1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Howl - Magic Hat Brewing Company

Not Rated.
HowlHowl

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

935 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 935
Reviews: 434
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 14.44%
Wants: 33
Gots: 43 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Magic Hat Brewing Company visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  4.60% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Born of dark and cold and snow in the marrow of the northeast's longest night, Howl comes in on wailing winds with winter-weary eyes burning holes in sunless shadows. In its darkened depths our inner voids are warmed.

32 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-18-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Howl Alström Bros
Ratings: 935 | Reviews: 434 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mcdego1279
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

mcdego1279, Apr 13, 2013
Photo of yergermeister
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

yergermeister, Apr 18, 2012
Photo of BrentW425
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

BrentW425, Aug 14, 2014
Photo of Ishogai
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

Ishogai, Feb 11, 2012
Photo of Greenbaygator
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

Greenbaygator, Oct 30, 2012
Photo of Tundruth
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

Tundruth, Mar 17, 2012
Photo of mwar
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

mwar, Nov 26, 2012
Photo of GrunenTeufel
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

GrunenTeufel, Jun 23, 2012
Photo of Durandal_777
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

Durandal_777, May 09, 2014
Photo of RoryOMoore
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

RoryOMoore, Mar 28, 2012
Photo of RedSpecial1
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Very dark roasted color, and a small off white head which dissipated quickly.

S: Slightly roasted coffee notes, and a caramel maltiness, maybe even toffee.

T: Light coffee flavors with caramel and faint hint of vanilla.

M: Smooth as you first sip, but more bitterness comes out as it warms up.

D: Very smooth, could definitely be a good session beer in the winter months.

RedSpecial1, Dec 31, 2009
Photo of Hopfenpeter
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a crystal mug the color is like expected from a Schwarzbier, black. The beige head builds nicely and leaves good lacing. The smell hints sweetness, but is not strong. Tasting the beer you will first feel the roasted malts and taste a sweet toffee- coffee taste, which is balanced evenly with mild hops at the back.
Mouthfeel is prickly , due to good carbonation.
Very drinkable beer, a very nice seasonal Schwarzbier.

Hopfenpeter, Nov 07, 2010
Photo of Zimm
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

Zimm, May 15, 2013
Photo of KenRapoza
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

KenRapoza, Apr 18, 2012
Photo of BonzoTour
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

BonzoTour, May 29, 2012
Photo of MaddDogg84
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

MaddDogg84, Apr 05, 2012
Photo of 160Shillings
4.28/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Aroma: coffee-like roast malt with faint spicy floral noble hops
Appearance: Very dark brown with a hint of ruby. Pours a nice head of fine tan foam that falls into a small ring that follows the beer down the glass.
Flavor: French roast coffee-like roast malt, caramel, rounded melanoidin malt are all present without being excessive, they linger into a long finish. Medium hop bitterness with spice and floral flavors.
Mouthfeel: Medium mouthfeel with medium carbonation.
Overall Impression: A nice German-style lager that is dark without being burnt
Comments: Schwarzbier is sometimes called “black Pils”, Magic Hat Brewing Company shows why it is, not as hop dominant as a true Pilsner, but a great German-style lager that presents a full range of flavors without being burnt.

160Shillings, Mar 07, 2012
Photo of udubdawg
4.3/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle

pours very dark brown, though far from opaque. Quite a bit of ruby highlights when held to the light. Took off a half point or so for the fleeting nature of the tan head.

Aroma has a bit of a roasted component right up front, coffee, touch of bittersweet chocolate. Light caramel behind, no alcohol, no burnt grain aromas. No fruitiness or diacetyl, very clean with a hint of minerals - perhaps from the water? Slight herbal hop character. Overall there is a perception of a little more sweetness than I prefer to the style, but it is hard to find an area where it is does not fit the style guidelines. Very nicely done so far; on to the taste!

Nice mixture of sweet, coffee and bittersweet chocolate roastiness, and a small amount of caramel flavor. Not a huge malt presence overall; to style. Again clean and with no off flavors, fruitiness, or diacetyl. Dries on the palate though there is a surprising amount of residual sweetness. I'd like to to be even slightly drier. No real hop flavor but a moderate refreshing bitterness.

medium light body, nice drying finish, though the carb level could be higher for a super high score. No astringency despite the decent amount of hops and quit a bit of roasted grains.

Overall this is one of the best of the style I've had. I'd be happy to drink this any day of the year. It doesn't seem particularly underattenuated but the amount of residual sweetness mixed with what could be a higher carb level keeps it from the upper echelon of my favorite beers.
Very well done.

udubdawg, Jan 23, 2011
Photo of droobacca
4.33/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: very dark brown with a tan head that tries but fails to hang around

S: Cocoa smell with roasty toasty malt in there as well

T: Coffee and Cocoa nice divergence from most Magic Hat offerings

M: Medium cocoa with hops joining in towards the end

D: First Schwarzbier ive encountered, was surprised at first and a little taken aback because this beer followed a #9 in my evening so the dichotomy of the two was very interesting.

