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Punkin Ale - Dogfish Head Brewery

Punkin AlePunkin Ale

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

4,549 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4549
Reviews: 1915
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 12.66%

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: NeroFiddled on 09-26-2002)
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Photo of joemcgrath27

Alberta (Canada)

3.15/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - clear orange brown, short tan head left random islands, not the best retention
S - caramel and grains, cinnamon and all spice, very subtle pumpkin
T - sweet molasses, the pumpkin is almost undetectable, typical spices and some alcohol
M - decent carbonation, fairly thin and tingly spice finish
D - too light on the pumpkin, decent spice highlights, a little thin and the alcohol was present, not the best i've had this fall

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2010 04:04:57 | More by joemcgrath27
Photo of abecall98


3.15/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A - pours a bright orange, cloudy color. Tiny white head, not much lacing.

S - slight pumpkin pie aroma, getting some cinnamon notes.

T - very spiced. I taste cinnamon, brown sugar, and not enough pumpkin like I enjoy my other pumpkin ales.

M - not very good. A little less carbonated and thinner than I prefer.

D - the mouthfeel and taste don't help this beer out. And, and 7%, I taste some heat in the aftertaste. If they had more pumpkin flavor, it may have masked it.

O - there are better pumpkin ales out there.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2010 21:15:46 | More by abecall98
Photo of bierguru


3.15/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A -
dark orange in body high carbonation head is white soapy fades rather quick

S -
pumkin pie smell almost exactly
pumpkin bold spice with a slight nutty smell

T -
spice up front and a mixture of cinnamon dull pumpkin taste backend is pretty sweet

M -
light and bubbly slight allspice bite

D -
its good not the worst but not the best the spice is bold and gets annoying after a while

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 22:14:12 | More by bierguru
Photo of airforbes1

New York

3.15/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a light, clear orange color with a nearly non-existent head. The nose is spicy, even for pumpkin beer standards. There's a strong nutmeg aroma, with some cinnamon and allspice in there, too. (I swear I smelled these things before I took a closer look at the bottle!) It's so strong that gives the beer a hot smell. The aroma is attractive, but I wonder if I'll find the beer to be too hot.

Yep, this is a hot beer for 7% ABV. There's an undercurrent of vanilla before the spices come on strongly in the middle and the end. With some warming, some alcohol beings to creep into the taste. I find my opinion of this beer sinking with each sip.

This beer doesn't compare well to Fisherman's Pumpkin Stout (another beer in my horizontal tasting), which does a good job of masking 7% ABV. I'm finding this beer to be too hot and a little too boozy. I probably won't buy this one again.

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2011 01:09:34 | More by airforbes1
Photo of viaingo


3.15/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Type: Pumpkin Ale
Color: Amber
Body: Lightly carbonated.
Head: Almost non existent. I poured it and the tiny head just disappeared.
Taste: The lack of a head was made up for by the taste. The first thing you taste is most definitely taste the brown ale first. Robust dry taste led by lots of spices pumpkin being a nice addition.
Aroma: Very robust and dry. You can definitely smell the cinnamon and nutmeg. You almost can't smell the pumpkin until you detect it's slight aroma.

This will be a fine addition to my wall of fall beer. Trying this beer brings me one step closer to trying all of the pumpkin beer out there!

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2011 01:57:57 | More by viaingo
Photo of BeerTruth


3.18/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a rusty copper hue with a one finger white head that quickly dies down to just about nothing. No stickiness or lacing any where to speak of. Smell is of cinnamon and not enought pumpking. Lots of clove and nutmeg as well. I think the spices are a bit over the top and lack the pumpkin smell. Taste starts with an interesting creamy hop flavor with all the spices mentioned earlier. I really enjoy the hoppiness to this beer, but the flavors seem too artificial to me and a bit overpowering. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation, a bit too much actually. Just had the Pumpking from Southern Tier and Punkin' doesnt even compare to it. I put a 22 oz. Pumpking down easier than a 12 oz. Punkin'. This one is just kind of "meh" for me.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2007 01:06:28 | More by BeerTruth
Photo of spike882

New York

3.18/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Nice golden orange color with a relatively nice thick head the disipates fast. A little astringent in taste to me even after pouring into a pint glass. Also had this on tap at one pub and enjoyed it much more. A little to spicey for my tastes but would still reccomend to try it.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2008 03:35:05 | More by spike882
Photo of donteatpoop


3.18/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

The bottle called this a brown ale with pumpkin spice (and some other shit)... I was expecting it to look like a brown ale based on this. Instead, this was a coppery amber color, perfectly clear, with some cream colored head at the top.

