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Friday, October 14, 2011

Magic Hat’s Night of the Living Dead variety pack dissected.

Welcome back to another installment of “Kill My Liver, Please!” Today’s post is about Magic Hat’s frighteningly festive variety pack—Night of the Living Dead. What’s in the box? Glad you asked… #9, Hex, H.I.P.A., and Humble Patience. And all but 1 are pretty damn good.

#9 Not Quite Pale Ale is easily the most accessible beer in the box and is basically Magic Hat’s flagship beer. It’s a complex tasting beer with an unusual aftertaste. It has a dry taste and a dark, almost cloudy color. It’s not bitter, but if you’re mixing and matching drinks out of the box you might think it is. In some ways it reminds of an English ale more so than a pale ale, but who cares? It’s a good beer just drink it.

Hex (Oktoberfest) is by close decision my favorite beer in the box. I have a sweet tooth and this beer has a sweet caramel-ly taste with touches of cinnamon and nutmeg. It doesn’t scream pumpkin, but it’s certainly suited for fall. The aftertaste, and smell are a touch smoky and it has a nice deep cherry color, which really sets it apart from many of the beers I’ve been drinking lately.

Humble Patience is in the box and would be my number two. It’s a super-smooth tasting Irish Red Ale with a nice dark red/brown color and a contrasting white head. It has a tiny touch of sweet flavor to it. A little malty, a little coffee hint maybe. Certainly a good beer and certainly a good Irish Red.

Lastly, H.I.P.A., and I have to say I don’t like it. I’ve had it before and I’m sure I’ll have it again, but after close examination it’s just not good. It’s really bitter and leaves a bad taste in my mouth and it only seems to get worse as the bottle gets closer to empty. It has a good color, good smell, and plenty of hops, which leaves me wondering what the hell went wrong here. I love a hoppy beer, but Magic Hat just can’t seem to make a good one. I’ll take Victory’s Hop Wollop anytime.

All in all it’s a good pack. If you can get the beers in your area as 6 packs you might be better off doing it that way just to avoid the H.I.P.A. it sours the batch. Thankfully the other three make up for it. And if you drink like I do just drink all the others first so you can’t taste how bad H.I.P.A. is.

Next up: Shock Top Pumpkin Wheat and Leinenkugel Oktoberfest!

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