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Citra Pale Ale - Hill Farmstead Brewery

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Citra Pale Ale
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110 Reviews
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Reviews: 110
Hads: 869
Avg: 4.39
pDev: 20.27%
Wants: 398
Gots: 57 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: baggio on 06-29-2010

An American Pale ale bittered, flavored, and dry hopped exclusively with Citra hops from the American Pacific Northwest.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 110 | Hads: 869
Photo of mynie
4.71/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

We were sitting at Montpellier's Threepenny tap when this keg was tapped. For the next hour and half, approximately 90% of drink orders were for Citra. All you had to do was nod at the bartender and he poured you one.

Why? Because it's that freaking good. Like most other single-hopped citra APA's, HF's Citra pulls off the rare feat of being incredibly hop forward but also ridiculously sessionable, like 7 Up. The fruit nodes are gigantic and zippy, but they come without the more "acquired taste"-style nodes you get with your regular high-alpha beer. There's no cat pee, no pine, no verdant stickiness, not even much bitterness. Just apricots, mangoes, and oranges.

Having had this, Zombie Dust, and PseudoSue all fresh at their respective brewers, I'd say this just nudges out Sue but still falls a tiny bit short of the dust. It's the most sessionable of the three (there's practically nothing in the aroma or flavor that comes off as alcoholic), but I just like the slightly more abrasive feel of the Dust. Still, this is world class.

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Photo of Luk13
4.64/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Hill Farmstead third anniversary. Pours a pale hay golden with thick creamy head. Aroma is tropical fruits and citrus, flowers and dank resin. Taste is very fruity, moderatly hoppy with a little more malt than I could expect from HF that makes it dangerously drinkable. Very good.

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Photo of stephenjmoore
4.73/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

A- Pours a hazy, pale orange, with a frothy, foamy white head that hangs around and leaves a lot of sticky lacing.

S- Huge citrus, tropical fruits, hints of sweet bread. Big, potent and fruity aroma.

T- Packs a huge tropical fruit punch, with lots of citrus, orange, grapefruit, pineapple, hints of mango. Enormous hop flavor for a 5.3% abv beer.

M- Medium bodied, medium carbonation, easy drinking, very refreshing.

O- Just a remarkable beer. Packs so much hoppy flavor into a refreshing, lower abv beer. One of the best uses of Citra hops and one of Hill Farmstead's best hoppy offerings.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.59/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml Flip top growler opened on 5.11.13

A - Pours a cloudy light orange-yellow with a foamy off-white head and good retention.

S - Lots of citrus- oranges, mango, pineapple. Great!

T - Pineapple, oranges, subtle tropical -amazingly smooth and soft on the tongue.

D - Good carbonation and a medium silky body.

O - A fruit forward, light pale with the wonderful citra hop dancing on my tongue. I loved this beer!

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Photo of WanderingFool
4.48/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Citra pale ale pours a cloudy straw yellow with a medium sized, creamy head on top. As the foam dissolves a netted pattern of lace clings to the glass.

The aroma has strong notes of pine with some orange and lemon citrus mixed in. A touch of pale malt is also present.

Each sip of this medium bodied beer is soft and watery on the palate with moderate carbonation. The flavor has a nice balance of malty sweetness and citrus hoppiness. It begins with pine, lemon and orange citrus. In the background there's a nice dry malty sweetness that's somewhat bready. It finishes dry with lingering pine and malt sweetness.

This is a great well balanced full flavored beer with a great aroma. My only issue is that I'm not close enough to Hill Farmstead to get it more often.

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Photo of inlimbo77
4.35/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

64oz, filled 4/12/13, drank 4/20/13
5oz mini snifter

A: Hazy golden yellow. Bright white head. Sticky lacing. Still good carbonation after a week in the growler.

S: Lots of juicy citrus. Fruity hops. Orange lemon rind. Maybe a touch of light malt graininess, but primarily getting bit orange and citrus on the nose. Smells heavenly.

T: Flavor matches nose. Delicious citrus forward hop varieties: getting plenty of tangerine and orange and lemon, but also some grapefruit and mango juiciness. Minimal malt bill makes this so sessionable. Dry crisp finish.

M: Light to medium bodies.

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Photo of Rutager
4.52/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A HUGE thank you to the most generous Caudalie for sending me this as a part of my fantastic CANBIF box!! 750ml growler.

Appearance. Pours a hazy, bright yellow-gold with a finger of frothy white heads that leaves some great lace.

Smell. Big yellow grapefruits, some papaya and orange, grainy lightly toasted malts and a touch of cedar. There's a hint of green onion there as well, but it's not a bad thing (if that makes any sense).

