Pumpkin Beer

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There has been a recent tradition among American craft breweries and home brewers of brewing Pumpkin Beer as an autumn specialty. These beers are almost always ales and are sometimes also referred to as Pumpkin Ale. They may be brewed with whole pumpkin meat, with traditional "pumpkin pie" spices but no actual pumpkin, or with both. In 2007, some adventurous brewers began using the hollowed-out pumpkin itself as a mash tun or fermenter.

Because pumpkin is technically a fruit but is usually thought of as a vegetable, pumpkin beer may be considered either a fruit beer or a vegetable beer.

History of Pumpkin Beer

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Brewing with Pumpkin

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Competition Styles

The GABF recognizes pumpkin beer as a separate style, no doubt because of the rapidly growing number of commercial examples. The BJCP does not; any pumpkin beer should be entered into a BJCP-sanctioned competition as a Fruit Beer.

BJCP Style Guidelines

See the BJCP "Fruit Beer" style definition under Specialty Fruit Beer.

GABF Style Listings

Pumpkin Beer

4D. Pumpkin Beer
GABF Style Listing (2007)
Pumpkin beers are any beers using pumpkins (Cucurbito pepo) as an adjunct in either mash, kettle, primary or secondary fermentation, providing obvious (ranging from subtle to intense), yet harmonious, qualities. Pumpkin qualities should not be overpowered by hop character. Entries in this subcategory may or may not be spiced or flavored with other ingredients. To allow for accurate judging, the brewer may list a classic style of base beer, and/or any other ingredients or processes used. Beer entries not accompanied by this information may be at a disadvantage during judging.
Original Gravity (ºPlato): 1.030-1.110 (7-27.5 ºPlato)
Apparent Extract/Final Gravity (ºPlato): 1.006-1.030 (1.5-7.5 ºPlato)
Alcohol by Weight (Volume): 2-9.5% (2.5-12%)
Bitterness (IBU): 5-70
Color SRM (EBC): 5-50 (10-100 EBC)