Hummin' Bird - Red Oak Brewery

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Hummin' BirdHummin' Bird

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70 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 70
Reviews: 25
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 16.58%
Wants: 3
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Red Oak Brewery visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-04-2003

From the brewery: Hummin' Bird is a Light Lager or Hell (Helles) similar to those found throughout Bavaria. We use carefully selected Pilsner Malt...then it is delicately hopped with imported Tettnang Noble Hops. Then we add a proprietary lager yeast strain which is not filtered out providing ones daily supply of vitamin B. Hummin' Bird is slow-cold aged for over one month resulting in a lush mouth feel.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 70 | Reviews: 25
Reviews by TrickkyGangsta:
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.13/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance was a hazy orange color with nice fluffy head that disapeared rather quickly.Smell was a little buttery and fruity.Taste was buttery but was a little sour not overpoweringly so but kind of an annoyance.Nice body for a 96 calorie beer but there were a few things I didnt like about this one.

Photo of tdm168
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Village Draft House in Raleigh

Arrived a clear gold with no head. Nose picks up faint grains and nothing else. Taste is grainy with a mild hop bitterness. There's moderate carbonation, light bodied.

Overall this beer is a very mild and smooth lager. The flavor is balanced well and is quite refreshing. Not my favorite style, but I would definitely have this beer again on a hot summer day.

Photo of ordybill
4.47/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 OZ bottle into a pint glass.
Aroma- Grain and yeast aroma, light and refreshing
Appearance- Pours a slightly cloudy yellow. Has a small white head.
Taste- Has a very delicate grain and bread flavor that is very nice, if you are looking for a hop bomb this ain't it.
Palate- A light bodied beer with moderate carbonation.
Overall- A very nice example of a Munich Helles Lager. Red Oak has done a nice job.

Photo of etownhooligan
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is by far one of my favorite breweries here in North Carolina next to the Alewerks in Williamsburg. I enjoyed many of these fine beverages while waiting for my Sociology class to begin as well and many others at Guilford College. There is nothing like a Hummingbird on a nice summer afternoon in the Carolinas.

A: Pours neatly, slightly cloudy amber with orange accents with a quickly diminishing slight off white head.

S: Strong bready earthiness yet it is clean. Strong malt accents overpower the mellow hops of this brew.

T: Mellow and malty, hints of corn and cereal. The sweet aftertaste is one of my favorite things about this drink, it truly sends my taste buds in transport.

M: Medium bodied, yet not too heavy. Low carbonation and velvety mouth feel overall.

O: I enjoy this beer a lot and I have to be careful as I can drink quite a few of these. A good drink for the warmer days of summer, I highly recommend it.

Photo of Kegatron
3.18/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap @ Revolution Pizza (Charlotte, NC) on 9/4/09. Served in a pint glass.

Pours a clear pale gold, with a finger of foamy brite-white head. A thin & soft looking layer of retention leaves back a lightly foamy cascade of lacing, which quickly retreats down the sides of the glass. The aroma is lightly sweet grains and fruity citrus. A bit of grassy hops gives this a more airy feel in the nostrils, but I'm not getting a whole lot past the initial sweetness.

The taste is lightly toasted bread, with some citrus character adding in additional sweetness. Light bittering hops give this a bit of extra presence. Finishes with a slight smack of sweetness and that's about it. Pretty clean. The mouthfeel is light bodied, with a bit more of a sharpness to the carbonation than I would have expected. Probably gives this a bit more oompth in the mouth than what is actually there. Pretty easy drinking overall.

Pretty decent little Light Lager here. The flavors aren't very memorable but aren't exactly offensive or anything either. Crisp, yet smooth, this wasn't so bad paired with the pizza that we had with it.

Photo of jsausley
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Let me start off by saying that this is definitely my least favorite beer from Red Oak. Probably because it's the lightest, least flavorful beer from Red Oak. But that's not a bad thing - overall I would say that I am a massive fan of Red Oak's lagers, and having been a visitor to their lovely brewery more than a handful of times. Every other beer on their list ranges from "Mmm" to "Holy @#*&" on my completely scientific rating scale.

Red Oak has always been a staple for me locally. In fact I'm very glad that I have Red Oak beers available on tap at almost all of my local haunts. My review of the Big Oak beer sings its praises and Red Oak Amber Lager is still one of my absolute favorite go-to beers to pair with a good meal. Many pitchers of it were had during my college days.

I digress. Red Oak Humminbird. They claim it is a Munich Style Helles Lager. Which it must be, who am I to decide?

This beer was poured from a bottle into a beautiful KC Pils glass from Boulevard Brewery, Kansas City, MO.

A: Best part of this beer is its lovely appearance. It pours a nice smooth and consistent clear-gold. Plentiful bubbles eagerly rise from its depths. The head is a nice froth, forming 1-2 inches when poured properly, but dissipates quickly and leaves no lacing. One of my favorite things about a nice lager is that you can look at it from above and see the bubbles popping up from underneath the surface, and I have to say that Humminbird is probably the most active beer among Red Oak's offerings for this nice little feature.

