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Shiner Ruby Redbird - Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner

Not Rated.
Shiner Ruby RedbirdShiner Ruby Redbird

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
72
okay

251 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 251
Hads: 1,187
Avg: 3.12
pDev: 50%
Wants: 21
Gots: 312 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner
Texas, United States | website

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer | 4.01% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: wagenvolks on 03-17-2011

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (27) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 251 | Hads: 1,187
Photo of Beerwolf666
3.44/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

I have to Admit it,this took some Major Balls by the brewer..I mean right off the bat, Grapefruit & Beer? Seriously? I mean maybe if it was a California brewer,But TEXAS? they shoot you for this Kind of stuff in Texas dont they? hehe;)
Anyway,Came across this @ my local Beer shop,and since I will try Any Beer Once,I had to check it out,purty cheap too~5 bucks a 6er,so what the Hell!
Now I was Not expecting Much going in,I mean Beer & Grapefruit does not sound that gr8 to me,but I do like a lot of fruit beers,and I dig a good Ginger beer also~
Poured a 12oz Bottle of "Ruby Redbird" into a Pabst Pint Glass~
humm? Looks Kinda Nice Actually,maybe a Ginger ale/Light Lager with a shot of Grenadine..perhaps a strawberry Blondish color more or less.
It Smells Very Nice too,Grapefruit,spicy Ginger,with just a Hint of Malt,No hop odor whatsoever,Citrus Hints..about it.
Taste~Purty damn tasty to be Honest,Very Light and zesty,I get a little Malt taste up front with a Grapefruit/Citrus Mix following,and then a rather nice Ginger Finish,and just like the smell,I really can not detect any Hops @ all.
Now this Beer probably will not win you any Tough Guy Points with your meathead Buddies,or earn you any respect from your Hop Head Friends,who Only Drink IPA's,but I could care less about that kind of crap.
Now I am not saying "Ruby Redbird" is going to take the place of my Favorite summer time beers anytime soon [Flying Dog's woody Creek & Sam Adams Summer Ale] but Hell ya! I think it's a very good choice when you have some Yard work to do,and a soda or lemonade just aint cuttin it,or washing the car,Painting the house..whatever, with a very Low ABV [4.1%] it's a good choice when you want a crisp refreshing VERY Light beer with something off the beatin track..Grapefruit! hehe;)
Cant really think of much Grub this would go with besides Fruit & perhaps some Buttery cheeses..perhaps Guda,Edam & Brie may be ok,though probably best as an "Apertif~Cheers & Peace2All.

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Photo of sgt_187em
4.21/5  rDev +34.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The first thing I tasted was the ginger, which I liked because I like spicy. But it overpowers the grapefruit and the tart. It does have a grapefruit aftertaste. The spice enhances the carbonation. The color was a light amber and the head was very light.

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Photo of Travix1516
3.12/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This was a decent beer. It had a strong grapefruit smell which is to be expected from a beer that hinges the flavor profile on the fruit. It often reminded me of Shiner's Hefeweizen, but that may have been due to the citrus notes. It was refreshing on a hot day and I would have it again, but I don't really see myself buying a six pack of it. Not great, not bad. A decent beer.

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Photo of LordHammer
2.15/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my River Horse glass.

A: Light gold with the faintest hint of pink? Or is that my imagination? Head faded very quickly to nothing.

S: Some sweetness, but the nose is dominated by spice, strangely enough. Just a big ginger smell, maybe a bit of clove. Much more intriguing if this were soda.

T: Bit of sweet malt out front, then a total grapefruit/tart citrus bomb. The ginger is present at the end. Seems to get a little better with each sip, perhaps that's my palate being obliterated?

M: Thin, watery, and highly carbonated. Refreshing? I guess.

O: Hard to call this beer. The fruit and spice flavors are the huge majority of the flavor. I get that it is supposed to be refreshing, but I can't imagine enjoying this no matter how thirsty I was.

EDIT: Based on having a second one out of the bottle whilst hot and sweaty, I've adjusted the scores slightly. Not good, but a bit better.

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Photo of kyleelton
1.19/5  rDev -61.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Out of a bottle into a pint glass.

I've been on BA for awhile and never written a review, but this time I just couldn't stay silent. I knew this would either be awesome or wretched:

As soon as I poured the glass I knew I was in for trouble. The color was okay, but the head and clarity was very seltzery and the light foam dissipated quickly.

I put the glass to my nose and was hit by a fruity, citrus smell that reminded me of a bad Grocery store Sprite knock-off.

My wife, who usually likes fruitier beers, summed it up fairly well. It tastes like watered down Sprite. You know how after ice has melted and you water down the carbonation as well as the flavor.

Too much carbonation and very watery, despite a very prominent nasty grapefruit aftertaste. I like grapefruit, but this tastes like chemical, over-produced, from concentrate type. Think of Orange Juice vs. Orange Drink.