The smell and taste were among the better attempts at pumpkin ale that I've had the chance to try; but I've really only had one that was worth drinking... And I don't think this was anywhere near the caliber of that one.

The strong point of the beer for me was the mouthfeel. Everything else was 'meh'. Nothing special.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2010 04:57:57 | More by donteatpoop
Photo of ThisWangsChung


3.18/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a burnished copper color. The head is very fluffy, if not the tallest at only a finger. While the off-white colored head doesn't have great retention, it does leave a ring of lacing on the glass.

S: Dogfish Head actually didn't overdo it with the spices - and that's a good thing in this case. Many times, I've had a pumpkin ale that smelled good but tasted unpleasantly spicy. This smells like it's full of brown sugar, with a touch of gourd character and spicing only existing as a subtle background note. So I'll probably like this more than the Pumpkinheads of the world.

T: Actually, the bitter nutmeg character seems to come through more strongly than the nose suggested. And that's not a good thing in this case. A pleasant canvas of brown sugar and caramel sweetness open it up, with the slightly problematic spice notes appearing in the middle, and fading away as more is drunk. The finish is faintly nutty and mineral water-esque, with something resembling hops occasionally.

M: It's a weird combination of full-bodied and sharp (due to the carbonation). Somehow, this works to give it decent drinkability combined with the dry finish. Once the carbonation fades, it becomes merely full-bodied...and loses its drinkability in the process.

O: It's not great, but it's better than a few others in the style I've had. It has potential as a pumpkin ale for those who don't like pumpkin ales. It's also reasonably complex and only offers a mild spice note. But to me, it still tastes a little uninspired. It's been a while since I've properly enjoyed something from DFH (I think it was a 2011 bottle of WWS), and this doesn't quite change my mind about that.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2013 22:14:28 | More by ThisWangsChung
Photo of UnionMade


3.2/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

The beer pours a hazy glowing orange. Backlit, it turns a fiery shade of cinnamon, brightened by the suspended yeast pour, topped with a thin, scattered, off white mist. I poured the beer into a belgian style tulip goblet, which usually creates a healthy froth of head, but this quickly dropped into a medium sized collar, with a tight swirl of mist in the middle. No lace. I suppose the lack of head retention could be attributed to the alcohol and lack of hop presence. The color is spectacular, easily a 5 if there was a better head.
The aroma is very spicy and rich. Plenty of toasty caramel malt is boosted by a well spiced pumpkin pie blend. The ginger is very apparent, along with nutmeg. Some cinnamon adds a whiff of fireball candy, with perhaps a bit of brown sugar. Not too much in the way of actual pumpkin, if anything, more or less just the spices. No apparent hops. It reminds me of going to my grandmother's house when i was little and opening the spice cabinet, just standing on a chair inhaling the cacaphony of exotic aromas and looking at the strange little bottles and leaves wrapped in paper. Bright oranges, dull greens, and earthen browns.
The flavor starts with a pleasantly toasty caramel maltiness, riding all the way through the sip. The spices come in immediately, with cinnamon and brown sugar lending a spicy sweetness. Perhaps a bit of squash in the middle, with a slight ginger tang that grows steadily into the finish. Just a hint of cookie dough yeastiness. The brown sugar remains throughout, somewhat like belgian candi sugar in it's placement. A bit of ginger spiciness, along with a mild nutmeg bite, make up the finish. It blends nicely with the caramel malt, creating a feel not unlike liquid pumpkin pie. A fog of boozey alcohol adds a slight tingle to the finish, numbing the tongue slightly, reminding oneself of it's rather potent alcohol content. A faint saccharine sweetness in the aftertaste, coupled with assertive ginger, creates an almost artificial flavor. Similar to a fireball candy after a plate of sushi. The beer is fairly big bodied, I'd say on the portly side of medium, but easily carried by a sparkly, boisterous carbonation. A bit cloying overall, particularly in the finish, with a sugary feel throughout. One bottle of this is quite enough for me.
One of, if not the biggest, seasonal pumpkin ales out there. Perhaps a bit over-wrought, with too much spiced sweetness. I feel like I'm drinking a candy store, especially when it warms up. Perhaps a bit more punkin and grainy malt, and less allspice and brown sugar. I can appreciate the effort and laud the inventiveness, but it's not for me. Well worth the money for the pack, for the experience alone, but I'll stick with marzens come september.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2004 01:34:17 | More by UnionMade
Photo of SwillBilly


