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Pistil - Magic Hat Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

122 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 122
Hads: 698
Avg: 3.27
pDev: 40.06%
Wants: 5
Gots: 90 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Magic Hat Brewing Company visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: shand on 04-16-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Stop and smell the petals Pistil is a summer beer unlike any other, brewed with a combination of dandelion petals, Pale and Acidulated malts, flaked oats, and Apollo and Northern Brewer hops that results in a one-of-a-kind beer with a slightly sour acidity and a smooth malt body. Perfect for taking down deep thirst.

20 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Pistil Alström Bros
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Reviews: 122 | Hads: 698
Photo of metter98
3.31/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is slightly hazy light yellow in color (like a witbier) and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high dense white head that died down leaving a thin head covering the surface and lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of floral and citrus hops in the nose—marigolds and lemons seem to stand out in particular.
T: Like the smell, the taste has flavors of floral hops along with notes of lemon and orange citrus and a slight amount of bitterness.
M: It feels rather light-bodied (but not watery) on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: While this beer has muted aromas and flavors, it is very easy to drink. I wouldn't mind having one of these again on a summer day.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.8/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

i like it, its clever. definitely an american pale ale, hoppier than youd think from a flower beer, but its nice. smells like the spirit of dandellion, very polleny, like biting the yellow head off one of them, then eating the greens and roasting the root. its hard to place really, in any meaningful stylistic sense, but it sure is drinkable. flavor is very pollen based, in a good way, like coconut water in the sense than its drinkable and satisfying, but you always want more. im impressed with this, feel is intersting, plenty of body for a summer beer, but medium carbonation that lets you taste the whole thing. overall a beer i will drink a million of this summer, and a one of a kind creation. i like the bold hops in this.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.83/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This poured out as a bright yellow color with a lot of floating particles in it, the head was foamy and white on top. the smell of the beer was floral and sweet. The taste of the beer gives off a big sweetness in the beginning that fades into a gentle bitter finish. The mouthfeel of the beer is light bodied and very drinkable, it's got a decent carbonation to it. Overall I thought this beer was a lot better than I pictured it being. I would probably drink this one again some day.

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Photo of brentk56
2.32/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

Appearance: The load pffft when I opened the bottle was a giveaway that this beer was going to have a lot of carbonation and it pours out almost all foam though though the liquid buids with a slightly hazy honey color over time; of course, the flip side of overcarbonation is typically great head retention and plenty of lacing

Smell: Grassy and herbal with a cooked vegetable character

Taste: Rather neutral malt flavors, up front, but then the lemony herbal and rather medicinal dandelion flavors take over; tart finish with the cooked vegetables underneath

Mouthfeel: Watery and overcarbonated

Overall: I'm really quite disappointed with this beer and find it hard to take another sip

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Photo of emerge077
3.41/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Colorful retro label takes a cue from Milton Glaser's iconic Dylan poster.

Decanted carefully into a tulip glass, its a lightly hazed goldenrod orange with an ample head of creamy white foam. Crown of lace is ample as well.

Floral and sweet, grains of paradise, wet husky grains. A bit muted and one dimensional but pleasant enough.

Tastes slightly bitter like tea, along with some cooked greens, somewhat crisp and dry in the aftertaste. A light herbal sweetness balances the bitterness, again somewhat green and floral. Somewhat interesting but not well defined. Tastes like tea mostly.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

12 ounce bottle - $1.79 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a hazed, pale light yellow body with a smallish, white head.

Smell: Shredded flower petals, chopped mint leaf, and some weedy, and bitterish dandelion greens atop the subtle, highly restrained malts.

Taste: Mild malts from top to bottom with some slight milky oat hints. Light, low sweetness that doesn't last long. Herbal tea accents, a slight sourness there, and a touch of lemon, too. The hops yield a slight mintiness. Dry, lightly sourish, vegetal finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Medium-plus carbonation.

Overall: It's a bit different, and, while interesting, one was enough for me, thanks.

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Photo of TMoney2591
2.78/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in a Lagunitas mason jar.

I remember enjoying Fatome's Pissenlit, so I have high hopes for another dandelion beer. This stuff pours a clear pale gold topped by a finger of lightly off-white foam. The nose comprises light honey, very light white bread, and a touch of sweet flowers. Everything is vague and sweet-ish. The taste brings in more of the same, along with some severely-funky lemon peel, light grass, and moss greens. It literally leaves a bad taste in my mouth. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a fairly dry finish. Overall, a pretty sad beer, one that just plain doesn't taste very good. I guess dandelions are fickle little weeds...

