Pecan Ale
Abita Brewing Co.

Pecan AlePecan Ale
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
American Brown Ale
Ranked #704
ABV:
5.2%
Score:
77
Ranked #46,457
Avg:
3.38 | pDev: 14.79%
Reviews:
416
Ratings:
1,122
From:
Abita Brewing Co.
 
Louisiana, United States
Avail:
Fall
Wants
  24
Gots
  153
SCORE
77
Okay
Pecan AlePecan Ale
Notes: Formerly Pecan Harvest Ale

Pecan Harvest Ale is made with real Louisiana pecans that have been toasted to perfection. That makes it something really special, because most beers with a nutty flavor or aroma aren’t made with real nuts. The natural oils from the Louisiana pecans give the ale a light pecan finish and aroma.

20 IBU
Reviews: 416 | Ratings: 1,122 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by lastmango:
Photo of lastmango
3.29/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured an orange amber copper with off-white 2 finger head that dissipated quickly. No lacing. Aroma is just faint toasted pecans, not much else. I am tasting a slight caramel with buttery sweetness with a tad of hop bitterness. Moderate body and carbonation. A bit wet on the end. Overall, uninspiring. I was hoping for more flavor, especially the pecan.

 358 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of logicalparadox
3.64/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer is probably a little underrated. Is this a world class, earth-shattering beer that will change your whole perception of a style? No. But it is a good beer, nonetheless.

What I like about this beer is its simplicity, yet it's uniqueness. I don't think I've had or seen another beer that focused on a nut, let alone pecans. The humble pecan is more than just an occasional filling for pies, topping for ice cream, or add-in for salads. It is one of the quintessential culinary and cultural icons of the American south, generally, and Louisiana in particular.

Being a Louisiana-based brewery, it's fitting that Abita would reach to this heritage to try and represent themselves. But Abita could have done something more glitzy (and cliche), like the all-too-obvious vanilla pecan-praline porter that I'm sure someone has already done or thought about doing. Heck, that would be all the more "New Orleans" touristy, crowd-pleaser (or at least sales-generator) beer, wouldn't it?

Instead, Abita chooses to embrace the pecan itself. Just the nuts. They use real pecans, from the Louisiana crop harvest no less, and they toast them up before adding to the brew. Maybe I just love a great concept beer with something to say, but I think this beer works at least as well as an example of Southern Americana with actual integrity, getting back to the roots of classic Southern crops and ingredients, as it does as an actual beer in my glass. Props for that alone.

OK, long digression, but the result is an enjoyable brew. It's got a nice, light toasted pecan amber hue to it, puts on a good head, and the head has pretty good retention (perhaps from the nut proteins?). Aromas a malty, with a subtle nutty backdrop that alludes to the pecans without shouting about them. The flavor profile is light, with some toasty and grainy malts, a mild crispness, some dark leafy fall flavors of toffee, toasted bread, honey, biscuit, and dare I say something vaguely reminiscent of candy corn. True to it's base, it's a good old brown harvest ale under the hood.

In that mix, the nutty pecans come through with distinction, and a bit of that toast. Not cloying at all like a "pecan pie" interpretation of such a beer.

Overall, perfect for the season, a nice change from the herd of all those pumpkin beers, Oktoberfest Marzens, big milkshake-heavy porters and stouts, and harvest ales that are typical for Fall. This is not a beer made to be an alpha dog and outperform all contenders, nor is it a flavor bomb... but I think the "less is more" approach works well here.

 2,570 characters

Photo of Pegasus
3.53/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Clear light amber brown, with just a faint haziness, a moderate off-white head, which retains quite well, thick, chunky broken lace, and no visible carbonation.

Aroma: Nutty, malty aroma, with caramel notes, and a moderate herbal hop presence.

Taste: Opens with strong toasted malt notes, as the taste progresses, dark caramel notes appear. Finishes dry, with a lingering toasted malt and pronounced nutty note and a late spike of herbal hops.

Mouth feel: Smooth and fairly full, soft.

Drinkability/notes: Pleasant and drinkable, would be a good session beer.

Presentation: Packaged in a short twelve-ounce bottle with a twist-off crown, served in a standard pint tap glass.

 691 characters

Photo of Brenden
2.76/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The color is a dark copper, almost but not quite red. The head retains pretty well and leaves a little thin lacing ina couple of light patches.
The aroma is of malts, but pretty mild. No complexity and not much substance. Pecan is nonexistent to my nose.
Malt makes a stronger appearance in the flavor, with some hops in the back but well subdued. Pecan is almost an afterthought and doesn't show up at all except for a nutty addition in the finish. There's a tangy zest in here that doesn't scream pecan ale and lingers in a funky aftertaste.
The body is on the light side of medium and carbonation is mild. There's a light crispness in the body and that's about it.
If I drank this without knowing it, I don't think I would figure out it's supposed to be a pecan ale. The funky zest and aftertaste mar this one a bit as well. There's a sturdy malt back, but I'd never get this one as a specialty ale.

 902 characters

Photo of bmjivi221
1/5  rDev -70.4%

Photo of Travcofarms
3/5  rDev -11.2%

Photo of WestHam973
1/5  rDev -70.4%

Photo of Suds
3.4/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer is a honey-amber colored, clear liquid. The head is modest but leaves an enticing lace. It's aroma is enticing....nutty, sweet, slightly malty....a little toasted bread. Some caramel and honey. The flavor is balanced, but not really dovetailed with the smell. A little oily, some pale and toasted malt taste. Not really sweet, but no serious bitterness either. Nut flavor is present, especially in the hind-taste. Medium, trending light, in body. It could be more full in flavor and mouthfeel. Still, I imagine that this is a difficult beer to craft, and it is nonetheless very well done.