Overall Impression:
When I last visited Sea World several years back (before I really knew much about beer besides that I did not like BMCs) I went to their Anheuser-Busch beer school and learned that beer is made of barley, water *rice? and hops. I'm a little shocked they still use hops. But that's another story. After the beer school they gave us free samples. They were trying out beer infused with fruit (this was before the BL Lime and Miller Chill crap) and they literally poured a Mich Ultra and mixed it with cherry (or whatever) syrup. It was God-awful. My point is that this beer is the closest thing I've tasted to that, since. It should be noted I've never tried BL lime. I was hoping for a light, slightly fruity nod to the IPA bitterness that can taste grapfruity. As a Texas beer drinker I'm also always in Shiner's corner, morally speaking. But this beer was so bad. So bad.

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Photo of OverToad
1.12/5  rDev -64.1%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

I had high hopes for this beer. Shiner makes some good beer so I thought what a great idea. Boy was I wrong.

The beer looks nice as you pour it but that's where it stops.

Taste is just horrible. All I taste Is strong ginger ale and no grapefruit.

Mouthful reminds me of the fountain drInks that run out of syrup.

This has to be the worst beer I have ever had and I've had some bad ones.

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Photo of Snow
3.6/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

You need to like Grapefruit to enjoy this beer
Its a bit sweet as well, all in all a good grab for a hot day

it pours light to medium gold with a grapefruit citrus hitting you in the face, the hops are lacking like others have commented. The key here is the grapefruit and effervescent quality. So if your looking for an enjoyable summer beer you have one

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Photo of AdvocateFan
2.33/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Light, just a few steps off from being refreshing/thirst-quenching. Grapefruit is prominent, but not as satisfying as I'd hoped for. Ginger kicks a bit of spice. No alcohol flavor detected. Notes of lemon zest/rind. Spritzy (very highly carbonated.)

Best way to sum this up is "Zima reincarnated." Not kidding. Maybe a touch of Tequiza too... Definitely alcopoppy.

I applaud the brewery's continued efforts to add more beers to their line up. Shiner is a trusted TX brand and these excursions help turn people on to drinking better beer and to not fear exploration. But this one I will not be purchasing again. Can't win 'em all!

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Photo of Mr3dPHD
4.5/5  rDev +44.2%

This is a brew that many will rate poorly based on their personal preference, as opposed to how well it was done within it's style. I'm not a huge Shiner fan nor am I a fruit beer person, but in my opinion, they hit the nail right on the head with this one.

The beer pours with a thin fizzy soda like head which vanishes seconds later. Right off the bat you are hit hard with ginger and citrus on the nose. It almost smells like some sort of fresh ginger cocktail. The initial flavor is smooth and on the sweet side, but the sweetness quickly fades as it hits the sides and back of the tongue where it becomes dry and crisp. The ginger is present from start to finish, and that juicy red grapefruit comes through perfectly in the finish. It's light bodied and so juicy, but it isn't a sweet fruit beer by any means. To me it makes a perfect substitute for juice with breakfast, or as a refreshing alternative to a cider on a hot day. This is a wonderfully crafted unique brew that serves it's intended purpose perfectly.

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Photo of oreo
3.66/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Got this bottle for free today from my beer guy.

Drank straight from the bottle, but poured a bit out to see the color and head.

Poured a nice amber with a short bright white head. Gone within seconds.

Smells pretty neat, lots of grapefruit and ginger. More fruit and citrus than ginger which is good.

Tastes pretty damn good. I can see how they call this the "perfect summer beer" Very light and refreshing. Easily drinkable on a hot summer day. Over the course of the beer, the ginger makes more of an appearance in the taste. Kinda kills all the wonderful grapefruit I had at the beginning.

Very light and crisp mouthfeel, as a summer beer should be.

Overall this is a good beer. Not great, but enough to keep me happy during ahot summer day. Well done shiner!

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Photo of loobear
3.44/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A - Golden orange body with a spritey head that dissolves quickly.

S - Smells like a malty grapefruit. Slightly sweet, slightly bitter. Interesting.

T - Intense grapefruit on the front, finishes with decent smoothness. Lots of crispness and bite with little harshness. Interesting.

M - I'm yearning for a bit more carbonation. I think that this would make the beer much more enjoyable for me. It has such a smooth finish and plenty of grapefruit character, it seems like the intensity could be lacking in this dept.

O - I've never had a grapefruit beer before. The concept is interesting. Did Shiner deliver? Certainly in flavor. Some areas were lacking IMO, but I did enjoy.

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Photo of HankSingle
2.85/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.75

This is a pretty good ginger beer, and a pretty lacking grapefruit beer. My partner tore through the six pack on a hot day when I was out, but the one I had was marginal - nice, not offensive, but utterly absent the grapefruit flavor I was looking for when I bought it.

