Jinx | Magic Hat Brewing Company

very good
578 Ratings

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

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 578 |  Reviews: 350
Photo of albern
3.32/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I didn't realize this was a Scotch Ale until I read the header on the web page; in short, this is a decent beer, but a very weak, watery scotch ale that doesn't have nearly the warming alcohol notes, not nearly the syrupy thickness, or the maltiness of an ale representative of the style. What you will get is a hazy brown beer with some head that doesn't hang around too long. The smell is molasses, coffee, chocolate, toasted malts. The taste is quite subdued and you don't get near enough of that smoky peat flavor characteristic of the style. This is a light to medium bodied beer, that needs to be chewier. The mouthfeel is watery, little aftertaste, and the drinkability is fine, just not if you are in the mood for a real Scotch Ale.

 740 characters

Photo of InsolublePancake
3.39/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- Decent deep copper color, kind of hazy, sporting a modest head that fails to stick around too long.

S- Quite sweet with a hearty caramel maltiness, some chocolate, a coffee-like roastiness and a generous helping of smoke. A metallic aroma also plays heavily on the nose.

T- The peat smoke is very prominent in the taste, even more so than the nose hinted at. Some malty sweetness comes through at times, but the smoky character really takes center stage here. It's pretty good, but it really needs more malt character to back it up. A touch of bitterness lingers on the finish along with some roasty flavors and the ever-present smoke.

M- Kind of thin, actually. Not watery by any means, but a scotch ale needs to have a little more body to it.

D- The drinkability is kind of limited by the smoky flavor. I really wouldn't want more than one in a sitting, but I'd gladly drink the one.

An interesting beer, although a bit out of whack. The smoky character was nice, but other than that, it was kind of bland. It's still one of the better beers I've had from Magic Hat (not that that's saying much), and certainly worth a try at least once. I doubt I'll get it again, but I was glad to have tried it.

 1,208 characters

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.

 332 characters

Photo of rowew
3.5/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz longneck, abstract label. ABV and best by date clearly marked.

Appearance: Slightly hazy reddish brown, thin head fades quickly.

Smell: Some caramel, just a bit of cooked vegetable.

Taste: Different than what I expected - a bit of dark fruit, some caramel flavors, and just a hint of smoke.

Overall impression: Different, but still drinkable and interesting. Not a bad fall offering.

 407 characters

Photo of DrainBamage
4.69/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a very dark cloudy red color a has only a thin lace of head. Has a sweet roasted caramel malt aroma with a hint a smoke. The taste is slightly bitter, but goes down smooth. You can definitely taste the presence of the roasted caramel malts, but it does leave a slight taste of a cigarette in your mouth. I'm not a smoker, but it didn't really bother me. It leaves an interesting tingling sensation on the tongue and the carbonation is moderate. This beer can't get much better for the style. One of the best Scotch Ales I've ever had.

 540 characters

Photo of iceball585
3.77/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Dark reddish brown color, white thin ring of head

S- Roasted malt, caramel, scotch, kind of sweet smell

T- Smokey, cocoa, roasted malt, earthy, dried fruit, scotch, caramel, slight hop bite

M- Medium bodied, medium carbonation, alcohol warming feeling, oily finish

D- Definatly worth trying and could easily drink more than one of these

This is a very complex tasting beer. It's a little fizzy feeling but not enough that it would turn you away from it.

 461 characters

Photo of grahambo
4.49/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - The beer freshly poured from a growler has a very nice deep red/brownish color to it.

S - The smell is very warm...that is, there are hints of chocolate with a strong amount of whiskey malt (the beer is aged in whiskey casks)

T - Exceptional, this beer brings together everything that is great about fall beers, a nice chocolate taste combined with malt and whiskey

M & D - The beer isn't nearly as heavy to drink as it looks which is one of its best qualities, it feels and goes down like a much lighter beer with the taste of a heavier one.

This is my favorite beer...I just wish they released it all year.

