Clara Grisette - Hill Farmstead Brewery

Not Rated.
Clara GrisetteClara Grisette

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BA SCORE
90
outstanding

101 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 101
Hads: 589
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 8.17%
Wants: 96
Gots: 84 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  4.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: starrdogg on 08-09-2011

Clara (1906-1969) was our grandfather’s sister; Hill Farmstead Brewery rests upon the land that was once home to her and her 13 siblings. In her honor, this Grisette is crafted from American malted barley, Vermont Organic Wheat, European and American 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 Clara.

Pale Malt, Organic Vermont Wheat, American and European Hops, Ale Yeast, and our Well Water
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 101 | Hads: 589
Photo of BarrytheBear
3.79/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Wheat seems to cut much of the tartness...only a lingering sour on the fade with some yeast and pepper notes. A good beer, a fun try, but not my favorite HF saison. (164 characters)

Photo of Chico1985
4.15/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12/3/14 - Updated from a 3.75 'Had' rating. Have tried this a few times now and picked up two bottles of the 9-2014 batch. Split this particular one 3 ways.

A - Nice glowing orange with some haze to it. White head retains pretty well, a spotty cap/thick ring/some lace is left.

S - Light citrusy tartness, definite oats, lemon lime, light brett, lots of yeast, farm.

T - Brett opens up nicely here bringing on some nice lemon, grapefruit, general tart citrus goodness, farminess. Light tartness, a big yeast profile, almost chalky, some pepper spice, tangy wheat, oats.

M - Impressive body and flavor for 4%, kinda chalky, medium carbonation, very drinkable.

O - Great brett/light tartness without sacrificing drinkability or a nice straight-up light saison base. For the ABV this is a pretty remarkable beer. This one goes a bit underrated in my eyes. Easy-going and would make a great summer beer. It's been great revisiting this and HF's George recently - two 3.75s I now shake my head at. (998 characters)

Photo of brystmar
4.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks Josh!

Beautiful appearance, as always. HF has that down cold. Wheaty, malty, earthy aroma. Smells and taste almost vinous even though I'm pretty sure it never spent time in wine barrels.

Smooth, refined flavor profile. Not too much wheat as these styles often get. Hoppy notes at the end add delicious complexity to the mix. Infinitely sessionable Shaun does it again. (377 characters)

Photo of grittybrews
3.58/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a hazy yellow with a finger of off-white head. Aroma with hints of pepper-dominated spice, lemon, and mild funk.

Dry, airy mouthfeel. Flavors of grass, biscuit, lemon, and tart fruit esters on the finish.

Light and enjoyable but not entirely distinctive. (263 characters)

Photo of jbertsch
4.46/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bright gold color with a huge white frothy head. Looks very refreshing.

The aroma gives off a significant farmhouse funk. Earthy, dank, little wet blanket. Some fruit notes in the background along the lines of white grape and pear.

The taste is almost champagne-like with elegant fruit notes (grape and pear again) on top of a wheat and farmhouse hay-like malt background. A little doughy.

Mouthfeel is bubbly, refreshing yet still has that trademark Hill Farmstead smoothness on the back.

Overall this is very nice, elegant, refined. If you're a fan of Saisons, give this a shot. It shows the style can still be exciting while at sitting at session-beer abv levels. Glad I have another bottle! (702 characters)

Photo of rtepiak
4.36/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

i'm had this beer before but mind you am review a year old bottle.

a personal favorite style. the table saison that has minimal accent in the spectrum of hill farmstead saisons but a lot of dimension for a beer that is 4%abv. beautiful pour. never seen an american beer with such a successful belgian whipped head. nose of lemon zest subdued in wheat yeastiness. lemon balm, grass and creaminess that is quite suitable for game bird lightly spiced. mild funk but more noble hops grassiness. extremely drinkable and smooth with a popular beer conception. i wish it replaced the american lager forever. (601 characters)

Photo of starrdogg
3.8/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden-yellow with a big fluffy white head and a lot of bubbles floating to the top. Lots of carbonation.

