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Shiner Ruby Redbird | Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner

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Shiner Ruby RedbirdShiner Ruby Redbird

Brewed by:
Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner
Texas, United States

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.01%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by wagenvolks on 03-17-2011

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Reviews: 267 | Ratings: 1,243
Photo of brother_rat
3.27/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I had this on draught over at Hill Country in midtown last week, and I was able to get a 6-pack of it this weekend for a grilling party where I was able to review it. I poured a bottle into a regular pint glass.

A: Pours a nice bright hazy golden, with a tinge of redness--almost a light, strawberry blonde coloration. Not bad. The beer was highly carbonated and it showed, and there was a one-finger head of big bubbles that quickly went down. Nice and translucent. No lacing. 2.75

S: Nothing spectacular: you do pick up a bit of the bright citrus notes and the spice upon opening, although the crisp grapefruit and spice/ginger flavors that come through very strong in tasting are very muted. The scent does not linger. 2.5

T: Actually quite tasty and refreshing: the grapefruit hits you over the head, and the spice is also very pronounced. You can pick up ginger, but also some other blend (allspice? nutmeg?), and the grapefruit flavors does tend to fade into a general citrus and green brightness as the beer sits. It's very light but not insubstantial, and it all leads to a nice tart/sour flavor that reminded me slightly of a spiced-up Berliner Weisse. Very light on the hops, and very light on the malt also; I have to say that had I not seen that red grapefruit was being used (noted on the bottle), I would have thought white grapefruit. 3.5

M: Very carbonated, which I don't usually like--but it seemed to open up the bright flavors. Had the feel of a spiced Fresca soda, which on a very hot day (outside, grilling) worked very well and was very refreshing. 3.5

O: To me, this is a perfect example of a situational beer--and really, that's all you can expect from any sort of seasonal, let alone a summer seasonal. I found the beer very pleasant for a hot day out by the grill--it's tart and refreshing, the hint of spice went fine with our meats and grilled veggies, and the very light character went down really well. With the nice bright tartness, I didn't miss the hops or malt one bit. As long as you keep your beer cold (the experience went downhill considerably as my beer warmed up), it's a great light choice with some character. For any other day but a hot summer day, I'd give it somewhere in the high 2s, but for a hot summer day it got the job done and then some: 3.75.

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Photo of DeFaz
3.28/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Pours a fairly large (for a summer beer) white head that quickly fades and leaves no lacing. I was expecting a bright ruby color, but it really has more of a red tint.

Smell: Pleasant but unremarkable. Grapefruit and ginger.

Taste: Not complex, but still interesting. It's simple and refreshing. You'll taste the grapefruit and ginger. Somewhat dry and somewhat sweet--not spicy, but certainly crisp.

Mouthfeel: Pretty much exactly what I was looking for. Body is typical of a summer beer: somewhat (but not in my opinion too) thin and carbonation is on the high end. This goes down easy and despite being somewhat sweet it's not sticky.

Overall: Look, if the idea of a beer with considerable grapefruit and ginger flavors sounds uninviting, then this probably isn't your best option. For me, as someone who likes ginger and grapefruit, I enjoyed drinking this while acknowledging that it's not complex. It's not the best fruit beer out there, but if you happen to crave both beer and grapefruit on a warm day and are looking for one with only natural flavors, this isn't a bad choice.

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Photo of archyquaffer
3.28/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

The label mentions the additions of Texas Ruby Red grapefruit and ginger. Poured from the longneck twisty into a Pilsener glass. A moderate pour produces only about a half-inch head, which disappears within about a minute, leaving absolutely no lacing. The beer is an amber color with big fizzy bubbles rising.

The aroma is distinctly of grapefruit, but not overwhelmingly so. Grapefruit and ginger are quite apparent in the flavor, but seem fairly well balanced by a base bitterness suggesting (what else?) grapefruit pith. Some subtle floral notes are also discernable; perhaps also just a bit of honey. Underneath it all, a slight touch of pale malt flavor adds a cracker-like note. It's sweet overall, but not cloying. The mouthfeel is rather spritzy. A very mild lingering bitterness connects sips.

