Gin Clara
Hill Farmstead Brewery

Gin ClaraGin Clara
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Farmhouse Ale - Saison
not listed
4.5 | pDev: 6.67%
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Gin ClaraGin Clara
Notes: 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 iteration of Clara was aged for over a year in gin barrels from Caledonia Spirits in nearby Hardwick, Vermont. Unfiltered and naturally carbonated, this is the ale that I dream to have shared with Clara.
Reviews: 12 | Ratings: 62 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rodmanfor3
rodmanfor3 from Vermont

4.75/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Gin Clara just might be the ghost whale of Hill Farmstead.

I cellared my bottle for two years until a special occasion popped up, and when the time came to celebrate, I shared a 375ml bottle with what now seems like far too many people.

From the healthy pour that I enjoyed, I found myself in awe as I discovered how good this beer truly was. The gin barrels had integrated seamlessly into the subtle flavors of the base beer to create a near masterpiece that finished clean and dry. This one was special.

Oct 17, 2017
Photo of SomethingClever
SomethingClever from Ohio

4.72/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

375ml bottle poured into Merlot glass bottled in 2015.

A: Crystal clear yellow honey colored body with a generous white soapy head on top.

S: Lots of juniper, slight mint, honey, light Crackery malts.

T: The gin intertwined and layers through this beer without being overwhelming. It has a very soft honey juniper and fruit taste then a nice light malt and softer honey taste then finish with a nice gin dryness.

M: Soft feel no harshness

O: This beer is damn near perfect, I am not a fan of gin at all and this beer is remarkable. The way the gin doesn't dominate the beer but elevates it is extrodinary.

Sep 01, 2017
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missings0n from Connecticut

4.79/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Like every Barrel Aged Hill Farmstead beer, the barrel time adds a great complexity. This one takes the slightly tart, wheaty Clara and adds a soft floral gin undertone which complements it so nicely

Jul 23, 2016
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doremite from Vermont

4.56/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This exceeded my expectations. A truly complex yet pleasant Clara varient. Lightly tart without being sour and, for me, the perfect touch of the gin barrel in the finish. Showcases the HF barrel program beautifully. I am not a gin fan but the subtle hint of it does wonders to this one. So easy to drink yet just complex enough to savor. A treat.

Apr 01, 2016
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mythaeus from Pennsylvania

4.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is a beautiful brew all around and one of the most unique beers I've ever had. The gin barrel worked extremely well in adding oakiness juniper, lime, and a whole host of other characteristics to the beer. If you're a fan of gin, seek this out!

Feb 24, 2016
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Bsquirrelbrewer from Pennsylvania

4.68/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from the bottle into a HF tulip.

Beautiful straw golden color. Smell of Brett, oak, and juniper. The taste brings barrel, funk, and gin in a beautiful balance (and I am not usually a fan of gin).

The texture is spot on HF. Great mouthfeel for the style.

A phenomenal, unique beer.

Feb 24, 2016
Photo of jaasen64
jaasen64 from Massachusetts

4.56/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Haven't done a review in awhile so here we go. Consumed right after drinking a '14 Clara aged for over a year and half.

A- Pours with an opaque golden straw color, fairly minimal carbonation without too much head but far from being flat.

S- Fairly strong and aromatic nose with lots of complexities mostly arising from the gin barrel. Definitely get a strong botanical component consisting of mint leaves, juniper berries, pine, grass, light vanilla, and oak.

T- Barrel is still definitely present but not as much as in the aroma. Pick up light bitter lemon juice, vanilla, oak, mint leaves, and a strong juniper berry presence on the finish.

M- Probably the best aspect of this beer is that it's so drinkable. Just like the non barrel aged version this is super clean and drinkable.

O- HF hit this one out of the park and definitely makes the case for breweries using gin barrels more frequently. My only complaint is that with it being so drinkable you really wish you had more then one single 375ml bottle.

Feb 20, 2016
Photo of Alieniloquium
Alieniloquium from Florida

3.48/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

375 mL bottle. Clear golden body. Medium white head. Huge gin aroma. Light oak and acidity. Almost all gin, though. Taste is also extremely gin heavy. Almost tastes like ginger. Woody and a little astringent. Some strange sweetness. Low carbonation. Light. It's interesting, but I think I prefer regular Clara to this.

Dec 07, 2015
Photo of starrdogg
starrdogg from District of Columbia

4.64/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is one of my favorite HF saisons to-date. The gin barrel brings an incredible complimentary flavor to the base Clara and doesn't overwhelm it like I was worried it might. Definitely worth your time if you love what these guys do already.

Nov 30, 2015
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Skrip from New Jersey

4.6/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375ml bottle poured into a Hill Farmstead fest. glass.

A~ darkish orange with a tiny head and a little lacing.

S~ tons of gin! woooooo! juniper berries pop like crazy followed by herbs, brett and some zesty wheat!

T~ gin and wheat... juice! tons of juniper berries and a nice coconut like flavor up front. slightly floral with lingering zesty peppercorn wheat.

M~ smooth as could be! great carb and extremely drinkable!

O~ when you use an amazing gin barrel you get an amazing beer! ...sometimes! haha but Barr Hill is amazing! all i have to say is i wish there was more of this! absolutely incredible!

Nov 18, 2015
Photo of Resuin
Resuin from Massachusetts

4.55/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 375 mL bottle into a stemmed glass. This was bottled 08/05/15.

A: Pours a golden amber and leaves a half finger of white head that dissapates slowly to a layer atop the beer. (4.25)

S: Big juniper, floral notes, mild oak, light peppercorn, white wine, light hay. Very nice and interesting. (4.75)

T: The taste follows the nose big time: juniper, more floral flavors, light oak, ginger. Finishes dry. (4.5)

M: Light carb with a light to medium, slightly creamy body that tingles the tongue a bit. (4.5)

O: This gin barrel plays a huge part in this one, but there are still some elements of Clara left. I haven't had this gin but it must be pretty interesting. Solid beer. (4.5)

Nov 13, 2015
Photo of Ian_B
Ian_B from Massachusetts

4.75/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Delicately balanced notes of floral and citrus in both the aroma and taste. Lightly sour. Grain and subtle earthiness from the yeast provide a backbone to the soft, but prominent botanical gin that slowly develops on the lingering finish.

Both light and delicious enough that you'll want to guzzle it, yet complex enough you'll end up savoring it. The long-lasting finish is phenomenal.

Nov 13, 2015
Gin Clara from Hill Farmstead Brewery
Beer rating: 96 out of 100 with 62 ratings