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Punkin Ale - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Punkin AlePunkin Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

2,061 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,061
Hads: 6,326
Avg: 3.91
pDev: 12.79%
Wants: 354
Gots: 1,228 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: NeroFiddled on 09-26-2002

A full-bodied brown ale with smooth hints of pumpkin and brown sugar. We brew our Punkin Ale with pumpkin meat, organic brown sugar and spices. As the season cools, this is the perfect beer to warm up with.

28 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Punkin Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,061 | Hads: 6,326
Photo of SaintPeter
3.49/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a copper color with red highlights, beautiful to admire. Voluminous white head that vanishes quickly. Foam head clears to an amazing color and leaves a clinging shapes on the glass.

Nose of cold fresh cold pumpkin and spice of nutmeg and cinnamon. Smell of unsweetened pumpkin pie right out of the fridge. Caramelized sugar comes through.

Champagne bubbles tingle on the tongue initially. Mild pumpkin pie spiciness of clove, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves Spice is not overdone, as expected by the smell. The alcohol doesn't come through, unfortunately. Expecting more caramelized sugar and pumpkin flavor. Clean aftertaste--well as clean as a gourd beer can be), linger of spices.

Creamy mouthfeel, medium bodied, pleasant.

One is the limit.

Probably the best pumpkin beer I've ever had, which is not saying much as pumpkin beers always taste like farts. A successful attempt at a gourd beer.

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Photo of mikereaser
3.49/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a copper color, little head and no lacing. The nose is very appealing, it seems like it has a nice mixture of pumpkin and spices. It looks like there is stuff suspended in the glass. Its not a bad tasting beer, for a pumpkin. There is a bit of an alcohol taste and the taste is not as good as the smell. I will try one of these every year just to check in, but pumpkin beers, no matter how i want to like them, aren't my favorite style.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a clear orange/amber with a smallish white that quickly dissipated, leaving a small ring that left a little lacing on each sip. Aroma is very spicey. Almost too spicey as the pumpkin aroma is subtle but it's still there.

Taste is once again frontloaded with spices and sweetness. Much like the aroma, the pumpkin taste gets overloaded and seems barely detectable on some sips. Light hoppiness and more than I care for hotness (especially as it warms) in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and seems fairly thick for a Pumpkin Ale.

The Punkin' Ale seems to be one of those beers that I try and try with each year to love and it just never happens. Just way too over spiced with not enough pumpkin and a unnecessaryly high 7% ABV make this a one time a fall beer for me. If they want to keep the high ABV, they should make this an Imperial style and ramp up the flavor too.

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Photo of peabody
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours out amber to orange with a large head of white foam. Lacing here on the glass.
Smell is cinnamon clove and apple pie. A bready aroma here too. I love the smell of this beer.
Taste is spicy and sweet without being overpowering. Can't really taste punkin' but darn the whole puniin' pie is here with all the spices.
Mouthfeel is little sticky but finishes very clean.
I would like to try this in keg form. Best punkin ale I have tried to date!

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Photo of vacax
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Orange amber with a big almond colored head. Decent retention and some lacing. Smells of allspice, a bit of nutmeg, and some brown sugar character. No real pumpkin in the nose, essentially dry with a few pie spices.

The taste is at first quite subdued, mostly dry with a moderate bitterness. The brown sugar lends it dryness which emerges in the flavor along with a bit of allspice and maybe a touch of nutmeg. Not too much spice, overall this is an easy drinking version of a pumpkin ale, and a decent alcohol wallop at 7% ABV. Unfortunately, no actual pumpkin flavors I can pinpoint, which for me is a problem. The body is medium to light with relatively high carbonation for the style, it lacks an autumnal richness in body. This is a clean, relatively light pumpkin ale.

While this is quite a drinkable beer, for Dogfish Head this tastes simple and uninspired. I wouldn't call this ale off-centered at all, more like a typical, clean, pumpkin ale that does not stand out in terms of flavors. Way overpriced for what it is as well. Still, a pretty decent pumpkin ale, despite missing the expectations I have for the DFH brand and price tag.

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Photo of mactrail
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Starts with a promising sweet maltiness and some spice. The cloves and cinnamon conspire with the alcohol to give it a hot taste. Somehow the hops seem overdone as the bitterness does not play well with the sweet spices, I think. Fairly rich tasting, though the body is on the lighter side. Nice carbonation, lovely in the tall tulip glass with the golden amber color. Boozy and spicy smell is rather pleasant.

Tastes better as it warms up, but a little goes a long way. Raspy taste in the back of the throat. Oh, pumpkin? It does have a hint of candied yams.

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Photo of paco1029384756
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a brown amber color with a small head.

Scent of bready malts, warm spices, and pumpkin. The spices in the scent outweigh the other qualities more than they should.

Taste is similar, bready malts and spices warm with the alcohol and pumpkin is noticeable, but overpowered. Alcohol is too apparent for it only being 7% by volume.

Mouthfeel is smooth and clean.

I am glad I tried this one before I bought it, and I will pass this one up in the future in favor of better pumpkin beers.

