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Grand River Highballer Pumpkin Ale

Brewed by Grand River Brewing
Style: Spice/Herb/Vegetable
Cambridge, Canada


on tap


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RATINGS: 109   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.27/5   SEASONAL: Autumn   EST. CALORIES: 156   ABV: 5.2%
Appearance: Orange colour, of course! with a white frothy cream topping Aroma: Think pumpkin pie, with contributions from cinnamon, all-spice, nutmeg, cloves and vanilla Flavour: Subtle pumpkin and spice flavour balanced by a pale ale malt profile and hop contributions from amarillo and liberty hops

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Raistlin (219) - London, Ontario, CANADA - NOV 26, 2015
Pours hazy orange amber with a small off-white head. The head fades to a thin cover and leaves a small amount of fine lace. On the nose, there are big notes of pumpkin and vanilla, along with typical fall spices, cinnamon and nutmeg. The flavour is mildly sweet and slightly spicy with huge pumpkin and spice notes. The finish introduces subtle hops and pale malts but the overall impression is of pumpkin. On the palate, it is medium in body with a smooth, creamy texture and average carbonation.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Pailhead (6032) - Plymouth, Michigan, USA - NOV 1, 2015
Courtesy of Tim

Bottle: The aroma consists of moderate-heavy ginger, light nutmeg, cinnamon, light pumpkin, and a hint of butterscotch. It’s a slightly hazy golden-orange with a small white head that quickly fades to a minimal film outlined by a very fine ring. The flavor starts with a hint of pumpkin. The finish has light-moderate ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, and a hint of butterscotch. It’s light-medium bodied with mild carbonation.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Helsdon (319) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - OCT 22, 2015
Fruit/veg beers have to be the hardest to get right. And pumpkin might be the toughest of all. This one pours a clear caramel brown with a bit of big-bubble head. The nose is heavy on the pumpkin, as one would expect with allspice and a little clove-ish spice, with a dry-hay malt. The taste is lacking in balance. The pumpkin and spice comes in first with a little to much pie-ish-ness for me, followed by some astringent bitterness, all sitting on sweet hay malt back. Overall not my ideal.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
5000 (6599) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - OCT 6, 2015
Bottle:   Thick hazy amber, small sudsy off-white head, no real lacing.   Soft apple-cinnamon like spices.   More on the nose than on the tongue.   Decent malt base, spicy without being over the top.   Almost full bodied.   Apple-Cinnamon like spices on the finish.   This one is a like the hot apple spiced cider sort of Pumpkin Ale.   Pretty good.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
KoNrRiI (871) - Århus, DENMARK - OCT 4, 2015
0.5 bottle. Clear, brown color and a small, off-white head leaving no lacing. Aroma of cinnamon, coriander, and pumpkin. Taste is sweet, suffused with pumpkin and a mix of spices generally reminding of the fall spirit. Medium body, creamy texture, and soft carbonation. Finish is very sweet, more balanced than the rest but also more definitive when it comes to that spicy character. Overall not a bad beer, reinforced my faith in pumpkin brews.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
dfearnley (1419) - Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA - SEP 27, 2015
Bottle to taster Some gourdiness, but that could be due to expectation. Clove, mace, cinnamon, very light citrus, pepper and malt. Translucent amber with a thin off white head. Taste is slightly sour and peppery with clove and mace and ending with some bitterness.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Kauge (953) - Tallinn, ESTONIA - SEP 18, 2015
Bottle from LCBO. Hazy amber with a really fast dissipating head. Mmm, pickled (marinated?) pumpkin aroma, vinegary and slightly spicy - pretty nice, albeit a bit thin. And so is the palate - watery and weak, with a tingle of vinegary pumpkin. Amarillo, really? Waste of hops I’d say. Pretty disappointing.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
OOKPIKABLE (193) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - NOV 21, 2014
Pours golden brown. Aroma of honey and some malts. Tastes of honey and pumpkin. Smooth.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
DuffMan (8324) - the land of bitumen, beef & beer, Alberta, CANADA - NOV 8, 2014
Bottled, shared with TylerDurden, bottled on Oct. 9 2014. Pale orange-gold, hazy, with a very lively off white head. The nose has big pumpkin and spices, a little bready, but notably devoid of darker elements (no brown sugar, no molasses etc). The palate opens with reedy thin malts, pumpkin, lighter spices than in the aroma. This edges toward sour in an odd way. Quite gassy. After the aroma this failed to impress me.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Papillon (382) - Sudbury, Ontario, CANADA - OCT 17, 2014
500 mL Bottle. Deep gold body with a thin film of head that quickly settled to a wispy film. Pumpkin pudding stands out in the aroma over the pale malts, notes of banana and plum sauce, hops barely discernible. Pumpkin and pale malts pair up for the better part of the taste, subtle notes of treacle and grapefruit rind in the aftertaste, and then the hops do speak up but without much assertion. The best part is the clean finish.

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