Monthly Archives: September 2014

Anderson Valley Brewing Company – Fall Hornin’ (2014)

AlexAA: A rich mahogany pour w/ a fluffy beige head gives way to a scent of cinnamon, nutmeg and doughy yeast 7/10

AlexTM: Complex taste profile that changes from caramel, brown sugar, and lightly roasted pumpkin to fizzy carbonation and then fades into hoppy bitter finish 8/10

AlexP: Too large an amount of sweet pumpkin for so light-bodied of an ale – leaves a sticky aftertaste. 7P

AlexO: The Moxie of pumpkin cola beers – a flavor combo of too many ingredients that I would have to grow up on to understand. 74/100

NicAA: Cola colored with thick foamy head. Allspice, clove and pine aroma on top of heavy malt and floral yeast. 7/10

NicTM: Very sweet malt, ginger and molasses. Clove in the back end, with a touch of piney hop. 7/10

NicP: Not getting much in the aroma or the taste, but what there is tastes a little artificial. 2p

NicO: Um, I like the label..? A bear with antlers is cool. The beer I wanted to like, but its just, average. With too much clove. 71/100

Anderson Valley Brewing Company Fall Hornin 2014

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Posted by on September 30, 2014 in 2014 Reviews


Starr Hill Brewery – Boxcarr Pumpkin Porter (2014)

NicAA: light cocoa head rests on a rich dark coffee colored brew. Nose of warming cinnamon and meaty sweet pumpkin, allspice, and brown sugar. 9/10

NicTM: Light mouthfeel, moderately carbonated. Roasted malt brings smoky coffee notes, bitter hops, offset by sweet pumpkin and light fall spicing. Much lighter than the aroma suggests. 8/10

NicP: Very present in the aroma, less so in the taste, behind the roasted malt. Sweetens up as the beer warms 3p

NicO: Smoky and roasty, the pumpkin and spices move forward as this warms, but remain understated. Light body, i’d like this as a Thanksgiving dinner accompaniment. 88/100

AlexAA: A rich chocolate hued porter that is matched by an aroma filled with  chocolate malt, nutmeg, and cloves. 8/10

AlexTM:  The spicing takes on a more subtle role as smoke surrounds sweet caramel, chocolate, and pumpkin lightly toasting it. 9/10

AlexP: Sweet pumpkin is there for depth to the body, but is a wallflower in taste to the heavy malts and spicing. 3P

AlexO: Both a solid porter AND pumpkin beer – makes me want to build a bonfire for the occasion of drinking it…in my living room. 85/100

Starr Hill Brewery Boxcarr Pumpkin 2014

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Posted by on September 29, 2014 in 2014 Reviews


Steven’s Point Brewery – Whole Hog Pumpkin Ale

NicAA: Misty, russet brew with light head. Huge aroma of mouthwatering pumpkin, savory spices, and liquid pumpkin pie. 10/10

NicTM: Sweet pumpkin, caramel and biscuit malt crust with delicious cinnamon and nutmeg. A dash of vanilla adds the cream on top. 10/10

NicP: Lots of it, fresh and delicious and so well spiced, wrapped in a wonderfully crafted malt bill. 5p

NicO: Outstanding. Pumpkin pie perfection so fresh I almost want to check I didn’t leave the oven on. Not just the whole hog, this is the whole farm. 96/100

AlexAA: Rusty lush copper-tone and no lacing, cinnamon, sweet pumpkin meat, cloves, nutmeg, all-spice, and caramel pack this dense aroma 9/10

AlexTM: Rich textured ale w/ sediment dripping in toasty caramel, fresh pumpkin, and a perfectly balanced smattering of spices in this heavy body. 9/10

AlexP: One step away from literal chunks of pumpkin bobbing away and giving zero effs while doing it. 6P

AlexO: Rugged, hearty, and full of saucy spicing. I’m down for a tumble in the hay with this pumpkin. 95/100

Steven's Point Brewery Whole Hog Pumpkin Ale 2014

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Posted by on September 28, 2014 in 2014 Reviews


Magic Hat Brewing Company – Wilhelm Scream (2014)

NicAA: Cinnamon, anise, clove and pureed pumpkin aromas leap from this glassy, ruby colored brew. Light head and lacing. 7/10

NicTM: Light mouthfeel, this malty but thin brew has a generous helping of clove and cinnamon, but could use a little sweet to balance out the bitterness of the clove and hops. 7/10

