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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.

1,925 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,925
Reviews: 777
rAvg: 2.94
pDev: 27.21%
Wants: 17
Gots: 123 | 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: 1,925 | Reviews: 777 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of loving44


1.85/5  rDev -37.1%

Poured light gold amber with a fizzy white fizzy head. The head faded quickly into a slick ring around the glass. Looks almost flat already. No head forms when I swirled the glass and no lacing.

Smell: Sickly sweet, waxy pumpkin, no hops, tootsie pop?. hay, crayon... some spice. Not horrible... better than the average macro smell, but I expected more from this.

Taste: Sweet pumpkin-squash type flavor with hints of pumpkin pie spice. Grass, Hay, Corn, almost no hop bitterness. I think this is way too sweet.

Mouthfeel is flat and oily, really watered down. The beer loses it's carbonation really quickly to the point where it becomes almost undrinkable. I poured the last two inches or so down the drain.

I remember this being pretty tasty a couple years ago, I don;t know what happened. If you're going to try this one this fall, make sure it's ice cold and drink it straight from the bottle.

P.S. : My girlfriend thought it was tasty stuff!

11-01-2006 14:32:05 | More by loving44
Photo of whynot44


3.13/5  rDev +6.5%

Light copper/pumpkin colored with a modest and quick disappearing white head.

The aroma is mild pumpkin pie spices with hints of malt.

The taste is mainly pumpkin pie spices, although milder than some pumpkin brews, not overpowering but not overly satisfying either. Light bodied, actually a bit watery. Finishes slightly dry, with spices, hints of pumpkin and maybe even a trace of hops.

Overall, not a bad beer, and possibly a good "beginner's" pumpkin ale. It's not strong enough to be offensive if you have a limited tolerance for pumpkin pie spices in your beer, but could benefit from a bit more substance. Kind of a "Pumpkin Lite".

10-27-2006 03:39:18 | More by whynot44
Photo of flexabull


3/5  rDev +2%

Pours a golden clear color, with a faint head that quickly died.

A hint of spice and pumpkin on the nose. It's pleasant, a bit like pumpkin pie.

Taste is a lot like a pumpkin pie, but without the whipped cream. Not many other beer flavors going on. I like other pumpkin beers better, especially when they have some beer qualities like malt and hop flavors.

This is drinkable, but far from great.

10-26-2006 03:50:09 | More by flexabull
Photo of Drew966


2.48/5  rDev -15.6%

Pumpkinhead Ale pours an orange color with a minimal white head from a brown twelve ounce bottle. The aroma is pumpkin pie spice, leaning heavily on cinammon. Tastes like pumpkin pie spice backed by diacetyl. I'm glad I didn't buy a sixer of this, it's not awful, but I couldn't drink more than one.

10-26-2006 01:00:20 | More by Drew966
Photo of Frozensoul327


2.88/5  rDev -2%

A: Medium orange-yellow color with a touch of haze. Short lived white head bubbled off to never-neverland, leaving a flat liquid top.

S: Some spices and herbs, a touch of pumpkin.

T: Middle of the road flavors of pumpkin and malt. A bit of hops adds a nice sharpness to an otherwise boring beer.

M: A little flat and watery, could benefit from more density and carbonation, but overall, acceptable.

D: A fair example of a pumpkin ale, but not too satisfying.

Notes: I can skip this next year and not lose any sleep over it.

10-17-2006 23:43:58 | More by Frozensoul327
Photo of lpayette


1.9/5  rDev -35.4%

Theme for this review: disappointment.

This one was a real disappointment to me... I thought that I remembered hearing some people raving about how great this beer was last year. I sincerely hope that they were talking about something different. Luckily I narrowly avoided disaster when I made the decision to just buy one bottle instead of a whole six-pack... that was a sound financial decision.

12 oz. bottle. Best enjoyed by Dec. 2006. Sampled on 9/23/06.

Appearance- Golden orange. Bright white head with lots of visible carbonation. Looks promising, hopes are up. Then the head quickly disappears... ok let's keep a positive outlook for this beer.

Smell- what's this??? light grains... definitely weak, light, macro-like grains. My nose decides to dig deep for more and it finds traces of spices and... corn???

Taste- grainy water... very subtle spices... hints of pumpkin... just hints. Subtle hop finish... and is that corn again? So by now my vision of this being a great pumpkin ale have disappeared and I am wondering if it is fair to label this a pumpkin ale at all.

Mouthfeel- Ok. So the mouthfeel is ok. light-bodied.

