the nose also nicely complements the other qualities without being overly assertive. Mouthfeel is medium-light with a carbonation that falls just short of crisp. The citrus also adds a nice feel without being too much in the foreground. Overall, this is a really interesting offering. I have yet to try a bad beer from this brewer; I just wish his offerings were more accessible. That said, the char and coffee flavors in this brew are really nicely complemented by the citrus. (864 characters)

Photo of cpetrone84
4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pour is jet black with creamy dark caramel head. Nose is heavier on the roast coffee, light vanilla and some touch of milk chocolate, light cherry and fair bit of citrus takes over. Body is thick, very heavy and creamy, taste is heavy roast coffee with notes of peat. There is some milk chocolate mid palate and faint sweetness in back and a slowly increasing citrus very powerful in back. It's almost like a loaded hop stout with assertive carbonation and a dry, slightly bitter finish. (487 characters)

Photo of ColForbinBC
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap, served in a HF stemmed tulip

Pours an ink black with a two finger mocha colored cap. The head stuck around for a while, never fully retreating. Some sip marks with dots and delicate lace.

The aroma is of thick chocolate, almost fudge-like with a good amount of bitter roast. A large amount of oranges cut right through everything else and invade the olfactories in a quick burst.

Much like the nose, bitter roast and fudgey chocolate hit first before a wave of citrus. The citrus bursts onto the palate, cutting right through the other flavors, and leaving a lingering bittersweet citrus flavor on top of of a touch of roast.

A medium body with moderate carbonation make this guy feel lighter than it really is. The wave of citrus is really impressive. Like a quick strike before receding.

A clean, flavorful stout with a huge rush of citrus that makes this guy unique. (882 characters)

Photo of cbutova
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Huge thanks to Emma for sharing this.

January 2014 date on the label.

A- Poured from the 12oz bottle to four glasses for the tasting with a pitch black body. Light mocha tan head forms to about a finger even on a small pour with a frothy texture. Head retention is decent as it falls to a small ring leaving spotty lace as well as a few patches.

S- Deep roast malts make up basically the entire nose of the brew for me. Dark roast maltiness, dark bitter cocoa powder, toasted oats, cereal grains and a tiny bit of an ashy burnt quality. Fair amount of hops and citrus round it all out, not sure if all of that comes from the citrus but it is nice and fresh feeling.

T- Follows the nose with a great base Imperial Stout. Roast and toast qualities really come out in all capacities with a breadth of flavors coming to mind. Notes of charred dark grains, cereal, toasted oats, rich dark chocolate, cocoa nibs, licorice and caramel. The citrus is trumped by the roast grains at first but starts to open more and more with warmth and it really adds a new dimension to stouts for me. Citrus zest oil hits the palate in the finish and compliments the deep roast grains. Slight liqueur edge that opens a lot with time.

MF- Not the thickest of all Imperial Stout bodies for me but at a moderately high chewiness after all. Carbonation at a decently high level which usually isn't that great in big stouts but without it the citrus might not shine like it does. Roasty and citrus peel bitterness in the finish.

At a certain point in the experience this beer hits a warmth where the zest, barrel and massive roast base stout open up and shine together. I personally think each element is done well and they balance and work off of each other. Another fresh, delicious HF brew, no surprise anymore. (1,792 characters)

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Daybreak from Hill Farmstead Brewery
90 out of 100 based on 60 ratings.