Heavy Seas - Great’ER Pumpkin - Heavy Seas Beer

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Heavy Seas - Great’ER PumpkinHeavy Seas - Great’ER Pumpkin

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BA SCORE
88
very good

640 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 640
Reviews: 204
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 13.59%
Wants: 64
Gots: 104 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 640 | Reviews: 204
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 warnerry
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear reddish copper with a finger of off-white head. Not much lacing to speak of.

S - Bourbon, vanilla brown sugar and pie spices (cinnamon, nutmeg and clove) up front. Some caramel malt as well. Didn't really get any oak notes. The bourbon is really a complement here. It is one of the predominant aromas, but it blends nicely with everything else.

T - The taste follows the aroma pretty well, with the addition of some wood tannins. A bit sweet, but not overwhelmingly so. The bourbon flavors are an improvement on the base beer.

M - Medium, slightly syrupy mouthfeel.

O - Nice flavor combination. I enjoyed this more than the base beer (which I also thought was pretty good).

Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into my large brandy snifter.

A- Body is a uniformly translucent pumpkin hue-its pretty cloudy. Pours with a 2 finger or so smooth, creamy white head. This slowly, eventually fades to a nice thick collar. Little lacing is left behind in the glass.

S- Pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon and brown sugar stand out the most initially. Behind this is a distinct boozy astrigency. A slight bourbon sweetness can also be detected.

T-There is a very good balance initially of pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, sweet bourbon, and dry oak. Its quite complex. The finish is more astrigent-with some alcohol bitterness coming through-but the spices and pumpkin have almost equal strength. What lingers is a good bit of nutmeg and cinnamon, a hint of pumpkin-and a big alcohol warmth.

M- Medium to low carbonation with a slightly dry, spicy body with medium weight.

D- This is a very good, different pumpkin ale. The bourbon barrels add a different character-and certainly a big kick. This is clearly a strong pumkin ale that doesn't hide its booziness. Job well done by Clipper City here- one of my favorites from them.

Photo of CloudStrife
3.94/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a snifter. 2013 vintage.

A: Pours a mostly clear amber with an off white head. Lots of visible carbonation going on in the body. Spots of lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: Spiciness up front with a dose of sweetness. Graham cracker like crust aroma is present which I like in pumpkin beers. Bourbon barrel aging doesnt make too much of an impact.

T: As with the aroma there is a healthy dose of spice to this one. Cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg come to mind. Bourbon is light in the background adding just a touch of vanilla, oak and booze.

M: Medium body with lots of carbonation for such a boozy beer. Retains a creamy mouthfeel. Finish is a bit sticky which is understandable considering the sweetness. Alcohol isnt too hot.

Overall its a pumpkin beer that exemplifies the style but I still feel that this one could push the envelope a little further. A bit more bourbon and pumpkin flavor.

Photo of jbaker67
3.94/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Murky orange pour with a thin off-white head. The nose is more whiskey than bourbon with a hint of booze. Faint pumpkin pie spices creep up in the background of the aroma. The flavor is a very nice blend of oak and vanilla with pumpkin pie and whipped cream. This is far from your average pumpkin ale. Very well done.

Photo of Dope
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep orange pour with a nice billowy tan head. Retention is good and lacing is excellent.

S: Tons of pumpkin along with some milder pumpkin spices. Nutmeg and cinnamon in particular. A bit of bourbon, surprisingly not much. Bourbon comes out as it warms. A touch of vanilla?

T: Much like the nose. Lots of bourbon soaked pumpkin with nutmeg and cinnamon in the background. A light touch of vanilla everywhere. A little bit of oak too, especially in the aftertaste.

M: Medium body, a little tingle from the bourbon.

O: Interesting take on a pumpkin beer, never had a bourbon barrel one. Definitely adds a decent bit of complexity that complements the beer. Base beer isn't really all that hot unfortunately, needs more spices.

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

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.

Photo of adamette
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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.

Photo of silentjay
3.92/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a tarnished copper color with a quickly fading almost white head that leaves some decent lacing.

aroma first is of bourbon, then spices, then some sweetening from the pumpkin, plenty of vanilla, brown sugar, though not a very strong aroma and a bit bourbon dominant.

bourbon again out of the gate with the spices up next and a bit of squash-like pumpkin flavor with a vanilla and boozy finish.

medium bodied with a heavier level of carbonation than I'd expect in a bourbon-barrel aged beer.

not my favorite pumpkin ale, not my favorite imperial pumpkin ale (fishermans imperial pumpkin stout!), not my favorite bourbon barrel aged beer (allagash curieux), but an enjoyable beer that I would drink again.

