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Demo - Magic Hat Brewing Company

Not Rated.
DemoDemo

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
79
okay

403 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 403
Reviews: 139
rAvg: 3.44
pDev: 15.12%
Wants: 5
Gots: 18 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Magic Hat Brewing Company visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: NEhophead on 01-13-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Demo is a deliciously dark lick of an India Pale Ale. It’s medley of roasted malts and heady hops will have your senses dancing to the beat of a different I.P.A.

45 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 403 | Reviews: 139
Photo of VelvetExtract
3.29/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours an extremely dark color. Nearing black. Looks more like a stout than anything else. Head is very attractive. Frothy head that is not too tall but retains its minimal stature and remind me of a frothed espresso drink. Head laces like a dream as well.

S-Soapy hop aroma is the most prevalent scent. Also a mix of floral and pined hops with coffee roast. Plenty of coffee in the nose. The hop profile is not overly attractive however.

T-Still soapy. Like a cup of coffee that didn't have the soap washed out properly. Aside from that, the pine and grass hops are back. Plenty of coffee again, but the mixture of flavors doesn't work well.

M-Pretty light, good amounts of carbonation too. The feel is npt the problem here whatsoever. A bit creamy too.

O/D-Overall I did not love this brew. Flavors were coarse and didn't flow. I am all about raw flavors in my beer, but this one just didn't meld well within itself. Not too bad, but this beer is evidence why some people avoid Black IPAs. Flavors collide too drastically.

Photo of ROGUE16
3/5  rDev -12.8%

Photo of williamjbauer
3.75/5  rDev +9%

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.11/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Part of the new 12 pack.
Enjoy by Apr 30 2011.
Oh boy. Another black IPA. In a pint glass the beer was a dark brown color with a thin tan head. There was a bunch of light brown particulate matter suspended in the beer.
Roasted malt aroma with some floral/herbal hops.
Chocolate and coffee taste, late piney hops.
Pretty bitter (and not in a nice way) mouthfeel.
This was unappetizing and didn't taste that great. I've had two, and I'm going to try to palm off the last one on my son-in-law.

Photo of Gmann
3.26/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown color with a bunch of small particles floating about. The head is a toasted khaki color, fairly dense and rocky. Some lacing left on the glass.

The aroma is not very strong, especially for an IPA of sorts. There are light hints of a roasted malt and a barely there hint of hops. There is a bit of a twang in the aroma.

There is a decent hop flavor. Some lime citrus and a leafy fresh hop. There is some cola and roasted nut flavor from the malt, kinda has a home brew flavor to it. Some sour tea like flavors round out the brew.

The feel is light and very carbonated. Sits fairly balanced on the palate, sort of twangy and bitter.

There is some decent flavors and the beer drinks fine. Is it a great "Black Ale", no, not close but its not bad.

Photo of gtermi
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of WDJersey
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of Bung
3.53/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz. A pretty much black pour, a light tan head on top. Kind if frothy appearing.

Aroma, lots of cocoa and roast malt. Almost like an American stout. Some herbal notes.

Taste, dry roast malt, chocolate, cocoa. Almost a lactose like quality. Finish coffee. Barely any trace of a hop.

Light side of medium, adequate carbonation. A carbonated mocha coffee. Drinks pretty easy.

Really odd one here. IPA fans will certainly be disappointed. For some reason I kind of dig it, but wouldn't call it much of a dark cascade.

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
2.73/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

L - dark brown color with a tight beige head that left a decent amount of lacing behind.

S - roasted malt and a hint of cocoa powder, no real aroma of any hops.

T - roasted malt sweetness upfront with the slightest hint of bitterness midway with an odd bitter to sticky sweet finish.

F - medium bodied with a crisp feel.

D - it went down easy.

Photo of aztraz
2/5  rDev -41.9%

Photo of david18
3.33/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I had a sixteen ounce pour of this at the Amsterdam Ale House in Manhattan's Upper West Side. It was listed as a Black IPA, which I thought was a little bit of an exaggeration. Not quite as hoppy as that.

Color was very dark with a dark head as well. Nice carbonation at first but it dissipated pretty quickly.

Aroma was of light hops and some dark roast. Not bad but i wished I was getting more from it.

