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Short's The Magician - Short's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Short's The MagicianShort's The Magician

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

323 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 323
Reviews: 165
rAvg: 3.43
pDev: 16.03%
Wants: 7
Gots: 17 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Irish Red Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
"A rich lustrous dark red London Ale. Rich malt complexities lending notes of toasted caramel, raisins, toffee, and slight roast chocolate. Very light hop additions let the true malt characters promenade throughout the tasting enjoyment this beer offers."

(Beer added by: CortexBomb on 03-21-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 323 | Reviews: 165 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

3.55/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a cloudy russet color with a modest cap that fades rather quickly leaving just a few dots behind

Smell: Caramel forward, with a tart stone fruit character behind

Taste: Opens with a rich caramel character, but by mid-palate, the tart, sour cherry character dominates; after the swallow, the profile contains a blend of the two polar flavor opposites, though the finish winds up the sourness outlasting the caramel

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Sour caramel? What will they think of next? Not sure this was intended - interesting but disappointing

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2010 18:41:45 | More by brentk56
Photo of SickGnar


3.1/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Dark ruddy amber that is just shy of clear. Fairly small light tan head, but it keeps a ring and laces spottily. Really pretty bubble at edge of glass with every tilt.

S: Darkly toasty malts with some richness, but a focus on special B type dark fruits. Some doughy sweetness and caramel notes and a slight roasty edge. Not really picking up any hops. Nor any of the stuff going on in the palate.

T: Damn, must have gotten an old/infected sixer. Taste a bit like it is moving toward a flanders flavor. Seems to have soured a bit, but in a smooth and rounded way with minimal tartness. Despite the nose it does not have much sweetness. Just an initial dark fruit / dried cherry hit. And then way in the finish there is some lingering molasses/brown sugar. Some toasted grain & funky caramel make it through the sour twang along with some faint herbal & earthy hops and a husky grain feel.

M: Just barely under average body with a medium carbonation level. Less chewy than I would like, and more drying - in a vaguely astringent way.

D: Not terrible, and different for sure. Probably takes away from what it once was. I see a few other folks also found the sour note, but I have to think it was not intentional. As I worked my way through the sixer it didn't really get more soured, but did became more astringent and dryer. Drinkable yes, but not what I think of when I think of some sort of British isles red style.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2010 12:46:06 | More by SickGnar
Photo of jmich24


3.43/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottled poured in to Duvel Tulip.

A: Dark burgundy red. One finger tan head, gone in a hurry. Good lacing.
S: Smells like shorts specialty brews, which I am currently not a fan of. Weird yeasty smell. Roasted malt, carmel.
T: Malty! Burnt malts, carmel. Again the Shorts yeast... Not a fan
M: One the thin side but not overly thin. Crisp finish, appropriate carb.
D: One is fine but I wouldn't order another.

I cant get past the Shorts yeast. Except for the IPA Huma I am not a fan.

Serving type: bottle

12-15-2010 23:11:54 | More by jmich24
Photo of Beejay


3.45/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a nice brown. A little murky, it ranges from a pale brown to a ruby red in my glass. A nice tan head that sadly dissipates rather quickly.

S: Nice pronounced caramel, with some bread aroma in there. There is almost a flour like quality in there somewhere.

T: Definitely a nice burnt caramel flavor. Bready, with a touch of earthy hops. There is something else in there that I can't put my finger on. Almost a hint salty...?

M: Thin to medium with active carbonation.

D: Good, but not outstanding. I would like to try it on tap, but I probably wouldn't buy it in bulk.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2010 03:48:08 | More by Beejay
Photo of alleykatking


4.2/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle.

A- Pours a amberish crimson color. Half finger light tan head shows weak retention. Light streaky lacing that falls back into the beer as I drink.

S- Caramel malts come out in full force with a light toffee malt kind of balancing it out. Darker fruits toward the middle (think raisin and plum) with some grassy hops toward the ending. Overall simple and nothing too complex...but it works and works well.

T- Lots of malts right off the get go. Bready caramel malts with some ligth toffee notes. Darker fruits in the middle with raisin and some light cherry to it. Grassy hops in the ending with a light bitterness to it. The alcohol is more so in the ending than anything else. Once again nothing special but well made flavor wise.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Malts and more malts left on the palate with malts, light bitter hops, and light alcohol in the aftertaste. Flavors overall were blended into a balanced beer. Clean and crisp tasting overall. Medium drying on the palate from the alcohol.

