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Heavy Seas - Great’ER Pumpkin - Heavy Seas Beer

Not Rated.
Heavy Seas - Great’ER PumpkinHeavy Seas - Great’ER Pumpkin

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

209 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 209
Hads: 674
Avg: 3.87
pDev: 24.29%
Wants: 69
Gots: 117 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mcallister on 07-28-2010

In the most worthy of pumpkin patches and during the silence of the midnight hour, the Greater Pumpkin raises up and pours a rich deep and burnished orange color. Heady aromas of bourbon, cinnamon, ginger, allspice and clove linger seductively over the thick white head of this tremendous brew. Its love at first sip as the full malt body, dominated by British crystal malt, brown sugar and pumpkin, slowly washes over your tongue. Bourbon barrel aging rounds out the flavors with notes of oak, vanilla, and bourbon. Pairs well with crisp autumn weather, crunchy fallen leaves, and the knowledge that your kids will be asleep soon so you can raid their Halloween candy bags.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 209 | Hads: 674
Photo of ksimons
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-a clear amber with a thin layer of white head that quickly disappears and leaves a little lace around the top

S-the smell is very nice with earthy pumpkin backbone with cinnamon, vanilla, and bourbon

T-taste is similar to the smell; pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger, vanilla, and bourbon

M-medium body, good carbonation, slightly hot finish

Overall I found that the beer became markedly better once it had warmed up. Nice vanilla and bourbon flavors and a good amount of pumpkin spices

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.06/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Dana for sharing this beer.

The beer pours a nice orange color with a very small fizzy ring of head with littl lacing, has a sort of thin look but a nice shade.

The aroma is pretty nice but doesn't jump out of the glass like you would hope for, though it doesn't smell bad. Seems pretty thin in aroma actually the more I try to smell in there. Some boubon and spices rise out of the glass, obvious pumpkin pie aromas like cinnamon and clove though they are still pretty subtle and then a nice blanket of sweet and oak vanilla bourbon flavors.

The taste is quite nice though, the flavors mingle together very nicely. The bourbon is not overpowering but accompanies the spices and malts of the pumpkin base beer very nicely, it has a warm and endearing quality. Has a cereal like flavor to the malts. Very flavorful and elegant flavored beer.

The mouthfeel is medium and has just th slightest little warmth of alcohol although again it is not overpowering. Good carbonation, wish maybe it had a little bit of a thicker feel.

Overall a very nice beer, better than most of the pumpkin beer out there in my opinion.

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Photo of emerge077
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bright jewel tone color, saturated dark orange. Long lasting head of creamy foam, never breaks after the first few sips. Irregular spotty lacing.

Huge roasted pumpkin aroma, sweet like pumpkin pie, crust and all. Not overly "spicy" and no overt bourbon in the nose, but there is a nice mellow dose of vanilla and nutmeg.

Medium bodied with a little bit of bourbon heat behind it, lingering pumpkin and pie spice flavors. Slightly nutty, vanilla from the bourbon, and a hint of the whiskey barrel at room temperature. Nicely melded, really enjoyable, slightly boozy. Would seek this out again.

Thanks Chris for sharing this one!

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Photo of endincolorado
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, orange-amber color with nice, thick, foamy white head that settles slowly. Great lacing.

Really nice aromas of caramel malt, pumpkin and spices, a sweet, alcoholic note from the bourbon along with a faint oaky vanilla.

Tasty caramel malt, a nice balance of pumpkin pie spices, alongside a pretty powerful bourbon barrel presence that provides some warming alcohol, and a pleasant woodiness. Texture is medium-bodied and adequately carbonated.

This one packs a punch and is clearly meant to be drunk in small portions, though it's tasty enough to forget this and down the whole bomber.

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Photo of chilly460
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pretty orange/brown beer with a contrasting tan head. Head sticks around well, good lacing.

S - Huge, festive, aroma. Lots of caramel sweetness, cinnamon spice, pumpkin, and booze. Can't say I'd know what the style of a barrel aged imperial pumpkin would be, but this is what I'd want.

