Damon (Bourbon Barrel Aged) - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
Damon (Bourbon Barrel Aged)Damon (Bourbon Barrel Aged)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
98
world-class

588 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 588
Reviews: 83
rAvg: 4.45
pDev: 8.76%
Wants: 1,102
Gots: 99 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 01-10-2012

Damon (1993-2004) The time spent with loved ones, now lost, seems to affect our mind and body perpetually: memories happen upon us, unsuspectingly, and bring about tears of fond remembrance. Damon was our brother – devout and patient in an age of busyness and distraction. In his honor, we crafted and conditioned this Imperial Stout in bourbon barrels from our favorite distillery. We still reflect, daily, upon our Damon and his scruffy chin of grey – of his loyalty and his love.

Aged in Blanton's bourbon barrels.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 588 | Reviews: 83
Photo of Urbancaver
4.72/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Jesus this is an amazing beer. Tried it only a few days after RARE DOS from Peg's... the most similar beer to RARE DOS I've ever had. Amazing mouthfeel. The aroma and flavour can only be described as perfect. A masterpiece from Shaun and one I'm looking forward to having again

Photo of Sean9689
3.78/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared at Perennial.

A - Pours black, mocha-colored head, wisps, thin collar.

S - This is a Blanton's/bourbon bomb straight away! After the huge booze, there's roasted malts, chocolate, light bread, caramel, oak, very subtle hops, and burnt sugars. The booze flairs my nostrils...woah.

T - I think this beer needs to additional cellar time to lose some of the booze. The palate offers lots of bourbon, oak, chocolate, light vanilla, caramel, and toasted malts. The alcohol is very noticeable, which detracts from the rest of the beer. Finish is chocolate and booze with light oak. Really more like 3.75 here.

M - Medium to full body, good carbonation, rich, creamy finish.

O - While I like this beer, I want to like it more. I think another 6 months to a year of additional cellar time will do this beer some good. I will revisit then and update when I have it again. Right now, I suggest holding your bottles unless you really want a bunch of alcohol with your RIS (which some people prefer).

In summary, good now but is destined to be great in the future.

Photo of afksports
3.4/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This reminded me a little of Bell's Black Note. In that they are both hyped barrel aged imperial stouts that underwhelmed. Body was slightly thinner than expected, alcohol was hot and up front, but way boozier than 10% abv should be. Cheap quality bourbon vanilla taste without rounded molasses notes. Sugars found in the middle were syrupy and wet, although there was a nice chocolate component present. Finish didn't carry the roastiness you'd expect from the middle of the taste. But probably the worst was that the booze was overwhelming and clouded by oak, ash and carbon.

Worst part, those pieces - oak, heat, bourbon, stout base, weren't integrated very well. Maybe this was sitting in a hot place before we opened the bottle? I'd tend to give the brewery the benefit of the doubt, based on the tremendous stuff they've put out before.

And that said, for all the negatives, Damon still drank as a solid beer. It did the style adequately (despite the oak), and I'd quaff it again. Especially on tap. But when there's shelf stuff like Oak Aged Yeti available that tops it, I'd only drink Damon as a local find, not as a must-seek "gem".

Photo of SamuelJackson45
4.72/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a dark brown to a light black in color with small carbonation barley a finger head.

S- This baby smell of the finest bourbon in the world with fresh smell of vanilla and oak tannins even a slight of roasty scent.

T- Aww pure heaven with the flavors of good bourbon , vanilla , honey and caramel that so sticky goodness. Even had hint of light milk chocolate taste in the aftertaste.

M- This have a nice smooth to velvety goodness that just wraps around the tounge and just clinging on every minute.

O- This is one hell of beer. IMO it ranks with the best and should climb the latter pretty fast. This is a must try beer. Cheers....

Photo of Jeffo
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Was lucky enough to get a couple bottles of this, one from jedwards and the othe from jbeatty. Thanks heaps gents. I thought I'd take the HF challenge and drink them both on the same night. What a treat / mistake that was...

From a 500ml bottle into a snifter.
Vintage 2011
Bottle 451 of 864

APPEARANCE: A sludgy black, thick pour yields a small, tight, tan head with very good retention. Head fades to a good wisp and ring. Pitch black in color with no carbonation evident. A swirling wisp and ring remain until the end and leaves dots of lacing down the glass. Thick and nasty looking. This is a black, black, thick, evil looking stout beer.

