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Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale - Kiuchi Brewery

Not Rated.
Hitachino Nest Red Rice AleHitachino Nest Red Rice Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

545 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 545
Reviews: 308
rAvg: 3.7
pDev: 14.86%
Wants: 27
Gots: 34 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Kiuchi Brewery visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-01-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 545 | Reviews: 308 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of SwillinBrew


3.28/5  rDev -11.4%

I poured this from an 11.2 oz bottle. It poured a light copper with yellow hues. Mine had a thin while head which left a faint lace if any.

The aroma was a faint spice with some orange/citrus... i think. When I tasted it, I couldnt quite place it. Maybe it was the red rice??? I couldnt taste much hop nor much malt but did taste a sourness. Not a bad sourness,... just not something i'm used to. It was different, yet pleasant.

The body was light and dry. I dont think i'll be drinking more of this... not because it's bad but rather I dont think this is my style... (I do love their anniversary ale).

03-12-2005 06:13:31 | More by SwillinBrew
Photo of Hibernator


3.93/5  rDev +6.2%

I picked up a single of the Hitachino Red Rice Ale. I had it out of 330 ml short, brown bottle. I have seen this beer just a few times and I've always been interested in seeing what its all about. The label states that the ale is brewed with a special red rice. There is also, what I assume to be a freshness date on the front label for RR.3.8 in black ink.

I served the beer in an imperial pint glass. It pours a hazy orange color with a nice head on top, but the head quickly vanishes to a thin ring lacing.

Chalky yeast scent in the nose with some fruit in the background. I also get a little bit of spices or cloves.

Sweet and crisp mouthfeel. Fairly intense carbonation prickles the tongue. Rasberry or strawberry fruit flavors are blended with a Belgian like yeast. The finish is dry and clean. At 8.5% ABV, it's very well hidden. I would have no clue that this little beer would pack such a punch.

The first question that comes to my mind is where is this beer when I go out to Japanese restaurants for sushi? I would love to order this over the typical macro Japanese adjunct beer options. This is an interesting beer. I like it.

02-12-2005 17:41:30 | More by Hibernator
Photo of merlin48


3.18/5  rDev -14.1%

This is one of those kooky breweries, based on my third sampling of their ales. This one pours from a 330ml bottle a pinkish burnt orange body with a small, big bubbled head that is offwhite in color. Active carbonation is apparent, with lots of bubble action. Rings of patchy lace form atop the hazy body.
Aroma is restrained, thankfully, as what I notice is not overly pleasant. Very adjunct like, with notes of sake and rice.
Mouthfeel is light bodied and highly carbonated.
Taste is interesting. Begins sweet and yeasty, and morphs into a dry, sour, and acidic sake taste. Some sharp notes are present, and it's difficult to discern whether it's from the hops or alcohol. Finishes dry and vinous, very akin to sake.
Well, this was another unique offering from Hitachino. This one is going to be an acquired taste, but at the high price I probably won't bother. I like their Classic Ale, aged in cedar, much better. Try this one if you want some sake and rice in your beer.

02-06-2005 19:30:58 | More by merlin48
Photo of cokes


3.95/5  rDev +6.8%

Salmon-tinted copper, blurred and sporting a trim, stark white head.
Nose of cloved sake, bologna, and and pepper.
Begins with a notion of baked clove-sprinkled honey ham, one that is quick and fleeting. Sake is dominant at this point, and lingers for a long while. Turns doughier and grainier, with an undercutting pear and green apple tartness. Finishes with a burst of spicy hops and not a legit trace of ABV.
A different brew for sure, and a bit score-defiant of that reason, but it's one that I'd get again on occasion.

01-11-2005 05:56:51 | More by cokes
Photo of GCBrewingCo

North Carolina

3.63/5  rDev -1.9%

The beer poured golden amber (definite reddish hue) with a very slight haze. The head was just off-white and frothy growing tall and falling slowly to coat the glass.

The aroma was fruity and had a strong soy/miso presence when opened. The fruity presence was banana and there was a slight clove much like a hefe.

