Hitachino Nest Japanese Classic Ale - Kiuchi Brewery
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Ratings: 371 | Reviews: 236 | Display Reviews Only:
3.88/5 rDev +2.1%
Source/Serving: 330mL bottle
Smell: Fresh apple, caramel, citrus, ripe fruit, a hint of cedar, and a little flowery.
Taste: A sweet, slightly cidery and juicy opening quickly crashes into very dry, slightly bitter cedar with significant pepper notes. The middle has notes of cedar, pepper, and apple skin with honey and bready grains. Mouthfeel is medium bodied. Finish is dry, peppery, and woody and is pleasantly bitter.
Notes: Very interesting and unique flavors, at least to me. Well worth trying.
01-22-2010 06:12:46 | More by 4000qtrap
3.88/5 rDev +2.1%
a: thick beautiful cream foam with light dark yeast marks on the top of the head; decent retention; orange body with bits of yeast floating in it; limited movement
s: a sour bretty type scent is the most prominent in this beer; which seriously gives me the worry that maybe it's a little oldschool, idk; some coriander and orange; very sweet
t: malty and mild; some honey taste; light sourness; smooth anf mild with yeasty notes
m: a little grainy because of all of the yeast; but smooth and buttery texture; very minimal carb
d: a good beer but weird especially if the style is IPA; very smooth
01-15-2010 02:46:32 | More by hoegaardenhero
4.3/5 rDev +13.2%
Lucky enough to find a 2002 vintage.
A: Slightly cloudy orangish-yellow color with a fair amount of sediment. Thick course head that quickly dissapates but leaves a nice lacing.
S: Tart cherries, apples, apricots, hints of malt and wood.
T: Slightly tart and warming, getting nice mix of flavors from the malt and wood. Hints of apple and apricot. Hop flavor has all but disappeared but some bitterness is still evident.
M: Medium body with lively carbonation, nice dry finish.
D: Very interesting beer that I would love to try again. Funny this beer tastes more like a Petrus Aged Pale that an IPA.
01-02-2010 19:27:45 | More by DrinkingAleToday
3.8/5 rDev 0%
Appearance: Hazy, rusty gold colored brew with a thin, off white head.
Smell: Sweet caramel, toffee and smoke with a hint of tobacco and pine.
Taste: Sweet malty start evolves smoothly into a soft, yet bitter hop flavor. Hints of wood from barrel aging.
Mouthfeel: Medium body. Balanced, yet slightly confused fluctuation between sweet and dry.
Drinkablity: Not overly hopped, but an interesting IPA. A challenging blend of flavors.
12-20-2009 04:57:36 | More by SargeC
4/5 rDev +5.3%
A: Very cloudy brownish orange color. Pours with a decent finger of yellow-tinted, big-bubbled head that has decent retention and leaves an light amount of lacing.
S: Predominantly lemon and orange hops, no grapefruit. There is some pinewood in the background.
T: Sharp sweet malt followed by a blast of woodsiness (I'll presume this is the cedar mentioned on the side of the bottle), that fades away gently leaving a moderate tannic bitterness.
M: On the lighter side of medium. Appropriate carbonation. Ends with a dry, chalky mouthfeel.
D: A solid beer that offers a fine alternative to the more commonly available Japanese lagers. While probably not my personal preference in the way of an IPA, I did appreciate the Japanese approach to an IPA.
12-12-2009 03:32:18 | More by Florida9
3.9/5 rDev +2.6%
From a 720 ml brown bottle. Hazed rustic coppery amber in appearance, creamy, frothy white head with excellent retention, and thick gashes of lacing.
Curious aroma of incense wafting up from the glass upon deep inhalations--I can't put my finger on it but it's similar to the smell of a lot of hippie shops that sell a lot of East Indian paraphanalia that I've been in (or dragged to...). Wood, that's for sure, must be the cedar barrels that it's aged in. Mild hoppiness manages to permeate the cedar, although with effort.
The cedar definitely works in the flavour though. The sweet wood blends with sweet neutral malt, the earthiness blending in seamlessly with the earthiness and spiciness of the hops, the finish is quite musty and dry. Sweet, citrusy aftertaste. The cedar remains present throughout.
Mouthfeel is on the fuller side of medium-bodied, riding the fence on that. Smooth, carbonation is minimal, yet the body is pretty full all the same.
I'm not quite sure what to think of this beer, except that I like it even though my brain doesn't quite agree with me. All the factors, as odd as some are, come together and work together, although not something I can have on a regular basis, but worth revisiting. This time around quirky is a good thing.
12-08-2009 09:14:43 | More by IronDjinn
4.38/5 rDev +15.3%
Pours a nice amber hue with a two-finger head into my fluted glass that leaves some lacing on the edges.
