Flora - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
FloraFlora

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
98
world-class

552 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 552
Reviews: 94
rAvg: 4.44
pDev: 9.23%
Wants: 604
Gots: 95 | FT: 12
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: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 552 | Reviews: 94
Reviews by xenjoiii:
More User Reviews:
Photo of Stevedore
4.65/5  rDev +4.7%
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.

Photo of obiwan_k3n00bi
4/5  rDev -9.9%

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

Photo of dar482
4.3/5  rDev -3.2%
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.

Photo of kingcrowing
4.2/5  rDev -5.4%
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.

Photo of doremite
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This rating is for Batch 5...

Photo of Soonami
3.48/5  rDev -21.6%
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.

Photo of glid02
4.72/5  rDev +6.3%
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.

Photo of 05Harley
4.23/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch #3 (silver cap)
(150 calories)

Purchased on 2/18/12 @ Hill Farmstead Brewery, Greensboro VT.

Pours a light golden color with a big two inch soapy white head. Tiny fines are visible suspended within the golden haze as heavy lacing adorns the glassware. A few lines of carbonation can be seen rising to the occasion.

Aroma is zesty with lemon leading the way followed by oak, grassy hops, pepper and a boat load of funk. Nice earthy tones here.

The flavor is rich in citric fruit, wheat bread, white wine and mineral water. A near perfect balance between sweetness and acidic aftertaste.

The body is light with moderate to low carbonation. Mouthfeel is acidic by nature and leads to a fairly strong tart feel. It doesn't take long to notice the dryness set in but it goes perfectly with the style.

Overall a fine example of the style, full of flavor and quite sessionable to boot. A must have for any BA.

Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.88/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch 4. 750ml capped bottle into a Cantillon tulip. Shared with schen9303.

A slow gusher. Pours a .5 finger foamy white head with as always, great retention. Beer is a crystal clear goldenrod that reveals ample carbonation. Lacing is thick, layered and web-like with excellent cling. Perfect.

Nose is white grape must tartness, some cobweb, wood, and floral/citrus/spice notes like coriander, orange peel, and a dash of peppercorn. Pretty mellow but very appetizing.

Opens citrus, froth, wood, and funk. Grape skins, coriander, and some Brett funkiness towards the middle. More spiciness at the back with a citrus and grape finish. A light, spritzy champagne-yeast tartness in the aftertaste. Delicious. Probably the best HF Saison I've had to date.

Light bodied with ample carbonation. Prickly and lively in the mouth and goes down quenching, smooth and aggressive. Messy finish with a dry, lingering aftertaste. So incredibly drinkable and quenching at the same time. I could easily take down gallons of this and enjoy every sip.

This beer is almost perfect in every way. Possibly one of the best beers I've had from Hill Farmstead... which is saying a lot considering all of their world class offerings. Flora is magnificent from start to finish. It looks incredible, smells incredible, the flavor is complex, yet light and quaffable and the body and ABV are such that I could drink this all day, every day. Flora is a masterpiece. Do yourself a favor and seek it out!

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.05/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into an HF wine glass. Batch 3.

Appearance - Golden orange. A little hazy. Big white head that leaves a bit of lacing and large surface wisps.

Smell - Earthy notes, akin to brett, without ever being bretty. Lemon zest. Wheat grain. Wine and a hint of acidity.

Taste - Strong white wine flavor. Much more acidic, but not sour. Grainy. Bright lemon tang. White wine lingers in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Light, but the flavors linger well on the palate. Well carbonated.

Overall - Lacking the complexity of the other barrel aged saisons, but still the barrel adds a great deal. The base beer is just lacking a little bit.

Photo of Kegatron
3.61/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml capped bottle into a couple of glasses. Thanks go to Stakem for sharing this during a recent Hill Farmstead tasting.

Pours a hazed gold, with a finger of frothy bright-white head. This stays rich and bubbly and coats the sides of the glass with swathes of creamy lacing. There’s a nice robust look to this. Wine barrel jumps right out in the aroma, with a tannic fruitiness that sits dryly in the nose. Honey, tartness and light funk sit along the back.

The taste is tart and earthy lemon character, some dark fruitiness, wheat, a touch of vanilla and honey. A dry tannic feel from the barrel sits on the edges of this, while a mildly funky tartness lingers in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a firm bubbly creaminess to the carbonation that expands out into the mouth. This overall flows pretty easily in the mouth and helps handle the strong tartness.

