Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale - Shipyard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Shipyard Pumpkinhead AleShipyard Pumpkinhead Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,431 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,431
Reviews: 849
rAvg: 2.98
pDev: 27.52%
Wants: 32
Gots: 372 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Shipyard Brewing Co. visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-04-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (47) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,431 | Reviews: 849
Reviews by zachturner39:
More User Reviews:
Photo of franklinn
5/5  rDev +67.8%

A: 5/5 Looks great! Radiant in the glass

S: 5/5 Smells like pumpkin pie!!! Nutmeg and spice and pumpkin and malt.

T: 5/5 Exactly like it smells but even more intense. How is that possible?? Huge cinnamon roll things going on, plenty of vanilla as well. Spectacular!

M: 5/5 Velvety and smooth. Perfect.

O: 5/5 Literally flawless interpretation of the style.

Photo of PorterPro125
3.32/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Serving Type: 12 oz. Can

A- Pours a Clear Golden liquid that lacks a proper head. The appearance of this beer is quite lacklustre and lacks anything that could impress.

S- If you enjoy Pumpkin Pie, this beer may excite you to high levels... damn this beer smells amazing. Although it doesn't exactly smell like "pumpkins", this beer smells uncannily like Pumpkin Pie.

T- Much like the aroma, the taste is full of Pumpkin Pie. Surprisingly, this flavour doesn't really come off as too sweet and is quite nice. Once again, this beer does NOT taste like Pumpkins but it does taste an awful lot like Pumpkin Pie and that is a treat I happen to enjoy greatly!

M- Unfortunately, the great aromas and flavours are presented by mouthfeel/body that reminds me of a budget beer (think Busch, Keystone, etc.) or any other cheap Lager. The body is extremely weak and the carbonation reminds me of a soft drink. Extremely disappointing for a beer with such a great aroma and taste.

O- While this Pumpkin Ale tastes quite great (although not pumpkin tasting at all), the appearance and mouthfeel ultimately prevent it from being a solid brew. Sure, if you can get past the look and body and focus on taste and aroma only, this is a pretty decent beer. Due to the fact that I think this beer tastes damn good, I don't mind suffering through a (excuse my language) shit appearance and body. While I wouldn't recommend this beer because of its qualities as a whole, I do recommend it for its aroma and taste.

Photo of NonSequitur
4.5/5  rDev +51%

I'm surprised by the 69 BA rating, and angry about the bros 41 score. Without being prejudiced by the label or description, Pumpkinhead simply delivers a great tasting and refreshing product in this category. And unlike the more expensive Pumple Drumkin ($11 for 6), this one is inexpensive, widely available, and tastes like what it says it tastes like. I look forward to this one each fall.

Photo of oberon
2.67/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Well I made many trips here this past week because it was in the same town where I had my honeymoon.This one sells like crazy,why?Anyways pours an incredably light color for a pumpkin ale with almost no head,aroma is crazy spicey-cinnamon and allspice and nutmeg.Taste hits hard with the spice when first hits your taste buds,way to much nutmeg and cinnamon after a few it mellows a little but definently not a top notch pumpkin ale.

Photo of ExtraStout
2.7/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

It pours lager yellow with maybe a bit more copper. There is a thin white head that does not last too long. Little lacing and ample carbonation.

This is not what I expected. It didn't look, smell, or taste like an ale. It was just too light. I did like the spiciness of the beer - nutmeg and cinnamon (pumpkin pie), but if it had been backed up by a more robust platform I would have enjoyed it more. 1 beer maybe enough for most.

Photo of Straz85
1.94/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

I had this at a fall wedding. It was either this, Bud, Coors or Heineken. I had never had this and generally I love pumpkin ales.

Light orange/yellow in color. Fizzy, looks like a soda. Smells like a pumpkin pie without the pumpkin (if that's possible). The taste was awful. Tasted like a bad ale mixed with water and pumpkin pie spices, very minimal pumpkin flavor. It was easy to drink because it had so little flavor.

In the future, I will choose water, juice or soda over this beer.

Photo of chOAKbarrell
3.27/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

*I originally posted this a month or two back under the wrong Shipyard pumpkin ale (Eli's). This Pumpkinhead Ale is the one I meant to review*

Cinnamon ahoy! I cant believe the amount of cinnamon in this beer! I dont have the most distinguished palate, but this is a blast in the face! There are also apple tones present. Very interesting. I gave the taste a (relatively) high score for this beer, but I dont know if I should have. It kind of belongs in a catagory of all its own - cinnamon beer. There is so much more of that than any noticeable pumpkin flavor. Compared to other pumpkin ales, this one would rank low, as it doesnt seem to really follow the guidelines. I liked the taste, though, so it gets a 3.5 in that area.

All that being said, there is not too much else notable about this Pumpkin ale. It is very light colored, which is a bit of a turnoff. Same blast of cinnamon in the nose. Light, sharp mouthfeel to match.

I think after more than one of these beers, things would get way too sicky-sweet, and possibly nausea-inducing. I definitely wouldnt want a whole six pack. Low drinkability.

