Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Vera Mae - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
Vera MaeVera Mae

Educational use only; do not reuse.

105 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 105
Hads: 602
Avg: 4.27
pDev: 19.91%
Wants: 313
Gots: 96 | FT: 12
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: SFLpunk on 07-25-2011

Vera Mae is crafted from organic Vermont spelt, American hops, wildflower honey, dandelion flowers from our fields, our distinctive farmhouse yeast and water from our well. Unfiltered and naturally carbonated.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 105 | Hads: 602
Photo of Sammy
3.63/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

John S's bottle, recent acquisition. Yellow with a huge head, significantly yeasty aroma. Honey and bitterness, very well carbonated much more so than other HF I have tried. Middling saison really, and the honey seemed to have neutralzed other flavours.Decent drinkability.

 273 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.09/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Wowcoolman for sharing this one at jmgrub's tasting.

Batch 1.

Pours a murky yellow with a foamy off-white head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, spices, herbs, and some fruity aromas. Taste is much the same with a slight tartness and a spice finish on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink.

 512 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: The beer pours out with a ton of foam and as the liquid materializes it is a cloudy honey color; the whipped egg white head persists at length, leaving copious amounts of lace behind

Smell: Slightly funky, slightly floral and slighty earthy, the yeast drives the aromatics

Taste: As with the aroma, the yeast has a big impact on the palate; cantaloup and green tea, up front, with a growing lemony character that appears in the middle; the finish is a bit fruity, a bit grassy and somewhat dry

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with high carbonation

Overall: Hill Farmstead's saisons compete with the best of Belgium; I cannot really identify the spelt character in this beer but the flavor profile is complex and enjoyable, while the mouthfeel is light and airy

 776 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of SFLpunk. Thanks! Served in a Hill Farmstead long-stem tulip.

Pours a bright, clear golden-yellow color with a towering head and loads of retention. Foamy head is one of the better ones I've seen in quite some time. The nose brings some nice dandelion character along with light spice and faint wheat. Flavor has plenty of floral and grain characteristics plus a bit of white pepper and spice. Light body with crisp carbonation and a dry finish. Not quite as enjoyable as some of the other HF saisons, but still quite excellent.

 547 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a delicate hazy light yellow color ale with a super large foamy head with great retention and very good lacing. Aroma of fruity ester with nice floral undertones and some light honey notes. Taste is a wonderful mix between some rustic notes with some floral notes as well as some honey and light fruity ester. Body is quite full with great carbonation and no apparent alcohol. This is a great example of complexity and drinkability without being overly sweet and with great attenuation.

 501 characters

Photo of mendvicdog
4.37/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

The dandelions add an odd flavor and make the mouthfeel a little harsher than most of the HF saisons.

Still has amazing mouthfeel and the smell is much better than the taste, bright and slightly funky.

 202 characters

Photo of oline73
4.05/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was opened at the Baltimore BA August tasting. Poured from the bottle into a tasting snifter.

Appearance: Pours a really cloudy bright yellow color with a layer of white head. This is a really bright and cloudy beer.

Smell: Light and quite herbal. Mild citrus notes are here as well.

Taste: This is a very light and refreshing saison. Herbal and a bit tart, I'm getting some lemon along with the herbal yeast notes. I'm also getting some white wine notes. Definitely a nice summer beer.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the thin side of medium with tingly carbonation and a very dry finish.

Overall: This is another great summer beer. The lightness along with the herbal notes worked really well together. I'd have it again.

 728 characters

Photo of jlindros
4.12/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Despite that summer is almost over, and this is a spring seasonal, however it's a cool day and seems like it should be drunk.

Pours a nice fluffy 1.5 finger head that fades fairly slowly with nice layered lacing, over mostly clear pale honey colored beer.

Nose has some nice saison aromas, light straw and wheat like, hint of hay, nice farmhouse aromas, light aromatic spices that bring hint of orange zest, lemongrass, light floral character that is probably the dandelion, hints of grassy hops, and a bit of a sweet malt, with a touch of a funky like farmhouse aroma.

Taste is interesting... starting right out with a farmhouse funky yeast that is very similar to Brett, it really does seem like Brett. Then more great saison malts, little fluffy with hint of sweetness, but mostly dry and bready, with a farmhouse earthy malt profile. Then light floral saison spices, little tingle even, and that floral flower like taste, again most likely dandelion but I'm not quite sure. A bit of an earthy spicy yeast flavor from the farmhouse flavors, and hint of citrus zest. A mild bitterness in the background. Finish is fairly dry but clean, some more bitterness with an interesting almost definite dandelion flavor finally coming through, light earthy herbal bitterness, more citrus, and a bit of farmhouse funk.

