Motueka Pale Ale
Hill Farmstead Brewery

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Pale Ale - American
Ranked #110
Ranked #3,987
4.14 | pDev: 7.25%
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States
Notes: An American Pale Ale bittered, flavored, and dry hopped exclusively with Motueka hops, a New Zealand varietal.
Reviews: 35 | Ratings: 167 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Hyptochrons
Hyptochrons from Massachusetts

4.52/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

the single hop pale ales from hill have this perfect light grainy malt character and the perfect level of texture in the light-medium bodied mouthfeel that is wonderfully crisp and imo a perfect base to do a single hop beer with.

found this one to present mostly with lime and grapefruit character, some herbal, earthy, and dank flavors.

Jan 01, 2021
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Alieniloquium from Florida

4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

750 mL growler. Hazy light orange with a big white head. Smell is lemon and tangerine. Kinda earthy and pithy. Doesn't smell sweet like other HF pales. Taste, again, isn't that sweet. Hops lend grapefruit, garlic, some spiciness almost like rye, and pine. Finish is bitter grapefruit. Medium light body. No experience with motueka hops before this beer, so I didn't know what to expect. Standard HF craftsmanship, although this hop doesn't lend itself to quickly dispatching glass after glass like, say, Nelson or Citra.

Dec 25, 2015
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dar482 from New York

4.49/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

The beer comes in a hazy murky medium gold.

The beer hits of pear, melon rind, star fruit, lemon, light doughy malts, a hint of honey sweetness, herbaceous and floral finish. Pithy aftertaste.

Dec 10, 2015
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reebtaerG from Maryland

4.17/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had a 4oz pour from growler into tulip glass

A- Pours a nice light gold, foamy white head. Great lacing.

S-Aromas of passionfruit, citrus,pine.

T-Taste is light. Some melon mends with the pale malts nicely, a bit of pine comes in, but only very subtle.

M- Light-medium in body with fine carbonation.

O-Overall a decent APA hard to compete with Edward.

Mar 05, 2014
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Stevedore from Oregon

4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

App- hazy straw yellow body, nice one finger white head, good retention, nice lacing

Smell- Floral, nice breadiness, biscuits. Very floral nose that is quite a bit sharper than any other floral pale ales I've had the chance to try.

Flavour- Favors the malts a bit- bready, honey, caramel- but complemented nicely by a floral flavour typical of the more floral hops. Possibly some lemon zest as well, but rather floral-dominant.

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied, great carbonation, not super creamy but fairly easy to drink. Not terribly bitter, with a nice floral aftertaste.

Overall- Very interesting floral pale ale, I like how this beer is quite balanced between the floral hoppiness and the bready malts. Still, not something I'd use one of my 3 growler fills for- I'd drink this on tap in Waterbury anytime though.

Feb 13, 2014
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MDDMD from Pennsylvania

4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A-golden yellow color with a nice white head and decent lacing

S-citrus, light tropical, grassy, hint of floral

T-citrus, grassy, nice floral, little tropical fruit, light Brady malt, mild bitter finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, smooth

O-have never tried this hop as a single varietal before, unique flavor and very well-balanced in this APA

Jan 23, 2014
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Skrip from New Jersey

4.19/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

on tap at Hill Farmstead poured into one of their tasting tulips.

A~ glowing bright yellow with a fluffy head and some lacing.

S~ very sweet, honey like. lots of bitterness that goes along with earthy grass.

T~ follows the nose with the sweetness, a lot more earth here. i love the Motueka hop presence, definitely different than your run of the mill hop. less citrusy than most.

M~ very dry finish from the bitterness and nice carbonation. also slightly thick.

O~ not my favorite of their single hop series but its interesting to try all these different hops in Hill's incredible style. i really like the sweetness though, crazy different from most pales. give it a shot if you have the chance, of course!

Jan 17, 2014
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rlee1390 from Indiana

4.12/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Cloudy bright yellow, two finger head with some lacing.

S-Tropical, good deal of lemon, spice bread, grass.

T-Well balanced, some lemon, tropical, good deal of spice, grass and bread. Slight bitterness.

M-Medium bodied, nice carbonation, dry finish and crisp.

O-The spice notes were great, this hop wasn't amazing but very interesting due tot he spice.

Jan 13, 2014
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hillvt4me from Vermont

4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at el cortijo cantina

A - Apricot yellow hue with a nice head that leaves some spotty lacing.

S - Orange citrus, light herbal hops.

T - Balanced tasty citrus, oranges, apricot and minimal pine.