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.87/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Magic Hat Pistil
12 oz. bottle, coded "AO3361 1304 1651"

So what is Magic Hat's Pistil? I thought it was just a floral IPA, but it's certainly not hoppy or bitter enough. It is quite floral though, clearly reflecting the name. Ah, the label reads "ALE BREWED WITH DANDELION". Well that's fairly unique. I'd heard of dandelion wine as a kid (it was something my older neighbors made at home), but I've never heard of it in a beer. Or have I? Let me look it up. Ah, yes. Apparently it's not that unique, but it's still interesting. I also note that it's just 4.5% ABV. Perhaps this is a spring beer. Check, the Magic Hat website confirms it. OK, let's take a closer look: Hazy yellow-gold body beneath a pillowy white head. Slightly better than average retention and lacing. Floral nose as mentioned. A little bit of golden malt sneaks through as well. Nice. In the mouth it's light bodied and moderately crisp. Appropriate for what they're doing here. The flavor is not as floral as the aroma suggests, implying to me that it's actual dandelions and not just hops giving it that brightness in the nose (I also get an occasional light note of chlorophyll as well, which backs that up). There's a light tartness to it, which is refreshing; and which also seems to give me more of a floral impression (unless I'm just succumbing to the power of suggestion). It's not very bitter... maybe in the 20's, and it finishes quite dry with the flavor almost vanishing. That's OK though, that works. It's a light bodied and lower alcohol spring beer that's very refreshing, and I don't really need it to linger in the mouth. There's enough charm to the floral / dandelion aspect of it that it's interesting, and thankfully not overdone. I can imagine drinking a few of these in a row. Would I buy it again? Sure. I'd enjoy a pint of this at the pub as my first beer, and I think it would be a good beer to take to a party (I'm pretty sure women would like it). Would I recommend it? Certainly to try. It may not be the only dandelion beer available (does Fantome still brew Pissenlit?), but it's still unique.

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Photo of mactrail
3.14/5  rDev -4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Slightly hazy with zillions of tiny floaters. No apparent sediment, however. Light shade of amber in the tall glass. Pleasant enough head and spritzy on the tongue.

Light mouthfeel. A hint of malt with a mild honey and orange peel flavor. Faint touch of hops. Well, faint touch of flavor all the way around. Not crisp enough to really be refreshing, and not flavored enough to be interesting. Quite drinkable but the appearance is more than a little off-putting.

From the summer mixed twelve pack bought at Trader Joe's in Washington, DC.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
3.8/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a hazy golden color with TONS of floaties.. kind of interesting to be honest. Nice wheaty smell. Taste is light to medium bodied, definitely get a nice warm weather vibe. Great mouthfeel with some snappy hops, a bit of sourness, and a nice clean finish. Surprisingly well balanced and pretty tasty for a seasonal! A pretty good new addition from Magic Hat, recommended.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.77/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

On-tap 3/15/2013 at Doherty’s East Ave Irish Pub in Pawtucket, RI, served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color, with a large foamy white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is faint but contains citrus, hops and light caramelized malts.

T: The taste starts out bready with a hearty but not too heavy malt character. Then some mild citrus and caramel sweetness comes in. The hops presence is mild but complementary but brings some balance. The after-taste is slightly bready and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and a little smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, mild kick, decent representation of style, for a beer that is supposed to be different it seemed pretty average to me and there wasn’t anything that really stood out.

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Photo of LXIXME
3.51/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Smallish white head just sort of sits above a clear very well carbonated pale golden colored beer.

Lemony aroma with a bit of light malts blended in.

Light tart lemony citrus taste that seems to bring just a hint of some spices along, giving this an almost lemony pepper taste, but on the very light side of that equation.

A light dry aftertaste that seems to have a bit of the lemony aspects remaining with this lighter bodied drink.

Considering this is listed as a Herbed/Spiced Beer I would have to say this one is on the lighter side of that equation and it is a very easy to drink beer without the negative tastes that come with beers like Bud Light. If you want to ween a light American lager drinker on to better beers, something like this or Shiner Bock would be good gateway beers.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.25/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

thanks to tenderbranson69 for sharing this bottle with me, enjoyed chilled from a tumbler.

