Smashed Pumpkin - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
Shipyard Brewing Company

Smashed Pumpkin - Bourbon Barrel-AgedSmashed Pumpkin - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Pumpkin Beer
Ranked #39
Ranked #12,029
3.94 | pDev: 11.93%
Shipyard Brewing Company
Maine, United States
Very Good
Smashed Pumpkin - Bourbon Barrel-AgedSmashed Pumpkin - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
Reviews: 27 | Ratings: 153 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Davepoolesque
3.91/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(2012) Cinnamon, pumpkin flesh, vanilla, Cherry skin and some nutmeg. A tiny hint of twang. A bit vegetal. Smooth. Virtually no carbonation. It's holding up well enough.

 169 characters

Photo of rand
3.67/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

750 mL bottle poured into snifter

I'm not certain if this was infected, but there's a tart funk in this brew that I haven't noticed in Smashed Pumpkin.

It has a similar appearance, if a bit more viscous and weighty. Aromas of sour apple, cinnamon, oak, honey and lot hot booze. Booze at the front of the palate as well, strong, and that sour fruit aspect I'm not sure was intended. Long, sweet finish.

I'm going to have to try this again, I think I got a funked bottle. I wasn't picking nuances of vanilla and caramel typical of bourbon barrel-aging. Interestingly, it doesn't taste all that bad (although I usually don't mind slightly infected barrel-aged brews).

 674 characters

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into snifter, 2016 vintage bottling. Pours lightly hazy deep orange/copper/light reddish color with a 1-2 finger dense and fluffy off white head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, caramel, brown sugar, honey, toffee, vanilla, toasted oak, bourbon, pie crust, light apple pie/cider, herbal, and oak/toasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of pumpkin/spices, bourbon barrel, dark/bready malt, and light fruity yeast notes; with great strength. Taste of big pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, caramel, brown sugar, honey, toffee, vanilla, toasted oak, bourbon, pie crust, light apple pie/cider, herbal, and oak/toasted earthiness. Light herbal/woody/spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, caramel, brown sugar, honey, toffee, vanilla, toasted oak, bourbon, pie crust, light apple pie/cider, herbal, and oak/toasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Damn nice complexity, robustness, and balance of pumpkin/spices, bourbon barrel, dark/bready malt, and light fruity yeast flavors; with a great malt/bitter/spiciness balance, and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light dryness from bitter/spiciness, increasing through the glass. Light-medium carbonation and medium-full body; with a very smooth and moderately creamy/grainy/sticky balanced mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warmth lingering after the finish; with zero barrel booziness. Overall this is an excellent barrel aged pumpkin ale! All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of pumpkin/spices, bourbon barrel, dark/bready malt, and light fruity yeast flavors; very smooth and easy to sip on for the big ABV. The fruity apple yeast notes made it really unique, and complimented the pumpkin ale style flavors extremely well. A very delicious offering.

 2,043 characters

Photo of Ozzylizard
3.03/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2015 edition bottle # 05376 at 42 degrees into a snifter, allowed to warm to 50 degrees
$ 15.54/bottle ($ 0.611/oz) at Consumer’s Beverage, Lancaster, NY
Aroma very weak – mixed spice with nothing pronounced, no bourbon, no oak
Head small (< Two cm, aggressive pour), off white, frothy, diminishing to two mm ring and partial layer
Lacing - none
Body brownish orange, opaque
Flavor – not much. No pumpkin, no bourbon, no oak, no char, just some weak spices and alcohol afterburn; no malt, no hops, no diacetyl
Palate medium, slightly syrupy, lively carbonation
I’d have drain-poured this if it were a reasonably priced 12 oz bottle, but I intend to get my investment back, if not in enjoyment of the nuances (none) then in a moderate buzz.

