Devious Imperial Pumpkin | Fegley's Bethlehem Brew Works

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Devious Imperial PumpkinDevious Imperial Pumpkin

Brewed by:
Fegley's Bethlehem Brew Works
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by mymrnngjckt on 09-26-2010

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Reviews: 47 | Ratings: 239
Photo of brystmar
4.37/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: roars to life with copious amounts of carbonation and thick, white head. Not the best retention, however, and halfway through the drink I'm left with no traces of head or lace. Lack of retention is the reason this doesn't get a 5.

S: fresh pumpkin, sweet malts, spicy cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon. Many beers smell like pumpkin pie, but this one smells like really good pumpkin pie.

T: healthy doses of malt backed up by strong spices. Tons of clove and other spices here, much moreso than its peers. The pumpkin itself is there but isn't the central focus and balances well with everything else. Mild boozy warmth as it descends leaves the familiar (and pleasant) caramel flavor, reminding you this is an imperial brew. Devious is impressively crafted, and top-notch for the style.

M: medium-bodied, more carbonation than I normally like, and not creamy enough. But this is all nit-picking: this is a fantastic pumpkin ale!

D: great flavors and balance mask this imperial pumpkin's strength well. I could happily take down this entire bomber and still beg for more.

Overall, this is a first-rate pumpkin beer. Not sure why its average rating here is so low -- this truly is a pinnacle of its style. The only other pumpkin beer on par with Devious is the Frog's Hollow Imperial Pumpkin from Hoppin Frog. I think I slightly prefer that brew to this one, but it's close. Really, really close.

*** The Pumpkin Beer Hierarchy ® ***

Top Tier: (in order, separated only by marginal personal preference)
- Frog's Hollow Double Pumpkin Ale by Hoppin Frog
- Devious Imperial Pumpkin by Bethlehem Brew Works

2nd Tier:
- Good Gourd by Cigar City

3rd Tier: (tied)
- Punkin' by DFH
- PumKing by Southern Tier

...and then there's everything else. Seek Devious out! Buy multiples! It's rare that pumpkin beers get this good.

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Photo of drcarver
4.03/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - great creamy standup head. long lasting. good lacing.

S - mix of spices. more nutmeg and creaminess. vegetable pumpkin in the back.

T/M - bitter initially then sweetness takes over. low on the spice level but what little there is hangs at the top of the mouth and in the nose. creamy texture with a bit of heat.

O - nice work... 9% is a bit excessive, but pretty good.

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Photo of oline73
3.1/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy reddish amber with a layer of off white head that goes away completely.

Smell: Very sweet. Some malt and a very strong molasses note. Some pumpkin and pie spice, but it's in the background compared to the sweetness.

Taste: The sweetness is still there, but not as overpowering. Stronger notes from the spices, mainly cinnamon and nutmeg. Just a little pumpkin and some bitter alcohol in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with tingly carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: A bit too sweet in the smell and too boozy in the finish. Not bad, but I wouldn't have another.

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Photo of n2185
4.06/5  rDev +10%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear, dark orange with two fingers of beige head that recedes into a a thin ring with no lacing.

S: Some spice notes up front--cinnamon, clove, nutmeg--followed by a good bit of vanilla. There are some light hop aromas as well with some sweet citrus notes.

T: Similar to the aroma, spice notes up front along with vanilla flavors. Light, sweet bready notes follow along with sweet citrus hop notes. There's a light alcohol burn as well.

M: Medium body with fairly high carbonation, this beer feels fairly crisp, which is nice.

O: Quite a good pumpkin ale. I'd like a bit more pumpkin flavors and possibly less alcohol presence, but at least they don't overdo it with the spices. Very enjoyable, overall.

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Photo of PCampbell
3.97/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a 12.5 oz tulip glass. Pours dark amber with a thin off-white head. Not much lacing to it.

Has a heavy smell of pumpkin and spices to it; cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, etc. Tastes of pumpkin pie, some caramel sweetness, cinnamon, nutmeg and some slight alcohol. Has some good carbonation with a medium to heavy mouthfeel to it.

