Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...

Warlock - Southern Tier Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

319 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 319
Hads: 2,632
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 12.94%
Wants: 115
Gots: 749 | FT: 17
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: MasterSki on 09-19-2013

Imperial stout brewed with pumpkins Warlock is brewed to enchant your palate on its own and also to counterpoint our Imperial Ale, Pumking. Make your own black magic by carefully pouring this Imperial Stout into a goblet.

Dark and mysterious, the Blackwater Series is serious about high gravity. Reanimate your senses with Warlock’s huge roasted malt character, moderate carbonation and spicy pumpkin pie aroma.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 319 | Hads: 2,632
Photo of velkepivo
1.27/5  rDev -67.8%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

Sorry, but this beer is simply revolting. Beyond cloyingly sweet. So sugary my teeth actually felt gritty after a few sips. Stacked high with the sweetness, there is a chemical, artificial-flavor flavor. Nauseating. Poured it down the sink, and that's hard for me to do. This is a beer for people who drink 3L bottles of soda every day. (340 characters)

Photo of jmasher85
1.89/5  rDev -52%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 1.75

I can't believe the score is so high on this one. I like pumpkin beer but this is just nasty stuff. Must be that the newest batch, at 10% ABV, is drastically different than the previous ones listed here as 8.6%. Or else I got a bad bottle, but since I will never risk money on this potential waste of funds again, I may never find out.

Pours like a stout with no head or lacing.

Woah. First smell has a lot going on. Really sweet, a bit briney like seaweed, and then back to intense pumpkin candy aroma. A little caramel too, some nutmeg and cinnamon, kinda just smells like a Cracker Barrel store in the autumn.

Taste is just a little more than I can handle. Really sweet, rich, and psychotic that they would sell this in a bomber without a warning to share it with like, 4 other people. Hops are doing a strange thing with bitterness against the sweetness, and it tastes like a fermented pumpkin pie. A bit of dark chocolate, coffee, fig, and yeah, again with the pumpkin.

Way too sweet and rich and intense for me, I'm actually just going to pour this out and give it to my girlfriend who loves this kind of overcooked shit. Probably would benefit from some aging or something, but no, I can't take more than a few sips. (1,237 characters)

Photo of Ngntjp
1.96/5  rDev -50.3%

I hate to leave a review so short and negative, but this particular beer tastes, to me, what guinea pigs smell like. Pumpkin beers are a hard sell for me, but the flavor in this reminds me more of the rat I saw behind the store I work at tonight than of anything pumpkin. Maybe I'm missing something in this one. But, you'd be hard pressed to get me to drink it again unfortunately. Sorry southern tier, I love stouts, the bigger the flavors the better, but this one, just does not at all do it for me. Hard poured into the sink. (529 characters)

Photo of Gus34
2.31/5  rDev -41.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This thing just made me sick to my stomach. I'm really glad I shared half of this bomber with my friend because I wouldn't have made it through it otherwise. This may sound harsh but it tasted like they brewed a generic and uninteresting imperial stout and sprayed pumpkin perfume into it. I really don't think a dark and roasty beer pairs well with a sweet, almost pumpkin pie taste. Just a little too many flavors battling against each other in this one. I know a lot of people will enjoy this, but it's just not for me. Personally, I would stick with Pumpking. (563 characters)

Photo of Tidesox28
2.37/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 2.5

I had such high hopes for this since I'm a pretty big fan of Pumpking, but was overall disappointed.

A -Didn't look bad. Aggressive poured gave me a 1 finger dark khaki head. But not thick like most of the stouts I drink

S - Smells just like Pumpking. vanilla. cinnamon. sugar. warm milk. hint of spruce.

T - Pumpkin and spice up front. Sweet vanilla like a touch of Creme brulee. As it warmed I got notes of like spruce needles, which was obviously off-putting.

M - For a stout, way too thin in my opinion. Felt almost like soda.

O- Won't be getting again. Would much rather have Pumpking. (597 characters)

Photo of BeerFMAndy
2.44/5  rDev -38.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

22 oz bottle poured into a snifter.
8.6% ABV, Snifter shown with 42°F, DOB 08/26/13, "Pair with: Spicy BBQ, roasted / smoked foots, carrot cake. Store: Dark, upright, <48°F Serve: Goblet

Thanks, Todd?

