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Old 10-24-2007, 09:48 PM   #1
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Default Pumpkin Brews--a comparison by Dude and Mrs. Dude

SWMBO and I bought a bunch of different pumpkin brews (all we could find) and did a short little comparison, here is the lineup, and the results: I based the scores simply on a 5 point scale. Nothing tricky about it. 5 is the best, 0 is the worst. I based the scale on sight, aroma, taste and intangibles. Our intent was not so much to critique the "beer", but how the pumpkin and spices were integrated into it. The goal is simply to decide which pumpkin beer of the lot was the best one, and which one we'd buy.

The competitors:

Blue Moon Pumpkin
Jack's Pumpkin Spice Ale
Weyerbacker Imperial Pumpkin
Buffalo Bill's Pumpkin Ale
Dogfish Head Punkin' Ale
Smuttynose Pumpkin
Post Road Pumpkin Ale

The results:


Blue Moon Pumpkin: Faint nose of pumpkin, spices. Bland, no hint of pumpkin in the beer, only faint spices.
Dude score: 2/5 SWMBO score: 2.5/5



Jack's Pumpkin Spice Ale: More prevalent spices, not much pumpkin itself in the aroma. Tastes fairly bland, but stronger spices than the Blue Moon sample. I'm not sure this even has pumpkin in it.
Dude: 2.5/5 SWMBO: 2.5/5


Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin: Strong notes of pumpkin and spices. Taste is slightly alcholic with prevalent spices and pumpkin. All-around excellently done.

Dude: 5/5 SWMBO: 5/5


Dogfish Head Punkin Ale: Well integrated pumpkin and spices. Nice, malty backbone to go with the pumpkin spices which are not overdone. IMHO, a pumpkin beer needs to have a bit of sweetness, this one has it.

Dude: 4.5/5 SWMBO: 4/5

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Old 10-24-2007, 09:48 PM   #2
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Smuttynose: Spices are evident, but "spicy" with clove, possibly over the top, IMHO. The beer is actually quite bitter, which detracts from the pumpkin aspect. I was disappointed in this one, I had heard good things.

Dude: 1/5 SWMBO: 1/5




Post Road Pumpkin: Spices evident, good balanced of malt, spices, and possibly some vegetable. Tasted well balanced in all aspects.

Dude: 3.5/5 SWMBO: 3.5/5


Buffalo Bill's Pumpkin Ale: Nicely done with the spices and fruity vegetable aroma and taste. Solid beer all-around. Not as "flavorful" as a few of the others though.
Dude: 4/5 SWMBO: 4/5





And now....

...The verdict:



Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin. This is an all-out killer beer. It has everything, malt backbone, nice balance of spices and pumpkin (it really is in there), and a good alcohol bite. This year it is available in 12 oz bottles. A clear winner for both of us. Now, we need more!
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Old 10-24-2007, 09:58 PM   #3
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Awesome! Thanks for the reviews, guys, and nice score on all that pumpkin brew!

I've yet to find any for sale around here, but I did drink Jack's during my last trip East. As you noted, it was less than impressive. Watery with a hint of spice and no real pumpkin flavor.

For the skeptics...having enjoyed more than a few pints with the reviewers, I must say, the Dude family knows their beer! Have no fear in trusting their opinions.

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Old 10-24-2007, 10:05 PM   #4
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Somehow I knew that winner would be unavailable here.

Great info BTW!

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Old 10-24-2007, 10:05 PM   #5
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Yuri, I'll send you a bottle of the DFH and the Weyerbacher--both are great, and I know you brew a good pumpkin beer so I think you'll like them both. Once my smoked porter is ready (next week?) I'll send some of that with them too.

And thanks for the kind words.

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Old 10-24-2007, 10:07 PM   #6
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No prob, Dude. I'll send a few Thunderstruck your way in return. I backsweetened this year and probably overdid it. Drink it for dessert.

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Old 10-24-2007, 10:11 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olllllo
Somehow I knew that winner would be unavailable here.

Great info BTW!
I'll look for some at the beer store tonight (Weyerbacher's hit-or-miss there; they may or may not have it); if they do, you want to do a beerswap?
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Old 10-24-2007, 10:20 PM   #8
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I can hook him up too, I'm looking for some more Alaskan Smoked Porter.

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Old 10-24-2007, 10:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_bird
I'll look for some at the beer store tonight (Weyerbacher's hit-or-miss there; they may or may not have it); if they do, you want to do a beerswap?
If you can think of a commercial left coast that you like. It may be mid November before I can bottle. Very little in the AZ market that I'd say is exceptional. Merely good.
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Old 10-24-2007, 10:22 PM   #10
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I'll do some browsing this weekend.

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