Clara Grisette | Hill Farmstead Brewery

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91
outstanding
125 Reviews
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Clara GrisetteClara Grisette
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States | website

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by starrdogg on 08-09-2011

BEER STATS
Reviews:
125
Ratings:
725
Avg:
4.1
pDev:
8.29%
 
 
Wants:
99
Gots:
108
For Trade:
15
User Reviews
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Reviews: 125 | Ratings: 725
Photo of Reagan1984
4.03/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Mtardiff for providing this bottle.

What a nice looking beer. Bright perfectly clear gold color with several strands of releasing bubbles. A fluffy/pillow like whipped egg white head with excellent retention. Some thick clumps of lace cling to the glass.

Aroma is sweet, pale malts, a touch of candied sugar. Perhaps pear and definitely lemon. A hint of yeast and pepper in the aroma. As the beer warms a layer of funk and earthiness emerges in the aroma. (becomes more complex) starting temp was 48...

Flavor is much less sweet than the aroma hints. I was shocked how dry the flavor actually is. I like this. Sometime I mention white pepper and here I almost need to upgrade that to black pepper, interesting. Yeast flavors and almost that burnt rubber flavor. Light bread just below the surface. A lasting bitterness sticks with you long after you swallow.

Fairly delicate body which is accentuated by the the lingering head, Borderline astringent on the tongue. (yeast?)

Pretty interesting beer. God Bless Clara wherever she is.

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Photo of MDDMD
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A-golden to slightly orange color with a nice white head and some lacing

S-wheat, yeast, hint of tartness,floral, hint of lemon

T-wheat, lemon, floral,yeast, nice tartness, hint of herbal

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, crisp, slightly astringent

O-nice rustic farmhouse ale, good flavors

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Photo of FosterJM
3.9/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1734th Review on BA
Bottle champagne flute
750ml

Shared with my coworker Antti

App- A nice and orangey golden color with some yellows mixed into it. A bit shimmery and buttery looking. The head on this was nice and puffy and then fell to some really great cling and sticky lace.

Smell- This was very similar to southern stars Walloon. Where this seemed like a saison at first but turned a bit. Lighter, more earthy and grainy from the wheat and a bit spicy like a small rye but unique in that sense.

Taste- I enjoyed this little beer. Drank bigger than the 4% would lead on. A bit small on certain aspects of flavors but with that spicy pseudo rye tinge, and with a bit of the wheats coming in it was a nice balance and duality of flavors. A little of a saison peppery note.

Mouth- Even for a small AbV this had a nice medium wet body behind it with a good medium carbonation. Dry, earthy, grassy and balanced.

Drink- Leave it to Shaun Hill to take an obscure small ABV beer and make it damn good, love HF stuff.

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Photo of KYGunner
3.95/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The Amber hued body gave way to a frothy marangue-like head. The head was a stack of tight knit bubbles with a bright white color.

The aromas were strong and tangy with sour Apple, light pears, acidic lemon even even notes of banana.

The flavors were more subdued than the nose and not nearly as complex. This tastes very cidery with a tart Apple and sweet honey.

The feel is very dry but not astringent with a moderate carbonation.

I like this plenty but wish the taste would have emulated the scent as it was far more varied and bold.

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Photo of Tucquan
3.97/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on 2012-12-08 at TJ's pub in Paoli, PA for their 9th anniversary celebration.

A - Cloudy orange with a 1/2-finger white head and mild lacing.

S - Funky farmhouse yeast (milder than with their Arthur), lemon, light wheat bread.

T - Cirtrs, yeast, light malt, mildly sour. Pleasant but not astounding.

M - Light-medium body and medium carbonation. Spritzy.

O - Enjoyable. Plenty of flavor for a low ABV brew.

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Photo of Florida9
4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

HF Clara
Apricot color. Hazy nice foamy head. Excellent retention. Some light lacing. Aroma is all Saison: yeasty, lemon, pepper and spice, bright with a slight acidity. Taste is nice: bright -and lemony. Very lift body. There seems to be a bit of oaky astringency on the back end, but this is still a pretty damn good Saison. Lighter bodied. Heavier carbonation. Virtually no bitterness. A nice beer from HF.

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Photo of WanderingFool
3.93/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clara pours a hazy honey orange with a moderate, creamy white head on top. The foam dissolves very slowly coating the sides of the glass in netted patterns of lace.

The aroma is a little funky with spices and fruity notes. bread, lemon, mango, and coriander plus a touch of fruity tartness are all detected.

