Dismiss Notice
Microbrew Invitational
Join us June 3 + 4 in Boston and help us drink 300+ beers, ciders, kombuchas, meads, sakes and more!

TICKETS: beeradvocate.com/micro/

Buffalo Bill's Pumpkin Ale | Buffalo Bill's Brewery

633 Reviews
Read the review
For Trade:
Buffalo Bill's Pumpkin AleBuffalo Bill's Pumpkin Ale

Brewed by:
Buffalo Bill's Brewery
California, United States | website

Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-01-2001

User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 633 | Ratings: 1,181
Photo of hreb
2.74/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pumpkin beer is a fine thing. Like just about any style, it can be executed well or badly. Pumpkin ales tend to veer towards either sweet pumpkin pie spices, or forgo those in favor of real gourd flavor. Tragedy and victory can be found at either end of that spectrum. Which way will this beer go? The label claims both pumpkin and natural spice.

12oz screw-top. Pale color just on the amber side of straw. Thin white head that dissipates quickly. Giant sodapop bubbles rise towards the surface. Aroma is not particularly strong, but does identify this as a pumpkin beer in a pleasant, inoffensive kind of way.

First sip is striking in its level of carbonation...and lack of flavor. There's a crispness to it, which is dulled by a faint taste of pumpkin, along with an edge of not particularly descript spice (cinnamon, maybe nutmeg). I don't get clove or allspice. More alarmingly, I don't get...ale. This beer screams lager to me. Thin body, forced gas...lager or not, this is clearly an American Macro of Pumpkin Ales.

This is inoffensive enough to serve to non-beer connoisseurs, which puts it ahead of many pumpkin ales, but I would not buy this again.

 1,160 characters

Photo of LampertLand
2.65/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Buffalo Bill's "America's Original" Pumpkin Ale @ 5.2% , giving a 6pack a try , served chilled into a pint glass
A-pours a hazy orange/gold with a quick off whit head that leaves no lacing
S-faint smell of pumpkin , more clove than anything
T-sour , metalic tasting , way too much clove
MF-mild carbonation , flat , watery , lifeless beer
Ov-for once I agree with a Ba rating/ranking , avoid this beer

cheers LampertLand

 421 characters

Photo of RoamingGnome
2.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from 12 oz bottle into pint glass. Served chilled.

A) Slightly hazy orange, with plenty of visible carbonation. Virtually no head, and no lacing to speak of...

S) Decent pumpkin aroma. A hint of sourness to this one, and faint spices.

T) The pumpkin flavor is more pronounced on the nose. The pumpkin here was thin and watered down. Light spice hits the tip of your tongue, but quickly dissolves. The finish is a bit of grass and light gourd, which kind of reminds you this is a pumpkin beer. Lackluster aftertaste...

M) Light bodied brew. A little to thin for my liking. There was a good amount of carbonation. While not thrilled with the mouthfeel, it was pretty easy to drink.

O) If you are in search of a good pumpkin ale to enjoy this Fall, move along, there is nothing to see here.

 799 characters

Photo of MaximalC
2.07/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a hazy amber color with a minimal white head that is gone in a flash. The aroma smells of spices and a modest dose of pumpkin with little else to speak of. Flavor is unlike anything I've tried before. A vague, unnatural juiciness presents up front, augmented by a spiciness that feels out of place with such a watery mouthfeel. There is an almost bile-like quality lurking in the wash. This initial assault soon evaporates, leaving a mild, wheaty haze at the finish. I think I may detect some hops near the back end as well, but it's hard to say. Very hard to find anything positive to say here.

 601 characters

Photo of socon67
3.27/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Cloudy orange pour with a foam that settles fast. Lacing is minimal. Visible carbonation.

S - Scents of nutmeg and cinnamon come to the front. A pumpkin pie smell is there as well.

T - A one trick pony. The flavoring seems tedious and laid over a light grainy\hoppy beer. The flavors are solid but the beer is not distinguished from the many other spicy pumpkin beers on the market.

M - Easy drinking and ligth feeling ale. Over time this one felt a little thin.

O - There is little to offer this as a better option to any other pumpkin beer. Not a bad beer, but hardly a standout.

 590 characters

Photo of bnes09
3.04/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Transparent orange color. Sudsy, soda-like head with no retention.

Spicy pumpkin and cinnamon in the aroma along with some mild bread grains.

Weak grainy flavor, mostly corn. Slight pumpkin and cinnamon character. Just a hint of herbal hop flavor. Not problem with balance here, all the flavors are weak.

Light body, highly carbonated, crisp finish.

Pretty lack luster. Probably best to pass on this one.

 408 characters

Photo of HoppyHomo
1.77/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

At first appearance i thought this was going to be extraordinary. The packaging looks Americana, the pour is heady and it has some nice initial aromas.

Then you taste...

Like the silent friend thats laughing to himself in the crowded room because he knows he cut something fierce- this is what that brewery did when you brought your 6 pack up to the counter to try to spend your hard earned money on an inferior product.

