Wachusett Imperial Pumpkin Ale - Wachusett Brewing Company

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Wachusett Imperial Pumpkin Ale
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BA SCORE
82
good

87 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 87
Reviews: 45
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 12.12%
Wants: 5
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Wachusett Brewing Company visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: silentjay on 08-16-2011)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 87 | Reviews: 45 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Faina
2/5  rDev -44.9%

Photo of mikesgroove
4.05/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

orange color coming forward right away. Decent amount of haziness could not hide the ample carbonation that was being exhibited throughout the glass. This all came to a head that was about two inches in height at first but settled down to just a light scattering across the top after a few minutes.

The aroma was full of cinnamon and pumpkin spice as you might have imagined. Not as heavy and sweet as some of the others I have had this fall, this was rather a lighter, with a little more emphases on the spices that lie underneath and a decent touch of a grassy hops that was laying around as well. The flavor followed suit rather nicely. Light spiciness with a hint at some soft grain and light bready malts lying under that. Not much in the way of a hop profile here, and the body was light and airy.

Photo of Flounder57
4.03/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle was poured into a Stella glass.

Appearance: The beer poured a finger and a half head that has reduced to a thin layer. A nice hazy orange mohogany color with slight signs of carbonation coming up the middle of the glass.

Smell: Very starchy and edible too. Pumpkin spices like the label says, sweetness from the malts and candi sugar, hop profile is very light and not noticeable.

Taste: Same as above. A nice blend of the spiciness and breadiness produced from the puree and spices incorporated into the beer.

Mouthfeel: smooth, full bodied, low to medium carbonation, slightly chewy from the breadiness. Very easy to drink and the booze is hidden very well for 8%.

Overall: Not a shabby Imperial Pumpkin. Will keep this in mind next fall. Will be retiring pumpkin beers very soon and moving on to more seasonal beer suitable for the winter and snow. Still very nice and would recommmend to anyone.

Photo of waiting4lunch
4/5  rDev +10.2%

Photo of mountdew1
3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial pint glass. Color was a nice pumpkiny orange with numerous streams of bubbles rising from the bottom. Head was a thin dirty white, that left a bit of lacing and didn't cling much at all. Aroma was a pleasant pumpkin pie, a bit of spices. Perhaps reminded me a bit more of pumpkin ice cream than pie. Flavor was pretty much what it smelled like. Ended up being a bit mellow tasting than it smelled. Felt a tad starchy in the mouth. but coated well and was nicely carbonated. Overall a pretty decent pumpkin. One that definitely tastes and smells like pumpkin instead of just incorporating or using the spices.

Photo of ZacharyJ
4/5  rDev +10.2%

Photo of DoctorB2B
4/5  rDev +10.2%

Photo of PEIhop
4/5  rDev +10.2%

Photo of danmcg62
3.65/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Cracking this open on my birthday for my 70th review!

A-Pours a clear amber color with a finger width head that stays around only for a moment leaving a thin lace around the glass. Looks good, but looks like your typical pumpkin ale.

S-I'm getting major spice and pumpkin right off the bat. There's a real thick, almost bready smell in there as well. A bit boozy as well. Very interesting.

T-Real thick spicy, pumpkiny, bready taste. Taste like pumpkin spice bread in a glass. Mild hop spice in the rear as well.

M-Much thicker than any other pumpkin ale I've had. Sort of boozy, can definitely feel the 8% were with others (i.e. DFH Punkin Ale) it doesn't come through as much.

O-Overall this an above average to good pumpkin ale. It's a very interesting take on the style, just not my favorite.

Photo of Lawnboy33
3/5  rDev -17.4%

Photo of WanderingFool
3.65/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Wachusett Imperial Pumpkin Ale pours a clear, copper color with a two finger creamy off white head on top. The foam dissolves quickly leaving only a few spots of lace on the glass.

The aroma is spicy with notes of cinnamon and nutmeg. Hints of squash are also present.

Each sip of this medium bodied beer is soft on the palate, with a firm carbonated fizz. The flavor is sweet with pumpkin spices and pumpkin flavor. It begins with sweet caramel malt notes, followed by cinnamon and nutmeg. It finishes with earthy pumpkin notes and a touch of alcohol. It finishes dry with lingering spice and pumpkin flavor.

This pumpkin beer isn't as heavily spiced as others and has actual pumpkin flavor. Some alcohol notes are present, so I wonder if this is a pumpkin beer you could age for a while to mellow out the flavor?