3.2/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle

Appearance: A dark amber brew with a small, off-white head. Head dissipates quickly leaving little to no lacing on the glass.

Smell: Sweet malt with hints of spices. No discernable pumpkin smell.

Taste: Initial hints of spices giving way to a slightly sweet malty middle that finishes with a somewhat dry, hoppiness, also a bit alcoholic. Aftertaste leaves slight hints of pumkin pie.

Mouthfeel: A little too carbonated for me and rather watery and thin.

Not what I was expecting and not one of the better DFH beers IMO. Didn't have any real pumpkin flavor and smell. Alcohol was fairly well pronouced as I warm up after drinking this brew. An easy drinker but not one that I will seek again.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2005 18:38:19 | More by SwillBilly
Photo of jamie2dope


3.2/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Purchased from Spirit Haus in Amherst Massachusetts. Poured from the bottle into a pint glass a nice orange color, and a nicely sized white heading, that quickly faded to a thin lacing. Aroma was pleasing, with some definite pumpkin pie presence, as well as other spices. My only complaint with the smell was there seemed to be a somewhat sopay presence to it, not becoming at all. Taste was about as close as ive seen to a brewery really capturing the pumpkin taste without making it seem too artificial. Mouthfeel was relatively medium in size. As for dinkability, one was enough for me. Even though I have the utmost respect for this breweries attempt at the style, it is simply one that ive never really enjoyed too much. I suppose if you are interested in the style, this might be a good starting point. This is the best example of the style ive tried to date, and even then I wasn't very impressed.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2006 01:10:40 | More by jamie2dope
Photo of younger35


3.2/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Received this brew along with a bevy of others from YonderWonderer. Have had a lot of Pumpkin Ales lately and have been most excited to try this one. Drank from my Laughing Dog pint glass.

Appearance- Pours a super clear reddish orange with a bright white head. Very nice cap and collar that leaves very little lacing. Surprisingly light compaired to other brews of this type.
Smell- Lots of pumpkin in this one. More pumpkin in the nose than the other similar brews I’ve had. Very spicy as well with lots of cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. Pumpkin pie in a bottle.
Taste- This one is a bit different than the other Pumpkin Ales I’ve had. Starts with a bit of pumpkin that quickly leaves. It’s taken over by a sweet toffee/brown sugar that quickly gets cloying. A bit of a lingering cinnamon but the spice is definitely more present in the nose. The alcohol is covered well though.
Mouthfeel- Somewhere between medium and full body with a slick feel and aggressive carbonation.
Drinkability- I had big hopes for this one but it’s not the best Pumpkin Ale I’ve had. It’s tasty but a bit cloying and I really wish there was more spice in the taste. The nose was fantastic though and I wish it tasted like it smelled. Thanks again to YonderWonderer!

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2007 16:58:01 | More by younger35
Photo of Franz4


3.2/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Hazy copper color with slight orange tint to it, just a touch of translucence as well. small head that dissipated quickly.

S- oranges and sweet potatoes come through in the nose, nicely balanced with a touch of pumpkin as well, just a hint of alcohol. Cinnamon and other spices (coriander?) present as well.