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Photo of msubulldog25
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured to a pint glass from a 12 oz.bottle, dated "09.06.06". Bought at Whole Foods in Portland, OR.

A: A warm and clear copper/amber with a creamy 1 finger white head, almost no lacing.

S: Smells of mild cinnamon and nutmeg, allspice, brown sugar and caramel malt. A pleasant aroma but not very strong nor lingering.

T: A slightly metallic "brown ale" taste with hints of the spices and a slight sourness. Not as sweet as expected, somewhat bitter with a tangy bite, hinting at citrus.

M: Fairly smooth and slick and with a relatively light body. Moderate carboantion with some earthy bitterness in the aftertaste. Flavor is a little clingy and sticks in a gummy way; some alcohol warming. Generally average and not terribly likable mouthfeel.

D: A decent beer, pumpkin or otherwise, but not one I'd have to drink again. Spices seemed subdued, less than I'd hoped for; I was underwhelmed. Worth a try, I guess...

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Photo of rye726
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pretty good pumpkin ale, but like always, I would like to see more of an actual pumpkin presence. Aber color and a thick tan head. The nose has some sweet malts, spices and subtle pumpkin. The taste is a little lighter. Good spice presence matches well with the malts, but where is the pumpkin. Medium body goes down well.

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Photo of earthboundagain
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From Notes:

A: A mix between amber and copper in color, the head is off white and settled into some slight lacing.

S: Ok smells like pumpkin pie mix, with some brown sugar as well.

T: Hmm, a slight semi sweet pumpkin with the pie spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, a slight clove flavor as well. A touch of brown sugar in this one as well.

M: The body is medium and the carbonation is as well. The beer has a slick felling as well but not overly slick.

D: I could not have more then a few at a time, the pumpkin pie spice rush would be too much for me to take.

Thoughts- This beer is more spice and less pumpkin, but the flavor is not overpowering like some I have had. This beer is a good stab at the style and something to drink around Halloween.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a nice amber color but the head was lacking. Nose is sweet and sticky with cinnamon, nutmeg and light pumpkin.Taste is not overpowering pumpkin like I wished but cinnamon and nutmeg were there. Mouthfeel is creamy, sordove bland in the taste and lingering. Not one of my favorites from DFH

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Photo of wvsabbath
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Tanish golden, With some yellow, 1/2 creamy head.

Smell - Pumkin, nutmeg, malts, hops, sugar and a very bitter, almost pickle aroma also

Taste - Hmm, this is different. Defintley taste the pumkin, hops are present, as usual the alcohol also. Many spices also i taste. Basically its a jacked up brown ale with pumkin spices and added sugar.

Mouthfeel - I enjoyed the first taste, was simular to pumkin pie but after i swallowed, the aftertaste is nutmeg and all spice. Ekk, not liking that at all.

Drinkabilty - Well, im glad this bottle was given to me, so i didnt get stuck buying a 4 or 6 pack. One is fine for me, maybe two if i was eating pumkin pie. I wish the beer had more malts and pumkin and less spices. Ill stick with great lakes or smutteynose octoberfest.

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Photo of kingcrowing
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured in a pilsner glass.

Pours a dark amber color with a decent head that fades quick. Smell is as you'd expect. Pumpkin pie, very spicy and pumpkin. Some maltiness to it.

Mouthfeel is a bit watery and light. This beer is on the sweet side. Not bitter, all spicy. Very sharp and carbonated. Really the best Pumpkin beer I've had and the extra abv is a nice addition.

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Photo of RickS95
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A little more clear than I'd like, but that's probably the American way. It's a light to medium brown with a thin white head that has no retention.

A bit of spice in the nose, but it seems more savory than sweet. Allspice and nutmeg, but they're both muted. However, the pumpkin is actually prevalent in this beer.

I can get some of the flavors of pumpkin pie, but there needs to be a bit more sweetness. Brown sugar is mentioned on the bottle, but I'm not picking it up.

It's ok in the mouth, nothing dominates or is offensive. A bit spicy, but that's expected. A slightly dry finish.

Not a bad beer for the style, but there are better beers out there. Slightly disappointed coming from Dogfish Head.

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Photo of TrickKnee
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Having tried this both on tap and bottle i must admit it is my least favorite pumpkin beer of the season. I know i know how can i say such a thing. This was always my favorite but after trying wyerbacher and smuttynose there is just no comparison. There is a small amount of spice smell and scents however nothing compared to the other two. Tastes more like a brown ale than anything else. I could definetly drink more of it than the other two but it is also a lot pricer which knocks it down a peg or two.

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Photo of eonbluekarma
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The aroma of pumpkin pie spices is unmistakable. Cinnamon, nutmeg and a sweet pumpkin smell are easily distinguished. The head is white and beer, amber. I could use a little more hit of pumpkin on the palate though. The mouth feel is soft with a little carbonation. High alcohol content is a signature of Dogfish Head.

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Photo of ralree
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: VERY clear orange-brown. Fairly light and has great carbonation, but bubbles don't hang out long.

