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#9 - Magic Hat Brewing Company

Not Rated.

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5,126 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,126
Reviews: 1,622
rAvg: 3.39
pDev: 18.29%
Wants: 56
Gots: 700 | FT: 1
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-09-1998

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
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Ratings: 5,126 | Reviews: 1,622 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of larsee01
3.75/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A--I've had this on tap before, and it looked more appealing than when I poured it from a bottle tonight. Charming, orange-tinged gold. No head this time. Clear without much character nor carbonation.

S--Definite apricot scent. More dried apricot than fresh produce or nectar. Sweet and mild with a hint of cooked veggie. A bit buttery too.

T--Again on the sweet side and apricot. A new flavor for me, so a fun novelty. Not overwhelming nor natural tasting fruitiness like a lambic. A rich, buttery taste emerges--that's the best way I can describe it. Bready/cooked veggie aftertaste is mild and not unpleasant.

M--Carbonation much more active on the tongue. With the sweet fruitiness it's an almost electric mouthfeel. Light crispness evolves into a comfortable mild, lingering richness.

D--Very much so, but I don't know about an extended session. Sweetness may eventually get a tad tiresome.

Photo of BDLbrewster
2.98/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a very light hued yellow with sort of an amber twinge to it. Large fizzy head with minimal retention. Sheets of lacing.

The smell is sweet, buttery apricots?... The smell reminds me of adjunct corn sweetness. No hop profile to speak of, at all....

This tastes like a heavily toned down Pyramid Apricot, and not in a good way. Notes of apricot and some sweetness due to residual sugars. Watery and suffering from a complete lack of bitterness, this brew comes off as completely unfocused to me.

Mouthfeel is on point for the style, light bodied, airy and extremely carbonated.

Overall the price is a bonus, $3 for a bomber. Not to enjoyable, for me at least. Is this the 211 of craft brews?

Photo of Bockrules
3.37/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

poured from the bottle into a pint glass

A - Pours a cool gold-copper with a one finger white head and perfect clarity. The head is gone a quarter down the glass, leaves behind a few splotches of lacing near the bottom of the glass. The only redeeming quality is the cool color.

S - Pale male with tons of apricot. Just like opening a bag of dried apricots as a kid.

T - Very fruity up front. The body is almost tea-like: the pale malt serves as a background for subtle apricot and pear flavors. The finish is dry and cidery. Slowly the fruity flavors come back and leave an apricot aftertaste.

M - Light and thin bodied. This beer could definitely be thicker. On the plus side, the carbonation level is high and seems to suit the style well.

D - I have to be in a certain mood to drink this beer. It's light body and subtle flavors make it an excellent thirst quencher, and in the right situation I could drink a few of these before getting sick of the sweetness. But too be in the real of a good micro it needs more hops and malt.The first time I ordered this, I was out on a date with my girlfriend and the water told me it was a pale ale. I was very surprised and repulsed when my drink came.. Only later did I find out that it was a fruit beer!

Photo of rfgetz
3.89/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Hazy golden orangey straw. Puff of white head, wuickly diminishing. Decent lacing.

S - Straw with appricot and even peach notes.

T - Bitter and sweet appricot and peach flavors. Earthy straw.

M - Light bodied, high carbonation.

D - Light, refreshing, not overpowering... all around decent beer.

Photo of bamadog
3.88/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at The Cellar in Blacksburg, VA this weekend with Kels. Not a bad choice for a place for food and beer, and not a bad beer either. On tap into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a light golden coppery color and comes with a one finger white head that fades to a thin and uneven skim; body is clear and shows strong and fast carbonation coming up in the lines of very tiny bubbles; a pretty full lacing is left holding to the sides.

Smell: Light and fruity esters (apricot); a wheaty/yeasty graininess; a mild hoppy bitterness and a slightly sweet maltiness - not a bad nose if I do say so myself.

