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Howl - Magic Hat Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

945 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 945
Reviews: 434
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 14.44%
Wants: 34
Gots: 46 | 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: 945 | Reviews: 434 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rwilde
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

rwilde, Jan 21, 2012
Photo of bcal16
3/5  rDev -18.3%

bcal16, Jan 20, 2012
Photo of JAHMUR
2.5/5  rDev -31.9%

JAHMUR, Jan 20, 2012
Photo of plusorminus
4/5  rDev +9%

plusorminus, Jan 20, 2012
Photo of BeerNoobNC
4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark black color. Didn't get much when I smelled it. The beer is lighter in body than it looks, which is typical of this style. This dark beer is actually very smooth and drinkable. The taste is good. There is a malty taste with a hint of chocolate or coffee and maybe a hint of hops in there. Overall, this might be the best I have had in this style. I have only had a few, but they have all been good, so that actually is a good thing. I recommend giving it a try, though you might want to avoid the variety pack and get just a 6-pack of this.

BeerNoobNC, Jan 20, 2012
Photo of tommyd313
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

tommyd313, Jan 20, 2012
Photo of RKel888
4/5  rDev +9%

RKel888, Jan 19, 2012
Photo of Frozer
3.63/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-Poured in t a pint glass...Very dark brown, almost black but you can still see a dark brown tint along the edges of the glass. About 1 finger of light brown head sits atop. Virtually no lacing as I sip this one.

S-Heavy malty smell, cannot trace any hops aroma

T-An "in your face" amount of smokey flavor up front, almost overwhelming. I spicy after taste that surprisingly overpowers the initial smoke flavor.

M- Good amount of carbonation. I was expecting a little less based solely on the dark appearance of this beer.

O-Overall I enjoyed the beer. After drinking about half a glass I became accustomed to the smokey flavor. It is complemented quite well with the roasty/spicy finish.

Frozer, Jan 19, 2012
Photo of ajaxivan
3.4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

An acquaintance of mine gave me a case of this for doing him a favor. This is something I wouldn't have bought for my self, here it goes.

A: Nice and dark with a good looking tan head.

S: Nothing to write home about, slightly sweet dark fruit, touch of spice with some chocolate.

T: The slight hop bitterness works well with the subtle smokiness. A little chocolate comes through with some spice.

M: A little thin, carbonation is spot on.

Overall, I was pleasantly surprised with this one. I haven't had many Magic Hat offerings in many years and this is not bad at all. I'm also not really one for lagers and this is a good change of pace for me. I would recommend this especially if looking for a beer with alot of flavor and low abv.

ajaxivan, Jan 18, 2012
Photo of mbabble
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

mbabble, Jan 18, 2012
Photo of VelvetExtract
3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours akin to Pepsi. Bigger frothy head is born. Head is consistent and leaves lightning bolt lacing patterns. I can barely see through this beer.

S-Smells like a Porter. Roasty and surprisingly quite smoky. Light chocolate as well. I think the smoke is the most noticeable aspect of the nose. Certainly more brawny than I was expecting. Actually a bit excited to try this.

T-Chocolate comes out more in the flavor. Underlying smoky character. Roasted coffee beans strictly in the finish. Good dose of coffee at the end to be exact. Definitely has more flavor than I expected.

M-Medium body with enough carbonation. Not too much lasting feel.

O/D-Better than I was expecting. A pretty good glass. Magic Hat will come up and surprise you every-so-often. Hard to find fault with this one.

VelvetExtract, Jan 18, 2012
Photo of psuKinger
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle given to me by my neighbor Brian as part of a Christmas 6-pack. Many thanks to him for that.

Bottle poured into a standard nonic.

A: Pours a dark shade of brown with an off-white head on top, half a fingers worth, that stuck around for a while.

S: Strong notes of cocoa and a touch of spice, with "roasty" charachter underneath.

T: Nice roasty charachter here, lots of flavor for such a low ABV beer. Notes of cocoa and roasted malts, with a nice twang of dry bitter hops and a touch of grapefruit on the back end.

At 4.6%, there's considerably more flavor in here than I would have anticipated. Good balance, and more than just a 1-trick-pony, too.

M: Normally I'd like a little more CO2 in a lager, but this isn't a typical lager. Carbonation is appropriate. And a nice amount of hop residue on the finish. A little light and thin, but that's to be expected at 4.6% ABV.

