Tuesday, July 6, 2010

371. Hitachino Real Ginger Brew

“Their beers are good as soon as you accept they’re not gonna be what you want them to be.”

This is our first beer from Kiuchi Brewery in Ibaraki, Japan. We tried it mainly because of our love of a good ginger beer—Mount Island Desert Ginger from Atlantic Brewing Company is still the benchmark here, although I still miss the old label, which was so much cooler.

Real Ginger pours a clear caramel with an ivory tan head. The nose has a sweet candy caramel malt aroma coupled with some spicy ginger coupled. Flavors open with soft caramel and a bit of toffee before moving into a clean creamy middle with more sweetness and some herbal ginger flavors. The finish starts sweet, but dries out quickly, and has a slighty chalky or minerally characteristic and has a bit of a spicy ginger bite. Real Ginger has a medium body with a soft, creamy, and bready mouthfeel. The carbonation is medium, but there is not much of a presence across the profile. There is also a bit of an herbal spicy tang on the back of the throat as well, which corresponds to the spicy, dry bite in the finish. Real Ginger is a well-made, interesting beer; it’s the first Top 1o Best contender of the new year.

From the bottle: “Fresh ginger roots added to the brewkettle create an intriguing balance of ginger-spicy, sweet-malty and hop-dry flavors and aromas.”

From the Hitachino website (I think this is the most succint description from a brewery’s website that we’ve ever seen): “This Ginger Ale is brewed using fresh fragrant raw ginger.”

ABV: 7.0%
Malt: Marris Otter, Munich, Crystal, & Chocolate
Hops: Chinook, Perle, & Styrian Golding
IBU: 18
Specialty: Ginger


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