Aroma is full of floral hops with a hint of malt underneath. Very nice aroma here that seems fit for the style.
Taste is full of grassy hops with a hint of sweet, biscuity malt underneath that gives a bit of balance to this beer.
Mouthfeel is full of lingering biscuit malt and grassy hop flavors. Carbonation feels right. Beer goes down really well with no harsh aftertaste.
Very nice example of the style that gets a Japanese take. This is actually more drinkable than a few other examples I've had. Well done.
10-18-2009 04:47:58 | More by Brad007
3.43/5 rDev -9.7%
Poured from a 12oz bottle
Appearance - Hazy orange/amber with a big off-white had that formed upon pour. Resolved to little to no head. Hard to pick up the level of carbonation, but it did take a while for the head to fade.
Smell - Open the Hitachino cedar chest! Nice cedar nose which deadens much of any other aromas. A bit of the malt sweetness is noticable, but it is lost in the cedar overarching nose.
Taste - The cedar aging comes through exceedingly so in this Hitachino offering, to the point of overpowering much of the malt and even hop presence. There is a nice hop finish, but it's subtle. I found the cedar overdone.
Mouthfeel - Light mouthfeel, when compared to other offerings in the style, this appears to be about average. Nothing really special. I bit thin on the finish.
Drinkability - This is my third Hitachino offering. All have been very unique beers and well-worth trying.
10-12-2009 00:12:07 | More by Nesued
3.93/5 rDev +3.4%
2002 vintage opened on 10-4-09
A- Nearly gushed. Poured sunset auburn with a generous, creamy head and solid retention.
S- Oaky with typical aromas that go with that; cherry, vanilla. There's and underlying almost vegetal feel to it that i'm not crazy about but it does have depth.
T- Matured fruity flavors, a big hit of vanilla, with a sherry-like oxidation. Improves alot as it warms.
M- A lot of carbonation right off the bat. So I let it sit for a while and it smoothed out.
D- Very unusual. I wouldn't drink this a lot or often. I'll say it does age fairly well and if you're into vintage and run across it, it's worth a try.
10-05-2009 17:59:34 | More by brownbeer
4.05/5 rDev +6.6%
I wasn't expecting to like this beer nearly as much as I did. I'd heard good things about this brewery, and thought this would be the one to try as the signature ale.
Pours an interested cloudy amber, with a thick eggshell head that lingers, mild laceing. The aroma is a delicate blend of caramel malt and flowery hops entertwined, the cedar is present around the edges. The flavor starts with malt sweetness, bursting into flowery hops, with a touch of dry honey before a crisp cedery finish. The hops are not overstated like many in this style and the cedar adds an exra which complements the hops and finishes this beer very, very well. It's a little oily but the brightness of the cedar and the dryness honey finish overcome it well. I'm nearing the end of my 24.3 (extra points for haveing a really cool looking bottle painted owl dude) and wishing I had more.
09-09-2009 04:27:35 | More by templar316
2.23/5 rDev -41.3%
Poured into a standard shaker glass
A: Bright amber with a big head that does not go away. Excessive bubbling.
S: Mellow sweetness. Very subdued. Kind of like grandma's closet. That must be the cedar coming out.
T: Sweet nothing up front, followed by light hop bitterness, finished off with an astringent bitter smack. Definite cedar bite.
M: Light. Very light. But ends with a pucker that won't leave the back of the cheeks.
D: One of these is enough for me. Coats the mouth. Won't go away. Water will not get rid of this.
I'm not a big fan of this beer but I don't know if that's because it's a unique style and my first taste of it or because it's not very good. IPA aged in cedar. It' probably just not my style.
08-26-2009 22:16:07 | More by gofreaksgo
4.08/5 rDev +7.4%
I drank this from a bottle into a chalice.
It pours a dark oraned with a peach colored head that disappears quickly, has little lacing.
It smells very good of citrus with light hops, but the aroma is light, doesn't present hard you really have to get down there and smell it.
This beer starts out light sweet with flavors of hops and ends with nice bitter touch like a typical IPA. This one is easy to drink, a likeable bitter end. Overall a very decent effort.
08-10-2009 01:26:58 | More by jrallen34
3.83/5 rDev +0.8%
A - Poured out a cloudy orange color with a good deal of sediment in the glass. It had a small, off-white head head that left soapy residue.
S - It smelled of cedar, vanilla, floral notes and fruit.
T - This had a really strong vanilla taste and had a powerful sweet caramel flavor, too. There was hints of woody flavors and fruits.
M - It was soft, smooth and creamy. A light to medium-bodied ale.
D - This is a nice brew. It's almost too sweet to have more than one in a sitting.
07-26-2009 22:05:33 | More by zeff80
3.25/5 rDev -14.5%
Bought from Frugal Mcdoogal in Nashville, TN for $5. Poured from the bottle into a standard pint glass.