A nice 'it's really hot out' beer, but I don't know if that saves it - I really do think I'm being hung up on the grapefruit on the label; but, then, I wouldn't have bought it just for the ginger.

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Photo of alohaspicoli
3.17/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass.

A: Sort of a hazy brownish gold color. No head or lacing.

S: Grapefruit, citrus.

T: Bitter but strangely nice and refreshing. Grapefruit is the most prominent w/some citrus.

M: Not much body or carbonation.

O: I'm kind of torn on how to wrap this up. When I break it apart into the above sections nothing really stands out as great, but overall I thought it worked in a weird way. Especially when this beer is served ice cold on a hot, humid, summer day (which was when I tried it). Sort of a polarizing beer, as opinions on it were divided right down the middle at the BBQ I had it at. But I'll definitely pick some up next summer to give it another shot.

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Photo of TucsonTom
2.28/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

I wanted to like this beer, really I did.

I like Citra hops, and right there on the back label is says Citra, Cascade and Mt. Hood are used; all excellent. So, I'm thinking: "Ruby red grapefruit with Citra ... what a wonderful, tangy combination!" Then there's the 4% ABV, which is right up the alley I've been walking lately: beers with 5% ABV or less. And to cap it off, Shiner's stuff is often on sale for $4.99 a sixer.

But I should have gone to the Shiner website before my purchase. The Ruby Redbird webpage says nothing about the hops used, AND THE IBUS ARE ONLY 13. THIRTEEN?? What'd you do, Spoetzl, pass an open baggie of hops over the kettle like you do with Vermouth when making a super-dry martini? I found little hop presence, as a 13 IBU wound suggest. But why promote hops on the label when their contribution to smell and taste are hardly noticeable?

The color is actually very nice; looks like filtered apply juice. I did find the grapefruit and ginger in the smell and taste ... BUT NO DARN HOPS! It was also about as flat as apple juice; no carbonation to speak of.

The more I think of it, the more I think the mention of any hops at all on the back label is deceptive advertising. Either fix the beer with more hops, Spoetzl, or print up some new labels that promote this beer for what it really is: a grapefruit/ginger beer.

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Photo of justinjj1280
2.58/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours an orange/amber, and the head dissipates fairly quickly.

Aroma is very strong on citrus, and the taste follows. It's grapefruit, but tastes more like lemon to me. The acidic citrus flavor and the ginger are just overpowering, and overshadow any other beer flavors that might be there.

This is a confusing beer. It is crisp and refreshing, but just tastes out of balance. If they tweaked the recipe a bit, they might be on to something. For summertime concept fruit beers, I'd go with 21st Amendment Hell or High Watermelon or Leinenkugel's Summer Shandy. This is not a repeat buy for me, even though I give them credit for creativity.

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Photo of supie12
3.56/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Understanding that the Shiner Brand isn't really a craft maker, they do offer a few beers that are worth a try and plus its a great local favorite for us Texans.

When poured in a Pint Glass:
The color is an amber with plenty of bubbles. The head fizzes out rather quickly. The taste holds obvious hints of the citrus fruit added. It goes down smooth and is a great summer refresher.

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Photo of BrandonWardlaw
4.12/5  rDev +32.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: A very light amber. Pours with a very tiny head that dissipates instantly.

Smell: Frankly, it's bizarre. Not in a bad way, but definitely not a conventional beer whatsoever. The ginger and the grapefruit hit you in the nose right away, and that's all I'm getting out of it.

Taste: Again, bizarre, but in the best of ways. Has a very crisp, gingery bite, which mellows quickly. Finishes with a slight tanginess, and a bit of bitterness at the rear of the palate from the grapefruit.

Mouthfeel: Pretty light. Moderately carbonated. Extremely drinkable.

Overall: This ain't your normal glass of beer. It's pretty out there, and definitely the most adventurous Shiner brew that I've ever had. It's nice to have a citrusy beer that doesn't taste like chemicals and failure (Bud Light Lime, anyone?) The bottle brags that it's the "Perfect Summer Beer", and it might be right. I think it would also pair pretty well with asian or asian fusion dishes. It would be especially good with sushi. I'm sure a lot of BeerAdvocate users are going to give this beer poor reviews ("WHY DOES IT NOT REEK OF HOPS?!?!?", they'll scream), because they seem to love rating beers without regard for their intended drinking context. But if you're looking for an unpretentious, unusual session beer - give this a shot.