Appearance 3.5, Aroma 3, Flavor 3, Palate 3, Overall 3

 804 characters

Photo of Treyliff
4.18/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750ml cork & cage bottle, 2014 vintage
Bottle number 05195

A- pours a murky brown color with a fizzy off-white head that reduces quickly and eventually disappears completely

S- lots of bourbon on the nose up front with undertones of oak & vanilla. The pumpkin spices is subtle at this point, although there is some cinnamon poking through with the bourbon controlling most of the aroma

T- bourbon and oaky up front with some notes of spiced cider, brown sugar and honey. The spicing kicks in as it nears the finish with an emphasis on cinnamon and nutmeg. More woodsy bourbon & cinnamon on the linger with a resemblance to cooked cinnamon apples

M- medium-thick body with low carbonation leads to a slightly foamy mouthfeel and a warming finish

O- barrel treatment has proved successful to an already solid pumpkin beer, definitely worth a try

 854 characters

Photo of smanson56
4.21/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I've had bottles of the 2012 and 2013 BBA Smashed Pumpkin I found the 2012 to be much smoother with less of the bourbon taste than the 2013 which to me was the better beer with a nice strong bourbon finish.

 206 characters

Photo of Kgoldsbe
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2014 version at 12.0 ABV

Subtly spiced so the bourbon aging is the star. Vanilla overtones. This highly alcoholic beer is very unique and enjoyable. Great substitute for a hot toddy as it warms you.

 200 characters

Photo of mactrail
2.85/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

This is the 2014 edition. Murky and the color of unfiltered cider with a brief flicker of foam.

The first sip tells the story-- this is one of the wierdest beers you will ever hope to taste. It's exactly like a Mexican candy, the big chunks of fruitlike stuff bristling with chrystalized sugar. The squash flavor comes through in the aftertaste. I think this was aged in a fruitcake instead of a barrel. There is a touch of something boozy, followed by a hot alcohol rush. Welcome to the monkey house!

From the 750 ml bottle purchased at Coit Liquors in San Francisco. I could of had a couple of six packs of very tasty craft beer for the price of this concoction.

 667 characters

Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.77/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

2013 edition bottle # 3147. Purchased over the summer in Maine. The label claims 12% alcohol.

A- Pours a dark orange hue. Body has a uniform translucency. Pours with a very small soapy head that immediately fades to a thin collar. Very little lacing is left behind in the glass.

S- Sweet bourbon, vanilla, pumpkin, oak, thick honey. A hint of cinnamon, nutmeg and an overtone of alcohol astringency.

T- Bourbon flavors are the highlight upfront with a soft pumpkin and somewhat prominent woody backbone. The finish highlights nutmeg and cinnamon with a touch of honey and a touch of alcohol astringency. Lingering is a hint of spice and a big alcohol warmth.

M- Low, but very tingly carbonation that fades quickly. Body is medium weight and slightly sticky with bourbon and honey, yet slightly bland.

O- Overall this is a nice pumpkin ale that really highlights bourbon barrel aging. I would say the bourbon characteristic are the most forward, followed by honey and pumpkin, and subtle barrel. It is a big boozy tastefully crafted pumpkin.

 1,055 characters

Photo of BeerVikingProject
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

Great pumpkin and bourbon notes, the only thing is there is a bit of a medicinal aftertaste - I feel like this is unique to this year's batch. I don't remember that taste last year.

 182 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.79/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2014 vintage, bottle No. 06372. Poured from a cork and cage into a snifter, the beer is a hazy, deep, vibrant, orange-caramel coloring, with a tall, fluffy, light, off-white head. Aromas of vanilla and booze first and foremost, with a quick follow of pumpkin spice, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Roasted notes and woody characteristics round the nose out nicely. Flavors are spice forward, heavy in cinnamon and pumpkin spice, with some sugary highlights. This is immediately followed by rich pumpkin flavors, vanilla crème highlights, subtle wood spice, gingerbread and graham cracker notes, and a subtle booze kick. Smooth and robust in mouth, with a boozy and pumpkin rich aftertaste, as well as a building warmth. The finish is smooth and spiced, with a lingering spice and pumpkin blend. Solid brew.