The flavor was sour and that would explain the soy/miso aroma. The flavor also had a trend toward miso. Behind those flavors was a slight chocolate flavor, and the same slight banana fruitiness and just a hint of clove spice. As the beer warmed, the sourness became less apparent or the palate became fatigued. In either case, the beer should be consumed after warming a bit.

The finish was dry with no lasting sourness, but there was a lasting fruit presence. The body was medium light.

24.3 ounce silk screened bottle. Opened this one because I thought it would be light. Had no idea it contained such a high alcohol level and that it would be sour and then it would transform into something completely different. My first taste said to pour it out, later I found myself strangely drawn to the bottle...

12-30-2004 21:16:35 | More by GCBrewingCo
Photo of Gusler


3.43/5  rDev -7.3%

The beer disembarks the brown 330ml bottle a murky reddish-brown with a minimal frothy off white head that depletes quickly leaving a blotchy coating of lace. Nose is sweet, plum like, fresh and clean with the start sweet and the grain profile moderate as is the feel at the top. Finish is pleasantly acidic and the hops forthright in their spicy presence, quite dry aftertaste that covers the palate, also appears to be some alcohol bitterness at the back, a drinkable beer and a change of pace from the normal malt laden beers, a new beer and brewery to me.

12-29-2004 20:36:51 | More by Gusler
Photo of oracle


3.63/5  rDev -1.9%

10 oz draft pour in a chalice glass.

Wow, this is one unusual beer.

Beer arrived looking somewhat peculiar, a deep bronze tinged with redness. There was no head to speak of, just a very thin film that left no lacing.

Smelled like no other beer I've ever tried. Kinda sweet with definate wine-like sourness.

Taste was also extremely unusual. You could taste rice in it right up front along with slighly sweet notes, but the finish came hard, fast and very wine-like. It had a stinging, almost burning quality to it. The first sip was so shocking, I almost put the beer down and didn't finish it. I'm glad I didn't. After 4 or 5 sips, I got adjusted to it. The taste started to smooth out somewhat and the very unusual flavor of sake started to come in.

That's right, I said sake. I have since found out that they use sake yeast in the brewing process, which would account for the some of the very unusual flavor here.

It's very rare to find this on draft in Southern Indiana (thank you Roger), but if it comes around again, I will order it again

12-29-2004 13:17:23 | More by oracle
Photo of AlexJ

North Carolina

3.03/5  rDev -18.1%

Pours a hazy, pale, funky color that there is no name for: yellow + pink=?? Airy, white head dissapears quickly, minimal lace. Funky aromas of belgian yeasts, lemony citrus, wheat-malt, and slightly sour apple. Tastes...odd to say the least. It's like a wheat beer trying to go Belgian. Fruity, soft and effervescant with crisp flavors of apple, pear and apricot. Light mouthfeel, dry finish. Does not taste like an 8.5% beer at all. I really don't know what to think, there's not another beer on the planet that this reminds me of. Worth trying for the sheer weirdness of it.

12-16-2004 23:40:44 | More by AlexJ
Photo of ybnorml

Rhode Island

2.88/5  rDev -22.2%

A cloudy darkish yellow beer. Has an off white head that dissapears quickly. There is a very nice fruity sweet character along with an inviting spiceyness in the aroma. The flavor is sour, dry and reminds me of fruit going bad. None of the Belgian spiceyness promised in the aroma. More like a gueze than a strong ale.

12-08-2004 22:34:35 | More by ybnorml
Photo of clvand0


3.38/5  rDev -8.6%

Came in a 25oz bottle. Pours a dark orange color with a white head. Aroma has a grainy character backed by some floral hops. The flavor is slightly sweet and leaves a bit of citrus bitterness on the palate. Medium drinkability and medium body. This was an ok beer. Nothing too wonderful, but good.

