Iwatekura Japanese Sansho Ale
Sekinoichi-shuzou, Iwate-kura Brewery

Iwatekura Japanese Sansho AleIwatekura Japanese Sansho Ale
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Style:
Herb and Spice Beer
Ranked #100
ABV:
5%
Score:
82
Ranked #30,106
Avg:
3.76 | pDev: 11.7%
Reviews:
8
Ratings:
22
From:
Sekinoichi-shuzou, Iwate-kura Brewery
 
Japan
Avail:
Year-round
Wants
  4
Gots
  0
SCORE
82
Good
Iwatekura Japanese Sansho AleIwatekura Japanese Sansho Ale
Notes:
Reviews: 8 | Ratings: 22 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of kemoarps
3.49/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Crisp clear honeyamber. Small white head. Decent retention. Some lacing.

Nose is sweet. There's some perfumed grains? Interesting. Like... flowery incense. Or like... geranium soap? It's certainly interesting.

Flavour's much the same. I keep getting the impression of grandma's soap, or like floral incense. It's not actually soapy, though, just the soap fragrance. It's just the floral thing that I keep wanting to refer to as geranium, but I'm not actually sure at all if that's what geraniums smell/taste like. *shrug*
Sweet and mildly hoppy and all the big floral.

Clean and light drinkable. Interesting for sure, and I'm glad to have tried it, but I don't necessarily feel the need to repeat.

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Photo of Cylinsier
3.96/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle

Pours mostly clear deep golden, white lacing for a head.

Aroma is of sweet bready malts and fruity citrus.

Flavor is of bread and cereal malts, citrus and tropical juice, and lemongrass.

Light body, light sting of carbonation.

Very interesting ale. Light, refreshing, and distinct. Haven't had one that tastes like this before. Would probably have again.

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Photo of elNopalero
3.9/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours a hazy tan. Coriander forward notes, light peppery finish. Floral. Easy sipper. Found this interesting but nothing that really stood out as a must-have again.

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Photo of nick_perry
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy orange color with a thin, persistent white head. Some sediment at the bottom. General herbal and vegetal aromas. Flavor is herbal (again, I can’t really put my finger on what herbs), pepper (but not spicy), lemon, and grassy. Light-to-medium bodied with a dry lager malt. Lacy, lingering finish. Interesting and pleasant beer. The obvious food pairing would be to suggest Japanese food, but perhaps chicken or a pasta dish as well.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.98/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a medium golden amber with a half finger off-white head with good retention and nice lacing. Aroma of pale malt, quite floral, pepper, lemon and orange citrus; quite herbal. Flavor is mild lager malt, lemon, earthy and floral herbs that are hard to identify, pepper flavor without any spicy bite; finishes with lemon and faintly perfumey florals. Medium bodied with light creaminess. An interesting herbal ale with a light lager body that is reminiscent of adjunct lager, slightly sweet and neutral. The herbal flavors are lean towards earthy, peppery and floral notes, and although there are hints of floral perfume, it is deftly handled. Hard to identify the herbs and the description sounds annoying for an ale, but this is quite pleasant. The light ale body with its lager quality is a nice base for the intriguing mixture of herbs. For an ale with such unusual flavors, quite drinkable.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.64/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a murky yellow-brown with a foamy tan head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Tiny particles of sediment sink to the bottom of the glass after the pour. Smell is of grain, earth, spice, pepper, and herb aromas. Taste is much the same with pepper, herb, and earth flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of bitterness and heat on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with interesting pepper and herb characteristics from the sansho used in this one.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of owenfi
2.51/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Nice golden color and okay clarity.

Smell is interesting, lots of herbal and floral, with a bit of an odd chemical sensation. It reminds me of a 4th of July party in 2010, but I can't place just why yet, perhaps something reminds me of a pool.

Taste is peculiar. Like coors steeped with rose hips, or some odd malt liquor. Dry. Oily?

Extreme carbonation. Swishing it in my mouth almost bursts out even after pouring in a glass.

Don't love it, but I'm not a big fan or asian beer in general.

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Photo of shigg85
4.75/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Had this on tap at Vivo in Ikebukuro, Tokyo. Poured into a UK pint glass. When a brewery decides to use the name of a particular spice or herb in the brew's title, I expect that additive to stand out and speak to me somehow. Iwatekura did exactly that -- they created a beer with Japanese sansho in it, and it tastes exactly how you would expect. A decent IPA beer flavored with this spicy, citrusy sansho right in the back of your throat as you drink. Absolutely beautifully crafted -- loved it! Will definitely try it again!

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Iwatekura Japanese Sansho Ale from Sekinoichi-shuzou, Iwate-kura Brewery
Beer rating: 82 out of 100 with 22 ratings