S: Extremely light and crisp. No alcohol traces. Some hops and some light malt, but overall an airy and light aroma. Some citrus fruitiness as expected.

T: A sweet and buttery mix of hops, malt and lemon notes. Not a bad beer by any stretch but void of any strong or characteristic flavors.

M: A predictably smooth unfiltered loveliness with a crisp bite and significant carbonation. Wonderfully easy to drink, as an offset to its fairly average flavor.

O: I'll be frank. I don't order this at dinner. I've had it a few times, didn't really care for it enough to pick it again, and mostly decided to buy another bottle for the review. Honestly, I can't see why they bother when Red Oak Amber, Big Oak, Battlefield and Old Oak are so wonderfully amazing lagers. I suppose they need a light and frisky beer for the wives to drink on the tour.

Photo of Bung
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Draft at Revolution Pizza. A solid gold pour. Minimal white head, but good carbonation throughout. Grassy, light malt, hints of fruit like pear. Taste is very inoffensive, suble malt and citrus, very small amount of biscuit. More hops than the aroma would lead to. Could drink a ton of these, a good alternative to a big macro.

Photo of dbrauneis
3.67/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Served on-tap at First Street Draught House in Winston-Salem, NC

A: Pours a very lightly orangish amber in color with moderate amounts of active visible carbonation and some brassy + golden yellow highlights. The beer has a half finger tall foamy off-white head that slowly reduces to a medium sized patch of mottled thin film and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of toasted grainy malts with light aromas of earthy and grassy hops.

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of toasted grainy malts with just a hint of sweetness followed by some light flavors of earthy and grassy hops. Light amounts of bitterness are present but fade pretty quickly.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: Not the greatest beer that I have tried but definitely a solid "light" offering from Red Oak and one I would definitely try again. Easy to drink.

Photo of VaterRoss
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at the brewery

Appearance is a hazy (unfiltered) straw yellow with a white head that recedes to a ring. Smell is malty with a light funk (approaching skunk) and some lemony citrus tones. Taste sadly features the funk first, followed by some nice Munich light malt and some lager yeast cleanness. Some sourness as well which is unusual for the style. Mouthfeel is medium-light, fairly high carb featuring a high drinkability.

In the past this has been my favorite beer by Red Oak, not sure what was going on this time but there was some definite funk in the taste and smell that I do not recall from previous samplings (I plan to re-review this one). The funk is especially odd as this tasting was in the brewery itself, this is troublesome to say the least. This is a good American Helles that doesn't quite match up to its German counterparts. If only the funk wasn't there.

from notes 1/20/12

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a weisse vase, the beer is a bright, golden coloring, with a steady flow of carbonation and a fluffy, light, white head. Aromas of toasted grains, subtle hops bitters, and subtle floral notes. Tangy and slightly bitter overall. The flavors are toasted and sweet forward, with a subtle buttered toast vibe overall. Floral highlights, with a bitter tail end to clean the palate. Very light and crisp in mouth, with a very subtle toasted aftertaste. The finish is crisp and effervesced. Light, tasty, refreshing brew!

Photo of bradenh
3.59/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A- slightly orange, amber, yellowish color with a thin white head.

S- bready, slightly malty, earthiness, but I don't get much hops

T- upfront is very bready, earthy, and malty. Finishes with a nice balanced taste, almost get some zesty notes in the finish. Would pair well with a burger or pizza.

MF- moderate to high carbonation, fizzy bubbly tingle lingers for several seconds, light body, easy drinking.

O- It's a great go-to beer when you just want to drink something easy with friends or with a meal.

Photo of sinistrsam
3.42/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Medium copper-orange body and medium white head. Mediocre aroma of fruits(sweet and sour) and malts, some alcohol. The taste was malts and some yeasts, a little sour but nothing complex. Good mouthfeel. Full bodied, crsip and clean with a smooth aftertaste. Quite drinkable and a good first impression from this brewery.

Photo of TheKingofWichita
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another great beer from Red Oak. Had it on tap at a bar in Charlotte. Pours a clear golden color with a nice thick white head. Smells a nice hop aroma and of fresh cut barley. Tastes great, good hop nose with tasty bitterness. Great medium body mouthfeel. Very drinkable.

Photo of twage04
3.49/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Tastes kinda like urine smells, even by pilsner standards. Hop presence isn't obvious, kinda high carbonation. Nothing really memorable here, several other local pilsner are more remarkable.

Photo of Durge
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This brew is a somewhat cloudy pale gold/yellow lager with a modest white head and a decent coating of fine lace. The aroma is very light rice cereal with a hint of malt. The taste is a fairly crisp and refreshing copy of the aroma. It's not bad, granny apple highlights with some grape and rye bread. Decent feel for a relatively light brew. Pretty drinkable but I probably wouldn't want to go too crazy on this taste. It's OK though.

