Hot Rod Red - Aviator Brewing Company

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Hot Rod RedHot Rod Red

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very good

41 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 41
Hads: 158
Avg: 3.76
pDev: 14.63%
Wants: 5
Gots: 12 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Aviator Brewing Company visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
Irish Red Ale |  6.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Loki on 12-04-2008

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 41 | Hads: 158
Photo of blackie
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

draft at Chow, Raleigh

a: draft served in a 20 oz nonic pint, the beer is a deep reddish amber in color, arriving with a healthy topping of eggshell white head, retention and lacing average

s: grainy breads and nutty toasted malts on a nose of mid-sweet caramel, nice roast, earthy hops, enjoying the complexity and deep toasted notes here

m: carbonated to about a moderate level, body around medium

t: bready with a caramel sweetness upfront, followed quickly with deeply toasted red malts, and then nutty toast continuing into the finish as things try out, earthy hop flavors with a balanced bitterness

o: a well above average red here, the deep toasted character courtesy of the roasted malt adds a great underlying complexity to the sweet caramel, pleasantly interesting for the style, drinks well

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Photo of a0lbudman
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-clear light brown with an off white head
S-hoppy, roast aroma,yet has some sweet grain and malty sweetness
T- roast taste with a good hop bitterness in the aftertaste
M-medium body and medium carbonation
O-Great Irish red!! Has a good hop flavor and outstanding mix of malt, hops, and grain.

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Photo of I3eck
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can -> Wine Glass

A: 3/4" khaki head, slight haze, cranberry juice red with a slight brown toasted hue, stumpy and spotty lacing.
S: Chocolate, cherry, toasty malts, slight hop undertones, candy apple.
T: Toasted/smoky malts, chocolate, coffee, cherry/cranberry, lingering bitterness.
M: Medium to full bodied, good CO2, bit of alcohol warmth which is appreciated, bitterness wraps around the tongue and hangs out in a good way.
O: Didn't know what to expect from this beer but I am impressed. Most Irish reds I've had have been poor attempts and can't even touch this beer on a complexity level. This beer packs a lot of flavor, aroma, and alcohol and delivers it in a nice little aluminum package for you. Well done.

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Photo of Durge
3.98/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A dark, copper colored brew with a healthy off-white head and major walls of lacing. The aroma brings sour mash malt, a little pine hop and fruit nougat and a touch of grassy yeast alcohol. The flavor closes the deal with deep grassy malt cider. There's a vague floral edge, slightly perfumey vegetable ideas. It has some bock-like qualities. A little skunky. A very solid red ale, easily recommended with medium body and a dry feel, smooth and modestly carbonated. Nice!

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Photo of tone77
3.94/5  rDev +4.8%

Poured from a 12 oz. can. And yes, you guessed it. That can reached my hand by way of the legendary woodychandler. Has a pretty deep amber color with a 1 inch head. Smell is malty, caramel. Taste is also malty, hops are present, caramel, very refreshing and smooth. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall a very easy drinking beer that I could consume all night.

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Photo of mactrail
3.89/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This is really quite interesting. A surprisingly different flavor-- and plenty of it-- in an Irish Red. The taste is something I have not encountered for a long time, one I describe as "musty," but in a good way. It's woody and fragrant, like cedar, but has a mushroom sort of taste along with the earthy hops.

Reddish amber in the Duvel tulip with a modest but persistent foam. Plenty of hoppy flavors give this a bitter middle that intensifies in the aftertaste. The nutty, roasted flavors are what give it some zest. I score this highly because it's a superior example of a really dull category of beer. From the 12 oz can purchased at Whole Foods in Washington, DC.

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Photo of daliandragon
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a bomber from Aviator, just a few minutes down the road in Fuquay. Pours darker than most in the style, with a brown top and orange feet. head is eggshell colored and has copious lace but doesn't last long. Nose is floral hops over a foundation of caramel and toasted malts.

Strong malt flavors, with caramel and toasted morphing into coffee and baker' s chocolate before long. Hops are window dressing at first but shine on nicely in the aftertaste. The combination of English and west coast hops makes this unique.

Certainly not standard among the Irish Reds I have sampled in the past but definitely tasty and interesting.

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Photo of mechamifune
3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Have had this beer many times and have experienced a lot of variation with it. This review reflects the most common experience I have had with it.

Pours a nice red/amber with a heavy creamy head.
Hops are evident in the smell, more so than most "irish reds" (though i think that categorization is often misused). Smeetness is also evident, but not heavy.

Taste is pleasant, a slight but far from overwhelming hoppiness with a obvious malt backbobe. More hoppy than most in this style, and for me thats a welcome change.

Mouthfeel is a little thicker and heavier than I would like, but again I think it is probably about right for the style.

As a result the drinkability is good but not great. A decent enough session-style beer and a good take on one of my less than favorite styles.

