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King Don's Original Pumpkin Ale - Catawba Valley Brewing Company

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King Don's Original Pumpkin Ale
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very good

38 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 38
Reviews: 24
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 13.02%
Wants: 8
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Catawba Valley Brewing Company visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-06-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 38 | Reviews: 24 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by gueuzegeek:
Photo of gueuzegeek

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Now, granted, I only had a small sample at the World beer festival, but, that was enough to see the nice rich deep amber color. I could not get a good read on the head from my sample, however, MAN what an absolutely fragrant brew!! Totally rich with all the spices of a pumpkin pie. This is one tasty brew as well, the pumpkin pie aroma carries straight through to the taste!! A wonderfully rich spicy taste. This brew is one to savor!!

Serving type: on-tap

10-17-2003 22:05:29 | More by gueuzegeek
More User Reviews:
Photo of tfsimpkins


2.25/5  rDev -44.7%

10-20-2013 01:25:15 | More by tfsimpkins
Photo of AngusOg

North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -14%

10-18-2013 21:55:38 | More by AngusOg
Photo of Axnjxn

North Carolina

4.11/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

on draft at beer study in chapel hill, into a snifter.

pours a very dark orange with a typical inch thick head. smell is of a lot of cloves and nutmeg...extreme amount of spice on the aroma. the taste is also filled with spicinees, but its lacking the typical super sweetness that you usually find in pumpkin beers. this definitely helps and is a big plus...you still know you're drinking a beer! light body though, but this is lower in ABV so expected.

overall one of the better pumpkin beers I've had. recommended.

Serving type: on-tap

10-08-2013 20:35:49 | More by Axnjxn
Photo of KevinGordon

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

10-06-2013 05:19:21 | More by KevinGordon
Photo of FIN


4/5  rDev -1.7%

09-03-2013 17:23:49 | More by FIN
Photo of eargle


4.75/5  rDev +16.7%

11-20-2012 20:26:12 | More by eargle
Photo of crawdadwilly74

3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

10-31-2012 11:34:53 | More by crawdadwilly74
Photo of BuddytheElf


4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

10-29-2012 22:39:19 | More by BuddytheElf
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

3.68/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: The orange colored liquid wears a nice crown of foam that drapes a few strands of lace

Smell: Pumpkin pie spices galore

Taste: Pumpkin pie spices dominate the flavor profile, too; this is one of those pumpkin beers that is all about the spicing so it is hard to taste any pumpkin in the mix

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: I like a bit more balance in my pumpkin beers but this is a very nice example of the spice-forward aspects of the style

Serving type: on-tap

09-22-2012 20:18:43 | More by brentk56
Photo of kell50

North Carolina

4/5  rDev -1.7%

09-12-2012 02:11:46 | More by kell50
Photo of JKAllen

4/5  rDev -1.7%

09-08-2012 10:20:02 | More by JKAllen
Photo of Hopman1985

North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

02-03-2012 18:36:54 | More by Hopman1985
Photo of VaterRoss

North Carolina

5/5  rDev +22.9%

12-27-2011 02:08:44 | More by VaterRoss
Photo of dfpratt09

North Carolina

4/5  rDev -1.7%

12-25-2011 06:13:18 | More by dfpratt09
Photo of Lantern

5/5  rDev +22.9%

12-06-2011 16:02:35 | More by Lantern
Photo of DoctorB2B


4/5  rDev -1.7%

11-20-2011 18:07:42 | More by DoctorB2B
Photo of cwguy5

North Carolina

3.73/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up this growler from Brawley's Beverage in Charlotte, NC. Poured into a Unibroue Becker style glass.

A - medium-dark reddish brown color; slightly hazy; white head consists mostly of a ring around the glass and faded to nothing; no lacing that i noticed
S - clove and nutmeg, light vegetable
T - right off the bat you taste clove, cinnamon and nutmeg; the nutmeg tastes very fresh and is almost a bit peppery; not dry by any means but not as sweet as i expected; honey and toffee in the finish; would have liked a slightly maltier backbone maybe
M - light-ish carbonation; body is medium and slightly coating; linger consists of pumpkin spices - mostly nutmeg
D - very drinkable as it is light and crisp despite a medium body and slightly coating mouthfeel; spices are pronounced but not too heavy; sweetness level is in the right area - not cloying like some pumpkin beers; would seek out again for fall sessions

Serving type: growler

09-13-2011 03:58:30 | More by cwguy5
Photo of GehenHerzog

North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had it on Tap at Vintner Wine Market in Charlotte and also out of a growler from Bruisin' Ales in Asheville. The quality control seems to be very good as they seemed to be close to identical at both.

A - Dark brown color, reddish-orange when held to light. Thin off white head

S - The spices really come out in the smell. Cinnamon and clove. Not a whole lot of pumpkin smell.

T - If you like pumpkin, this is a must try. Tastes like a pumpkin pie. Cinnamon and pumpkin spice are very noticeable. Sweet and spicy.

