Mary | Hill Farmstead Brewery

60 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States

Style: German Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Mary was Edward's mother and our great-grandmother. A German-style pilsner brewed with our well water, American 2-row malt, our favorite German hops, classic German lager yeast.

Added by yourefragile on 01-13-2013

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Reviews: 60 | Ratings: 478
Photo of kevanb
4.37/5  rDev +5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

750ml growler, freshly filled, poured into a Hill Farmstead willibecher glass. Enjoyed on 9.6.16, reviewed from Tasting Journal.

The beer pours a bright golden color, copper hues with nice clarity, lively activity in the glass with a nice foamy white head, great retention and lace. The aroma is very nice, plenty of earthy noble hops, pine, grass, lightly floral and herbaceous with crisp, pale, pilsner malt that is lightly bready. The flavors follow very nicely, assertive malt bill, bready and light, cereal grains and pilsner malts, green noble hops, floral, light spice, pine and grassy with some herbal and floral qualities. The mouthfeel is excellent, coating, lighter body, very lively, smooth yet crisp and dry at the finish.

Verdict: An exemplary American Pilsner from Hill Farmstead. Crisp, bright, refreshing, really hits the spot on a summer day and continues to prove the level of mastery Hill Farmstead has on nearly any style.

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Photo of CHickman
3.99/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Lark, pours crystal clear gold color with a 1 finger bright white head that faded average time and left basically zero lacing.

We've got ourselves a hoppy pilsner here with the nice mix of toasted grains, graham cracker, light caramel, zesty citrus hops, peppery spices, sweet fruit like rotting pear or green apple, grapes, champagne and a mix of fruit. Enough malt backbone to balance the hops and make it easy drinking. Nose was basic but had more fruit and hoppy aspects than usual, but still smelled as I expected it to. Nice session beer, but perhaps a bit over-hyped since it's from Hill Farmstead.

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Photo of wasatchback
4.4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Exactly to style yet with the trademark HF silky mouthfeel. I've not had a ton of pilsner's but this stands out. Wonderful beer and seemingly perfect in execution. Germany would be proud.

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Photo of nerdboy19
3.68/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Look : Cloudy golden-yellow color with white foamy head - 4/5
Smell : Noble hop's herbal, grass like aroma. Little bit of citrus and cracker like malty sweetness. - 3.5/5
Mouthfeel : Light bodied, high carbonation, perfect. - 5/5
Flavor : Malt, biscuits, buns, hops, little bitterness, well balanced. - 3.5/5
Overall : Very well made pilsener and I was impressed. Sad thing is that I don't really prefer pilsener to other styles like IPA / stouts / sour. - 3.5/5

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Photo of JamLand
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of the better Pilseners, I've had. I'd love to do a side-by-side with this and Live Oak Pilz. I'm calling those the top two German-style Pilseners in the US and you can't stop me!

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A clean and crisp American take on the style. This specific example has much more restrained hops than other American counterparts. A delicate balance between sweetness and bitterness. A pleasure on a warm day.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.24/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Dive Bar in Manhattan.

I was expecting this to be hazy and it wasn't, which I appreciate.

It's really true to style, from appearance, to nose, to flavor. Crisp, refreshing and light and really distinguished by a floral, lightly sweet honey finish that lingers. I like that little flourish, however HF achieved it.

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Photo of fitzy84
4.06/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had at the Whetstone Station Restaurant in Brattleboro. The beer had a clear yellow appearance with visible carbonation and a huge head that dissipated a little bit over time. Aromas were more moderate than I expected, but still offered some floral, slightly metallic, hops that were quite appetizing. The beer's taste was sweet, refreshingly watery, and full of bready hops. Good carbonation and medium body to this beer. Overall, I enjoyed the appearance and taste-mouthfeel the most with this beer.

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Photo of Sheppard
4.21/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a pale straw and has the look of a Pilsner. It is a little bland, the saltine cracker like malt is a little soft. The hops provide some good spicy bittering but again, it's very subtle. A very drinkable Pilsner but not hitting it hard on the flavor for me.

