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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
86
very good

199 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 199
Hads: 643
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 13.51%
Wants: 68
Gots: 106 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 199 | Hads: 643
Photo of kzoobrew
4.32/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into shaped imperial pint. Four finger creamy french vanilla colored head. Decent retention, a slim cap in left floating atop for the duration. Moderate lacing, scattered clumps left clinging to the glass. Body is a glowing orange color with slight haze, pretty standard for a pumpkin ale.

Warm pumpkin and spice aromas mesh seamlessly with the bourbon. The combination works so well I am surprised this is not done more often. Strong doses of cinnamon and nutmeg followed by a warm bready aroma. The bourbon in integrated in such a way it is just another piece and not the focal point.

Flavor is very well balanced. Waves of pumpkin, spice and bourbon hit the tongue intermittently keeping the taste buds off guard. The oak and the bourbon contribute flavors which compliment a pumpkin ale very well. Vanilla in integrated evenly through out.

Medium to just under full bodied. Texture is smooth with moderate carbonation. Flavors do cling to the tongue a bit but the finish is not excessively long.

Awesome beer, tremendously drinkable. Almost zero booziness which is surprising considering we are talking about a 9% -bal aged beer. This has become my favorite pumpkin ale and possibly my favorite holiday beer as well. In the past I have found Heavy Sea to be solid but not much more, this is the first offering that truly impresses me. Highly recommended. (1,370 characters)

Photo of OneDropSoup
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
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. (1,209 characters)

Photo of GregSVT
4.34/5  rDev +12.7%
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. (949 characters)

Photo of zaphodchak
4.54/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

EDIT: It seems as though I got a bottle of last year's batch, by some fantastic stroke of fortune. Over the fresh version, aging has improved it astronomically.

Thin whitish head, orangey hazy body. Some lacing.

Nicest pumpkin beer I've ever had the joy to nose. Pumpkin, nutmeggy spice, and a heavy helping of bourbony oak.

Holy cow; the taste absolutely lives up to the nose. Fantastic imperial pumpkin ale with heavy, heavy oaking presence. This bottle may have been from last year, which will only help it. There's a faint alcohol burn, but I don't mind in the least.

Mouthfeel is pretty standard and totally second fiddle to everything else. I don't notice it, so it must be all right.

Even if you don't like (or don't think you'll like) pumpkin beers, if you've ever enjoyed a bourbon-barrel aged imperial stout, you'll love this beer. I guarantee it. (862 characters)

Photo of Naugros
3.45/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Nice head, but there's a massive chill haze. Hold the beer up to the light and there's a bunch of sediment floating around in there. Not sure if it's lees suspended in the beer or spices.

The bourbon and the pumpkin are both right up front in the nose. Working together they smell a little solvent rather than boozy. The bourbon surpasses the pumpkin in dominance in the taste. The sweetness is tempered with bitterness as well as a twinge of sour. But I don't get much from the spices as they've been hijacked by the booze.

The time has come to rethink aging every beer we can get our hands on and throwing it into a bourbon barrel. It works with stouts and some barleywines can stand up to the strength of that liquor. Pumpkin ale sounded like a good idea to treat in this manner, but I don't think it really worked here. The original product was probably not bold enough and perhaps Weyerbacher might think about putting their Imperial Pumpkin Ale into bourbon barrels. It might do better sticking up for itself. (1,019 characters)

Photo of ChadQuest
3/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

First off, i am drinking this bottle 8 months after it's release.

Color is a golden hue, lighter then i was anticipating, not much lacing or head at all, drops out right away.
The aroma is sweet pumpkin pie, wood, and alcohol. I would have liked more spice notes.
The flavors are rounded smooth pumpkin sweetness and a light woody alcohol. Little spice, really little bourbon character.

I enjoy pumpkin beers, but i like more spice then this one. This one was also probably better fresh when the bourbon was stronger. (519 characters)

Photo of LordAdmNelson
3.31/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice hazy orange color with smallish off-white head that recedes to a ring around the edge of the beer. Aroma is dominated by the Heavy Seas bourbon barrels, a bit boozy, the cinnamon/nutmeg/pumpkin seems to be a bit drowned out.

Flavor is pretty good, although I am not a huge fan of whatever the bourbon aging does to the Heavy Seas beers. I had the bourbon barrel barleywine and I tasted the same thing from the bourbon aging--a bit of vanilla heavily folded into an over-the-top buttery presence. Ruined the barleywine, though it worked a bit better with this beer. I like the Great Pumpkin a lot, so this was kind of a let-down. When the Great Pumpkin does show through over the buttery mess that is the Heavy Seas bourbon barrels, it's still quite good.

