1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout - Kiuchi Brewery

Not Rated.
Hitachino Nest Espresso StoutHitachino Nest Espresso Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

746 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 746
Reviews: 374
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 11.99%
Wants: 31
Gots: 45 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Kiuchi Brewery visit their website

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerBeing on 07-20-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 746 | Reviews: 374 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of gford217
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

330mL bottle poured into a tulip.

Pours dark brown out of the bottle and sits almost completely black in the glass with a huge tan head that shows excellent retention and lacing.

Aroma is like a mocha with some espresso and cocoa sweetness. Lightly roasted black malts, caramel and vanilla.

The taste has a little bit of lactose sourness with the sweet vanilla and espresso bitterness. Pretty sweet taste where the coffee isn't nearly as dominant as I expected. Some caramelized sugar as well.

The mouthfeel is excellent, super smooth and creamy. Lightly bitter in the finish.

This is a solid if not spectacular stout that's extremely smooth and drinkable.

gford217, Jul 27, 2010
Photo of laituegonflable
3.43/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Alright, my first taste of Japanese craft beer, let's go...

Pours a nice black-brown, with lovely ochre head that disperses, leaving a ring of beige lacing around the top with great stickiness. Carbonation is steady, and has a bit of wobble to the body. Looks pretty nice.

Lots of cool espresso notes on the nose, kind of spicy coffee, hints of mint on there, a mild cocoa touch but not a lot of roastiness. Coffee dominates and it's rich, strong, bitter. Good aroma but a bit simple.

Taste is also full of coffee, quite sour, spicy and phenolic with peaks and troughs of flavour. Taste is more roasty with strong coffee ground flavour, hints of peppery spice, caramel sweetness underlying and a bit of a clovey spice on the late-mid as well. Never loses sight of the flavour, but sweetness dips late and that produces a slight soapy astringency which doesn't quite sit right with me. There's a good front, but by the finish it's a bit on the nasty bitter side which leaves a harsh, ashy aftertaste.

Good body but swills around in a watery kind of way. It has a slight carbonation tingle which is not bad, but yeah, feels a little on the thin side.

The aftertaste is a little rough but otherwise a decent drinking stout.

laituegonflable, Jul 26, 2010
Photo of sisuspeed
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark, dark, brown with a thin, tan, head that slowly fades away to a thin ring around the edges of the glass. Light lacing.

Nicely roasted coffee beans with a touch of acidity on the nose. Almost smells like some green (unroasted) coffee beans are in there as well. Dark malts and some bittersweet chocolate.

Lots of bitter coffee grounds wash over the tongue, followed by dark, black malts, but still somewhat balanced with a sweeter chocolate presence. The finish is quite smooth and balanced. Fairly basic, but well done.

The body is smooth and roasty with lingering bitterness. The ABV is essentially unnoticeable. It would nice if the mouthfeel were a bit thicker, but not too bad. Light for an imperial stout.

Drinkability is good. There is a decent amount of coffee in the flavor and beer is fairly well balanced for a coffee stout. Overall, this is well done, but not overly complex. Worth trying if you see it, but there are better examples of the style.

sisuspeed, Jul 23, 2010
Photo of CrazyDavros
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with a liquorice brown creamy short-lived head.
Nose is full of intense coffee and sweet dark chocolate. A mix between a mocha and a rich chocolate cake. Plenty of roasted malt later on.
Roasted coffee really hits as a flavour but underneath there's still a lot of dark chocolate and sweet roasted malt. Some soft alcohol.
Creamy high carbonation, very rich, smooth body.

CrazyDavros, Jul 18, 2010
Photo of BEERchitect
3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Certainly an espresso-focused stout and among the most highly tauted of the Hitachino brand, this robust stout showcases the coffee very well and with little inflection from many other beer characteristics.

Dark brown, but not black, the beer displays mohogany highlights through the light-permiable glow. A delicate off-white creme forms on the beer and holds firm through about half of the session before faltering. The look of the beer seems more like espresso than beer.

