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Fermentation Without Representation - Epic Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Fermentation Without RepresentationFermentation Without Representation

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

473 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 473
Reviews: 139
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 11.81%
Wants: 20
Gots: 53 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Epic Brewing Company visit their website
Utah, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Our first ever collaborative beer has all the familiar flavors of the season, but done with Epic style. To a base of strong, roasty, and chocolaty porter, we add 200 pounds of real pumpkin per batch, five spices and whole Madagascar vanilla beans. As you pour this deeply ruby brown beer, you’re greeted by the aroma of fresh cut squash,followed by rich chocolate. The flavor starts sweet with marshmallow,vanilla, and some pumpkin pie, then yields to a coffee roast and darkchocolate dryness. This beer is a great introduction for curious drinkers and a special holiday treat for fans of the style.

(Beer added by: JohnGalt1 on 11-06-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 473 | Reviews: 139 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of oriolesfan4
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of kojevergas
3.23/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I gained confidence in Epic after trying Big Bad Baptist, which really impressed me. So I picked this one up for $8.99 at a local shop. 1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a New Belgium stem-goblet in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given the style, hype, and brewery.

Exponential series. DC Brau collaboration. Release #8. 7.7% ABV according to my label.

Served straight from the fridge and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a two finger gorgeous frothy khaki colour head of very good cream and thickness, and good (~3 minute) retention for the high ABV. Body colour is a solid nontransparent opaque black. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Par for the style, but with a nice appealing head. So far so good. There's nothing unique or special about it.

Sm: Pumpkin gourd and some spice: nutmeg, cinnamon, maybe rosemary. Dark malts, cream, a hint of coffee. Timid underlying caramelization. Maybe a fleeting tinge of vanilla. A well executed aroma for a pumpkin porter. Evocative and appealing. Moderate in strength. I'm excited to try it. Little hopping here. Good aromatics.

T: Pumpkin notes are delightful; it's not just the meaty gourd but also the fruit aspect (yes, pumpkin is a fruit). Light spicing; mainly nutmeg but also some rosemary. Dark malts fill out the foundation with little caramelization. Some light milky cream lends the body character. It's simply executed, but effectively so. There's not a great deal of subtlety to it, but it hits the right notes for the style. No yeast character comes through, nor does any alcohol. I don't get any roasted barley, which is a damn shame. Coffee is also missing. There's maybe some chocolate malt here, but no true chocolate. Well layered and definitely balanced, but it does leave something to be desired. This isn't unique or special.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Some creamy quality. Good carbonation, if a touch too high. Good palate presence. Too thin; it flirts with weakness. This is by far its main flaw. Suits the flavours generally.

Dr: I like it, but it doesn't bring anything truly remarkable to the table. It's decently priced for what it is, and it isn't as messy as many collaboration beers. Hides its ABV well. Quite drinkable. I might try it on-draught (I'm told the DC Brau variant was draught only) but I wouldn't get the bottled version again. A likable pumpkin porter that will meet your expectations but not surpass them.

High C+

Beers to compare with: Alpine Ichabod

A poor candidate for aging. Drink within 1-6 months.

Drank fine from a goblet. A snifter or teku is probably ideal.

Pair with chocolate or marmalade on bread.

Photo of InspectorBob
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.63/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch #1; Sampled November 2011
A solid pour into my Lost Abbey Teku glass produces a three-finger thick, light tan colored head that leaves some light lacing on the sides of the glass as it slowly subsides. The beer is a concentrated brown color with suggestions of black to it; when held up to the light it shows a brilliantly clear, deep, concentrated ruby and plum color. The nose smells of brown toasted bread and an initial tartness that seems sort of pumpkin like; this last is surprising as I wasn’t expecting to notice any actual pumpkin in this beer. My second sniff has me noticing sweet spice notes of cinnamon and cardamom, some sweet clove and maybe some of the tartness is actually accentuated by a light ginger note. Ah, the sweetness is really accentuated by a smooth vanilla note that I am mistaking for an actual sweetness.

The beer is lightly sweet, even somewhat light bodied on the palate. It finishes with a roasted bitterness that is a bit like cold black coffee as well as a lingering spiciness and hint of tartness that also lingers on for quite some time in the finish. The spiciness contributes notes of nutmeg, cardamom, perhaps a touch of allspice, clove and a definite vanilla note. The body has a light prickliness to it from the carbonation and it does have a viscous texture to it up front, it finishes light though as the combination of roast, bitterness and spiciness lightens up the effect of this beer pretty quickly. The beer is certainly a bit colder than I would perhaps prefer right now, but that is easily remedied. This has a prominent astringency / bitterness to it, though I am not sure what all contributes to this; certainly roast malt and perhaps some hop bitterness does, but there seems to be more to it somehow. As the beer warms up the spices open up a bit more with the cardamom, a touch of ginger, some smooth clove notes and perhaps some of the sharpness comes from some peppercorn notes in the finish.