MF is thick, chewy, coating. Maybe a hair more carbonation to keep it moving but that's about it. OK drinkability, but I can't get past the buttery character of these beers. Maybe it's me--I'm pretty sure it's not the bottles since this is the same flavor I've found in two of their BA beers. (1,062 characters)

Photo of brewtus
3.85/5  rDev 0%
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. (378 characters)

Photo of rootbeerman
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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. (450 characters)

Photo of jgasparine
4.64/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured from the bottle with a very thin, offwhite head, which quickly evaporated to a collar... over a completely opaque, turbid pumpkin color... with little traces of carbonation working its way up the sides of the glass.

S- The aroma is an incredibly complex combination of graham- cracker-like malt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice, which is met with a wonderful compliment of bourbon and vanillin (presumably from oak). Some very mild vinous notes in the background. Just a tremendous amount of stuff happening here in this nose...

T- In the mouth you get this malt character, that again comes through with a slight impression of graham cracker... which is met with moderate, well-proportioned dose of cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice. On the mid palate, you have a mild surge of vanilla and bourbony flavor... which turns to a moderate hop bitterness into the finish, which terminates with a kiss of booze that lingers tremendously on the palate. I truly appreciate the amazing complexity of this brew in the flavor profile... and nowhere do I feel that one component of this symphony overpowers any other element. The ability to maintain such a dynamic yet balanced flavor is worthy of a '5'.

M- Medium-plus body, with a fair amount of texture due to unattenuated sugars and a very gentle, yet pervasive carbonation. Just a tiny hint of heat from the EtOH. And a very mild astringency.

D- This stuff is just too delicious... and dangerously quaffable. Hands-down one of the best brews I've had from Heavy Seas! (1,519 characters)

Photo of wiscokid920
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

This brew is great stuff. Everything I hoped it would be an more. It has an excellent malty base built into the base beer and the bourbon barrel vanilla and slight oak play off the subtle pumpkin pie spices superbly. Very Well Done! (235 characters)

Photo of SomethingClever
3.59/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle poured into Chimay Chalice

A: Amber colored slightly hazy could be because It is so cold almost no head whatsoever

S: smells of ginger, nutmeg not so much like a cohesive pumpkin smell getting no bourbon on the nose

T: tastes like a pumpkin beer maybe not as sweet as some but it just tastes like pumpkin. I'm not getting much bourbon maybe on the finish and it just makes it sourish/bitter

M: a little syrupy but not over the top like some pumpkin beers I'd say medium body

O: meh a pretty average beer, tastes like pumpkin bourbon is about undetectable. if you see it and you love pumpkin you might love it but otherwise don't bother (655 characters)

Photo of yankeej13
4.17/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Love my pumpkin beers

A- Pours out a nice light copper like color, has a mild head of foam that fades into a nice thin lace w a small amount of carbonation.

S- Has a very strong pumpkin aroma with mild amounts of cinnamon, nutmeg, a nice tint of bourbon and vanilla, clove.

T- Has a nice smooth pumpkin taste right out of the gate with a bourbon vanilla, with hints of cinnamon and clove in the mid palette, nice and creamy with a sweet malt finish.

M- Great drinkability for the alcohol content, smooth and extremely refreshing.

Overall- Liked it alot, much different than others, I like that there is a giant burst of pumpkin with mild spices rather than lots of spices and lil pumpkin. Very pleased with it. Cheers (722 characters)

Photo of jpmclaug
3.72/5  rDev -3.4%
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. (719 characters)

Photo of mostpoetsdo
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Caramel amber, thin white head which vanishes soon after pouring.

S: Nutmeg is most prevalent out of the pumpkin spices, a bit of bourbon, raisins, some mustiness.

T: Alcohol upfront, more wine tasting than bourbon; gentle, earthy hops, not as malt forward as I expected. Fairly acidic. Almost tastes like pumpkin wine, if that's a real concoction.

M: Medium body, not that carbonated, especially smooth for a barrel aged beer. Again, getting a slight wine vibe.

O/D: Alcohol is hidden well, getting most of the taste, and not that much burn. Probably won't get again, but an interesting beer. (600 characters)

Photo of WMEugene
4.53/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Lost Dog (Col. Pike) in Arlington. From notes made on 10/12/11

A - hazy orange color, nice head retention, good lacing

S - smooth pumpkin smell, sweetness, slightly malty

T - nice pumpkin flavors balanced with notes of Bourbon. Bready malt flavors in the background

M - medium bodied, smooth with noticable Bourbon alcoholic heat aftertaste.

O - heavy seas' greater pumpkin is a unique and great take on your traditional pumpkin ale. I'm all about aging pumpkin ales in bourbon barrels now! (505 characters)

Photo of hdofu
4.78/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

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. (632 characters)

Photo of uvachief
3.25/5  rDev -15.6%

Not bad but not great either. Good seasonal pumpkin ale. Little too light and lacking in pumpkin pie for my taste. Smooth and that golden orange brown color on draft. Little to no head. Smooth and light in the mouth. Finished clean. Just needs more of that pie taste. (273 characters)

Photo of BradtheGreat7
4.21/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Review taken from notes: Early November 2013- 1st time experiencing.

