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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.

1,944 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,944
Reviews: 778
rAvg: 2.94
pDev: 27.55%
Wants: 17
Gots: 133 | 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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,944 | Reviews: 778 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Spikester


3.43/5  rDev +16.7%

Copper with a half-inch off-white head. Minimal lacing.

Aroma is a mild pumpkin pie aroma.

Taste is sweet, acidic (like hard cider), some hop flavor. Sweet malts and pumpkin flavor rules the taste profile.

Mouthfeel was average and pleasant enough.

I've had this before and didn't much care for it. The bottle was probably too old. This bottle with a "best before" date of Jan. 2009 was much better. Would make a good session beer for Halloween.
Update: Best by 3/2012. Better than last time. More pumpkin flavor and mild on the spice. A half point bump on the taste segment.

11-08-2008 02:32:35 | More by Spikester
Photo of orangemoustache


2.45/5  rDev -16.7%

Pours a crystal clear golden amber with lots of cascading carbonation that sounds like rice crispies cereal(snap,crackle,pop)strange. The head is bubbly and white,leaving no lacing at all. The nose is weak overall with some lackluster nutmeg and mineral notes on the tail,like crushed gravel. The flavor spectrum mostly one sided pumpkin pie filling and some graham cracker notes. I detect some odd cantaloupe flavors on the back side. Really in need of some malt backbone. The mouthfeel is thin and watery(reminds me of a bud select)and way to much carbonation. A lack of flavor and too much fizzy carbonation kills the drinkability .

11-05-2008 18:50:30 | More by orangemoustache
Photo of yesferro


3.33/5  rDev +13.3%

Bought this at Tony's market in Tupelo, served it in a pint glass.

This beer smells good, it smells just like a very sweet pumpkin pie and that's exactly how it tastes, sweet and spicy. Sadly it's a little too much like pumpkin pie and not enough like a beer. It's interesting but I wouldn't have more then 1 of this at a time. The novelty wore off real fast, kinda like with abita's purple haze (well, this is actually a little better). I have some friends who usually don't drink beer that are now down to their 3rd 6pack of this brew. This beer really isn't bad, it's just not a beer drinkers beer at all.

11-04-2008 13:51:49 | More by yesferro
Photo of wesl56


3/5  rDev +2%

i first tried this beer last year, but i saw it in the store today and couldn't really remember it, so i decided to try it again... now i know why...

a- light golden color, a little foam from pouring it into a glass but no head and no lacing

s- faint spice aromas, like cinnamon and cloves

t- tastes like a pumpkin pie... first thing that came to mind.. a little apple/cinnamon clove flavor

m- nothing special

d- fairly light and easy to drink... i didnt care to drink another one right away

overall nothing special... maybe a treat around the fall holidays for someone who enjoys flavored beers

11-03-2008 23:26:44 | More by wesl56
Photo of Rayek


2.68/5  rDev -8.8%

A: Orange amber color with somewhat active carbonation and good clarity. Fizzy off-white head starts out OK, but quickly dissolves. Leaves no lace.

S: Heavy dose of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Very much like pumpkin pie without the pumpkin.

T: Different. Pumpkin pie spices dominate the experience. There is a slight toasty flavor from the malt. I detected a hint of what tasted something like actual pumpkin.

M: Light body is super fizzy.

D: Not my cup of tea. A very weird and gimmicky beer that I don't wish to revisit.

11-03-2008 17:09:30 | More by Rayek
Photo of gubbt


2.83/5  rDev -3.7%

Pours a clear, light golden color with a small, fading white head. Looks like a pale ale.

Some grainy malt with pumpkin spices, nutmeg, cinnamon.

Okay up front with typical spicing, that continues through. Finish is kinda watery and generally not too appealing. Not any real pumpkin flavor.

Mouthfeel is better than Buffalo Bills, probably the highlight of the beer. On the light side for a fall seasonal though.

Meh. I won't return to this, as it is very average. I've only tasted a few pumpkin ales and they have all been dissappointing. I need to find some Punkin' Ale and give that a shot.

11-03-2008 05:55:02 | More by gubbt
Photo of thekevlarkid


2.48/5  rDev -15.6%

Sampled off the tap at 8:40 in the morning on a Tuesday at the Lincoln Inn, because I'm classy like that. My pint arrived with a thick, one-finger heat of white foam atop the straw-gold liquid. Looked light for a Fall/Harvest beer. The retention was moderate but the lacing good in spotty sheets of fine bubbles. The aroma was semi-sweet citrus and spices, nutmeg and cinnamon. The flavors however were very washed out, lemon dominated the palate with little hops or malt discernable. The spices were there but weak and no pumpkin flavors could be found. The mouthfeel was watery and under-carbonated. Yes it was easy to drink, but why would you want to? It was too light for an autumn brew and generally lacked assertiveness. Disappointing.

