Friday, March 14, 2014

Magic Hat Dream Machine

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (1067) - Albany, New York, USA - MAR 14, 2014
I poured a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass. It appears to have been bottled on 2/13/14.

Appearance: Honey/amber hue. Mostly clear body with plenty of consistent carbonation visible. Pours to a large, white, frothy head which retains and laces extremely well.

Smell: Zesty aroma of an herb garden and spice rack seasonings.

Taste: Magic Hat Dream Machine is an interesting beer to say the least. It appears to be an attempt to capitalize on two trends happening in the craft beer movement right now: the "New England-style" IPA, as well as the "India Pale Lager" brewing style. I can’t believe it, but somehow this brewery managed to pull off pull simultaneously. I’m not saying it’s God’s gift to beer, but for what it is it’s a job well done.

Since this is a Vermont-brewed, hop-forward brew, it’s no surprise that there’s a strong herbal component to this brew. Other hoppy beers from the New England area also seem to have this character, too. Basil, parsley, rosemary, plus some garlic and onion powder. The malt is down-played, but strong enough to balance out the hops (which are more flavorful than they are bitter). This could almost be mistaken for an spice/herb/vegetable beer, but as far as I can tell it contains none of those finings. This would be an ideal accompaniment with plenty of flavorful meals.

Drinkability: Though technically a lager, Magic Hat Dream Machine drinks like an ale in terms of both flavor and mouthfeel. The body is perfectly medium, with a distinctly crisp mouthfeel that’s never fizzy and always smooth. For only 5.7% ABV it’s got quite a lot of flavor and doesn’t feel nearly as heavy as that strength might indicate. Not what I would consider sessionable, but it does have a bit of a refreshing quality and leaves a fairly clean, pleasant aftertaste. 
Grade: 8/10

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