Flora - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
FloraFlora

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

90 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 90
Hads: 562
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 3.76%
Wants: 600
Gots: 92 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

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

Wine barrel aged Wheat Saison fermented with resident microflora.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 90 | Hads: 562
Reviews by Bardwashrind:
Photo of Bardwashrind
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch 3

As many have stated, there are characteristics in the beers from Hill Farmstead that ring true and nearly iconic. I certainly have caught the bug and fallen under the spell that come with each new bottle or growler from this impressive brewery. I have had a previous experience with Flora, and yet, Batch 3 caught me off guard.

This is simply near perfection.

Funky but restrained, wild but with character, tart but wonderfully balanced and complex in such a long, heady way, there is something special about this bottle. While it shines with flavors that are comfortable and even defined, there is still a slight edge of origin that can't be replicated. This beer, possibly more so than other HF brews, sings with sincere voice of truth as to where it was created.

Flora doesn't plow one over with loud intensity, it's the subtle whispers that infect your head as the first glass is nearing end. Each sip is like a growing beam of light that takes over, heightens the moment and boarders on euphoric. I'm in envy of any within a 100 mile radius of this brewery.

It's the space in-between movements. The silence after the bang. The first light from beyond the darkness.

If this is the direction Hill Farmstead is taking with their spontaneous cultures/wine barrel aging program than we have a great deal to look forward to. This truly is the most engaging and exciting brewery in America, possibly the world. I only hope to one day see the view from the farm.

ISO: Flora batch 3, permanently.

Fucking magic right here.

Batch #1
Bottle came from the generous hands of RSchaeffer. Thanks so much for kicking things off like this.

The obsession fully takes hold after this bottle.

Upon the warmth of a later summer evening, the thought of a wine barrel finished Saison made perfect sense.

Flora poured with a lively head that topped our glasses with thick foam. Yeasty bread and peaches came to mind after first whiff. Some barrel notes, perhaps nutty and even hay based without being at all funky. Pleasurable with a rustic styled approach.

The initial taste brought upon a faint smile for it was so bare bones in application. Brett, stone fruit (peaches), more yeast and a distinct Saison element showed through. The mouth feel came off a touch on the lighter side but multiple sips allowed for the barrel presence to continually be felt. Quite nice because the base style could still be known. Not dominated by wine or oak but fairly obvious that more than just stainless was being applied.

Only the third Hill Farmstead I have tried but the first where I feel I understand where this brewery is coming from. While intentionally looking for subtle flavors, they can be found, if just drinking for thirst quenching reasons, the beer is still delicious.

Most likely one of the closest comparisons to that of the rural breweries of Belgium/France that specialize in farmhouse styles.
Flora was very enjoyable and the end of the bottle brought a sense of desire through delight that will only be fulfilled by experiencing more beers from Hill Farmstead.

4
4
4
3.5
(3,090 characters)

More User Reviews:
Photo of Stevedore
4.65/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

750ml bottle of batch 5. Bottled 7/2013. Poured into a Hill Farmstead stemmed glass today, 4/24/2014.

A- hazy straw yellow body with a slight orange hue. Thick, effervescent three finger white head that recedes to one finger quickly and retains for a long time after. Tons of thick, sticky lacing.

A- white wine, oak, wheat character, funk, yogurt tartness, slight vinegar, pale malt. Explosive nose that is very complex indeed.

F- even better than it smells. Tons of white wine, wheat, funk and apple cider tartness. Some vinegar as well, with a nice wet oak presence. This is incredibly complex and interesting.

M- medium bodied, well carbonated but a bit lower than that of Florence. So drinkable, lots of white wine character perfectly complements the tart wheat aspects.

O- I see what the big deal is. Showcases a perfect saison blended with white wine character. This rates as one of the best I've had from Shaun, and I still cannot think of a better wine barrel-aged saison out there. (1,000 characters)

Photo of obiwan_k3n00bi
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Less boring than Le Serrasin (or however you spell it), but still really boring. (80 characters)

Photo of dar482
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The aroma has bright hay funk and lemons. A touch of white wine.

The aroma is better than the flavor. It hits of light lemon tart, a decent tart throughout with a wheaty body and a touch of floral honey. Lots of lemony white wine.

Surprisingly, this was less tart than Florence. Unfortunately, one of the most disappointing of HF's saisons. (342 characters)

Photo of t2grogan
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of SkiBum22
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of lateralundertow
4.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of thetommo
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of MaybeSoMaybeNot
4.95/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Photo of warnerry
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of TimoP
3.5/5  rDev -17.8%

Photo of BillKuhnel
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of standardcherry
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of kingcrowing
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap poured into a wine glass at the fall harvest event.

Pours a nice hazy orange color with a small light white head - turns into some fine lacing. Nose is similar to Florence but there's a noticeable funk presence here that I really like.

Taste is again very similar to Florence but pumped up in every way, it's got a more earthy tone to it, with some of the funk and oakiness to it. Really a nice step up from the normal version. Mouthfeel is pretty creamy and mellow, nice smooth carbonation lends it to being a damn easy drinking beer. (545 characters)

Photo of Janeinma
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of sourdog
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Cynic-ale
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of doremite
4.97/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This rating is for Batch 5... (29 characters)

Photo of Soonami
3.48/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to BrewerDan23 for sharing this bottle.

This beer pours a very cloudy gold with just a little island of lazy white foam. The beer smells overwhelmingly bretty with huge funk that's like bad breath. The beer is very dry and thin, low in carbonation and has little hopping. The beer tastes mostly like funk with over ripe papyas, buttery oak and cracker-y malt. To me, it's a fairly one-dimensional brett-bomb and I was looking for a bit more complexity. (460 characters)

Photo of williamjbauer
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of jtladner
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of SPRichard
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of stereosforgeeks
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of glid02
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle shared by Sally – thanks! Judging by the reviews this is Batch 1, it’s unlabeled except for an “F” on the cage.

Pours a hazy golden color with a one-finger white head. The head recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of light malts with hints of wheat and large amounts of funk. Also present are earthy and floral hops, light citrus, and mild white grape aromas.

Tastes similar to how it smells, though it manages to be even more complex. Light malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by crisp light citrus and moderate amounts of funk. Midway through the sip a slight wheat twang works its way into things along with leafy hops that dry it out a bit. Near the end of the sip white grape flavors with hints of oak make an appearance, carrying through to a very crisp ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It’s got a nice thickness with active carbonation.

Drinkability is great. I finished my glass very quickly and could have a lot more of these.

Overall I was very impressed with this beer. Everything was done just to the right point and no one component was overdone. Very complex and well worth a shot. (1,156 characters)

Photo of Schlafly33
4.61/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

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Flora from Hill Farmstead Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 90 ratings.