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Punkin Ale - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Punkin AlePunkin Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

5,952 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,952
Reviews: 2,011
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 12.69%
Wants: 315
Gots: 909 | FT: 10
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,952 | Reviews: 2,011 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cetherid
3.6/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

poured into a pint glass


pours a dark orange color. very minimal head.


aroma is more of spice than actual pumpkin. other's I've had you can actually smell pie crust. this is mainly pumpkin spice. perhaps a hint of cinnamon in there.


mainly taste spices. a little hops but that's about it. a little fake tasting for me. this is the 2nd one I've had and it's a bit better warmed up. still, I'm not thrilled about the taste. this is considered one of the best pumpkin beers. perhaps pumpkin ale's just arent my thing. sad, because I love pumpkin pie.


medium bodied. low carbonation. feels good in the mouth.


high alcohol and not a thrilling taste (at least for me) ranks it a little low. like i said before, i just must not like any pumpkin ale.

Photo of deereless
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Very good head retention - foam is dense and tightly packed, deep gold to mild orange in color, spotty lacing - 4.00, S: As expected the nose is loaded up with pumpkin as well as a strong infusion of nutmeg and some cinnamon, there is a thick sticky bun like sweetness - 4.00, T: The flavors pretty closely follow the nose with a definite pumpkin flavor as well as the cinnamon and nutmeg, alcohol is evident but does not disrupt the beer, there is a nice smoothing earthiness to the palate, I wouldn't expect to find hops in the beer but I am perceiving a bite - 4.00, M: Very creamy and thick mouth feel - 4.50, D: A very drinkable pumpkin ale, nicely spiced - doesn't try to overdo it, recommended - 4.25

Photo of msolar
4.4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Knowing how DFH likes to push the limits of brewing I was expecting this to rival Southern Tier's ridiculously sweet "Pumking" (which happens to be one of my favorite Halloween beers despite it's moderate drinkability).

The Punkin' Ale, however, was surprisingly well balanced and easy going - it wasn't over the top with spices or flavoring but did make a really nice beer.

Long story short, I ordered a log of it to put on tap at home.

Photo of SnowGoon99
4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving type: bottle into Stella Artois glass

Appearance is a dark red with shades of orange. Ideally i'd like a pumpkin type ale to be more orange like but it's not so far off. The aroma was almost non-existent. Only hints of the spices but only after i took a really big whiff.

Taste was amazing. Typical pumpkin ale spices such as cinnamon and allspice with a hint of the rumminess from the brown sugar. Extremely drinkable but still held on to it's body. Very well balanced.

Overall i wish the aroma matched the flavor. It kinda put me off a little when i smelled nearly nothing and then tasted a plethora of flavors that all had their voice but melded together well. Would definitely buy it again.

Photo of mlazzaro
2.76/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

bottled in 2010. fresh pumpkin beer.

I was kind of surprised to see the ratings on this beer. I remember liking it a lot more. Being 7% ABV, it would certainly age well. But this time I found it to be boozy and somewhat spice dominant rather than actual pumpkin flavors.

a- More of an amber ale than a brown as the bottle states. Some head retention issues, maybe due to the alcohol content. I will say it is remarkably clear.

s- Smells like a spiced up barley wine.

t+m+d- It tastes rather young. Boozy and sweet. I kind of find the spice dosage to be overpowering. There is notable pumpkin flavor, but it is masked by so many other stronger flavors. and although I love my high ABV beers, it just doesn't seem to fit into this beer. The harsh booziness is distracting from the pumpkin, which is the reason I bought this particular beer. Kind of a mess. Maybe its too fresh/young.

I am usually not so critical. I love Dogfish Head and don't mean to rip on them. Just being honest with this beer.

Photo of velkyal
2.53/5  rDev -35.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

ight - light amber, almost no head to speak of

Smell - very spicy, lots of cinnamon and a slight cideriness

Taste - syrupy, caramel and spices

Sweet - 3.5/5

Bitter - 1/5

This was very sweet, but not cloyingly though sufficiently sweet to be sickly if you drank more than a few ounces. Not what I would have expected from Dogfish Head.

Photo of BeerCon5
3.96/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a nice amber/orangish color with a small amount of slightly off-white frothy head that remained throughout the beer.

