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Nelson Sauvin Pale Ale - Hill Farmstead Brewery

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Nelson Sauvin Pale AleNelson Sauvin Pale Ale

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BA SCORE
97
world-class

274 Ratings
THE BROS
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 274
Reviews: 44
rAvg: 4.41
pDev: 7.26%
Wants: 65
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mymrnngjckt on 09-07-2010

An American Pale Ale bittered, flavored, and dry hopped exclusively with Nelson Sauvin.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 274 | Reviews: 44
Photo of mick303
4.5/5  rDev +2%

On tap at the brewery. Great retention and lacing. Aroma is lemony and gooseberry, spruce, citrus with some herbal tones. Full body, hops create a clean slight acidity. Complexity is very interesting, a light floral citrus with great depth, amazing. Slight peppery/rosemary on the finish. Loved this beer and would look forward to having it again.

Photo of jaasen64
4.21/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml growler poured into a HF stemmed glass.

A- Pours a very hazy orangish yellow, about a half finger of white frothy head forms that settles to a thin bubbly top.

S- Juicy oranges, dank resinous hops, definite earthy fresh hops, nice balance with the malts and plenty of aroma for a lower abv.

T- Earthy bitter hops, oranges, light passionfruit, bit of pine, finishes a bit watery with a light bitter orange peel. Not as good as the aroma but still way better then your average pale ale.

M- Super drinkable albeit a little watery, bitterness lingers on the palate.

O- This was a fantastic APA however I think I prefer Edward slightly more. Still definitely at the top of it's class for a single hop pale ale.

Photo of Chico1985
4.35/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Shared a 750ml growler 2 nights back. Thanks Me.

A - Hazy pale orange with a white head. Good retention and great and lacing as usual from HF.

S - Nice dank tropical fruits. Earthy, peach, passionfruit, grapefruit, tropical goodness.

T - Lots of earthy danky peach and general tropical fruit, slight sugar cookie malt, mostly hops with some decent bitterness for a pale ale.

M - Carbonation is a little on the lower side, good bitterness, light and very drinkable, maybe a bit thin if I had to nitpick but overall fine.

O - Yeahhhh, really good, especially for a single hop beer, definitely a nice showcasing the flavors and complexities of the Nelson hop. Lots of great Nelson danky funky fruits and big flavors for the low ABV.

Photo of jlindros
4.54/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my hill Farmstead stemmed goblet, filled on Wednesday, reviewed on Saturday.

Pours a huge fluffy soapy frothy 2 finger head that fades slowly with tons of frothy soapy lacing, hazy murky peach tangerine orange color. 4.75

Nose is all Nelson! Big fruit, tropical fruit more generic and not really citrus variety, papaya pineapple like, and a musty resin and dank earthy note, a little tangerine and rind later, fluffy airy malt base. Not very complex, just shows off the Nelson nicely. 4.5

Taste brings more fresh Nelson hop, with a bitter rind out front, quickly into genetic tropical fruit, again that pineapple papaya like, and a mild tangerine citrus. a light grapefruit like pith note but very light, quickly into mango and a big bitter rind, that turns a little spicy on the back end. Nice light fluffy malt base adds just enough to prop up the hops. Besides being spicy on the back end, the hops also bring a mild dank resin. Finish is drier with a mild fluffy malt, and big spicy rind hop and little tropical note lingering. 4.5

Mouth is med bod nice fluffy feel with great carbonation. 4.75

Overall great as expected, as usual for hill Farmstead, great hop profile, great fluffy make base too back it up, great carbonation esp for growler. Again not very complex, not over done either, just perfect to showcase the great Nelson hops. Very tasty and drinkable.

Photo of RaulMondesi
4.69/5  rDev +6.3%

On tap at Beachwood Brewing in Long Beach, CA.

Did Sonny Liston just knock me out? Wow. Alpine Nelson, move over, the champ may have just entered the building. All those beautiful Nelson hops, but again with that yeasty backbone. Raul just found the Treasure of the Sierra Madre; Raul just found The Maltese Falcon... Yes.

Photo of Rollzroyce21
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%

- 2014 vintage
- Off tap @ Beachwood (LBC) on 7-Nov-14
- 10 oz. pour into a wheat beer glass

Tasted against Abner, Double Citra, Legitmacy, and Nelson Single Hop. Of the four, I ranked this one 3rd, though not sure if its a fair comparison as it's supposedly only a pale ale.

It's difficult to compare this to other top-tiered APA's like ZD. Pseudo might be closer. I found it comparable to Alpine's Nelson, but maybe a slightly less drinkable due to it's juicier, thicker body. Still, one of the best beers that highlights this varietal that I've tasted yet.

