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Daybreak - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
DaybreakDaybreak

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

261 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 261
Reviews: 58
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 8.63%
Wants: 196
Gots: 50 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

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

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: bark on 09-28-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 261 | Reviews: 58 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.54/5  rDev -15.1%

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.

UCLABrewN84, Oct 28, 2013
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -4.1%

djrn2, Mar 04, 2013
Photo of Thorpe429
4/5  rDev -4.1%

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.

Thorpe429, Dec 17, 2011
Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev -4.1%

zestar, Apr 23, 2014
Photo of nmann08
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

nmann08, Mar 12, 2012
Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev -4.1%

acurtis, Feb 03, 2012
Photo of ygtbsm94
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

ygtbsm94, Mar 13, 2012
Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev -4.1%

spycow, Jan 13, 2013
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

westcoastbeerlvr, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of TMoney2591
3.8/5  rDev -8.9%

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...

TMoney2591, Jan 07, 2013
Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev -4.1%

largadeer, Jan 14, 2013
Photo of SocalKicks
4/5  rDev -4.1%

SocalKicks, Apr 21, 2014
Photo of Kegatron
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%

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.

Kegatron, Sep 10, 2012
Photo of MasterSki
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%

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.

MasterSki, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of drabmuh
4.15/5  rDev -0.5%

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.

drabmuh, Mar 26, 2012
Photo of jlindros
4.4/5  rDev +5.5%

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

jlindros, Jan 29, 2012
Photo of Rifugium
3.79/5  rDev -9.1%

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.

Rifugium, May 18, 2014
Photo of oline73
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%

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.

oline73, Feb 09, 2012
Photo of Rochefort10nh
5/5  rDev +19.9%

Rochefort10nh, Nov 21, 2011
Photo of InspectorBob
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

InspectorBob, Jan 01, 2012
Photo of corby112
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%

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.

corby112, Nov 30, 2011
Photo of yourefragile
4.58/5  rDev +9.8%

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.

yourefragile, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of orangesol
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

orangesol, Apr 27, 2014
Photo of stakem
3.6/5  rDev -13.7%

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.

stakem, Sep 13, 2012
Photo of afsdan
5/5  rDev +19.9%

afsdan, Sep 02, 2014
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Daybreak from Hill Farmstead Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 261 ratings.