SMELL: Big nose on this one for sure. Roasted malts, dark chocolate and lots of bourbon barrel. Oak, vanilla and milk chocolate in there, as well as touches of toffee and molasses. This is phenomenal, though perhaps a touch more base beer is needed for a perfect score.

TASTE: This is a perfect score. Period. Roasted and caramel malt up front, with lots of bourbon barrel at the swallow. Bourbon, oak, vanilla and milk choclate with some bitter dark chocolate and toffee sweetness as well. Big, bold and lingering aftertaste of bourbon barrel, bitter dark chocolate, sweet molasses and roasted flavors just doesn't quit. This is phenomenally ballanced and absolutely decadent. Love it.

PALATE: Full body, thick and heavy on the palate, with lower levels of carbonation. Creamy on the palate, goes down fine with a bit of a bite at the swallow, though well measured, and finishes slightly sticky. Some heat lingers. Could be a touch smoother, but it's full, heavy, and plenty dominating.

OVERALL: Well, I hate to say it, but this is perhaps the best barrel aged imperial stout to have ever crossed my lips. I can't imagine it getting any closer to perfection than this. A massive, evil look, a wonderfully bold and balanced nose, flavors to write home to your mom about, and a heavy and meanacing palate to boot, this is just a nasty beer that every BA stout lover should get to try. Actually, since I would love to get more of it, forget everything I just said about it. Nevermind. It sucks. Thanks again gents! Send more asap. I am thirsty.

Photo of brystmar
3.85/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by a generous BA at our tasting last weekend.

Aroma boasts dark, strongly roasted malts (almost burnt) with subtle notes of bourbon. Hints of chocolate in the background too.

Starts off roasty but gets immediately blindsided by booze and, to a lesser extent, bourbon. Chocolate tries to save the day towards the end, but the alcohol prevents it from finishing cleanly. A touch ashy overall too.

Truly surprised at how messy this stout was. If memory serves, my two pours of it on draft at EBF were considerably better and more balanced. Booze character then wasn't the sore thumb it's become in the bottle. *Generously* rating it 4.0 on taste because 1) I recall my EBF pours being quite good, and 2) time might smooth these rough edges.

Our 9-person group's opinion on Damon was (surprisingly) unanimous: this is a hot mess. Bourbon isn't integrated well, nor is the booze character. A tremendous disappointment.

Still, Damon's a decent RIS overall, though it falls far short of my expectations from Hill Farmstead. Founders Imperial Stout truly is a better beer right now, but that could easily change in a year or so.

Photo of johnnnniee
4.2/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled at EBF Saturday afternoon. Solid black color with an off white head. Aromas of bourbon, oak, vanilla, chocolate, coffee, and caramel. Flavor follows the aroma quite well with a bit of a dry finish. Light body and level of carbonation with a sweet slick mouthfeel. Smells wonderful tastes pretty good but is a bit thin and finishes kind of dry. I’m a bit disappointed with this one because the other Hill stuff I’ve had has been exceptional. Maybe I can revisit this after the bottles come out.
I was able to try this again out of a bottle on 5/11/2012, thanks Matt. Pours a solid black with a thinnish tan head. Smells a lot of bourbon with chocolate, oak, vanilla, coffee, roast, and a hint of smoke. Flavor is big and bold with the bourbon and the alcohol that comes with it. Roasty chocolate and coffee with hints of vanilla and oak in there. Medium to thick body with a light level of carbonation and a chewy sweet mouthfeel. I certainly enjoyed the sample I had out of the bottle much better than at the fest. This is a damn good stout and I do love me some stout. Its a shame these beers are so hard to come by. My rating reflects my impression of the bottle version.

Photo of billab914
4.3/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to IrishColonial for sharing a 500ml bottle of this with us the other night. It poured close to black in color with a thin, frothy tan head to it. The head quickly dissipated down to a thin ring of bubbles concentrating around the edges of the glass.

The aroma shows a lot of roasted, smoky and slightly burnt malts to it right off the bat. The bourbon is pretty reserved in it, but adds a little complexity to the background. There is also a little bit of a fruity, almost wine like quality coming out as it warmed A decent amount of alcohol shows in it, but not too bad.

