Pecan Harvest Ale | Abita Brewing Co.

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Pecan Harvest AlePecan Harvest Ale

Brewed by:
Abita Brewing Co.
Louisiana, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by acrawf6 on 02-05-2007

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Reviews: 394 | Ratings: 1,049
Photo of LaurenLM
5/5  rDev +48.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer has strong malt flavors, which blends great with the pecans. The matiness and pecans almost gives a coffee cake like flavor. I wish this beer was available year round.

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Photo of singletary
3.93/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It pours amber color with a nice head on it. It has a malty and caramel smell to it, the taste is heavy on malts with a hint of the pecan coming in at the end. A easy beer to drink with a nice taste a very good effort by Abita.

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Photo of Groenebeor
4.29/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours a dark nut brown, slightly clear, small head that fades fast. Never seen a lasting head on this beer in the past few years of enjoying it.

S: Not much to smell, faint memories of breadiness and nuttiness.

T: This is one of my favorite seasonal beers. Lovely notes of pecan, toasted malt, wheat bread, and low alcohol warmth.

F: Medium carbonation, very drinkable.

Overall an excellent fall beer!

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Photo of Sabtos
2.77/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Dark amber, medium head that slowly dissipates.

Smell of fried dough oddly enough--for a New Orleans beer I guess a little reminder of beignets is welcome. I also get some surprising hint of a barleywine somehow, even though the alcohol is at session level.

Flavor of prune up front, then later on, on the backend, the hints of pecans come through. If you're looking for something thick and sweet like pecan pie, this isn't it. A malty brew with some added pecans for a slightly unique ale is all this is.

This is confused, in my opinion. I'm not sure how it's possible I get barleywine overtones in a low alcohol beer with pecans, but there it is.

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Photo of CHickman
3.37/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazy copper amber color with a 1-2 finger foamy light tan head that's full of tiny bubbles, fading slow to average time and leaving a foamy layer on top. Decent spotty lacing but it leaves rings as it fades, which surprised me.

Smells of malt, light roasted pecans, herbs and faint caramel. Really dull overall, the recurring pecan scents are the only thing saving it from being a dud.

Like the nose it's rather basic tasting with the pecans being the star of the show. The malt backbone is sweet with brown sugar, caramel, buttered biscuit, roasted grains, faint floral hops and what seem like oaky notes. It's basically nutty with a sweet malt foundation and just enough hops to all a little balance, but not much.

Mouthfeel is light and watery thin with a light body, really mild carbonation and a sweet finish that trails off with the pecans and roasted grains. The pecans salvage this but I wish they would have had a more pronounced and stronger presence throughout. I appreciate the attempt here, but it came up short. Not a bad beer, just a bit of a letdown IMO as I was hoping for a very strong pecan taste.

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Photo of BigBry
3.36/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle I have had hanging around for a while.
Pours a clear, dark orange with an inch of loose foam. Head shrinks down leaving a thin collar, limited lace.
Smell has some sweet caramel, toasted malt, and some roasted nuts.
Taste has some of the roasted nuttiness, and more caramel malt sweetness.
This beer has a good level of carbonation, crisp mouth feel, light body.
Overall, this is a pretty average beer. Nice addition of the pecans, but rather light (color, aroma, flavor, mouth) compared to some other Brown ales.

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Photo of muffiewolf
4.59/5  rDev +36.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Appearance- Dark brown with some decent lacing with a decent head that dissipates very fast.

Aroma- Smells great with light hop and obvious hints of pecan and caramel malts.

Taste- Very pleasant taste with pecan and a stronger caramel malt flavors.

Feel- leaves a light presence of mellowness and drinkability that creates a desire to have another.

This is very well executed and unique brew. Definitely a 5 for creativity.

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Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
3.56/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the bottle, it pours a moderately dark amber with a moderate off-white head which quickly dissipates to a ring. Slightly nutty smell. Taste is subdued. Finish is pleasant.

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Photo of UPMD_Bill
3.34/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Drank from bottle so can't comment on look or smell that much. Roasted pecan complements toasty malt and is evident on first sip. Not particularly sweet. Mid-sip pecan is more subtle. The beer feels kind of lighter and more watery/less filling than I would expect from something made with pecans. Moderate to high carbonation. Finish is drying and a little woody but not too bitter, reminding me of pecan husk.

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Photo of stevoj
2.8/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Very reminiscent of some of the European chestnut ales. Slightly nutty aroma, some brown sugar. Taste is flat and dry, mildly sweet.. Dull appearance, flat finish.

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Photo of schwansmantr
4.33/5  rDev +28.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look- Dark copper/brown with some decent lacing and a small maybe one finger of head that dissipates very fast.