I'm enjoying this beer during my lunch break. This refreshing beverage provides a good alternative to a soda pop or an iced tea, and the low ABV means you can drink two or three of these without going back to your job buzzed and ready for a nap.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.28/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Picked this up at Fairway in Woodland Park for a dirt cheap price of $5.99 (or was it $6.99), figuring that it would be a steal at best and a lawnmower beer at worst. My expectations were low for this given that I'm not a fan of this style of beer, but I wanted to see if this would buck that trend. Although it didn't, there wasn't anything not to like about this and it was so unoffensive that I actually had to pace myself when drinking this, in order to actually take the time and see if there was anything worth savoring.

Other reviewers on here saw a bit of a head on this when it was poured out but this was the first beer that I've ever seen where there wasn't a head at all to be found. Zero. Zilch. Nada - just like the lacing from start to finish. This allowed for the dull goldenrod hue to stand out a bit more and since there was hardly any carbonation to be seen, this had the appearance of flat soda. Not much of an aroma here either and the taste was that of a ginger beer, along with lemon zest and flat champagne. Any alcohol here was along the taste and feel of Zima and only the snap of ginger remained in the aftertaste, well into the next sip.

Sure, this was a session beer...but that's only assuming that more than one would be had in a sitting. For me, I could have a few at a time but it's easy to see why most people would only drink one of these before moving onto something else. There's not much to love here and unless you're looking to kick back with a few on a hot afternoon, there's not much to take away from this. This was pretty much a textbook example of what a Summer seasonal should be.

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Photo of Tone
3.29/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, copper color. 1/5 inch head of an off-white color. Poor retention and poor lacing. Smells of ginger, pale malt, and slight citrus. Fits the style of a Fruit / Vegetable beer. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of ginger, slight sweet malt, slight pale malt, and hint of citrus. Overall, session-able, not complex, and almost completely a ginger beer.

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Photo of Dope
3.29/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

No bottling date that I could find.

A: Crystal clear amber pour. Small soda-like fizzy white head (with just a hint of pink in it?). Head fizzes away fast. Slight bits of lacing, minimal retention.

S: Lots and lots of ginger for sure. Hint of grapefruit. Smells mostly like a ginger beer or a ginger ale.

T: Yup, lots and lots of ginger again. Mild grapefruit flavor. Not grapefruit hoppy flavor, just like grapefruit juice only sweeter. Almost no bitterness at all in fact, just a hint in the aftertaste. Just some sweet grapefruit (ruby red I assume) and ginger pretty much throughout.

M: High carbonation with a light body.

O: Not a horrible beer but hardly a beer at the same time. Tastes like someone mixed a little ruby red grapefruit juice and ginger ale and called it good. Good summer beer, I guess. I'd rather an APA or a witbier or a saison, myself. This is more of a quasi-craft beer, IMO. Gateway beer. Not horrifying but nothing special.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.3/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

- Beer brewed with ruby red grapefruit juice and ginger. Served cold as suggested.

A: Rustic oxidized orange with a translucent clarity and a quickly diminishing fizzy beige head that showed a polished clean surface. Carbonation was quick at pace of fine misty bubbles while no window dressing was evident.

S: The aroma was distinct of fresh pink grapefruit, juice like in character, fresh pulp variety. Beyond the pink grapefruit you may be hard pressed to pick up much else.

T: The flavor was fresh grapefruit juice, sweet and tart notes. Again hard to distinguish hop, yeast, or malt character, but this isn’t uncommon per style. Some ginger notes come on, but is the grapefruit juice that is front and center focus of this beer. Smooth and refreshing.

M: Good amount of body, though only a slight amount of carbonation.

O: You may forget your drinking a beer here, though it keeps within the guidelines, low malt and low hop profile, clean yeast, with a forefront of the fruit/vegetable highlighted. Has no mention of alcohol, and drinks like a dream if you are a fan of grapefruit juice (of which I am). Labeled as a great summer time beverage, consumed cold on a hot day, hell I will go as far to say this is the ultimate breakfast beverage as you may not be able to tell this apart from virgin grapefruit juice. Overall as a beer would call this worthy per style, and a solid good rating if you’re a fan of grapefruit juice.