A - Clarity shows through the pour but the beer itself is a dark brown that turns black in the glass and is capped by an ivory head that lowers somewhat quickly to a pile of loose bubbles and dots of lace.

S - Warlock smells like Pumking and next to nothing more; cooked, sticky white rice, pureed pumpkin, and a dash of real spice sprinkled over faint suggestions of dark malt. Warlock is wholly artificial in nature, nothing about it appealing to me.

T - The malty flavor is a nice departure from the aroma, really coming into it's own instead of being a dark Pumking clone. Roasted malt waves it's wand of acridly bitter cocoa and hints of coffee as Warlock finishes out with more of the artificial flavoring; pumpkin and spice that feel all too fake.

M - Medium-light bodied, Warlock is a thin-feeling imperial stout with plenty of carbonation trailing off with the dry, acridly bitter finish of roasted malt and artificial flavor.

O - Once upon a time I couldn't get enough of Pumking, so much so in fact that I held a case of the next year's release at a local liquor store, only to get it and wonder why I wasted my money. Had the recipe changed or was it just my palate? A debate for another day but I digress. Now I find myself unable to stand Pumking's massive, inescapable artificial nature that haunts me with every whiff and I find Warlock to be exactly the same. The aroma is fake, fake, fake. Not only is it fake, but it doesn't even smell right; it smells like a cheap dollar store candle. An exact replicate of Pumking in aroma, Warlock is displeasing and while the flavor is a step up, it's not fantastic either. Big roasted malt but the body doesn't follow suit making it a thin-tasting, thin-feeling imperial stout that's not worth the calories it contains.

Beerwolf77 and I are avid pumpkin beer (and general pumpkin) fanatics so the first of our two outrageously large pumpkin beer tastings this year required Warlock's inclusion. Upon taking our first sip, we simultaneously looked at each other with disgust and went to the sink with our glasses and bottle. Unfortunately for Todd, he purchased two bottles at the same time giving me the pleasure of revisiting it for this review. In closing, I hate to just shit all over a beer, especially when my reviews are generally higher than the average so, I'll make it clear I like Southern Tier. They make some fantastic beers but, Warlock is not one of them. (2,640 characters)

Photo of joeseppy
2.54/5  rDev -35.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a thin cola dark brown with bubbly half inch head that recedes to the edge.

It's taken me a while to put my finger on this--CREAMED CORN. Deep malt and roasted pumpkin seed and pumpkin flesh. Meaty with a touch of smoke. Also, smells like the inside of a Jack-O-Lantern's aging flesh that's been sitting around awhile after Halloween.

Sorry, can't get away from the creamed corn. Roasted mexacali sweet cream corn. I also get Pumpking. More mace than nutmeg and heavy cinnamon.

Mouthfeel is med to heavy that carries with low end carbonation. Lingering taste of, like; this pie was BBQ'd over mesquite wood rather than in grandmas kitchen. Also cinnamon is heavy on the palate.

Creamed corn brew. This does not sit well with me. Too much going on. Pumpkin, roast, spice, smoke, malt and corn sweetness. Reminds me of when I begged my wife to bake a chocolate flan. She always baked the most outstanding custard flan, but I wanted chocolate. It was horrible to say the least. So with this Warlock, I thought, I would love an Imperial stout pumpkin and it ain't working. I'm going to stick with Pumpking. This Warlock is a pass for me. (1,143 characters)

Photo of champ103
2.57/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A: Dark brown, nearly black color. A two finger bubbly beige head rises, then recedes after a minute to nothing. Not much lace.
S: Sugary, burnt toast, light roast. Then some buttery malts and pumpkin spices. Like cinnamon, and allspice. A mess.
T: Like the nose, just a complete mess. Granulated sugar, and cloyingly sweet. Which is expected for their stouts. Burnt toast and light roast. Buttery, almost diacetyl flavors, pie crust, and spices. Again, cinnamon and allspice in the finish. Actually the allspice takes over after a while and lingers on forever.
M/D: A medium body and moderate carbonation. I am surprised at how watery and thin this is compared to other stouts they make. Way to sweet, and just messy. Hard to drink more than a few ounces.