Taste. Huge yellow grapefruits again complete with plenty of bitter rinds, a little orange and it's rind as well, even some lemon rind in the bitter finish and a nice light grainy malt that adds just a little sweetness and flavour in the background throughout. Very much lives up to the hop's namesake.

Mouthfeel. Medium body, on the lower side of medium, very smooth carbonation.

Overall. Man, these guys can do no wrong with everything I've tried from them so far. Thanks again Caudalie, very cool to get a rare treat like this all the way here on the west coast of Canada!

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.65/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

750 mL growler poured into an Allagash chalice.

Appearance - Hazy orange with a nice white head. Sticky lacing. Great retention.

Smell - Oh my. Citrus hop all the way. Smells like a really well hopped IPA. Tropical fruits and citrus. Just a hint of grainy malt shines through.

Taste - More focused on orange citrus here, but still retains some tropical fruit flavors. No sweetness, grainy malts give the only bit of backbone it has. Almost no bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium carbonation, maybe a little low from the growler. Light body. Drinkable as hell.

Overall - This is just as good, if not better than Zombie Dust. Holy crap. Hill Farmstead has set the standard on pale ales with this one.

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Photo of cfrances33
4.68/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Growler thanks to ILOVESTOUTS poured into a pair of Hill Farmstead stems.

Pour: Hazy, bright yellow orange body, with two fingers of white fluffy head. Lots of sticky lacing, and the head lingers for the majority of the glass.

Smell: Big, bright grapefruit and mango up front. Lots of juicy citrus. A touch of white pepper, and light breadyness.

Taste: Really clean grapefruit and citrus juiciness throughout the entirety of the taste here. A very light white pepper. A slight doughy sweetness. Finishes with a light bitterness and linger citrus fruits.

Mouthfeel: Incredibly refreshing and drinkable. Very light bitterness, and a very juicy consistency.

Overall: One of the most drinkable pale ales I’ve had and maybe the best.

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Photo of Skrip
4.36/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750ml growler poured into a Hill Farmstead oversized wine glass.

A~ almost looks like a mix of lemonade and orange juice but very hazy. with minimal head.

S~ man, i can tell its all citra hops right off the bat. very fresh and a little earthyness.

T~ just as expected, citr(a)us up front with a piney finish. very clean! just as clean as Spotted Cow, if that makes sense to anyone lol

M~ smooth as can be, nicely carbonated, and very refreshing!

O~ really nice and very sessionable! this is probably only my 4th hoppy HF brew but they have all been amazing. trade for some growlers! sell your soul! do what you have to do!

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Photo of nhudson
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Purchased a 2L of this in person from the Brewery on Saturday. Shipped back to Birmingham chilled and opened. Poured into a Piggly Wiggly snifter.

A: this beer is by no means clear, it cloudy and hazy. Yellow to golden in color with the best looking head I've ever seen on a beer. Lacing is thick and sticks to the glass in heavy sheets. This beer is beautiful to look at.

S: what an amazing aroma, pure Citra. Pineapple, Grapefruit, Dragonfruit heavy in the nose. Reminds me of the last time I drank Zombie Dust. They should make an air freshner that smells like this.

T: citrus hops bitterness with a very soft roundness to the beer. It's not harsh like most heavily hopped IPA's or Pale Ales. It's easy as hell to drink with the lower abv. Beer finishes dry and has a very light malt back bone. Tons of pineapple in the flavor.

M: the softness of the beer beings out the oils in the hops, it's oily but very easy drinking. No alcohol is noticed. I could drink the entire 2l in one sitting, if I had to.

O: one of the best APA's I've ever had. Hands down a world class beer, especially for hop heads. Wish I had access to this brewery all the time.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.84/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A single hopped pale ale from Hill Farmstead. Uses only Citra hops, one of my favorite hop varieties. This is gonna be good. Poured from my Hill Farmstead half growler into my Hill Farmstead oversized wine glass.

Pours a very hazy and cloudy orange-ish. Medium sized head forms, and sticks around for a good amount of time. Looks like orange juice, maybe grapefruit juice.

Smells like citrus, so juicy and fresh.

Tastes incredible. Citrus fruits- grapefruit, orange, mango, etc. Light but pleasant bitterness throughout makes it very easy drinking. No real malt flavor to speak of, it's all about showcasing the Citra hop.

Light bodied, well carbonated. Insanely drinkable, goes down so easy.

One of HF's best pale ales.

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Photo of cpetrone84
4.1/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pour is hazy dark orange with light sediment floating around and a white head with some loose bubbles on top. The hops are quite strong, it gives it a tropical fruit aroma with grapefruit and pineapple notes. There is an accompanying dough malt playing around underneath but subtle. The flavor is more balanced, the Malta are grainy with a light doughiness. The hops are assertively tropical, grapefruit and pineapple, with an assertive bitterness, dry finish, and clean light to medium body. Overall, another good beer from hill farmstead. Good balance, different malt components, interesting focus on the citra hop, extremely bright for a lower abv beer.