Photo of VelvetExtract
4.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Growler. Super excited for this one; my favorite hop utilized by one of the best brewers. Pours cloudy and opaque yellow. Nice, doughy head. Aroma is full of Nelson Sauvin goodness. The hop is incredibly unique. Earthy, white grapey, and tropical fruity. Has the Hill Farmstead aroma I pick up in all their hoppy beers. The flavor is super smooth and loaded with tropical fruits. The Nelson hops aren't necessarily tame but some of the funkier flavors I pick up in the hop are mellow. It still is loaded with hop-juice, fruit flavor. The malt is awesome pale and bread that accentuates the hops. Lighter bodied with a softer carbonation. Not super bitter. I think my hopes for this one were set a little bit too high. It's a great beer but I have seen this hop showcased more effectively in other brews.

Photo of angrybabboon
4.39/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Split with Goblinmunkey7, growler filled about 6 hours ago

Consumed 10/25/14

A: Lightly hazy, pours a golden honey color with some tangerine - pours with a big, white head, keeps a frothy head, leaves some nice streaks and blobs of lacing

S: Nelson hops everywhere - not extreme, but very aromatic - nice hop profile some with orange, grapefruit, pine, spices, and some tropical notes like melon, hint of pineapple - more citrus with something that smells like lime - very hoppy but not aggressive at all - pale malts, nicely light body

T: Fruity, flavorful, and clean - tangerine, orange, ruby red grapefruit, lime flesh - some pine - pineapple, cantaloupe, melon - very bright, very floral - grassy and earthy, too - low bitterness - pale malt, low level of sweetness - extremely clean

M: Medium to light body, nice carbonation, very smooth, very dry and very clean finish

O: Hooray Nelson!

This is a creative use of Nelson Sauvin hops. They impart a big, bold flavor that usually fits better in an IPA or DIPA. But Hill Farmstead has managed to subdue them to the degree that they fit in an APA. This is extremely drinkable. I might even like this more than Edward, which is unexpected.

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
4.11/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Split with angrybabboon.

Appearance: Hazy dark golden yellow. Head is a massive pillowy white. Lacing coats the glass in streaks. Decent head retention leave a clumpy cap and collar. Loose and chunky. Moderate carbonation on the pour.

Smell: Malts are very light. Slightly bready with a very light powdery yeast. Hops are lightly tropical with a bit of a bitter edge. Passion fruit, melon, and some grapefruit. Soft fruitiness. A touch of pineapple. Slightly woody. Kumquat. Not the most complex nose in the world, but it's solid. Balanced.

Taste: Slight woody bitterness. Mildly herbal as well. Malts run light and slightly sweet. A touch of cracker and a mild bready element. Fresh green wood. A touch of mint. Slight citrus zest bitterness. A touch of pith. Peach pit, kumquat, and soft mellow - mostly honeydew. Soft fleshy fruit. Lightly floral with something woody thrown in the mix. Has the same balance as the nose. Yeast adds a small touch of fruity esters. Light and fluffy.

Mouthfeel: Matches every other Hill Farmstead pale ale. Mediumish body with a moderate carbonation. Slightly dry on the finish. Smooth, slightly creamy sip.

Overall: Ha Ha

I like Nelson Sauvin when it's used well. This uses it well. It's delicate in the right places with enough balance to make it drinkable and interesting.

Photo of Franck
4/5  rDev -9.3%

Nose of sweet fruits (passion fruit, watermelon, orange) and this typical fresh scent that only HF has the secret.
In mouth, it's a brief fruits explosion. Brief, because a bitter and dry taste quickly invades the palate.
Bitterness is moderated and dry
I guess it would be better to enjoy that beer on a warm day in July rather than a cold and rainy October day.

Photo of cpetrone84
4.27/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pour is a cloudy pale yellow with a fluffy pure white head. Nose is heavy tropical fruit of pineapple and grapefruit with a nice balance of grain and bread crust. Taste is very balanced, strong clean grain, less hop forward than the nose. Carbonation is strong and the body is light with a powerful bitterness on top of the grapefruit on the rear end of the palate.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.39/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750ml Flip-Top growler opened on 9.6.13

A - Pours a cloudy dark yellow with a large soapy off-white head that just sits there.

S - Mostly melony and some grassiness.

T - Grassy and earthy with a touch of melon.

D - Good carbonation with a very light body. A touch bitter.

O - A nice crisp pale - earthy and melon dominate.

Photo of BeerImmediately
4.66/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Growler picked up at HF 10 days ago (I know, shame on me). But it turned out very well.

