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Red Nectar - Humboldt Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Red NectarRed Nectar

Educational use only; do not reuse.

257 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 257
Hads: 565
Avg: 3.65
pDev: 20%
Wants: 11
Gots: 36 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Humboldt Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-25-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (6) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 257 | Hads: 565
Photo of Nehal
3.14/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

This ale has not a very strong smell. It has a root beer kind of malty taste with bitterness. Not a very strong nose. it feels soapy and does not have a big head. It is not a bad ale but not a great one too. If you like a less flavorful lighter ale with the bitterness go for it.

Probably will go with less spicy appetizers.

 327 characters

Photo of krimsontide1
2.41/5  rDev -34%
look: 5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

Just not my kinda brew. The hop flavor is very "cascade-y". It over powers the smell and flavor. Nothing much beyond that smell and flavor profile. It tastes like one of my not so great home brews. Not an enjoyable drink for me.

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Photo of ZBowden
3.4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours Amber with big beige head, smells of malts piney spivey hops slight lavender, tastes of sharp malts and hops with lavender/soapy taste, creamy mouthfeel dry lasting finish.

 178 characters

Photo of McAfee85
2.58/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Unfiltered, copper color with little lacing. Very faint to no aroma with a flat taste. Maybe I just got a bad batch but based on this beer there are much better choices in this style.

 185 characters

Photo of dorianmarley
3.98/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance is a very nice head that fades with pretty lacing. It is more brown amber than red.

Nose is spiced and musty, with day old bread and cardamom and wet malt.

Taste is big malt with lemon peel and citrus hops and sourdough bread.

Mouthfeel is semi-dry with a lot of biscuit character. Medium carbonation. Very drinkable.

Overall, this would be a great session for a long ball game.

 396 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.05/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle with a July 2014 date stamp.
Poured deep reddish amber topped by a fine bone-colored head that leaves some webby lacing on the glass.

Aroma: Dank, earth English hops with some biscuit in the background.

Flavor: hop forward for style, Mildly bitter.

Feel: both crisp and smooth.

 297 characters

Photo of hophugger
3.27/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a deep orange-amber, good head and minor lacing, if any. Aroma is very mild, sweet, like honey with maybe a hint of hops. The carbonation on this beer is a good amount but it stops right before being too much, nice!. Taste is somewhat balanced with hints of honey malt, hops and a little citrus. Mouthfeel is awesome, bubbly and goes down rapidly, lol. Overall, a well done beer..

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Photo of zookerman182
3.78/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance is a red orange color with a half finger head.
Aroma is citrus, cleaning solution, floral.
Taste is heavy floral and citrus but immitation flavors. No malt. Some mild spices.
Mouthfeel is medium and it finishes clean.
Overall its a mildly refreshing beer. Some annoying flavors.

 290 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.78/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

In true Californian style, the brewers behind the Nectar Ales brands aren't content on allowing the common acceptance of what amber ale are prescribed to be; no longer the sweeter brethren of American pale ale, but a drier, crisper and toastier session that lets the hops shine on!

Red Nectar's aesthetics are nearly rusty rudish-brown with that classic dry-hopped haze. Its creamy froth unleashes an array of earthen bouquet. Toasty, nutty and kettle caramelized malt links up with herbal fresh-hung tobacco and a dried apricot ester character. Its taste mimics that of the nose, but much less sweet than anticipated.

Over the middle, the caramelized malts continue to trail as the hops pull forth. Its shadow of roasted peanuts, medium toast and crusted bread carries the slimmest balance of beautifully burnt sugar. So much as to promote an undertow of blackberry jam with those esters dancing about the periphery of taste.

Its finish comes quick as its medium-dry and creamy body turns absolute dry with urgency. The acrid nature of toast amplifies its dryness and props up those sharp, grapefruity hop bitternesses that extend in aftertaste.

Its easy to see why this American amber ale has garnered accolades in recent Great American Beer Festival competitions.

 1,270 characters

Photo of Fatehunter
3.86/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours two fingers of head on a clear dark straw colored body.
The aroma is rich caramel and malt. Nice.
The taste is lots of caramel sweetness balanced out by mild lemon bitterness. Good profile.
The texture is smooth with lower carbonation.
Excellent balance and drinkability.

 277 characters

Photo of JuicesFlowing
2.66/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Poured into a shaker pint glass.

