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#9 - Magic Hat Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,739 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,739
Reviews: 1,572
rAvg: 3.39
pDev: 18.29%
Wants: 41
Gots: 426 | 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: 4,739 | Reviews: 1,572 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ElGordo
3.48/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep golden with orange highlights. Head is thin and whispy and disappears almost immediately. Not much carbonation. Nose of apricots, sweet malt, very light hops. Palate is redolent with apricots, along with some light hops, mild citrus sourness, and a touch of sweet malt. Finish has some pretty serious astringency. Body is nice and substantial, but not heavy. Sort of a novelty, but still a decent beer.

ElGordo, Nov 08, 2005
Photo of hopsaplenty
3.15/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

#9 pours orangey gold into the glass, pushing up a modest of-white head that disspates and leaves thin trails of lacing. The nose is of apricots and malt, and the taste is much the same. But the fruit is dry, almost astringent, a bit too "clean" and the malt is not quite enough to offset this. It has a modest body and bitey mouthfeel.

This beer has changed over time and is not the same as I remember it.

hopsaplenty, Nov 06, 2005
Photo of daliandragon
3.9/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The famous Magic Hat #9. An ex-girlfriend introduced me to this beer long ago..at least I got something out of the relationship.. Saw a Halloween Mix 12 of Magic Hat's beers and went to an old reliable first.
#9 pours a bright reddish color, actually closer to orange than brown, with a hint of head but no more. This is among the fruitiest beers I've ever smelled, with sweet apricots and probably other fruits as well. It almost smells like wine from some angles which is normally bad until you sniff again and get the fruit.
Beautiful full flavor with obvious fruit tones at the begiining followed by a hop period and finishing with roasted malt on the roof of the mouth. There is a yeast flavor mixed in here as well. This is a very pleasant sipping beer, and more adaptable than most fruit beers because of its dual hop/malt action.
High marks to Magic Hat for originality and craftmanship. A bit of the "jack of all trades, master of none" label here but this is still a nice effort.

daliandragon, Oct 27, 2005
Photo of CastAStone
4.33/5  rDev +27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tap from Buffalo Brewpub - about the farthest they let this beer travel. Essentially no head, no lace. Beautiful smell - very orange, very smooth. A little weak, however. I could say the same about the taste - orange, smooth (i.e. no hop taste whatsoever), other fruit flavors are noticeable. A lighter beer flavor, but not in the light beer way. Thicker than you might expect in your mouth. Very drinkable - you could easily drink this all night. My two non-beer snobs with me both were blown away by this beer.

CastAStone, Oct 24, 2005
Photo of unknownlamer
3.8/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Everything about it seems every so slightly above average. It looked alright, didn't have much of a head, and had a grainy smell with a hint of frutiness. It has a fairly simply taste with a bready grain flavor dominating in the front, and a refreshing dry fruitiness in the back. It is a bit sweet around the edges with the fruit flavor becoming more apparant for a moment or two after swallowing. The slightly tart aftertaste disappears really quickly.

The one thing that stands out about this is how easily drinkable it is. It goes down smoothly, doesn't leave much of a taste behind, and really is refreshing. Definitely something that I would get for hanging around outside during a warm day with friends.

This is an interesting beer, but not really something I saw initially as being a good flagship beer. After drinking a lot of these I can see why it is the Magic Hat flagship (easily drinkable and a definite good session beer).

unknownlamer, Oct 19, 2005
Photo of beermanbrian
3.68/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this one many years ago on a visit to Vermont. Can finally get it in PA and was looking forward to trying it again. Nice golden/amber color but really lacking for any kind of head or lacing. Smell is full of appricot that really drowns out much of anything else but is nice and inviting. Taste is fruity up front with a wheat malt background that turns into a dry finish with no real aftertaste. A nice change of pace beer that is worth a try.

beermanbrian, Oct 17, 2005
Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured into the glass clear medium amber with a white head which rose medium and fell slowly to lace the glass.

The aroma was apricots front and center with a nice sweetness. The aroma also contained peach and just a hint of caramel and perhaps a cinnamon spice.

