Punkin Ale - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Punkin AlePunkin Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

1,991 Reviews
THE BROS
91
outstanding

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Reviews: 1,991
Hads: 5,997
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 6.39%
Wants: 327
Gots: 974 | FT: 8
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
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Reviews: 1,991 | Hads: 5,997
Photo of barnabasdog
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

A- honey amber color, one finger head with no retention and no lacing, good visibility,
S- Apple, lemon, light spice
T- hops, dough, apple, all spice, nutmeg, banana, and malts and brown sugar
M-medium body, watery, light carbonation, taste does not linger
O- solid pumpkin ale by dogfish head would get it again (312 characters)

Photo of Lou22
3.25/5  rDev -16.9%

I'm not going to do an in-depth review. I had this beer chill for a little and it was a lot more enjoyable. Definitely a wintery-feel to it. More spice than pumpkin, smooth as ever though. This deserves to be enjoyed. (217 characters)

Photo of Agent1
4.4/5  rDev +12.5%

It took me over 5 years to acquire this little puppy. Pretty excited to give this a taste!

Appearance - Not quite as full-bodied as I anticipated. I assumed this would be a much richer, darker "brown ale", similar to the Dogfish Indian Brown Ale or Palo Santo in terms of color. Instead, this is quite amber and bright orange in color. Not necessarily a bad thing, per se, just not as malty as I had originally hoped for. Head dissipates almost immediately. No head after a few minutes. Bubbly inside the glass.

Smell - All spice is quite prevalent on the nose. Cinnamon is detectable, yet faint and subtle. Nice and not overbearing.

Taste - Nice and subtle tastes going on here. Pumpkin is light, fermented brown sugar, caramel, molasses, rum, subtle cinnamon, all spice (heavier than other spices, also on the nose). Not detecting much nutmeg. Nice medium malt body. Lightly hoppy and the hops compliment everything else without taking away from the pumpkin and spices.

Mouthfeel - Surprisingly well carbonated given how flat this beer looks in the glass. Nice and bubbly and the sugars move all throughout the palate.

Overall - Balanced and easy drinking. GOES GREAT WITH HOMEMADE PUMPKIN PIE. I have a feeling that this may be the point of this Pumpkin Ale: to be a session beer that goes down easy, and in turn, multiples can be enjoyed. It's also a beer that most people can appreciate, including non-beer lovers. Very broad in its approach. Again, this is not nearly as bold as I thought it might be. Sam usually likes to push the envelope with his beers, but this one holds back. Still nicely balanced and nothing to complain about! However, I would have to be honest and say, it is a SLIGHT disappointment for me personally given that it doesn't differ too much when comparing it to other pumpkin ales on the market. Brooklyn Brewery's Post Road is not far off from this and is more widely available. This is still a great beer! (1,945 characters)

Photo of ThickNStout
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%

12oz bottle from Bullock's (Woodstock, GA). 8.99/ 4 pack. Bottle date is on a strange format but I believe 6/14/14. Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Pours a clear, deep copper with about two fingers of white head. Nice retention across the top and a few spots of lace.

Nutmeg, pumpkin and a malty sweetnness on the nose. Not much going on but it's pleasant enough.

Taste is straight forward as well- toasted malts, brown sugar, pumpkin, allspice, faint nutmeg and a little cinnamon. Smooth and unassuming, this goes down very easily.

Body isn't heavy but has a nice creamy weight to it. Soft carbonation. Finishes with pumpkin, pie spice and brown sugar.

I'm not sure why it took me so long to get around to trying Punkin Ale. It's a very approachable pumpkin beer. Not too spiced and not overly boozey. It might not be my favorite pumpkin brew but it is very well rounded and incredibly easy to drink. (913 characters)

Photo of MikeRusso
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

This is my favorite pumpkin beer. The flavor of pumpkin is there but not too strong. The spices are aromatic but not artificial on the tongue. It's a nice solid beer with some pumpkin added for flavor. Not a pumpkin with beer as an afterthought. (246 characters)

Photo of rob111270
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

This is one of the best pumpkin ales I have had. I have been on the hunt for the best tasting one and this is right up there. Has good pumpkin flavor, not overpowering and not as sweet as some of the others I have tasted. This beer has a bit of a bite to it in my opinion. The spices are very well blended for a delicious tasting beer! Best of luck finding this gem this late in the season...although, I did find a place earlier today that still had several cases available. Needless to say, I bought one!!! Happy drinking everyone!!! (541 characters)

Photo of MattyG85
4.21/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tall pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep amber orange with a moderate amount of bubbles. About one finger of off white head which settles into a thin patchy layer.

Smell: A spicy, earthy, and sweet aroma with good hints of pumpkin, fall spices, and caramel. Upfront scent of pumpkin along with a good presence of fall spices including cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice. Toasted malt with hints of caramel, toffee, biscuit, grains, and yeast. Sweet hints of brown sugar. Hops are pretty light. A very solid pumpkin aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, an earthy, sweet, and spicy malt forward taste with notes of pumpkin, caramel, and fall spices. Nice upfront taste of pumpkin. Mix of fall spices with notes of nutmeg, cinnamon, and allspice. Toasted malt with sweet notes of caramel and toffee along with biscuit, grains, and yeast. Sweet taste of brown sugar. Mild background notes of earthy hops. A pretty nice taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a medium to high amount of carbonation. Creamy, spicy, and smooth with a drying finish.

