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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 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)

Photo of far333
4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2002

Served at cellar temperature in a crystal goblet.

Pours out oily black, and foam rises up to a high mound of chunky brown meringue, but settles down quickly to a half inch lid of fine, tight brown bubbles. Aroma is subtle and understated raspberry, with the slightest hint of cocoa, some plum, and a bit of talc riding beneath.

Mouthfeel is smooth with moderate carbonation, creamy with a fine tingle along for the ride. Flavor is very well-balanced and enjoyable, with the raspberry and cocoa swimming in and out and complementing each other very well. Dark roasted malts ebb and flow. A coffee bitter lingers, and fans out across the back of the tongue morphing into chocolate. The flavor gets more intense with each sip.

As I swirl the glass, a thin sheet of foam rises evenly up the sides and slides slowly back down. This one has aged well, and is very satisfying to sip slowly. Would go well after dinner, perhaps over dessert, or even with a mild cigar.

The other three 2002 bottles in the cellar may have a short lifespan. (1,058 characters)

Photo of UnionMade
4.75/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours out of it's fancy teardrop shaped bottle a deep, dark brown, pretty much black. Completely opaque, with no light shining through, even when put right up to a light bulb. A vigorous pour generates a healthy, short beige foam. The head settles into a light coating of mist, with a thick collar bordering. The mist keeps all the way through, leaving tons of lace clinging to the glass.
The aroma is deep and complex. Very much like a gourmet raspberry chocolate, with sweetish roasted malt generating a dominating dark chocolate scent. An underlying raspberry tartness is perfectly placed, not too strong so the malt doesn't come through enough. A bit of sweetish, cookie like yeast. Some burnt quality to the malt, although remaining extremely smooth and blended.
The flavor starts with a sweetish, full roastiness, very heavy on the chocolate. Plenty of dark chocolate, with a mild burnt malt edge. The yeast smooths it all out, adding a creamy, cookie dough quality. The raspberry creeps in, adding a well placed berry sweetness, countering the slight malt bitterness. A touch of prune, red grape and fig into the finish, meeting soft herbal hops that slide under a growing burnt malt bitterness. A bit of astringency, with the chocolate intensifying into a baker's chocolate bitterness. The raspberry takes on a pleasant tartness, mingling with the burnt flavors to create an amazingly complex finish. A lasting dark choholate flavor sticks to the tongue for ages, along with a bit of herbal hops and plenty of raspberry.
Easily one of Magic Hat's best beers, this is probably one of my all time favorites. One of the most well wrought fruit beers, if not the best. My only complaint is that I have to drive 5-6 hours to Burlington to actually get some. I brought home a case this year. It's really that good. (1,828 characters)

Photo of nixhecks
4.37/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I have been searching for this beer since I heard of it about four years, and tonight I finally found one. Poured a viscous, inky black with a brown head reminiscent of an imperial stout. Very stciky with lots of lacing Aroma was overwhelmingly of tangy, sweet raspberries and a sharp coffee note in the background. Flavor was very interesting, obviously full of raspberries - very sweet at first, melding with a chocolatey malts, and then tart, accompanying a hop bitterness perfectly. Aftertaste contains the coffee/mocha flavors hinted at in the aroma. Mouthfeel is a little thin, but I can't think of much wrong with this brew. I also have the very satisfying feeling one gets at the end of a long, long beer hunt. Cheers to MH! (732 characters)

Photo of taez555
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a black body with a small brown head.

The nose was beautiful. There was a mix of chocolate and raspberries flowing back and forth.

The taste started off big and chocolatey. Lots of dark malts with a firm roasted barley bitterness. Chocolate, caramel, espresso, even a slight metallic touch from the bitterness. Medium to full bodied, yet very smooth. But what really made this beer unique was the tart raspberry overtone. Fresh and tart, yet never overpowering. It just sat perfectly in the mix as if a flavor shot in a cappuccino.