The taste also has some bold, bitter, roasted malts with a touch of burnt smokiness to them. Again, it's pretty light on the bourbon but it does give it a little warming alcohol presence. I get some creamy sweetness adding some good balance to the dark malts. A little bit of a fruity, wine like character lingers in the finish.

The mouthfeel is creamy and medium bodied with carbonation being moderate. Overall it was a very good beer. Great range of flavors to it and it comes together very well.

Photo of Rhettroactive
4.35/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From 500mL bottle to Devil's Backbone glass on 5/5/12
*From notes

-- Another solid pull from the cellar of IrishColonial --

A: Unlike HF's BoT, this is broodingly dark in appearance. Rich bootstrap brown to almost black at it's core. A healthy pour yields a .5 finger head that leads to a decent collar and no real signs of lacing.

S: A bit odd at first. This really needs to warm, allowing the beer to open up and blossom. As it does, I'm overwhelmed with charred hops, rich dark malts, a splash of warm dark chocolate brownie batter and medium toast.

T: I get the feeling that the folks at HF really like their smoke, as this starts out a bit smokey - just as their Jim and BoT do. I'm also getting a good bit of earth and a solid bite from the hop oil. Hints of medium body red wine and their barrels linger around in my mouth, though I'm not sure if they used wine barrels. On the finish, I get some subdued, mature bourbon and hints of fresh oak.

M: Extremely rich and dense. It's not BCBS, but it doesn't have to be. Luxurious texture adds to the complexity of the beer. The carbonation is spot-on.

O: Another winner from HF, whose seemingly on quite a roll. Intricate and delicate, yet big and bold. My hats are off to everyone involved in Damon, as it really is unlike any other RIS I've encountered. Heartily recommended.

Photo of raveskdr
4.7/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Split this beer with starrdogg after we picked it up from HF. Poured into a snifter.

A - Jet black. No other way to describe it. Really lacking in carbonation even after a super aggressive pour. Slight bubbles make their way to the top of the beer.

S - A lot of vanilla and wood on the nose. There is a scent there that I can't really put my finger on, but it just smelled a tad odd and out of place. Not unpleasant, it just didn't mesh.

T - Wow. Just, wow. TONS of roasted coffee, chocolate, vanilla. They all intermingle perfectly together. Slightly better than BoT.

M - Smooth and silky, no alcohol on the back end. An incredibly drinkable beer for being a barreled stout.

O - Another winner. Simply a beautifully done beer. His barreled beers can compete with anyone. Worth every last bit of the hype.

Photo of landhoney
4.75/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Excellent beer, to me the unique thing about this beer is the finish; chocolate, coconut, vanilla, citrus(?) but not in a sour way at all, just a hint of something maybe from the hops(?). Mouthfeel was excellent as well. Up front its definitely stout, bourbon, wood, etc. all very well balanced, on the sweet side but certainly not too sweet. Overall an amazing beer, and uniquely complex in the finish especially.

Photo of jmarsh123
4.1/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours almost pitch black with a small tan head that fades into a wisp.

Smells of sweet bourbon, chocolate, vanilla and coconut. No one aroma overpowers the others.

Taste is similar. Starts out chocolately before showing some of the barrel characteristics. Coconut and vanilla especially come to the forefront and increase as it warms. Bourbon adds just a kiss of a boozy flavor to it, but isn't the main feature.

Fairly thick and viscous mouthfeel, something HF always nails on their IPA's and does so again on this.

Overall this is a very good beer, but hardly the mind blowing experience many others made me expect. I feel it could use some coffee or some other bitter roasted malt to balance it out more. There are lots of good flavors, but they are all on the sweeter side. Still good, but would probably shoot to being one of my favorite with a touch of balance.

Photo of largadeer
3.92/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Shared by dsgolovin. Thanks!

Appearance: Black as pitch with oily viscosity. A hard pour yields a finger of crusty brown foam that recedes slowly.

Smell: When cold, a lot of bourbon, oak and black licorice with milder notes of dark chocolate. Malt pops out more as it warms up, bringing chocolate to the forefront along with a good amount of molasses and tar. Smells pretty good, but I could do without the ashy, tar-like malt character.

