Hitachino Nest Japanese Classic Ale | Kiuchi Brewery

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Hitachino Nest Japanese Classic AleHitachino Nest Japanese Classic Ale

Brewed by:
Kiuchi Brewery

Style: English India Pale Ale (IPA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by scottum on 06-27-2004

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Reviews: 257 | Ratings: 445
Photo of seand
4.42/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a cloudy amber with a fair amount of off white head. The foam thins out but doesn't completely dissipate, leaving a solid if thin surface layer and nice lacing.

S: Sweet English IPA with some noticeable complexity. Nothing in particular jumps out, but the blend is quite pleasant. It's a subtle but significant difference from a standard beer of the style.

T: Light sweetness, light bitter IPA notes, mild pleasant grain. Like the aroma, this is good, and a little different, but still close to the style.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation. Well suited to the style.

Overall, I really like this. It would probably be a go-to beer if I could find it easily and at a reasonable price. It's a beer-y beer, without any crazy flavors, with enough complexity to keep me interested.

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Photo of DrinkSlurm
3.63/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

OK. I got this for $4 at whole foods in Hallandale Beach, FL...
nice night cap...
Pours a rusty orange with little head. Smells of malty fugle hops, but the cedar really stands out. Taste is of woody cedar which really dominates, mixed with sweet malts a english fugle hop-like taste. Its ABV is hidden VERY actually seems more like a very mild ale. Very dry earthy aftertaste with tanic tones left on the tongue. Its almost too much cedar. In is too much cedar. I cant finish it.
Overall, a good beer; not amazing, not great, just a good brew, in moderation. I dont think id get again but I did enjoy. But would probably enjoy with a great cigar for sure...

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Photo of StJamesGate
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Rusty orange with lumpy soapy taupe head that rims and sheets. Caramel, wood and orange on the nose with maybe a bit of buttery Maris Otter.
Sweet caramel and orangey hops with maybe a bit of sandalwood or vanilla.
Lemon fizz candy finish and orange pith bitter linger. Medium, chewy, some stick.

Historically accurate EIPA, and as balanced as any HN beer. The hops are there, but the IBUs aren’t; it’s the cedar-aging that hold your attention.

I had this down as comparable to Meantime IPA, but it’s not there. Orange and caramel, sure enough, but needs to take the leash off.

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

Aroma is typically malty with a firm hoppy and woody undertone and a touch of fruit. It pours a clear golden amber with a fairly thick off-white head. Malty flavor has appreciable hoppy and fruity notes and just a hint of hop bitterness. Smooth flavor has about average body and a good amount of ragged fizz. Though not spectacular, still an enjoyable brew.

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Photo of shleepy
3.73/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from bottle, bought at Whole Foods (San Ramon), into a snifter. Drank on 3/27/2012.

A: Dark amber / light brown; medium head.

S: Caramel sweetness. Not much else.

T: Honey, caramel (which I don't particularly like). Not much in the way of hoppiness. Some light, indistinguishable fruitiness to go with the honey flavor.

M: Medium body, balanced level of carbonation.

O: I wish it had less caramel flavor, but it's not bad.

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Photo of flyingpig
3.29/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Orange amber, small foamy white head that leaves good lacing.

This one starts with some light, floral hops on the nose along with some good pine bitterness and a touch of citrus, grain and spice.

Light pine taste with hops and bitterness with an almost perfume like secondary smell. There is some fruit in there as well, perhaps some apricot and there is some cedar too towards the end.

Smooth, refreshing feel to it and carbonation was low. I'd put the body as being medium and a dry finish.

I would rate this one as being an average, English style IPA that could have been a bit more adventurous and exciting but still a descent beer.

1001 Beers Blog:

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Photo of kojevergas
3.4/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

11.2 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a conical Guinness pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Bottle acquired at Hi Time Liquor in Costa Mesa, California. I don't recall the cost. It struck me because the label advertises that it's aged in cedar casks, which I found intriguing. One thing I'm unclear on after reading the label is if the cedar casks used previously contained sake or not; it seems to imply that this could be the case but dances around it. This is me first beer from this brewery, and I'm looking forward to it.