The scent was dominant of pumpkin spice and cinnamon.

The taste was pumpkin immediately, not as sweet as the smell led to expect. Cinnamon was also present, and biscuity malts.

Light bodied, smooth and kind of creamy; also a bit oily. Perfect amount of carbonation.

This was a flavorful beer, I was especially impressed with the genuine pumpkin taste. It was very easy to drink a few of these.

Photo of BeerNinja007
4.1/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I picked up a couple 12oz singles for $2.25 ea at Harvest Fine Wine in West Hartford CT. Bottled in 2010. Served cold in a chilled pint glass.

Clear light brown brew turns bright orange when held to a light. From a moderate pour it gives a lovely thick and creamy light tan head, minimal lace. Smell is fairly hoppy but hard to characterize because it blends with a bunch of spicy fresh cinnamon and clove. Backbone is moderately thick malt that similarly blends with a sweet-starchy pumpkiny body, like pumpkin pie beer. Taste is also pumpkin pie, with a moderate hop adding oomph to the spice and a moderate bit of marzen-like malt adding body to the pumpkin. The feel is a bit harsh, too fizzy, and the pungent hop overpowers the creaminess. Finish is a bit of spice and warm vanilla.

Photo of tbase
4.72/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured a beautiful orange yellow with a head reminiscent of guiness. The smell is wonderful, pumpkin is what stands out most, but you can also pick up some of the cinnamon and nutmeg. Probably the best pumpkin beer Ive tasted so far, there a good amount of complexity but with a good balance of all the flavors. I also feel like they got the drinkibility spot on for the fall season not too thick not too thin.

Seriously drink this beer if you like pumpkins, or if you just like beer it is too delicious to pass up.

Photo of adam42381
3.98/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear caramel brown with golden and orange highlights. Features a 1 finger head which dissipates fairly quickly. Minimal lacing.

Smell: Typical fall spices with roasted malt in the background.

Taste: Very similar to the aroma. Sweet pumpkin does jump out at you in a good way. Pumpkin pie flavor is dominant throughout with bready malt in the background. Light hop bite at the finish. Aftertaste is pumpkin and spice.

Mouthfeel: Light-to-medium-bodied with a decent amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: Very high drinkability. You could knock back several of these without any problem.

Overall: Very solid beer. This is a very good fall beer. It's definitely worth buying.

Photo of AITCTKD170
3.73/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this brew poured from a bottle into a pint glass. It poured a nice light amber color with a one finger head, leaving a little lace on the glass. At first smell, I could smell the apparent cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice, no notable pumpkin. Initially all the taste is of the added spices, leading eventually to a smooth finishing pumkin and spiced flavored ale. A little on the light side for a pumkin ale. A beer I wouldnt mind having again, but a little expensive for the overall experience - $10.99 for a 4 pack.

Photo of Julz
3.05/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A beautiful golden color with a think head when poured.

Stale bread with a nutmeg smell which makes you think of fall and crisp cool air.

Bitter right off the bat, then strong "alcohol" flavor and then finished again with bitter.

Medium body which is nice in the mouth.

I was really looking forward to trying this beer, kinda disappointed. I like IPA's and bitter ales but this is just a little to strong for me. I think I prefer the Post Road Pumpkin Ale better.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of cottonkoozie
4.32/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Almost "punkin" colored. A golden orange color with a creamy off white head. Decent retention.

S - Nothing overpowering, very balanced. Smells of yeast, pumpkin spices, malts, and hops. Everything kind of comes through as a blend with nothing overpowering.

T - Pretty much like the smell. Let this one sit out of the fridge for a little while because none of the flavor comes out when it is too cold. As it warms you get the pumpkin spices with a nice balancing hops. A well spiced brown ale just as marketed. Theres an aftertaste just like pumpkin pie.

M - Good carbonation, not to much which allows it to remain somewhat heavy, however enough to give you a tingle on the tongue. The weight to it is just enough for a good fall brew.

D - Very good. Remains smooth while packing a ton of flavor, and the aftertaste doesn't linger too long, just long enough to be very pleasant.