NicP: The pumpkin here tastes a little artificial, but it isn’t overwhelmed in the mix. 4p

NicO: While it isn’t exactly bad, much like the sound effect which gives it its name, Wilhelm Scream is a little like an uninspired stock effort to fill a gap. 70/100

AlexAA: Quickly fading lacing on a deep, clear russet, aroma of molasses & cinnamon 6/10

AlexTM: Bitter cloves followed by a syrupy sweetness in a watery, light body 5/10

AlexP: Drawing a huge pumpkin on your label doesn’t suddenly jam gourd into your thin ale 2P

AlexO: Patron saint of mediocre pumpkin beers – when you mumble what you say, you’ve said nothing. 51/100

Magic Hat Wilhelm Scream 2014
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Posted by on September 27, 2014 in 2014 Reviews


Woodchuck Cidery – Private Reserve Pumpkin (2014)

NicAA: Rich honey colored cider with a refreshingly simple aroma of sweet apples and pumpkin. 8/10

NicTM: Light body and low carbonation. Super sweet jolly rancher-esque apple pumpkin flavor with no detectable spice but perhaps a little ginger. 7/10

NicP: Overpowered some by the sugary apples. Pureed, seems unspiced. 2p

NicO: A fun offering that wouldn’t be out of place in a grownups halloween handout. But just like candy, too much and I’d expect my teeth to feel furry.  77/100

AlexAA: Jewel-toned amber w/ a crispy cinnamon apple aroma lightly clovened for the spooky season 7/10

AlexTM: Confectionery apples are doused in vanilla and rolled in brown sugar for this sweet treat, with a generous helping of pumpkin. 8/10

AlexP: Nine apples to each pumpkin, but pumpkin gets the last laugh. 6P

AlexO: The carnival treat of the pumpkin ciders – a little too much of every ingredient, but the crisp air makes you take just a little more than you know you should. 82/100

Woodchuck Private Reserve Pumpkin 2014

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Posted by on September 26, 2014 in 2014 Reviews


Rock Art Brewery – Vermont (Pumpkin) Spruce Stout (2014)

NicAA: Deep brown, thick, clingy head. Chocolatey aroma with rich roasted malt and a sweetness from the pumpkin. Clean spruce notes. 8/10

NicTM: Smooth and low carbonation with a velvety mouthfeel. Fresh spruce and big chocolate, very sweet and not much char or espresso. 8/10

NicP: Sweet and present, a nice addition as an extra fermentable here, but its not the star of the show, nor is it spiced up. 2p

NicO: A nice chocolate stout which has a nice piney, crisp edge from the spruce tips. Not much pumpkin, but as a fermentable it works. A little more toastiness to the malt would be great though. It’s a bit like being hit in the face with a chocolate bar in the woods. Which isn’t necessarily the worst thing, but you know…79/100

AlexAA: Deeply dense brown stout w/ tan head, slight espresso to the nose with a lush pine quality 7/10

AlexTM: Creamy onset that quickly shifts into edgy, chalky pine with a bitter, smoky finish 5/10

AlexP: Faint thru the forest of evergreen – these woods are dark and full of terrors. 2P

AlexO: I feel very passionately about…the label change on this stout – it angers me.  59/100

Rock Art Vermont Spruce Pumpkin Stout 2014

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Posted by on September 25, 2014 in 2014 Reviews


Doc’s Draft – Pumpkin Hard Apple Cider (2014)

AlexAA: It’s like smelling liquid Big Red w/ a hint of apples & nutmeg, very bubbly and sparkling 6/10

AlexTM: Quite ginger-y plus all-spice, slight toasty pumpkin is hard to discern thru the sweet apples 6/10

AlexP: Apples bob away while dunk-tanking the pumpkin under 3P

AlexO: This is the cider that every year threatens to break up @ratemypumpkins – sorry, Nic. 63/100

NicAA: Sunshine colored with a tempting aroma of cinnamon, sweet apples and pumpkin swirled together with ginger. Very inviting! 9/10

NicTM: Dry start, as the plentiful bubbles move you forward into tart apples, on into sweet fresh pumpkin, all the while wrapped in a light veil of fall spices and delicious fresh ginger. 9/10

NicP: Roasty and sweet, mixed wonderfully with the tart apple. Complimented nicely by the well balanced spicing. 4p