This is absolutely disgusting and possibly the worst pumpkin beer on the market. I wanted a beer-Not water with pumpkin spice. Disgusting disgusting disgusting!

 585 characters

Photo of BrownAleMale
2.91/5  rDev -1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a Kasteel goblet.

Appearance- A hazy orange with 1 finger of off white head that dissipates quiker then you can blink. You are left with 0 head in aprox. 3 seconds.

Smell- Nice pumpkin and spice notes.

Taste- Here is where we went wrong. You get lots of watered down pumpkin. I didnt know I was getting a generically tasting pumpkin that seems to have been mixed with water. You also get a little acidic hop finish.

Mouthfeel- Very light and super watery, almost like drinking a flat pumpkin tasting pop made by a generic brand.

Overall- I enjoyed the smell, but the watered down fake pumpkin flavors left this as a less desirable pumpkin beer.

 674 characters

Photo of jeonseh
2.59/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Orange, brown color with a slight golden hue. Lots of carbonation Initally and a small white head that completely disintegrated

S - Hints of clove, straw, light pumpkin, and cinnamon. Smells like a wheat beer that added pumpkin and cinnamon to it.

T - Straw, clove, bubblegum, light cinnamon and pumpkin. The taste reinforces the idea of this being a spiced pumpkin beer

MF - Light, slightly watey with high carbonation that gives it a slight zip in the finish.

O - A decent, simple pumpkin beer that reminds me of a spiced wheat beer

 542 characters

Photo of GossageBrewery
3.06/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured this Pumpkin Ale from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. It poured a clear orangish color, produced a thin white head, featured poor head retention and it left no lacing on the glass. The aroma contained pumpkin, spice (mostly clove). Medium in body, this ale had a foundation of malted grain, cinnamon, clove and only mild pumpkin flavor. Disappointed with the level of pumpkin flavor in this beer. Only slight suggestions of hops, typical for the style- semi dry finish. The bottle claims that his is America's first Pumpkin Ale. It generally does get that credit, I will say that while this is a decent session beer- I expected more from the "original"...There are much better pumpkin ales out there- Go out and find one!

 730 characters

Photo of YLBDY
3/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Definitely lacking any kick or spiciness usually reserved for pumpkin season. The nose is a bit sour I picked up a six-pack at a North Carolina convenience store and dont think I will ever finish it with all the quality beer in the Asheville area. Seems almost like an Oktoberfest with a sprinkle of pumpkin.

 308 characters

Photo of Mora2000
3/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer pours an orange color with a small white head. The aroma is grain and cinnamon, with a few other assorted spices thrown in. The flavor is similar. I get a lot of nutmeg and cinnamon notes, as well as a hint of cinnamon. Overall, the beer is lacking in the aroma and flavor and doesn't stand up to the better pumpkin beers. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

 372 characters

Photo of kneeland
3.6/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I'll put this in the better half of pumpkin beers. I'm rarely disappointed in pumpkin ale, and Buffalo Bill's did not disappoint. The label didn't intrigue me at all, but I went for it anyway.

The color is a good looking, typical amber orange. It has some carbonation, but not much head. I would have preferred more. Definite hints of nutmeg, cinnamon, and pumpkin spice.

I would drink this again, but it's far from my favorite.

 430 characters

Photo of buschbeer
3.48/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle
Served in a perfect pint glass

A - It pours burnt orange with amber highlights. I got about two inches of off white head.

S - I get some pumpkin spice, nutmeg and cinnamon.

T - I get some pumpkin spice. The nutmeg and cinnamon do not come through on the taste so much.

M - Thin

O - It's like a watered down version of a pumpkin ale. The flavors and aromas I get are good, but they seem muted. I would like a stouter version.

 443 characters

Photo of The_1084
2.33/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: copper color; no head, even with an aggressive pour; high activity of carbonation visible

S: mild hint of pumpkin, but not much else

T: honestly not a lot happening here; very bland and flavorless

M: thin/watery texture; highly carbonated; dry finish

O: I always look forward to trying new pumpkin ales each fall, but this one was disappointing

 351 characters

Photo of Megahertz
2.87/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz into a sampler cup. Freshness info not apparent.

A - Hazy light amber with a moderate white head that falls quickly. No lacing, mild carbonation visible.

S - Moderate pumpkin spice aroma. No background notes of malt apparent.

T - Very effervescent with macrobrew-like flavor with a mild spice note. Timid. Strong hop bitterness.

M - Light body with high carbonation.

O - An introductory pumpkin beer.

 412 characters

Photo of RickS95
2.89/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Only slightly different looking than every other orangey beer. I expected something a bit darker and richer looking. This is just a stock clear pale orange with a white head, maybe a finger thick, with only average retention.

The smell is an improvement in that you get both the normal pumpkin pie spice scents as well as that of real pumpkin.

It's not real good. While the spices and pumpkin fruit come through in the nose, they're barely found on the tongue. There were spices, but it's a half-hearted attempt and falls flat. Tastes like a bad combination of a pilsner and a pale ale.

