Nectar IPA | Humboldt Brewing Co.

very good
344 Reviews
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Nectar IPANectar IPA

Brewed by:
Humboldt Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
60 IBU

Added by avylover on 10-03-2002

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Reviews: 344 | Ratings: 870
Photo of Darbycopenhaver
1.46/5  rDev -61.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Absolutely disgusting. Save yourself a few bucks and just buy Pine Sol, put it on ice, and pour it in a glass. This is the worst beer I have ever tasted.

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Photo of mithrascruor
2/5  rDev -47.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

12 oz. bottle poured into a mug.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy dark amber color, darker than an IPA should be. Off-white head is decent, but has little retention.

Smell: Deep, strangely sweet malts with a light piney/citrus hop aroma.

Taste: Similar to the taste, but the malt flavor has this mild and sickly sweetness to it. The finish and aftertaste are similar. It is really gross.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and slightly syrupy. Minimal carbonation.

Drinkability: Undrinkable. One of the worst.

Awful and undrinkable. It is rare for me to say that. Looks and smells decent enough, but the taste is awful. I don't know if it is a spoiled batch, but I notice that the taste has a similar nature to that of their Hemp Ale (also not good). I've enjoyed their Red Nectar ale in the past, but the rest of this 6-pack is going down the drain asap.

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Photo of JLaw55
2.5/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This was thick and cloying. It definitely had an immense malt presence, but it also kept true to it's name with a very present honey like flavor and consistency. It was thick and slick, very filling for an IPA. You hardly taste the hops as the cloying sweet flavor takes over and sticks on your tongue.

Would Drink Again: No
Would Purchase Again: No

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Photo of JayAre46
2.58/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A - 12oz short stubby bottle with a vibrant humming bird on the label that reeks of...Oh Yeah big ups to IPALOVR for this extra appreciated to the fullest, anyway pours transparent deep amber with ruby highlights, good color. off white 1 1/2 finger head that falls leaving spotty lacing and a thick ring around the edges

A - is rather weak, get a sweet caramel malt up front with some sweet fruits fused in and out rather absent, not a big hop presence more of a maltiness.

T - im not sure about the bottling date, but extremely watery and slightly oxidized, fruity and floral, the caramel malt that was in the nose is almost absent, not very bitter at all. again very watery.

M - light bodied a bit too thin for my liking, the carbonation does not help the lacking body where it is almost not existent. ss

O - assuming this is not very fresh and if it is, this is one of the worst ipa's ive had. ill give it the benefit of the doubt and say it can't be fresh and that this one has seen better days. possible avoidance.

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Photo of sellmeagod
2.7/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A decent IPA that drinks well at 6.7 abv.

The cute hummingbird draws you in and the decent head retention is good enough to pass for a decent appearance.

It tastes bitter, but not overly so, and sweet enough to give legitimacy to that hummingbird. I don't think I'll drink it again though, just because of the underwhelming overall feel and ordinariness of this IPA.

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Photo of JerseyKirk
2.75/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A: cooper to red. White head that settled quickly.

S: citrus, pine, grapefruit, lemon. All subtle and weak.

T: Citrusy hop flavors with a slight caramel malt taste. Not very fresh tasting.

M: Medium bodied, good carbonation, lends to the sweeter side.

O: I love bold, hit me in the face ipas. The style dictates really strong smell and taste however this beer doesnt have either. Could be an older bottle or just an average ipa. I'm leaning towards the latter.

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Photo of Lucnifter
2.98/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle dated 09/04/14. 9 months old. A baby was conceived and born between when this IPA was bottled and me prying off the cap to reveal the sad, WELL past it's prime beer. Nearly no hop aroma. Malty and stale. I really need to look for bottling dates.

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Photo of jtierney89
3/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy amber with a thin lace of head with lots of oily citric hops on the nose. Little bit of grapefruit in their as well. Lots of tropical sweetness up front with tastes including grapefruit and pomegranate. There's also some malty sweetness up front. finishes with a nice floral bite, the flavors all go really really well together, im impressed.

High in carbonation and medium in body. Super drinkable. Super surprising find.

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Photo of largadeer
3/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle with a "bottled on" date (bottled 2 months back FYI).

Appearance: Golden amber with a bit of foggy haze, though clear on the whole. An inch of head rises and falls pretty much immediately thereafter, leaving some sticky lace before settling to a ring. Standard IPA appearance, not bad.

Smell: A mild hop aroma of grapefruit and orange. Light sweetness and resin. Not exactly jumping out of the glass.

Taste & mouthfeel: Mildly hoppy up front, very grapefruity with a fructose sweetness that gradually turns into more of a blood orange flavor. Slight graininess, but leaning toward the fruit. Somewhat oily but light in body overall. Gentle hop bitterness in the finish; this is no West Coast hop bomb. Pretty decent, but lacking in character, especially hop character. The malt base is solid and clean, it just needs a bigger hop profile.

