Spooky | Blue Mountain Brewery

24 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Blue Mountain Brewery
Virginia, United States

Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.20%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by dbrauneis on 09-01-2013

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Reviews: 24 | Ratings: 148
Photo of Slack
3.61/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Amber brown in color and fair amount of head that settles to hardly any. Lacing is okay.

Nose is mild sweetness and not much else.

Taste is sweet, mild bourbon, mild oak, a bit of nutmeg, a bit of cinnamon, and pumpkin in the background.

Mouthful is medium and cloying. Carbonation is average.

For a pumpkin beer, this is sub par. The pumpkin is far behind everything else and the spices aren't really there.

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Photo of Riff
3.81/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2016 version Poured from a bottle into a shaker glass. Pours a dark copper color with an offwhite head, Smells strong of dark chocolate with a hint of vanilla and malt. Tastes mostly of dark chocolate, vanilla, hints of bourbon and pumpkin. Overall it's a solid beer, heavier on the chocolate, smells quite good.

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Photo of Pencible
3.86/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.75

A: This poured a hazy copper with thick off white head.
S: It smelled like cocoa powder and toasted oak and vanilla, with some copper hops and pumpkin and fall spices.
T: It tasted like earthy caramel and vanilla and toasted oak, with some cocoa powder and pumpkin and fall spices. It had a clean earthy sweet aftertaste.
M: It was thick with moderate fine carbonation. Nice big body.
D: This was an interesting drink, more like a cheap bourbon barleywine with a hint of pumpkin. The scent and taste were decent but not delicious. The body was great, and the finish was smooth with well hidden alcohol, so it was easy to drink. Probably not for aging. Certainly not bad, but not that amazing fresh.

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Photo of Xenoreactive
3.96/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is based off of 2014's Spooky which was phenomenal and delicious off draft. I have no idea what happened to 2015's recipe, but let's refrain from speaking of that one.

L: Pours a nice dark orange color with reddish hue. Little bit of foam that dissipates with your drinking progression.

S: Don't get too much outside of pumpkin, vanilla, odd herbal notes and a light bourbon tinge.

T: Flavorful and delightful. Has a creamy feel to it with a pronounced sweetness. Molasses, gourd, nutmeg, cinnamon, pie crust, vanilla bean ice cream and bavarian cream all come through. A delicious fall beer. nomnom

Feel: Creamy and refreshing. I would almost call it a dessert beer with it's frothy and dessert-like presence. Quite satisfying.

Overall: Loved 2014. Hated 2015. 2015 would get a 2/5 from me. Was thin, lighter-colored, lost its creaminess, sweet flavors disappeared: an overall drainpour. Could not taste any wood/bourbon notes. I really hope this was an off keg, because it depressed me.

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Photo of KYGunner
3.79/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Rating this is tough because I enjoyed it quite a bit but I thought this was a pumpkin beer. I got tons of toffee, caramel and light vanilla. Some spice, maybe, but no pumpkin at all. It's good but seemed to lack it's supposed style.

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Photo of AndrewMichael
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL corked bottle, best by October 2016 on the cork. Poured into a stemmed glass. Dark amber color with frothy, white head on the beer. A unique pumpkin ale, smooth with subtle flavors of the pumpkin, cocoa nibs, and barrel aging. Also very smooth for the abv. Glad I tried this beer, and would definitely get more of it.

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Photo of HattedClassic
3.91/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The beer pours a nice white and foam y head that dissipates but leaves some foam on the top. The beer itself is a nice clear medium amber color that has a really strong orange hue.

The smell is nice and certainly different than other pumpkin beers. The smell has some really strong vanilla and bourbon notes. The pumpkin is barely noticeable since it mixes very well with the vanilla. The smell is not very spicy but it does have a nice cocoa note to it that mixes well with the other notes and makes it fairly a fairly tolerable smell for a pumpkin beer.

The notes in the taste are the same as the smell. The bourbon notes are a little bit stronger and the vanilla is a little bit weaker. The cocoa nibs add that nice chocolate flavor that gives it a needed sweet bitterness.

The feel is medium bodied but on the heavier side. It's smooth and a little bit creamy with biting carbonation that give it a nice bit of texture.

Overall, a very good pumpkin beer. The taste isn't too spicy or too pumpkin and the other notes make it into a nice balanced beer. While I don't think it's worth the price point, I don't really regret buying this beer. Definitely recommended as your Halloween beer.

