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Pumpkick - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

137 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 137
Hads: 1,030
rAvg: 3.47
pDev: 15.85%
Wants: 15
Gots: 136 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerWizard on 07-30-2013

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 137 | Hads: 1,030
Photo of woodychandler
4.39/5  rDev +26.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I was out visiting a friend in Ann Arbor, MI recently when I spied this on the shelf with my little eye. Never having had one and intrigued by both the upgraded label and the idea of cranberry juice in a pumpkin, I pulled the trigger and brought it back with me.

From the bottle: "What's that bite of tartness doing in a pumpkin beer? Adding the unexpected kick of cranberry juice to brighten this traditionally spiced seasonal ale. PUMPKICK is brewed with plenty of pumpkin juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice, but it's the cranberries and touch of lemongrass that'll have you hunt[ing] and pecking for more."

I Pop!ped the cap and began a somewhat gentle pour since I was unsure if there might be any lees. I need not have worried as I still got just over a finger of dense, tawny head with decent retention. Color was Deep Amber/Light Copper to Copper (SRM = > 13, < 17) with NE-quality clarity. Nose smelled of vanilla, molasses, brown sugar, maple syrup and a tartness that I would not have otherwise been able to identify as cranberry juice. Mmmm. Mouthfeel was thin-to-medium. The taste was mostly sweet - vanilla, nutmeg, cinnamon, but with a tart note running through the middle of it. I wonder what inspired the brewers to include cranberry juice. It certainly made it a different pumpkin beer than so many of the others that I have tried. I really overdid it last year, but this revived my interest in the style. Finish was semi-dry with the combination of the spices and the cranberry juice working in tandem to dry it out, but while still retaining some of the initial sweetness. (1,596 characters)

Photo of Slack
2.79/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Amber in color with 1/2 finger of head. Smell is sweet fruit but nothing really discernable. Taste is pumpkin up front with a mix of flavors in the middle and bitter lemon at the end. An ok beer but there are much better pumpkin beers available. (248 characters)

Photo of Jeffreysan
2.94/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a cloudy, golden/orange color with a half of a finger of white head that quickly dissolved into a thin lacing of foam that gripped the sides of the glass and formed wispy clouds that partially covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Not much in the aroma department, either that or I’m stuffed up. I get very faint notes of malt, brown sugar, and a little bit of pumpkin, but nothing in the way of hops.

Taste: Interesting. Much more sour than I was expecting from a pumpkin beer, even more sour than the other pumpkin beers that I’ve had that have included some sourness to their profiles. There is some maltiness with this beer as well as some sweetness, but the sourness just overpowers everything. Not balanced at all.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, but with some good carbonation to tickle the taste buds. With an ABV of 6.0%, there is no presence of alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is only an OK beer. I’m a big fan of New Belgium, in fact, Fat Tire, Abbey, and 1554 are three of my favorite beers, but I’m not a fan of this beer. In my opinion, there’s no balance here at all, the sourness of this beer just overpowers everything, and I can’t taste much of the malt or sweetness. Sour fans will probably love this beer, but alas, I do not. Sorry New Belgium, this one was a strike out for me. (1,382 characters)

Photo of mchegash
4.14/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance - 4/5
A clear dark orange color (when held up to a bright light, it's a fantastically brilliant pumpkin orange), with about 1 finger of head upon initial pour, dies down within a minute or so. Can essentially see no carbonation rising through the beer. Normally I like to see a lot of carbonation rising in my beer, but the fact that there is so little in this beer actually makes me intrigued. It makes the beer look super tranquil.

Smell - 4.15/5
Strong nutmeg, cinnamon, and pumpkin smells. The cinnamon seems most prominent. Smells like a nice creamy pumpkin pie.

Taste - 4.2/5
Sweet malts, cinnamon, nutmeg, pumpkin, a tiny bit of hops. Has a bit of a juicy feel to it...I assume this is from the added cranberry juice. I really like how I can still taste the malts in this beer. Given the strength of the aroma, I was really worried about the spices overpowering this beer, but that turned out to not be the case. So many pumpkin ales are just overpowered by the fall spices. But this beer seems like a really nice balance between malty beer taste, and the fall spices. I am really happy with the taste.

Mouthfeel - 3.75/5
The beer is medium bodied. The carbonation is very light. The beer is nice and creamy, although near the end of the sip there is a more crispy carbonation kick. I think the beer could use a tiny bit more carbonation.