Each sip of this medium bodied beer is creamy and smooth with a light carbonated fizz. The flavor is much like the aroma, bready with notes of lemon, mango, coriander, and a little pepper. Some bubblegum sweetness is present in the background. It finishes flowery and mildly tart. Once gone the lemon citrus and coriander linger on the palate.

A very tasty beer that would go great with a nice Vermont cheese plate. Clara has a great mouthfeel, but the aroma fades after the first few sips.

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Photo of Treyliff
4.29/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle, poured into a snifter

A- pours a murky bright golden-yellow color with a creamy white head that retains nicely, leaving some lacing behind

S- earthy and funky with some dried hay and must, lemon peel and coriander

T- tart up front with notes of earth and hay, followed by tart lemon peel, peppery spice, floral hop and yeasty dry finish

M- light body and carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel and a dry, crisp finish

O- very enjoyable saison that's loaded with flavor at under 5% ABV

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Photo of Sean9689
4.03/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to ChrisPro for this one. Poured into tulip.

A - Pours light golden yellow, nice amount of lacing, thick collar, thin cap left over after the initial pour.

S - Light funk, floral, slight herbal notes. All very light and crisp which is what this beer is suppose to be all about. The funk is there, just in a smaller dosage.

T - Pretty much like the nose. Light funk, floral, slight herbal. Mostly a light funk on this one with the other notes taking a back seat.

M - Light body, good carbonation, semi-dry finish.

O - Super easy to drink and at 4%, I wouldn't expect anything else. Just a very light, easy drinking beer, which is what HF billed this one to be. Very delicate, very nice.

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Photo of harrymel
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Keef. Bottled earlier.

Nice light grain on lemon color with a solid quilt of white fines and drapes of lace. Nice nose here. Plenty of grain, soil, hints of horse, some manure and clay. Slightest hint of lemon in the nose. Slightest tart with lemon flavor, grain, yeast, some tasty light pilsner character. Medium on full bodied with soft carbonation and a wet finish. This is a really desirable beer.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml capped bottle decanted and poured into a Lost Abbey teku glass. Shared with schen9303.

Creamy 1.5 finger white head with good retention. Beer is a deep, cloudy goldenrod. Lacing is spotty and stringy with moderate stick. Pretty beer.

Nose is citrus, wheat and various sweet spices. Real aromatic and fresh with a clean liveliness.

Opens sweet citrus with a spice presence lingering in the back. Some wheatiness towards the middle with coriander and floral notes finishing up the experience. A very mild tartness hovers in and out. Very little aftertaste. Deliciously refreshing.

Light bodied with moderate to high carbonation. Lively and prickly in the mouth and aggressive and bubbly going down. Slightly messy finish with a very clean aftertaste. Hugely drinkable.

Following in the footsteps of the HF hoppy offerings, this beer is clean, fresh, balanced, and infinitely drinkable. I wouldn't expect anything less and Clara really delivers. A very solid beer.

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Photo of Arbitrator
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Chilled bottle into a glass. Thanks!

No batch number.

A: Pours a cloudy apricot orange capped with a finger of off-white head which falls into a thin collar. The back of the glass has nice lace curtains.

S: Lemon zest, dried hay, grass, bread, and white grapes. Quite nice on the nose, though it doesn't have much phenolic (pepper) character.

T: Hill Farmstead produces a lot of saisons, so it's no surprise that the recipes have gotten dialed in. Lemon zest, grass, white grapes, and green apple. The mid-taste evokes grain. The finish is redolent with minerals, earth, and yeast; there's a slight pepper bite, but it vanishes as yeast pulls into the aftertaste.

M: This was less effervescent than some of HF's other saisons, but to much nicer effect. The bubbles are soft and velvety, creating a soothing presence instead of a prickly one. The downside is that the flavor lingers, with a slick, yeasty aftertaste.

O: I suspect this is the kind of beer that gets lost in a big tasting lineup. Open it before other beers, or open it by itself. It's a nice experience.

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Photo of BarrytheBear
3.79/5  rDev -7.6%
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.

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Photo of Sabtos
4.41/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Slightly cloudy gold amber, with an eggshell colored whip cream meringue head of hard, round peaks.

Warhead foam--the first thing that was said with the first whiff of that foam, which included accidentally touching it. It has a sharp, acetic sting, with floral dry hopped aromas and honey.

