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#9 - Magic Hat Brewing Company

Not Rated.
#9#9

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
77
okay

4,744 Ratings
THE BROS
74
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,744
Reviews: 1,573
rAvg: 3.39
pDev: 18.29%
Wants: 41
Gots: 430 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Magic Hat Brewing Company visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  5.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
A beer cloaked in secrecy. An ale whose mysterious and unusual palate will swirl across your tongue and ask more questions than it answers. A sort of dry, crisp, refreshing, not-quite pale ale. #9 is really impossible to describe because there's never been anything else quite like it.

20 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-09-1998)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,744 | Reviews: 1,573 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Knapp85
3.93/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First time I had a #9 was in 2007 on tap at a place called the Kaystone Pub in Bethlehem. I remember seeing a neon sign for it above the bar and the friend I was with say that it was a pretty good beer. I hadn't heard of it so I gave it a try. It poured out as a copperish amber color with a thin fizzy white head on it. Not much lacing here. The smell of the beer had a fairly strong aroma of apricot and grains. The taste was subtle yet strong enough to know that there really was some apricot in there. The mouthfeel was light and pretty smooth going down, not a huge amount of carbonation in there. Overall, when I first started trying different beers I founf this one to be a real treat. If there was either Guinness or #9 where ever I went, I would have to choose which one I wanted. For a while it was a goto beer for me. I still enjoy it from time to time.

Knapp85, Jun 13, 2011
Photo of oberon
3.75/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this many times while living in Vermont and had a bottle yesterday for the first time in a few years.Poured a slight hazed light amber color with a tight 1/2 finger white head that stuck around for a minute leaving no lace behind as it settled,quite effervescent on the nose with big apricot and honey notes,with a noticable toasted grain elemant in there as well.Its a good cook out and or bbq beer lighter easy going down and chicks dig it,anyways the fruity flavors of apricot and or peach are not as big as in the nose but really show thru in the finish as well a little toastiness with just a lighter herbal hop note as a slight balancer.Hey it is what is a easy quaffing cult beer I would take it over any macro or other fruit beers out there for sure.

oberon, May 15, 2006
Photo of TMoney2591
2.58/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Man, I'm startin' to dig the discount beer area at a local Whole Foods: I can pick up a brew I've heard a lot about without paying very much. If only more stores did this. This guy pours a mostly clear pale-ish straw topped by about a finger or so of white micro-foam. The nose comprises peaches, wheat, rice, very light toffee, and a smattering of florals. Something akin to a medicinal scent creeps in on the borders, making things seem a bit off. The taste brings this medicine in in the form of an aspirin-like flavor, which ends up dominating things, forcing the apricot, wheat, and hoppy florals to the back (relatively speaking, anyway). The body is pretty light, with an strong moderate carbonation and a fairly crisp finish. Overall, something went wrong here. The fruit dies on the tongue, allowing the aspirin to usurp. It's almost as if they gave up on this one.

TMoney2591, Aug 09, 2010
Photo of zeff80
3.55/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a clear, orange-gold color with a thick, rocky off-white, one-finger head that left minimal lace.

S - It smelled of apricot. There are some floral notes and hints of caramel

T - Apricot taste lead things off but mellowed as it warmed. It was sweet with a mild tart kick. Caramel and homey flavors emerged as it warmed even further.

M - It was soft and smooth. A light-bodied beer.

D - An interesting beer. The taste was constantly evolving, which was good and bad.

zeff80, Jul 02, 2009
Photo of biboergosum
3.53/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, in a dark, pleasantly dank pub in Wyandotte, Michigan - you know, the kind with the best tap-list in the local, and any adjacent zip code. Anyway, this one is brewed with 'essence of apricot', apparently.

This beer pours a clear, medium copper amber colour, with two fingers of lazily dissipating puffy, frothy, and rocky off-white head, which leaves a low-slung wall of well-pockmarked lace around the glass.

It smells quite readily of a semi-sweet apricot and peach fruitiness, with a lesser, somewhat sugary pale malt underneath. The taste is more not quite sweet floral fruit - highlighted by seedy apricot and stale peach - a bit of earthy yeast, timid grainy pale malt, and subtle leafy hops. Not quite pale ale, indeed.

The carbonation is on the low, barely perceptible side, the body medium-light in weight, and generally smooth, if a bit wispy and ethereal seeming. It finishes well off-dry, showing off its proclaimed pale ale-friendly grainy malt, and still innocuous earthy hops, amongst a lingering plum and pithy apricot fruitiness.