Photo of barczar
3.91/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy deep copper with orange tints and a billowing, frothy cream head that leaves minimal lacing.

Vanilla, nutmeg, ginger, clove, cinnamon and pumpkin dominate the initial aroma, with a hint of booze lurking in the background. There's a buttery, caramel malt character that emerges, accompanied by graham cracker notes. Very spice forward.

Flavor reveals more boozy notes, with vanilla and bourbon underlying a slightly sweet, bready, toasted caramel malt backbone that dries out in the spicy finish. The pumpkin character emerges more so in the aftertaste, but nutmeg cinnamon, and clove are evident mid palate. Buttery, graham cracker notes surface mid palate to add a pumpkin pie flavor. Banana esters become noticeable as it warms, along with a slight squash tang and cola notes.

Body is full , creamy, and smooth, with minimal carbonation and surprisingly light alcohol warmth.

Spice dominates the aroma, but seems to be subdued by the bourbon character in the flavor. Very nice take on the style. Not overly sweet, with a pretty decent pumpkin presence, though the balance is toward spices. The bourbon adds nice complexity. And that 10 percent is surprisingly well hidden. The banana and cola character I'm perceiving is somewhat disappointing, but I think it's just a combo of other flavors...namely ginger.

Photo of biggred1
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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.

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

Poured into a stemmed tulip: Hazy, translucent russet with just a dusting of head & a thin, beige collar. A few strands of nucleation.

Smell has some orange peel, typical spice profile (a little cinnamon, a little nutmeg, clove, allspice, a tiny bit of ginger). Some lightly caramel malts, only trace amounts of the bourbon barrel, with very subtle oak & vanilla. Booze is apparent, too.

Starts off with the spices & pumpkin flavor, followed by a substantial alcohol presence & rolling into the bourbon characteristics & settling there nicely. Very nice, long aftertaste, moving through the spice notes, oak, & vanilla again. Bourbon verges on becoming unwieldy, but stops just short. Not bad, but not sure if the pumpkin is big enough to balance the booze & barrel.

Full-bodied, a little prick from alcohol & spices. Heats up in the middle & gives the palate a little bit of a work-over.

This is a style I just couldn't resist trying -- while it's got some flaws & I don't necessarily think the pumpkin is enough to support the bourbon barrel, it's enjoyable nonetheless. Definitely a sipper, & I can think of a handful of pumpkin ales I'd go to before this, but I'd be up for it again sometime for sure.

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 Jwale73
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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.

Photo of clayrock81
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a hazy auburn w/ good carbonation leading to a large head that dies slow (not much lace). The aroma is a mix of pumpkin (not overbearing), some caramel/sugary sweetness, cinnamon, spicy pepper, some bready dry malt and hints of bitter citric hop. First impression is real sweet and smooth, as a sweet pumpkin (along w/ sugar, caramel, and maybe vanilla) taste hovers over the spicy, alcoholic edge. This sweetness is thin, however, and there is a crisp, dry finish of spice and a touch of hops, plus a touch of that bourbon barrel (I think...might be power of suggestion). This finish amplifies the sweetness on the next sip so I couldn't put this beer down and overall I'd say it's nicely balanced, although some might find it too sweet.

Photo of IrishMonk
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Out of a bomber from Habersham Beverage in Savannah.

One of my favorite fall seasonals, a creamy pumpkin ale that is pretty drinkable despite the heavy alcohol. Not as spicy as the Great Pumpkin. The bourbon flavor is very forward, and slightly over takes the spices, but leaves a nice pumpkin crust finish. Well worth a try if you like full, barrel aged ales.

Photo of rudzud
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up at Julio's. Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a crystal clear light copper with a creamy almost two finger head that faded to leave a nice blanket and rich halo.

S - Nice sweet malts, pumpkin spices, and some smooth bourbon. Very creamy and smooth smelling.

T - More of the sweeter malts with lighter pumpkin spices. A fair amount of bourbon and oak notes as well as alcohol. Just not enough pumpkin for me in this one.

