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Harpoon Grateful Harvest Cranberry Ale - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Not Rated.
Harpoon Grateful Harvest Cranberry AleHarpoon Grateful Harvest Cranberry Ale

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BA SCORE
76
okay

215 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 215
Reviews: 97
rAvg: 3.28
pDev: 15.24%
Wants: 7
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Harpoon Grateful Harvest is a beer brewed with Thanksgiving celebrations in mind. A puree of freshly harvested cranberries, donated by local cranberry farm AD Makepeace, lends a subtle tartness to the beer. The cranberry flavor complements the malty character derived by the combination of Munich and Vienna malts. An addition of CaraMunich malt enhances the beer’s reddish hue and adds a touch of sweetness, while Northern Brewer bittering hops complement the slight cranberry tartness.

25 IBU

(Beer added by: LtCracker20 on 10-11-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 215 | Reviews: 97 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by JimmieFrisbee:
Photo of JimmieFrisbee
3.38/5  rDev +3%

Poured from a bottle into my Samuel Adams perfect pint with just under two fingers of head.

Wasn't sure what to expect in terms of appearance... thought it could be red/purple because of the cranberry puree, but that is not the case, at least in this light. It seems to be a very dark amber. I could even say color is bordering on brown if it were not so transparent. Highlights are red, head is a frothy off-white (slightly hued toward brown). Does look tasty.

My first impression of the nose is chocolate, which I was not expecting at all. Behind it is a faint, sweet and tart fruitiness. This aroma comes out more as it warms, and that initial chocolate I thought I detected subsides. A little bit of hoppy cleanness seems to come through, as well.

First sip is a surprise. Seems to be a bit of that cranberry flavor up front (don't know if I'd have been able to pick out if I didn't know it was in there, so maybe I only think that's what I taste), with some chocolatey-ness with it. The two flavors don't necessarily mesh well together, at first. I'd be interested to know what the grain bill for this beer is, or if this chocolate sensation is all in my head. The following flavor is a lingering, heavy sweetness that seems to be typical of an amber sort of ale, combined with some fruit sweetness. Finish is relatively clean given how sweet it is. The odd flavor combinations are growing on me the more I drink, but still not my favorite. This brew certainly isn't "bad".

Medium body in the mouthfeel, maybe slightly on the thicker side. Very pleasant in that regard.

Overall, not a bad beer, or something I wouldn't want to finish. Its name brings to mind Thanksgiving, and I'd be curious to see how this would pair with turkey and stuffing, maybe even curious enough to pick up another bottle or two for the meal. It's also nice that the proceeds go to local foodbanks. Worth trying, for sure!

JimmieFrisbee, Nov 06, 2011
More User Reviews:
Photo of beergod82
4.25/5  rDev +29.6%

beergod82, Feb 13, 2014
Photo of lordofthewiens
3.3/5  rDev +0.6%

Innocuous enough,pleasant,but not great beer.
In a Sam Adams pint glass it was a cherry amber color with a tan head.
Sweet aroma, a hint of cranberry.
It had a slight taste reminiscent of cranberry bread; not much there.
A bit on the tart side.
Middle of the road. I had two of the 6pack, my wife had the other four.

lordofthewiens, Dec 02, 2010
Photo of generallee
3.43/5  rDev +4.6%

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass. The label has a freshness date ("Best By" 01/15/11) and a description of the beer. It also mentions that Harpoon supports there local foodbanks from the sale of this beer.

Appearance: The body has a reddish copper color with good clarity and a quick fading light off white head. Lacing is minimal and slick.

Smell: The aroma has light scent with a mix of sweet/tart malts and cranberry.

Taste/Palate: The flavor reflects the scent with a light to medium bodied malt sweetness with notes of caramel, sweet bread and pie crust. This is offset by light cranberry tartness and faint hop bitterness. Carbonation is light and the palate is a little sticky.

Notes: For me this is just a good average beer. It's not a stand out but it is more balanced then Samuel Adams Cranberry Lambic.

generallee, Dec 23, 2010
Photo of tigg924
3.3/5  rDev +0.6%

Appearance: red brown in color..no head, minimal carbonation, clear

Smell: cereal and small dose of cranberries

Taste: tart cranberry juice, grain, and toasted malt

Mouthfeel: light bodied, medium carbonation, tart

Drinkability: The cranberry juice really shines through and melds well with the beer. You must like cranberries to appreciate it, but this is a decent beer. That said, this is a two max in a session though.