 616 characters

Photo of srrn
3.66/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer is best decribed as earthy. I don't know if it's the power of suggeestion from the label or not but, I'm a trail runner and this beer tastes like an autumn run through the hills. That's a good thing. This beer is a ruddy brownish red with kind of a soda like carbonation. Not particularly good looking. Smell is fruity apples, carmel and earth. Taste is complex and what holds this beer up. Peat, fruity apples and maybe a sour tang later on. Mouthfeel is a bit thin for me. This won't be a regular, I like some other wee heavys better, but I will buy it again.

 571 characters

Photo of jcdiflorio
3.35/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sevred into a flaired tulip glass from a 12oz bottle with crimped cap.
Slightly hazed ruby/deep copper color with a 1' light tan head that dissapated quickly into a sudsy ring which really comes to life with a swirl.
Lively looking constant rising of bubbles with tighly knitted strings of tiny bubbles rising from the sides of the glass leaving some spotty lacing.

Sweet malty aromas,roasty with a hint of smoke,earthy/musty with an apricot-like fruityness. Aromas were slightly on the faint side.

Sweet syrupy carmell taste,roasty, with a touch of peat. Earthy with some dried fruityness finishes clean,juicy with a pleasing,drying hop feel has a very nice balance. Good taste a touch on the light side for the style.

Medium bodied,slightly cloying with a tangy grainyness. Easy drinking just not something i would want to drink a lot of.

 843 characters

Photo of JamesS
4.37/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured out a very nice deep copper color, reminding me of a dark apple cider (real cider, not hard). The first smell was nearly overpowering, but all of the next nose tests were great. It has an deep earthy smell with a storng scent of apples in it. Fairly smooth in the mouth, just a bit rough. Great taste! It has a nice dark, earthy feel to this aspect, as well, including a wonderful, strong taste of peat. Don't confuse it with a scotch ale, but if you like scotch or scotch ale, you should like this just as much. (I feel it lacks the nice smokiness of a true scotch ale from scotland.)

 592 characters

Photo of Scribbles
3.71/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Very dark coloured, decent head when poured, but I thought it was best right from the bottle.

Smell: Not too much smell to it, maybe a little earthy, But not too bad.

Taste: Very Earthy and smoky toasted flavours, if that isn't in your taste this certainly isn't the beer for you. With all the Smokey and earthy tastes the hops don't stand out much but they're there. The 6.9% abv in this is very well masked under all the other flavours. Funniest thing while drinking these I kept thinking of the flavour of espresso coffee, I don't know maybe I'm wierd.

Mouthfeel: smooth, even more so when warmer; goes down easy unless you don't like the taste. Then I can imagine that it might not be as pleasant in you mouth.

Drinkability: Pretty Drinkable, very strong flavoured(in the ways mentioned above) but smooth enough to go down easy, with hardly a hint of the alcohol. I don't think I would be able to drink a lot of them in one session though. Pretty good overall, it's a nice beer to relax with at the end of a cool fall, or cold winter day.

On a side note I've found that its flavour makes it quite nice as a base when steaming clams, all it needs is a little butter, salt and pepper added, and its good to go.

 1,229 characters

Photo of dickieb
3.77/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was probably my favorite beer when i made the switch to the good stuff, pours a rich amber, with a small head and some nice lacing. The smell is sweet and nutty, with a hint of smoke thrown in their. Taste of some dark and sweet malts ending with some lingering smoke flavor and a hint of warming alcohol. The mouth feel is good even with the big malty character, and this one drinks easy for about 7%

 406 characters

Photo of sleazo
3.79/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-brownish red. Rich creamy head. Good lacing.

S-sweet roasted malt.

T-rich caramel and toffee. A hint of fruity yeast. Hop level is minimum. Light smoke in the aftertaste. The good thing is it is not overly sweet.

M-slightly syrupy with low carbonation

D-This is one of the better brews from this brewery. There is enough subtleness to keep you interested. Would have again.

 381 characters

Photo of BBM
3.28/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Jinx poured a deep, dark oak color into a pint glass. Ruby highlights throughout, and a thin tan head atop it. Aroma was muted caramel and roasted almonds.