A: This is a good looking beer. Very nice head that disappears slowly. Nice lacing. This beer is very cloudy.
S: Very fruity and sweet. Almost woody. Lots of yeast.
T: Very citrus-ey and hoppy. Tastes very clean and woody.
M: Creamy and smooth. Seems very thin for an india pale ale.
D: Not exactly "sessionable" due to the fact that this is such a unique and different beer. Still fairly drinkable. I'll definitely grab one of these again.
07-21-2009 02:05:10 | More by carsonplunkett
3.35/5 rDev -11.8%
Watch out for gushers with this one. I cracked a cold bottle just like I always do, but foam erupted right away and caused a bit of a mess. I only lost a couple ounces though and it calmed down right away. Once in the glass, it was a hazy orange with a fluffy eggshell coloured cap. Good head retention with a bit of chunky lace. Interesting aroma, a combination of spicy wood and floral character. There's a mild nutmeg component and hint of citrus. The wood aging was a little overdone in the flavour - too much cedar and wood resin along with a dry astringency - but the hops weren't completely overwhelmed. Bitterness was light, as was malt sweetness. Notes of nutmeg and cinnamon appeared mid-palate. Slight warmth in the finish. The carbonation died down quite quickly, starting very high but becoming a bit low after 10 minutes or so. Overall it's an interesting beer, but the wood was too much for me. If it was brought into balance it would be really good rather than a bit better than average.
07-19-2009 00:19:50 | More by DrJay
4.38/5 rDev +15.3%
I must admit, I was pretty skeptical of finding a decent beer here. I found this beer in a gourmet food store in singles, it looked interesting, so I gave it a try (I was out-of-state).
The beer poured a cloudy burnt orange color, and I poured down the center of the glass, and got way too much head. The head was also a tannish orange color. As I poured the rest I was a bit more careful, still quite a heady beer.
The aroma was nice, certainly hints of some cedar (label stated aged in Cedar casks). The taste was unique, it had a IPA hoppy flavor, and the strong cedar accents actually went well with the hops. The finish was clean and too a point slightly sweet. The lacing was big, persistent and heavy around the glass.
I thoroughly enjoyed this beer and was pleasantly surprised.
I have never heard of Kiuchi Brewing, now I am on a quest to find more.
06-25-2009 12:24:18 | More by eewhiz
3.9/5 rDev +2.6%
The beer pours a slightly dark amber color with pretty good head retention and lacing. I don't get a lot on the nose, just some light citrus and tea aroma. Flavors on the palate replicate the nose, except there's something of a delicateness to this beer's flavor profile that is unusual. The beer is fairly light and crisp, with the light bitterness nicely balanced with the light malt. Mouthfeel is fairly light, and the alcohol is barely noticeable. Drinkabilityh is pretty good.... I could probably drink a lot of this very beer.
An absolute treat to try on draft.
06-25-2009 00:48:18 | More by John_M
4.55/5 rDev +19.7%
Pours a nice red orange with a slightly tan head. Poured up a very nice thick head in a 22 oz. nonic glass. Decent head retention.
Smells like most Hitachino beers, ie a little musty/cardboardy from travel. A bit of the cedar from the casks comes through in the aroma.
Wow! I can totally taste the cedar casks this was aged in. I'm not getting the sake taste that I've found before in the Red Rice. Woody, almost pithy. I'm not sure if this is a desirable flavor, but it is damn interesting!
Finishes clean with a little residual bitterness. Closer to an American style Pale Ale than an IPA as far as perceptible bitterness goes. I guess that's what you get when you brew a hand me down recipe from the 1800s using readily available hops.
I'd almost say you could session this. I'll have to lay into a whole six pack next time I find it and try it out.
06-17-2009 07:56:11 | More by johndakar
3.13/5 rDev -17.6%
pours a cloudy orange with a small off-white head, and some lacing.
smell is faint, grain, spice, and a touch of citrus.
taste is smooth and creamy, grain, some spice, some citrus, a little woody, and a touch of pine in back.
more of a bitter than a IPA to me.
05-16-2009 03:17:34 | More by froghop
4.7/5 rDev +23.7%
A - Cap opens with a real nice "pfft." Wow, this pours into my Stone imperial pint glass with a massive 2-finger head! Damn, ridiculous lacing too. Freakin' ice-cream-cone head just like Houblon Chouffe; you're kidding me, right? Amber-gold pale ale body. If I'm judging a book by its cover, this one is perfect. This is a perfect 5 in looks, and I don't even have to think about it.
S - Wow! I was not expecting the cedar casks in which this was matured to come through like this. Very woody, in a light and pleasant manner, just as you'd expect from cedar. I note a lot of raisin-y sweetness beyond this, almost like a Dogfish Head big beer - I hope it isn't as sweet as it smells. It's almost starting to smell like ripe strawberries.
