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Twilight Of The Idols | Hill Farmstead Brewery

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Twilight Of The IdolsTwilight Of The Idols

Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Twilight of the Idols is our winter porter. We brew Twilight each autumn, with a touch of locally roasted coffee and cinnamon, and age it on a blend of select vanilla beans. Originally conceived with a friend in 2009 while brewing in Denmark, the name of this annual release is inspired by the title of one of the last texts written by one of our philosophical idols, Friedrich Nietzsche.

Added by kingcrowing on 10-28-2010

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Reviews: 183 | Ratings: 1,030
Photo of VelvetExtract
4.46/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A-Looks like chocolate milk right after a violent stir from a spoon. Milk chocolate color with a cluster of large bubbles atop the body. Completely opaque.

S-Nose is not incredibly intense but it displays a perfectly crafted aroma of coffee with cream. Mocha aroma along with some French vanilla. Smells creamy.

T-The flavor is very roasty and delicious. Espresso beans along with both milk and dark chocolate. Bitter coffee notes are balanced by a lactic milky taste. A robustly flavored Porter.

M-Feels like a Stout. Pretty viscous. Full bodied. Carbonation is very soft. Oily and creamy.

O/D-Awesome. Such a treat to try. One of the more imbibable dark brews I have had. Creamed coffee in beer form. Very happy. This brewery cannot do wrong!

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Photo of xenjoiii
4.3/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap; poured into a tulip at the Good Life.

A: Black body with a small dark khaki head that quickly faded into a thin layer of film around the side of the glass.

S: Roasted coffee and bitter chocolate

T: A combination of strong coffee and roasted malts dominate the front of the palate. Faint notes of vanilla and cinnamon begin to emerge towards the middle of the mouth. The beer has a nice bitter chocolate finish. Excellent porter.

M: Lightly carbonated. Silky mouthfeel.

O: As previously stated this is an excellent porter. Definitely one of the best I have had to date.

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Photo of socon67
4.27/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Black pour with a cream colored foam

S - Nice scent of chocolate, coffee, and rown sugar.

T - Hearty, robust porter with plenty of flavor. Malt tastes a bit more like an english porter, but the chocolate and coffee flavors are up front and consistent.

M - This one is very smooth for a hearty porter. Feels lighter than you would think.

O - Liked this one alot. Great example of a porter that could pass for a hearty stout.

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Photo of ghostwalker
4.42/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler fill from the source. Nice drive if you have the time!

A: Beautiful chocolate brown body with a dark brown head.

S: Nose is deep, dark, rich chocolate malt. Just scrumptious.

T: Flavor is smooth and rich chocolate with a noticeable spice contribution. Molasses, pumpkin pie, cinammon. Truly a wonderful sipper.

M: Slick and smooth. Even leaves a smooth residue.

O: Very nice porter. I'm sure I didn't get all of the complexity that is in there, but I really enjoyed this brew. One of my favorite porters ever.

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Photo of axeman9182
4.22/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Cafe D'Alsace, and served in a tall thin glass.

Twilight of the Idols pours a solid black, with about a finger of mocha foam left crowning the beer. Head retention is just average, and there's a little bit of lacing left stuck around the glass. The nose is nice, dominated by milk chocolate with a strong spicy cinnamon presence. The flavor profile takes things to the next level though, starting with a creamy chocolate open. Cinnamon comes in for a short time in the mid palate, before coffee and more chocolate close things off. The finish is like the liquid equivalent of snacking on chocolate covered coffee beans. The mouthfeel is also top notch, very full and creamy for a 7.5% beer, with a subtle and understated carbonation. I'd be shocked if there weren't a healthy dose of oats in the grain bill, because the body is just that silky smooth. Twilight of the Idols was the first non hoppy beer I've had from Hill Farmtead, and it left me just as impressed with them as I was by their outstanding IPAs.

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Photo of mltobin
4.42/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Twilight of... was served on-tap in Worcester MA.

Appearance is black with a light brown head. Upon smelling this, you know right away that you are in for a treat. It has vanilla and coffee on the nose, some malts. Then, with a taste and there is more of the coffee and vanilla, along with some cinnamon and some other winter spices. Roasted malts continue in the taste too. This is very well balanced and drinks easy, a smooth texture and finish. It would be great to drink a glass of this alongside chocolate chip cookies. A fantastic porter and well suited to a cold night in New England.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
4.05/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap, served in a HF stemmed tulip

Pours a near black with a thin dark khaki cap. Bit of a creamy cap as it clings to the sides and leaves faint sip marks.