10-20-2004 18:55:41 | More by clvand0
Photo of Gueuzedude


3.85/5  rDev +4.1%

Surprisingly this pours with a pink tinged head that is frothy for a bit but then settles down with time. The beer has a hazy light amber color. The aroma is quite grainy, with some qualities that I can't quite pick out. It is also a little bit fruity in the nose, with perhaps a hint of cherry. Hmm, very interesting taste, the finish is quite unique, and I don't know how to describe it, almost has a menthol character to it, maybe a bit like wet grain. The beer is light, with a solid grain character to it. According to the label all of the color has come from the rice, which makes sense as I don't taste any crystal malt notes that would usually accompany a beer of this color. I definitely like this beer, it is quite interesting. I definitely recommend trying it as it has some unique character to it.

10-11-2004 17:00:12 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of IronDjinn

Alberta (Canada)

2.83/5  rDev -23.5%

Managed to sample this while I was in Vegas. Came in a big-assed 24.3 oz. dark green bottle. Poured out a clear amber colour, small tight foamy white head. It had a very musty odor to my nose, that was predominantly what I could pick up. A sweet acidic flavour, almost sake-like due to the grains used to brew it, I couldn't pick up any real nuances beyond that. The flavour tends to turn a little astringent after a while. Somewhat soapy mouthfeel. An interesting experiment, but just not my bag, baby. The boys working the counter at Lee's Discount the night I picked this up were right, I should have grabbed more Stone instead.

09-27-2004 23:27:18 | More by IronDjinn
Photo of Rastacouere

Quebec (Canada)

3.18/5  rDev -14.1%

Nice white head sticks to the glass but doesn’t produce much lacing. Body is orange to golden with a lot of sediments. Original fruity aroma: Yeasty pears, apples, cherries, grapes... rather sweet, but well made. Yeasty bread, filling. Dry and grainy. Slight sour spades. Very unique and tasty of course, but not quite as demarcative as I hoped. Nice foamy mouthfeel, highly carbonated. Musty finish where I was thinking "Hmm, they could have hidden that 5% ABV a tad better". Then I noticed it’s 8.5%. Good job!

09-27-2004 15:12:38 | More by Rastacouere
Photo of kiya


3.93/5  rDev +6.2%

I absolutely love the bottle design and artwork for this entire brewery, great looking from the outside, now let’s check out what’s inside…

A thick bright white head, moving down quickly leaving behind absolutely no lace, just the clean dry glass.

I quickly noticed the strong citrus and floral notes as the head left a lot of surface area at first.

A bit surprising was the mouthfeel, with a very strong carbonated feel. it’s hard to fully understand this ale until it sits out for at least fifteen to twenty minutes and warms up a bit and flattens out a bit. I found the flavor to be very pleasant, something I see myself wanting more of once the first bottle ran dry. Once this beer comes closer to room temperature the darker burnt caramel flavor really starts to come out, which works brilliantly with the, now subdued, apricot and orange peel flavors.

All in all, I would happily buy this beer again, It’s as good inside as it is outside the bottle.

09-14-2004 22:06:10 | More by kiya
Photo of RoyalT


3.05/5  rDev -17.6%

Appearance – This one has a pretty, hazy yellow body with a full head.

Smell – The strong, ricey grain was balanced by some surprisingly soft, floral hops.

Taste – The sharp grain and rice defined this ale. I caught some good sweetness at the end, though.

Mouthfeel – This one is light to medium in the body with some good, tingling carbonation.

Drinkability – This one was OK. It went well with my Kaisershinken ham and Swiss cheese sandwich.

Comments – The style classification has to be wrong. This isn’t anything close to a BSPA.

08-30-2004 16:22:13 | More by RoyalT
Photo of maxpower


4/5  rDev +8.1%

24.3 ounce bottle pours cloudy bright reddish-orange color with a huge frothy head that leaves some lacing in my glass. Tropical fruity aroma, sweet fruity flavors. Medium to full bodied with a soft mildly carbonated mouthfeel. Finishes a bit sour and dry, alcohol very well hidden, its hard to believe this is 8.5%.