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Photo of Arbitrator
4.91/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Chilled 750mL growler into a glass. Thanks, Ben. From notes.

This was filled at a release, shipped via expedited FedEx to my work, and placed promptly in the work fridge upon arrival. I had intended to fly it with me on vacation the next day, but I made some excuse about the box being too small, and I convinced my fiancee that we should crack it immediately. To my chagrin, she loved it (she normally hates IPAs) and took quite a generous pour.

A: This is probably the one ding I can give this beer, so if you're looking for one of those reviews where I slam a beer for this or that, click the 'Back' button and look elsewhere. This is a cloudy, golden copper body (unfiltered); but I love clarity. On the other hand, it pours with a beautiful head and leaves creamy lace down the sides. I'll split the difference.

S: Mango, papaya, grapefruit zest, pineapple, even a touch of lychee. This hits that tropical citrus sweet spot that gets me a-twitter, and I'm having a hard time finding much to bitch about here. The nose is billowing, aromatic, and expressive.

T: Ridiculous. This has mild bitterness, but the flavor is loaded with succulent citrusy hops that give it the impression of a sweet fruit salad. Again: papaya, pineapple, mango, grapefruit. The pale malt base is restrained, helping the beer finish dry and clean; at best it imparts a light sweetness. I'll admit my bias for Citra hops is shining through here, but I don't exactly love Knee Deep Citra -- the way you showcase the hops certainly matters. This beer does it well.

M: Just under medium-bodied; it finishes clean, with bitterness found only during the taste and not after it. Good carbonation. The growler survived transit well.

O: It drives me nuts that some of the best IPAs I've had are among the most unattainable. Christ.

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Photo of Gosox8787
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 2L growler, screwtop instead of a normal swingtop, filled fresh yesterday at the brewery. Poured into a Sam Adams pint glass and served while chilled.

Appearance: Bright yellow/orange in color. Pours a really creamy white head that sticks really nicely to the glass.

Aroma: Really nice mango, pineapple and citrus hop notes. The citra is definitely upfront and plentiful. Not much malt background at all.

Taste: Huge tropical fruit notes from the Citra hops. The malt background is barely there and really allows the hop notes to shine. Really nice balance of bitterness and tropical fruit notes.

Mouthfeel: Light, bright and refreshing. Really drinkable.

Overall, a really refreshing and bright single hop IPA/APA. The citra really works perfectly to provide that tropical fruit backbone. Really complex for a single hop beer too. I might have liked this more than the Double Citra. Really good, highly recommended.

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Photo of CliffBrake
4.59/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pale orange color, cloudy with a small white head that leaves moderate lacing.

Great aroma. Very fruity and complex. I pick up papaya and grapefruit with a touch of pine and spice. Very inviting!

Crisp, juicy taste with orange and other citrus flavors riding on a firm, dry bready malt base. Nice dry finish with a bit of spicy bitterness punctuating the final impression.

Medium mouthfeel with a firm body and good carbonation. Really quite delicious. A great showcase for the citra hop, but also a well made tasty beer on the whole. This is probably my favorite of the Hill Farmstead single hop series to date.

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Photo of BARFLYB
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On Tap at Teresa's Next Door and some pours from some growlers at Capone's

Off the spout, this looks mighty tempting. A new golden penny look with some burnt orange seeping through. The inch of firm white head leaving notches is strong and lasting. Great looking beer. Smell is all citra hops leaving some mango and papaya, slight grapefruit. The smallest amount of pale malt in the distance, biscuit like. Oh boy, a light beer with mad flavor. Big on the citrus and light on the pine, lighter on the malt and no alcohol. Some light grassy flavor with warming. The feel is light bodied with moderate carb that fizzles out with some swirls leaving for some clean unadulterated hop flavor going down the gullet with ease. If I could procure a growler of this, it would be taken down in two hours. It's all in the well water, and people who care about their product, Hill is that and more.

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Photo of Rifugium
4.2/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Teresa's, Wayne, PA

Poured a hazy golden orange with a nicely sized and nicely lasting foamy white head that dots the glass with lacing. Nose full of hops as expected, citrus zest, tropical fruits, floral notes. Taste starts out juicy with pineapple and dries out considerably mid- to end-palate with freshly peeled orange and grapefruit zest, biscuity malt base distantly noticeable. This drinks almost like an IPA rather than an APA, though the hops, while clearly in charge, are perhaps not quite as intense as they would be in an actual IPA. Medium body, crisp, bitter aftertaste, a nice drink overall.

