Hitachino Nest Commemorative Ale
Kiuchi Brewery

Hitachino Nest Commemorative AleHitachino Nest Commemorative Ale
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Strong Ale - Belgian Dark
Ranked #317
Ranked #32,841
3.77 | pDev: 11.14%
Kiuchi Brewery
Very Good
Hitachino Nest Commemorative AleHitachino Nest Commemorative Ale
Notes: This commemorative ale was brewed specially to celebrate the new year using cinnamon and coriander. Please enjoy while you forget the worries and troubles of the old year.
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Reviews: 118 | Ratings: 256 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of josanguapo
josanguapo from Spain

4.25/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

De estucerveza. En copa Teku. Vainilla no pillo, pero el cilantro si y le da un toque festivo-especiado muy interesante. Buena presencia maltosa,corpulenta

Feb 16, 2020
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GuyFawkes from Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2015 vintage; drank 8/28/15 @ Bad Apple.

Murky dull orange appearance.

Minimal khaki head; no lace.

Orange peel & dried flower notes in the nose.

Medium mouthfeel.

Apple cider & orange peel flavors up front; dry yeast notes on the finish. Caramel emerged as this warmed.

Interesting but a bit odd. I'd have another...

Apr 05, 2019
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oberon from North Carolina

3.82/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2017 bottle,8%ABV.per label.Pours into a snifter a lightly hazed amber with a large blooming off white head,almost two full finger that settle slowly into a frothy mass,just a great looking pour here.Very fruity in the nose with a slight shot of resiny hops,not a strong aromatic beer but what I get I like.Yeast notes abound on the palate along with some coriander-like orange and earthy flavors,a little spice and earth in the finish.This is no Eisbock,I would categorize it as a Belgian style of some sort,not bad but the yeast character is heavy handed.

Feb 23, 2019
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Profundobaso from New York

3.71/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served on tap and poured into an 8oz glass.
L - deep red, no head or carbonation visible
S - fruity, possibly tea and/or raisins
T - tartness stands out the most, followed by a complex mixture of taste that I can't quite distinguish. Quite boozy.
F - refreshing and complex at the same time. Boozy, but still fairly easy to drink.
O - My first Kiuchi beer. I've heard a lot of good things about them, and this one did not disappoint. Will try out some of their other selections.

Jan 21, 2017
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Beginner2 from Illinois

3.63/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Only my 4th brew from Hitachino, the others were in the Belgian styles and all enjoyed by me. And judging from their most rated beers, they focus on Belgian styles.
But in reading their list of beers, I see that they crafted four beers with many ratings in the English and German styles, of which this Eisbock is one. But simply put, Commemorative Ale is not as enjoyable as their Belgians.

Now, this is only my 3rd Eisbock... so I have lots to learn.
While this looked and smelled like I'd enjoy this, Taste disappointed. I can see how the flavors are concentrated from the freezing process. But the flavors are not clean here... so the process makes this beer almost worse than it would be if it did not have the concentration step.
Nonethless, an interesting beer... just not one I'd have again.

Jan 08, 2017
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q33jeff from New Jersey

3.54/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5


AROMA: Orange Peel, Coriander.
LOOK: Cloudy Orange, Little Head.
TASTE: Slight Tart flavor. Orange, Nutmeg, coriander.
FEEL: Medium Carbonation. A little creamy.

Another good beer from Hitchino Nest. I officially have a favorite Japanese Brewery now.

Dec 19, 2016
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hoptheology from South Dakota

3.72/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Picked two of these up on accident, oops, hope they're good. 2015 Edition.

Pours a raisin colored body, with strikes of putrid tea and orange, with big chunks of sediment at the bottom. The head is popcorn colored and lasts a minute or two, initially forming 3 fingers but leaving off with a ring. Not too appetizing.

A fruity bouquet with raisin, cherry, orange, and plum. A touch of bourbon in there and some musty caramel malts. Nose finishes with a bite of light fruit.

Flavors of heavy coriander, light plum, orange, mahogany, and blood. Some caramel and toffee notes also surface, and it finishes with both dark and light fruits. It really should be drank cold though, I imagine a whole plethora of ungodly flavors will surface once this warms up a bit.

Feel is carbonated, semi-dry, and prickly. A touch of belgian inspiration.

I like these ales that Hitachino comes out with. It shows a genuine versatility in their beermaking. This one isn't bad, and though it isn't great, I won't have a problem drinking the other one. Cheers!

Feb 22, 2016
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57md from Pennsylvania

3.81/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a honey brown color with practically no head. The nose is spicy with a trace of citrus. The flavor is lightly fruity with the essence of dates and plums. The finish is tarty and dry.

This offering has some interesting flavors but I am not sure that they work together all that well.