Photo of BigMarty1980
2.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A- Was surprised by the lighter coloring of this Pumpkin Ale. Coloring reminded me of a
Sunkist soda diluted with white cream.

S- Initial smell was pumpkin followed by cinnamon & some nutmeg. But sadly, that disappears quickly.

T- First taste after pouring into a pint glass is of a cold piece of pumpkin pie the day after Thanksgiving. After that its more like a pumpkiny soda

M- Very thin & not much body

O- Was my first crack @ this Shipyard seasonal. I wouldn't make it a point to get it again but if I was offered one I'd gladly accept.

Photo of lordofthewiens
2.58/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This beer is a pale yellow color with a fairly good head to it. The smell s predominately spicy, but I have a difficult time appreciating pumpkin. The taste is pretty bland, but at least I can taste some nutmeg. OK to drink, just not very exciting. I've tasted better pumpkins.

Photo of Todd
1.12/5  rDev -62.4%
look: 1 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Pale yellow, very cidery in appearance, with a fizzy white head that you can literally hear sizzle its way into a head of nothing. I'd expect something a bit more robust looking to usher my palate into the fall with this beer.

No real pumpkin aroma, but rather the spices employeed when baking traditional pumpkin pies. Label states "Malt beverage with pumpkin spice added" -- says nothing about actual "pumpkin."

Very thin, and even though this is an ale (I use the term loosely) it has that cheap lager feel on the palate -- fizzy and bland. Speaking of fizzy, the carbonation is over the top. Not a hint of maltiness. Sweetness tastes contrived, as does the pumpkin spice flavour. Touch of sour in the background along with a moment of astringency. Finish goes dry with a semi-husky feel.

Hands down one of the worst Pumpkin Ales that I've ever tasted, and ranks up there with my worst beers ever. Save your money. Avoid this beer at all costs. This is not what New England style Pumpkin Ales are about.

Photo of Beaver13
2.1/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle. Pours a clear gold with a frothy white head that quickly goes to a thin film and laces the glass.

The aroma is light spices (spicy cinnamon sticks), some fruits and some skunkiness. Not much pumpkin.

The flavor is spicy cinnamon / peppermint and sour apples with a bland vegetal malt finish. The mouthfeel is thin to medium and watery.

Overall, very strange. More peppermint cinnamon than pumpkin.

Photo of generallee
3.24/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a big dimpled mug. The bottle date reads "Best Enjoyed Before Feb. 2010" and it was sampled on 9-12-2009.

Appearance: Its body has a clear, golden amber color with a thin off white head. The body is full of visible carbonation and still the head quickly fizzles down to just a very thin wispy layer. Lacing is minimal and very slick.

Smell: The aroma is very pleasing but light. There are notes of cinnamon toast, light grain and apple cinnamon cereal.

Taste/Palate: Like the aroma the flavor is light bodied and a little thin. Also there is no real pumpkin flavor. It does have a nice apple cinnamon crumb cake/carrot cake like taste. The finish is quick and fairly clean with maybe just a little bit of sweet spice hanging on. It has lots of active carbonation and with its thin texture it makes for a fizzy feel on the tongue.

Notes: If this was just a spiced ale with a little more body I would love it. However as a Pumpkin Ale it is rather boring.

Photo of Richie_Inman
4.15/5  rDev +39.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Sorry it's one of my favorite pumpkin beers.

Photo of Jason
2.05/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Presentation: 12 oz twist off brown long neck bottle with a “Best Enjoyed Before” freshness date on the side of the label. “Malt Beverage With Pumpkin Spice Added” on the bottom of the label.

Appearance: Lots of bubble rising to the top with a soda like look to it, the head is lacking. Clear golden hue.

Smell: Smells of artificial powdered cider mix … lots of cinnamon.

Taste: Thin and very slick on the tongue, light bodied and highly carbonated. Very thin malt, lots of spice artificial cider flavour leaning mostly on cinnamon. Hops are not found and an actual malt flavour is very hard to find. Faint alcohol and dextrin beer like characteristics are in the finish.

Notes: Tastes like a beefed up Zima with extra cinnamon, just as bad as Buffalo Bill’s Pumpkin ale. Is this beer?

Photo of BlueHammer
4.69/5  rDev +57.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

After having one of my favorite brews on-tap, I HAD to go get it in the bottle... Mmmm, I love Autumn!!! The taste from the bottle was not as clear as when on tap but I did notice that the tast started to improve as it got warmer (I don't think I gave the on-tap brew enough time to get warmer!).... However, the pumpkin taste still came through strongly. It has that autumn spice flavor, somewhat pumpkiny and somewhat nutmeggy. Bottle or tap, I highly recommend this brew!

Photo of Billolick
2.6/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle, with no freshness or best before type info.

Pours lightly hazed light golden amber, off white head. Leaves a thicker collar, next to no film and just a few spots of "lace" on the glass.

Sweet fruit juice nose...Hmmm kinda off putting.

