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Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale - Shipyard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Shipyard Pumpkinhead AleShipyard Pumpkinhead Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

850 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 850
Hads: 2,519
Avg: 2.88
pDev: 48.96%
Wants: 35
Gots: 447 | 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 (53) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 850 | Hads: 2,519
Photo of SetarconeX
2.68/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Not too much to look at. Far to light and transparent, though with some nice corbonation on it. Big, almost soda like. Sweet, cinnamonny scent, smells rather nice really. Wouldn't mind sniffing this for quite a while...

Take a sip and...oh god! What went wrong here? Tastes of rancid cinnamon and rotting vegitation, with a hop or two as garnish. Really one of the more disgusting beers I've tried lately. Pretty big dissapointment considering how lovely it smelled.

Pleasently smelling and foul tasting. Probably one to avoid.

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Photo of Shovelbum
1.7/5  rDev -41%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

This beer is nasty, and not in good way.

The body was pale yellow in color with a fleeting head.

Smelled of cinnamon, and maybe a bit of pumpkin, but mainly cinnamon. ferent

Tasted like someone had dropped a cinnamon stick in an American macro-lager. Light-watery body… oh and did I mention cinnamon. I recognize that spice is part of this style, but this example did not find the blance between cinnamon and the other spices that make pumpkin pie so good-- not to mention the lack of another important flavor-- pumpkin.

Heavy carbonation that dominates the mouthfeel, and nose and throat for that matter.

Drinking this beer was not a pleasant experience. I enjoy many of Shipyard’s other ales, but for this one their heads seem to have been somewhere else-- not inside of a pumpkin, but perhaps a jar of cinnamon.

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Photo of ryantupy
2.34/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I have never had so much trouble getting rid of a six pack ever. Now I am stuck with with the remaining 5 bottles with no one to try and pawn them off on. This beer was a terrible dissapointment and had really no pumpkin flavor at all to it. It had quite a bit of cinnamon to it but no pumpkin flavors. This beer is defiantly not worth reccomending.

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Photo of chrisssm
1.27/5  rDev -55.9%
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.

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Photo of Gaben
3.18/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I had this stuff a couple of weeks ago, a pretty sweet tangy beer to drink. I wouldnt perfer drinking this stuff everynight , but about once or twice in a month for that cinamon tastes. A good try if never drank once before.

.. Id have to say stick with the punkin' ale from dogfish-head.

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Photo of Morris729
2.97/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clear light golden color with a frothy white head (I was expecting a bit of orange, but no such luck). Nose is dominated by cinnamon and sugar and is reminiscent of pumpkin pie mix. Mouthfeel seems a bit thin and watery. Taste matches the aroma—liquid pumpkin pie mix heavy on the cinnamon. Seems a bit too artificial. Perhaps worth a try if you’re curious, but that’s about it.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
3.33/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The color is lager golden with a high level of carbonation. The head is average height and pretty thick. The aroma has the clean sweetness of a cream ale with the tiniest hint of spice. The taste can be described as that of a cream ale with pumpkin flavor and spices added. The pumpkin and spice flavors come in toward the middle and aren't very strong. Cinnamon is notable. Finish is a continuation of the pumpkin taste. I think this works well for what it is: a lighter pumpkin flavored ale. This is easily enjoyable if you don't want or expect something bigger or bolder.

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Photo of stof0048
3.42/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Okay, so I'll keep this one short and sweet. I'm not quite sure why this beer gets such low ratings. I have tried other brands and I think this one is great. I won't say it's the greatest thing since sliced bread, but a nice seasonal to have around from time to time. Very pale beer, not cloudy at all. Has the carbonation of a light beer... the mouthfeel reminds me or Mich Light or Rolling Rock Light. Taste is somewhat bolder than expected. Heavy taste of cinnnamon and nutmeg with hints of apple. Of course you can taste the pumpkin in this. I described it to a friend as pumpkin pie infused with cinnamon applesauce. Overall not a bad beer. Then again, not at the top of my list, but worth having around for a little bit of a different taste.

