Jinx | Magic Hat Brewing Company

very good
350 Reviews

Brewed by:
Magic Hat Brewing Company
Vermont, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
It’s OK to be a Wee Heavy. Much has been made of the ills of smoking. Jinx thinks there’s nothing wrong with it. For years, he stood strong with his peat-smoked whiskey malt mash. He held his head high when others made fun of his wee heavy physique, becoming a mainstay in Magic Hat’s Night of the Living Dead Variety 12-Pak. People said he’d never attain an Original Gravity above 15.1 degrees Plato or an ABV above 6%. He proved them wrong. Take Magic Hat into the next alellenium. Vote Jinx.

23 IBU

Added by stirgy on 12-06-1999

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Reviews: 350 | Ratings: 576
Photo of Sodamhwf
1.34/5  rDev -64.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.25

This was one of the worst beers I have ever had. It has a chemical after taste. I love all styles of beers. I can not understand the high ratings it's gotten on here.. I had to pour 8 oz out. I just couldn't drink it. I like all the other beers magic hats has. But Wow!!!!!!

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Photo of Naugled
2.06/5  rDev -45.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

12 oz bottle served in flute.

The fruity esters really hit me hard. I smelled strong peaches and caramel in the aroma. Not what I was expecting.

Nice tan head that quickly subsided.

Deep copper brown color and clear.

Unimpressive mouthfeel, with medium body and smooth and sweet. OK carbonation.

Very light hop flavor and bitterness in flavor and aroma.

Metallic flavors very apparent, copper, iron, tinny, as well as iodine. Sometime a peat smoked malt can have these flavors out of proportion.

Not sure when this was brewed but it certainly didn't age well.

Not a very drinkable beer for me, I certainly won't have another.

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Photo of semihobo
2.44/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12 oz best by Dec. 08. Served in a chalice.

Rich dark brown with ruby edging, piddly head, no lacing.

Smells of mixed nuts, tobacco, and grass. Sweet caramel malts, very musty and earthy. Complex and largely devoid of traditional scents.

Earthy tobacco taste, not too sweet. Lots of peat and a touch of smoke. Some flatly acidic bitterness. Maybe it's just that this is a Scotch Ale but it tastes "wee" bit like... scotch. Generally herbal and medicinal.

Decently thick mouthfeel with carbonation that is just a bit too sassy to fit here.

It's complex, but I didn't really enjoy it. Glad there were only three bottles of this in the Participation 12er. Below average.

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Photo of jamie2dope
2.65/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I missed the initial release of this beer, which sort of sucked, but luckily there was a twelve pack left at Atlas up the street. It poured a dark brown coloration, with little heading at all. Smell had some sweet sugars, tree bark, caramel...all somewhat weak but nice overall. Taste was to be honest a bit on the sour side. I could taste some of the smokyness to this beer, but it didn't really add to it very much. Mouthfeel was also quite a bit lighter then I remember it being in recent years. One or two of these was more then enough for me. It's sort of unfortunate considering I really used to enjoy this beer. Maybe I got an old bottle or something. I'll probably give it another chance next year. Cheers

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Photo of aaronh
2.7/5  rDev -28%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

"Life's not heaven on Route 7"

Hazy copper tinted dark amber beer topped by a minimal amount of off white head. Peat and some type of disinctive hop aroma. Slightly earthy, seems much like some brown ales I've had aroma-wise. Northern Brewer? Perle? I don't know. (At this point, worries about similartes to Bell's Amber and/or Cottonwood Low Down brown are surfacing.) Ahh, true to form. Taste is dominated by a woody, earthy bitterness that reminds me of eating dirt. A bit of smoky peat and malt sweetness saves it a bit. Mouthfeel is a bit harsh and grainy. Drinkability is OK. I just can't get past the dominant earthiness. Every once in a while, I find a beer with this flavor profile. The previous two similarities were mentioned above. Time to start investigating this beer in relation to the otehr two to make sure I don't make something like this. It's a solid beer; I just don't care for it. Some people like blondes, others brunettes. Well, I like the latter, and this is more like a redhead. Or maybe a punk chick with pink hair. Just not my type...

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Photo of thequeen711
2.76/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a tulip glass dark golden, small frothy head diminishing to light lacing. Absolutely no detectable nose...I could smell a thing. Mouthfeel is light. Seems like a well rounded beer, starts with a hoppy taste, then turning to a malty sweetness. I can't make my mind up about this brew...I usually enjoy most Magic Hat offerings, but this one may need another taste later...