This is a very sweet, nutty beer up front, with emphasis on the caramel and toasted malts. Almost no bitterness was accounted for, but the beer wasn't overly sweet. There were hints of spices and a woodsy flavor, both of which became more pronounced as the beer warmed. The alcohol was masked well.

Mouthfeel was medium bodied and creamy. To be honest this is a decent dark amber beer with a slightly extra kick. I didn't really get the Wee Heavy vibe from this one, so if you're looking based on style, this may not be what you had in mind. Still, it's a decent beer in it's own right.

 746 characters

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
3.8/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle> fat snifter.(update review)

AP: Red-oak, rusty brown in color, thick and murky with big carbonation that creates a tan colored 1" deep foamy head that is reduced to only a thin vail rather quickly.

Nose: sweet malt with oak, nuts and some very nice orange peel, corriander and a very pungent mossy herbal effect. Sweet red berries and slight citrus notes at the end, slight alcohol heat buzz as well.

Flavor: The malt has a slightly sweet, oak-aged woodieness that turns dramatically to a herbal, mossy, wet-earth herbal effect from the hops then morphs into a walnut-like bitterness at the end and a bit of heat right at the end that seems to add to it's bitterness.. (This nutty and dry bitterness mellows as the brew warms up to room temprature. )

Feel: Medium bodied, crisp ending very dry.

DA: 6.9% abv is felt and enjoyed.

 850 characters

Photo of beerNdarts
3.7/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I really enjoyed this one. I will admit, my "broad spectrum" experience with beer types is a little limited... but with all of the malt flavor, especially as this one warms, I felt almost like I was drinking a Guinness Extra Stout...

A- Dark brown, head was about 3/4" and dissipated quickly.

S- Malty, hoppy. Smells just like it tastes. A little sweet?

T- This is what really impressed me. I found that about 15 mins out of the refridge and I could really taste what this beer was all about. Don't notice the 6.whatever ABV very much. Very malty, a little spicy (as in spices). I don't know about everyone else, but I found this beer to be very well balanced. Well done MH, this is definitely my new cold-weather stand by. I never did like Sams Oktoberfest, thanks for the alt.

M- Definitely a little thick, not like a stout but this is a beer that lets you know what you're drinking.

D- Not a session beer by any means, although I'm sure when I go camping over Columbus Day it will be treated as such. If you can get by the thick(er) malt flavor, this is an easy swiller.

 1,079 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.95/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Advertised as a seasonal, but only if your season is eight or so months long -- I guess a mid summer through mid winter brew? Noticed some definitive maltiness, borrowing something from Oktoberfest / Marzens and Dopplebocks, but leaving a decernable estery / spicy quality found in Winter Warmers. All with a heavy dose of earthy, amber-malt, and mild peat-ey quality. You'd think that the textue would be heavy, but instead lands on medium firmness and much less sweet / cloying than anticipated. Easy to drink under about 7% of mild alcohols. Quite complex, flavorful, and rememberable.

 588 characters

Photo of bboven
3.85/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep brown and clear. No lacing but pretty decent head retention.

Smells very Belgian, actually. Like a tripel or a strong dark. I get lots of fruit and alcohol, not much else. Great for a Belgian, but...

Tastes like a Belgian as well with a little added roast and bitterness. Great, but doesn't seem to style.

Great coating mouthfeel, a little over-done on carbonation, but I guess that comes with trying to appeal commercially to so many people.

Highly drinkable. It's lighter than a lot of other wee heavys that I have had and tastes more like a Belgian than anything, but I didn't take any points off for not to style because it is a very good beer. Maybe someone will pick this box up and discover something new. Kudos to Magic Hat for bringing less prominent styles to grocery stores and gas stations everywhere.

 822 characters

Photo of williamherbert
3.73/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Quick hit thoughts:

* The look is a deep reddish brown with a nice half-finger of head, but no lace.
* It looks deep and dark; completely opaque.
* The smell is a dark, smoky malt, but not that strong or considerable of an aroma.
* Tastes like a dry amber/red but with a roasted, smoky, almost BBQ accent
* Really malty and dry but with sweetness at the tail end of the swallow.
* Slightly bitter, esp as it warms; does have a bite on the way down.
* Because of its bite, may be hard to repeat. It's a smoky, rich, dark roasted brew. Typical of most Magic Hat offerings; competent, just nothing mind-blowing.