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Photo of ThaneMcC
3.35/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a pleasant deep brown/orange. Copious white head and fine effervescence . Smells of wood, bourbon, some sweet gourdy smell (pumpkin) , no pumpkin spice or cocoa on the nose. Tastes of bourbon, non-descript sweet malts, dark fruit, very little pumpkin or cocoa notes. Medium body , pleasant effervescence and clean finish.
Ovearll – Not bad for the genre – but very little of the flavors that I expected – very little pumpkin or cocoa and a bit cloying in its sweetness. Not terrible – but I wouldn’t purchase again.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.31/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Aromatically, this is a bit weak, but I do get a combination of oak barrel, vanilla, and pumpkin spices. The oak is the dominant note. It tastes...I won't say weak, I'll say "not shouty". I get gentle oak to start and gentle pumpkin spice to finish. This is not a pumpkin pie bomb, then again it's been aging a year. A touch dull, but easy to drink and not overly sweet.

3.31/5: A 7 out of 10 on the spooky scale

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Photo of teromous
2.94/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Dark brown with orange hues and a few hints of red. The head is an insanely creamy mass of white foam that leaves lots of lacing. It looks dense like memory foam.

Aroma: There is a fairly strong bourbon and oak aroma that dominates and leaves room for nothing else. It's good but it has that "bourbon barrel aroma" that you'll get from every bourbon barrel aged beer. No spice, pumpkin, or chocolate comes through in the aroma.

Taste: I get bourbon flavor accompanied by a slight hint of black cherry. The bottle says "ale brewed with pumpkin flavor and cocoa nibs aged in bourbon barrels." I don't taste any pumpkin or cocoa.

Mouthfeel: It has a medium mouthfeel with a good amount of carbonation. There is a light tannic quality to the beer which gives it some good palate complexity.

Overall: It was pretty poor for a pumpkin beer. It just tastes like "insert random bourbon barrel aged beer" without delivering any pumpkin flavor, any spice, or any chocolate. The bottle makes mention of nostalgic memories of trick-or-treating and how this beer is supposed to come close to the memory of those times. If this were Halloween candy it would be that ribbon candy old people give to kids. I don't know how anyone could taste this and think that it is a pumpkin or chocolate beer in any way. I feel pretty ripped off. For a bourbon barrel beer it isn't bad, but as a pumpkin pie and chocolate lover I feel like I have had the rug pulled out from under me. I would not buy it again and I would recommend others pass on it. With the shelves full of pumpkin beers this time of year there is simply no reason to settle for mediocrity. If you want to scratch that pumpkin itch this will not help you at all.

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Photo of Jeffreysan
4.15/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle, 2014 vintage, poured into a goblet

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, deep, dark, mahogany color, speckled with orange highlights and two fingers of white-colored head that slowly dissolved away into a thick lacing of foam that completely covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Not much of an aroma, but I do get some faint notes of toasted malt, some boozy bourbon notes, and chocolate.

Taste: Wow! What this beer lacks in aroma, it much more than makes up for in flavor!! There’s delicious flavors of toasted malt up front, followed by pumpkin pie spices of cinnamon, clove, all-spice and ginger, as well as chocolate, vanilla, and a touch of strong bourbon. Absolutely delicious!

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and nicely carbonated. With an ABV of 8.2%, there is just a touch of alcohol on the palate.

Overall: Delicious beer! I really like all of the spices, chocolate and bourbon. Highly recommended.

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Photo of tigg924
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours an orangish-brown color with one inch head. Very good pumpkin beer. Plenty of oakiness with a decent amount of pumpkin spices. I will look for this again next year.

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Photo of superspak
3.9/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, best before 11/2015. Pours lightly hazy/cloudy reddish orange color with a 2 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of caramel, pumpkin, toast, cinnamon, nutmeg, gingerbread, vanilla, toffee, oak, bourbon, light cocoa, and herbal/oak earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/bready malt, pumpkin/spices, and bourbon barrel notes; with good strength. Taste of big caramel, pumpkin, toast, cinnamon, nutmeg, gingerbread, vanilla, toffee, oak, bourbon, light cocoa, and herbal/oak earthiness. Light oak/spice bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, pumpkin, toast, cinnamon, nutmeg, gingerbread, vanilla, toffee, oak, bourbon, light cocoa, and herbal/oak earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice robustness, complexity, and balance of dark/bready malt, pumpkin/spices, and bourbon barrel flavors; with zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very smooth, moderately creamy, and slightly slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very nice barrel aged imperial pumpkin ale style. All around nice complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/bready malt, pumpkin/spices, and bourbon barrel flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Omnium
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Balance between sweet pumpkin, spice and some oak, vanilla, and bourbon flavors is a welcome flavor, and nice complexity, still its just ok when it boils down to it.

