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Feast Of Fools - Magic Hat Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Feast Of FoolsFeast Of Fools

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

86 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 86
Hads: 174
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 13.42%
Wants: 60
Gots: 16 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Magic Hat Brewing Company visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: UnionMade on 05-08-2002

In medieval times, the celebration of darkness and light was marked with great halls filled with smoke and mirrors. Gilded goblets brimming with seasonal brews were lifted to lips speaking a language no longer known. The present connects the past through the brewer’s art and a beer of utter darkness is born - Feast of Fools Raspberry Stout. Gather thy friendly fools for a round and celebrate the oncoming darkness with sweet ale and glee.

28 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Feast Of Fools Alström Bros
Reviews: 86 | Hads: 174
Photo of OWSLEY069
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours jet black, with a tannish-brown head. In the aroma, a sweet maltiness and a small hint of chocolate, and cherries and/ or raspberries. In the taste, a roasty malt, and a dark cherry/ raspberry end. A smooth and malty mouthfeel, with a dry fruity and roasty malt aftertaste. Nice stout, interesting with the fruit presence, very drinkable. (344 characters)

Photo of Brad007
3.87/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark black color with a brown head that starts out ample and fades.
Aroma is raspberry with a nice hint of roasted chocolate. Smooth and roasty. Smells very drinkable. Taste is smooth and roasty upfront with raspberry and chocolate flavors in the middle. Fades to a nice raspberry hint at the back of the tongue. Rich in the middle. One thing I don't like is how the raspberry starts out strong in the nose but fades in the taste. The chocolate flavors come out very well though. It's very drinkable despite the mentioned flaw about the raspberry (in my opinion anyway). (579 characters)

Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.46/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to a friend in VT, I finally had a chance to try this hard to find beer. What a rollercoaster of a beer to say the least. This is the current release picked up from the brewery 12-5-07.
A - really cool blacked out bottle, caged and corked. Cork took a pair of plyers to pry out and is loaded with graphics. Rating though is based solely on the beer - midnight black with a medium dark tan head.
S - opened at cellar temp, mineral effect but really nothing shows up till 3/4 through the bottle when the raspberries say hi.
T - light yet rich milk chocolate, the perfect amount of blended raspberries, cocoa and the barest hint of roasted grains. WOW.
M - surprisingly light bodied, creamy smooth with a light sweet aftertaste reminiscent of fine european raspberry chocolates without the sugar effect.
D - so easy to drink, so magnetic it draws you back for another sip and another sip... Wow, did I just finish that?

If you get a chance at this definitely try it! (973 characters)

Photo of CharlesDarwin
3/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

750mL. 5.3% 2004-2005 version. Thanks for sharing Dylan! Aroma is an intense, lightly parching cherried candy and sweet chocolate, however mildly artificial. Dark black with dense foam tan rim. Cordial cherries dominate the initial flavor, in that sold at the counter, wrapped in red foil, in plastic trays, at a midwestern gas station, kind of way. Stout character takes over with a salty and pithy stout run. A medium, woody and seedy stout with dropping of cheap kirsch. Finishes in the middle. (497 characters)

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2005 vintage, 750ml bottle with new artwork. Pours into my glass a deep brooding black color with dark ruby highlights and a nice bubbly dark tan head on top. Does look nice in the glass. Aromas of roasty, even slightly smoky cocoa alongside a nice fresh raspberry as well. I'm picking up a touch of oxidation and I might have held onto this for a little too long. Even still, the aroma is inviting.

First sip brings some roasty dark maltiness upfront with a touch of smokiness. Notes of bitter cocoa lead into a rush of wonderful raspberry flavor. The fruit works in really well and brings a light touch of sweetness. Just a really enjoyable fruity stout.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a prickly carbonation. Goes down smooth and tasty. I've enjoyed this beer the last time I had the chance to drink it and I'm enjoying this bottle as well. I haven't had much from Magic Hat but the Feast of Fools is surely worth checking out. I hope I cross paths with it again! Thanks to UnionMade for this one. (1,007 characters)

Photo of BillyB
3.84/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aroma's in this beer are fantastic. Strong scents of deep rich chocolate and sweet, tart raspberries. Also some slight coffee/ caramel notes in the smell.

