1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Heavy Seas - The Greater Pumpkin - Heavy Seas Beer

Not Rated.
Heavy Seas - The Greater PumpkinHeavy Seas - The Greater Pumpkin

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

437 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 437
Reviews: 176
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 15.03%
Wants: 50
Gots: 55 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: mcallister on 07-28-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 437 | Reviews: 176 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of adamette
adamette

Ohio

3.93/5  rDev +1.8%

Live review. Poured from the 22 oz. bomber that I bought at Wine and Beverage Depot in Mentor a few days ago for $8.99. No observed "best by" date or "brewed on" date. I am not sure that it matters too much with the reasonably high ABV of 9%. I have to admit being intrigued by this one by the Bourbon Barrel Aged aspect of it. Poured into my silver rimmed Orval goblet.

A VERY short lived off white head over a hazy, thick looking pumpkin colored body. The head which was barely there after a vigorous pour disappeared almost completely in 10 seconds. I really like the look of the body. 4.5

S Well, smells of a sweet malty pumpkin beer with bourbon notes. Just like I expected but intriguing none the less. I am not convinced yet, even as I am about to taste this beer, that these combinations will even work. 4.0

T Interesting. I taste probably more of the bourbon than the pumpkin but the pumpkin is certainly in there. The pumpkin is a nice subtle, authentic pumpkin and not a candy or spicy pumpkin which I find often in pumpkin beers. The bourbon tastes provide the sweet malty, burn of alcohol that you would expect but have a kind of dark caramel taste that is quite good. 4.0

M Surprisingly smooth for the elevated ABV and ultra sweetness. 4.0

D This is meant to be a sipper and it intentions are well received. I will only be able to drink the bomber but the process is enjoyable. 3.5

Notes: I can understand if this is a polarizing beer. Some will really embrace it and other will be repulsed. Actually I find that this is the case for any pumpkin beer. I came in skeptical but interested and I go out pleased with this beer.

01-23-2011 03:06:13 | More by adamette
Photo of biggred1
biggred1

Indiana

3.9/5  rDev +1%

Dense, deep pumpkin-orange with a creamy eggshell head that leaves pretty lace on the glass. The aroma is pumpkin spice and bourbon barrel, toasted oak notes. A creamy, custard-like pumpkin pie and whiskey barrel quality..who wouldn't like that? A toasty, oaky whisky barrel version of a pumpkin beer. Good stuff. Full bodied,oaky and sticky.

12-25-2010 03:16:29 | More by biggred1
Photo of aerozeppl
aerozeppl

New York

3.03/5  rDev -21.5%

A: Reddish amber color with quite a bit of stuff floating in suspension. A half finger of white head with some lacing.

S: The nose is mostly nutmeg. For a bourbon aged beer this nose is tight when it should really be bright. Not that impressed at all.

T: No bourbon at all which is a disappointment. Not much pumpkin either. More pumpkin spices which I think it a way to turn an ale into a pumpkin ale. It is not bad and there are no off flavors or anything like that but it is just kind of meh for me. The idea of a bourbon pumpkin ale really exited me but the execution left me wanting more.

M:Medium bodied. Carbonation is soft and pleasing.

D: A friend had this on cask and said it was one of the best beers that he had ever had. This was a big let down for me. I think they might have a small issue on the bottling line. Their draft beers are always remarkably better. For a big barrel aged beer this is kind of bland.

12-19-2010 21:56:53 | More by aerozeppl
Photo of LanceW
LanceW

Michigan

3.2/5  rDev -17.1%

Had this brew a "barrel aged" tasting. It ranked right in the middle of the pack for my self. There was a large amount of spice in the brew due to it being a pumpkin ale. I didn't pick up the barrel aged at first but the body was quite full and large.

Worth drinking but I believe that there is better in the 8-9 dollar bomber range.

12-05-2010 21:39:47 | More by LanceW
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

4.22/5  rDev +9.3%

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.

11-27-2010 19:44:28 | More by Mora2000
Photo of Jwale73
Jwale73

Rhode Island

3.9/5  rDev +1%

22oz. bottle served in my Darkness tulip. Pours a semi-hazy burnt-orange with a creamy, loose, one inch bright white head. Head gradually disperses into a creamy slick with some thin, but densely packed strands of lacing evident during the tasting. Nose expresses bourbon, a buttery quality, pumpkin spice aromas and a trace of citrus. Taste follows nose - pumpkin pie flavors dominate upfront; nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, followed by bourbon flavors that nicely integrate with the other elements. Mouthfeel is light-medium (but closer to medium), with a lively carbonation, a slightly silky texture and some residual alcohol heat detectable at the finish. A very pleasant variation on the style and makes a great post-Thanksgiving digestif. That being said, 22oz. is perhaps a bit much. A 12oz. bottle split amongst two is more than satisfying.

