Hitachino Nest White Ale | Kiuchi Brewery

549 Reviews
Hitachino Nest White AleHitachino Nest White Ale

Brewed by:
Kiuchi Brewery

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-13-2001

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Reviews: 549 | Ratings: 1,520
Photo of heymikew
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Breaks all preconceived notions about Japanese beer!

My friend sends me a pic via whatsapp while I'm @bevmo and wants 6. At $6/sm bttl I get 2.

Especially yummy with a seafood dinner.

Pours out cloudy into a tulip glass.
Yellow straw colored...lemon/citrus in the left nostril, dry Wit on
the right

Refreshing lemon creame flavor, slightly sour with a great balance.
Goes down soo easy. Light carbonation.

A must for the beer connoisseur

Will get more.

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Photo of schoolboy
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is my second taste of Kiuchi and the second winner. The ginger beer was a best of (a very limited) breed. This is also excellent. I still haven't tried the stout they were raving about, but it's in the fridge.

This one pours to look gorgeous. The thin head keeps giving, but not pumping. The aroma is a bit unique. A nice blend of things, but nothing jumps out and slaps you (it's not an American style so this is good).

The taste is a beautiful balance of malt, yeast and faintly, some hops. There is a slight fruitiness - sweetness from the combo. It is a very clean and pure tasting brew.

The aftertaste is wonderful. I wish I had five or six of these to guzzle, but for $4.99 a bottle, it is a luxury I will have to forgo. There are other less expensive representatives of the style that make more sense, but there isn't anything here I could fault outside of the price.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

NOTES: this is available in a 720ml bottle and it is quite good as well!

A Damn Fine White Ale! This is a great offering from this Japanese Brewery. This poured a nice light amber hazy colour and smells of spices galore! This tasted like a super-spiced up version of the Classic Belgian Wit Beer and it was awesome! This had a wonderfully full and creamy mouthfeel as well as an awesome drinkability factor!

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Photo of mmmbeer
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL olive-green bottle with some code on the back label. Brewed with orange peel, nutmeg and coriander, and hopped with Perle and Styrian Goldings - 13 IBUs. It sits a pale, unfiltered whitish-gold in the glass (opaque by the last pour), with medium to high carbonation, and topped with two inches of bone-white head that retains well, lacing the whole way through. Smells spicy, with medicinal phenolics, citrus, a touch of coriander, yeast, and a light musty character. The flavor is very much the same, with a tart sourness, sharp coriander, orange and lemony citrus, spicy/grassy, peppery and musty hops, and a background of flavorful wheat. It has a light, well-carbonated body that imparts a medium finish on the palate, and is quite refreshing. Delicious and thirst-quenching, and it tastes a bit wild - like a spicy Berliner weisse; or even a witbier spiked with Orval. I'm not sure if the beer is intentionally soured or if it is just a bit old, but either way it adds a wonderful extra dimension to this tasty brew.

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Photo of timtim
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

in my experience, this is one of the best wit beers of all time. hazy straw colored with a nice white head that leaves nice lace. hitachino beers tend to glow, and this one has a weird pinkish hue in the beer and the head. maybe i'm nuts. nose is full of corriander and orange zest. taste is wheaty for sure, with corriander and orange in the front, and some ginger and a tiny bit of pepper in the back. light, spritzy and creamy at the same time, and a nice, long finish. hell of a beer, i wish it was a bit less expensive, or i would knock 'em back all day, all summer. great with humboldt fog.

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Photo of cokes
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A nice wit imported across the wrong ocean.
Nice pale orange in color with a good deal of haze. Smallish head, but lasts the duration. Spicy in the nostrils, coriander especially, and some equally spicy yeast aromas.
Zesty! Lots of spice on the tongue. More coriander and a good deal of pepper. Faint citrus rind (orange...maybe even grapefruit). Yeast flavors add to the melee. Not much sweetness here at all. But I am not complaining.
Finishes bone-dry
Just a hair on the watery side...but with all the flavor here, it doesn't seem to matter.
Glass was gone before I could fully appreciate it.
Good stuff.

BTW: My frequented liquor store was selling bottles of this for $0.99 (and the weizen too). I figured they were old, but gave it a shot anyway. These are in good shape. I'll clean out the rest of their stock tomorrow.

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Photo of ordybill
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 OZ bottle into a pint glass at the World of Beer in Pooler, GA. The appearance is a clear bright gold color with a small white head. The aroma is mild and is mostly light hops and some fruit. The taste is a very nice blend of fruit and spice.