08-18-2004 23:55:42 | More by maxpower
Photo of RenoZymurgist


3.45/5  rDev -6.8%

This ale pours a weird orange brown color. The aroma is sweet with light malt accents. The flavor is absoultly mind boggling. In Nevada there is a native plant called Indian Tea or Mormon Tea which is an Ephedra relative. I have drank this tea many times and Red Rice has a flavor very much like the Indian Tea in that it has a creamy medicinal quality. Reminds me of Sake this ale has a flavor that is strange and enticing at the same time. The finish has a medicinal graininess to it that i can only equate to Red Rice. An excellent ale to experience as it showcases the prowress of Japanese brewers.

08-03-2004 04:47:41 | More by RenoZymurgist
Photo of NeroFiddled


4.38/5  rDev +18.4%

Hitachino Nest's Red Rice Ale is certainly one of the most unique beers available. It pours a hazy deep gold body that streams with effervescent carbonation beneath a 3/4" cap of fluffy, bright-white foam. The head retention is very good and it leaves some nice spots and thins splashes of transient lace throughout the glass. The nose is quite unusual with an aroma that expresses wheat, but is also similar to that of a dry white wine combined with a touch of play-doh. It's light-medium bodied with a very delicate, effervescent carbonation that lends a mild zest to the tongue before it warms in the mouth becoming airy and slightly creamy. There's an odd, almost medicinal, lightly tart, and slightly candyish note in the flavor that's quite unique. It's kind of like delicate spice wrapped in soft, creamy candy - all tied together with a twine of dried flowers. It finishes with its sweetness rapidly fading as its tartness and bitterness rise; and a mild bitterness, spicy hop, light phenolic, and some astringency linger in the mouth. As odd as it is, it's also quite delicate; and in that way it becomes quite enticing. There are some harsh notes to it; but there are also harsh notes in the best Belgian gueuze. They're what gives it it's character, and this beer is nowhere near as intense as a gueuze. You may not love it, but it's certainly worth trying. I find it intriguing, and perhaps, one of the most interesting beers in the world. My highest praise to Mr. Toshiyuki Kiuchi!

07-20-2004 18:31:56 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of TheLongBeachBum


3.88/5  rDev +4.9%

Presentation: 330ml (11.2 fluid ounce) squat Japanese stubby that looks just like the picture in the BA Database.

Appearance: Fizzy pour that creates a smallish white head that fizzled somewhat until it left a thin blanket covering and some lacing. Graded dark gold fading to light orange color with some lemon marmalade hints as I work my way down the curved Birra Moretti glass that I decided to use. Many streamers in the body of the beer continue apace as a quick swirl reveals and abundance of dissolved carbonation.

Nose: Spritzy and very fruity nose that has a zesty aroma with a whiff of strong oranges & lemons in the odor. Mild, rather delicate hoppy nose with a hint of sourness. Average strength but sharply pungent acidic aromas.

Taste: The ‘oranges and lemons’ I detected in the nose are immediately evident in the preceding phases of the beers entrance. Malts middle the brew with some bitterness that builds and balances with some sour twitches. The finish has Saki soaked malts that exhibit a light red berry feel that is delicate, yet carried by the lingering carbonation in the mouth as the beer is swallowed. Very tasty.

Mouthfeel: Sparkling feel with some immense carbonation that fizzes on the tongue. Spritzy, smooth and champagne-like, the body of the beer is full of energy and helps to balance the acidic oranges & lemons well.

Drinkability: I took to this brew immediately. The little stumpy bottle was empty in no time. A tad expensive at around $4 a bottle, but it certainly hits the spot.

Overall: I am not one for style infractions, having stoned the “style police van” when it drives anywhere near me, but I have to say that the “Belgium Strong Pale Ale” description may be a tad misleading to those who have not tried this before. Think more of light Pale Ale with hints of citric acidity and zesty red berry fruits mixed with some Saki soaked Malts. Whatever you want to refer to is as, it’s my third brew now from Kiuchi, and this is just as damn tasty and impressive as the other two. Expensive but Recommended.

07-01-2004 06:53:29 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of rdrummer

New Jersey

3.78/5  rDev +2.2%

This one takes some getting used to. It is kind of an odd looking and tasting beer. It pours a light, amber with some evident reddish hues. It had a short-lasting head and only minor lacing. The aroma is primarily ricey with some spices underneath. The taste is very complex. It is sweetish throughout with some vanilla and coriander tastes near the end. It is sweet than a sweet malt. The beer is effervescent, cleansing, and light. The beer is a on the sweet side to drink more than one, but it was a very interesting tasting.

