auerbrau (3203) - Ithaca, New York, USA - OCT 24, 2008
UPDATED: OCT 25, 2008 Draft at the brewpub. Noses in a soft cinnamon oil, vibrant freshly grated Nutmeg and splash of boiled whole allspice. A bit of malt sugar brings up the rear. Subdued due to temperature and gas delivery. Flavor is rich and nuanced. A great balance of spice and wheat malt(?). There’s a bit of chewiness and caramel that adds depth to the spice profile, which is near perfection. Really this beer wins because of how balanced, diffused and integrated. It’s just at that nice level that’s not overwhelming and potpourri-like. There’s a deeper hearty warm pie character that transcends spice, malt and pumpkin meat. A light leaf of hop adds another drop of complexity. Very delicious, fresh and bright. Very good. Maybe not mind-bending, but excelling thanks to high drinkability, perfect spice level and gentle complex sweetness, something that most spice beers try to achieve, but often fail at doing. And Wow, only 4.5%. Flourishes out with a really delicate, but noticeable wildflower honey note and a touch of soft, caramelized pumpkin flesh. Miver (609) - Silver Spring, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 20, 2007
Draft at Brewpub. Pours hazy orange with an small beige head. Aroma is pumpkin; fresh pumpkin, like you just stuck your head into a freshly carved pumpkin. Hints a spices are evident, but not over done. This is a very natural pumpkin taste, and it makes all other pumpkin beers look bad. Perfect amounts of nutmeg, and cinnamon. Extremely drinkable and very impressive! axilla (962) - New Providence, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 9, 2007
Poured a cloudy orange body with an off-white peppered head. The aroma is fresh cut pumpkin that is nicely, but not overly spiced. Just enough to complement but not take away from the pumpkin. The flavor is the same way. Big, fresh pumpkin meat with a little spice. The most natural tasting pumpkin anything I’ve ever had!! kmweaver (3207) - Petaluma, California, USA - NOV 23, 2007
Draft, Selin’s Grove Brewing Co. Pours a hazy, golden-orange color; off-white head with fine-bubbled lacing. Wonderful, generous aroma: shows (oddly enough) the mild, raspberry- and cherry-tinged tartness of the Phoenix Kriek, but melded with an excellent, soft spicing of cinnamon and nutmeg; just a gorgeous aroma and unlike anything I’ve ever smelled; pumpkin pie and kriek. Medium-to-full mouthfeel: dense, warm pumpkin pie spicing and graham cracker maltiness upfront; not overly sticky or roughly spiced at all; generous, beautiful pumpkin ale, with some dried red fruits and more pumpkin and cinnamon coming through at mid-palate; immensely dense for 4.5%. I could drink buckets of this. Medium, cinnamon, nutmeg, and toasty grains in the finish. kramer (6682) - Sunbury, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 29, 2007
Multiple pints, at brewpub. Pours a clear orangish copper under a creamy one inch nitrogenated off-white head. The spicing is incredible on the nose, the usual cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg, with a little caramel malt, and fresh scooped pumpkin meat. Reminded me of a fresh baked pumpkin whoopie pie. The flavor is much more subtle with the spices, just light cinnamon and allspice with lots of meaty pumpkin on the finish. The most distinctive pumpkin beer as far as conveying the pumpkin flavor instead of the usual hodgepodge of pie spices. Mouthfeel is incredibly creamy with the nitrogen serving method. In general I’m not a huge fan of nitro, but it was great the way it worked with this beer. Overall, easily the best pumpkin beer I’ve ever had, this made Weyerbacher’s Imperial Pumkin look like crap. Very natural tasting.
wcampbell (721) - Clemson, South Carolina, USA - OCT 28, 2007
UPDATED: MAR 22, 2009 By far my favorite pumpkin ale. Slightly sweet cinnamon and pumpkin flavor mixed with some other malts. Lingering pumpkin aftertaste. Smooth and full mouthfeel. Low carbonation. Very drinkable, I could drink this all night long. lilannie (384) - Adamstown, Maryland, USA - OCT 28, 2007
Aroma: pumpkin and apple spice, little bit of whipped cream, and custard
3fourths (9347) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - OCT 28, 2007
Appearance: golden brown-orange, small head, lacing
Flavor: lots of pumpkin pie, cinnamon, and apple spices, like a pie, whipped cream, with a little malty/hoppiness but this not too overwhelming
Palate: smooth and creamy, nice spicy aftertaste
Overall: YUM! Would have gotten a growler, expect it’s on nitro.
UPDATED: SEP 26, 2012 2007 vintage
Pint at Selins Grove. Moderately muddy orange and near-brown colored body with a finely-bubbled foamy tan head. This may be one of the few times when I stick my nose into a beer without knowing what to expect and have it completely blow me away. I can’t do it justice with my limited rating ability (’’they should have sent a poet’’), but dear lord this thing smelled amazing: rich, creamy and spicy pumpkin soup with a hint of whipped cream, some apple cider aromas and some pumpkin bread and cinnamon as well. Ridiculously amazing aroma. Flavorwise it’s almost the same, with the whipped cream/pumpkin pie and apple cider flavors, made even better, I think, by a rich and creamy-smooth nitrogen palate. I could seriously drink this beer through the entire fall and winter, and it’s one of those rare beers you will look back on and crave over and over.
Maybe a little more sweet up front, certainly served too cold, opens up very well with temperature. Huge spiced pumpkin pie all over this thing, nutmeg is strong and peppery. Less meaty and less of the creamy pumpkin pie charachter than the 2007. Still an amazing beer. Last years was a 4.6, this perhaps is 4.0-4.3.