Look: Ruby copper body. Cream colored head, little retention. Little or no lacing.

Aroma: Sweet caramel, wet cardboard, sweet corn.

Taste: Sweet malts and a caramel candy presence at first. A tangy, woody finish, faint hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, really dry.

Overall: I just did not dig this brew that much. The caramel sweetness was good, but what came directly after that was hard to pin down on the palate.

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Photo of mrfrancis
3.59/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clear, ruddy amber with a puffy, thick khaki head.

S: Aromas of lemon, lime, bitter orange, minerals, biscuit, caramel, toffee, roasted nuts, and dark bread are present on the nose.

T: Hoppy notes of herbs, lemon, lime, bitter orange, and pine are present on the entry, but are joined by fleeting notes of dark bread, biscuits, caramel, toffee, and roasted nuts around mid-palate. The finish better showcases the beer's maltier aspects as notes of caramel, toffee, and roasted nuts are underscored by mildly herbal, citrusy hop notes.

M: Medium-bodied and dry for the style. Carbonation is very firm and active. All in all, this is a bit overcarbonated for my tastes.

O: Not a bad amber/red ale, but also not exceptional either. It is exactly what I would expect from a West Coast brewery tackling the style. Try it if you are a fan of hoppy, turbulent amber ales and are willing to overlook the fact that it is a bit two-dimensional.

 949 characters

Photo of metter98
3.67/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is relatively clear reddish amber in color and has a light amount of carbonation along with some fine particulates visible floating in suspension. It poured with a finger high beige colored head that died down, leaving a thick collar around the edge and lacing on the surface and down the sides of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of caramel and toasted malts are present in the nose along with hints of floral hops.
T: The taste mostly follows the smell and has a light to moderate amount of bitterness along with additional notes of spicy hops.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The taste of this beer has a very nice balance between the malts and hops.

 715 characters

Photo of beatenbyjacks
3.36/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance - Nice amber red color that pours a nice full head of foam

Smell - Oaty maltiness comes across all over this one. Smells like a brewhouse on brew day.

Taste - Get a slight hoppy flavor in the front that leaves quickly to a malty end.

Mounthfeel - Very easy to drink, but kind of flat

overall - Nice sessionable beer, but nothing spectacular

 355 characters

Photo of BeerWithMike
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled last night on 1/16/14. Bottle chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured into a pilsner glass.

Pours a pretty amber in color with a very thin off white head. Some spotty lacing was seen with each sip. The aroma is of toffee, caramel, orange zest and grassy grains. The taste actually has even more going on and is more complex than the aroma. Has a slight bitter aftertaste but didn't linger to long unlike some red ales. Medium carbonation.

 465 characters

Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled on 6/12/2013. Pours slightly cloudy orange copper color with a 1 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of caramel, toast, toffee, grapefruit, orange zest, brown sugar, biscuit, floral, grass, light nuttiness, and toasted earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance of malt and hop notes; with solid strength. Taste of caramel, toast, toffee, biscuit, grapefruit, orange zest, brown sugar, floral, grass, light pine, light nuttiness, and floral/toasted earthiness. Light pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, toast, toffee, brown sugar, citrus, biscuit, floral, and light nuttiness on the finish for a good bit. Nice balance and robustness of malt and hop flavors; with a very balanced hop/malt flavor profile and no cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body with a lightly creamy and smooth mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a nice amber ale. Good balance and robustness of malt and hop flavors; and very smooth to drink. A nicely enjoyable offering.

 1,231 characters

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.49/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours out a clear, pure amber color with an off-white finger width head. Fair retention, resulting in a broken layer of suds across the surface. Lacing is small and spotty, with little stick.

Smell - Aroma is a nice mix of caramel, fruity esters and some floral hoppiness.

Taste - Starts with earthy and floral notes, backed by a moderate caramel backbone. Honey sweetness. Hops turn grassy and bitter in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium in body with moderate carbonation. Goes down easy enough, then a semi-dry finish.

Overall - Eh, it's okay. The flavor is a bit too sweet at times, then too grassy/waxy in bitterness for my liking. Decent, but probably not something I'd buy again.

