Carla Jean Lauter

The Beer Babe

Hats, Hops and Paws? Oh my.

There is something about the change of seasons that gets me going, makes my heart light up. So, in honor of that I’m reviewing three apricot brews for you.

The first is the classic – a Magic Hat #9
Magic Hat makes some classy stuff, and if you’ve got it in a bottle, like me, you get to read their witty little sayings under neath the caps. This one said : Wine me, Dine me, #9 me. A nice light beer with a very distinct sweet and apricoty smell. It is pale and yellow but has a lot of flavor. It isn’t overwhelmingly sweet, but definitely has an apricot finish and scent through all of it. This is a classic in the bars near me, but you have to watch what you pair it with. It is light and great for a hot day, and doesn’t fill you up or weigh you down. Apricot can be a finicky flavor, and its nice to have something that complements it. I had one today with a spinach-avacado salad with poppyseed dressing and it was fabulous. I cheated a little, though, because the bottle of poppyseed dressing says it would taste great with apricots. Hehe.

Number two is a little more local – Sea Dog Brewing Company’s Apricot Wheat Beer
This beer pours darker than the Magic Hat, and has an apricot smell that’s a little bit darker or more complicated somehow. It isn’t light and breezy but smells a bit more… mature? On tasting the sweetness that I expected was trumped a little by almost a savory end of the apricots and wheat interacting. It’s a bit drier too, and not quite as refreshing. But I think that this one would go over better with a meal. It’s also a summer beer but hits a little heavier, has a little bit more complexity of flavor. This one is a have-it-with-dinner apricot beer, instead of a have-it-outside in summer beer. I like it, it still conveys that kind of summery taste without being overly sweet.

And onto number three – Dogfish Head’s Aprihop
Now, Dogfish Head’s brewing usually puts into mind the most extreme version of whatever beer style they take on. But, like the wheat beer, this is a different style brewed with apricot flavors. The smell is far less apricot-like than its previous fruity brethren, though it is there and you can pick it out if you’re aware or expecting it. The taste is hoppy and sweet, sharp and fades fast. But it’s also the least sweet of the three, but has a stronger flavor overall. As part of the aftertaste there’s a little bit of metallic taste that hangs on, but as I got down a little further in the glass that disappeared. This one is tricky too, and a bit stronger than last year’s version if I remember. The Dogfish head crew have I think, missed the mark a little on letting the apricot have center stage, but haven’t missed in terms of making this beer such an enjoyable drink.

So, that about wraps it up for these spring apricot dreams. If anyone knows of more apricot brews that are out there, send me a review or your two cents. Just thought it would be fun to do a field survey of springy drinks on this beautiful spring day.

P.S. I have now added the word “hoppy” into my spell check, because I have grown weary of it reminding me that it isn’t really a world.

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1 Comment

  1. Jacob

    The #9 actually works really well with fried chicken.
    But unfortunately I have to be sparing with drinking my magic hat. We don’t get it out here in chicago, so I pick it up when I got out to visit my brother who is in college at Middlebury in Vermont and try to bring back a case in my checked luggage without breaking any of the bottles. I brought back the summer variety pack a few weeks ago and am sadly almost finished.

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