#9 | Magic Hat Brewing Company

1,693 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Magic Hat Brewing Company
Vermont, United States

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A beer cloaked in secrecy. An ale whose mysterious and unusual palate will swirl across your tongue and ask more questions than it answers. A sort of dry, crisp, refreshing, not-quite pale ale. #9 is really impossible to describe because there's never been anything else quite like it.

20 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-09-1998

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Reviews: 1,693 | Ratings: 5,660
Photo of sbw138
1/5  rDev -70.6%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Magic Hat #9 might be the worst beer I have ever tasted. It is bland, and the flavoring they add is simply horrendous. I've noticed this is the "cool" beer to drink in college towns. I don't think it is because it tastes good to certain people, I think they just like to say they are drinking a Magic Hat #9.

But really, this beer pours a hazy orange/yellow color. I have had this, or people I know have had this, and every time it smells like it is skunked to me, but that is how the brew always smells.

But, I do appreciate how this could be considered some sort of a gateway beer from your coors and miller lights to a better beer!

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Photo of yeahman
1.09/5  rDev -67.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Had this from a mixed pack that my wife bought.
Looks hazy.
Smells like a dry apricot.
Flat and uninteresting flavor and mouthfeel.

I thought id give this a try since my wife seems to like it. Maybe her review will balance out my glaringly bad review.

Is the #9 in reference to how many attempts it took for them to get to this flavor profile? Maybe they should have a #10. Just sayin.

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Photo of elgiacomo
1.11/5  rDev -67.4%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

12oz bottle, best by Feb 2010. Pours light amber with a small off-white head, tiny spots of lacing, maintains a weak cap.

Aroma is orange kool-aid, orange gatorade, fruity shampoo, smells VERY artificial.

Flavor is orange rind, almost like Flinstones vitamins or generic orange tums. Despite this, it feels like this is giving me heartburn. Blech.

Mouthfeel is oily, a little sticky, medium carbonation.

Pretty nasty overall, gonna go put a PBR in the freezer, this is going down the drain. Yeah this is at the end of its run, but still technically within the "best by" range. Undrinkable, artificial, nasty crap.

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Photo of slowbie
1.14/5  rDev -66.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

This beer actually looks pretty good. Not a very impressive head but a nice golden amber color and very clear.

Take a whiff and everything goes downhill. I have never had this beer before but was vaguely aware that there was something fuity about it. One whiff let's me know that this is not going to be a good thing. The description here on the website says it'sapricot, the bottle says 'natural flavor.' I never would have guessed either. The nose is dominated by a nasty fruit smell that smells very fake despite purportedly being real. I can smell a little malt sweetness behind that but the fruit smell overrides everything else.

The taste is the same as the smell, albeit with a hop bite up front that quickly disappears. I can also taste a bit more malt in the finish, but it's still pretty much gross fake fruit flavor all the way through.

Even the mouthfeel is not good, as the carbonation bite does not blend well with the fake fruit sweetness.

Overall, I might give this beer a better score if it warned me anywhere on the bottle that it was a fruit beer, but even then the score wouldn't be much better. This is bad.

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Photo of dragos
1.21/5  rDev -64.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Abolutly the worst beer I have ever had. The nose is like roses' parfume that becomes so overpowering when you drink it that I felt I was going to vomit after 3 sips. I am absolutly sorry that I wasted $10 on a six pack. Just horrible. The rest will be trashed. On the positive side it looks like a perfect pale ale in terms of SRM color. The mouthfeel not much here, can't feel the malt or hops. Very light and watery.

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Photo of muffins
1.22/5  rDev -64.1%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Honestly, this is my least favorite beer in the world.

I first had it at the brewery. They make a few perfectly good, delightful, unpretentious beers.

Since that first trial, this beer has been heavily marketed (at least in my market), showing up all over the place. "Maybe I missed something at the brewery, where I sampled a number of beers," I thought, otherwise, why would this beer be everywhere. I had just delighted in an Aprihop, which in description might seem similar. So I ordered a draft of it.

Wow -- worse than I thought. My girlfriends reactions are often more jarring and unaccepting than mine -- she took one sniff, recoiled in disgust and said "ugh it smells just like cat pee." She was right, sort of -- I debated if perhaps the pee in question was more likely from a coyote. Certainly nothing of hops in the aroma.