Palate: Quite a bit of ashy, tar-like dark malt flavor. Bittersweet chocolate, molasses, a bit of dark fruit. The malt character reminds me quite a bit of Scandinavian imperial stouts. Bourbon and oak are nicely integrated, and blend well with the huge malt backbone. Mildly bitter with well masked alcohol, just a bit of heat in the finish. Mouthfeel is the highlight of the beer - it's full and viscous but not under-attenuated.

Overall: Very good, but I didn't like it as much as I was expecting to. Birth of Tragedy was more enjoyable to me.

Photo of mulder1010
4.62/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

500 ML bottle poured into a tulip
Thanks to Alex for the bottle

A-- Poured a dark brown and settled black. Just a touch of dark mocha colored film. Lots of bubbles and a bit of a collar. No more than film even with aggressive swirling.

S-- Bourbon, oak, dark chocolate, vanilla, toasted coconut and oak. Well meshed smell and very rich at that.

T-- Thin taste. Thought I would get more out of the body than this. Picked up a whole lot after a bit. Rich, thick, and out of this world after 10-15 minutes of air. See smell for the flavors in this. Just richer after a bit.

M-- Rich, thick and coating. Long lasting flavor and really the strength of the beer. Coconut really picks up in the mouth. Not as thick as other BA stouts but man how it feels is excellent. Medium bodied and low carbonation.

O-- Outstanding beer. Just outstanding. Well hidden AVB, long lasting flavor and just a kick ass beer. A touch too thin for me but seriously made up for it in the feel. Well balanced and well thought out. Must try beer

Photo of MrKennedy
4.77/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Huge thanks to mulder1010 for opening this up. 500ml, bottle 638 of 864, 2011 vintage.

Pours a not quite black, dark with a tan head of foam that falls and leaves tears on the side of the Great Divide tulip.

Smell is rich, with bourbon, chocolate, vanilla and oak, coconut and toasted coconut all there. Nothing too over the top, all mingling well and still able to get both the base beer and the effect of the barrel.

Tastes of chocolate, some vanilla, coconut with a touch of bourbon and oak that keep it ticking along nicely.

No booze, beautiful coating mouthfeel. Not the thickest body, but what is there coats your mouth amazing well, yet has you back and ready for another sip not too long afterwards.

First Hill Farmstead beer and went into it with great expectations. It still managed to excel, brilliant. Massively enjoyable. Refined, tasty and great balance. Very enjoyable to drink. Hats off to mulder1010 for this! One amazing brew.

Photo of starrdogg
4.39/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer pours black with almost no head and pretty serious lacing. Smell is a really nice mix of the barrel and the base beer. Bourbon comes through initially, but there's also a nice amount of roastiness in there as well. Flavor is really nice, the base beer is a very nice mix of roast and chocolate, and the bourbon/oak flavors blend with it very nicely to give it a nice sweetness and smoothness. Bourbon isn't super prominent, but still plays a nice role. Mouthfeel is medium-thick bodied and the carbonation isn't the issue I thought it might be after seeing the beer. Overall this a really nice Imperial Stout, I'm very impessed and another hit from Hill Farmstead.

Photo of HopHead84
4.67/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

4/12/2012

500ml bottle poured into a snifter. Bottle #165/864. Thanks for the opportunity to try this.

A: Flows like motor oil out of the body with much viscosity, yielding a finger of dark brown foam that gives way to scattered lacing.

S: A medley of dark chocolate, brown sugar, bourbon, and vanilla. I get a firm oak profile with a big dark malt presence, notes of dark fruit, and licorice. I detect the faintest essence of smoke with a whisper of maple. The bourbon is present but not overpowering, allowing the quality of the base beer to be showcased as well. The roastiness is tame, which is how I like it. Coffee is a shadow.

T: Lightly earth up front with an upper low bitterness and a dash of alcohol. Bourbon quickly takes the helm, guiding me into a tranquil sea of brown sugary dark chocolate and vanilla. This sea is inhabited by scattered colonies of blackstrap molasses and licorice. The beer has a big dark malt presence without any harh or overly roasted notes. The beer finishes with bourbonic oak, brown sugary vanilla dark chocolate, and an increased but not inappropriate level of alcohol.