I have never enjoyed Pumking, and this is not much better. A sickly sweet, allspice bomb that is not enjoyable for me to drink. Enough said. (918 characters)

Photo of zander4dawin
2.72/5  rDev -31%

Well, it says this beer is retired and I say that's for the best. You can tell the base stout to this beer is solid, great black appearance, hop balance, and mouthfeel. Where this beer disappointed was the spice boutique, way too much Potpourri taste, harsh and pungent on the taste buds. While I found Pumking to be a classic pumpkin beer Warlock can be skipped. (366 characters)

Photo of far333
2.76/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served in a crystal snifter. Black and opaque with a thick half inch head of oatmeal brown foam that lingers very long. Aroma of buttered sweet corn, vanilla, and nutmeg.

Faint flavor of dark malt makes itself known briefly at the outset, but is quickly overpowered by vegetal accents, vanilla, toffee, candy corn, and brown sugar. There is a weird sweetness and offputting spiciness here. Full mouthfeel, but a bit slick, and still manages to finish with a carbonation tingle.

Seems a bit gimmicky. Would like more imperial stout and less vanilla, spice, and sweetness. The combination didn't work as well as I had hoped. Could not get through the entire bottle. (665 characters)

Photo of TheHammer
2.88/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

This is my first mobile review so I'll be brief. Southern tier has not been good to me and this beer is no exception. It tastes like a pumpkin ale but instead of pumpkin it's been replaced by Coal. The strong nice smell of cinnamon and nutmeg Is the best part of the Beer and you can really taste it. However quickly turned lame carbonation, burnt malt, plastic aftertaste and very heavy body is why this beer is getting a low rating. I got this one as a gift because I have yet to have a good beer from these guys. Hope it's the last one I have. (546 characters)

Photo of Gobearswalter34
2.91/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown with a very thin off-white head that dissipates quickly. Smells of pumpkin and fall spices. The pumpkin is still quite bold and the blending of the spices and chocolate hints does not come together very well. The funky pumpkin sticks around for a while. Gets better as it warms. (301 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Bottle: Poured a black color stout with a large off-white foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of cinnamon is quite powerful and hides every other flavours. Taste is also dominated by loads of cinnamon and other spices leaving little spices to roasted malt and/or black chocolate notes or even pumpkins. Body is below average with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. I get the concept of this beer but this just lack overall balances. (457 characters)

Photo of TooGood
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into Pumking chalice. Pours a deep brown with little to no head retention. The smell is wonderful, very pumpkin pie like with nutmeg and slight cinnamon overtones. The taste is similar to the smell until the end, at the finish I get a very strong nutmeg/bitter taste that is quite unappealing. The beer goes down smooth with a slightly thicker mouth feel. Overall an average pumpkin flavored beer, but nothing I would seek out again. The bitter over the top spice notes on the finish are too much for me. (537 characters)

Photo of logicalparadox
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Looks pretty at first. White head atop a brew that could pass for cola.

Nose is pumpkin and spice. You'd be forgiven for thinking this was Pumking. Doesn't have any aromas that would suggest a stout.

Taste is sweet, upfront, followed by spice. Lots of pumpkn pie spices. Good, but fake tasting. Finish is long and quite sweet and with something strange. Not sure what it is, nor whether I like it.

Body is lighter than expected and lighter than should be for the style.

I'd try this again, but I'm disenchanted to know this has added flavors. Maybe that explains some more f the off character. Also a bit disillusioned about calling this an imperial stout. (662 characters)

Photo of TheCondor
3/5  rDev -23.9%

I had heard some positive scuttlebutt about this brew from some cats in the know. Although I do not like pumpkin beers or any sort of beer with pumpkin in it, people who are supposed to know good beer said this was quality. I am unsure if there is an actual "pumpkin beers" style, so I am rating this on the listed style, the Double/Imperial stout. Side poured from the bottle into a goblet.

