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Heavy Seas - Great’ER Pumpkin - Heavy Seas Beer

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

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BA SCORE
88
very good

636 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 636
Reviews: 203
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 13.59%
Wants: 63
Gots: 97 | FT: 4
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 636 | Reviews: 203 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Chaney
3.26/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tonight, my wife and I did a comparison test with this one and it's younger brother: "The Great Pumpkin."

On each of the Heavy Seas bombers, there is a story printed. The two Heavy Seas pumpkin beers have EXACTLY the same story, except on this one, the final sentence is: "From the haunted wood emerges the Great'er Pumpkin of them all!"

A: Nice Halloween orange color, with this just one shade darker than the non-barrel aged version. The carbonation is medium and there is about a half inch head on it.

S: It sort of smells like dark fruit dipped in bourbon. If I hadn't know this was a pumpkin ale beforehand, I never would have pegged it as that.

T: Nothing but bourbon wrapped in fruit (notice that I didn't say it the other way around). It may not be a great taste, but it is definitely one of the most interesting pumpkin brews I've ever tasted. The pumpkin tastes BBQd, burnt even, with subtle fruit notes on the aftertaste.

M: This is definitely creamier that "The Great Pumpkin", but I find it far less satisfying. The bourbon relentlessly beats you over the head and doesn't take any prisoners.

D: This is a very interesting experiment, however, I don't believe that this is a style that works as a barrel-ages concoction. When I go shop for a pumpkin ale, I want just that...a pumpkin-flavored ale.

Photo of ncstateplaya
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of jzeilinger
4.27/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a very deep orange color with no carbonation and an off-white creamy foam head with rocky billowing bubbles in the middle.

S - Heavy spiced pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon, some boozy bourbon, and perhaps some light vanilla aroma.

T - WOW! This beer strikes a perfect balance between pumpkin, spices, vanilla, and bourbon. There's some light woodiness in the flavor as well and the combination of everything together makes for a very interesting beer, it all plays very well together with no one fighting for the front seat. Halfway through the sip, the bourbon and oak flavors are more pronounced. After all the sweetness, this beer does finish with a nice touch of hop bitterness. I'm not a huge fan of cask beers but it really does bring out the nuances in a beer, although I much prefer CO2. The booze creates a very noticeable warming in the back of the throat on the way down.

M - Thick and full bodied that's total velvet on the tongue.

D - Can't have too many of these, they're very potent. Of the pumpkin beers I've had, I'd have to stamp this one as my favorite.

Pumpkin and bourbon barrels, now here's something very different...and I like it!

Photo of emmasdad
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
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.

Photo of Kmlund
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of NJBeer265
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of Hojaminbag
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The Greater Pumpkin has a hazy orange body with a ton of sediment floating throughout it. The head is off-white in color and more than two fingers tall.

The aroma is really nice: pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, bourbon and some sweet malt.

I really liked the idea of a pumpkin beer aged in bourbon barrels, because I figured that pumpkin beers have such strong flavors that they could stand up to barrel-aging. I think I was right, as I like how the flavors work together in Greater Pumpkin. Bourbon and pumpkin mix together at first, coupled with an array of spices that include cinnamon and nutmeg. As the spices fade they mix with a woody flavor. A little bit of sweet malts shine through toward the finish, and also a low hop-bitterness. A blast of warmth from the alcohol finishes it.

The body is pretty full with a creamy smoothness. Good mouthfeel for a beer that is this big and packed with strong flavors.

Pumpkin spices and bourbon are two flavors that can be unpleasantly overpowering in a beer. Mixed together, the two manage to complement each other quite nicely. This beer is a little bit hot and boozy, especially as it warms.

Photo of Nichols33
3.56/5  rDev -8.7%

Photo of mcallister
3.55/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Highly carbonated deep amber colored with a fluffy slightly off white head that holds good retention and leaves nice lace.

Nose of bourbon, vanilla, sweet oak, toasty woods, hints of nutmeg and cinnamon, with an underlying of toffee.

Decent beer but a pumpkin ale? The bourbon shows through nicely but like the bourbon barley wine it's not necassarily the best bourbon out there at least the way it's aged. Ahh some hints of cinnamon and nutmeg with a butternut squash finish and a bit of oxidation on the finish as well. Some toffee malt oak and vanilla in the middle but not much else. Good but not what I was hoping.

Photo of Howlader
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.1/5  rDev -20.5%

Brief write-up. This beer does a few things right in the style: namely, it doesn't go overboard with the fall spicing. Both cinnamon and nutmeg are well restrained, giving the caramel malt backbone some breathing room. But there's also a big problem with this beer. The finish is WAY too stodgy. It's a full-bodied brew as well, which means this is a slow sipper at best. I was also a bit disappointed in the overly subdued bourbon presence, but hey it's not remotely boozy either. Overall, it's not bad, but not great.

3.1/5: It would be a really good pumpkin ale if it weren't so flabby

Photo of donkeyrunner
2.5/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Passing by a bottle of bourbon aged beer with pirate bottle art work would prove impossible for me.