One of the better imperial pumpkin beers out there, worth a taste if you can get it.

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Photo of IronLover
4.07/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled from a bottle with no freshness date. Dirty copper orange with an amber hue and a deep haze. Poured with a short, frothy, off white foam that quickly reduced to a wispy cap that leaves wet lacings on the glass. Sweet pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg and sweet caramel malt aromas along with the perfect amont of clove spiciness. Pumkin aromas tended to strengthen as the beer warmed a bit. Medium bodied and wet feel with assertive, fine textured carbonation. Nice combination of sweet pumpkin, cinnamon and clove spice from beginning to end. Spices intensify toward the finish. Finishes semi-dry with the imperial abv showing thru as the beer warms. One of the best pumpkins I've had.

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Photo of philbe311
3.57/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Two plus fingers worth of orange tinged audibly fizzy tightly packed head that quickly fizzes away leaving a splotchy uneven lacing... The color is a deep rich amber... A slight bit of small bubbled moderate paced carbonation rises within...

S - The nose is predominately autumnal spices... Nutmeg... Cinnamon... Clove... A touch of all spice... Freshly cut pumpkin... Some very faint notes of caramel... Wonderful balance and nice complexity for the style...

T - The spices are also at the forefront of the palette... Cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove blend nicely and dominate... A hint of all spice... Some bready crust-like malts... The pumpkin is subdued... Any notes of sweetness are very muted and lie well beneath the surface...

M - Medium bodied... A slightly awkward carbonated fizziness... Sleek... A "thin" syrupy coating coats the mouth...

D - A very solid Pumpkin Ale... The spices outweigh both the pumpkin and sweetness in this one... It also packs a little bit of a punch... Very respectable, but not top tier...

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Photo of lostandwandering
3.53/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours and orange/amber color. Half finger head that fades quickly. Little to no lacing.

S- cinnamon, molasses and a little bit of alchohol.

T- a little bit of pumpkin, cinnamon and molasses. A little bit of sweetness here, but not as sweet as Pumking.

M- A little thin with a decent amount of carbonation. There's a residual spiciness. No real alcohol bite, though.

O- Not a bad imperial pumpkin. Not one of my favorites, but certainly not a bad brew.

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Photo of bigfnjoe
3.26/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a corked & caged bottle into a DFH snifter

A- pours a nice shade of orange with a two finger, very puffy offwhite head. No lacing

S- cinnamon and nutmeg, and I'm smelling some alcohol in here as well. Aroma is a little weak

T- tastes like fall....cinnamon, nutmeg, and a lot of sugar comes to the forefront in this one. It's really sweet too...moreso than many of the other pumpkin beers I've tried. There's also a little bit of an apple cider vibe to it

M- the texture is very thin and watery, which I really didn't expect from an IMPERIAL pumpkin ale at 9%

O- no thanks. I'll take a Pumking for two bucks more

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Photo of BuxMontBeerLover
4.42/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased a 6pk at Wegmans in Warrington, PA

Poured and enjoyed in a DFH Signature Glass

A - Pours a mostly opaque, dark amber color. A half-finger head on the initial pour that quickly fades leaving no visible head. No lacing at all on the glass.

S - This beer has a great aroma. A mix of spices, including cinnamon and nutmeg. Smells like a pumpkin pie.

T - An excellent pumpkin ale. A fantastic mixture of caramel-like sweetness along with cinnamon and nutmeg. The pumpkin is also noticeable although it isn't overly dominate. The alcohol is noticeable but not to the point that it overpowers the beer.

M - Good amount of carbonation. A medium to semi-heavy consistency.

O - I really enjoyed this beer. It's really well balanced and I enjoyed savoring each sip. This isn't a beer that you want to pound down. Due to the heavier consistency and the higher ABV, this is a great beer to sit back and take your time with. I'm looking forward to enjoying the remaining bottles. Great job Brew Works. Highly recommended.