D/O: A surprisingly enjoyable beer. When I hear "Magic Hat" and "Lager", my expectations are immediately lowered. But this far-and-away surpassed that. A very drinkable beer, and overall, a treat. I look forward to my next one.

psuKinger, Jan 18, 2012
Photo of miishka3
4/5  rDev +9%

miishka3, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of CBlack85
3.9/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a DFH shaped pint glass.

Beer pours a deep dark brown (nearly black) with lots of ruby highlights when held up to the light. About two fingers worth of tan head recedes into a thin crown fairly quickly, leaving behind a small amount of lacing.

The aroma is mild, but enjoyable. It is comprised mainly of roasted malts, chocolate, and a mild coffee aroma. There are also an earthy quality. No real hop aroma to speak of.

The flavor is fairly well balanced between the roasted grains, caramel malts, coffee and chocolate. To a lesser degree there is a faint smokiness, and a light hop presence that is barely noticable. Medium bodied and moderately carbonated. Very easy to drink.

One of my favorite styles, and this one doesn't disappoint. I went into this beer with low expectations, but was pleasantly surprised.

CBlack85, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of tzieser
3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from a 12oz bottle into a standard pint glass.

a: black in color with a fluffy white head that settles into a thin lacing.

s: roasted malt. not much more to say

t: lots of roasted malt flavor with notes of burnt grain, bittersweet chocolate and hints of tobacco. finishes clean.

m: good mouthfeel.

a solid black lager. reminds me of Full Sail's Session Black Lager and brings back fond memories of Buzzards Bay Black Lager (though not nearly as delicious IMO).

tzieser, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of Arithmeticus
3.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured chilled in large dessert glass

A: solid black; good sized head drops down pretty quickly; black; good carbonation
S: toasted grains, doughy malt
T: nice balance of (prominent) toasted grains, (prominent) malt, and (light) hops; semisweet; not bitter; not complex; very drinkable

Not bad; good sessionable beer

Arithmeticus, Jan 15, 2012
Photo of laicha926
3/5  rDev -18.3%

laicha926, Jan 15, 2012
Photo of imperialking
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

imperialking, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of Corpsehoagie
3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After.being very disappointed with a magic hat variety pack.(my first and last magic hat experience) I was reluctant to try this one. Black lager was right up my alley but my previous magic hat scars were still there. It wasn't until the town drunk came into my work and insisted that I try it.
My first sip was a huge surprise, it didn't suck. Not only that but it was an excellent beer, I sucked down that six pack in no time.

Corpsehoagie, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of jpd7374
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

jpd7374, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of LookingToLearn
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

LookingToLearn, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of Rob315
4/5  rDev +9%

Rob315, Jan 12, 2012
Photo of BeardedRiker
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

You know, I think this might be my first Magic Hat beer. It seems that most of their beers are pretty good. A friend left a six pack of these so I took one for me to review. I used to not care for black lagers/schwarzbiers at all but over the past few years I'm starting to like them a lot. Locally, Rahr & Sons makes their Ugly Pug black lager and I think it's one of their best. I think what I like about the style is that it is easy to drink and has the roasty flavors I enjoy so much in porters and stouts.

This schwarzbier looks black, and it does look like that, but when held up to light it has more of a dark brown, slight ruby color to it. It's also a bit murky as well. I think there's some sediment in there as well. I hope that's not a bad thing. :P The head looked nice. It formed a little slowly with the surface looking pretty creamy and underneath it was more bubbly. It was about a finger and a half high and tan.

I get mostly mealy, malty, and nutty aromas. The roasted coffee and cocoa aromas are underneath, as is a sort of burnt sugar sweetness. The smell becomes easier to notice as the beer warms.

The roasted coffee and chocolate flavors are more pronounced in the taste than in the smell, although they show up in the middle and linger the longest. Up front is minimal hop bitterness and the mealiness I got from the smell. Sweetness is pretty strong, like caramel or brown sugar, and it stays on the tongue for awhile.

Carbonation is medium and it keeps alive what overall is a smooth beer that is just barely sticky at the end from the sweetness. It's definitely drinkable, as it should be. Nothing bad but nothing great.

This is another black lager I've enjoyed and now I can say that the only Magic Hat beer I've had is one I've enjoyed.

BeardedRiker, Jan 12, 2012
Howl from Magic Hat Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 945 ratings.