Tag Archives: Fall seasonal

Fat Head’s Spooky Tooth

Fat Heads Spooky Tooth

Fat Heads Spooky Tooth

High expectations for Fat Head’s Spooky Tooth. A style I really enjoy and a brewery I am eagerly trying more from.

Pours darker than a lot of pumpkin beers. More brown than orange. Amazing aroma. Loads of warm spices and some pumpkin, too. The complexity is evident from the first sip. Using 8 malts and 7 spices and other flavorings, the balance is phenomenal. All the familiar pumpkin pie spices plus, guess what, pumpkin (which is lacking in many other pumpkin beers). Completely hidden 9% ABV.

Top tier pumpkin beer. No doubt about it!

Grade: A

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Buckeye Brewing Pumpkin Dead

Buckeye Brewing Pumpkin Dead

All season, I have been comparing pumpkin beers to Southern Tier Pumpkin. I think I’ve finally found a true rival with Buckeye Brewing Pumpkin Dead.

The color is remarkably clear. The aroma is full of pumpkin pie spice along with something unexpected, butterscotch. Warm spices at first back off to a nice blend of pumpkin and pie crust. That butterscotch is still in there, too. A hint of hops make their presence felt at the back end.

A great beer here. Big flavors, fantastic balance, excellent mouthfeel. I already want more!

Grade: A

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Southern Tier Harvest Ale

Southern Tier Harvest Ale

Up to now, I have only had two offerings from Southern Tier: Pumking and Creme Brulee Stout, and both are outstanding. What does Harvest Ale have in store?

Inviting copper color with a sticky, if thin, head. Caramel and apricots in the nose. Wheat, dried apricots, caramel, and a dry finish. Some lingering banana, too. The hops provide a late, but pronounced character.

I like it, but it isn’t on the same field as the ones I mentioned earlier.

Grade: B

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New Holland Ichabod Pumpkin Ale

New Holland Ichabod Pumpkin Ale

The first thing that strikes me about New Holland Ichabod Pumpkin Ale is, well, pumpkin. It’s the most pumpkin-forward beer I’ve had this season. A clingy white head floats on top of a gorgeous copper body.

While the aroma is nearly all pumpkin, there are some pumpkin pie spices in the flavor with cinnamon and nutmeg. Smooth and refreshing, the flavors are more subdued than most other pumpkin beers, but it’s very tasty.

Quite earthy with a medium to light body.

Killer label, too.

I’d say it’s good, but doesn’t quite come up to Pumking.

Grade: B

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Dogfish Head Punkin Ale

Dogfish Head Punkin Ale

My first pumpkin ale of the season was the outstanding Southern Tier Pumking, so we will see how Dogfish Head Punkin Ale stacks up.

Nice copper color and tons of warm spices as soon as it’s poured. Loads of pumpkin pie spice like cinnamon, clove, and allspice. Of course, the pumpkin in present, too. I’m getting more hops here than I have with other pumpkin ales, but they are spicy hops that pair quite nicely with the pie spices. Nice warmth from the 7% ABV, as well.

It’s pretty darn good, but I’d go with Pumking over this. The Punkin Ale is dominated by spices, where the Pumking had more complex and better balanced flavor.

Grade: B

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Magic Hat Hex

Magic Hat Hex

First off, I have no idea what’s going on with the video you’ll see when you check out the link on the Magic Hat website for Hex. Maybe after a few more, it’ll make sense, but it’s not particularly powerful at 5.4%.

Color is dark orange and cloudy with a sticky white head. Some fruity and malty aromas come through. Lots of carbonation, it’s smooth and creamy. Some sweet malt, rye, orange, and a nice hop kick at the end.

Reasonably tasty, quite drinkable.

Grade: B

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Coney Island Freaktoberfest

Coney Island Freaktoberfest

Red beer? Bubbly pink head? What is going on with Coney Island Freaktoberfest?

A blend of 6 malts. 6 hops varieties. The ABV? 6.66%, of course. Regardless of if this beer is any good or not, this is an example of why to love craft beer. It’s fun, they are taking chances and being creative.

The smell is fresh and fruity. Hops dominate the flavor, but they aren’t overpowering. Some sweet malt in there, too. Outstanding lacing, even if it is pink foam. Smooth and crisp without being the slightest bit watery.

It doesn’t taste as complex as the 6 malts and 6 hops would expect you to believe, but it’s a fun, unique, tasty, and drinkable beer. What’s not to like?

Grade: B

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Sam Adams Harvest Pumpkin Ale

My appreciation for Sam Adams is growing (though, I will still never go near Cherry Wheat again, thank you). The Harvest Pumpkin Ale is a perfect fall beer. A gorgeous orange and tan color and delicious spices. While I did taste some pumpkin, it was mostly in the background. But those warm, delectable pumpkin pie spices were right up front. Cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, they’re all there. It was still refreshing and crisp, too. And even though it is heavily spiced, it is fantastically well balanced. Stellar

Grade: A+

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Sierra Nevada Tumbler

Since Sierra Nevada is following me on twitter now (and you can too), I figure it was time to review one of their beers. Here is one of their fall offerings, Sierra Nevada Tumbler. It pours a dark brown color with hints of orange. Nothing really stands out in the taste. There are some hints of nuts, some roast, and some caramel. But it’s full, earthy, easy to drink, and delicious. Perfect for a day of watching football. There are times where I just want a beer to taste good and I don’t seek out all the nuances. This is one of them. Get it while you can!

Grade: A

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Southern Tier Pumking

Southern Pier Pumking

It’s my first pumpkin beer of the season, and I’m starting big with Southern Tier Pumking.

The color is a crisp copper with just a bit of cloud. Not much head sticking around. Lots of pumpkin and spice in the nose, but it doesn’t smell like the pumpkin pie in a can.

Fresh pumpkin and graham cracker hit first with the familiar nutmeg, clove, and allspice coming later. Not much from the hops and this ends up in a long, dry finish.

Might be the best pumpkin beer I’ve had. I really like the spiced graham cracker flavor coming through. And when you consider this and the Creme Brulee Stout, are Southern Tier the kings of dessert beers?

Grade: A

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