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Punkin Ale - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Punkin AlePunkin Ale

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

5,224 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,224
Reviews: 1,952
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 12.66%
Wants: 280
Gots: 588 | FT: 6
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,224 | Reviews: 1,952 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of paco1029384756
3.45/5  rDev -12.7%
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.

paco1029384756, Sep 28, 2008
Photo of johnd513
3.55/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up as a single for something different. Pours an orange amber color with a small off white head that quickly disappears. Smells of pumpkin, spices, cinnamon and nutmeg. Medium body, nice carbonation and a little on the sweet side. The taste is pumpkin and spices. Pumpkin pie in a bottle. I wasn't crazy about this one but certainly worth a try.

johnd513, Sep 28, 2008
Photo of Pleepleus
3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle to pint a deep orange/amber color with a minimal off-white head and nice lacing throughout. Smells of cinnamon and nutmeg like pumpkin pie. Tastes malty up front with sweet cinnamon and spices and a late alcohol bite. Goes down smooth despite heavy spice flavors, has mild carbonation and almost creamy texture that finishes crisp. I would recommend this since I enjoyed it but I could not envision drinking alot of these.

Pleepleus, Sep 28, 2008
Photo of brdc
3.55/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Small capped bottle, poured into a pint.

Amber colored, off-white head of average size, decent retention and lacing.
Aroma is heavily spiced; pumpkin is obviously there, but cinnamon and nutmeg easily dominate the smell.
Medium bodied, it is very sweet, and spiced, but in a sweet way. Mutmeg again dominates the picture, with prominent contributions from cinnamon, and to a lesser extent, pumpkin.
Very low drinkability; an interesting brew but excessively sweet.

brdc, Sep 27, 2008
Photo of twiggamortis420
3.65/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Light brown in color with a tan creamy head. Nice lacing and collar.

Nutmeg, cinnamon, pumpkin, cloves, raked leaves, brown sugar and raisin nut bread. Lots to smell in this one!

Really is not as sweet as I was expecting from the nose. Mostly nutmeg and various other spices with hints of pumpkin pie, cinnamon and apples. Surprisingly clean and dry finish.

One of the better pumpkin beers out there. The nose is really sweet, but the taste is more dry and spice-like. This beer definitely makes you think of Halloween as you drink it...Trick or Treat for adults!

twiggamortis420, Sep 27, 2008
Photo of MrMcGibblets
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

deep clear amber with an off-white diminishing head and a slight chill haze. aroma and taste can be summed up simply: pumpkin pie. the moderate caramel malt sweetness leads to a spicy almost-drying finish. light, creamy carbonation and a somewhat viscous. medium-bodied. this will be great with holiday meals. a must-try fall seasonal.

MrMcGibblets, Sep 26, 2008
Photo of SouthLoopSuds
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Orange in color, white head, decent lacing.

S: Spice, and some fruit.

T: Spices, slight cinnamon and nutmeg, notable alcohol finish.

MF: Crisp, a lot of carbonation.

D: Not bad for a gimmick beer. I didn't really detect any pumpkin, but it was pleasant enough.

SouthLoopSuds, Sep 26, 2008
Photo of MrIncognito
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tumbler.

A - Clear orange with a nice thick fluffy white head that lasts a good 5 minutes before becoming a 1/4 inch foam. Nice lacing, but not as sticky as I like.

S - Hops up front with a nice pumpkin spice immediately following, then tails off into a nice brown sugar sweetness. Traces of alcohol with a deep breathe through the nose.

T&M - Smooth and creamy with a great pumpkin spice taste with sweet brown sugar and alcohol to close. Slight hop bitterness but not biting. The alcohol is sweet and lightly warming and neither that nor the pumpkin spice is overwhelming as I thought it would be.

Very tasty and interesting brew. Tastes like a beer with some pumpkin pie-like spices more than a pumpkin beer, which I like. Drinkable but very sweet so I could maybe do 2 in one sitting.

MrIncognito, Sep 25, 2008
Photo of largadeer
3.15/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Brilliantly clear pumpkin-amber in color. An inch and a half of off-white colored head rises, lasting a few minutes before eventually receding to a ring.

Smell: Pumpkin pie spice, with nutmeg especially standing out. There's a bit of squash-like aroma, but I wouldn't necessarily identify it as pumpkin. Beyond the spice, there's actually not much.