Reviewed live. Served refrigerator cold and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a three finger head of nice cream, decent thickness, and good retention for the ABV. Colour is a murky nontransparent dark copper.

Sm: Clean brewing malt (prefermentation), tame underdeveloped bittering hops, some spices, cream, and clean barley. Caramelized malts. Surprisingly, the spices dominate. Very intriguing, but I don't know that it's a good sign. Still, the aroma is unique - especially for the style. A moderate strength aroma.

T: Certainly cedary yet in a subtle fashion. Spices are present - particularly on the climax, but it's clean bright malts that dominate. Maybe honey malt? The hops are hardly noticeable, and instead lightly impart a vague fresh floral flavour. This is a great approach to the style, and I support it. Here's an IPA that doesn't beat you over the head with imbalanced hops. Nicely structured. Well balanced, if simple. Pleasant and enjoyable. Nicely built. It's experimental without going for huge bold flavours, which I appreciate it.

No yeast or alcohol comes through.

Mf: Light on the palate. Smooth and wet. Not creamy, but that wouldn't suit the style or flavours anyway. Silky. Not crisp. Complements the simple pleasant flavour nicely.

Dr: This one impressed me. I don't usually care for IPAs, but this brewery approached the style in a fresh and distinct way. Not a hop bomb from some American brewery dicksizing IBUs. Hides its ABV very well. I'd have it again, but unfortunately subtlety and complexity just isn't there to make it great.


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Photo of Zimbo
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Judging this beer in parts does not do it justice because as a whole it just sings. Underneath the cap there's a fresh deep sweetness framed in hops.In the glass its a deep orangy golden colour with a decent head and light carbonation. The body is full and robust but also gentle and full of citric goodness. Unmistakably those cedar elements are in the background but they marry harmoniusly with everything that's in this beer. The way I look at it this could probably rival any other internatiional IPA.
Unique , distinctive and worthy of much more noteriety.

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Photo of GinaBeerInc
4.38/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Draft. Hazy, deep golden body. Frothy, off-white head. Aroma of toasted malt, cookie and bread, floral hops and earthiness. Noes of orange and honey. The flavor is lightly to moderately sweet and lightly bitter. It finishes lightly sweet and moderately bitter. Medium body, creamy texture, average carbonation. Sweetness and bitterness are nicely proportioned for an IPA. A softer presentation than American IPAs, especially in the mouthfeel which is less carbonated and less crisp. Very good.

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Photo of kaelingirl
3.91/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pint 8.3oz bottle into pint glass
pours a cloudy hazy orange with a nice white head that fades quickly leaving behind very nice lacing.
very faint floral and grain aroma
the taste is floral hops first followed by a mellow bitterness
very crisp and smooth
very tasty brew

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Photo of bismarksays
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a slightly hazy orange color. A small amount of head with excellent lacing.

S- Soft cedar, spicy floral notes. Not really hopforward per se. Tough to grade as it doesn't smell like a typical IPA, but the overall nose is very pleasant and inviting.

T- Sweet caramel, lemon/apricot fruitiness, subtle cedar, a hint of spice. Atypical of an IPA, but unique and interesting. Very little lingering bitterness, but a very pleasant lingering aftertaste of woodiness and caramel

M- Medium body, solidly carbonated, finishes cleaner than most IPAs.

Overall- What to make of a beer that breaks nearly every mold, refuses to fit in a neat category, and generally leaves as many questions as answers? My general rule of beer is that I would rather be shocked than bored, rather find something new than just another "solid" example of a well defined style. Average IPAs seemingly grow on trees. This beer, whatever it is, it anything but average. Maybe not the first choice for a hophead, but the ride is worth taking for anyone who loves beer.

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Photo of Philousa
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep orange, bordering on red. A bit opaque with one finger head that retains extremely well throughout drinking, though not much lacing is evident. Tangerines up front with amber malt aroma. Turns a bit metallic after a few sniffs. A hint of cedar is there too, though I wouldn't have been able to place it if I didn't read the label. Sweet nectarine and darker citrus followed by light woodiness/cedar flavor. Bitter malt and harsh wood flavors follow with an alcohol burn. The wood is evident, too much to drink without sipping. A bit acidic in feel, this one bites you. Viscosity is middling with a dry finish.