Drinkability- So... this goes down pretty easy in much the same way that water does. And just like water, it's not interesting enough to session. I had high hopes for this beer, but it simply left me wondering what the point is in brewing a special seasonal if you're going to skimp on flavor.

10-17-2006 05:42:44 | More by lpayette
Photo of AaronMcDonald


2.98/5  rDev +1.4%

A: Color is golden with slight tinge of orange. Pours a good amount of head but quickly dissipates to nothing. No lacing.

S: Smell is mostly of cinnamon with a little nutmeg thrown in.

T: For this style about average. The pumkin "essence" only comes through at the end. Other than that taste like a lighter ale. This ale does seam to be more of a pumkin spice ale than a pumkin ale.

M: A bit thin.

D: I like these about 1 per sitting.

The ale does remind me of fall and is not bad at this time of year.

10-16-2006 21:21:01 | More by AaronMcDonald
Photo of wcudwight

North Carolina

2.93/5  rDev -0.3%

Sounds like a Sprite when opened and poured. Golden amber in color with some hints of orange. Very clear with lots of carbonation bubbles. Massive fizzy head that was gone to nothing in seconds. When I say nothing that's exactly what I mean. No lace, no foam, nothing.
Smells like apple cider. I thought this was supposed to be a pumpkin beer? The apple cider aroma is nice and reminds me of autumn.
The flavor is full of artificial candy like sweetness. Lot's of cinnamon. Maybe some nutmeg. Doesn't taste much like beer, but it doesn't taste bad.
Mouthfeel is thin and watery.
I couldn't imagine drinking more than one of these. If you want a pumpkin beer that taste like pumpkins, try Cottinwood's Pumpkin Spiced Ale.

10-16-2006 01:37:22 | More by wcudwight
Photo of OStrungT


3.98/5  rDev +35.4%

This beer pours a very clear golden color with a thin, but fluffy, off white head. The head fades too fast, leaving almost no laces.

Pumpkin dominates the aroma of this beer. It also has a pleasent cinnimon aroma. A slight citrus aroma is also present.

This beer tastes of pumpkin mostly. It tastes slightly spicy also. It tastes quite like a slice of pumpkin pie.

This veer is crisp and refreshing. It goes down smooth, leaving a pumpkin aftertaste. It is very low in carbonation.

I think this beer might be a decent session beer. The flavor might get a little overbearing after a few, but it is mild and non aggressive. I can put down a few.

Overall: I like this beer. I guess I am one of a few that do. Oh well, that just leaves much more for me. Cheers.

10-15-2006 02:37:12 | More by OStrungT
Photo of stouty1


2.7/5  rDev -8.2%

Okay so this has no head, no smell, and no taste.

A: Golden yellow like a Pilsner. No head at all, just fizz.

S: First whiff smelled like pee. Second whiff had a far off distant pumpkin. I have Halloween decorations that smell more like pumpkins.

T: Caronated like a Sprite with a slight finish of pumpkin.

M: Carbonation hurts my mouth and throat. Watery, no body.

D: I could drink these, but i don't want to.

10-15-2006 02:09:05 | More by stouty1
Photo of MrHurmateeowish


3.5/5  rDev +19%

Amber color with almost no head to speak of. Smells overwealmingly of pumpkin pie spice. Tastes malty and of pumpkin pie spice. Pumpkin is also present; more so than Sea Dog's, less so than DFH, Smuttynotse, and others... Light to medium bodied. Rather drinkable... Seems more like a spice ale than a pumpkin ale... Not my favorite pumpkin ale. Better than I remember, perhaps this year's batch is better than last year's...

10-15-2006 00:53:55 | More by MrHurmateeowish
Photo of PBRstreetgang


2.65/5  rDev -9.9%

Pours a brilliantly clear, light golden color. A fizzy, one and a half finger head dissipates quickly, leaving no sign of lace. Mild aroma of pale malt, allspice and pumpkin pie spice. Very plain pale malt base, with a slight saaz flavor and weak autumn spice flavor. Semi-drying aftertaste, light and bland with any residual taste evaporating immediatly. Light in body and extra crisp; perhaps an incling of texture, but seems more like adjunct dextrins than starchy pumpkin. This is a very safe seasonal, it finishes clean with an immense drinkability. Suitable for someone who desires something unique for the holiday; but does not wish to step far outside the realm of light lager.