Feb 03, 2016
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FLima from Brazil

3.79/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2015 edition.
Slightly hazy amber reddish color with a fluffy head with medium retention.
Malty and fruity aroma as expected from its base style with notes of oranges, honey, nutmeg, cinnamon and prunes.
Flavor with notes of slightly toasted and grainy malts, prunes, orange citrusy, nutmeg, vanilla, cinnamon, tangy hops, hints of cocoa, a bit of white grapes, ginger, anise, candied fruits and caramels. Corianders suddenly showed up later on. Dry aftertaste with a deceivably medium bitterness.
Medium body with appropriate carbonation. Alcohol of 8% is superbly well hidden.
Very good beer, not from start, it has grown on me. Spiced, balanced and complex Eisbock, or maybe a malty Witbier (with no wheat). Still it is light and refreshing on its own way. Great beer to start training your senses once most of the ingredients above are easily identifiable.

Nov 30, 2015
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2014 edition, 8% abv. i love what these guys do, but this one isnt my favorite, not by a long shot. i had much higher hops, loosely an eisbock with vanilla beans and spices added, this should taste better than it does, although freshness might be an issue in my bottle. it pours a rich caramel color, bronze to amber really, honey thick, and heady as they come, frothy and lasting. it smells fine, the vanilla is lost to booze, malt sweetness, and oxidation though, and i cant really place the spices, but they seem a little all over the map. notes of cardamom, clove, allspice and anise in the tastes confirm that, and the vanilla seems almost superfluous to what else is going on, like the grain bill is complex enough and sweet enough that it basically does the same thing. im also not sure im getting eisbock as the base style very effectively, although being this sweet its hard to tell. its spicy, but not over spiced, and i find myself liking that aspect more and more as i drink it. the amped up carbonation also helps, but i wouldnt and maybe couldnt drink more than one of these in a sitting.

Jun 12, 2015
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clayrock81 from Florida

3.85/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured a copperish body with two finger head and lace patches down the glass. Aroma is spicy and peppery with hints of anise or licorice. Medium bodied with a little bit of sweetness and smoothness. Has this spicy feel to it that gives it a heated sweetness and there is a touch of woodiness or breadiness that give it a fuller body. Pretty interesting beer.

Mar 19, 2015
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Rollzroyce21 from California

4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

- 2014 vintage
- Poured from 11.2 oz. bottle into stemless wine glass on 3-Feb-15

Aromas of all the listed spices. Don't get much vanilla in aroma, but get more of it in the taste. The flavors work well together and for an eisbock, there's no hint of boozyness whatsoever, which I prefer. Smooth and quite enjoyable. Would seek this out again next season.

Feb 03, 2015
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chogm54 from Australia

3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

bottle poured into half pint glass

L - amber, almost nil head

S - faint cinnamon smell, but not getting much in the way of smell

T - strong malts, mixed with spices (vanilla, nutmeg) and ginger. Very short, sharp finish.

M - no carbonation to speak of. Oily texture, full and thick bodied, alcohol is potent.

O - the various spices make this different to other strong eisbocks. in no way sessionable, but a nice cool weather sipping beer.

Jan 31, 2015
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ONovoMexicano from New Mexico

4.13/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2011 twelve ounce bottle poured into a Munique glass.

Spritzy but fluffy oatmeal-colored head forms about a fist thick and somewhat quickly recedes, leaving only a yin-yang shaped lace over the body. The body is a curious shade of amber, almost orangish and hazy.

The aroma is very Belgian in that it's yeast-heavy, floral, sweet with pungent sticky malt, and spice-laden. Tasty fruit flavors that I can't single out swirl around between an odd funk.

Okay, I can definitely dig this flavor. Juicy fruit flavor, like orange meets dark cherry, joins coriander, sweet wheat and malt, and light vanilla flavor. This tastes dessert-like in with a lingering banana sweetness. It's very nice.

As noted, yeast is prominent, spice is prominent, but this brew comes together nicely. At times light, floral and wheaty, at other times coriander forward with sweet creamy malt with a yeasty bite. It's deceptively enjoyable and easy to overlook the 8.0% ABV, which is nowhere to be found on the tongue or throat.

I'm glad I picked this up. Hitachino can often sit on shelves here in New Mexico but there are some gems among their brand. This is one of them.

Jan 27, 2015
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barczar from Kentucky

3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Smells of toffee and prunes.

Flavor is led by dark fruit, with raisins and prune tartness underlying a light sweetness that becomes dry mid palate and finishes bitter and herbal. Good amount of alcohol heat.

Certainly not an eisbock in the traditional sense, and a little more one-note and bitter than I prefer.

Jan 24, 2015
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Bitterbill from Wyoming

3.63/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

I see a hazy honey coloured brew that brings almost a 2 finger head of foam. Lacing is you betchya!