The color is golden with thick 2 finger cream and swirls of suspended particles intermingle with lots of fast moving bubbles of carbonation. The lace collects and head retention is good. The smell is very wheat oriented with mild bready notes from the yeast and a herbal/floral but mildly citrus aroma augments the malt aromas. The feel is creamy, highly carbonated and mildly astringent with some slight tangy acidity in the finish, body is semi-full for the strength.

This is a unique beer because I can't say I have had any type of beer with dandelion in it before. The smell is totally different than the taste until midway through and it starts with a slight malt taste, but gets very floral almost grassy and slightly lemony in the next taste. The yeast adds a light creaminess to the flavor with subtle toasted tinges from the malt which has a mild sweet element, but overall the flavors are ok, just seem to cohabitate in general. Overall a good beer to try if you like wheat and spice, but not a really complex beer, more for summer relaxation and I felt it was decent.

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Photo of Jason
3.21/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

12oz brown bottle with a freshness date.

LOOK: Hazed yellow color, good frothing on top.

SMELL: Bready, lemon grass, yeast, vegtal, spicy

TASTE: Crisp, gummy, grainy, grassy, taffy, peppery, lemon pith, nutty, semi-dry finish

Decent but not much to it, some vague flavors from the danelions perhaps ... too subtle IMO. A basic cloudy unidentified brew at best.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.44/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: Philly Beer Scene Tasting panel with Matt Falco at Victory Brewing Company, Downingtown, PA

I was privileged enough to be on the tasting panel for PBS Magazine, along with Bill Covaleski of Victory and Greg Ramirez of Exton Beverage. This was one of 21 beers we sampled during the session. I'm not a big fan of Magic Hat, but surprisingly I liked this one quite a bit.

Poured a light, hazy golden yellow with a bit of noticeable sediment, under a cap of bright, foamy, white head; minimal retention, and a bit of lacing. Aroma of fresh cut grass and meadow flowers (this is brewed with dandelion after all), lightly hopped. Light taste, not bursting with flavor, but this isn't that kind of beer. Grassy notes, flowery, light perfume, nothing I would call "spicy" per se, just more floral than anything. This beer had to have been very fresh. Crisp but subdued hops, and light biscuity malts. Normally I wouldn't drink something this light, but man did it go down smooth and easy. I could theoretically sit outside all day on a hot summer day and drink a case of this.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
2.55/5  rDev -22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.75

Ick. What the h, e, double hockey sticks is the base on this? It tastes dirty and just off. Not as in the beer is spoiled, but just totally bad. Almost a dirty taste to it. It's been a long time since I've made a beer drainpour, but this might be the next one.

Magic Hat should lay off the gimmicks and stick to making solid beers.

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Photo of chinchill
3.7/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

undated 12 oz bottle served in a lager glass. Pour is clear with fine-grained carbonation and a durable white head. A thin partial coat of sediment was left on the bottom of the bottle.

Surprised by the moderately intense and mainly hoppy aroma. Nice balance of hops and malt, leaving this surprisingly hoppy brew a touch sweet at the start and mildly bitter in the finish and aftertaste. Dandelion, unless specially treated, is very bitter too, so the absence of a solid smack of bitterness is surprising. The contribution of the dandelion is subtle, however. Mildly tart too, with a hint of citrus.

M: Crisp; medium-light body with medium+ carbonation; semi-dry finish.

Overall: A tasty and distinct ale worth seeking out, and worth selecting when a summertime refresher is desired that's bolder than usual.

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Photo of smcolw
3.62/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thick, lumpy head that leaves some chunky lace. Settles to a single layer of bubbles and leaves less lace toward the bottom of the glass. Cloudy with a dark gold/light amber color.

Crisp, fresh malt aroma with hop in the background as a spice. Pleasant if slightly fruity.

Far drier than the smell indicates. There's still some fruitiness as if dried apricots were added to the bright tank. The finish features mild bitterness. Neutral body and carbonation.

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Photo of jwc215
3.38/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours clouded yellow with a thin head that lasts. Some lacing sticks.

The smell is very mild - some crackery wheat with a slight floral touch.

The taste is slightly sweet, slightly tart with a dandelion-like floral touch.

The carbonation edges towards fizzy, but th ere is enough body to it to keep the fizz controlled, allowing it to be fairly refreshingly crisp with a light, smooth body.

