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Pumpkin Ale - Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Pumpkin AlePumpkin Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

84 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 84
Hads: 278
Avg: 3.61
pDev: 22.71%
Wants: 9
Gots: 48 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co. visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: aerozeppl on 09-28-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 84 | Hads: 278
Photo of woodychandler
3.39/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I am winnowing through the bottles of everything except IPAs & DIPAs since I seem to give them short shrift. It is my greatest desire and hope to get things caught up so that I CAN return to The CANQuest (tm).

From the bottle: "

After I Pop!ped the cap, I commenced a light pour with an eye towards possible age and lees. It worked since I got two fingers of foamy, rocky, eggnog-colored head with good retention. Color was Deep Amber/Light Copper to Copper (SRM = > 13, < 17) with NE-quality clarity. Nose was strong with nutmeg, cinnamon and allspice. Mouthfeel was thin to medium. The taste was spicy and evocative of pumpkin pie. I would put it at the low end of sweetness. On the other hand, all of the spices rendered it very dry on the finish. I will cop to having been very excited when Pumpkin Ales first hit the market, but I am becoming satiated with the style, having consumed my share. I would put this one somewhere towards the midpoint of the pumpkin spectrum. It was decent, but not mindblowing. I will leave it at that.

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Photo of djura
3.29/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Got it from USA, bottle 0,33 l
A - Reddish to orange amber color, thin foam, lasting couple of seconds. Lots of bubbles at first.
S - Red fruits, apple, malt, cherry, nutmeg.
T/M - Warmer, medium bitter finish, medium carbonation. A bit sour at the end, spices, fruits, cherry mostly.

O - Maybe this one is good for this style, but i do not feel more then average taste in it.

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Photo of BranfordBound
3.61/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had on tap at Margarita's in Branford, poured into a pint glass. Comes out a pretty hazy copper color, solid head that sticks around, some lacing. Not a ton of pumpkin spice on the nose, sweet, malty, hints of spice. Sweet flavor, smooth, some spices in the back, a little bitter at the end. Overall a decent pumpkin beer, not too sweet nor spicy. Nothing offensive and very middle of the road; good beer.

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Photo of generallee
3.76/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: It has a quick fading head over a nice amber colored body with a slight haze.

Smell: The aroma is light overall. I get notes pumpkin pie spice standing out with a light touch of spicy/herbal hops.

Taste / Palate: I get mild pumpkin pie spice and light pie crust like maltiness. There is only a slight touch of hops in the finish. It is nicely balanced and fairly easy drinking.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.48/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

this is the first beer from these guys that i have not been over the moon on. its not bad, its just generic and samey and shows some flaws. didnt think that was possible from this brewery, which i hold in the highest regard. rusted dark orange to amber in color, some viscosity evident, and not much head at all in my wine glass. the nose is muted spices, caramel malt, and some sort of pumpkin, but it doesnt seem as squashy as it does canned and processed. the flavor is similar, with the spices all there, as per requisite, but not in any dynamic or inviting way, just sort of tossed in for style sake. the pumpkin is way back in here behind the malt, which at least is fresh and well dosed, and fermented out enough to be relatively dry in the finish, but carbonation is woefully lacking and my overall impression of this one is that its just a little better than average on the whole. disappointing for a brewery capable of magic, but one of the few pumpkin beers i could drink ten of, not that i would want to...

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Photo of biegaman
3.6/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pumpkin Ale isn't a style where you'll find much variation. Most recipes rely on the same handful of spices for their flavour profile and most, with very few exceptions, have, as Captain Lawrence's does, a medium-deep, clear orange colour that's befittingly similar to the skin of a pumpkin.

This recipe includes actual pumpkin, but not every one does. To be honest it's usually hard to tell anyways; spices like cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, and allspice are typically bold enough to overshadow subtle gourd flavours. Who would want a beer that tasted strongly of squash anyhow?

Conversely, no one wants to feel like they're drinking hand soap either. The key is finding a good balance. Captain Lawrence has done a pretty good job, providing suggestions of baking spice that are folded seamlessly into a caramelly maltiness that itself shows nicely restrained sweetness.

Having more mild pumpkin pie qualities makes this just as easy to quaff as a standard ale; it doesn't have to be relegated to dessert (though it does have enough nutty, toffee notes should you want to). Its medium frame and subtler spicing means more than one is actually an option.

Captain Lawrence has some unique experiments for die-hard beer geeks, but they also offer a more simple, if solid lineup for general audiences. Their pumpkin ale is part of the latter. Its recipe stresses 'serviceable' over 'substantial' and the result is a very approachable, yet average beer.