The aroma is of roast, dark chocolate, vanilla beans, fresh coffee and a faint hint of cinnamon lays low. There is a fresh citrus hop presence that pokes through all of the other aromas.

Up front, the roast, dark chocolate, and fresh coffee take the lead before a rush of citrus and a finish of roast, vanilla, and cinnamon. Some citrus lingers, but the lingering flavors are mainly roast and cinnamon.

Full bodied porter, rich and creamy. The feel is really the best part of this beer. So smooth for how big it is.

This is a fine porter that I would seek out again. Rich, bold flavors, a nice hop profile and the added touch of cinnamon for a little flair.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.47/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap @ Lord Hobo (Cambridge, MA) on 2/3/12. Served in a cervoise.

Pours black, with a thin mocha colored head. This retains with some creamy ringing around the edges, leaving back a nice enough looking cascade of spotty lacing behind. Chocolate, vanilla, and cinnamon sit right at the forefront, with flavorful roasted coffee flavors moving in next, before it is all undercut by a floral green citrus presence. There’s just a nice ebb and flow to the nose, with the flavors intertwining beautifully here.

The taste is just as rich, with chocolate, toffee, and dark burnt grains spreading out into more of a roasted espresso presence. Hops are bit more assertive here as well, with a profile of green citric bitterness. The vanilla addition really works nicely here, as it helps smooth out some of the rough edges from the hops and roast but they still return in the finish, with a combination of citric bitterness and a dry charred feel. Cinnamon is spread throughout, with me probably picking it up in backend and finish of the profile the most. The mouthfeel is full bodied, with a big mouth filling firm creaminess to the carbonation which pops that roast and hops on the tongue. This gets a much more smooth and silky feeling along the back, combining with that ridiculously well hid ABV to get this a extra creamy feel that goes down effortlessly.

I’ve been anxious to try this one for a while now and man, I was impressed! I just loved the combo of flavors involved here, chocolate, vanilla, cinnamon, with roast and hops adding a bit of an edge to things. But this was so well balanced and smooth overall. Wow, I love their takes on American Porters from here. Just tremendous stuff!

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Photo of Damian
4.62/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank on-tap at Lord Hobo, Cambridge, MA
Served in a cervoise

The beer poured super oily and nearly pitch black. A tight, one-finger head of saddle brown froth topped the liquid. The head quickly dissipated to a clingy ring of foam.

Super strong notes of freshly ground coffee beans dominated the nose. A touch of roast was also noticeable. Hints of vanilla. Straightforward yet so amazing.

The flavor profile was rich and robust. Coffee notes were again quite apparent, but they was more bitter and roasty than in the aroma. Roasted malts came through strong on the front end. Some sweet caramel malts as well. Touch of vanilla and spice in the center. Faint notes of dark chocolate. The finish was roasty and moderately bitter. Overall, this was a very well balanced beer.

The mouthfeel was fuller bodied for the style. Quite slick and oily. Creamy and silky smooth on the palate.

After trying Twilight Of The Idols and Birth of Tragedy (which is the barrel-aged version of Twilight) on back-to-back nights, I can confirm that these beers are entirely different beasts. While I loved the bourbon notes and the overall intensity of Tragedy, Twilight definitely had more coffee and vanilla nuances (and more carbonation). Like nearly all of Hill Farmstead's offerings, this beer is fantastic.

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Photo of andrewinski1
4.23/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Crop. Served in a nonic glass with a small dark tan head. The color is very black.

The aroma is not very strong, but some mildly sweet chocolate.

The taste is excellently rounded with lots of sweet chocolate and vanilla. The finish has a nice coffee emphasis without leaving any harsh bitterness.

The body is medium with a nice soft carbonation; this is a little smooth.

The flavor is unbeleivable here. Hill Farmstead remains one of my all time favorites.

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Photo of tempest
4.3/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had a glass at the Farmhouse in Burlington VT. Damn, that's a porter. The coffee and vanilla are wonderfully blended into the beer. So many coffee porters and stouts go too heavy on the java, and even get a stale taste. This beer takes a great cup of joe, adds a dash of subtle vanilla, and still brings a great porter. The malt brough a dark, chocolate character with a sharp roasted edge that's balanced by the sweet vanilla. The beer is formidable, but never too heavy. Find this porter.

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Photo of iadler
4.15/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml growler courtesy of dciBA. Much appreciated!

A- Pours a deep black with a small light mocha head that dissipates into a thin cap. Some spots of lacing are left behind.