Sweet, artificial tasting and again nasty/off putting is the feeling I get. I get no pumpkin, perhaps a hint of seasonal spicing, but mosty sweet/artificial/cheap fruit juice.

Only made it through about 1/2 of the bottle. Life is too short to consume much of this stuff.

Photo of codysjb
3.15/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Shipyard Pumpkin
Poured from a bottle into a pint
A: Generic, straw orange color with a small head. But the head doesn’t dissipate.
S: Musk, spices, some minor pumpkin notes but lots of nutmeg.
T: Spiced, flavored beer. Some nutmeg, some cinnamon maybe? Not like a pumpkin, a little watery but not bad.
M: Better, nice spices that melt together
O: Generic, sure, but not terrible for the style. Kinda right in the middle.

Photo of tigg924
2.8/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: medium head, medium bubbles, clear yellow orange

Smell: cinnamon, cloves, and honey

Taste: cinnamon, cloves, honey, big pumpkin in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: light-sickenly sweet

Drinkability: The more I drink this beverage the less I like it. Mine tasted like bad honey. It is really sweet. The spices inside it make it feel like an autumn drink and I could have more than one then. I almost felt like I was drinking the innards of the pumpkin as it was being carved. I have had this before and thought it was not bad, so I may re-review in the fall.

Photo of Byeast
3.07/5  rDev +3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured a clear gold , with maybe a tinge of orange to the color and a quickly vanishing white head. The aroma is cidery , some cinnimon and spice ,the combination of cereal like malt and cinnimon reminds me of cinnimon toast crunch, very slight edge of pumpkin. Taken to the lizips , more light cidery flavor and a bit of spice and cinnimon , a bit of malt flavor , not really much pumpkin flavor ... maybe a hint. The taste and texture is kind of thin on this one. Its not bad , but i don't think there is enough pumkin, or any flavor for that matter. Smells better than it tastes.

Photo of Cavanaghty
3.97/5  rDev +33.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Golden amber color with a lot of carbonation. Foamy white head that only lasted a minute leaving no lacing on the glass.

Smell: Spicy like nutmeg, cinnamon. other "fall" related spices.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Light bodied and well balamced, smooth and drinkable. Taste spicy, like sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and again other "fall" like spices I would associate with halloween or thanksgiving.

Overall: I don't understand why this beer gets such low scoring, I can understand the misleading assumtion that it taste like pumpkin pie, but I think this beer is underrated for what it is. I always look foward to this beer every fall.

Photo of magictrokini
2.58/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

First time with the pumpkin beer. Orange-brown pour with a bubbly head. Aroma is close to gingerbread. Taste is the same, with the pumpkin coming out. Spicy and sweet, but watery. An okay little beer. I see some people killing this beer on this site. Its not that bad. I find it amusing that these same people crush this beer, that has ACTUAL flavor, while loving the brackish, stale organic nonsense.

Photo of chrisssm
1.27/5  rDev -57.4%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

we were having a pumpkin ale night and this was in the beginining of the night. the first thing that we noticed was the label stating that this was a "malt beverage with pumpkin spice". this was the first indication that it wasn't going well for this beer. after the first taste we were a little disappointed. after the second, we were done. last year, we felt that this was a great representation of pumpkin ale. what happened with this year is unknown. hopefully, next year will be better. we will not give up this just yet.

Photo of wattoclone
3.37/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

I first tried this in my home state of PA and thought it was smooth and refreshing, but rather weak for a pumpkin ale. Then on an excursion with the wife to Rhode Island I tried the Pumpkinhead on draft at a restaurant near our hotel. It was served in a goblet with the rim dipped in cinnamon sugar. It was superb when served this way. The waitress told me this was the "brewery recommended serving method". Wow, I thought I have to try this at home. Well I did and found it was like a different beer. Ever since I have tried this serving technique with other substandard pumpkin ales, but alas, it only works for Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale. Apparently this beer must be brewed with the expectation that local New Englanders will dip their glass in cinnamon sugar before serving. Yes, it is a good pumpkin ale, just weak by comparison to most other craft pumpkin ales. It just needs a little kick from the cinnamon sugar.

Photo of kingcrowing
3.21/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured in a pilsner glass.

Pours a super clear straw color with a small head that fades fast (Think PBR). I thought DFH Punkin' smelled like pumpkin pie, but not compared to this. There's a ton of pumpkin spices goin on.

Very easy to drink. but there's not much to it beyond pumpkin pie flavor. Very simple, not the best Pumpkin beer out there for sure.

Photo of WeymouthMike
4.2/5  rDev +40.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I couldn't believe the poor ratings that this has received when I looked up pumpkin beers. Well, anyway, I loved this beer and it is tied for my #1 pumpkin beer along with Boston Beer Works pumpkin. This beer has just the right amount of spice and no slimy after feel that some people wrote about. I also, supplied this at a party and people loved this as well as the Post Road that I had supplied which was also a hit.

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Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale from Shipyard Brewing Co.
69 out of 100 based on 2,431 ratings.