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Photo of SteelerChris
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I am a devout Craft Beer drinker and have recently begun to explore some interesting Asian crafts. I was originally introduced to this beer at a wine bar and it was paired with a hearty artisan Mac and Cheese. The bottle itself is interesting but once you smell the aroma you know you are in for a treat, because it is loaded with hints of citrus, sourdough bread, and spice. It is like smelling summer. The color of the beer is what it is to be expected (cloudy pale yellow) and obviously unfiltered with a medium frothy head. The flavor of the beer is not overwhelming; notes of a "warhead" candy are delicately balanced with floral and yeast. The Asian flavor comes out with some bitter orange and eastern spices to create a unique profile on the palate. Although the forward taste passes quickly, the aftertaste is creamy and refreshing. This is a good beer to introduce to a woman who doesn't like beer, because the flavor is mild with hints of sweetness and sour (like a lemon drop). A few days ago I tried this beer again and paired it with spicy BBQ tri-tip and pork, which totally worked because the refreshing characteristics really cut through the spicy-fatty meat. It was a summer hit with fairly tough beer critics! Crisp, light, refreshing, and almost too easy to drink. I actually let it come to room temp as well to test its drink-ability, and was happy to find it still tasted pretty darn good at 67 degrees

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Photo of tony223366
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From my beer journal. Originally reviewed on May 20, 2011.

A: Lightly cloudy and pale yellow. Nice fluffy head. A good looking beer with a cute label. My girlfriend instantly fell in love with the label.

S: Definitely orange peel with punches of cloves and hints of coriander. Actually kind of reminded me of a pumpkin beer.

T: Lots of cloves and coriander. Orange peel is present too. A little sweet up front and then oh so smooth.

M: Very creamy mouthfeel... dare I say perfectly carbonated?

O: This beer was great. From top to bottom this was by far my favorite witbier I tried.

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Photo of IPhantom
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours straw yellow--the same color as a macro, but oh so much more. Gorgeous fluffy head that quickly dissipates, no lacing, but enticing bubbles throughout. Nose is fruity and spicy, with ginger being the most evocative note. The taste is light and elegant, the wheat fruit notes playing off the supremely light, bubbly feel, and back again. Excellent beer overall, especially in the summer months. Looking forward to checking out other offerings from this brewery.

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Photo of ADZA
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This brew pours a pale straw hue with decent carbonation that leaves a two finger bubbly head and nice lacing all around the glass,wow what an aroma its full on citrus,orange peel,lemon zest and the feintest bit of corriander which i rather like and to be honest this has to be one of the nicest,strongest smelling witbiers ive smelt really inviting,it has a nice easy mouthfeel which slides down with tastes of citrus,orange peel,lemon & lime bitters and lemon barley,i dont usually give too many 5's for any beer but i only bought one of these brews and as soon as i finished it i wanted another one so bad its not funny,overall a really tasty brew that will buy more of.

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Photo of BeerNemesis
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hitachino Nest White Ale. 1PINT 8.3 FL.OZ.

Poured into an Ommegang Rare Vos glass -- It's a cloudy straw-yellow that eventually settles into a clearer beverage rife with carbonation. The 1.5" head quickly recedes into a thin snow-white film of micro bubbles on the top.

Spritzy on the intake, there's ginger, ginger and more ginger. Cloves pop up in droves as well. There may be a slight malty background, but ginger and cloves dominate the nose.

Grainy malt may be first to the party, but the dazzling duo of citrusy hops and coriander/ginger/clove spices dash in with style and panache and wow the crowd that is my mouth. The hops are so vibrant and juicy, with a hint of orange, fresh, succulent oranges at that, that it's hard to keep my mind off of them. But in come the spices backed by a subtler puff of ground pepper that give nuance and charismatic vigor to the already titillating taste. I cannot stress enough how much flavor I'm experiencing all of a sudden. This is amazing, and disorienting for my palate at the same time. Sourness dominates here, and the finish is dry, bitter, and tinged with lemon peel.

Oh so creamy! It may be light bodied and refreshing, but it rushes in in a disarmingly smooth and even fashion.

Well this one's a bit interesting. The flavor is so overpowering, it's bound to polarize. If you don't like it, there's little room for refuge. If you do, you can drink this 'till the cows come home (or whatever the trite expression is you like).

Wow, I will say it again: The flavor is vibrant, juicy, and unique. Like boozy sunshine in a bottle.

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Photo of nomad
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured a nice hazy straw color, slight apricot hue, with a bubbly thin head and plenty of carbonation underneath.

Smelled of oranges, sweet lemon, a beautiful tart wheat, and a soft and flowery malt. Tasted like some tasty wheat, solid pale malt, and great classic lemon and citric tinges of a wit. Incredibly juicy, like biting actual fruit wedges thinned down a pinch over tantalizing wheat. Spice is light but nice enough, especially with the yeast poured in. Had a juicy, citric, and light grainy finish.