Strong espresso aromas dominate the nose with subtle maltiness, caramels, alcohols, or esters that struggle to balance the roast. No real hop presence or interference from any other beery aspects in the aromatics of the stout.

Again, very solid espresso flavor with a modest support from deeply caramelized malts, licorice, burnt cocoa, and heavy toast. As the espresso flavors take hold, I realize that the beer offers no real reprieve or balance from the coffee taste, bitterness, or intensity.

As strong as the coffee flavors are, the beer could use more of a malty mouthfeel to keep the beer from feeling like espresso and more like a substantial stout. The beer struggles to acheive the body of an American stout, much less a Russian Imperial.

The beer has a bold and elegant display of espresso roasted coffees. But the lack of balancing malt flavor, sweetness, and complexity; the beer gives me a one-diminsional quality with little intrigue or interest.

BEERchitect, Jul 14, 2010
Photo of mulder1010
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330 ML bottle poured into a SA Perfect Pint

A-- Poured black. Pretty straight forward there. Decently aggressive pour got a long lasting two finger dark mocha colored head. Lots of lacing on the glass. Thick and streaky. Well maintained head and good head retention.

S-- Espresso, more like over drawn espresso, chocolate, and roasted malts. A little bit of sweetness that sort of reminds me of Sticky Date Pudding. Just no Carmel sauce.

T-- Big hit of espresso, not real bitter but strong. Chocolate somewhat smooths out the espresso taste.

M-- Big espresso followed buy chocolate. Chocolate is a tad bit sweetened. Medium to full bodied low carbonation. Chocolate smooths out the espresso. Has bitterness but it is not over bitter.

D-- Good drinkable beer. Can do 2 of these and not get tired of it. ABV is very well hidden. if you like espresso and chocolate this is a must drink.

mulder1010, Jul 13, 2010
Photo of FenwaySquid
4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz. brown bottle, no dating that I could find unfortunately becase I think it's at least 2 years old, poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep dark brown color, almost black and complely opaque. The head formed a creamy 1 finger thick and retained nicely.

Aroma: Sweet roasted and chocolate malts, and of course the coffee.

Taste: Coffee flavors up front, then some chocolate in the middle. The finish starts sweet then turns bitter, lingering nicely.

Mouthfeel: medium to full bodied, extremely smooth and creamy. The 7.5% abv hides quite well.

Overall: If you like coffee stouts, this is a must. Simply excellent

FenwaySquid, Jul 13, 2010
Photo of Macca
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This pours jet black with a generous tan head that hangs around.

Aroma - coffee, coffee and coffee. I'd like to think I am getting a bit of choc in there as well but I think I might be kidding myself.

That is the sort of lush mouthfeel that I was hoping for. Some great acidity. The dark choc is certainly there on the palate. Bitter bitter chocolate.

Wow. Never drunk anything like that before. I think I'd prefer it with a sweet chocolate dessert though.

Macca, Jul 11, 2010
Photo of womencantsail
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: The pour is nearly black with a thin tan head.

S: The nose has plenty of strong coffee to it along with quite a bit of bittersweet chocolate. A bit of burnt malt, and licorice.

T: The coffee flavor is up front and lightly bitter. The chocolate provides a nice sweetness along with a smooth, creamy flavor that I was not expecting.

M: The body is medium and really just quite smooth. The beer is fairly lowly carbonated.

D: Pretty easy to drink for an "imperial" stout. Nice coffee flavor and an even more impressive chocolate quality.

womencantsail, Jul 09, 2010
Photo of Ghenna
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 11.2oz bottle purchased from the Davis Foods Coop. Pours an opaque brown. .5 in of latte colored foam that seems to be doing a good job of sticking thus far.

Smells of coffee, burned malts. Tastes pretty well the same way too. Starts off sweet malt and coffee, and ends with burned malt/coffee bitter. Beer doesn't particularly mouth coating or anything, but the coffee bitter does stick around for a bit.

