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Tuesday, May 17th 2011

Number 9
(Magic Hat Brewing Company)

Brand new to cans this month, and a first for the brewery, is Magic Hat's popular #9. This apricot ale has many friends and foes and has certainly played the role of gateway craft beer for more than a few of each. With a beer as ubiquitous as #9 now available in cans there is even more proof that breweries, both big and small, are seeing the benefits. Cheers!


From the Magic Hat site:

"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."

Here we go...


Pour - golden, amber in appearance with a bubbly, soda-like head that fizzes away rather quickly leaving a film on top. 


Aroma - apricot essence, orange peel and some slight malt aromas but that is about it. Not a whole lot sneaks by that sweet apricot smell.


Taste - sweet and tangy with a more than subtle, but less than intense, flavor of apricots. No real hop presence in this beer, not like Dogfish Head's Aprihop, as this is more of a standard ale with the defining characteristic being the apricot. Finishes rather light on the tongue with only a bit of the sweetness carrying over to the next sip. 


Overall - #9 tastes much better, in my opinion, from a can. The apricot flavor, which is an issue for some folks, is not overly syrupy or cloying and actually tastes like apricot. There is also a freshness in this beer that I've rarely tasted before, even on tap. Sure, its a bit sweet and it's not for everyone but it certainly goes down easy when it's nice and cold on a hot day and there are definitely moments when that's all you really want.


Would I buy more of it? - you know I might. A 12-pack of this would go over well at a barbecue as its a pretty approachable beer for most folks. I also think it goes extremely well with yardwork. I drank one of these straight from the can while mowing and it worked wonders.


Note - Magic Hat's #9 turned 16 years old earlier this month. It was first bottled back in 1995 and has been the brewery's flagship beer ever since. Not many breweries have done the marketing side of things as well as Magic Hat. It takes a lot of skill to make an apricot-flavored ale your number one selling beer year-after-year! I think these cans will serve Magic Hat well.


Can Scale:
(See All Rated)
Style: Fruit/Vegetable Ale
Brewery: Magic Hat Brewing Company
South Burlington, Vermont  
United States  
Container: 12 oz. can
Malts: Pale and Crystal
Hops: Cascade and Apollo
ABV: 5.1%
IBUs: 20
Date: May 17th, 2011

Posted by Russ

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Labels: Fruit Beers