Taste: Mild apricot flavoring; a strong wheaty breadiness; mild hoppy bitterness and the same slightly sweet maltiness that was found in the smell; the aftertaste is pretty much all wheat.

Mouthfeel: Average at best - moist and well carbonated; has a slight drying effect in the end and even causes a bit of a pucker as if there's a bit of a tartness that I didn't pick up anywhere in the flavors.

Drinkability: Not too bad - I don't think I'd go out of my way to get this beer, but if it's where I happen to be, then I would gladly drink it again.

Photo of dbmcrorie
3.46/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz brown long neck bottle poured into an American pint glass. Label states "not quite pale ale"... so... what is it then? Freshness date on back (Sept. 09). Under the cap reads, "If your Vote's Uncast, you can't Bombast".

Clear golden blond body with slight orange hues to it. A decent off-white head that starts to get clumpy as it fades. Nice foamy cap stays till the end of the pint, leaving plenty of sticky lacing to dirty up the glass.

Candied apricot and dusty grain is the predominant aroma. A buttery presence peaks around the corner, followed by weak hoppy oils and a biscuity malt. Nothing wrong here, just a bit timid and uneventful.

Well that's why I smelled a tart apricots. The body is full of it. Pale malt and biscuity flavors are overwhelmed by marmalade-meets-dried-apricot. There is a slight hop bitterness that makes itself known in the back of the mouth, but gets washed away with a fruity finish. Light-medium body with a smooth mouthfeel. A surprisingly clean crispness to it, and a bitter-fruit aftertaste.

Interesting pale ale. I applaud Magic Hat's ability to take a different spin on traditional beer. But sometimes it can be so unique that you have to be in the mood for it. This particular brew almost crosses over into being a fruit beer, rather than a pale ale.
Might pair greatly with chicken, especially covered in a marmalade or apricot glaze; or in a fruit-based salad. Would also go great with roast chicken, fruit filled cheese, and savory sauces.


Photo of cdizinno
2.93/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Clear golden yellow color. Minimal head with medium to heavy lacing

S: Sweet smell. Hard candy and buttery scents.

T&M: Light bodied and smooth. Fine carbonation. Smooth and crisp. I don't like apricots and the first couple of sips are not tasty, however, it grows on you. Mild sweetness and a bit of an oily finish.

Definitely not my favorite. I wish Magic Hat would make their 'Odd Notion' '09 a standard, but I believe this is their most popular brew.

Photo of aaronxsubaru
3.62/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was interesting. Its not really like anything i've had before. apricot taste is what this is all about. Its hard to discribe but to me it tastes alot like plants, or earthy as some say. the after taste is interesting and the flavor keeps you intrigued but at no point is great. I think this was diffrent enough from other beers for me to order it again sometime, but not something i'd say i liked alot.

Photo of FleeVT
3.79/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pint served up at Whitlows in Clarendon. I didn't know this was a fruit beer until it arrived.
A: pale with a decent fizzy white head. Lots of carbonation bubbles throughout the session. Extremely clear.
S: Apricots all the way, with hints of nectarine. Not much of a hop backbone.
T/D: palate follows the nose. Light bodied fruit beer with a crisp finish. Really good summer beer. I'm usually not a big fan of this style, but #9 does it right.

Photo of dasmith52
3.87/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Being that I go to UVM, this is the one of the most popular beers in town so I may be bias. Ive had a lot of this and it is good in a bottle, but much better on tap.

A: Pale brown that is slightly golden and nicely translucent. Holds its head very well.

S: The apricot is very prevolent as well as other fruit flavors. There is also a nice malty and a very slight hops flavor that is reminiscent of a pale ale.

T: The fruit flavor really cuts through (especially on tap) without being too much or overpowering. there is a great malt and slight hops flavor.

M: Nice carbonation and smooth. maybe could be a bit thicker or creamier.

D: Very easy to drink and drink a lot of.

