Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale
Kiuchi Brewery

Hitachino Nest Red Rice AleHitachino Nest Red Rice Ale
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Belgian Strong Pale Ale
Ranked #300
Ranked #34,025
3.73 | pDev: 14.21%
Kiuchi Brewery
Hitachino Nest Red Rice AleHitachino Nest Red Rice Ale
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Reviews: 347 | Ratings: 770 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of henrikb
3.48/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

Look: Orange-ish red, dense white head that dissipates quickly. Slight haziness and a little bit of carbonation visable.

Smell: Smells like rice, so not much. Nothing offensive, but nothing great either.

Taste: Smoky, carmely, slightly fruity flavor. The finish tastes alcoholic, with a light sweetness.

Feel: It is a little bit on the light side to my liking, but the amount of carbonation is excellent.

Overall: A tasty beer, I would drink this again.

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Photo of jjamadorphd
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up because of the label art alone, glad I did as this was an okay experience...

Coloration is an orange-tinged, reddish colored brew, the foam is thin and short-lived. Smell is wheaty, which translates to the taste along with a distant sweet flavor that I surprisingly tasted. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied, lightly carbonated, and has an almost spicy twitch to the tongue. Not a bad brew, not the best thing I've had but it was a nice surprise to experience.

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Photo of Nofoba
3.25/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 330ml bottle. It has a cloudy, rust colored body, with a little bit of visible carbonation. Thick, off-white head with low retention.

It has a light aroma. Sweet, slightly sour, with notes of redcurrant.

It has a light, smoky flavor, with hops, caramel, redcurrant, marmelad and alcohol. The aftertaste has a watery, alcoholic taste to it.

A unique taste, but overall it feels underwhelming due to its wateriness.

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Photo of JonnoWillsteed
3.69/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

£3.95/330ml from Harvey Nichols dept store in London SW1 - let's hope it proves worth it!
L- I'm not sure about 'red', though it is to the orange-side of chestnut. Pours with very slight haze and 1Cm ultra-fine white head.
S- There's something of a woody/leather smell to this.
T- Balance comes first, then some power. The flavour is solid but clean. 0.00% out of line or objectionable. The lable suggests 'A hint of fruit in the nose and palate'; I don't get that, others might well, but I like it. There is no lingering after-taste on the palate, another positive.
F- It feels every bit of 7%. Carbonation is also good in the mouth (the head is holding very well too). You might not be reaching for this on a blazing August day in Kyoto, but elsewhere less madly balmy I could drink this year-round.
O- Lovely, intriguing, slightly different style but the Japanese search for perfection shines through. Still, hugely expensive, £12/litre, as much as I like it I'm not pursuaded it's THAT good to warrant paying such again.
BBE: 04/2020

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Photo of jwc215
3.62/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz. bottle (Purchased and drank at PF Changs, Scottsdale, AZ):

Pours orange amber with a thin lasting head. Lacing sticks.

The smell is of white rice, caramel, sourbread, grass, some vague general fruitiness.

The taste is of white rice, restrained caramel, melon and some grass.

It is light and smooth. Alcohol very well-covered.

A decent to good brew that works well with light Asian food. (Not seeing the "BPSA" style in it.)

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Photo of dave_ackbar
4.24/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Wow, this beer is amazing. Went to my local beer store and the label caught my eye. Then the title Red Rice Ale, I had never heard of that before.
Look is that of a typical red ale, Auburn with thin head.
Smell was so so crisp and with the hint of spices that I can’t really identify, but smelled great.
Taste is so darn good, definitely like a great red ale with a slight spiciness.
Feel is crisp crisp crisp.
Overall I love this beer.

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Photo of mikeg67
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Pours hazy orange with tall, long-lasting, fluffy white head and nice lacing. Aroma is of yeast, grain and some vegetables. Body is medium and smooth. Taste is of grassy hops, some caramel, spices, ripe fruit and bready malt. Finish is long and dry. Very good brew.

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Photo of hopsputin
3.54/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: slightly hazy dark amber color with some light red notes. 2 finger frothy tan head

S: caramel, lemongrass, bubblegum, and vanilla. Some rice as well, and over-ripe strawberries

T: caramel and grassy grains. A little cardboard in there as well. A mild alcohol taste as well. Light strawberry

M: medium mouthfeel with low-mid carbonation - too low for the style

O: aroma was promising, but the taste is a bit of a let down caramel and alcohol, not much beyond that

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Photo of josanguapo
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

De Estucerveza. En copa Teku. 5 meses tras bbf. Jugando a Avernum 5. Original y agradable, con un sabor dulce como a chuche de fresa y buena sensacion en boca, con cierta efervescencia y amargor bien ajustado

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Photo of bark
3.27/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The colour is amber-brown, the liquid is hazy. The two fingers off-white head sinks quickly down leaving no lacing.

