Pumpkin Ale - Kern River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Pumpkin AlePumpkin Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

139 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 139
Reviews: 59
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 14.4%
Wants: 21
Gots: 7 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Kern River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: HopHead84 on 09-14-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 139 | Reviews: 59
Reviews by pastradul:
Photo of pastradul
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

poured into a duvel green tulip.

huge white head that leaves slowly. lots of bubbles along the glass.

the nose is a ton of fall spice right in the front of the nose. with a bit of pumpkin in the back of the nose.

the taste is very similar. the spice is less then I was expecting which works out well. with a bit of pumpkin working it's way through t the palate in more of the mid and back of the mouth. as it warms the pumpkin comes through a but more.

I feel that the carb could be a bit less and it would help the beer a bit more.

Pretty solid pumpkin beer IMO.

More User Reviews:
Photo of augustgarage
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap @ Blue Palms Brewhouse in Hollywood - served in a snifter.

Clear ECE/ACE amber body with a half-finger of seashell foam. Pasty lacing, decent retention.

Light pumpkin aroma with a hint of angel cake as well. Pleasant but restrained.

Pale malt base comes through with a lovely crispness on the palate, offsetting any sugars from the pumpkin. The latter is pure and while not vegetal, certainly isn't going to bring to mind "pie" either. A touch of earth and pepper (perhaps from hops) is revealed in the finish.

Light-bodied, lively, and smooth mouthfeel.

About as refreshing a take on the style as one could imagine. Unique and well done.

Photo of HalfFull
3.62/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a pint glass. This brew pours a hazy golden in color with a full inch of almost white head. Decent and artsy lacing follows, settling to a surface ring.

Smell is less of pumpkin than of such fall spices associated thereof. OK there is pumpkin, and cinnamon, allspice and orange, bit of pepper as well. Pumpkin notes are well spiced, pretty interesting.

Flavor is moderate and with a cooked pumpkin and spice flavor that follows the nose. Interesting gruit notes on the nose and tongue truly override the pumpkin flavors and not in a negative way.

Offers a smooth feel and decent drinkability. Light in body, the aromas of this brew give it some substance indeed.

Photo of GRG1313
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Light orange amber with a pleasant white head that's creamy and long lasttingly firm.

Nose is huge pumpkin and pumpkin spice, rich and bold and like the best of pumpkin cookie and bread.

Mouth is medium bodied with elegant carbonation and a very nice balance.

Flavors are well integrated pumpkin, winter spice, cinammon and pure pumpkin pie. I'm not a big pumpkin beer fan but this is a clean, rich and flavorful example with nice integrated flavors and balance and a nice clean and uplifting bitter herb finish.

Photo of SpdKilz
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours into my SA Perfect Pint with a slightly hazy golden color. Over two fingers of white fluffy head is achieved with a moderate pour. The head slowly dissipates, leaving chunky lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell - In one word, it reminds me of fall. Light spices such as nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice. There is a definite pumpkin aroma - though not overdone. Overall it is a more subdued aroma of the spices and pumpkin, though quite pleasant.

Taste - Interesting - not what I was expecting. As the individual who posted beneath me noted, this appears to be a blonde pumpkin ale, though that is not necessarily a bad thing. The spices come through nicely, though I will admit there is an odd vegetable flavor (again, not bad in my opinion, just different) that suggests, besides pumpkin, celery and perhaps cabbage? There is more of a "bitterness" to this than malt (I do wish there was a hint more malt) though honestly, this is an odd pumpkin beer but one that is impressing me the more I sip it.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied, lower carbonation, pretty creamy.

Drinkability - Quite so. Relatively quaffable in my opinion. Not nearly as heavy on spices as say DFH Punkin, however, a great session pumpkin beer in my opinion. There is just enough flavor to make you want more, but it is not overpowering in the sense that you would get sick of it after a glass. A great attempt from Kern River with their own twist to it.

Photo of Dspohn
4.47/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got to try this from a KR growler after the FW 14 release at the Pour House.

I'll admit to being fairly intoxicated and not taking good notes on this review. But after sampling some awesome beers and getting to try the very highly regarded Citra DIPA and Just Outstanding which were both excellent and receive a lot of praise, I feel like this underrated beer deserved a great review. By FAR my favorite pumpkin beer, incredibly refreshing, light and delicious. One of the standouts of the night. I sort of hate pumpkin beers that tend to be too heavy,sweet,over-the-top but this was a wonderful beer.