22 oz brown bomber that just seems massive and thick. Well made? I think so. Label is pirate inspired with all sorts of 'Heavy Seas' artwork going on. A little Halloween Like with the jack-o,yes, but it is the fall time. Not bad artwork at all. Poured this into a massive German rounded and dimpled like mug. I'm assuming a 24 oz mug!? Lol.. Every bit went in with no problem.

A - a burnt orange color with a more rusty amber hue. Somewhat hazy body. Off white head was massive on the pour and took its time to settle to a nice size ring of lace leaving minimal stick.

S - wow, big bourbon whiffs up front.. I like. Big vanilla and oak aromas throughout the start. Then come some lovely Autumn seasonal blend of spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, along with a crisp punch of allspice. Toasted malt, brown sugar, and a hint of pumpkin in the end.

T - toasted malts, bourbon brilliance with vanilla, mild caramel, and a sturdy oak flavor. Roasted pumpkin with nice touches of pumpkin spice toward the middle. More of the traditional cinnamon and allspice quickly following. Brown sugar toward the finish paired with the sweet vanilla and bourbon barrel goodies.

M - pretty big in body and coats very very well. Nice warming from the 10% is what I look for this time of year. Texture isn't overly thick but it still does well for itself. This is a big pumpkin ale and you'll need to drink this like you would an imperial. Not at all overly sweet nor too much of any one thing. It's very well balanced and quite delicious. Finishing this bottle wasnt a problem for me. That can't be said about a lot of pumpkin ales.

O - a wonderful pumpkin ale. It Has the balance, the flavor, and the aroma any pumpkin head would enjoy yet provides the sort of class a bourbon barrel freak would appreciate. This was an interesting beer and very enjoyable. I was almost shocked at how good Heavy Seas did with this. By far the best beer I've had from them. Ill buy it again next year as well. (2,041 characters)

Photo of Daktyls
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a hazy amber color with a half finger head that recedes quickly to a minimal lacing in the center of the brew.

S: A light aroma of bourbon masks most of the other smells, leaving a slight amount of malt to be detected as well.

T: A light malty-pumpkin flavor up front followed by bourbon-y sweetness on the back end. Spices are somewhat limited but present, lending little to the taste.

M: Medium amount of carbonation for an overall light body, seems to work well together.

O: Overall, this tastes more like bourbon that anything else. Not necessarily a bad thing, just not really pumpkin-y at all. (612 characters)

Photo of BrewUSA
3.74/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Great Seas Greater Pumpkin Ale

Look 9/10
Smell 16/20
Taste 35/40
Feel 7/10
Drinkability 17/20

Overall 84/100

Too boozy for its ABV... Nice flavor and the pumpkin is real nice... I just feel like I have had too many too many pumpkin ales that were far better~ (261 characters)

Photo of fourstringer
3.99/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a Brewer's Art goblet with a moderately aggressive hand. 2013 vintage, but no specific dating on the label. There is a cartographic background with a scary pumpkin head.

A: Honey-orange body with a slight haze. 1 finger off-white head with ok retention. Light lacing. Not too shabby.

S: Nutmeg & pie spice. Bourbon. Oak. Lighter cinnamon and booze.

T: Lightly sweet with a tame spiciness that develops into a pleasant, even-tempered bitterness. Fairly dry finish for the flavor profile. Noticeable alcohol consistent with 10% ABV. Light oak, nutmeg, vanilla. I can detect some actual pumpkin, which I find fairly rare for most pumpkin beers. There is a pronounced whiskey finish to this brew.

M: Moderate to low carbonation with a good smoothness. Moderate body. Some alcohol burn is there, but not unwelcome.

O: Nice beer. I find the bourbon/barrel-aged notes to be fairly present. I appreciate the restrained sweetness and appropriate hopping. Well balanced. Good sipper.

Prost! (1,016 characters)

Photo of endincolorado
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
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. (603 characters)

Photo of jale
3.12/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a cloudy orange-amber with two quarters of off white head.

S: Pumpkin aroma with a lot of nutmeg.

T: Sweet with a hint of malt upfront moving quickly into alcohol heat. Pumplin but mostly nutmeg middle. I don't pick up any bourbon but the finish is considerable oaky tannins.

M: medium body which is somewhat sticky. For a lighter beer I find this slightly chewy.

O: I would like to have tasted more malt backbone in this. (436 characters)

Photo of pzrhsau
3.97/5  rDev +3.1%
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. (556 characters)

Heavy Seas - Great’ER Pumpkin from Heavy Seas Beer
86 out of 100 based on 199 ratings.