Photo of skrib09
3.74/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

poured a hazy gold with a white head.

smells of peach and apricot. the canned stuff.

taste is much the same. it hits the palate with the same notes as the syrup from the canned fruits. sweet, a little viscous, and fruity.

mouthfeel is neutral. not a lot going on. it's a little crispy on the sides of the palate. this beer is drinkable if it's your thing.

Photo of Dotcubed
3.64/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I know I've had this but haven't typed in any notes.

Good head retention.
Smells like I remember, Apricots. Sweet aroma.
Very potent.
Looks average. Crystal clear yellow.

Malty, sweet. Strong white bread yeast.
Refreshing, medium to light body.

Kind of dry too. Lacks some carbonation.

The label says drink by the end of July 09.
Kinda wish it has a production date too, but glad to see a best by date.

Pleasant and enjoyable.
Wondering if they'll bring more into the Minneapolis market.
Kind of a long way to ship them.

Photo of VTaler
3.61/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Darker golden yellow color. Almost kind of orange. Pretty Transparent. Had surprisingly great head retention. Ivory white color head. Very thick lacing. Very impressed with the appearance

S - Fruity aroma. Even though there is apricot it was not really an apricot smell. Slight hoppy and malt smell

T - Not very bitter. I guess this is what they mean by "not quite pale ale". The aftertaste is of apricot. Kinda spicy but in a good way. There really is not much apricot at all. There could be more. It kinda tastes like a generic all with a subtle generic fruity aftertaste.

M - Too carbonated. I feel like more of the flavor could come out if it were less carbonated

D - This is very drinkable because there are not strong flavors so none to get sick of. Overall there is nothing special about this beer. It's rather low in alcohol. It seems like a beer too please everyone but not astonish anyone.

Photo of LyonsHead
3.87/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark yellow/light orange with a nice white head and some lacing

S: I smell earthy hops with some citrusy notes mixed in, there is a nice malty balance here.

T: starts with an earthy spiciness. there is a strong maltiness all the way through and it finishes sweet.

m: slightly on the thin side and finishes pretty sweet. I wouldn't call it cloying but it definitely sticks with you

D: this is good, not a pale ale... which I guess the label says. Its still good though, I do like this beer!

Photo of canoehornpoint
3.08/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thin white head that holds the glass well. Color is medium golden, perhaps slightly cloudy.

Aroma is thin, some malt and twangy grain. Very mainstream aroma.

Taste starts with orange citrus and then a bit of plum/apricot and finishes sort of a flat plum/apricot that doesn't have great appeal.

Medium body with lithter and sort of unpleasant finish. Not bad but nothing to write home about.

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.

Photo of minterro
3.27/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A: partially murky yellow colored beer, with a off white colored head that leaves specks of lacing. on a side note i really like this label. under the cap "It's always best to Confess to your Mess".

S: very strong perfume fruit

T: taste of the beer is odd to say the least. I don't like it when i leave the beer in my mouth, however it tastes fine if you shallow it right away... idk. fruity taste. refreshing, might be better enjoyed on a sunny day

M: don't like the feel, light and watery, the carbonation bites at the inside of my mouth

D: easy to drink, although most light bodied beers are.

notes: i don't know about this beer, it was interesting and non-convertional... it could have been worst. its worth a try not sure if i would buy it again, but u never know.

Photo of Vonerichs
3.63/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep golden color with an enormous white fluffy head that lingers for a long time, leaving behind moderate lacing.

The smell is light, and reminds me of juicy fruit gum. The apricot is there but it smells like a combination of sweet fruits.

The apricot is the dominant fruit in the taste, no doubt. In fact, it's about all I can taste but just like the smell, it's very light. I think that's a good thing in this beer because it allows bready malt to come through.

Light body and crisp carbonation, leaving a slightly sweet aftertaste. Surprisingly, the mouthfeel isn't very sticky and is more on the crisp side, slightly dry.

This is a decent summer beer and with a relatively low abv and lighter body is easily sessionable.

