On September 26th Hill Farmstead had a bottle release including 4 beers; Damon, Double Barrel Damon, Flora and Flora Satsuma Mandarin. I decided to take the day off work and make the trip to Vermont. I took two friends with me and we planned to make a day of it. The bottle release was to start at 11:00 and bottles were limited to 300 of each for everything but Double Barrel Damon which had approximately 190 bottles total. Hoping to get bottles of each we met in Fryeburg Maine at 7:30 and planned to arrive at Hill Farmstead a full hour before the release started at 11:00.
Our timing was perfect and we pulled up to Hill Farmstead at 10:00 AM. The only problem being the line was extremely long even 1:00 before the release was to start. After standing in line for about 45 minutes we determined we were not even within the first 300 people and no way were we included in the first 190 that would get Double Barrel Damon so we made the tough decision to get out of the bottle line and start the growler line. This ended up being a wise decision as best I can tell from the BeerAdvocate thread you would have had to arrive around 9:30 to get any bottles and by 8:45 to even have a chance at the Double Barrel Damon. The lines were much longer than most people anticipated including the employees and volunteers at Hill Farmstead.
We got our growlers and were on our way around noon. The bottle line had barely moved at that point and we headed out to the rest of our stops. Lost Nation in Morristown was our next stop and we had a great Gose there. I grabbed a growler and a glass that you will see reviewed shortly. Then off to Waterbury to stop at The Alchemist, the one case limit was still in affect so not a lot of extra Heady made it back. No where close to the 13 cases I brought home in March. We then had lunch at Blackback which included drafts from Hill Farmstead, Lawson’s and Zero Gravity. Excellent beer and plenty of other people that had gone to Hill Farmstead for the bottle release.
Next stop was the Warren Store for some Lawson’s Finest Liquids and then back to Hunger Mountain Coop to see what other goodies we could find. Ended up with a couple bottles from Prairie that we cannot get in Maine as well as some Crooked Stave. Then the long journey back to Maine. We arrived in Fryeburg around 7:30 and each of us had about another hour from there.
We were initially disappointed to miss out on the bottles at Hill Farmstead but at the end of the day it is just beer and we brought home plenty of great beer to drink. Much fun was had and we will certainly be making this trip again although it probably will not be on a Hill Farmstead bottle release day as we may never see another announced release like that.