Should be smooth and spicy, it's not. Feels like a bad pilsner. Not exactly a dry finish, not a wet finish, just a finish that leaves you wondering what you just drank.

Poor. And I've got 5 more to drink. It would score better if they didn't call it a pumpkin ale because it leaves you wanting something better. In the grand scheme of beer, it's merely average and better than an American macro any day, it's not a very good pumpkin ale.

 1,030 characters

Photo of RichardMNixon
2.32/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured into a stein.

A: Pumpkin/copper-colored body with minimal head.

S: Lots of pumpkin spice, with a bit of vinegar.

T: Disappointing. Much less spice flavor than there is in the nose. Just not a whole lot there in general.

M: Thin and inoffensive.

O: Meh.

 264 characters

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
2.63/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Burnt orange. Minimal off-white head. Higher than anticipated carbonation. Retention is low and leaves a bubbly, ultra-thin collar. Perfectly clear.

Smell: Massively sweet. Brown sugar, pumpkin pie spices, and a tiny bit of real pumpkin playing in the background. Aggressively spicy and sweet. Sugar. Some pale roasted malts. Lightly cooked malts. Doughy.

Taste: Pretty much the nose with a high carbonation. Big upfront sweetness followed by a bug hit of brown sugar and nutmeg. Some cinnamon and vanilla as well. No aftertaste. Some minor citrus notes. Blast of flavor and then nothing. Cooked malts. Some dough. Malty and sweet.

Mouthfeel: Bubbly. Carbonation is aggressively high. Very clean. Higher side of light for the body.

Overall: Eh, and that's being generous. Big blast of spice followed by nothing. It's like pumpkin soda, which is good if that's what you're looking for.

 900 characters

Photo of BeerManDan
2.65/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

The color when poured into a pint glass was a sort of yellow/orange with very little foam and very little lace on the side of the glass. The smell of spice was evident in the aroma. Not a lot of pumpkin flavor, but some bitter spices in the finish. Not what I expected for a Pumpkin Ale. Just to bitter and not alot of spicey pumpkin flavor.

 341 characters

Photo of theecaleb
2.84/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured to a pint glass while home brewing pumpkin spice porter.

A. Looks great. Orange pumpkin color, head quickly vanished. Leaves virtually no lacing.

S. Boring and dull. Light hints of pumpkin, cloves, and other spices.

T/MF. Light, light hint of pumpkin, little spice left in mouth. Watery, with decent carbonation.

O. Very light and watery. Nothing I would drink again. No, I would not recommend this beer to a friend.

 441 characters

Photo of TheSixthRing
1.77/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance - Pours a slightly burnt orange color with a finger width head, poor retention, and a lacing that's quite sparse.

Smell - Incredibly faint - hints of hints of pumpkin... and that's it.

Taste - Watery... scant hints of pumpkin, and a modicum of cinnamon spice... if even that.

Mouthfeel - Watery. Somewhat carbonated.

Overall - Good Lord! I thought this was the beer I had last year that had this incredible pumpkin flavor... but this tastes like diluted pumpkin water. This can't possibly be the same beer, can it?!?

 533 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
2.61/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a Black Raven imperial pint Pours a slightly hazy medium orange amber. Thin head that fizzes out instantaneously (but made an interesting sound as it did so). No head, lacing or carbonation. Light aroma of sweet malt and pumpkin pie spices. Taste is dry pumpkin, with a distinct earthy note that had a hint of moldiness. Finishes with a slightly sour, dry flavor. Light bodied. Not that good.

 404 characters

Photo of Smurf2055
2.64/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle from Wing Central in U district into a pint glass. Aroma was of mild pumpkin, yeast, cinnamon and sugar. Appearance was very bubbly. Very dark orange, fizzy, and head leaves quick. Almost glassy. Lots of bubbles stick to the side of the glass. It’s more like a pumpkin soda than an ale. Taste was bland pumpkins. Sweet and not a really big profile. Too much carbonation with the sting to go with it. Palate was soda-like. Sticky and strong carbonation is all I can say. Overall, if you are looking for a good pumpkin beer, keep clear. I’ve spoiled myself having had Pumpking and Great Pumpkin as some of my first pumpkin beers. I really appreciate the style of beer. Having said that, this is not a quality pumpkin beer. I can appreciate it, but it’s for sure not a beer drinkers beer. Alcoholic pumpkin soda

 821 characters

Photo of fsimcox
2.34/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Pours a cloudy, off-orange color. Fizzy head dissipates almost immediately. No lacing.

Smells like pumpkin pie. Some spicy cinnamon and nutmeg.

Sweet, fizzy, pumpkin taste. The taste is a lot weaker than I expected, given the smell. There are some holiday spice notes, and a hint of sour apple in the finish.

Mouthfeel is fizzy, lots of carbonation, and a warm finish. A syrup feeling lingers.

I’m not fond of this beer.

 427 characters

Buffalo Bill's Pumpkin Ale from Buffalo Bill's Brewery
69 out of 100 based on 633 ratings.