Photo of cbros
2.75/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Serving type- On tap at Sweet Basil Restuarant

Appearance- poured a light straw yellow with medium head that dwindled down to a white lace.

Smell- Little hints on hops but besides that there were no scents of anything else.

Taste- A mellow and light hoppy taste was followed by a little hint of aftertaste. I could not really taste any keys ingredients in my glass. For me it was flat and tasteless.

I had never tried one before and originally thought that maybe my beer was the end of the keg. However I was mistaken, needless to say that this was not a great beer drinking experience. I would have liked to support a local brew but unfortunately this left me wanting more. Its too bad too because their flagship beer was one of the first 'craft' brews I had ever tasted and enjoyed drinking that. I would still like to try their other selections, so even though this was not a favorite it has not detoured me from getting another Red Oak again.

Photo of cottonkoozie
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours a slightly cloudy yellow with an amber hue. Very little head and little retention of what there is. Carbonation looks about right, not over or under. Would have rated higher with more head though.

S - Biscuit up front. The yeast really come through. Grassy hops notes. Clean grains.

T - Bready yeast and clean grains flavors dominate. Very little hops. Also some sweet fruity notes. Not bad, but a little too sweet for me.

M - Very good, I think one of the benefits of not filtering their product comes through here.

O - Overall a good beer. Nothing that really blows be away about it, but it is not bad and would be excellent when in the mood for a quality light style beer on a hot day. My only real complaint is that it is a little too sweet for me.

Photo of habitual_calculus
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A pretty solid lager for my newbie palate. Very clean-tasting, simple, but very good. Best tasted after taking the Friday 3pm tour.

Appearance: Light golden brown, slightly lighter than it's brother, Red Oak Lager. A little cloudy but clean (and it is an unfiltered lager).

Smell: The smell was simple but inviting, smell's of malt.

Taste: Simple and refreshing. Really tastes of malted barley, obviously, but I really felt like Red Oak's adherence to the the beer purity law shines through in their simple product. That being said, the lager style is not my favorite and Hummin' Bird was good but not fantastic.

Mouthfeel: Very good, after-mouthfeel a little sour perhaps

Overall: Pretty solid, a little something different. Would never turn one down.

Photo of Onenote81
3.97/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at the First St. Draught House here in town. Came out a very pale bright yellow with about a quarter inch head resting on top. This did not stick around at all. Left some spotty lacing. Smells like corn, some malt, veggies.

Really mellow flavor here. Corn is the biggest flavor I can get out of this. Backed up by some malty sweetness. No real bitterness to this at all. Nice and crisp with a medium amount of carbonation. I could drink alot of these. Not the best beer by Red Oak, but I'd get it again.

Photo of xmorgan
5/5  rDev +35.9%

Had this t Flying Saucer in Raliegh.
YUMM! This delicate Helles captured the taste and spirit of Helles style beers.
I love all beer styles and super hoppy beers are soo wonderful, but so are some styles!
This beer is filtered and is golden with bright foam and awesome lacing
Nice floral and delicate aroma
With that subtle straw taste that is erffervesant and so nice

Photo of soupermirl
4.13/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A friend brought this back from the brewery, it was a couple of days old and delicious. YUM. The color was very good, kinda looked like an IPA in the growler.

Appearance - A light shade of orangeish IPAish but light color, nice color.

smell - Nice, just like it tastes.

taste - Good. Good. Herbal, helle-ish.

mouth - aftertaste of goodness, just right for a helles bock

Drink - easy... yummy.

Photo of rclangk
3.35/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

A crisp and clear brew that's full of flavor.

Photo of atsprings
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Falls Tap Room, wow, I'm the first person to review this beer in over 2 years, was intrigued to try the beer that the Red Oak trucks proclaimed to be "America's Best Lager," (Victory Prima Pils, Sam Adams Double Bock, Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold just to name a few.) Served a hazy pale orange with a thin head that lasted as a ring. Aroma was some sweet fruits with a hint of yeast. The taste was much better than expected, granted I wasn't expecting much. A decent amount of sweet fruit and even a hint of clove. The beer was light with a nice crispness and just the right level of carbonation. While this is not a style I'd seek out that often, this is one I'd choose on tap again if not much better is available.

Photo of LittleDon
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass at Harrison's in Cary, NC. Golden, clear and no signs of carbonation. It is poured with no head. Grainy aroma with a bit of sweetness. Medium bodied. Not as hopped as typical German lagers (and consistent with the style). Slightly sweet backend. Very clean with a medium mouthfeel.

Photo of MrMeerbill
5/5  rDev +35.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The holy grail of lagers absolutely the best

Hummin' Bird from Red Oak Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 70 ratings.