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Howl - Magic Hat Brewing Company


Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

898 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 898
Reviews: 435
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 14.13%

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)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 898 | Reviews: 435 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of jtierney89

New Jersey

1.65/5  rDev -55.2%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

pours pretty dark, but not black, more a very deep brown. Head retention has been amazing. Smells heavily of charcoal, leather and bitter coffee. Not the most appetizing of scents. Medium to light in body with some toffee caramel and chocolate tastes present but coffee flavor dominates the beer once it finishes. I don't know what to pin point about the beer exactly that I don't like, but im not liking. It might be the flavors, possibly if they were a bit subdued it'd be alright but the flavors present in this beer aren't the flavors I wanna be punched in the face with.

Serving type: on-tap

11-28-2011 01:41:31 | More by jtierney89
Photo of Knapp85


3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got to have this up at the brewery before it was even released a few years ago. Kind of exciting I thought. The beer poured out really dark even for being a sampling glass. The light that could get through just gave off a red hue inside the glass. The head was thin but has a light brown color to it. The smell of the beer was a lot like a German Lager with some roasted malts and chocolate in the mix. The taste of the beer gave off a lot of chocolate and dark malt flavors, it had a good bitterness to it as well. The mouthfeel was on the lighter side which I thought was impressive. Overall this beer isn't bad, I got to have it again from the bottle and it was still pretty good.

Serving type: on-tap

09-02-2011 04:17:16 | More by Knapp85
Photo of jmvecchio1


3.08/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The beer pours more of a dark brown, slightly red color. A thick head accompanies the pour, but fades to a strong lacing that lingers.

The smell is very sweet and with malty notes.

The taste is malty up front, but quickly fades to a sweet caramel that lingers after each sip.

Serving type: on-tap

07-16-2011 20:11:15 | More by jmvecchio1
Photo of CHickman

New York

3.95/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasting notes from winter 2010 (on tap): pours opaque brown with a small tan head that faded quickly, leaving very good lacing and rings.

Smells of roasted malt, toasted grains, molasses, syrup, caramel, smoked wood or charcoal, and light floral hops; nice roasted winter campfire aroma.

Tastes like it smells with sweet roasted malt, toasted grains, molasses, syrup, caramel, smoked wood, charcoal, brown sugar, bourbon, toffee, vanilla, coffee beans and light floral hops; really robust and tasty with just enough hops and other flavors to balance the roasted malts and sweetness.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, with light carbonation and a medium to heavy body. Medium drinkabiity, as with most winter warmer types, but a very good beer overall.

Serving type: on-tap

06-10-2011 03:46:38 | More by CHickman
Photo of ktrillionaire


3.75/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The brew pours a deep brown-black hue, and is capped with a tan-gray froth that quickly recedes to an encircling collar.

The nose is mineral-y and herbal, with just undertones of malt and roast. The flavor delivers a bit more malt and roast, in the form of some burnt toast notes. Mineral and herbal notes border on metallic, but stop short of unpleasantry. There is some unsweet cocoa or chicory astringency that develops, but overall the brew mostly stands out as moderately refereshing and easily drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

06-06-2011 00:08:45 | More by ktrillionaire
Photo of bierslaaf

South Africa

3.05/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours dark brown with almost no head. Slight lacing left on the glass. Coffee and roasted malt aroma with no distinctive hop present. Fairly low bitterness for a dark beer. Light body. I'd prefer this in summer. Flashiness lingers in the finish. Fairly average beer.

Serving type: on-tap

03-01-2011 18:24:17 | More by bierslaaf
Photo of king75


3.9/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-very dark, pitch black even, a solid inch of creamy colored head.

S-can pick up the scent of chocolate, coffee, and a smoky hickory aroma.

T- Am picking up a nice toned down dark chocolate flavor, a smooth hint of coffee, and a tinge of smoky flavor.

M- this one is medium bodied, smooth with a very light bitterness at the end, but yet very crisp.

D- a little too full bodied to drink several of, but for a good stand alone beer this one is solid.

Serving type: on-tap

02-16-2011 02:52:16 | More by king75
Photo of KTCamm

New Jersey

3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap at a local BBQ joint as the winter seasonal.

Pours dark black with wisps of white foam on tap. Slight roasted barley smell, but otherwise very faint. Smooth roasted taste, like a light stout. Some coffee notes. Very thin mouthfeel, more smooth than anything. Quite drinkable, lots of flavor, could be sessioned.

