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Harpoon Imperial Pumpkin - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Not Rated.
Harpoon Imperial PumpkinHarpoon Imperial Pumpkin

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

130 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 130
Reviews: 30
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 12.6%
Wants: 5
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BEERMILER12 on 08-16-2013)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 130 | Reviews: 30 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sazz9
Sazz9

Texas

3/5  rDev -17.8%

10-12-2013 22:07:28 | More by Sazz9
Photo of Kevin_Siqveland
Kevin_Siqveland

Virginia

3.5/5  rDev -4.1%

10-12-2013 21:31:08 | More by Kevin_Siqveland
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

3.68/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: pours a dark black color with a 1/4" head that falls to some big surface bubbles.

Smell: roasted malts, dark fruit sweetness, and a bit of spice comes through to the nose.

Taste: roasted malt, dark chocolates, raisins, some cinammon, and a hint of pumpkin is with a bit of alcohol warming.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Smooth from start to finish. Long lasting aftertaste.

Overall: this beer is a slow sipper and is really just a big flavored stout with some pumpkin pie spice wrapped around it. Worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2013 23:27:40 | More by Gavage
Photo of Drknight
Drknight

Virginia

3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

10-11-2013 14:23:37 | More by Drknight
Photo of skaboom420
skaboom420

Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

10-10-2013 00:30:54 | More by skaboom420
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

2.9/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

I have really liked the big pumpkin stouts I have had so far this season.Pours nearly jet black except for a tinge of brown when held to the light,a half finger beige head atop.Nutmeg and clove stand out most in the nose along light alcohol and molasses-like sweetness,downhill from here.Somewhat fizzy and much lighter than expected in the mouth with harsh over spiced flavors and some stinging alcohol in the finish.Wow I have to say I was expecting something much better here...might be a drain pour.

Serving type: bottle

10-09-2013 20:49:09 | More by oberon
Photo of bluntedboywonder
bluntedboywonder

New York

3.25/5  rDev -11%

10-09-2013 01:02:00 | More by bluntedboywonder
Photo of TequilaTom
TequilaTom

Ohio

3.25/5  rDev -11%

10-07-2013 14:18:30 | More by TequilaTom
Photo of ldhughes3
ldhughes3

Louisiana

3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

10-06-2013 13:16:55 | More by ldhughes3
Photo of KevinGordon
KevinGordon

North Carolina

3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

10-06-2013 05:19:51 | More by KevinGordon
Photo of BColton1
BColton1

Rhode Island

3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

10-04-2013 23:35:55 | More by BColton1
Photo of projektyle
projektyle

New Hampshire

3.5/5  rDev -4.1%

10-03-2013 01:54:31 | More by projektyle
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spence524

Texas

4/5  rDev +9.6%

10-02-2013 17:24:50 | More by spence524
Photo of mhbarber
mhbarber

Virginia

4.25/5  rDev +16.4%

10-02-2013 00:53:06 | More by mhbarber
Photo of emottram
emottram

Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

09-30-2013 23:38:09 | More by emottram
Photo of scxcrunner
scxcrunner

Massachusetts

2.75/5  rDev -24.7%

09-29-2013 22:49:04 | More by scxcrunner
Photo of Kilhd
Kilhd

Alabama

3.25/5  rDev -11%

09-29-2013 20:16:18 | More by Kilhd
Photo of Dicers
Dicers

Texas

4/5  rDev +9.6%

09-28-2013 02:07:46 | More by Dicers
Photo of Jslay013
Jslay013

Massachusetts

2.75/5  rDev -24.7%

09-27-2013 18:42:39 | More by Jslay013
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

2.5/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

Acquired at Whole Foods HQ. 22 fl oz brown glass bottle with appealing simple label art and branded pry-off pressure cap served into a pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are high. 10.5% ABV.

Served cold - straight from me fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as I pour.

Pours a half finger wide head of nice rich khaki colour; not as tan or rich as it could be, but it has a soft shiny complexion. Thickness and creaminess are a bit underplayed, but generally pretty good. Retention is poor - maybe 40 seconds at best. No lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Body colour is a predictable opaque dark black; not quite a solid or jet black - the edges have a cola colour in the glass. Nontransparent/nontranslucent. No yeast particles are visible. I've seen more vibrant imperial stouts, but this one is generally appealing for the style.

Not unique or special, but there are no obvious flaws.

Sm: Pumpkin - mostly a puree, but there's a bit of gourd there. Doesn't come off as artificial as most pumpkin puree beers do. Still, real pumpkin would be preferable. Chocolate malt. Dark malts. Brown sugar. Molasses - I could do without that note. Plenty of evocative yet balanced spices: nutmeg, clove, allspice, cinnamon. I don't find any ginger. I do get some vague almond extract. Not as roasty as I'd like; it has very little roasted barley character at all. Unfortunately, I get a buried nebulous hint of anise/licorice (which I can't stand in a beer, especially when combined with molasses notes).

No hop/yeast character or alcohol is detectable.