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Photo of goodbyeohio
2.45/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

pour was shockingly light.. water-drinking piss colored with a big, sudsy foam. nose is a grassy sourness with sweet spice hints. it sure tastes like pumpkin.. flavoring. adjunct sweetness mixed with the most generic pumpkin artificial flavoring. like pumpkin flavor you think about when you eat a cookie from the store-brand halloween variety mix colored bright orange. very mild hops presence wears off before the aftertaste. drinkable in a soda-pop-ish way and pretty much overall terrible in terms of autumnal beers. i can't hate it 100%, because i finished the bottle. would never buy a six pack and i don't recommend you do either. this is probably the furthest pumpkin beer from craft brewing that exists in the known universe today.

thanks shi(t)pyard for crapping in my mouth in the shape of a cold-weather gourd.

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Photo of sabrills70
1.8/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a light amber almost gold color with a 2 finger head, but not much lace to speak of. Smells of a macro lager with some nutmeg and cinnamon mixed in. A bit cidery too. Watery and thin in the taste. Again like a macro lager with just enough spices added so thay can call it a spiced malt beverage. High carbonation - to high. Cidery and not very drinkable. I admit I got sucked in by the label. A poor attempt at a pumpkin ale. Avoid this one.

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Photo of Winter
2.47/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a clear pale orange-yellow with a fizzy white head that disapated to a thin white surface covering. Aroma consists of pumpkin, nutmeg and a pinch of cinnamon. Basically, what you'd expect from a pumpkin ale. Mouthfeel is thin and very over-carbonated. This ale is thin in flavor also. Taste lacks pumpkin flavor. Lightly hopped, supplying a tiny amount of bitterness. Seems seltzer-like. Some nutmeg in the finish. Overall this just comes up short as a pumpkin brew. I'll skip this one next time.

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Photo of SixpointJMH
2.67/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I'm really perplexed by this one. Staring out, I enjoyed my first few sips and was shocked that it was rated so low. As I drank on, I understood more and realized the problem (in my eyes) it's basically Heineken (or even Miller Lite) with some spices thrown into the mix, which, while certainly an improvement over both the former an latter, is still nothing to be proud of.

It pours an abysmal (yet crisp) looking pale yellow colour with the head dissolving instantaneously.

The smell is faint at first but gives way to some pumpkin aromas, although its mostly cinnamon, some nutmeg and a gingerbread cookie smell. There may be an everso slight hint of malt lingering here and there.

The flavour is somewhat of an improvement on the aroma, but not much, and certainly nothing to rave about. It's basically more of the same but more pronounced, with a more distinct pumpkin flavour in the finish. Mouthfeel is thin and overly carbonated, although it does provide a hint of warmth,

Drinkability? Eh. I can drink 'em but really don't want to. It's moreso a quest to finish them all and move on to something else. Would I buy this one again? No. This is definitely one of my least favourite pumpkin brews out there, if not the worst one that I've sampled.

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3.02/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Light pale gold with a 1/2" white head that falls to a cap. Tornado of carbonation bubbles. No lace.

Cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and every other pumpkin spice. Almost overpowering.

Flavor is full of bold spice. Cinnamon is the most prevalent. Slight maltiness, no hops. Sweet. Very similar flavor to Big Red chewing gum.

Thin mouthfeel, highly carbonated. Very light.

Interesting. Not highly drinkable, but I will revisit this next fall.

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Photo of Lordsoth
2.32/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Well now, this is my last attempt at a pumkin ale. Let's get this over with. Appearance: pale, head vanishes quickley, lot's of carbonation (maybe I should have had a soda). Smell: it was the best quality of this beer. Smelled of pumkin pie with the spices overwhelming. Taste: Again, spices were stronger than the pumkin. Mouthfeel: uh, must have missed it. Drinkability: like a light beer. Well, in my opinion, pumkin should be served on a plate in a crust with cool whip on top!

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Photo of IrishRedRock
1.25/5  rDev -56.6%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

So I'm waiting for a phone call, hopefully from some high ranking government official, to tell me I've been drugged and the experience I'm having of drinking this beer isn't happening. Or maybe they're calling to tell me that Shipyard accidentally bottled Grandma's perfume and sent it to their distributors, and somehow it ended up in my glass. I'd be happier with the former situation.