Photo of jmarsh123
3.48/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours gold/orange with a 2 finger white creamy sticky head. A little lighter than most pumpkin beers.

Well balanced aroma consisting of gingerbread, allspice, nutmeg and cinnamon.

Taste is a bit of a let down after the appearance and smell. No off flavors, but everything is pretty subdued and a bit bland. The cinnamon comes on a little stronger than some of the other spices and it finishes a little spicy, bitter and dry.

Mouthfeel is a tad light, but not bad, and carb levels are good.

A decent pumpkin ale. I've had much much worse, but also better. It was enjoyable, but I doubt I'd seek it out again.

Photo of beorn7676
4.35/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pleasant orange color with big fluffy bright white head.

Good aroma of pumpkin pie spice. Smells like a pumpkin ale should.

Really love the flavor here. Good amount of spice but nothing overpowering. Tiny bit of sweetness. Hops are subtle but help keep everything in check. Great balance in this beer.

Mouthfeel is just what i want from this ale. Slightly creamy but quit refreshing.

Overall i really enjoyed this one. Wish i bought more than one. The best Pumpkin ale i have had so far.

Photo of largadeer
4.47/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks, Stan.

Appearance: Glowing jack o lantern orange with a large blanket of foam.

Smell: Sweet bready malts and pleasantly restrained pie spices. Nutmeg, allspice, clove and ginger, perhaps? Spices prevail, contributing most of the depth, but this never comes off as cloying.

Great pumpkin pie flavor. This tastes a hell of a lot like pumpkin pie, actually. There's a pleasant bready sweetness beneath the clove, nutmeg and ginger. Medium in body, malty and spicy in the finish. I had low expectations, but this turned out to be a surprisingly excellent pumpkin ale.

Photo of vacax
3.82/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got a bomber at Hi-Time.

Pours a fairly light orange, some floaties, average looking light tan head with low retention. Appears fairly highly carbonated. Smells pretty similar to some real pumpkin pie: cooked pumpkin, allspice, slightly spicy vegetable smell that is reminsicent of beets for me, all topped with a little light caramelly sweetness.

The taste has a cooked pumpkin flavor with a nice amount of allspice to it. To me this is lightly sweet, and I appreciate how the bitterness kept fairly low in order to highlight the pumpkin flavor. I am not a fan of brews that just load up on spices and intensity instead of going for a real pumpkin flavor. Slightly spicy, again sorry but it sort of reminds me of beets, but is pretty tasty. In my book, one of the nicer pumpkin beers. Light in body with a smooth medium carbonation that adds a creaminess. Finish is pretty similar to the flavor, the spice sticks around.

Photo of ThickNStout
3.18/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

22oz bottle, extra from soughtbygod. No bottling info. Served in a Sweetwater snifter.

Pours pale orange hued yellowwith about one finger pale head. Plenty of broad white sheets of lace.

Smells of pumpkin, wheat, hay and slight spice.

Subtle pumpkin flavor leads. Followed by wheat, spice and a little bitterness.

Light body with lively carbonation. Pumpkins and that slight bitterness in the finish.

Not bad at all but a tad thin and subtle for my tastes.

Photo of Xul
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly hazy, deep golden with amber highlights, capped by two fingers of foamy white head. Retention is good as the head recedes every so slowly, leaving light lacing down the glass.

S: Big allspice character up front with some distinct clove notes, followed by fresh pumpkin. Some caramel lurks in the background. Not overly complex, but it's a pumpkin ale...it's supposed to smell like pumpkin and spices.

T: Slightly sweetened pumpkin through most of the mouth, with spices coming in near the tailend and lasting through the finish, but at a very subdued level.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation, has a bit of chewiness that fits well with the style.

D: Easy drinking but not the best take on the style I've had.

Photo of wethorseblanket
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Extra from Richard - thanks.

Pours a hazy, slightly yellowish orange with a nice medium white fine head which slowly fades. Nose is spices dominated by allspice, a bit of clove, ginger, faint cinnamon, and a trace metallic note also. Taste is slightly sweet but not too overpowering. Lots of allspice with pumpkin coming through. Mouthfeel is a somewhat thin and watery compared to other examples of this style. Overall, nicely done and enjoyable.

