Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale | Shipyard Brewing Co.

2,678 Ratings
Read the review
Shipyard Pumpkinhead AleShipyard Pumpkinhead Ale

Brewed by:
Shipyard Brewing Co.
Maine, United States

Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.70%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-04-2001

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,678 |  Reviews: 881
Photo of TheFactoryEatery
2.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of sommersb
3.51/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Tasted On: 09-25-2013
Freshness: Best by 03-2014
Packaging: 12 oz. brown bottle, twist-cap
Glassware: Mug
Purchased: Single from Pour Vous, Hendersonville, TN

A: Clear and golden beer with a white head that fades fast. I don't get any lacing.

S: Pumpkin aromas, along with spices like clove and allspice.

T: Fruity and spicey with notes of cinnamon, nutmeg and pumpkins.

M: Light bodied with high carbonation, the finish is fruity with pumpkin pie spices.

O: A pretty good pumpkin beer

 490 characters

Photo of Chirpie
3.83/5  rDev +32.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Let's throw this out there... this beer doesn't takes like pumpkin. Using that metric, I could see why there's a fair bit of disappointment surrounding this brew.

But otherwise, sue me, I like it. I tasted this out of a 12oz bottle into a tulip. Appearance is kind of underwhelming. The way it tastes and smells, you'd think it'd be a little less clear and a tad darker.

It's a spice bomb all the way. If you aren't a fan of it in the first 5 seconds, you're not going to get much else as you finish the bottle. Cinnamon all the way.

As a pumpkin beer, it sort of is a fail, but as a brew I like, I think it's better than that. Cheers.

 638 characters

Photo of Cylinsier
2.82/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

12 oz can

Pours a hazy golden, half inch of white head dissipates to a film.

Smells of mild citrus tartness and mildly wheaty malts. Some cinnamon peaks through. No hint of pumpkin.

Tastes of mild citrus and light grassy malts, maybe a hint of dryer papery malt character. Again, no pumpkin.

Lighter body with tingly carbonation on the tongue.

All in all, this isn't a bad summery ale. But this is supposed to be a pumpkin ale. Where's the pumpkin? Did they forget to add it to my batch? No evidence in the appearance, aroma, or flavor. While the beer itself is fine, you'd never know it was supposed to be a pumpkin ale. .

 630 characters

Photo of Botulizard
2.03/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

A: Held up to the light, it appears pale yellow- not unlike an AAL. At a normal glance, it's orange-ish. No real head, just a thin foam cover. No lacing on the glass at any point.

S: Pumpkin meat. It's not as spicy as I'd like it to be at all. There's also a faint smell of some ambiguous, plastic-like chemical.

T: Pumpkin pie with very mild, faint spice. The faint chemical-like smell also translates to the taste. No taste is very strong, and the beer's very watery.

M: Very thin, light carbonation. Watery.

O: It was OK enough to not be a drainpour (mostly because it's REALLY rare for me to actually pour out a beer), but it's quite lacking on all fronts. I don't think I'll be drinking this again.

 709 characters

Photo of Phramboise
4/5  rDev +38.4%

Photo of dcp27
3/5  rDev +3.8%

Photo of waddellc2
3.25/5  rDev +12.5%

Photo of AndyAvalanche
2.82/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

12 oz. bottle poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint. Comes out golden/yellow straw, like a valley in at harvest time. Excellent clarity and a thin white head with small fizzy bubbles. Little bit of lacing and glass retention. Gets a lot of credit for being horrible all around, but a decent looking beer. Slightly darker and more full looking than an average macro-ale.

Smell is adequate for the style, a bit too sweet for my liking. tough to distinguish, but there are some toasted malts in here; it's just really masked by all of the pumpkin pie spices. Smells more like pumpkin pie with a dab of whipped cream.

Really not a fan of the taste. It at least SLIGHTLY smells like beer, but it doesn't taste like it. Like a lite lager with the same pumpkin pie spices.

Mouthfeel is okay. Light bodied, more of a light and crisp on the mouth for a summer style than fall. Taste only slightly lingers for a few seconds then disappears. Again, a bit too sweet. Good carbonation level though. Reasonably drinkable, just not my thing.