M - Nice and creamy mouthfeel. Quite drinkable considering the higher ABV. Bourbon is nicely present.

O - Overall, I'm mixed on this beer. As a bourbon beer, its not too shabby. As a pumpkin beer though, it leaves somethign to be desired. Wish there was more pumpkin in here than bourbon, but its still not a bad brew.

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Malty aroma has firm notes of pumpkin and cinnamon and a bourbon overtone that comes from the barrels in which it was aged. It pours a slightly hazy dark orange amber with a pale orange-tan head that does not stick around for long and leaves minimal lacing. Flavor has a strong bourbon note that dominates the flavor but does not overwhelm it, allowing the malt, pumpkin and cinnamon notes along with the whisper of caramel to have their say. Thick, smooth texture is fairly tingly and has a strong nip thanks to the bourbon. A perfect beer to begin October!

Photo of cosmicevan
3.87/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

saw this locally and had to jump at it. just looked too interesting to miss.

a - opened the bottle and filled my cbs snifter. poured a soft orange, but settled in the glass as a darker brown with a thin white bubbly head that fizzed away somewhat quickly. to the light, this beer is chunky!?!

s - nice festive spiciness of a craft store with a soft barrel. the bourbon here is more in the vein of backwoods than in various -bal stouts. smells pretty fantastic.

t - full bodied pumpkin with a slap in the face of booze. has a kind of sangria type vibe with a pumpkin twist. the booze is REALLY in your face on this one.

m - boozy tingle. full bodied. the heat is on.

o - overall, who would've guessed it...barrel aged pumpkin!?! and it works!!! overall it is good, but the alc is just intense and i never say that. enjoyable none-the-less and a must try for the fans of the pumpkins.

Photo of gford217
3.87/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a bright, completely opaque orange with a soapy white head that recedes to a small swirl along the top.

The smell starts with the spices, nutmeg and cinnamon especially, balanced by the vanilla sweetness from the bourbon barrels. There is a sweet sugary pumpkin aroma that floats underneath the alcohol.

The taste is more of the same but probably a bit sweeter with the vanilla and pumpkin up front, giving way to the light spices. The spices don't last long before the bourbon barrel knocks them out of the way and dominates the finish with a definite burn going down.

The mouthfeel is smooth and boozy with a nice tingle on the palette from the combination of alcohol and pumpkin spices.

The bourbon mellows the spices from the base beer pretty well and gives the impression of a well-balanced pumpkin beer. Not bad.

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 Kegatron
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a tulip glass. 2011 Edition.

Pours a clear copper, with a ½ finger covering of slight off-white head. This retains with more of a thin frothy fizziness, which leaves back a foamy cascade of lace that quickly slides down the sides of the glass. The aroma smells of vanilla, oak, pumpkin spices, a touch of softer fruity orange character, and then some underlying greenness. It’s tough to say if it’s pumpkin or not, as a bit of stiff warmth starts to come out as this warms and muddles things a bit.

The taste has a lot of vanilla going on, with additional notes of sweet caramel, orange zest, green pumpkin (it’s definitely standing out more here), and then some festive feeling spices that are scattered throughout the profile. The bourbon flavor mostly sits in the back here, and it rather nicely done, with a pleasant lightly charred burn on the back of the palate. More barrel flavor creeps into the finish, with a woody dryness that lingers with some leftover sugars and a touch of spice. The mouthfeel is full bodied and fairly effervescent in the mouth. Things do get a little smoother though as this runs over the tongue and the alcohol itself it pretty well hid. There is some warmth to the body here and the bourbon leaves a bit of heat behind but I was a bit shocked at how overall smooth this was in the mouth.

This was nice and was much better than I thought a BA Imperial Pumpkin Ale would have turned out. Besides some misgivings with the nose, I really enjoyed the overall integration of the flavors here and I was extremely surprised at how much of a smooth sipper this ended up being in the end. A full bottle was a little too much for me in one sitting but this is a perfect one to split.

Photo of brewtus
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours dark orange with a single finger off white head. Smell is full of pumpkin, cinnamon, oaky bourbon. Taste starts with lots of pumpkin, cinnamon again, sweet potato, some marshmallow, sweet, finishes with an oaky bourbon, not too hot, plenty of malt, slight hop presence. This is well balanced but neither of the flavors are intense enough IMO. I did really enjoy it though.