T - Hmmm, I do get a crazy suggestion of strawberries here, yet it isn't as sweet as I feared. What hops were used in this, I wonder???? Interesting astringent bitterness, a little soapy and pine-sap-ish. Still big on the strawberries - I haven't had strawberry flavor come through like this in a beer before, short of a big-assed barleywine. I've almost forgotten about the cedar - I love the light woodiness it imparts here. This beer is definitely something!
F - This beer has been damn near nailed. Medium body, the somewhat heavier feel makes it seem stronger than it is, yet this is still a very smooth beer that slides down the gullet with no problems.
D - I must get more. I had the Hitachino Nest Red Rice, and the White Ale, and was only mildly impressed...but this, this is excellent. At 7.5%, you are not going to pound this, but it is still very much enjoyable. My compliments to this Japanese brewer. How can this be this underrated?
04-16-2009 22:14:47 | More by Patrick999
3.73/5 rDev -1.8%
Pour a nut brown with some gold highlights. Head fades quickly and mot much lacing. The nose is heavy in fruit, but not in a way you'd expect from anything calling itself a "pale ale".
Taste is...different. Honestly, it reminds me almost more of an ESB than any sort of IPA. We have a deeper fruitiness than you might expect mixing with a malt base.
Overall it's good and I'm glad I tried it. I won't be in a rush to get back to it though.
04-03-2009 23:07:14 | More by Larrytown
2.88/5 rDev -24.2%
Served very cold and poured into a tulip. Two fingers of resilient billowing white head formed supported by the glass and lively effervescence. Dull copper colored liquid with visible yeast sediment. The cedar smell is surprisingly obvious and strong. Also smells of grapes, and apples. Taste is tart with cedar and and some finishing hops predominating. Just a hint of malts near the end. A pretty straightforward beer in taste. Dry and light mouthfeel. Interesting beer to try for the cedar, but not really the most pleasing.
03-31-2009 00:48:07 | More by daftafne
2.83/5 rDev -25.5%
Bottle says brewed in 2002. I almost believe it because the bottle is quite dusty. Bottle reports 7% abv and oak cask aging.
Appearance: Poured into a ravenhead dimple. I was expecting IPA so I was a bit disappointed with the appearance. Copper-colored. loose two-finger head, composed of big bubbles. Ended up with some pretty big chunks from the krausen in my glass.
yeasty aroma I don't detect any hoppy notes.
Flavor: complex notes of oak, sake, pineapple, brown sugar, yeast. No real notable hop character aroma.
Mouthfeel: is much like unfiltered sake which compliments the complex flavors
Overall I'd say this beer is quite rich and flavorful. If you read the front label and ignore the back, then this is a very nice real ale offering. Trying to label this beer as an IPA is quite dangerous because the style guidelines are written around the American adaptation of this style. I'd say Hitochino's Nest is shooting for one of those neat CAMRA labels on their bottle.
03-28-2009 23:32:28 | More by northernbrewer
4.43/5 rDev +16.6%
Appearance: copper amber, clear, medium head, medium carbonation
Smell: notes of pear, pineapple, and wood jump out
Taste: pear, pineapple, wood, sweet fruit--maybe lychee, malt
Mouthfeel: very balanced--parts sweet--parts sour--very smooth
Drinkability: I have never tasted another beer quite like this one. To say it is complex in aroma and taste is an understatement. This one grew on me as I tasted it and could have several..I think this is a must beer if not just for its uniqueness.
03-27-2009 19:25:44 | More by tigg924
3.85/5 rDev +1.3%
12oz brown glass pry-top bottle. Only stamp says J.8.9. (not sure what that means).
Appearance: Incredibly hazy orange/tan color with one inch of off-white head that leaves distinct rings of lacing.
Nose: It immediately smells like sour oranges aged in oak. Also white grapefruit, citrus peel/rind, there's a woody note, but not the typical "oak" aromas. Almost a vanilla note, but not quite. It's like smelling a candle labeled "Clean Mist"...you can kinda tell the individual parts, but can't quite place all the aromas.
Palate: Wow. There's a lot going on here. For starters, the hops play a big citrus-y roll up front and the bitterness then segues into that sour/wood feeling of a beer aged in exposed conditions (i.e. some outside bacterias + wood ageing). All the citrus from the nose is joined by a burnt coal and a little metallic or chemical thing. Nicely bitter and somewhat sour. Texture on the finish is woody.
Notes: This is an unusual beer, but what did I expect from Hitachino? I think I like it, but would like to try it again another day, maybe with some food...but what to pair it with? Yikes!
03-25-2009 01:47:46 | More by SFLpunk
Hitachino Nest Japanese Classic Ale from Kiuchi Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 371 ratings.