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Arthur - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
ArthurArthur

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

1,471 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,471
Reviews: 188
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 7.8%
Wants: 449
Gots: 280 | FT: 40
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kingcrowing on 10-03-2010

Arthur (1922-2005) was our grandfather’s youngest brother; Hill Farmstead Brewery rests upon the land that was once home to him and his 13 siblings. In his honor, this Saison is crafted from American malted barley, American and European hops, our distinctive farmhouse yeast and water from our well. Unfiltered and naturally carbonated, this is the ale that I dream to have shared with Arthur.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,471 | Reviews: 188
Photo of scotorum
4.08/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the 25.4 oz. bomber into a Hill Farmstead stemmed tulip.

a; Hazy gold with an inch plus thick white head which receded to thick surface foam and dense lacing.

s; Belgian yeasty light ripe fruit combo with sour notes.

t: Difficult to begin to sip because inhaling the aroma of it makes me cough every time. Holding my breath, getting the same as the nose, with the dominant note being sour.

m: Light to medium, ok body, plenty of carbonation tingle.

o: A very good example of a sour saison. Easy drinking for those who favor that style. In this case my taste and overall ratings are based on perception of quality relative to the style rather than my personal reaction of enjoyment.

Photo of ttp86
4.31/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Think I had a bad bottle. Would like to try it again in the future.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.34/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

the difference between a very good saison and a world class one turns out to be not all that much. its just that one extra degree of refinement and attention to detail, maybe knowledge of process or even quality of ingredients. its tough to pinpoint, especially here, in a beer that in so many ways is not that different from a million other saisons on the market. it has a soft fluffy mostly pale malt base, with a slightly higher dosage of hops than tradition probably calls for, but with classic varietals and a yeast strain that makes it special. the recipe is the same across the board, but arthur has that it factor, that distinguishing element(s) that puts it up into a category nearly all of its own. for me, one element is the yeast. its super super funky, but it isnt tart or sour at all, and while it definitely has wild ale appeal, it doesnt get as involved on that front, a level of reserved craftsmanship rarely seen. if there is a little brett in here, its mild and sweet. the other element is the hops, and we all know these guys do hops pretty amazingly, but its grassy and bigger in this beer, without even lending oils to the beer to make it sticky and heavy, and without much bitterness. its a special understanding of the ingredients and the processes that produces such dynamic balance. mouthfeel is special as well, its carbonated quite brightly, but its not the racing soda bubbles of most, its a more gentle upbeat tune this one sings, and i am really happy having it hum along on my palate. finishes nice and dry and clean, feels rustic and timeless, traditional but evolved, and like something to be revered and shared, which is exactly what we did with it. a common beer style, probably with common ingredients and processes, but of outrageously uncommon quality. this is the new benchmark in my mind.

Photo of John_M
4.24/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Have had this beer many times, and like it quite a bit. There's a hint of sour to the beer (some batches seem a bit more sour than others), but is still in the range that I can tolerate. Otherwise, the beer is light, fairly dry, slightly bitter, and just very, very easy to drink. Very well crafted farmhouse ale from HF.

Photo of Damian74Shensky
3.44/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I Think I just dont like this style....

Photo of KillerJigger
4.02/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brisk! Could use a bit more flavor but yumm.

Photo of tmbgnicu
4.64/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Fantastic saison, shared a bottle with my wife over dinner. The funk is beautifully balanced with wheat tartness. Fresher bottle(3-15), will hold one for a little while to see what age does to it...

Photo of adapt313
4.54/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Absolutely fantastic saison. So bright, lively, and refreshing. The nose is a fair bit more tart than the taste. Perfect balance of tart, funk, and wheat. Super sessionable. Crisp, refreshing, near flawless brew.

Photo of aleigator
4.31/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Many thanks to Ron for providing the bottle!

Pours a hazy sun-yellow color, with a big, froth head.

Has aromas of wet grass, hay, citrus green apple peel and a lovely, slightly fruity, acidity. Bretts blend well into the rustic characteristics of the nose, providing an enjoyable freshness. The nose reminds me more of a Berliner Weisse, than a classic Saison, while being a bit richer and more pronounced on the nose.

Has a lively, very refreshing carbonation. While the beer is still relatively low in alcohol, its got a decent body to it.

Begins with soft wheat, wet hay and acidic lime, inviting sour bretts to the palate. Has a truly refreshing beginning, almost mirroring the nose, balanced by bready, slightly biscuity malts. Taste is still without a doubt providing a very pleasant freshness, with the right amount of lactic citrus fruit among funky yeast and wheat. Ends with biscuity malts among citrus bonbons, revealing a good amount of sourness.

A real treat, my first Hill Farmstead brew, a fuller bodied Berliner Weisse - or a truly refreshing, sessionable saison. Either way, the beer provides a crisp, citraic freshness, well edged into a distinct wheat foundation leading to a very well composed brew, I would love to drink frequently during warm summer days.