10-14-2006 07:01:48 | More by PBRstreetgang
Photo of jhammerly


2.9/5  rDev -1.4%

A very light body that has a yellowish, orange hue to it and is almost clear. The head was nice while it lasted - fluffy white and about two fingers thick. It quickly vanished within minutes. A faint pumpkin aroma (and something else that I couldn't quite place) lingered a bit, but like the head, it didn't stick around. Pumpkin pie flavor with a touch of cinnamon is somewhat mixed with the taste of a flat beer. Mouthfeel is thin and watered down. despite all the negatives about this beer, it isn't terrible. I could handle this in small doses, but I won't be going out of my way to obtain again. This might be the fall equivalent of a lawnmower beer - perhaps a leaf-raking beer?

10-14-2006 05:22:08 | More by jhammerly
Photo of Vancer


2.17/5  rDev -26.2%

This pour of pilsner yellow, slight amber tinge, does not bode well. No head or lace. Ummm, no aroma, maybe a far off whiff of pumpkin in a neighbor’s yard 3 houses down.

Extremely weak and pathetic pumpkin brew. A cheap ale that had a pumpkin rind dipped into it. Why did they bother? I’m embarrassed that I bought and shipped some of this to other BAs.

Sorry guys – hells bells, A.B.’s Jack pumpkin is better that this.

10-14-2006 00:56:42 | More by Vancer
Photo of arnulfooxblood


2.9/5  rDev -1.4%

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle with a festive headless horseman holding a beer aloft.

Appearance--Amber to orange hue, disturbingly thin looking for an ale. The head disappeared very quickly.

Smell--Mmmm. Pumpkin pie.

Taste/Mouthfeel--The smell misleads the drinker into expecting a much thicker beer, it's actually a bit on the thin and watery side. Obvious "autumnal" spices, but it's so thin it's not doing too much for me.

Drinkability--One at a time, thanks!

10-11-2006 01:48:00 | More by arnulfooxblood
Photo of riversider76

New York

2.3/5  rDev -21.8%

Pours golden. Not much of a head, and no lacing. Smell is weak, and not unlike a macro brew. Body is like soda pop. Taste is malty up front,with some bad pumpkin spice in the finish. Not a very good pumpkin ale.I was expecting better. Man,don't go there man!!

10-10-2006 23:10:59 | More by riversider76
Photo of bditty187


2.38/5  rDev -19%

Clear, gold in hue with a steady stream of animation racing to the white head; at the apex the foam was two fingers tall. Head retention was fair; the bubbles steadily fell to a soapy cap. The color of the liquid is kind of dull for a fall beer, IMO. There was no subsequent lacing. Boring appearance, from top to bottom but overall I’ll call it average.

The nose smells faintly spicy, like a pumpkin pie sans the pumpkin. (Isn’t that an issue?) I like to smell pumpkin flesh in beers of this style. (Duh.) I don’t smell anything but pumpkin essence. Is that a mineral water twang? There is something funky in the background I’m not digging it. The nose does nothing for me.

Thin biscuity malt upfront, mineral water twang in the middle, pumpkin pie spices at the finish. It has a mildly sweet aftertaste, muddled gross spiciness. The palate is a mess, IMO. The lack of a true pumpkin flavor really derails this beer. The spices are not too overbearing but the malt/pumpkin is so lacking. Yawn/yuck.

Prickly carbonation, watery mouthfeel, as it is no more than medium-light on the tongue. I find this beer depressingly thin.

I like a well-made pumpkin ale, sadly Shipyard doesn’t deliver. I took a flier and purchased a six-pack of this in Council Bluffs, IA. WHY! Now I am stuck with five bottles. Shit. Avoid, IMO.

10-10-2006 13:57:15 | More by bditty187
Photo of tonistruth


2.5/5  rDev -15%

A- 1/4" white fizzy head thats pretty much vanishes, clear orange color, constant bubbling action going on, no lace

S- pumpkin, bready, faint spice, somewhat sweet

T- lots of pumpkin, almost so much that you cant taste anything else. sweet, bit bready, some spice

M- very high carbonation, fizzy, light body

D- Shipyard got the pumpkin flavor right, but this is like soda, or a zima. Fizzy body, sure this could be fun for halloween beer pong, but not if your looking for a pumpkin ale.

10-10-2006 03:56:13 | More by tonistruth
Photo of bennetj17


3.05/5  rDev +3.7%

Received from Vancer in BIF46.
This beer's appearance is not too inviting; weak head, pale light gold color, fair carbonation. The aroma seems light and malty, but there is a definite sweet pumkin spice going on. The flavor is subtle and macro-ish, but it does have a decent pumpkin pie like taste with hints of cinnamon and nutmeg. Mouthfeel is somewhat watery, with barely enough body to make it drinkable. Moderate carbonation overall. The drinkablility isn't great, but I have to say I like the potential here with pumpkin flavor. If it were a bit more robust and had a fuller mouthfeel, it would be pretty good...

