Pumking - Southern Tier Brewing Company

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1,811 Reviews

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Reviews: 1,811
Hads: 6,859
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 16.87%
Wants: 458
Gots: 1,678 | FT: 33
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  8.60% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerBeing on 08-26-2007

19 Degrees Plato
8.8 Degrees L
2-row Pale Malt
Caramel Malt
Pureed Pumpkin

Kettle Hops: Magnum
Aroma Hops: Sterling
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,811 | Hads: 6,859
Photo of StJamesGate
4.13/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pale orange blonde with white collar. 4
Incredible nose - pie crust, vanilla, whipped cream, Creamsickle, candy corn, and yes, pumpkin. 4.75
Squash, cinnamon, buttery crust, brown sugar, and some lemony grassy hops. 4
Cream soda finish and dry linger.
Almost medium, hot, fizzy. 3.5

It really does taste like pie: crust, cream, spice and pumpkin. I’m not sure I want that, smooth and integrated though it is, but it hits the concept like all this ST beers do - it’s just not as much fun as most of those. Too lean, too hot, a bit of work altogether - but oddly tasty, too. 4 (580 characters)

Photo of Jeffreysan
4.45/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

22 oz bottle, 2013 edition, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a very pretty, clear orange color with a quarter of a finger of white head that quickly faded away into an extremely thin, almost invisible, halo of foam that gripped the sides of the glass, but otherwise left no head to speak of.

Aroma: Tons of pumpkin and spices present in this beer! All-spice, brown sugar, clove, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla all dominate the aroma. While I don’t get much in the way of hops, I do get some malt notes, like freshly baked sourdough bread. Very appealing.

Taste: Tons of spices here too! Pumpkin obviously, but a lot of vanilla, caramel, cinnamon, nutmeg too. Good malty backbone to round everything out. A little on the sweet side, but not at all overpowering or out of balance, at least not for my palate. Definitely not a sugar bomb. Finally, there is no hops bitterness to speak of, which I overall prefer.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, but with practically no carbonation to speak of. With an ABV of 8.6%, there is surprisingly little alcohol on the palate, which could make drinking this beer a little dangerous, in a fun way.

Overall: This is a delicious pumpkin beer. Great flavors of pumpkin and spices. I’m definitely getting this every year!! Several bottles, too! (1,304 characters)

Photo of jasonpeckins32
4.51/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got a growler fill of this when it was in season (2014). Hands-down my favorite Pumpkin beer. This one is the pumpkin pie, nutmeg, with the whipped cream on top. Love it. (173 characters)

Photo of MrWonka
5/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is by far my favorite beer, period. I've tried numerous pumpkin brews this previous yr and this stomps them all without question. Anyone who says this beer tastes like candy corn, do not pay attention to them! I've disliked candy corn all my life and this beer tastes nothing like it. I'll leave u with this image/taste in ur head... Are u ready? Graham cracker vanilla-flavored Wheaties. Yes Wheaties the cereal. Think about it. (434 characters)

Photo of bwood06
4.01/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - Clear amber in color with a thick head that dissipates quickly to a thin lacing. Visible sediment (yeast). 3.75/5

S - Pumpkin squash, nutmeg, and cinnamon. More emphasis is placed on the spices than the squash. 4/5

T - Taste follows the nose nicely. Pumpkin is more pronounced than in the nose but the spices are near equivalent in balance. Ever so slight sourdough breadiness. 4/5

M - Very smooth with a clean finish. Slight lingering bitterness but not much. Moderate carbonation. 4.25/5

O - Probably the best pumpkin beer that I have had outside of Southern Tier's Warlock. 4/5 (599 characters)

Photo of JohnnyI
3.99/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

2014. "Pumking is an ode to Puca, the mythical Celtic Horse beast said to entice careless travelers on to its back and take them on a terrifying night ride through the forest." Alright Puca, I'm ready for my ride....

The translucent copper-creamsicle ale crashes in to a goblet, forming an inch of lush foam. The linen colored head stands barely an inch, with densely packed bubbles and thin lacing around the rim. The glorious smell of fresh baked pumpkin pie fills the nose, complete with a buttery graham cracker crust. There's an assortment of pumpkin potpourri spices that serve to compliment the hearty gourdlike aroma. The first sip.... flavor overload. This beer is a sweet spice-bomb in the strictest sense. Each tiny sip packs enough flavor to embarrass most of its competition. The buttery, sweet malts are there, but you only get a fleeting moment with them before the spices come barreling in. There's also a slight hop bite that ties this beer together and keeps it from completely overwhelming your senses. At 8.6%, the alcohol is well hidden, but you could hide a Buick behind the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and allspice. They stick to your palette like a burr, embedded until you raise the glass again to wash away the taste and start over. The mouthfeel is a little lighter than you might expect from a beer of this magnitude. A richer, fuller body would suit this brew well, creating an unparallelled seasonal dessert-beer. The current beer just doesn't have the constitution to support so much character. At any rate, this is a slow sipper. I can do one of these each year, and I continue to appreciate this outrageous ode to pumpkin pie. (1,657 characters)