S: Cinnamon and spice and everything nice. Pretty alcoholic, and a little sweet/sour smelling as well.

T: Pretty bitter - has a nice spicy aftertaste and a good alcohol burn. Very sweet. Bitterness is pretty overpowering though.

M: Astringent - and it doesn't go away fast. Does go down smooth and isn't overly carbonated, so bonus points for that.

D: Drinkable, but not something I'll be drinking again.

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Photo of hoplover82
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A-Pours a crystal clear deep orange color with a medium to small off white head that has really good retention and ok lacing.

S-The smell of cloves and faint pumpkin come to mind, maybe even some cinnamin.

T-Mainly spices but I do get some pumpkin flavor. Some good amount of soft bitterness to keep it from being too sweet.

M-A medium body, creamy, yet it's kinda thin. And lacks an ending... after the flavor n' stuff, it drops off to nothing...

D-It ok in D but, it's not something I would want one after another. But other spiced beers like Anchor's Christmas Ale I could session all night. It's just kinda plain after it's out of your mouth... But it's not bad.

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Photo of OldeGolde
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A quality brown ale that hints at molasses, spices (nutmeg!) and contains a suggestion of pumpkin (even pie [even cream!]). The pumpkin is mostly in the nose. I have to emphasize that these flavors are subtle- this beer wins points for not going too far in that direction. In a blind test, an amateur would not note the "punkin" flavor, I am sure. Though it's 7% ABV (not bad), you can taste a slight amount of heat. Here's to the heat, though, I've been taking cold showers all week and fall is fast approaching. Wouldn't mind sucking down a few of these on an autumn night with some friends.

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Photo of Arithmeticus
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured chilled in short glass at friend's house.

A: good carb action; thin head; slightly reddish copper color, clear
S: the pumpkin is strong up front, then dissolves to malt
T: allspice and nutmeg are very strong, drawn over a very hoppy ale for a base; the pumpkin element is too strong for my taste; had this been more subdued, I would have rated it higher.

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Photo of Dogbrick
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I know it’s not really the season for this beer but what the heck. I might have been even more let down if I tried it around Halloween. Pours a luminescent orange/copper color with a medium thin beige head. Head retention is pretty weak, and thin lacing. The aroma is spiced with cinnamon and ginger, as well as malt. The mouthfeel is kind of syrupy and sweet, with malt, cinnamon and brown sugar flavors. It becomes overbearing at times. The finish retains the sweet character and is pumpkiny (?) and malty. This is a decent seasonal, it is just a little too much in the sweet department at times.

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Photo of phishgator
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A unique brew that has a combination of flavors that might be a little too much. The pumpkin and spices are a nice mix but, a bit over the top. The pour is a nice foam and large head. It certainly reminds me of a thanksgiving day with pumkin pie. The taste is probably the best characteristic about this brew.

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Photo of bifrojm
3.46/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Bottle poured into a tulip glass. Nice copper color with white head.

Smells lightly spiced of pumpkin pie, nice nutmeg and bits of cinnamon. Smells sweet with malt.

The taste is good, not great for the style. Nice blend of spices for a light pumpkin pie flavor. Very malty sweet and unfortunately I feel the booze shines through. I used to love this pumpkin ale until I had more spiced and quite honestly more balanced versions.

Mouthfeel is fine, nice body, decent carbonation.

Drinkability - I still buy this one, but only because I can't get my favorite in Chicago (Schlafly!). It's kind of boozy (tasting, not just in ABV), so I usually only have one per sitting before moving on to something else. There are two schools on pumpkin ales, and I land firmly in the more spice, the better, and I think this is in the more subtle arena. I alos think the balance is off, especially for the Dogfish guys.

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Photo of 57md
3.46/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is a bright orangey-copper with a finger of head that sticks around for a while and leaves nice a lacing behind. The pumpkin definitely comes through on the nose. There is a blast of pumpkin upfront in the flavor profile and then the most discernible thing is malt. The finish is dry and more astringent than bitter - the bitterness does not appear to come so much from the hops as from something else that is less than pleasant.

Often I hear this offering described as packed with flavor, including pie spices. I have sampled this beer over the course of several years in bottles and I have now tried the 2013 version on tap. After multiple samples, I can safely say that it is not very flavorful at all and there are much better pumpkin ales available to enjoy during the upcoming fall season.

I love DFH, but this one is not one of their best.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.46/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a shaker pint glass at Durty Nellie's.

Finally reviewing this stuff during, like, my twelfth tasting of it. Geez... It pours a clear tawny-amber topped by a half-finger of dirty cream-white foam. The nose comprises apple juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, and caramel. Save the light spicing, there ain't too much pumpkin (pie or otherwise) character going on here so far. The taste holds notes of mandarin orange syrup, cinnamon, green apple skin, brown sugar, nutmeg, and a very light bit of toasted rye bread. The pumpkin character is still pretty nonexistent, but at least the combination tastes good. The body is a rather light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a slick feel. Overall, a more-than-decent brew, but not exactly the most pumpkin-y thing out there. Generally enjoyable, though...

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Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 2,061 ratings.