The flavor was light with a wheat flavor and not much of a fruit flavor at all. There was a light apricot and low peach at the very first contact with the palate but that quicky goes away leaving a dryness and no other real flavors besides just a hint of caramel and a light tartness.

The finish was dry with really nothing lasting into the afteraste. The body was just a bit less than medium. Nice aroma, but not much else here of interest.

12 ounce bottle. Best before end N notched on label.

GCBrewingCo, Sep 30, 2005
Photo of jmz62565
3.38/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A full two finger head with a nice amber color.The smell is a little sweet with hints of ginger,cinnamon and carmel.The taste has a sweet carmel start,but leaves a dissapointing watery finnish.This ale is a little lighter than it looks,it does go down smooth,but I wish this was a little bitter.

jmz62565, Sep 27, 2005
Photo of wedge
3.78/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

"Don't Tease, aim to Please"

Pours clear copper color with a small head. Smells of malt and fruit - apricot and peach. Sweet fruity taste - but not too fruity. Solid pale malt and wheat behind the fruit too, making this much less one-dimentional than other fruit beers - very earthy. Minimal hop bitterness. Light, dry mouthfeel.

The most common of the Magic Hat's and not as bland as one might think. Simple but good if you want a nice refreshing beer to chug. Crisp and enjoyable.

wedge, Sep 19, 2005
Photo of HappyHourHero
3.65/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mild, barely sweet aroma that is a mix of apricots and grainy malt. Small white head fades quickly to a thin film leaving no lace. Scores of fine bubbled streams rise through the glowing copper beer. Faint apricot combines with a dry hop tea flavor up front. Maybe a bit of wheat in there, and if you try hard a pinch of hop bitterness towards the end. Finishes rather dry and clean. Moderately light, crisp mouthfeel combine with the lightly sweet flavors to create a very drinkable beer (especially when it's extra cold). A good fruit beer, decent overall that unfortunately become a

HappyHourHero, Sep 13, 2005
Photo of tastybeer
3.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Looks crispy clear and golden tangerine with a nearly white mediocre head that fades fast. Nice color though. Smell is quite refreshingly full of fresh apricots, pear, apple and peach. Its a very nice mouth watering smell. Taste is also refreshing. Very fruity with a slight twang and some malts that peak through. Very smooth in the mouth with nice crisp carbonation, and very very very easy to drink. It slides down real easy and leaves the palate fruity and dry with subtle bitterness. A very easy beer to enjoy. Not complex/very simple.

Refreshing, crisp, and apricotacular. I can see why many like this beer. Easy going and not offensive.

tastybeer, Sep 10, 2005
Photo of asabreed
3.53/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Just bought a 6-pack at the grocery store for around $6. For some reason tons of places around Richmond now are carrying Magic Hat. They had a 6-pack of Jinx, too, which I'll try soon, but since it's still hot and this seems to be a good hot weather thirst-quencher, I opted for the #9.

Appearance: Decent head that doesn't fade as quickly as I thought. Oddly there's tons of sticky lacing all over the glass as I drink, which is pretty cool and surprising.

Smell: Not an overuse of fruit in the aroma, but you can definitely tell it's there for sure. You can smell the apricot and faint hints of malt, but it may be that there's not enough malt to give this a decent enough backbone.

Taste: Once again, seems like it's too light on the malt. It's not insanely fruity like some fruit beers, and you can still tell it's a brew for sure, as some fruit beers won't do. Mostly apricot flavor and a little bit malty and yeasty. But I wish there was more of a chewy body, as it seems a bit watery. Still, it's tasty, refreshing, and has enough in it that I'm not sick of it and can easily drink another. It seems like fruit beers (not lambics but fruit / vegetable beers) are hard to get right, and I suppose that makes sense. But this is pretty good for what's going on with it.

Mouthfeel: A little slick and a little watery, but the carbonation is the thing saving it, as it's enough to make it enjoyable as you keep drinking, but it's not overdone.