While I certainly found this to be interesting, the combination of wine barrel, Brett and wheat gave this a rather funky tartness throughout the profiles which my palate never did fully adapt to. I’m glad that I was able to try but I think that they’ve pulled off better with their barrel-aged Saisons from here.

Photo of mobius387
4.45/5  rDev +0.2%

incredible nose, big wine and french oak characteristics. a little light on base beer flavors but as it warmed up it got a lot more robust. overall another fantastic offering from HF and right up there with the other BA saisons/farmhouse ales

Photo of Kinsman
4.08/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Birthday treat to myself picked up at the brewery this afternoon. Pours a clear light golden color and a foamy white head with a nice sticky lace.

Wine notes come across the nose right away with a nice fruity note and some spice note in the background. Bready backbone lays a nice foundation for the palate upon with the cider and grape flavors build on. Lemon citrus notes come through midway and take over from there on. A bit musty and spicy from the base beer but the barrel flavors hide it pretty well.

Light crispness and a medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, a good saison is only made better by the barrel treatment. Enjoying this quite a bit more than Florence.

Photo of SpdKilz
4/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Taken from notes. Had at a small tasting at wedgie9’s apartment and thanks to Ryan for the bottle. Batch 1.
Appearance – Pours into a tulip with a hazy gold color. About a finger of head is achieved with a soft pour that dissipates slowly leaving nice chunky lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell – A wonderful aroma of barnyard funk, lemon zest, apple, wet hay, leather, honey, and tartness.

Taste – To be honest, the taste is a bit of a letdown. I was expecting a bit more in your face funk and flavor, but it was a bit subdued. Perhaps a bit more of age would have been beneficial to this beer. The initial taste is not so much sour/tart as it is earthy. Hay and barnyard must (not funk) is prevalent, slight lemon and apple sour citrus flavors, wheat, oak, and bread. A complex beer, albeit not what I was expecting.

Mouthfeel – Medium bodied, spritzy carbonation.

Overall – A good saison and one I am glad I was able to try. However, that said, I would take Bam Biere over this any day. I wish the sour/funk was a bit more dominant. Drinkability was great, and I would honestly love to try this with a couple years on it.

Photo of dvmin98
5/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This was the best saison I've ever had, and I am not a big saison guy. Fantastic.

Photo of emerge077
4.46/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Mark for sharing this one with us! Quick review from written notes.

Hazy gold color, with some visible micro sediment, topped with a thin layer of white foam that showed some lasting retention.

Light fruity sweetness in the aroma, along with some white wine minerality.

Tart and juicy grapefruit taste, puckering dry tartness in the finish. Effervescent, clean, crisp feel. Fresh and fruity. A very quenching Saison that hits all the right notes for me. Probably the closest to Fantome that's brewed stateside in my opinion. Highly recommended. Thanks again Mark!

Photo of Rutager
4.76/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Huge thank you to Montrealbcr89 for not only coming to my tasting, but bringing this gem. If there's one thing I've learned in my beer tasting career, a HF saison is something to be excited about.

Appearance. Pours a hazy straw gold with a thin white head.

Smell. Wildflowers, slight whiffs oranges and lemons, light barrel and white wine. My description can't do it justice and I spent a lot of time with my nose in the glass. Fucking amazing.

Taste. Some lemon sourness, light wildflowers and minerals. Again, I don't have the words to describe this one in a way that does it justice but it's subtly complex and somehting I could drink every day.

Mouthfeel. Light+ body, medium+ fine carbonation.

Overall. As always with these HF saisons, one of the best beers I've put in my face. Thanks again Tyler!! Best one of the night imo, and against some pretty heavy hitters.

Photo of Bardwashrind
5/5  rDev +12.6%
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
4

Photo of smakawhat
4.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a Hill Farmstead wine stemware glass.

A little bit of a minor gush out of the bottle, Hits the glass with a classic creamy and whipped up tiny bubbled white head. Lots of clingy lacing while drinking. Body is a mix of opaque and clear with some whispy lacing coming off the side. Real nice glowing brassy gold, and lemon and peach apricot brown hues.

Nose is quite impressive. Hot brett, and toasty white baguette baked bread. Little lemon, lots of fruit, white vinegar, faint pepper. Fruit angle hits in many places, apricot, peaches, really nice smell.

Taste on the palate is wine like vinous, bringing all the brett like heat but tolerable. Lots of toasty bread finish on the aftertaste. Lemon zest, citrus and apricot. Real great thick white vinegar character on the palate.