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Photo of garymuchow
3.3/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pleasant soft aroma with hints of the grapefruit and slightly stronger the ginger. The grapefruit grows in time making an interesting and enjoyable nose presentation.
Smallish fairly dense white head caps a brilliantly clear dark gold body.
Soft malt flavors going towards breadiness. Tartness from the grapefruit leads to a very extended dryness closing in on more astringency than I appreciate. Pick ups of the grapefruit primarily and the ginger secondarily add interest to the flavors.
Lighter body with a wee bit bigger carbonation that fits the beer well.
Ya' know this is an all right beer. There are several components that are quite good, but the flavors for me ultimately aren't satisfying, however, as a summer seasonal, it's an interesting and unique alternative of which I give the brewery kudos.
Thanks Dave.

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Photo of Spooky_Action
3.3/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

12 oz amber bottle poured into glass mug. Could not locate a manufacturing date on bottle.

A – Clear & golden-red in color. The head only lasted during the pour - the carbonation hissed and ultimately left behind no head or lacing. Some bubbling observed.

S – Mild citrus peel aroma, subtle spiciness. Smell is mild and does not
linger. Nothing unpleasant.

T – Initially I am hit with mild citrus fruitiness - grapefruit and perhaps strawberries (neither sweetness nor tartness dominates). The ginger flavor is less intense than a ginger ale. Hard to notice other flavors. A slight fruity aftertaste - almost no bitterness.

M – A little watery at first, but the carbonation is enough to produce foam to tickle the tongue.

O - An easy, pleasant and simple beer. The overall flavor profile is not robust enough for my liking, but is still refreshing.

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Photo of wagenvolks
3.3/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a pilsener glass.

While the initial, crackling head doesn't stick around (or to the sides of the glass) for long, the ample supply of carbonation provides a consistent cap of spittle foam. Body is a deep golden-straw color, and crystal clear. The aroma is equal parts Ginger Ale and 7UP. I wish the Citra hops were more prominent. Lots of spicy ginger sweetness, though, with a pleasant undertone of fresh, fleshy grapefruit. A bit of bleached crackers and wheat in the background.

Ginger picks up in intensity with the flavor of Ruby Redbird. Spicy, crisp, and pickled. Grapefruit is an afterthought, and struggles to maintain relevance behind a drying cereal graininess in the finish. A bit too vegetal for my liking. Effervescent mouthfeel is thin and clean with a lingering sharpness from the ginger root. Overall, one of Spoetzl's more unique offerings. Definitely worth trying, if only for the novelty.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.31/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Shiner Ruby Redbird
12 oz. bottle; $1.49 Total Wine & More, Claymont, DE

So I have a Shiner Ruby Redbird sitting here before me. I know nothing about it except that it's listed here on BA as a "Fruit / Vegetable Beer". Odd.

It poured a clear deep-golden orange amber body beneath a short head of white that simply vanished. Perhaps my glass is not "beer clean", but it only leaves minor spots of lace that appear and fade between sips.

The aroma is interesting. It's sweetish, and spicy. I'm thinking ginger and lemon, and perhaps some berries (which is probably coming from the yeast). It's clean and inviting.

In the mouth it's light-medium in body and gently zesty.

The flavor clearly displays the ginger. It has the spiciness, but it also has the more 'meaty' flavor of the ginger. I'm not sure about the lemon I found in the nose as it seems more like lime here. Regardless, there's a little bit of citric acid tartness that helps balance it as there's very little bitterness; however, the malt isn't really that sweet, it's just a slightly bready, straightforward golden malt. You notice the malt at the end, but upfront it's all ginger.

I sampled this beer fairly warm, and I wonder what it would be like ice-cold on a sunny day while cooking outdoors. The cold might make it seem a little more spicy and gingery. And it would cover up the malt a bit more... it's almost not a "beer". But OK, it's at least refreshing, and a touch interesting. It's not a beer that I'd immediately reach for or buy again, but I can think of quite a few mainstream American lagers and/or light beers that I'd pass over for this one. I'm not sure I can give this one a "worth trying", but that wouldn't be the worst thing you could do.