S: Smell is that typical saison yeast aroma mixed with something else more earthy/grainy that I can't quite put my finger on and a little bit of sweetness. Definitely a little bit unique in the smell.

T: A little bit lemony, a little bit peppery and a little bit grainy with almost no sweetness at all to speak of. As I drink on, the graininess really becomes the dominant flavor. It's actually got a good amount of flavor considering such a low ABV, but I'm not blown away with it like I am with some of the other HF stuff.

M: Very light-bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Finishes very dry.

O: Another strong effort from Hill Farmstead, especially given that the style "grisette" is not one I've ever encountered before, but I don't think it measures up to some of the other HF saisons like Anna. It's still a nice, flavorful, light, easy drinking beer, however, and there's always a place for something like that in this world. (1,074 characters)

Photo of Jimmys
4.48/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750mL into tulip. bottled 06 2013.

A: a hazed pour. straw blonde color on the edges and a bit richer at the center. head is bright white and frothy. retention is fantastic. spotted lacing left behind. pretty classic saison appearance.

S: a mild barniness starts off the aroma. very mild. more horse saddle than full on horse blanket. tart. lemon juice. a little bit of yeast bitterness as I approach the end of the bottle, but it is definitely yeast derived.

T: the first thing I notice is the tart, acidic nature of this brew. a mild barn, but really quite fleeting. there is a rich flavor in there that reminds me slightly of the rind on brie cheese. maybe that is just more of the funk talking. which is definitely there throughout the entire drink. finish is citrus fruit.

M: mouth has a bit of zip on it. light bodied.

D: a pretty tasty saison here. super light but having a great deal of complexity/flavor/aroma. this can almost all be taken from the yeast. great example of taking a simple canvas of a brew and letting the yeast showcase all of its nuances. surprised this isn't rated a bit higher. (1,114 characters)

Photo of cfrances33
4.43/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle thanks to WhereTheWildBeersGo, poured into a Hill Farmstead stem.

Pour: Hazy orange with a two and a half finger white head. Head hangs around for a little bit, and has a little bit of lacing.

Smell: A tart lemon zest up front, followed by spicy yeast and white pepper. A light biscuity malt sweetness.

Taste: Follows the nose perfectly, with a really nice tart lemon bite up from, and a great biscuity sweetness. A light yeast and white pepper on the finish. Simple but delicious.

Mouthfeel: Crazy drinkable. Lemon tartness lingers on the back of the tongue for a while. Very, very refreshing.

Overall: A beautiful easy drinking beer. I can only imagine how great this would be on a hot summer day. (711 characters)

Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
2.06/5  rDev -49%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

1 liter swingtop growler to tulip. Sampled on 8/11/11, one week after the fill. This growler did some traveling, so the temps were up and down a couple of times. I'm hoping that the counter pressure fill and the small 1cm headspace helps to hold up the beer.

A: No pop on opening. Very little effervescence visible. Scant 1 finger white head, bubbly & whispy and quick to diminish. The body is a light yellow-orange with golden hints, mostly clear with a touch of haze. Despite the small head, the lace stuck to the glass in decent amounts.

S & T: Light and very straightforward malt bill with notes of straw and general grain aroma. Hops suggest dried grass and flower stems. The earthiness is ample and light notes of funk and must back it up. Light rubbery phenols bring the score down. Short flavor duration.

M: Carbonation aside, the mouthfeel delivers what you expect out of a 4% beer. With no sound upon opening, its no surprise that the carbonation is very soft, and the main reason for the below average mouthfeel score.

O: Pretty lackluster given it's pedigree. I sampled this beer at the brewery as well and still wasn't very impressed. Perhaps my bottle will offer a different experience. I'll update this review when it's opened... (1,248 characters)

Photo of lovindahops
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Closing out the final September weekend of 2012 with a bottle of hill farmstead Clara. It's been a great hill farmstead week to say the least

A- an expected hazy orange HF body with thin spider webs of lacing clashing to edges. Nice refreshing saison look

S- Wheat, lemon, and grassy scents partner up with a farm house scent to propagate into a light spiced saison. Herbal and spicy

