Nimbus Rillito Red Ale - Nimbus Brewing Company

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Nimbus Rillito Red AleNimbus Rillito Red Ale

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89 Ratings
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Ratings: 89
Reviews: 42
rAvg: 3.22
pDev: 17.7%
Wants: 0
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Nimbus Brewing Company visit their website
Arizona, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beerguy101 on 09-06-2003

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 89 | Reviews: 42
Reviews by TheLongBeachBum:
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
2.61/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Presentation: Like the earlier Pale Ale, the Red Ale arrives is a short, fat, stubby 12 fluid ounce bottle with another one of those deceitful looking screw-off crown cap, which had to be destroyed by my heavy brass Samuel Smiths bottle opener. Single main obverse label looks like the one pictured on BA and has a monkey headed dancing dude amidst some flames. The crown cap has an interesting purple colored logo set onto the brass colored background, a picture of a monkeys head is surrounded by the words ‘Nimbus Brewing Company – Arizona’. No mention of the word “Rillito” on my bottle but it is listed at 5.0% ABV.

Appearance: Rustic deep copper brown with a light haze. Big frothy tanned head rises high and leaves a thick tide mark to remind you where it gets to before it slowly collapses down to a solid looking ½” thick creamy covering. Finely dissolved conditioning and a half decent appearance.

Nose: A nose that has an “all over the place” transient feel like a restless teenager. The caramel malts, grapefruit and citric twang come and go with a malt sweetness.

Taste: Like the nose, the organization here is somewhat chaotic. Sporadic sweetness turns up when it feels like it, I swear it appears at different times during different mouthfuls. Nice hop input with a sharp grapefruit taste and some citric bite. Malts are roasty-toasty, but that annoying sweetness seems to over-balance this at times. The finish has the merest hint of a sourness to it, which increased in strength as time went by, sometimes it lent itself towards the hops, at other times it just felt a little sour. An up-and-down brew that is seemingly unpredictable, even between tastes.

Mouthfeel: Decent to moderate build here, some strength and the conditioning is nicely entrenched. One of the better parts of this brew.

Drinkability: Sadly the strange nose and mixed-up eclectic tastes detract heavily from this Nimbus offering. I could have easily given up halfway through but I pushed on, not sure it was worth it though.

Overall: I’m not too big on Reds to start with, but aside from that and with an open mind, I can’t get any more excited than to say that this is just an average offering at best, in a grumpy Scrooge mood I would say that it drops below par in several areas and fails to score overall. Like the Pale Ale, I find this to be rather messy and unorganized in places.

More User Reviews:
Photo of chinchill
1.47/5  rDev -54.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.25

Recently purchased 12 oz bottle.

Like other beers from this lousy brewery, this one gushed out of the pint glass with just a small pour. The aroma is bad and the flavor worse. Incompetently crafted and highly likely to be infected. I have had had 4-5 other bad beers from the brewery, from multiple sources on different occasions. Moreover, both of the other two people I know who have had a Nimbus have had similar poor experiences, also ending with a drain pour. I can now put this on my small list of never again breweries and urge anyone reading this to do the same.


Photo of warriorsoul
3.2/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This is the only Red Ale I find in the "Rillito" found on the bottle...thanks to bennetj17 for this one.
A semi-hazy amber red amber with a half a finger of white head...most fades to a thin layer and leaves behind some thin, yet very tight lacing.
Very nice in the nose for the style...a generous dose of fruity hops and sweet caramel malt.
Taste is less enjoyable...dated, so it is fresh. Almost 29 IBU's per their website, but not bitter at all...actually, sort of flat tasting.
The malt is less sweet than I'd expect too...a watered-down flavor comes to mind.
Mouthfeel is thin and the carbonation is pretty low.
I could drink this, but not really enjoying it. This could be a decent gateway beer to get folks away from the BMC products, but would not impress someone looking for a stand out brew...IMO of course.

Photo of Bcant
3.05/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A Pours a hazy red/orange with a rocky white head.
S Malt nose, some strawberries and raisons, also slight citrus hop notes.
T Slightly sour, raisons and butterscotch, finishes dry with citrus.
M/D Chewy, slightly sharp, not as drinkable as a beer this style and abv should be.

