¡Magnifico! | Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project

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43 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project
Massachusetts, United States

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 3.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Do you ask, “Who is a ¡Magnifico!”? IT IS A PITY TO ASK SUCH A QUESTION! Dear friends Magnifico is one of our most favorite seasonal offerings -our friendliest beer ever. In 2011 we slip him into our line-up without fuss, all by ourselves on a private world-party tour of a small part of Boston. We swear nobody comes, but no admonishments!

This year, he says hello again my friends and this time he’s in bottle too. We love him because he’s only 3.4% alcohol by volume and perfectly full of lovely Citra, Horizon, Simcoe and Bravo hops. He also likes barley (because you must in order to make beer). He has Munich Malt, Crystal Malt and Maris Otter from Inglaterra.

Look at the label of ¡Magnifico!! It’s also magnifico! He’s just a little chico – malinki hop with a moustache gigante! He has big heart for such small creature. It’s the spirit of beer my friends and friendship and happiness. And loveliness. My friends, we hope you enjoy ¡Magnifico!(!) in the same spirit.

Oh, we nearly forget… if you drink ¡Magnifico!(!) in a bistro or cantina make sure you ask for proper glass! Jambo!

40 IBU

Added by OldIronLungs on 08-08-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 43 | Ratings: 152
Photo of Tilly
3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

P: Slightly hazy, golden amber with a bright white head that quickly turns into a great lace.
A: Citrus lemon, malt fresh baked bread.
T: Malt, lemon, fresh baked biscuit, some spice, a bit of mixed fruit I can't quiet nail.
M: Light body, crisp, clean, carbonated like a Belgium, a little bit of tartness.
O: This is nice for what it is. This is a good session drinker.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On-tap 8/5/2014 at Doherty’s Ale House in Warwick, RI, served in a snifter glass.

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

S: The aroma contains Belgian yeast, a good amount of hops, light caramelized malts and some citrus.

T: The taste starts out bready with a hearty but not too heavy malt character and Belgian yeast. Then some mild but complementary sweetness follows from flavors of citrus and caramel. The hops presence is good for the style and provides a good balance. The after-taste is slightly bready.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, very mild kick, good representation of style, this is a solid beer to drink for a while.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.12/5  rDev -17%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I have grown tired of looking at the massive bottle backlog here at Chez Woody and I have decided t do something about it! Namely, it's total and utter eradication. For me, the toughest part is/are the bombers, since while I could easily drink one by myself, I really do not want to. I am routinely opening the porch to visitors to enlist their aid in this endeavor and last night, Mike, a high school classmate sto pped by to help me put a dent in things. A little background on this one - it was a closeout at The Friendly Greek's Bottle Shop during a recent brewery tasting that they hosted and a fellow beerhead told me that it was aged and beyond its prime, but at the price point, it was a steal. I decided to take the chance and also to help out The Greek, who has always been very, very good to me.

From the label: "Bottled in: June 2012 Thank you for drinking our beers"; "Forget everything you know about low gravity beers! Okay, remember some of it, but check this out: it's a fun, HOPPY, fun, happy homage to the greatness of beer without all the 'I love you man' at the end ... AND it's Magnifico!"; "Pour with gusto down the center of a big glass, pausing to allow head to settle, then continue. Be patient for best enjoyment!"

I had it chilling on its side in the cooler, but when I pulled it out and held it upright, i noticed a LOT of floaties, so we quickfat put it into The Beerfirgerator for a period of time to allow for settling and flocculation. It worked! The initial pour was VERY gentle, though. This resulted in a simple skim of bone-white head. Color was a slightly hazy golden-yellow (SRM = 4 - 5). Nose had both an old newspaper mustiness and a lemon zestiness. Mouthfeel was medium. Taste was bitter, almost astringent, much akin to what I had experienced in a Calypso single-hop beer. Finish was really dry, but the astringency was a bit much, even for me. Oh well, I got my money's worth and then some, so it all worked out.