To put it bluntly, this beer sucks from start to finish, and am amazed they are even proud of or even find this acceptable enough to slap a label on and let anyone outside of the brewery sample it. Pumpkin ale? Pours a fizzy golden color, so un-pumpkin ale, with a quickly dying fizzy white head. Aromas of spicy women's perfume, new clothes (it reminds me of how Macy's smells) and wet cinnamon sticks. Flavor of cooked veggies, clove, spices, vanilla, corn, and one of the nastiest saltine cracker aftertastes I've ever encountered. A bit too carbonated and fizzy on the palate.

I guess the intent here was a pumpkin ale, but this is waaay off the mark, in nearly every way. Absolutely no malt character anywhere in this; it's all artificial spices. I doubt any pumpkins died in the creation of this ale, which tastes a lot more like a crappy lager with a cinnamon stick in it.

I can count the number of beers I've ever dumped on one hand, and this is another finger to count. An absolute mess.

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Photo of countrocula
2.29/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

I really wanted to like this. Whether it was my childish "judging a book by its cover" from the Sleepy Hollow headless horseman on the front or the fact that the pumpkin model used was the countenance of an evil jack-o-lantern, I do not know. In any case, I was a bit let down.

Pop the bottle and dispense. Pours with ultra lively carbonation (something already seems to be amiss) and has a hue a tad darker than a Foster's. Head disappears almost immediately and you're left with the splotchy froth that tops many of the macros. Bubbles still lively and seem to never stop.

Big malt and a "pumpkin spice" aroma (not pure pumpkin) akin to the flavoring added to Starbucks' seasonal offerings of pumpkin latte and eggnog hit you.

Mouthfeel is way too bubbly and watery. Had I been suffering from a headcold, I may mistake this for Bud Light.

Any semblance of supposed ale character is remarkably absent. This is almost like an alcohol tinged seltzer with a "pumpkin spice" twist. I thought this is how ZIMA and wine coolers were made.

Oh wait, I've just seen "malt beverage with pumpkin spice added" emblazoned beneath the "ALE" branding. I feel like a fool now...

The remainder of this six pack will go to providing me a cheap buzz and washing down half a pack of Marlboro Reds.

I feel so used :(

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Photo of LPorter33
3.19/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is my probably my last pumpkin ale of the year as I'm getting quite sick of the style. Purchased this bottle from Martignetti's

Appearance = pale and fairly weak looking. Not much head that withers away into a faint white film. Lots of bubbles. Doesn't look rich or complex.

Smell = This smells like a pumpkin flavored lager, not ale. The pumpkin essence is light and refreshing. I like it although there's not much spice.

Taste = Hmm..this is like what I imagine the new Budweiser pumpkin ale to taste like. Very watery and flavorless beer with some pumpkin flavor inserted in. There's nothing great going on here, but it's not terrible and it's certainly drinkable.

Overall = This should be called a macro lager with pumpkin essence. It's certainly not a good ale but for what it is, it ain't bad. Better than average drinkability. I would not recommend this if you're looking for a real pumpkin ale: try Dogfish Head's version instead. But if you want an easy drinking beer with a bit of Fall spice, you'll probably enjoy it alright.

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Photo of radshoesbro
3.06/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

a - very typical. looks very similar to carbonated apple juice, but just a bit darker.

s - the smell of this beer is what makes me keep coming back to it. every time i smell this my nose tells my mouth that there is absolutely no way i won't like this. it has a smell of pumpkins and spice, almost exactly like pumpkin pie.

t - at first this tastes like a good lighter beer, sweet and spicey with a descent amount of pumpking. unfortunately the finish is fairly weak. it's like drinking a great beer that as soon as it hits the back of your mouth it goes stale.

all in all this is beer that i would definately try, but i wouldn't recommend unless you're planning on drinking to get drunk or you're just low on cash. i seem to come back to this every year and it's probablly just because it smells so good.