11-27-2010 00:24:07 | More by Jwale73
Photo of elgiacomo
elgiacomo

Georgia

3.53/5  rDev -8.5%

22oz bottle, fall 2010 vintage.

Pours hazy amber/copper with a one finger off-white head that leaves good spotty lacing and holds a good cap.

Aroma is pumpkin, spices: clove, ginger, cinnamon, clove, not much bourbon on the nose although good overall strength.

Flavor is pumpkin, spices such as ginger, clove, nutmeg, a little cinnamon, fair bourbon whiskey, light vanilla, malty, light hop presence, alcohol makes an appearance, long spiced finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, medium carbonation, creamy.

Good pumpkin beer, less bourbon than expected. A big beer that needs sharing as 22oz would be too much for one person.

11-25-2010 21:51:36 | More by elgiacomo
Photo of rootbeerman
rootbeerman

Virginia

4.1/5  rDev +6.2%

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.

11-25-2010 00:33:54 | More by rootbeerman
Photo of nlmartin
nlmartin

Ohio

4.1/5  rDev +6.2%

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!

11-22-2010 11:08:16 | More by nlmartin
Photo of david131
david131

California

4.03/5  rDev +4.4%

A- A hazy, bright orange liquid with a thin but creamy bone white head.

S- Very aromatic with loads of bourbon, vanilla, mint, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Very nice.

T- Bourbon and pumpkin pie. A bit heavier on the spices than the aroma lead on. There is some definite alcohol presence.

M- A creamy body with subtle carbonation. The finish is pretty warm from the alcohol.

D- A bit of a sipper, but very memorable and enjoyable. Worth seeking out for something different.

11-22-2010 04:26:34 | More by david131
Photo of Hojaminbag
Hojaminbag

Colorado

3.9/5  rDev +1%

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.

11-19-2010 00:43:27 | More by Hojaminbag
Photo of ToasterChef
ToasterChef

Maine

4.22/5  rDev +9.3%

Poured from a cellar temperature bottle into a Smuttynose Big Beer Series goblet. The beer has a translucent orange color, with notes of brown to give it a slightly tarnished look. A bubbly tan head settled to a skim with a ring of large bubbles at the edges. Tiny carbonation bubbles can be seen within.

This beer smells very good to me. Woodsy bourbon and oak are present, but so is warm pumpkin fruit. There is just a hint of spice mixed in as well. A touch of hot alcohol gives away this aroma as belonging to a strong beer, but otherwise it smells like an appealing pumpkin dish. This is by far the best pumpkin beer aroma I've come across.

This beer has an interesting blend of flavors. It's hard to tell where the pumpkin ends and the bourbon begins. The pumpkin does feel stronger as I first sip, with bold fruit flavors present here. Smokey bourbon and oak move forward as I swallow. Some alcohol burn is present here. Pumpkin spice lingers on after I swallow.

Great'er Pumpkin is a smooth, full bodied beer without too much carbonation. A decent coat is left behind. It has a pumpkin flavor and gives off alcoholic vapors. This warmth is similar to how a sip of bourbon feels going down.

It won't be difficult for me to finish my glass of this imperial beer. I wouldn't want to have too many glasses of this in a session, simply because it is so strong. I would like to pick up a few bottles of this next fall to spread out across the season. It's a very enjoyable beverage. Who would have thought bourbon aging a pumpkin ale would work so well?

11-16-2010 22:20:13 | More by ToasterChef
Photo of Mitchster
Mitchster

Michigan

4.35/5  rDev +12.7%

$7.99 for a 22oz bottle @ Jacks.9.0%ABV per the bottle. Pumpkin ale aged in bourbon barrels, brewed with spices. No ingredients listed on the mfgr website. Pours out to a hazy burnt orange, requiring a hefty pour to achieve a decent head which recedes quickly leaves minimal lacing. Carbonation is mild. the aroma is a nice blend between the sweetness of the malts, pumpkin and spices. The spices are not overpowering which is common in a lot of this category. Maybe a little vanilla in the nose. The mouthfeel is soft and silky, dense, rich and syrupy. The taste is again, a great balance between the spices and malt. The malt is firm and compliments the spicing, which is not overbearing. Suggestion of vanilla and just a stinging peppery hint of bourbon in the aftertaste.

I'm not a fan of this style, but this is a wonderful pumpkin ale...without a doubt, the best I've had. It is very rich, so a 22oz bottle is plenty but I could see myself picking this up again next year, or even sitting on a few bottles.