Photo of bditty187
3.15/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Hazy, coppery-amber gold in hue, the shading shows more depth than a typical Red Ale, which is a positive. Off-white foam, at the apex the head was two fingers tall but the bubbles quickly faded to a thin cap. Disappointing. The subsequent lacing was widespread and disorganized. I like the appearance, sometimes “simple” is agreeable.

The nose is quite pleasant; it seems like an ESB mixed with an APA and Red Ale. I detect some citrusy hops upfront with grapefruit hints, melon and orange fruitiness in the middle, caramel malts at the end. I am happy the nose is not too clean. In fact, I’d call the nose organized confusion. Clearly, this beer is in the realm of a Red Ale. Plus the aromas are agreeable. Moderate potency, inviting.

While the messiness of the nose was charming the same cannot be said about the palate. I found it malty sweet but in a vague, disorganized fashion. Prickly hops, moderate bitterness which I like, hints of citrus zest, pine bark, and flowers. It is somewhat earthy, too. Juicy finish, malty sweet, fruity… the aftertaste is the same. The malt profile is not pronounced enough for the style, it is plenty hoppy though (and tasty in spots). Overall, I’m just not digging this beer. It is not flawed or off, it is just not matching my tastebuds. Not everything can be a homerun.

Medium-light in body, thin, low (flat) carbonation, the mouthfeel is a tad sluggish which hampers the palate. I’d like more zip.

I just can’t get into this beer. The more I sip the sweeter it gets… plus it is a little too fruity for me. While not a bad beer or a flawed beer I just can’t drink this happily. At best I’d call it “okay.” Nevertheless, thank you Aunt Kathy and Uncle Rick for shipping this sample to me all the way from AZ. Regardless of my 2 cents, I’d still say this beer is worth a try.

Photo of CharlesDarwin
3.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

12 Oz Bottle via footy. Caramel and candied orange aroma, sedate, slick and slippery. Pours a heavily hazed orange, with gold fringes, and a slimy grease ring of white. Flavor holds some flaccid hop character, rising with some Amarillo, then kumquat and tangerine. Light Asian pear. Malt runs in the generic line, bits of honey comb, bread and biscuit. There's a marked feeling of thinness in the middle of the beer. Towards the back end, a more acerbic and planty hop figure. Some unique off-notes arising from yeast character, bits of aged fruit, plant parts and savory components. Mediocre.

Photo of Jredner
4/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very aromatic malt and hop with the hops making the whole thing mildly citrusy. Amber color with a nice fluffy white head. Toned down malt/bread flavors with ample hop citrus and bitter notes. Nicely done ale from what i am coming to think is a very underrated brewery.

Photo of metter98
3.23/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

A: The beer is hazy amber orange in color and has a light to moderate amount of visible carbonation along with some particles resting at the bottom of the glass. It poured with a two finger high beige head that died down, leaving a thin head covering the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light aromas of doughy and earthy yeast are present in the nose.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste doesn't have very strong flavors and mostly consists of yeast.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and a little thin on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer doesn't offer much in the way of malts or hops in the smell or the taste. I'm not sure if the beer I had was aged a bit, but if this was the case I wouldn’t expect that the malt flavors would disappear.

Photo of Gusler
3.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer as it pours from the tap a nice translucent amber color with a moderate sized tan head that is spumous in texture, the lace a fine sealing sheet upon the glass. Nose is fresh and crisp with a pleasing to the senses malt sweetness, the start has a decent malt profile and is also sweet to the taste, top is middling in its feel. Finish has a moderate acidity with hops delectable in their spiciness, droughty aftertaste, and another fine Arizona summer beer.

Photo of charlzm
3.05/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Consumed June 23rd, 2012. Poured into a standard pint glass.

The color is a hazy copper/caramel. A cream colored head less than a finger high forms from a moderate pour. Minimal sheeting.

Aroma is a balance between sweet grapefruit and caramel malt.

Flavor is dominated by malt. Caramel malts open up with bready and slight toffee components. There's an odd note, verging on cardboard, lurking in there as well. Bitterness is on the low end of moderate with just a thin, indistinct note lingering on the palate after each sip. Increases a great deal as the beer warms up, however.

Carbonation is good and the beer is medium bodied.

Not world class, but certainly gets the job done.

Photo of flexabull
3.69/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a murky red color with a decent off white head.

Aromas are nice, cereal grains, and bright pine like hops.