S- Freshly roasted coffee beans, dark chocolate, roasted malt and vanilla.

T- Coffee beans with dark chocolate, vanilla, start anice and some roasted malt in the finish.

M- Low to medium carbonation with a smooth rich body.

O- A smooth and easy to drink porter. The flavors complement each-other as nothing was too dominant. The spices weren't as evident as I thought they would be, but still another solid offering from Hill Farmstead.

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Photo of Retail1LO
4.12/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a sampler from a 750mL swingtop. Pours jet black with a thin head. Nose is roasty and sweet. Taste is mildly smokey with a nice tinge of bitter ess. Mouthfeel is pretty decent. Well carbonated, slightly astringent. Im not a huge porter fan, but this is one of the beat examples of the style I've had.

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

750 ml growler. review from notes from a week or so ago.

pours black as a starless night with an avg mocha head that laces well while quickly settling to a thin film.

coffee, vanilla, molasses, a touch of cinnamon as it warms (though I'm not sure I would have noticed it without reading it had it in there). sweet, roasty, and balanced.

smoooth. vanilla, molasses, day-old coffee. a touch of a cinnamon cuts through the sweetness on the finish.

velvety smooth, medium bodied with a subtle carbonation.

an easy-drinking beer that has plenty of flavor, is well balanced, and is slightly complex. A very good beer, but it doesn't wow me as much as a few other Hill Farmstead beers.

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Photo of pwoods
4.22/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Kels bf for picking this up for me.

750ml growler poured into a snifter.

A: Pours pitch black with no light. Moderate head with only some retention. Decent lacing.

S: lots of fresh brewed coffee with a hint of vanilla but with a pepper/chili kind of spice... Though I don't think there's any in this beer. Some light roast.

T/M: Coffee is big but not dominate. Vanilla is mild and not very sweet, as well as the spices. Roast is slightly bigger. Body is medium full to full and creamy with medium to mild carbonation.

D: Pretty drinkable for the weight of the body, but everything is very balanced and pretty tasty.

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Photo of cbutova
3.95/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On- tap at Armsby. Reviewed from notes.

A- Black pour into a pint glass. Tan head with good size and retention. A decent amount of lace.

S- Porter base with a pretty big dark fruit, cinnamon and general holiday spice feel. Roast malt, cocoa and coffee in the background.

T- Holiday spiced porter with a nice earthy cinnamon bark and vanilla flavor. The dark fruit flavor is big here once again over cocoa and roast malt.

MF- Silky feel with low but smooth carbonation. Oily and warm feel.

A good porter with very noticeable cinnamon bark, vanilla and spiced feel.

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Photo of ggilman
4.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured vigorously from a HFS growler to a Sebago Brewing Company tulip glass.

Deep dark black, much blacker than Twilight! If I swirl the beer in the light I can pick out some faint chestnut around the edges. Minimal mocha head, with a little brook trout patterned lacing. Vanilla comes through big in the nose, followed by coffee grounds and then kahlua. Some coffee roast, but everything is overshadowed by vanilla bean. So silky smooth. Vanilla, bourbon, and coffee. Rich and chewy. Milk chocolate, root beer, amaretto. A little bit of booze and bitterness, but overall a creamy delicious beer. Not sure I could polish off a growler alone. A little heavy and rich. Ecstasy-inducing in small doses.

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Photo of Bardwashrind
4.7/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. Shared with the lady of the house and our good pal, Rake. Thanks to RSchaeffer for always coming through.

Drank while listing to Gorgoroth's Twilight of the Idol's. Crushingly appropriate.

Grower was filled to the point of nearly overflowing, full is a good descriptor of it's condition. Mocha colored bubbles arose from the glass and a delicious aroma of sweet chocolate and vanilla wafers followed. Almost black in color with just the slightest hint of light making it's way at the beer's edges. More aromas of burnt sugar, fresh brewed coffee, toasted bread and a little bit of charcoal. Insanely inviting.

The first sip was full of a harmonious balance of sweetened chocolate ganache, espresso, raisins, vanilla beans and black pepper. Quite amazing, the balance of richness with the drying finished left me speechless. The charred flavor of the darkened malts tied everything together and made for one seamless drinking experience.

Unreal. The subtle flavors and the sheer level of rounded integration of each component was just remarkable. These beers speak so softly and yet they say so much. I swear it, my bags are nearly packed, I'm just about ready to drop everything and lurk in the woods around Hill Farmstead with hopes for more tastes of these beers. World class for sure.