M: The beer is full in body with a moderate level of carbonation. The mouthfeel is chewy, sticky, viscous, and silky, with notable palate warming. Really excellent feel for the style, and considering this is barrel aged I'm even more impressed.

Overall: An excellent beer all around. I raise my glass to Damon and think back on my beloved dog lost not long ago.

Photo of codysjb
4.65/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hill Farmstead Damon.
I was the first one at the release at 9 am and got to meet all the brewers before anyone else showed up (was pretty cool). Most people in line were pretty cool too despite the fact that certain individuals felt the need to rush to the front of the line when more than 20 other people were there before them.
Bottle 280/864
Poured into my CBS glass
A: Pours a jet black with no head. Some small lacing that it retains on the top of the beer with some bubbles.
S: Bourbon, caramel, coffee all rolled into one. The Bourbon is most prevalent.
T: Lots of bourbon but not overpowering. Some notes of Carmel and chocolate linger. Overall there’s a lot of bourbon right up front and not a ton going on after that.
M: Bourbon, pretty much entirely bourbon flavor. Not as much going on as bourbon county and there’s really one flavor and not a lot of change.
O: Great beer. I think I prefer Bourbon County but it’s better than 99% of everything else I drink. Once more Hill Farmstead does and amazing beer.

Photo of Jwale73
4.42/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle shared by jedwards. Bottle 425/864. Pours an inky black with no head. Nose expresses bourbon, dark malts, buttery notes and ethanol towards the back. Taste expresses bourbon, but not too bold, with roasted malt and some sweetness. Mouthfeel is medium-light in body, slightly oily in consistency with some residual heat. This is an exceptional, incredibly tasty and well-balanced BA stout. If you are expecting a big bourbon bomb, you will not find it in Damon; however, the way this beer comes together is quite fantastic.

Photo of Gushue3
4.75/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Really excited to finally try this beer, a good way to end my vacation. Poured into Hill Farmstead bulb

A Pours opaque from the bottle and the same in the glass. Smaller brown head forms above the body and slowly comes down leaving bubbles and froth on top. Nice signs of carbonation when I play with it and this beer looks pretty nice, big surprise from HF.

S Sweet malts and a nice dose of bourbon are the first thing I notice. Sweet chocolate and a subtle roast are there

T Follows the nose to a tee. Sweet roasty malts, chocolate,sweet bourbon that is well integrated. Vanilla-y bourbon on the finish makes this one very nice and complex stout. Not one flavor overpowers another, each sip is a little different.

M Big heavy mouthfeel with a low carbonation feel. pretty much how I like my stouts to feel. Slick and creamy, this is an enjoyable sipper

O Really enjoyable stout. Flavor profile is really something else

Photo of Gosox8787
4.67/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I decided to open this beer for my 500th review on BA. Definitely seems worthy of the occasion, especially considering how awesome Birth of Tragedy was.

Presentation: 500 mL waxed and capped bottle poured into my new Kate the Great tulip, which seemed pretty appropiate. Served at cellar temperature after peeling the wax off.

Appearance: Dark brown to black on color, pretty standard for a barrel aged stout. Leaves a nice, dark brown lacing around the edge of the glass.

Aroma: Big dark chocolate and fudge cake upfront. A nice slight burn from the bourbon. Vanilla, bourbon and coconut are all noticable and add nice complexity throughout. Really balanced for being so young.

Taste: The chocolate and bourbon notes really play off each other well. There is some sweet caramel and vanilla. Lots of espresso and coffee notes that add a contrasting bitterness. The barrel aging is done well and does not make the beer too unbalanced or hot. The bourbon really works and does not overpower the base beer, which seems rich and complex on its own. Incredibly easy to drink as well.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and creamy, coats the mouth very well.

Overall, a really well done and delicious barrel aged stout. Incredibly balanced and drinkable. Definitely one of the better barrel aged stouts I've had. Definitely hope that Hill Farmstead does this more than once.

Photo of 05Harley
4.6/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Vintage: 2011
Bottle # 699 of 864
(315 calories)

Price - $20/500ml bottle

The inaugural RIS brewed by Hill Farmstead brewery. I've been waiting a long time for this one.

Pours pitch black and I mean midnight black. A one finger brown creamy head follows and fills the top of the glass with red edges. A looker, hell ya like a Victoria Secrets model dressed in lingerie. The foam appears to be a little more modest and retreats to a creamy film. Left behind is polka dotted lacing at a stand still on my snifter due to the sticky nature. The appearance is a dead ringer for the style.