Photo of MikeBrandman
3.63/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Golden yellow. Deeper than straw. Transparent. Big deal here is the head. Poured 3 fingers of head that faded slowly and supported an excellent aroma. Off white head that got rocky and fluffy with a little settling. Some of the thickest lacing I've ever seen.

S - Gave off a pretty strong aroma, but it wasn't as much apricot as...fruity. Smelt a little generic and not necessarily apricot.

T - Good mix of pale ale bitterness and apricot. Bitterness comes through in the begininning but then fades to the apricot tones. A nice spiciness to it. However, the apricot tastes as cheap as it smells. Not so much flavor as essence.

MF - I didn't care for the mouth feel that much. It felt syrupy, as if it was in my mouth long after I took a gulp. Lends to the artifical taste of the beer.

D - If the flavor doesn't get to you, it has great drinkability. The alcohol is low, but if you're a hophead or a devote fruit beer fan, you probably won't like it. It's too middle ground to appease hard core fans in either camp.

Photo of youngblood
3.07/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pours very effervescent, like watered down gold. Lots of carbonation bubbles, super light head.

Smells like apricots. Yep, mostly like apricots. I like apricots though.

Very one dimensional, lots of shallow apricots flavor and some lagerish flavor hanging back. Not alot of depth here.

Pretty slick on the tongue, not in a bad way though.

High drinkability, very refreshing on a hot summer day.

Photo of Anthony1
2.5/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

bomber poured into 2 "perfect pints"

This poured a hazy gold with a decent head. Head faded fast and no lace. Smell was kinda bland as was the taste. Tasted like appercot and bread. Tasted very bready to me. Was rather let down by this beer, felt like it was nothing special. med/light feel that was slightly dry.

Photo of caddybuyer
3.03/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From a 12 oz bottle, from notes

A-pale amber with an attractive rocky head that lasts awhile. Decent looking beer.

S-Sweet candy like smell..almost like a soda, but with malts under it all. A bit strange.

T-Apricot malts hit the palate immediately, then some dry malts. Not bad. Decent summer brew.

M-Well balanced overall.

D-Not looking to have another any time soon, but for a refreshing summer fruit beer, this is not half bad. The label says "not quite pale ale"...I'd say "nothing at all like pale ale", but, whatever....kudos to them for trying something different.

Photo of atpben
2.9/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had this at the Gingerman in Houston. Review from notes taken. Poured into a pint glass. Appears a light copper color with thin white head. Very fruity in the aroma with apricot? seems to prevail with also a little bit of peach. Fairly light in the body with more apricots and wheat in the taste. Hints of light caramel came through also. Didn't care for the finish too much which was dry and nutty. Average beer.

Photo of NODAK
3.29/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Interesting aroma on this one of maltiness and some citrus, which could be expected. Definitely different.

On first sip, the carbonation seems pretty heavy here. I get a sense of sour fruit upfront, which is quickly whisked to the side by a decent shot of hops, which seem to be Cascades or something similar. As it finishes, the bitterness intensifies a bit and runs along the sides of the tongue. After the finish, I get a little bit of grain on the palate. The finish is also quite clean, with minimal to no stickiness in the mouth.

Overall, I'd say it's a decent, but not that good, brew and is a bit toned down for a pale ale as far as hoppiness is concerned. Then again, it does say on the bottle it is the "not quite pale ale".

Photo of endincolorado
3.42/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- clear, pale gold with thick, white head. Light lacing.

Smell- Fragrant, citrus, fruitiness that reminds me of Smarties. Decent, crisp maltiness. Light hop aroma.

Taste- Sweet fruit in forefront. Apricot, maybe some mango, and lemon peel. Some biscuitty malt. Fairly dry finish.

Mouthfeel- Light-medium body with plenty of carbonation.

Drinkability- Pretty refreshing and crisp. Definitely different. The fruit flavorings could become overwhelming after a couple.

#9 from Magic Hat Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 5,126 ratings.