It’s not secret that many of my friends (and soon to be contributers) love pumpkin ale. Now this doesn’t mean Southern Tier releasing Pumking is the second coming of the lord savior, but it’s certainly cause for celebration, like Christmas, Thanksgiving, or having a Friday off. Sure it’s not wine, but to be honest, during the month of October, it only seems right an exception be made for an amazing seasonal produce inspired beverage. So without further ado, lets talk about Dogfish Head’s Punkin Ale.
Sight: The head is smooth, with rather large bubbles. The ale itself is a deep amber, verging on a slightly too orange pumpkin pie color.
Smell: The smell is full of pumpkin, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. It somehow leans a little on the funky squash side of things, and isn’t the sweetest smell. A bit like savory pumpkin pie.
Sip: It’s smooth and strongly reminiscent of holiday spiced (think Christmas, gingerbread men, spiced plums, etc) caramel on the start. There’s a lot of cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice, and it pushes the envelop on the spice level. It leaves a lot of the pumpkin’s natural sweetness behind, but captures it’s flavor. It’s a little on the earthy, chocolate spice end, and a little more vanilla flavor could soften it’s flavor profile. [A.B.V. 7%]
Savor: While it hangs out at the savory end of the pumpkin spectrum, this doesn’t detract from the distinctly fall like aftertaste.
Overall, Dogfish Head Pumpkin Ale leans rather savory, but cocks it’s leg toward the right spices. It’s an enjoyable brew, and while many pumpkin fans want a bit more pumpkin, lovers of intensely spiced pies, and baked pie pumpkins won’t be left wonting.
Verdict: Baked, not pied.
Price: $1.89 / 12 Fl Oz.