Photo of TheBrewo
3.84/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

We crack a bomber of their 2013 stock with the new label, pouring a brew of rich reddish pumpkin coloring into our large tasting snifters. It holds a creamy two finger head of easily reproducible sandpaper foam, with airiness resembling frothing sea foam. Lacing is in wet cords around the glasses. A definite haze cuts clarity, but no sediment is noted. Carbonation appears to be active around the edges, but slow. The aroma whiffs of bright and souring oak, light mossiness, coiny metallics, apple cider vinegar, clean vanilla, fusel burn of smoky bourbon and nail polish remover, black pepper, cinnamon, allspice, sour lemon citrus, black currant, fresh whipped cream, and fresh pumpkin pulp and seed. Our first impression is that while the booze is high towards the front of the sip, it ends with nice sweetness and balance. As we sip, you are hit primarily with big fusel booziness, amber and caramel maltiness, table salt, granite, bittered oak, black pepper and biting cinnamon spice, lemon peel, chemical burn, plastics, and parchment paper. The middle to the peak immediately eases up, with sweetness of warmed brown sugar, thick caramel maltiness with nice roast and warmth, sweet bourbon booziness, buttery diacetyls, coconut fruitiness, cleaner oak, light plastics, lactic creaminess, and continued bite of citric rind. The end washes with sweet cinnamon-sugar, vanilla icing and extract, cherry sweetness, that continued core of sweet booziness, phenolic plastics, sweaty and dirty oak, salt and pepper, flakey pastry cream puffs, and a gritty, wheaty type malt. The aftertaste breaths of cold pumpkin pulp, aluminum foil and icy metallics, fusel smokiness, bourbon and oak, gingerbread and cinnamon, fresh pumpkin vegetals, sheeted plastics, heavy creamer, burnt butters, and wheat breadiness. The body is medium to full, and the carbonation is reasonably high. Each sip comes on pleasant froth, cream, foam, slurp, smack, and pop. The mouth is initially coated with syrupy thickness, but quickly warms, and then dries with light astringent pucker. The abv is appropriate, and the beer sips nicely.

Overall, the most enjoyable aspect of this beer was its aroma. This initially came across as quite booze and metallic, but as it warmed, those notes faded, allowing the beauty of the spice and the gourd to flourish. That said, the flavoring to follow lacked the punch that we’ve come to expect from these big, oaky pumpkin beers. The oak was actually great, and almost overly so because of how sour it was, but the pumpkin was rather flat. This is not to the fault of the brewer, but rather to the fault of the product itself, as it is inherently not very spicy or savory in its flavoring. There was, however, enough spice added to keep things interesting, and to meet the wood in full. This was a nice beer for sure, and we are glad to have had it fresh, while the bourbon barreling is in full season, but we suggest you wait a bit if you want a cooler, more buttery, and smooth-sipping beverage.

Photo of HattedClassic
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance:
The beer pours a nice thin but substantial head that is a creamy and fluffy white. The beer itself is a clear dark orange with a little bit of haze. The orange also appears to have hints of brown.

Smell:
The beer has a very spicy smell. The main notes appear to be clove and cinnamon that mix very well with the pumpkin. The pumpkin seems to be balanced with the spices and is very sweet. Additionally, hints of gingerbread come out as well in the smell. As the beer warms, the spices become much more dominant and the alcohol makes an appearance as well. Also, the beer takes on a buttery smell.

Taste:
Spices such as cinnamon and clove notes come out in the taste. The pumpkin also comes out very well. The spices and pumpkin mix decently with the bourbon but I think the bourbon mutes the other flavors. Hint of alcohol that increases over time as the beer gets warm and becomes more metallic. As the beer becomes even warmer, the beer balances itself with a slightly buttery taste but the metallic taste is still there.

Mouthfeel:
Biting carbonation and a medium bodied. The feel is a little thick but, ultimately, smooth. The beer also has a little bit of alcohol warmth.

Overall:
A pretty decent imperial pumpkin ale and one that I will probably pick up again next year when it comes out.

Heavy Seas - Great’ER Pumpkin from Heavy Seas Beer
88 out of 100 based on 640 ratings.