Mouth is med bodied, good carb.

Overall really interesting. Not the best saison I've had, but a nice one. Good malts, a really funky farmhouse character that is almost Brett like, nice floral aromatics and flavors, and just a hint of nice dandelion flavor.

 1,571 characters

Photo of mdfb79
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 11/05/11 notes. Brought a bottle of this to a recent tasting. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter.

a - Pours a hazy bright yellow color with high carbonation evident and two fingers of fluffy white head. A ton of lacing left on the glass and some nice head retention.

s - Smells of citrus hops, oranges, honey, floral notes and hops, and light earthy/funky notes. Great nose; ton of floral/earthy notes coming through witht he oranges and citrus, I'm really loving it.

t - Tastes of floral hops, citrus hops lightly bitter, yeast, light earthy notes. Not as much orange or citrus as the nose, and not as sweet, but more floral notes. Very nice, but a step down from the nose.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Light bitterness, but overall pretty easy to drink.

o - Overall a really good saison from Hill Farmstead. I thought the nose was amazing and it was really easy to drink. Samples among about 20 Fantome beers and this held its own, and was better than at least half the Fantomes. Would like to have it again.

 1,040 characters

Photo of MasterSki
4.13/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of AshleyMiller. Thanks! Served in a tulip.

A - A big white foam settles to a persistent meringue foam, leaving behind tons of splotchy lace. Vaguely transparent banana yellow body.

S - Dry, musty, with some straw and floral notes. Dandelion isn't overt, but adds a bit of sharp herbal character. As it warms up a bit of the honey and sweet malt comes out.

T - Taste has a bit more herbal and leafy character to it, along with some bitter dandelion greens in the finish. As it warms cereal grain character comes out - reminds me a little of Cheerios.

M - Medium-light body, lower, pleasant carbonation, and a lightly sticky and otherwise smooth body. No alcohol present, nor was any expected at 6.0% ABV.

D - It's not my favorite Hill Farmstead saison, but it's an very good and well-crafted beer all the same. I'd gladly have this one again if offered, but there are a half-dozen Saisons from Shuan Hill that I'd choose first.

 948 characters

Photo of drabmuh
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer provided by Michael to compare with the dandelion beer from Fantome, this one was better, less vegetal.

Beer is yellow and hazy with a soft white head of small bubbles. Lots of lacing, moderate carbonation.

Honey comes through in the aroma nicely, along with a little grassiness and some hop like aroma, smells nice.

Beer is light in body, pretty floral throughout but not too grassy. Beer has a slightly dry finish but there isn't any real bitterness that would be overly amplified by the dryness. You can find the flowers but overall it is not very dandelion-esque. I liked it though, a lot.

 602 characters

Photo of mothman
3.25/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very foamy white head. Color is a very pale and hazed yellow.

Aroma: Reminds me of fantome. The honey is apparent. It is very floral. Weedy with some lemon zest and spices. Pears and some fruit flavors. Earthy.

Taste: Unique. Dandelions are here. Very floral. Grassy with pears and dried fruits. Spices. Coriander.

Mouthfeel: Really dry. Lighter bodied with a low to medium amount of carbonation. Bone dry.

Overall, a good beer, but too dry. Unique flavors all around.

 480 characters

Photo of stakem
3.63/5  rDev -15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cheers and thanks are owed to BA baconsausage for hooking me up with this. Poured from a 750ml into a gigantic over-sized wine glass. The brew streams a perfectly clear golden yellow color with a rich 3+finger white frothy topping. The cap slowly fades leaving pillows of patchy lace sticking to the glass. A light swirl revives a finger of slightly off-white cap back to the surface and paints some strings of webby lace on the glass.

The aroma is lemony scented almost perfume-like inclusion that makes me think this is going to be sour. Some earthen edges with a mild inclusion of sulfur and stinky feet/cheese. The earthen aspects of this are a bit grassy and vegetative somewhat similar to dandelions but that is a bit of a stretch. There is a soft fresh grain note underneath that is minorly reminiscent of wheat. Overall, a fine smelling brew.