M - minimal carbonation, too drinkable and smooth.

O - really solid APA. single hop variety is excellent. Nice fruit notes; I feel this deserves the highest of marks; nice trade up from the Edward.

Jan 04, 2014
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andrewinski1 from New Hampshire

4.04/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pilsner glass. The color is hazy straw. There is a decent sized head with nice sticky lacing.

The aroma is lots of citrus with mild sweet candy.

The taste is dry and crisp, with a nice zesty hop finish. This has a clean taste to it, no strong yeast presence.

This is light with a relatively soft creamy carbonation.

This is really tasty. I thought the last batch was a bit grassy, but this has more citrus and zesty hop flavor.

Feb 12, 2012
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xnicknj from Pennsylvania

3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on tap at devils den in philly

Pours a hazy golden straw color with a thin layering of white head. Sticky lacing webs across the glass while drinking.

Bitter and floral in the nose with a punch of hops. Some grainy notes with citrus and straw.

Floral and bitter hops up front on the tongue, followed by a snap of lemon and citrus peel. Somewhat grainy with some soft bready notes. Milder malt backbone in between the earthy hop flavor. Finishes dry with a touch of citrus.

Lighter medium body, slightly higher carbonation, bubbly and brisk on the tongue. Another nice beer from HF, but I've had better from them.

Feb 10, 2012
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rudzud from Massachusetts

4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at the Armsby Abbey as part of the Hill Farmstead tap takeover. Reviewed from notes.

A - Pours a hazy golden orange with a nice thick head that leaves loads of spotty lacing.

S - Very nice citrus notes as well as light grassy hops. Nice floral fruits as well.

T - More of those tasty citrus (oranges) and light pine. There are very nice fruit notes to go along with this too (mango, light grapefruit).

M - Mouthfeel is slightly lower carbonated resulting in a creamy and smooth feel.

O - Overall I enjoyed this APA. Shows off what a single hop variety can do. Nice fruit notes on this one, worth having again.

Feb 10, 2012
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BARFLYB from Pennsylvania

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On Tap at Blue Dog.

Motueka comes out of the spout and into the tulip a hazy yellow color with some blond highlights resembling a dirty saison. A nice bright white head that fades, leaving nothing.

Smell is bright and clean with a dose of floral hop, that one being Motueka I believe a new strain from New Zealand. There is a light citrus thing going and I get lemon. Not the most pungent of scents.

This is easy going beer and a true pale. It does not jump out at you but the Motueka hop leaves a floral taste with each sip. Lemon comes up. Some trace amounts of malt, without the sweetness. I am always impressed with how clean Hill Farmstead beers taste and this one is no different.

as stated above, the beer is clean. I wonder what type of water Shawn uses up there (Well Water?). Anywho, it's clean, the body is light and the carbonation is there but subdued. A lingering aftertaste of lemon, which lasts.

Not my favorite from the HF hoppy offerings. Perhaps it's this hop strain. I do dig the craft that went into it. This upsets me now that I know I missed the Galaxy single hop version, which is supposed to be the tits.

Feb 07, 2012
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Hojaminbag from Colorado

4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Motueka has an orange colored body and a creamy, tan head. Retention and lacing are both very good.

The aroma is very fruity without being aggressively hoppy, with a little bit of malt in the background.

I am completely unfamiliar with the hops in this one, but they are certainly very good. They are lightly spicy, but with a lot of fruit character to them. The fruit flavor isn't the typical, aggressive citrus flavor that come from American hops, but rather softer and tropical in nature, with hints of lemon as well. There is also some grass and resin flavors. The malt is understated, which is good, because the hops in this one are not overwhelming.

Soft carbonation, but smooth.

Motueka Single Hop Pale Ale has a very interesting flavor profile considering it only uses one hop, and I like it. This is a well-done pale ale.

Jan 27, 2012
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Gfunk720 from Connecticut

4.77/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Blackback, out of HFS stemwear. Reviewed from notes

A- Straw tan, with some pale yellow hues. Pours with a healty pure white foamy head. Nice lacing, and a nice overall glow.

S- Soapy hops, lots of citrusy/lemon and pine. Fresh grass, with a nice light malt profile. The hops just smell so fresh and pronounced. This can't be a APA...

T- Crisp and fizzy at first. Then smooths to a nice pale malt and piney lemony hops. The aftertaste is a very complex mix of resinous pine, fresh grass, and citrus. It just lingers in your mouth.

M- Perfect for the style.

