Ephraim | Hill Farmstead Brewery

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99
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1,039 Ratings
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BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States
hillfarmstead.com

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Ephraim (1823-1913) was our great-great grandfather; Hill Farmstead Brewery resides several hundred feet downhill from the land that he and his father settled. In his honor, this Imperial India Pale Ale is dutifully crafted from American malted barley, buckets of American hops, our ale yeast and water from our well. It is unfiltered, naturally carbonated, and double dry hopped. Intensely aromatic and saturated with resinous hop flavor, this is the ale that I dream to have shared with Ephraim.

280 Theoretical IBU

Pale Malt; Dextrose; Centennial, Chinook, Columbus, Simcoe, and Warrior hops, Ale Yeast, and our Well Water.

Added by Kegatron on 09-28-2010

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,039
Reviews:
238
Avg:
4.5
pDev:
8.22%
 
 
Wants:
1,496
Gots:
43
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,039 |  Reviews: 238
Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev -11.1%

Photo of Texasfan549
4.12/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of GRG1313
4/5  rDev -11.1%

Photo of spycow
5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of kjkinsey
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Knapp85
4.74/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

One of the best Hill Farmstead beers in my opinion. The beer is a nice golden color with a good head retention. The smell is strong with hops. The taste is well balanced between a big malt bill and even more hops to give it a potent bitterness. Overall it's outstanding, wish this one was more accessible.

 305 characters

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of oline73
4.05/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I received this from a trade and split it at Max's during Baltimore Beer Week. Poured into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a clear golden/light amber with a half finger of white head that leaves a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Sweet and extremely hoppy. Some malt, but mostly citrus hops. There is a mild burn at the end.

Taste: This beer can only be described as a hop bomb. Sweet citrus hops crush the tongue immediately. The finish is very bitter with a taste of citrus peel and some alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with tingly carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: I thought this was a good beer, but I liked Abner more when I tried that. This is intense and I couldn't have done more than one glass.

 718 characters

Photo of SocalKicks
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%

Photo of WillieThreebiers
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%

Photo of largadeer
4.75/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had a few pours from a growler thanks to Arbitrator. The growler apparently lost a few ounces of beer in transit, but that didn't seem to harm it much beyond a slight loss of carbonation.

It pours a hazy glowing peach color, capped by a finger of white froth that takes a moment to form and then slowly settles to a collar.

I was taken aback by the huge hop aroma. Tangerine, pineapple and grapefruit instantly remind me of Pliny the Younger, my gold standard for the style, but there's also a resiny/evergreen-like quality to it. There's a lightly sweet sugary (though not overtly caramelized) malt backbone, just enough sweetness to give a beer this big some substance.

Hop flavors hit the tongue first, and mirror the aroma with notes of pineapple, tangerine, grapefruit, perhaps a touch more juicy tropical fruit. It has a substantial malt character, but I only pick up a hint of sweetness before my palate is annihilated by the hugely bitter finish. The mouthfeel might be my favorite aspect of the beer, it's sharp and resiny, extremely bitter but not necessarily harsh. Truly outstanding stuff, and surprisingly easy to drink for a 10.5% monster. I hope this becomes a somewhat regular release.

 1,204 characters

Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%

Photo of mothman
4.35/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to kbutler1 for sharing this one.

Poured into Bells snifter.

Pours 1 finger of white head that fades to a thick ring. Leaves some lacing from there. Color is a clear golden orange.

Aroma: Hmm, this smells far better than any east cost XPA I have smelt. Reminds me more of west coast style. Huge pine hop profile with a large amount of citrus. Has a lot of mangoes and grapefruit flavors with a bit of orange. I get a touch of onion, but it is very faint.

Taste: Very hoppy. Floral and pine round this one out with a touch of alcohol. It also has a heavy dose of grapefruit, orange, and mango, much like the nose. There is a touch of bready malts and an light union flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation. A little boozy. Pretty bitter. Ends clean with a little heat left over.

Overall, this is a great dipa. Either I am very thirsty or this thing is that drinkable, because my glass isn't lasting long. I am glad I have finally had a DIPA from the east coast that has impressed me.

 1,025 characters

Photo of Kurmaraja
4.42/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So. Damned. Creamy. The dextrose bumps up the body but doesn't make it syrupy. The appearance is pretty much perfect; bright auburn, perfect carbonation, sticky lacing. Pine resin and grapefruit dominate the taste and aroma. Maybe some tangelo and sweeter citrus. Though far from my favorite HF hoppy beer, it's ne of the best triple IPAs I've had. My heart still belongs to Notorious though.

 392 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.62/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review altered after 2011 EBF.

Had this very fresh at EBF. The characteristics are similar to what is described below, but everything was so much more pungent. The nose absolutely exploded with raw hops that carried through to over-the-top hops in the flavor along with a really nice amount of bitterness for a seriously drinkable brew.

Old Review: 4 / 4.5 / 4 / 4.5 / 4

On tap at the Three Penny Taproom. Super-friendly staff and I'm really glad that this was still on we Amyliz4 and I made it in.

Pours a really bright orange color with two fingers of white head and a load of sticky lacing around the edges of the glass. The nose is really nice and over-the-top hoppy with a lot of pine, resin, orange peel, citrus, and some light tropical fruits.

The taste has many of the same components of the nose, though those are often overshadowed by the absolutely bruising bitterness that comes through in the mouthfeel. Citrus, tropical fruits, and a bit of pine. The feel is really, really hoppy and mixes well with the light alcohol that comes through. I'd love to try this again and will hopefully be making a trip back up North to visit all these magnificent Vermont breweries at some point soon.

 1,203 characters

Photo of jlindros
4.37/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had at Armsby Abbey Hill Farmstead takeover.