I remember having this on tap years ago and thinking it was ok, but Pumpkin Ales have come so far these days that this is just more of a seasonal crowd pleaser than anything else. Worth trying, I'm sure it's available to almost anyone in the US these days. Was looking for an easy pumpkin beer on my night off and had this in the fridge from some friends bringing it over. Not bad, not good, in-between.

 1,436 characters

Photo of KAP1356
2.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of kricks77
3.75/5  rDev +29.8%

Photo of Ivanhoes_Backpack
2.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of GraduatedCashew
3.5/5  rDev +21.1%

Photo of Saird
3/5  rDev +3.8%

Photo of rdeitch21
4/5  rDev +38.4%

Photo of YardmanFTB
1.9/5  rDev -34.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

Beer pours an extremely pale yellow with thin white head. This tells me two things: 1. The body is incredibly thin. 2. There is zero pumpkin in this beer. There is zero spice in the aroma. You can taste cinnamon, but it's as if someone took a budlight or smirnoff ice (dare I say) and sprinkled some cinnamon in there. Too me, this is barely beer and not what I look for in a pumpkin beer.

 389 characters

Photo of bigred89
2.5/5  rDev -13.5%

Photo of BeerMeColorado
2/5  rDev -30.8%

Photo of abex44
4/5  rDev +38.4%

Photo of cjgiant
3/5  rDev +3.8%

Photo of brandon911
3.5/5  rDev +21.1%

Photo of ThisWangsChung
2.49/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

12 oz can into a pint glass. I really hope this is as bad as the horror stories lead me to believe...

A: Pours a hazy golden color. The head is a one finger white shade with bad retention. That combined with nonexistent lacing means this isn't exactly a looker.

S: Let's see. Cinnamon and nutmeg notes? Check. Actual gourdy character? Check. Nothing that makes me want to retch? Uh...check! As a complaint, the pumpkin pie character seems weirdly artificial, like some saccharine pumpkin-flavored candy. So while we're at it...too sweet? Check. I really don't hate the aroma, though; in fact, I actually like it.

T: The flavor is a big step down, and it's not good, but it's not the sheer terror I expected. It starts with a light note of allspice, before turning into some weird pumpkin-flavored candy finish. It's dawning on me - this tastes more like pumpkin-flavored cream soda instead of an actual beer. Like most sodas, it's quite sweet, to the point of being bothersome. Even worse, the sweetness is kind of artificial.

M: Light and fizzy. Just like soda, actually. All the carbonation tries to dry the palate out some, but all that sugary sweetness wins out. This combination really taxes the palate after a while: something so light shouldn't be so hard to imbibe.

O: I can actually see why this appeals to so many casual drinkers. It's pumpkin-y (read: spicy) enough, and not very beer-y, so mission accomplished. Beer geeks, though, needn't bother. I really wanted to hate this a lot more than I do. Still, that only means it's wretchedly forgettable instead of wretchedly awful, and I'm not really sure which is worse.

PS: I couldn't have been the only one surprised to see this pumpkin soda-- oops, I mean beer get tons of high scores from Untappd users.

 1,774 characters

Photo of Cheld
1.86/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2

After pouring into a glass, the beer appears to have a pleasant color and nice foamy head that dissipates to leave a thin white film over the surface. Not a bad start... Then you go to sniff it (or accidentally sniff it while taking a swig) and get a strong whiff of a frat house's bathroom upstairs from a bakery- a sickly vomit odor with a hint of beer, followed by cinnamon and cloves. Not the most appetizing. I found myself hard pressed to continue tasting after that, but continued nonetheless. After steeling myself for a taste as atrocious as the smell, I was pleasantly surprised by the taste- that's not to say it was good, but it wasn't horrible. It is somewhat watery tasting at first, followed by a blast of spices- namely cinnamon and cloves. Not sure I even tasted the pumpkin in there. Definitely not something I would try again, and can't say I recommend it.

Note- I took a taste of a friends who drank his out of the bottle. That is much preferable for this beer as it doesn't open up and release it's rather foul aroma.

 1,039 characters

Photo of Chevelle66
3.75/5  rDev +29.8%

Photo of Jersh67
3/5  rDev +3.8%

Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale from Shipyard Brewing Co.
2.89 out of 5 based on 2,678 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.