Appearance is deep black with a dark tan head that quickly disperses.

Taste is of slightly roasty malt flavors. Strong chocolate and raspberry flavor. No alcohol taste.

Mouthfeel is kind of watery and bland.

The smell sets you up for a great taste and mouthfeel but kind of falls short.

Not a bad beer but taste and mouthfeel don't meet up with the fantastic aromas.

Very drinkable. (556 characters)

Photo of rickcampie
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

this holday stout provides a rich chocolate color, followed by a thick creamy head. as you drink there is some previlent lacing. the taste of rassberries and choclate malt is very overpowering. abv is just above 7% but doesnt taste strong. this beer would be a good after dinner beer. in my own opinon i could only drink a glass or two at a time. it was availible in special holiday growler only at the brewery. (411 characters)

Photo of Brophmstr
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml Humdinger bottle . . . smell the dark chocolate raspberry . . . just like a Godiava raspberry truffle. Excellent aroma.

Dark on the pour but not murky, served up in an English Imperial pint glass.

Body was lighter than expected considering the color, very enjoyable (279 characters)

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.97/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

growler provided by meatbeagle. yeah, meatbeagle...just like to say "meatbeagle."

Fully, impenetrably dark, with a thick, rich cocoa head...gotta love it!

Aroma hits with raspberries first, then chocolate, and slight coffee, but berries are on top and remain dominant. Sweet, fruity, bitter, ...very nice.

Taste: not quite as mellifluous as we'd like...but, there's nice roast and nice grit, and the fruit plays above...smooth and silky, chocolate meets dark fruit, very nice. Rich, and delicious. Medium to full body, long, sweet finish...good stuff.

mmmn, very likable, very smooth and yummmy...yup,that one fits. (628 characters)

Photo of mikesgroove
4.21/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Much thanks to meatbeagle for gettisto me!

Poured a thick deep black with a huge brown head and a huge amount of lace. Looks pretty much as good as a stout can look, awesome, can't wait! Smell is a strong licorice with hints of caramel and rasberry. The taste is very very sweet. Deep flavors of licorice and candy, is that dark cherry I taste..yummy to say the least! Nice as thick as I would have liked, but it goes down very easily and could be an easy all night drink. (475 characters)

Photo of geexploitation
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours deep brown, pretty much black, with little in the way of highlights, and a big, dark dark head that shrinks quickly to just some stray bubbles here and there. Aromas of roasted malts, dark roasted coffee, and vanilla raspberry. The fruitiness is nice here; it's not too pronounced. On the palate, nice stout sourness to start off with (or maybe it's the raspberries), with a touch of watery fruit in the mid-palate. The finish dries out a bit with roasted malts and more fruit notes that never get sweet. Long and active finish. Mouthfeel is rough at lower temperatures, but it smooths out considerably as the beer warms, resulting in something that can feel a bit watery at times, but is slick overall. Overall, this is a good fruit beer, kept in balance and not too cute. Nicely done. (792 characters)

Photo of ppoitras
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Half growler (32oz) filled at the brewery.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 3/4" brown head above the opaque dark brown/black brew. Head falls ever so slowly, with plentiful delicate lace. Aroma is raspberry puree, with undercurrents of dark sweet grains. Tastes goes along the same lines, with the berry retreating a tad to let the dark malts shine. Mouthfeel is creamy smooth, and drinkability is reasonably good, although the fruit does get a bit tiresome after a spell. A seasonal I enjoy each time it comes about. (533 characters)

Photo of weeare138
3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears a dark brown with a red edged hue. A nice, 2 finger tan head slowly fades out to a fizzy little head and collar.
Smell is of raspberry with chocolate syrup and nuts.
Taste is of raspberries, cocoa powder, roasted nuts, and maybe mild white grape flavors as well.
Mouthfeel is resonating cocoa, brown sugar, and creamy whipped raspberries. (349 characters)