Photo of ken2cart1
5/5  rDev +37.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

a- dark orange, light brown

s- pumpkin, unlike the other this actually smells like pumpkin and not just nutmeg and cinamim

t-wow unreal, best pumpkin ale i have tried, sweet pumpkin extract with a nice bittering balance of cinamin and nutmeg..lots of body to this beer, nice caramel backing

m- creamy very velvety, slides down tongue and throat, leaves mouth dry and parched wanting some more

0 - 5! best pumpkin!!!

Photo of beer2day
3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pumpkin gold (ok, orange really) pour with 1 finger of medium bodied straight cream head. Decent retention. Very little to no lace.

Nose is more spice than pumpkin. Pumpkin is there, but pie spice is the number 1 trait.

Light pumpkin flavor, in the vein of a pumpkin muffin. Medium spice without being too artificial. Really, really just pumpkin.

Feel is lighter than the flavors demand. Could use more malt to back up those spice flavors.

Nice representation of style. ABV is muted for an impy.

Photo of jondeelee
3.25/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Wachusett's Imperial Pumpkin Ale begins with, naturally, a strong pumpkin aroma. But this is not the pumpkin aroma that often spills from Imperial Pumpkin ales, coming across as deliciously baked and bespiced pumpkin pies. No, in this case the aroma smells distinctly of raw pumpkin, as if one had been cut open and you were smelling the fresh interior. There are distinct spices blended with this raw pumpkin aroma, including nutmeg, cinnamon, clove, and allspice. Mixed in with these, as if a somewhat weak Imperial Stout had been poured into this raw pumpkin, are light coffees, molasses, and brown sugar. The result is compelling, though in my opinion tending slightly too much toward pumpkin and spice.

On the tongue, the first flavors are of spiced pumpkin pie, the spices coming across more weakly on the tongue than they did on the nose, but nutmeg and clove still distinct. A lingering raw pumpkin flavor does somewhat mar this, giving the beer a stale and too-earthy quality. In subsequent sips the Imperial part is more noticeable, bringing in creamed coffees, brown sugars, hints of anise, and some darker fruit esters, such as fig. However, the raw pumpkin bite overpowers many of these more subtle flavors, making me wish that the pumpkin:beer ratio had been skewed more heavily in favor of the latter. Mouthfeel is a viscous medium, seeming to cling to the tongue like pumpkin gut, and carbonation is medium-high.

Overall, while there are good flavors in here, the wrong ones take center stage, and at least one of them--the raw pumpkin--should be cut back greatly. The overall sensation is that of a medium-quality Imperial ale that had been doused with artificial flavors in an attempt to make it appear of higher quality.

Photo of MoreThanWine
4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 2 1/2" orangy froth head, which is pretty big for anything Imperial. Body is a dark but clear Mars orange. Smells like pumpkin pie. Taste is too but a little less sweet, like they left half the usual sugar out of the pie, but still dessert like and still tasty. The higher alcohol and richness of an Imperial beer is apparent. All in all a respectable pumpkin beer.

Photo of HosP
3.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

First pumpkin beer of the fall! Poured 22oz bottle into snifter.

A- Pours dark orange, amber in color. Very hazy, with light coming around the edges. Thin white head on top, clings to edges and stays there.

S- Smells like a pumpkin pie. Get a real pumpkin aroma, no real spices in the nose. Reminds me of good pumpkin pie filling!

T- Taste is very similar to the nose. Smooth pumpkin flavors. Very little spice like most pumpkin beers. Some sweet candy sugar taste at the end. Still a very good pumpkin taste.

M- Medium body. A little much on the carbonation.

O- Good pumpkin beer here. I think I prefer more spices with my pumpkin flavor, but this is still solid.

Photo of womencantsail
4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at American Craft

A: The beer pours a dark amber, almost copper, color with a finger of khaki head.

S: Tons and tons of pie spices here. Heavy on the nutmeg, cinnamon, all spice, and vanilla. There is quite a bit of toasted malt and caramel to it as well. As is often the case, not much pumpkin.

T: Very heavy pie spice character on the palate as well. Nutmeg, cinnamon, and all spice are all there. Nice vanilla sweetness to go along with the caramel and toffee flavors.

M: Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

O: Thought this was a very solid pumpkin beer. It did become a touch boozy as the glass warmed up, but it didn't really bother me.

Photo of uustal
3.2/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours an orange/amber with a slight pearl white head. Aroma full of fall spices, led by cinnamon and nutmeg. The flavor follows. Somewhat harsh cinnamon and nutmeg spice to start. Hints of graham cracker and the slightest pumpkin puree flavor, but you really have to search for it. Not too pleasant alcohol shines through as it warms. This beer was overpowered by the spice in my opinion. Secondary flavors were better done, but too hidden.