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Photo of JoshVandy
3/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to IPALOVR for this extra.

355mL bottle into a Town Hall tulip.

A- Pours a dark golden, almost copper, color with about a 1 finger off white head. Has some fairly respectable lacing on the glass.

S- A sweet maltiness comes first, which is fairly odd for an IPA. Subtle citrus and hop notes are next, followed by sweet caramel. Almost smells like a young barleywine. Interesting.

T- Big sticky sweet malts and caramel hit my mouth, then closely behind are the citrus and slight floral notes of the hops. It's pretty strange that the hop profile in this is so subtle, yet the malt presence is borderline overpowering. Not great.

M- Thicker than most, almost chewy, with medium carbonation. This could definitely improve with more carbonation. Slight bitter aftertaste from the hops, thankfully.

O- Frankly, if this bottle didn't say IPA on it, it'd be hard pressed to classify it as one. Way too sweet for the style, in my opinion. This could definitely use some more hops added to it to balance the excessively sweet malt backbone. Average at best.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.03/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: A bright orange pour is topped off by an eggshell white head that was one part frumpy, and one party frothy. A medium show of effervesce rises at a moderate pace. Some nice stickage occurs of moderate coverage for a lacing.

S: Pine underbrush, sweet caramel nut toast, with a mixture of dried orange and lemon peels first appears on the nose. Some complexity is only hindered by the light offering coming off very reserved per style.

T: For Flavor the malting was thin, of lightly toasted caramel grains, with an underwhelming amount of bitterness that was more on level of a macro-interpretation and undefined. It does however increase somewhat with some grapefruit/citrus bitterness on the finish but again, felt a bit underwhelming and washy. Not bad, but really nothing definable in anyway earning average regards.

M: Medium bodied with very little effervesce. A citrusy flower coating possibly saves this from subpar mediocrity. Lacked a crispness and sharpness in delivery and was rather laid back and lazy in the mouth.

D: Unlikely repeat. A possible starter/tweener beer for those just starting to get into craft. An ipa with training wheels if you may, that will no doubt fail to raise an eyebrow for the seasonal drinker.

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Photo of Tilley4
3.03/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured at a recent tasting at Maria's in Chicago...

A blend of sweet caramel malts meld with citrusy hops... More malt forward than I was expecting from an IPA... This reminds me more of a hoppy Red Ale...

Piney hops are quickly dominated by a sweet caramel maltiness... Rather balanced for an IPA which I would expect in a Pale Ale but not in an IPA...

Enjoyable but not memorable...

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Photo of GurpSlurp
3.07/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a pint glass.

Was expecting a sweeter beer by the nectar name and having had others with similar descriptions taste differently.

Picked up in a build your own 6 pack and would have to say I probably wouldn't buy again. Quite bitter and lacking any sort of fruit/floral hop taste. Has a bit of a honey taste but not one of my favorite. It's worth a try as I am a bit picky but would not recommend to buy more than a single. May end up as a let down. It was for me.

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Photo of TonyT
3.1/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

(Review taken from notes)

For an IPA, this beer did not offer much in the smell category. The taste was more malt than hops and offered a thin mouth feel. The ABV was hidden pretty well, which made it a drinkable beer. But the more I drank it, the taste actually dissipated. It got to the point, half way through, that I just took it back to the bar and ordered a different beer.

I don't think that I will revisit this one.

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Photo of Iguana
3.16/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearence - Poured a nice shade of amber with a 1 inch head that laced up nicely.

Smell - Smell's of honey, malt, and slight hoppy aroma.

Taste - Taste kinda missed the mark of what I was lookin for, this one seemed more like a amber than an IPA. I was hoping for a nice hoppy beer which this was not.

Mouthfeel - Smooth, nice bitterness finish.

Drinkability - Dont know as i'd session it, but overall not too bad

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Photo of ccrida
3.16/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into a nonic pint, Nectar IPA is a brassy bronze with an off-white head that decent lace.

Smell is pretty strong, wet floral and watermelon hops, some sulfer. Not that great.

Taste is also a little off...there's a metallic bight or something here. More leaf and melon hop flavor, some sweet caramel malt, waxy phenols. Not spoiled or bad, but just really not that well crafted IMHO, and rather generic.

Mouthfeel is oily and a bit chewy, medium bodied.

Drinkability is ok, there's a bite to it that I don't love, almost grassy. Maybe it's a little long in the tooth?

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Photo of DogFood11
3.18/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Copper with orange outer. White head is tight and leaves tons of coating, eventually it falls to a thin cover.

A bit of a funky wet towel type smell hits me up front. Beneath that there is tons of citrus hops. First drink produced plenty of hops, sugary malts, and a rather large warm ending. This is a unique IPA for my taste buds in that it actually starts out with the moderate hop profile and then about 3/4 of the way through there is this barleywine'ish, super sweet, syrupy, sugared malt that just diffuses the brew alltogether. I kinda liked it but boy its one rich IPA.

