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Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout - Kiuchi Brewery

Not Rated.
Hitachino Nest Espresso StoutHitachino Nest Espresso Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

836 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 836
Reviews: 391
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 11.7%
Wants: 32
Gots: 62 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Kiuchi Brewery visit their website

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

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerBeing on 07-20-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 836 | Reviews: 391 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of axeman9182
3.14/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11.2oz bottle, courtesy of the Amanti Vino Beer of the Month program, poured into my Duvel tulip.

The beer pours black, with subtle mahogany coming through along the edges when held to light. In other words, the beer's not stout black. Head formation is weak, the caramel foam cap is less than a finger in height, and head retention is just as poor. A hint of lacing is the only thing keeping this beer from an even lower appearance score, easily the worst looking stout I've ever seen. This bleeds over into the smell, as the lack of head renders the dark chocolate and coffee (surprisingly chocolate heavy for a beer with espresso stout on the label) a bit weak. I cracked this beer at fridge temperature, which was a mistake on my part. It was very murky cold, but really opened up once it warmed. Dark chocolate leads things off, though not as rich as I find in some stout. The second half is where the coffee comes in, and as with the nose I'm surprised it's not a bit more intense. There's a distinct bitter coffee finish though that I find myself enjoying. Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout it in a bit of a weird spot as at 7.5% it's a bit small for an imperial stout, and a bit big for a regular stout, and that issue shows up in the body. The beer doesn't have a big rich body, but it's bigger than most regular stouts, and just ends up stuck in no man's land. An overly aggressive carbonation doesn't help matters either. Given the flaws that crop up in HN Espresso Stout it's not all that drinkable for an imperial stout. This isn't a terrible beer, but it's not on the same level as many of the other stouts out there.

Photo of WesWes
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a pitch black color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great! It has a rich, chocolate and coffee scent that's sweet up front along with a dry, coffee aroma. The taste is good. It has a smooth, dry coffee flavor that goes down easy with some chocolate malt sweetness. It's rich and easy drinking with tons of expresso character. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn fine coffee inspired beer. It's dry as hell, but has tons of flavor.

Photo of brewcrew76
3.95/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Black with ruby highlights and a thick creamy mocha head with plenty of sticky lacing everywhere.

S - Strong espresso with bittersweet chocolate, hints of roasted malt and sweet caramel.

T - Bitter, burnt coffee grounds, some roasted malt, sweet dark chocolate, a touch of spice, sweet and a bit astringent.

M - Smooth and creamy but on the light side for an imperial stout. Bitter astringency lingers on the tongue.

D - Bold coffee stout but not very complex.

Photo of ncaudle
4.01/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

bottle poured into goblet.

absolutely pitch black with a 2 finger mocha head. left a thick lacing down the sides of the glass.

coffee aroma is not as prevalent as I had hoped. some subdued chocolate, that's about it. there is a slight coffee taste but not enough to really call this an espresso stout imo.

medium thickness leaving a creamy film across the tounge. very easy drinking stout!

Photo of megahurts4
4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout

Appearance: Opaque black, huge head with a lot of lacing.

Smell: Espresso, floral hops.

Taste: Espresso, floral hops, and a slight cocoa/chocolate flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thick and slightly like syrup.

Bottom line:
Do you like espresso? This tastes a lot like an espresso with some minor cocoa/chocolate flavor and floral hops. You can also taste the minerals in the water that was used for brewing. This is an excellent beer.

Photo of Reaper16
3.78/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle served into a tulip glass

Pours a roasty dark brown - pretty much black - with three fat fingers of mocha head. Lacing is wall-like around the glass. Head retention is impressive, staying at about one finger of medium-sized bubbles throughout most of the drink.

This is certainly a coffee stout. I get straight up coffee grounds at first. Earthy, dusty. It yields to some vanilla, some caramel syrup. With warmth a certain fruity quality begins to emerge that reminds me of cordial cherries. The back end of the aroma is full of baked chocolate. Brownies, maybe. This beer pretty much smells exactly like the experiment I did at work a few weeks ago where I sprinkled coffee grounds onto chocolate chip cookies.

That fruity aroma was indicative of a strong dark cherry Shasta flavor on the palate. Black cherry, cordial cherry candies. Oh yeah, there's lots of coffee too, especially on the finish. It tastes like Folgers with a splash of sno-cone flavoring. Thankfully the roast is strong enough to take the edge off of the sweetness. This is an interesting beer. In truth I find it to be a 3.75 but I rounded up to 4.0 considering I can't score it a 3.75. Too much fruit for my tastes. But it works reasonably well. You should enjoy this beer a lot.

Mouthfeel is pretty solid for the style. It doesn't have enough thickness to be considered "good," but it is certainly above average. The thinner body works well with the fruit tastes. An ABV% of 7.5 is pretty reasonable for the style. If only the fruit didn't get to become taxing after about one bottle.

This is a damn nice coffee stout. It does some things that other beers of its ilk don't. Worth seeking out for anyone that likes coffee-forward beers.

Photo of StoutKing0104
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is my first Japanese beer and I think I chose a winner.

A - A pretty hard pour delivers a black body with about a half finger worth of deep mocha head. The head sibsides fairly quickly leaving decent lacing. This lacing gets better as the beer goes down.

S - Immediately hit with storng espresso and coffee aromas, then roasted malt, dark chocolate, and a little smoke.

T - NOse doesn't lie, a strong taste of black coffee and espresso bean which is countered nicely by the dark chocolate. There is also roasted malt with a little smokey effect.