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Photo of aquatonex
3/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not your usual pumpkin ale.

Pours very light wheat-orange with a very short bubbly head that quickly dissipates. Looks like a light beer. Nose has some pumpkinness along with spice, but pretty light. Taste is light also, tastes like a light beer with a tiny bit of pumpkin and spice. I was expecting a heavier, maltier beer with more spice and more pumpkin. Was too light for me.

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Photo of Pegasus
3.42/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Clear medium golden color, with a large, persistent, fine-grained head. There is nothing whatever in the appearance of this beer that suggests pumpkin ale.

Aroma: Lots of pumpkin pie spice in the aroma, quite pleasant, very much like a freshly-baked pumpkin pie.

Taste: Opens with tart malt, soon overwhelmed by pumpkin pie spices, late in the taste some herbal hops appear. The finish is a bit dry.

Mouth feel: A bit thin, with soft carbonation, but not unpleasant.

Drinkability/notes: A decent beer, quite appropriate to the season, although I do wish it contained some pumpkin, rather than just the spices.

Presentation: Packaged in a twelve ounce brown glass longneck with a twist-off crown. The label art is spectacular, featuring a headless horseman on horseback with a mug of pumpkin beer, the neckband features a particularly malevolent jack o'lantern. This beer would be great for a halloween party. Served in a standard pint tap glass.

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Photo of assurbanipaul
3.7/5  rDev +28.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear and bright orangey yellow with a minimal head and bubbles of carbonation rising like soda. Aroma is strangely sweet and fruity, like a light pumpkin pie syrup.

Taste is a gentle pumpkin pie essence over a lightly malted lager-tasting base. Elements of allspice and cloves, wouldn't surprise me if it had a kölsch base. Spices are very subtle, barely enough to make their presence known, not enough to saturate the palate.

Mouthfeel is light and smooth, well-carbonated, very easy to drink. Very unlike most pumpkin ales, not heavy or heavily spiced at all. It'd be nice to serve in a fluted glass to people who are expecting champaigne, it's not so "beery" that people may turn their nose up at it.

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Photo of antzman
2.31/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

My first fall beer of the year, and I was pretty disappointed. This beer had great promise with a tantalizing aroma that really kicks out the smell of cinnamon and cloves, but it pretty much ends after the first sip. This seemed like biting into a pumpkin pie, and chasing it immediately with a glass of flat beer.

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Photo of Naes
2.37/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

This beer is very pale, a golden orange if you will. Its head is small, white and disappears quickly.

The aroma is faint but of pumpkin, spice, cloves and cinnamon.

Its flavor starts off with a hint of hops and then is overpowered by cinnamon, especially in the aftertaste.

Mouth feel is light bodied and is highly carbonated.

This is definitely not a beer that I could follow with a second.

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Photo of jmz62565
2.92/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Not a very dark ale.A very small head with little carbonation.The taste is very strong.I have not tasted any pumpkin brews with this much spice.Some people look forward to fall and the octoberfest season and other specialty beers,I am one of these people.This beer makes me want to tailgate or have a big thanksgiving dinner.I really like Shipyard beer,but i think they may have used a little too much cinnamon.
P.S. There are not many beers that have a "cooler" label than this one.

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Photo of Ricochet
2.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It's going to be fall, and my beer store had a ton of Pumpkin beers to try. I am still looking for one as good as I got from The Quarrymen brew (way gone) and I hope that I will eventually...

This was okay. It was a darker yellow but not quite amber and had mild carbo and head. It smelled like Ballantine ale, so I thought "cheap ale" with just a hint of pumpkin spice. Mouth went average. It was like any other ale . Taste was interesting. The pumpkin flavor was slight and incedental but I couldn't taste any ale. It was just like Ballantine with pumpkin flavor, odd , but okay! It had a wierd "cerial" aftertaste too.

This was the cheapest beer in my sampler, 67 cents a bottle, I didn't buy Ballantine this time around but I could see getting this again in place of Ballantine only during the fall.

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Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale from Shipyard Brewing Co.
67 out of 100 based on 850 ratings.