Pumpkinhead Ale | Shipyard Brewing Company

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Pumpkinhead AlePumpkinhead Ale
2,720 Ratings
Pumpkinhead AlePumpkinhead Ale

Brewed by:
Shipyard Brewing Company
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

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Ratings: 2,720 |  Reviews: 889
Photo of TheBishopco
2.75/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of Rekrule
1.25/5  rDev -58.5%

Photo of TimoP
2.25/5  rDev -25.2%

Photo of MrBarbecue
2.5/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of slowdaddy
3.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of circus_cat
3.68/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

My Whole Foods sells singles and I knew this beer was pretty infamous so I just picked up one of these (I'm jumping the gun on pumpkin beers but I do want to find a good go-to one before the season really starts!)--I'm going to attempt to not let the bad reviews it gets prejudice my thoughts on this beer. Here goes.

A: It doesn't really look like a pumpkin ale. It's kind of a deep gold rather than that characteristic amber you get with pumpkin ales. Not much head, what little there was fizzled pretty quickly leaving no lacing.

S: Nice on the nose. Big cinnamon up front. Definitely one of those pumpkin beers that is more pumpkin pie than naturally gourdy/squashy. Both have their places, but that's what this one is for sure. Very spicy. A hint of coriander, and of course all the Thanksgiving spices. A little grassiness.

T: This beer tastes like pumpkin pie. I actually find it pretty pleasant, to be honest. It leaves you with an allspice aftertaste. Pumpkin pie crust breadiness. I taste a little bit more of the natural squashiness than I got on the nose, but it's still pretty subdued.

M: Light bodied, a little too fizzy.

O: Maybe I just had really low expectations but I think people are too hard on this beer. It is a little gimmicky from the bottle art to the pumpkin pie as opposed to the colonial pumpkin flavors...but it isn't a horrible beer in my opinion. I would recommend it for a non-beer snob who wants to drink some pumpkin ale around Halloween time.

 1,485 characters

Photo of SpectralAbyss
3/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of SouljaSaia17
3.22/5  rDev +7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This is my first review of a beer from Shipyard. Surprised by the low ratings on beer advocate, so I guess we will see if we agree or not.

A: Pours a semi-dark golden color with a 1 inch bright white head that is slow to disappear, so hard to tell if there is any lacing.

S: Smell flows right out of the glass with pumpkin, spice and some cinnamon. Nothing too complex about this beer as far as the aroma goes.

T: Flavor consists of an actually pumpkin pie, which is what so many claim, but so few seem to be. Get some brown sugar on the body with a hint of spice and cinnamon on the back end.

M: Sweet, flavorful, light carbonation but very creamy and easy to drink for the style.

O: Make no mistake about it, this is an Octoberfest beer. And is much better than a Harpoon version and a bit more pumpkin pie flavored than a Sam Adams Octoberfest. A solid seasonal beer by a company who is very underrated in craftsmanship. Most likely the best fall beer I've had so far.

 976 characters

Photo of TheSixthRing
2.4/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance - Pours a clear, pale golden orange with a half finger head, poor retention, and a sparse lacing.

Smell - Smells of sugar, pie dough, sugary pumpkin and sugary spices.

Taste - Tastes as it smells. Sugary pumpkin soda character. Hints of cinnamon and nutmeg spice. Just really sweet. Pumpkin soda with a half shot of alcohol is the best way to describe this. Honestly.

Mouthfeel - Light... nearly watery. Sub-par carbonation. Sadly empty. No thicker than soda water.

Overall - Bleh. I thought I'd had some bad pumpkin ales... this is pathetically bad. I try to give the benefit of the doubt... this is too bad to even consider a higher rating.

 657 characters

Photo of wingman14
2.23/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a darker yellow and looks like champagne with all the carbonation, but no head, weird. Not as dark as I was expecting for a pumpkin ale, usually darker with a hearty dose of malt. Smells like cinnamon gum, candy-like, very sweet. Not much else going on. Taste is mostly cinnamon, a weird off flavor hits the aftertaste, but the cinnamon dominates. The mouthfeel is light, highly carbonated, not a very good balance of anything. Overall, if they would have marketed this as a cinnamon beer I would have been more satisfied, but hard to recommend this one, not much pumpkin going on.

