Whatís to be said that hasnít already? I finally made it to Hill Farmstead. Beer is obviously the best out there. The growler line can move a bit slow at times, but we got there early enough that we were in and out in a half hour after opening. Prices for growler fills were very reasonable. Great experience.
This is on the outskirts of e middle of nowhere, and isnít going to be stumbled across; it is definitely an intentional destination. As good as the beer is, it is as inefficient as it possibly could be. A forty person line took us 2.5 hours, and there is a limit of 3 growlers per person. That is inexplicable. The beer delivers though.
jdb288 (85) Robbinsville, New Jersey | October 20, 2014
Just got back from a quick weekend trip (NJ to VT) for the sole purpose of visiting this brewery.
The trip: Yes, itís remote. Yes, there are dirt roads, limited-to-no cell reception, and few gas stations/services. I didnít mind that part. Itís like a scavenger hunt with a pretty epic prize at the end!
The brewery: As it stands, there are few (if any) frills. Itís a beautiful piece of land, but itís function over form until the expansion is complete.
The products: Indisputable quality. They know their craft, and we know that. Enough said.
The value: Canít be beat. The only other HF bottles Iíve obtained are through trade, a random lucky night where I found it on draft, or the secondary market. In any case you canít beat straight retail.
The service/process: The staff was very friendly and efficient. Yes, itís a laborious process to fill growlers. The fact that you can do the tastings in line is great and helps to pass the time. Be patient; youíll get what you want.
Overall, a great experience. I hope to make it back some day!
Visited July 2013. Took awhile to get to this place as it is remote. Parking was ok. Line took forever to get through as they essentially were not limiting number of containers a person could have filled and there was only one fill tap per brew. We got there about 12:30-12:45 and were in line for 2.5 hours. Would have abandoned if we hadnít driven so far to get there. They would only let us drink their tasters from the covered tables, so had to take turns with GF to get something to drink while in this incessant wait. I donít blame the low service grade on the people behind the counter, they were working hard (all two, then finally three of them) as on management who donít seem to give a ratís a$$ about how much of a pain it is to be served by them because they know how long it takes and donít take the steps needed to improve things. Yeah, their brews are great, but itís not like there are no alternatives out there that are easier to get. If I ever go back to Vermont, Iíll stock up on Heady Topper. If I happen to find HF brews in the VT pubs, Iíll have them then, but will never go back out to the farm. Prices were ok. They ran out of several of the bottled brews I had wanted by the time we got to the counter. Iím not gonna give them a higher rating because of the quality of the brews. Will rate those separately.
Visited on August 21, 2014, 50 minutes before opening. I was somewhat apprehensive because of some of the revues for the brewery, but if you have a lot of patience and common sense. And also that this place is a work in progress, a guy just behind my last came in April and noticed two new sections, more brewing space and the tap room and retail shop. So if your coming before all of the brewery is done, arrive before opening or be patient and do something while waiting. Getting there is not that bad, if you get the directions right. The dirt road is not that bad, but it was dry. I went there on a Thursday and I was told by a store clerk at the Beer Cellar in Waterbury that this day is the least busiest. I arrived 50 minutes before opening, there was some cars but no line up. So I took advantage to take some pics of the place and going to the porta potty. I got in line 30 minutes before opening, we were about 6 in all (I was first in line). They let us in 15 minutes before time, so some of us can try some beers (5 for four 5 oz tasters), I did not partake mostly because two were not available. And just before noon, I gave my order (after my mom, I let her pass first). The service very friendly and as fast as they can be. They also now take credit and debit cards (note to Canadians, debit has to be a Visa or Master Card, not your bank card). So 15 minutes after opening, I was done. There was a taco stand if I wanted some (cash only), great Idea if you think youíll come out two hours later and you havenít eaten yet. This is one of those pilgrimage type place, Iíll be back!
The drive was quaint on an old dirt road to reach the brewery. Barn style building with construction going on a new wing. No bathrooms, just a couple outhouses that could use a service. Waited in line until about 10 minutes after 12 before the doors open. There is a separate line just for bottles to help speed things up, but this still is slow. We waited for 1 1/2 hours in a zig-zag line to purchase our selections. Prices are not cheap, but not over blown either. Tasters are served while you stand in line waiting. A couple of picnic tables are under a cover outside for other family members to wait. I know that many others have rated this higher since it is a rare opportunity to visit. Iíll rate higher once the new wing is done and there is actually something to enjoy oother than the beer.