 1,455 characters

Photo of JustinAniello
3.21/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours deep orange with a finger of head, quickly dissipates to a light cap and sticky lacing.

S - Brown sugar, sour pumpkin, and a light cinnamon.

T - Light sweetness followed by mild sour pumpkin, rye, and hop bitterness.

M - Light body and carbonation.

O - Not a bad beer, not a good pumpkin ale. Very mild aroma and flavor profile especially lacking in pumpkin flavor or any holiday spices.

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Photo of mitch3114
3/5  rDev -16.9%

Sampled on 10/4/14 at annual pumpkin tasting party

Poured from bottle into tasting glass

A-Pretty standard, nothing extraordinary. Lighter bodied golden hue with slight orange tint

S- Smell was slightly off-putting with a stale hop smell in addition to the typical pie spices

T- taste was not bad although a bit lackluster. Pie spices, no distinctive properties to set this brew apart

M- Standard carbonation,body

O- Overall, I was expecting a little more out of this beer since Captain Lawrence tends to brew some decent beers. Its almost as if they just threw this together just so they had an entry in the pumpkin category. Very plain jane and un memorable. I would not purchase or recommend with all the other options out there. However, I would not turn it down if someone offered me one. Not a bad beer, just nothing special about it.

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Photo of Cjstoutlover
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

The crisp is there for sure! If your looking for a pumpkin ale you would like the pumpkin to slightly out do the hops! This doesn't happen here! You do taste pumpkin but very subtle! On a good note it is balanced, it is crisp clean very very little after taste, the hops don't jump through the roof and the alcohol doesn't over taste the grain. But again wish more pumpkin stood out. Enjoyable to drink none the less

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Photo of JohnFatAss
3.06/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Run of the mill pumpkin ale.
Smells of pumpkin pie spices.
Some pumpkin in the taste but mostly spice.
Very carbonated but the mouthfeel is a little watery.
An ok beer.

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Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +10.8%

This one is a deep amber-red, bright though dark and translucent. Its tan head caps at almost one finger. It's creamy and frothy and takes a good while to recede to an island and some thick edging while leaving legs on a good stretch of the glass.
With a good mingling of pumpkin, spicing, and sweetness, this one has the keys to a good pumpkin beer: the pumpkin flesh has enough presence without being either overly vegetal or sour; the spiciness blends nicely, allowing everything to come together without being harsh; the sweetness is just enough to complement the spicy and fleshy notes, with very nice elements of cinnamon and brown sugar. The malts give just a hint of crust to it (graham cracker), though I can't say whether that's intentional.
This beer is crisp, lightly smooth in its medium body working off of that bite. It's semi-dry with a vinous element at times, while the spices nip the tongue consistently.

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Photo of Samp01
2.85/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Pours a cloudy orange amber hue with a very small beige head. Aroma and taste has some caramel malt, grains and grassy notes. A medium body with good carbonation. This brew has very little in the way of pumpkin or spices. Seems to drink more lager like. Overall not that great for a pumpkin ale but still drinkable.

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Photo of logicalparadox
3.25/5  rDev -10%

An OK pumpkin ale.

The spice is there. the pumpkin if faint (overwhelmed by the spice) but is there. OK head, though retention is poor. It's a good pumpkin ale, but not a great pumpkin ale. Worth another try? Sure. But not worth a place on my list of pumpkin ales for the ages. With so many better offerings, do I even have room in my stomach, let alone my fridge, for this pumpkin ale when the leaves turn brown?

 416 characters

Photo of smacgaha
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Appearance - Poured from a bottle into a wheat beer glass. Slightly hazy; light orange. Not much lacing; decent head that dissipated after a few minutes.

Scent - Very faint. Some pumpkin with a hint of toast, but mostly various spices

Taste - Not much pumpkin; mostly various spices with a wheaty aftertaste. Very warming.

Mouthfeel - Somewhat excessive carbonation.Very light.

Overall - Reasonably well-balanced, but a little too light on the pumpkin and the carbonation is a bit much. Good for the price.

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Photo of dank203
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

not a bad one. the body is full with a bready malt coming thru, like a good pale ale. the autumn spices are there with a slightly peppery hot finish. it's well balanced, and pleasant

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Photo of WhiteHillsStore
3.9/5  rDev +8%

A very solid pumpkin beer. Pours a dark amber with a thin head that doesn't trail the glass. The smell is full of pumpkin and spices like cinnamon and nutmeg. The taste is a little sweet in the beginning with the nutmeg and what tasted like a little brown sugar, and then the pumpkin flavor finishes the taste. Very refreshing. Very nice for the price as well.

