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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

449 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 449
Reviews: 177
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 14.73%
Wants: 53
Gots: 62 | 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
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Ratings: 449 | Reviews: 177 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of joshuacavett
4.95/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured a hazy orange with an unbelievable nose. If I could rate higher on the smell, I would. Pumpkin, peppermint, american oak come to mind. Taste was delish and mouthfeel was right on. Shared this with friends (poured 4 ways) and I wish I had the whole bottle to myself. I true jewel!

joshuacavett, Oct 06, 2010
Photo of generallee
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
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.

generallee, Oct 04, 2010
Photo of OneDropSoup
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
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.

OneDropSoup, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of pzrhsau
3.98/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A:Nice opaque color with notes of brown and orange. The malt almost adds a straw color to accent it. Neat head that sticks to the glass.
S: It has a strong bourbon smell hinted with alcohol that turns into sweetness and pumpkin right away.
T: The bourbon aging really gives it a nice sweet accent to the malt. It has accents of cinnamon and all spice. Really gives it some great depth.
D/M: Very thick and strong beer. Really should be enjoyed on a warm day with some strong food. Great carbonation and balance. I applaud the improvement with this version.

pzrhsau, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of endincolorado
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
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.

endincolorado, Oct 01, 2010
Photo of OWSLEY069
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy orange to light copper color with an off white head. In the aroma, bourbon, oak, and pumpkin spices. In the taste, mellow bourbon, oaky, and mellow pumpkin spice. A smooth and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a dry bourbon to a clean aftertaste. Light bourbon probably due to the spice contrast. Nice warming feeling.

OWSLEY069, Sep 30, 2010
Photo of GregSVT
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber into a snifter

A: Pours a hazy burnt orange with a small off-white head that fades to a small ring and leaves only the smallest bits of lacing on the glass. It could use more of a head but as a barrel aged high abv beer I can't fault it 100% for this.

S: The nose is full of pumpkin, nutmeg, and buttery bourbon. Smells wonderful and I can't wait to take a sip.

T: Flavors of pumpkin, spices like nutmeg and allspice, and sweet buttery bourbon all hit the tounge at the same time. I'm not sure if there are different batches but this one isn't a bourbon bomb like some reviews below would have you believe. The barrel aging isn't as big as some BA beers I've had(GIBCS).

M: The feel is medium-full bodied and a bit low on the carbonation but again this is about par for a barrel aged beer.

D: This drinks very well for a 9% beer and I have a few more I will be enjoying this fall/winter.

If you like Nemesis 2009 you'll like this.

GregSVT, Sep 29, 2010
Photo of DrDemento456
3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got a bomber of this for 7.99 at my local beer Nutz. Not Sure of the age but with some sediment in the bottle it may be last years batch. Hoping the bourbon has rounded out in that time!

A - Poured a nice amber with an inch of fluffy white head. The pour was pretty carbonated so the sediment was disturbed and resulted in a snow storm in my glass. Ow well it's a bourbon beer so I don't think it is soured.

S - Wow this smells like a booze bomb! Heavy bourbon with just a hint of caramel sweetness with just a pinch of nutmeg and cinnamon.

T - Belch! Ow wow the only time I had a as much bourbon flavor was in Nemesis! Usually a beer will round out the bourbon flavor resulting in a sweetness but this is full on booze flavored! Hard to detect anything else but I did pick up mostly caramel sweetness, some wood, and a very mild if any pumpkin taste but really it good have just been bourbon with this monster!

M - Very heavy and almost undrinkable. I kind of enjoy a scotch or bourbon flavor MILDLY in my beer but this is ridiculous.

D - I don't think age will do much more with this beer since after a while the sediment starts to set in destroying the flavor. Was really hoping for more with this beer but has really opened my eyes for big ABV Pumpkin ales. Most of them (Smashed Pumpkin, Hopping Frog Double Pumpkin, and this) were total booze bombs. I will stick with my Screaming Jack from Michigan. PASS!

DrDemento456, Sep 29, 2010
Photo of mcallister
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%
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.

mcallister, Sep 28, 2010
Photo of jsh420
1.75/5  rDev -54.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

pours cloudy amber orange with a 1 finger head that left some spotted lacing

smell - almost none but i get some watered down bourbon

taste - sweet bourbon smacks your tastes buds right off the bat - this beer has more bourbon flavor then lots of stouts aged in bourbon barrels and no pumpkin to back it up - i think i might and coke zero so i can drink this booze monster

mouthfeel - kind of sticky medium body with low carbonation

drinkability is awful - 3/4 of this bottle went down the drain

jsh420, Sep 28, 2010
Photo of weezyfart
3.55/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After much fanfare from friends of mine, I decided to plunk down some bucks and give this beer a try. I actually had pretty high hopes because this is the only aged pumpkin ale I've cone across yet.