The nose is pretty festive. I get some nutmeg(a fav of mine in winter brews), coriander, some grape like fruitiness, all on the malty and fruity side and nay to any bitter notes.

Nutmeg and a sweetish malt flavour that reminds me of the lovely oxidation you get in a UK barleywine or old ale is first up for me. I do get some coriander and some other spiciness that doesn't strike me so hot. Now there's a strange bitterness that creeps in in the finish. It really started off great but...

Medium body, lightish carbonation.

Bottom line, it's strong and pretty good overall. I had higher hopes based on my first sips.

Jan 24, 2015
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doktorhops from Australia

4.23/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2014 Vintage: I must say that I admire Hitachino Nest’s work as a brewery - they always seem to strive for unique styles and brews, this time we will have a go of their Commemorative Ale as it is a special occasion for me (my weekend begins now). First off I love the label - very reminiscent of Hokusai (one of my top 10 favourite artists). There is no description for the style of this Ale but with ingredients such as Orange Peel, Coriander, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, and Vanilla Beans I’m going to categorise it as a Festive Witbier.

Poured from a 330ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: Cloudy deep copper body with a thin off-white lace ring around the glass. It appears quite dense and lush, I’m really looking forward to the first sip. 9/10.

S: Very nice, festive and spicy with all the above noted ingredients: Orange Peel, Coriander, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, and Vanilla Beans - plus some dark fruits (plum, date, macerated dark cherries). The whole aroma gives of a Christmas fruit cake fragrance. 8/10.

T: Sensational! This is one Christmas fruit cake beer not to be trifled with! Festive puns aside there is a hell of a lot going on with this brew - Orange Peel, Coriander, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, Vanilla Beans (yes, yes, yes and yes), plus those dark fruits and a truckload of molasses that sticks to your mouth. It finishes with a slight herbal hop note and a touch of spirit burn at the back of the throat. It has to be one of the most aggressively flavoured/balanced beers at 8% ABV that I’ve ever had, fantastic! 9/10.

M: Heavy bodied with some stickiness from that molasses and a dense but light carbonation. 8/10.

D: The more I drank the more hop bitterness came to the fore, it’s a minor distraction from this Festive Witbiers overall score. As far as the flavours go this is a beer that would give some of the Trappist brews a run for their money - it is a BIG, hairy, challenging Ale with finesse that is not often seen (or tasted) outside of Belgium. Hitachino Nest have once again shown just how much the Japanese craft brewers can be players in this large boutique beer world. Kampai! 8/10.

Food match: I would recommend this brew after that big traditional Christmas dinner but before or with that traditional Christmas pudding.

Dec 07, 2014
Photo of goochpunch
goochpunch from Texas

4.3/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2013 Commemorative Ale.

Pours out a copper orang with a thin, frothy, off-white head. Spicing is subtle in the nose. I get mostly citrus-related notes: the coriander and orange peel. I also pick up a lot of caramel. Reminds me of a winter release of a typical biere de garde. Flavor is loads of caramel, orange, bread, honey, lightly toasted grains, with a fairly mild yeast character. Cocoa in the finish. Mouthfeel is silky and a bit sticky. I really enjoyed this, and it reminds me of some French bieres de garde that are released around the holidays. I should have saved this for Thanksgiving dinner; it would have gone perfectly with it.

Nov 24, 2014
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xShoWTeKx from South Carolina

3.87/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a hazy copper color with a 1 finger white head that dissipates quickly.

S: Smell is very nice, caramel, orange, grassy hops, and spice.

T: Up front is huge nutmeg and caramel, light citrus and bready yeast, a fairly strong hop presence.

M: Mouth feel is a bit strange the beer pours fairly thick but it feels very light, light carbonation and a slightly dry finish.

O: Definitely different, this was my first beer from this brewery and it has me wanting to try more.

Oct 13, 2014
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Cylinsier from Pennsylvania

4.22/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz, 2013 on the label

Pours a hazy deep amber, tending towards a brownish color, with minimal white lacing for a head.

Smells of fresh grassy malts over bretty elements and a mix of spices such as coriander, lemongrass, and a very prominent fresh ginger.

Tastes of fresh bready malts with a bit of caramel richness over some mild grassy notes and more lemongrass and pronounced ginger. A mild hop bitterness in the finish.

Medium to full body with a fizzy carbonation on the roof of the mouth.

A truly unique and pretty good stronger ale, a lot to like here. Also a lot of love-it-or-hate-it spicing. Personally, I tend towards liking this ale which feels most like a Belgian saison but with notable Asian influence.

Jun 04, 2014
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thecheapies from Pennsylvania

3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Dark buckwheat amber color, and with a vigorous pour, I got a serious foam surge. But, the head that amounted was poor in retention and just a fizzy rush that killed itself shortly afterwards. A lot of turbidity through particulation.