 797 characters

Photo of Chuck_IPA_Mathus
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

anohter great pumpkin for a non pumpkin fan

no real distinguishing aroma

bourbon barrel aged is the secret. I am not apumpkin fan at all, but both the fall pumpkin beers I like have come from the bourbon barrel.

little spendy though for what you get.

 254 characters

Photo of Furlinator
3.82/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2013 vintage.

Pours translucent orange amber. The 1/4 inch off-white head quickly disappears completely and leaves no lace. There is visible floating sediment.

The smell is of bourbon, cinnamon, maple syrup, sweet potato and nutmeg.

The taste is of pumpkin, brown sugar, maple , Autumn spices and bourbon.

The texture is heavy bodied with low carbonation.

Nice pumpkin and spice flavors and aromas. The bourbon presence is not overpowering. A solid (but not great) effort.

 482 characters

Photo of neophilus
4.29/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Coffee colored brown ale pours with a decent tan head, some good lacing. Medium opaque body lets some light shine through.

Good malty aroma on the nose up front with caramel notes, deeper and richer malt and caramel than the standard Smashed Pumpkin. Pie spices are there as well but more subdued and in harmony in this version.

Rich and luscious caramel malt body delivers a solid flavor with the first sip. Pie spices are in harmony with the sweet malt body. Bourbon barrel aging adds some spicy sweetness that compliments the spices. Ginger is the dominant spice flavor which is typical - not my favorite and I think it is the downfall of many a good pumpkin beer but here it is barely held back by the bourbon barrel aging.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin for my liking, such a rich and complex beer deserves a heavy body to carry it. Still though this is one of the better uses of bourbon barrel aging I have found and truly enhances the pumpkin style.

 952 characters

Photo of HSGB1316
3.95/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I was recommended this beer by a store owner who likes pumpkin beer. I did not know exactly what to expect when I uncorked this bottle, but my expectations were surely met. So long as you like the taste of bourbon barrel aged beer, you will like this one. There is enough of a pumpkin flavor to remind you what time of year it is, but that is not the predominate flavor I tasted. You might want to share this one though because it is a 12% beer.

 445 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to AbeFroman for sharing this one at Tieman's tasting.

2013 vintage. Bottle # 00149.

Pours a hazy orange-brown with a foamy tan head that fades to nothing. No lacing on the drink down. Smell is of malt, pumpkin pie spice, bourbon, and earthy wood aromas. Taste is much the same with pumpkin pie spice and bourbon flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of woody bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a very earthy quality in both the aroma and flavor.

 603 characters

Photo of gcamparone
2.7/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a oversize wine glass. Bottle #6093. Purchased in North Providence, RI.

A- Pours an amber honey colored body with a 2 inch head that reduces slowly and leaves some retention. Little lacing.

S- I was slightly taken aback by the aroma of this beer. It's really not what I was expecting. The aroma is overtaken by a sharp grassy, earthy, oddly spiced smell that I can't quite put my finger on. Cinnamon and some pumpkin comes through too, mixed with a strong cheap whiskey aroma. I was really hoping the taste would redeem this beer.

T- The first flavors to touch the tongue is mixture of rotten orange peel, grassy, herby spices and a somewhat cloying whisky taste. Next up is a slight cinnamon, nutmeg flavor with oak and maybe some vanilla. The herbal, grassy flavors make me nauseous. Bad bottle?

M- Medium-light body, medium carbonation.

I wasn't very impressed with this one. It's lacking balance, flavor, and the bourbon barrels really didn't work well with the odd mixture of spicy notes. The grassy, herbal aroma and taste overtook any good aspects of this beer. I hope this was a bad bottle. I will re-review if I try again with different results.

