Black Magick | Voodoo Brewing Company

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Black MagickBlack Magick

Brewed by:
Voodoo Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 15.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
This is an Imperial Stout that is of great strength and complexity. We then gently age that beer in Elaigh Craig 13 1/2 year old Bourbon Barrels for 6 months to 1 yr. and then primed and bottled to bottle condition for continued aging and celler life. Black Magick should be able to be aged up to about 5 years, to heighten the complexity and smooth nature of this beer.

First Black Magick brewed in Feb 2007. Released 2009. = 15% ABV

Second Black Magick brewed in 2009 and released 2011. = 15.5% ABV

Added by WVbeergeek on 07-05-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 203 | Ratings: 314
Photo of largadeer
2.06/5  rDev -50.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Edit: Tried this again (thanks, Barry) and I didn't enjoy it at all. Lots of soy sauce and burnt malt, very acrid and difficult to drink.

12 oz unlabeled bottle acquired from Dyan. Thanks!

Appearance: Opaque black, nearly opaque even in the pour. Little head appears from a hard pour, which is no surprise given the nature of this beer. Swirling the beer around coats the glass in a thick, oily residue.

Smell: Big bourbon barrel aromas are the first thing noticed, with charred malt, hints of dried fruit, a bit of sherry-like oxidation. Doesn't smell terribly sweet, which came as a surprise.

Taste & mouthfeel: Baker's chocolate, burnt bitterness and overt bourbon barrel. There isn't as much vanilla or caramel as I would have expected, however; this is on the dry side given the rumored 18% ABV. There's also very little harshness from the alcohol, and the finish is actually very clean. The oak character is more tannic than sweet, which pairs well with the faint sherry-like notes of oxidation. Medium-full in texture, somewhat lighter than I had expected given the strength - a touch more body and sweetness would be an improvement. Pretty good stuff all the same, I'd drink it again.

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Photo of waltonc
2.08/5  rDev -49.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Picked this up in a recent trade.

A: pitch black and virtually no head at all. Poured more like black juice than beer. A troubling start to the beverage.

S: Super boozy smell, tons of dark fruit in here, rum-soaked-raisins, bourbon.

T: Again, the dark fruits are very strong, there's bourbon, and at 15% ABV, the alcohol is hot. Not super sweet. Kind of dry, in fact.

M: Medium bodied, very low carbonation.

D: Very off-putting and out of whack. Super high ABV coupled with low carbonation and strong dark fruit notes don't work for me. I'll probably end up pouring out some of this. As far as super strong bourbon stouts go, I'll take a Goose Island BCS over this every time, especially given the price tag on this one.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
2.11/5  rDev -49%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Thanks to ipa247 (Jeff) for this one. Unlabeled 12oz. bottle poured into a Darkness snifter. Shared with schen9303.

A: Standard pour yields no head... so I extend it... and still nothing. Beer is thicker than motor oil and darker too. Lacing is spotty and and sparse with moderate cling. Nice legs though. Not the best looking but damn... may be the thickest imperial stout I've seen to date.

S: Nose is outrageously aromatic and strong. Booze hits full force right at the beginning. Notes of vanilla, roasted malt, liquorice, brownie mix, creamy hops, and chocolate linger in the background. Make no mistake about it... this is very one-sided... and not a good side either.

T: Opens very roasty and boozy. Ethanol and roasted dark fruit bitterness create an awkward combination at the start. Liquorice and stale sweet soy sauce towards the middle. Abrasive chocolate, bitter cocoa powder, creamy hops, and liquorice at the end. Finish is more roasted dark fruit and cocoa powder. Aftertaste is bitter cocoa powder and some bittersweet chocolate. Too much booze and not enough complexity. The flavor that is present is awkward. Not impressed at all.

M: Medium bodied and moderately carbonated. Oily and thick in the mouth but bubbly and prickly going down. Finish is messy with a lingering aftertaste. Rather standard but the body is light for how it looks and at 15.5% ABV, this actually tastes STRONGER than it actually is... which is a feat in itself.

