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The Magician | Short's Brewing Company

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The MagicianThe Magician
402 Ratings
The MagicianThe Magician

Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Irish Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
The Magician is a lustrous, dark-red, London style Red Ale with a rich grain bill. The grain combination lends complex notes of toasted caramel, raisins, chocolate, and roasted toffee. Very light hop additions let the true malt characters show throughout this beer.

20 IBU

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 402 |  Reviews: 170
Reviews by Avagadro:
Photo of Avagadro
1.94/5  rDev -44.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

A: Pours ruby red with a touch of cream colored head and a slight haze. I would have liked to see a less-hazy product, as well as a bit more of a head.

S: There is something off here immediately. Sweet caramel melds with diacetyl and a citrusy twang.

T: The same three contestants are present in the taste, battling over the terrirory. The result is a war-torn pallete that is less-than pleased.

M: Full bodied and slightly carbonated.

D: If it weren't for all of the other reviews posting similar experiences, I would swear that this is a bad batch. Way too much diacetyl, and there is also the weird twang. I don't know what it is, but it has no place being there. Their goal was to let the malts take the stage, but they failed.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of CMUbrew
3.48/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: A very dark red-brown color. A head forms and then disappears almost as quickly.

S: Nose is predominately raisin and fig dark fruitiness. A tiny bit of chocolate is buried in there also.

T: There's a lot going on here. Tea flavors appear on the front end, moving into bready and biscuity sweet malts. Dark fruit is in the background and the trace chocolate notes appear again. Sweet overall.

M: Light body, quite under-carbonated. Slightly dry finish.

O: A quality beer that would be much better with some bubbles. Underrated beer overall in my opinion.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.25/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a clear amber, topped with a ½ finger of foamy off-white head. Retention looks more like that of the thin and fizzy wisps variety, leaving back a gentle cascade of light lacing which slowly recedes down the sides. The aroma smells of toasted bread, caramel, and a little bit of cocoa powder. I'm getting some overripe fruit character here as well, along with some herbal dankness.

The taste is rich with buttery toasted bread and some sweeter light toffee notes. There is a good bit of dark fruit here, which mixes with the earthy textures of the hop bitterness that is present to impart a gritty feeling tartness that lingers hard into the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a sharp creaminess that keeps this smooth. This is actually pretty easy feeling overall, which really helps the deep twang of the flavor profile.

I could swear at first that the sharp souring/tart tang of this was an infection but as this warmed; it became more readily apparent that this was actually part of the flavor profile. It was definitely interesting but I don't see myself wanting to get into another bottle of this anytime soon.

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Photo of Rons35
2.5/5  rDev -28%

Photo of papat444
2.61/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Thanks to grub for this one.

Poured from a 12oz. bottle, bottled 03-11-10.

Appearance: A strong, one finger head with a light brown/ruby red body.

Smell: Malty, fruit, a little sweet but it's all very faint.

Taste: Ummm, more tartness. Actually, it's a bit more balanced and there is more flavor depth here with the overriding fruit being cherries. It's not offensive but it's not really what i wanted, especially after the first Short's i had.

Mouthfeel: Next to no carbonation though the body is fuller than the first Short's.

Drinkability: Half a glass was enough for me.

Overall: The flavor profile is way too accentuated towards tart fruits which is not what i look for in a red ale. Better than the Bellaire but not my cup of tea.

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Photo of thatoneguymike
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of t0rin0
3/5  rDev -13.5%

Photo of Runninmixz
3.25/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of Monkeyknife
3.53/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle a clear dark amber with two fingers of beige head.

Aroma of sweet caramel malts, tropical fruit and raisins.

Tastes of sour dark cherries, rich caramel malts, tropical fruit and herbal notes. Finishes clean.

Light-to-medium bodied and dry with a light carbonation.

A very drinkable and enjoyable Irish Red from Short's.

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Photo of buddha5050
3.25/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of klikger
3.1/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz pour served in the classic Patuto Piraat tulip

A - Dark brown with hints of red, no head, not much lacing

S - Caramel

T - A malt profile somewhat similar to a scotch ale --> sour malts & lemon peel --> peat moss adds an interesting touch to a complex, not too sweet finish

M - Medium to heavy, a bit undercarbonated

D - Not too drinkable for me

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Photo of Zonian1
3/5  rDev -13.5%

Photo of drxandy
3.88/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ crunchy's in east lansing, mi on 5/25/08, served in a 25oz mug. Deep reddish brown, nice small white head, medium carbonation

smells of sweet malts, bitterness, hints of cherry and chocolate

tastes crisp, appley, roasty malts, almost like a porter of sorts mixed with cider, nice balance, hops play nicely in background

mouthfeel is creamy, slightly bitter, good texture and easy to drink.