 587 characters

Photo of Willthegrill09
3.25/5  rDev +8%

Photo of VncentLIFE
2.63/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

what the hell is this thing in my glass. It looks like an IPA: deep goldenrod body, high carbonation, and tiny white head. The smell, I cant even, I dont know. I wanna say theres a hint of lactic acid reminiscent of a German Berliner Weisse. Very tart, and I would love this from a Berliner/Jolly Pumpking sour, but theres nothing else there. No spices aside from a light powdery cinnamon.

The lone bright spot is the taste. Very sweet, sweet grain bill reminiscent of a German Munich Helles. theres almost a sweetness like that of candy or Pumking. The dominant flavor is super sweet cinnamon candy, but no pumpkin or balance of spices. light Red Hots or Fireballs (the candies). Almost feels watered down.

The finish just gets worse. Kind of tastes like tap water really late. Odd I know, but still.

Finishes super clean and sits light. Doesnt exactly feel like a beer, maybe the girlfriend will like it.

 910 characters

Photo of koenig1462
3.75/5  rDev +24.6%

Photo of Optifron
4/5  rDev +32.9%

Photo of Momar42
3.38/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into Duvel tulip

A - clear deep yellow with virtually no head.

S - mild pumpkin pie spice with a hint of cinnamon. The nose is very small in comparison to other pumpkins.

T - in contrast to the aroma, this beer has an actual flavor profile. It may be one dimensional but its there. The flavor on the front is mild but finishes nicely with a spiciness and pumpkin. This one is drinkable and actually pretty pleasant.

M - easy drinking and easy finish. Smooth and creamy. Nicely done.

O - I had not plans to like this beer but damned if I dont find it drinkable. Not the best pumpkin beer by any stretch but wouldnt turn one down. For the price, this brews drinkability and finish put it up there with the must try if you are in the mood for pumpkin. Give it a shot and see what you think.

 804 characters

Photo of Nutwood
3/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of tmm313
2.75/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of BeerLover99
1.36/5  rDev -54.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

A: yellow/gold body, trace white head, ok lacing

S: honey, cinnamon, malt

T: big sweet honey, hint of cinnamon/nutmeg
grain finish

M: med/light body, dry/crisp mouth

O: Love this style, but not this beer.
Would not buy again, nor would I recommend.
Sorry this is only pumpkin in name only.
Said ale, but more lager.


 346 characters

Photo of BrewtalAlement
3.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of Nerudamann
3.15/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Look - light golden, very light blonde color, clear, with moderate carbonation. Small head, maybe half a finger's worth or so.

Smell - as you'd expect, pumpkin-like. Plus a hint of spice, probably corriandar. Nothing much else.

Taste - the taste of the pumpkin flavor hits first, and then in the middle, very quickly following the initial taste, is a sharp bitterness that doesn't last long. Following by the lingering taste of the pumpkin flavor.

Mouthfeel - pretty well-balanced, but leans a bit on the watery side.

Overall - not a bad brew, but not terribly intriguing.

 617 characters

Photo of Rojada1988
3.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of leinie13
2.75/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of Celtics76
2.84/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I decided to break my rule about not having pumpkin/Octoberfest beers until 9/1, figured this would make a nice "dessert" after an evening of pizza and wings from BHOP.

The aroma is very nice - cinnamon and pumpkin spice, but mostly cinnamon. Taste is profoundly cinnamon, I only get a very small trace of pumpkin here. Based on the fact that this is supposed to be a pumpkin ale, I have to deduct points for this. There's no head to speak of..very thin texture as well.

As one-dimensional as it gets. I can see why it's so popular though - I love the labeling (I'm sure that helps sales) and it goes down easy, inviting the drinker to have several in one sitting.

Personally, I'm looking for more robust flavors in a pumpkin ale, with pumpkin spice at the forefront.

 772 characters

Photo of thegerm87
3.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of DrunkenMonk
3/5  rDev -0.3%

Pumpkinhead Ale from Shipyard Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.01 out of 5 with 2,720 ratings