Photo of humuloner22
4.74/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Received this in trade a few weeks back. I noticed the bottling date was from January of last year, still this one has held up very well, perhaps even better than it was fresh? Although there was no noticeable off flavors at all. Very well crafted beer.

Appearance: Light golden honey colored with a large amount of delicate white head.

Aroma: Tartness is the dominant aroma some sweetness in there as well. Very much a Belgian style ale.

Taste: Tart, citrus fruits and a little bitterness pretty complex, yet mild as well. Very clean finishing and truly enjoyable.

Overall: This is my first Hill Farmstead beer and I am amazed at how well crafted it truly is, if I had not just ran across the date I would never have been able to tell that it had over a year of age on the bottle. Super beer! I hope this is the first of many opportunities.

Photo of ELS
4.45/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received in a trade. The bottle was 7 months old and I was surprised how well the saison held up considering the age. Makes me want to go to Vermont and drink some HF Beer on tap to see what it's like fresh.

The smell and the taste definitely have a lemon zest quality. There is a good amount of sourness which I'm guessing became more pronounced with age. The sourness is well balanced by a slight sweetness from the malt. It's a very well crafted beer that I would trade for again if the opportunity arises.

Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.23/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - The beer was a golden yellow color with a bright white head.

Smell - Lemon & grass makes an impression in the aroma.

Taste - As part of the taste, I detect impressions of dry lemon, grass, and lemon rind. The dry after makes the drinker needs another drink in the potentially never ending cycle.

Mouthfeel - The carbonation is appropriate for the style, brushing away sweetness and leaving dryness.

Overall - I am not huge on the style, but I enjoyed this one. It does not possess the medicinal qualities of some in the style.

Photo of Tarabeth
5/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I really enjoy this beer, one of my favorites from Hill Farmstead.

Photo of sdeese21
4.88/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Amazingly good beer! Hint of sour accompanies the light citrus aroma. Mouthfeel is on point. Beautifully done, Hill Farmstead!

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

Love this. What a great brew if you can find it

Photo of Devman171
4.49/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle, pours orange with white head. Aroma is light tart and yeast. Taste is more tart than i expected, really tasty

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

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a Hill Farmstead stemmed glass. Purchased at the brewery in November.

Pours a super hazy, pale yellow body with a big gushing frothy white head that reduces slowly to leave some lacing a decent, uneven white retention that sits for a while. Some sediment.

Aroma is super inviting with big fruity and tart aromas, namely tart citrus, lemon, and green apple mixed with banana-clove, peppery spices, farmhouse funk.

Taste is equally as complex, upfront is tart citrus but not overpoweringly sour, saison yeastyness & barnhouse funk, estery banana, a creamy caramel, with a spicy, peppery, and slightly bitter finish. Super complex. Excellently balanced. Easy to drink with a medium body and medium carbonation. Very refreshing.

Overall a world class Saison, super complex, balanced, and tasty. I expect nothing less from Hill Farmstead.

Photo of KATCanada
4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

From bottle, fridge temp in snifter. 10/14 bottling consumed Jan 4 2015.Pours a light gold with beautiful cloudy white foam. Nose of barnyard from the yeasts with a hint of sourness. Taste is a refreshing saison with the late sourness but not over powering. Lemon sorbet - I'm thinking of the Lemon Ice on a hot day at the old Yankee stadium (go Blue Jays!), granny smith apple. Great acidity - eating eat with Sushi and would recommend this combo to foodys. Wish I had some oysters too. Overall enjoyed on it's own and with food. Thankfully I have another bottle which I will save for a warm summer's night.

Photo of LambicPentameter
4.64/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed out of a brown 750 mL bottle to start of NYE 2014 after getting this in a non-BA trade a few weeks ago. As my first taste of Hill Farmstead, it's amazing that I was able to hold off this long. Label is marked with a bottling date of 10/2014. Poured into a Boulevard Smokestack series tulip glass.

Appearance (4.75) - Starting off on the right foot, this is what a saison should look like. The body is a glowing lemon topaz hue with hints of spun gold and a slight haze that seems to enhance the glowing nature. A lazy trail of carbonation rises from the etching on the bottom of the inside of the glass to replenish a towering four finger head of stark white meringue-like foam. With the way the beer developed a half finger of foam inside the bottle after I popped the top, I was afraid it might be a gusher, but after some careful handling, the carbonation was just enough to provide the massive head. Rings of sticky lace adorn the sides of the glass after the head dissipates several minutes later.

Smell (4.5) - At first whiff, there is a decided acidic tartness to the aroma alongside notes of white pepper and citrus zest. Some light floral notes take the edge of the acidity and bring it back to it's saison roots, rather than straying too far overboard with any sourness. Some barnyard funk and the impression of sourdough comes through as the yeast and malt make their presence known.