Notes: I enjoyed this product. It's one of those beers that tastes nice but I could only handle a couple at the most in one sitting, not because of the alcohol splash but because it would start to wear on my palate. Aggressive but in need some refinement. Close to being an excellent beer.

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Photo of Floydster
3.18/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My dad gave me a twelve ounce bottle out of the six pack he bought from BevMo in Torrance

Pour was a golden brown with a 1/2 inch head that settled quickly

Taste was not that bitter for an IPA and I was expecting more since their Hemp Ale is so spicy

Could drink several of these, light for an india pale ale

 311 characters

Photo of udubdawg
3.2/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

arrives quite deep amber, nice clarity, topped by a decent off-white head with fair retention and a scant bit of lacing.

citrus, with a surprising amount of caramel behind. Mild alcohol, comes across as a little spicy and generally mixes well with the hops. Clean, no fruitiness, very malt other than sweet caramel.

woah, tons of caramel. Caramel malt bomb. Really detracts from the drinkability. Supposedly fresh, but this is rich, borders on cloying. Sweet background of pale malt, with moderate bitterness with a softened edge. Low hop flavor. Mild alcohol flavor, not too "hot", and a surprisingly big body, creamy in the mouth, moderate carbonation. Not at all the dry IPA I prefer, but nothing really wrong with the style this way. Clean, generally void of faults, but drinkability suffers and the big sweet caramelly body really detract. Decent example, but not one I'll look for again.

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Photo of pwoods
3.21/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz. brown bottle poured into an imperial pint.

A: Pours an average coppery amber with good clarity. Decent sized off white head on the pour with decent retention. Some lacing.

S: Ok American hopping. Plenty of pine but not enough citrus or resin. Lots of biscuity, caramelly malts... over balancing.

T/M: More of the hops. Still plenty of pine and a bit more citrus than in the nose but still not very dominant. The malts definitely over balance the hops with lots of caramel and biscuit and even a rye like flavor. Body is medium or so with mellow carbonation.

D: ABV is exceptable but it's not overly drinkable and just isn't what I look for in an IPA.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.21/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours copper and orange. Good 1/2" head, decent lacing. Aroma had surprisingly some sweetness moreso than hoppy notes.

Taste quickly recalibrated the sweet/hoppy inversion. Heavy crystal malt. Comes dangerously close to approaching balance, something no CA ipa should really try to do unless they're going English I guess.

Caramel and some residual honey sweetness, tempered by around 45-50 ibu of bitterness I'd guess. Pass. Nothing bad here, just nothing exceptional in the land of exceptional.

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Photo of engagechad
3.21/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This bottle was purchased as a single from Total Wine in Richmond, VA - Poured into a Victory tulip

Pretty beer with good head retention. Dark bourbon color but clear as a bell, well filtered. Smelled of faint hops and lots of malt. Other reviews say that this is a well balanced IPA but personally I think it's a bit too far on the malt side. Tasted good, but as said in the previous sentence, it's a bit malty. Mouthfeel and drinkability are okay, it was smooth but not incredible.


I would recommend this beer to a amber ale, brown ale drinker who wants to step into the world of IPAs. Not amazing but I certainly wouldn't turn it down if offered again.

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Photo of Yeroc
3.21/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

poured from a 12 oz bottle into an IPA glass

A - slightly hazy copperish/orangish color. Not much head (less than a finger)

S - very sweet smelling. Notes of honey and apricot (something fruity)

T - lose a little bit of the honey in the tast but still very fruity (again I'm thinking apricot?)

M - not your typical IPA mouthfeel. Light with a slightly bubbly feel.

O - enjoyable but not my thing. I like my IPA to have more bit/bitterness. This comes in at 60 so a little low for my typical liking. In closing, I would not turn one down if offered but I don't think it will be on my "soon to purchase list"

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Photo of Wasatch
3.21/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a clear dark amber color, nice carbonation, tiny head, a little bit of lacing throughout the drink.

S - Scents of slight hops, sweet malts.

T - I'm disappointed in the taste, not hoppy at all like an IPA should be. The taste is sweet malts. This does taste very nice, especially if it was an amber ale instead.

M - Medium body, nice carbonated feel.

D - Drinkable. Humboldt fell short on this one, should be an amber ale, instead of an IPA.

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Photo of croixian1
3.22/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

An okay IPA, but lacks the hops-pop and bitterness I enjoy so much. Aroma is also a bit weak, lacking, again, the hopy/grassy smells. Nice, full mouth feel with plenty of thick carbonation. Very slight hop aftertaste, not as much as I usually enjoy.
Overall a decent beer, something nice to enjoy with a hearty pulled pork sandwich on a hot, sunny Florida afternoon. Would have again.

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Nectar IPA from Humboldt Brewing Co.
3.8 out of 5 based on 870 ratings.
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