Drinkability: If the smell and taste were better it would be a 4, but as it stands it's not something I could see many people wanting to drink this as a session beer. But for summer, when you're thirsting for a beer that's a little bit different, or something to sweeten up the palate in the fruit department, this is a pretty decent and readily available (I think) version of the style.

asabreed, Sep 09, 2005
Photo of freed
2.48/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

This is the last sample my friend brought back from the east coast, and the one I'm most anticipating because of internet chatter. The label is cool, and the bottle pours a light copper liquid with a slight haze. Rim of foam and little spots on top and seemingly active carbonation.

The aroma is, well, it's like almost any fruit beer. Like you took a regular beer and put generic fruit into it. It's reminiscent of Blackberry Wheat but with an apricot twist. Whether the aroma comes from extract or not, it doesn't smell natural.

The taste is also dominated by the apricot-ish flavors. Following the initial rush of sweetness there's a quickly drying tartness that leaves the mouth parched like soda ash. It's really not very pleasant, and I'm not sure I want to finish it.

In a world of beers with big flavors, one often finds their way back to balance. I think this beer could use less of the fruit flavoring and rely on the goodness of malt to give it a more palatable taste.

freed, Aug 30, 2005
Photo of granger10
2.05/5  rDev -39.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I got a sixer of this from my family in New York, it's their favorite beer. Throughout this week I have been trying to enjoy it, thinking it would improve but alas it did not happen. Flavor is sickening with a poor apricot flavor and some funky English ale type taste. Finish is medicinal and leaves a nasty flavor on my tongue. I could be wrong but I don't think they used real apricots in here. It just doesn't work for me. This tastes really fake and overly sweet and medicinal. Not a good beer at all.

granger10, Aug 27, 2005
Photo of Rootdog316
3.98/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Magic Hat #9 Ale pours to a golden color with a light head formation and a crisp malty nose. Nor does it in the palate, where the fruit is not entirely noticeable upfront but becomes apparent in the finish. There's just a touch of it, and it accents the crisp, biscuity malt palate and slightly buttery Ringwood yeastiness nicely. A light kiss of hops punctuates the brew and makes it quite drinkable.

Rootdog316, Aug 20, 2005
Photo of semihobo
4.33/5  rDev +27.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured a nice glowing orange-amber. Poofy head slowly faded down to a nice layer of lacing.

Smells of spiced fruit, with spices like those in some wheat beers (coriander, etc). Some smell of citrus rinds and tanginess, with a mild hops scent.

The taste is excellent, very different. Fruit and apricots (listed on the label, they are a prevalent flavor). NOT too sweet, which is welcome as so many fruit beers go over the top and come out cloying. Some light malts and a grainy aftertaste after a small but noticeable hop finish. For being described as a "not so Pale Ale" the hops are very subtle.

The mouthfeel is nothing dominating, moderate and appropriate bubbling that doesn't overwhelm the flavor. Far from flat, though.

The drinkability of #9 is ridiculous. It's one of the most drinkable beers I've had or even heard of, in all senses of the word. I could barely set this one down, and it's even more quaffable when it's fresh on tap. The taste is friendly and nonthreatening but surprisingly complex. Doesn't fall into the usual "super sweet" or overfruited categories of fruit beers. Good for inexperienced or even non-beer drinkers, but also good for those who like to root around looking for flavors. You can think hard about it or not. Also gets points for creativity -- I don't know of any other fruit beers as multidimensional as this.

semihobo, Aug 10, 2005
Photo of HoorayBeer
4.7/5  rDev +38.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have been drinking this odd brew for quite a few years. It puts a different spin on beer. Sat down with it, and it had a nice clear amber color, with a 1 inch head, not too thick, it left quickly after pouring. Smelled great, of fruits, notably something like peaches or apricots, quite different than other fruit brews. Very sweet first taste, hits the front of the tongue. Very smoothe and easy to go down mouthfeel. I will keep coming back to this beer when I can get it. Always a good choice, keeps things interesting.