Serving type: on-tap

01-29-2011 23:23:31 | More by KTCamm
Photo of nrbw23


3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a really dark brown with a bit of ruby highlights. Appears to be pretty clear but its also pretty dark. Head is a tannish color that has pretty much no lacing and lacing.

S- Smells of roasted malts with a bit of sweet malitness. A bit of chocolate, smoke and I'm not really picking up any hops.

T- Taste is smoky grain, quite a bit of spice, nutty and a very light amount of coffee.

M- On the lighter side of medium in body and carbonation.

D- Not to bad at all. Pretty easy to drink. A pretty simple beer.

Serving type: on-tap

12-05-2010 17:06:03 | More by nrbw23
Photo of Cyberkedi


4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Comes out of the tap a deep opaque chocolaty sable with a fine-bubbled tan head that leaves some decent lacing. Aroma is rich and mainly of quality coffee with hints of molasses and unsweet chocolate. Rich, smoky coffee flavor has hints of chocolate, wood and toffee. Lively, fizzy texture leaves a nice tingle and hints of good mocha.

Serving type: on-tap

11-27-2010 03:38:47 | More by Cyberkedi
Photo of speter

New Jersey

3.43/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours nearly black (especially at the bar at Rattle N Hum), but a pocket light reveals ruby highlights, as the style demands.

S: Faint roasted barley, but little else.

T: Nice coffee notes beside an otherwise crisp, clean lager taste. Initial lager hop bitterness transitions into a dry, roasty center. The roastiness persists through into the aftertaste without becoming bitter.

M: Medium body with an average amount of carbonation.

D: Very drinkable. There is nothing overpowering or taxing about this beer (or the style in general), and thus nothing to tire your taste buds.

Serving type: on-tap

03-13-2010 03:41:24 | More by speter
Photo of cdizinno

South Carolina

2.9/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown with a thin tan head and minimal lacing.

S: Fruity sweetness with little or no hops.

T&M: Roasted molasses and caramel are prominent in the tast. Light to medium body with toasted caramel finish.

Better than most Magic Hat's, but weak in substance.

Serving type: on-tap

01-23-2010 21:26:02 | More by cdizinno
Photo of Boppar

New Hampshire

3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap in a pint glass.

A: Dark, dark brown with some ruby. It looks sort of like watered down molasses. Not as black as a porter, but certainly close. One inch of head.

S: Earthy hops, sweet malts.

T: Sweet malts, toffee, bittering hops on the finish.

M: The mouthfeel is medium-light and briskly carbonated.

D: Definitely a session beer.

Serving type: on-tap

01-23-2010 15:34:43 | More by Boppar
Photo of donniecuffs

New Jersey

3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

At the Cloverleaf Tavern, Caldwell NJ: poured into an American pint glass, mahogany with less than a finger of beige head and spotty lacing. Smelled of raisins, orange, and malt. Tasted of raisins, dates, molasses, and orange peel, with a dry finish. Medium-bodied; more carbonation than expected. The taste mix just didn't do it for me, hence I wouldn't consider sessioning this beer.

Serving type: on-tap

01-14-2010 05:13:46 | More by donniecuffs
Photo of Jayli


4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had at Not Your Average Joe's in Watertown, MA 1/4/10

A: This beer pours a deep almost opaque brown with slight mahogany edges. One finger of khaki colored head that recedes quickly sits on top. Nice sheets of lacing are left on the glass.

S: Nose is of chocolate, caramel malts, hint of smoke and coffee.

T: Taste starts with chocolate and caramel malts with the middle filled out by deep roasted malts. Touch of coffee, smokiness and burnt malts finish this beer.

M: Medium body, moderate carbonation, crisp light feel with a sticky finish.

D: Tasty, goes down easy, low ABV with a lot of flavor. This is a highly drinkable beer that you can sit with for an evening.

Serving type: on-tap

01-08-2010 13:48:32 | More by Jayli
Photo of MTNboy


3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It has a black opaque body with a brown hue. A dark tan almost brown head with very spread out lace. I thought the aroma was faint other than a burnt metal scent. It has a clean roasted malt taste with some mild hop tones. It is mainly like charred wood and grain with some spiciness that I can't quite place. The mouth feel is smooth but somewhat thin.

Serving type: on-tap

01-07-2010 20:57:35 | More by MTNboy
Photo of Boto


3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Draught @ Headkeeper: This one poured a dark, opaque brown color. There was as small tan head that dropped off quickly. The nose is good. First off you get some chocolate, then roasted malts. The taste is chocolaty, and a bit roasty and a bit dry. Nice.

