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Feast of Fools Variety Pack from Magic Hat

The Feast of Fools variety 12-pack comes with three bottles each of four different ales, the #9, Lucky Kat, Winter Odd Notion 09, and the Howl (click each beer for my full review).

The variety of beers in this sampler pack is impressive. The Howl and the #9 are about as far apart on the flavor spectrum as you can get. The Howl is a black-as-night winter seasonal with pungent coffee, chocolate, and smoke flavors. The #9, on the other hand, has an incredibly strong apricot flavor.

At $14 for the 12-pack, I think the Feast of Fools is a good deal for anyone who is a fan of Magic Hat. If you aren’t a fan of the #9 or Lucky Kat, I would recommend picking up a 6-pack of Howl this holiday season. In my opinion, it is by far the best of the bunch.

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Howl Winter Seasonal by Magic Hat

Howl Winter Seasonal by Magic Hat

The Howl page on Magic Hat’s website is so damn cool it demands a look. Here is Magic Hat’s description of their dark black ale.

“Born of dark, cold and snow in the MARROW of the North East’s longest night, HOWL comes in on WAILING winds with winter-weary eyes, burning holes in sunless shadows. In it’s darkened depths our inner voids are warmed. HOWL will remain until your bones are thawed, your spirit is freed… and until there is no longer a NEED…”

That certainly got me excited to sample this black ale.

The Howl pours as black as a demon’s soul with a large, caramel colored head. I opened the bottle and set it about two feet away and all of a sudden I was smacked in the face by strong coffee, chocolate, and smoke aromas.

Like the smell, there are chocolate and coffee flavors with hints of roasted malt and smoke. The howl has a pretty low ABV at 4.6%. I was shocked that the ABV was this low after drinking half the beer. There is not a strong alcohol presence, but for as flavorful and dark as the beer is, I just assumed that it was at least 7%.

Being 4.6% definitely makes this a drinkable dark ale. If you are looking for a flavorful, dark seasonal brew to have before hitting the town, this is not a bad option. You will have a HOWL of a good time.

Brewery website: http://www.magichat.net/

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