T - Right on cue with the aroma, big "festive" beer. Booze was just a bit out of balance with the flavors, otherwise well done. I'm accustomed to big barrel aged stouts, I think they need to tone down the bourbon on this relatively lighter beer.

M - Just needed a bit more chewy meaty feel to it to live up to my vision of what a monster pumpkin beer should be.

O - Fun dessert type beer, they did a nice job defining a "new" style to me.

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Photo of emmasdad
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

After trying Avery's Rumpkin recently, I redoubled my efforts to acquire this beer, and, as luck would have it, I ended up with 5 of them. Fortunately, it is quite enjoyable. Pours a dark golden color, bordering on amber, with a good dirty white head on top. Aromas of bourbon initially, giving way to vanilla, cinnamon and a host of supporting pumpkin pie spices. On the palate, this one drinks way to easily for 9%, with a nice creamy mouthfeel, and flavors of brown sugar and sweet malt, buffered by autumn spicing and a lingering boozy finish. Very nice.

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Photo of rootbeerman
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

from notes:11-5-10

A: pours cloudy dark orange with a thin short lasting orangish white head.
S: malt sweetness with spiced pumpkins, a touch of bourbon main spices are allspice clove and a touch of cinnamon.
T: great balance between bourbon and pumpkin. nice spice blend with the pumpkin and malt.
M: slightly syrupy, coating and lingers for a long time. carbonation is low.
D: good sipper, flavors are balanced well, bourbon adds a nice touch.

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Photo of MbpBugeye
4.11/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- The look of this one is pretty scary. Its a muddy looking, trashy colored orange with a dirty haze to it. Not much of a head unless you pour it pugnaciously.

S- Very strong on the bourbon. But also very strong on pumpkin. This is one of the very most pumpkiny pumpkin ales out there. At first the aroma was a bit brash and hard to get used to. Its very boozy smelling, that combined with the spices give this a very formidable aroma. Lots of pumpkin, cinnamon, vanilla, brown sugar, oak and bourbon.

T- Again, it took a little while to acclimate to this beer, and it gets much more enjoyable as it warms. Once everything sinks in and falls into place it is very good. Very sweet vanilla, pumpkin puree, cinnamon sugar, and oak. Big waves of bourbon rock you if you arent ready. The finish is very very strong on bourbon.

M- Silky smooth with lots of warmth.

D- Im going to buy more of this.

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Photo of begforme4484
4.12/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a burnt amber orange with a yellow hue on the edges. Finger width of white head, with solid lacing retention.

Smells of pumpkin, spices, oak, and bourbon. It smells like, well, an aged, spiked, The Great Pumpkin.

The taste is superfluous. The fall spices, pumpkin, wood, malts, and bourbon notes blend together almost too well.

It's lightly carbonated, very smooth, as it should be IMO. Medium bodied and hidden alcohol tones.

Overall, this is going to be a hit or miss beer with most people. I think it's a must try, if you do happen to find a bottle or two of it around your area.

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Photo of nlmartin
4.12/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was served chilled in a pint glass.

Appearance: The body of the beer is a reddish orange coloration. The head was white and quickly resolved into a ring of foam.

Smell: The aroma of the beer has suprise vanilla bourbon, pumpkin, nutmeg, honey and cinnamon. Pretty much exactly what I was expecting.

Taste: The taste is a mixed bag for me. The bourbon vanilla barrel flavor peaks its head out of the jack - o - lantern. Meaning a fairly well balanced interplay between flavors. Was hoping for a bit more bourbon. The spice part of the beer is really well done. I have had pumpkin beers that are a giant mess due to spices. The cinnamon, nutmeg and perhaps cardamon are fairly subdued.

Mouthfeel / Drinkability: Smooth even slick full bodied beer low carbonated but works well with the beers character. No sign of the alcohol in the mouth. The more of this I drink the more I am digging the beer. The beer would be a sipper for a more restrained beer drinker. Nicely played!