Overall i really was surprised and enjoyed this beer, not the best beer ive ever had, however i enjoyed the contrast between howl and #9. With some wintery mix falling outside this was a nice warm rich beer for a cold evening.

droobacca, Feb 22, 2011
Photo of bens0n
4.33/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer pours an opaque dark brown with an enormous amount of long-lasting, fluffy, creamy tan head that laces the glass with every slight disturbance.

It has a mild roasted coffee smell with some chocolaty undertones, but the roasted coffee is the most prevalent.

Up front its pretty bland, you can pick up on some of the malty goodness but the pinnacle of the flavor in this brew comes out at the end. It has a lovely roasted coffee taste and warms you up; which reminds you that this is definitely a winter seasonal brew.

This beer is not exceptionally thick, but the creamy head is what makes it go down so smooth, I could have easily downed the entire 6 pack in 1 sitting it was so drinkable.

bens0n, Nov 28, 2010
Photo of beerguru15
4.33/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I received the Winter sampler pack for Christmas and am enjoying the Howl, also known as Black as Winter Night beer tonight.

When pouring the beer it's defiantly as described..this beer is a really dark brown color that leaves a light tan head that lingers.

when smelling the beer you're presented with the pleasant smell of chocolate and some roasted malt.

When tasting the beer you're hit with a somewhat strong - but smooth taste of chocolate, malt and a little bit of coffee. Perfect for a stout and for a winter beer!

The mouthfeel on this beer is medium, the effects aren't as relevant but it does linger to a degree.

the drinkability part of beer is dead on, as it goes down really smooth and makes you want to go back for more. Plus with it being only 4.6, you're more than welcome to continue as it's not like most schwarzbiers in that category.

Overall I was quite pleased with this beer and found it enjoyable. This is a perfect beer to drink during the winter time and during the times where you just want to relax and have a beer in the cold weather.

beerguru15, Feb 19, 2011
Photo of NuggetNectar22
4.33/5  rDev +18%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Great beer! Perfect for winter. Nice roasted, caramal taste.
There was a nice foamy head on the beer after I poured it. The smell is truly fantasic. The body is full, but not thick like a stout.

Magic Hat nailed it with this brew. Stay inside and drink a few of these to keep you warm during the winter.

Enjoy, Cheers!

NuggetNectar22, Dec 04, 2010
Photo of Daktyls
4.33/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of the reasons to love the season.

A: Pours motor-oil black with a very small tan head which dissipates to a nice fine lacing on the top.

S: Smells of roasted coffee beans and dark, bitter chocolates. A very faint aroma of licorice and dark fruits is present as well. Some roasted malts are also detectable.

T: Coffee, bitter chocolates and roasted grains are immediately present. There is also a slight smokey taste followed by some maltiness.

M: Quite a bit of carbonation here with almost a watery feeling on the tongue, which is a little discerning, but does not distract from the overall feel, which is still quite good.

D: Very drinkable, this has consistently been a "go-to" beer for my winter season. I look forward to it coming out each year.

Daktyls, Dec 02, 2010
Photo of thegodfather1076
4.35/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out of a 12oz. bottle into a glass...

Presentation - Awesome label, artwork, and coloring as is always the case with Magic Hat beers.

Appearance - A deep dark brown almost black color with a very nice light tannish head that follows the beer nicely down the glass as it is consumed...

Smell - Rosted coffee and a dark chocolate smell are very pleasent and noticeable...

Taste - Can definitely taste the rosted coffee malts all the way through this beer with a slight hint of dark chocolate...Hops r just right and do not over-power the other flavors in this offering...

Mouthfeel - Much ligher than would b expected with a beer like this...Very smooth with only a slight carbonation

Drinkability - This beer is very drinkable for a dark beer because of its light attributes...

I really enjoyed this beer and would def buy again...A very nice light alternative to a porter with alot of the same flavor characteristics...

thegodfather1076, Nov 06, 2010
Photo of CaptJackHarkness
4.35/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Twelve ounce bottle, cap says " Undressing. Distressing or a Blessing?"

Pours a very deep shade of brown with large frothy beige/tan head. Head sadly reduces quickly though. Aroma of spiced coffee and Chocolate. Taste is Coffee and hops, perfectly balanced. Good feel on the tounge, warming and welcome.

CaptJackHarkness, Dec 15, 2011
Howl from Magic Hat Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 935 ratings.