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Photo of TheDudeRules
3.65/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sinister black pour into my Lift Bridge snifter.

Quarter finger of khaki colored head. Fades quickly. Zero lacing. Outer ring remains around the glass.

Smell consists of coffee, roast chocolate and some oak tones that linger in the nostrils. Even a touch vinous.

Chocolate and coffee roast are at the forefront. The woodsy smell doesn't translate to taste. Slightly sweet on the finish of the sip. Slight boozy exhale. I am struggling to find the vanilla.

Creamy in the mouth. Carbonation is a touch under. Thin. Drinks fairly well.

Very solid beer. As far as a porter goes, one of the better ones. A great tick.

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Photo of Rhode17
4.82/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml Growler. Thanks to Mike for bringing it back from his Vermont road trip.

Barely a wisp of foam on this one. Not really much carbonation but it still has fantastic color and just a hint of a ring of caramel head.

Smells slightly of cocoa, vanilla and coffee. Beautiful aromas that mix really well together. There is just a little bit of spice lurking in there too.

Well balanced flavors that echo the aromas. Velvety but lighter in body at the same time. Ever sip lasts for a minute or two on the tongue. I can't shake the little flavor on the finish that reminds me of gingerbread. This is just decadent without being overdone and artificial.

Man this is just a fantastic beer, totally worth the expectations. Too bad I have to wait for folks to drive north to get a second growler of this one.

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Photo of 321jeff
4.52/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Growler provided by Michael when the Stillwater stuff got boring, thanks!

A pour down the middle only yields a fingers worth of head, but the brew is a rich chocolate brown.

Aroma is is slightly roasty with some milk chocolate notes but I don't get much vanilla. Very mild but pleasantly so.

Taste hits with some vanilla up front and some slight roast. Finish is milk chocolate and a little sweet. The flavors each stand out in their own way but none tops the others.

Mouthfeel on this one is a homerun. Silky smooth and the alcohol is non-existent. Overall, a great take on a porter, rich without being over the top (yes, I'm looking at you, Southern Tier).

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Photo of PorterLambic
3.75/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Arrives in a snifter with a big ring of foam over a very dark brown liquid. Retention was quite good considering what little there was to start with.
Smell is malt, cocoa, spice that appears coffee at first glance and wet cardboard.
Taste is malt, coffee, cocoa, wet cardboard. Balance is good.
Somewhat smooth while still having a drying finish. Light effervescence with a fairly full body. 7.5% ABV is really well concealed. Not sure if that is a good thing. Overall, a pretty good beer considering my aversion to coffee.

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Photo of davewlfpckfan29
4.23/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

WOW. I am lucky enough to have this brewery so close to me. I have had this on tap both at Hill Farmstead, and now at Parker Pie. I have purchased the 750ml bottle as well because I like this beer so much.

Beautiful dark brown color, tan lacing which sits at the top

The smell of the beer is very pleasing.

Vanilla and coffee. Yes. But also much more taste from spices, such a great balance of so much that is going on in this beer.

Smooth mouthfeel, very easy to drink a couple glasses of this.

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Photo of Sean9689
3.95/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks, Bob! 750ml growler in Narke tulip.

A - Pours black, tan-colored head, thin ring, some wisps on top.

S - Sweet milk chocolate, light roast, caramel, lots of vanilla. All very sweet and rich...smells like dessert.

T - Vanilla is more pronounced here, chocolate, light roasty malts, some coffee and cocoa in there as well. Really digging the vanilla and chocolate sweetness, the roasted notes are light and subtle.

M - Light to medium, good carbonation, rich and smooth, creamy finish.

O - Drinks like a chocolate/vanilla milkshake. An excellent dessert beer and perfect for the winter months to warm you up. Another winner from HF!

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Photo of unclejazz
4.53/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap on Sunswick 35/35 last week and have been thinking about it ever since. I have had some good porters since then, but they all bring me back to this.

A-is for alluring. The velveting reddish tan color of the head about a finger thick laid on top of black body with ample carbonation.

S-is for sultry. This mixture of anise, coffee, and cocoa with a roasted smoky background. dang amazing.

T-is for toffee. this came through in taste and i must have missed the smell, but it is delicious. this flavor cuts through me like the wind outside.

O-I had seen good things about Hill Farmstead and thought I would not have a chance to sample their wares. Thanks to the great taps of Queens. Vermont is not too far away, maybe a road trip is in order.

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Twilight Of The Idols from Hill Farmstead Brewery
4.29 out of 5 based on 1,030 ratings.
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