Interestingly enough, this beer does actually have some real pumpkin noticeable in both the aroma and flavor; it is light, but certainly adds some tartness and a bit of a squash / vegetal note to this beer. The spice character here is actually somewhat restrained compared to most pumpkin beers and it actually works pretty well. I am surprised that I am not getting an anise aroma or flavor from this beer though as that seems to be one of the more noticeable notes in beers that have had Five-Spice added to them; though perhaps this blend of Five-Spice is different. An interesting go at a Pumpkin Porter; it could really use a touch more body and rounded malt flavor to balance out the spiciness and the roast bitterness that can be a touch distracting in this beer.

Photo of Halcyondays
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, it's nice to see another pumpkin beer in the Southland besides Sam Adams and Punkin', as much as I like those beers, we need some variety,

A: Pours black with a medium tan head, good lace, thick, nice look.

S: Pumpkin flesh, dark chocolate, fragrant, nice.

T: Real heavy porter flavour upfront, charcoal, dark chocolate, vanilla beans. The pumpkin really comes out in the finish. Great pumpkin flesh flavour, with a hint of dark anise style spice.

M: Medium-bodied, creamy, rich, nice deep finish.

O: The close to $9 price tag for the bomber is not making me happy, but if this is going to be a regular offering in Southern CA in the pumpkin beer style, I'll certainly buy it because it is a good beer in the end, and frankly it doesn't get much better than this in the pumpkin beers offered in the Southland. We don't get Pumking of course. Epic continues to make good stuff.

Photo of Gavage
3.13/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: pours a dark brown color with a 3" head that slowly falls to a thick surface foam. Thick lace paints the glass.

Smell: roasted malts and vanilla really come through to the nose.

Taste: roasted malts, vanilla, molasses, and a hint of chocolate arrives late. Bitterness is mild at best, and there is a hint of allspice. A bit sweet overall.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp throughout. Long lasting aftertaste as the flavors stick to the tongue.

Overall: a bit dissappointed with this as the vanilla beans really show through here without the woody tones a bourbon barrel beer may have. I really didn't taste any pumkin here as to me this was more of a vanilla porter.

Photo of imperialking
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of duceswild
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of dbrauneis
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Release #7

A: Pours an opaque but clear very dark amber (almost black) in color with dark brown highlights when held up to the light and light amounts of visible carbonation near the surface of the beer. The beer has a finger tall light tan head that quickly reduces to a medium sized patch of large bubbles, a thin film covering the majority the surface of the beer, and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light to moderate aromas of roasted malts, chocolate, pumpkin, and vanilla. This is followed by much lighter notes of spices - nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, and ginger.

T: Moderate flavors of roasted malts and chocolate upfront, followed by the flavor of the pumpkin and the vanilla. There are spicy notes in the finish with nutmeg, cinnamon, and ginger standing out.

M: Just shy of medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly thin with a bit of dryness in the finish.

O: A very interesting take on a pumpkin beer, the pumpkin and pumpkin pie spices really add to the depth of flavor of the porter. Enjoyable and pretty easy to drink - the alcohol is well hidden.

Photo of corby112
3.6/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Release #1.

Pours a dark caramel brown color with mahogany edges and a frothy, two finger beige head. Excellent retention, only slowly fading into a lasting cap that coats the glass with chunks of soapy lacing.

Slightly smokey dark malt aroma with an earthy, vegetal presence balancing out the roasted quality. Hints of chocolate, oatmeal and coffee bean countered by autumnal spice and pumpkin.

Medium bodied with a blast of autumnal spices up front that lingers over the roasted malt and sweet pumpkin into a dry finish. Lots of clove, cinnamon and brown sugar followed by the toasted dark malt notes. Hints of coffee, toast and oatmeal along with some silky chocolate malt before finishing with pumpkin and some nutmeg.

Overall this was an interesting experiment that is somewhat successful. It still has the roasted dark malt qualities of a porter with a subtle pumpkin presence. The spices are what really give it a seasonal feel. They are a bit heavy for my liking, overpowering the other notes a bit but this is still a pretty solid beer.

Photo of superspak
4.23/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass; release #12 bottled 7/22/2012. Pours nearly opaque clear dark reddish brown color with a 1-2 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of chocolate, pumpkin, caramel, cocoa, roasted malt, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, toast, vanilla, dark bread, ginger, and roasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of dark/roasted malt, pumpkin, and spice notes; with great strength. Taste of big chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt, pumpkin, caramel, cinnamon, toast, clove, nutmeg, vanilla, ginger, dark bread, and roasted earthiness. Lingering notes of chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt, toast, pumpkin, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, ginger, dark bread, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Fantastic balance, complexity, and robustness of dark malt, pumpkin, and spice flavors; with a great malt/spice balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Light-medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very creamy and moderately slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a highly excellent pumpkin porter! All around great balance, robustness, and complexity of dark malt, pumpkin, and spice flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

Photo of LXIXME
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of Zorro
4/5  rDev +5%

Dark brown nearly black colored beer with a medium sized light brown colored head.

Smells mild with a strong caramel scent. Spice is mild with s stronger chocolate scent.

Starts sweet with a lots of chocolate and a mild bitterness. Very mild pumpkin pie spices other than that this is basically a Porter. Spice gets stronger as it warms.