O: This beer is sought after?!? I don't understand it in the least or else I'm entirely missing something here but this is not a good beer. Too much booze, not enough flavor, and every other aspect is barely average. Pass... its not nearly worth the effort.

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Photo of womencantsail
2.22/5  rDev -46.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

Thanks to Steve for sending me this beer.

A: The pour is very dark brown, almost black. Very small to no off-white head.

S: Super boozy with a lot of roasted malt aroma. Somewhat solventy with an ashy aroma to it as well. More than anything, though, the nose is booze.

T: The flavor is overly harsh and boozy as well. I guess some booze is expected at such a high ABV, but this is just too much. Lots of roasted malt and charred flavor. Not really enjoyable. Maybe some tannic oak-type notes.

M: Medium to full in body with a moderate carbonation.

O: Couldn't even finish more than a few ounces of this.

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Photo of Thorpe429
2.31/5  rDev -44.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Reviewed from notes. Thanks to bmanning for this bottle. Opened at a tasting nearly a year ago.

Pours near black with zero head retention. A thin whisp of a mocha head comes with the initial pour, but that is gone quite quickly. The nose really, really brings on a boozy character with some bourbon and sharp oak as well. A bit of roasted malt as well as chocolate and vanilla. All these things smell like they've been soaked in booze. The taste is booze and oak with mild hints of flavor in the background. A little bit of smoke and roast as well as really dark chocolate. The mouthfeel is completely boozy and a bit viscous. Drinkability is quite low, as this is just a bourbon booze monster.

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Photo of nickd717
2.33/5  rDev -43.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

12oz bottle thanks to bring.

Pours black and thick with a minimal head on the beer.

Aroma is soy sauce, roast, bourbon, and booze. Intense.

Flavor is also very intense and soy saucey. Roasty with anise, charcoal, and alcohol. A little too reminiscent of Sam Adams Triple Bock.

Really full-bodied with extremely low carbonation and a slick palate.

Really undrinkable in large amounts, even a ticker's 2oz pour.

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Photo of corby112
2.9/5  rDev -30%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

From notes:

Pours pitch black and completely opaque with a two finger, frothy dark mocha head that quickly fades into a lasting ring. Minimal spots of lacing.

Roasted chocolate malt aroma with a slightly acrid character. Hints of roasted coffee bean, burnt toast and a huge bourbon presence. The barrel aging gives off a dominant bourbon presence as well as some earthy oak and vanilla.

Chewy medium body with roasted chocolate malt, sweet alcohol notes and a huge bourbon flavor. This beer is almost a complete bourbon bomb and needs a lot of time t mellow out. There is some slight roasted malt, chocolate and toffee. Unfortunately this is overpowered by the overbearing bourbon/booze presence. Subtle hints of earthy oak and vanilla but overall this beer is kind of a one dimensional mess at this stage.

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Photo of BigMike
2.95/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This is one beer that i've been dying to try. I'm a real big fan of Voodoo brewing.

A: Pours dark as used motor oil. No light penetration what so ever. No head to be seen.

S: One sniff reveals what i thought. This is a huge ass barrel aged stout. Alcohol, burnt chocolate, black licorice, bourbon, charred ash, coffee, alcohol.

T: Holy hell this thing is big. Alcohol burn out the ass. Like the nose there's, licorice and charred ash tray. Coffee oak and vanilla.
Overall it's dominated by a burnt alcohol flavor. Very sweet and sticky on the finish.

M: Like an oil slick. This thing coats your entire mouth with alcohol burn and sticky chocolate.

Overall: Not the easy drinker like their BBVD is. And surely doesn't make any attempts at hiding the 15%abv. This is an ass kicker for sure. Proceed with caution!