Photo of Crosling
4.04/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Black with a head that develops like a rising loaf of bread. Huge and thick head of tan foam. An aroma of rich dark grain (chocolate, roast, coffee) and subtle raspberries. Beautiful malt and fruit balance with intertwined notes of chocolate, coffee, roast, raspberries and a touch of grapefruit. A very good fruit beer. (320 characters)

Photo of CRJMellor
4.07/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a deep black with a dark tan/ brown bubbly head that recedes very quickly.
Aroma of dark fruits, some light cocoa powder, chocolate and hint of roasted nuts.
Flavors of the raspberry stands out well but ind of overpowers the chocolate and caramel notes bit too much. Roasted notes appear towards the bak of the palate and cut the sweetness appropriately.
Mouthfeel is very smooth with not wuite enough carbonation. Finish is sort of abbreviated and left we wanting a bit more palate coating tang and coffee bitterness.
Drinkability is solid, not spectacular. Expecting more from this one but it is a pleasant brew. (629 characters)

Photo of akorsak
3.75/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

I received this as a gift from my brother and his girlfriend, recent initiates into the New Hampshire way of life. I am drinking it from my Chimay chalice.

Appearance: For once, I will talk about the bottle. Very nice looking 25 oz bottle. Red and white illustration on black bakground. As for the beer, it is black with no discernible colors eminating when held up to light. It pours with little carbonation and holds no head.

Smell: Rich, decadent chocolate, almost a solid milk chocolate like Hersheys. The smell might be a little top over the top, but it is unusual (think Young's Double Chocolate Stout).

Taste: Slightly sweet raspberry makes itself known upfront, followed by smooth chocolate flavors. There is little carbonation to cleanse the mouth on each sip, prolonging the pleasant flavor.

Mouthfeel: This beer is milk chocolate in the mouth, enough said. The raspberry can be a little too much, but the chocolate can overpower that sweetness.

Drinkability: I think that this is a very drinkable ale. The biggest problem is that one can not drink more than one. The damned cork is too small and wedged to tightly in there. I ended up using a corkscrew to open it up, just a little ri-goddamn-diculous. Magic Hat, go easy on the cork, please! (1,268 characters)

Photo of Omniscia
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle of this at the brewery not more than two weeks ago, and it's been calling my name ever since. But, no, this was to be served only on Christmas. I'm calling this one as I experience it, so, here goes...

First Impressions: The bottle is nice, sleek, matte black, like a stealth bomber. The usual assortment of strange personages decorates the label, one of which appears to be carrying a Magic Hat growler. This is a nice-looking bottle. As with last year, however, the cork leaves much to be desired, requiring way too much exertion to budge even a millimeter; in the end, a corkscrew had to be employed.

The Pour: Black velvet, baby, with the occasional slight glint of crimson as it fills the vessel. Brown, caramel-like head, about three fingers, lingers for about a minute before disappearing, leaving almost no trace of lacing to tell us it was there.

The Olfactory Test: As expected, it smells divine, like a big slice of the finest, darkest Belgian chocolate cheesecake, drizzled with a field-fresh, tart raspberry sauce. This is a beer I wouldn't mind eating.

The First Sip: As it smells, so does it taste. Delectable flavors of chocolate melt in your mouth, mingling with with the delicate raspberries that taste so fresh and earthy you could swear they were picked not ten minutes ago.

How Does It Feel: Certainly not like a rolling stone. The body is, overall, a little anemic compared to the rest of it. Judging from the appearance, the aroma, and the flavor, you'd expect this to be a little thicker, a little more syrupy, but it's as thin as day-old, reheated coffee. It's still nowhere near as insubstantial as your average macro, but if there is any weak point to this beer, this is it. It does leave behind a nice aftertaste, however.

Going The Distance: It's sweet, but not cloying. Dark, but not bitter. Bulk up the body a bit, and this would make a wonder dessert beer. That said, it goes down easily, and I am thoroughly enjoying my experience.