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Photo of mrn1ceguy
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of PittBeerGirl
2.5/5  rDev -28%

Photo of avschmitt
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of johnnnniee
2.78/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown with cloudy glowing reddish highlights when put to light. Smallish off white head dissipates quickly. Smells of caramel, chocolate, sulfur, tart cherries, misc dark fruits. A rather odd smattering of aromas waft from my glass. Thankfully the raw sewage aroma that I thought I smelled after I first poured subsided. Taste is tart and fruity with a creamy finish. Mostly tart cherry maybe some plums mixed with some caramel or toffee malt flavors. Thinnish body, light level of carbonation. I don't know what I have here. It's listed as an Irish Red Ale, but tastes like a fruit beer. I would say its infected, but there is very little carbonation. It tastes ok if a little tart so how the hell do I rate this? Irish red this is not!

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Photo of rolandboy
3.25/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of carlborch
3.76/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The pour is a dense reddish-brown. A small (1/2 inch) collar of foam forms. The head is tan colored. The nose is delightful and suggests sour cherries and hops. The initial palate also suggests cherries, the middle is light roast and caramel with a finish that reminds me of dried dates with a hint of figs and some decent sour notes. The body is light-medium-light and the carbonation is low. The alcohol is not evident. Delicate Belgian lace forms. It is very smooth, bright, and dry. Somewhat moreish. I have put this thirst quencher on the repeat purchase list. Easy to quaff and not cerebral.

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Photo of leprechaunandfatman
3.98/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of semibaked
2.55/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured into a Pint Glass

A - Pours a dark brown with reddish highlights and produces a small amount of head and no much lacing.

S - Really strong smell of malts, caramel, butter and dirt. Weird combo I know, there is certainly no hops around these parts.

T - I get the sweetness which is good but then that dirt/soil flavor kicks in (I know you say how does he know what dirt tastes like but hey that's the impression I get from this), just unpleasant.

M - Light to Medium bodied, some oily notes and medium carbonation.

D - REALLY DISSAPOINTED with this, I love Short's beers overall but this is by far my least favorite, I am bummed I have 4 more bottles of it. Oh well.

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Photo of SportsandJorts
3.7/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: dark, brownish red. near opaque. almost nonexistent tannish head. leaves a slight lacing on the sides.

Smell: bready, caramel malts, some fruits

Taste: strong bread and caramel malts upfront, slight notes of fruit. backside is taken over by bitter chocolate. I am bigger fan of it up until the chocolate

Mouthfeel: pretty light and smooth, slight lingering chocolate bitterness.

Overall: This is a decent one. not overwhelmed by it. I think it would improve with out the chocolate taste at the end.

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Photo of mltobin
3.53/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a pack of this while passing through Mass.

Appearance is red-brown with about one finger of head. Its` smell has cherries, toffee and bread...& tart. Upon sipping, I think that this is different than other Irish Reds that I have consumed in the past. The malts are there that I would expect, but spices such as pepper are more pronounced and also a sour aspect that really sets it apart. I was not expecting that in this style. MF is light-med, good carbonation. For me, this was pretty good, partly because it is so different from most other Irish reds.

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Photo of 6thstreetbrewpub
3.71/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of GRPunk
3.85/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle (stamped 03/05/10) poured into a mug.

A- 1/2 finger, tan head drops fairly quickly to a nice lace that left decent sticky spots. Dark brown/red body with moderate carbonation.

S- It's quite sweet. I picked up caramel intitially, with some subtle fruit (cherry?). A little later there was a bit of a roasty quality.

T- Fruit is more present in the flavor. Definitely a tart cherry presence. There were subtle chocolate notes. Clean finish.

M- It was pretty clean. Moderate carbonation and viscosity. Dry finish.

D- It's a pretty easy drinker. Intruiging, yet subtle. It had an interesting combination of flavors that really worked together. I wasn't "wowed" at first, but something makes me want to try it again.

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The Magician from Short's Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.47 out of 5 with 402 ratings