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Vinyl - Magic Hat Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

605 Ratings

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Ratings: 605
Reviews: 264
rAvg: 3.38
pDev: 15.09%
Wants: 7
Gots: 29 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Magic Hat Brewing Company visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Lager |  5.10% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-04-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Vinyl sails in on her shining wings as the spinning sun returns. She is the season-shifter, bursting from her cocoon to sing the ancient song of vernal yearning and to summon spring's sweet green return... Her metamorphosis becomes our own. Her thirsts are shared by all. Drink in her mysterious elixir as the revolution blooms again...

24 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 605 | Reviews: 264
Photo of thekevlarkid
3.8/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured briskly out of a bottle this beer was a murky copper color with two fingers of tan head that quickly receded. It did lace in sliding bands despite the very thin collar it retained. The aroma was of toasted malt, nuts, hints of tobacco and bit of must that developed more as it warmed up. The flavors were better than the aroma. More well rounded; clearly a lager. Good tasted malt again, caramel malt, nuts, hints of licorice and finally the typical (but not always favorable) Magic Hat yeasty finish. The mouthfeel was creamy but slick, the body medium and the carbonation medium.

Photo of vdread
3.58/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Vinyl pours a dark amber with a thick tan head that leaves a few splashes. not much for a nose, but the some floral hops, sweet caramel are noticeable.

tastes sweet, malty, dominated by toasty, bready malt, caramel. a range of slight fruit tastes come in, mostly of apricots and apples. all followed by a hint of cocoa (i had to confirm this with others to be sure). hops are light, floral, with a very slight bitterness.

well carbonated, medium bodied, easy to sip.

+ while not really an interesting beer in any big way, the slight dry cocoa/chocolate taste added a very unique dimension to this beer.

+ simple drinking at its best. a light, low ABV, clean, simple lager taste. i can't find anything less than positive to say about Vinyl

Photo of oberon
3.71/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Mellow in Greensboro.An impressive pour from the tap,a slight hazed amber hued brew with a large,craterous, slight off white head that settled very slowly.A mix of toasted malt and caramel in the nose,nice but would have liked a little hop zip.Flavors were alot like the aromas,toasty with a bit of caramel and anise,if there there would have been some hop imparted sharpness in the finish it would have been great,as is pretty good.A decent stab at the style,has flavor...but could have more.

Photo of elgiacomo
3.32/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, pours dark amber with a one finger off-white/light tan head that reduces to a small ring and doesn't leave much lacing.

Aroma is mild but contians caramel malt, bready, a little yeasty, some cereal and grains.

Flavor is caramel malt, a little sweet, with some mild hop bitterness on the finish.

Mouthfeel is oily, medium bodied, clean finish.

This is pretty good for the style, a bit better than Yuengling, but for a price. I'd like to try Brooklyn Lager to compare.

Photo of mempath
4.15/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

decent lacing and head. both collapse slowly and with grace...nose is pure malt. nice thickish taste with a blast of biscuitness and malts. as mentioned by another reviewer, very english in character. good mouthfeel integrated. very drinkable. sessionable. not a monster. not a ghost. somewhere in between. not winter. not summer. it's almost spring...

Photo of JordanEllwanger
3.71/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A dark copper amber hue very transparent. Dark colors for a lager. A quick fading head leaving no trace behind. Smells light and malty toastedness. A strong tasting lager. Has an English flavor about it with lots of toasted malts. Feels smooth and enjoyable.


Photo of matty
3.28/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Amber colored beer with a slowly fading head.Aroma is malty.Taste is caramel malts with earthy undertones.Overall a decent beer that would fit better in the warmer months of the year.I think that this is something that should be tried at least once.I would buy again but not actively seek out.

Photo of Pabs311
3.56/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- pours a clear copper with a thin off-white head that fades fast.

S- carmel maltiness and earthy qualities, not overly complex or impressing.

T- pretty balanced with the smell. some hop bitterness with a dry finish.

M/D- Light-medium bodied. overly carbonated.