Final Thoughts: This has potential. It still needs a little work, however, before I'll accept that it's worth the $10 price tag. For $5-6, we have a winner, but this is a little short of the quality threshold I associate with double digits. Worth a try, though, if you're curious. (2,285 characters)

Photo of ommegangpbr
3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Merry Xmas to me!
One of the toughest beers to open this far. I needed pliers to get the cork out.
The bottle says 5.3% so I'm assuming this is this years batch.
Pours an opaque black with a deep tan head; leaves some lacing on the glass. Appearance here earns extra points cause the bottle is real cool lookin.
Smells a bit like raspberry sorbet, with, perhaps a bit of chocolate and coffee thrown in.
The taste reminds me of when I went to a beer festival once, and the guy at the table mixed for me some Lindemans Framboise and some Sam Smith's Oatmeal stout. Make of that what you will; I happen to like the flavor. Raspberry stout indeed.
The mouthfeel is up and down for me. It's enjoyable while you have some beer in your mouth but the finish is chalky. It balances out to being ok.
I picked this guy up cause I think it was the last one the place had and I'd never seen it before. I'm glad I did. Those that dont like fruit with their beers should still probably stay away but this is a good rendition of such a thing. (1,033 characters)

Photo of jamie2dope
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

picked up a few bottles of this mysterious stout a few months ago at the magic hat brewery, but didnt have the heart to open one until tonight. In a word: Beautiful. It poured pitch black with an impressively thick light brown head. Smell was mild at first, but with a little spin some lovely coffee,chocolate,berry and charcoal aromas surfaced. Taste was delicious, like a big piece of EXTREMELY rich chocolate cake with rasberry lingering just behind. Being a somewhat mild, medium bodied stout, it was very drinkable. Ive had this brew before and have to say that it is one of my favorites, however this seasons batch seemed to be lacking a bit in the amount of rasberry in comparison to other years. Even so, the berry complements the stout and is still a damn tasty choice for any time of year. (799 characters)

Photo of NEhophead
3.68/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

1pt 9 fl oz.

Huge, rocky-foam that's light brown in color; good durability. Some thin and spotted lacing with good strength. Opaque black in color.

Nice tart, ripe raspberry aroma. Mild coffee and milk chocolate. Faint whiff of alcohol.

Mellow, milk and dark chocolate, roasted malt character. Very distinct peat smoked quality throughout the sip. Underlying metallic raspberry flavor; artificial. Light bitterness with a coffee-raspberry aftertaste.

Drinks a shade lighter than full bodied. A lot of carbonation; spritzy on the palate.

The sweet/tart quality matched with the heaviness of the style makes this version a little tough to have more than one at a time. Unique, but not too appealing for my taste. (726 characters)

Photo of Rastacouere
3.47/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Almost black. Low light brown head. Very fruity/vinous aroma where raspberries somehow stand out among dark chocolate roastiness. Complex torrefaction aspect with even more fieldberries notes (lueberries, strawberries). Desserty on the palate, not unlike a chocolate and tart fruit syrup to add on ice cream. Finished with a light roastiness, almost smoky and definitely nutty. Almost no carbonation on the medium body. (419 characters)

Photo of theo871
4.58/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2004 Edition. Humdinger!

This "epic elixir" is hand packed in champagne style bottles. The Black bottle matches its contents perfectly. Once you manage to pop the cork you are in for a treat.

Pours dark as night with a large tan head that subsides to about thumbnail depth. Lots of lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smells primarily of raspberries and dark chocolate, with a hint of dark roasted coffee.

Taste is fruity, with coffee undertones. Very smooth in the mouth with few signs of carbonation.

Even though Magic Hat has this one labeled as 5.8% this year, its complexity is that of a sipping beer, and one to savor, as it only comes around once a year. They recommend consumption at 55° F.

One of the best beers I have ever sampled. Pick this one up at the brewery while it lasts! (806 characters)

Photo of Beersignal
3.77/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This certainly is an interesting beer. Very dark brown almost black pour with the faintest hints of crimson defeating its opaque tendancies. The head is diminutive and short-lived but left some lace work on the glass.