 713 characters

Photo of Bookseeb
3.34/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance has a ruby red color supporting a fair head that slowly dissispates leaving spotty lace. Smell has a nice balance between sweet caramel malt and the floral hop aroma. Taste faulters a bit from the aroma in not having that full flavor balance. Mouthfeel is lighter than medium with good carbonation.

 309 characters

Photo of RonaldTheriot
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Red Nectar has a thick, foamy, off-white head, a mostly clear, brown-red appearance, with lots of streaming bubbles and some thin lacing left behind. The aroma is of sweet, rich, slightly tannic malt and a touch of a hop zing. Taste is of a bit of a citrus aspect, tannin, medium-roasted barley, sweetness, bread crust, and a mild bitterness. Mouthfeel is light to medium and lager like, and Necatar Ale Red Ale finishes mostly dry, refreshing, and easy drinking. Overall, this is a really nice beer, and I score it most excellent.


 537 characters

Photo of WyNG
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I poured the chilled bottle into a pint glass. It has a dark copper color, with a good head of fine bubbles that turned into a nice lacing. This beer was very well balanced. It was malty with some smooth caramel flavors, but it was not sweet. It had a good piney hop presence for a red ale which I really appreciated. This was a nice beer.

 339 characters

Photo of barczar
3.6/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a brilliant amber with a foamy one inch khaki head that dissipates somewhat quickly, leaving minimal lacing.

Amber and caramel malt abound in the aroma, with woody notes and floral and herbal hops adding complexity. There's a hint of citrus.

Toasted, woody malt, with hints of caramel and oats accompanies muted citrus undertones in the flavor. The finish is decidedly dry and lightly bitter, with a hint of roast. Perfumey, floral notes emerge.

Body is moderate, with moderate carbonation and a hint of alcohol warmth.

Balance is definitely toward the malt side, though the hops prevent the malt sweetness from becoming cloying. Very drinkable, but not spectacular. A touch more bitter than I prefer.

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Photo of Brenden
3.44/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer has a nice, bright dark orange-red body with a light head that's both fluffy and creamy and leaves pretty good lace behind.
The smell is good, with some blend of fruits mingling with caramel. It's lightly sweet with an herbal counterpoint to the malts. While leaning malt-heavy, the hops balance this beer well, at least in the aroma.
The taste goes weird, though. It's got mostly an odd burnt cereal grains taste with a lingering sourness. Other sweeter elements are pushed aside but still come out. I have to wonder what happened. At least the bad off-flavors don't dominate, and some of the goodness makes its way in. It's a strange transition from smell to taste, though.
The feel is crisp with some smoothness in a medium body with a little overzealous bite of spritz.

 783 characters

Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
3.67/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into becker pint glass; dark orange and clear with a huge fluffy off-white hide that fades slowly leaving tons of lacing. Smell is light floral hops, slightly metallic and bready caramel malts. Taste is spot on the smell; clean, crisp crackery malts with just a slight twang of hop bitterness to finish it off. I generally like amber/red ales that are a bit hoppier, but this one is tasty and drinkable.

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Photo of schoolboy
3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Overall, I am probably a little harsher on this style than others because it is not my favorite, but a nice red can be refreshing. This one is pretty complex and interesting.

It pours dark with a little head. The aroma is a rich nose full that reflects the chewy mouthful that the taste will be.

It sits nicely in the mouth with a nice mix of malts and hops. The balance is good. There is a slight off taste and aftertaste that could be attributed to sitting a long time on the shelf, but I think it is fresh, it just tastes that way.

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Photo of jkrich
3.99/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured a beautiful, clear garnet red with some brown highlights. The foamy off-white head quickly receded with minimal lacing.
The sweet malt aroma competed with a resinous, piney aroma with the malt eventually prevailing after the pour into a pint glass.
As the aroma indicates, this is a balanced and refreshing amber with a somewhat malt forward flavor. The flavor begins with a faintly syrupy (though not cloying) taste that is quickly countered by some faint hop bitterness. The ale has some hints of molasses and caramel but somehow remains light and thirst-quenching.
The ale has a light to medium body with a somewhat thick mouth feel from the malt profile. The zesty carbonation keeps it lively.
Open opening the bottle and smelling the piney aroma wafting upward, I assumed this would be a hop dominated amber. In fact, it is a mild yet flavorful ale this is very quaffable. I am glad to see this is available in southern Indiana.

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Red Nectar from Humboldt Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 257 ratings.