F - Moderate carbonation tingles the tongue and brings out the full flavor of the espresso bean. The brew flows fairly smoothly over the pallet but the can sting a little if held too long on the tongue.

D - A terrific stout with nicely balanced coffee and chocolate flavors. Makes for a very nice, and delicious, drinking brew. I recommend that everyone should try this one.

Photo of thagr81us
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from tap into a 4oz tumbler. Poured a reddish black when held up in the light with a one finger tan head that lingered throughout. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of roasted malt and subtle coffee beans. The flavor was of subtle espresso, roasted malt, a little watery, with a nice cream followthrough. It had a medium feel on the palate with low carbonation. Overall this brew wasn't that bad, but it also wasn't that great either. For me the flavor and aroma profile of this one was lacking a little bit. If this were to have been bumped up a bit this could be quite excellent. Worth trying on tap for sure, but that is about it...

Photo of BeerNinja007
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a 330mL single of this on a recent beer buying trip through Connecticut. $4.99 at Amity Wine & Spirits in New Haven. Served cold in a small chilled goblet.

A hard pour of this pitch black brew fails to generate much head. What's there is mocha colored and spotty, except where it forms a clingy meniscus which curtains the glass as I sip. The nose is a huge dose of acidic dark coffee, a bit of dark chocolate, dry and astringent like a strong porter. Maybe some licorice, smoke, and earth waiting in the wings? Taste is also strong with black coffee, but balanced fairly evenly with chocolate. Dry, but not astringent or overpoweringly acidic like I had fear'd it might be. Moderately carbonated, fairly dense but not viscous. Finishes with a dry starchy/grainy feel, as if there were fine particles of coffee ground or cocoa powder on the tongue.

The second pour into the glass gives a nice 1/2" cake of raw umber foam, better than the first pour, but it again settles quickly. The taste is more balanced but less diverse than the smell.

Photo of milkbaby9
3.61/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

330ml bottle (labeled E.10.02, drank 9-6-2010) into Samuel Adams sensory glass. Pours out a rich dark black brown producing 2 inch creamy tan small bubbled head that sticks around and leaves incredible lacing.

Aroma of dark chocolate, dark roasted coffee beans, a sweet creaminess. Only a slight "green" aroma from hops betrays this as beer instead of a mocha coffee. However, the chocolate and coffee aromas seemed to diminish as the beer warmed up.

Taste was sweet and lightly fruity entry into a strongly malty body -- a bit roasty, lightly chocolate and coffee. Much more subtle than I expected, especially compared to what you might expect from an American coffee stout. Finishes with a bit of a hoppy bitterness taking over from the roasty bitterness and some maltiness hanging around.

Moderatly low carbonation but not quite as smoothly milkshake as I would've preferred. Medium light body, a little too watery.

Alcohol starts to come through as it warms up, though it still remains pretty smooth and mellow to drink. A bit of a surprise to me as this is much more smooth and mellow than I expected with the coffee character being more subdued and less dominant than I expected. Okay, but not sure I'd pay this much ($4.50/bottle) for it again.

Photo of foogerd
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A- blackness with a espresso colored head
S- coffee beans ground soaked in licorice coffee and dark chocolate really bold
T- straight up coffee and espresso with bitter chocolate and a slight tang finish
M- medium carbonation and a bit watery for the style
D- i drink 3 cup of coffee a day who am i to judge?

Photo of BDTyre
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very nice coffee stout from Kiuchi. Dark coffee colour with a coffee-and-cream head that is dense but thin.

Rich, roasted coffee smell. Slight sugary flavour to it. Rich, slightly bitter black coffee. Very rich espresso flavour.

The important points on this are spot on, but I do think it is a bit thin. This could be "beefed" up a bit. I'm surprised at the light body on this as the alcohol content suggests this should be a bigger beer.

But still, quite enjoyable and a very tasty beer.

Photo of fastsrt
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 ounce bottle to snifter

A: black pour, thin head leaning to nothing.

S: bread, coffee and chocolate

T: light, tastes like there is british influence, astringent in the finish. subtle coffee

M: light body, nice balance,

D: smooooth, drinking beer

Photo of mtnbikerpa
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pilsner style glass. About 2 inches of dark creamy head. Body of the beer is almost black. Strong scents of coffee and chocolate almost remind me of a mocha. Slight roasted nut-like flavors really add to the rounded out flavors. Smooth mouthfeel. This beer is a nice sipper.

Photo of andrewinski1
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into tulip with two inch head on top of a pitch black body. The bubbles are tiny and the head lasts quite a while. The coffee smell is prevalent. A hint of sweetness that is reminiscent of chocolate is in the background. The taste is dominated by smooth espresso flavor. Sweet chocolatey malt flavor is in the background. The bitterness is strong; after a couple sips the coffee flavor leaves a slight tang. This is a lighter bodied stout and drinks well considering. I would have again.

Photo of gford217
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
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.

Photo of laituegonflable
3.43/5  rDev -12.7%
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.

Photo of sisuspeed
3.95/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

Photo of CrazyDavros
4/5  rDev +1.8%
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.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.82/5  rDev -2.8%
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.

Photo of mulder1010
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
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.

Photo of FenwaySquid
4.35/5  rDev +10.7%
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

Photo of Macca
3.9/5  rDev -0.8%
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.

Photo of womencantsail
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
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.

Photo of Ghenna
3.81/5  rDev -3.1%
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.

Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout from Kiuchi Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 836 ratings.