Took a sip. Wow worse than I remembered. Synthetic fruity flavor (even if it is natural) -- like an apricot jolly rancher in your mouth while you drink a beer you don't like.

Left it 90% un-consumed -- unheard of in my cardholding clean-plate-club world.

Perhaps most distressing is that this seems to be the worst beer this brewer makes. I sincerely believe that some brewers should not be allowed out of their state. There is no reason a beer like this must travel near 1000 miles. Certainly they have drains to pour it down in Vermont?

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Photo of HarrySTruman
1.26/5  rDev -62.9%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Pours gold with a nice head. Head retention was poor. Lacing was minimal. I generally don't like the bottle design and I think most of the sayings under the caps make it sound like a bush league craft beer.

Smells of apricot, almost like rotting fruit.

Taste is terrible. I can't even describe the after taste. I drank one of these things, thought it was bad, tried a 2nd one (I had 3 in a variety pack) and I had to drain pour it. The 3rd one suffered the same fate.

The mouth feel wasn't terrible. Properly carbonated, slightly dry finish, not bad in anyway.

It's like an apricot and rotten fruit beer. I found it to be absolutely terrible. One of of only two beers I've ever considered a drain pour. I'm not a big fan of any of the 4 beers I have tried from Magic Hat, but none of them were as bad as this one.

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Photo of Dave1999
1.36/5  rDev -60%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Poured a transparent fizzy yellow with a white head. Looked like an adjunct lager.

Didn't really have much smell, maybe a slight frutiness.

Not much taste a little sweetness.

Very carbonated like fizzy water. Thin mouth feel not much to it.

Overall this beer reminded me of a light lager was pretty awful.Worst beer I've had for a while.

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Photo of SitkaSteve
1.41/5  rDev -58.5%
look: 2.25 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2

I've heard bad things about this brewery, still wanted to try this for myself.
Well, here goes nothing.
This was poured into a pint glass.
The appearance was a hazy burnt purple to ruddy brown color with a quickly dissipating fizzy head with no lacing, well, okay then, be that way, I'm trying to be fair here, easy there Tonto, no need to just die out and show me entertainment.
The smell, well, there's some burnt sugars, raisins, and overly baked bread (wants to seem like its burnt?!?!).
The taste was semi-sweet with that burnt bready to overly cooked fruits. Weird aftertaste.
The mouthfeel was about light bodied. Sessionability, hmmm...weird flavor and aftertaste makes it not seem so much.
Overall, do I have to go on? Well, I gave it a fair shot and am now thinking the joke's on me and my wallet for paying for this swill. Oh damn, look at that, my toilet just barfed it up.

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Photo of MillySox
1.44/5  rDev -57.6%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Light golden color with a foamy white head. Very little aroma with nothing out of the ordinary detected. Smooth on the pallet followed by a swift kick in balls. There is something like grape hi-c all over this concoction that was mislabeled as beer. If they did use hops they were wasting them.

I'll be perfectly honest. My review maybe should be taken with a grain of salt because I only drank half of this beer. The barmaid actually approached and offered to pour me something different because she could see the agony on my face as I tried to swallow this crap.

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Photo of TwoLips
1.46/5  rDev -57.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Random pick from a mix your six. Poured into a tulip glass, and spit directly into a sink. To be fair, I am generally not a fan of fruit style beer, but I can appreciate when the style is done very well. This one, however, did not contain any fruit I know in nature. A faint pale ale with semi-sweet taste, too foamy, and distinctly cheap. The "Magic" is that they are still making this.

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Photo of bobhits
1.49/5  rDev -56.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Magic Hat's flagship beer....really?

This beer is relatively clear, well carbonated and leave some lacing. It smells like a sour with apricot notes dominate. It isn't sour...it has spices, some malt notes, and well more apricots. The flavors here don't mix, they don't work, and they are a pass. I really don't see why this beer is made and even fruit beer drinks I imagine would want different fruit flavors.

Just a complete pass from a brewer that isn't great to start with.

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Photo of TheSarge
1.51/5  rDev -55.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Thin white head with okay lacing, hazy orange/gold colored body.

Aroma is apricot, with a hint of wet dog. This kind of tastes like wet dog too. I've never licked a wet dog, but this has to be what it tastes like to do so.

Thin and crisp is about the best I can describe this brew.