Taste is far less powerful than the nose would suggest, which is a wonderful thing. I get some lactic essence, a little like sour cream, with sour apricot, and jalapeno without the capsaicin. However, it is still mostly acetic, but very drinkable and not overly sour.

Supremely frothy and bouncy on tongue despite the unexpected sourness. A fun, delicious drink.

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Photo of hooliganlife
4.14/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

pours golden yellow, fizzy head with light retention.

sour grape and tart apple with a sour mash.

tart up front with a rather light flavor overall. some pale malt and green apple seem to be most apparent.

very light with a rather moderate carbonation. leaves a bit of tingle afterwards.

this is really good for 4%. super easy and refreshing.

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Straw, hay, and wheat are the stars here. Balanced and quenching. Light tartness but generally that farmhouse character you expect from HF in a lighter body.

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Photo of jaasen64
3.95/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle purchased from the brewery last Saturday. Poured into HF stemmed glassware.

A- Pours a translucent orange golden with about two fingers of fairly dense lightly bubbly white head that has great retention and leaves a thin layer of lacing. Nice carbonation of steadily rising bubbles. Towards the end of the bottle there is definitely significantly more haze from the yeast sedimentation which reduces the transparency.

S- Lightly sweet smell of yeast, a significant amount of floral notes, barley, a little bit of honey, and some pale malts. A little bit above average aroma strength and fairly pleasant.

T- Lightly sweet with a little bit of floral hops, honey, barley, and some pale malts + yeast on the finish. At first I didn't really care for the aftertaste, it was a little bit too heavy on the pale malts but towards the end of the bottle it definitely improved significantly and balanced out a little bit more. Overall it definitely packs a decent amount of taste for a 4% saison.

M- Fairly light, easy to drink, refreshing, a little bit over-carbonated.

O- This definitely wasn't my favorite HF beer, but it was still very well done for a 4% saison. All the flavors were well balanced and it was definitely a decent session beer. For one of HF's lowest ranked beers, this beer is still actually pretty good and definitely enjoyable. My only major complaint was that it was slightly over-carbonated. Overall it was nicely crafted and I recommend trying it out if you like saisons, just don't expect anything that will blow your mind.

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Photo of joe1510
4.32/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750ml

Big thanks to Ryan for sending me this packed into yet another stellar box o' beer! Clara is a bright golden libation with orange hues when the light is right. A good deal of haze makes the body tough to see through but does amplify the glow. The head is easy to produce, even on a soft pour I get a thick cap of silky white foam that leaves patchwork lacing on its way down.

Wow, musty wheat leaps from the glass as I pour. Wheat steals the show but there's a good amount of lesser components. An earthy, hard water element makes itself known shortly after the wheat. The yeast and hop blend add perfume driven depth, floral and modest. A solid squeeze of lemon brightens it all up. There's a little must, a little wildflower, a touch of the wild as a whole, but it's perfectly balanced. Impressive, very impressive!

The flavor profile is bright and quenching. Wheat melds perfectly with barley for a seamless concoction. It's fresh and straight from the farm. Floral qualities flash through at the back of the throat while lemon runs throughout, a touch of acidity livens it up. Phil Harmstead's yeast add, again, some of that wild; hard water, wildflowers, fresh cut hay. This is a damn good beer.

You're met with, appropriately, a lively, bubbly mouthfeel to keep the light body moving at a respectable pace. It's light and airy, thirst quenching and dry. The finish even leaves a soft bitterness in its wake accentuated by that dryness. They nailed the mouthfeel on this beer, near perfect for the style.

Of all the good to great Hill Farmstead farmhouse beers out there floating around this is up at or near the top of my favorites. It's rustic and bright, complex yet easy drinking, and a joy to partake on every level. This is a beer worth buying as much as possible. Thanks again, Ryan!

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Photo of Chico1985
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
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.

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Photo of pmarlowe
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Matt for this. Teku glass.

Pours clear orange-tinged gold, with a finger of snow white head, very good retention but minimal lacing. Wheat malt and earth, a touch of orange creamsicle, pine/spruce, and pink grapefruit hard candy. Taste is bread/wheat malt with a bit of a twang to it (not tart or sour), moderate bitter earthiness, and a touch of pepper/clove. Medium body and medium-high, biting carbonation. Overall, pretty tasty and drinkable saison with a bit more complexity than usual.

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Photo of inlimbo77
4.2/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml, fall '12
Hill Farmstead wine glass

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden yellow color. Finger and a half of fluffy bright white head. Good carbonation flowing from bottom of glass. Some lacing is left as it recedes.