Taste (4.75) - As wonderful as this beer smelled, the taste is even better. There is so much going on, but it's not busy or overwrought. Notes of clover and pepper blend seamlessly with a refreshing but delicate tartness that leaves just the lightest kiss of that pinch of sour on the tongue, with a dry finish to prepare your mouth for the next sip. Light citrus and the suggestion of peach dance over the more earthy notes of yeast and grain. While stronger than a traditional "session" beer, the taste of this beer is so excellent that I could easily drink bottle after bottle without tiring of it.

Mouthfeel (4.75) - Light bodied, but with enough heft to provide an excellent counterpoint to the tartness and pungency of the beer. Some beers like this can feel watery even though they are supposed to have a lighter feel. This one manages to have some girth without being heavy. High carbonation and a dry finish on the tongue.

Overall (4.5), this is just a fantastically crafted beer. The saison style is a broad-ranging one, so it's hard to compare takes on the style that can be quite different from one another. That said, I can attest that this particular beer more than lives up to the massive reputation that precedes Hill Farmstead. It's the quintessential tart farmhouse ale in my mind.

Photo of mick303
4.36/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle. 8 months since bottling. Poured a cloudy yellow gold, strong initial head and a great lacing and film on this, fair bit of visible carbonation.

S- gooseberry, pear, and a lot of estery farmhouse yeast, almond, orange blossum, some tart berry aromas and golden plum notes, pale mlt, some earthy bitterness underneath the with clove and forestry pine spice.

T- a lot of tartness comes through with a full bodied yeast profile, sour pear and honeydew notes, quite a bit of green tart fruity notes then some pleasant earthy notes and more robust yeast notes. Shifting from sharp acidity to horsey and mildly farmhouse notes, hay, barny and with a drying, tart finish. Crisp with lots of farmhouse depth and tangy notes.

M- quite a bit of acidity, moderate body with a cleansing carbonation, the acidity is quite strong but the finish is pleasantly balanced with a crisp dry acidity.

Quite a bit more tartness than I anticipated, which was a great surprise. Light and quenching with a lovely yeasty complexity, some florals and fresh citrus, with a robust barny undertone and some hoppy spice. A lovely saison and I will look forward to seeing how this ages. Balance is pretty terrific, but you do have to crave the acidic tartness.

Photo of zonker17
4.52/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Soft beer with balanced hops and carbonation.

Photo of PSU_Mike
4.21/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a very pale yellow with a huge white head that lingers forever. Quite cloudy in body. Nose is belgian yeast, some lemons, and other citric flavors. The taste is very tart which I didn't see coming from the nose. Funky lemons, some hay, low acidity, and belgian yeast come through on the tongue. The finish is very crisp and clean with a very low lingering tartness.

This would be a great warm weather beer to sit by the pool and crush all day long.

Photo of boilermakerbrew
4.94/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Pours a very hazy yellow to straw in color with a huge, fluffy head. The head is here to stay with tremendous retention. Lacing is also phenomenal with an intricate lattice work down the side of the glass from the incredibly fluffy head.

S- Just like the head on this beer, the scent is almost fluffy in quality. Light scents of grain, funk, and just a touch of tart acidity intermingle on the nose and provide an enticing scent. Underneath those scents is a smell of a touch of peppery spiciness that really mixes in with the funky part of the scent very well. Slightly dry on the end of the smell as well.

T- Starts with a mix of slight tartness and some funk at the beginning of the drink. The tartness is very mild and has just a touch of lemony characteristics. The grain and spiciness come next with a light and dry flavor that is accompanied by the same pepper flavor as the scent. The drink moves more towards a dry flavor overall in the second half and the funk and grain are dominant flavors from there on out. The lingering flavor on the tongue is just a touch of the tart flavor mixed in with the dry funkiness.

M- This beer is best described with a word that I have already used in this review; fluffy. It is very light and airy on the tongue with an easy drinking, smooth feel. Greatly sessionable with an evolving flavor profile as it warms.

Overall, this is the type of saison that is right up my alley. Grainy and just a little spicy and funky with a light to moderate level of tartness. My favorite saisons have that tart aspect yet keep a great complexity with grain and funk, and this beer has all of those qualities.

Photo of RaulMondesi
4.79/5  rDev +9.9%

On tap at Beachwood Brewing in Long Beach, CA.

Mind blown. Mind on the wall like Earnest Hemingway. All those grassy, peppery saison flavors, but with a dollop of the most glorious citrus possible. Am I tripping? No, I'm alive.

Photo of Rollzroyce21
4.4/5  rDev +0.9%

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

Tasted against Anna, Florence, and Brother Soigne. Of the four, I ranked this one 3rd.

Not tart like Anna and Florence, which I actually don't mind as it's a Saison. A bit one dimensional. Still a fantastic saison.

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Arthur from Hill Farmstead Brewery
97 out of 100 based on 1,471 ratings.