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Photo of SHODriver
3.78/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: poured into a tulip to a light gold with a half finger of dense off white head that retains well
S: smells slightly fruity and some spicy yeast aroma is going on as well
T: taste is slightly fruity with a bit of spice and some nice sweetness. very delicate hop flavor as well with a slight citrus and faint grassyness. swallow is more light fruityness and a bit of residual hop bitterness.
M: This beer is light with slightly prickly carbonation and a refreshing finish
O: This is a pretty good beer. the flavors are all there and there is nothing off the mark. It drinks very easily and effortlessly. Definitely a nice beer for a hot day.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.81/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a hazy light to medium golden amber with a fine half finger white head with good retention and lots of lacing. Aroma of light biscuit malt and citrus. Flavor follows with light biscuit malt, citrus and grassy hops with light grapefruit rind. Finishes with very light biscuit malt and lingering grassy hops. Light bodied with active carbonation. A light ale, resembling an American pale ale more than a Belgian pale, but remarkably flavored for 3.4%. Quite an achievement for the ABV. A very nice lunch beer.

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Photo of EspressoGuy
2.73/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.75

Bottled on: Aug 2013 (?)
A: bright hay with orange hints
S: like an average commercial lager or light ale; corny not hoppy (like the label says).
T: very steely and flat tasting. Tinny. Lifeless. Finishes clean and fast. Not offensive just absolutely forgettable. And certainly not "fun and happy".
M: light bodied. Bang on for a session beer.
O: This beer may have been stale but if I bought it at a reputable bottle shop so trusted their stocking. Major disappointment from one of my favourite breweries.

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Photo of DrJay
3.55/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Golden beer with a fizzy, of-white cap of foam. Fragrant hop aroma, fruity with a bit of restrained citrus, mild herbal and spicy notes, some sweet malt too. Solid bitterness with low sweetness, lots of hops crammed in here (spicy, herbal, fruity) with a bit of malt at the end. Light bodied with moderate carbonation, slightly coarse. Pretty good and quite refreshing.

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Photo of tone77
3.53/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 22 oz. bottle. Has a dark golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of malts, grains, some sweetness. Taste is surprisingly hoppy, some malts, grains, very easy drinking. The fruitiness usually found in Belgian ales seems to be missing. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a refreshing and enjoyable beer.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.52/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Glossing over the label reveals a beer at very modest alcohol levels. The mind interprets it as low in taste and body, but only one of those things are true. Certainly its light texture offers supreme drinkability, but the level of flavors that are packed into the bottle are nothing short of "Magnifico!"

The summer of low gravitiy marches on with this light golden-copper colored ale. Its bright clarity proudly celebrates the effervescent streams of carbonation that rise from beneath. Those tiny bubbles quickly build a fluffy and arid head of stark-white foam in a light and loosely knit structure.

Spice and earth rise to greet the nose with a crisp and dry grain and crust-type of maltiness. Rounded by straw, fresh-cut grass, oranges, grapefruit, apples and pears, its obvious that the hops and esters are hard at work in here. A final tinge of peppercorn closes out the aromatic profile heading into taste.

To taste, all those things are present but with a virtual absence of sweetness. With all the bread and grain sweetness dissolved, the dry cracker-like taste is timid but gives a lift of brightness to the fruity apple, orange and pear flavor. The balance from pepper and hops comes easy as the ale has really no sugar to interfere. The flavors seem to float above the tongue to arrive at finish in stealth-like mode. Finishing with spicy, grassy bitterness and a crisp iron-like taste- the ale refreshes the palate with ease.

That absence of sweetness gives the beer a snappy, quick and mineral-lined texture from start to finish. Its exuberant carbonation provides a seltzer water effect to draw the ale from the tongue and offer a light prickle while at it. Unfortunately, its light "naked" character leaves the grain astringency and hop bite exposed to be felt in palate sensations.

Magnifico! does pack a lot of flavor in light body Belgian-esque form, but still- there's little to celebrate the beer beyond its light body, high effervescence, and modest taste. Yet it begs for light culinary fare such as sushi and summer salads

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.38/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a snifter.

3.25 A: Lightly hazed light orange color. One and a half fingers of pillowy white head. Retention is about average and just a wisp or two of lacing are left.