 609 characters

Photo of bosco7
3.88/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown with a head composed of microscopically fine bubbles.

Caramel, grape soda, smoked malt, and chocolate in the nose. A little odd.

Upon first sip I notice a surprisingly apparent vinous character to this brew as well as the dryness. Some caramel , toffee, and a hint of chocolate in the start but is completely overwhelmed with fruitiness. Grape, dark cherry, and acidic grapefruit. Some smokeyness in the aftertaste.

A very enjoyable beer as long as you don't think of it as a Wee Heavy. I like my Wee Heavies heavier and with more malt in the flavor profile and mouthfeel. Still warming and an interesting drink.

 629 characters

Photo of NJpadreFan
3.47/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Magic Hat- Jinx

Appearance- reddish brwon with a small sticky head.
Smell- Caramel malt with a light grassy moss aroma.
Taste- Burnt sugar caramel malt with a grassy/ mossy hop flavor. Slight fruit notes come through. Grape and cherry detected?!
Mouthfeel- Sweet and chewy. Thick malty base with a tangy dry finish.

Overall- This improves as it warms up and gets closer to the bottom of the glass. Another decent offering from Magic Hat.

 439 characters

Photo of burnstar
3.85/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark red/mahogany with a decent head which recedes quickly leaving some nice lacing. Pleasant sweet malty aroma with a touch of smoke. Rich malty taste. Sweet caramel and toasted malt flavors. Nutty notes. A touch of smoke in the finish. Medium to full bodied. Wouldn't want to drink a ton of this but it does go down fairly easy. Good beer overall

 361 characters

Photo of edthered413
3.7/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bought a growler at the brewery a few weeks ago.

A - Pours a light to medium brown, slight head laces nicely on the glass as it disappears during drinking.

S - A sweet malty smell along with a hint of a smoky smell as well. Nice.

T - Nice Malty taste with some hop flavor as well. Nice balance to it.

M - Well bodied, a nice one to savor

D - A good beer to give you a warm up on a cool evening. I will definitely be getting more of this as the temperature goes down.

 471 characters

Photo of Gambrinus1184
3.77/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap at Sophie in Watertown, Conn. (in a Magic Hat pint glass, nice touch)

A: Very dark, burnt amber color with a one finger head that left in a hurry, leaving behind a thin layer of lace and lazy carbonation, what could be seen of it in the murk.

S: Definitely smells of peat moss, or fresh soil. The sweet malt aroma is just scarce enough to let you know it's there.

T: That sweet malt smell translated well into the taste. A slight floral hop finish is noticed on the back of my tongue. Very nice balance in this brew.

M: I find the mouthfeel on Jinx to be a little syrupy, but if you're not chugging it, which I wouldn't recommend doing anyway, it's enjoyable to sip on.

D: With an ABV of almost 7% and that tendency to be a bit too sweet or syrupy at times, I wouldn't dub this a session beer. However, I'd find it hard not to have more than one of these on a crisp autumn evening (or morning, depending on the person).

Overall, I do enjoy Jinx. I'm not a huge fan of everything Magic Hat does, but this is a nice addition to the family. I'd choose a Belhaven Wee Heavy over this one in terms of style, but it's probably better than some things you'll find this fall.

 1,187 characters

Photo of Durge
4.2/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A dark coffee color with a solid tan head and good lacing. The aroma is very solid stuff with smokey, earthy malt and a touch of brown sugar. Porter-like I think. The taste is fortunately quite true to the aroma with the addition of a little apple on the edges. There is a sweet malt and maple sugar presence that blends nicely with the smokiness. A very smooth mix of flavor. Hearty autumnal goodness in a relatively drinkable brew. I like it and am happy to have a few left to this six pack. Recommended!

 506 characters

Jinx from Magic Hat Brewing Company
3.75 out of 5 based on 578 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.