O- Though this was a little bitter and dry, this was probably the best APA I've ever had. To think this was made with one type of hops, and is only 5.2% amazes me. Had a Daisy Cutter the other day, and this beer absolutely blows it out of the water. People need to remember this is not a 7-8% IPA, but just a hopped Pale Ale


Jan 20, 2012
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Retail1LO from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Capone's.

Pours a beautiful pineapple/grapefruit juice color. Conversely, it's got a brilliant straw haze to it. The nose is marvelous. A light citrus with honey and an herbal tone. Very nice. The taste is smooth. Very sessionable beer indeed. Citrus, more honey, and some grass. This is a different animal from any APA I've had previously. Diggin' it. The mouthfeel is smooth with out any bitterness or lingering aftertaste. It goes out like a lamb. Overall, this was a nice beer. This is the kind of beer you can cozy up to and have a few in succession.

Jan 14, 2012
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JAXSON from Pennsylvania

4.17/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Capones. The pour was a hazy peach orange with a small white head. The yeast looked somewhat disturbed but not too bad. Nose is dry, floral hops, light fruits, quite herbal. Flavor, as with Hill Farmstead's better pale ales, is very dry, earthy, and floral. Some lemon and mint type of zest, and a light softer fruit profile. Restrained and very well done. I'd like to have a super clean, fresh sample of this to really gauge it but I liked it quite a bit.

Jan 12, 2012
FeDUBBELFIST from Pennsylvania

3.79/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft pour into a pint glass for $6.00. Sampled 1/11/12.

A: Server with a finger and a half of foamy off-white head. Well retained. The body is super hazy - if not murky with little transparency - and a muddy orangey amber in color. Unfiltered? Lacing begins to thoroughly coat the glass, then gets broken by up as the head dries out.

S: The nose is hop forward, but not as straightforward as, say, Edward is. Mango flesh comes through - in its earlier stages of ripeness - and not quite juicy yet. The malt bill is fairly neutral while the yeast imparts a doughy, soapy quality. The nose is rather good, just not a standout.

T: The taste comes together with a little more complexity. Tropical notes beyond mango linger long on the back end. The sweetness of star fruit and papaya is offset nicely by the hop bitterness.

M: The mouthfeel is smooth, creamy and gently carbonated. The flavor lasts long, leans towards dry, and the bitterness extends the flavor rather than bringing it to an end.

O: Motueka is a very good single hopped pale ale. Very easy to drink, refreshing and well-balanced. I'd be happy to order another.

Jan 12, 2012
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cbutova from Massachusetts

4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Armsby Abbey.

A- Hazy yeasty yellow-orange body with a creamy white head. Nice size and retention. Spotty rings of lace down the glass.

S- Not as intense as the flavor but it's quite nice. Hoppy notes of floral and fruits, like peach, kiwi and citrus.

T- A big blast of flavor but smooth and balanced. Hops drop a big fruit flavor but not the usual citrus pine. I get big hints of peachy mango, sugar coated grapefruit, kiwi, strawberry and some citrus. Combined with floral notes, this beer takes on a really interesting profile, from a single hop varietal!

MF- Creamy body with good moderate carbonation. A bitter sweet feel that drinks smoothly.

Sean makes a damn good single hopped pale ale. As flavorful or more so than many stronger IPAs. I would drink this by the growler if I had it available.

Jan 07, 2012
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infi from New York

4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Blind Tiger, East Village.

Poured into a tulip.

Very hazy, yellow-tinted body with great carbonation. Thin, vibrant white head that recedes quickly.

Great amount of earthy hop characteristics on the nose. Smells of crushed lemongrass. I'm guessing those are the Motueka hops? Very nice. Some passion fruit and dried mangoes and a touch of grapefruit to create a nice synergistic profile. Very aromatic and floral. Didn't expect any less from HF.

Tastes incredibly clean, fresh and balanced. Sweet malt backbone underneath the floral, grassy hop infusion. There's an unripened mango-like sweet and sourness imparted on the flavors. Really awesome. One of the best tasting pale ales I've had.

Lighter side of medium. Perfect carbonation. Not overly aggressive. Smooth drinking. After missing so many other HF pales, I finally was able to try one and Motueka certainly didn't disappoint. Absolutely loved it.

Jan 04, 2012
Photo of Reagan1984
Reagan1984 from Massachusetts

4.53/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

OK, so this beer is in the underrated category for me. Hill Farmstead’s big beers and DPA’s get world class ratings that are justly deserved. But this beer is right in the class of those others. I think folks drop the scores a bit since it’s not barrel aged, 9% and/or doesn’t contain a hyped hop like Citra or Nelson. But the bottom line is that this is an amazing beer and one I would Love to have a keg of for a party.