Overall, it's an interesting aroma of moderate strength, and suggests that the flavour profile will live up to the pumpkin/imperial stout hybrid premise. I'm looking forward to trying it.

T: Hmph. Right off the first sip I can tell the spices and pumpkin clash somewhat with the dark malt/chocolate malt body. The finish (and most of the third act) is/are entirely too bitter, with troublesome anise/licorice mixing with the bitterness of the dying spices. Molasses lends an unnatural sweetness to the second act. Caramel. All the spices are packed in on the climax and in the third act, making it structurally imbalanced. I get allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove. Too much nutmeg. The cinnamon also seems a bit strange, and distracts from the malts. Out-of-place green apple makes an appearance; that was a poor choice. There's an unwelcome baked brown sugar character throughout the beer which I'm none too keen on. The pumpkin itself has less presence than the spices, and isn't evocative; there's no true pumpkin or pumpkin gourd, just a vague puree/extract note that rings artificial (contrary to what the aroma suggested).

It does come off on the sweeter side, definitely. No hop character or yeast character comes through. I do notice an evident alcohol presence, which reduces the drinkability.

Depth of flavour is on the low side of average for the style, as is duration of flavour. Intensity of flavour is average for the style.

The harsh spice presence needs some real toning down. It definitely needs more pumpkin - and real pumpkin. Too sweet as well. It's an interesting stab at a pumpkin beer, but ultimately it's quite a mess. Imbalanced, with little cohesion; certainly not gestalt. Lacks any subtlety whatsoever, but it does attempt to bring the complexity - it just falls short on the execution. I wouldn't call it uninspired, it's just a failed experiment. I wouldn't say I like it per se.

Mf: Smooth and wet - too much so on both counts. Sticky. Overcarbonated. Lightly syrupy. Too thick/viscous. Has an unjustifiably overbearing presence on the palate for its lack of flavour and balance. It crosses the barrier from 'pleasant alcohol warmth' to 'unpleasant heat.' Doesn't suit the flavour profile well. It ought to be more dry and coarse, as well as a bit less thick and more approachable. Unrefreshing. Flawed execution.

Dr: While I'll finish the bottle alone, it's not the most drinkable beer - both due to its relative lack of quality and its troublesome mouthfeel. It's a deeply flawed beer, but I applaud the attempt to merge the concept of a pumpkin beer with the imperial stout style. Unfortunately, Harpoon fell well short of its aims, and we're left with a spice-dominant pumpkin-minimal beer that has none of the best attributes of its two constituent styles and many of the worst. I wouldn't get it again, nor would I recommend it to friends.

If you're going to brew a pumpkin beer, commit. Brew with real pumpkin, put in the time and effort, clean your messy tanks, and deliver. At the end of the day this beer seems like more an attempt to capitalize on the popularity of the pumpkin seasonal than a sincere attempt to satisfy drinkers.

High D+

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2013 03:08:42 | More by kojevergas
Photo of lordofthewiens
lordofthewiens

Maine

3.99/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In a pint glass the beer was black in color with a small tan head.

Aroma of pumpkin, spice, molasses, and a hint of chocolate.

Nice taste. Pumpkin first, then cinnamon and allspice, followed by molasses. I didn't get the chocolate that I thought I detected in the aroma.

Sweeter than I expected and very smooth. The alcohol was extremely well-hidden.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2013 21:51:35 | More by lordofthewiens
Photo of MightyDog
MightyDog

Texas

4/5  rDev +9.6%

09-25-2013 21:39:53 | More by MightyDog
Photo of Brad007
Brad007

Vermont

4.03/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Just in time for the fall season!

Pours a pitch black with a one-finger brown head into my glass. I suppose it could be a dark brownish tint as well.

Creamy with a good touch of nutmeg in the nose. Pumpkin pie stout is more like it. I'm not complaining.

Creamy and dry with hints of cocoa, nutmeg and perhaps vanilla(?) Warms the throat as it goes down.

Lingering cocoa and nutmeg. It's kind of harsh though with carbonation a little too high for my liking.

A decent stab at the holiday grab. Flavors could use some work (less carbonation, a more balanced touch of cocoa and nutmeg) but it fits the theme regardless.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2013 23:57:16 | More by Brad007
Photo of mdanberg
mdanberg

Delaware

3.5/5  rDev -4.1%

09-22-2013 06:49:55 | More by mdanberg
Photo of Franziskaner
Franziskaner

Missouri

3.43/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Dark black in color. Just a slight bit of light gets through this one. Not much foam on the top of this one. I do see carbonation bubbles, though. Cinnamon, pumpkin, and nutmeg are prevalent. Mouthfeel is thick and chewy. The aroma seems to say pumpkin ale and the taste is pumpkin stout. I get licorice, the bitterness of the roasted malt, and some lingering sweetness of the molasses in the aftertaste. Interesting, but a bit off.

Serving type: bottle

09-21-2013 03:11:54 | More by Franziskaner
Harpoon Imperial Pumpkin from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
83 out of 100 based on 130 ratings.