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Photo of GFSchwab
2.77/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Out of the tap I have found to be in agreement with my peers on this beer. From the name and even the tap design, the beer looks interesting enough to give a try. However, I was somewhat dissapointed i na lack of depth and overal simplicty for what could of been an outstanding beer.

It appeared an earthly dark brown with a fading to non existant head. very tall, very dark, would of lead to a statuesque figure if there was a thin layer of head to compliment the color.

The smell was laiden with the peat used to smoke the malts, it was the first and last aroma that came to me and for the most part dominated the beer in general.

The taste was also dominated by the peat with faint notes of stronger flavors that are much more common in a scotch ale. I found it completley absent of any hop accent and it just seemed that the smoked flavor trumped over everything. Slight tofee and an alcoholic pinge resonated on my pallet by those monents were fleeting.

The mouth feel was rough, it felt like I was drinking a side of bbq'ed chicken, it left an overbearing accent from the peat thhat made it barley palletable at times.

As for the texture and overall discourse, it was an extremley heavy beer that I had diffuctly in drinking down in its entirety. The lack of balance in the flavors and the thick content made it difficult overall.

Although the peat floavor was original, and did go nicely in the realm of scotch ales, I think the peat would have tasted better as a smooth (4.5-6.0%) porter or stout. It was difficult to handle as a scotch ale, usualy the mmalts used to make the scotch ale present morethen the sufficient challenge for the beer, smoking the malts was just too much.... Although this is a testament to magic hat's willingess to experiment and try new things, which as many brewery such as this do, envelop the ethos of American craft brewing.

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Photo of Floydster
2.78/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle that was part of Magic Hat's mixed pack, split with a friend, poured into a small pint glass

A-Murky brown color with a very red tint, could see through it easily in the light, small 1/4 inch off white head, not much retention, no lacing

S-Smokiness, sweet malts, toffee, caramel, nuts, milk chocolate, brown sugar, fruits but could not really tell which ones, faint whiskey aromas

T-Earthy and a little skunky, malt was a little chewy, smoky aftertaste, not much sweetness like I could smell, roasted nuts, faint hoppiness at the beginning, too much malt and bubbles that make it a little hard to get down

M-Way too much carbonation, taste lasted only a couple seconds, very thin body, somewhat dry and crisp mouthfeel

D-Could drink a few bottles of this and then wonder why I did not drink something else, fairly light on the stomach, low in alcohol for a scotch ale, not very smooth

Weakest wee heavy I have tasted, must be spoiled by Alesmith, first Magic Hat brew, pretty disappointed with this beer, cannot recommend it to anybody

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Photo of BeerBelcher
2.78/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I was a little concerned when I bought this beer. No hops? Other beers I've had without hops that substituted heather or other mysterious ingredients for hops were challenging and just so....different. And this beer was so...ordinary. It was ordinary, but not in an above average way. Just kind of there.

Color was a touch dark. Head appearance was a bit industrial looking, with a fair amount of head comprised of consistently sized bubbles. Aroma was faint to non-existent. Flavor was a touch malty, but again, not much there. Struck me as a very mild amber ale.

Nothing special here...IMO, not worth the money or the calories. But at the same time, it is hard for me to say anything to negative about it.

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Photo of callmemickey
2.82/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Copper-Amber-Brown with a very thin cream offwhite head

S: Peat smoked roasted malts.. real earthy with some hop accents

T: Honestly, the flavor is so flat and mucky.. the malts are real bland .. only the interest of the smoky peat flavor is notable

M: Medium bodied with some carbonation.. a bit jumbled on the palate some sips are lasting others not so

O: The flavor really hurts the overal impression

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Photo of pmcadamis
2.84/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A - This deep brown cloudy beer looks ruddy brown/red in the light and supports a massive three finger khaki head that deposits lots of thick foamy lace on the glass. The head sticks around for a long time (never falling below two fingers), and a quick swirl spatters more foamy lace around the edges on my big brandy snifter. This looks creamy, dense, and thick. Were off to a damn good start!

S - Grape Tootsie Roll Pop, grape flavored soda (Grapette?), and mild milk chocolate. Not a whole helluva lot going on.