Overall - 4.1/5
Overall, I was very happy with this beer. The color, aroma, and taste of this beer are great. And the beer has great balance in the taste. Normally I don't like New Belgium beers very much, but this one is an exception. (1,597 characters)

Photo of Dandub33
3.75/5  rDev +8.1%

At first taste, this beer was too sour and too much cranberry flavor. It lacked any hop flavor or aroma. I initially rated it 3.375. However, as I have worked through the 6 pack over several weeks, it has grown on me. It is still sour and needs hops, but the after taste is that of pumpkin spice reminiscent of Belgian beers or a fine hefeweizen. In the end, New Belgium lived up to their goal of brewing in the Belgian style however untraditional. Thus the improved rated to 3.75. (483 characters)

Photo of Mitchster
4/5  rDev +15.3%

Brewed with Pale, Munich, Caramel malts, Pumpkin juice, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Allspice, Cranberries, Lemongrass. Hopped with Target. 6.0% ABV

Pours out to a slightly chill hazed light amber, forming a nice big creamy light yellow head with superior retention and thick lacing. Moderate carbonation, ~2.5 carbs or so. The aroma is quite nice, one gets the obvious cinnamon and ginger, but I actually get cranberry and orange as well. Delicate, very nice nose. Mouthfeel is smooth lightly tart, with a medium body. The taste is a recap of the aroma...the cranberry comes through nicely as well as the spices. Thankfully, the spices are not overpowering like many pumpkin beers. The malt base is a bit flimsy. I'd like to see mostly munich and some biscuit malt along with a little darker crystal like 40 to accent the toasty sensation of the pie crust. It needs a touch more residual sugars or perceived sweetness and body to be balanced, but still, this is much better than most pumpkin beers. Bitterness is very mild, which is a must in this style of beer. No perceptable off flavors or aromas.

A very nice fall seasonal. I don't think I've ever had a pumpkin beer that makes me want to buy a 6'er, but this comes pretty close.
L=4.25, A=4.25, T=4.0, MF=3.75, D=4.0 (1,276 characters)

Photo of Myotus
5/5  rDev +44.1%

Best pumpkin ale I have tried so far. The spices mix exceptionally well with the pumpkin juice. The slight taste of cranberry seals the deal to create an ultimate pumpkin ale experience. (186 characters)

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.62/5  rDev +4.3%

Infuse with cranberry flavor. Let's see how this one tastes!

12 oz bottle poured into clean glass.

Appearance (3.75) : This one pours a very pretty off-white three fingered head on top of a ginger ale colored body. The body is mostly transparent with about 40% opacity. The head sticks and stays around for awhile, but leaves lace as it descends.

Aroma (4) : Ginger and pumpkin with tart cranberry. Some small beery ale notes underneath. As the head recedes more cranberry can be detected, almost like Ocean Spray. It reminds me of the cranberry jello desert we have around Thanksgiving. Bouquet is medium strength.

Taste (3.75) : A bit of flat pumpkin, mixed with watered down cranberry cocktail, ending with some ginger and more stale pumpkin. "Flat" is the best word I can use to describe the overall flavor. Everything is there, and it tastes good, but it's very two-dimensional. This "pumpkick" NEEDS a serious KICK. Out of the bottle it is even worse...simply horrible. If you're gonna have it, pour it into a glass. I'll give it a generous 3.75 because the taste is there and it's original.

Mouthfeel (3.25) : Smooth, but under carbonated (never thought I'd say that) for what it's trying to be. I honestly feel like adding 7-up to it to wake it up a bit.

Overall (3.62) : Pumpkick leaves a little to be desired. The droopy, drowsy mouthfeel along with its flat flavor profile makes this only a little better than the worst pumpkin ales. For the record I would drink this again. And I won't knock it because the flavor is good, it's just fleeting and watery. The label is great, and its an interesting concept, but if New Belgium reads these things, spice it up a bit with an injection of carbonation. (1,715 characters)

Photo of Hoptometrist
4.22/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap into a shaker glass.

A- Poured a clear dark orange color with off-white soapy head that left no lace.

S- Big cinnamon, cranberry, nutmeg, and bready notes. Very aromatic and festive.

T- Lots of cranberry, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Some light bready notes.

M- Dry, medium body, prickly carbonation, and smooth.

O- I really dug this unique pumpkin beer offering. The cranberry flavor really added a nice dimension of sweetness with the pumpkin spices. (468 characters)

Photo of biboergosum
3.56/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

16oz glass at Beer Revolution - this one was a bit hard to track down around here.