Overall a very good beer. Nothing over the top here, and also nothing to let you down. Great for getting you into the mood for fall. I really like the level of spice in this one, its enough to satisfy someone who is in love with the style, and low enough to still be enjoyed by someone who may not have had the style before or may not be a huge fan of the spicier pumpkin ales. Good beer and one I look forward to as a seasonal.

Photo of MBPChead
4.28/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Has this one for the first time tonight and I was very excited to try it, here are my initial thoughts.

Look: orange with a slight amber hue and a small creamy colored head. Very lovely in appearence.
Smell: exactly like the bottle saying says: pie spices, pumpkin, brown sugar, and a mild hop aroma. Just a good smell all in all.

Taste: almost identical to the aroma, linking starts of with a malty forefront giving you the taste of pumpkin, pie spices, and brown sugar and a decent hop kick at the end. A good solid flavor overall.

Feel: smooth, silky, just a tad bit thick, and a prickly feeling on thee tongue before it goes down. Wonderful feeling overall.

Drinkability: truly outstanding drinkability; punkin is smooth, crisp, refreshing, solid, and just overall tastes good. I could easily drink this one back to back.

I will admit I'm not a huge fan of the hop kick at the end, but all in all this really is just a wonderful beer that's perfexct for summer or fall. Chalk up another classic from Dogfish Head in my book.

Photo of ThreeDimesDown
4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a bright copper with gold edging and an off-white head that dissipates to a thin layer, leaving little lacing.

Aromas of spices as advertised (nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice), pumpkin and pale malt.

Up front on the palette are the above-mentioned spices. Hanging in the background is a bready light maltiness that mellows the spices a bit. Pumpkin and brown sugar sweetness appear in the middle and finish. Very subtle hint of alcohol.

The mouthfeel is the highlight of this brew. Creamier than expected, medium but without any sticky, syrupy feel. The active carbonation leaves a nice crisp finish.

A pumpkin beer that still taste like beer. Subtle and well balanced flavors that aren't fighting for supremacy!

Photo of vette2006c5r
4.36/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Punkin ale poured a dark, deep amber color with almost no head. Could smell a bit strong, but smells of pumkin pie. A nice strong flavor, very complex. Strong nutmeg, cinimon, and pumkin flavors. Nice smooth flavor, but full. Overall a grea unquie beer, best pumkin beer s far.

Photo of nickhiller
1.9/5  rDev -51.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: copper, little head, no lacing.

S: spice, clove, smells a bit like a Pilsner, malt.

T: punkin [sic], spice, some vomit, it's kind of like an elementary school classroom during Halloween. Or Bath & Bodyworks.

M: well carbonated, leaves a sickly sweet taste in the back of your throat that is rather unpleasant.

D: gross. That's pretty much all I have to say. I'm huge fan of almost everything DFH does, but this is unacceptable. I'm not sure who they're trying to appeal to here (the Blue Moon Harvest Moon crowd maybe?) but I'm not buying it.

Photo of andrewinski1
3.72/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. Copper color with slightly off white head.

Smells of cinnamon mostly with a touch of nutmeg and a bit of pumpkin sweetness.

The taste is a nice balance of sweet with a bitter finish. The pumpkin flavor is subtle, but there.

The mouthfeel here is really enjoyable. It's creamy and smooth, something that is rare outside of a true cask ale.

This is a thick, hearty ale so it's not too drinkable (especially when compared to something like pupmkinhead) but it is definitely not a struggle to get through this beer, it's enjoyable.

For what it's worth, this is my favorite pumpkin ale, but I still only get it about once a year.

Photo of JoePat
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a nice amber brown with a thin white head that dissipates quickly. Very clean and clear with no haze what so ever.

The aroma is mostly of nutmeg without much else coming through. The nutmeg is pretty assertive and spicy.

The flavor doesnt have a lot of spice I can taste some nutmeg and a little cinnamon but it is mostly beer. I can feel the spice drying my tongue after I drink it but the flavor is mostly a good brown ale.

The mouthfeel is well balanced and has a good consistancy.

Nothing stands out too much about this but it is a good balanced beer with some spice flavor and aroma.

Photo of feelmefoam
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Punkin pours a clear apple cider color with moderate amounts of carbonation running up into a finger of cream-colored head that dissipated fairly quickly, leaving a moderate amount of lacing.

