Elder Betty | Magic Hat Brewing Company

171 Reviews
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Elder BettyElder Betty

Brewed by:
Magic Hat Brewing Company
Vermont, United States

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
Elder Betty is a weiss-style ale with a bready malt flavor balanced by a touch of hops and complimented by the tart berry flavors of elderberry.

13 IBU

Added by Jason on 03-28-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 171 | Ratings: 1,147
Photo of FreshHawk
3.62/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Straw color with a healthy, smooth, white head. Very good retention leaving a nice layer of lace.

S - Bready malt along with some banana. Hints of berry (blueberry and blackberry), not overly aggressive or artificial aroma. Hints of lemon. I go back and forth from enjoying it as a summer beer and not being all that into it. Somewhat reminiscent of a blueberry/lemon muffin.

T - Slightly more tart than the nose suggested (lemon and some berry tartness). Berry flavor is definitely present, it's not artificial but also not bursting with a fresh berry taste or a jam flavor. Solid bready malt flavor provides a good backbone but not too much sweetness.

M - Light to medium body. Pretty carbonated. Crisp with a slightly dry finish.

D - Pretty easy drinking beer. I kept going back and forth from really enjoying this beer to being ambivalent. It hits the marks for an easy summer drinker though.

Notes: Nice berry flavor that isn't artificial tasting. Not that is like some sours with tons of fruit flavor but it does the trick. Good balance with tartness. I kept being reminded of blueberry lemon muffins or a berry pie of some kind, but not in a "this is really sweet way." Good summer beer but not great.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%

The CANQuest ™ leads to unscrupulousness at times and last night was one of them. Several of us had just been to a really rockin' show and we decided to hit up the newly renovated Horse Inn a few blocks away. Their new claim to fame under new ownership is having an unbeatable CAN selection. When you say that to me, I become deeply dubious, so I was anxious to see just what they had to offer, not expecting to find anything new. Lo and behold! I did not know that Magic Hat was CANning this beer, but I am not a huge fan of field reviews, either. Here in PA, beer may be purchased for takeaway at a bar, but not as a single. I asked anyway and Score-O! I know, I am going straight to Hell for all of this.

From the CAN: "A Golden Haze for Summer's Daze".

The Crack! showed that even Magic Hat is not holding back when it comes to brimful CANs. Knowing now why many of them do it, I am curious as to why they all do not fill their CANs this way. I got in an inverted Glug and then sat back to watch as the pseudo-cascade took place. The three fingers of dense, rocky, yellowish-white head was like meringue atop a pie! I kid you not, that was some of the thickest, densest head that I have enCANtered in a long time. It took forever to settle, also. Color was a cloudy (not hazy, sorry) Golden-Amber (SRM = > 5, < 7). Nose smelled like berries, but I would have guessed blueberries or the like because I just do not have much experience with elderberries. Lacing began to appear as the head fell. Mouthfeel was soft and medium. I liked the way the tartness of the wheat and the sweetness of the berries interacted to create a nice balance. I really felt like I was drinking liquid blueberry pie. Finish was semi-dry since the berries were not bringing that much sweetness to it. Once again, a good Summer beer.

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Photo of Schmidts
3/5  rDev -10.4%

Pours yellow Orange not much head. Smells of Berries and Lemon. Only a Little lacing. Not much exciting about this beer it is refreshing but does not go enough on any point. I was very disappointed.

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Photo of Cavanaghty
3.25/5  rDev -3%

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Golden color with a thin white head and a lot of carbonation. No lacing on the glass.

Smell: Citrus/hops with berry notes.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Smooth light bodied. Taste of hops with fruity citrus and berries and a tart aftertaste.

Overall: Ok brew. Glad I tried it.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%

Although they're certainly not the first to do so, you've got to give Magic Hat at least a little bit of credit for originality in producing "Elder Betty", an elderberry weiss. The berry flavor comes through quite clearly, and adds an interesting secondary flavor that comes out in the lingering finish. The base beer is well-made, although basic, but that's clearly so as not to interfere with the berry flavor; and along those lines the bitterness is kept in check, and there are no hop flavors to speak of. It's interesting and refreshing, although I'm not sure you'd really want to have two of these in a row.

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Photo of JohnLasher92
3.86/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a light shade of amber. Very mild foam. This beer is well carbonated and bubbles like a champagne. I don't typically like fruit beers and didn't think I would like this one because Elder Berry is usually too tart for me. It was the perfect amount of tartness to make this beer taste like an ale with a cider-like touch to it. I would definitely enjoy a session with a six pack of this sometime, preferably on the beach.