T - There is a major grape Tootsie Roll pop flavor going on here. Its not bad, but its pretty one dimensional and it overrides other flavors here... like cola, mixed nuts, and root beer.

M - Thinner than it should be. This is light on flavor and light in the mouth... that's not a good combination for a scotch ale! Finishes clean and slightly nutty.

D - This is underpowered and pretty boring honestly. Its more like a mild brown ale than a wee heavy. The nutty aftertaste isn't bad, and its a damn good looking beer, but it somehow fails to deliver. Mediocre, really.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
2.94/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Too many infected bottles in the last month - I reach for a magic hat to break the curse with a jinx...

'Life in a Hurry makes everything Blurry'

Appearance - speaking of blurry, as the cap just did, this pours a blurry chestnut. A thin head, weak retention, unimpressive lacing.

Aroma - cocoa and smoked malts. Pretty nice!

Taste - brief sweetness, just a touch before a heft of smokiness clouds the palate. A thick smoke, wet wood really grabs the taste buds and doesn't let go. The finish is a sour smoky flavor, I don't much care for it. Edit - labeled as a scotch ale, I had my palate ready for something different. Reading some past reviews, this was once classified as a smoke beer. As a smoke beer, re-trying this, my expectations are better met, meriting a better score(from a 2 to a 3).

Mouthfeel - some smoothness, well-carbonated, no problems here.

Drinkability - nah, glad I only bought the single. Way too smoky and not near sweet enough. Edit - previous comments designed for a scotch ale. As a smoke beer, this is passable as an option for a cookout or something. I'd probably still spring for something else, but am bumping this a half point.

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Photo of daliandragon
2.97/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Advertised on the top label as a Peat Smoked Seasonale offering. This is a pretty quirky beer from a pretty quirky company, but generally they back it up with quality.
A darker color than their other offerings, a dark amber without much head or lacing. Some visible carbonation and a hoppy nose with a tinge of alcohol and some spices and perhaps sugar.
Now I can see why this is called a smoked beer. A hoppy, alcoholic taste with what I can only assume is the advertised peat. The aftertaste is a bit dry and gritty.
This is not my favorite beer by any means but it is original and has a nice individual character. A good try by Magic Hat but I won't go out of my way for this one again.

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Photo of Atlas1
2.98/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured a decent two-finger head, which was noticeably thin from the start, and faded quickly. No lace to mention. Smoked orange aroma with some woody undertones. A very thin mouthfeel. Malty up front with hints of citrus and brown sugar. No real hop presence. Finishes with a slightly smokey residue in the back of the mouth. I'm not very impressed with the Jinx. I tried this years ago and seem to recall liking it more, but this time around it didn't do much for me. I'll try it again in a couple of years and re-evaluate. Otherwise, I'll just find something else to drink.

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Photo of Matty1918
2.98/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy dark amber with a minimal creamy head. As the head settles down it leaves some good lacing.

Aroma is of sweet malts....caramel and some alcohol hints are there also.

Taste is of raosted sweet malts....almost like hints of caramel and syrup. A little watery in the mouthfeel category.

Not my favorite Scotch Ale. You could drink this as a session beer. Not impressed.

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Photo of WakeandBake
3/5  rDev -20%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Notes Oct 12, 2008
Dark brown color beer with a thin tan head. Aroma dark fruit,bread and faint earthy herbal hops . Flavor is brown bread,faint smoke,caramel,and maybe cherries. Nice mouthfeel. An odd but solid offering,fun to try but not really my thing.

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Photo of PatandDavid
3/5  rDev -20%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Hmm, what a shocker to sit down to review this one and find it it's supposed to be a smoke beer...I think they forgot to put some in the keg that was on at Redbones (or maybe I didn't notice it because I was at Redbones, all that smoked meat and everything). Anyway... The pour was a medium dark copper color. This is what I think is so funny, my notes say: clean aroma! Uhh, I tasted a malty base (no smoke detected, alas), with a flowery hop aroma. Some slight astringency in the finish. I remember I was out with a few fellow BAs, and we were all like: what is it. I can't believe this was a smoked beer. I found this an average beer, not bad, not outstanding. pat

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Photo of jp32
3.01/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark, deep mahogany brown with and average-sized khaki colored head. The aroma is roasted malts accompanied by hints of hopps, toffee, and coffee.