Taste & mouthfeel: Caramel sweetness, pumpkin and a motherload of spices. It tastes like someone knocked the spice rack into the brewing kettle. I do enjoy pumpkin pie, so this is fairly enjoyable stuff, but they went a bit far here. A medium body and moderate carbonation make this easy enough to drink, but the spices add a slight astringency to the finish that I could do without. A good brew all the same, probably one of the better pumpkin beers I've tried.

Notes: Not bad, but becomes a chore to drink after a while due to the excessive spicing.

largadeer, Sep 24, 2008
Photo of abfraser
3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Golden amber color, nice frothy head that dissipates quickly.
Good lacing.

S: Pumpkin pie spice. Nutmeg. This smells like pumpkin pie.

T: Malt hits the palate first, followed by that pumpkin that lingers and lingers. Great.

M: Smooth and creamy.

D: Very drinkable. Well balanced, not super high in alcohol (although strong)

The best pumpkin beer I've had. Not cloying or spice overdosed like some others. This is pure pumpkin pie in a bottle. It's not something I'd drink more than a couple of times a year but with the holidays approaching quickly, I'm saving a couple of bottles.

abfraser, Sep 23, 2008
Photo of brewmudgeon
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

before i started trying pumpkin beers i viewed them as festive drink-a-few-days-a-year things that you wouldn't want to have more often. dfh punkin, and to an extent weyerbacher (which is starting to grow on me), prove that conception was inaccurate. right now i'm thinking 6 months out of the year (at least) the mood is liable to strike, and it will suck when i can't run to the store and satisfy the craving. better go out and get some more...

dfh punkin ale pours an orangey dark amber. the head is short and ense, fading to a cap and leaving lace here and there. the carbonation looks to be of high quality.
smell is of ... pumpkin! pumpkin pie spices all around, and pumpkin through and through. this is the stuff.
taste is pumpkiny as well, and very well integrated into an overall ale experience. the spices are around but they don't annoy you (as post road can). there is also a rich, diffuse sweetness that complements and never offends.
the mouthfeel is rich, smooth and creamy, even more so than weyerbacher. very appropriate imo. carbonation is perfect. it's like eating half a pumpkin pie while drinking a carefully matched ale, only better.
i often find myself a bit disappointed with dfh, particularly with the quirkier brews. not this time. this is by far the best pumpkin beer i have had. must stock up.
wonder if i should top it with a little whipped cream...


v: oz1 al3 3.175

brewmudgeon, Sep 23, 2008
Photo of phattysbox
1.83/5  rDev -53.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12oz bottle stating that it has been brewed with real pumpkins and spices. Poured into regular pint glass. Initial 1/2 inch head dissapears into a whispy thin lace. Nice dark orange color however.

Smell took me back a bit. No pumpkin in the nose and and odd spice smell that seemed to fail around. I could not tease out individual spices such as allspice, nutmeg or cinnamon. A pungent maltiness also got in the way a bit. Hoping the taste would pick up the smell but unfortunately was even worse. Spices were were chaotic and produced strange twang followed by a strange malt backbone. No pumpkin that I can tell and the fusel alcohol further confused the palate. The brew gave me a puckering effect that was not due to hops.

A strange brew indeed that misses the mark in my opinion of what a pumpkin ale should be. No balance whatsoever and had to drain pour. Interesting, many of the DFH unique brews go this unbalanced route for me since the DFH 90 Minute is so fantastic. Seems like the beer was trying to do to much. Still waiting for another showstopper from DFH besides 90.

phattysbox, Sep 22, 2008
Photo of ColForbinBC
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at a local pub, served in a pint

Appears a burnt orange color with a tight, foamy one finger light tan head. Good retention but only a smattering of lace here and there.

Cinnamon and allspice dominate the pumpkin, nutmeg and sweet malts. A pretty solid nose though. Not overly sweet.

The sweet malts come to the forefront more on the taste. Cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg and pumpkin all have their place in equal parts. Very nicely balanced.

Medium to full-bodied. Thick and creamy. Adequate carbonation.

With all of the spices in this one, I would have to limit myself to one or two of these. While they are a nice offering, the spices would get to me after a while.