3.25 S: Dank hoppiness which is allowed to shine due to the lack of tons of malt. Floral, herbal, and earthy. Just a hint of spicy yeastiness. Not a lot going on, but it works.

3.5 T: Taste is like the nose, but better. Floral, herbal, earthy hops. Mild bitterness. Touch of spice. It's just a sessionable way to drink hops.

3.5 M: Lighter body. Maybe a hint too much carbonation, but good enough. Not really creamy, but smooth.

3.25 D: It's decent for what it is, though I definitely prefer more flavorful brews.

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Photo of ehammond1
3.32/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle (2013)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, brooklynbrews!

A slightly hazed darker apricot or peach skin in color. Very persistent, whipped-cream style, near-white head. Lots of sticky lacing left all the way down the glass. A gorgeous beer, no matter how you slice it. Truly something special to admire in the glass.

Not a very expressive aroma, even after a little bit of warming. Some toast and mild biscuit, with just a touch of a fruity hop character I would call apricot.

Surprising bitterness leads the way, along with mild straw, and a little bit of lingering apricot hop character finish. Cracker and pale malts throughout. Very drinkable. A bit of an earth or dirt character as well. Nice, but nothing standout about it.

Medium bodied with near-high carbonation.

A tasty little low ABV number, but unexciting almost across the board.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.54/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pretty Things Magnifico

Appears cloudy golden apricot, white head fine lacing. Aroma earthy citrus with some English yeast notes, nice pungency. Flavors abrasive hop action with wormwood yeast open fermentation like nuances dirty earthiness weighs down the palate. Mouthfeel again a bit harsh especially for such a low alcohol beer. Overall I will try it again this sample is extremely fresh just some flavors not meshing very well.

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Photo of BEERMILER12
3.57/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled in: JUN 2013

A: Pours a clear straw yellow color with 2 fingers of head that slowly fades down to a thin cap

S: Some nice fruity notes comes through first, along with a light Belgian yeast note. Some pine comes through as well

T: Starts off with a bit of yeastiness and fruity notes and goes into a bitter piney note that doesn't mesh that well with the fruity notes. Finishes with more of the piney bitterness

M: Light-medium bodied with moderate carbonation

O: Some nice flavors for a 3.4% brew, but they don't mesh all that well. The fruitiness really clashes with the piney hop notes and kind of throws things off. Nice for a session ale, but kind of an odd brew overall

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Photo of LarryV
3.05/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I really like most Pretty Things offerings, this one's a bit of an anomaly. Pours an opaque yellow, aroma is really off putting. For lack of a better description, almost like burnt vomit, I really don't like the aroma of this beer.

Taste is decent with a twang of hoppiness and a dry finish. Glad I tried it but I won't be buying this one again. There was no way to tell if this was an older bottle or not since the dating system was not used (Bottled in <month> <year> nothing being selected)

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Photo of harsley
4.44/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

This is everything a hop forward session beer should be. It's light on the mouth feel, which would probably be my only negative. It smelled and tasted like there were hop pellets in the bottle. Full of carbonation which left a huge head lingering until the glass was empty (which didn't take too long). The malt definitely takes a back seat but it's there enough to keep things real. Color was nice and it was pretty clear. I didn't notice much "Belgian" about it and didn't know it was considered a Belgian Pale until I saw it here. I'm guessing it was fermented on the cooler side to keep the esters down and the hops either drowned them out or were so well matched that they blended with each other into one harmonious flavor explosion.

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Photo of smcolw
3.96/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Thin bar-poured head. Settles to minute rim bubbles leaves some streaky lace. The cloudy broth is dirty gold in color.

Pleasant flowery hop with a black pepper kick. Light crystal in the background.

This a strongly bitter (said black pepper!) beer. The swallow and aftertaste is like sucking a hop pellet. It's hard to detect the malt base--mostly pale. The body is neutral; the carbonation elevated. Definitely a hop head beer.


June 9, 2013 -- Bottle version

Key difference comes from the head, which is very impressive. Lumpy while settling. Lots of chunky lace on the glass. I would also consider the body to be on the thin side with the carbonation still elevated.