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Photo of TheSupremeAJ
3.92/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle fresh and in early season from Abe;s of Bethlehem. Pours a magnificent clear copper color with little, diminishing head. Aroma is of pie spice mostly and is fairly pleasant. The taste is balanced! The pumpkin is noticeable but not overbearing. Mouthfeel is average to good... hops are a little too much actually.

Overall this is a good Pumpkin beer that actually kind of reminds me of a Yuengling for some reason or another....

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Photo of justintcoons
3.53/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a crystal clear dark amber/orange with 1 finger of head that dissipates quickly. Moderate carbonation and some pretty good lacing slides down the side of the glass.

N: Nutmeg, pumpkin pie, cinnamon, pie crust and maybe some caramel apple.

T: Caramel, pie crust and nutmeg upfront. This is followed by candy sugar, cinnamon, hints of pumpkin and very subtle notes of citrus. Finishes with lingering spices, some burnt sugar and a little booze.

M: Medium bodied, smooth and dry.

O: There's a lot of spices up front but I feel like it helps to hide the 9% abv. The caramel and pie crust flavors underneath it all are very nice. There's only a hint of actual pumpkin flavor and the beer could benefit from having a little more. Overall it's very tasty and dare I say somewhat juicy.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked this up as part of a mix-a-six from Al's of Hampden, enjoyed chilled from a tumbler shared with octopus87.

The color is firey golden red with a good level of clarity with a crust of tan cream with tight bead and lace that sticks lazily. The smell is dominated by pie spices - lots of clove right off with a hint of nutmeg nuttiness and slight bitter citrus tinge with nutty malt and subtle brown sugar scent. The feel is moderately spiced in texture which is good considering I expected spice overload judging by the scent with good carbonation level which is moderate and mild creamy feel with a light bitterness and moderate amount of sweetness with semi-dry finish.

This Imperial Pumpkin has a nice blend of pumpkin pie spices with plenty of clove and cinnamon giving a woody earthy element and adding to the layer of caramel malt body underneath with some slightly slick sweet and smooth yeast accents. The alcohol comes into the taste late, but it is still there but the spice distracts for the most part and it doesn't seem hot or really apparent until the last taste. I enjoy this beer for what it is - a pretty decent pumpkin ale, not strong flavored even though the spices are assertive and the alcohol is not hot and malt stays away from cloying so I generally enjoyed this. A good strong pumpkin ale.

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Photo of Knapp85
4.2/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Devious is a really good fall brew. Grabbed a bottle as soon as I could to try this one. The normal pumpkin ale I tried on tap at the brew works and wasn't overly thrilled with it. This brew dropped a bomb on the other pumpkin ale. This one poured out as a deep copper color with a thick white head on top. This beer has a nice lacing on it. The smell of the beer is full of spices and pumpkin aromas. The taste is loaded with cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and pumpkin. Had a light vanilla flavor in the aftertaste too. The mouthfeel had a hefty bite to it. Overall the beer is a good one, really enjoyable.

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Photo of ewitkows
3.94/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It's fall outside.. tis the season for pumpkinfestive brews! My fear was that this would be an overly sweet beer with an artifical pumpkin flavor.. only because so many other pumpkin beers seem to try to add a flavor to a beer.. this wasnt the case.

I live about an hour away from Allentown, PA where this beer is brewed, so it was easy to find in a local store. I purchased a 1Pt, 9.4 oz bottle for about 9 bucks, and I would say that a beer, at this size.. for the alcohol content.. its worth the price (note, when I drink beer, I have a 50-50 rule, 50% towards taste, 50% towards making me feel all happy inside).

First, it's a PUMPKIN ale, so dont add any fruit to it (unless you prefer an orange pumpkin ale ;) It pours with an orange, hazy, murky color, with a medium head. If you close your eyes and dip your nose into the glass, you will invariably pickup notes of pumpkin.

The initial taste is light, with a medium-low amount of carbonation. What's worthy of note with this beer is that its a beer with Pumpkin, not the opposite. Its certainly not sweetend.. or sweet for that matter, and not overdone, just brewed with the flavors you would hope for with a Pumpkin Ale.

The aftertaste is slightly on the bitter side, but for a beer with this particular amount of alcohol content, its finishes rather nicely.