T- slightly alcoholic here as well, tastes more like sweet potatoes than pumpkin, a hint of brown sugar comes through as well. Nutmeg comes through in the aftertaste.

M- fine carbonation is evident, leaves a yammy aftertaste as well.

D- It's not the strongest example of a pumpkin ale out there, it's worth a try if you haven't had it, but I won't go out of my way to find this next fall.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2010 00:56:42 | More by Franz4
Photo of southside

South Carolina

3.2/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a bit different than most pumpkin ales. This has much more spice coming from the nutmeg and cinnamon additions, and a nice sweetness from the brown sugar but not too overbearing. This is more of a spice type of beer with some pumpkin flavoring, rather than the pumpkin being the main focus of the taste. Definitely interesting and worth trying, especially if you aren't always fond of how sweet pumpkin ales can be.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2011 17:35:33 | More by southside
Photo of Truh

New Hampshire

3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Gave thanks to Samhain with this one on 10/8/2004. 12-0z. bottle poured into a tall cylinder of glass.

Just a shade of filmy carbonation at start. Light brown to amber hue and crystalline. Pumpkin pie sweetness to nose, with all of the spices mentioned on the label – allspice, cinnamon, and nutmeg. On mouth, less pumpkin than expected, some strong malt character that lends it a medium body while the spices leave a lasting impression on the tongue. Eh, give me a CBC over this one any day of the week.

Serving type: bottle

03-05-2005 21:59:13 | More by Truh
Photo of bfr1992t


3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle served in a standard 16oz glass.
A - average, amber, light head.
S - earthy malt, almost sour.
T - strong brown ale at first, weak hints of pumpkin. First taste finished with pumpkin pie. Subsequent tastings were more of strong brown ale, somewhat sour/bitter and less, almost non-existant pumpkin. I really had to hunt for the pumpkin flavor at times but when it did appear it was like a bite of pumpkin pie.
M - Harsh from carbonation. Otherwise average.
D - Most likely pass on this brew due to the bitter finish. I'm not a fan of brown ales. I would not consider it a disappointment and would recommend to any brown ale drinking.

Serving type: bottle

11-02-2006 02:00:00 | More by bfr1992t
Photo of jackorain


3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is my 1st pumpkin ale. It was 2006. I choose DFH because of their over the top approach to most beers. That being said I was a little dissappointed.

A-Copper, chill haze. not much head. what was there settled almost immediately to a thin ring

S-This beer smeeled pretty good. right of the bat I got roasted pumpkin and roasted malt with the pumpkin taking the lead. I didn't get much spice.

T-Alcolhol 1st, mild pumpkin spice, not much hop to speak of. Maybe a little roasted pumpkin flavor but nowhere near what was suggested by the aroma

M-too much carbonation for me, very fizzy almost soda like. Behind this overpowering carbonation, there may have been a creamy, meduim bodied mouthfeel.

D-The fizz bringing the alcohol directly to my plalate/nose really ruined this beer for.

Sorry DFH, love most everything you do but this didn't do it for me. I was thinking maybe, Indian Brown with roasted Pumpkin in the mash wold make a fantastic Pumpkin but that is not with this is.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2006 18:07:45 | More by jackorain
Photo of ChainGangGuy


3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear copper body topped by a small off-white head with moderate lacing.

Smell: The aroma is plenty spicy, with gobs of nutmeg and allspice present. As for the pumpkin aromawise, it's a no-show.

Taste: Light toffee sweetness upfront with a fair amount of nutmeg and especially cinnamon, which provides a nice spicy bitterness. Where have all the pumpkins gone?

This is a pumpkin ale, if I remember correctly. Sadly, you hardly get a true sense of any pumpkin in this brew.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, with an ample carbonation that comes across as fizzy. Too fizzy, really.

