Prostman (1077) - Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 9, 2003
This is just an outstanding example of an IPA...I am becoming very fond of this style and this beer is part of the reason why. TheBeerLover (1027) - DC Metro Area, USA - JAN 25, 2006
I have had the good fortune of visiting Magic Hat Brewing, of South Burlington, VT. This is an outstanding Ringwood brewery, well worth the trip, take the tour, and of course sample at the tap room. What is ringwood you ask? Ringwood is a very distinctive ale yeast strain that has its origins in England. Ringwood yeast has a very "earthy" aroma and produces a by product called diacetal. Diacetal gives the beer a "buttery" flavor and mouth feel, some compare it to butter scotch, or pop corn butter. Some beer lovers can’t detect this. Others can and find it off putting. Then there are beer lovers, like me, who can detect it, and love it. A brewer really has to work with this strain, diacetal is appropriate in British ales, but not when the levels become too high. I enjoy a high level of diacetal, but I enjoy it more so when it is restrained, and the amount present is appropriate. With the proper amount, it gives a beer another dimension and makes it even better in my opinion.
Most breweries that use this strain brew mainly British beer styles and use a Peter Austin designed brewing system. Magic Hat does use the ringwood strain, but doesn’t use a Peter Austin system. Ringwood is a very vibrant strain and open fermenters must be used when brewing this beer. I have a lot of experience with ringwood beers. I have had examples from about 20 brewery/brewpubs, in New England, the Mid-Atlantic, the Midwest, and even the West Coast. Of the 20 I have personally visited 15.
Blind Faith is an IPA by style and it is a very good one. This beer pours to a deep golden color with a nice white head, and a good carbonation. The nose on this beer is fantastic. Very fragrant hop aromatics of pine, and citrus marry with the ringwood earthiness. The palate is a firm malt backbone of pale malts, and a touch of caramel. Crisp and biscuit like, slightly sweet, and with some nice butteriness from the ringwood as well. This beer finishes with a long, dry, citric, hop bitter bite, and more mushroom like earthiness. This is a fantastic ringwood IPA. Ringwood really adds another dimension to this beer. This beer is a hoppy IPA, and hop presence is a major player in this beer, but with the addition of ringwood it becomes even better. This beer is the perfect match for a good steak and a baked potato. It also works well with spicy foods, I would match this with Mexican, or Thai dishes.
Wilecat (66) - Charlotte, North Carolina, USA - AUG 26, 2002
Good beer to drink while watching bangbus to bangbus........................ morebier4me (140) - New York, USA - JAN 6, 2003
I sleeper of an IPA............................................... bbp182 (255) - Levittown, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 11, 2007
This is a nice take on an IPA. Its malty going down, but hops are noticeable. The aroma is great, appearance, well its very nice!, overall, I like this beer alot.
Gusler (2653) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - DEC 5, 2000
I think my favorite of all Magic hat’s beers, Great nose, malt with a bit of the hop flowers hiding underneath. The finish is a big hop spicy bite that is quite interesting. Above average like ability. Shadallion (534) - Sacramento, California, USA - JUN 3, 2001
Its just amazing how much variety there is within the IPA style. There are your insanely bitter, crips IPAs (Speakeasy Big Daddy), your full-bodied, big-flavored IPAs (Lagunitas, Celebration Ale, Hop Devil) and then this kind of IPA: mellow, perfectly balanced, and sweet. Orange-flavored malt dominate this brew to start, but by the finish all you can think about is the extremely bitter hop finish. You can also tell this beer is dry-hoppedfrom the spectacular aroma. I would call this more of a buffed-up ESB than an IPA, personally. Truly fantastic, folks. raymow (1675) - Bensalem, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 11, 2003
Almost exactly what an IPA should taste like - it just needed a bit more hoppiness. Other than that - excellent! ben1843 (6) - Florida, USA - FEB 26, 2006 does not count
This beer is awesome. I enjoy all of magic hats beers, but this one inparticular is good. smcolw (617) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - MAY 9, 2009
Excellent creamy and lasting head that leaves sticky lace. Dark golden or light amber in color; not quite clear. Impressive continual stream of micro-bubbles to the surface.
Awesome aromas of fresh hops (definitely a dry-hopped beer). Not dominating like some IPA’s, there are also crisp malt notes. The blend is just about perfect. This is one inviting beer!
Strong bitter flavors throughout the tasting profile. The malt sneaks in mid-sip, but is more the accompanist rather than the hop soloist. Solid flavor with wonderful subtle changes prevalent from sip to swallow. The aftertaste is pure dry hop that lingers a long time. Very full bodied for the style. I envision that this would float to the top of any IPA session series.