Definitely a very solid coffee flavored stout. Hitachino's price point makes it a little shy on value, but it is definitely a beer I could use to get coffee drinking friends into the craft beer world.

Ghenna, Jul 08, 2010
Photo of BMoney575
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled on 7-4-10
E.09.11 printed on the bottle.

Pours completely black and opaque, with a very thin tan head that quickly fades. Lacing is very thin, just a few brown rings.

Smell is very complex, aromas of chocolate, coffee, and anise. Sweet, but well balanced, not overly strong and very enjoyable.

Taste is huge malt right up front, strongly smoky and sweet. Flavors of anise and coffee bitterness dominate, with a sharply hoppy finish. The aftertaste is all coffee, with a slight sourness from the hops.

Mouthfeel is a little light, but still slick and creamy to go with the malty flavors.

Drinkability is good, but the sweetness and bitterness are a brutal combo.

Overall, a good beer that's definitely worth a try.

BMoney575, Jul 04, 2010
Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle served in a glass beer mug.

L - black with a thick tan head that drops to a layer and leaves a thick ring of lacing on the glass.
S - coffee aroma is like a sweetened espresso. I also got some chocolate cream aroma.
T - the espresso flavor is certainly in here as well as a chocolate flavor. Some sweetness but not as sweet as i thought it would be from the aroma. Malts are roasted and burnt in flavor. The aftertaste is a strong bittering chocolate taste and then rich coffee flavors. Very nice finish.
F - full bodied with a creamy feel.
D - a good tasting, drinkable brew.

JoeyBeerBelly, Jul 04, 2010
Photo of matjack85
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I tried this 330ml brown bottle at Quencher's Saloon in Chicago. I've tried lots of Hitachino Nest beers before but this was a new one for me. The back label has an E: 9/11 on it so I'm assuming the "E" stands for expires, making this beer really fresh as this is only June of '10.

The bar was dimly lit so the pour looked jet black to me with a creamy 1 finger mocha brown head, although I noticed some reviewers claim it is actually really dark brown rather than black. In either case you can't see thru it, the head lasts a good while, and the beer leaves some good lacing on the glass.

Nice but mild chocolate and coffee aroma. Not as strong as I expected from an espresso, but still very nice.

This is a pretty solid stout. Big coffee flavor combined with roasted malts, chocolate, and just the right amount of bittering hops.

Smooth and light sounds contradictory, but that's what this beer is. It's creamy without being full bodied with low carbonation. Light for a stout but still very flavorful.

The bottle says 7.5% alcohol, but you cant taste it at all. It's a very easy and enjoyable drinker.

matjack85, Jun 30, 2010
Photo of WOTO97
3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is without a doubt one of the most easy drinking coffee stouts I have yet reviewed.

Poured a deep brown to pitch with a very frothy cappuccino head and nominal lacing

Really enjoyed the big roasted malt character up front, roasted coffee beans soon overpowers the nose, some burnt qualities to the coffee character, with just a hint of hop bite in the background

The coffee is damn-near overpowering on the front of the palate but does fade to a nice cocoa-like bitterness on the back of the palate, some very big roasted malt notes on the finish with a faint freshly baked bread character lingering in the background

The mouthfeel was big and dense but finished surprisingly clean for the style, if you are expecting a dense motor oil type body...be advised, this is not that type of coffee stout, much more delicate of a mouthfeel (hard to judge whether I really like the change of pace or whether I really need that dense, thick MF)

Knowing this is a coffee stout, I want to immediately compare it to a BGB-type offering; however, I am probably better served setting this alongside HN's other offerings and drinking it as a much more subdued coffee stout. While I expect a coffee stout to have bold flavors (with a nose to match) throughout the experience, I will add points in the end to Espresso Stout for being so quaffable.

WOTO97, Jun 22, 2010
Photo of MbpBugeye
2.9/5  rDev -26%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

A- Very nice and rich head. Its big and billowy. Khaki colored with decent lacing. The beer isnt totally black. Especially on the pour, some red highlights are visible.