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Photo of Mojo
3.82/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This is review number 400 <w00t!!>

12 ounce can poured into a New Belgium globe glass

A - Wow, as soon as I popped the top foam began to ooze of out the can. I wonder if my son shook it up and put it back in the fridge because he is just weird that way. The color is a nice apricot red and there is a towering frothy light tan colored head that just lasts and lasts. It took me five minutes to finally get all the beer poured into my glass. Retention and lacing are legendary. I'm giving this a 2.75 though because I don't like to wait ten minutes before being able to take my first sip.

S - The smell is sort of weak to my nose. Maybe a little grainy with a slight alcohol note.

T - This beer had a very sweet malty flavor with a dry finish. Maybe some roasted flavors there too. There is a bit of a punch to the flavor that was somewhat unexpected.

M - sort of thin, but lots of carbonation.

O - refreshing enough, but I did not dig the foam geyser.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.76/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured on-tap at the Tap House and served in a shaker pint, the beer is a caramel brown coloring, with a thin, sparse, filmy white coating of head. Nose of roasted nut, caramel, and toffee. Very rich aromas on the nose. Flavors are rich and roasted caramel forward, with a subtle resinous hopped backbone. Chocolate notes into the aftertaste to join the toffee, caramel, and nut, with a building bitterness to balance. Rich, smooth bodied, with a sweet linger into a smooth finish. Good beer.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.74/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a crystal clear medium garnet red in color with light amounts of visible carbonation and some dark amber highlights. The beer has a finger tall creamy light beige head that slowly reduces to a mottled surface of thin film with a thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of toasted malts with light amounts of caramel sweetness and slightly stronger aromas of pine hops. There is a touch of citrus/orange rind hops as well once the beer warms up a little.

T: Upfront there are light to moderate flavors of toasted malts with some caramel, toffee, and brown sugar sweetness - but not overly sweet. That is followed by slightly stronger than moderate flavors of pine/resin and citrus/orange rind hops. Moderate amounts of bitterness which do not linger for too long.

M: Medium bodied with slightly more than moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: Overall this is an enjoyable beer and it hides the ABV pretty well, I enjoyed the hoppiness but still found it relatively easy to drink. Nothing exceptional but a better American offering in the Irish Red Ale style than I normally come across.

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Photo of Pencible
3.73/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: This poured a clear dark mahogany with chunky sediment.
S: It smelled like dry roasted barley with a little earthy copper hops.
T: It tasted like earthy copper and nutty malt, with a little roasted barley. It had a clean dry and somewhat bitter aftertaste.
M: It was somewhat thick with some carbonation. Decent body.
D: This was a decent Irish red ale. Nothing exciting, but very traditional scent and taste and body. It had a clean and mellow finish, so it was really easy to drink. Not bad to try once, but I prefer something more interesting.

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Photo of Cylinsier
3.7/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


Pours a clear copper color with a bit of white lacing.

Bit of toastiness in the nose with maybe some maple sweetness and also hops aromas.

Mild grain taste, somewhat toasted, and a touch of hop bitterness.

Moderate to fuller mouth with a good tingly carbonation.

Solid Irish ale with good flavors and presentation. Not quite anything special, but worth a try and gets the job done.

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Photo of SIRIUS2
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at the Aviator Tap House in Fuquay Varina, NC.

Brought to me in a standard pint glass. Deep orange to red in color, very light head that quickly reduced to a thin layer of bubbles and a heavy ring around the glass. Very light lacing.

Aromas are relatively light. There is some moderate to light malts that mix with herbal grassy hops. Nothing here is overpowering or strong, but rather well matched and balanced.

Flavors of modest malts and light earthy hops are quite well balanced. Slightly heavier mouthfeel than I would have expected and somewhat muted grassy hop notes make this a most enjoyable brew. Finish is more dry than not, and is relatively clean. Linger is short and slightly hoppy.

Nice flavors for an Irish Red, with hints of "English" hops and malts. This really strikes me as something that might be had at an English inn rather than an Irish pub. Just the same it's solid and clean. Nice brew!

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Photo of LXIXME
3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Big light tan head settles into a nice lacing above a clearish caramel bronze colored beer.

Rich roasted caramel malt presence in the aroma with just a hint of some hops sticking around the edges.

Roasted caramel malts tastes that seem to almost border on burnt roasted, with also a bit of slight bitterness from its hops sources.

A light dryish roasted caramels hanging around aftertaste on the medium bodied Irish Red.

A decent tasting beer, maybe a little much on the hints of burnt malts but I like how the dryish aftertaste keeps building long after each drink.

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Photo of avalon07
3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a clear consistency. There was an inch of foamy, fairly long-lasting head. Good lacing.

S: A good amount of hops and a very noticeable caramel presence in the aroma.

T: Tasted of hops, malt, a little citrus and some caramel in the finish. Not quite as dynamic as I would have liked, but an OK flavor.

M: A well-carbonated beer with a dry, earthy finish. Medium-bodied.

O: Not too bad of a beer, but doesn't particularly separate itself from the herd.

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Photo of KYGunner
3.65/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Obvious amber color was soft and clean. The head rose thickly and mounted strongly for a minute or two but disappated to a fine lace.

A weak scent but it's an aromatic scent. Kilned grain, barley, pecan or nut, and a chocolatey maltiness are all subtle but I like it.