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Photo of scottyb88
4.12/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- pours the standard brownish orange color with a head that wasn't overly large, but it fades to an off white cap that doesn't seem to be going away

S- some spice notes but also the bourbon wood is coming through; some pumpkin in there as well

T- really nice blend of pumpkin spices and bourbon wood bitter tangy flavors; a nice dose of citrus and bourbon at the end of the sip but right before there is this rich buttery crust flavor

M- a little fuller than most pumpkin ales and the aftertaste is actually quite nice with a hint of bourbon wood and citrus bitterness

D- it's hard to judge this beer because of the uniqueness; def nice to try but I can't really see myself going through a 6-pack if it were able in that packaging; it's not as pumpkin-pieish as other beers in the style, but more of a blend of flavors...if your looking for pumpkin pie dipped in bourbon your not going to find that intensity of flavor with this beer; definitely a nice version of the style but not my favorite

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Photo of InlandTaipan
4.14/5  rDev +7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was poured out of a 22oz bottle.

A: A roasted orange color that is hazy. Sediment is present (bottle was poured gently to avoid disturbing sediment).

S: The aroma of this beer is very inviting. Unlike most other pumpkin beers I have tried the aroma is extremely balanced as opposed to focusing on spices. The bourbon character comes through but is not overwhelming.

T: The flavor is extraordinary. There is sweetness, spice, wood, malt character, as well as bourbon present. No one flavor dominates. An excellent blend of flavors for a barrel aged pumpkin beer.

M: The beer is perfectly carbonated in my opinion. with each touch of the tongue to the roof of my mouth I experience a sensation of bourbon vapors entering my nasal cavity which is very pleasant.

O: The Greater Pumpkin by Heavy Seas is a must try with well balanced characteristics, although I would swear this beer is higher than 9%!

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Photo of rebby
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I do like my J.D., so when I saw this in Wegman's Collegeville PA I had to try it! It is a really lovely color, a coppery orange-brown, and fairly strong bourbon nose. The bourbon for me overpowered the overall taste a little, and also had a bit of the "hot" quality. But as I said I do like my bourbon as well as my beer, and I like pumpkin too! I'd like to taste a little more pumpkin and maybe a little more spice (not more cloves though). That doesn't take away from the brilliant idea of pairing the taste of bourbon with pumpkin and spice, all in a beverage that can be enjoyed in more than one tiny sip at a time. Great job! I'm going back for more tomorrow.

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Photo of Zraly
4.16/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cloudy orange with one-finger head poured into a Dogfish Head goblet. Light aromatics of pumpkin pie spices, vanilla and a hint of crushed leaves: a total autumn beverage. Nose is subtle and slightly sweet.

Predominate flavor is a bourbon pumpkin pie that is appropriately spiced with nutmeg, cinnamon, and ginger. Unlike some heavier pumpkin ales it avoids the overbearing quality that can be pumpkin pie spices. Smooth. Warm, sweet clove and vanilla finish that dries down and is rounded out by a firm but pleasant bourbon note.

The 9% is hidden, making this dangerous in a good way.

I would enjoy this with brie, bread, and pecans. It would definitely jazz up some pan gravy made with turkey stock for a stellar open-faced hot turkey sandwich with a side of sweet mashed potatoes.

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Photo of generallee
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 1pt. 6oz bottle into a tulip glass. The label has its ABV (9%) and a short description but no freshness or born on date.

Appearance: The body has a deep reddish orange amber color with fine yeast sediment floating around giving it a hazy look. From the pour I got a small off white head that quickly fades to fine layer of foam with a thick ring around the edge of the glass. Lacing is good.

Smell: Right away there is a noticeable whiskey presence. Notes of the booze, the vanilla, and some oak notes mingle with honey sweet malt notes and pie spice in the nose.

Taste/Palate: Right up front I get the bourbon whiskey notes with hints of vanilla, caramel and a slight touch of oak. This plays well with the base malt which has some honey like sweetness, pie spice and a hint of pumpkin squash flavor. The finish has some sweet boozy warmth from the 9% ABV that adds to the bourbon character. It also carries some of the pie spice and some mellow hop bitterness deep into the finish.

Notes: The bourbon barrel notes were a nice touch to base pumpkin beer. I liked the lighter balance of spice here in The Greater Pumpkin Ale vs. the regular The Great Pumpkin Ale.