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Photo of orbitalr0x
3.17/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Deep dark black pour with virtually no head, almost looks still in the glass. Syrupy entrails cling to the side of the top of the glass. Aromas of bold dark malts that are somewhat roasted with lots of dark fruits and a backbone that's boozy and has some soy sauce accents as well. Slightly smoky to boot. A bit odd.

First sip brings a blast of big roasted malts upfront. Somewhat sweet and syrupy with lots of fruit flavors along with a dose of smokiness. Boozy accents hit midway down and bring in some big, slightly overbearing alcohol heat. Overly extreme in my opinion.

Mouthfeel is thick and again slightly syrupy. A bit too much residual sweetness and alcohol here. I think this one could have been better if the abv was ratcheted down a few notches. Thanks to autumnaldave for sharing the 12oz bottle, as 6oz of this was more than enough - not a big fan of this one now but maybe some age on it would help.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.18/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle thanks to Mike, poured into my Narke tulip... A typical flat ba pour, a light tan ring presents briefly, a deep black body... The aroma smells a little like a black sharpie with some bourbon and alcohol, boring and simple... This is really hot with even more black sharpie and the finish is hot with lots of peat and way too much alcohol.

Not liking this at all. Pass.

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Photo of sweemzander
3.23/5  rDev -22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle poured into a snifter. Most recent vintage that was released in 2011.

(A)- Pours fairly thick and pitch black. Produced a very subtle tan froth and bubbles. Not surprising considering the massive ABV on this bad boy.

(S)- Very dry and boozy. Hints at raisin and molasses. Definitely heavy in oaky and bourbon aromas.

(T)- Similar to the smell in every way. Very boozy and oaky; the bourbon has really completely taken this beer over and made it its own.

(M)- A great carbonation level actually, thought the high ABV heat is very prevalent and hot, yet not has potent as I was expecting.

(D)- Like I said, the bourbon has definitely taken this one over and has made it its own. Very boozy and hot with primarily bourbon flavors and aromas. If you are looking for a stout whose profile almost completely portrays a bourbon barrel, this is a good example.

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.28/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle shared by RoyMunson.

Pours black as night with no head at all on the pour. Inky black and devoid of anything.
Wow, what an intense nose on a beer. Don't think I have ever smelled any beer like this. It's hard to even discern what the hell is going on with so much going on.
Taste is bitter chocolate, and a little bit of roast, but there's a ton of alcohol. Due to the high abv the mouthfeel is thin as well.

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Photo of Overlord
3.28/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to JWelsh for the trade!

Pours black with, startling enough, kind of a ruddy bit of foam around the edges. Interesting, and unexpected. No real head. Just a thin crust of foam.

Smells like booze soaked dark fruits along with booze and bourbon soaked booze booze booze booze. And there's maybe some chocolate, oak, and vanilla in there. And booze. You can smell the bourbon from five feet away.

Taste is one of the most alcohol laden beers I can ever recall consuming. I've had stouts of 10-13% that hid their ABV much better than this 15% monster. It's like a souped up Kentucky Bourbon Stout. Big bourbon, chocolatey/roasted malt, and dark fruits galore, with some vanilla and oak to round it out. I'm actually surprised that the main characteristic of this flavor is the dark fruit, rather than chocolate, coffee, or the more typical double stout panoply. Fairly disappointing aroma/flavor package due to the heat.

Mouthfeel is, surprisingly, neither that thick, nor "chewy." It's not watery, mind you, but I was expecting a syrup.

Drinkable? Yeah ... for me maybe. But for me, it's a full-time thing (name that movie!).

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.38/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle courtesy of vwcraig. The first whiff is actually pretty nice and reminiscent of Goose Island Bourbon County Stout. Booze, chocolate cake, booze, alcohol and booze dominate the flavor and the aroma. The consistency is syrupy at times. This beer has good enough flavor and aroma if you can get past the high ABV which I cannot. I guess I juts don't really see the point of a 15% beer when 10% would work so much better on many levels.

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Photo of prototypic
3.43/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to guinnessdoc for sending me this bottle long, long ago.