Pours with a healthy 2F of fluffy, bright white head that fades to a skim film over a very cloudy golden body. Awesome lacing.

Aromas have a LOT going on. Dull mango, guava, lime, herbal oregano, earthy, and leafy.

Mouthfeel is clean, dry, and refreshing. Medium body. Flavors continue the herbal and tropical fruity qualities. Mango, peach fuzz, guava fruit, some bready malt - wheat crackers. Even a kiss of lime in the finish. Light bitterness, some funk, but not distracting.

What a kick ass pale ale. Just exudes pure quality. Glad I made the huge trip, and can't wait to share the two other growlers of Susan and S&S #7 with beer buds on Monday.

Photo of JMScowcroft
4.36/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hill Farmstead Brewery - Nelson Sauvin Pale Ale, poured into a tulip glass.

Look - Pours a cloudy yellow with a massive frothy head. Tons and tons of lacing. Great looking APA.

Smell - Nelson hops sour dank tropical citrus, almost a roasted caramelized malt behind it.

Taste - Dank tropical citrus hops with a slight roasted finish, quite interesting and unique.

Mouthfeel - Sits dry and clean. Zero booziness. Great drinkability and moderate carbonation.

Overall - This is a great brew, I love trying single-hop varieties from kings like Hill, this is how you find what you prefer and what you do not. I am still not sure if Nelson is my favorite hop but I definitely give credit where it is due, and credit is due here, exceptional brew!

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.55/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Growler shared by jayhawk73. Thanks Jeff!

The beer is yellow with a towering, pure white head. Moderately hazy. The aroma offers Nelson hops, which is one of the best smelling and tasting hop varieties I have had. A showcase of for hops, with a subtle malt presence. Incredibly smooth and drinkable. A beer that is hard to savor, as it goes down so effortlessly. Delicious.

Photo of brewandbbq
4.49/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml growler courtesy of Ruth, thanks!

Pours pale, hazy gold with a half inch head of white. Tattered lacing and a partial skim coat for the duration.

Aromatics lead off with peach fuzz, pears, dank weed, and tropical fruit. Floral and fruity but short of pungent.

Light to medium bodied with a crisp, drying mouthfeel.

Tropical fruit and hop resin starts the palate. Extremely light malt character, perhaps a bit biscuity and that's it. Low bitterness with plenty of peach, mango, and a hint of pine.

Finishes with some lingering fruit but quite dry and quenching.

Great beer with plenty of Nelson character. Would I drive hours to stand in line hours to get a growler though? No.

Photo of DonFrap
4.74/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 750 growler to a tree house snifter. Not a huge Nelson Sauvin fan, but figured is give this a shot to see what Shaun could do with it. Definitely has that peppery Hop smell, but with a citrus backup. Poured very light, lighter than I remember HF APAs being. Nice head, good retention. Taste was a surprise. The hop profile comes out up front, but finishes with a smooth citrus finish, very crisp. I liked this WAY more than I thought i would. Definitely get this if you can!

Photo of Willytee3
4.74/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours an opaque glowing golden yellow with huge foamy pure white head. Reduces to bubbly film with great Japanese Mountain lacing.

Smells of high alpine evergreen with light candy malt backbone. Kiwi, pear and mango jucicy fruits with some spicy floral qualities.

Tastes of rosemary bread with pineapple and mango. Alpine evergreen with delicate earth and white pepper. Nice bittering on the back side with northern and tropical fruits. Lemon finish with a touch of straw and dry tartness.

Overall an amazing single hop that displays well a balance of light fruits and delicate earth.

Photo of jrenihan
4.35/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Beer is a cloudy straw colour- very light golden. Moderately sized snow-white head. Great lacing.

Nose contains juicy tropical fruits and some weedy herbal notes. Fruits include pineapple, apricot, mango. The interplay between the fruit and weeds that is characteristic of Nelson Sauvin is really well displayed.

Taste is very nice. The herbal, weedy flavours get revved up and are the most prominent part of the beer. The tropical fruits are also quite evident, mango, pineapple. Moderately bitter, very flavourful. A bit of bready malt, quite minimal. Tasty stuff indeed.

Medium bodied, moderate to low carbonation. Nice feel.

Overall, really good stuff. I am a big Nelson Sauvin fan and this is a very good showcase for it.

Photo of Pahn
4.89/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

32oz growler into a red wine glass.

Appearance: Cloudy orange yellow. 2 inch fluffy white head that laces up the glass. The glowing, inviting look of a good IPA/APA.

Smell: Explosion of tropical fruit, lime, and funky, earthy, smoky undertones. The full character of Nelson Sauvin hops. Beyond improvement.