All in all, it's a pretty bad beer; however, the best before date is November, and it is November. Thus, I may try this again down the road...

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Photo of tucson_brewson
1.52/5  rDev -55.3%
look: 2.25 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 2

L: Drank out of the bottle, but poured a little into a glass to see what it looks like. Light amber haze with little head that dissipates quickly.

S: Artificial fruit, light spice, Blue Moon but weaker

T: Artificial citrus, apricot, spice, then Robitussin after it sits for a while

M: Sticky, unpleasant, much like a past-prime Hefeweizen

O: Purchased because of word of mouth/Rochester on the label. Would drink for free if offered, otherwise avoiding

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Photo of aldujaparov
1.52/5  rDev -55.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

almost undrinkable, tastes like perfume. still have a couple in the fridge hoping to pawn off on unsuspecting guests. have to leave 250 characters!? what else to be said? only way I got past more than 1 was late at night didn't feel like going out for something better.

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Photo of harrymel
1.56/5  rDev -54.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Thanks to: jenray, SBALDWIN, and Beerindex helping beerthursdays to put some junk in my mouth in my first BIF. And also thanks to Urbancaver for helping me put somebody's junk inside me...

So, I pull this abortion out of the box, only to think, "really you guys, that bad?! Or that awesome?!" Then, I label it with name and person/people I should thank when I taste this junk.

Fast forward, I open the mini fridge, what's next? #9. It's my second beer of the night, but the number 9 was considered sacred for the Egyptians and Grecians, and is the hour many begin their workday - so I say fuck work, I'm having a sacred beer! Here we go.

A: Upon first impression, bottle looks psychedelic, notches indicate this would have been best before 10/2010. After removing the several revolutions of electrical tape from the cap, I pull off the protection of the hat. Standard sounds from something busting open with fluid. So, then I pour this hazy, toasted grain ale into a NB globe. A near single finger of soap sud head dissipates freely and resolves to a thin, broken sheet of the same. No lacing.

S: Smells like caramel malt. Yep, that's about it. Some sweet hues of fruit (over ripened apricots, maybe). But mostly just smells sweet. I think it's funny the label identifies this as an "almost pale ale" when it's a fruit beer from my understanding. Little bits of wood and cardboard breach my nostrils as well. Whatever, bad, not memorable for fucks sake.

T: So, I remember this one time when I was younger, and it was the first week of July. I had the chance to spend over $200 on fireworks at the Nez Perce Reservation (in case you don't know, this meant fire hazard level of fireworks). My poor, naive grandma hooked it up. I nearly burned down the forest that dusk, and then when I got home, my mom made me eat dry raw wheat toast (AKA bread). No butter, no nothing. My dirty fireworks hands were dusting the raw toast as I put it in me. So, take that, bottle it, sell it, expire it, send it to me, and that's what's in here and now my mouth/throat. Apricots elusive here.

M: The beer slides into the breadth of my oral cavity with ease and rolls around with medium body and low carbonation for the style (IMO). I'm no style expert, but this ain't quite right here.

D: I could always put the cap back on and send the rest to my BIF target. Who don't like sloppy seconds!?

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Photo of dertyd
1.59/5  rDev -53.2%
look: 5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.25

A-nice amber copper 1 finger head verry little laceing

S-almost no smell light mango

T-not good bitter sour fruit no beer taste

M-kinda sticky in mouth


Wow!!! Realy let down on this one was exspecting a lot more almost dosent taste like beer taste like a realy bitter wine/wine cooler.will not drink this one again!!!

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Photo of hungerfordj
1.66/5  rDev -51.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

I don't get the big deal. My friends are always so excited about #9, but this is one of my least favorite beers around. I'd rather have a coors light. The apricot flavor is boring and frankly just gross. Of all the fruits. The first sip was almost okay, and each one after was worse. I have a hard time finishing one of these.

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Photo of livewire78
1.69/5  rDev -50.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

My first Magic Hat.

Lemme just get to the point and say that this tastes like a Bud Light PLUS.

I could describe the color and the aroma and blah, blah, blah but it all comes down to the taste anyway.

It has the same stale wet clothing taste that Bud Light has but only amped up a little bit. I certainly don't think it's a masterpiece of brewing perfection but it would be a great gateway beer for your BMC buddies.

