Columbus Pale Ale | Hill Farmstead Brewery

very good
17 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
An American Pale Ale bittered, flavored, and dry hopped exclusively with Columbus hops.

Added by rudzud on 02-18-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 17 | Ratings: 47
Photo of Billolick
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Birdsall House Peekskill, NY

Pours heavily hazed lighter amber, loose off white head, leaves a tiny bubble film and fine and scattered lacing.

Fruity hop nose with resiny undertones.

Quite dry and near puckering brew with more then a moderate hop bite. Resins, light tropical fruit notes and dense waves of hoppy goodness. Flavorful, complex and thoroughly enjoyable IPA.
HFB brews living up to the hype.

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Photo of ehammond1
3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


Acquired via trade
Thanks, AdamJackson!

Hazy golden with a pillowy, big-bubbled near-white head that leaves irregular lines of lace down the glass.

A somewhat spicy and earthy aroma from the Columbus hops, along with a bit of sage or coriander character, surprisingly. Hoppy and bright, but not my favorite hop aroma.

The flavor follows the aroma similarly, with a moderate level of bitterness per the style, and a distinct earthy/peppery/herb hop character.

Medium bodied with moderate/high carbonation.

A good pale ale, for what it is, but these aren't my hops of choice.

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Photo of Rifugium
2.65/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

First had: on tap at Hill Farmstead, Greensboro, VT

Yep, definitely something going on with this brew, and it wasn't good. Hazy orange-yellow body with a small white head that fizzled away to nearly nothing. Aroma of biscuity malts, herbal hops, some indistinct funk. Taste was...quite weird, frankly. For something labeled an IPA, up front this resembled more of a stale saison with lager-ish qualities, wet grass funk, phenols, saltines, cardboard, giving way to some of the biscuity malts and herbal hops noted in the aroma, but with a general blandness throughout. I don't know if it was an off batch or what, but considering this was fresh from the source, I really can't give it a high rating. Light-medium body, thin and almost...flat? Just too stale and off-tasting to be drinkable. Quite disappointing for an otherwise consistently solid brewery.

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Photo of tewaris
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Hazy amber, good head, good retention. Very strong juniper like notes, minty, piney. Right up my alley. Kicks quite a bit of ass taste wise too... piney, good balancing malts but definitely in the backseat. Clean, crisp, dry, awesome! Great treat right after Edward. I like it very much!

3, 3.5, 4.5, 5, 4

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.71/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hill Farmstead Columbus, on tap at Ginger Man in NYC.

Appearance: Classic Hill looks, hazy and fresh, like squeezed OJ out of a farm kitchen. One finger of super white head that lasts and lasts. I love how Hill beers look! Great lacing too.

Smell: Very subtle but delicious, with spice and orange peel. Fresh mountain air in the Alps. Orange sponge cake, soapy citrusness.

Taste: Dry and slightly pungent, like licking a chalkboard or a slate stone. Then bitter orange, reminds me of munching on oranges in Sevilla right off the tree. Tingly hops at the end, powdered sugar and a watery finish. Pine and resin as it goes down.

Mouthfeel: Full flavor, medium body. Refreshing, satisfying. Perhaps a little thin, but fine. Super citrusy, bitter finish.

Overall: For a single hop beer, this is quite good. But it doesn't stand up against other amazing Hill beers like Edward.

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Photo of Gosox8787
4.17/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 750 mL Hill Farmstead growler with a flip top. Filled about five days ago, but refrigerated ever since. Served chilled in my new Kate the Great tulip.

Appearance: Light orange to light brown in color with some cloudiness throughout. Not much of a head on the first pour but settles into a thin, sticky lacing.

Aroma: Some earthy pine notes upfront provide a really nice backing. A touch of citrus as well. Very pleasant and well done.

Taste: Some nice light pine and earthy hops. Definitely more earthy and piney than tropical. Does a nice job of highlighting hop variety with seeming overdone or one note. Really nice and drinkable, but a lot fo flavor considering the ABV.

Mouthfeel: Light and crisp. The growler definitely keep the carbonation well and this went down smoothly.