S- Nice strong espresso coffee smell. It is backed up with some vanilla, milkiness and caramel. In all its a very nice, rich and sweet smelling beer.

T- The taste is a bit disappointing based on the nice smell. Strong coffee but its not fresh coffee. It tastes stale, cold and oily. There is a little bit more caramel to sweeten things up. Most of the bitterness comes from the coffee but there is a little bit of hops around the finish.

M- Way too thin and flat. The carbonation is way too low. It really feels like an old cold cup of coffee. This is really what ruins this beer for me.

D- It drinks easy for an imperial stout but it just doesnt stand up to all the other amazing coffee stouts out there.

MbpBugeye, Jun 22, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 6/6/10 notes. Had on tap at Max's in Baltimore.

a - Pours a very dark brown, almost black with no head.

s - Smells mostly of coffee and roasted malts. Little bit of chocolate.

t - Taste is mostly coffe, but also roasted malts and maybe a bit smokey.

m - Medium to full body and low carbonation.

d - A decent stout, but coffee dmoinated the smell and taste. Would give another shot.

mdfb79, Jun 12, 2010
Photo of jjanega08
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A= The pour is a black color with really bright amber highlights. The head is about a finger high with decent retention and some spotty lacing.

S= Deep deep roast and coffee. One of the roastiest stouts I've ever smelled. The coffee has an almost citrus smell to it. Citrus or chili. I can't really decide. Really unique however. Never smelled anything like this.

T= The taste follows the nose to a tee. There is a ton of roast. Really really roasty. The lime or chili I took in the smell really came through in the taste as well. Unique to say the least.

M= A nice feel for the style. Nicely carbonated and just silky enough.

D= Interesting beer to say the least. I liked it a lot. The chili or lime flavor I got was different and kept me on my toes throughout the drink. Worth trying once at least to see if it's your thing.

jjanega08, Jun 08, 2010
Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 11.2oz brown pop top; cool owl label; this is my first Hitachino beer and I'm really excited about it. Clearly marked best by date

Appearance: Pitch black, with a dense 1/4 head which fades to a thick sticky ring with good retention.

Smell: Really rich chocolate and coffee aromas, with some sweet dark malts as well. Straightforward and bold, yet not overpowering. This leads me to expect good things to come...

Taste: Coffee. Lots of coffee. Bitter, but stops just short of astringent. Dark (and I mean dark) chocolate. Fruity alcohol. A bit more than might be expected for 7.5% actually. Ends dry and bitter, the coffee now coming through with a slight astringency and almost tannic quality. A bit one-dimensional (which, IMO, is ok in a coffee stout) but the bitterness and the alcohol is a bit brash and it's not quite as smooth as I'd like...

Mouthfeel: Rich, fairly full, and smooth

Drinkability: Medium to medium-high

Conclusion: Not bad at all, but didn't quite live up to my expectations and for $5.00+ a 11.2oz, it's a bit pricey for me. At that price, I'd take a Peche Mortel or a KBS almost every time. And heck, for $7.99 you could get a whole sixer of Schlafly coffee stout...

BedetheVenerable, May 28, 2010
Photo of htomsirveaux
4.08/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330 mL bottle tried 2 Mar 2010.

Last beer tried at Maple Ave (sniff...).

Served in a Liquor Mart shaker pint (yet again...). Oily black pour. Medium thick black head. Possibly medium carbonation, hard to tell. Opaque black color. Aroma is strong, coffee, some caramel, perfumey woodsy/floral, ethanol. Very roasty, lots of coffee, slightly acrid. Some chocolate, more coffee. Ethanol sneaks up on you. Did I mention coffee? Some coffee roastiness in the finish. Medium body.

Well done.

htomsirveaux, May 26, 2010
Photo of yeahnatenelson
3.33/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was thrown in as an extra in a recent trade from BucketBoy. Thanks again!

Appearance -- Pours a deep, dark mahogany - jet black in the glass - with two fingers of stiff tan head. Massive lacing.

Smell -- Not a whole lot going on; espresso, dark chocolate, char, some mild acridity. Everything is very muted.