10-09-2006 18:45:32 | More by bennetj17
Photo of plaid75

New York

3.03/5  rDev +3.1%

Poured a light copper hue with half finger white head. There was little retention and lacing.

The smell was simply unappealing. A very mild cinammon spice that was overpowered by an acrid plastic-like aroma.

The taste featured a light grain taste couiple with a sprinkling of pumpkin spice. A decent doughy finish though.

The mouthfeel was light with a chewy doughy aftertaste.

Overall, not much to report. Essentially an all malt lager with a smattering of cinammon.

10-08-2006 18:13:34 | More by plaid75
Photo of nlmartin


3.6/5  rDev +22.4%

This beer was served in a pub glass.

Appearance: The beer has a oddly pleasing fizzy pumpkin orange coloration. The head is a small white ring of foam.

Smell: The beer has a very good pumpkin pie spice load. The beer is loaded with cloves, cinnamon and all spice. The pumpkin gives a vaguely musty smell.

Taste: The beer delivers on pumpkin spice without a trace of pumpkin. The beer suceeds as a spiced beer but not as a fruit beer.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: The beer light bodied with vigourous carbonation. This is a fairly easy to drink beer. I could drink a few of these in an evening. Then I would have to seek out a different beer.

10-07-2006 16:02:22 | More by nlmartin
Photo of xav33


3.63/5  rDev +23.5%

Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale
12 oz bottle
Recent bottling, carved into 10/06
Medium pour in a tulip glass

Poured a clear golden hay with a medium rocky quickly diminishing white head.

Smelt of moderate ginger and cloves, some traces of pumpkin.

Taste was upfront moderate sweet ginger and a light sweet pumpkin feel followed by a more subdued but more bitter ginger taste with slight bitter pumpkin accents. Mouthfeel was light, watery and fizzy.

Overall, a simple ginger oriented pumpkin ale that is maybe simple in taste, but not uncomfortable on the palate.

10-03-2006 05:32:22 | More by xav33
Photo of Tallboy


3.03/5  rDev +3.1%

Appearence: A medium golden color with a bubbly ivory head that barely caught my attention.
Aroma: Cinamon and spice at first then comes the awesome scent of fresh baked pumpkin pie.
Taste: Verry elegant cinamon flavor with some nice herbal malts and nutmeg produce a unique offering.
Mouthfeel: Verry thinly bodied with moderate carbonation.
Drinkability: As a fan of spiced beers I liked it but would not list it as my all time favorite of the pumpkin themed beers.

10-02-2006 03:08:04 | More by Tallboy
Photo of BeerSox


1.85/5  rDev -37.1%

12oz bottle into mug

Ultra clear dark yellow. Looks like apple juice. Creats a large fluffy off white head which doesn't last very long. Eventually settles to a fuzzy cap. Lacing is nearly non-existant.

Very strong pumpkin spice aromas, and very cinnimon like. Apple cider like aromas can also be detected.

Very pungent spicy flavor, which barely mimics pumpkin. Tastes like movie-theatre (watered down) style pumpkin soda.

Light bodied and watery with high carbonation, has the feel of soda.

A very lackluster attempt at a pumpkin ale. There probably isn't any real pumpkin in this, only spices. There are better choices out there.

10-01-2006 19:48:12 | More by BeerSox
Photo of davidshamoon

New York

2.85/5  rDev -3.1%

You wouldn't know Shipyard's Pumpkinhead was a pumpkin ale by looking at it -- it's a pretty conventionally golden brew (just a touch more orange) with a disappointing head that doesn't linger for more than a minute -- but the smell will set you straight. I noticed a hint of white wine, but, wow, is the nutmeg powerful.

Though the Pumpkinhead has a nice, crisp flavor when it first touches your mouth, that nutmeg comes in mighty strong at the swallow. Put simply, the beer is over-spiced; and it's a recognizable pumpkin ale because of the inclusion of spices that one associates with pumpkin pie, not because pumpkin flavor itself is blended in.

This is the second pumpkin ale I've had this season, the first being Brooklyn Brewery's Post Road. I recommend going with the Post Road. The spices are better blended and more subtle, allowing pumpkin flavor to come through. I didn't hate the Pumpkinhead, but it's kinda like drinking eggnog: too much will make you sick, and more than a glass is probably too much.

09-27-2006 21:08:06 | More by davidshamoon
Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale from Shipyard Brewing Co.
68 out of 100 based on 1,925 ratings.