And that's all there is too it, as I'm not even paying attention to the mouthfeel when it tastes this good, though it could have more pop to it. Regardless, a world class witbier, simple to understand, easy to enjoy.

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Photo of Auraan
4.53/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a gorgeous cloudy yellow with a three finger fluffy white head that stuck around and left a bit of lacing as I drank the beer. True to style and very attractive. Scents of orange peel, which is quite pronounced, grainy wheat, sweetness, chamomile, allspice and clove, fruity and yeasty esters, incredibly complex for a witbier and extremely pleasant. Taste begins with yeasty wheat bread, moving into citrus peel, slight peppery spiciness, herbal hops, and finishing with wheat cracker and a strong graininess. Aftertaste is yeasty and grainy with some herbal notes. Mouthfeel is light bodied with high carbonation, with a nice yeasty feel present as well. Overall it's an amazing witbier with a depth of complexity in it's aroma that no other witbier I've had has reached, and and an excellent flavor hitting the wibier style with a nice herbal hop character that adds some complexity there as well, the mouthfeel is standard for the style but good. It's just a fantastic witbier, with an excellent complexity to it, and it's just plain pleasant to drink. Well worth it's $5 price tag. An excellent craft beer out of Japan

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Photo of HeroicDoses
4.53/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a rich yellow haze with a spectacular head. Smell is a deep mix of subtle lemon and wheat. Consistency is truly inspirational. The carbonation literally hangs in the glass, creating a suspended cloud of headyness. If you like white ale (and it's my favorite), this is a homerun. Has a tasty lemon flavor with a distant accent of slight tartness. The combination of the two gives it a truly unique appeal. I'll give it Japan here, this is a mindblower. Picked up a pint of it at ShopRite Liquors in Oakland (AMAZING selection btw). The description they used on the display was simply "Some say it's the best beer", and I think they might be right. Oh, and the drinkibility is off the charts.

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Photo of ForkAndSpoonOp
4.53/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a beer my brother raved about for a while after he discovered it last year. I came across some bottles and decided to put aside my prejudices that something of decent quality can't come in such an adorably twee little package. Though that said, I do kinda want to hug this bottle. Super-kawaii.

I'm either too indie or not nearly indie enough, having recently acquired some completely unbranded pint glasses, so I'll be using them until I figure out which. Opened the 12 oz. bottle carefully, as my girlfriend has requested that I save the bottlecaps so she can make more earrings. Poured a cloudy, sickly yellow color. Maybe half a finger of head, dissipated rapidly and left no real lacing to speak of.

What's lacking in the visual aspect is more than made up for in the smell. Tons of lemon, ginger, yeast, the hopes and desires of a nation struggling to return to their daily lives after a tremendous metaphorical and literal upheaval.

This beer tastes exactly like an awesomely fucked-up glass of orange juice. Citric and plenty hoppy for my personal tastes. Some nice spices, too; nutmeg and maybe a little bit of cardamom. Light and airy. I wasn't expecting the carbonation to be this nice, given the poor head retention. Tremendously refreshing on a warm day.

Tasteless jokes aside, this brewery has done a tremendously good thing by temporarily shifting over their bottling capacity to supply water to the earthquake victims. Not only do they make great beer, but they're great people as well. Though that does mean I'll be hoarding any bottles of this nectar I come across until Japan achieves normality.

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Photo of sessycuban
4.53/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - The beer pours a light yellow body, almost a lemon color. You will note the strong carbonation and abundance of bubbles. The head retains very well.

S - The smell of lemon is definitely there, but without being too sour. The aroma is simple in my estimation, which for this style of beer isn't so much of a problem.

T - You almost get a subtle taste of bubblegum in this beer. This is not to suggest that the beer tastes like a mixed drink but rather that the taste is quite pronounced for a witbier. I didn't get a lot of bitterness in this beer.

M - The beer has a thin consistency, but I think it really works. It is quite refreshing and goes down smoothly.

D - This is a very smooth beer, in fact one of the smoothest I've ever had. It is very easy to put down and you learn something new every time you drink it.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.53/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Delicate and nuanced in every aspect.
I get hints of orange juice and some coriander in the nose.
I feel like I can taste the orange juice on the finish and a bit of the spices. Light and smooth with a crisp finish.