NicO: Beautifully crafted fall cider that doesn’t rely on being candy sweet or super spiced. Pair this with a cheese plate, a crisp day and a leafy fall vista. 92/100

Docs Draft Pumpkin Cider 2014
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Posted by on September 24, 2014 in 2014 Reviews


Timmermans – Pumpkin Lambicus (2014)

NicAA: Caramel color with a vinous aroma, slight hints of potato chips. Light hints of pumpkin. 7/10

NicTM: Light bodied, earthy brew which matches the pumpkin meat. Sweeter than expected, a little oaky and a very light spice. Yeasty, not very tart, a little honey. 6/10

NicP: Gourdy but not dressed up. A little too much like plain, uncooked pumpkin. 3p

NicO: I wanted this to be more sour, and to be honest, more interesting. Almost undetectable spice and raw-ish pumpkin…sweet notes. Kinda odd. 68/100

AlexAA: light effervescent tawny brown, 1/4 inch cream lacing, sour mash and sweet imprint of delicate pumpkin on the nose 8/10

AlexTM: sweet fruit mingles w/ sour mash into a tart embrace wrapped in cinnamon that quickly fades to bittersweet 8/10

AlexP: Potent and dripping with sweet thru the lambic brewing process 6P

AlexO: For any sour fans, this is a must. It pings a triangle from bright to tart to yeasty freshness. 86/100

Timmerman's Pumpkin Lambicus 2014

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Posted by on September 23, 2014 in 2014 Reviews


Samuel Adams – Harvest Pumpkin Ale (2014)

AlexAA: froth topping a burnt sienna translucent ale giving off an aroma of thick molasses, cinnamon and all-spice. As it warms, pumpkin joins the mix. 7/10

AlexTM: heavy caramel & mild smokiness combine for a dense maltiness that you could cut with a knife, cinnamon & all-spice become more prominent as ale warms on a pillow of fresh pumpkin. 6/10

AlexP: Fresh, watery pumpkin has picked a fight with the malty playground bully. 4P

AlexO: Each year, the recipe gets better, but I don’t want an aftertaste that makes me want to floss malt out of my teeth. 70/100

NicAA: Brick red with fast fading head. Aroma of clove, light piney hops and a smidge of pumpkin. 6/10

NicTM: Light mouthfeel, high carbonation. Tastes much more interesting than the aroma suggested. Rich malt, warming clove and sweet pumpkin. A little caramel note, perhaps from brown sugar which is nice, but i’d like to see a bit more cinnamon and a touch of vanilla. 7/10

NicP: The pumpkin that’s there tastes pretty fresh and meaty, either they used more this year or got better gourds. 3p

NicO: More interesting than previous seasons, Harvest Pumpkin does now actually taste like a pumpkin beer. I’d like to try it on draft to compare. Would make a solid pumpkin beer float. 71/100

Sam Adams Harvest Pumpkin 2014

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Posted by on September 22, 2014 in 2014 Reviews


Redhook Brewery – Out of Your Gourd Pumpkin Porter

NicAA: Rich, pitch black brew with a fluffy chocolate head. Cocoa-pumpkin aroma is very inviting…9/10

NicTM: Medium body and silky mouthfeel. Toasty espresso, sweet chocolate and maple syrup notes and smooth puree pumpkin. Spices are wonderfully muted, and tie the flavor of the porter base to the pumpkin. 8/10

NicP: In pumpkin porters the strong flavors of the toasted malt can also overpower the pumpkin, but not so here. Nicely done. 3p

NicO: Porters are wonderful bases for a pumpkin beer, and this is a solid offering. I’d like a little more maple syrup to make this stand out, but I’d happily drink a six of these next to a fire. The spices come forward as it warms, but only enhance the malts and pumpkin and don’t overwhelm. Hooked. 87/100

AlexAA: toasted aroma of smoky espresso and pumpkin wafts up from this root beer colored porter 7/10

AlexTM: very carbonated with a fine layer of maple syrup evening out the bumpy, earthy cedar, and letting the sweet pumpkin pour thru w/ a touch of nutmeg and smoke. 8/10

AlexP: Nice and gritty – like a pile of toasted pumpkin seeds, seasoned by open roasting 4P

AlexO: This porter begs to be enjoyed in front of a campfire – the maple syrup gives it the homey taste of spiked camp coffee. 84/100

Red Hook Pumpkin Porter

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Posted by on September 21, 2014 in 2014 Reviews