11-02-2008 15:01:41 | More by thekevlarkid
Photo of jbphoto88


3.38/5  rDev +15%

Poured an orange clear color with not much body or soul. The head is almost nonexistent and all but vanishes as quick as it appears.

The scent has some pumpkin pie spices in the nose but they are minimal and not really great. A malt backbone is in the background but it smells weak stale.

The taste is more flavorful then the scent leads on. There is a sweet chalky/ grainy spice that reminds me of fall. A sweet combination of cinnamon and some sweet malts and wheat all reminiscent of a pumpkin pie.

Not a great beer but one I can get behind this time of year. Its got some nice spice to it and a clean pleasant taste that's not overpowering but also isn't amazing. A slightly above average beer that I can drink a bunch of but don't really enjoy.

10-31-2008 23:42:41 | More by jbphoto88
Photo of HopDerek


3.55/5  rDev +20.7%

Pours a clear gold color with 2 fingers of foamy white head. OK retention leaves some lacing. Smells of cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, brown sugar, and grain. Tastes of cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and allspice up front, definitely spiced. Then grainy malt notes mix with cider, with a citrusy orange finish. Thin in body and high in carbonation, lots of spices and not much else. Still, easy to session and a pumpkin ale I enjoy drinking every year. It's not too intense in any aspect, but the spices aren't weak either.

10-31-2008 02:33:12 | More by HopDerek
Photo of superdedooperboy


2.88/5  rDev -2%

Pours a light golden hue with a tiny white head that quickly disappears to nothingness and leaves behind no trace to indicate its brief existence.

Nose is of pumpkin pie spices--nutmeg, clove, cinnamon--and nothing else, save perhaps a tiny hint of sweet malt.

Mouthfeel and body are both thin and rather watery. Flavors present are simple holiday spices that appear in the nose, with a sugary malt sweetness presenting itself near the end before finishing long and spicy-sweet.

Drinkable in that it goes down easily, but the spices are a bit too much as they are not balanced out with anything.

For a pumpkin ale, this one is a complete failure. A spiced ale, for sure, but lacking any of the requisite characteristics of a pumpkin ale, being too light in color, body, mouthfeel, and lacking any pumpkin flavor. Not recommended.

10-29-2008 02:46:27 | More by superdedooperboy
Photo of morebeergood


3.03/5  rDev +3.1%

Went to a wedding on Saturday night, and this was the only non BMC beer behind the bar at the reception. Poured from a bottle into a stemmed glass. Decent sized white head, nice orange hue to the color. Faint smell of cinnamon. Had the taste of a pumpkin ale, but no substance to back it up. There was a real distinct lack of any body to this beer which is really distracting. It's like drinking pumpkin flavored water. Too light for a fall seasonal beer. At the after party at a local bar, they had it on tap too, so I grabbed one to compare. My pint had no head whatsoever, and was even harder to drink. Not my favorite pumpkin ale on the market.

10-27-2008 23:17:28 | More by morebeergood
Photo of dnichols


3.1/5  rDev +5.4%

I was poured a short pint from the tap at a Portland, Maine restaurant.

A: It poured a golden body with a slight haze. It's large white head dissipated fast leaving minimal lacing.

S: It emitted a distinct but not overpowering aroma of pumpkin with hints of sweet toasted malts and light flavors of oranges.

T: It was surprisingly thin and flat with a signature pumpkin flavor accented by cloves and sweet oranges.

M: It was light and thin with medium carbonation and a slightly sour aftertaste.

D: There was nothing that made this beer memorable nor one I would seek out. It went well with clam chowder and fried clams. Not a session brew.

10-27-2008 02:54:20 | More by dnichols
Photo of caddybuyer

New Jersey

2.38/5  rDev -19%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle.

A-Pale, light orange color with medium clarity. Head quickly dissapates to virtually nothing with light lacing.

S-Brown sugar, pumpkin pie spices and a sweetness that one would expect from a pumpkin ale.

T-Cinnamon and sweetness with a bit of hard apple cider thrown in...with a back end of slightly sour bitterness. Clean finish and very very light. Not what I would expect from a pumpkin ale from Shipyard.

M-Light and fizzy, macro lager style.