Black Magick lives up to its name. It's onyx. Pitch black. No light's cutting through at all. Ominous and impressive. A thin layer of head just covers the surface. It's dark mocha colored and recedes very quickly. At 15.5% abv, it was born to die...quick.

The nose is alright, but doesn't blow me away. It has a strong, bittersweet dark chocolate scent initially. It's followed by a rather strong bourbon scent. It's a little much for my preference. I understand this was barrel aged for somewhere between 6 months and 1 year. Perhaps that was a little too long. Roasted coffee is noted. There are also light dark fruit and black currant scents. Smells slightly charred. Alcohol is easily noted, but it is 15.5% abv. Is that a surprise?

The flavor's pretty good. I'm debating the flavor score. It's definitely full of bittersweet, dark chocolate. The malt base is nice and rather sturdy. Roasted coffee blends well and adds subtle depth. Bourbon is strong in the mix. A little too strong for my preference. I prefer a more subtle, moderate approach. It has a light, tangy dark fruit flavor. Black currants, light molasses, and a charred flavor round it out. Alcohol is rather strong and warm. Boozy? Yeah, a little. But, I don't think it's overly hot. Go figure. Honestly, I think the flavor's just above average. It's too boozy and the strong bourbon flavor overpowers some of the other stout flavors.

Black Magick also has a medium body. It feels too thin. The label says this was brewed with 15 different malts. I'm surprised it doesn't have a fuller body. It needs it. Drinkability is average at best. The flavor's alright, but it's boozy and grows tiresome rather quick. It's also damn strong at 15.5%. Yeah, you read that right.

I'm honestly a little disappointed in Black Magick. It's alright, but could be dramatically better. The biggest problems are the overly strong booziness and the insufficient body. This would be much better if it were aged in barrels for 3 months and came in at about 10% abv. Add a little more heft and it'd probably be a real winner. As it is...just a little too extreme. Glad I got to try it out nonetheless. Thanks a ton, Josh.

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Photo of homebrew311
3.45/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to the Central PA crew for passing this along to our tasting group.

A: pour is dark, opaque, creamy looking head, minimal lacing

S: deep smokey notes, lots of molasses, some delicate vanilla, noticeable booziness on the end

T: the taste features a lot of chocolate and roasted character, but boy is it hot. There is very little balance as this is incredibly sweet with a burning alcohol character. Perhaps this needs some time to mellow, but the 15% is overwhelming and detracts from the beer at this point.

MF: thick body, syrupy and sticky

O: this one is just a little too much for me right. I would love to give this one another try with a year or two of age on it.

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Photo of Dubbercody
3.47/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Two different bottles, one with the paper label one without. Both brought to the Stouts tasting.

I'm really glad we all shared these two bottles. Wow what an awesome beer. Definitely a sipper and defiantly something to share (both the enjoyment of and the ABV of with friends.)

The beer is quite hot, but manageable. Would do well with some years on it. Thick and oily and really really enjoyable. Thanks to DA (and other) for bringing this treat.

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Photo of TheFightfan1
3.53/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Another one deleted ok I'll try again. I bought this at union jack's. Poured into snifter. Poured opague black with a little bit of a light brown heading that stuck around a bit.

Smell is mostly bourbon some darker fruits mixed in but for the most pat just heavy in alcohol,

Taste is pretty much the same. Like taking a shot of bourbon and chasing it with a stout. A little too heavy my liking. Some ashy like chocolate notes as well.

Mouth was very creamy and nice velvety texture. does get a little hot in the throat and belly from the hot alcohol.

I couldn't help but think this might be much better if it was aged to help the hot alcohol mellow out a bit.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.54/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a deep pitch-black stout with a motor oil consistency and a small foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of roasted malt is detectable but mainly dominated by bourbon notes. Taste is also dominated by bourbon notes with a bit too much alcohol for my taste with light vanilla finish. Body is full with good carbonation and alcohol is too apparent. Very well done but I can't say I enjoy barrel-aging with alcohol is so present.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.55/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Black, black, black. Dark tan head, small, but there. Leaves to ring fast. Not much lace.