Overall this is a pumpkin spice porter.

Photo of afsdan
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of Stinkypuss
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Pours a dark and toasty blackish brown color with an off white head. The aroma is very roasted with some pumpkin and spice notes also coming forth. Upfront in the flavor there is plenty of roasted character followed up by the pumpkin pie taste and mocha even. Just a bit of spices mainly just pumpkin and roasted malt here but they definitely work well together. Full bodied well carbonated ale. The Pumpkin Stout is becoming a big trend in seasonal beer here in the states. With these flavor combinations, it can easily be understood why.

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

Did you have pumpkin beer? You had pumkin beer. Dude what is wrong with you? Oh. It's a porter, ok well chalk this one up to different, plus I'll go see if I can cheer for the hometeam here (sort of). Poured on tap at Pizza Paradiso Dupont into a tumbler.

A nice light tan colored head, slightly creamy with tiny foam. Body is a dark brown walnut not much else. Looks fine from the start.

Nose is soft, squash, nutmeg, some mild sweet vanilla and clove, with mild sense of crust.

Taste brings nice roasting char and pumpkin spice mix. Mild burnt vanilla and warm brown spices of sweet nutmeg with a simple good body. Mild carbonation, good malt density to go with the spice as well.

Overall perhaps porter and pumpkin equals success! Quite suprised with this one, neat take and another good brew.

Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.5/5  rDev +18.1%

Photo of rab53
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of billab914
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into my Dogfish glass. It poured black in color with a thick, foamy tan head to it. Very good head retention and lacing as I drank it.

The aroma shows some pumpkin pie spices to it, but it's milder and smoother then most pumpkin spiced beers. I also get some raw pumpkin mixing with some chocolaty, cocoa like flavors. I liked that the spices were a little more reserved.

In the taste I get a little more of the porter character coming out. I get a little more chocolate to it with a moderate roasty, slight coffee like flavors. The pumpkin and spices come in more on the back end. Again the spices are pretty mild and I get more of a raw pumpkin, squash like flavor.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied and carbonation is moderate. Overall I thought it was a pretty good beer. I really liked that the spices were a little more reserved in it and some actual pumpkin seemed to come out. There are tons of spice bombs out there so it was a little refreshing for me that this was a little different. The porter characteristics were nice as well and the flavors worked pretty well together. Overall a pretty nice beer of the style.

Photo of Kelp
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of sendbeer
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of beerthulhu
3.73/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Release #4.

A: Corkboard tinted head is slight but shows a moderate rate of retention atop a standard issue black porter coloring. Generous lace coverage.

S: The aroma is sweet of chocolate and cocoa most noticeably. Pumpkin spiced coffee with ginger and cinnamon come through along with some vanilla and pie crust.

T: The flavor is pumpkin spicing of cinnamon and ginger once again, sweet coffee roast. Pumpkin, sweet toffee and milky chocolate support as well vanilla. The finish finds a light chalky fade of creamer powder on the close out.

M: Thick oily roast mouthful with a lively carbonation factor.

O: Overall a nice pumpkin influence and spicing with a decent imperial porter malt base. Worthy a try.

Photo of liamt07
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Steve, 650ml into a tulip. Release #8.

Black body with a light brown head. Good retention and spots of lace. Nose has some light pumpkin pie spicing, some roast, smoke and some peripheral vegetal and anise. Taste is roasty and drying, cocoa, pumpkin pie spicing midpalate and into the finish. Creamy thinner medium body and medium low carbonation. A nice pumpkin spiced porter, much nicer as it warms.

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Epic Collaboration with DC Brau.

From Epic's website:

"Brewed on: October 10, 2011. Packaged on: October 25, 2011.

Our first ever collaborative beer has all the familiar flavors of the season, but done with Epic style. To a base of strong, roasty, and chocolaty porter, we add 200 pounds of real pumpkin per batch, five spices and whole Madagascar vanilla beans. As you pour this deeply ruby brown beer, you’re greeted by the aroma of fresh cut squash,followed by rich chocolate. The flavor starts sweet with marshmallow,vanilla, and some pumpkin pie, then yields to a coffee roast and darkchocolate dryness. This beer is a great introduction for curious drinkers and a special holiday treat for fans of the style."

Poured into my new Cigar City snifter... pretty decent dark tan head... nice retention and lacing... the brew is deep dark brown that shows garnet highlights on the stem end of my glass.

Nose is a pretty good porter ... dry cocoa and then the spices come out swinging... clove.. ginger... nutmeg and cinnamon...

Flavor mirrors the nose with a sweet spice up front that gives way midpalate to a dry roasty malt and bittersweet chocolate... finish lingers with ginger and nutmeg.

Body is a solid medium with good small bubble carbonation.

I normally don't really appreciate beers with spices, but this one shows a judicious hand... nicely done, but finishing the bomber is going to be a chore for me.

4/3.5/4/4/3.5

Photo of Cynic-ale
4/5  rDev +5%

Fermentation Without Representation from Epic Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 473 ratings.