Flavors are of cereal grains, hard candies, light sweetness, and tea like malt flavors. Fine has a light crisp mineral like hop bite.

Mouthfeel is ok, a little thin, but about right for the style.

Drinkability is pretty good. Just an above average and fairly tasty red ale that is really easy to drink. Sessionable.

Photo of DogFood11
1.73/5  rDev -46.3%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Poured into a pounder glass it forms an easily managed fizzy head. Lace is spotty. Light copper to orange body.

Along the lines of other Nimbus beers I"ve had lately it doesn't have much of an identity. Hops are evident but do little to help the overall taste. This is a mostly malt driven kind of tart red ale. Not what one would expect nor did it work out well. A bit watered wich also falls in line with the Nimbus brews I've had and not what I'm looking for. A bit of orange zest makes its way to the top and some watered down young lemon is in the aftertaste.

Notes: Pass by the whole lineup.

Photo of Lucklys
3.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Being titled a red ale, I expected nothing short of a red coloration and this Nimbus brew did not disappoint. Freshly poured into my snifter glass, it glowed a wondrous copper red/brown and looked thicker than it was. The head was definitely lacking, barely building before breaking up, and there was no lacing to speak of. My first shock was the amalgamation of scents emanating from the beer. It's an oddly pleasant mixture of malt, sour cherry, yeasty dough, and maybe something citrus...grapefruit perhaps.

Where I was completely assuming that this ale would be thick in my mouth, what with all the different smells, my second shock was due in large part to the fact that the liquid was practically water-like in texture. Very thin, very watery, yet it still managed to maintain all of the flavors of the malt, cherry, dough, and grapefruit. The only problem with all of these flavors being thrown together on my tongue, was that each one wanted to overpower the others, rather than compliment it, and I ended up with a horrible sour-fruit aftertaste that lingered for a long while after each sip. I found that the dryness of the beer helped keep the aftertaste from dissipating. Also, with very low carbonation, it was just like drinking really strong fermented fruit flavored water.

Now, despite the first half of the bottle being somewhat of a mess, the second half somehow managed to taste a little better. I'm hoping this is because I was learning to enjoy the multitude of flavors rather than just making myself believe the little bit of alcohol was helping me tolerate it. Either way, I can't honestly say that I didn't enjoy the rest of the drink once I became accustomed to the strong flavors and watery texture.

This ale best represents late fall here in Arizona, when the temperature starts to dip below 80º and the air isn't quite so dry. A good cookout with lots of brats and sauerkraut, maybe a little mustard, would be the perfect accompaniment to the overwhelming sour sweetness present in the drink.

Photo of Uncle_Jimmy
3.36/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance- hazy red orange 1.5 fingers of fine yellowish foam it sticks around a bit and leaves light lacing.

Aroma- not terribly floral- like most reds, some watermelon apple bubblegum a slight plastic.

Taste- some sweetness in the front in and slightly fruity. followed by a dry grainy finish with a hint of butterscotch. hops arent too pronounced but have a bit of a resiny quality. as it warms get almost fruit juice ish.

Mouthfeel medium bodied but dry ( sweetness is percieved in aroma mostly)

Overall- i think i kind of dig Red Seal of the reds I have tried. this one aint bad, it may get some Belgian drinkers into the red game ( esthers fruityness not too Hoppy)

Photo of
3.85/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle.

Hazy amber/copper color. Medium sized, rocky, off-white head formed after the pour. Beer was very still -- few bubbles rising.

Interesting scents - flowery, tea, honey, and fruits - mainly cherries and berries. A very sweet smell.

Taste moves in a different direction than scent, and is more bitter than sweet. Not by much, as overall it is quite well balanced. Molasses and grasses! Biscuity. Grass really comes through mainly in the finish.

Medium in body. Low to medium carbonation. Dry.

Quite tasty. For me, best of the lighter Nimbuses (Nimbii?). Well balanced, yet nice hop flavor.

Photo of bjohnson
3.03/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to Solomon420 for this guy.

A: I could only pour about half the bottle into the glass. Extra carbonation and huge 3.5 finger head. Nice and frothy though with a marshmellow like top. Slighty hazy dark peach color. Great looking lace.
S: Nice citrus and fruity nose with a bit of rye in there. Earthy smell also in there.
T/M: Not much going on at first. Slight fruityness with a sharp bitterness that leaves the mouth dry. Gritty and earthy in the mouth. Medium body.
D: Drinkability isn't very high. Very carbonated making it not very enjoyable.

