1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Highballer Pumpkin Ale - Grand River Brewing

Not Rated.
Highballer Pumpkin AleHighballer Pumpkin Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

78 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 78
Reviews: 43
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 8.12%
Wants: 5
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Grand River Brewing visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Pumpkins for the Highballer Pumpkin Ale are all grown by our owner Bob Hannenberg in his Garden.

(Beer added by: Viggo on 09-29-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 78 | Reviews: 43 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BigGruntyThirst
4.25/5  rDev +11.3%

BigGruntyThirst, Sep 03, 2013
Photo of gloryhole
3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

gloryhole, Aug 11, 2013
Photo of DaPan
4/5  rDev +4.7%

DaPan, Feb 13, 2013
Photo of bigox420
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%

bigox420, Jan 27, 2013
Photo of SandS
3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

SandS, Dec 02, 2012
Photo of jmkoscie
4/5  rDev +4.7%

jmkoscie, Nov 30, 2012
Photo of bgibbard
4/5  rDev +4.7%

bgibbard, Nov 12, 2012
Photo of kinguy
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

kinguy, Nov 03, 2012
Photo of Kremlock
3.83/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on September 14th 2012, drank on October 21st 2012.

A: Dark copper in colour. Pours a 1/4 inch head that collapses to a ring around the glace.

S: Smells like unspiced pumpkin, a bit of caramel followed hint of vanilla

T: Taste is opposite of the smell, more spices less pumpking. Spices are spicy cinnamon, pure vanilla bean and ripe pumpkin. There is a nice bitterness that starts and follows through all the way.

M: well carbonated, smooth feel on the palate. Nice dry finish.

O: Carbonation is high enough to cut into the flavours of the pumpkin. Spices and hops are well balance and the finish is nice and dry. I much prefer dry and bitter pumpkin ales vs the more maltier and sweeter ones.

Kremlock, Oct 22, 2012
Photo of wordemupg
3.93/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into tulip 10/10/12 thanks liamt07 for the bottle

A hazy orange amber with a few bubbles and suspended particles, a noisy thumbs width of foam falls fast and leaves no lace

S ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg with a little pumpkin puree, some bread and toffee with just a little earthy hops in the background

T much of the same really, not over the top with the spices like many pumpkin beers I've had in the past,

M a little thin with prickly bubbles leaving a tingle on the tongue, ginger and pumpkin linger faintly on the finish

O this one worked for me, not heavily spiced and pretty mellow all-around, still beer unlike many pumpkin beers I've had that are almost unrecognizable from all the spicing

Its to bad this didn't show up before my Thanksgiving dinner because it would've been a great beverage choice with my turkey, ham and pie. yup that's right bitches I got turkey AND a ham, living the dream, living the dream

wordemupg, Oct 11, 2012
Photo of RedAleMan
4/5  rDev +4.7%

RedAleMan, Oct 06, 2012
Photo of beerhunter13
4/5  rDev +4.7%

beerhunter13, Oct 03, 2012
Photo of spinrsx
3.48/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle from the Ottawa LCBO for 4$

Appearance - Clear copper colour with an average size fizzy beige coloured head. There is a lot of carbonation and there is some fair lacing. The head lasted for around 2-3 minutes.

Smell - Malts, cloves, all spice, pumpkin

Taste & Mouth - There is an above average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel, and all-spice/clove. There is also some pumpkin and a bit of a rustiness. It ends with a malty and spicy aftertaste.

Overall - Not the best seasonal beer by any means, but a solid effort from this brewer nonetheless. I won't be shelling out another 4$ for more but I'm glad I gave it a shot.

spinrsx, Oct 03, 2012
Photo of slitherySOB
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a dark golden amber colour with a fingers worth of head that disipates quickly but leaves lacing. Smells like pumpkin pie. Pumpkin, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, and sweet malts. Tastes like it smells. LIquefied pumpkin pie. Mouthfeel is smooth and low carbonated with a great overall balance. A delicious beer.

slitherySOB, Sep 29, 2012
Photo of fostachild
3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

fostachild, Sep 22, 2012
Photo of jrenihan
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled Sept 4, 2012.

Beer is a slightly hazy copper colour. Smallish off-white head. Fades fairly quickly to a film.

Nice smell. Cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and pumpkin. Some bready malt and grassy hops.

Taste is good, and very similar to the nose, though not quite as nice. Pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger. Spices are very prominent. Grassy hops there as well. Well balanced. Has the characteristic Grand River flavour that I cannot quite describe, but I expect has to do with the water.

Medium bodied, moderate carbonation.

Overall, pretty tasty!

jrenihan, Sep 20, 2012
Photo of SebD
3.7/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: It has a nice deep golden/amber color to it. It has a thin white head that dies down somewhat fast and leaves some lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitly give out hints of pumpkin and spices (cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon).

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a some pumpkin but not as dominant as the aroma, some cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon and some malts.

Mouthfeel: It has a low carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with good flavors and aromas.

SebD, Sep 19, 2012
Photo of bryehn
3.93/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on Sept. 14 (5 days ago).

Pours a clear golden-copper colour with a small but frothy white head. Solid, long-lasting collar, but little lace.

Smells of ripe pumpkin, honey sweetened toasted malts and grasses. Very warm and inviting.

The taste is also pumpkin forward. There is a lovely light and fruity ale underneath with a sweet caramel tone. Grassy, floral hops bring earthy and tart characteristics, as well as a mild orange pekoe tea flavour. Subtle spiciness present throughout that comes forward in the finish.

Full-bodied with low carbonation. Dry cracker character on the tongue. Pepper and allspice in the aftertaste.

Quickly became one of my favourite pumpkin ales after a couple days. The pumpkin shines, rather than the spice and it’s extremely smooth drinking. Great with (or in) a stew, crusty bread, roasted meats and, of course, pumpkin pie.

bryehn, Sep 19, 2012
Photo of mspang
4/5  rDev +4.7%

mspang, Sep 15, 2012
Photo of philmen
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

philmen, Sep 15, 2012
Photo of Molson2000
4.25/5  rDev +11.3%

Molson2000, Sep 13, 2012
Photo of KrisDLSmith
4/5  rDev +4.7%

KrisDLSmith, Sep 10, 2012
Photo of heebes
4.23/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottled on Sep 4th 2012.
5.2% abv.

Pours a rich dark orange with half a finger of light tan foamy head. Nose is brisk with lots of pumpkin, spices, cinnamon, faint hops. taste is majorly pumpkin, cloves, spices and cinnamon, some good barley malt caramel backing, very fresh and full tasting. Good body, peppery mouthfeel, smooth.

Overall a well rounded pumpkin ale from Grand River, spot on this year.

heebes, Sep 09, 2012
Photo of cmadd
3.43/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Half a finger of white head. Disappears quickly, leaves no lacing. Clear amber leaning to yellow.

S: Nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice with some earthiness. Grassy pilsner hops in the background.

T: Sweet cinnamon, squashy pumpkin and hard water earthiness holds the finish. This earthiness really dominates the beer and is very characteristic of Grand River. Almost no hops, what is there is very light and grassy. In the late finish the sweet pumpkin comes back; nice touch.

M: Light carbonation. Very nice.

O: Pretty decent, but nothing particularly remarkable.

cmadd, Apr 09, 2012
Photo of ThinkAgain
4/5  rDev +4.7%

ThinkAgain, Jan 06, 2012
Highballer Pumpkin Ale from Grand River Brewing
86 out of 100 based on 78 ratings.