Damon (Bourbon Barrel Aged)
Hill Farmstead Brewery

Damon (Bourbon Barrel Aged)Damon (Bourbon Barrel Aged)
Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States
Russian Imperial Stout
Ranked #11
Ranked #208
4.49 | pDev: 8.02%
Nov 20, 2022
Jan 10, 2012
Damon (Bourbon Barrel Aged)Damon (Bourbon Barrel Aged)
Notes: 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.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Photo of Holderness
Reviewed by Holderness from Massachusetts

4.24/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
2020 vintage. A very solid and canonical example of the style, perhaps *the* prototype of what a bourbon barrel aged RIS should emulate. I find the style to be a little bit on the roasty, herbaceous side and this was no exception. The barrel aging did smooth things out quite a bit in the flavors, although I was surprised that the mouthfeel wasn't fuller. Overall very glad to finally try this but I definitely prefer Beyond Good and Evil, and their other sweeter BBA stouts

Nov 20, 2022
Photo of 5toutman75
Reviewed by 5toutman75 from Illinois

4.56/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
Bottled 1/10/2020
Consumed 10/28/2022

I just got a job offer today, so I needed to pull something out of my cellar to celebrate. I traded a bottle of EH Taylor small batch for this bottle of beer, so let's see if it lives up the hype and $50 I paid for the bourbon. It does look spot on amazing. It's super thick but not syrupy in a bad way. This is the kind of stout that beginners would hate and neck bearded beer nerds crave. On the tongue it's super full and soft. Absolutely perfect for the style for me. I'm not getting enough on the nose though to wow me. I get bourbon and chocolate. I smell the typical lovely bitterness of a RIS. Still, it's lacking in the nose for me. Drinking it though everything lives up to the hype. It's less sweet than a typical Goose BCS which set the standard for me back in the day. I can taste the booziness but in a good way. I like high abv stouts where I can taste the alcohol a bit. Why make a bourbon barrel aged stout if the bourbon isn't front and center? What's different and great is that there's also the balance of the base beer. There's a lot of plain old RIS here. Take your best like a Darkness or Expedition and add the bourbon with everything balancing out perfectly. The finish is long and toasty like a good cup of coffee. A great beer and worth the bourbon (at retail.)
Oct 29, 2022
Rated: 4.2 by codytwo from Connecticut

Oct 28, 2022
Rated: 4.53 by Benish from Utah

Aug 18, 2022
Photo of Pearlyp
Rated by Pearlyp from Vermont

4.87/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
Hands down the best beer I’ve ever had!
Aug 13, 2022
Rated: 4.35 by Affinity from Missouri

May 02, 2022
Photo of Siriusfisherman
Reviewed by Siriusfisherman from Vermont

4.6/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
Pours a deep, black with a thin mocha-colored head that dissipates quickly. The aroma gives notes of charred oak, bourbon, dark fruits, dark roast coffee, and vanilla. The flavor is less sharp, and more rich with notes of dark chocolate, espresso, chocolate chip cookie, and oaky bourbon and vanilla. The flavor lingers well after the sip with rich, chocolatey cookie flavors. The body is very full and creamy without ever being syrupy, leading to a very balanced finish. Overall, a very flavorful and drinkable beer. One of my favorite BBA Stouts I have ever had, very well balanced flavor and mouthfeel. Highly recommended.
Apr 10, 2022
Photo of Travitten
Rated by Travitten from Iowa

4.7/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
Uh, nearly perfect
Mar 02, 2022
Rated: 5 by JBowenGeorgia from Georgia

Feb 20, 2022
Photo of Bhubbard34
Reviewed by Bhubbard34 from Pennsylvania

4.67/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
2021 Release - Jet black with considerable tan head on an aggressive pour. Smell of bourbon barrel and light char. Taste is incredibly balanced between barrel and chocolate, no burn. Thicker than I expected on the mouthfeel. Classic Hill, world class BA non adjunct stout
Feb 06, 2022
Photo of jrc1093
Reviewed by jrc1093 from Connecticut

4.26/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
Bottled on 1/10/2020; consumed on 1/29/2022

Pours an oily midnight-black body capped with a modest finger and a half of dense, pale mocha foam; great head retention leaves a paper-thin veil over an otherwise viscous void along with a large, creamy collar, and the occasional strand of webby lacing dotted around the walls of the glass.

Aroma opens to a healthy barrel char with tinges of ashen smoke advancing to black licorice before finding predominant, nutty bakers chocolate over the middle; dark cocoa is enhanced by subtle caramels as a medley of dark fruits enriches delicately savory, tannic qualities in the backdrop through the close.

Taste brings soft vanillins into black licorice as deep bakers cocoa waves wash over splintery barrel accented with dark fruit esters; whipped milk chocolate decadence on the back end finds spent coffee grounds and hints of bourbon underscoring the finish.

Mouthfeel shows a body on the heavier side of medium and a moderate-low carbonation, purely silky in texture with intensely focused consistency advancing to a creamy mid-palate engaging a rounded, sinewy grit; vaguely tannic leanings into the back end are masked by moderate warmth as a subtle dryness evolves through the finish.