Appearance: murky brown almost rusty in color with a small cap that left no lacing.

Aroma: I get a lot of wood, a lot of vanilla, plus pumpkin spice of course. I also get some dried apricot.

Taste: this is where the beer gets lost to me. Just about all I taste is vanilla and oak. There is lingering spice in there, but it is way overshadowed by the oak and the whole beer gets steered off course. In other words, it totally flew over the seasonal runway. I could drink this in February and basically think of it as a strong ale brewed with spices and aged in oak. I then may have given it better scores because I wouldn't have been thinking "pumpkin, pumpkin, pumpkin"

weezyfart, Sep 28, 2010
Photo of Pencible
3.7/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This poured a hazy dark gold with a little off-white head.
S: It smelled like lots of mulled spices and cider, with pumpkin and sweet bourbon and a bit of oak.
T: It tasted like pumpkin and apple cider / mulled spices, with bourbon and vanilla and oak and biscuit. It had a somewhat dirty bittersweet aftertaste.
M: It was fairly thick with moderate carbonation.
D: This was better than the average pumpkin ale, but not amazing. The bourbon aging was a nice twist, and it seemed to work well with the other flavor elements. But the general quality and crispness of the brew was somewhat lacking. Nice body, and it hid the alcohol well, so it was pretty easy to drink. Enjoyable, but a bit sloppy, so there was some missed potential.

Pencible, Sep 27, 2010
Photo of ShogoKawada
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz into Newport Storm pint glass. 2010 bottling.

A- A orangey amber beer that kind of looks like oil and water mixed. Is that the saturated bourbon or the pumpkin remnants? Hmm... White head that fizzes out quickly.

S- Bourbon! Pumpkin spices mix with the vanilla oaky peppery bourbon notes.

T- Bourbon-dominated. The pumpkin flavors mesh well and almost fade into the background of the flavor profile. The spices are integrated with the bourbon notes.. if you like bourbon you will love this beer. People who don't like bourbon might find this beer to be too much. I personally love it.

M- A bit hot, good carbonation keeps it from being too heavy.

D- High. I really like this beer, it won't be for everyone but I think the bourbon barrels work really well with the pumpkin ale base. I've bought a half-case of this already and will buy more if I see it. Good stuff.

ShogoKawada, Sep 27, 2010
Photo of glid02
4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the Porter in Atlanta.

Pours an almost opaque orange-amber color with a one-finger cream-colored head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of large amounts of spices - nutmeg and cinnamon - with fresh pumpkin seeds. Also present are hints of butterscotch and even lighter hints of vanilla.

Tastes very good. Medium malt flavors with good amounts of heavy pumpkin flavors kick things off. Joining in shortly thereafter are deep spices as in the aroma. Midway through the sip slight amounts of butterscotch flavors work their way into things, fading out into smooth bourbon flavors that carry through to a crisp ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a smooth thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is also very good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have a few more.

Overall I was very impressed with this beer and even more impressed that the bourbon was as subtle as it was. A very well done beer that's well worth a shot, especially as the weather cools.

glid02, Sep 26, 2010
Photo of jpmclaug
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into my Deschutes snifter. I heard this was a bourbon bomb so I have high expectations

A - Hazy orange body with a small lingering white head.

S - Smells like pumpkin pie. Pumpkin aroma with subtle pumpkin spices. Not especially pungent but pleasant.

T - Pumpkin spices with a sweet bourbon flavor mixed in. The bourbon isn't as prevalent as I was led to believe. Really blends well with the spices normally found in pumpkin beers. A bit of an alcohol flavor in the finish as well.

M - medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D - Pretty decent beer. Definitely a sipper. Warming alcohol notes makes me think this would be a good cold weather beer. Worth trying for a new experience.

jpmclaug, Sep 26, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into my Duvel tulip. Tried a bottle of this right after The Great Pumpkin.

a - Pours a hazy orange-amber color with 2 inches of white head that leaves quickly and light carbonation evident. Some nice lacing.

s - Smells of bourbon, pumpkin, and oak. Smells pretyy good, but no spices like in The Great Pumpkin.

t - Tastes of bourbon, vanilla, oak, pumpkin, and bready malts. Again, no spice or caramel malts like The Great Pumpkin had.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation.

d - I actually liked this one more than The Great Pumpkin, though it isn't as much as a pumpkin beer. The spices and caramel malts that The Great Pumpkin had were kind of lost here due to the bourbon and oak, but a very enjoyable beer. Would have again.

