Demo | Magic Hat Brewing Company

BA SCORE
79
okay
432 Ratings
DemoDemo
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Magic Hat Brewing Company
Vermont, United States
magichat.net

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by NEhophead on 01-13-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
432
Reviews:
145
Avg:
3.45
pDev:
15.07%
 
 
Wants:
6
Gots:
33
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 432 |  Reviews: 145
Photo of Sammy
3.7/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle from Premiere. Not as hoppy as a black IPA, and has a decent bitterness for a black, good roasting mostly. Mouthfeel a tad less than middling, still nicely drinkable. Black coloured bodied, of course. Worth a try, just do not expect it to be a black IPA.

 261 characters

Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of kylehay2004
3.61/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A:three finger tan foamy head on a very black with little light getting through body

S: lots of coffee and roasted malt. Strong aroma

T: more coffee which dominates however it is very mellow without much coffee bitterness. The hops are light and mostly in the finish. Roast malts as well.

M: full bodied and moderate carbonation.

Overall: I like the coffee in this one a lot. I wish the hole had a stronger presence but with this much coffee, more may not even have a chance to come through.

 495 characters

Photo of jaydoc
3.5/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of StonedTrippin
4/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this beer is definitely underrated here on BA. pours a heady chocolate syrup color with a lot of carbonation. smells like sweet milk chocolate, lots of hops, and smokey burnt malt. flavor is cocoa on the front end with all the hops and roast on the back end. maybe a hint of rye spice in there as well. its balanced and big, but its smooth and drinkable in feel, with a velvet texture and a medium body. overall an excellent late summer beer when the evenings are chilly and a little more oomph is needed. should have higher scores on here.

 540 characters

Photo of djrn2
3.52/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Knapp85
3.57/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Got a bottle from a good friend of mine. He was very excited for me to try it. The pour was pretty nice, a deep brown color with a pretty good looking tan head on it. The smell of the beer was hoppy and had some dark chocolate notes as well. The taste of the beer was hoppy, then it faded to a macho coffee type of aftertaste. The mouthfeel was too light for this style. Overall it was one of the better beers Magic Hat has put out in a while but still not that impressive.

 473 characters

Photo of oriolesfan4
2.9/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Part of the new sampler pack, the new spring beer for Magic Hat. Seems like Black IPA's are the new rage around the breweries, and now that it has become one of my new favorite styles, can't say I really complain.

Pours a very, very dark brown with a tannish head. Smell is of roasted malts. Taste is medium bodied, very stout like. Almost no bitterness or hops can even be detected. Has an almost sweet sort of taste to it, like cocoa powder or coka-cola. Definitely doesn't taste like an IPA and tastes kind of confused overall. I like the style, and this is drinkable for sure, but for me Magic Hat missed the boat here... way too much of a mess.

 650 characters

Photo of olradetbalder
2/5  rDev -42%

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.81/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Magic Hat Demo
12 oz. bottle, freshness code ink-jetted on neck of bottle.
"BLACK I.P.A."

Appearance: Very dark brown body beneath a creamy tan cap (current style guidelines call for a "white to off-white" head). It's obviously got some body to it as I can see particles in suspension. Very fine bubbled carbonation.

Smell: Roastiness like cold black coffee, char, minimal hoppiness that's semi-floral and kind of like wet foliage.

Taste: Dark chocolate with a fruity edge (blackberry, perhaps currant, some orange) upfront and across the middle. A dry, charcoal-like roastiness allows for just a medium-level bitterness to balance it. There are some low-level hops in the background that emerge in the finish as the dark malt fades, with more orange-like citrus and a bit of spice (unless that's the alcohol), followed by more leafy and floral character.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and smooth with a moderate, fine-bubbled carbonation.

Overall: While it's not a bad beer (it's actually pretty enjoyable), I certainly wouldn't label it as a "black I.P.A.". It's just too roasty with that charred dryness to it (how they got that using chocolate malt as their darkest malt, I don't know). And honestly, I don't think there are enough hops to it. It works on the bitterness side because of the drying quality of the roastiness, but the flavor hops shouldn't be relegated to the finish, they should be right up-front. And the complete lack of hops in the nose is almost unacceptable for a black IPA, it should be full of piney and resinous Pacific northwest hops. On the other hand, beer is beer, and experimentation is good, so taking it just at a hedonistic level I'd say it's my favorite Magic Hat beer.

 1,706 characters

Photo of jlindros
3.25/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

"All we need is humble patience" so goes the wisdom of Magic Hat.

A big frothy head fades semi slowly with some sticky lacing and a bubbly head left behind, over murky super hazy dark brown reddish maroon color.

Nose has some toasty malts, reddish malts, a bit syrupy, a malty and light nutty aroma, slight musty grape seed hazelnut like aroma.

Taste starts with a light malty dark malt aroma, some toasty and nutty malts, a musty grape seed like flavor too, a weird hop bitter flavor, some light fruit, very dry even to start, and a light fruity hop flavor. Finishes a bit spicy and some earthy hops, dry but sticky, and super dry and bitter grape seed finish.

Mouth is med bodied, decent carb.

Overall pretty meh, pretty much what I expect from Magic Hat these days, very meh beers unfortunately, weird flavors, super dry, some fruits that don't blend, just not very good.