Drinkability: The pumpkin flavor was subtle to the point of being absent. Sure, there's plenty of spices, but the missing pumpkin flavor was a disappointment, and made for an uninteresting beer. I guess $8.99 doesn't get you much pumpkin these days.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2006 22:14:32 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of JamesS


3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a nice copper color, but with very little head and no lacing. Nice scent, very pumpkinish, with pie spice, although it's almost too pieish and not enough aleish. Nice taste, same with the taste, with a lot of spice and bit of hops in the aftertaste. Not the smoothest pumpkin ale, but not bad. It's worth a try, but I prefer Blue Moon's, it's easier to find, cheaper, and just as good (in one of the rare cases of a macro being just as good, or better, than a craft).

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2008 01:12:43 | More by JamesS
Photo of Likeburning


3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Medium to full bodied and quite spicy, I was apprehensive about the pumpkin flavoring at first, but quickly won over by this seasonal beer. Almost as if you're drinking in the turning of the leaves. I haven't found a Dogfish Head yet that I didn't like.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2008 17:43:18 | More by Likeburning
Photo of throwthechaff


3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was kind of disappointed in this seasonal brew from dogfish and I am beginning to think that most of their beers get more credit then they deserve because they all taste the same in just little ways. You can totally taste the alcohol in this one and even though the pumpkin taste is very good and very real it does not make up for how boring the rest of the brew is. I don't know if I just do not care for these pumpkin brews. I have had a minor handful of them, (not talking dogfish head) and still have one that i thoroughly enjoy. The only reason i come back to them is because i love pumpkin but have not yet found one that translates into beer. I would totally pass on this one, i think dogfish gets to much credit for beers that all taste the same in ways. Overpriced and not worth it.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2009 07:49:28 | More by throwthechaff
Photo of infi

New York

3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle, courtesy of BA r0nyn.

Poured into a nonic pint.

Pours a translucent dark-orange to brown color that generates a sizable white head of fine bubbles. Tons of carbonation activity throughout the glass with little to no lacing after constant swirling. On the nose, it's very pumpkin heavy with some hints of malt. Can't really differentiate any of the indicated spices on the front label from the pumpkin-laden aromas.

Taste is total opposite from its smell - sweetness from the malt and caramelized sugar is actually more predominant than the pumpkin. But towards the middle, the subtle spiciness from the cinnamon and all-spice becomes present on the tongue and finally ends upon a slight hop bitterness and boozey heat. Good overall taste with a bunch of flavor components. This pumpkin ale has a medium-bodied mouthfeel with adequate carbonation. Drinkability is fair to good. Not one of my favorite beer styles but overall, it's pretty decent. Very fitting for this coming autumn season.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2009 04:57:08 | More by infi
Photo of HalfFull


3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Alas, like with Pizza Port brews you ask me where I had this beer. Well, since it comes in a BOTTLE, I actually had it at home. But alas, thanks for asking.

From a 12 oz. bottle and poured into a large wine glass, this brew pours a clear deep golden copper in color. A half inch of head dissipates quickly. Rather clear and light for a self proclaimed 'brown ale'.

Interesting sweet light caramel nose with a touch of fruit and sugar. Otherwise has a light amber sense to it. Rather nondescript with just a hint of ginger spice and light 'pumpkin'. Allspice and nutmeg? Yeah, Me Talk Pretty One Day. Or not.

Flavor is light, as is the carbonation. Slight amber sense to it, otherwise light in body and rather boring overall. Unimpressive. And from Dogfish Head, at $2.79 for a single, extremely unimpressive. Simple and subtle, yet don't bother.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2009 06:19:26 | More by HalfFull
Photo of AgentZero


3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Orangish amber color with a small white bubble head that dissipated leaving the sides of the glass clean.

S - Pumpkin and nutmeg dominate, with a bit of cinnamon thrown in for good measure. There is a graininess to this and a bit of alcohol in there.

T - Get a decent amount of pumpkin pie taste on this one. Nutmeg and cinnamon and some nice pumpkin. A grainy, malty, lagerish taste on the end as it finishes sour and with a bit of alcohol. Not horrible.

M - Light bodied, moderate carbonation bite adds what seems to be a spicy kick.

D - Started out good, but got harder to drink as I went, got through the bottle with just a bit of difficulty at the end.

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2010 05:33:08 | More by AgentZero
Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
89 out of 100 based on 4,549 ratings.