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Photo of Davepoolesque
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not a bad pumpkin beer. A little light on spice, but that is welcome. Huge carbonation. Very effervescent..........................................

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Photo of cottonkoozie
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Pours a thick creamy colored head (granted I poured a little too rough) with good retention and nice lacing. Clear reddish brown color, reminds me of the color of sweet tea. carbonation looks medium to light.

Some raw pumpkin smells, roasted malts, some of the cocoa, a little bit of the bourbon, a little of alcohol, some spices.

Flavors of raw pumpkin with light pumpkin spices. Bourbon flavors hit me more on the back end of the sip and then carry into the after taste, overpowering many of the other flavors. Not tasting much of the cocoa nibs or roasted goodness that I got in the nose.

Overall, pretty good. Almost think the bourbon aging could have worked better with a stout or porter, or at least with little more pumpkin kick, as the flavors kind of overpower that here. However I am a big fan of bourbon aged beers, so I still like it.

Second pour from this bottle is much different from the first. Color is similar but very cloudy. smells and taste of much more pumpkin spices. Much more balance, very good.

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Photo of Treyliff
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Halloween beer!

A- poured into a snifter. Pours a dark and hazy amber color with some orange hues, nice frothy white head has good retention and leaves a small layer floating on top as it settles

S- some raw pumpkin guts up front with some faint underlying cinnamon and ginger, there's some barrel character but it's very hard to find. Faint aromas overall

T- In terms of a pumpkin ale, the pumpkin flavors are of raw pumpkin, rather than the pumpkin spices. Bourbon flavors kick in mid-palate with a hint of vanilla, they aren't very strong but do overpower and flavor of pumpkin. Some sweet brown sugar at the end with a touch of lingering vanilla barrel flavor

M- medium body with low carbonation leads to a moderate and silky mouthfeel with with a smooth finish, ABV is barely noticeable

O- I was hoping for a little more assertive pumpkin flavor to match up with the bourbon. Glad to try it but not one I would go back to

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.54/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a cork and cage bottle into a shaker pint, the beer is a muddled, hazy, orange-brown coloring with a sparse, filmy, off-white head that coats the glass as you drink. Aromas of subtle pumpkin, bourbon, vanilla, woody characteristics, and very subtle spices. The bourbon barrel aging seems to have overpowered the other aromas. Flavors are heavy bourbon forward, with all the vanilla notes and warmth that comes along with it. The pumpkin becomes a highlight, and there are only trace hints of cinnamon throughout. Mid-bodied, with a slight effervescence that helps lighten up the robust flavors and building warmth. Boozy and bourbon aftertaste, leading to a warming, booze lingering, slick finish. This beer is a bit off the map for the style, but a flavor bomb nonetheless.

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Photo of n2185
3.69/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A: pours a clear, dark orange with two fingers of white head that fades into a frothy ring with little lacing.

S: oak, vanilla, bourbon, and sweet chocolate dominate the nose with some pumpkin spices underneath.

T: bourbon and oak are forerunners here as well with pumpkin spices and cocoa coming through afterward. Sweet breads, vanilla, and caramel bring up a lightly boozy finish.

M: medium body with lowish carbonation, this beer is pretty drinkable for being barrel-aged, though is a little on the watery side.

O: an enjoyable beer overall. I wish there were more pumpkin and spice flavors and aromas, but what's there is far from bad.

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Photo of obywan59
3.36/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Pours a murky orange to amber with a 3 finger thick head that becomes chunky as it recedes leaving a bit of thick lacing.

Oak, bourbon and spice with an occasional whiff of pumpkin and chocolate. Very nice.

Oak and alcohol are dominant at first. Very boozy. Bourbon and vanilla and a bit of spice show up when the beer warms. A hint of chocolate. Tart and bitter qualities that both seem out of balance. Borderline cloying. Green.