Taste: Follows the nose, with less tropical fruit, more lime and cheesy funk. Crisp dryness and high carbonation leave a clean finish. Missing the cereal grain of What is Enlightenment? or the Amarillo single hop, but the toasted cracker flavor that's there instead is nice, and works well as a counterpoint to the hop explosion up front.

Extremely delicious. Unbalanced in favor of hops in a way not truly characteristic of Hill Farmstead, but this is a small complaint.

Mouthfeel: Perfect American Pale Ale. Fills the mouth with hop succulence, but it's still light side of medium bodied, super dry, well carbonated. Nailed; like the smell, it's simply perfect.

Overall: I like great beer, I like Nelson Sauvin hops, I like crisp pale ales. Easy drinking, powerfully hoppy, just excellent in every respect.

Photo of Skrip
4.48/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

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

A~ glows like the sun. glowing yellow on the outsides which fads to a bright orange in the middle. nice white head and a lot of lacing.

S~ earthy pine, all kinds of citrus, and a little bit of that delicious vomit smell. in the best way possible of course haha.

T~ pretty much follows the nose and reminds me a lot of Enjoy By and Bitter Valentine. Nelson must play a huge roll in those brews. the citrus opens up even more here with lots of tropical guava, mango, and papaya.

M~ i should really just start giving the mouthfeel for all HF brews a 5 lol. well maybe except for BoT haha. anyway... amazing carbonation, smooth as can be and super refreshing.

O~ Nelson the boy who threw up the earth haha. i really enjoy that vomity, earthy pine in IPA's. i now believe i know where that comes from but i could still be totally wrong lol. this is definitely one of my favorite hoppy HF brews (i might say that too much lol) but in my defense i don't usually enjoy (by) single hop pales/IPA's. this is surly amazing though, go for it!

Photo of Davepoolesque
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

Some bitter hop sweetness. Getting lots of grapefruit. Traditional Hill malt profile. I think that Nelson by Alpine is a bit better though.

Photo of cfrances33
4.87/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2L growler poured into a Hill Farmstead stem.

Pour: Bright, glowing yellow orange body, with two fingers of frothy, sticky white head. Lots of lacing, and the head hangs around for a while.

Smell: Juicy, tropical mangos and citrus fruits up front. Some of the earthiness associated with Nelson comes through, with a very light white peppercorn. As a whole, the fruits dominate.

Taste: More of the same tropical fruit forward mango and citrus, as well as some white pepper. More earthy Nelson. Not much malt presence to speak of, except a very light, raw dough. Finishes lightly bitter with a lingering mango juiciness.

Mouthfeel: Incredibly refreshing and drinkable. Dare I say thirst quenching. Beautiful carb.

Overall: I think this could be the best hoppy offering I've had from Hill Farmstead. So flavorful, yet so light and refreshing.

Photo of rlee1390
4.48/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A-Very cloudy bright yellow, two finger head, very fluffy with great lacing.

S-Suck dank tropical notes, lemon orange, grass and some malt.

T-What balance. Starts with very tropical notes, lemon, orange, grapes, grass and some malt. Has a pleasant bitterness in the finish.

M-Tad lighter, but nicely carbonated with hop bite.

O-Nelson hops are amazing. Great way to showcase them.

Photo of GuinnessAtRogerWilco
3.74/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml growler purchased at the brewery on 8-8-13, so 5 days old at this point. Though the Susan I opened with friends last night on day 4 was fine. Poured into a standard pint glass.

AP: Light peach and apricot colour, almost looks like a Hefe. Foamy 1" head fizzled down to 1/8" with minimal lacing.
AR: Thankfully this has a nice lively nose on it. Pineapple, mango, gooseberry and guava. Little whispers of orange and pine with light grains and cracker.
T: Light grains and cracker for the malt base. The tropical fruits in the nose aren't as prominent in the taste. The main flavours are lemon and pink grapefruit. Damn, this is quite the letdown after how inviting the nose was. The lemon and PG just push the tropical fruits to the back, practically suppressing them from adding more depth to the taste.
M: Moderately carbonated, a bit light in body for a Pale Ale, IMO, crisp and off dry finish.
OV: This is my 2nd HF brew out of 4 that has been a letdown for me. I thought this would be really good by the nose, but the flavours just didn't hold up. The Susan was fine the day after and on day 4, so I don't understand how S&S #7 and this beer could be 'off' on day 3 and 5. I would still visit HF when I go to VT again, but would prefer to get heartier beers next time that might do better in a growler for a few days and a 7 hour Jeep ride home.

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Nelson Sauvin Pale Ale from Hill Farmstead Brewery
97 out of 100 based on 274 ratings.