S - Hot. Searing hot alcohol. Chocolate chip cookies, cocoa, brownies come to mind too.

T - Taste matches smell but more on the booze less on the other attributes. Surprising amounts of soy.

M - Thinner than you would think. Harsh. Hard to balance so much booze.

D - One is enough for me. Check please!

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Photo of raoulduke37
3.58/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

This is one very impressive and complex brew. I poured it into a Guinness pint and it looked like black death. Tan head for a split second but dissipated to almost nothing in about 2 minutes. No lacing around the glass at all. Looks mighty inviting, though, all that blackness. Smells like a very strong port wine, cherries, and strong malted aromas. Taste is extremely complex - grapes, dates, molasses, definitely some chocolate, and bits of vanilla from the aging barrels, no doubt. Very smooth on the way down, no agitation on the tongue or anywhere else. This is one brew, however, that I may not be able to finish. On second thought, there is no way I'm pouring this down the drain.

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Photo of Sean9689
3.58/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Mike for this one. 12oz bottle into CCB snifter.

A - Pours black, ever so small mocha-colored head which quickly vanishes into a thin ring around the glass.

S - Huge alcohol nose, some oak, char, strong day-old black coffee.

T - A bombardment of alcohol, oak, char, and big malty notes. Not very complex at the moment and is overly hot right now. Oak hot alcohol finish that's unappealing.

M - Full, viscous, slight carbonation.

O - Too hot for me at the moment. Some cellar time might do this one some good. I can't recommend this one at the moment but would like to try a bottle with some age on it and try again.

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Photo of AgentZero
3.6/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - A very black beer, pretty dead, with a small mocha head that didn't stick around long.

S - Oak, char, coffee, lot of booze and bourbon. Smells pretty hot, but at 15.5% that's expected. Some dark fruit notes.

T - This has a really full taste that is a ton of toffee, roasted malts, oak, and bourbon. Finish is just too hot, but the flavor profile does show some potential.

M - Thick and sludgy. Low carbonation.

O - This is a somewhat promising beer that may do better with age, but right now it is just too hot and too much.

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Photo of Phelps
3.64/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sent by sholland119 as part of the Blind Beers BIF. I poured it into my New Belgium globe. A fairly rough pour begets hardly any head at all -- the black syrup coming out of the wrapped bottle gives up just a few tan bubbles.

Smooth cocoa, a hint of anise, some molasses, a little maple, some lactose, hints of hops both piney and earthy.

I can tell this is a powerful stout. Ethanol is the major flavor contributor, assaulting tongue, throat and nostrils with trip to the lips. Beneath the booze, some dark fruits (plums, prunes) can be detected along with dark chocolate, anise, toast and a smooth nuttiness. Earthy hops are here as well.

The body is as ginormous as I expect the alcohol content to be -- this stuff is thick as heavy cream. Carbonation is mild yet pinching. Alcohol is currently providing me way more warmth than is necessary on this balmy Arizona summer night.

A thick, powerful brew. If I had it again, I'd probably try to find at least two other people with whom I could split the bottle.

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Photo of hippityhops85
3.65/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz into a tulip glass. Shared by two people.

Pours a pitch black liquid with no discernable head. Expected for something that is so high in abv.

Nose is initially strong with bourbon notes and then melds into a bourbon/oaky character. Lots of earthiness in there as well.

The taste is slightly unsettling. There are so many pronounced flavors going on and none seem to work together very well. Lots of bourbon, lots of oak, lots of chocolate. No real balance going on here.

The mouth feel is ok, low carbo but enough to make it somewhat enjoyable.

Overall, I think Voodoo could do with lowering the abv to make the flavors come together more.

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Black Magick from Voodoo Brewing Company
4.14 out of 5 based on 314 ratings.
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