Hitachino Nest Extra High (XH) - Kiuchi Brewery

Not Rated.
Hitachino Nest Extra High (XH)Hitachino Nest Extra High (XH)

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BA SCORE
85
very good

618 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 618
Reviews: 336
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 13%
Wants: 24
Gots: 32 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Kiuchi Brewery visit their website
Japan

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
From Japan's most prestigious brewery, Hitachino Nest XH (Extra High) is a strong Belgian Brown Ale, matured in shochu (distilled sake) barrels. Chinook & Styrian Goldings hops are use

(Beer added by: UncleJimbo on 12-29-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 618 | Reviews: 336 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by MadeInOregon:
Photo of MadeInOregon
4.9/5  rDev +30%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Found this at a Japanese grocery store. Lucky me! I didn't know it was "retired", but was still more than willing to shell out $6 for a Hitachino Nest I hadn't seen before.

THE APPEARANCE of Hitachino Nest XH is, well, beautiful--as silly as that word is for describing beer. Massive latte-esque foam erupts from the liquid, which is a very nice orangish brown and very cloudy with sediment. Thick, lacing is all over the place. Mouth-watering! The bottle is even attractive--too bad I can't drink that. Foam eventually dwindles down to a nice thin film across the top of the beer.

THE SMELL is candied orange, yeast, banana, and little hops. The candy quality is very unique and clearly references the sake that was stored in the same casks as this beer. Think: Nigori sake + a strong Belgian ale. There are some similarities in fragrance to a bourbon-barrel aged beer, however the XH is much crisper and sweeter due to the rice from the sake.

THE TASTE is equally impressive, and very complex. Flavors progress like this: Sake, banana+candied orange, cotton candy → Hot, spicy yeast → Milk chocolate → light hops → orange peels + banana + hops

THE FEEL is very full and stimulating, yet not assaulting. The alcohol, like with most of the Hitachino line, is mild and well-masked. An American ale this bold would normally push 10%.

CONCLUSION: This is only my second All-5's rating. I find no faults with this beer other than that it's so hard to find! It's a very unique (and Japanese) take on both the barrel-aging concept as well as strong Belgian ales (Yes, I do not think this should be called an “American Strong Ale”. “Belgian Double Ale” would be more appropriate, in my opinion). I'd never heard of, or even thought about aging beers in sake casks so this was my first sampling of such a style. So, Kiuchi Brewery is setting the bar pretty high for future tastings!

More User Reviews:
Photo of braugon
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of weatherdog
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served on tap in a 13oz Hitachino stubby tulip shaped pint glass at Bavarian Lodge in Lisle Il

It pours a lively reddish brown with a 2 finger head. The beer was pretty cloudy and lots carbonation bubbles were surfacing.

The aroma was pretty muted for what I would expect from the description. It had some wood and cherry type fruit notes mixed in with some nice Brett funk.

The taste was nice and tart with some fruit notes. It reminded me of a flanders style beer at first. Some wood came through as well. I'm sad to say that I've never partook in drinking sake so I cannot report on any influence in this beer. Overall it had a decent funky brett flavor profile but everything seemed muddled and sloppy. The carbonation was on the high side and became distracting forcing me to take smaller sips in order to savor the beer properly. An interesting beer for sure and glad to find it on tap.

Photo of tbryan5
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of BenTherHppedThat
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of explosivebeer
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a deep, slightly hazy amber with a thick, lasting, creamy head. It has a nice sour aroma and flavor that is balanced with a little underlying sweetness in the body of the beer. There are some woody notes followed by a balanced finish. Tasty. I'll definitely get this one again.

Photo of blackearth
2/5  rDev -46.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Purchased from Blue Max Liquors in Burnsville, MN. Pours a murky, dark reddish brown body with a huge pillowy off-white head. There are globs of sediment floating around and settling in the bottom of the snifter. The aroma is one big sour mish-mosh of belgian yeast. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and highly carbonated. The bottle actually foamed out a little after I popped the cap. Sweet syrupy flavor that has a tart and sour finish. I can't detect any sake. I guess this is what you get sometimes when you buy "experimental" beers. I couldn't even finish this one.

Photo of kuishinbo_tantei
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of DaftPatrick
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of dill
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was excited that this beer made it's way to America and I picked up a bottle as soon as I could and tried it right away. I shared it with a friend who really likes shouchu so I was looking forward to her reaction to it as well. It poured a golden yellow with a thick white head. I noted some floral notes to it as well as some spice and a bit of the shouchu which I was really looking for. It's a bit dry with tight, gentle carbonation. A nice beer to savor.

Photo of R_Kole
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of SmellsofMahagony
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of mverity
3.54/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I picked up a bottle from Hop Jacks in Pensacola. Pours an amber brown color with white head that dissipated quickly. Smells of sweet grass, caramel, touch of sour notes. Taste is mostly sweet caramel and some tartness. Mouthfeel is rather watery. Otherwise, I'm glad I only bought a single bottle of this beer. Not great

Photo of merlin48
3.48/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dirty auburn brown body with a small beige head that quickly falls to a cap. Some rings of lace aound the snifter. Aroma of wood, sake, and fried rice. Mouthfeel is nice, medium body and crisp carbonation. Taste is better than the aroma with prominent oak wood tones and a faint note of berries. As it warms, the sake becomes dominant imparting some harsh alcohol which lasts into the finish. Not my favorite Hitachino Nest but one of the most interesting.

Photo of henryclay_
4.75/5  rDev +26%

Photo of Mora2000
3.7/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Travita for sharing this beer.

The beer pours an orangish-amber color with a tan head. The aroma is basic caramel malt with some fruit and yeast. The flavor is completely different, with brett funk, citrus fruit and a good amount of tartness. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of JC333
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of GuidedByVoices
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of bsp77
4.38/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Pilsner-like glass.

Appearance: Cloudy orange with towering cream colored head and some nice lacing.

Smell: Tart apples, vinegar, oak and pepper.

Taste: Nice tartness derived from apple and citrus. The oak aging adds a nice level of complexity, as does the brett. Ends with pepper, clove and spicy hops. Great balance overall and the tartness remains at a manageable level.

Feel: Moderately high carbonation, medium body with a tart, dry finish. As the carbonation recedes, it becomes very smooth.

Drinkability: Love the complex layers within this beer, while remaining compulsively drinkable.

Photo of innominat
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of virinow
3/5  rDev -20.4%

Photo of fionn13
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of bpfrush
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of dogfishandi
3.93/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz bottle poured into a bulb style glass. xh.10.08. stamped on the bottom of the back label. listed as 7% on neck of bottle.

pours out a really nice murky reddish/ orange brown color with a huge 4 fingers of billowy, soapy off white head. amazing rocky retention and lots of furry sticky lace.

off the initial smell i got lots of sour, tart, musty funk. behind that there some spice, ripe fruits, a bit of dark fruits and a bit metallic with just a hint of wood.

lots of sharp tart musty funk, ripe fruits, leafy herbs, aluminum like metallic flavor which is not too desirable. a bit of dark fruit like malt sweetness and a bit of a spicy bitterness with a touch of wood in the background.

the funk and tart is there, but not enough to pucker you mouth. light and fluffy on the palate, medium bodied. lots of carbonation.

one and done, but i would drink this again. this to me is exactly like a belgian flanders red/ oud bruin. a nice beginners sour. the funk is definatly there, but nothing overpowering. worth one bottle.

Photo of wehttam
5/5  rDev +32.6%

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Hitachino Nest Extra High (XH) from Kiuchi Brewery
85 out of 100 based on 618 ratings.