D-I think I'll pass. Not one of the worst pumpkin ales that I have tasted, but certainly not one of the best.

Notes: I really wanted to give this one a chance, and had the opportunity to try it on tap in New Harbor ME, at Shaw's open air bar. Not much of a difference, and a real disappointment.

10-24-2008 23:13:12 | More by caddybuyer
Photo of Reagan1984


2.85/5  rDev -3.1%

Had this before the now famous Red Sox come from behind victory Thursday night. If they come back and win this series, I'll have to drink this beer again since I'm a superstitious freak. That's too bad, because it's not that good.

It essentially came off as a macro-brew with some cinnamon and nutmeg in it.

Came with no head at all. There was also no lacing. The beer was a light bright/clear amber color with mostly orange highlights. Some visible carbonation.

Taste was rather light and smooth. There was crispness to it much like a macro-brew. There was no depth like some of the better Pumpkin Ales that are available in the fall. The Jack's Pumpkin Spice from Budweiser is much better than this for a macro comparison. I won't even bother comparing this to DFH Pumpkin' or Weyerbacher.
There is no comparison.

There was a hint of nutmeg and a touch of cinnamon. But that's really about it.

Mouth feel was light and fizzy. There was a lot of carbonation.

Drinkable yes. Interesting - not really.

10-18-2008 21:34:23 | More by Reagan1984
Photo of Offa


4.03/5  rDev +37.1%

I actually find this not only quite pleasant, but tasty and interesting. It's light and a bit fizzy, but tasty and more interesting and enjoyable than some darker, heavier pumpkin beers I've had, although overall I find the type to be of rather dubious quality.

It doesn't look great, being light, faintly orangish amber with a thin, fizzy, barely off-white head that steadily shrinks to nothing.

The aroma is better, being pumpkin pie with spice, grain, and a hint of what seems to be grape.

The taste is pleasant yet interesting, if light. It starts sweetish and gradually becomes drier by the finish. It has pumpkin and spice, all light but clearly evident. The spice is more a mixed array of spices rather than, say, just cinnamon. It has a light but persistent grain quality and a hint of fruit. The finish is a nice pumpkin pie and toasted grain blend. It's somewhat lively, crisp, and highly drinkable.

I also find that this ages well. In fact, I just drank a bottle that was left over from a year ago, it is great, and it is what I just based this review on. I feared it would be nasty, but if anything, it seems even better and more complex than I remembered. I have not bought any new bottles as I have other stuff to try, but is this really that good, or did it somehow age incredibly well? At the very least, letting it sit for a year didn't harm it.

10-15-2008 05:09:02 | More by Offa
Photo of bigkahunas4


1.3/5  rDev -55.8%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Bottle was left by my sister's friends in my fridge.

The brew pours a very straw yellow - does not scream pumpkin by any means. Barely any head. Nice lacing but really bad retention.

Smell's like a pumpkin pie - due to an overwhelming amount of spice in here. Clove and ginger and cinnamon - smells like a yankee candle. So not a bad scent - just not what you'd expect from a beer. Taste is full of these same spices, followed by a really nasty malt character. Think of a Budweiser with spices tossed in it and you have this brew. Mouthfeel is that of a Budweiser as well - very light.

Drinkability ---- NOPE! Pouring the rest of this out and enjoying a Hennepin.

EDIT- It's amazing how tasty a great beer is after a terrible one.

10-11-2008 21:41:21 | More by bigkahunas4
Photo of OtherShoe2


2.05/5  rDev -30.3%

Pours pale orange with a fizzy white head. Some lacing.

Smells like pie spice. Some malt aroma in there, but hard to find.

Whew. Pumpkin pie spice amalgamation cinna-nutmegie-clove essense with some sugary and buttery notes. Where's the beer? Not as horrible as other reviews state, just not really worth your time to drink. No actual pumpkin in this.

Mouth coating and fizzy, not great in the mouthfeel or drinkability categories. Someone gave me one to taste, and one was enough. Not going to have this ever again.

10-11-2008 13:48:21 | More by OtherShoe2
Photo of Goregazm

Rhode Island

2.93/5  rDev -0.3%


Appearance: Light golden color, not very thick. Not much head here, it is very thin and dissipates quickly. Leaves little to no lacing.

Smell: Very sweet. Predominately pumpkin and spices (nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon, etc). Can detect a dash of brown sugar in there as well.

Taste: Just like the smell, the taste is very heavy on the pumpkin and spices. Has a slightly bitter pumpkin pie taste. Nothing groundbreaking here.