Flavor also featured some roast and a little bit of hops. The balance was good but the overall flavor was not among my favorites.

Overall an ok beer. Try it if you see it but didn't blow me away.

Photo of BMMillsy
3.23/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Not a terrible black ipa, but still not great. Pours a light brown with small white head. Aroma is some roast, a good bit of pine, some light chocolate sweetness, and a bit of caramel. Roasty malt character with a slightly watered down taste, brief hints of citrus on the back end. Relatively light bodied, medium carbonation. Magic Hat continues to be a small step above some other, but not much else.

Photo of JamLand
3.25/5  rDev -5.5%

Photo of thecheapies
3.35/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Coffee black. Foamy head, eggshell color. Holding okay. 3.5

Baltic porter-like in the nose. Roasty with dusted cocoa and coffee in the nose. Earthy malts and herbal hops. 3.5

Very roasty and showing a lot of booze. Salty mineral notes with obvious coffee and chocolate. Strange wheat cereal in the finish. Sparse berry notes, but an otherwise dry black ale. 3.5

Medium carbonation and a medium body. Drinkable but with a booziness. 3.0

Average black ale. More malt bitterness than hop bitterness and obscured hop flavors. Bit of a misnomer. 3.0

Photo of homebrew311
2.69/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Grabbed this as part of a mix 6 for the purpose of reviewing. Pours black, like a stout, some cocoa colored head with fair retention. The nose is predominantly roasty with notes of chocolate and roasted barley. I am not getting the big hop profile that I'd expect from an ABA, instead this smells more like a porter/stout. The taste is roasty like the nose with a very mellow flavor. Some hop character makes its way to the surface towards the finish, but it seems to clash with the roasted profile that is happening. This brew has an identity crisis, as the dark malts and the piney hops compete for the spotlight. With that being said, the balance is a little off. The mouthfeel is thin with moderate carbonation. There is a wateriness to this beer as well. Overall, I would say pass on this. Magic Hat certainly does some interesting things on the branding/marketing side of things, but the product inside the bottle is lackluster and forgettable.

Photo of rlee1390
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Black-ish, when put up to light looks more of a dark brown. 1/2 a finger of head but leaves behind great lacing.

S-Coffee, licorice and burnt malts. Not much hops though.

T-Starts with the coffee and burnt malts that are in the nose. However lacks in bitterness. For what Magic Hat describes as a Black IPA (not trying to start the name of the style debate here) where is the bitterness???

M-Medium bodied with little carbonation.

D-Bought a single of this to avoid the spring mix pack. Easily the worst of the IPA on Tour, but the previous three were all solid beers.

Photo of ngeunit1
3.48/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a dark brown black color with a finger of frothy tan-brown head. The head has pretty good retention and laces nicely.

S - Aroma is full of sweet lightly roasted carmel malts. There is also some sweet chocolate and some coffee elements that break through.

T - Starts off with some chocolate flavor and some roasted sweet carmel malts. A little bit of coffee flavor in the background. Just a touch of hops come through in the middle with more chocolate flavor and roasted flavor. The finish is fairly sweet with a some brown sugar flavor and toffee malt. Finish feels a little bit off.

M - Medium-light to medium bodied with moderate assertive carbonation. Feels even a bit creamy at times with a slightly syrupy finish left behind.

D - Fairly drinkable. Resembles more of a porter than an American Black Ale with the rather low hop presence. The flavors are pretty nice up finish with feels a bit off.

Photo of Metalmonk
3.91/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nothing pale about this one, but nothing that black about it either. So, it's a very dark IPA and a hardly-black Black Ale. Color is a dark reddish brown, mahogany maybe, and the head is a fluffy, creamy, meringue-firm sort of dirty white. I dig.

Nose is truer to style than its appearance. Lightly burnt grains, hint of smoke, citrus-y hops -- very clean despite the "something's burnt" element. Truth be told, not as burnt smelling as many others in this style. Everything is balanced well, the somewhat conflicting citrus and charred grain aspects mingling nicely.

Appearance would indicate that the burnt taste of many ABAs is going to be lesser here, and it is. You get more of a nice caramel-y, smoky toffee kind of taste instead, and the citrus-like hops don't abrade against that but instead mesh well within. The burnt aspect comes in the finish, and plays tricks on your tongue (burnt or fruity, or burnt fruit?). The feel is smooth and airy, soft and slick, and keeps Demo's drinkability high.