I was worried with this one. I usually don't like wood aged beers unless they're a strong ale or Burton Baton. On top of that, it's cedar; one of the strongest tastes a wood can have. The cedar came through well, bubbling up after a few sips, but it didn't take over. Whew. The harsh woody bitterness was there, but it wasn't overpowering. It just forced me to sip and enjoy this English IPA a little more over time. This isn't something I'd buy a 12 pack of, but it's a great beer of which I want more.

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Photo of ckollias
3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed this 12oz bottle out of a large snifter glass.

A: Pours a hazy orange hue with a frothy, 2-finger, white head that quickly dissipates into a wispy lace leaving a partial trail down the glass.

S: Malty hoppy aroma with hints of citrus, mostly lemon, in the background.

T: Smooth malty flavor with an alcoholic twinge and decent hoppy background.

M: Medium body and medium carbonation.

O: Interesting beer - an English India pale modeled in Japanese tradition of being aged in cedar casks and then hopped with an American hops. It was good – but no where near what I would call an IPA.

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Photo of Risser09
4.19/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

11.2 ounce beer into a tulip · March 2011 bottling · fridge temp

Appearance: Golden orange color with a tad bit of haze after swirling. A nice 2.5" head builds and shows off it's retention by sticking around for a few minutes. Tons of lace cling behind on the glass, a thick webbing.

Smell: Interesting malt aroma with mostly biscuity characteristics and some other cereal grains. A fresh aroma of hops that is best described as floral. Nice.

Taste: This beer has some great flavor. Herbal, English hops create a bitter earthiness. Envelope that with clean, biscuity malts and you have a great English IPA. I am trying to find the cedar somewhere and think it might be lingering on the very finish of the beer with a dry sensation.

Mouthfeel: Bitter, sweet, creamy, and a slight wood finish provide plenty to chew on. This beer has great mouthfeel.

Drinkability: The best Japanese beer I've ever had, though it is my fist craft beer from that country. Great use of ingredients, good method and subtle wood experience make this beer a great drinker that I would seek out if available.

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Photo of mulder1010
3.11/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

330 ML bottle poured into a tulip.
Just a bit out of date

A-- Poured a hazy orange amber color. One finger off white head, on swirling got two fingers. Head slowly dies off leaving a solid layer of film and a good solid ring of lacing.

S-- Musty dirty sort of smell. Get some cedar mixed with earthy grape and orange. Wood really carries this.

T-- Past its prime orange and pine. Get a lot of wood as well. Still pretty workable.

M-- Rich, thick and earthy. Undertones of mandarin orange and pine. Finishes dry and crisp.

O-- Probably really good fresh. Still pretty good for being a bit old. Has held up pretty well.

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Photo of AgentMunky
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a 6 ounce stange/cylindrical glass at Ten. From notes. Reviewed 13 July 2011.

A: A nice finger of head. Cloudy. Light brown-yellow. Translucent. Very pretty.

S: Slightly sour malts with hints of yeast? Subtle but interesting.

T: Really nice. Big, heavy, and strong. Obvious alcohol and sweet fruits (purple grape). Robust, full-bodied, and very much an ale. However, it certainly doesn't taste like any English IPA I could think of...Very little aftertaste.

O: Almost too grapey/Kool-Aid-ish. Otherwise good. Recommended. Will look for more of this breweries beers.

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Photo of Samp01
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice cloudy copper / amber pour with a lasting tan head with descent lacing. Aroma and taste of sweet caramel malt with some nice citrus piney hops and some spicy fruity notes. A nice medium body with moderate carbonation on the palate. The finish is sweet malt with some good citrusy piney hops for balance and fruity notes on the ending. Overall a good, balanced easy drinking IPA.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Quite an interesting brew, this beer poured out as a nice golden color. The head was fluffy and white, it settles in a short period of time. The smell of the beer has some hoppy aromas mixed with the grainy malts. The taste of the beer is where I find this to be the best. The Flavors of wild rice, malts, black pepper and hops all come together here. I never would have guessed that this beer would have that much going on inside it. The mouthfeel of the beer is light and drinkable. Overall I really enjoyed the beer and would probably have it again one day.