Mouthfeel: Thin, not very frothy or foamy. Starts to "tingle" after a couple seconds in the mouth. The aftertaste is sweet & sour, with a slight pumpkin taste left on the palate.

Drinkability: All in all, I've had worse pumpkin ales, but I've had far better as well. This is not the worst beer you can buy, but if your in the mood for a pumpkin ale this Autumn, you can definately do better than this one.

10-07-2008 06:03:02 | More by Goregazm
Photo of dstc


1.98/5  rDev -32.7%

Pours a piss yellow with a foamy white head. Head falls to nothing with no lace left behind. This does not look appealing.

Spicy clove aroma.

Hmmm. It has a weird, week pumpkin flavor to it but not much more. Does not taste like an ale at all.

Thin and watery in the mouth.

Bad beer, bad! Not a good fall beer (if you can call it beer). Avoid.

10-03-2008 13:42:20 | More by dstc
Photo of Beaver13


2.03/5  rDev -31%

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.

10-03-2008 01:38:41 | More by Beaver13
Photo of mullenite


3.4/5  rDev +15.6%

Poured a clear orange with a half finger head that left quickly and left very little lacing.

Nose was sweet brown sugar and cinnamon. Like a very heavily spice pumpkin pie. Taste is very similar with a little something extra that I can't put my finger on but makes it taste undeniably like a beer and not root beer.

High carbonation leads to a clean finish which, along with the low alcohol content, makes for an extremely drinkable beer.

10-02-2008 20:45:40 | More by mullenite
Photo of erosier


3.63/5  rDev +23.5%

L: Pours a light orange-yellow color with a medium sized and light white colored head that fades fast and laces a bit but not much on the way down.
S: Smells of sweet malt and then some pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon, and maybe some vanilla.
T: Pretty decent blend of pumpkin pie flavors. Sweet malt, pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, and a hint of vanilla at the end.
M: Pretty light, crisp, and the right amount of carbonation.
D: I thought it was pretty drinkable and very surprised to see the ratings were so low. Apparently I liked it more than most.

09-30-2008 12:31:07 | More by erosier
Photo of oriolesfan4


2.05/5  rDev -30.3%

Bought a batch of random Pumpkin Ales and this turned out to be one of the worst ones. From appearance to taste to mouthfeel it feels like it is just lacking. It also tastes very fake, as if a pumpkin spice package was tossed into a batch of crappy beer and it was bottled. There are much better pumpkin ales out there and I would def. pass on this one.

09-29-2008 04:20:13 | More by oriolesfan4
Photo of Haybeerman


2.65/5  rDev -9.9%

A: Bright, clear copper color with amber highlights. Poured a thin fizzy white head the dissipated quickly. Lacing washes back down the side of the glass without sticking. Decanted continuously.

S: Sweet pumpkin, gingerbread and allspice.

T: Sweet and cloying, lots of spices. Where did the pumpkin go?Not much of a balance with malt as I've experienced with others.

M: Light body. Clean and crisp with a dry finish. Generous carbonation.

D: Fairly drinkable. Clean crisp mouthfeel and carbonation set you up for another drink and it goes down fairly smooth.

09-28-2008 23:58:56 | More by Haybeerman
Photo of djeucalyptus


1.93/5  rDev -34.4%

I've been on a Pumpkin beer kick lately, and this one just about put a stop to it.

A - Poured from bottle into a pint glass. The clear golden straw color was pleasant, but a thin light cream colored head was quick to bubble away leaving light lacing.

S - Smelled like someone dumped spices in my beer. Cinnamon, then nutmeg, a bit of clove, a bit of raisin and maple syrup nearly completely masked any other scent.

T - Surprisingly, it tasted like someone dumped spices in my beer. Overly spiced, with the cinnamon and nutmeg assaulting my taste buds with the sole intention of preventing me from tasting any of the usual beer flavors. A bit of grass and straw came through, but it wasn't easy.

M - very high on the carbonation. Easily one of the most carbonated beer's I've had lately, I felt like I was drinking from an over-carbonated soda fountain. Thin fairly smooth overall, but the carbonation kept making me think of pumpkin pie pop rocks.

D - Carbonation and over spiciness aside, it's not a bad beer. But the bubbles and spice were just too much. Finishing it wasn't the most pleasurable task, and I don't see any more in my near future.

09-27-2008 17:04:18 | More by djeucalyptus
Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale from Shipyard Brewing Co.
68 out of 100 based on 1,944 ratings.