This beer appears a clear, medium copper amber colour, with one thick finger of puffy, loosely foamy, and mildly bubbly off-white head, which leaves a decent array of snow rime lace around the glass as things slowly dissolve.

It smells of semi-sweet, fleshy pumpkin, nutmeg and cinnamon spice, bready caramel malt, and tame earthy, leafy hops. The taste is sugary, pastry-like caramelized malt, pureed pumpkin, rather mild earthy seasonal spices - maybe some ginger, maybe some allspice - a touch of white pepper, and leafy, weedy hops.

The carbonation is fairly peppy, with a swirling frothiness, the body a sturdy medium weight, and plainly smooth, the spices affecting things seemingly from beyond. It finishes off-dry, the pumpkin continuing to meld into the base caramel malt, as the pie-friendly spices carry on fading out.

A so-so, and kind of underwhelming version of the style, as the pumpkin and spice alike seem to be phoning it in. Not sure that I'm overly content paying premium Canadian prices for this, when I could have had it for a song a few weeks ago in Denver. (1,169 characters)

Photo of AdrianAltine
4/5  rDev +15.3%

Very nice beer smooth pumpkin tastes with a heavy finish of Nutmeg. I like Nutmeg so I liked the beer others that were looking for a strong pumpkin need to look elsewhere, but I will buy it again. It also has a new label for 2014 that was quite entertaining. (258 characters)

Photo of MattM
4.75/5  rDev +36.9%

When I drink a pumpkin ale I want to know I'm drinking a pumpkin ale. This is what a pumpkin ale is supposed to taste like. There's nothing subtle about this beer. The pumpkin taste and aroma hit you right away along with hints of cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice. It's like a liquid pumpkin pie minus the terrible sweetness. And you can drink it guilt-free knowing they only use the best, freshest, non-GMO ingredients and sustainable business practices. (452 characters)

Photo of Webbey
5/5  rDev +44.1%

I know lots of folks aren't too big on Pumpkin Ales but my goodness you must try this beer. I drank it on tap at my local Pluckers Sports Bar and didn't even drink it slow enough to recall what it looked like.

A piece of liquid pumpkin pie but BETTER. (252 characters)

Photo of SassieCassie
2/5  rDev -42.4%

It's definitely not bad tasting, but it is a poor representation of the style. The fruit juices added and the abundance of cinnamon make it taste more like a mulled cider than a pumpkin beer. (191 characters)

Photo of AnnieMichaele
4/5  rDev +15.3%

This is a GREAT beer. Some pumpkin beers are overpowered by cinnamon and while delicious are not beers you can drink more than one of. Pumpkick is delicious. It has lemon and cranberry undertones and tastes more like a slice of pumpkin bread. It is by far one of the best pumpkin beers I've had! (295 characters)

Photo of Kinsman
3.75/5  rDev +8.1%

Surprised to see so many mediocre ratings for this tasty fall beverage. From the first whiff, you can tell this beer is exactly as advertised... a pumpkin beer with a twist. A lot of pumpkin pie in the aroma up front with the combination of spices and pumpkin, before the cranberry really reveals itself. First sip shows more of a balance between the sweet and tart, with a nice malty note in there as well. Overall, a nice twist on the standard pumpkin beer. (459 characters)

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.87/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Enjoy by date of 01/18/15

Appearance - Pours semi-clear and rusty orange in color with a half finger of off-white head. Sub-par retention results in a broken layer of surface suds and a thin ring around the edges.

Smell - Pumpkin and cinnamon hit the nose first, along with a healthy amount nutmeg and pie crust. Faint berry tartness from the cranberries begins to surface a the brew warms.

Taste - Pumpkin kicks things off, but is quickly met by the cranberry tartness and the spice combo of cinnamon and nutmeg which peak mid-taste. A baked pie crust / bisquit-like character hits near the finish, while hints of minty freshness touch in the finish and roll into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Light in body with fair carbonation. Goes down easy enough and with a decently crisp finish, but nothing too outstanding.

Overall - A damn solid pumpkin brew from New Belgium. The cranberry twist livens up this pumpkin ale without compromising its integrity to the style. If you're looking for something with a unique take on the usual pumpkin ale, give this one a go. (1,068 characters)

Photo of chinchill
3.51/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz 2014 bottle with a BB date stamp of Jan. 2015.