ColForbinBC, Sep 22, 2008
Photo of jettjon
3.58/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 12 oz bottle with "packaged on" year available but not marked. Into my Sam Adams glass (thanks, guys!), it's an attractive deep coppery amber clear color with moderate precipitating carbonation. 1 finger off-white head quickly fades to a thin cap and ring. Some lacing remains. Nose is bready and hints at allspice, cloves and biscuits. Flavor of mild toasted malt, lightly buttery diacetyl, and finishes on a mild alcohol burn. Mouth is full and just about right: middle of the road viscosity with a smooth, creamy finish. Drinkability is good: it's a tasty brew though not remarkably so. Not so much as I'd want another. 7% ABV detracts from having too man.

Overall: Almost more like a spice amber ale than a true seasonal pumpkin ale. Worth a try but not spectacular.

jettjon, Sep 22, 2008
Photo of Blakaeris
4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours brilliantly clear orange bronze in color. Modest white head with no lacing to speak of.

Aroma is malty and fruity, with brown sugar sharp scents of cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice.

Taste is sweet, malty and fruity. Plenty of spices going on as the nose suggested, offering a pleasant complexity. Hops are rather earthy in nature and bring much needed balance. Finish is peppery and spicy with lingering nutmeg and alcohol warmth.

Mouthfeel is light-medium bodied.

Certainly the tastiest example of the style that I've ever had. Flavor is complex and satisfying. A nice brew for a cool fall day. Would probably match well with a Thanksgiving dinner. Yet again, Dogfish Head proves itself as a great brewery.

Blakaeris, Sep 21, 2008
Photo of Murchmac
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What did the inbred family have for dessert? Pump kin pie....

This beer pours a one finger head golden orange just beautiful pumpkin pie in the sky.

Smells bready, pumkin pie-esque, like a pie cooling on windowsill on a warm autumn day.

This beer is exactly what you'd expect. By about halfway through the beer with each sip, you can taste each individual spice added. Excellent, complex, spicy beer.

Carbonated yet full bodied. Jack skelenginton, im the eggman.

Much better than that skank pumkin from Flavor of Love, you know, the one that spit on New York...

Murchmac, Sep 21, 2008
Photo of pokesbeerdude
3.68/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a rich, burnt orange color, no head at all. Small foam, white in color.

S: Smells like pumpkin pie. Spicy, and lots of herbs, really over powers any sort of pumpkin flavor. Not a bad smelling beer overall. Cinnamon is strongest.

T: Very heavy on the spices, pumpkin really pops, chai, flavors. all complicated. no hops. interesting.

M: Thick and malty, little carbonation. goes down smooth.

D: Fairly drinkable, but only one of these gets the job done for me. A nice after dinner beer interesting use of spices. Not a bad beer, but one was good for me.

pokesbeerdude, Sep 21, 2008
Photo of philbe311
3.63/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - A slight head from pour quickly fades, leaving a deep rich golden copper color with slight orange hue and highlights... Loads of rapid carbonation... A rich creamy tilted lacing...

S - Smells like a freezer style defrosted pumpkin pie... Nutmeg... Brown sugar... All spice... Cloves... Squash... Possible hints of pepper...

T - Spices, especially the nutmeg, standout... Pumpkin taste is secondary and quite mild... The warmth of alcohol esters... Taste lingers...

M - Fizzy carbonation at start... Medium bodied and lush... Smokey and leathery...

D - A one and done seasonal for me... Definitely a pumpkin ale, but not a session brew... Solid, but not great...

Bottle / Artwork - Standard Dogfish Head bottle... Nothing out of the unusual here...

philbe311, Sep 21, 2008
Photo of bonkers
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I poured a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass. The beer is a nice shade of orange, decent head, decent lacing. The smell is mild pumpkin pie spice. The taste follows-mild cinnamon, mild clove, faint pumpkin. The beer is light bodied, and somewhat heavily carbonated. The beer is pretty drinkable. A solid beer overall, but not my favorite style.

bonkers, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of gabeerfanswife
3.45/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: dark tan; quarter inch head recedes to small bubbles. Looks sort of like a pale ale.

S: spicy but not overwhelming

T: It is quite tasty but I taste more nutmeg, cinnamon and fall flavors than actual pumpkin. There is a bit of alcohol at the end that I am not digging too much.