T- very tart wheat that flows with a fresh lemon flavor embodies a tasty saison flavor. Don't overlook the simplicity that really flows into the taste

M- flowing carbonation meshed well with tart flavor

I- excellent saison that is not complicated. Instead it's detailed with the desired properties of a saison. Like it (708 characters)

Photo of craytonic
3.53/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Nice off-white head, hazy golden pour

Smell: Touch of earth and sweet, floral notes. Light hops

Taste: Similar, touches of floral and citrus notes

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation

Overall: Decent beer, not something I would seek out again. Fairly standard offering. (278 characters)

Photo of Bendurgin
4.63/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a tulip. This one pours a clear golden straw color with three fingers of pillowy white head. Real good retention and sticky lace.

Nice floral aroma with lemon in the background. Real good farmhouse aroma with some spicy hops. Really a nice dry farmhouse flavor with a dry bitter hop finish. Hints of lemon and a good musty farmhouse flavor.

The body is nice and light with good lively carbonation. Crisp and dry on the finish. Overall this one is knocking me out. Really exceptional stuff here. (509 characters)

Photo of brianmandell
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Light, delicate, yeasty and refreshingly effervescent, this is a beer I'd like to drink for hours on a hot summer day. The light bready malts have some sourdough and mild yogurt undertones which are balanced by a lemony tartness. The effervescent sparkling carbonation is what makes this beer. Overall, this is an excellent table beer. Simpler than other HF saisons but just as enjoyable. (388 characters)

Photo of ChrisPro
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750mL bottle picked up at the brewery

A - crystal clear pale yellow with pillow of white foam; lacing prevalent througout

S - hay, earth and some nice herbal notes.

T- very little sweetness and some solid funk; a nice dry butter finish. Very well balanced

M - perfect carbonation; light bodied and extremely dry

O - sickeningly quaffable. So much flavor for the ABV. One of my favorites by HF for sure. (408 characters)

Photo of Gosox8787
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 750 mL bottle picked up from the brewery a couple weeks ago and kept chilled until opened. Served chilled, but allowed to warm to near room temperature over about half an hour. Poured into my Portsmouth Brewery tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a nice light, fluffy head, about two fingers with pretty decent retention. Yellow to light orange in color with just a touch of cloudiness.

Aroma: Some light honey, green apple and pepper notes. The yeast adds an interesting element, and just a light touch of tartness, but this really isn't that sour at all. The wheat keeps this light and bright.

Taste: Definitely a strong pepper note compared to most HF saisons. A touch of earthiness and bitterness, possibly from the hops. Light and bright with a bit of sour, but its barely there. Slightly earthy and bitter aftertaste. Refreshing and simple.

Mouthfeel: Light and fully carbonated. Definitely refreshing and easy to drink.

Overall, a really simple but enjoyable saison. Not overly complex, but the pepper and wheat provide an interesting interplay and make for a nice experience. Not sure I would pick up again when faced with this against other HF saisons, but I did enjoy it. (1,195 characters)

Photo of cvm4
4.12/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottled Sept. 2014

L - Pours an opaque golden/amber color and has a one finger eggshell head that dissipates to a ring around the glass.

S - Nice wheat base backed up by some yeast and floral notes. Also, a fruity tartness on the backend.

T - Whoa... Lemon notes in the front and floral notes in the back of the mouth, at the same time. I'm not sure I've experienced that before. Good amount of yeast and hay with some mild acidity.

F - Light bodied and medium carbonation. The carbonation is bubbly and just moves the flavors all around. It has a dry mouthfeel.

O - Rustic, simple but complex and that taste has me coming back. (633 characters)

Photo of ToasterChef
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A chilled 750ml bottled dated 6/2013 is poured into a white wine glass.

The beer is a clear, golden liquid with a few fingers of pure white foam. Uniform lacing is left behind. A few streams of rising carbonation can be seen rising within.

There is a complex mixture of aromas: wheat, spelt and farmhouse yeast. There is also a dry sweetness.