Serving type: on-tap

12-20-2009 17:35:22 | More by Boto
Photo of taigor

New York

3.2/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap poured into pint glass.

A - Poured black, almost non-transparent color with medium head that slowly dissipated leaving a lot of lacing around edges of the glass.

S - Malts predominate right away, with hints of caramel, dark chocolate and oatmeal.

T - Malts and caramel sweetness upfront followed by dark chocolate, coffee bitterness later on.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

D - Ok, very good for winter season and abv is low.

Serving type: on-tap

12-16-2009 13:47:15 | More by taigor
Photo of TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap 12/13/09 at Doherty's East Ave Irish Pub in Pawtucket, RI, served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a short beige head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of roasted malts, coffee, lager yeast, some dark fruit and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with a dark roasted malt character followed by flavors of coffee and dark fruits. The sweetness isn't too heavy despite the maltiness and there's a decent balance. The hops presence is mild but complementary. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, slightly filling, mild kick, good representation of style, if you're in the mood for the style this is a good beer to drink for a while.

Serving type: on-tap

12-15-2009 01:47:39 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of ImusBeer


3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I'll try to update this later since when I tried this I had a bit of a cold.

It arrived in a 22oz mug, very black with a dark tan head and some thin lacing while I drank.

The only real thing I smelled was smokeyness from the roasted malts. The taste only added to the smoke and roasted malt aromas.

The mouthfeel as really thin, some bitter bite at end. A nice beer not very heavy nor too smokey, I could have had another.

Serving type: on-tap

12-11-2009 16:02:09 | More by ImusBeer
Photo of bonbright7


2.53/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I had this on tap at Bobbique in Patchogue, NY and was served this with a platter of ribs. I thought it looked fine with a small head and its aroma was okay with coffee tinged malts, but nothing fancy for a winter ale. When I got the first taste, I thought it must be the bbq ribs, so I had water and bread before trying again. It may have needed a little time to warm up after coming through a cold tap. It tasted like a black version of Euro- pale lagers with nothing in body or taste. Not bad, but no substance to it. I consumed half the pint and then moved on to something else.

Serving type: on-tap

11-30-2009 14:39:04 | More by bonbright7
Photo of Bung

North Carolina

3.65/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Blushing Monk Asheville. A very nice near black pour with a highly contrasting white head. Aroma is mild, roast/burnt malt and nut. Taste has the same, with some dark chocolates, smoke and ash. Thinner body than I would like, just a tad on the watery side. Finish is quite clean and dry. Drinkability is very high, especially with the abv. Aroma and flavor is a bit subdued compared to ones I've had that I liked more. But, I'd say this stuff was pretty good, especially for Magic Hat, which has some pretty mediocre brews.

Serving type: on-tap

11-08-2009 18:55:27 | More by Bung
Photo of kingcrowing


3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sample poured into a tasting glass at Magic Hat.

Pours a dark brown almost black, with a little lasing. Smell is very yeasty and roasty.

Taste is sweet, coffee and chocolate, low carbonation makes it very smooth and rich. Awesome winter beer, very tasty and malty, really surprising this is a lager!

Serving type: on-tap

10-16-2009 01:09:58 | More by kingcrowing
Photo of HardTarget


3.93/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I held this one longer than I should

Appearance: Black as night, doesn't even give a ruby edge when back lit. Holds a white halo of foam and a thin cover.

Smell: Mild searthy hop, cleanly fermented malt, roasted barley, a hint of smoke.

Taste: Some stout flavors, the roasted barley in particular, a slight almost lactic milk stout sweetness, then goes very clean and balanced. Finishes with a light chalky dryness.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, slick texture, firm but moderate carbonation.

Overall: A nice sipper! Good flavor kept in check, balanced, easy to enjoy.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2014 05:10:45 | More by HardTarget
Photo of luis_dibiase


4.55/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

great beer my first time having it my friend brought me a case when i ran out of my usual beer I opened up a bottle and took a sip it was delicious. It has a nice cream flavor to it nice black charred look and taste. great for watching the game and sipping on a hot day haivng a b.b.q my review overrall outstanding. unfortunalty its not for sale in my town i have to drive a ways from here.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2013 20:27:34 | More by luis_dibiase
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Howl from Magic Hat Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 898 ratings.