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Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale - Shipyard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Shipyard Pumpkinhead AleShipyard Pumpkinhead Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,833 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,833
Reviews: 772
rAvg: 2.94
pDev: 27.21%
Wants: 15
Gots: 80 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-04-2001)
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Ratings: 1,833 | Reviews: 772 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

2.65/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light orange/gold color with a very thin white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is heavy with spices (cinnamon and nutmeg) and light malts with very little hops.

T: The taste is spicy and sweet but still very light with flavors of cinnamon & nutmeg. The light character is light and there’s almost no hops presence. The after-taste is slightly sweet. When I first tried this beer, I thought it was pretty good, but that was when I first started drinking beers not made by Bud, Miller or Coors. Now that I’ve tried a great many craft brews, I realize that this is pretty much a macro with some spices added.

M: Crisp and smooth, light-to-medium body, medium-to-high carbonation, finish is clean.

D: A little tasty, goes down ok, not very filling, not much of a kick, not the best representation of style, I could drink a few, but there are several others that I would pick within the style.

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2007 02:38:04 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of scottyshades


3.28/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a nice gold color with an amber hue, massive white head that settles very quickly...highly carbonated
S: Pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, hopy, very spicy
T: Hops, pumpkin, spicy, a little watered down in my book
MF: Very clean, crisp, spicy aftertaste
D: I wouldnt drink more than one per sitting

If you like this, or dont like this beer, try Dogfish Head Punkin' Ale...it is much better

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2007 02:48:53 | More by scottyshades
Photo of mfrogs

New York

3.85/5  rDev +31%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On a whim, had a pint on draft at Toast in Morningside Heights. I've not drunk many of this style and was surprised by the pale color. Almost no head, pleasant aroma of spice. Was surprised by how good it was (unlike other reviewers) -- has the sour taste of a gueze or Rodenbach, tempered by lively carbonation and then a smooth almost ethereal finish of pumpkin pie spice. Light, flavorful, very drinkable. Maybe the keg makes the difference

Serving type: on-tap

10-19-2007 15:11:18 | More by mfrogs
Photo of ccrida


1.2/5  rDev -59.2%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

This beer is so bad, I'm not gonna waste much time with the review. It poured with a big white head that quickly disappeared, is ridiculously effervescent, a clear, piss yellow.
Smell is very generic beer graininess with some pie spices.
Taste is terrible, gawd it's off, no malt or anything remotely resembling ale, like cinnimon flavored seltzer.
Moutfeel is paper thin.
This is the first beer I've dumped out in as long as I could remember. I wouldn't have had more then a sip if I wasn't reviewing it...as it was, I had about 5, which was 5 to many.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2007 01:23:28 | More by ccrida
Photo of woemad


3.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle purchased at Huckleberry's in Spokane for $1.49. First time I've had a beer from Shipyard, and the first time I've had a pumpkin beer. In fact, aside from some SA beers (that were probably brewed in the midwest, anyway), this is the first New England beer I've ever had. According to the label this is good through February of 2008.

This poured a gold color, just a shade darker than a mass market lager, with a similar fizzy head - though it took a little longer to dissipate than, say, a Bud. Occaisional spotty lace.

The smell is pumpkin-y and mildly spicy. Doesn't smell bad, but I was expecting a little more.

The taste is weaker than the smell. "Innoffensively spicy" is how I would describe this.

Mouthfeel is right for, say, a cream ale, which I think this was before the pumpkin flavoring was added. Carbonation is acceptable, body is fairly light.

A fairly bland beer that doesn't taste bad, is mildly flavored as advertised, but isn't terribly interesting. I'd like to get a richer flavor, or a bit more body, or both.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2007 21:12:38 | More by woemad
Photo of Monkeyknife


3.05/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a bottle a clear light pumpkin color with a light white.

Aroma is like pumpkin pie in a glass.

The taste is much weaker than the aroma. That's a shame. There's mostly a thin sourness with a hint of spices.

Thin mouthfeel with a sharp carbonation.