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Photo of Jazzcrop
4.27/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Tastes of lavender, chamomile, hopes, bitterness, malt, honey malt, fluff, flowers, rice, fizz, mint, citurs, plumy tastes and pure cane sugar. Smell like an IPA from Japan, LOL. That and plenty of malty good, hops, hops and hops. Pretty dope, y'all.

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Photo of Nuggethops
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pours a golden color with an orange hue. an aggressive pour yields one finger of white head that dissipates quickly to a thin uniform cap leaving a little thin lacing, Very lively with tons of bubbles racing to the top of the glass.

There is a faint aroma of cedar in the nose when poured cold that becomes dominant as it warms. sweet roasted malt character as well with slight earthy floral hop presence which is barely present as the beer warms and the cedar begins to dominate. The taste is sweet and nutty with a bitter finish. I detect a little cedar in the taste at first but again the cedar flavor really becomes pronounced as the beer warms making for a very interesting English ipa.

The beer is a bit thin and almost over carbonated it's very dry and bitter the aftertaste that lingers a little longer than I would like. I enjoyed this beer for sure but would have liked a little more smoothness my throat felt super dry when done drinking this brew, just one of these in a sitting is good for me.

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Photo of albertjr21
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Into a pint glass, this pours a glowing copper color, with a cloudy look if you let the bottle sediment in. Aroma is a modest yet inviting one with notes of toasted malt, citrus and floral hops. Sweet citrus hops gently mingle on the palate with a balancing crisp and refreshing malt. There's a noticeable sake-esque taste throughout, particularly with the dryness in the finish. Orange citrus noted hops resonate in the aftertaste. Smooth for it's 7.5% abv.

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Photo of HattedClassic
4.47/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a nice thick two fingered head thee diminishes quickly but still lasts afterward. Thee beer itself is a nice hazy reddish orange.

Smell: Strong malts with a hint cedar and slightly hoppy but overshadowed by the cedar when warm but strong hops and malts when cold.

Taste: Strong cedar and caramel malts as the ale gets warmer but the hops are dominant when it's cold.

Mouthfeel: Light carbonation and creamy feel.

Overall: A pretty good beer from Hitachino and even better when drunk during a hot day. I definitely recommend this beer to anyone interested in a break from hopped up IPAs that most people seem to prefer.

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Photo of Kbogac
3.44/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 24 into a Sam Adams glass. Dark yellow with lots of particulate floating around. Huge head that slowly fades to a heavy film. When I first poured it I got a huge whiff of hops but strangely it's not there on the first taste. Virtually no hop taste. Malty with bitterness a little pepper but the hops is subdued. After it warms a little I get some cedar and rosemary scent. Also a little more cedar in the taste. Unusual beer.

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Photo of boudreaux
4.47/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: what an IPA should look like; hazy, orange/honey color, with a frothy, sticky white head about 2 - 2.5 fingers thick; head retention is rocky and lasting, with sticky lacing lasting throughout

S: hoppy, but not overwhelmingly so; a great bitter, fresh aroma from the hops; also, an earthy, woody smell from the cedar casks; a great, forest-fresh smell

T: the hops are definitely present, but muted somewhat by the sweet, smokey flavor of cedar wood casks; tastes really complex and delicious

M: creamier than I expected; medium body, smooth, and soft on the tongue

O: really smooth and flavorful; exhibits the qualities of a traditional IPA, with a nice twist from the cedar

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Photo of centbeerfest
3.55/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Another gift for my birthday so had only one to try. Poured it into a small tasting glass 3-4 ounces at a time. Not like most Japanese beers that I have had and you could tell right from the outset.

Amber cloudy gold color with a nice solid head. It is hard to imagine, but I did smell some of the same characteristics as a sake, but that may have been tainted based on my knowledge of the origin. Perhaps it was the cedar casks that both are fermented in that made the connection.

Nice consistency and a good uniform mouth. High alcohol cis front of center and did not taste like the "pale ale" classification on the bottle. Not necessarily bad, just not what I expected. Some sediment in the final pour.

I enjoyed the beer, but on a take home scale, I would leave this on the shelf for another day.

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Hitachino Nest Japanese Classic Ale from Kiuchi Brewery
3.8 out of 5 based on 445 ratings.
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