M - Good carbonation, mouthfull is medium-full.

D - Phenomenal. What every pumpkin beer should strive for. When I had the growler, I was disappointed when I finished it during the tailgate.

This is my favorite pumpkin beer and it's not even close. I wish it was bottled because my refrigerator would be stocked with it during the fall. Fortunately, growlers are readily available. My tailgate beer of choice during football season.

Serving type: on-tap

12-23-2010 04:52:54 | More by GehenHerzog
Photo of aventinus829

North Carolina

4.53/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this wonderful brew on tap at Growler's Pourhouse in Charlotte, NC. It is quite good!

A: Reddish-brown
S: Lots of festive spices. Nutmeg and cinnamon even.
T: Awesome. Not so much pumpkin as a really good blend of fall spices.
D: Very, very drinkable.

Note: They line your glass with an interesting blend of sugars and cinnamon if you get this beer at Growler's. Quite a treat!

Serving type: on-tap

11-22-2010 02:59:35 | More by aventinus829
Photo of mbrown26

North Carolina

4.8/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What every pumpkin beer should live up to. If you don't like pumpkin or pumpkin pie, this probably won't be your thing, but if you like a good pumpkin beer, this should be right up your alley.

I could see for some people that there wouldn't be enough body, but for me it was perfect. I felt like I was drinking a beer that had a pumpkin flavor instead of the other way around.

The smell had the characteristic of roasted hops, pumpkin and nutmeg and the color was a nice brownish orange.

Serving type: on-tap

10-31-2010 08:51:16 | More by mbrown26
Photo of Deuane


3.65/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Deep brownish copper with a thin white head that quickly reduced to a wispy veil and left spotty lace.

S-Nice aroma of a freshly made, caramel coated gingerbread. Nice, pleasant aroma of real pumpkin spices.

T-Strong pumpkin pie spices come off a bit too harshly. Caramel malt needs more beef to counteract the spice punch....good but more than I prefer.

M-Medium bodied, fairly sharp with good lingering spicy bitterness.

D-Good but...see above. I think with a bit of tweaking this would be outstanding.

Serving type: on-tap

01-14-2010 16:24:48 | More by Deuane
Photo of Swellcox


4.88/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've enjoyed this wonderful Fall beer on tap and in a bottle.

A - rich dark color, reddish-brown in a glass, nice thick head

S - a spicey, but not sweet, pumpkin aroma

T - smooth on the tongue, very palatable, smooth malty sweetness, nice aftertaste with lots of spices

M - enough natural carbonation to lighten this thick beer

D - outstanding!!! What every Pumpkin beer should strive to be.

Serving type: on-tap

03-24-2009 22:59:49 | More by Swellcox
Photo of ckeegan04


4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Deep orange color tinged with brown. Very thin wispy white head that quickly fades but leaves moderate lacing on the glass.

S - Wow, it smells just like my wifes gingerbread. Lots of clove, allspice, and cinnamon in the nose. DOnt pick up a whole lot of pumpkin, but I'm not sure pumpkin really has the strongest smell.

T - Strong taste of pumpkin pie spices including allspice, nutmeg, and cinnamon. A little light breadiness to it as well provides a nice backing.

M/D - A little thin on the feel but it goes down real easy. Good carbonation level and one of the better pumpkin ales I have tried.

Serving type: on-tap

10-31-2008 03:32:27 | More by ckeegan04
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on tap at the Brewgrass festival in Asheville, North Carolina. Consumed on 09/20/2008 and reviewed from notes taken at the time.

What can I really say about this pout, it was a damn pumpkin! Rich orange color was an absolute treat to look at. Some light haze and cloudiness to it, enough to make it look a bit thicker then I thought it would. A nice one inch head of white and fizzy foam came up over the top and settled down nicely into the glass leaving a good amount of side glass lace to mix around with the carbonation that could be seen streaking up.

The aroma was about as rich in pumpkin spice as you could possibly get. Huge notes of spices that just come whiffing up to the surface. This was an enormously good smelling beer. I swear if you could bottle the fall season, it would come close to this I am sure. The flavor was more of the same, rich in every sense of the word. Huge notes here of all spice, pumpkin, and hints of earthy grains. Tingling the tongue as it went down it was like a piece of pumpkin pie, which is about all that can be said. Delicately light Mouthfeel was well carbonated and not too thin or anything that would be anything less then wonderful. Easy to sip as the flavor was far too rich to be putting this one down in too great of numbers.

Overall though this has to be one of the best pumpkin ales I have ever had, hands down. Rich and decadent, smooth and deliciously. Probably the best beer that Catawba makes, well next to Coconut. Go find this one this fall season for sure.

Serving type: on-tap

09-23-2008 23:44:19 | More by mikesgroove
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King Don's Original Pumpkin Ale from Catawba Valley Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 38 ratings.