Overall, I enjoyed this beer, but I wouldnt go out of my way to purchase it again. Its not that I didnt like it.. but rather I just didnt fall in love with it. However, for 8-9 bucks a bottle, for 9% alcohol, and for a seasonal beer in mid-october, it was a nice treat. I would recommend this beer to a friend.. but I wouldnt buy a 12 pack of it.

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Photo of tbrown4
3.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Second time with this brew, first from the bottle. Surprisingly there doesn't appear too much of a negative difference.

The base seems to be a nice brown ale, roasted and sweet. Spice aroma and flavors are ok. There is definitely some depth to the flavor here, but not quite enough for the heft of this beer. Obvious alcohol flavors linger.

I split a 25.4 oz. bottle with a friend into two large tulip pours. We should have done smaller snifter pours.

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Photo of bbeane
3.74/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Poured into a snifter... starts with a weak head sitting on top of a cloudy mahogony colored beer

S- Very aromatic. Mostly spices... nutmeg and cinnamon. Obviously some pumpkin aroma with a well pronounced alcohol smell

T- Very nice. Mild pumpkin flavor with spices... mostly nutmeg. Bit boozy
M- Medium body with light carbonation

D- I like it. It's not ridiculously pumpkiny but has a nice flavor. Bit expensive, but gotta expect it with the high abv


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Photo of drabmuh
3.42/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

One of the bottles shared at a recent pumpkin tasting, at least pumpkin beers come around once a year.

Beer is orange and slightly hazy with an offwhite head.

Spicy aroma but there is definitely some pumpkin in there, its average smelling.

Beer is kind of sweet and mild, heavily carbonated in the palate but the flavors are muted. Mouthfeel mediocre and overall, even for a pumpkin beer, its quite average.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.18/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at Capone's a month or so ago. Shared at our big pumpkin tasting.

Pours a slightly-pale and hazed orange color with a really nice, lasting off white head. Nose is pretty plain, with a bit of spicing and hints of pumpkin in the background. The taste also brings on a bit of pale malt. Really quite plain in general. Feel is light with fairly high levels of carbonation for the style. This goes down pretty easily for its strength, but there's nothing too memorable about it.

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Photo of Gavage
3.3/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: pours a clear reddish orange color with a wispy head that disappears immediately.

Smell: nutmeg, cinnamon, and a bit of earthiness creates an aroma that is not as pleasant as one would like.

Taste: caramel, nutmeg, cinnamon, alcohol, and a moderate bitterness creates a decent flavored pumpkin ale.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp to start, smooth and a touch dry at the finish. Alcohol and spices linger a while after swallowing.

Drinkability: this is a slow drinking beer, and the bomber bottle is a bit much for a single session.

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Photo of mattgreger
3.69/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very good pumpkin beer by Brew Works.

Pours with a dark caramel color, with a small bubbly head that fades very quickly.

Strong and solid aroma of pumpkin pie and spices. Strong aroma of nutmeg. Not overbearing, but definitly strong

Taste is very good. Taste just like it smells. Nice crisp pumpkin flavor with some spices that give it a nice little bite.

Mouthful is decent, carbonination might be a little heavy on this bottle, but still goes down pretty well

Overall, I enjoyed this beer. As expected, this beer does have a higher alcohol %, so it does affect the total drinkablity of the beer. Great beer to enjoy with friends during fall season, but would be hard to have more then a few of these brews.

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Photo of mymrnngjckt
2.31/5  rDev -37.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured from a 750ml cork and caged bottle into my Mikkeller chalice. Pours a golden brown color. The smell is kind of blah. Heavy on the pumpkin pie spice with no smell of roasted pumpkin. The taste is similar to the smell; not much going on when it comes to pumpkin taste but a dominant alcohol taste is present. The mouthfeel is dominated by the alcohol and none of the minimal pumpkin taste is present at all. I wouldn't reach for this one again. There are much better pumpkin beer avaialable.

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Devious Imperial Pumpkin from Fegley's Bethlehem Brew Works
3.69 out of 5 based on 239 ratings.
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