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Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale

August 4, 2014

I know, I feel weird about the fact that I’m reviewing another Hitachino Nest beer only a week after having them for the first time too. I spotted this new one in a tiny upscale market a few blocks from my house, and the idea of an ale brewed with sake rice. Normally, I avoid beers with rice (like most mass-produced lagers in the US) because they’re terrible and give me wicked headaches, however I figured sake rice would be a little different.

The first big thing you’ll notice about this is the color. They call it a ‘smoky pink’ but I found it to be a bit darker: a hazy red-brown with a cream colored head sitting on top. The scent is rich and when I opened the bottle it immediately hit me with sweet malts, strawberries, and a hint of yeast. The middling body and creamy mouthfeel make the Red Rice ale a delight to drink.

Once again, the flavor is complex. There is a strong rich maltiness to this beer that gives off notes of cream and brown sugar like a warm dark pastry. Then you get spikes of strawberry from the beer that bring a nice sweetness to the brew. Finally though, the rice shines through and the beer tastes like warm sake. That strange but delicious combination that’s part fluffy rice, part sweet yeast, and part warm booze. The finish is a touch of lingering sake flavor and strawberries, a really great flavor to end on.

The Red Rice Ale is definitely worth investigating and I will continue to be on the look out for Hitachino Nest brews.

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From → Beer

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