Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

Life Without Principle #1 | Hill Farmstead Brewery

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
67 Ratings

Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States

Style: American Blonde Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Life Without Principle #1 (we are big fans of Thoreau!) is the first in a series of Citrus inspired American Style Blonde Ales. #1 is brewed with 200 ICUS of Valencia Orange and complemented by several American hop varieties. The inaugural release was brewed with the help of our good friend Luc "Bim" Lafontaine, formerly of Dieu Du Ciel! in Montreal and now en route to Japan to open his new brewery.

Added by MasterSki on 08-06-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next → last
Ratings: 67 |  Reviews: 21
Photo of Massbmx
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of orangesol
4.22/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to j12601 on RB for bringing this growler to Campground Brewdown.

A - Pours clear straw yellow with a nice one finger tall white head leaving small trails of lace down parts of the glass.

S - Smells of citric fruit zest, pungent grassy hops and some bready pils malt. There is a lot of aroma packed into this small beer.

T - Starts off with a nice mix of grassy hops and fresh citric zest - mostly oranges - quickly giving way to some chewy pils malt. Finish is pretty bitter, lingering for a little while after the finish. Not overly balanced but still a very nice beer none the less.

M - Medium-Light body with moderate carbonation. Chewy, bitter feel that leaves the palate dried.

O - Not as good as Walden but I still really enjoyed this one. It packed plenty of flavor into a relatively small package. I hope this one is still one when I get up to the area, I would love to give it another go.

 910 characters

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

Review from notes. Consumed 8/16/12

Appearance- Light golden color. Pours with a large finger head.

Aroma- Tropical fruits, hops, orange, clementines, pine

Taste- Citra hops on the front of the tongue. Zest really kicks in, then a bit of a sweet orange flavor. Bitter finish.

Mouthfeel- High carbonation, nice coating while still feeling light in the mouth.

Overall- I'm a big citrus guy, so I had high hopes heading into this one. Unfortunately I'm not a big bitter guy, and in the end I think there was a little too much zest. Hill Farmstead makes very good beers, and I think the construction of the beer is spot on, just the flavor profile off a bit off.

 664 characters

Photo of InspectorBob
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of claytong
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of jlindros
4.22/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my Hill Farmstead stem, with a pasty white fluffy 1 finger head that fades at a med pace, with just a bit of lacing, a clear pilsner blond colored beer.

Nose brings a wallop of tropical fruit, mango, papaya, and a light musty passion fruit jump out at first, with some grapefruit, a light fluffy airy peach and tangerine, a hint of floral hops as well, a slight orange rind comes out as it warms. Just a touch of malt under.

Taste starts with lighter hops, fresh tasting hops, with a light floral flavor, and again citrus and tropical fruits, with tangerine being the strongest, with touches of grapefruit, peach, mango, and just a touch of musty passion fruit and resin. A light clean malt base washes it through quickly, with a bit more grapefruit coming out the more I swish it around my mouth. There is a light grassy noble hop flavor in the background as well that follows the fluffy malt base. Finish is drier and quite clean, just a touch of grapefruit and tropical fruit hops, and a bit more of the grassy noble hop lingering. Bitterness ramps slightly on the finish as it dries quite a bit.

Mouth is med bodied, decent carb.

Overall pretty good. More blond like than Walden, but less on the overall hops, and slightly lower on the totem pole, but still very tasty and amazing nose. A nice long bitter finsh as well.

 1,340 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.72/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at Black Back Pub. Light yellow and lacey. A new blonde,hoppy blond, yes with valencia orange.Medium mouthfeel, suitably carbonated.Well executed for what it is. Good though not exceptional creation.Refreshing, drinkable, but not something I want daily.

 268 characters

Photo of jaasen64
4.09/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml growler filled in person at the Festival of Farmhouse Ales last Saturday. Shared with Brian (Auror) and DonFrap. Poured into HF tulip.

A- Pours a very light translucent yellowish gold, about a half finger of white head that quickly recedes to leave almost no head, slightly below average carbonation.