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Photo of yankeej13
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Love my pumpkin beers

A- Pours out a nice light copper like color, has a mild head of foam that fades into a nice thin lace w a small amount of carbonation.

S- Has a very strong pumpkin aroma with mild amounts of cinnamon, nutmeg, a nice tint of bourbon and vanilla, clove.

T- Has a nice smooth pumpkin taste right out of the gate with a bourbon vanilla, with hints of cinnamon and clove in the mid palette, nice and creamy with a sweet malt finish.

M- Great drinkability for the alcohol content, smooth and extremely refreshing.

Overall- Liked it alot, much different than others, I like that there is a giant burst of pumpkin with mild spices rather than lots of spices and lil pumpkin. Very pleased with it. Cheers

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Photo of rlee1390
4.18/5  rDev +8%

A-Clear amber in the glass, not much carbonation, one finger head that does not last long.

S-Nice spice character with a good deal of pumpkin. Mild bourbon and pleasant oak.

T-Starts with spices, cinnamon and nutmeg, then pumpkin flavor. Mild bourbon, more oak than bourbon but it goes nicely with the beer.

M-Medium bodied, not much carbonation though. Borderline watery.

O-What can I say? I love pumpkin beers and this is a yummy one.

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Photo of runbirddrinkbeer
4.19/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Found this gem at a local co-op and had an open mind as I haven't seen this brewery's products around here. Amazing aroma of vanilla, pumpkin and nutmeg escapes the bottle and it pours a hazy red/amber. Half finger of white head that dissipates. Bourbon barrel aging apparent on tasting with warm boozy aftertaste enhancing the vanilla, pumpkin and balanced nutmeg. Overall my favorite of the 2013 pumpkin beer/ale/imperial ale class thus far...but I would like to do a side by side comparison with Good Gourd.

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Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Exiled for sharing this beer.

The beer pours a light orange color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the pumpkin and associated spices - mainly nutmeg and cinnamon. I don't get too much bourbon-aged character in the aroma.

The flavor is pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon and some oak, vanilla and whiskey notes. You can definitely tell the bourbon is there, but is more subtle than in a lot of other beers. The bourbon-aging compliments the base beer, it doesn't completely overshadow and dominate it..

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to my boy Lunch for sending me this one in a past trade! 2010 Vintage! Served from bottle into a Stone nonic. Poured orange with a minimal off-white head. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, pumpkin, wood, and sweet alcohol. The flavor was of sweet malt, cinnamon, brown sugar, wood, and sweet alcohol. It had a light feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a fairly good brew. After having the base version right before this one, I was a little concerned on what I would think of this one. However, this one definitely improved quite a bit with the -bal treatment. The barrel added a nice bit of complexity that was lacking in the previous beer and made it much more enjoyable to drink. Definitely the better of the two without a doubt. Just ask nickd and he will tell you why.

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Photo of stephenjmoore
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Off-white head with some light lacing. Looks somewhat unfiltered with some sediment floating around.

S- Spices up front, some pumpkin. Slight hint of alcohol, but cannot really smell the bourbon.

T- Spices come through right away, can taste the sweetness from the bourbon, but the alcohol is well hidden. Very satisfying.

M- Light carbonation, medium mouthfeel.

O- A very good pumpkin offering. The first barrell aged pumpkin that I have had and was impressed.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.21/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Incredibly spicy, savory, and sweet- Heavy Seas churns out a beer that's easily mistaken for rum-soaked graham crackers. And at imperial-type strength, its a pumpkin beer that's finally fortified and worthwhile.

Poured into a round snifter, its orange glow with slight tawny brown-bronze low lights- the beer starts to even look like a pumpkin. Its bright clarity really shows off the streams of carbonation the rise up from its depths to build a creamy ivory head to top of the ale. Semi-stern retention struggles to retain the second half of the session and laces only daintily- preferring that rum-like consistence as much as ale.

Biscuity, savory and spicy- the beer's aromas is strikingly of gingersnaps and graham crackers as the caramel-soaked malts become decorated with cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, allspice and ginger that dance about its periphery. Toasted grains provide a near-toffee richness with toasted pecans, bread crust and a distinct "french toast" character.