The flavors are unfortunately stale, it tastes good but gives off a tainted grain taste. Slight smokiness and roastiness offset a grain, barley and nuttiness. I'm longing for a robust, deep and textured roasted grain and it's there but simply not evident enough to proclaim.

The feel is smooth, lightly carbonated and a bit thick but well presented for a canned beer.

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Photo of zeledonia
3.62/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.75

Tasted 6 April 2013.

Pours a deep, rusty orangeish red. Mostly clear, letting a lot of light through it. I can see the bubbles on the far side, but it's not like looking through glass. One finger of off-white head, decent retention and nice lacing. A solid ring of bubbles and half-cap on the surface.

Smell is really toasted, like a marzen. The most obvious thing I get in the nose is those biscuity toasted malts. It's not bad, but there's not a whole lot to it. Can says it's supposed to be hoppy; it is not. There's a faint herbal nudge in the back, but that's it.

Taste is more interesting. Has more of the Scotch ale twang. Earthy, not exactly peaty, but the mildly bitter black earth or black tea flavor that I get from a lot of Scotch ales. Also has an interesting honey-like sweetness, right in the middle, that fades out. There's a little bit of unpleasant bitterness that I'd like to wash away, and slants more towards that in the finish, but mostly I like it.

Feel is pretty flat. Ends up feeling like uncarbonated soda. Lasting, too. Flat to lightly syrupy/oily to watery.

Interesting beer. I like the taste, where that earth/tea flavor really shines, and the sweetness adds a lot of complexity to it.

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Photo of Dave1999
3.61/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark red colour with a white head.

The smell is soapy, with some sweet malts. The soapy smell is a bit weird.

The taste is very nutty with some sweet malts. Simple but very tasty.

The mouthfeel is light with medium carbonation.

This a simple yet tasty beer. The smell was a bit off but didn't detract from the overall beer too much.

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Photo of oberon
3.58/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Speakeasy in Carrboro.Poured into a standard pint a deep amber/bronze with tight one finger slight off white head that held well.Caramel toffee and brown sugar sweetness in the nose,lighter burnt toast aromas as well,the hops provide some herbal notes.Starts out with caramel malts and brown sugar with hops melding into the beer adding leafy,and herbal hops.A more hopped up red but not as big as alot of American reds.

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Photo of tdm168
3.58/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber with a half inch of head with great retention. Smells of caramel malts and mild hop notes. Taste is burnt, roasted malts with mild, piny hop character. Mouthfeel is crisp with medium carbonation.

Not a bad Irish Red. Definitely more flavor than you're average mass produced Irish Red.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.58/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer pours a copper color with a couple fingers of off-white head and a high level of carbonation

S: Smells of toffee and toasted bread with a bit of piney hops. Not much citrus to it, but a little bit of floral and earthy notes. Pretty simple aroma to the beer, but not bad.

T: Toasted bread is the dominant flavor. There is some toffee and a little bit of caramel sweetness to it which is nice. Subtle bitterness with a light hop flavor.

M: Medium in body with a moderate to high carbonation.

O: Overall a decent red, but I don't know if I'd come back to this one.

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Photo of bosox941827
3.53/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap at Tyler's TapRoom in Apex into 16oz logo pint glass that I wanted to take with me (but didn't!). First try of an Aviator beer, which is my bad as they're just down the road...
A - Nice, welcoming reddish-amber color
S - Mostly caramel malts but a bit of hops as well
T - Gotta say up front, I'm not a fan of "red" beers, as they've always had somewhat of an "off" flavor to me that I can't place, however wanted to try an Aviator, so gave it a whirl....and actually, as red ales go, this has got to be one of the better ones I've tried. Has MUCH more of a hop presence than am used to from this style, which is fine with me. Kind of has an English Pale Ale type hop flavor for me. Can still sense that "off" flavor which I mention above, but it's hidden by the hops and bit of alcohol. That being said, sweet malts predominate here, with the hops finishing things off.
M - Properly carbonated with a nice smooth mouthfeel.
D - Could session this, especially with the hops balancing things out.

Overall probably the best red ale I've had, which, granted, doesn't say too much. But I liked this beer, would order it again, and it gets me excited to try more from Aviator. So, mission accomplished!

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Photo of beer2day
3.46/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bright red pour with 1-finger of light tan head. Very little retention. Laces very nicely.

Faint, sweet malt nose. Not much to go on.

Sweet hit on the tongue. Turns very sweet in the aftertaste, like big red licorice. Surprisingly dry and hoppy in the finish.

Decent malt body.

Easy drinker and hides it's slightly higher than average abv well.

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Photo of SaCkErZ9
3.45/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served on draft at the FV draft house. Pours reddish ruddy brown color. Small wispy off white head. Good dose of lacing. Sweet up front with some caramel maltiness and bready backbone. Not much different than the Steamhead. Biscuity and bready with some yeast flavors kicking in as well. More of the chocolate malitness. Not too shabby. Tastes close to a brown ale/amber ale hybrid. Plenty of bread.

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Hot Rod Red from Aviator Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 41 ratings.