Dark orange sherbet color with a marrow beige-white head. Swirly skim retention with a few foamy fingers rising from the orange miasma.

Cinnamon lead pumpkin pie spice is most discernible on the nose followed by a pumpkin pie filling and woody, wet bourbon mash up. Aroma is messy and doesn't feature the bourbon well.

Pumpkin pie spice, mild vegetal pumpkin and bourbon muddled together to form a uniform boozy blah.

I thought I was done with boozy, overspiced pumpkin ales for the year but this one sucked me back in. Once again, bourbon was the source of bad decision making.

Photo of ThePorterSorter
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of WanderingFool
4.29/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from a 1 year old cellared bottle. Great'er Pumpkin pours a hazy orange amber with a small creamy white head. The foam dissolves quickly leaving behind a few spots of lace on the glass.

The aroma is malty with a touch of tartness. Caramel, bubblegum. oak, vanilla and bourbon are blended with green apple and some medicinal alcohol.

Each sip of this medium bodied beer is syrupy with mild carbonation. The flavor is rich and sweet with a touch of tartness. Caramel malt followed by oak, vanilla, bourbon and dark fruit are followed by some green apple tartness. It finishes with a taste of cinnamon with lingering oak and tart flavors.

This is a very tasty beer that's easy to drink for 9% abv.

Photo of LehighAce06
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of hoppymcgee
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of Zach136
4.25/5  rDev +9%

Photo of jaymo18
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of tclapper
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of thekevlarkid
3.97/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Out of a bottle purchased at Hopheads this beer was a hazy orange color with a thin layer of white head. The retention was not very good but it did leave some streaks of lacing throughout the sample. The aroma was an appealing blend of pumpkin, spices, booze, caramel malt and hints of toasted nuts. The flavors were good and definitely put it amongst one of the best pumpkin beers I’ve had. It was doubtlessly boozy right from the beginning with notes of bourbon and vanilla but beyond that first wave was the pumpkin and spices one would expect followed by the subtle notes of caramel and butterscotch. I suspect this beer would age really well because I felt the strong booze notes were quashing some of the potential complexity. The mouthfeel was good, the body medium/full and the carbonation on-point. A “big” beer but a good one and exactly what I’d expect from Heavy Seas.

Photo of Chugs13
4.25/5  rDev +9%

Photo of jampics2
3.87/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle into a snifter. Sampled alongside the regular Great Pumpkin, which I believe I actually prefer to this.

The pour produces an off white head on top of the dirty pumpkin orangeish brown body. Not a great looking beer, the head quickly recedes and doesn't leave good lace. Just a bit above average here, but mostly the same look as the Great Pumpkin.

The smell is where the two beers start to differ. This has some spices, namely cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove, but also features some well-integrated bourbon. There's not a lot of malt, and the bourbon is just barely there - enough to notice but not a huge dominant component. There's also some notes of vanilla and butterscotch, and maybe even some brown sugar, but they're not very expressive. This was a step back from the very expressive and pleasant nose of the Great Pumpkin. Also, some really heavy booze emerges. This gained a single percent but apparently that was all raw booze.

Whereas the Great Pumpkin has a nice sweetness to the taste, that quality is taken away by the bourbon in this version, and I can't say it's for the best. The caramel is replaced with dry bourbon and wood, but the notes I would have liked - oak tannins, coconut, vanilla - aren't prominent or, in some cases, even present. Some spice and bourbon sting don't work that well together, and, while it has bready tastes and isn't a bourbon bomb, the beer just looses so much sweetness and replaces it with bourbon and booze.

The mouthfeel is OK, medium body and medium carbonation, with some lingering booze and spice. Overall, this was just not working for me, and I was very excited by the idea. The execution, however, was just not great, but an admirable attempt. I'd love if someone made a bourbon barrel aged pumpkin beer with lots of vanilla from the barrel, maybe a barrel aged imperial chocolate pumpkin stout. That's the ticket. Until that get's released, stick to the regular Great Pumpkin or pour a bit of Makers Mark into a Southern Tier Pumking (don't try that at home, I'm kidding).

Photo of KYGunner
3.72/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The color is a bright copper and this yielded a huge creamy and foamy head that was congealed at the top. So thick you can float a bottle cap on it because I did.

HUGE coconut cream aroma with some pumpkin spice. The bourbon and oak come out in the aroma but it's quashed by the Coppertone Lotion scent.

The flavors are more towards the bourbon than the scent was. The bourbon is very clean, smooth and slightly oaked. The coconut is tamed and serves with vanilla. The pumpkin is sweet, not overly spiced and not too earthy.

The feel is thin and there is a nice heat in the chest but none in the throat.

Overall, interesting. This seems to serve bourbon drinkers well, as it really took the bourbon flavor but pumpkin beer fans may not find what they are looking for.

Photo of AndrewMichael
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%

Photo of mpayne5
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Heavy Seas - Great’ER Pumpkin from Heavy Seas Beer
88 out of 100 based on 636 ratings.