 1,195 characters

Photo of pkalix
4.8/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2013 edition of this one, says 12% on the bottle....
not much head, heavy looking brown-orange liquid with an equally heavy spice aroma from the top. repeated smells give a very sweet, pumpkin-pie filling aroma with slight vanilla, whip cream (YES! it smells like whip cream!), and maybe a tad of bourbon in the distance.... nice consistent lacing/covering on the side...
first sip.... 'manufactured' spice taste with expected bitterness from the chemical-taste... some genuine spice, nutmeg, vanilla, pumpkin, cinnamon.... and yes, of course, even a little bit of whip cream. is that possible? is this even possible at 12% ??
I have to admit I have never liked a 'pumpkin' before. it was always a kind of novelty beer to me. but this is AWESOME! this is different. admittedly, I DID get that chemically-altered-for-taste kind of smell and flavor at the beginning, but either my taste buds quickly accommodated and adjusted or I might have been off. but the following smells and tastes are genuine flavors and this is very delicious. I swear it is a luscious, creamy pumpkin pie with a nice buttery bread crust and thick whipped cream topping. can almost get vanilla ice cream in there also. now, this is sweeter than a regular brew, and I suppose that may qualify it as a novelty, or you can say that it's from the higher malt quantity which is giving it such a high abv and is sweeter as are most higher abv brews.... either way, I don't wanna go off track with a novelty. but this is WAY better than I anticipated. i'm not really sure why I even purchased this except it was a recommendation.... and I am pleasantly surprised. I couldn't drink more than this one bomber though. i'll need to change it up for my next one.... the high ratings are for its category; not for an overall rating. I think it's fair to rate this compared to its peers as opposed to rating it against all the major leaguers in general.... as i'm winding down to the last of the bottle, the sweetness is beginning to dominate. that was interesting. now back to something less sweet and yummy. something like a . . . . . Sucaba? is that one any good?

 2,125 characters

Photo of puboflyons
3.93/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From corked, caged bottle no. 01455, 2012 batch. Sampled on February 7, 2013.

So it is a few months past season but the pour is still very attractive copper-orange with the soft, silky off-white to tannish head that sits on top the whole time. Nice clarity.

On the nose I am getting plenty of malts and pumpkin spice and a bit more booze than I might have hoped for.

The body is full and creamy.

The taste is also fairly boozy like the aroma with the pumpkin spice up first and the bourbon in the batter's box. It is too bad it was more like hard liquor than a pumpkin ale but that might have been due to the amount of time that passed since this was bottled.

 664 characters

Photo of Dope
4.1/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2012 batch, bottle 03407

A: A very murky golden-orange. Moderate sized fluffy white head. Fades pretty quickly. Decent retention at least and quite decent fluffy lacework.

S: Wonderful strong bourbon mixed with pumpkin and pumpkin spices. Nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves primarily it seems. Swear I even get a little apple cider in there. Great combination.

T: Strong bourbon up front (but not overpowering). Mixes with the pumpkin and spices. Wonderful combination again. Primarily caramel, toffee and vanilla mixing with the nutmeg and cinnamon and pumpkin. Bourbon fades a bit in the middle leaving the spices to stand alone a little stronger now. Some nice oak mixes in with the spices in the lingering aftertaste. No sign of alcohol other than the belly warming sensation.

M: Medium bodied and not nearly as thick or heavy as you'd expect for the ABV.

O: What the? Giving Shipyard 4.5s? I'm confused, myself. This beer is awesome. I'm not even a fan of regular Smashed Pumpkin (think I gave it a 3.5ish). This mega barrel-aged version is just superb. Great complexity between the bourbon and pumpkin and spices. Perfect balance of flavors to boot. Alcohol almost completely hidden. They really did well with this one. Definitely seek one out if you like pumpkin ales. I honestly think this may dethrone Pumking for me. That's saying a LOT.

 1,343 characters

Photo of Auror
3.87/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into an over-sized brandy snifter.

Appearance- Pours a murky gold with a small head. Not much lacing to speak of, despite the 11+ alcohol percentage. Reminiscent of a frothy honey.

Aroma- Oak, alcohol, plums, grapes, vanilla, tannins, and nutmeg. Complex nose... a lot going on here.