tigg924, Jan 06, 2011
Photo of harryragg
4.25/5  rDev +29.6%

harryragg, Nov 21, 2013
Photo of chinchill
3.28/5  rDev 0%

12 oz bottle, dated "enjoy by 02/15/13", served in a Sam Adams lager glass.
A: The beer has a complementary reddish tint in the otherwise deep amber, clear ale. Decent, renewable tan head.
Cranberries evident in the fruity flavor and aroma, as well as in the not-so-subtle tartness. The flavor more clearly reflects cranberry than does the more vaguely fruity aroma.
Some hop bitterness is apparent. Crisp, slightly astringent feel with near medium body and medium carbonation.
My favorite aspect is the rather marked transition from momentarily sweet to tart and, with different timing, from tart fruit flavor to a more balanced and bready/malty aftertaste. Well crafted, and perhaps a bit better than expected, but there may be only so far one can go with a cranberry ale.

chinchill, Jan 10, 2013
Photo of ianjsullivan
3.35/5  rDev +2.1%

ST: 12oz poured into a pint glass.

A: Amber with a red tint and slightly off-white thin head.

S: Cranberries really jump out of the glass. There is also a citrus edge and sweet malt.

T: Cranberries are prominent all the way through from beginning to end. The sweetness of the fruit quickly changes to tart and a bit of bitterness joins in the finish.

M: Medium

O: It tells you it is a cranberry ale, and it certainly is. The cranberry dominates the aroma and the taste profile. There is some balance as the sweet does quickly give over to the tart. It has a bit of zing, but the finish cloys the tongue. I think it would be good with Thanksgiving (turkey and stuffing in particular), which was the point of the ale.

ianjsullivan, Nov 14, 2012
Photo of acurtis
2.75/5  rDev -16.2%

acurtis, Nov 28, 2013
Photo of Brenden
3.46/5  rDev +5.5%

A rusty red-orange-brown colored brew grows a thick, creamy head roughly one finger tall. It shows great density and retention, as it remains thick and its same height for some time, even making a nicely dense and thick island of foam. More lacing could have been left, but certainly no complaints overall.
There's a nice balance with an emphasis on malts in the nose. Cranberry tartness is as advertised. Hops are lighter and offer mostly floral notes. Lots of bread and toastiness come out. This seems to be a red ale-type base, and a pretty good one. It's interestingly sweet against the tart and floral aspects.
The flavor showcases the sane malt-forwardness but with a bit more bitterness from the hops than in the aroma. The cranberry is likewise strong. Unfortunately, toward the end of each sip, something about the tartness and the bitterness clashes to make a pithy sort of sour bitterness that's less pleasant on the back of the tongue and throat.
Both crispness and smoothness come in moderation. The body holds up with about medium strength, but feels (not terribly, but somewhat) thin particularly at the middle of the tongue.

Brenden, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of genovm
3/5  rDev -8.5%

genovm, Dec 28, 2012
Photo of secondtooth
3.21/5  rDev -2.1%

Pours a deep ruby amber, with a fair head and only slight (but attractive lace).

Nose is tart and subtle, but discernibly cranberry in character. Fair.

Taste is malty and sweet up front, with a hint of tart cranberry. But whereas many fruit-infused ales are over-sweet and overbearing, this one settles back and avoids that particular affliction. The cranberries are tart and sour, not sugary.

The aftertaste/finish is where this one loses me -- it's sour and leaves a somewhat unpleasant lingering flavor. So, although this seems to capture the essence of natural (unsweetened) cranberries, it's not completely there yet.

secondtooth, Jan 04, 2014
Photo of NeroFiddled
3.75/5  rDev +14.3%

Harpoon Brewery "Grateful Harvest Cranberry Ale"
12 oz. bottle, "ENJOY BY 03/15/14 315 09:28

An interesting beer, and a welcome addition to my usual line-up of "holiday" beers.

It's a clear, dark-copper color with ruby and orange highlights beneath a pillowy white head. The head retention is "fair" to "OK" but the lacing is definitely limited.

Cranberry and caramel malts greet you in the nose.

The flavor follows the aroma, and it's gently fruity and lightly tart backed by a slightly sugary dark-caramel/brown sugar maltiness. The bitterness is minimal, as it should be to keep everything in balance, but it still finishes dry with the tartness leading and then fading to leave cranberry and malt residue behind.

In the mouth it's medium bodied and crisp.

Nicely done. An entertaining, unique beer that offers enough character to hold your interest without going so far as to distract you from your meal or whatever else you're doing. Worth trying.

NeroFiddled, Dec 16, 2013
Photo of cjgator3
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%

cjgator3, Dec 24, 2013
Photo of cliff1066
3.25/5  rDev -0.9%

cliff1066, Jan 23, 2013
Photo of mdvatab
2.9/5  rDev -11.6%

An extra in a trade late last fall.
Poured from 12oz bottle (bb 2/15/12) into imperial pint.

A: Rich, caramelly malt, ripe plum, cranberry fruit, vanilla, toasted oak.