I did not change the scores to reflect this.

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Photo of bum732
3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

S: Bitter, perfume-like hops, light grapefruit peel

L: Cloudy golden yellow, creamy white head dissipates. Decent lacing.

T: Bitter, dry maltiness up front. Medium high herbal/citrusy bitterness with some herbal hop flavor. Light malt character with a dry, slightly chalky finish.

M: Medium light bodied, medium carbonation.

Kind of an older bottle (June 2012). So maybe unfair to judge, but not a huge fan of this beer. Very bitter and dry.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
3.6/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22oz bomber poured into a pint glass. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a copper/golden color with a slight haze. Fast-moving streams of carbonation rush to support a very cratered yet creamy looking bone-white head. Retention is good, and a thin blanket of lacing coats the glass.

S: Oily and floral hops with a subtle leafy backing. Yeast scents are slightly chalky and lightly spicy with a ghost-like hint of clove. Malt is light but multi-dimensional. Bready with that lightly fruity aspect- definite Munich. There's also a cookie-like expression and just a touch of sweetness. The nose is good. Light but playful.

T: Yeast character at the outset with a brief wash of chalk and vague spice. Hop oils follow that up with floral and spicy/leafy tastes. Grass too. Bitterness is very tame. After a touch of initial sweetness, the malt base goes dry with tastes of cracker, sugar-free cookies, and dry biscuit. The finish is bone dry and abrupt, leaving only fleeting thin, grainy cracker tastes and slight oily hop bitterness.

M: Light in body, but full in the mouth with a semi-firm malt texture that creates the illusion of some weight. Ample prickling carbonation. Some astringency and enamel-scraping.

O: The playful complexity on the nose didn't really translate to the taste. It's just too dry and astringent for me. The chalky yeast tastes were a bit out of place too. I feel very indifferent about it, and really, what's the point of a session ale if it doesn't leave you wanting another?

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Photo of biegaman
3.9/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

¡Magnifico! is a homological name, it expresses a property which it itself possesses. ¡Magnifico! looks exactly that: magnificent. Its golden complexion shimmers and, as most sediment stays caked to the bottom of the bottle, maintains a clean, more or less clear complexion. Its head is like something from a lotion commercial; there's as much froth on the top of the beer as there is on the sides of the glass.

Pine-like tree resins and great, budding leafiness give this aroma the (literal) air of a Northwest forest. Add to it faint grapefruit and herbal spice and you've got yourself a more than noticeable hoppiness, albeit one that doesn't boast hops as ends in and of themselves. There is plenty of biscuity, bready maltiness to temper things (and even a little bit of yeast, too). Things are shaping up nicely...

Note that ¡Magnifico! has exclamation marks at *both* ends of its name. The first, I assume, relates to the honeyed, bready malts that initiate the flavour, and the second the earthy, vinous hoppiness that concludes it. In this flavour, sweet and bitter shake hands like two world leaders. This beer witnesses a wonderfully harmonious, Kumbaya moment between the two seemingly opposed features.

A highly hopped, low alcohol beer may appear a new style but it’s actually not that novel an idea. So-called "session" or "table" beers are historically common in nations like Belgium and England. The idea is something flavourful that can be casually (perhaps copiously) quaffable. ¡Magnifico! is exactly that: it has as much barley as grandma's heartiest soup and hops so crisp you could cut your teeth on them.

¡Magnifico! provides exactly what a low-gravity session beer should: carefree enjoyment and flavour that is both plentiful and balanced. The people at Pretty Things know what they're doing. It's a brewery that if you ask anyone from New England about it, and they've tried their beers, they'll say: "They're great! I love their beers!". And if they haven't, you'll probably say to them: "They're great! You'll love their beers!"

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Photo of Oakenator
4.67/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is golden amber with some haziness visible in the glass. The head pours nicely at first but has larger carbonation bubbles than most other beers. Solid lacing. Classic ale smell with a bit of hopiness on top of it. The taste is phenomal for a beer this low strength - how they crammed this much flavor into a beer this mild is a feat. Solid hops and malt flavoring - from front to back - not leaning in any particular direction but still a very nice clean flavor. The taste even lingers for a bit. Well done, and definitely sessionable (many sessions).