 598 characters

Photo of hyland24
3.39/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pilsner. This beer poured a slightly hazy brown amber color with a 1 inch off white foam head leaving behind speckled lacing throughout the glass. Not much to smell but picked up slight hints of malt and nuts. The taste was decent with definite nutty flavors coming through although the malt was more predominant. No pecans to speak of but similar to a nut brown ale. Good carbonation finishing crisp an fairly clean. Not a bad beer similar to a nut brown. Wouldnt go out of my way for it but worth trying once.

 539 characters

Photo of CuriousMonk
3.54/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This one challenged my taste buds! Poured from 12 oz bottle into a dimpled mug. Poured a pretty clear coppery amber with a thin white head. It seems to have pretty low carbonation. It smells wonderful--very nutty and a little fruity. It feels medium-bodied and it's flavor is just as wonderful at the smell! You can really taste the pecan and it finishes very smoothly. This brew really offers an enjoyable experience--I'll definitely buy this one again and I highly recommend other to try it.

 493 characters

Photo of zbkai189
3/5  rDev -11.2%

Photo of Nunya323
4/5  rDev +18.3%

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.7/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Interesting. You can really taste the pecan. Hell, you can even smell it! But does it fit in with the beer? I'm not sure, but I kind of like it. It's weird, but good. It replicates a caramel-coated pecan. It doesn't really interfere with the beer. It's just an odd-twist. But is an odd-twist enough? I'm thinking to myself right now, out at the bar, would I have one of these? Maybe. And if I did, would I have two? Probably not. But I'd definitely have one at home. Two in a row? Probably not. On the other hand, and I've said this about many beers before, I think this is an excellent beer to have with Thanksgiving dinner, or something else along those lines. And, although it's not particularly rich or sweet (it's actually really well balanced with just the pecan nuttiness added into the mix), I think this would make a great beer to relax with on a spring, summer, or fall evening on the back porch as the sun goes down and the stars come out. Interesting. Charming. Worth trying.

 987 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.54/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz 2012 bottle served in a snifter.

Poured deep amber with a proper tan head that had limited retention.
Only lightly nutty in the nose, this has a fine nutty flavor that lingers in the aftertaste. About 50/50 sweet/bitter balance overall.
Medium body and carbonation with a rather dry finish.

O: Readily recommended as a budget nut ale. Excellent with guacamole and should be great with cheese.

 401 characters

Photo of justinjj1280
3.62/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light amber with little very little head that disappears quickly.

Flavor is of sweet caramel malt, and the slightly buttery pecan came through pretty clearly. I quite like the flavor.

Light in body and on the mouth.

Hard to rate. I really like the taste, but it needs a little something different in the texture, maybe some creaminess.

I'd buy it again.

 366 characters

Photo of LGFitz2
3.75/5  rDev +10.9%

Photo of dbunch21
3.52/5  rDev +4.1%

Photo of Lupe
3.6/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy orange-copper with a tight off-white head that quickly dissipates to a fine ring, leaving spots of lacing.

Aroma of sweet and toasty malt with nuttiness. Light pecan notes come through in the nose.

Toasted malts with a little toffee, nut, and light brown sugar. Finishes with lingering pecan flavors. Nicely balanced. Hops are light and cut the sweetness.

Light to medium in body and fairly smooth. Carbonation is mild.

Easy to drink. A solid beer - Not going to blow you away, but good flavor and nicely balanced. Good session brew.

 560 characters

Photo of jeremyd365
3.97/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a pretty clear coppery amber with a thin white head. It seems to have pretty low carbonation. It smells wonderful--very nutty and a little fruity. It feels medium-bodied and it's flavor is just as wonderful at the smell! You can really taste the pecan and it finishes very smoothly. This brew really offers an enjoyable experience--I'll definitely buy this one again and I highly recommend other to try it.

 413 characters

Photo of danielofthedale
3.54/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a burnt orange with a small tan head. The head fads fast with almost no lacing. A some what active flow of bubbles up from the bottom of the glass.

S-Get a big whiff of pecan right off the bat. Then some citrus hops and a slight sweet malt aroma.

T-It starts with a noticeable pecan flavor, which is nice since many nut flavored ales come up a little weak in that area. A small amount of caramel and roast malt flavor in the middle. Floral and citrus hop flavor in the finish.

M-Carbonation is pretty good on this beer. A very crisp beer. It has a light body, lighter then American Brown ales I think.

O-Better then I was thinking it would be. I am not a big fan of pecans but it compliments the beer quite nice. Would have like the malt to be more of a player in the flavor. All in all a good beer session beer though.

 832 characters

Photo of cliff1066
3.4/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of ADKbeerguy
3.8/5  rDev +12.4%

Photo of WanderingFool
3.25/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of Smakawhat
3.69/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Deep four finger off white head, with lots of thick retention and soapy bubbles. Body color forms a nice deep caramel and bronze amber, pretty clear as well with not much visible carbonation.

True to word, it's pecan nuts on the nose. Dry. A soft tannic nutty quality to match and a little hint of possible biscuit and caramel sensing sweetness.

Body and flavor comes in a little unexpected. Delivers the nuts shall we say on first sip but comes with an odd medicinal backbone. Good depth but strangely not covering or coating the palate, and a lifeless body feel with minimal carbonation. Sweet malts and caramel finish with barely any hinting toasty quality.

Overall I seem to remember enjoying this beer more in the past, but this is not a total letdown by any means.

 822 characters

Photo of casualfan
2.75/5  rDev -18.6%

Pecan Ale from Abita Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 77 out of 100 with 1122 ratings