Hill Farmstead Brewery

BEER AVG
4.33/5
Hill Farmstead BreweryHill Farmstead Brewery
PLACE INFO

Type: Brewery, Bar, Store

403 Hill Rd
Greensboro Bend, Vermont, 05842-8813
United States

(802) 533-7450 | map
hillfarmstead.com

Notes:
Hill Farmstead has a small bottle shop that carries offerings from other breweries in addition to bottles and growlers of their own offerings.

Added by papat444 on 04-08-2010

BEER STATS
Beers:
109
Reviews:
6,475
Ratings:
44,855
PLACE STATS
Score:
100
Reviews:
92
Ratings:
613
Avg:
4.61
pDev:
4.99%
 
 
Taps:
0
Bottles/Cans:
0
Cask:
N
Beer-to-Go:
N
View: Beers | Place Reviews | Events
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Reviews: 92 | Ratings: 613
Photo of Fernans
4.69/5  rDev +1.7%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

The Taproom is a nice open space plain but modern with great view of the brewery itself. Grounds are expansive With only 5~7 drafts to choose may seem limited to fill, but they have a number of bottled offerings for imbibing on premise. Oddly enough bottles, and swag are purchased in the old tasting room. Be warned, its a minimum of 3 miles of dirt roads (they are graded) to get there. Luckily, you will be rewarded when you get there.

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Photo of John_M
4.24/5  rDev -8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

Visited HF the other day, which has always been a big want of mine. That being said, I think it's pretty hard to review this place, especially if you're already a big fan of their beers. In any event, will try to be as objective as possible, in describing the pros and cons of a visit to HF.

The wife and I drove up from Portland Maine on a Saturday, and even though the calendar said it was Spring (April), it still sure looked like winter in this part of the world. It was snowing for much of the drive on I-93 and I-91, and so to no great surprise, the roads to and from the brewery were not in the best shape. These mostly consisted of dirt roads the last couple of miles (once you get off of hiway 16), which in this case meant muddy and slushy roads, with some very sizeable potholes. So either bring a 4 wheel drive vehicle or an SUV if you can, or expect a pretty stressful, often white knuckle drive (there were times when I was concerned our Nissan Versa rental car wasn't going to make it). Once you do arrive at the Brewery (which is really out in the sticks), the place sticks out like a sore thumb. HF is a sizeable, attractive, very new and modern looking facility, with a fair size parking area (the better to accommodate the hordes of HF fans who come up here daily, at least on the days HF is open). Even though the weather and roads weren't the best, there were till 40 or 50 cars in the parking area, and the tap room was jammed packed.

When we arrived, the first thing we did was to walk into the Bottle Shop. I don't think there's any way to know for sure what's going to be available on any given day in the bottle shop, so you're taking your chances any time you come up, hoping to score a particular bottle or bottles. Luck wasn't with me the day we visited. I think there was something like 9 or 10 different bottles for sale, consisting of 6 or 7 HF beers, and several guests selections and collaborations. On this day, this included Arthur, Edward, the Everett porter, a dry stout and the Civil Disobedience, none of which were really beers I was hoping to obtain. However, as we had driven all this way to visit, it seemed crazy to leave empty handed, so I grabbed a bottle of the Civil Disobedience to take home. After that, we proceeded to the tap room.

As mentioned, this was my first visit to HF, so I found the arrangement in the taphouse a bit confusing. There were quite a few people there, so it took a bit of work to get the attention of a staff member. However, when I did, she could not have been more helpful and friendly (the guy over in the bottle shop was equally friendly and helpful). She indicated that if we were just getting samples, we could go to any station we wanted (looked like they had separate areas for bottles, by the glass, food and growler purchases - though given the crowd, it didn't appear as if this was enforced rigorously). Our service person indicated we would need to go over to station one to purchase a glass of anything, but I saw folks around us ordering glasses, bottles and growlers as well.

On this particular day, there were 6 beers on tap I believe, 4 of which could be ordered by the glass (Abner and the S&S were only available for "growler" fills). As I think the website mentions, they don't really fill actual growlers here, instead using 750 and 2 liter bottles with the HF logo. Unfortunately, the DIPA's were really the only beers I wanted to get a glass of, so we ended up just trying samplers (which were complimentary) and leaving. Frankly, I wasn't hugely impressed by what was available on draft, but what makes the tap room worth visiting, even if you don't see anything on tap you want to drink, is the outstanding onsite bottle selection (beers that can only be enjoyed in the taproom). In addition to a considerable number of BA HF beers I would love to have been able to take home, they also had a nice selection of guest beers, including several Belgian lambics and Gueuze. Frankly, that's the only reason I'm giving this place as high a selection and quality score as I have. The regular pales ales, IPA's, porter and session porter were fine for what they are, but other than the Everett, I don't think any of them are particular standouts.