Appearance - Pours just like you would expect a stout to pour. Dark brown to black pour with a decent one finger head that leaves little lacing and only lasts for a minute. Cool packaging and name on this beer.

Smell - Smells of spices, strong pumpkin, and a little nutty. The pumpkin scent is quite strong, a little overwhelming.

Taste - And we really start to go downhill at this point. The palate is overwhelmed with spices and pumpkin. Very little taste diversity is exhibited, just nuttiness, spices, and strong pumpkin.

Mouthfeel - Finishes decently clean. Medium bodied, medium carbonation

Overall - I will never buy another beer with "pumpkin" mentioned anywhere on the label. I threw this out after a couple of drinks. It was absolutely horrible. Putrid, disgusting. (1,172 characters)

Photo of utfiero
3/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Color- dark brown walnut. Slight head.

Aroma- strong nutmeg and hint of pumpkin pie with coffee in the background.

Taste- If you serve this too cold, it tastes like a pumpkin pie filled with old Starbucks coffee grinds. Let it warm, and it improves greatly with a balance of pumpkin pie and vanilla stout. Not for everyone, but a fun fall beer on a cold night.

Poured from 650 ml bomber into a Liefmans Goudenband glass (my preferred all purpose beer tasting glass). Tasted on 10/14/2013. (493 characters)

Photo of Hex92
3/5  rDev -23.9%

I'm a big fan of pumking, so when I saw this beer I figured I would love it since imperial stouts are one of my face. Not so. It seems a bit thin, the flavor doesn't taste like an IS. So a bit dissapointed. Would rather have purchased Pumking.

So stick with the original is my suggestion. (291 characters)

Photo of cbutova
3.01/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Last night on-tap at The Foundry, Northampton, MA. Missed this one last year.

A- Pitch black stout poured from the tap to a chalice. A tan cap up to over one finger with a puffy, foamy thick texture. Fairly good retention falling to a medium ring. Lacing consists of sheets and spots.

S- For me this is very hard to tell apart from Pumking. Massive pumpkin spice dominates the aroma with nutmeg, vanilla, ginger, cinnamon and sweet pumpkin flesh coming to mind. Roast is somehow very far in the backdrop to this.

T- Pretty much follows the aroma with a beastly presence of pumpkin pie spice flavor. Ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla sweetness, vegetable pumpkin flesh and caramel. Just a hint of roast for me.

MF- Thick bodied with a frothy, creamy texture. Carbonation at a medium level with a slightly warming finish while pumpkin pie spice lingers for a long time.

Even though this is black as the night it somehow doesn't deliver a lot of roasty, stout like flavors for me. The pumpkin pie spice dominates it entirely and I find it feels just like Pumking. Less spice and more roast would make this a good to great beer. (1,129 characters)

Photo of DaveBar
3.09/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Purchased at the LCBO on sale for $7.50 for a 650ml bottle. Served at 4deg C in a tulip

A- Opens well and pours a small head that is gone in no time. Very dark brown.

S- Not a lot here but does have some nice malt backbone.

T- Hits you with a surprise, not a good one though. TONS of spices. Cinnamon galore. Nutmeg, pumpkin and a touch of chocolate. Figs present. A lot going on but in weird proportions. Not my cup of tea.

M- Mighty watery for an imperial stout. Lots of carbonation

O- Not so good. This one is a drain pour

Food Pairing

This one was so bad that there is no food pairing offered

Yuk (610 characters)

Photo of Etan
3.16/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

On-tap at the Coopers Tavern, served in a tulip.

A. Pours black with a nice light beige head.

S. Smells of heavy pumpkin spice, dusting of sweet cocoa and roasted grain, sugary caramel. Very sweet.

T. Taste brings brazen allspice, light vegetal pumpkin flavor, astringent roasted malt and cloying, artificial butterscotch. Nothing redeeming here.

M. Between medium and thick-bodied with light carbonation.

O. I should have known better. This beer has the same terrible cloying butterscotch flavor that Choklat and Creme Brulee have. I could not get past a couple of ounces. (578 characters)

Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.2/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

22oz. bomber into a Cigar City snifter.