The flavor is very earthen with hints of grass, wheat and straw-like grain inclusion. There is a bit of that previously described lemony aspect found that was so bold in the aroma but instead of being citrus and zest-like or fruity, it is very bitter like chewing on the rind of an orange/lemon/grapefruit. It has a bit of an oily cling that resonates long into the aftertaste with a bit of a draw back to the initial earthen flavors. As the brew warms up, it gets to be a bit soapy.

This is a light bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It looks, smells and feels the part of a saison but the bitterness was a bit over the top and distracted a little bit from the overall experience. However, I gotta say that this was one of the more enjoyable Hill Farmstead brews that I have had in awhile. I would get this again if the opportunity presented itself and proceed almost like it is a hybrid ipa/saison instead of expecting a saison in the more traditional sense.

 1,828 characters

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.23/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer is golden yellow and hazy with an inch of white head that plasters the glass with lacing. The aroma brings lemons, floral notes, light spice, honey (which emerges more and more as the beer is allowed to warm. Delicious flavor. Beautiful and clean. Honey and lemons. Refreshing. Is Hill Farmstead the best brewery in the USA?

 333 characters

Photo of smakawhat
4.53/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a large tapered wine glass.

Classic Hill Farmstead look. Shocking bright white head, three fingers, massive retention, huge clumping and lacing. Body color is a gorgeous orb glowing honey gold and green hued just a touch. Just one aggresive looking brew.

Nose is floral and good sense of fresh mowed grass. Crisp honeycomb, and mild garden herbal notes. Very unique and lots of fun. It's like a garden in here, the beer smells of just dense pollen.

A really wondeful tartness. Quick puckering lemon citrus acid. A real punch that lingers just on and on even after the swallow. Creamy body, with a mild carbonation, extremely soft feel to the palate. Honey smacks the lips and lingers with a sense of floral lip balm on the skin. Tight quick carbonation that slowly evaporates on multiple sips. Slight chewy malt, but the beer is truly acidic forward with wonderful aromatics and flavors. Tannic coating on the aftertaste, mild tartness, and even a hint of Gose like salt.

Overall what more could you have expected from Hill Farmstead. More greatness what else.

 1,092 characters

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Golden yellow with a nice white head. Lace inside the glass and swirly designs on the surface.

Smell - Intensely floral. Also very yeasty. Pale malt and a white wine-like acidity.

Taste - Very yeasty. Flowery and winey. Grassy bitterness builds into the finish. Floral flavors linger.

Mouthfeel - Light. Crisp and spritzy. Nice flower flavor in the finish.

Overall - Very enjoyable. The flowers are intense, but the saison handles them well.

 517 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
4.09/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at Eb's
Pours a slightly hazy yellow color with a smallish off white head that dissipates quickly. Smells of bready malts with an earthy herbal minty aroma that I assume is from the dandelions. Hints of citrus and sweet honey on the nose round it out nicely. Sweet bready and honey like malt flavors up front balanced with some herbal minty flavor before a slight funk and a fairly dry finish. Medium to light body with a moderate level of carbonation and a sweet bubbly mouthfeel. Nice brew, definitely different I'm glad I got to try it.

 546 characters

Photo of yourefragile
4.8/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2012 batch on draft at Harvest Festival. Served in a... HF glass (shocking).

Reviewed the first batch from the bottle previously, but this year's was distinct enough to merit a new entry in my opinion. Poured a chalky, hazed golden color with a frothy white head; excellent retention and ample lace. Floral and nectary nose of honey, clover, dandelion and grass. Flavor is similar, dominated by the floral and lemon flavors with an ample tart and light pepper finish. Dry medium body with high carbonation and a crisp finish. I want more of this beer always.

 559 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 into a stemmed vase, the beer is a bright, slightly hazy, yellow-gold coloring with a foamy, light and fluffy, bright white head that lightly clings the glass. There is a steady flow of carbonation throughout the body, as well. Aromas of subtle lemon grass, rich honey, woody notes, vinous dandelions, and a blend of floral highlights. The flavors are tangy sweet and extremely vegetal forward, with a solid bitterness that quickly follows. Rich honey, sweet and tart lemon, and floral highlights lead the charge, but the very bitter and resinous hops profile cleans things up quickly, with another blast of tart citrus lemon and grapefruit coming along with it. The wood spice ends up blending with the floral notes as an accent, and there is a subtle sour twist on the back of the palate. The body is smooth and robust, with a slight effervescence from the carbonation. The aftertaste is bitter and vegetal, with the citrus highlights still shining through. Dry, crisp finish, with a solid bitter and resinous linger. Very solid beer!