Not impressed.

Photo of beerthulhu
3.7/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a brilliant apple-marzen with a compact desert sand colored head that was spongey and moderately lasting while leaving a poor lacing. Visible effervesce was strong with a steady dose of dense shower streams of quickly rising micro-bubbles. Overall a pretty decent coloring here.

S: The nose was fair per style with a mild fruitiness of apple peels. Lightly toasted grains are also present bringing a light toasty dryness to the senses. Little or no hoppiness was detected.

T: The flavor was bright, brought on by the ample carbonation that amplified the dry and sweet toasty nature of the drink while a dry fruitiness of apple skins rounds things out for the initial impression. Fairly malty with a distinguishable residual malt coating on the tongue. The sweetness and fruitiness comes through late in the drink with representation of apple skins and a light flowery hopping that shines through here with perhaps the slightest hint of semi-dry cherry skins. A nice level of maltiness, flowery bitterness and a fair amount of flavor per style gives this good regards. On a final note and thought, this was orginally labeled as a Vienna style lager, though it tastes more like a octoberfest style beer with use of lightly toasted munich malts rather overly sweet Vienna.

M: The mouthful had a nice fullness, very slick in texture with a toasted dry malt fader lingering on the swallow.

D: Drinkability was fairly good, a little malty and fruity but generally acceptable for downing a few in a row. A pretty full flavor and would consider a repurchase here.

Photo of feelmefoam
3.48/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice caramel amber color with ruby highlights. Put up a large, fluffy tan head about 3 fingers tall that left decent lacing with moderate retention time, eventually receding to a foam cap that sits atop the beer.

Pretty fragrant nose on the beer, not overly complex, but still good. I can pick out a slight bit of graininess, some caramel malts, and a distinct fruitiness mixed with a little earthiness.

Simple and slightly sweet flavor. The caramel malts show up again and carry through until the end of the gulp, but also entertain the light plum/apple flavor as well as the earthiness present in the nose towards the end.

A pretty crisp, light-bodied beer with maybe a little too much carbonation, but overall it's pretty good. The light and crisp body helps complement the slightly fruity flavor.

Overall, this is a pretty drinkable beer that I could see myself having a few of during a nice spring day. Actually, it really makes me want this long winter to stop grinding on and let spring show it's beautiful face. Either way, this is just a nice, slightly fruity, run of the mill lager that won't disappoint but also won't blow you out of the water.

Photo of Lerxst
3.38/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a deep amber with one finger slightly off white head that held on for a bit and then left just a bit of lacing.

S-It has a very faint nose. A bit of malt and a slight fruit note.

T-Bready malt, with a touch of citrus hops, maybe a bit of banana and pineapple. Not bad at all, but nothing outstanding.

M-Medium body, somewhat stinging carb bite with a surprising finish that is a bit oily.

D-Its not a bad beer, so more than one is doable.

Overall, this is a decent beer, just nothing outstanding.

Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The other new Magic Hat I ran into. I wasnt sure what to make out of it at first, but turns out to be very nice in the end. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 02/13/2010.

The pour was nicely done, dark orange in color with a good clarity and a nice and tight head of white on top of the glass. Faded smooth and left a tiny but broken head across the top of the glass. Aroma is caramel malts and rich earthy hops, Very green it comes across. Nice and smooth and even as it warms it maintains its richenss. Nice caramel flavor washes across the tongue, followed by a healthy dose of grain and a nice and well rounded feel. Smooth, lightly dry finish smacks of grass and bready malts before it falls down and leaves you looking for more.

Overall this was very solid, a very intresting and very drinkable amber. There are doing good things with these seasonals for sure.

Photo of animalchin
3.9/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Red-orange body. Head goes away pretty fast but there is some minimal lacing.

S - A lot of malt and lemon peel. Nothing much going on here.

T - Wow - a lot more than what I was expecting. Sweet malts, chocolate and caramel. Creamy toffee after-taste going on. A beautiful balance.