Photo of Kari-D
2.5/5  rDev -22.4%

This Nimbus Red Ale has a sour taste I can not get past, and Reds are usually my thing.

Photo of Wasatch
3.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks bennetj17 for the brew.

Pours a slightly cloudy orange/amber color, nice carbonation, big foamy off-white head, nice lacing throughout the drink. The nose is of sweet malts, hops, caramel, and slight citrus. The taste is malty, and slightly bitter, and a slightly dry finish. Light-Medium body. Drinkable, a nice amber from Nimbus.

Photo of beerguy101
3.56/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reddish brown color. Small white foamy head. Aroma is malty and sweet. Full bodied amber. Malts are nutty and sweet. Light hops are slightly spicy. Good balance. Mouthfeel is full, smooth taste. Finish is crisp. Aftertaste is malty and slightly bitter.

Photo of BretSikkink
3.3/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fairly red color, some brown-amber notes. A little hazy, with a white top. Nil lacing and stickage. Not too great. Nose is caramelized malt with a backup of floral hops, but neither are very strong. A little pizza dough note as well.

The flavor is malty, with the slightest hint towards a roast. Hops are buried really deep, if they're present at all. The first sip was a little too "rotten fruit" for me, and it never quite went away. Too much for a light-bodied brew IMO.

I wasn't enamored of this one, but for darker fruit flavor in a fairly light-bodied package, this could be for you.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.25/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a murky light copper with a foamy orange-tan head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots and streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Small particles of sediment are seen floating around in the beer after the pour. Smell is toasted malt, caramel, and some herbal hop aromas. Taste is much the same with a medium herbal hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an average beer with a pretty good aroma but the taste doesn't match up.

Photo of ColForbinBC
3.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint

Pours an orange amber with reddish highlights when held up to the sun. A fluffy, off-white cap rose to fill the pint and subsided in due time. Had to pour this one in three parts due to the quick rising cap.

Slightly musty body, caramel, cereal grains and light citrus and pine needles. A mild fruity presence as well--cherries and wild berries.

The flavors lean more towards the malt and the pine and citrus take a seat in the way back. Caramel, cereal grains, and musty (almost moldy) cherries and wild berries.

Medium bodied with good carbonation. Nothing spectacular.

Drinkability is probably the best thing this beer has going for it, unfortunately, the flavor profile is a little to muddled and lacks a true identity.

Photo of armock
2.58/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to NitroGen for sending this my way.

A - Poured an amber color with an off white head that fades quickly

S - Has some sweet malt scents with some tart fruit and mild hops in the nose

T - Its like a train wreck in my mouth everything thats in the smell collides in your mouth and not in a good way at all.

M - This beer has a thin watery body with medium carbonation to it

D - So far I'm not impressed with the beers from Nimbus that I've had it seems like they're trying but they're failing save your money and buy someting better to drink

Photo of ccrida
3/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a tall tumbler, Rillito is a hazy auburn with an off-white head that leaves scattered lace.

Smell is sweet cereals grains, a little fruity.

Taste is on the sweet side, fruity. I've had their pils, pale and now amber, and there's all very similarly sweet, the difference being the hops of the pale and the crystal tea flavor here in the amber. I'm starting to wonder if these are even whole grain or actually extract brews!

Mouthfeel is dryish, medium light bodied.

Drinkability is fine, a sweeter, generic amber, forgettable.

Photo of UberWasser
3.98/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz brown bottle served in a mug.

Pours a hazy brandy-like amber color with a with a quickly dissipating but thickly bubbled head. The best part of the look is definitely the color.

Smells faintly sweet with a mild citrus background. Not a lot going on in the nose of this beer, for me.

The taste ramps it up though. Starts with a grainy sweetness that becomes somewhat fruity and alcoholic over the middle of the tongue. At the back of the mouth a pronounced orange zest comes forward to balance. Tasty. Mouthfeel is full and bubbly, pleasent overall.

I find this to be a very drinkable example of a red ale. Not a complex beer but a very pleasing one that makes me go back for more every time.

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Nimbus Rillito Red Ale from Nimbus Brewing Company
75 out of 100 based on 89 ratings.