M: thin and crisp; not watery

D: Its yummy but not the best of the pumpkin beer lot. 7% is a bit high for drinking more than a couple on halloween. I like a pumpkin beer I can chill with while passing out candy on the front porch. Could be tasty with fall foods like turkey and mashed potatoes.

gabeerfanswife, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of albern
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I just reviewed a Saranac Pumpkin prior to sampling this one. Needless to say, this is a much more substantial, interesting, and complex pumpkin ale than the Saranac, even though I enjoyed the Saranac. The Dogfish pumpkin pours a more orangey amber color with little if any head, lacing, retention. The smell is definite spices in the allspice, nutmeg, and vanilla family. There is a good amount of cinnamon and pumpkin in the nose as well.

The taste is quite substantial, probably the highest ABV pumpkin I have had, and not loads of carbonation or efforvesence. The beer is not well carbonated, a bit syrupy, and quite good. The taste is a nice melange of pumpkin, allspice, nutmeg, vanilla, and some hop presence underneath. The beer is a bit crisp, not much maltiness popping through, and a nice flowery hop emerging towards the finish. This is a very nice pumpking ale, although there is a bit more alcohol presence and residual ABV throatiness than I would have cared for. Worth seeking out. L'Chaim.

albern, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of Dodo2step
4.22/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

P- Market Cross Pub in Carlisle

I have been looking forward to this beer for months, since last year actually.

A- a nice dark burnt orange color. Not much and little lacing. pretty clear as well. It was poured into a nice frosty mug.

S- clove is the dominant smell and then there is pumpkin. nutmeg and cinnamon and allspice.

T- strong clove and pumpkin pie spice. Nutmeg and cinnamon round out my aftertaste. Beautiful mix and very delicious.

M- imagine biting into a nice slice of pumpkin pie with a splash of nutmeg and cinnamon on top. Smooth and crisp.

D- i could pound these back and not even think twice about stopping. this would be a good case of beer to take tailgating.

Dodo2step, Sep 19, 2008
Photo of waltonc
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On tap at Monk's Kettle.

A tasty fall treat I've enjoyed for the last four years now. This is the first time I've had it on tap. Very glad to see that Dogfish is expanding its repertoire in San Francisco.

Smells of pumpkin pie spices and tastes the same. The beer is well built. Not a half-ass piece of crap like that Buffalo Bills garbage. Mouthfeel is fairly thick, and complements the sweet, spiced pumpkin flavor very well. Carbonation is fairly pronounced. Can't drink too much though, or I'd get sick.

waltonc, Sep 19, 2008
Photo of JakeSuperior
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a: brownish-orange, light brown head

s: slight smells of pumpkin, spices, nutmeg

t: nice blend of spices and pumpkin taste. Considerable more pumpkin taste than some other pumpkin ales. The spices are very prominant, but just as I think they're about to overpower, they fade to a nice aftertaste. Nicely balanced.

M: medium bodied, smooth going down, nice level of carbonation

D: I'm on my second right now, could easily kill the 4 pack it comes in, but not more than that. Spices do tend to become too much after while.

Yet another solid offering from Dogfish. One of the better pumpkin ales I've had.

JakeSuperior, Sep 18, 2008
Photo of beerdad
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz beer poured into a Tulip glass from Flying Fish.

*Appearance - Nice clarity for a pumpkin beer. The lighting is dim here, but I'm going with dark bronze
*Smell - Big. Nice melange of spices, brown suggar, lots of cinnamon, clove. rum soaked raisins.
*Taste - Spicy again - cinnamon and allspice/masce pretty prominet. Tastes malty like a brown ale in the middle. Alcoholic dry/heat kicks in. Somewhat bitter finish.
*Mouthfeel - Tastes a little thin, unles you hold it and swirl and coat your tongue.

*Drinkability - I don't get the 7% ABV too much - covered up by the spices. I like this punkin as it is on the bigger side. It seems easier to drink in the four pack also. I would not drink more than 2 in a row, but that is my limit for pumpkin I think.

Probably my favorite pumpkin beer, and one of the few I buy.

Reviewed on: 09-18-2008 1:10 am

beerdad, Sep 18, 2008
Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
89 out of 100 based on 5,224 ratings.