To say that HFB is in the middle of nowhere is an absolute understatement. Lots of construction going on out there. Iím interested to see how everything turns out. Iím sure you know by now that itís four two ounce pours. That being said, they handled the release very well. The staff is friendly and the beers are world classÖ.
One of the best breweries in the world, in a beautiful surroundings. The drive is tedious for almost anyone, but this only adds to the draw. So good that they can thrive with what would be unacceptable delays almost anywhere else. While the staff is friendly, knowledgeable and helpful, the operations are annoyingly inefficient, but then again, could it voluntarily be part of the charm and myth?
jredmond (277) New York, New York | July 4, 2014| Updated September 10, 2014
Stopped by HFS a couple times and have had mixed experiences. Yes, of course the beer is world-class, but what you have to go through to actually get it may not be worth it. First time we came by was during the week (around 2p) and during a snow storm. There were a handful of people in line - no biggie. We got samples (limited to 4-5) which is helpful in picking growlers but closer to a tease. On the second visit we arrived at opening on Friday. The line didnít seem too bad, but we ended up waiting 2.5 hours to fill growlers. Yikes, would not knowingly go through that again. Also, the HFS bottles available had sold out in the days leading up to our visit, so unfortunately no bottles to go. Thankfully, Iíve heard they have started accepting credit cards recently, so I plan to get wild next time I stop by.
Pretty little brewery in the middle of nowhere. Youíll have to take a drive on a couple of dirt roads to get there. Visited on a Thursday afternoon, there were maybe a dozen people in front of us. The line move slowly, but after an hour we were out of there. You can also have some samples while youíre waiting (four 2oz pours for 5$). 6 taps and 7 bottles available. Friendly and professional service. Cash only. Cool experience but really, youíre just stand up in line waiting for growlers to be filled.
Type. . . . . . . . . . ..Growler Filling Station Level. . . . . . . . . . .High Location. . . . . . . .Poor, Middle of Nowhere, Dirt Roads Prices. . . . . . . . . .Medium to High up to $30 per bottle Tap Selection. . . .Medium, 6-7 House Beers on tap Bottle Selection. .Medium, 6-7 Bottles including guest bottles Samplers. . . . . . ..Yes, only 4-5 allowed though 6-7 beers on tap Full Pours. . . . . . .No Beer Level. . . . . ..Extremely High Food. . . . . . . . . . .No Food Level. . . . ...N/A Staff. . . . . . . . . . ..Fairly Nice Growlers. . . . . . ..Yes Noise Level. . . . .Quiet Dťcor. . . . . . . . . .New Wood, Modern Barn Good for Kids. . .No Parking. . . . . . . .Private Gravel "Lot" WiFi. . . . . . . . . . .Yes, But Did Not Work Cash Only. . . . . .YES Recommended. .No, See Explanation Comments: This is not a brewery tasting room as there is no place to sit down and try the beer. You are limited to only a few samples and cannot get a sample of every beer on tap if it exceeds 4-5. WiFi is free, but didnít work. Extremely slow moving line once you walk in is for growler fills only. If you are buying bottles, you use a separate, unmarked line. If you are just there for tasting beers, then you came to the wrong place. You can taste beers while you are in line for growlers as a way of deciding which beers to fill your growlers. Small line took 45 min to suffer. Location is In the middle of nowhere with no food. So come with a packed lunch I guess? 5 bottles were available including 3 that are nationally distributed through Grassroots/Anchorage and Shelton Bros. So only 2 bottles not available elsewhere. No full pours available by Vermont law. Disappointing. Would not recommend coming all the way out here. Better to go to Waterbury and hit up the beer bars with full pours. This is why Hill Farmsteadís Anniversary event was not at Hill Farmstead. They are also cash only even though they have really high prices, have an iPad, and have WiFi. That is just inexcusable. Closest ATM is miles away and charges a fee. So I guess if you go here you have to be rolling like $300 in cash deep. Should tell the local gang to start holding people up on Hill Rd.