The smell is light with strawberries, bitter almonds, Japanese cherries and some green tea.

The taste is dry with light notes of strawberry jam, beef stock, oolong tea and banana skids. Light to medium body. The aftertaste got growing notes of hot alcohol, cheese doodles, red fruits and black cherry tea. The finish got lots of alcohol with dry fruity flavours and strawberry/raspberry bubble gum.

The carbonation is strong, the many mid-sized bubbles are smooth and short-lived. The liquid is somewhat light.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.32/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Amber hued with an inch of tightly knit off white. There’s not much aroma, just of faint rice. I’m tasting the sweet bready malt. The mouth is light and smooth.

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Photo of Gajo74
3.71/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a cloudy amber/copper color, carbonation and yeast sediment visible throughout . A billowy thumblength head rises to the top. Good retention that yields a creamy film and lacing.
The rice adjuncts are the dominant aroma throughout, its sweetness seemingly out of place for the style. Yeasty and with fruity esters, apples and beer. A faint alcohol spice makes a fleeting cameo.
The taste is dry at first, however, the rice adjuncts and wheat like malts soon bring a sweetness. Yeasty flavors that bring forth fruity esters, apple, pear, even a fleeting hint of orange peel. A light alcohol spice is present throughout. The finish is sweet, rice like, has a touch of alcohol, and slightly sticky and dry towards the end of the drink.
Medium bodied and with a lower carbonation than I’m accustomed to for the style.
This one is all about the rice adjuncts, which certainly add a unique twist. Not particularly true to style, but tasty nevertheless.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

this is super weird but also really good and very drinkable for how unique it is, i always enjoy the beers these guys make. its oddly pink from the bottle, the rice coloring it perhaps more than i expected, a little cloudiness but no visible sediment, and an average looking off white head with some lace left behind when i am finished. the nose is striking and so is the taste, to me it reminds me of one of those ludens cough drops, cherry flavored, that i used to eat as candy instead of medicine as a kid, definite red berry and cherry candy character in here, that cant all be from the rice can it? i have noticed these sorts of fruity flavors in sake yeast beers before, so perhaps some of that is at play, i wish they have me more information here, i immediately want to know what it is i am tasting, if its all from red rice, its awfully unique rice they are using here, but it cant be! i get some raspberry jam in here too, and a nice earthiness and starchy texture from the rice, sort of white wheaty to me in feel, nice and bubbly, a little sweetness at the end and a tea-like herbaceousness as well, very interesting and complex beer, great with raw tuna, but probably also valuable in a thousand other culinary contexts. i sure would like to know more about this one, but safe to say its one of a kind!

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Photo of Dawon
3.15/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

향부터 알콜부즈가 쫌 느껴지고 어떤 특색있는 향도 아님 맛도 특색없고 그닥 맛있는지 모르겠음 팥느낌도 있는 맛임. 탄산감도 조금있는 편

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Photo of Beginner2
3.94/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Red Rice is so interesting that this is close to something like "I've never had an ale like this."
How does Hitachino do that?
Since I don't drink much sake, I'm not used to rice making the malt. That's a minor part of the answer.
But, these flavors are more than a different, sweeter grain. It is a well-crafted ale. Lots of yeasty flavors. Subtle use of spice.

This is my 7th ale from Hitachino. A few were quite good and I put Red Rice in that group. I'm guessing it is because of Hitachino cultivates its yeasts so well. So, the question is: " Can the Japanese copy Belgians well, also?"
Answer: Think of Hitachino as a brilliant adaptor.

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Photo of Just-the-sip
4.3/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Had in Japan with red sauce pasta and shrimp. Yes, I had Italian in Japan but they do it way differently. Looking for Hitachino since I arrived and finally found a place that didn't carry the big 5. Great beer. Super smooth on the pallet. Nice red color. Goes well with red sauce dishes. Had to have it in its origin country cause it's a bit pricey in the U. S.

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Photo of MoohMooh
3.99/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours reddish brown, one finger immaculate white head. Hazy.

Smell is sweet, there's caramel and some citrusy hops. Kinda grainy too. Oh, it smells like strawberries! Weird, but on the interesting side. It does smell a little like cooked rice, I think. Or maybe it's just wishful thinking.

Tastes of strawberries too; Rice is mostly present in the aftertaste. Banana, slight pepper. Apple? Citrusy hops, like in the smell. Alcohol is there, but not overpowering -- it actually feels very "sharp" in the aftertaste, much stronger than 7% ABV, but at the same time very subdued. And vaguely reminiscent of sake? Maybe it's the rice.

Body is medium, and the carbonation is pretty lively. Drinks really easily.