Interesting complex of aromas emanates from the glass, beginning with a judicious balance of coffee and blackberries upfront leading the way for hints of smoke and homemade jam to express themselves. In the back remnants of sweet fruit sugar, and a mild almost dead tartness wisely cuts the sugars.

Velvety liquid enters the mouth and releases flavours of roasted coffee, blackberries, and faint but very perceptible mustard seed. Finish is dry and long with a mild sustained bitterness closing out the experience. Hats off to Magic Hat for such a creative beer. (786 characters)

Photo of bditty187
4.18/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black in color, there was no hue to it, pure blackness. Even when I held it to a light there was no wavering in its depth. I didn’t notice a hint of highlight. Impressive. The head was brunette in color, attractive, at the apex it was a little over a finger in height. Head retention was fair, it slid to a bubbly but pocked cap, thicker around the edges but not naked in the middle. The subsequent lacing was spotty and it didn’t cling particularly well. Overall this looks wonderful in my goblet. The nose is gourmet raspberry chocolate. It is like New Glarus’ Raspberry Tart in regards to the mouthwatering fruity aromas, granted the strength here doesn’t compare but I get the same “lavish” vibe. To state it simply, it smells good. When mixed with the chocolate it is simply amazing. Sam Adam’s Chocolate Bock couldn’t even dream of being so chocolaty. Rich, dark, mysterious and these are just the overtones. Roasted malts are noticeable, coffee hints. Some trace hints of cookie. Distant hint of grass at the back, airy at the finish, I wish the overall potency were stronger but the invitation is still clear, “Drink Me You Fool!” The palate has plenty of charm. I really like the harmony between the raspberries and chocolate flavors. Lovely. Neither one is too loud nor too quite. I’m enjoying their conversation immensely. The chocolate flavors are dark and semi-sweet; there is a good amount of depth. In the middle I get a hint of roast, some astringency, and a silky fruitiness that is beyond just the raspberries (plums and a grape or two?). Grassy at the back. As is, the palate is tasty. There is a good amount of complexity but everything falls into some general categories. But what really elevates this beer is the aftertaste. The roast really grows on the tongue; it spreads like a plague or something. Coffee does the same thing to me. I like it. More raspberries flavors as well. I must also comment that even though the abv falls above 7% I don’t taste a lick of it. My brain says otherwise. Now the only thing that doesn’t impress me is the mouthfeel. It is too thin and even a bit watery, medium in body. This aspect of the beer is average; I can’t really compare it to another style because this is a hybrid of sorts. Still it feels light in the mouth. Still, that isn’t much to criticize about. This is easy drinking, it just isn’t bulky enough to *have* to sip it but it is so damn tasty you *want* to sip it. Bring on the cheesecake! Thanks UnionMade, this was a surprise inclusion. I’m very grateful for the opportunity to quaff this gem. I owe you one buddy! (2,607 characters)

Photo of Goldorak
4.02/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled 21JUL2004

I bought this 2003 edition Humdinger at the brewery, during their holiday season open house. A great visit, nice people, excellent Beers and good specials. Very nice black champagne-like bottle, with simple sticker and inscription card, suggesting this should be consumed within 6 months of purchase. I'm a month late, but we decided to give it a go anyways.

It took forever to get the genie out of the bottle, seriously the cork was at least an inch deep in the rim. It finally came out a very dark black with a beautiful creamy brown head. Some brownish yeast deposit was found at the bottom of my glass.

Excellent smell, smokey, coffee, mild fruit that translated nicely from the nose to the mouth. Even my girlfriend who isn't very stout inclined enjoyed this one. After a few sips, the mouthfeel develops a strange aftertaste. After much debate we pinned it down as being yellow mustard served on those giant hot roasted pretzels! Call me crazy, but I wasn't the only taster in the room to pick up on this one. I'm sure this had something to do with the aging process because I certainly didn't recall that when I tasted a fresh sample at the brewery. Interesting indeed. Next year I won't wait so long before poping the cork on edition 2004.

Only 3.5 for drinkability, because I wouldn't see myself downing tons of this stuff, but as an after dinner "dessert beer". (1,401 characters)

Feast Of Fools from Magic Hat Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 86 ratings.