Overall a great dry bretty saison, with huge fruit flavor character to it. Real fantastic brew.

Photo of jmarsh123
4.85/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch 3

Pours hazy medium yellow/straw with a small off-white head and some aggressive bubbles. Slight lacing down the glass.

Aroma features light fruits such as lemon and pear with a little bit of a grape like sweet. Good funk and a nice clean tartness.

I'm not sure words can describe how good this beer tastes, but I'll try anyway. Starts out with lemon, apple and pear flavors. As it rolls over the tongue, the tartness increases. Never getting overly sour, but pleasantly tart. Some white wine notes come into play as there are moderate amount of oak and a little chardonnay flavor. Finishes grainy and sublimely tart.

Creamy mouthfeel with good carbonation levels making the tartness really pop. I could've drank 3 bottles of this in one setting.

This is the best HF beer I've ever had and that's saying something considering how much I laud most of their stuff already. An absolutely perfect sour that was well balanced and complex without any one flavor or sensation overpowering the rest. I savored the last few sips of this and let it roll around all the parts of my tongue getting every last drop while secretly wishing I had chosen this to drink by myself instead of split with the girlfriend. Outside of Lente (which I'd need another taste of to compare) probably the best sour I've had.

If you have any bottles of this, please disregard the above review. They are bad. Send them all directly to me now for proper disposal.

Photo of largadeer
3.53/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Rating is a composite of the two batches.

Batch 1:

Milky pale blond with a tall lasting white head.

Smells great. Very floral, perfumey. Nice fruitiness, very berry-like, specifically blackberries. Vinous notes, citrus, strawberry.

Palate has a sharpness to it up front, a nice blackberry-strawberry fruitiness. Citrus, too, along with vinous notes and a mild lactic character. Very light with a dry and tannic finish. Exceptionally good.

4
4.5
4.5
4.5
4.5

Batch 2:

Same appearance as batch 1. Tons of cheesy funk on the nose here. Very bretty, a bit metallic. Tastes cheesy, lactic, funky, vinous. Dry finish. Not great, this batch has an overwhelming blue cheese character. It's drinkable, but it doesn't live up to batch 1.

4
2.5
2.5
2.5
2.5

Photo of jbernier83
4.27/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an Allagash Coolship glass with lots of fluffy pale straw colored head with slightly darker liquid. The foamy cushion dissapated fairly fast leaving a thin layer or bubbles.

Smells is of apple, banana, honey, and plenty of funk.

White wine, tart lemon zest, slight oak, bretta funk, with a hoppy finish that is nice and bitter.

light dry mouth feel fairly bubbly, but leaves the mouth feeling a slight rubbery coating.

I really enjoyed this, taste the yeast seemed mild at the start yet very apparent in the finish. Felt refreshed after drinking it and would love another glass.

Photo of oline73
3.98/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy yellow color with a hint of orange. There is a layer of white head that fades to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Slightly funky and quite herbal. Light and crisp, very nice.

Taste: Very light with just a touch of funk. There is a wine tartness. This beer is really refreshing.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is light with foamy carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: Light and easy to drink with a mild wine note. I thought this was a very good Saison.

Photo of claspada
3.85/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice very cloudy yellow/straw color with a big white head.

Aromas begin with a nice straw, wheat presence. There is a lemony tartness that emerges as it warms coupled with some grassiness, earthiness and a little oak.

The tastes begin with grainy wheat malt, some hay/straw and a light sourness. Light fruit notes of apple and pear with lots of lemon zest and some green apple. Some bacterial notes with a bit of grassy and earthy funk.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with above average carbonation, but it works with the stle here. Finish is dry and crisp, almost like a really good pilsner-like bite at the end.

Overall this was a very good beer, not the best of the style or something I necessarily need or want to have again, but this is also not a style I really love. Would be great during the warmer monthes of the year for sure, but is just not hitting the right mark for me on this chilly fall day. Still quite good and recommended if readily available to you or if it can be acquired easily.

Photo of N17shelfside
4.56/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Batch 1 on tap at Farmhouse in Burlington. Drank alongside a fresh cantillon gueuze, which has much more farmhouse variety complexity, so some of my feelings might be tainted by that. Very dry, might actually have been a little past its prime. Had some nice funk to it, probably that natural Greensboro yeast. A little lemony, some grass, but overall just light and crisp. Overall a very good summer saison.

« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Flora from Hill Farmstead Brewery
98 out of 100 based on 552 ratings.