S: Some funk. Barnyard. Wet hay. White grape. Green Apple. Spice, pepper.

T: On the front of the tongue, you get that traditional Saison pepper spiciness. That pronounced yeast strange really shows. I guess predominantly I get flavors of white grape and that slightly tart green apple hint. Maybe some grassy grainy hints as it get further on the palate. Finish is dry. White wine like. Love the low ABV here. Refreshing little Saison without the guilt.

M: Light leading into medium.

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Photo of ScaryEd
3.85/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a hazy amber-orange color with a 1/2 finger white head. The head is gone almost instantly and leaves very little lacing as it dissipates.

The aroma is very tart, with notes of lemon, peppery spice, and wheat.

The flavor brings tons of wheat and yeast, some cracked pepper, and a nice lemony tartness throughout. Very earthy.

The feel is light bodied with moderately high carbonation. Very drinkable. Goes down dry and smooth.

Overall, a very good yet slightly disappointing grisette. I expect more from HF farmhouse ales and this one just didn't quite cut it. However, it's still a good beer and about as refreshing as it gets.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a large win glass from a 750ml bottle and split with my wife.

Pours a nice slightly hazy pale golden color with some darker orange/light amber hues. There is a nice half inch white head that forms and recedes down to a nice thin mat.

Aroma is yummy. Nice notes of funk and musty barnyard with a nice dosage of citrusy American hops. There is also a nice floral aroma of the European hops. The nice malty and bready grain notes really shine in the aroma of this brew. I detect some slight sweet yeast phenols as well as some mil lemony tartness in the nose, quite faint. The best part of the nose is the slight citrusy and resinous notes of American hops.

Flavor starts off with pretty clean and bready grain. Nice and fresh notes of oats. This is followed by some funky yeast notes with some slight phenolic esters and some nice fresh mildly citrusy hop notes. Very clean and delicious saison. There is a sharp but mild and faint lemony tartness that shoots up near the end of the brew. The finish of the brew is nice and dry as expected and the grassy and herbal hop notes linger throughout with some nice bitterness to boost. Very yummy brew. Nice vivid and clean carbonation and a light body.

This is a delicious and drinkable light saison. Nice low ABV make for easy sipping. Great clean carbonation gives the brew a playful mouthfeel. The grain and yeast notes are delicious with some amazing funky notes some mild tartness and a nice lingering grassy and citrus hop notes.

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Photo of bmwats
3.51/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750 ml. bottle into a tulip.

A: Cloudy, hay color. Substantial, bubbly white head. Craters slowly, leaving an uneven surface, a blanket of carbonation, and some dry residue. Lots o' beer ring lacing. Head renews thoroughly with each pour.

S: Sourdough bread, with a slight hint of raspberry.

T: Light wheaty flavor of sourdough with just the slightest hint of sweetness. A little light pepper.

M: Very light body with a pungent, biting finish, and a bittersour aftertaste.

D: Goes down easy, not much resistance, and nothing off-putting.

Atmosphere is pretty solid. Nice body, thick head and lots of lacing. Light, but decent aroma of fermented sourdough, and hints of raspberry. Flavor is a very light combination of the same... pungent sourdough flavor with a slight sweetness. Overall, this is a good quaff.

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Photo of angrybabboon
4.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Consumed 8/29/15 at the new Hill Farmstead tasting room

A: Medium gold, with some touches of tangerine - nice clarity - large white head, fades to a wispy cap, leaves some nice streaks of lacing

S: Intentionally mild, some nice funky aromas - Hill Farmstead saison yeast, lightly funky, with some spice and pepper - light citrus with a touch of lemon - floral and lightly earthy - pale malts, light malts, touch of wheat - lightly fruity esters

T: Clean, light, bright saison - nice Hill Farmstead yeast, as expected, with some pepper, spice, light fruity esters - light citrus, lemon, orange rind - touches of grass, earthiness, herbal notes - green apples - light bread, touch of wheat - extremely clean, extremely refreshing

M: Light body, perfect carbonation, dry, crisp, clean finish

O: Session saison is the new saison

This is bursting with Hill Farmstead saison magic, yet it's brilliantly light and drinkable. This does not taste like a watered-down Arthur or Florence, either. It's its own thing, and it is quite lovely.

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Clara Grisette from Hill Farmstead Brewery
91 out of 100 based on 125 ratings.
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