Photo of stickynotes
3.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pleasing, slightly hazy auburn, a mostly white head reduces soon into a film. Nose is sweet malt, nutmeg, cinnamon, and some ginger, pumpkiny backbone. Taste starts some sweet malt, bready, pumpkin in the middle, spiced with nutmeg, some clove. Ends with a yeasty spice bite. Mouthfeel is slick, some carbonation off the back of the tongue. Overall this is a good offering. Pretty coherent, flavors work well together and make a pleasing-to-drink imperial pumpkin.

Photo of Burt
4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass.

Dark amber orange that is hazy, thick off white head that dispersed slowly and left a little clumpy lace.

Light pumpkin pie spice, bubble gum some alcohol.

Sweet caramel up front, get a little pumpkin pie in the middle, some crust as well, bubble gum at the end. Mouth feel is slick and coating.

Nice beer, enjoyed this one. It was not like the rest of the pumpkin beers that I have had. This was well made.

Photo of tigg924
4.33/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: 1/4 inch head, orange-brown in color, clear, low carbonation

Smell: cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice, toasted malt, alcohol, and clove

Taste: bread, Belgian spices, Spices are cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice, cardamom, and clove

Mouthfeel: sweet a with a bitterness in the middle, moderate to high carbonation, medium bodied

Drinkability: An interesting an unique take on the style. After a couple moments it hit me, this is a Dubbel meeting a pumpkin ale. I would look for this again if not just due to its uniqueness. A solid fall treat that now becomes the fall seasonal I look forward to the second most.

Photo of SirSketch
3.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A - Brilliant dark copper color with a tan, clumpy head.

S - A hearty, caramel malt aroma backs up the plethora of spices. Cinnamon and nutmeg are in the foreground, as well as the a distinct smell of pumpkin that normally isn't found in pumpkin beers, oddly enough. Fresh baked sugar cookies come to mind, too.

T - All of the typical thanksgiving spices are apparent, but the beer is in no way muddled. The aftertaste has a lot of esters that remind you it's still an ale at heart. Some bubblegum, too.

M - The pumpkin gives this beer a slick mouthfeel, and it could use a bit more carbonation, too.

O - A really great equilibrium between a malty ale and pumpkin pie. Not muddled like most pumpkin beers and not overwhelming.

Photo of BennyL1
3.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a globe glass. Brand new beer for the fall from Wachusett, have some high hopes for this one.

Pours a nice dark amber with some orange hints. Good couple fingers worth of creamy head. Decent lacing.

Aromas of pumpkin, cinnamon, and some brown sugar. Some caramel malt as well. What you would want and expect from a pumpkin ale.

Some nice pumpkin in the taste. Nice hints of cinnamon and nutmeg. Some toasted malt in there too. Little bit of warming booze on the end.

The brew is on the full bodied side with adequate carbonation. Feels good on a chilly night like tonight.

Good job from the brewers at Wachusett, very good pumpkin ale that can compete with most others in the style.

Photo of zoolzoo
2.6/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours copper / amber, foamy white head dissipates into a wispy cap.

S: Fleshy pumpkin, sharp alcohol tinge, underlying spice, brown sugar.

T/M: Fleshy pumpkin from the nose, contrasted by a muted assortment of fall spices. Candi sugar does add sweetness, although this aspect seems to be apart from the rest of the beer. Not "creamy" enough in body or taste to support this level of sweetness. Maybe some more spice or something? Think sugar coated pumpkin flesh, vodka like alcohol finish with a lingering astringency. Not bad, not anywhere near the best.

O: A decent beer, but there are better pumpkin offerings on the shelves right now.

Photo of OtherShoe2
3.9/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark orange with a cream colored foamy head. No real lacing.

Pumpkin flesh and some pie spice in the nose. A whiff of alcohol.

Surprised by this one, particularly how it is advertised on the bottle. Expected much sweeter and it is not. Some light caramel malt coupled with some pumpkin/gourd essence, light pie spice (nice), and all cleared out by some very apparent chemical alcohol. Light bitterness and caramel in the end. This one is done right. One of the better pumpkin brews, as they really tamed the sugar. Malt and fruit and spice have great balance. And the alcohol is needed.

Medium bodied, ok carbonation.

The bomber was enough for me; in fact, one was fine. I would find it hard to have another, but just because of the richness of this brew. Nice beer, and this is from a marginal fan of pumpkin beers. Very worth the try.

Wachusett Imperial Pumpkin Ale from Wachusett Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 87 ratings.