The taste is quite complex. Roasted and toasted with some herbal notes, pepper, and a taste of brown sugar in the background.

The mouthfeel is average, as is the drinkability.

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Photo of aquatonex
3.08/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Well, I do love Magic Hat, but I wasn't expecting a smoked beer when I took my first sip...

Oh my god. Don't drink a smoked beer without first knowing it's a smoked beer. It almost made me throw up. Pours very dark brown with a hint of amber. A finger of head that was moderately retained. Smell had some hops, malt, and fruit with smokiness around the edges. So, I take a sip. OY! Has a little chewy fruitiness, dominated by smokiness, balance of hops and malt is good but I can't get past this supreme smokiness. If that's what you're looking for, then great. For me, I couldn't get past 1/4 the bottle. Mouthfeel is quality, of course, it's Magic Hat. Tried hard to not rate it from my likes, but it cost the beer points.

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Photo of BrewMakeMeFeel
3.1/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Look: Light copper brown with off-white head
Smell: Smoky with a caramel sweetness
Taste: Caramel sweetness hits first, followed by smoky flavor with a hint of chocolate, finishing with a peaty flavor and lingering hints of smokiness.
Feel: Smooth, a little on the thin side

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Photo of SixpointJMH
3.11/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

i sampled this one years ago whilst living in boston and despised it. clearly the worst brew in the mh family, i though at the time, and have avoided it since...until now. it's certainly better than i remember it but still nothing to write home about. i guess maybe i just don't get this one. it pours a very nice ruby colour with a farily thin head that leaves virtually no residue on the glass. the smell is odd: somewhat smokey, some what rubbery, somewhat malty, but totally average. the flavour is equally perplexing as, while it does have smoke notes to it that are pronounced at times (especially at the start of the brew), there are too many other weird flavours thrown into the mix to call it a true smoked brew, i think. like with the smell, there is a rubber flavour at times which is quite out of place. i picked up some cooked vegetable flavouring as well. odd, but it works for the most part, i guess. this one is quite simply hard to pinpoint. its too scattered for me to say that i enjoyed it but there's nothing glaringl wrong with it. try it for a change of pace but i can't imagine myself sampling more than one per season, at best.

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Photo of Globetrotter
3.11/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Hand-carried from Vermont to Vienna (thanks, Bob), the standard brown 12oz bottle looks like the one pictured here. No useful ingredient information. Best by the end of January, I made it with a few days to spare, popping the top on 1/28/07.

Pours a cloudy orangish brown under a one finger light tan head that fades fairly quickly to film, which then lasts forever, leaving some nice lace. The nose is light sweet caramel, much simpler than expected. The mouth is slightly sticky and fairly well carbonated. There's lots of sweet caramel malt taste, but not much else. No spice, no bitterness, and definitely no smoke. It's smooth and enjoyable, but very siple. Just a touch of dryness in the aftertaste hints at the presence of hops. Globetrotterette thought it was awful - "genuine kvas" - but I'll stick to simply disappointed.

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Photo of drifter29
3.11/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle, the dark amber offering quickly settles with a light creamy head that soon dissipates. Initial flavor is slightly sweet with carmel accents and a slightly smoky overtone. Medium to light body makes this an easy beer to drink and could make for a nice session beer. The second was definitely better than the first. The upfront malt qualities does not stay around long and I found the finish to be less than desired. Still a decent beer by any means.

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Photo of yesyouam
3.12/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at the Flour City Brewers' Fest 2008. Magic Hat Jinx is a hazy amber ale with a huge, fluffy, cream coloerd head. The retention and lacing are excellent. It has a bready aroma with a touch of sweetness and roastiness. It is medium bodied, smooth and slightly metallic in the mouth. The finish is sharp. It has a well balanced flavor; slightly sweet with a touch of caramel and a slightly alkaline note. It beats #9.
(rated Aug 17, 2008)

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Photo of
3.13/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle

Clear, dark gold/amber. Small, ivory colored head.

Scents of caramel and pine.

Taste included toffee, roast notes, a touch of smoke, and grass/herbs/spice at finish for some bittering.

Medium in body. Low to medium carbonation. Dry.

OK, smoke was well done in that it accented rather than overpowered. Not terribly impressive, though.

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Jinx from Magic Hat Brewing Company
3.75 out of 5 based on 576 ratings.
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