And that same savory caramel, nutty, toasty and crusty flavor comes to life with a supple hint of butterscotch just as the spices fold into the taste in the middle palate. Turning from sweetness to toastiness, the sprinkle of all those pumpkin pie spices help to dry the beer as the sweetness begins to fade until the taste of dry molasses, spiced rum, and husky grain character gives it finish a glimpse into the gingersnaps that was picked up by the nose.

Full-ish in body, the beer's ample sweetness certainly speaks to its imperial strength and savory character. But as the carbonation keeps the beer creamy, the alcohol and spice counterbalances with a drier tone. Finishing spicy, warm and rum-like- echoes of spice and toast stem into a long and arid aftertaste.

The secret is out! Imperial Pumpkin Ales is what beer enthusiasts crave. Its as sultry, savory and seductive as any taste in the beer world. Heavy Seas takes advantage of the impressionable palates with a drier and spicier version of this clever and quirky seasonal beer.

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Photo of BradtheGreat7
4.21/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Review taken from notes: Early November 2013- 1st time experiencing.

22 oz brown bomber that just seems massive and thick. Well made? I think so. Label is pirate inspired with all sorts of 'Heavy Seas' artwork going on. A little Halloween Like with the jack-o,yes, but it is the fall time. Not bad artwork at all. Poured this into a massive German rounded and dimpled like mug. I'm assuming a 24 oz mug!? Lol.. Every bit went in with no problem.

A - a burnt orange color with a more rusty amber hue. Somewhat hazy body. Off white head was massive on the pour and took its time to settle to a nice size ring of lace leaving minimal stick.

S - wow, big bourbon whiffs up front.. I like. Big vanilla and oak aromas throughout the start. Then come some lovely Autumn seasonal blend of spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, along with a crisp punch of allspice. Toasted malt, brown sugar, and a hint of pumpkin in the end.

T - toasted malts, bourbon brilliance with vanilla, mild caramel, and a sturdy oak flavor. Roasted pumpkin with nice touches of pumpkin spice toward the middle. More of the traditional cinnamon and allspice quickly following. Brown sugar toward the finish paired with the sweet vanilla and bourbon barrel goodies.

M - pretty big in body and coats very very well. Nice warming from the 10% is what I look for this time of year. Texture isn't overly thick but it still does well for itself. This is a big pumpkin ale and you'll need to drink this like you would an imperial. Not at all overly sweet nor too much of any one thing. It's very well balanced and quite delicious. Finishing this bottle wasnt a problem for me. That can't be said about a lot of pumpkin ales.

O - a wonderful pumpkin ale. It Has the balance, the flavor, and the aroma any pumpkin head would enjoy yet provides the sort of class a bourbon barrel freak would appreciate. This was an interesting beer and very enjoyable. I was almost shocked at how good Heavy Seas did with this. By far the best beer I've had from them. Ill buy it again next year as well.

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Photo of Flounder57
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bottle was poured into a large snifter.

Appearance: A one finger head was poured that reduced to a thin layer. It is a copper orange color with great clarity and vision of tiny bubbles coming up through the glass. Spotty lacing down the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: Pumpkin, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, bready malts, caramel, vanilla, oak, coconut, and nice warm booze.

Taste: Starchy pumpkin, spices, sugar, bread, caramel, nice warm alcohol, and a happy man. Delicious stuff.

Mouthfeel : Silky smooth, nice barrel booziness, medium to full bodied, low to medium carbonation, and a little chewy.

Overall: This beer could obviously get better with age. Might have to buy several bottles to store on the pantry.

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Photo of MDHopster
4.24/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

My god, I can't stand pumpkins and I love this one. It has to be served at the correct temp, around 50 degrees or a little warmer to really bring out the the bourbon barrel aging, but does the aging ever pair with the pumpkin and spices. Pumpkins are a style I can't generally abide, everyone has different tastes, but I enjoy bourbon barrel aged beers so when I saw this at the White Oak Tavern tonight, well I had to get a taste. After a taste, I ordered a full 10 oz goblet and savored every drop.

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Heavy Seas - Great’ER Pumpkin from Heavy Seas Beer
87 out of 100 based on 209 ratings.