Gotta love the label, a 45 rpm demo record label. Very good beer too, a slightly different take on the style. But for their "IPA on Tour" series, I'm most anxious for the return of Encore.

Photo of wedge
3.66/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

"Nuthin' to It but to do it!"

Very dark, opaque brown color under a huge, chunky, milk-shake head. Lacing all the way down the glass. Light grassy hops over some roasted malt, creamy coffee, and nuts. Quite mild overall, though it improves as it warms. Heavier roast in the flavor: bitter chocolate, black malt, and some piney hops laying underneath. Much nicer as it warms up. Dry, smooth, medium body. Although this isn't much of a "Black IPA", it is a tasty beer. I could drink a few of these and be perfectly happy.

Photo of buckyp
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of ThePorterSorter
3.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance:
The beer pours a dark black with brown highlights around the edges. Little head/lacing, but copious amounts of dense particles floating (almost stationary) around my glass...I give points to beers that aren't ashamed to show where they came from.
The head that was visible for a brief minute appeared to be a light tan.

Smell:
I made the slight mistake of judging this beer as a "cold server," but upon reconsideration, I would have liked to see how this beer smelled at warmer temperatures.
Although I am slightly desensitized to hops, there is still a slight bitterness. However, a majority of this beer is devoted to a burnt toffee/caramel malt. A little aeration goes a long way with this beer.
Also, a little more alcohol really would have helped to crank up some of the aromas this beer is hiding.

Taste:
Initially I'm only getting rich, toasty malts with hints of the hops that would qualify this beer as being on an "IPA tour." Although initial impressions of a beer can go a long way, the truth unfolds to reveal this beer's true balance between a lingering burnt/bitter aftertaste and initial sweet/burnt maltiness. All prejudices aside, this is one of the better Magic Hats I've tasted in a long time.

Mouthfeel:
Roasted malt up front with a toffee sweetness that follows. The aftertaste is bitter, but the palate is still coated heavily with roasted malt.
No heavy alcohol and the body is between medium-full.
My only major complaint is I would have liked to get more hops upfront.

Overall (Drinkability):
Smooth, easy to drink, can drive home after having a couple.
I paid $0 for this beer, snagged it out of a friend's variety pack (which was fair priced to begin with). I appreciate Magic Hat's efforts to produce different "IPAs on tour" to try and tap into the east coast IPA market, but a huge "under-hopping" leaves this beer out of its league.
With great beer comes great responsibility. I feel responsible to stand up to this beer/brewery that has had their name run through the muck after their recent acquisition by Anheuser; I think Magic Hat is making an effort...so far it's just not enough.

Cheers.

Photo of rarbring
3.53/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer is very dark brown, has a huge tan head that leaves some lacing, rather small curtains.

Smelling of toast, dark roasted coffee, smoked meat and chocolate.

Starting with burned toast, dark coffee beans, bitter high grade chocolate, a few sprinkles of brown sugar and soy sauce.

Medium high carbonation, rather watery and a medium body, a coarse dry finish.

Well it's black, more than IPA. Miss some body and maybe more sweetness and less bitterness might have been good.

Photo of Redrover
3.32/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From the mixed 12 pack, poured into a pint glass, the beer is dark brown a beige head and tons of sediment. Is that supposed to be in there? It covers the bottom of the glass and is suspended through out.

Roasted malts and dark fruit in the nose. For a black IPA, I'm not getting many hops.

The taste is of roasted malts, a bit of coffee, raisins and brown sugar. This would be a decent brown or black ale, but I do want a few hops in my IPA.

The mouth has heft, but the sediment is course.

All-in-all, this was a bit of a miss for me.

Photo of Herky21
3.25/5  rDev -5.5%

Photo of KTCamm
3.78/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Pours dark black with some off white foam. Slight patchy on top. Roasted coffee smell. Dark chocolate too. Light mild pine-hop taste buried in an espresso malt. More Malt than bitter. Somewhat of a bitter remains, but mild. Some carbonation. Enjoyable.

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Demo from Magic Hat Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 403 ratings.