mdfb79, Sep 23, 2010
Photo of DCDevilDancer
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

No disrespect to those who have reviewed this tasty delight before me, but this beer is being severely underrated, and under appreciated. Some of the previous "B" reviews have hinted that the parts of the beer (bourbon, rich pumpkin, restrained spice) may need time to coalesce, without seeing the process through. No need to wait until next Halloween! Pop this bad boy open now! Then throw it back on ice and wait an hour or two. Maybe sip on a delicous fresh HS/CC Great Pumpkin and enjoy the bright, fleshy, not-over spiced, pumpkin driven pumpkin goodness of their ready to drink un-aged offering as you wait.
Then get ready to enjoy a creamier, richer, bourbon-tinged treat. The boozeiness diminishes as the Greater Pumpkin has time to breathe, and the bold flavors find time to integrate.. you'll think you made the perfect pumpkin bourbon float.
This stuff is legit!
Just give it some time... in the cellar &/or simply w/ some air!

DCDevilDancer, Sep 23, 2010
Photo of aasher
3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I opted to go ahead and pour this one instead of aging it. The curiosity got to me. It poured a cloudy, murky dark burnt orange with almost no head at all. You can smell it from a couple feet away. You can pick up the pumpkin, nutmeg and cinnamon. Up close you get little more than bourbon, oak, and vanilla. The taste isn't what I wanted it to be. It's subtly pumpkin while overly bourbon. I would've liked it the other way around. It drinks slightly "hot" too because of the bourbon flavor paired with the 9% alcohol content. It has a medium to body and leaves the bourbon flavor on your palate. I like it, but it could've been better. I'll probably buy another one just to let it age for a couple years.

aasher, Sep 23, 2010
Photo of Chaney
3.28/5  rDev -15.2%
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.

Chaney, Sep 23, 2010
Photo of jnn4v
3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Orangeish brown, hazy color. No sediment. Very little head.

S: Smells like pumpkin spice candles, hot mulled cider, and hints of apple pie.

T: Apple pie spice, apple cider, pumpkin pie, and alcohol. Not overly sweet. Sort of medicinal flavor.

M: Good texture. Medium-to-thick mouthfeel.

D: OK drinkability. The alcohol and cloves started to get annoying halfway through.

jnn4v, Sep 19, 2010
Photo of Thorpe429
3.23/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark, dark brown with the slightest tan head. Smells slightly of bourbon and a little bit of pumpkin pie spice in the background. Neither seems to stand out. The taste ups the intensity a little bit, but not in a good way. The bourbon and pumpkin spices just don't really blend all that well in this version. The mouthfeel is medium with low carbonation. No noticeable alcohol. Drinkability is pretty good for a beer of this heft, and I'll give it points for not having ridonkulous amounts of pumpkin spices, but that's about all I can say.

Thorpe429, Sep 18, 2010
Photo of nrpellegrini
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Great smooth pumpkin flavor and spices just like the original but you pick up sweet bourbon flavors. It smooths the pumpkin spice out which I prefer.. The alcohol taste is there but subtle. If you like the original you have to give this a try. Clipper city!

nrpellegrini, Sep 15, 2010
Photo of cwps48
3.25/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Golden orange, but hazy. Moderate head with no lacing after it recedes.

S: Overwhelming bourbon barrel aging. Southern Tier-esque. Though, unlike ST, they did manage to get a bit of other flavor in the beer; pumpkin manages to turtle-head out. Swirling allows some of the cinnamon and allspice to pop, also.

T: Vanilla. Jesus, this is bourbon barrel aged. Pumpkin hardly comes out, but you can find it if you look hard enough. Somewhat hot.

M: Dry. Too carbonated for my liking. But I will admit, it is somehow making me want more...

D: Somewhat smooth. But too much bourbon to drink it quickly. Definitely a sipper.

cwps48, Sep 12, 2010
Photo of shageman331
3.55/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- slightly better head than the great pumpkin by heavy seas and a little darker, but all in all pretty similar

Smell- big hit of vanilla and Bourbon with some pumpkin making its way through

Taste- there is a lot of vanilla in this beer. The Bourbon influence is a bit overpowering and masks the pumpkin a little too much for my taste. I would like more pumpkin and spice.

Mouthfeel - Carb is well done and keeps the party moving along

Overall - I think this beer could have been exceptional if the Bourbon influence was toned down. All on all, this beer is a bit of a let down.

shageman331, Sep 12, 2010
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Heavy Seas - The Greater Pumpkin from Heavy Seas Beer
87 out of 100 based on 449 ratings.