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Perfectly clear gold. Lively carbonation. Head is creamy, bright-white, and leaves some nice sheets of lacing. Head retention is good. Small cap lingers for the duration.

Smell: Grassy. Pale malts. Graham cracker and bread crust. Mild herbal/earthy hops. Very pale. Slight push of grains. Nice floral edge with something approaching raw honey. Very mild.

Taste: Clean, floral, and pale malts. Some cracker. Mild earthiness. Grass. Extremely light. Maintains that mild raw honey edge found on the nose. Nice depth. Very mild yet complex. Small touches of yeast. Mild spiciness in the back. Toasted just a touch. Everything is done minimally.

Mouthfeel: Body is a bit on the thin side, but it works with the lively carbonation and delicate flavors. Some slight dryness.

Overall: It's mellow and it's incredibly drinkable. This is a fantastic summer beer.

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Photo of Gatch
4.63/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in: June 2012

A: If you pour it straight into the glass like the bottle recommends, a huuuuge, bubbly yet pillowy, crater-filled, towering, white head forms. Slowly falls leaving behind a ton of lace. Hazy, pale, golden-yellow in color.

S: Big bouquet of yeast, hops, lightly toasted malt, spices, and wildflowers.

T: Pale malt, floral hops, yeast. It's so smooth and fresh that I can't go any deeper than that to find flavors. It's insanely drinkable (as it should be) and the finish is fantastic. Dry, hoppy, and with a bit of yeast.

M: Incredibly smooth, right amount of carbonation, tons of flavor for the ABV. I can't say anything bad. If I wanna get picky, I'll say the body is a bit thin at the front but from the middle to the finish, the body beefs up and becomes perfect for the style.

O: If someone on the street told me that Pretty Things made a bad beer, I would slap them. This is a ridiculously good, well-crafted beer!

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Photo of VelvetExtract
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

A-Magnifico pours a brilliant glowing orange color. Head is frothy and gigantic and it lasts forever. Light lacing. The bubbles rise in strict columns. Looks awesome.

S-Lemon and lime zest. Sweet muffin malt. Candied citrus hops and floral hops. Light grains and buttery biscuits. More intense than you'd expect from a 3.4%er.

T-Lemon and lime zest again. Grassy and flowery hops along with light citrus. Sweet bready malts and lightly spicy grains. Taste is fuller than most American Pale Ales I come across. Really tasty.

M-No skimping here. Body is (in the context of a low ABV beer) surprisingly full. Also has plenty of bitterness and lingering dryness. Sessionable for days.

O/D- A beer under 3.5% ABV with this much flavor is impressive. It also doesn't hurt that the beer just plain taste great. Kudos.

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Photo of greybeardloon
3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 5

Bottled June 2012

A: Nice head and lacing.

S: Dusty yeast, bread and leafy hops.

T: Doughy and yeasty with herbal hops that are a bit bitter on the finish. Fairly balanced flavor.

M: Initally very carbonated, hits a sweet spot, and then quickly flattens out.

O: Remarkably flavorful beer for the abv. Unsurprisingly, it's very drinkable.

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Photo of Celtics76
3.71/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an interesting one. Had seen it at Bottles for about a month before finally deciding to pick it up. I guess the low 3.4% ABV scared me off for a while.

I poured this as directed, half of it straight down the middle. After letting the 1/2 inch of head settle, poured the rest. Hazy gold in appearance.

As expected, this has a mild taste. Citrusy, light hop flavor. One of the most drinkable beers I've ever had. Paired very nicely with a dinner of stuffed scallops and grilled salmon. The finish is bitter, which lingers afterwards. This surprised me but was welcomed.

Recommended, especially with a seafood dinner. What I don't recommend is pairing it with an episode of Real Housewives, which is unfortunately what I had to sit through while enjoying this.

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¡Magnifico! from Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project
3.76 out of 5 based on 152 ratings.
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