Quite a bit more spicing in the flavor than I get in the aroma. I see this has lemongrass and cranberries too -- these may create the cloudy aromatics. The odd combinations works well in tasting but, with some tartness and lemongrass, this is not your standard pumpkin ale.

Lively, medium-high carbonation befitting the light body.

O: Pleaseant and intersting beer: intersting for both the unusual flavor profile and the mismatch between aroma and flavor. (517 characters)

Photo of busternuggz
4.25/5  rDev +22.5%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a narrow tulip glass.

Nice orange/amber color but poor head retention. Cooked pumpkin meat, cinnamon, and nutmeg on the nose, with just a little cranberry juice if you look for it.

Full bodied with a big pumpkin presence; not squashy and not pumpkin pie, kind of like cooked, slightly sweetened pumpkin puree. A little bright herbalness from the lemongrass, then the cranberry comes in at the end with a mild tartness. Just enough pie spice, and a light caramelly malt presence.

This is my pick for pumpkin beer of the year so far. Lots of pumpkin favor, well balanced, with an interesting contribution from the cranberry. I like it better than this year's DFH Punkin. (704 characters)

Photo of jellikit
3/5  rDev -13.5%

A: copper. Thin, fuzzy head.
S: pumpkin pie filling.
T: meh. Bitter, weird-spicy, alcohol, cinnamon and nutmeg.
M: medium-high carbonation. Medium body. Dry.
O: I'm not a huge pumpkin beer fan. Now I remember why. I am rating this 3, but if you are a fan of this style, maybe it is good to you. Not me. (321 characters)

Photo of Brenden
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Almost a rusty sort of orange with pale red and light brown highlights, this beer's dark color combines with a little haze to bring it very near opacity. The head is a thin, bubbly layer of nearly white foam that keeps at least that, ringing the glass where the beer initially settles and following with spotting.
The nose offers a nicely spiced bouquet with pretty much all the cinnamon and nutmeg one could want without giving too much. There's a hint of crust and a slight inkling of tartness under it.
The flavor brings more of the tartness out, pretty much even with the spicing. Just a ghost of vegetal flesh lies underneath, and the malts do make for a somewhat crusty (but not exactly dry) note. Some dryness does come in with esters and the tang.
The body is an equally crisp and smooth one in a body that starts medium and, while remaining there, drifting toward light as it goes. It starts with little action on the tongue in terms of dryness, which comes into the middle along with something that's not quite acidic but feels similar, though light. (1,065 characters)

Photo of bluejacket74
3.9/5  rDev +12.4%

12 ounce bottle, enjoy by 18 JAN 15 on label (drank on September 13th). Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a slightly hazy orange color with about an inch off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both decent enough. The brew smells like pumpkin, clove, and cinnamon. Taste is similar to the aroma, but there's also the addition of some nutmeg, tart cranberry and some earthiness. The cranberry gets stronger as the beer warms. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's a bit slick and has moderate carbonation. It's also easy to drink. I think it's a good pumpkin ale overall, the addition of the cranberry puts a nice spin on it. I enjoyed it! $8.99 a 6-pack. (674 characters)

Photo of secondtooth
3.73/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Nice deep amber upon pouring, with an average-sized head of white foam. Attractive fence-row-lattice lace.

Nose is spices, cinnamon, allspice, brown sugar, and of course pumpkin. Little trace of the cranberry here, easily overwhelmed by the spice and pumpkin. Nice.

Taste - Mild pumpkin and spice, with a hint of tart cranberry underneath it all. It’s a well-balanced mix, and Pumpkick is an easy-to-drink, light-bodied pumpkin ale that maybe isn’t huge or overwhelming, but is quite drinkable and one I’d easily purchase again. (536 characters)

Photo of hophugger
3/5  rDev -13.5%

Pours a beautiful deep golden-brown-orange color. Hints of cinnamon and nutmeg. Decent head and lacing. Too much spice and it took away from the pumpkin flavor which was hard to distinguish. Ok, but not one of their best ! (222 characters)

Photo of bushdere
2.75/5  rDev -20.7%

A ton of cinnamon and nutmeg. No pumpkin.
I can only drink half of a glass before I am dreading my next sip. Good thing this is only a seasonal. Rare miss for New Belgium.
Pours like a brown ale. Nice deep color.
Nose is very Spivey with strong cinnamon. Gave me hope for good things to come.
The mouth is somewhat thick. Not terrible by itself.
Taste: see above
Serving type: bottle (385 characters)

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Pumpkick from New Belgium Brewing
79 out of 100 based on 137 ratings.