Let's talk about the nose, strong and full of aroma. Chocolate, bourbon, caramel, oak and dark cherries. A faint but noticeable roastiness works it way through but can't overcome the sweet sensation. Highly quaffable and simply amazing.

Tastebud sex baby! Flavors of chocolate and soft vanilla bourbon come on first followed by layers of extras such as buttery caramel, molasses and various dark fruits. The bourbon flavor is as close to perfect as possible without being overdone. A slight booziness is noticeable but quickly forgotten with the next sip.

The mouthfeel is silky smooth and maintains that creamy look with the feel. The body is medium with low carbonation and very little bitterness. Finishes tangy and moderately dry. A little more bittering hops please..

Overall am I biased due to it being brewed by a local, your f***ing right I'am but I'll take the hit on this one. As I poured the final glass I couldn't help but feel a little disappointed. This was it. The bottle is empty and the experience is over. I think this feeling is what it's all about, keep them begging for more. The last time I felt like this I was enjoying another local favorite RIS "Kate The Great". Phenomenal job Shaun and thank you for the experience.

Photo of claaark13
4.53/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Chilled, set out for about 15 minutes and poured into a HF tulip...both the bottle and tulip provided by jedwards (badass). Bottle #639.

A - Pours black with a very slow rising, minimal head. The head never really develops and remains as lingering lacing throughout. Returns upon some sifting. The lacing retention keeps it looking good.

S - Traces of oak, chocolate and dark fruits. Nothing is too strong at all. Nice, but muted.

F - Slight oak, vanilla, cocoa, dryness from the oak that has some sweetness to balance, and then a nice cocoa/vanilla finish. Wow. There is complexity yet so much balance and smoothness.

M - Thicker side of medium, low-medium carbonation, very silky. Although the body feels so nice, it is still a little light on the tongue.

O - HF does it again. I'm having a tough time figuring out the difference between this as an RIS and Birth as a Porter. The only real difference in the two are the flavors....and a little bit in the appearance. Fantastic all around. I wish I had a case of this.

Photo of rudzud
4.57/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Waited in line for a few hours outside of Hill Farmstead to get this beer. Was the first person in line. Few in the cellar and one to crack now, the day before Kate Day. Poured into my Duvel tulip. Bottle 799/864

A - Pours a deep, rich almost oily black colour. Definately is clear, I could see that in the stream, but as it collects in the tulip it is inpenitrable by light. There was a half finger deep dark mocha head but that disappeared rather quickly to leave a very, very thin halo.

S - Aroma is very rich and inviting. Some sweet malts, nice chocolate roast. Lots of rich mellow bourbon on this one. Clearly a good bourbon with some nice earthy vanilla wood. There is some slight alcohol burn on the end.

T - Very smooth and mellow. Nice roasted malts and chocolate. Dark chocolate. Dark chocolate that is wonderfully intermixed with smooth good quality bourbon. Nice bourbon and oak along with some vanilla. There is a very slight warm booze bourbon finish to it.

M - Mouthfeel is very nice. Rich, creamy, thick and silky smooth. Practically no bourbon heat at all on the finish but all the nice bourbon qualities.

O - Overall, yet another excellent limited release from Hill Farmstead. Their stuff is well worth seeking out. Delicious beer that will only improve even more with age.

Photo of drabmuh
4.55/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by yourefragile because he thinks I'm fragile, poured into a Hill Farmstead becher because that's the only HF glass I have and drank through a straw because there was a baby on my head at the time, all of this actually happened.

Beer is black with a nice tan head of small bubbles, moderate retnetion, low carbonation, some lacing, looks nice.

Aroma is interesting, not as bourbon forward as one might expect but excellent because I can smell both the bourbon and the yeast, mild roast, sweetness, chocolate perhaps?

Beer is medium in body, creamy, sweet, mildly oaky and bourbony, tastes nice, an interesting beer. I commented that it is slightly Black Albert like and people didn't disagree. I'd have it again, a very nice beer.

Damon (Bourbon Barrel Aged) from Hill Farmstead Brewery
98 out of 100 based on 588 ratings.