Thick bodied and sticky, accentuated by the booziness. Peppery carbonation and a substantial burn of alcohol.

This beer certainly has character, but it's boozy and a bit harsh at this stage. However, I think it has great potential as it ages. I intend to sample it again in a few weeks.

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Photo of VincentFrey
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3

From the bottle: Ale brewed with pumpkin flavor and cocoa nibs and Aged in Bourbon Barrels. Stats: 8.2% ABV, 22 IBUs. Poured from 750ml cork / caged bottle into a Nepenthe Homebrew tulip.

Blue Mountain has been hit or miss for me; they’ve had some fantastic stouts and Local Species is a nice little brew, but they also had a terrible, terrible sour I can’t believe I spent money on. That said, they’re small and learning barrels, so let’s keep supporting them

Pours a very cloudy orange, with some reddish tints. Bottle conditioned, so unsure what’s filtration and what’s being kicked up in the pour. Either way, not a bad sight and certainly not what I expected to see from the description. Nice “pumpkin” appearance though.

Aroma is actually somewhat unpleasant. There is a hint of bourbon, but it mostly smells artificial and, in an odd turn of phrase, wounded. Like there was something here but it got displaced by the aging, or the pumpkin, or the cocoa, or something.

Taste is…strange. Very, very strange. The barrel is incredibly present, and most welcome. However the pumpkin is only a small part, tasting more like a spice or additive than actual pumpkin. Perhaps that’s because it uses “Pumpkin Flavor” rather than pumpkin, sort of like souring a berliner with lactic acid after of a real infection. Cocoa nibs come through a good bit as the beer warms up, which is nice. It’s very drinkable though, with some residual sugars sweetening up the process for winter drinking. I don’t super care for it, but it makes sense with the style and especially if live yeast is in the bottle.

Overall, this is a pumpkin beer that is really a strong winter warmer. It’s certainly not unpleasant, but not worth the $13.49 price paid at Urban Cellars in Baltimore. Try it if you consider pumpkin beers a necessity or enjoy a different sort of barreled beer, but otherwise, avoid.

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Photo of oberon
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dull lightly hazed pumpkin color with a thinner but well sustained off white head atop.Aromas of pumpkin pie spice and heavy bourbon tinged oak and vanilla,it smells boozy and sweet.Thankfully it's not overly boozy and/or sweet with the barrel playing a big role giving off the bourbon and toasted oak notes,cinnamon and nutmeg stand out most on the pumpkin side of things.I didn't pick up the chocolate nibs the beer sat on but all the other parts of the beer came together pretty well,the feel was a little fizzy but not bad.It's a headache inducer I think.

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Photo of clayrock81
3.62/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured an orangish yellow with two finger head thanks to lively carbonation but dies quickly and there's no lace. First thing I pick up is pumpkin, possible yams, then some woodiness and a little bit of booze. A somewhat muddled and not so easy beer to drink but for the most part a light body that passes over the tongue with ease. You'll get the pumpkin (possible yams) taste, along with some other sweetness. A little boozy or else just overly hopped because there's a bitterness that bleeds, not balances, into the beer. Other than that there isn't much going on as it seems there's too much alcohol and hops that don't complement the pumpkin too much (a touch of cinnamon wouldn't of hurt). Good attempt, though.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.61/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a hazy golden orange in color with light amounts of visible carbonation and some faint hints of orangish brown highlights. The beer has a four finger tall foamy light beige head that slowly reduces to a two finger tall medium to large cap in the center of the beer with a finger tall thick foam covering the remainder of the surface of the beer with a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of bourbon, oak, and vanilla with lighter aromas of pumpkin and just a touch of cocoa.

T: Upfront there is a light to moderate flavor of toasted malts with some moderate flavors of oak, bourbon, and vanilla. There is a light hint of pumpkin and cocoa towards the finish. Moderate amounts of residual alcohol in the finish.

M: Slightly heavier than medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly thin with moderate amounts of dryness in the finish. Light alcohol warming.

O: I really like the concept of this beer but I wish it had a little stronger a flavor/aroma of pumpkin with some hints of pumpkin pie spices added to the cocoa nibs and bourbon barrel aging. A little too strong in the barrel flavors to be great but definitely worth grabbing.

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Spooky from Blue Mountain Brewery
3.68 out of 5 based on 148 ratings.
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