 879 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.97/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a thin off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains roasted malts, grassy hops and some chocolate

T: The taste starts out a sweet milk chocolate flavor and a hearty roasted malt character. The hops presence is mild for the style but complementary and brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

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

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style, this is a solid beer worth drinking for a while.

 680 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.15/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle - $1.49 at Charlie's Beer and Wine in Marietta, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown body with a smallish, light beige head. Not too terribly much lacing on the descent.

Smell: Roasty, chary, slightly ashen malts with far fainter hints of bitter chocolate, licorice. Lightly leafy hops and some mild, understated citrus hints.

Taste: Coffee-flavored roastiness, a bit chary, with a small helping of dark, bitterish chocolate and oh-so burnt bread crusts. Hint of licorice coming through as it warms a minute or two. Light sweetness. Leafy, faintly citrus hops with sufficient bitterness. Drying, roasty finish with a low, lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied (barely). Medium carbonation.

Overall: Not nearly as hoppy or as bitter as many Black IPA's, but still firmly roasty. A situation I'll face with a brave smile. Even still, it's OK. Just OK.

 887 characters

Photo of russpowell
3.65/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an effervescent mahogany with 3 fingers of tan colored head. Good head retention & lacing

S: Brown head, charred grain & coffee, dark fruit

T: Roasty grain, brown bread, some carob notes & dryness, as well as woody hops up front. Dark fruit notes, & more woody hops, plus some herbal notes, some black currant as well. Finishes dry, woody, fruitty, with a little carob sweetness

MF: Medium bodied, firm carbonation, good balance

This is a different kind of Black ale, I do like it. Easily the best beer I've had from these guys in years

 547 characters

Photo of smcolw
3.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown color and lightly cloudy. Good starting head that settles to a single layer of bubbles. Very good rim lace after each sip.

Dark but dry malts to the nose. Lesser hop smell. Light yeast aroma.

Quite dry, almost astringent. Slightly thin bodied, the carbonation does match this well. Good darker crystal malt flavors--slightly nutty. The hop balances the malt well, but is not distinct. Overall, a very drinkable, if non-distinct, black beer.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.44/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Best by Mar 31, 2011. Drank Feb 16, 2011.

A - Dr. Pepper in color. A khaki head pours about 2 fingers high and settles into a ½ finger of creamy, fine bubble foam that sticks through the drink. Nice lace.

S - Light, slightly earthy. Hint of roast. Surprisingly little hop.

T - A coffee-like bitterness and pine up front. Solid coffee and dark toast through the mid profile, with a touch of caramel. Has a nice milk chocolate flavor deep in the finish.

M - Medium-light body with a pleasant bitterness that doesn't build aggressively throughout the drink.

D - Nice balance and good flavor lead to on-par drinkability.

 622 characters

Photo of Jason
3.97/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle with a freshness date inkjet printed on the neck of the bottle.

Tan head and lacing do a great job with dressing the glass, opaque brown color talks about being black. Stodgy pungent hop nose with a charcoal burnt graininess in the nose. Smooth with some crispness on the backside. Some burnt flavors from the malt, some sweetness as well. Hoppiness is pungent and pulls on the palate. Finish goes towards dry with a clean roasted flavor and lingering hop.

Solid, perhaps one of the best beers Magic Hat has come out with in years. Only gripe is that I expected it to be full on black ... splitting hairs now.

 629 characters

Photo of Zaphog
2.75/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of thatoneguymike
3.5/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of WoodBrew
3.04/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Boy oooohhhh Boy....I am struggling with this beer. I admire the moxy of Magic Hat to try an American Black Ale....which I refer to as a Black IPA. I just do not think it came together. The appearance, for me, is not rated high because of the floaties present...more than there should be. The color is black and you cannot see through it. Almost no head and poor lacing. The scent is gives the beer promise, definitely has a hop to it. The taste though comes of very espresso-ish and acidic. The of course hampers the mouthfeel. I would not session this beer. I am glad to have the opportunity to try this beer, but would not drink a lot of it.

 644 characters

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Body is dark cocoa brown with a cloudy amber appearance once held toward the light, big light tan head dwindles slowly with fine evenly strung rings of lacing. aroma has dark mint hints of nearly burnt ash with mild to dark notes of cocoa. Very herbal highlights amongst the backdrop of dark roasted malt character this is pretty amazing for what it is. Flavor has mild dark chocolate brownie notes drizzled with mint icing light on candy heavy on herbs and endurance...pretty amazing actually, one of the beers that you try not to remember but actually grows on you with each sip. Mouthfeel is medium bodied dark silky smooth body with evenly done carbonation I can't complain about the texture or body in this one. Drinkability in this one isn't bad at all, I don't judge it but I'm scared about what it thinks about me.

 822 characters

Photo of ejimhof
3/5  rDev -13%

Photo of JAHMUR
2.5/5  rDev -27.5%

Photo of tdm168
3.19/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dark black with a quarter of an inch of brown, dense, foamy head that has great retention. The nose is faintly roasty with a creamy, butterscotch note. The flavor is exactly the same. There is also a mild, astringent finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, smooth, and crisp.

There isn't much flavor or balance here. The flavor is dominated by a big butterscotch creaminess which isn't pleasing. The hop character is mild, but harshly bitter when it wants to be. Overall, I'm not a big fan of this one.

 511 characters

Photo of imperialking
3.5/5  rDev +1.4%

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Demo from Magic Hat Brewing Company
3.45 out of 5 based on 432 ratings.
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