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Photo of Treyliff
3.32/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear and the color of a dark apple cider with no head or lacing. Smells of citrus and ginger, very similar to Bud Light Lime, slightly artificial.

Taste-Light and refreshing, well balanced. The grapefruit gives is a sweet taste with a faint taste of giner lingering on the back end. Seems to have more of a malt presence than most other summer fruit beers. Mouthfeel is light and refreshing.

Overall this beer serves it's purpose well. Very refreshing on a hot summer day or for grilling out.

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Photo of Kromes
3.32/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Clear orange color with no head and lots of noticable carbonation.

S: Smells like malt and ginger.

T: A bready, honey malt background gives way to a ginger and grapefruit flavor. The flavors aren't strong and then disappear quickly.

M: highly carbonated.

O: Call me crazy, but for a summer seasonal beer, this is pretty good. But I do love ginger ale, so I may be biased here. It's light, refreshing, easy drinking, and not overbearing. A great summer session beer.

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Photo of jngrizzaffi
3.32/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a clear dark golden color with a thin carbonated head. Head retention is non-existent. Lacing is minimal. Has a lot of carbonated bubbles. Has more of a sweet, berry and grapefruit aroma with a hint of spicy hops at the end. Very little malt in the taste. Mainly a light grapefruit with a mild spicy hop at the end. I still taste some berry in there, maybe raspberry. Light bodied with heavy carbonation. Taste artificial to me. Not much to it. Would drink again, but it would have to be if only adjuvant lagers are only other option.

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Photo of breadwinner
3.35/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

GINGER! KAPOW! Big old blasts of ginger off the nose, with the ruby red grapefruit coming in to pick up the pieces. It's a little jarring, definitely intense, but not altogether unappetizing. Clear copper/gold color, little head, bubble body that wasn't distracting. Palate is replete with ginger still, though the grapefruit is there too both for flavor and bitterness, along with some vaguely grainy flavor. There was just the lightest touch of mustiness or vegetal-ness or something. Not enough to be super distracting but enough to notice. Not a bad beer, per se, but I'd reach for a helluva lot else before this on a hot summer day.

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Photo of specksnreds
3.35/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is why I try new beers...even when it's Shiner. I really like this beer. I smell and taste more rosemary than grapefruit, but I can pick out the grapefruit. Either flavor is a bit much on the tongue. Golden in color with, as George would say, "...a pinkish hue." Plenty of carbon dioxide, but not much of a head. Zero head, as a matter of fact. Put it in a can, and it'll be my new fishin' beer. Ooooh, I almost forgot, it's got a tangy finish. Genuinely tangy, but not Tang. That would be gross.

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Photo of chilidog
3.35/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a amber with no head or lace.
Aroma of citric, earth and pine.
Taste of a slight citric grapefruit with a ginger dryness.
The mouth is left with a sweet tart lingering grapefruit tartness.
Overall an ok summer beer but not a fan of lower abv brews that tip-toe into its flavor profile.

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Photo of DerekP
3.36/5  rDev +8%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Okay, so it's a fruit beer, and fruit beer's really don't taste like traditional beers with a solid malt bill.

Shiner Ruby Redbird is kind of like a ginger ale, but with alcohol. I'm talking about a serious ginger ale, not the mass produced "natural flavors" ginger ale.

In my light it looks amber-orange. The head left in a hurry. It smells of ginger up front with the sweet bitterness of grapefruit in the shadows. Again, it tastes and feels like a ginger ale. My guess is there is not one cultivar of hops listed in the ingredients for this recipe, but I haven't seen the blackbook of the brewmaster. Call it a hop-free beer if you can stand to imagine such a blasphemous concoction.

Refreshing? Yes. Satisfying? Sure. Does it stand a chance when I've got a choice between it and Bell's Amber Ale or another favorite of mine, Sierra Nevada's Torpedo? No. That being said, nice try.

I like you Shiner Ruby Redbird, but I don't love you.

