Up first, guest reviewer Christopher Filipowicz’s take on:
There’s so much to say about so little with this one. After the acrid nose wafted over me, like a punch to the nose, the smell that lingered was not unlike that of an overly sweet/spiced sweet potato dish in which the sweet potato is not tasted. Speaking of taste, we have come to the moment of truth. When I brought the beer to my lips, I felt a turn in my stomach like when you’re going over a hill in your car and it grabs you. I felt bound to my noble duty of tasting the beer the slutty goat/wench was not subtly trying to get me to taste, so I obeyed this mockery of Pan and let it in. Well, there was an overwhelming amount of what one could say was cinnamon, and sugar, which might trick the drinker into thinking there is pumpkin in this beer. I can plainly and very truthfully state that there is as much pumpkin in this beer as there is in an apple, or a car tire, or any other manner of things that are not pumpkin. After the rancidly sweet taste leaves my mouth, there is a somewhat mineral water aftertaste. It’s as if all the substance of the beer is gone and it’s just the dregs of the carbonation and water that were a part of the beer. It was a quite unsettling experience. I will give them 10 points for the creative slutty goat lady and 2 for the fact that I didn’t vomit. 12/100
Up next, returning guest reviewing favorite, Tim Veilleux, with his own take on Horny Goat Brewing Co.’s Hornycopia Pumpkin Ale:
Pours a thin-looking, nearly headless, clear amber. The smell is mostly cinnamon and nutmeg. Kind of like a spice cookie, but with an off-putting sweetness, like grandma dropped a whole box of Splenda into the batter. The taste is an astringent, unpleasant sack of burnt spice, covering up any theoretical pumpkin. Leaves behind the feeling of a cinnamon challenge-esque tongue residue.
This is the 7th Grade Home Economics version of a pumpkin beer. It’s not out and out bad, but you smile and drink it, patting your C student kid on the head and telling them what a shining star they are. Which is extra weird, since the bottle tries to ply you with sexy goat. Goats chew tin cans to get the tasty glue taste from the label, so they might not be my go-to for beer recommendations in the future. 77/100
And now, for my take:
Look, if you don’t want to brew a pumpkin beer, please don’t brew one. No one is forcing you down that avenue at knifepoint. AND, if you don’t brew yet another mediocre at best pumpkin beer, think about how much you are making life a slightly kinder place by withholding the thoughtless swill that you zested a dirty pumpkin into and then bottled for the Fall season. Our current recent offender, Horny Goat, has brewed an ale that for all extenuating purposes, seems passable. It pours a pleasant tangerine-like orange, and smells faintly of caramel with dashes of nutmeg and cinnamon. That’s where the pleasantries end. For a fleeting moment, this ale tastes of burnt nutmeg, meek cinnamon, and caramel malt, but only for a flash of time. It transforms into what essentially tastes like soda water with some corn syrup stirred into it. Almost all taste vanishes, but the phantom presence of beer in your mouth leaves you confused and distraught. Wasn’t there just beer here? It’s like hearing someone insult you, but you can’t decipher the words. You know it happened, but how upset should you be?
If somehow cheese had ended up in this Wisconsin beer, I would’ve been more impressed than this poor excuse for a soda stream that someone dyed with Manic Panic. 52/100
Sink pour #3 of the pumpkin beer season. I drew a picture with some helpful recipe suggestions.