M & D - Pretty heavy for a red lager. I was overall very impressed with the taste, though the smell and look didn't seem like it was going to have much to offer. Probably one of the better Magic Hat brews I've had. I would have this again and again for sure.

Photo of BlackBearForge
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vinyl pours a nice deep coppery amber, very clear with a nice off-white head which leaves some oily lacing that doesn't stick.

The aroma is toasted malts, caramel and nice floral hops with a bit of orchard fruits as well.

Nicely toasted bready malts in the flavor, caramel, what tastes like European hops with a bit of yeasty ester. Very much like an Oktoberfest or Vienna Lager. Som apple and perhaps pear is evident as well. Nice full flavor.

Mouthfeel is medium, perfectly carbonated, smooth and nicely creamy.

A very nice lager, sampled from the Spring variety pack. If it becomes available in six packs I most certainly would put this in rotation as it is a very good lager.

Photo of leecschmidt
3.63/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This is an interesting January "spring" release from Magic Hat.

It has an amber, slightly cloudy appearance which had a small amount of sediment in the bottom if the bottle.

The beer poured nicely into a pilsner glass with an off white head which lasted a decent amount of time and had some lacing.

The initial taste was a typical malty flavor with a hint of roasting. Not anything special as far as taste but overall good finish.

Some carbonation feel but not too fizzy. Refreshing after shoveling the walkways, which was a nice change from many of the winter beers (still a favorite of mine) that I have been having.

The drinkabilty was very good. This is one you could drink all night and would be a good transition beer for a domestic drinker.

Photo of david131
3.58/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- A deep, clear orange/red with a creamy white head that has decent retention.

S- Oats, sweet caramel, fruit, and cocoa powder.

T- A nice balance of all the things I picked up on in the aroma.

M- A nice amount of carbonation and a clean finish.

D- Good flavors and an especially nice finish. Nothing super special, but enjoyable.

Photo of pzrhsau
3.96/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Nice rich deep brown color with a palish yellow head.
Smell: Nice rich malt flavor with a spiced hops aftertaste.
Taste: Very toasty malt flavor. Very good flavor and not burnt at all. Reminds me of roasted sunflower seeds. This is a great flavor to have heading into the spring.
Mouthfeel: Not to heavy, good weighted lager to bridge the gap between winter and summer. Nice carbonation, light and tingly on the tongue.

Photo of tzieser
3.43/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Clear coppor color with a white one finger head that dissipates into a very small lacing. Pretty malty nose-- toasted bready malts are very noticible. Very little hop aroma. Aforementioned toasted, slightly burnt malt flavor...slightly rye flavor. Very little hop character. Pretty light in body, making it a good session beer

Worth trying, but I don't think I'll be getting more.

Photo of KOPBeerDrinker
3.6/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle into a pint glass. Deep copper in color, clear. One inch tan foamy head. Left no lacing. Smells of toasty, bready malt. Tastes biscuity up front, followed by some hops. Mouthfeel is medium, not too much cabonation. A pretty good, well balanced beer.

Photo of Jesstyr
3.63/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed in a antique schlitz glass with a ribeye, poured from 12oz bottle.

A: Dark amber color, with a finger or so of head that lingered nicely.

S: A little of the typical fruitiness from Magic Hat, but a little more balance and nuttiness.

T: Very nice flavor, quite malty (almost too much so), and a little fruit, not really ideal from a lager. Overall nice balance, and pretty enjoyable.

M/D: Fairly full and smooth, nothing really lingers good or bad. A little spicy, and definitely something that can be enjoyed for more than just one.

Overall worth another shot or two from me, and one of my preferred Magic Hat beers, compared to their usual overdone efforts.