D- This beer was a pleasant surprise. I noticed that people have been giving it average scores but this is more than a average Irish Red. Short's is known for all their crazy beers but this one shouldn't slip by. I personally could drink a sixer of this and am glad I live only 5 miles or so away from Michigan so I can pick up more!

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2010 06:18:20 | More by alleykatking
Photo of Stigs


3.05/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle from the brewery, served in a standard pint glass

A - pours with a thin and short lived layer of fuzzy, light tan colored foam. the beer is mostly, very dark ruby/red in color. a bit dull and life-less, like a flat pop.

S - strong whiff of caramel malt, lightly toasted nuts, and bread.

T - light caramel, amber malt. hints of some dark fruits, grapes, and a faint nutty finish. some slightly odd, yet not completely unappealing tobacco, and ginger as well.

M - very thin, almost watery body. carbonation is light, aiding in the thin feel. slightly dry with lingering malty sweetness.

D - uninspired if anything. lacks both any sort of hops for balance, as well as a solid malt base to build upon. half of a glass of this is enough.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2010 01:20:44 | More by Stigs
Photo of levifunk


3.03/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

reviewed from notes.

a - black-cherry red in color. low carbonation (could be due to growler)

s - sweet malts and teriyak sauce. odd smell

t - dry flavor with a bit of sweetness. maybe some nut? This beer is impossible to identify.

m - light body and low carbonation.

overall - very interesting with all the crazy flavors, but not particularly good.

Serving type: growler

11-15-2010 19:32:02 | More by levifunk
Photo of JLeege


2.28/5  rDev -33.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance- Pours a deep amber with virtually no head.

Smell- Mostly dough/bready malts. Some dried fruit. A faint citrus hop presence.

Taste- Another very sweet beer from Shorts. Dark fruits up front, bready in the middle, weird on the finish.

Mouthfeel- Medium body, low carbonation.

Overall- In a word, Weird. Not a drain pour, but I would not drink this again. I wouldn't even qualify this as average for the style.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2010 05:11:22 | More by JLeege
Photo of klikger


3.13/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz pour served in the classic Patuto Piraat tulip

A - Dark brown with hints of red, no head, not much lacing

S - Caramel

T - A malt profile somewhat similar to a scotch ale --> sour malts & lemon peel --> peat moss adds an interesting touch to a complex, not too sweet finish

M - Medium to heavy, a bit undercarbonated

D - Not too drinkable for me

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2010 03:34:00 | More by klikger
Photo of noborboxers


3.88/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass, with little to no head, not by fault of the beer, but that of the bartender. A very nice dark deep amber color. First sip is filled full of carmel flavors, and hints of toffee.
Also, nice malt notes. Mouth feel seems to coat well, giving a slightly creamy taste. A nice medium to maybe medium light body. I could honestly see myself being able to sit down and have 2 or 3 of these on a cool fall day.

Serving type: on-tap

10-29-2010 02:22:27 | More by noborboxers
Photo of thagr81us

South Carolina

3.83/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to enelson for this extra in a past trade! Served from bottle into a Stone nonic. Poured a murky red-brown with a one finger off-white head that subsided to a minimal amount quickly. There was no apparent lacing present throughout. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, caramel, and citrus hops. The flavor was of sweet malt, fruity hops, and a slightly sour note. It had a light feel on the palate with low carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good Irish Red. The slightly sour note was very different than what I am used to, but I rather enjoyed it as I am a big Wild Ale fan too. With that said, this one is worth trying given the opportunity. Seeking out... Not so much.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2010 12:16:08 | More by thagr81us
Photo of errantnight


1.55/5  rDev -54.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Well, Short's, I keep hearing good things, but your bottled offerings continue to be pretty terrible.

Poured into my Bruery tulip, this is a deep, deep amber, towards brown. No lacing, and just the faintest hint of retention in a ring around the outermost edge.

First warning is the nose, just overwhelming with green apple, only the faintest hint of the promised roast and toasted caramel malt underneath.

On the palate this is tangy, thin, insubstantial, and harsh. I suppose there's an impression of what might be a reasonably good beer buried in there, but it's lost.

I appreciate the thought in including this one, mothman, but this one was a failure.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2010 22:24:33 | More by errantnight
Photo of TMoney2591


3.88/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Chicago Bears shaker pint glass.