Photo of RUNYYFan
3.15/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3

This review is specifically for the 2014 edition. I was not thrilled at all with the flavor of the brew at all. This was way, way too hoppy. In past years the flavor was all about the wonderful flavor of pumpkin and the spices that infuse those pies at Thanksgiving. This year, it was as if the pumpkin was an afterthought. Overall, the flavor did not come close to any of the past experiences. (394 characters)

Photo of Thirsty-Thor
4.74/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Damn!!! That's a pumpkin beer! I feel like I've tried them all since my wife is a self avowed pumpkin ale freak. We happened to see it on tap at a growler shop over the weekend and added it to her 4-flight tasting. Hands down the biggest pumpkin flavor. Like a fresh pie with spices and comfort food galore. A bit sweet for my taste but definitely a palate cleanser for all the porters and stouts we tend to consume around the holidays. (442 characters)

Photo of ALewis84
5/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured deep orange with 1/2 thick head that lightly dissipated. S:rich pumpkin pie crust with cinnamon and nutmeg. T: almost spot on with how it smells; pumpkin pie crust with hints of cinnamon, nutmeg and slight hints of allspice. I have to admit, I'm a fan of the sweeter craft seasonal beers, and this is one of them. Best pumpkin beer I've had to date. Absolutely amazing. (376 characters)

Photo of Matthew_Phoenix
4.24/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Tastes like pumpkin pie. I taste a lot of pie crust, a buttery, flaky type of flavor. A lot of pumpkin spices. I feel like the pie crust flavor was most noticible. Also worth noting is that everything tasted natural. No artificial like flavoring to be had here. (266 characters)

Photo of JLaw55
2/5  rDev -50.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

This was drinkable, but just barely for me. I have had a few pumpkin beers, and while not my favorite style, this is one of my least favorite ones. The appearance was good, kind of an amber/orange color with little head and little lacing.

The smell was the one very pleasant quality, in that it smells almost exactly like pumpkin pie. Unfortunately what followed was not as pleasant.

The taste was alcohol forward over everything. It really shows through, which is not something I am quite fond of in my beer. Once you get past the pure alcohol flavor, there are the normal spiced flavors of a pumpkin beer. Then on the back end was another unpleasant funkiness flavor, something that I think may be attributed to the actual pumpkin in the brew. This was unpleasant and tasted of musty, slightly spoiled melon and nasty sweaty socks. This is the first pumpkin beer I have had that uses actual pumpkin in it, which I believe is causing some of these negatives that I have not tasted in other pumpkin beers.

Finally, the mouth feel was oily with a noticeable alcohol presence. I am not fond of a burning alcohol presence in my beer.

Would not seek out, purchase, or drink again. There are better alternatives if you are seeking out a pumpkin beer. (1,254 characters)

Photo of jimbuck
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

very heavy aroma of spices..cinnamon,nutmeg,allspice,good pumpkin taste,although somewhat diminished.slight sweetness,as in the crust of the pie.alc.% is over 8%,but you get no hint of it.nice aftertaste,no bitterness.if you like pumpkin pie,this is for you;if you don't,you might be disappointed. (297 characters)

Photo of rbfurr3
3/5  rDev -25.6%

Schlafly and dogfish and weyerbacher do a much better job with this style. Not a huge fan of this one. Interesting, but too heavy on the nutmeg. Wish the malt character would come through a bit more. Would be good as a dessert beer. (232 characters)

Photo of distant-lover
5/5  rDev +24.1%

By far my favorite fall brew. I've tried gallons of other pumpkin brews however, STBC has mastered this one. Aroma. Appearance. Body. Consistency and taste. BAM!!!! (164 characters)

Photo of OrangeMen
3.96/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance- Pours a clean, transparent, golden orange color, beautiful glisten when held to light. Pillowy two finger thick head, maybe slightly off white, but mostly white.
Aroma- Sweet, rich raw pumpkin flesh, graham cracker pie crust. Wonderful buttery, vanilla creaminess. Variety of cinnamon/allspice/clove type spices.
Taste- Raw pumpkin, pumpkin pie type notes. Real rich creaminess throughout, buttery, vanilla. Cinnamon and nutmeg, graham cracker, and nice caramel malt base underneath it all.
Feel- Medium mouthfeel, higher carbonation though. Creamy and silk feel.
Overall- Such a rich and flavorful beer, spices are nicely balanced, and pumpkin flavors are real fleshy. The highlight of this beer is the creaminess, just a wonderful combination of buttery vanilla with the caramel malt notes. A great seasonal beer, and just full of the perfect flavors for fall/holiday season. (889 characters)

Photo of Pballa4lyfe
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Very good punkin ale. Dogfish head is still better in my opinion. I think Southern Tier went a little heavy on the spices, but still- very solid punkin ale and worth a drink! (176 characters)

Photo of franklinn
5/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: 5/5 Poured from a 22oz bottle into a frosted 22oz mug. Winter is coming and I'm ready for some pumpkin!!! The beer is bright with a creamy head.