A: Deep amber body w/ good clarity. 2 finger off-white head falls slowly; leaves light lacing.

F: Roasted maltiness up front, cranberry bitterness in the middle, followed by a subtle fruitiness, and punctuated by a lingering bitterness. The whole combination, unfortunately, doesn't work well IMO, and comes across a bit like cough syrup...

M: Medium body and carbonation.

O: I hate to be too hard in my critique, but this brew unfortunately comes across like as a bit of an amateur effort. I went into this one with an open mind, curious about what the cranberry would bring to the table, but was just not a big fan of the flavor combination.

mdvatab, Jan 14, 2012
Photo of Kegatron
3.58/5  rDev +9.1%

12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Review from a couple months ago.

Pours a deep clear copper, with a couple fingers of frothy and slightly off-white head. This retains with a rich ½ finger, which soaps the sides of the glass with thick swathes of lacing. The aroma, well, smells like cranberry, which mixes in with the fresh earthy citrus flavors of those Noble hops and a combination of sweet caramel and bready notes from the malt to impart a pleasant fruity tanginess in the nose.

The taste has a nice lager base to it of caramel sweetness and a light graininess. A splash of cranberry is present (but much more subdued than in the nose), as is an earthy citric bitterness that gives this some zip. The finish is moderately dry with a little lingering pith but is overall pretty clean. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a very smooth feeling crisp creaminess to it that makes this extremely drinkable.

For a cranberry flavored Lager, I thought that this was very well done, keeping the fruit in the nose but then more complimentary in the taste, where it marries well with those Noble hops. Flavorful and drinkable, this might be a new Thanksgiving Day go to from now on.

Kegatron, Feb 09, 2012
Photo of hdofu
1.63/5  rDev -50.3%

To the "wants" out there let me give you a heads up, this beer is a disgusting mess of flavors that don't work together.
It pours a copper color with a thin white head. It smells a bit of cranberry but mostly this horrible medicinal smell. Taste is like cranberry flavored cough syrup.... it truly is a disgusting taste to behold, I'd have given it a 1 but it at least tastes like cranberry so I gave it a half a star for that. It pretty crisp. Overall I'd say its like medicine more then beer and since theres no reason to take this as a medicine, I wouldn't recommend getting it.

hdofu, Nov 26, 2012
Photo of negroobserver
2.93/5  rDev -10.7%

Harpoon Grateful Harvest Cranberry Ale
Best by Jan 15, 2011

C: 2.5 - Pours hazy brown color with about 1/2 inch of while head.

S: 3.0 - Malty. Sour.

T: 3.0 - Malty. Sweet undertones. Medium bitter finish. Sour cranberry aftertaste.

M: 3.5 - A little watery. Low-medium carbonation.

D: 2.5 - Beginning with the color through every other category, this beer has been at best unexceptional. The sourness of the beer and the slightly water texture don't add to the desire to drink the beer. The sour texture is kind on unusual and interesting.

OVERALL GRADE: C-/c

negroobserver, Mar 21, 2011
Photo of KTCamm
3.3/5  rDev +0.6%

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a reddish brown with scarce white foam that settles quickly. Theres a dark red streak throughout. Cranberry sauce smell, like opening one of those jellied cans. Light tart open with an earthy malt close. Some hop buried in there. Leaves one thinking like a big glass of cranberry juice was just finished.

Nice concept, but kind of oddly glommed together and never really quite reaches the destination.

KTCamm, Nov 25, 2012
Photo of imasloth
3.68/5  rDev +12.2%

A- Pours an amber with a slightly reddish (cranberry) hue. Decent head to start, dissipates quickly, but leaves fair lacing.

S- Like a cranberry spritzer with the slight hint of malt. Both sweet and tart from the cranberry.

T- Starts with cranberry, then a sweet malt with cranberry tartness remaining throughout.

M- Light body, no discernible bitterness. Neither positive or negative.

O- I enjoy it much more than the rather plain Winter Warmer Harpoon does. I'd recommend it, not as a standard, but worth the yearly purchase of a sixer. User it to make Thanksgiving more bearable.

imasloth, Nov 20, 2011
Photo of Bjlps
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%

Bjlps, Dec 06, 2013
Photo of Kmlund
3.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Kmlund, Oct 03, 2013
Photo of tone77
3.3/5  rDev +0.6%

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a coppper color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of cranberries, some hints of malts. Taste is mild, some cranberry, a bit of malts. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and has good drinkability. Overall this is a pretty good beer.

tone77, Feb 24, 2011
Photo of LadyOfMuchBeer
3/5  rDev -8.5%

LadyOfMuchBeer, Dec 15, 2011
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Harpoon Grateful Harvest Cranberry Ale from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
76 out of 100 based on 215 ratings.