Shrug. I'm glad I had a chance to visit HF, but it's really a pain in the ass to get to, and given the quality of my visit, I'm fairly certain I don't need to ever come here again. The wife and I are staying in Waterbury for the weekend, and HF stuff seems to be on tap all over town (so plenty of places where you can order a glass of Abner, S&S, Harlan, Edward, etc.). I can see coming up to Waterbury and Stowe again (the area is great, with all kinds of great restaurants and beer bars), but not HF.

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Photo of BradfordStuckey
4.49/5  rDev -2.6%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75

I had the pleasure of visiting this quiet place during my visit to Vermont. Other than the town of Waterburythis was my favorite place in Vermont. Its out in the middle of nowhere down a series of dirt roads. They say they open at 11 but iff you arrive a bit earlier they will most likely let you in. The Vibe was like much like a comfy barn set up for people to enjoy drinks together. The service line was quick and there were about 8 bottles to choose from as well as growler fills on anything that was on tap. My favorites that I tried while I was there were Dorothy and Arthur. I met Sean briefly and gave him some SD beers and he quickly vanished without saying much. Great place and I would definitely return some day.

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Photo of Karibourgeois
4.53/5  rDev -1.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Beautiful brewery with amazing beer. Way out in the middle of nowhere and a major hike to get to but so worth it. Beers were all amazing. Lines weren't too long either.

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Photo of eifster82
4.97/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Place is pretty much perfect.

I'll start of by saying that this is very remote but in a beautiful area. If you end up finding yourself on a mud and dirt road, do not be concerned because you are on the right path still. A few turns on dirt roads and you'll be there. The place is set on a rolling hill surrounded by trees. Great setting.

Vibe was great. Everyone there was there because they are a hardcore lover of craft beer. No one will make the effort to come here that doesn't know about the quality already.

Building is well set-up with the shop, the glass looking into brewing area and the tap room with the big porch deck. Very clean and spacey. No complaints at all.

Service was prompt, organized and very friendly. They will chat you up, give you sampler of anything they have and be very open in general about operation.

Selection was huge. Tons of PA/IPA/DIPAs on draft, among others and plenty of sours and saisons in bottles for both consumption on-site and to-go. Also available were vintages from years ago at an appropriate price for something so rare and tasty.

They don't offer food directly except for a selection of fine cheeses but they do have a food truck right outside if you're looking for meal. When I was there, a tasty BBQ place was on premises and the pulled pork sandwich was solid.

Again, the place is pretty much perfect. If you are anywhere within 2hr radius of HF, a stop is a must. The state and the drive are very scenic so it wasn't an issue for me at all (and I drove from
Boston).

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Photo of Sabtos
4.8/5  rDev +4.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Many have seen the exterior in pictures, but few have experienced it. Hill Farmstead, as it is now after some recent upgrades, looks like two buildings but is basically one connected L-shaped compound. It is surrounded by tranquil farmland, a pond, coniferous trees and some mountains in the distance.

The bottle shop in the first wing to the left of the connecting parking lot is lined with barrels and teeming with boxes full of what's being offered to-go at the time. Unfortunately when I was there, they had stopped selling any full-sized glass merchandise, and apparently this freeze had been on for quite some time, so it may be a while until they have new glassware for purchase.

The taproom is the wing that appears straight ahead when viewing from the parking lot, or behind and to the right of the bottle shop. My first impression when opening the door to the taproom was that this place is just on the edge of having a fancy restaurant vibe. Until people start flowing in and the conversations begin echoing off the hard walls, it's very peaceful inside. The taproom is dimly lit with a fine ambiance and a very high-end bar top with clean lines and serve-yourself water vessels. For the most part it is a very mellow place with a very receptive and efficient crew. There may be one person there with a chip on their shoulder, but I have a feeling they are in a place in their life where they've earned the right to give attitude if they want to exercise it.

They have a fairly large selection of beers on draft that I literally have never seen on offer anywhere else in my entire life. Not to mention, they offer a fair number of bottled brews for you to buy for consumption on premises, which from what I understand can often be a luck of the draw, blind selection process. Some of these can be very rare, even for HF standards. One thing is for certain, literally all of the beers you will have access to are world class, many of which are of a quality not experienced elsewhere.

As a sidenote, there is a cool little place next door called the Hand Crafters Hub where you can pick up some VT cheeses and syrups and other incomparable local produce and crafts. They might have a few other surprises as well from time to time.