Overall: A pretty good pumpkin beer. Good mix of pumpkin flavor with spices and toasty malt notes. (1,172 characters)

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.55/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a crystal clear orange amber with an off-white, finger width head. Poor retention leads to an island of surface suds in the center and a weak ring around the edge.

Smell - Moderate aroma that brings sugary sweetness to the forefront, while pumpkin plays more as the secondary note. Cinnamon and nutmeg spice are noticeable as well, but aren't prominent.

Taste - Follows the nose. Sugary sweet profile with lesser pumpkin notes. Cinnamon and nutmeg come through mid-taste to deliver some spice and play off the malt base to deliver a light pie crust character. Light earthy bitterness. The finish does well to meld all the flavors together, but the sugary sweetness is still the predominant character.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied with sharp, bitey carbonation that tingles the lips. Smooth and silky on the swallow.

Overall - I was looking forward to this one, but quickly found myself underwhelmed by it's sugary flavor profile. As far as craft pumpkin ales go, it's middle of the pack, and this 4-pack will likely be my first and last go of it. (1,068 characters)

Photo of bnes09
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

Transparent copper colored ale. Nice head with solid retention. Malty, biscuit aroma with added spices. Mild bready malt backbone. Subtle butter flavor. Hint of pumpkin. Assertive cinnamon and nutmeg spices. Mild hop. Medium bodied. Descent carbonation. Finish is a little off balanced from the spices. Eh, it's ok. (316 characters)

Photo of johnnnniee
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Bottle from Harvest Market
Deep amber/copper color with small off white head. Aromas of caramel pie spice earth and a hint of chocolate. Sweet brown sugary with a bit of caramel and a hint of chocolate. Pie spices a subtle and balance the sweetness quite nicely. Medium body with light to moderate carbonation. I'm not usually a fan of pumpkin beer, but I could drink this one. Its a shame it took me so long to taste this one. (427 characters)

Photo of mjpolzin
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Surprisingly subtle for a Dogfish Head beer. For better or worse, a lot of their beers are out of the ordinary. This was one essentially a brown ale with just the slightest hint of pumpkin taste. (195 characters)

Photo of martyl1000
4.15/5  rDev +6.1%

Finally! A pumpkin beer to love.

The other seven pumpkin beers I've tried in the past two weeks have all been saddled with an off-putting chemical astringency. Probably has something to do with adding pumpkin to the fermentation. Dogfish Head has somehow figured out how to avoid it.

Those others also all suffered from Disneyland Syndrome: overdone pumpkin flavor to the point of gimickry, plus cloying sweetness.

DH Punkin instead offers a great fizzy carbonation to keep the heavy mouthfeel and starchy sweetness in check. (534 characters)

Photo of titty_mcbitty
4/5  rDev +2.3%

A: Brownish red with a creamy head.

S: Cinnamon and spice. Pumpkin obviously.

T: Pumpkin pie crust, spices and cinnamon, nutmeg, pecans, cooked apples, and gingerbread. It's like Halloween and Christmas all in one drink.

M: Medium and creamy. Nice carb as well.

O: Very pleased with this. Flavor is well balanced and tamed and leaves the palate satisfied! (363 characters)

Photo of Brackh
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

Pours a nice brown. Good taste all around. I don't really get any pumpkin here. I don't really mind it. Catch a little bit on the back end. The spices are great. It is more just a good all around beer. I would drink this again. (227 characters)

Photo of Frank_TX
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%

Enjoyed from a 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. I think Dogfish Head got this "Punkin Ale" right. It is a great brown ale with just the right amount of pumpkin and spices. The pumpkin flavor is not overdone and the brown sugar and spices add a nice touch as you sip this beer. I have been nursing the 4-pack for a week now. (328 characters)

Photo of Spikester
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Clear orange with a modest off white head and spots of lace.
Smell is pumpkin and light spices.
Taste is pumpkin with pie spices. Some bitterness follows from the hops.
Mouthfeel is medium with plenty of carbonation.
Overall an exceptional pumpkin ale. Alcohol is well hidden. Some brown sugar in the finish. (309 characters)

Photo of CraigS119
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Picked up the 4-pk. at Total Wine in Tampa, FL when I was on the hunt for Cigar City's Good Gourd.

Looks like reddish copper. Very heady, and there's lacing, yes, lacing, down the sides.
Smells like skunk pumpkin, nutmeg, and green banana.
Tastes pleasant. Lots of pumpkin spice, that's actually backed by a decent amount of fruit. The whole thing sits atop an albeit, weak, brown ale, but definitely fulfills the harvest pumpkin ale niche.
I've had some pretty terrible pumpkin ales, but this is not one of them. It's not an amazing beer by any stretch of the imagination, but will definitely satisfy a punkin craving. Not too sweet, not too spiced, not too watered-down.