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Photo of Pgstarr
3.4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Good light summer beer. Has a nice grapefruit undertones. Nothing spectacular but good for what it is. I keep it out by the pool to enjoy on hot summer days in Houston. It is a bit thin, but part of the summer beer appeal. I drink it straight from the bottle so I can not comment on color or head.

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Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Somewhat of an orange-ish tan color, clear, not a lot of head or lacing.

Aroma is pleasant, you can definitely smell the ginger. The grapefruit is less pronounced, but it's probably there in what I would describe as more of a citrusy note. There's a light background of malts as well.

The taste follows the smell pretty nicely. Plenty of ginger, especially on the finish. Citrus notes all the way. Malts are basic but ample. There's not a lot of hops.

Body is light and refreshing, and despite the lackluster appearance, it's amply carbonated.

It's a very pleasant and enjoyable beer. I wouldn't mind having a few of these while messing around in the shed in the back yard on a summer day.

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Photo of Strix
3.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured almost exactly like ginger ale, fizzy carbonation that disappeared instantly. Slightly yellower than ginger ale, but otherwise looks like pop.

Ginger is the main thing I pick up in the nose.

Interesting. I think I could create this with 50% ginger ale, 30% water, and 20% macro lager. Not really picking up the grapefruit, I guess that's why people use hops instead of actual grapefruit. That said, the flavor is growing on me. Light and crisp. Ginger in the finish, though sort of a stale grassy note in there as well.

Very carbonated.

You know, this was interesting, and I'm still not convinced it's actually a beer, but if I were in Texas and it was like 120 degrees out, I bet it would go down easy. Maybe I'm feeling charitable, or I just like ginger ale, but as a mindless summer beer, this was all right.

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It pours nicely, looks like an IPA colourwise, good 1 finger head of foam, not much lacing. The foam leaves the scene very quickly but the colour is nice.

The smell is attractive to me; strong nose of ginger, side note of some grapefruit.

The taste is so similar to the smell and what I expected after taking a few whiffs. Ginger takes no. 1, grapefruit no.2, and for what Spoetzl intended, or at least what I think they intended, they hit the nail on this one. I love a good ginger ale, ginger beer...so I'm enjoying sipping and drinking this 4.01%abv concoction. I guess it *could* have been listed as one of them there malternatives but like I said it's doing okay for me and I do find it rather refreshing. My bucks wasted on a 6 pack? Nah.

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Photo of MicTar
3.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

L: dark gold in color. Small white head that did not last, has no lacing.

S: can smell the grapefruit and a hint of ginger. Has a very clean smell.

T: grapefruit hits you first and then the ginger sneaks in on the finish with a small bite

F: light carbonation leads to a dry tartness from the grapefruit

O: I like this but am not sure if it would be a beer I would grab if I had some other choice. The bottle said to drink ice cold but as I let it warm the favors started to pop better.

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Photo of Libeertarian
3.43/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Color of peach-flavored Snapple tea. That is, clear, bronzy amber with yellow and pink hues. Tannish head fizzes up and then down very quickly. Completely gone in about 30 seconds. Nose is cranberry or raspberry, ginger, light on the grapefruit. Palate is not too sweet, in fact, incredibly dry for what it is. And what sweetness is there is well-balanced with ginger and a tartness which just barely favors grapefruit over tart berries. I don't even know if berries are an ingredient, it could be grapefruit that has lost some of its character. Light-bodied, spritzy to sudsy and velvety, quite crisp and refreshing.

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Photo of Ghohn
3.43/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had tied this at the local beer grotto. Ended up getting it a lot over the summer at the house as it FLEW out of the fridge.

Admittedly, my wife is a fan of flavored beers. Not me. But this was different. Not a foo foo beer at all. The best our neighborhood could come up with is that it is the perfect summer beer. Light in taste. Crisp citrus finish then a hint of grapefruit. Not overpowering, but a tease.

A hard beer to get/keep in Ft. Lauderdale with good reason!

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Shiner Ruby Redbird from Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner
3.11 out of 5 based on 1,243 ratings.
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