Photo of VTaler
3.68/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Nice thick amber hue with a think light brown head that goes away over time and leaves a nice lacing.
S - not much smell overall. The smell is has is kind of a spicy smoky smell.
T - First taste is that of a biscuits. Then comes in a chocolate taste. It starts off tasting like dark chocolate covered biscuits. After the malt taste is over the hops and the "other" stuff come in. It leaves your mouth tasting like beef jerky. It tastes smoky with a hint of saltiness. Overall a very unique taste
M - Decent. Medium/medium
D - Very drinkable

Photo of irishking1977
3.53/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Spring seasonal maibock? Hmm, I was under the impression that maibocks, bocks, and vienna lagers were designed more specifically for fall and maybe winter monhts. No matter...

A: Clear red amber with a two finger head that lasts for a short while, leaving rings of lacing in it's wake.

S: Mild malt and floral notes. I can also detect the faint scent of caramel and cinnamon. Bear with me, just getting over the flu.

T: It's like a lager/bock hybrid. Has the taste qualities found in a bock such as malty sweetness with caramel and cinnamon. Also could be perceived as a winter ale. The lager aspect is based on the relatively good drinkability that this one has, in comparisions to the meal-like bocks (and doppelbocks) that tend to be very filling.

M: Good carbonation and nicely balanced. Slightly watered down, but doesn't really detract from the quality of the beer. A relatively tasty brew that's also relatively drinkable.

D: This is probably a brew better suited to winter or fall months as opposed to spring, which the bottle says it is. Confusing, but if it's available during the bowels of winter, I imagine it's more of a three seasonal brew. Overall, a good hybrid bock/lager that could be enjoyed in front of the fireplace during a cold winter evening, while raking leaves during the fall, or mowing the lawn during spring.

Photo of ianjsullivan
3.72/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

S: 12 oz bottle poured into a standard lager glass.

A: Dark brown with hint of red hues. The head is not thick nor does it last long. When held to the light, the color is a hazy orange with steady carbonation.

S: The smell at first reminds one of the yeasty smell found in #9. However, there is more to it. Hops, malt, doughy bread, caramel, smoky toffee. The smell is one of the better things about this beer.

T: Interesting, the hops are there, though, not as strong as I had expected. They bring floral notes and bitterness in the middle and towards the finish. The malts are more important here however, which, considering the brown color, makes sense. Sweet caramel, slight smoke, matches with the slightly sweet floral of the hop.

M: Heavier than I expected as well, after all, it is supposed to be a spring offering. Medium-bodied, though on the heavier end of the spectrum, the beer is creamy at first though finishes crisp.

D: It's a bit heavy, though it's alcohol is not that high. More than one can be knocked back at a time.

Overall: Magic Hat makes beers that are fair to good. This beer is between those two categories. It is better than fair, yet, not quite good. I can sum it up this way, I am not unhappy that I have consumed it, however, I will not buy it again.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.1/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Like many Magic Hat beers, Vinyl follows suit with high sweetness and fruitiness.

The beer begins with a standard amber color, moderate on head formation, fleeting retention, and slight lacing at first. A better head with staying power would have been nice, but the beer takes on a flat appearance within a minute or so.

Sweet aromas of caramel and toffee. Fruitiness of appricots, apples, peaches, and pears line the beer from beginning to end. Light herbal hops seem to take an English earthy tone. Pretty simple, just sweet.

Flavors amplify the sweetness that is expected in the nose. Overly sugar notes resemble caramel but not the rich malts that I want in a Vienna. Lacking breadiness, richness, and fullness the beer drinks much like a caramel flavored soda pop. But there's the intense bitterness that comes in late; not much hop flavor but big on bitter (especially for a lightly bitter balanced Vienna Lager style).

Body is medium, seemingly larger because of the level of sweetness from unresolved sugars and abuse of caramel malts. Leaves a lot of sweetness on the palate without any resemblence of dryness.

Not a bad beer but it lacks several of the key characteristics that make true Vienna Lagers so great. I'm a little disapointed by the shortcuts.

Photo of strengthdoc
3.76/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured into the glass to reveal a nice copper color. There was very little head and lacing. The aroma was slightly bready with a mild hop character. The taste was mildly malty at first then gave way to a nice hoppy dryness in the finish. The is a nice quaffable beer.

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Vinyl from Magic Hat Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 605 ratings.