Taste- Lacks a lot of the components and punch of the nose. Starts with some cinnamon and dark fruit flavors, but they are a bit muted. Alcohol warmth comes at the end, but again it is evident, but not as strong as I suspected. As it warms, bourbon notes appear more readily.

Mouthfeel- Thin and syrupy. A very viscous texture between sips. Carbonation level is low, but it's there. Alcohol isn't a primary feel despite the high abv and bourbon aging.

Overall- Nothing offensive, but thin and lacking flavor. Fairly easy drinking. I'm not sure this style suits itself to barrel aging. Apparently, it was aged for over 3 months, but the spices and any pumpkin notes from the original are already much subdued, but there's not an intense barrel flavor either.

 1,073 characters

Photo of mdaschaf
3.45/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a rather light orange/amber color with a small tan head on top with little bits of lacing that form all around the glass.

S: A heft amount of spices, both cinnamon and nutmeg, with a bit of bourbon, mostly vanilla and a bit of caramel.

T: More spices on the flavor profile and more vanilla, with less bourbon. The spices come through again as cinnamon and nutmeg with a bit of clove and pumpkin spice.

M: Medium bodied, but on the thin side for what I was expecting/hoping for. Medium carbonation. Little bit of warmth as it goes down.

O: It was ok, a little thin. Better than regular smashed, but I was hoping for a bit more from this one.

 658 characters

Photo of Cavanaghty
4.5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Bottle #02825 2012 Edition.

Appearance: Hazy light brown/amber color. Thin biege head that went away quickly.

Smell: Pumpkin spice, cinnamon, nutmeg. Bourbon/Scotch smell, and alcohol is strong.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Smooth, full bodied and warm. Alcohol, bourbon, and nutmeg up front. Stays a very spicy and warm beer throughout.

Overall: Not what I expected, but very well crafted. Glad I spent the money on this one to enjoy around Thanksgiving. Couldn't think of a better one to try on this holiday.

 542 characters

Photo of Gosox8787
3.48/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 750 mL corked and caged bottle from 2012. Bottle 01492. Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass. Served slightly chilled.

Appearance: Dark orange to medium brown in color. A very light beige lacing that forms around the edges.

Aroma: Big cinnamon and nutmeg upfront clashes with the bourbon and a pretty noticable alcohol aroma. The barrel notes are not completely integrated at this point. Some subtle vanilla and pumpkin notes are there as well. Much more spice forward than I remember the base beer.

Taste: Still has a big spice note, like the aroma, but the barrel seems more evenly integrated. Nice combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, clove and allspice lends an interesting spice note. Some caramel and a touch of butter from the base beer. Bourbon and vanilla notes provide some complexity and added heat.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a nice bit of carbonation.

Overall, I like this beer, but it still feels far too hot. The barrel is clearly not fully integrated yet and the final beer feels hot. Still despite all the flaws here, I am still enjoying the beer. Perhaps some time would do this well. Right now, it is too hot and unbalanced.

 1,165 characters

Photo of Daktyls
4.27/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a hazy dark amber color with a one finger head that dissipates quickly to a single layer of bubbles on the top and around the end of the glass.

S: Aroma is darker and sweeter than 'normal' Smashed Pumpkin. There is quite a bit of brown-sugary sweetness, a little bit of bourbon and hints of pumpkin spice and malts.

T: Taste is much similar to the aroma, there's a lot of mild sweetness present with the malt notes though not much of the pumpkin or spice notes are present in the beer. Some of the bourbon flavorings are presently, though mildly.

M: This beer is somewhat thick and syrupy (medium viscosity, thicker than water, not as thick as syrup) with a very little amount of carbonation.

O: Overall, this is a great beer and quite tasty. Definitely a little kick with the high alcohol content, but very enjoyable.

 832 characters

Smashed Pumpkin - Bourbon Barrel-Aged from Shipyard Brewing Company
Beer rating: 87 out of 100 with 153 ratings