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Photo of rousee
4.53/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I love these people. This is one of my top breweries-- where they seem to get every style correct. They are WAY expensive though !! $4 + for a 12oz beer is a joke but I like this brand so much and it is fairly difficult to find --esp. around these parts, so I buy it. Had the Weizen last night and I think this one is much better. The taste on this with the beef jerky I am having is just perfect. You pick up every subtlety of the beer--from the nice yeasty wheat dryness to the spicy coriander, orange peel and pepper--everything-- really cuz there is a lot more going on here than those flavors I named.

A-not so hot. boring gold-honey murk-no head no lace. Does this mean its not gonna be good??
S-is freshly fermented apple orchard--but mild. there is some wheatiness present but overall just fabulous. You can pick up some of the spicy elements too.
T-I don't know if I have ever had a better one for this style than this. I don't know how fresh the bottle I am having is, but at the BBF (where it was definitely fresh) they had it from a 750ml bomber
and i remember it being equally good. I bet this beer on-tap would be close to the king of white ales. I am already giving it a 5 on taste and i hate to give these out w/o major consideration first. My taste descriptions are in the 1st paragraph but I will add that it has some sourness on the back but not enough to take away from the 5 score.

MF-nice fuzzy one typical of this style.
D-Way drinkable-probably desrves a 4.75 but I am moving my score from 4 to 4.5 anyway.

Edit--there is no edit--I earlier submitted the review w/o finishing it first.

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Photo of Drew966
4.54/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hitachino Nest White Ale pours a darker straw color with a huge white head and chunks floating in it from a brown eleven point two ounce bottle. The aroma is downright amazing. Citrus seems to dominate, but there is also some spice, coriander perhaps, that is noticeable. Sparkly carbonation. Taste is also very interesting. I would have to say that up to now, I have not been the biggest fan of Witbiers. This one is quickly changing my mind. Citrus is not overbearing, but is definitely dominant. Coriander is present but not in too assertive of a fashion. Very well balanced. Excellent beer, highly recommended. Who would have expected an excellent witbier from a Japanese brewery? I think I need to try some of their other beers.

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Photo of jackndan
4.55/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Hitachino Nest White Ale: Konichiwa! Excellent white Belgian style ale, with a weird owl on the label to boot. Creamy white sticky head over a fluorescent orange/yellow beer. Very cloudy, with an aroma of citrus cut only with faint yeast aroma. Well bodied, with a very easy drinking creamy mouth feel. The taste initially hits with a flood of citrus flavors, with a noticeable sensation of hops. The aftertaste reminds me of fresh pine, with a hint of hops. Very very nice, expensive beer from Japan.

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Photo of cheffu
4.55/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pour cloudy golden with a half a fingers worth of head, light carbonation. very floral with the sent of a peach. Taste of a clementine with a lingering sweet peach then orange peel finish. This is a soft beer and easy to drink, on a hot summer day would go down fast. Overall I would like to see more head but this was a great beer with great flavours and smooth finish.

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Photo of SiepJones
4.55/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass

A: Pours a murky straw color with a quarter inch of fluffy head. The head is puffy and doesn't leave much lacing.
S: Scents of lemony citrus, sugar, and a little coriander rise from my glass.
T: I taste a vanilla flavor, some sugar, and banana bread on the finish.
M: the mouth is very light, if there was no carbonation feel to it you might not even notice the beer in your mouth.
D: Extremely drinkable beer with a very refreshing flavor. This beer is flavorful but subtle.

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Photo of SuperSpy
4.55/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pale gold, cloudy, big rocky head that dies very quickly. This is spot on with what I would expect a wit to look like.

S - Lemon, hay, a mix of citrus. The lemony coriander aroma really dominates.

T/M - Wow... A rush of lightly sweet citrus, followed by lemony pepper and a very crisp, spritzer like finish.

D - A truly exceptional wit. Spot on to style and incredibly drinkable. Due to the cost I may not be buying too many more of these, but I have to pick up a few to let some friends give this a taste.

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Photo of bluHatter
4.56/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm always happy to try a Hitachino Nest ale I haven't had before. I'm pouring this into a frosted Hitachino Nest glass.

A: Looks light. Very little carbonation, considering I've had Hitachino Nests that bubbled over before it was even poured. Airy carbonation that sticks to the side of the glass, but little to no head on top.

S: Fresh, flowers, white wine aroma. Really a very nice smell.

T: Nostalgic flowery spices. Soothing, calming aftertaste. Difficult to place exactly, but it is excellent - flavors I've never had in a beer before.

M: Light, but with just the right amount of carbonation to really make the flavor work.

O: Once again, Hitachino Nest creates another masterpiece of an ale. I've never had anything quite like this - it's like they've been creating ale in a whole different universe without any input from ours. Just obscenely good stuff.

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Hitachino Nest White Ale from Kiuchi Brewery
4.05 out of 5 based on 1,520 ratings.
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