S: 5/5 Cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, pumpkin, caramel, brown butter, walnuts, gram cracker and the crispness of autumn. What more could you possibly ask for???!

T: 5/5 All the pumpkin spice in the world and the booze gives it a rum quality. Fantastic!

M: 5/5 Creamy like pumpkin pie

O: 5/5 Best pumpkin beer ever! (472 characters)

Photo of HardyTier
5/5  rDev +24.1%

One of my favorite beers. Great flavor with the pie crust smell as you open it and perfect for a fall night. They weren't afraid to have a lot of flavor in this beer which I appreciate as so many pumpkin beers are too subdued. Split a bomber with the wife or drinking buddy. (277 characters)

Photo of sprat1960
3.4/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Look: Light copper towards golden in color; orange tint - not surprising since the beer contains pumpkin. Translucent. Pours with no head at all, just a small layer of foam on the surface that quickly disappears. Lots of bubbles when poured; however the beer appears kind of flat quickly.

Smell: Delicious (for what it is) pumpkin pie aroma; you can really smell the spices. Made me want to dive in and drink.

Taste: Good; tastes like it smells - though I found the smell far superior to the actual flavor. True pumpkin pie flavor. Final taste is of the spices and with a slightly dry, bitter finish that I did not care for.

Feel: Medium body and medium carbonation; smooth.

Overall: Good for what it is. I am glad that I tried it, but this is something that I would not run out to buy again. I think once is enough for me; as life is too short and there are too many other beers that I prefer. (911 characters)

Photo of Seeker_11
3/5  rDev -25.6%

I was not really a fan of this beer. It smelled great and had nice color, but the taste was not there. I feel the pumpkin flavor really lacked especially for an "imperial" ale. (178 characters)

Photo of tone77
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a brown 22 oz. bottle. Has a rich golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of fresh pumpkin pie, graham crackers. Tate is pumpkin pie, vanilla, some graham cracker, perfectly spiced, a touch of alcohol as it warms. Feels creamy and delicious in the mouth and overall is a beer worth seeking out. (310 characters)

Photo of Premo88
4.23/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bomber poured into snifter

L: half-hazy orange that has a consistent translucence ... you can see through it very easily, but it's just a bit hazy; the orange pulls well short of amber but has just enough red in it to get past yellow into the golder range; late-percolating head pushes up just 1/4 inch with no sticking or lacing

S: like a candle shop, sweet and spicy ... smells exactly like the fall ... ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, pumpkin pie, pecan pie ... awesome. sweet vanilla as it warms, real mellow. alcohol is perfectly hidden.

T: more spice than pumpkin ... there's some earthiness that is either pumpkin or some kind of earthy-tasting hops -- they're bland and slightly bitter, don't taste particularly great but do offer some balance for the heavy load of fall seasonal spices

F: fantastic ... light but full with nice crispness from the carbonation ... feels like a perfect pale ale, so it's super drinkable

O: after trying a handful of pumpkin ales last season, I swore I was done with them. a friend said I should at least try the Pumking once, and I'm glad they did -- it's good. it's a load of spice and relatively sweet, but I like it because it has much more taste than any other pumpkin ale I've tried. (1,243 characters)

Photo of fank2788
3.34/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Hazy mid orange in the glass even after a quick pour there wasn't much on top of this one. So I don't really know what to say about the smell here. There is a lot going on as I'm getting a ton of spice cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, ginger along with a heavy toasted biscuit aroma. This is very reminiscent of the Warlock by Southern Tier. The taste is quite similar to the smell all of the spice is there and there is a pretty good caramel malt base so I'm sure a lot of people could find this quite nice. However, I think that this is far too brash and heavy handed to rate any higher than average as I'm more a fan of the milder versions of the style. There is a touch of bitterness that is found near the finish and that goes along with a medium body and medium level of carbonation in general this beer tends to be quite sweet. Overall I'm not a very big fan of this because I don't like such a strongly spiced pumpkin ale, however, it is a good representation of the style that I'm sure some will enjoy. (1,010 characters)

Photo of stratusjeans
2.75/5  rDev -31.8%

I was excited to try this beer after reading some great reviews. Poured into snifter, thin head, nice light orange color. Smells delicious, a little sweetness, definitely pumpkin, pie crust, and some spice.

Taste is where I was disappointed. Pumpkin up front, not very sweet, then a lot of spice on the back of the tongue. The spice tastes wrong to me. Not so much pumpkin pie or Autumn, but like a spice candle. Great to smell, not to taste. The spice lingers a very long time but is not a pleasing taste to have linger.

I can see some people would really like this but it isn't for everyone. (602 characters)

Photo of ttroha
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Bottle shared with a friend. Pours amber with a white head Aroma of pumpkin and spices. (nutmg, ginger, anice) Tastes of pumpkin pie: vanilla, butter, and nutmeg. Medium bod. Better than pumpkin pie. (199 characters)

Pumking from Southern Tier Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 1,811 ratings.