I'm getting proud of the beers my brother is bringing home from the store nowadays. This one pours a clear crimson topped by a half-finger of off-white foam. The nose comprises buttery biscuits, rye bread, and some strong-ish flowers. The taste follows closely, but adds a nice layer of blood orange flesh, bringing a whole new dimension to the proceedings. The body is a light-ish medium, with a light carbonation and a velvety feel. Overall, a pretty tasty red, which makes me even prouder of my brother.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2010 05:16:37 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of grub

Ontario (Canada)

3.08/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

purchased in michigan by either Viggo or myself earlier this year... neither of us remember which.

12oz bottle. sampled oct 3/2010.

pours hazy and chunky pale brown that is definitely a few shades past red. the small very fine cream coloured head quickly drops to a thin ring around the glass and leaves only a few spots of lace.

aroma is nice. lots of caramel and toffee. alcohol. biscuit and white bread. touch of lemon and light citrus. pretty fruity overall.

taste is ok. lemony sourness. bit of caramel. whole wheat bread and biscuit. bit of cracker. fruity. light alcohol.

mouthfeel is nice. medium-light body. just under medium carbonation level.

drinkability is ok. seems like the bottle might be off, but the carbonation seems normal and doesn't betray it having soured. might have to give this one another shot when i can find another bottle.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2010 19:30:15 | More by grub
Photo of Viggo

Ontario (Canada)

3.03/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle picked up in Michigan.

Pours a hazy dark orange, some reddish highlights, a bit of bronze, medium sized light tan head settles down to a thin big bubbled ring around the glass, a few lace spots stick.

Smell is alright, clean and malty, some caramel, lightly fruity, a bit of pineapple, a bit of apple, a touch of cherry, touch of sourness, bit of brown sugar, alright.

Taste is a bit off, lightly sour, some orange peel/lemon, a bit of biscuit, caramel, some brown sugar, sour fruit, apple cider, pretty weird and not very good.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with low to medium carbonation. Not bad, but a little off.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2010 19:14:10 | More by Viggo
Photo of akorsak


2.73/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A 12 oz bottle from Plum Market in A-Squared.

A: The red ale pours with an appropriately ruddy color, a darker hue that looks like an older penny, say an amber look. The ale had a small head on pour that quickly disappeared in my glass. A thin film covers the entire beer.

S: The red ale has plenty of caramel to go around, a sweet aroma with plenty of strength. Very syrupy with toffee running alongside the caramel.

T: While the nose is solid, the taste doesn't quite deliver. Roasted malts, with caramel in tow, are there. Unfortunately a metallic staleness keeps up step for step. The off flavors are mild but to control the ale. Another questionable bottle from Short's.

M & D: The off flavors ruins it the ale. Too bad too, because the nose has a really nice aroma.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2010 21:53:07 | More by akorsak
Photo of Thorpe429


2.8/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a slighlty darkened amber with a little head and little lacing. Smell is of slighlty roasted malts, bread, light fruit, some hops, and a bit of caramel. Taste is similar, but a bit bland even though i'm getting quite a few flavors. Medium body. Okay drinkability. Not a great representation of the style.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2010 21:32:07 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of robwestcott


3.55/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

big thanks to nerdrocker101 and the traditional GIF for this one.

poured from the bottle a thick, murky and dark amber to a sun king shaped pint glass with a thin, almost not there head (is there a shorts brew with a head ?) leaving no lace.

aroma of brown sugar and black cherries, maybe currants in the wayback.

the first sip brings cherries, a bit of dark chocolate, caramel and brown sugar or maybe molasses. the same "tang" is evident with this brew as was evident with the bellaire brown - though its not quite as distracting with the magician.

medium body, high carbonation, sweet and tangy.

drinkable - yes.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2010 22:53:25 | More by robwestcott
Photo of Kegatron


3.23/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a clear amber, topped with a ½ finger of foamy off-white head. Retention looks more like that of the thin and fizzy wisps variety, leaving back a gentle cascade of light lacing which slowly recedes down the sides. The aroma smells of toasted bread, caramel, and a little bit of cocoa powder. I'm getting some overripe fruit character here as well, along with some herbal dankness.

The taste is rich with buttery toasted bread and some sweeter light toffee notes. There is a good bit of dark fruit here, which mixes with the earthy textures of the hop bitterness that is present to impart a gritty feeling tartness that lingers hard into the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a sharp creaminess that keeps this smooth. This is actually pretty easy feeling overall, which really helps the deep twang of the flavor profile.