Photo of Etan
3.72/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

22oz into a tulip.

A: Clear gold with a large white head.

S: Light pumpkin flesh and pie spice in the nose. Some graininess.

T: Taste is bready with mild pumpkin flavor. The allspice is there, but it's restrained. A little bit of crisp hop bitterness. Essentially an American blonde ale with some mild pumpkin and spice flavors.

M: Light-bodied with zingy carbonation.

O: The pumpkin flavor here is pretty nice, but I think that it would work better with a maltier base beer.

Photo of DarthKostrizer
3.62/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Look: Orange with traces of yellow throughout. 1/2 inch head with ok retention

Smell: Lots of allspice upfront with pumpkin in the background

Taste: The flavor is pumpkin and cinnamon but it is a bit muted and it is a oneway street not much else going on here

Mouthfeel: Medium body and medium carbonation

Overall: It's not a bad pumpkin beer but that is about all I can honestly say it is not great by any means. Worth a try however if you like pumpkin beers

Photo of alcstradamus
3.35/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Received as yet another generous extra from Solomon420. Reviewed from old notes.

Orange/golden color with two fingers of persistent head. Pumpkin spices seem mostly relegated to the background stuck behind a nice orange zest aroma. Taste is somewhat watery, the pumpkin is there but if this was a blind tasting I would have a hard time picking it out. Still, pleasant overall. Mouthfeel is medium with a boatload of carbonation, probably too much so but luckily it is fairly soft. Nothing offensive in this beer at all, but it may be a bit mundane.

Photo of t420o
4.35/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Kern river pumpkin ale

A- pour produces a 1 finger white head that rests atop a light golden-orangish body that is hazy. Leaves decent lacing 4

S- sweet pumpkin pie type smell: allspice, cinnamon, caramel malt, smells better than the average pumpkin beer 4

M- I just had been drinking punkin before this which I feel is a good pumpkin beer but this one is definitely superior. It's similar but it tastes like sweet pumpkin pie but the pumpkin tastes very fresh and not artifial at all. They don't kill you with the allspice and cinnamon. It's done in excellent balance and is just right in the background. Overall flavor is light and refreshing but somehow rich and warming all at the same time. I love it.  Definitely in my top 3 pumpkin beers. Maybe the best 4.5 

M- excellent mouthfeel. Perfect viscosity and good cabonation. 4.5

O- great drinkability. Maybe the best pumpkin beers I've had. Will be buying many more of these 4.5



Photo of Thorpe429
3.51/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by drabmuh. Poured into a Bruery tulip.

Pours a pale peach to apricot color with a single-finger white head and some good white lacing. The lacing is a bit spotty. There are large carbonation bubbles visible throughout. Nose is wheat-based with some slight clove and pumpkin spice. The taste is really like pumpkin plus some clove and allspice. Overall, pretty light. Feel and carbonation are both pretty light. Drinks fairly well, but is a bit plain.

Photo of jlindros
3.65/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

In my never ending quest to try all the Pumpkin beers I could this year, I made a nice little trade with Solomon420 for some west coast pumpkin beers, and get more Kern River as I really enjoyed their 3rd Anniversary. This beer hits both categories, so here comes a review.

A: Pours a bubbly 2 finger head that fades as quickly as it rose. It's semi clear with some haze and the golden orange yellow color reveals the copious number of bubbles rising.

N: Hmm, not too bad. An obvious pumpkin aroma, with some toasted malt and toasted pumpkin. A slight sweetness and citrus, with some light spices. A big of malt as well.

T: Meh, its not bad, but nothing spectacular. Starts as a nice light ale with some toasty malts and crystal malt flavors. Some fruit and obvious pumpkin shine through, and bring a slight spice flavor with it. It's semi watery taste as well. Some pumpkin pie tastes shine through nicely. Some other juicy fruit flavors come through, but otherwise very light.

M: Pretty light with tons of carbonation.

F: Finishes pretty dry and still light. The huge number of bubbles helps clear off the tongue well. A light spice flavor comes through a little more. Pretty clean finish, and it would go well with spicy foods, esp Indian food.