It's an alright pumpkin ale. I expected more after experiencing the aroma. Too bad it didn't carry through.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2007 01:13:15 | More by Monkeyknife
Photo of JMBSH


2.73/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a light golden color with a half inch head after a hard pour into pint glass. Head went away rather fast.
The thing I noticed next was the smell. A strong nutmeg scent. Other hints of spices were there but nutmeg really stood out. I was then surprised by the fact that the spices were very light in the taste of the beer. Don't get me wrong, the fact that it was not overpowering helped make the beer taste like I could have a couple more. The problem is that I wanted a stronger tasting beer. Also this in another "pumpkin" ale that is missing... well, pumpkin! Sure pumpkin pie spices were used but there was no pumpkin taste. I know that this is done due to multiple reasons and most brewers don't use real pumpkin. So while this beer does quilify as a pumpkin beer, I will keep looking for one with pumpkin.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2007 06:25:02 | More by JMBSH
Photo of noremorse1


3.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a golden rimmed chalice that I just bought and must use! This beer pours a golden amber. I had it next to a pumpkin (completely coincidental) and the colors matched almost perfectly. Left about a 1/4 inch of thin, off-white head with light lacing.

Smell is very sweet with cinammon, nutmeg, and fall.

Right off I can say that this beer tastes much like a pumpkin pie and I am sure this is the brewers intention. Nutmeg is probably the strongest of the obvious three flavors here. The pumpkin and cinammon are also detectable.

Mouthfeel is clean and thin with a spiced after-taste. Subtlety creamy... probably closer to water than cream.

To some this may be overwhelming with sweet flavors, but to me it is enjoyable. I wish I had a few more as this is a great pumpkin beer for the month of October.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2007 01:10:47 | More by noremorse1
Photo of UFGUY2122


2.85/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a clear orange with a fizzy white head that was gone before i put the bottle down. The smell was very faint. What I could pick up was a hint of pumpkin and the only noticeable spice was nutmeg. This beer really lacks any complexity in taste, I get a hint of pumpkin as it fades in my mouth. The mouthfeel is light and watery. This beer is light enough that several could be consumed in one sitting but the flavor is a deterrent from having more than a couple.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2007 00:04:24 | More by UFGUY2122
Photo of Georgiabeer


3.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a medium golden with a thin white head that fades quickly. Aromas of lightly creamy pumpkin and pumpkin pie spices- heavy on the nutmeg. Taste is a litttle thin, but there is a nice creamy pumpkin note that falls off and becomes watery. Spicing is not so prominent in the taste, but what is there is on the finish. Mouthfeel is spritzy and somewhat watery. Not the greatest pumpkin beer on the planet. The creamy/nutmeggy combo could be worked with, but as is a little too thin and bland. Just okay.

Serving type: bottle

10-09-2007 14:19:47 | More by Georgiabeer
Photo of zeff80


3.33/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Poured out a clear golden orange color with a white, bubbly, one-finger head. It left no lace.

S - It smlled of pumpkin, spices and some grains.

T - It was very sweet and pumpkin-tasting. There was also some light caramel malt.

M - It was crisp and sharp. A light-bodied brew.

D - This was pretty good. I'm starting to like the style.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2007 01:48:39 | More by zeff80
Photo of IPAcraig


3.73/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

My wife loves these beers; they have become her favorite of the season.

Pours a very light, clear, amber with not much of a head.

Great aroma. It has the subtlety of pumpkins, but it also has the aroma nutmeg and brown sugar. The smell could be more powerful, but it very nice.

Good taste. Very clean. The same flavors are apparent here as in the aroma. A bit of malt sweetness compliments the spice. No bitterness to speak of.

Tingles slightly with the prick of carbonation. A light beer that seems lighter with the medium to high carbonation.

A sessionable pumpkin ale. Nice clean flavors, nothing great, just solid and a good representation of the style.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2007 01:25:13 | More by IPAcraig
Photo of albern


3.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

The high point is the spicy smell, part pumpkin, part cinnamon, part nutmeg. It goes down hill thereafter. The color is very pale, almost straw, with a soapy white head that does retain. The taste starts out a with a tinge of spice then is just bland, waxy, and not very good. It tastes like a lackluster ale with some spices added, with an emphasis on the added, not fermented. There isn't much going on one way or another. I'm tasting some adjunct in there as well that thins out an otherwise already thin beer even more. This is a watery, mediocre, pumpkin ale that won't offend but won't impress either. Keep going.

Re-review September 2009: This beer has a nice aroma and an interesting fizziness when the bottle is cracked and poured. It completely evaporates thereafter. The taste is pleasant enough, I will give this another point or two. Seems better than when I had it last time. It was quite drinkable and inoffensive this time around.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2007 21:43:58 | More by albern
Photo of msubulldog25


2.35/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A 12 oz. bottle poured to a pint glass, notched Best Before: Jan 08. Label shows what appears to be a photographed image of a 'Sleepy Hollow/Headless Horseman'-themed statue with an amateurishly drawn pumpkinhead and raised beer pint.