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Photo of scotorum
3.65/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from the 12 oz. bottle into a Lawson's tulip.

a: Clear dark gold with a half finger thick head which receded to thin surface foam and spotty lacing.'

s: Mild fruit cup.

t: Mild berry flavor over a light cracker malt base.

m: Light to medium, good body.

o: A refreshing summer brew with just enough subtle dark berry flavor while still letting you know it's beer.

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Photo of jbraico
2.95/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

At first when I smelt this beer I thought I was going to enjoy it. I liked the blueberry smell it gave off personally, but with every sip the taste kind of went south. This is more of a summer outdoor beer (beach, picnic,etc...). Not the worst thing I have

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Photo of HamdenHector
3.27/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A: cloudy; copper colored; 1 finger pillowy white head that receded slowly; moderate lacing;

S: wheat, yeast, strawberries;

T: wheat, yeast; ripe blueberries; a bit of tartness from mid-palate to finish;

M: light bodied; moderate carbonation;

O: refreshing and easy to drink;

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Photo of wsmith1625
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bought a 6 pack and poured into a pint glass. Hazy golden color with barely a 1 finger head. Smell was definitely fruity, I'm guessing of elder berries. Taste was crisp and fruity, but not sweet or syrupy. Very refreshing with a nice mouthfeel and pleasant aftertaste. Definitely a refreshing summer brew. I will definitely try this a few more times this summer.

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Photo of JamieDuncan
3.8/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Picked up a mixed six from Magic Hat, had not actually had any of their beers but had not heard good things. Pretty good looking beer, reasonably hazy , decent head that grabbed the glass. Not much to the nose but a decent taste. No idea what an elderberry even is but decent tasting beer. Nothing great but a good beer that is worth enjoying.

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Photo of nicholas2121
4.08/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Elder Betty brewed by Magic Hat Brewing Company. This brew pours out a cloudy amber color with a small white head. Going to say this brew is unfiltered. Elder Betty has an ABV of 5.5%. The smell is rich with spices and some grains and fruit. The taste is great smooth and rich with spices and berries. Elder Betty goes down smooth with no bad aftertaste. There is nothing bad to say about this brew. This brew starts off smooth with a clean finish. I like how this brew has more flavor than most brews on the market. This brew was more than what I was expecting. I would buy this Elder Betty again I'm giving this brew a 4.50 out of 5.

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Photo of Caveworm
3.71/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Elder Betty from Magic Hat Brewing Company, an elderberry infused wheat brew made for summer. Poured from the bottle into a glass, ol' Betty's got a very thick and creamy head for a wheat brew. The thickest I've seen in my experiences of this style of brew. Lacing is very good. You've got your typical unfiltered haze in the body, a medium-light amber.

Smells like the elderberry mentioned on the label, along with some of the classic wheat bier attributes like banana and clove making brief cameos. No lingering anything.


Overall a nicely earned 3.5 for Elder Betty, quite a fitting selection for this brewer's summer sampler pack. This is probably the most crisp wheat style of beer, be it hefewiezen, witbier, or what have you, that I've ever consumed in recent memory! I highly recommend this for a thirst quencher for the dog days of summer. Especially here in humid-ass Ohio hahaha. I shall CERTAINLY acquire this brew again from my local craft retailer!!

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Photo of allengarvin
2.82/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

IT's a gold beer, a little hazy, with a very small head. The nose... well, it's kinda nice... tart, rather than merely sweet, like I expect in a typical gimmick beer like this Unfortunately, the flavor is in the ugh-range, way too sweet, syrupy, and unpleasant. Actually, I can't finish this. Bleagh.

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Photo of Lavonnq
3.68/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pretty good overall. I enjoyed the taste and the overall characteristics of this brew. I liked the elder berry taste and other hints of berries. I was also picking up a hint of banana. I wish it was more bread tasting. Overall it was decent beer. I'd say it's worth a try.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.13/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

A: Pale orange, fair clarity with a strong uprising of carbonation. Chalky white, thin, frothy head that was moderately retaining. Some speckled lace but pretty much average in appearence.

S: Cold blueberries, sweet malt, fresh bread with a touch of yeastiness of banana.

T: Flavor was berries, muffin, and sweet malt with some fresh greenery. Light banana, a bit of soda bread on the finish.

M: Spritzy carbonation, syrupy texture with mid-range depth that seems a bit light at first but thickens up on longer holds.

O: Overall an okay, ordinary beer, that pretty much sums up most of magic hats offerings. Beyond that not much else to say, a don't bother, mundane, unexciting tick of a beer.

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Photo of flybass
2.13/5  rDev -36.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.75

Disgusting taste - I think this beer would be acceptable if the price could be lowered by a couple of dollars. However, contextualizing this beer with others in the price range, this is the usual low quality product from magic hat. I expect this to not even be the best beer at your local gas station.