An interesting blending of a pale and a fruit ale, drinkable enough in the late summer Michigan sunshine, I suppose, the bit that makes it through the various shutters and small windows of this joint. As for the apricot, I'm duly familiar with it through my local micro's best selling option, and I gotta say, I actually like this one better.

biboergosum, Sep 23, 2011
Photo of JAHMUR
2.5/5  rDev -26.3%

JAHMUR, Jan 20, 2012
Photo of NeroFiddled
2.93/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

How this got to be Magic Hat's best known beer I don't know. I'm sure it has something to do with its appeal to women, but even that doesn't make sense since women are better at tasting than men and this is just crap. Now don't get me wrong, 10 years ago with a little more fruit, it was bearable. Now, however, it just lacks fruit character. The yeast, at the very least, over-rides it for sure. It's more obvious once it warms though. I won't even drink this as a last option, I'd rather have the Miller Lite.

NeroFiddled, Apr 01, 2006
Photo of SocalKicks
3.25/5  rDev -4.1%

SocalKicks, Mar 22, 2012
Photo of Jason
2.53/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz brown bottle with a freshness date on the back label. Under the cap reads "Don't Pick Your Nose When It Shows". Meaning go to the bathroom and take care of business so no one has to see you digging for gold.

Solid two fingers of head, slightly hazed golden yellow color. Smells of a apricot hard candy and buttered biscuits. Smoothness and crispness I would expect for an English Pale Ale light to medium body ... lighter than I remember. Fruity with obvious fruit flavorings added, dry maltiness is a bit flat and the hops are very modest. Finishes Semi-dry with a feigned sweetness from the fruit flavoring.

So here we have the infamous #9, a beer that took Boston by storm many years ago. Its simply a plain English Pale Ale with flavorings. It was probably the bomb back in the day but now it just does not cut it for me anymore.

Jason, Jan 02, 2009
Photo of TheManiacalOne
2.13/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

On-tap at The Celtic Pub in Pawtucket, RI served in a US tumbler glass.

A: The beer is a bright amber color with a thin white head that fades quickly and leaves a little bit of lace on the glass.

S: Heavy fruitiness in the smell (apricot & berries) along with a background of hops and malt.

T: The fruitiness that you get in the smell hits you as soon as you get the beer in your mouth. It overpowers what little hops and malt characters exist in it. It does leave a bitter after-taste, but not the hops-style of bitter that is typically welcome.

M: Very crisp, light-to-medium body, high carbonation, dry finish.

D: It’s light and although the flavor is different, it’s strong enough to make it tasty, but to be perfectly honest; I don’t think I could drink more than one of these. I just didn’t like the flavor enough to stay with it.

TheManiacalOne, Jun 04, 2006
Photo of WVbeergeek
3.15/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a copper almost apricot tone with a nice sized full creamy off white head that leaves bountiful amounts of scattered lacing around my pint. Bottle says brewed with the essence of apricot this is pretty accurate for the aroma in my opinion, there's just a touch in the aroma along with a nut caramel malt character not really detecting any hoppage. Flavor of this beer has a little more apricot coming through then in the aroma but really blends together with a nut character in the taste, nothing expectacular but an easy drinking fruit beer. Mouthfeel is a bit thin but there is some slight syrup textures going on here. Not a milestone go to but a drinkable beer that hit the spot tonight.

Under the cap: "Have 3. Gotta Pee". All I can say is don't break the seal man.

WVbeergeek, Aug 04, 2003
Photo of RblWthACoz
3.25/5  rDev -4.1%

RblWthACoz, Oct 16, 2012
Photo of nickfl
3.2/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Two fingers of white head on a slightly hazy, golden body. The foam settles slowly and leaves moderate lace in its wake.

S - A light note of tart malt with some vanilla. There are some lightly hoppy notes in the background with a little bit of fruity yeast.

T - Light malt up front with some weak fruity flavors of pomegranate or raspberry. Tangy grain in the middle with mild herbal hop flavor. Finishes with slightly tart wheat and mild hop character.

M - Medium body, moderately high carbonation, and a slightly dry finish.

D - There is nothing seriously wrong with this beer, but it is a bit bland and one dimensional. The pale malt, along with a non-descript herbal hop character, seems to be the dominant flavor. One bottle is enough, I just don't find this beer to be that drinkable.

nickfl, Nov 30, 2009
Photo of russpowell
3.53/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured bronze with one finger of white head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Fruity, mostly apricot

T: Fruitty & jammy with a little bit of citric hops up front. Finishes with a bit of hop snap & apricot jam

MF:Medium-bodied with lively carbonation & good balance

Drinks fairly easy, just too damn fruitty for me. Liked it much more than the 1st time I tried it though. A decent enough fruit beer

russpowell, Aug 31, 2007
Photo of Slatetank
3.25/5  rDev -4.1%

Slatetank, May 16, 2013
Photo of feloniousmonk
3.83/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A confusing label here. "not quite pale ale" What does that mean? "natural flavor added" Which ones? If you "read" the psychedlic/op-art label, you'll find the image of an apricot. I still don't know why it's called #9..
Peachy color, with a short, white head. Aroma is the very essence of apricots! I read that it's "a pale ale with a spritz of apricot essence." Some spritz! That's the cheif aromatic, and flavor, but, I don't mind, I love apricots! Texture is full and welcome. Light body, good hop play on the palate, but very little bitterness. Malt is in adequate supply. A very tasty , bright, delicious ale, that I enjoyed.
However, my curiousity was originally piqued by an article in All About Beer, which quoted Magic Hat president Alan Newman saying, "I can look people in the eye and tell them 'you'll never have another beer like this!'" Well, I have, it was called Pyramid Apricot Ale! Or maybe Pyramid doesn't get to Vermont?
Thanks to purplehops and UncleJimbo for the trades.