Overall, to me it seems like a run-of-the-mill blonde ale with a slightly floral, well... like dandelion touch. Part of the spring variety pack, though described as summer-like. Inoffensive and refreshing enough to drink a few of these, but I doubt I would buy again.

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Photo of tdm168
3.5/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - bright, golden yellow with a short-lived, fizzy, white head

S - herbal, spicy hop aromas

T - faintly herbal, spicy hops, lightly malty, a hint of dandelions, a bit bitter

M - light bodied, a bit crisp

This is a unique beer to me. I was surprised that the dandelion notes came through. The herbal, spicy hop characters dominate however. This is light and a bit bitter. Ultimately, this is easily drinkable, but I'll pass in the end.

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Photo of WesWes
3.65/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a hazy gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a light and fruity pale/wheat malt scent along with hints of dandelion and other floral notes. It's dry with a touch of earthiness. The taste is average. Again, it's light and refreshing with a solid fruity/floral character. It goes down really smooth with a bone dry finish. The mouthfeel is decent as well. It is a low bodied beer with adequate/good carbonation. This is a rather quaffable beer with a refreshingly interesting flavor and outstanding aroma.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.7/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

My local, in-person trader, tone77, dropped this off as part of a big box o' beer recently and I have been having a good time sifting through them and trying to theme styles and tastes rather than just pulling bottles out randomly and opening them. Rest assured, I will open and review all of them and then The CANQuest (TM) will get back on its feet toot sweet.

From the trippy, groovy label, man: "stop and smell the petals"; "The ancient ritual of brewing a distinctly rich and flavorful beer is a performance to behold. Our mysterious melange of time-honored ingredients harmonize with chaotic chemistry, humble patience and blind faith to create this unique beer to share in the rousing company of kindred spirits. Cheers!"; "a performance in every bottle". Dig it, baby!

My pour blossomed into a fluffy finger of bone-white pollen until it was borne away on the wind. Color was dandy, lion-yellow with a haze of suspended particulate in evidence. Nose had an earthy, grassy smell and I began to consider boiling it down into something that I could put in a pipe and smoke. Mouthfeel was medium and it had an initial, unexpected tartness that gave way to a grassy flavor, like freshly-mown grass. Interesting. Unibroue makes "Ephemere", pronounced "Ay-fem-er-ay" and the finish on this one was ephemeral. I found myself wondering if I had even had a sip until I saw the lacing in the glass. Just like for the lotus-eaters, time was passing me by like nothing. There may be a subtle message in there - stay away from some types of plant matter, man. Wow, this was such a smooth drink that it seemed to evaporate out of my glass as I simply could not have drank it that quickly. I am definitely buying some more for use this summer. Next up in the series of nine beers: Peduncle; Receptacle; Sepal; Petal; Stamen; Anther; Stigma & Ovary (the last one subject to FDA approval).

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.24/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a pale yellow color with a bit of sediment. White head forms and recedes to a collar and provides little to no lace. The aroma is expectedly floral, like fresh flowers and a bit of underlying sweet malt. In the taste, earthy notes and edible flowers come to mind, with a certain earthy flavor and hops providing a firm bitterness. Light to medium bodied and fairly earthy in the finish. Overall, an interesting beer, not too bad.

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Photo of Zorro
2.37/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Clear and very pale yellow beer with a small white colored head. Looks REALLY light.

Smells malty and peppery with a herbal weedy aroma. That's about it a weird smelling beer.

Starts out very dry with a faint mango taste. Earthy and peppery with a substantial bitter finish. Tastes like Bud Light with extra hops.

Mouthfeel is thin.

Pretty insubstantial beer. Not recommended for any use.

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Photo of AlexFields
2.93/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Pours a bright, thick orange, looks like orange marmalade or something, has almost a pinkish tint as it pours, small to moderate sized head.

First thing in the nose is a bready malt character with a hint of bitterness, followed by very light hops and some odd plant like scent that I assume is the dandelions.

Taste is a fairly sweet, crisp, simple malt character that fades into that odd slightly bitter plant taste again, not much of a hop character at all.

Mouthfeel is odd, a bit watery, moderate carbonation but not particularly refreshing. Not terrible but weak.

I like this, more or less, or at least I don't really mind drinking it, but it's not very impressive.


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Pistil from Magic Hat Brewing Company
76 out of 100 based on 122 ratings.