11-16-2010 02:59:32 | More by Mitchster
Photo of hdofu
hdofu

Maryland

4.8/5  rDev +24.4%

This is more evidence of what some time in the woods can do for improving character. This is a completely different creature from its Great pumpkin sibling. It pours cloudy orange and has a fair amount of head. The Bourbon is very evident in the first sip and combined with the pumpkin spices it has a flavor much like egg nog. The smell is very spicy still much like pumpkin pie. It has a bit more of an boozy feel then the great pumpkin, which I like. In my oppinion this is probably my favorite pumpkin beer (when I had the great pumpkin I was debating whether I liked it more or Dogfish's punkin ale) as of now this is the best.

11-15-2010 23:51:11 | More by hdofu
Photo of dismal
dismal

Illinois

4.3/5  rDev +11.4%

I was really curious about this one as I've never had or seen a bourbon barrel aged pumpkin beer so I really wanted to try it. Poured a very dark cloudy hazy orange with a somewhat small to medium sized white head. The head fairly quickly dissolved but somewhat stuck around till almost the end of the beer. Left hardly any lacing on the glass. The smell for me reminded me of a lot of bourbon barrel aged beers or at least had a familiar smell of that with the twist of a pumpkin ale. Had the bourbon, the vanilla from the oak, pumpkin and spices. The smell was very good. Taste was pretty much the same except I think the vanilla, bourbon, and the other taste from the barrel really stuck out with the pumpkin not totally in the background but still very upfront and well balanced. The pumpkin was there but not overpowering which I liked a lot. Went down really smooth, not very bitter at all actually kind of sweet. Mouthfeel was pretty average, nothing to rant or rave about. Drinkability was great. A mildly high ABV but very well hidden in my opinion. I could smell and taste the bourbon but it played no effect in making "hot" or undrinkable. I could have easily done another after finishing this one. Overall not the greatest pumpkin ale I've ever had but I'd put it up there. I was skeptical about a bourbon barrel aged pumpkin ale but it turns out it was quite wonderful, the bourbon and the oak barrel add great flavors to this beer. If I ever see this one again I will pick it up without hesitation. Great beer and great pumpkin ale.

11-03-2010 05:58:18 | More by dismal
Photo of emmasdad
emmasdad

Colorado

4.08/5  rDev +5.7%

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.

11-01-2010 04:08:59 | More by emmasdad
Photo of John_M
John_M

California

3.58/5  rDev -7.3%

On cask at Mahaffey's the other night.

The beer pours a pumpkin orange amber color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is impressive in this pumpkin ale, showcasing a boatload of clove, nutmeg, vanilla, cinnamon, all spice and brown sugar. The beer smells sweet and very spicy. The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty closely in this fairly sweet beer, though there's also something of a buttery mouthfeel and considerable alcohol as well. While I realize this is meant to be an "imperial" style ale, this beer comes across as an 11% or 12% abv. beer.... that's how boozy it is. Mouthfeel is soft, smooth and almost slick in this low carbonation presentation, and the beer has a farily long, spice infused finish. As seems to be typical in these mutiny fleet beers, drinkability is not this beer's strong suit. The combination of sweetness, spice and in your face alcohol made it impossible for me to finish even the 10 ounce glass I was served at Mahaffey's. While interesting, at least for me, this was ultimatley another mutiny fleet dud.

10-30-2010 13:14:55 | More by John_M
Photo of bluejacket74
bluejacket74

Ohio

4.03/5  rDev +4.4%

22 ounce bottle. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours a cloudy orange/copper color with about an inch off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both decent. Aroma is sweet and spicy, it smells like pumpkins, spices (cinnamon, nutmeg), vanilla and bourbon. Taste is similar to the aroma, but with some alcohol/booze being noticable but not overpowering. The bourbon flavor is a bit stronger than the others, but the flavors all mesh well together. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit syrupy and has low carbonation. Drinkability is good, it improves as the beer warms up. I think it's a good overall brew, I'd buy this again.

10-29-2010 21:28:15 | More by bluejacket74
Photo of womencantsail
womencantsail

California

3.6/5  rDev -6.7%

What are the chances? Two people bring the same beer to an impromptu tasting (thanks Dan). Thanks for the taste from your bottle, Craig.

A: The pour is a dark amber color with a thin ring of tan foam around the outside of the glass.

S: Tons and tons of pie spices such as cinnamon, all spice, and nutmeg. The bourbon aroma is plentiful as well, providing quite a bit of booze along with the usual oak and vanilla.

T: The vanilla flavor is really nice and smooth here. Fairly sweet, but the bourbon flavor helps to mitigate that a bit, and the intense cinnamon and nutmeg flavors do an even better job of this.

M: The body is maybe on the thin side of medium with a low to medium carbonation.