Taste -- Espresso is abundant, with bitter chocolate, mild smokiness and charred wood. Finish is bitter coffee and burnt wood.

Mouthfeel -- Heavy, but not too heavy for the style. Carbonation is mild, slightly prickly, almost fluffy.

Drinkability -- Enjoyable. Goes down easy, feels good on the palate. Definitely enjoyable, but I would've liked to taste more malt sweetness to temper the espresso and bitterness. Still, quite good and I'm glad it was brought to my attention.

yeahnatenelson, May 23, 2010
Photo of ktrillionaire
4.6/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Nest! You've done it again! Seriously, this is one of the most underrated breweries out there.

A - It looks great; perfect stout, pitch black with a mocha-tan persistent head and tons o' lace

S - It is surprisingly not very aromatic. A vague creamy maltiness is all, perhaps a lil hop.

T - Wow. Huge flavor. Chocolate, vanilla, smokiness and char, cinnamon and chicory, just a plethora of rich and complementary flavors. Chocolate is huge, vanilla is big, coffee is there on the finish with a bitter acridity; this is just phenomenal.

M - On the thinner side for the style, but very well-apportioned.

D - I already love Nest. This beer was so much better than expectations, however. Awesome.

ktrillionaire, May 17, 2010
Photo of david131
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- A deep, dark black liquid with a massive, creamy brown head that has some excellent retention.

S- An astounding amount of coffee with some smoke and dark chocolate tossed in. A little one dimensional, but it is nice to come across a coffee stout that acutally has a lot of coffee once in awhile.

T- Strong espresso, dark chocolate, and a bit of dark fruits tossed in. There are some odd flavors floating around that are not beneficial to the beer.

M- Not particularly smooth. The carbonation brings a bit of a bite and the roastiness has a drying aspect. A bit too carbonated.

D- A very flavorful beer that is well made. The coffee aspects to the beer are fantastic. With a bit of rounding off of the rough edges, this would be world class.

david131, May 17, 2010
Photo of Dawkfan
4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Body is very close to being completely opaque. The head is a solid 3 fingers, the color is a fairly deep shade of brown, darker than most stouts. Retention and lacing are both very good.

S- Nice aromas of roasted malt, coffee and milk chocolate. It's definitely not as robust with espresso like I thought it would be, but it's pleasurable non the less.

T- Mellow in the beginning, but really packs a nice coffee bitterness in the finish that stays in the mouth for sometime.

M- The body could be a little fuller and chewier, but a nice mouthfeel overall. Carbonation seems spot on.

D- Another great beer from Japan. Can't wait to try the Celebration Ale & XH that I picked up from Kiuchi Brewing as well. More please!

Dawkfan, May 12, 2010
Photo of erosier
4.47/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Pours a deep black color with a medium bodied and thick tan colored head that laces the glass nicely on the way down.
S: Smells of sweet roasted malts, deeper black and chocolate malts, nice chocolate, espresso, coffee, and caramel aromas at the end of it.
T: Tastes like the nose but better. Sweet roasted malts, deep roasted black and chocolate malts with hints of caramel mixed in. Then a huge coffee and espresso flavor that is really smooth and enjoyable.
M: Very smooth, warming, rich, full bodied, full flavored, perfect amount of carbonation.
D: Very drinkable even with the high abv and the full flavor and body. Really well done.

erosier, May 12, 2010
Photo of Lazerlobe
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours inky black in my tulip, crowned with 2 fingers of graham cracker colored head. The foam recedes, leaving behind little bubble animals on the ring of the glass.

In the effluvium are faint chocolate and coffee scents

Malty chocolate, bitter hops and roast as well as some iron notes permeate the flavor. Carbonation is spot on and this come across pretty light as far as double stouts go.

The roasted coffee flavor is the dominant aftertaste, earning the brew its espresso title.

Its a good beer for what it is. Glad to have tried it.

Lazerlobe, May 10, 2010
Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout from Kiuchi Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 746 ratings.