1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. 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

545 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 545
Reviews: 192
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 14.43%
Wants: 64
Gots: 79 | 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: 545 | Reviews: 192 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ADTaber
4/5  rDev +3.1%

ADTaber, Aug 05, 2013
Photo of Mitchster
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

$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.

Mitchster, Nov 16, 2010
Photo of ncstateplaya
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

ncstateplaya, Sep 19, 2013
Photo of KevMo84
3/5  rDev -22.7%

KevMo84, May 31, 2014
Photo of Chaney
3.28/5  rDev -15.5%
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 emmasdad
4.08/5  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.

emmasdad, Nov 01, 2010
Photo of Daniellobo
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice bourbon barrellization of the Great Pumpkin… This is truly greater.

Presentation: 22 oz brown capped bottle. Perfunctory pirate skull and bones design: here the Great Pumpkin logo gets the barrel treatment. Pirate narrative describing the general style of the brew without going into much detail. Shows 9% Alc. by Vol. Poured into a tulip glass.

A - Medium amber-orange with an short frothy head, moderate to faint retention, small surface ring, and faint lacing.

S - Softly spice bourbon whiff, oaken sweet caramel riding the e pumpkin layer.

T - The tastes amplifies the sweet and spice pumpkin sense with a nice bourbon barrel identity, nice sync of spices woven with the oak vanilla. Underflow of the expected all spice, cinnamon, and clove come together in a subtle way dancing with the fleshy pumpkiness.

M - Medium carbonation and body. Prickly with a rather smooth finish and a soft lingering warmth.

O - Surprised by the flow of this offering. Nice sipper…

Notes: I many need to revisit the Great after having had the Greater Pumpkin… This works pretty well. Now, it´s only the second barrel aged bourbon pumpkin ale I try, and both, but this one in particular, were quite surprising… I may need to pick up another one of these.

Daniellobo, Nov 04, 2011
Photo of Immortale25
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Immortale25, Oct 10, 2014
Photo of Hojaminbag
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

Hojaminbag, Nov 19, 2010
Photo of mcallister
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%
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 Davepoolesque
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Davepoolesque, Oct 28, 2013
Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.36/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Tap and Mallet in Rochester, NY.

Pours a bright, hazy orange. One inch fizzy head. Small amount of lacing.

Smells like pumpkin spices- clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, etc, oak, vanilla, pumpkin.

The taste is pretty similar. Strong spicing especailly nutmeg, with oak, vanilla, and some slight, sweet bourbon flavors. Some rum-like flavors too, with brown sugar and molasses in small amounts. Biscuity sweet malts.

Medium to light body. Well carbonated, creamy mouthfeel. Very drinkable.

An excellent BA Pumpkin beer. I think this would also lend itself well to rum barrel aging.

GreesyFizeek, Dec 04, 2013
Photo of Kmlund
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Kmlund, Oct 28, 2013
Photo of VeganUndead
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

VeganUndead, Mar 31, 2014
Photo of barczar
3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
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.

barczar, Oct 16, 2013
Photo of donkeyrunner
2.45/5  rDev -36.9%
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.

donkeyrunner, Sep 24, 2011
Photo of Morey
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Morey, Oct 06, 2013
Photo of 2dogbrew
4/5  rDev +3.1%

2dogbrew, Sep 29, 2012
Photo of mrebeka
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

mrebeka, Nov 23, 2013
Photo of vermilcj
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

vermilcj, Nov 27, 2013
Photo of jsh420
1.75/5  rDev -54.9%
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 atone315
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

atone315, Jul 29, 2014
Photo of tclapper
4/5  rDev +3.1%

tclapper, Jan 16, 2012
Photo of ThePorterSorter
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

ThePorterSorter, Oct 25, 2013
Photo of hoppymcgee
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

hoppymcgee, Nov 05, 2013
Heavy Seas - The Greater Pumpkin from Heavy Seas Beer
87 out of 100 based on 545 ratings.