Final thoughts: Very light ale, some nice pumpkin flavors, light on the spices (thank GOD!) and some juicy fruit flavors. Pretty light and crisp and airy. Way too watery though, could use more flavor and body (just not spices).

Photo of Brewlore
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass.

The beer poured a very cloudy & hazy bright orange. It had a very nice white head which did cling to the glass quite a bit.

The aroma is pleasant with a lot of the allspice coming through.

It possess a really smooth medium bodied mouthfeel. This beer has an interesting malt profile. Fairly different from other pumpkin brews. It's rather crisp and slightly biscuity.

It's a good ber overall. The malts are rather crisp when compared to the malt profile of other pumpkin ales. The spices are present and blend well the malt.

Easy drinking and definitely not heavy.

Photo of Nugganooch
3.69/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On Tap at the Brewery – 11/15/2014
Taster from flight

A: Sienna orange hue and mostly clear. A half finger width of paper white foam settles over top. A loose webbing of lace gets left behind as I make my way down the drink.

S: The nose is spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg, and mace which is apparent but not overly potent like some holiday ales can be. From there comes a bit of sugary pumpkin or squash and a complementary bready pie crust element. Pretty nice and inviting.

T: Taste comes in almost reverse to the nose with a light bready malt sweetness up front followed up with caramelized squash and then the zesty spices. Nutmeg, cinnamon , and clove. Pumpkin is fleshy and not fully pronounced. That saisd the balance is nice and well rounded all together. Interesting approach here…the base brew is almost Lager like in that it is light and crisp yet malty and filling. Seems to work well here.

M: Moderate filling body with a nice creamy texture. Low bitterness to this with good balance overall. Finishes with a nice lighter feel and drying lift. Very clean all around.

D: This is a nice Pumpkin brew. Not all that much going on with it. Lighter than most others I would say while still maintaining a sweetness to it. Nice flavors and good balance.

Photo of womencantsail
3.28/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: The beer pours a hazy, light orange color with a finger of white head.

S: There is a bit of pumpkin to this, but that's just about it. A fair amount of all spice notes, and a definite grassy note. It's lacking in any real sweetness or malt, however.

T: A definite squash/vegetable character to it. So, the pumpkin character is good. It's sort of lacking in terms of the spices and also the bread/malt notes. Strangely, it's also a bit too bitter for a pumpkin beer.

M: Light to medium in body with a medium carbonation.

O: Really disappointing. I've heard this beer praised highly, but it didn't live up to its billing.

Photo of ThePaleRider
3.27/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

As much as I love Kern River I'm not really sure about this beer. Very faint pumpkin spice on the nose that quickly turns into sweet malts. Taste is nutmeg and slight cloves for a brief second. Really just tastes like a pale ale that's masquerading as a pumpkin ale. Is this a Sierra Nevada? I really look to Kern for bigger, brighter flavors and this doesn't bring it.

Photo of portia99
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle received in trade with vurt. Thanks! Poured into a Bruery goblet.

A - Pours a clear amber. Small white head. Head dissipates pretty quickly. Leaves a thin collar.

S - Lots of pumpkin character, pumpkin itself, nutmeg, cinnamon. Lots of fruityness and spicy Aromas.

T - Sweet and spicy. Sugary malt sweetness, balanced amount of spices - nutmeg, cinnamon. Not much hop character, bitterness just there to offset the other flavors. Good, well rounded pumpkin beer.

M - Thin to medium body. Low to medium carbonation. Very smooth...lingering pumpkin spices in the aftertaste.

D - Very drinkable pumpkin beer. Good blend of pumpkin spices...not overpowering, but definitely present. Very good pumpkin beer, might be my current favorite.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.46/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Popped this bottle open last night. Thanks for the bottle jodan!
22oz bottle poured into a Bruery Tulip glass.

A - Pours a light orange with a big cream-colored head composed of fine bubbles. Good retention and streak of lacing.

S - Strong cinnamin and ginger bread. That is all I got.

T - Cream, vanilla, gingerbread follows with some cinnamin - very pumpkin pie.

D - Smooth and creamy finish. Average body and carbonation.

O - Smooth, but very mild. A lot lighter than most pumpkin beers.

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Pumpkin Ale from Kern River Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 139 ratings.