HoorayBeer, Jul 22, 2005
Photo of pentathlete
3.63/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Minimal head on the draught. Deep amber with nice carbonation. Fruits I can't identify blending with malts in the nose. Flavor is watery malty and just a touch of fruit..maybe apricot...a surprising little balance of hops. Thin mouthfeel, very light body, and the finish is watery and short. But this is a drinkable brew, no doubt.

pentathlete, Jul 16, 2005
Photo of cubedbee
3.43/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a nice hazy gold with 2 fingers of white head which sticks around for a few minutes. Smells very fruity, apricot, tangerine, peach. Taste was pretty light on this one, apricots coming through gently over a mildly malty pale ale base. Barely detectable amount of hops in the fnish struggles to balance the fruity sweetness. Mouthfeel is slick and smooth, but a little on the thin side. This is an OK fruit beer, but too one-dimensionally unbalanced to be a session beer.

cubedbee, Jul 04, 2005
Photo of Toddv29424
4.13/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a wholly translucent copper color with no head. Smell is hard to discern, but there is definitely a vegetable taste in there but in the best way possible. Taste is really surprising. Very full and like that of a copper ale with much attitude. Very indicative of the Magic Hat flavor, lots of it and always something new.

Toddv29424, Jul 01, 2005
Photo of scooter231
3.9/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a very refreshing beer. It pours a hazy golden color that's slightly cloudy, and almost sunset-looking in appearance, with a very little head. Smells are fruity, lemonade and strawberries mostly coming through.

Taste is like it smells, fruity, though I sensed different fruits as well- apricots peaches, and oranges mostly. It's sweet, subtle, and dry. Also has a slightly sour aftertaste. Mouthfeel is chewy, but a little watery. Pretty drinkable, but it's a bit too sweet to make this uber drinkable. Overall a refreshing, tasty beer.

scooter231, Jun 28, 2005
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.83/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(Served in a small strange)
A- crystal clear golden body with low carbonation and a thin soapy head

S- Clean pale malt almost corn aroma but more like light fruit

T- Strong fruit a bit earthy peach with a taste of white raspberry and a light malt note. It has a slight peppery spice at the finish but not really hops flavor.

M- Medium mouth feel with some fizz noted

D- This beer is a smooth refreshing surprising beer. A pale ale without hops and a nice twist.

rhoadsrage, Jun 27, 2005
Photo of jakester
3.85/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is from a 12oz. bottle from a sampler case. Expiry date notched on the label. Label says "#9 flavored not quite pale ale".

Pours a slightly hazy (chill haze) gold with orange accents. One finger head of cream colored foam drops quickly to form just a ring. Not much lacing. Some carbonation is evident.

Aroma is of strong apricots, faint peaches, maybe light pale malt, with almost no hop smell. As the beer warms, bready malt does come through.

Tastes like it smells. Apricots dominate the taste, with some hop bittering there as well. Low to medium sweetness. The apricot flavor lasts through the aftertaste. Pleasant. Well balanced for style, with apricots coming to the front.

The mouthfeel is smooth, with a medium carbonation sting on the tongue. The pleasant, long lasting finish is crisp and clean, on the dry side. Some astringency is apparent at the end.

This style is really not my cup of tea, but judging it for what it is, it's good. I think the apricots would get to me after awhile, so I wouldn't want to have alot of these in a row. One or two of these would be refreshing, though.

jakester, Jun 26, 2005
Photo of ommegangpbr
4/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep, apricot colored beverage evacuated this bomber.
Smells of, at least a little bit, strawberries, peaches and nectarines.
Tastes like it smells, but more so. Has a bitterness that reminds me of nectarines as well. I find it to be quite tasty and refreshing.
There's some bitter/sour mouthfeel going on, but for the most part it is light and soft. Pretty pleasureable on the whole.
This is a smooth, drinking friendly concoction.

ommegangpbr, Jun 26, 2005
Photo of ADR
3.68/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clearish dark gold appearance, fluffy head of almost 1/2 an inch, creamy bubbles, and good staying power. Laces in partial rings and punctuation marks. Aroma is slightly acrid, some apricot and some sulfurous and wood elements. Mouthfeel is solid if light, carbonation about medium. Starts out light and oddly refreshing in a medicinal way. Cherry, lemon, and peach balance a bitterish backbone. Rounds down and finishes fuller at the back half, again with a slightly bitterish medicine quality and a distinction much more subtle than typical fruit-infused brews. I could be in the mood for this at the right times.

ADR, Jun 16, 2005
#9 from Magic Hat Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 4,739 ratings.