 1,054 characters

Photo of liamt07
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from iguenard, 750ml into a tulip. Batch 2.

Straw yellow, with a voluminous white head. Chunky retention and patchy lace. Nose is herbal, floral (dandelion can be sensed, interestingly enough...), dill, farmhouse yeast, light wheat and a touch of mineral character. Taste is floral and herbal again, dill, lemon, citrus zest, farmhouse flavours and light tartness. Sweet malt underneath (perhaps even honey there?). Effervescent feel, light bdoy. Yummy, light and refreshing - my first foray into Hill Farmstead beers and I want more.

 542 characters

Photo of HopHead84
4.33/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


750ml poured into a snifter at 55 degrees.

A: The body is a very pale yellow, a lighter shade of sunglow. The mountainous head rises three fingers above the liquid, slowly receding in a crater-like fashion after many minutes, leaving much lacing on the glass. Clarity is perfect.

S: My nose is greeted by a highly aromatic floral profile, the Dandelion presence is pronounced. A touch of citrus brings lemon to mind. Rustic earth notes blend with hay and grass. Very nice.

T: Grassy, with notes of hay and earth. A well integrated lower level of moderate bitterness is evident, and there's a very light spicy phenolic note that reminds me of white pepper. The flavor, like the aroma, is very floral. Dandelion tastes better than I would have guessed. I get some of the honey in the taste, along with light lemon notes. The finish is bone dry with lingering floral notes.

M: Light in body with a fantastic high level of carbonation that brings the beer to life on the palate. The mouthfeel is very dry.

Overall: A well crafted and unique Saison from Hill Farmstead. Definitely recommended.

 1,103 characters

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to hoppypocket for this one! Poured in to HF stemmed tulip.

A - Cloudy medium yellow with an orange glow around the edges. One finger of bright white head with good retention and good lacing.

S - Funk is noticeable up front with Belgian yeast, floral, lemon, coriander and sweet honey aromas also present.

T - Tartness and funk hit the tongue right away before the other flavours start to come through. Grass, lemon, big floral presence, coriander, Belgian yeast and some dill. Lighter lemon zest and spice in the background. The dandelion is not specifically noticeable but likely contributes to the big grassy and floral presence.

M - Light to medium body. Light carbonation. The typical HF dryness is present.

 725 characters

Photo of AlexFields
4.05/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Jackie O's bottle share 3/1/2013.

Pours a hazy lemon yellow, thick white head.

Smell is nice, faint citrus and flowers, but very light in character

Taste is pretty funky, odd flower flavors, tart lemon, touch of sweetness.

Mouthfeel not very thick but very frothy/bubbly.


 283 characters

Photo of vfgccp
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A – Huge head dominates the glass with a medium-to-fine bubble structure. Chunky lace. Hazy gold with green highlights.

S – Flower fields, spicy bitter greens, and a honeysuckle sweetness.

T – Smooth opening with honey and soft pale malt. Radicchio and dandelion lend bitterness and a black pepper spice to the center and linger long after the sweetness of the opening has dissipated, leaving a semi-bitter and pleasantly dry finish.

M – Dry, medium body with moderate carbonation.

O – Great floral and bitter character for the style.

 548 characters

Photo of rudzud
4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Having had this multiple times I figured it would be time to review. This is a Batch 1 bottle, initial release. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Ah yes, I seem to recall now Shaun telling me to open the bottle cold. So as I pop this room temp, having forgotten, it rather quickly rises from the bottle. Pours a lightly hazy lightly strawed golden hue with a big, creamy white almost 3 finger head that faded to leave soapy, sudsy lacing and a thick dense blanket.

S - Nice aromas of light honey and warm summer meadows full of dandelions. Very light yeasty funk with some soft gentle lemon. Very light, pleasant barn aromas with more bright almost phenol.

T - Taste is nice and lightly tart/sour with lots of lemon. Very light honey sweetness and some light bitterness that dandelions give to brew (similar to dandelion wine). Very slight spelt in the background as well. Very lightly funky which is impressive all the more seeing how all the sediment got mixed up upon popping. This tastes much, much better than I remember it tasting. Exponentially better.

M - Mouthfeel is very nice. Would like a touch more carbonation to help out the lemon sourness here. Feels more like a wild than a saison.

O - Overall, this is one of Shaun Hill's best saisons to date. All of his saisons are "good" but this though, this is something really special. Really enjoy how bright and tart this is.

 1,387 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Vera Mae from Hill Farmstead Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 105 ratings.