Overall, a really nice IPA, especially considering it is a single hop IPA. Really nice complexity and drinkability. As always, really impressed with Hill Farmstead here. They can make something as simple as a single hop IPA good enough that I would get again.

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Photo of silentjay
4.27/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml growler filled about 9 hours ago.

very hazy golden with a perfect two-fingered pure white head that recedes within minutes but leaves tons of chunky lacing behind.

very dank aroma with pine and herbs and flowers with a bit of citrus behind that. softly sweet malts hide behind that, letting the hop aroma really dominate.

spicy, herbal, earthy hop flavor with a bit of pine and grass and maybe some hay. slightly sugary sweet malts sit behind that, again. really lets the qualities of this hop come to the forefront.

light/medium bodied with perfect carbonation and a resiny feel left behind.

another top notch beer from Hill Farmstead. I mean, damn, can they make a sub-par beer? I don't think he could if he tried. I especially enjoy having a beer so damn aromatic, flavorful and enjoyable that has "only" 5.2% ABV, letting me enjoy this entire growler without worrying about how I'll feel in the morning.

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Photo of yourefragile
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to stardogg and raveskdr for muling me a pile of a growlers back from VT recently. Shared this one with Jean.

Pours a clouded golden amber, with an airy, well carbonated white head that fades to a thin ring of bubbles and wispy lace. Aroma is grapefruit up front with a piney finish and some light caramel malt throughout. Smooth, slightly thin medium body with light carbonation and a dry, crisp, pine finish. Columbus hops dominate the flavor with a resiny grapefruit and tropical citrus flavor throughout with a little more pine in the end. Not much to complain about here.

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Photo of 05Harley
3.68/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fresh from the keg @ Hill Farmstead Brewery, Greensboro VT
(156 calories)

Price - $15/Growler

Pours a hazey rust color free of sediment but what really grabs your attention is the three finger head that appears when poured aggressively. Fairly long lasting too and leaves behind thick lacing as a reminder.

The aroma has citrus qualities with grapefruit rind and lemon leading the way. Nose is all Columbus hops and not much else.

The flavor is strong in pine resin with an underlying taste of grapefruit. The taste is a bit misleading from the smell but on target with this particular hop. My tastebuds could use some sweetness to add some balance.

Mouthfeel is zesty and refreshing with a light body. Has a soft bitter feel with minimal carbonation bite making this a solid summer offering. A slight dry finish shows up after multiple glasses to keep you coming back for more wetness.

Overall a pretty decent beer. As far as the "three Cs" go, I prefer the Centennial due to it's stronger citrus aroma. This is still a very good IPA and quite sessionable.

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Photo of dudecandle
4.14/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Gingerman NYC, poured into a 13oz chalice:

A: Beautiful golden brown, hazy body with a nice, creamy off-white head.

S/T: Nice, light grapefruit hop on the front end, rounded out with some roasted malt and some piney hop notes. The hops on the taste always seem like they're about to hit that third level of IPA kick-in-the-face flavor, but never quite get there.

M: Smooth, almost creamy, not overly-carbonated

O: Unlike the other hop-bombs that Hill Farmstead somehow produces from their IPAs, I agreed with the description that I saw elsewhere describing this as an APA. With that in mind, it was just so much better balanced than probably any APA I've ever had before it. It didn't have that feel of just throwing hops at a beer, but rather, the hop was an integral part of the beer itself.
Another wonderful beer from Hill Farmstead.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler shared by the HF freaks I hang out with, I love IPAs and I love Hill Farmstead IPAs.

Beer is yellow, hazy, wispy white head, moderate carbonation, looks good.

Aroma is citrus, earthy, grass, nice aroma.

Beer is thin, sweet a little, great finish, moderate bitterness, nice hop bouquet on the front half. Very good IPA and I'd do it again.

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

750ml growler into Darkness tulip.

A - Pours like all the other HF hoppy beers, mirky golden, white head, spotty lace, thin ring.

S - Like Columbus hops! Light pine, citrus, grassy bitterness. All very light and well-done, nothing too in-your-face. Very refreshing to go with the light 5% ABV.