S- Lemon zest, orange peel, clementines, blonde malts, citrus hops. Definitely above average aroma strength, definitely very citrusy and more hops then your average blonde ale.

T- Lemon zest, orange peels, some clementines, slightly hoppy, finishes with some light malts. Definitely a lot of nice flavors going on here, but not exactly balanced as well as I would have liked. A little bit too much zest and too much of a citrus peel taste.

M- Light to medium bodied, nice carbonation, refreshing, finishes a little bit bitter and dry.

O- This was a pretty nice blonde ale, definitely better then most that I've had from the style however in terms of a Hill Farmstead beer (like most people I hold them to very high standards) it was a little bit of a disappointment, but a very good attempt at their first solo blonde ale. There were a lot of good things going on here (nice aromas, nice citrus tastes) however it was a little bit too zesty for me. I could drink this again, but I definitely prefer Walden over this. Looking forward to trying the other Life w/o Principles.

 1,385 characters

Photo of DonFrap
3.75/5  rDev -9%

Photo of huskermike12
3.75/5  rDev -9%

Photo of Gushue3
4.09/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 Growler filled this weekend at the Farmhouse Fest.

A. Large White head forms and doesn't hang around too long. Beer is absolutely clear and looks like ginger ale and lots of carbonation jetting toward the top

S. big time sweet citrus, orange really dominates along with clementine.

T. Really light and easy to drink. Not as much citrus as the nose and quite a lot of pale malt. Slight bitterness toward the end and the finish is very clean and crisp. extremely easy to drink.

M. Very light and dry. Lots of carbonation on the tongue and a clean finish.

O. Tasty stuff bit not my first choice for a beer. This stuff would be great at a cookout or a hot setting.

 669 characters

Photo of rondufresne
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of rudzud
4.29/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 2L growler of this at the Hill Farmstead Festival of Ales party. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a crystal clear super light straw hue with a half a finger white head that doesnt really slump down, just kind of hangs around. Not nearly as nice of a head as their other blonde ale, Walden.

S - TONS of valencia orange jest and citra hops. Again, not quite as good as their other blonde, but man alive does this smell nice.

T - Mmmm...oranges. Getting alot of zest notes here along with great citra notes. Wonderful bitter finish. Quit tasty really. Almost doesnt drink like a beer.

M - Mouthfeel is more than exceptional here. Wonderful carbonation, bright, crisp, just jumps off the tongue.

O - Overall this was a tasty beer from Shaun. Love the orange, wish the appearance was better though as it was almost lack luster compared to most of their other beers.

 882 characters

Photo of ferrettman687
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of CanuckRover
3.92/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pale hazy gold, looks almost like a wit.

Exciting citrus aroma, though not sure I can really pick out the orange that I'm looking for.

Really fresh up front with crisp citrus. Clean grain through the middle and a quenching finish. Bitterness is restrained.

Huh. I was really looking out for a big hit of orange, but am not sure whether I picked up anything other than the citra. A really nice summer beer, not sure if a heavier orange punch would help or hinder.

 476 characters

Photo of phingdong
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of Kinsman
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 growler picked up at the brewery this afternoon. Pours a perfectly clear golden straw color with just a touch of thin white head. Overheard conversation at the brewery that this was not filtered but finings were used to clear the beer for it's blonde appearance.

Aroma is like a freshly peeled orange and at this point thats about it. Little room is left for a hint of the malts underneath to come through.

The orange flavor isn't quite as overpowering on the palate as it was one the aroma. Orange is certainly most notable flavor but touch of hops adds a little depth to it with a nice bitterness to round it out.

Mouthfeel is light and bubbly. Overall, L w/o P packs more orange/citrus punch then just about anything else out there. Serve this alongside you're breakfast stout with some eggs and bacon and you're in heaven.

 836 characters

firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next → last
Life Without Principle #1 from Hill Farmstead Brewery
Beer rating: 4.12 out of 5 with 67 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.