Papery oxi note, first, with some sweet spiciness. Picking up honey notes, coriander, citrus peel, and maybe some warm vanilla in there; all with a stuffed up malt and fading hops, hops that might have been citrusy on their own. Smells messy.

Burly amber ale malts with latent spiciness and dank orange peels. The vanilla just adds to what is a cumbersome sweetness, with the seeming turn of the malts. Past its peak? Maybe, but this is a 2014 Commemoration. Coriander is there near the finish with more lingering honey and a heap of treacle. Has some Christmas-y flavors. Not my cup of beer.

Textured carb-barb feel. Definitely gritty, whereas I can feel those particles. Hampers things, a bit.

Spiced beer or Imperial Amber? Christmas Ale with Witbier spices? What is this mess? And, why do I feel like there is no such thing as a fresh example?

May 19, 2014
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KTCamm from New Jersey

3.61/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Served from a bottle into a pint glass. 2/18 review.

Pours amber orange cloudy with a light layer on top of white foam. Orange nose with a wheat back. Slight sour. Some citrus taste. Label speaks of other spices, but all I get is orange. Good, not great.

May 17, 2014
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jazzyjeff13 from England

3.25/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A 330ml bottle with a BB of March 2014, so it's a little out of date. 2013 vintage; ABV stated as 8%. Picked up a while back from Trembling Madness in York. Described on the label as a spiced beer brewed to commemorate the new year.

Poured into a Duvel tulip. Bottle conditioned. A deep, hazy coppery-orange hue with plenty of floating sediment and good carbonation. Yields a large head of creamy off-white foam that lasts for a few minutes before reducing to a patchy surface layer. Slight lacing. Aroma of warm spicy notes with hints of nutmeg, cinnamon, mild coriander, subtle caramel malt, pine needles, a twinge of fruitiness, stewed hops and earthy yeast. A whiff of warming booze in the background. Complex but a shade overdone.

Tastes of a blend of spices with a dry, bitter finish. Notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, mild coriander, caramel malt, pine, stewed leaves, faint fruitiness, subtle earthy yeast and harsh cardboard. Well-attenuated, followed by a powerful herbal bitterness upon swallowing. Mouthfeel is smooth, tingly and dry, with pleasant carbonation and good body. Rather astringent, accompanied by an aftertaste of acrid woody spice, stewed herbs/leaves and faint caramel malt.

It's certainly spicy, but not the most balanced or relaxing brew I've ever sampled. Looks alright, with an pleasantly spicy aroma. However, the flavour is rather harsh and dry due to an excess of spicing. Not much fruitiness to speak of and the malt takes a back seat. Subdued hops - mostly pine. Body is satisfying enough. Despite its strength, the malt just doesn't stand up to the spice regime. Someone chucked a rack into the mash if you ask me. Interesting but not particularly drinkable - no need to hunt it down.

May 03, 2014
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Bouleboubier from New Jersey

4.22/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

(purchased at Free Bridge Wine & Spirits, chilled - bottle code NY.12.11 - poured into a balloon)

A: hazy, pink-tinged orange liquid... about a finger's width of creme-colored foam on the pour

S: tropical-fruity bath soaps... fragrant orange-scented lip balm... spices slowly emerge - i'd say the nutmeg first, followed closely by a soft cinnamon... the coriander seems tough to single out... vanilla is the last to arrive along with some spicy alcohol

T: all the best flavor is in the follow-through... it almost tastes like some sort of clove-y, strong Belgian pale ale (a la Kwak?)... vague impressions of each individual constituent spice, if you're searching for them... luscious, chewy malt foundation... certainly a dynamic display orange peel and a moist kiss of spice in the aftertaste

M: superbly smooth, moderately viscous malty body with a mild sting of spice and alcohol up front on the tip of the tongue and a hearty warm whoosh! of booze starting early and carrying through the finish, lingering in palate... reminds me, all in all, of a boozy Scotch Ale

O: quite a fantastic blend and balance of all the flavors - nothing stands out too boldly... seems to have that signature Hitachino flavor at its core... dunno how they do it, but their ales are fantastic!

Apr 29, 2014
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titty_mcbitty from Tennessee

4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: This beer has a reddish yellow tint. Poured non-aggressively, so there is an absence of head.

S: Big vanilla notes, spice, clove.

T: Vanilla is prominent. Spice and earthy notes come through, then some ginger, sweet bread, honey, sugar, and Christmas cookie. Lovely taste!

M: Medium with a very nice carbonation. I really like the carb, as it provides a smooth and refreshing tone to the beer.

O: Awesome! Well-balanced, unique flavor, and refreshing and smooth.

Apr 24, 2014
Hitachino Nest Commemorative Ale from Kiuchi Brewery
Beer rating: 85 out of 100 with 256 ratings