An honest, old-school display of classic Russian imperial stout bittersweetness and borderline acridity, composed in masterful flux with a tame and well-integrated barrel; effortless despite these roastier leanings, this is another example of Hill Farmstead at a formulaic peak in composure.
Jan 30, 2022
Rated: 3.6 by mrtomatohead49 from Georgia

Jan 20, 2022
Rated: 4.5 by not2quick from Missouri

Jan 18, 2022
Rated: 4.64 by Cadyus from Vermont

Jan 10, 2022
Rated: 4.56 by benjaminsa from Vermont

Jan 02, 2022
Photo of Phyl21ca
Reviewed by Phyl21ca from Canada (QC)

4.5/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a large dark brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of roasted malt with some chocolate notes and some vanilla and woody bourbon notes. Taste is a great mix of roasted malt with some black chocolate notes with faint residual sugar notes with some woody bourbon notes with light vanilla, Body is full with a good oily texture and good carbonation with light warming alcohol notes. Solid barrel-aged imperial stout with good flavors balance.
Dec 21, 2021
Rated: 4.41 by Jkolls from Ohio

Nov 07, 2021
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
Reviewed by 4DAloveofSTOUT from Illinois

4.49/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
500ml black waxed bottle poured into HF white etched logo Charente glass (aka wine stem "bulb" glass).

75th unique beer from Hill Farmstead.

bottled on date is Jan 10, 2020.

Appearance: black bodied stout. 1-2 fingers tall; medium brown head. Big loose bubbles break the head down into a thin cap that drops down to an uneven ring. Booze legs with each sip. spotty lacing on the side of the glass.

Smell: While taking the wax off the bottle, I could immediately smell bourbon! Nice bourbon note and heavy barrel char once poured into the glass. Chocolate and smoke.

Taste: Bourbon leads this beer with a nice sweetness and the bourbon is also lightly spicy. Dark fruits, brown sugar, molasses, & moderately roasty malt profile. Tobacco and leather. Smoke, peat moss, and ashen barrel char begin to build after each consecutive sip; deep earthy and woody character as well. Umami richness in the middle of the stout. Light oxidation notes in the form of soy sauce; it's very faint and does not distract from anything here. Meaty smoke and peat moss finish that lingers for a little while after each sip. Unique flavors here that I don't taste very often in barrel aged stouts; it's rich with mature barrel notes without being overly sweet. Complex. Interesting. Well done bourbon barrel aged stout by Hill Farmstead.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied stout. Low and adequate carbonation levels. Creamy carbonation. Smooth and rich texture. It's not motor oil and its really great exactly where it is... in regards to this stout's texture. Damon is not at all boozy, but it does have a noticeable warming presence. This stout actually drinks heftier than the 10.5% abv & I do not mean this in a bad way at all. It's a really robust bourbon barrel aged stout and the texture lends itself to this without being abrasive at all. The beer remains smooth from fridge temperature all the way to room temperature. I solo domed this bottle and drank it over the course of two hours, it retained smooth sipping status the entire time.

Overall: Well, this beer has eluded me for a really long time. Really excited for the opportunity to finally get to drink it and see what it's all about. I got to try port Damon back in July of this year and I think that I prefer the port barrel version just a little bit more than the bourbon barrel. Hill Farmstead stouts always tend to distinguish themselves from the crowd. It shows that a stout does not need to be sweet to be rich especially when the stout has such great texture.
Nov 03, 2021
Rated: 4.27 by Filabee from Michigan

Nov 02, 2021
Rated: 4.98 by MJSFS from Florida

Oct 29, 2021
Rated: 4.68 by cd34 from Illinois

Oct 07, 2021
Rated: 4.5 by beermanben from Wisconsin

Oct 05, 2021
Rated: 4.53 by Zaximus from Colorado

Sep 30, 2021
Rated: 4.25 by spersichilli from California

Sep 19, 2021
Rated: 5 by ajramirez1 from Washington

Aug 19, 2021
Rated: 4.13 by Lucoli from New York

Aug 10, 2021
Rated: 4.75 by Ajlvt from Washington

Aug 07, 2021
Rated: 4.21 by dmb987 from New York

Jul 30, 2021
Rated: 5 by JAWS from New York

Jul 08, 2021
Rated: 4.5 by MTKATL from Georgia

Jun 20, 2021
Rated: 4.54 by EMH73 from New York

Jun 20, 2021
Rated: 4 by Rkitchen from Michigan

Jun 19, 2021
Rated: 4.75 by SharkNado from Pennsylvania

Jun 19, 2021
Rated: 5 by chitownfanatic21 from Wyoming

May 31, 2021
Rated: 4.67 by AD17 from New Jersey

May 31, 2021
Rated: 4.65 by GregSemenza from Connecticut

May 16, 2021
Photo of angrybabboon
Reviewed by angrybabboon from Massachusetts

4.43/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Consumed 4/27/21

Note: April 2016 batch

Black with some deep, dark brown around the edges, opaque, pours with a small tan head, fades to virtually nothing (not shocking after 5 years)
Deep spectrum of chocolate, dark chocolate, semisweet chocolate, brownies, chocolate cake, caramel, molasses, some dark fruit, nice balance with the bourbon, woody notes, oak, some vanilla, lingering sweetness balanced with some barrel dryness
On the light side of heavy, smooth, low carbonation

I believe I have had this beer as many as 3 times since April 2016, but I never reviewed it. Better late than never, and I may never have this beer again. Shocking news: this is an amazing beverage.
Apr 28, 2021
Photo of Sandis
Reviewed by Sandis from Minnesota

4.75/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
2018 version poured from the bottle into a snifter. Drank this beer on 4/19/2021 in remembrance of dad's birthday. This beer is wonderfully creamy, smooth and filled with chocolate. Just a touch of bourbon sweetness.
Apr 21, 2021
Rated: 4.33 by dleiner from New York

Mar 12, 2021
Rated: 4.63 by Bieniek30 from New York

Mar 02, 2021
Damon (Bourbon Barrel Aged) from Hill Farmstead Brewery
Beer rating: 99 out of 100 with 882 ratings