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Photo of Tucquan
4.29/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on 2012-06-09 in Wayne, PA at Teresa's Next Door during Philly Beer Week.

A - Excellent. Hop oils, hop floral, citrus. Almost in Heady Topper league.

S - Like Zombie Dust but less astringent. Fresh tasting. Plenty of citrus and hop bitterness.

T - Fruity and hop floral. Light malt backbone. Some pineapple. Nice dry and balanced bitter finish.

M - Light body and medium carbonation. Oily and lightly resinous.

O - If you want to know what this beer is like, crush a hop bud, put it in your mouth and wash it down with some fresh squeezed orange/grapefruit juice. Good stuff.

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Photo of Bendurgin
4.64/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Jake hauled this one back for on his recent trip. Poured into a pint glass. This one pours a golden muddy yellow with a nice cap of white head.

Citrapalooza on the aroma. Lots of tropical fruits like pineapple and oranges. This is simply lots of sweet citrus fruit. The pallet has a lots of citrus flavors with some a nice bitter hop finish. Hints of toffee sweetness in the background.

The body is medium and sticky with good carbonation. Overall this one is amazing. Other beers will only disappoint going forward.

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Photo of andrewinski1
4.14/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. The color is light hazy straw. There is a solid half inch foamy head.

The aroma is stong and has sweet melon with a hint of orange zest.

The taste has a mild malt flavor; just enough to add a touch of sweetness to lie beneath the itter hoppy finish. Zesty orange peel leads to a dank hoppy finish.

This is light and refreshing. MOAR!

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Photo of brystmar
3.95/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Josh for sharing this growler!

Beautiful pour, tons of lace and head. Hazy and effervescent. Fantastic aroma of fresh Citra hops; pungent, citric, inviting.

Taste is disappointing, however. Citra hops fade into a bland middle before finishing with biting, earthy bitterness. Aroma rivals Zombie Dust, taste does not :)

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Photo of Kadonny
4.29/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from tap at Capones in Norristown during Philly Beer Week. Poured into a 9 ounce snifter glass. The menu said 8%, but 5.4% seems more like it.

A: A super cloudy murky lighter golden color that has hints of brown. This is actually a tan color if I had to describe it correctly. Minimal head and glass lacing that was huge, sticky and lasting.

S: Juicy fruit and citrus are abound. Tropical fruit, pineapple, lemon, citrus and some slight sweetness.

T: Juicy citrus and tropical hop flavors just pour out. Pineapple, mango, lemon, tangerine, passion fruit and some grassy notes are melded with the subtle caramel sweetness. Finish is slightly bitter and super dry but smooth. Nice beer.

M: Medium to even a bit light. Easy drinking, not overly bitter, good carbonation and no alcohol.

O: A great pale ale that I just couldn't believe was so damn murky. Still, a real winner with this one.

Another great beer by HF. i wish I could drink their stiff all the time. Nice.

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Photo of starrdogg
4.37/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Michael for bringing this one back from Vermont!

Beer pours a cloudy golden color with a medium white head. I'm not sure why exactly, but I really like the color. The smell on this beer is absolutely phenomenal - it's bursting with citrus and I just can't get enough of it. Unfortunately the flavor doesn't quite live up to the incredible aroma, it's still quite good, but it's a bit one-dimensional as I find a lot of the single hop beers to be. It's got a very nice citrus hop blast on the front end, but there's not a whole lot else to this flavor and it falls off rather quickly to a slightly bitter finish. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with good carbonation. Overall, this is another very high quality hoppy beer from Hill Farmstead, but I just tend to like more hop complexity than a single hop beer can offer.

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Photo of raveskdr
4.19/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to yourefragile for hauling growlers back for me from the HF anny party. Poured into my FFF Teku glass.

A - Golden murky yellow color with light foam lacing.

S - Wow. This is Zombie Dusk-esque. Ever so slightly dank with massive pineapple and tons of mango.

T - Very slight caramelly malt is engulfed by fresh cut pineapple and slight mango flavor. Could have used some more malt back so there could have been more hops to round out the flavor. IBU's not high enough on this one.

M - Unfortunately, the malt backbone just isn't there, which really makes this too light on the front and middle of the mouth. Back end lingers just enough but isn't bitter enough.

O - A really solid beer overall, if you are comparing this to the spectrum of all beer. This is on the lower end of HF beers that I have tried. I expect big things from Shaun and he has almost always delivered. I look forward to trying the double citra, because I feel that resolves the issues that are in this beer.

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Citra Pale Ale from Hill Farmstead Brewery
96 out of 100 based on 110 ratings.