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Photo of Mitchster
1.69/5  rDev -50.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

$1.70 for a 12oz bottle, newly available in Michigan, here at Jack's. Pours out to a crystal clear orange amber, forming a modest white head which quickly recedes. No lacing. Carbonation is moderate. The aroma opens with apricots, followed by some dank wet cardboard. The mouthfeel has a crisp carbonation, but also has a ruddy oxidized twang. The taste is pretty bland, quite dry, little to no residual sugars, chemical bitterness, cardboard, wet newspaper.

Pretty dang awful. Horrible mouthfeel, horrible taste, horrible aroma. This one is going down the drain.

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Photo of lynchtae
1.7/5  rDev -50%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Was excited to try this IPA. It looked good from afar, but was far from good. First smell was reminiscent of Nyquil. The taste was somewhat fruit, a little hoppy and mostly menthol / Nyquil. After one taste I had to order another beer, quickly, to get rid of the taste in my mouth and the burning in my mind from this awful concoction. If you have ever considered drinking aftershave this is the beer for your, otherwise steer well clear of this brew.

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Photo of cvstrickland
1.71/5  rDev -49.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Got this in a "Pandora's Box" mixed pack. 12 oz bottle poured into a pint mug.

Nice fluffy head, pretty golden bronze color, light fruit smell, and then the drink...

Apricots. Apricots. Apricots. Sweet, sour, bitter. Hops undetectable above the jaw-clenching, eye-squinching,head-shaking sourness. Awful. Ugh.

Otherwise, it defintely seems to be beer,(if in no way resembling any version of a contemporary PA), but with a sour and bitter fruitiness that pervades, annoys, and overwhelms.

The originally enticing head cashed in early and diminished to virtual non-existence before I gave up trying to like this one; very little lacing to wash out of the glass. Won't drink the other two in the sampler, didn't finish this one, and opened a SN Celebration Ale to get the taste out of my mouth. Cheers!

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Photo of Phyl21ca
1.74/5  rDev -48.8%
look: 1 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Bottle: Poured orangey color ale with almost no head or carbonation. Aroma is quite weak but I can distinguish some sweet fruity flavour and some malt. Taste is almost indescribable, like a mix between some poorly grown apricot (lacking flavour and sweetness) and malt that doesn’t do any favour to this mix. Like all fruit beer, they can be a wonderful experience when correctly balanced or a complete disaster when things go wrong, such as this case was. Almost needs to wonder if this was a bad bottle.

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Photo of Duxx
1.74/5  rDev -48.8%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

I have never seen or heard of this beer before. It is not available in Kansas City or in stores west of there that I have seen. The carton claims this beer is "not quite a pale ale" yet somehow I thought I was buying something like a pale ale? Because I was expecting a different version of a pale ale, I was just about to really slam this beer in this review. I had no idea this was an apricot beer until I found its classification on BA. As a matter of fact I went back an read the entire packaging and did not see any hint this was a fruit beer. Looking at the orangish label it does kind of look like a psychodelic apricot. So, I'll rethink my review with a fruit beer in mind. Lets see...

A: Pours kind of a golden orange sunset color. A strange color for a beer but since it is supposed to be an apricot beer I rated it higher than I would have otherwise because thats what it looks like.

S: I didn't care for the smell. Kind of reminded me of the perm solution smell at the mall hair places. Other people say apricot smell but I didn't get that.

T: Not my cup of tea or beer for that matter. No appreciable hops just that perm solution taste.

M: Not too watery and medium in carbonation. Perfectly acceptable for a fruit beer.

D: Fairly light on the palate like a macro lager. If you liked this beer I'm sure you could drink several. As for me, I had trouble finshing just one. Several people noted that this was a cheap beer. Not in St. Louis, I paid almost $9 for a sixer. Ouch!

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Photo of Kanebanger
1.76/5  rDev -48.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

A: Yellow with a slight orange tint to it. Very little head that disappeard quickly.

S: Hint of apricot, seemed to be a little bit heavy on the malt side.

T: Apricot smell really misleading as there was very little apricot tast for some reason. Malt was a little overpowering. Flavors just did not seem to blend very well at all.

M: Extremely undercarbonated for the style. Felt as if it had been sitting out all night and then thrown into the fridge for an hour.

D: Couldn't drink more than one. Would prefer most BMCs over this.

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#9 from Magic Hat Brewing Company
3.4 out of 5 based on 5,660 ratings.
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