About a finger of very creamy tight head that immediately begins depositing lace all over the inside of the glass. Just a great looking beer. Color is fairly light and more on the straw side of the ledger. Dull on color and slightly cloudy.

Aroma is wonderful and a balanced blend of grassy/lemon hops and some nice bready notes.

Loved the flavor and the great bready flavors. Again balance rules the day here and you can just feel the freshness and craftsmanship in the flavors. For a Pale Ale, there is a lot going on here. The grassy notes again are present and a nice yet mild fresh hop flavor. Light citrus notes under the bread notes.

A fresh unfiltered feel, fairly light bodied.

Great beer… I don’t want to use the term… session.. so I won’t. But I could drink this all day! ;-)

Dec 31, 2011
Photo of Sean9689
Sean9689 from Illinois

4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at HF during my visit in late June/early July. From notes.

A - Pours a golden yellow color, mirky/hazy, nice white head, sticky lacing, thin collar, thin cap on top.

S - Lots of floral hoppy notes, slight touch of citrus, some grassy notes in there as well. The floral characteristics of this beer is what really stands out, very unique.

T - Grass, citrus, floral, touch of pine. The grassy notes are more pronounced here and meld well with the floral and citrus. A nice hoppy resin finish.

M - Light, good carbonation, oily pine finish.

O - Another solid APA from HF. Not my favorite, but it's great to try so many variations. Shaun and Dan are artists when it comes to hops!

Sep 12, 2011
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321jeff from Maryland

4.04/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml swing-top growler provided by Michael, thanks!

Pours a bright but hazy golden yellow with a minimal amount of head, but apparently the growler may have leaked a bit in transit. What head there is leaves some lacing and a thin collar sticks around for the whole drink.

The aroma is fairly unique, somewhat earthy with some lemon. Fruity in a non-citrus way. Not overpowering, but very pleasant overall.

The taste is also unique, somewhat earthy with moderate bitterness. I get some resin mixed in as well. There's also a sharp flavor that I can't quite put my finger on... kind of like the sharpness you get out of a sharp cheese... interesting.

The mouthfeel is what you'd expect for a 5% APA, fairly thin, but carbonation held up well considering there was some leaking and a lack of head. I feel like this unique hop would be better suited for a hoppy saison rather than a pale ale, but it's interesting nonetheless.

Jul 28, 2011
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yourefragile from District of Columbia

4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL growler (Thanks Tucker!) served in a stemmed Stillwater wine glass.

Looks like a HF pale ale, blah blah blah. Hazed honey golden color with a thin off white head that fades to a thin film and spotty lacing. Aroma has light bready malt with mild lemon sweetness and floral hops. Flavor is sharp and pleasantly bitter. Chewy medium thick body with prickly fine carbonation. Initially citrus sweet before finish floral, earthy and citrus rind. A well made pale ale as usual from HF, and an interesting new hop to try. I agree with Jeff who said Motueka might be a nice addition to a saison but for a single hop pale it's not quite cutting it for me.

Jul 28, 2011
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Kegatron from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ the Blackback Pub & Flyshop (Waterbury, VT) on 7/15/11. Served in a stemmed Hill Farmstead glass.

Pours a hazy gold, with a finger of bright-white head. This retains with some foamy edges that flare-up into a creamy 1/2 finger cap, leaving behind some heavy swathes of patchy lacing. The aroma smells floral, lightly spicy, and a touch tank with an underlying layer of soft bitter fruitiness in the nose. Malts are soft yet supportive with a sweet graininess, while I’m also picking up a bit of a protein like egg smell here as well.

The taste is fresh and biting on the palate, with a combo of grapefruit and lemon flavors popping in the mouth. This is balanced by notes of sweet grains and an additional soft fruitiness, as well as some grassy and herbal textures that soften the edges of the bitterness a bit. The finish on this is dry and crisp, with a lingering pithy feel. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with some softness to the edges of the carbonation before laying some sharpness down the middle of the tongue. That 5% is spot on here, having some presence in the mouth but still keeping this quite quaffable.

While I didn’t find this quite as full flavored as I did some of the other New Zealand single hop Pale Ales from here, this was still pretty darn solid, with a nice mix of bitterness, fruit, and herbal/floral character that kept this breezy and enjoyable to drink. This was another nice APA from here.

Jul 19, 2011
Motueka Pale Ale from Hill Farmstead Brewery
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 167 ratings