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.73/5  rDev +2.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 5

The vibe here is the open countryside of Vermont mixed with folks making a beer nerd pilgrimage. Very cool atmosphere inside the taproom as well as the property itself. Great view of the production facility and the barrel room. Staff in bottle sales was so personable and upbeat. Taproom visit on Wednesday was very laid back with an impeccable cellar list of HF bottles and Belgian lambics. The beer itself is as good as any you'll find across all the styles they offer. The small tastes of the hoppy beers don't do them justice, so order growlers based on what you know you like. The only downside was that on a day when the taproom had few customers, one of the bartenders couldn't be bothered to engage in conversation despite no one else needing service.

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Photo of happyreefer
4.97/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Some of the friendliest people I've met. Would love to have a beer with these guys and shoot the shit off hours. Lovely vibe, gorgeous location. What every brewery should strive to be. Hype aside, the beer is exceptional. You can tell that love and care has gone into every brew.

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Photo of Barracudas
4.57/5  rDev -0.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

A worthwhile brewery to visit. There were a lot of people there all enjoying themselves. Very pretty area with a lot of different activities to participate in.

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Photo of Sound_Explorer
4.22/5  rDev -8.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

This was a trek for sure along a dirt/gravel road for the last bit. Once you get there it is a really great looking spot and area to sit and have a sip for sure though. Good list of selections and separate lines for growlers and pints which is great since the growler line gets loooonng. They have a separate bottle shop/gift shop as well which is great too. Sadly, due to state laws (I presume) at the time of this writing they only allow two pints per person per day and no tasters, at least that I remember being there. Plan accordingly for a bit of a drive even from Burlington or Montpelier.

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Photo of Yetiman420
4.49/5  rDev -2.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 5 | selection: 4.25

Stop # 484 on my world brewery tour.

Did all the research and was well prepared...to listen to my GPS and take the back way in up a muddy, rutty road that my front well drive Camry had a hard time negotiating. Arrived around 10 on a Saturday in March. maybe four cars there already. Bartender said it died down beginning president's day.

Door on the left as you walk toward building is bottle shop. Door on right (long building) is tap room. Servers did a great job keep the tiny crowd taken care of. We were able to taste all draft beers and get two pints. Should have made decisions sooner on our growlers as by the time we were ready to get them filled, the crowd picked up a bit and took us an extra 45 minutes.

The best brewery in the US? It's a great place with a couple of "buts"

As I went through the sampling, I felt a lot of the beers were similar enough (and all very good) that it was hard to make distinctions and thus a choice on growler fills. I drink so much beer that I have a hard time smelling hop aroma so your mileage may vary.

The ability to fill as many growlers as you like is nice. I was bringing beer back to Ohio for friends so I got one or two of each along with bottles.

I understand the policy of two beers per person for onsite consumption. I happen to like to drink more and realize the complexity of trying to monitor who does and does not have a responsible driver.

Pristine landscape? Sure, and I'll argue that New Glarus has an equally pastoral setting with a remarkable facility (and world-class "boring" beers).

At the sake of sounding like a sour puss, I'll close by saying it was worth the trip and I had a delightful time. I split a bottle of Table Dorothy with my buddy over a one cheese VT cheese board which was simply divine. The service was exceptional.

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Photo of SpoiledInVT
4.74/5  rDev +2.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Gone are the days of the little room with an ipod playing, where you could shoot the shit for.hours while sampling beers. This place has turned into the Mecca for all of those beer pilgrimage folk. Absolutely beautiful place, now serving on premise bottles, overlooking an amazing view. The transformation over the past few years is truly a testament to the quality of the product, and the hard work by the entire staff.

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Photo of peepmachine
4.6/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

As a beer lover, I love this place. I can get great beer at a fair honest price. Staff are helpful and knowledgeable. The owner could use some social skills. (Not all of us are out of stater's who come there) The views are great. Just quintessential VT landscape. Tasting room is very well put together and comfortable. I just love coming up grabbing beer. Recommended!!!

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Photo of ELS
4.74/5  rDev +2.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Showed up on a Thursday afternoon and it wasn't too crowded. I was a little confused at the start because you have to take a number for growler fills (which I did) but didn't realize that you could order glasses of beer without waiting next to the growler fill area. I thought it was strange that in order to drink certain beers at the brewery you have to have a growler filled and then pour your beer into a glass from the growler. Why not just allow all growler fill beers to be on tap at the brewery for immediate consumption poured into 12 ounce glasses? The atmosphere is a stark but warm tap room with limited seating with the typical young male crowd that you expect to see at every world class brewery. The service was very good in terms of the bartender being nice, helpful, samples, responsive, etc. The beer is top notch as expected. Make sure to ask about any special bottles (like Ann) that might be for sale in small quantity.

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Photo of HehTheKid
5/5  rDev +8.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Beautiful mountains in the background! Awesome tap list! Great Service! Best Selection!

After graduation from university, me and a couple buddies finally visited best brewery in da world. This is no Labatt! Shaun is comparable to Prime Minister of craft beer. Spent a couple loonies there. This is only I can complain about, eh! Shaun took all me loonies!