Overall I found this too be a fantastic beer. I was expecting a lambic/stout, or something like omengang three philosophers, but it was nothing like that. Basically a dark roasted barley bitter stout with a nice overtone of raspberries. Really the best way to describe it is like a latte or cappuccino with flavor shot added. Great beer. (896 characters)

Photo of Running4beer
4.65/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is definetly a desert beer. This tasted great, it shocked the shit out of me. The aroma was amazing rasberries, chocolate and coffee. I'm not a big rasberry fan but the way the berries were mixed with the chocolate and coffee and a slight alcohol flavor made this beer taste very very good. This was a medium bodied brew very smooth and tasty. This was an easily drinkable brew. IMO this is a must try brew. (412 characters)

Photo of erica
4.73/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Mmmm! Had a lovely glass and a half of 2003 Feast of Fools last night, I was actually woken up for it, and I'm so glad i was! It was quite dark, black really, and to be honest I wasn't crazy about the smell. It smelled musty to me almost, with a sweetish backgound. But I tried it anyway, since I was awake now and was told it had a pound of berries in each 750 ml bottle. And my, did my eyes go big with a big smile with the 1st taste! This might be my fave stout, with flavours of raspberries, chocolate, coffee... Very desserty. I would take it over a chocolate raspbery coffee any day! And it wasn't syrupy like sweet fruity beers can sometimes be, no, this felt quite good in my mouth. And so, drinkability wins out here, and I wish I had more to drink! (758 characters)

Photo of francisweizen
4.65/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2003 Vintage/750ml Humdinger Bottle: Holiday Stout. This stuff pours out as black as a siberian night. This stuff is completely opaque and has a lovely tan/beige head of foam. The aromas are perfect and consist of cherries, raspberries, deep roasted malts, chocolate, caramel, toffee, and more! The taste is wonderfully roasted and consists of berries galore, and chocolate and caramel. The mouthfeel is super creamy and great and the drinkability is excellent as well. One hell of a "Humdinger"! (496 characters)

Photo of mikeys01
4.37/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This review is for the '03 Feast which I had on tap at the brewery last weekend and had a bottle of tonight. The bottle is a corked and foiled dark glass champagne bottle, characteristic of all the MH humdinger beers. The Feast pours out a nice deep black with a moderate amount of foamy brown head, which gradually fades out. Aroma is heavy with fresh raspberry and sweetness, with a nice roasty malt as well. This years version seems to be a bit less carbonated than last year's, and thus easier to pour as well. Taste is definitely very sweet, full of raspberry and nice chocolate maltiness, this is definitely a dessert beer. Nice and tart without drowning out the stout background, the malt and roast flavor come into play through the middle and end, with just a bit of hop bitternes there to wrap things up. Body is not as heavy as expected, for a choco-rasp stout, quite drinkable after dinner. This is always good stuff, worth picking up a few bottles from the brewery. (977 characters)

Photo of scottum
4.57/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewery!!! Too bad they weren't selling growlers!

Served a out very dark brown with a brown head. Yummy! Chocolate and raspberrys are lovely in flavor. Nice and thick. Smooth the whole way through. A great beer on tap, but even better from the bottle. I was smart this year and took home a case of them. (320 characters)

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

Feast of Fools 2001. Apparently this beer was not meant to be aged this long, but it was interesting how it had held up.

This beer poured black with tall, brown foam that eventually settled. This corked bottle had not lost any carbonation. The smell was a strong raspberry aroma with subtle hints of coffee, chocolate, malt, and a whiff of alcohol. The taste was tart with raspberry dominating, but with some cocoa and alcohol coming through. Most of the maltiness had gone away. The mouthfeel was light and airy and foamy on the tongue. The body was medium. There was a lingering raspberry tartness. The drinkability was good. This was a very interesting beer to sample. (674 characters)

Photo of PatandDavid
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this the other night with a bunch of BAs...what a wonderful beer to be able to share, I'd never even heard of it. I thought the pour was black as night, with a slightly off-white small head. Aroma was kriek meets framboise, with some roasted notes as well. The carbonation was tight, and made for a nice mouthfeel. The taste was of roasted coffee, with some bitter chocolate. This '01 bottle noted that is was a stout...very unique, glad I was with my fellow BAs when sampling. pat (485 characters)

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