A: Lighter colored than some other pumpkin ales, this one is quite clear and falls somewhere between 'honey' and 'amber'. Spritzy white head crests at about a finger, then drops away quickly to a thin ring and scattered spots of fizz. Fair amount of carbonation.

S: I can be suckered into liking the smell here mostly because allspice and nutmeg are among my favorite aromas - of course it's just spice, no actual 'pumpkin' here. Sure there's not much else going on - maybe hints of toasted malt and a faint nuttiness - but I do like that pumpkin pie spice smell, and this beer has enough of it.

T: This is a run-of-the-mill pumpkin beer from the first sip. No squash-like fleshy earthiness, just dashes of spice in an otherwise mediocre amber ale. Once the taste of nutmeg and allspice waned, a notable buttered popcorn diacetyl flavor set in, along with a lighter toasted malt. Sweet buttered corn finish.

M: First sips retain a moderate carbonation, but after only a few minutes from the bottle the mouthfeel is watery and slick. Medium/light-bodied with very little lingering flavor, be it malt, hops, or spice. Ends with an odd gumminess, something like licking an envelope flap.

D: My first, and likely only, foray into Shipyard's version of a beer style I do really enjoy when done right. Far too thin and one-dimensional for my liking. Having an excellent pumpkin ale (Elysian Night Owl) now available to me only reinforces the point that I won't be rushing back to Pumpkinhead.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2007 20:58:40 | More by msubulldog25
Photo of brewshakes

North Carolina

3.7/5  rDev +25.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I enjoy trying different pumpkin beers when they are in season so I picked up a six pack of this since I wasn't familiar with it. It had a very nice hint of cinnamon at the end and a nice feel to it. If you like pumpkin ales definitely give this one a shot.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2007 13:37:40 | More by brewshakes
Photo of Murchmac


3.58/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is the light beers of pumpkin beers.

Smells of pumpkin spice all the way through.

Tastes of pumpkin all the way through

Little mouthfeel, but can drink one after the other. If your going to buy a six pack of budweiser, buy a six of this instead.

Serving type: bottle

10-04-2007 04:20:53 | More by Murchmac
Photo of drjim34


4.38/5  rDev +49%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer, like many Shipyard brews takes a lot of criticism. I for one am a big fan of Pumpkin Beers, and try to taste as many as I can. This one is not my favorite, but is definitely in my top 3. I could break everything about this beer down like a typical review, but let’s look at this beer from a different angle. It is what it is supposed to be. A fun seasonal with a limited run of a few months. Summer is over, and my taste buds are ready for the change in styles. It’s fun to drink, talk about, and serve at a party, or Oktoberfest. Pair it with pumpkin fudge, or pumpkin pie. I do a pumpkin taste at my annual Oktoberfest party (this year w tried 8), and this beer always finishes 1 or 2 in the rankings. If you like spicy (nutmeg/cinnamon/all spice) then this is for you. Something different then the norm. I use it as my transition to Harpoon’s Winter Warmer.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2007 19:05:45 | More by drjim34
Photo of ChainGangGuy


2.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

($1.29 at Total Wine in Kennesaw, GA)

Appearance: Pours a clear coppery body with a bubbly, small white head.

Smell: I'm shaking and swirling here, but all I can coax out of it is a light wheatiness and hints of allspice and nutmeg.

Taste: Not much pumpkin flavor at all, but the spices are there, mainly allspice and nutmeg. Light lemony taste. Hint of graham crackers. Not much in the way of hops or malt. Finishes crisp, watery, and spritzy.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied, but the moderate carbonation makes it feel just a tad bit fuller.

Drinkability: I'd say I would prefer it with more pumpkin flavor, but really I would prefer it with ANY pumpkin flavor.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2007 01:31:19 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of goochpunch


3.05/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours out a realy pale and faded brass color with fat bubbles that feed a steady whipped egg white head. I smell mostly lightly-toasted malt, cinnamon stick, and diacetyl. Flavor starts off with cinnamon stick which is followed by wormwood yeast. Drying and yeasty finish. Not much pumpkin here, but there is an interesting cinnamon astringency along with the dryness. Not bad, just more of a spiced beer rather than a pumpkin beer. Mouthfeel is a bit fizzy and light. Not fully impressive, but I would go to this if I wanted some cinnamon and diacetyl combo. For a good pumpkin beer, I'll stick to DFH.