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Photo of Beerasaurus
4.86/5  rDev +5.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Visited on a Saturday, got there just before noon only to find an enormous bachelor party ahead of us. We went in the retail store first then realized we should have grabbed a ticket for the fill line first. Lesson learned! Picked up a few bottles then waited about 90 minutes for our fills. I've heard the waits can be longer but it was nice to spend a little time relaxing there after the drive from Burlington. The rolling hill country was beautiful, I can imagine a summer visit would be spectacular.

My only knock, and a minor one at that as we looked at the tap list online first, was that the tasters and growler fills were pretty much all pale ales. Was really hoping for a little variety with some of their other brews.

Nonetheless it was well worth the visit!

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Photo of zekeman17
4.73/5  rDev +2.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

What more can be said about Hill Farmstead that others haven't already said?

We were staying in Burlington for a week and I reserved a day to myself to make the 1 1/2 hour drive to beer Mecca. After driving through the beautiful hills of Vermont for a while, I turned off to follow the directions from the HF website. My GPS yelled at me the entire way, but after passing farms and cows and driving on bumpy, rugged dirt roads for a while I saw a sign telling me I had arrived!

I was surprised at the number of people that were there on a Wednesday at noon, but the whole process of filling growlers and buying bottles was run quite efficiently.

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Photo of CraftBeerLos
4.8/5  rDev +4.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75

Awesome place! Gorgeous views from the farm in the middle of Vermont. Love this place! New taproom is excellent and a great place to hangout while you wait for your fills. They have fill pours and bottles for onsite consumption. Oh and some of the best beer in the world!

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Photo of Shwilly_Vanilli
4.64/5  rDev +0.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75

Friendly, knowledgable staff. Very well organized. Exceptional selection. I do wish they'd bottle or can some of their hoppy beers, but I guess growlers are just part of the Hill Farmstead experience. Can't wait to come back!

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Photo of Beer4B
4.8/5  rDev +4.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Quite the drive out to the farm. Beautiful hillside. Unfortunately our trip was a week before the new bar space was open. The staff was happy and helpful and the selection was surprisingly good. Worth the trip

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Photo of nmaher
4.83/5  rDev +4.8%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Had the chance to visit in mid-November on Veterans Day. Got their shortly before 11am, was happy to have them open early (as appears to be somewhat the custom now) and made my way quickly through the bottle line. Made the rookie mistake of not sending one of our party over to grab a growler ticket as that line quickly grew and by the time we got our bottles we were 20 back from the current #. It took a little over an hour to get our turn and we enjoyed several samples and a cheese plate while we waited. Only minor disappointment is that they are limited (?) to only allowing one full pour during a visit. Which, if you're waiting an hour +, doesn't really cut it. Otherwise obviously the beers were great and the new tasting rooms is very nice. Selection was excellent for growler fills.

 801 characters

Photo of Alequine
3.87/5  rDev -16.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75

A long drive but not too long to visit the Mecca of east coast beer. The drive can actually be quite pleasant and beautiful through the rolling hills and forests and mountains of Vermont. Once you arrive it is a beautiful laid out property with a new bottle sale store and new tap room for growlers and select on-site pours. Once you go into the tap room it is not so friendly. Get in line, pick one beer and go. No tables, no chairs although there is a beautiful deck overlooking the Vermont countryside off to the side. The tap list was all IPA's which is fine if you are a hop head but was looking to try one of there outstanding saisons. Vary the tap list. Very disappointed in the vibe at the tap room.

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Photo of tmbgnicu
4.93/5  rDev +6.9%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5

The new tap room for growlers/select on site pours and bottles is simply fantastic. A very relaxed vibe awaits you, a beautiful deck overlooking the Vermont countryside is a nice reward for making the trip. Wished there were chairs on the deck, but leaning over the railing and enjoying a beer was just as nice. The beer needs no further review or introduction. Bottle sales are quick and easy, and even with no limit on growler fills, I didn't wait more than half an hour for my fills. Great process, great brewery, great experience.

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Photo of rogacks
5/5  rDev +8.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

This is a really cool spot. Seemed like it took a while to get my beer, but they serve flights to keep you happy. I was surprised with how much beer they had available. I left with more than I thought I would.

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Photo of edward_boumil
4.22/5  rDev -8.5%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25

A visit to these guys is OK. Obviously their beer is really good, but there isn't much to the place proper. Samples are charged, many breweries don't charge for their beer. There isn't much seating, which sucks. The waiting area is kind of drab.
That being said you come to a place like this for the beer, and it is great. Staff are nice and informative but a little pushy sometimes.

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Hill Farmstead Brewery in Greensboro Bend, VT
4.33 out of 5 based on 44,855 ratings.
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