It may be just a little too sweet, but it's a very interesting and unique brew. Really puzzling to drink something so close to a belgian pale ale and at the same time so different.

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Photo of Libeertarian
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From notes taken 12/01/16:

Appearance is gelatinous, semi-opaque, a lovely butterscotch in color with barest hues of pink, with fleks of various sizes in suspension and clinging to sides. Head is nearly pure white, fine bubbled, of lower retention but film-forming in patches. Lace and legs are a delicate sheet of alabaster. Extremely medicinal aroma at first, like menthol and Band-Aids. Gives away in large part to tart fruity and creamy caramel suggestions. Loads of menthol and Band-Aid to palate, but just enough sugar and light apple- and white grape-like tartness to balance this out. Moderately dry and clean finish, apart from mentholated and peppery afterbreath. Full-bodied but thin for what it is. Fine but sparse effervescence, somewhat prickly. Alcoholic warmth with retro-olfaction.

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Photo of safaricook
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This strawbeery aroma and taste is surprising and intriguing. Makes this ale insteresting instead of just solid. Will try to explore more from this brewery

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Photo of JonCorbett
4.02/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a hazy ruby red, with a loose and bubbly head, pretty quick dissipation and just speckles of lace here and there.

Aromatics: Fairly fruity combination of berry and pome fruits - almost a fragrant as a fruit punch, with sweet and mildly toasted malts.

Taste: Sweet and fruity, mild raspberry, pear, and apricot with touches of spice - maybe cinnamon and cardamom. I do have a reach a bit for that rice flavour that is there, just not as upfront as you might think it would be. A somewhat eclectic and complex array of flavours.

Feel: Not quite light but not quite medium body either - somewhere in the middle. Some finer carbonation bubbles still present to tickle the palate, and the 7%ABV is not entirely hidden, I do get a slight whisper of alcohol vapour during the finish.

Overall: A very interesting and pleasurable beer. I enjoyed its aroma a lot, and if the alcohol wasn’t as apparent to me at the end I could easily drink this daily.

Pairing : I’m going aesthetics here - from a Japanese brewer I’m going to go with a couple sushi suggestions. Though I believe most sushi will go great with this beer, I particularly enjoy tomago (sweet egg) and of course ebi ebi (shrimp), with a light tempura sauce for dipping. I could also easily just have a small bag of shrimp or cuttlefish chip snacks from the local asian supermarket.

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Photo of vickersspitfire
3.41/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Semi dark brown color, almost red at times with a thick and dense off white head and a thin lacing around the glass.
Smell: Caramel, light strawberry and mildly earthy, the aroma overall is very light.
Taste: Earthy, light caramel as it hits the back of your throat, there is a slightly tart flavor, but it’s not offensive.
Mouthfeel: Crisp, light, medium bodied and full of carbonation and very smooth.
Overall: Interesting, not quite your typical Belgian strong pale ale, but well worth the time and money- I think I only paid a dollar for this bottle! The flavor was unique and well balanced.

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Photo of ControlVolume
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Lots of particles floating around in the beer, reviews corroborate this is normal even though it freaks me out a bit. Has a much lighter, strawberry taste than what I usually associate with belgian strong ales. Very crisp. Pleasant bitter aftertaste. Unique, I'm not disappointed even though it's not my style. Recommend dumping the final sip of the glass since the sediment settles.

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Photo of Flickerdart
3.99/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 330ml bottle into a 16oz pint glass. Pours a rich amber with a thick creamy head that leaves behind a little bit of lacing as it subsides. Beer is cloudy and nearly opaque.

Smell is barely there, sort of a peachy sweetness with a hint of alcohol. It's not offensive, but it's not exciting either.

Taste is malty, with hints of peach and perhaps gingerbread. There is a faint caramel aftertaste. It's definitely a Belgian style beer!

The body is very medium. Not much to say about it. Carbonation is light, but it doesn't feel watery or thin.

Overall - I bought this beer to satisfy my curiosity, and it's been satisfied. I wouldn't seek it out again, but if I'm at a Japanese restaurant that serves this alongside Asahi and Kirin, I'd go for this every time.

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Photo of drmeto
3.12/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

-pours a cloudy rose-red with a medium,foamy,white head
-big particle floaties
-medium to high carbonation visible
-earthy,red potatoes,slightly spicy,grainy,caramel
-strawberries,grainy,cooked potatoes,cooked rice,caramel,dates
-clean finish
-medium to high carbonation
-medium body
-alcohol noticeable
Very unique, but not quite to my taste.

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Photo of bluzz
2.2/5  rDev -41%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

It tastes like beer with sake in it. It's not actually red. I don't like sake but it's drinkable. If you like sake and beer it's probably a good pick.

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Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale from Kiuchi Brewery
Beer rating: 84 out of 100 with 770 ratings