Pours a 1.5 finger coffee colored head with moderate retention. Beer is pitch black. Lacing is thick and web-like with excellent stick. Thin oily legs that stick around a bit.

Nose is sugar cookie, cinnamon, pumpkin pie, mocha and chocolate. Smells awesome!

Opens coarse cocoa powder. Burnt and roasted malt mixes with pumpkin spice and pie crust in the middle. End is coarse liquorice and more smoke and roast. Finishes the same with a lingering, dirty, bitter aftertaste. Not very good.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. A bit coarse and prickly in the mouth and goes down messy, powdery and grainy. Messy finish with an aftertaste that really lingers. Thin for the style. A touch messy too.

The look and the smell were very promising but alas when it comes to the taste, this beer falls flat on its face. There's no comparison between this and Pumking. (909 characters)

Photo of beerbully
3.21/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Black with 1/2inch thick toffee colored head. thick lacing with great retention. This is a great looking brew

S-Lots of pumpkin...followed by cinnamon, clove, brown sugar

T- Folllows the nose. feint notes of stout some chocolate slight roastiness expectingmore stout since it is marketed as an imperial stout. Like drinking a chocolate chip pumpkin cookie. Pumpkin dominstes the flavor on this brew. Was hoping for the opposite with stout at the forefront and pumpkin in the background

M-Little carb. Quite thin for an Imperial Stout.

O-More pumpkin than stout. Very sweet that cuts into the drinkability for me. Dissapointing experience with this one. Won't be trying this again. (686 characters)

Photo of AndyAvalanche
3.24/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25

Bomber poured into a larger version of the Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass. Liquid portion comes out sort of a light roasted coffee color, maybe a little darker. Deep amber highlights when held up to the light on the edges and anywhere else it gets thinner. Tan colored head, it erupts to the top of the glass on a pretty hard pour. Head eventually turns into a very small ring around the edge, not too much in the way of lacing.

Very sweet smelling beer. A quick sniff made me think it just smelled like a pumpkin cappuccino, but if you take your time you can get a little more detail out of it. Like caramel drizzled over a graham cracker, then sprinkled with a hint of cinnamon, then unfortunately doused with way too much nutmeg. Overall smells pretty spicy, really too spicy, a lot of pumpkin pie spices and not enough of a stout backbone, no natural pumpkin aromas. Too much spices to smell the naturally weak smelling pumpkin even though according to the bottle, it's been added.

Taste is really about the same as the smell, it's just way too sweet and spicy. Pumpkin again takes a seat (in the way back) to the overwhelming pumpkin pie spices. Nutmeg outweighs the cinnamon and graham cracker too. Sum it up it's kind of like getting a pumpkin spice coffee and adding a bunch of artificial sweetener to it.

Mouthfeel is actually pretty good, still too spicy, but there's an improvement here. Body is a hard medium. Starts sweet then fades away, but there's a hard gritty bitterness from the nutmeg that lingers forever. Could be a little more carbonated, but it doesn't drink like a 8.6% beer. Drinkability is there, again it would be better if it weren't so spicy. I didn't have Pumpking this year, but I remember liking it better than this, I normally like a pumpkin stout, and this one isn't bad, it's just not the caliber I'd expect out of Southern Tier. Worth trying, but you gotta share this one, you're making a mistake drinking it on your own. (1,961 characters)

Photo of JAFoley
3.25/5  rDev -17.5%

A - Dark opaque body with foamy tan head. Very good retention but no lacing to speak of.

S - Dark molasses and the usual cinnamon and nutmeg "pumpkin" spices.

T - Floral hops upfront recede to a wicked medicine flavor. Heavy chocolate sweetness takes over with the cinnamon and spices coming in. Nice alcohol kick.

M - Full body with moderate carbonation. Very thick and sticky.

O - Just can't do pumpkin beers. There's just too much "pumpkin" flavoring, so heavy handed. It comes off artificial and undrinkable to me. I'd love this to be a great stout first, then a pumpkin beer, rather than the other way around. (625 characters)

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Warlock from Southern Tier Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 319 ratings.