Serving type: bottle

09-29-2007 02:21:28 | More by goochpunch
Photo of TheAlumnus

New York

3.85/5  rDev +31%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Of all the Pumpkin Ales, this is my favorite

a- fairly generic but fitting the profile and color of what you expect from this flavor variety
s- solid bouquet, hint of clove/allspice provides a good nose
t- great initial burst loses a little on the back of the tongue
m- what you would expect a little thin but not lacking
d- very drinkable, a seasonal that is consistent well crafted and missed on the left coast

Serving type: on-tap

09-26-2007 06:09:52 | More by TheAlumnus
Photo of GPHarris


3.28/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a - poured a two-fingers thick off-white head into a snifter. it left a nice lace and a little sheeting action and billowed pretty well with a swirl of the glass. the body was a clear and way too light amber color.
s - smells like a pumpkin.
t - not much pumpkin taste coming through but a little allspice is.
m - crisp.
d - not bad and i could handle this in a pinch but doesn't do it for me.

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2007 18:10:30 | More by GPHarris
Photo of matylight


3.63/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: golden orange with a light spritzy 1/4" head that dissipates quickly.
S: nutmeg and cloves...pumpkin pie? certainly reminds me of fall. slightly sweet here and there.
T: i know i should be but i'm not getting too much pumpkin out of this. this may be from trying and making so many other pumpkin spiced beers where the pumpkin stands tall and proud in the forefront but this one has our large orange beast hiding somewhere in the background. primarily this beer is boasting a light malt base with lots of nutmeg and spices leading the charge. bready and warming.
M: light to medium bodied with equally light and spritzy carbonation. no bite and no bark.
D: this is certainly an easy fall drinker. goes down smooth with little arguement. i could go for a couple in a single sitting with no problem.
while it definately makes me think of the impending cooler and shorter days that bring on school and dried leaves, i can't help but feel that this brew could have somehow been so much more. it's too tame for my pumpkin lovin' taste. certainly a worthy effort. give it a try if you come across it.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2007 02:07:51 | More by matylight
Photo of livingregret


4.08/5  rDev +38.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type: 12 oz bottle w/ drink by date 06-07-08

Appearance: Pours a golden amber w/ a slight head.

Smell: I get spice, clove, cinnamon. No real "pumpkin" smell but plenty of spice

Taste: Amazing. Taste like actual pumpkin pie. No other way to describe it. Fresh...out of the oven pumpkin pie taste. A touch of spice toward the end makes this the best tasting pumpkin ale I've ever tried

Mouthfeel: This is a little bit of a let down. Watery and heavily carbonated.

Drinkability: For the TASTE of pumpkin pie this is the BEST Pumpkin Ale I have tried. I have tried 6 different pumpkin ales and this is the best tasting one. The smell is a bit off because there is only cinnamon and no real pumpkin smell and the mouthfeel is a little carbonated BUT the taste is amazing. A very drinkable pumpkin ale great for late at night or when enjoying a late night dessert

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2007 05:10:59 | More by livingregret
Photo of Blupoet03


4.33/5  rDev +47.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured golden-amber with a thin white head, bubbling nicely afterwards.

The nose is spicy, fully of nutmeg, cloves, and sweetness. The taste is like pumpkin pie in a glass. The hops show up with a slight bite at the end.

I think this is a great pumpkin ale, and as usual with beers that I like, I can't find much to say about it. It's a great drink to get yourself into the autumn spirit.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2007 01:29:41 | More by Blupoet03
Photo of kenito799

New York

3.08/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Best before Jan 2008.

Pours a crystal clear dark gold. Tiny white head recedes to nothing and leaves no lacing. Cinannmon and buttery pumpkin predominate on the nose. These flavors come through immediately when drinking. The underlying beer is a crisp lemony American wheat. This makes this brew quite refreshing, actually making the buttered cinnamon-pumpkin taste easier to enjoy as you drink. The overall effect is somewhat artificial, whether the flavors are natural or not, I don't know. More drinkable than you might expect. The overall effect is fake. Best setting: out of the bottle around a campfire on an early fall camping trip while making s'mores.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2007 00:44:01 | More by kenito799
Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale from Shipyard Brewing Co.
68 out of 100 based on 1,833 ratings.