Maybe it's just the glass I'm using, but something about Clara reminds me of a dry white wine. The flavors are earthy and grainy—no fruitiness at all—so that's not it. Maybe it's the light bitterness that tastes like white grape tannins. I'm not sure. It is a tasty beer though. I especially enjoy the grain profile; I feel like you can really taste the wheat and barley.

The beer is a touch heavier than I expected and the carbonation seems low. There is a slight sharpness to the aftertaste.

This is an enjoyable beer. It's not my favorite example of the style, but I'm also not upset that I have an extra bottle of it. If I made the long journey to Hill Farmstead and this was all I came home with, I may be a bit disappointed. I guess what I'm trying to say is that with the outstanding quality of the other HF beers I've had, I was expecting more from Clara. (1,216 characters)

Photo of Jonada
4.09/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottled 9/2014. 4% ABV. Poured into a wine glass

Appearance: Pours a darker golden yellow color with 1+ finger of a white creamy head that settles to a thin coating. Body is lightly hazy with moderate visible carbonation.

Smell: Lemon, lacto, white grape, pear peppery yeast, wheat.

Taste: Highly tart, mildly sour, with flavors mimicking the aroma. Light funk, apple/pear, earth, pepper, lightly floral with some citrus rind as well.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with medium fine carbonation. Finishes dry and tart. Really refreshing.

Overall: Another great beer from Hill Farmstead. Definitely lighter than most of their other "shelf" saisons, but without sacrificing flavor and complexity. (701 characters)

Photo of andrewinski1
4.23/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip. There is a giant uncontrollable head on this beer atop a light golden clear colored body.

The aroma is full of sweet honey malt with some peppery spice.

The taste is very dry and crisp. There is a lot of pepper flavor and it's full of earthy spice.

This is light and strikes a good balance between being creamy and sparkling.

This is delicious. It's light and very drinkable with lots of flavor. (420 characters)

Photo of jeonseh
4.18/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Hazy yellow with slight golden body and a milky white head.

S - Honey up front with light tartness

T - Tart with lactic acid, lemon, lemon zest, slight grassy body to it. Light lemon and honey on the back end.

MF - Medium body with a good tingle and tart presence to it. Leaves a light dry finish on it.

O - Really good Saison with a good tart and sour presence to it. (377 characters)

Photo of breadwinner
4.21/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Love the idea here, a nice, small, funkified table beer. And, boy howdy, with some age on this, the funk is legit, almost teeth-melting in sour acidity. More than enough body, so no concerns there. Overall, a tasty, sour treat that won't wobble your legs. My only advice is to figure out how you prefer your sour saisons. For me, I think too much age makes these a little one dimensional, so I recommend drinking sooner rather than later. YMMV, of course. (455 characters)

Photo of Luk13
4.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle. Beautiful opaque bright yellow-beige with white head that recedes quickly in a ring of foam. Aroma is rustic and farmhouse, old wheat, lemon and hay. Definitly funky. I really like the wheat profile. Taste is tart as per Hill Farmstead yeast. Wheat provides some body. I find it very mineral and earthy. Mouthfeel is deliciously dry and light-medium bodied. Very tasty but I don't like it is very sessionnable as it is a little too tart. As good as this is, I miss the Hill Farmstead's saisonthat weren't soured by the yeast. (533 characters)

Photo of mobius387
4.75/5  rDev +17.6%

Was at HF this week. Of all the beers there, Clara was the clear winner from our group. Beat out double citra, double galaxy, Susan, citra, among the regulars. Also drinking better out of the bottle than Anna or Dorothy.

Not sure if they changed the recipe from previous years, but 2014s vintage is way better than reviews. (325 characters)

Photo of celticfutblclub
3.99/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a pretty things pint glass.

A - light straw yellow body with lively carbonation. puffy thick white head that goes nowhere and sticks really well to the glass.

S - subtle notes of grass pepper and bread malts.

T - bread and grass up front. with pepper and lemon zest in the middle. finishes with a nice hoppy grass taste.

M - light bodied with lots of carbonation.

O - really good stuff. very very drinkable as well. (446 characters)

Clara Grisette from Hill Farmstead Brewery
90 out of 100 based on 101 ratings.