The smell is pretty good... not the most assertive aroma, but what I can sense is pretty good. A nice spicy nutmeg (like the bottle says) is clearly evident, as well as a bit of brown sugar and other spices as well. I don't smell any pumpkin yet, but I'm sure it's there.

The pumpkin is there in the taste. Up front is still that spiced nutmeggy cinnamon concoction, but then the beer mellows for a second and lets the pumpkin float in on the backside. The beer finishes with a bit of nutmeg/pumpkin aftertaste that makes me really want fall to get its ass here already.

The mouthfeel is probably the weakest part of the beer for me. It's a notch or two above light-bodied, with moderate carbonation, but I want a pretty thick pumpkin beer. Wouldn't that be delicious? A pumpkin syrup in a glass? Just give me a bit more body and I'll be satisfied.

All in all, another excellent beer from Dogfish Head. Very drinkable, but the only downside is that it makes me want autumn to come when I'm still in for another month of hot, sticky, South Carolina summer days. Oh well, I'll grab another six pack of this and wish away.

Photo of Dionysius86
4.59/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

A = Pours a dark amber. Cream-colored head, about two fingers.

S = Pumpkin and Cinnamon. Strong, but not overpowering.

T = I love the taste of this beer. Definitely my favorite pumpkin ale. It tastes just like a piece of homemade pumpkin bread. Pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger, etc. The hops also shine through. It has a sweetness that I call a "thick sweetness."

M = About average. Heavier than most light beers, but not too thick.

D = I look forward to this beer all year. It is a fall classic. It's somewhat price ($10 for a 4-pack) but totally worth it.

Photo of eggland
3.85/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Whole Foods, El Segundo, CA

a - orange brown, like a darker amber

s - sweet, subtle flowerness to it

t - subtle sweet, some pumpkin, I don't really tast the other spices they put on the label

m - not too dynamic, simple flavors.

d - not bad, but I don't have to come back to this one.

Photo of GallowsThief
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out of a 12 oz. bottle into a Duvel.

A - Pours a deep orange color. Had about 1 inch of head that disappeared quickly. Strong lacing that does not go away.

S - Nice holiday spice smell. Pumpkin galore. I get some nice subtle clove smell as well. Almost smells like pumpkin pie spice right out of the can. Cinnamon hits the nostrils.

T - Surprisingly not near as spicy tasting as the smell. The flavors are there but you get them much more in the nose. The cinnamon shines through in the taste.

M - Has just a bit of alcohol taste on the tongue. Creamy and medium bodied.

D - Surely drinkable. Be a good beverage for Halloween through Christmas to get you in the spirit.

Photo of birchstick
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - pours an orangeish brown with a one finger head

S - smells of lot of spices - loads of cinnamon, nutmeg, and some sweet brown sugar. There is also some subtle pumpkin in the nose, but I feel the spices are stronger.

T / M - follows the nose pretty closely. Starts off with a lot of spice, all of which were in the nose. The nutmeg was the strongest and was followed by quite a bit of cinnamon, which gave this medium-bodied ale a dry mouthfeel. Pretty good combination of spices going on here. I got the pumpkin flavor that this beer is named for on the exhale.

D - Pretty solid pumpkin beer here, but for some reason I think it fell a little short of what I was hoping this would be given its popularity. I wish I had another to compare it to. That being said, I would definitely have it in my fridge in the fall if this was available in Missouri. Props to BogleHill for the trade and giving me a chance to try this...I have been trying to get my hands on this for a couple of years now.

Photo of kbanks13
4.14/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an orange amber color, which is not as dark as I expected since the bottle describes this one as a brown ale. Still, it had a cream colored head that had a nice size and decent retention. Overall it looked about what I would expect a pumpkin beer to look like had it not said brown ale on the bottle. Smells of buttery pumpkins and squash with graham crackers, pie spices and molasses present, but not overpowering. The taste is clearly of pumpkin, with a proper dose of spice as a little bonus rather than the main taste. Sweet and biscuity malt centered beer with just enough hops to make the beer balanced. Feels nice and rich and appropriately carbonated. Tasty and reminds me of a good home-made pumpkin bread or pumpkin pie, not the overly sweet or spiced stuff found most places. This was a great beer, especially for a style that people can be so finicky about, I will seek this one out again.

Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 5,952 ratings.