I could swear at first that the sharp souring/tart tang of this was an infection but as this warmed; it became more readily apparent that this was actually part of the flavor profile. It was definitely interesting but I don't see myself wanting to get into another bottle of this anytime soon.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2010 16:23:30 | More by Kegatron
Photo of morimech


3.38/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep reddish, amber color with a small head that quickly settled to a thin cap. Moderate amount of sticky lacing is left on the glass. Malty aroma with hints of caramel and butterscotch (probably a touch of diacytl) with some herbal and floral hops. What I thought was diacytl in the aroma is much more noticeable in the flavor. A little too buttery. Otherwise has a nice caramel malt base with some mineral and earthy characteristics. Just a slight sour in the finish. The flavor is just a little rough around the edges. The body is light and nicely carbonated. Nothing really stood out. An interesting Irish Red that misses in a few areas.

Serving type: bottle

09-09-2010 21:43:59 | More by morimech
Photo of zoso1967


3.65/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to TCgoalie for this beer.

Pours a cherry wood tinged brown with a little light tan head that has decent staying power but leaves poor lace. The aroma is both malty and earthy. It has some nice toasted bread and toffee notes that combine with earthy herbal hops to create a classic aroma. The flavor is malt forward but with plenty brown sugar, toffee and toasted nutty character. Dry herbal hops are also present. The mouthfeel is a bit on the thin side and the finish is equally thin, though fairly well balanced. The herbal hops really linger on the tongue, and I find myself wishing the malt was hanging around as well. This is not the most compelling Short's beer I have ever had, but it is still a quality product.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2010 01:29:19 | More by zoso1967
Photo of Jayli


3.58/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Acquired this from gratefulbeerhead so a big THANK YOU goes out to him!
Reviewed from notes, consumed back in June.

A: This beer pours a reddish, amber color with a two finger of khaki/light brown head that retains nicely. Minor spider webbed lacing is left on the glass.

S: Nose is slightly buttery, sweet caramel malts and touch of grain.

T: Taste starts with a mild earthy flavoring mingled with sweet grass and grain. Caramel malts are highly present with a bit of a buttery flavoring that lingers in the finish.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation, creamy mouthfeel.

D: Goes down easily, not too filling, ok representation of style, a touch too sweet for me to drink all evening, but a nice beer none-the-less.

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2010 07:16:16 | More by Jayli
Photo of yeahnatenelson


2.5/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Appearance -- Pours a deep ruddy amber with two fingers of beige head that dissipate into nothing.

Smell -- The most prominent smell is of red wine vinegar. Beneath this tart and tangy haze is toffee, dark chocolate, char, and smoke.

Taste -- Much like the nose, the most prominent note is red wine vinegar. Beyond that there is a lot of dry, roasty malt character such as burnt toast, baker's chocolate, and dark fruits. Earthy/herbal hops in the finish. Also, some buttery diacetyl is present, but not nearly as pronounced as the tartness.

Mouthfeel -- Medium to full in body with moderate prickly carbonation. A bit heavy to be honest.

Drinkability -- As soon as I got a whiff of this, I swore it was infected. Upon reading a few reviews I found out that this is just the character of the beer: dry and roasty + tart/lacto + diacetyl. I typically like dry and roasty red ales, but this was a bit of a mess. On the heels of Bellaire Brown, this was a big letdown.

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2010 02:54:09 | More by yeahnatenelson
Photo of king75


3.98/5  rDev +16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A dark red lager that almost mimics the appearance of a brown ale.

Smell is of hazelnut and cream.

Has the taste of a red ale, but the smoothness of a brown ale. Has a very light, but yet creamy taste. Goes down really smooth.

Good, but nothing overly special.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2010 23:51:35 | More by king75
Photo of papat444

Quebec (Canada)

2.58/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Thanks to grub for this one.

Poured from a 12oz. bottle, bottled 03-11-10.

Appearance: A strong, one finger head with a light brown/ruby red body.

Smell: Malty, fruit, a little sweet but it's all very faint.

Taste: Ummm, more tartness. Actually, it's a bit more balanced and there is more flavor depth here with the overriding fruit being cherries. It's not offensive but it's not really what i wanted, especially after the first Short's i had.

Mouthfeel: Next to no carbonation though the body is fuller than the first Short's.

Drinkability: Half a glass was enough for me.

Overall: The flavor profile is way too accentuated towards tart fruits which is not what i look for in a red ale. Better than the Bellaire but not my cup of tea.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2010 12:11:58 | More by papat444
Short's The Magician from Short's Brewing Company
78 out of 100 based on 323 ratings.