T - Again, more pine, grassy notes, some citrus, and an enjoyable level of hoppy bitterness. Super-easy to drink, no alcohol whatsoever, just chugable. The finish is light grassy hops with a subtle touch of citrus.

M - Light body, good carbonation, ultra-refreshing.

O - Another excellent single-hop beer from HF. This just goes down the hatch so easily, it's awesome. Not sure if I enjoyed this more then the Amarillo, but still, really really good. Recommend!

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Photo of mdfb79
4.42/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 02/25/12 notes. Big thanks to yourfragile for sharing this one, always excited for new Hill Farmstead beers, especially hoppy ones.

a - Pours a murky yellow brown color with one inch of white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of pine hops, fruity malts, tropical fruits, citrus hops, grapefruits. Tons of fresh hops and topical fruits in the nose, really awesome.

t - Tastes of pine hops, grapefruit, citrus hops, tropical fruits, orange, mango, light floral nots. Almost no bitterness at all. Really nice again.

m - Light to medium body and moderate carbonation. Body has a very light amount of bitterness. Pretty easy to drink.

o - Overall I thought this was a great IPA from Hill Farmstead. was filled the day before and was just super fresh, with a ton of tropical fruits and pine hops. Would love to have it again, and really need to make a trip up there.

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Photo of johnnnniee
4.09/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Farmhouse Tap and Grille Burlington VT
Pours a hazy medium golden color with a small off white head that shows almost no retention. Smells of fruity citrus, apricot, tropical fruit, and hints of pine. Malt, yeah maybe there's some there. Taste is a bit different than the aroma lead me to believe. I get more onion and garlic in the flavor than anything else. Medium body and level of carbonation with a resinous bitter mouthfeel. This was a nice beer, but the Lawson's double sunshine is a tough act to follow.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler courtesy of yourefragile, and thanks to starrdogg for the assist. Sved in a mini snifter because all my Hill Farmstead glasses are packed. Moving sucks.

Pours a fairly-clear moderate golden color with a nice white head and plenty of lacing on the way down. The nose is super dank with a bit of resin. Columbus all the way. The flavor is about the same. Loads of dank Columbus hops with a touch of resin. Light body with crisp carbonation and loads of bitterness. Über solid; another big hit.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler shared by Sean. Thanks man! Served in a Hill Farmstead glass.

A - Quick-dissolving white foam settles to a thin cap, thick collar, and spotty lacework. Hazy orange body.

S - Tons of dank, herbal, and slightly spicy hop flavors mingle with orange citrus. Malt character is a mix of sugar cookie and crackery flavors.

T - Taste is actually less sweet, with more spicy and zesty hop flavors, and moderate bitterness in the finish. The malt character is more yeasty bread and less sugary. Seems a bit more understated than the aroma.

M - Smooth, juicy texture, medium-light body, pleasant lower carbonation, and a resinous and oily hop finish. No alcohol presence, but I wasn't expecting any at 5.2%.

D - This is quite pleasant, but it isn't quite as stunning as some of Hill Farmstead's other hoppy offerings. Still, it's really easy to drink and we crushed the 750ml growler pretty quickly. I'd have this often if it were available locally.

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Photo of rudzud
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Black Back in Waterbury, VT. Poured into a stemmed snifter. Thanks to bpk59 for initially getting this beer which made me realize no one had yet reviewed it. Jolly good sir.

A - Poured a hazy orange hue with a nice one finger head that left nice side lacing and a good foamy cloud. Super nice and inviting. Definitely a Hill Farmstead.

S - Aromas of juicy citrus and tropical fruits. Great orange juice, mangos, pineapples, and grapefruit rind. A nice musty earthy quality to this nose.

T - Very nice flavors here. Like the nose there is a very bright citrus rind hop quality followed by sweet delicious tropical notes of pineapple and manor. Candied grapefruit, just delicious. Nice bitter, but not overly so, finish. Delicious.

M - Mouthfeel is nice and light and smooth like every other Hill Farmstead beer.

O - Overall this is a great example of a single hop variety IPA. Definitely glad to have tried this one!

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Columbus Pale Ale from Hill Farmstead Brewery
4.07 out of 5 based on 47 ratings.
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