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Photo of Antikythera
3.61/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

a: heavy and golden.

s: berries and wheat. I don't know what elderberries taste or smell like, so all these elderberry drinks just strike me as generic berry.

t: a nice flavourful wheat beer with a very slight bit of tartness from the berry. Nothing fancy but nothing objectionable either, very easy drinking.

m: surprisingly heavy for a wheat beer. Nice and chewy.

o: this could be a regular summer drink for me. Not bad at all.

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Photo of RCLOHR267
4.38/5  rDev +30.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Magic Hat is becoming my favorite brewery!!! It's different, nothing else like it. You can definitely taste the elderberry, and it works. Took me a while to find this, but actually found it at a Kroger and Only one particular Kroger here In Indianapolis. And that was after I checked about 15 places. We'll worth finding it!!

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Photo of Owl-Head
4.14/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Fruity and flavorful as is to be expected by MagicHat. The scent and the flavor are nearly the same, reminiscent of blackberries but not in the way you would think of them traditionally. They combine a flavor and an aroma into a bottle that is subtly sweet, and delicately smooth enough to be a classy fruit beer, at the same time staying true to ithe maker.

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Photo of 312HopBomb
3.59/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear straw color with small head that fades quickly. No lacing at all.

Smell: Subtle berry and light wheat

Taste has the same. A sour tart berry flavor (never tried Elderberries). Light wheat and tangy finish. Not much hop. Very light subtle flavors.

Mouthfeel is thin and crisp. Refreshing and the tart note is very pleasant. Light carbonation.

This beer grew on me as it warmed up but I like fruit beer more than the average person I think. I like this one from Magic Hat.

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Photo of BeerWithMike
3.85/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled back on 11/23/13. Chilled down bottle to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler. Poured into a pilsner glass.

Pours a pretty reddish golden yellow in color. Not much of a head is seen and some very little spotty lacing when sipped. The aroma is of a berry mix with some grain. Very nice. The taste was about the same with some wheat after taste. Very nice despite the above average carbonation and not too sweet as you might think. No bitter after taste. A good different type of brew.

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Photo of SaCkErZ9
3.44/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I saw a mixed twelve pack on sale at Total Wine for $6.99 so I thought "why the hell not". I don't mind taking some chances on beer every now and then, especially when the cost affords me the opportunity.

Doesn't look very traditional. Rather dark for the style with a smallish head. Not too impressive. A slight bit of haziness but certainly more clarified than a traditional hefe. Kind of a bronze color.

I enjoyed the aroma for what it was: a hefe beer with fruit flavors or additions. I have never had elderberry, but it smells a lot like blueberries. Slightly manufactured aroma, but still, not bad. Slight spiciness and coriander, but it seems as though the elderberry steals the show here.

Flavor wasn't bad either. Again, mostly elderberry, but there is a nice spiciness with some clove and coriander. Quite refreshing, dry, finishes clean.

I like this better than the #9 that was in the box, but we will see about the rest. Not bad for a hot summer day.

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Photo of AtrumAnimus
4.71/5  rDev +40.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This one pours a beautiful cloudy tannish-blonde color with a thick and creamy head that lasts a very long time. The head settles slowly leaving the faintest tracing of lace down the glass that also shrinks with the head.

The nose is peppered fruit and sweet malt with notes of honey, bread, apples and spice.
The beer is a nicely bodied decent mouth feel beer that is not too thick but has a definite presence on the palate.

The flavors are excellent; the malt is there balanced between fruit and dry, and perfectly blended with the hops. Strong notes of peppery bread with apples that match the nose well along with caramel, sweet malts and nicely bittering hop finish that is not clinging to the tongue. I can swear I get faint hints of cardamom and flowery notes in there as well, extremely subtle, but definitely there.

Overall I really like this beer. The only down side is it is extremely drinkable and I find that my glass empty’s way to fast.

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Photo of BethanyB
3.46/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: A clear, very pale gold, with a fizzy white sliver of a head that disappears like a magic act.

Smell: The "elderberry" aroma, which comes off as aid of blueberries and blackberries, overpowers. A bit of pale malt and some spicy hops seep through.

Taste: Again, the berries are the lead act, with pale malt as a basic base. Just a touch of spicy hop flavor lends some balance. The fruit brings with it a slight lactic sourness. Refreshing and easy to drink, with a clean aftertaste. Nice enough, but lacking in complexity or real ingenuity. Clean aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medi-light, with high carbonation. Definitely a crisp, refreshing, summertime feel. The finish is slightly dry, I part to the high carbonation.

Overall: Has a lot of commercial appeal, with plenty of flavor, but not too much "beery beer" taste. I would NOT classify this ad a hefeweizen, but rather a specialty ale. Nothing about this beer says "hefeweizen" to me.

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Elder Betty from Magic Hat Brewing Company
3.35 out of 5 based on 1,147 ratings.
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