3.75/5 (684 characters)

Photo of ArchimedesSox
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Pours a burnt orange color with a small white head that dissipates quickly leaving no lacing down a 16oz pub glass.

Smell is of pumpkin and spice. Has a really sweet smell to it.

Taste is of the pumpkin and spice but it has a harsh astringent medicinal taste that was somewhat offensive. The dont get the medicinal taste on the 2nd or 3rd sip.

Mouthfeel is decent. Medium to loose with a good carbonation.

Overall, this one has a few things that keeps it in the 3s for me but it also has some good qualities that I like. Wouldnt mind trying it again on down the road. (580 characters)

Photo of RaulMondesi
3.79/5  rDev -3.1%

We got an aite one right here my peeps. Kinda like the Richard Simmons of Pumpkins, it's one that everyone knows about, but it's a bit too light. Nice and airy, light and clean, but Raul needs a lil more meat on this corn cob.

It has all those pumpkin notes (with a lil bit of astringency) but the Raul man needs a lil more boom boom in the zoom zoom. (352 characters)

Photo of hopsputin
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

a: a vibrant clear burnt orange & caramel color; some nice hints of amber as well. 1 finger white head that fades to about 1/4 finger pretty quickly

s: sweet pumpkin meat, some real nice caramel malts and toffee, something almost bubble gummy, caramelized brown sugar. towards the end there are some VERY mellow amounts of nutmeg, clove, and cinnamon - but the spice is very very muted. pumpkin rules the aroma

t: taste follows aroma. you're hit with some caramel malts and brown sugar up front followed by an assertion of pumpkin. the pumpkin tastes like a mix of the meat and toasted pumpkin seeds. the sweetness is cut by some nutmeg and cinnamon, but as in the aroma pumpkin dominates the taste

m: medium mouthfeel with a pretty high level of carbonation

o: one of my favorite pumpkin beers. its fairly straightforward, but i enjoy that the focus is on the actual pumpkin flavors. theres no pie crust/spicy feel to this really. its sweet and pumpkiny. one of many joys regarding fall (1,001 characters)

Photo of kellyej
3.8/5  rDev -2.8%

This beer is a fall classic. On the pumpkin beer spectrum that ranges from pumpkin pie to gourd in flavor, Punkin is certainly more toward the gourd side. It is very subtle, especially compared to other popular pumpkin beers like Souther Tier. This allows the beer to be totally sessionable while still giving some of the spicy fall notes people look for in pumpkin beers. Punkin pours a beautiful golden amber color with a wispy, foamy head. It is also quite clear. (467 characters)

Photo of Dave1999
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a transparent orange with a white head.

Smell is strong pumpkin, cloves and nutmeg.

The taste is much as the smell suggests pumpkin, huge amount of cloves, pepper and nutmeg.

The feel is smooth, medium bodies, quite crisp, medium carbonated, finishes dry.

Overall I like this beer, if you don't like cloves I wouldn't go for this though. I'm not normally into pumpkin beer but this was great. (402 characters)

Photo of anon
3.76/5  rDev -3.8%

Pours a nice clear copper, with a thin head that dissipates after a few sips.

Aroma up front is of pumpkin. Nutmeg in the mix and some clove. If only there were a bit more cinnamon.

Taste is of pumpkin, nutmeg, clove, a slight fruitiness as well. Slightly on the sweet side. Maybe little too sweet. Or maybe I'm just used to darker pumpkin ales.

Mouth feel is light and a good carbonation throughout.

Overall I was expecting a little bit more to this, but in the end it is still quite good. I'd recommend a try, anyway. (526 characters)

Photo of MasterfulIdiot
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

Poured into a Riedel tulip glass. The liquid is a clear orange-amber with plenty of bubbles rising slowly to the top. The pour kicks up a nice yellowish head with great staying power.

Aroma is all the pumpkin flavors you'd expect - nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, and, presumably, pumpkin. Nice bit of light roastiness in there as well, and a bit of a peanut flavor.

Taste follows the nose - basically exactly like pumpkin pie with whipped cream. Nice and sweet without being cloying - the perfect fall dessert beer.

Mouthfeel is relatively thin, with lots of carbonation.

Overall, super nice, if not particularly surprising. (627 characters)

Photo of Stevedore
3.52/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle of the 2014 release. Poured into an unlabeled snifter 9/18/2014.

A- Clear darker brown-caramel body, one finger white head with moderate retention, drops into a thick collar. A bit of sporadic lacing. [3.75]

S- Spices, pretty much. Pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves. Sweet brown base malt gives a nice bready aroma to things. It also gives a slightly alcoholic, boozy scent to it as well, especially as it warms up. [3.5]

F- Like in the nose, it's pretty much spices. So overall not as interesting. Nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves up front, sweet base malt intersperses in there, giving it sort of a pie crust breadiness. Kind of nice, actually. The alcohol booze is stronger on the palate, especially on the backend which I suppose makes for a sort of a solid digestif. [3.5] (784 characters)

Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 1,991 ratings.