D: I could see this being great, but the bourbon and spices are just overdone at this point.

10-28-2010 01:00:06 | More by womencantsail
Photo of Georgiabeer
Georgiabeer

Georgia

3.95/5  rDev +2.3%

Pours lighter than I expected, more a golden color than a brown- on the lighter side of amber. A fairly slight head, but that seems okay for the style and abv. Smells boozy and sweet, with some pumpkin pie spice notes. The bourbon is light and clean and style, rather than heavy and laced with oak and molasses. Tastes like a bourbon laced pumpkin pie- creamy, sweet, bourbony and with chocolate and some surprising lemon notes as well that add some nice acidity that cuts through the rest of the richness. Smooth and rich in the mouth, This is quite a nice variation on the standard pumpkin beer.

10-25-2010 18:13:42 | More by Georgiabeer
Photo of nas5755
nas5755

Massachusetts

3.18/5  rDev -17.6%

A hazy lite golden brown beer with a nice head and some minimal lacing. The nose is full of hot bourbon with a little pumpkin and spices. The beer tastes like bourbon with pumpkin and spices, more nuanced and complex than the nose, heat is noticeable but it does not distract from the beer in a negative beer(I despise heat is most beers). The heat actually works here. A very smooth mouthfeel from the pumpkin, mild carbonation. Overall, this is one of my favorite pumpkin ales and it is a style I just don't appreciate. A decent beer that has some strong points and some weak points.

10-21-2010 00:59:28 | More by nas5755
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

3.6/5  rDev -6.7%

Poured from the bottle into a bruery tulip. Beer is orange and hazy with a thin broken white head of small bubbles.

Aroma is strong with some pumpkin, minimal spices and strong bourbon.

Beer is light in body and quite hot. Its mildly spicy but the pumpkin some how cuts through and is still present. My wife enjoys this beer and this style more than I do but this is a decent beer. I wouldn't have expected much from a bourbon barrel aged fruit beer but this one comes through. Its a little harsh on the onset but overall its OK.

10-20-2010 01:47:38 | More by drabmuh
Photo of Frosty80
Frosty80

Michigan

4.43/5  rDev +14.8%

Color: sits a slightly dark copper or burnished orange with some sediment

Smell: awesome. good spicing thats well balanced with the usual wood, vanilla and bourbon aromas with a little alcohol to give it soul. very pleasing. like the perfect holiday potpourri

Taste: aromas translate well into the taste. good balance of spicing and bourbon cask flavors. alcohol makes an obvious appearance but, again, in balance

Mouthfeel: smooth low-full body with low carbonation

Notes: fantastic pumpkin seasonal. they prove that bourbon barrel aging a pumpkin beer works extremely well. delicious.

10-20-2010 01:37:36 | More by Frosty80
Photo of Bendurgin
Bendurgin

Maine

1.88/5  rDev -51.3%

Poured this into a pint glass. The body is hazy orange with about a finger of off white head that looks thick and creamy. The body actually really looks like sweet apple cider. Maybe because it's Autumn. The head doesn't retain very well and leaves just a little spotty lacing. I can definitely smell the pumpkin in this one, a bit of oak and certainly the bourbon. The bourbon is actually a bit aggressive, it makes it a bit to intense. Ugh. Pumpkin and bourbon don't go well together at all. This reminds me of cough syrup. I can taste the pumpkin, bourbon and Autumn spices but the bourbon is too much. I remember having the regular version last year and it wasn't bad. But these flavors just don't go well together. The mouthfeel isn't bad. Not really good though because the feeling in my mouth is just the really bad taste of cough syrup. Not at all drinkable. I'm really pissed at Shane from Tully's for pointing this one out to me and convincing me I should try it. That's strike two Shane.

10-19-2010 01:19:52 | More by Bendurgin
Photo of Bung
Bung

Michigan

3.78/5  rDev -2.1%

22 oz. Lighter, semi-murky orange pour. Some white head, receded to a whispy layer.

More pumpkin, nutmeg, ginger in the aroma than I expected. Some malt caramel and booze. Just hints of oak and vanilla.

Taste is very spicy up front. A bit uneven and overbearing nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger. The pumpkin and barrel don't mesh with the spices, at least at first. This improves greatly as it warms. Vanilla, caramel oak are much more present in the finish and in general when it warms up quite a bit.

Goes down all right, but it just doesn't leave me wanting more. The difference in the unwarmed state will probably cause me to not seek this out again, which is about par for the Mutiny Fleet series in general.

10-17-2010 04:30:20 | More by Bung
Heavy Seas - The Greater Pumpkin from Heavy Seas Beer
87 out of 100 based on 437 ratings.