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Photo of Stakebone
4.69/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Straw color. Smells like beer from the homeland. Tastes even better. Hops there but malt better. Lager yeast sulferiness is so appropriate and integrated. Mouthfeel perfect for style.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.8/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Hill Farmstead Brewery "Mary"
on tap @ Falanigan's Boathouse, Conshohocken, PA on 26 February 2016

Appearance: Hazy yellow gold body beneath a short head of white that drops shortly but leaves some nice spots and streaks of lace as it goes. (Possible dirty bar glass?).

Aroma: Moderate aroma of soft grainy malt, mild apple-like fruitiness, and floral, grassy, and spicy hops.

Flavor: The hop character is fuller than the aroma indicates, but not as spicy... instead it's more raspy, grassy, and only mildly floral. The hops are moslty behind the malt in the aroma, but more on top of it in the flavor. A stiff bitterness balances it, and it finishes dry with lingering grassy hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light in body with a gentle bristle on the tongue due to a median carbonation.

Overal: Pilsner, plain and simple. Not bad, but hardly exciting either. Kind of a cross between a German pilsner and a Czech Pils, but also quite "American" at the same time.

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Photo of JimsArcade
2.18/5  rDev -47.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.25

On tap poured into a goblet. Straw color but with no head after the pour. Crisp aroma as expected but there is a fruity aroma in there I wasn't expecting. As I drink, I can taste that off-aroma in the beer as well . It doesn't taste as crisp as a German pilsner should. It's just an average pilsner at best.

HF makes some of the best ales I've ever had, but this is my first lager from them and it is definitely a let-down. It feels like they need to refine their lagering to prevent the occurance of these off-flavors and aromas that should not be in a beer like this.

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Photo of thebeers
3.9/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Hazy pale yellow with a finger of white head. Lightly fruity aroma, that carries over to the taste. Just a touch of floral hops up front and bittering hops in the aftertaste. Almost like a Berliner Weisse without the tart or sour. Light bodied. Tasty, but fruitier and less crisp than I expect from the style.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

750ml growler served in a Hill Farmstead stemmed glass.

Pours a beautiful, clear light yellow body with a nice fluffy one finger white head, very good retention, some lacing. Smells of rich biscuit, crackers, mild earthiness, slight floral notes, very mild perfume, no diacetyl. It's extremely clean, yet reasonably potent. Flavour is similar, but even more clean; crackers, bread, noble hops, earth, floral notes, zero diacetyl. It's very well done, and well above average for German pilsners. Mouthfeel is absolutely perfect- creamy, medium bodied, crisp yet substantial; refreshing. The carbonation is truly perfectly dialed in. Very drinkable, refreshing. I can't say this is the best German pilsner I've had, simply because I haven't drank many of them, but this is up there in terms of how well-executed this is, especially based on mouthfeel.

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Photo of Gajo74
4.19/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look- pours a hazy straw color with a lovely creamy head and sticky lace.
Smell- sweet, grassy and floral.
Taste- lightly toasted malts, sweet on the tongue but with a dry finish. Not so hoppy, but some of the buttering hops felt in the aftertaste.
Feel- light, smooth and creamy. Very drinkable.
Overall, a delightful and tasty pils.

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Photo of BranfordBound
3.82/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Had at the Hill Farmstead brewery on Saturday, 9/26, poured into a wine glass. Pours a somewhat clearer gold color with hints of haze. Some nice pilsner malt on the nose, not really hoppy at all. Starts the flavor with a nice doughy sweetness, some grassy notes in the middle, finishes bitter and dry with some graininess. Feels very light and has a lot of carbonation, easy to drink. Overall not too impressed with this considering the other options here, but a solid American Pilsner nonetheless.

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Photo of Tucquan
4.42/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on 2015-09-29 in Lanccaster, PA at Hunger and Thirst on tap

A - somewhat hazy yellow with a 1-finger head and great lace.

S - pils malt, grass, lemon, fruity floral.

T - So fresh and German-authentic! Just the right blend of light malt and noble hops. A little spicy and a little bitter. Wow.

M - Light-medium body and medium carbonation. Crisp and very refreshing.

O - Simply a great Pils.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My four thousandth beer rating for this site -I enjoyed this at Hill Farmstead from a goblet on tap.