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Photo of titusgroan
4.23/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I... Like... this... beer! and i did NOT think i would! GO SHINER!!! I love SB and the black and some of the others but when my wife brought this home i was beyond skeptical - flash back to smokearse... i mean smokehaus... but it was a sorta hot day... i was ready for cold beer so... and the cute little label was so inviting. so i poured one in a cold glass - no much head, some bubbles nice gold color. but the smell was quite nice - i walked outside... the grapefruit and ginger were there and the hops too... somewhere back there... i walked out in the yard... the wind blew the trees around... kids where yelling... my neighbor was mowing. i downed a redbird and got another - and another... next day we had some friends over. we chilled out back and knocked back some redbirds... it was a good day... its gonna be a nice long summer... thanks shiner. its about DAMN time... this beer is unique- the grapefruit and ginger are up front but not overpowering - very tart and almost dry but very refreshing when its hot and humid... best ice cold. it is not sweet at all - i hate sweet beer but this is not sweet at all. i love to slosh it around in the glass it bubbles up and goes crazy - also lets that grapefruit smell out...

have not tried with food yet - i bet it would be great with pho!

i love ipa etc but this is something different and i'm so glad shiner did it. totally makes up for the smokehaus! i knew you had it in you shiner - now keep it up - GO CRAZY!!!

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Photo of jeffack
3.47/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: pale yellow-orange. Hardly any head.

As one other reviewer has said, this smelled like ginger ale.

It tasted like less-sweet ginger ale. Not much bitterness to speak of. I got the grapefruit flavor, but only because I was looking for it. As a grapefruit lover, I wish there had been more; it certainly could have helped balance the very-sweet flavor.

This is the first gingery-beer I've had, and I think I liked the idea of it more than the result; I'd rather it be a little more beer and less ginger-ale; mixing this 50-50 with a good wheat beer might result in a pretty good product.

Overall, it was a nice change and decent summer brew.

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Photo of moosemoose
3.54/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle into pint glass

A: Golden orange. Very bubbly. One finger head dissipates within a minute.

S: Notes of juniper and lemongrass over grapefruit and small amounts of citrus.

T: A bit watery. Ginger. I can't taste the grapefruit as much as others, I suppose. Lemon with a hint of mint.

M: Very crisp and refreshing. Light body. Highly carbonated.

O: Drink one (or two) after mowing your lawn.

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Photo of Brewnah
3.99/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

To me this is one of the best summer seasonal beers. In my experience the summer seasonal beers can either be way too fruity or a bit lacking in body and flavor. I found this both refreshing and full of flavor.

As weird as grapefruit beer sounded it was just what my taste buds expected. The balance of citrus and bitter taste on my tongue was perfect. Top that off with a hint of ginger and they have me coming back for more. It is a shame that this one can only come once a year.

The color was what I expected from the shiner family. It had a slight hue of red or amber. The head was only 1/8 inch but that could be to to a poor pour on my part.

All in all my favorite summer beer.

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Photo of drewy813
3.58/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 fl oz bottle poured into a weizen glass

A: Apple juice color. Lots of fizzy head that dissipates in seconds. Less head then a soda. Bubbles of CO2 remind me of champagne.

S: Honestly, nice smell. Sweet ginger and then the bite of grapefruit. No 'beer' smell really.

T: Taste is nice too. Citrus taste with ginger hints. Slightly sweet. Not too sweet though.

M: Drinks like a sticky soda.

Drinkability is average. I could drink 2 maybe 3, but I wouldn't finish off the 6-pack.

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Photo of lwootton
4.11/5  rDev +31.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a St. Arnolds Pint Glass.

Appearance: Dark golden with a straw colored head that dissipated quickly.

Smell: Dominated by ginger, very much like ginger ale soda with earthy malt tones underneath.

Taste: A moderate ginger taste supplemented by the characteristic Shiner earthy malt taste, with a tart aftertaste added by the grapefruit.

Mouthfeel: Nicely carbonated, not particularly distinctive.

Overall: This would be a great session beer for me. I love the taste, it's refreshing, and it's crisp. It would be nice if it had a bit more complexity but overall I enjoyed it very much.

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Photo of DuncanIdaho86
3.72/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This new seasonal from shiner cut the heat like A lightsaber. Even though most any frosty cold beer will cool you down on a hot summers day, The Ruby Rerbird did it with style.

I poured right into the pint glass, and though I was expecting a deep, sanguine red ale (on account of the name), I was surprised to see a hazy, rustic yellow ale. Either way it smelled fantastic, biting at my senses with that ginger aroma. Whooo-eee! If anything, the ginger kick dominates the grapefruit addition - but its still there. The fruity notes are undeniably there on the palette.

Good mouth feel, if not a little fizzy right? Better try a second to be absolutely sure.

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Photo of razordm
4.22/5  rDev +35.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is my favorite Shiner beer, but I also do like and drink grapefruit juice as well. Despite that fact, I was a bit apprehensive about "beer and grapefruit" but it was quite good. The amount and flavor of grapefruit was just right; not overbearing but enough to tell (without knowing the name) what fruit was included. Will definitely buy this again.

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Shiner Ruby Redbird from Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner
72 out of 100 based on 251 ratings.