06-22-2004 22:52:58 | More by rdrummer
Photo of connecticutpoet


3.33/5  rDev -10%

This was an odd one. I didn't know what to expect from it, so I went into it trying to be as openminded as possible.

It poured a nice light amber, slightly cloudy, which was a bit of a surprise. Likewise its aroma, which was of light malt with a touch of vanilla. I didn't expect a malt aroma from a rice ale.

The taste was sllightly smoky, with very light citrus in the aftertaste. Again, not expected, and not overpowering. And it certainly didn't taste like something with a high abv.

I am glad I tried it, but once was enough for me.

06-21-2004 02:52:32 | More by connecticutpoet
Photo of budgood1


3.18/5  rDev -14.1%

pours out a cloudy golden/amber colour with a fine white head and wisps of lace. unique aroma...like a spicy lunch meat...slightly phenolic...tastes really unlike any beer i've ever had before. some plastic and band-aid flavours...grassy...definite rice notes; a wild rice flavour and other herbalish notes. there are some real flavours happening but i'm having a hard time describing them because of their uniqueness. there is some bitterness to balance out the sweet and sour in the finish. this beer is really all over the place. it's nothing to dislike, but i wouldn't say i really like it, either.

worth trying. a nice beer to pair with a sweet and sour dish.

05-15-2004 19:43:24 | More by budgood1
Photo of feloniousmonk


3.75/5  rDev +1.4%

Color, pale crimson, nearly peach,slight haze, under a full, fresh, white head that settles down to a tight ring with a quickness.
Aroma is hoppy and citric, a small bit sour, yielding more grassy/herbal tones than it does fruit.
Brisk, tangy initial impression on the palate, tickles for a moment, then fades. Fruit that hid from the nose shows up in the flavor, light and subtle, though, strawberries, cherries.
Body is lightish, finish is less than I like.
Oddly, my impression of this brew changed halfway through...when once i was bored and disappointed, later on it perked up and I appreciated it's uniqueness more than I had.
Still not great, but quite an interesting approach, smooth, yet still spicy and lively, but very drinkable. Quite a quencher, with a kick.

05-10-2004 03:49:55 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of StevieW


3.5/5  rDev -5.4%

Big 24.3 oz bottle. The big Hitachino Owl staring back at you. I was really surprised to see this listed as Belgian Strong Ale. I guess it makes more sense now, viewed in that respect.
Pours a light golden color with a reddish tinge. It produced a bubbly rocky off white head.
Smell as cooked rice, sweet alcohol, and earthy yeast quality to.
Taste was oddly sweet, and slick to start, syrupy almost. Hints of fruits, strawberries, raspberries, and lots of alcohol taste. Has a certain crispness toward the finish, that attribute to the rice. No it doesn't taste like a budweiser, but not what I expected either. Seems to me more sweet than anything. Almost one the way to being a tripel ? Medium to light bodied, noticable alcohol kick and flavors. Not a guzzler to be sure, but an interesting beer, probably won't go searching it out again for a while.

04-25-2004 22:21:18 | More by StevieW
Photo of Crotor


3.55/5  rDev -4.1%

This is a truly unique beer. I'm delighted to see someone experimenting with adjuncts such as rice in such a way as to produce interesting and original beer (as opposed to the macro-brewed swill).

The beer has a slightly cloudy, almost orange, appearance. Low head and retention leave something to be desired.

The aroma is very clean, and *slightly* phenolic (the rice?)

The rice makes for a light body and pleasant, slightly prickley mouthfeel. Slightly tart and only barely bitter, there's a weird fruitiness at the end (raspberries?) The taste profile is quite aggressive considering the other qualities of the beer.

Truly unlike any other beer I've ever had. I applaud the brewers for their inventiveness...

04-13-2004 22:05:31 | More by Crotor
Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale from Kiuchi Brewery
84 out of 100 based on 545 ratings.