feloniousmonk, Feb 28, 2003
Photo of StonedTrippin
3.73/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

on the boat with the lads in the summer when its light out til 930pm, this is your pick. its local(ish), fruity(ish), and hoppy(enough to be refreshing without filling). had hundreds of these and the marginal utility is always parabolic. too sweet to have 14 of, but interesting enough to session all afternoon. find your groove with these and stay up late. a fine pair with any grilled veg.

StonedTrippin, Sep 23, 2011
Photo of drabmuh
3.13/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap at some bar. Beer served in a shaker pint. After the thread today about #9 and 9# i thought it was fitting that I had never reviewed it and I was now at a bar with it on tap.

Beer is clear and pretty dark amber. Forms a minimal head that breaks and leaves no lacing on the glass. Beer is carbonated moderately. Looks OK.

Aroma is weak. Smells like copyright enforcement, with some graininess and a mild berry smell.

Beer is medium bodied to light in body, fruit is almost entirely in the aftertaste of the beer. Very little carbonation in the mouth. This is an OK beer for a pedestrian but I'm really unimpressed. There is this grainy bitterness to it. Overall its just OK.

drabmuh, Jun 17, 2010
Photo of Rifugium
2.15/5  rDev -36.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

First had: on tap at Casey's, Newtown Square, PA

It took me a while to finally sample Magic Hat. I didn't even know that #9--their flagship brew--was a fruit beer, specifically, an apricot beer. And I didn't care for it much.

Pours a clear golden-yellow with a quickly dissipating head and moderate carbonation. Aroma is light, with pale malts and fruit on the nose. Light, grainy malt taste, with dilute apricot and a sugary quality. A small hop bite towards the end and some bitter aftertaste. Light bodied and somewhat drinkable, but not really my style at all.

Rifugium, May 13, 2011
Photo of mactrail
4/5  rDev +18%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Not much head but a rather rich mouthful. Malt is full flavored, with a hint of roasted barley, but more biscuity. Flowery, with a taste of sweet orange. Touch of brambly berry with a tangy taste. Nice malty note is the best feature. Very unassuming but one of the more pleasant lagers I've had this summer.

On tap in Manyunk, Pennsylvania at Raven Hill.

mactrail, Aug 26, 2011
Photo of WesWes
4/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a golden color with a thick frothy white head that quickly fades. The aroma is good. It has a citrousy hop scent and a pale malt flavor. It has quite a fruity aroma; maybe peaches. The taste is good. It has a strong apricot flavor and a grainy pale malt palate. It goes down smooth and finishes dry and fruity. The mouthfeel is good. It is a low bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a fine fruity brew. It has a solid core and excellent aroma.

WesWes, Jun 06, 2004
Photo of mendvicdog
3/5  rDev -11.5%

mendvicdog, Apr 26, 2012
Photo of Mora2000
3.18/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours golden orange with a white head. The aroma is very fruity, with lots of citrus including orange, apricot and peaches as well as some lighter malts. the flavor is more of the same with apricots and peaches being dominant as well as some bready malts. No real hop presence. Light mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Overall, a disappointing beer.

Mora2000, Feb 21, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
3.1/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

From 4/9/10 notes. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours a straw/golden color with one finger of white head with little retention. Light carbonation evident.

s - Smells of citrus fruits, tropical fruits, and hints of sourness and malts.

t - Taste is again fruit. Some citrus and tropical fruit flavors, and some hops/bitterness on the end.

m - High carbonation and light to medium body.

d - This is one of my girlfriend's favorite beers, but doesn't do it for me. It's easy to drinkg and you could have a few of them, but I wouldn't really want to.

mdfb79, Apr 10, 2010
Photo of jwc215
3.9/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on-tap at The Fox and the Hound in Edison, NJ.

Pours copper with nice head that diminishes and sticks around.

The smell is of soft apricot.

The taste is of soft apricot - not overwhelming - but present. A sweet maltiness gives it some body with a hint of balancing, bitter, earthy hops in the finish. Fresh apricot remains, but not strong.

I had this a while back and wasn't so impressed. Glad that I started off with this while watching the football games. Easy to drink and refreshing. This is rated according to style (as it should be)- Can't see myself getting this with any regularity, but for an American fruit beer, it holds up well.

jwc215, Jan 08, 2007
#9 from Magic Hat Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 4,744 ratings.