Semi clear orange nectar color, nice creamy 1 finger head fades semi slowly with nice lacing.

nose pure hop awesomeness, bit of pine, lots of citrus tropical fruit, guava, passion fruit, some earthy hop, and even a bit of candy. Some light sweet malts underneath.

Taste is more of the same hops, quite bitter, hops galore, pine, citrus, tropical fruit, fresh resin musty, little earthy, candy orange rind and pine. Big malty backbone with bit of sweetness to balance well, and hint of booze. Finish is even more bitter, little sticky but dry, lingering citrus, pine, light musty fresh hop.

Mouth is heavier bodied, decent carb, hint of booze but drinks much better than 10.5%.

Overall awesome but I think I like edward better. Nice balance, juicy hops and malts, a bit more tropical fruits would be more up my alley.

 866 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
4.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Kegatron
4.82/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I sampled this on tap at the brewery on 9/24/10 and knew that I immediately needed to grab a growler. 2 liter "genie" shaped swing-top growler into an oversized tulip glass.

Initially pouring hazy, this clears out nicely into a golden apricot color, topped with a rich foamy head that quickly settles down into a tight finger. This retains with a frothy ΒΌ finger or so which throws a robust spotty cascade of sticky lacing up on the sides of the glass. Really nice look here once this clears up. The aroma literally smells like a hop grenade went off in your nose. Grapefruit and pine cut through the nostrils like a knife, tempered on the edges by juicy tropical fruit notes (pineapple is especially strong) and sweet sugars from the malt. This is all wrapped up in a blanket of floral, herbal, dank, and spicy tones. This is just so fresh and powerful in the nose; I could literally just sit here and sniff this all night long.

The hop flavors in the taste are just unbelievably fresh and bright feeling, with a blast of bitter grapefruit and resins that stick in the mouth. The balance here is just impeccable though, with the sugary sweetness of the citrus and malts swooping in off the side to do their thing, leaving the fullness of the hop flavors behind but without a completely overly bitter bite up front either. The bitterness does come out to play big time in the backend though, with citrus rind, spice, and pine, all just smashing the finish of this and leaving back a resinous and dry feel that hammers the tongue and roof of the mouth. The mouthfeel is medium bodied in the mouth at first, with a combo of sharpness and smooth slickness from the hop oils, but the alcohol definitely adds some fuller feeling heft to this as well. Warmth hangs on the breath after each sip and gets a little borderline hot at times, especially when paired up with that intense dry-hopped finish.

With full and brilliant hop flavors, awesome balance, and an excellent drinkibility for a nearly 11% Triple IPA, it's hard to not want to compare this (and quite favorably I might add) to a certain similar beer out on the West Coast. The only drawback I could possibly find here is that there is maybe a little too much warmth coming out of the body at times but it's hard not to argue that the hop profiles here are just world class. I had the opportunity to try about five different hoppy offerings while visiting the brewery and to say that they've got a handle on these styles would be an understatement. Just awesome stuff here!

 2,534 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.55/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. Growler shared by Andrew - thanks.

A: Pours a clear straw yellow under a quarter-inch thick white head which fades to a thin cap and rim yielding some spots of lace.

N: Straight up - crushed pineapple.

T: Plenty of juicy tropical fruits. Nearly perfect balance.

M: Moderate body and medium carbonation. Dry, fruity finish.

O: Really, really nice. The ABV is so hidden, but it creeps in. I'm a believer.

 428 characters

Photo of Rifugium
3.56/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Blackback Pub, Waterbury, VT

I've had my fair share of HF beers, but for some reason this one has eluded me for years. Now I've had it, and despite it's reputation, I must say, I'm not a huge fan. I actually think the bartender may have poured me the wrong beer, because it just didn't match the bill.

Appearance-wise, the beer was tremendous. Served in a HF stem glass, slightly hazy, bright amber color with a large, foamy, white head that retained amazingly and left blankets of lacing on the glass. Aroma of somewhat muted tropical and stone fruits, musty grass, somewhat bready; none of the intensity I'd expect from a fresh IPA though. More in line with a Belgian IPA or even moderately hoppy saison (further leading me to believe it could have been a mis-pour). Unexpected hit of funkiness up front in the taste, soft peach, citrus zest, mango, pear, bready malts, slightly bitter in the aftertaste. Hmm. Yep. This was either a fresh saison or an old Ephraim. Medium body, somewhat sticky and chewy. Overall fairly drinkable, but not quite what I expected.

 1,086 characters

Photo of XmnwildX12
4.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of billab914
4.3/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. 750ml growler shared with some friends over the weekend. It poured orange in color with a thin, bubbly white head sticking to the edges of the glass.

The aroma had a bright, citrusy and juicy hop profile to it. I get notes of peach and pineapple to it mixing with a little grapefruit hoppiness. Some sweeter, almost sugary malty flavors come out in it as well.

The taste also has a juicy, citrus fruit presence to it throughout the flavor. I get a lot of peach and pineapple notes to it, with a touch of grapefruit. It finishes with some sweeter, malty, slightly candy like notes mixing with the juicy hops. It was relatively low on bitterness in the finish for the style as well.

The mouthfeel was medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Overall it was great beer of the style. It was very big on the juicy, citrusy hoppiness which I liked a lot. Out of the two I tried though this weekend I think I liked Abner slightly better. Abner seemed to balance the juicy citrus with some grapefruit and citrus rind bitterness while Ephraim was all about the juicy, fruity, sweetness. Both were pretty awesome though.

 1,137 characters

Photo of mendvicdog
4.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of vfgccp
4.48/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

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Ephraim from Hill Farmstead Brewery
4.5 out of 5 based on 1,039 ratings.
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