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Photo of tigg924
3.5/5  rDev -3%

An above average pumpkin ale that nicely balances the beer with the pumpkin flavor. Very bready. The pumpkin taste is never overbearing. I have others I prefer, but certainly worth a try.

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Photo of orcrist_cleaver
3.87/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A: It has a medium amber body, and has the best clarity of any beer I've tasted. Fizzy head, no lacing. Solid looking, but lacks sex appeal.

S: Very nice bending of pie crust and pumpkin; biscuit and cracker. No specific spice stands out, rather it's a well-blended pumpkin spice blend.

M: Lighter bodied, active carbonation. Smooth and soft, but a bit watery.

T: One of the better well-balanced pumpkin beers. It's pureed pumpkin, which seems to have accepted the spice notes more evenly. I get a bit of warming spice on the end, cinnamon and clove mostly. Some unwanted mineral notes (it is a very clean beer), but is not overbearing. Soft vanilla with a graham cracker/pie crust finish. Full pumpkin pie flavor, but lacks a bit depth.

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Photo of daveh88
4.53/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one of the best pumpkin ales I've ever had. It's a great Fall beer that doesn't overpower your senses in terms of the pumpkin and the Ale is far more important to this brewer than the pumpkin taste to it. Great head to it and an overall solid taste.

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Photo of Omnium
3.18/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Bottle > Pint Glass

A - Pours a slightly hazed orange, one finger of white head, very bubbly, mild lacing.
S - More based on spice, very peppery, biscuit malt, some mildly roasted malt.
T - Taste is very peppery, some nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, some pie crust and biscuity malt, some tartness.
M - Overly carbonated, mild feel.
O - Very spicy and peppery not well balanced and lacking in pumpkin

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Photo of utopiajane
3.38/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured a hazy amber orange with a thin head of loose tan foam. There was a burst of bubbles after the pour then a steady stream of effervescence. Nose is lightly sweet malt and a light spice. Nutmeg, allspice and a little ginger. Some sweet biscuit. I am not getting a lot of pumpkin but it's faint int he background. Taste is dry biscuit with a nice toasted malt sweetness. Light spice. The carbonation is very strong and the body of the beer is thin so it drinks a little watery and a lot like soda. There's a touch of pumpkin flavor that becomes stronger as it warms and a mild bitter finish that is dry and tasty.

The nose on this one is very pleasing but the drink is too thin. It was just ok.

 700 characters

Photo of oberon
3.05/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

A pretty"below"standard pumpkin ale here.Pours into a standard pint glass a cleat light brass color with a minimal head.Light pumpkin spice in the nose along with a sour note wich I didn't care for much.A lighter fizzy feel in the mouth, flavors have a sourness too that leaves the spice notes behind,for a non- funked out pumpkin ale this has some sourness that Iam not a fan of.Captain Lawrence from what I have had is pretty top notch...except for this.

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Photo of rlee1390
3.87/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A-Hazy ruby orange in the glass, two finger head but not much carbonation,

S-Pumpkin, cinnamon, spices some earthy notes.

T-Rather sweet, not too spice heavy, mild pumpkin with slight bitterness.

M-Lighter, tad watery, not much carbontion.

O-What can I say, I love pumpkin ales. Not the best, but enjoyable.

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Photo of CKav
3.25/5  rDev -10%

A- Nice, frothy head falls with some lacing. A clear orange color
S- Pumpkin Pie spices with cinnamon, nutmeg and some spicy hops. A hint of toasty malts
T- A good combo of spices and sweet malts. Finishes with some vegetable/pumpkin
M- Medium-thin feel, good carbonation
O- A good example of the style. Spices do not overpower the beer which is nice. Nothing in this ale tastes artificial. I would recommend and look forward to having another.

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Photo of MadScientist
3.6/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: A medium amber with good clarity. The head is low and made of long lasting ivory bubbles.

S: The smell is nicely balance with moderate aromas of spice, malt sweetness and pumpkin with the spice being mainly note of allspice and ginger with lesser amounts of clove and cinnamon.

T: A medium amount of pie spice flavors blended with a caramel malt sweetness and pumpkin flavors. There is a moderately-low hop bitterness that combines with the spice to balance the malt. The finish is moderately dry.

M: A medium-full bodied beer that feels pretty light from the high level of carbonation. A slight astringency from the spice noted in the aftertaste.

O: I like that the spice isn't overdone and the overall balance if the flavors is there. Between the spice, carbonation and dryness it's almost drinks like a pumpkin saison.

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Pumpkin Ale from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
82 out of 100 based on 84 ratings.