The color is a beautiful golden with thick pillowy white head and small bead with lots of lace stickage and great retention. The smell has the familiar German yeast with mineral and slight herbal hop with some lemon accents and perhaps a grassy element. The feel is balanced well with nice bitterness and semi-dry malt with moderate carbonation and dry finish.

The taste is great -lots of hop flavor up front with some Noble type flavors which are herbal with subtle citrus and the yeast comes through with slight mineral element and cracker like malt with slight earthy edge and good dry flavor with a hint of spice in the finish. Overall this is a great Pilsner -not only does hill farmstead have a mastery on hoppy ales this shows the versatility in that it is a traditional lager that rivals some of the best I have had.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler. Have wanted to try this for ages and it did not disappoint. Poured just slightly hazy. Fluffy, white head and a glowing, yellow body. Aroma was reminiscent of a pinnacle Pilsner with more of a hoppy kick than usual. Flavor was also instantaneously awesome. A Pilsner with a more hoppy edge. Still somehow manages balance with the pale malt and dry Lager yeast. Lots of Euro hop deliciousness. Medium bodied; fuller than many I have had. Would be very happy to crush growler upon grower of this. The best Pilsner I had had? Maybe.

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Photo of ArkyVaughan
4.04/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Not a pilsner fan, but no surprise that Hill Farmstead made one of the best pilsners, actually one of the best lagers, I have ever had. Super crisp and clean.

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Photo of kculrich
3.94/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a growler filled 09/03/15 into a cool pilsner glass. Mostly clear, straw colored, a foamy white head that abides, lots of sticky lace. S: yeasty, floral and dank. T: Follows the nose, with bitter herbs and sweet bread dough. F: Moderate carbonation, some mineral tang, heavier than expected from a pils, not in a bad way, just in a I-guess-I-won't-be drinking-more-than-maybe-four-of-these sort of way. O: A competent pils, not their finest offering but definitely tasty.

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Photo of mynie
4.66/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an Alchemist glass even though I own an HF glass because I will god-damned if I'm gonna drink a pilsner out of a chalice. Also, side note, why does Alchemist make glasses if you're supposed to drink all their beers right out of the can? I am the only one of you people who’s paying any attention? What about ETHICS IN BEER JOURNALISM?!? We need a #drunkardgate.

Okay, so I had this at Hill Farmstead's newly opened taproom, where you can get full pours. I was already drunk and palette-wrecked off of Heady, so I'm glad I had sense enough to discard my notes and take home a 750 of this.

It pours like a nice Euro pils—dark gold, filtered, with a steady white head that laces mightily.

Smells fantabulous. Mild herbal profile against aggressive, dry German hops that could easily be mistaken for Saaz. The German grain aromas become more pronounced as I gain familiarity with the beer and it ends up tasting like an absolutely perfect blend between a Municher and a Czech pils (although the hops are German, they're aggressive and spicy enough to resemble Czech beers).

Tastes like it smells: a wonderfully balanced-yet-aggressive pils. Medium grain, big hops, kiss of yeast, and then zero esters. Finishes dry as can be.

It's been a long time since I've had a good, fresh Prima Pils, and even longer since I had FFF's criminally underrated Czech Booty Camp, so I can't say for sure that Mary unseats either of them as the best American-brewed pils. I can say, however, that it easily sit alongside them in the upper tier.

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Photo of CNoj012
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This beer pours a very light shade of gold with a small white head and good carbonation. The smell is grains, malts and light earthy floral hops. Taste is much the same, but honestly it is not doing it for me. Feel is light with good carbonation. Overall a good beer, and worth noting pilsners are not ky favorite style, but I've certainly had better.

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Photo of mikeg67
3.79/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Monk’s cafe, Philly. Pours deep golden with fluffy, white head. Aroma is of biscuit malt, grain and some hops. Body is medium and crisp. Grassy hops, grain and pale malt nicely balanced on the palate. Finish is long, bready. Very good Summer brew.

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Photo of rodmanfor3
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A beer that is true to style and executed quite well.

The only unpleasant part about this beer experience was associated with a slightly skunky nose.

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Mary from Hill Farmstead Brewery
4.16 out of 5 based on 478 ratings.
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