Smell- Smells very good with light hop and a stronger hint of pecan and caramel malts.

Taste- Very nice taste to it very slight pecan and a stronger caramel malt flavor.

Feel- very pleasant and light for the amount of flavor that leaves the pallet moist'

overall- This is a good beer and would be great with a steak or lamb. The light feel would make it good on a hot day but it does have quiet a bit of flavor. This is the second Abita beer I have tried I hated the first one but this is a very good beer a solid A-

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Photo of BeerWithMike
4.21/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Sampled back on Sunday, October 18th. Comes in a 12 ounce bottle. Bottle chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured in to a "It's 5 O'clock Somewhere" pint glass.

Brew pours a pretty dark amber in color with a 1-finger creamy off-white head. Some spotty lacing is seen when sipped. Aroma is really nice and is of light roasted pecans and caramel. Taste pretty much follows the nose with a touch of brown sugar and maybe honey also. Really smooth with just a mild hint of bitterness of the nuts near the finish. Medium-bodied with medium carbonation. Overall a very tasty seasonal brew.

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Photo of keithmurray
3.71/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - translucent copper colored liquid with beige head

Smell - toasted nuts, candied pecan, caramel

Taste - much like the smell - caramel, candied pecan, toasted nuts, honey

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, medium carbonation, slight sweetness upfront, mild bitterness

Overall - decent beer, something a little different off the beaten path

Price Point - $1.79/12 oz bottle

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Photo of logicalparadox
3.64/5  rDev +8%
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.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.67/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Abita does some interesting things but they also have flops. Let's see how this one pans out. Poured into a flute glass, just because.

Look : Pecan-honey colored, with light hues of browns and oranges. 70% opacity with shadows of fingers on the opposite side. The head is popcorn colored and 3 fingers tall, but recedes like a landslide to a small ring within a minute. Lace is left in a "connected dancing" pattern around the glass.

Smell : Some festive fruity aromas, with banana bread, caramel roll, cranberry, raisin, and finally the nutty pecan and honey aromas. It finally ends on a kettle corn note. Very malty and little to no hop to be detected in the aroma.

Taste : There's a richness to the flavor, mostly enhanced by baked malts and sappy pecan. It's hard to nail down what else I'm tasting, but I'll aim for caramel, biscuit, and finally more nut hull and wraps up with a vanilla-root beer and slight rind hop bitterness. From the bottle the flavors are tighter and less spread out, but also less variety of flavors and more of a focus on simple caramel malts and pecan nuttiness with hints of blueberry. Once poured and let to sit a few moments, the flavors spread out and that's where you get the root beer, vanilla, and hop finish. Any off flavors are created by an exaggeration of yeast.

Feel : Mildly creamy, has a good carbonation to it, medium bodied. Sharp bite at the end fades out the feel.

Overall : Abita has been hit and miss for me. I think I've had three Abita beers and this one is about in the middle. I neither love it nor hate it. It could be a lot worse, but it could be better, although I'm not sure how. It's something I'd be willing to try again, but I think this beer needs a special occasion or a pairing for it to really shine. I'll shelve this one for awhile and maybe come back to it next year.

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Photo of Buck89
3.56/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Burnt orange color with a reasonable light tan head that receded quickly. Aromas were muted - toasted pecan and a bit of caramel. Did not seem artificial or medicinal to me. Tasted roasty up front with toast and pecan and a bit of sweetness but finished dry. Better than I expected.

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Photo of PA-hunter
4.13/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured bottle into glass. 5.2% abv.

Appearance- Pours a dark amber. Two finger plus head that lasts. Semi-clear.

Smell- Sweet caramel malt. Quite bready too. Nutty as well.

Taste- The sweetness is dry and toasted, like a baked pretzel. Caramel quality adds to the pecan nutty flavor of this beer. The pecan flavor lasts, along with some slight bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel- Medium-light in body. Active carbonation.

Overall- A nice brown ale, well done with regard to flavor. Easy drinking and sweet. Great use of using a regional ingredient (pecans) to make a tastey beer.

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Photo of MrWonka
4.28/5  rDev +27%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very, very good beer. Definitely has a prominent nutty-like flavor in the smell and in the taste. Would definitely recommend to anyone interested in drinking beers other than just Coors light, Bud Lite, etc. A very interesting brew that I would buy again and invite friends to try.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.15/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2

BOTTLE: 12 fl oz. Brown glass. Generally appealing label art. Branded orange pry-off pressure cap.

5.2% ABV. Reviewed live as a brown ale given the label calls it a pecan ale and I assume any nut ale is a brown ale unless explicitly informed otherwise. Served cold into a pilsner glass and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Expectations are average; I'm suspicious of the terminology "flavored ale" listed on the label, which makes me think this might taste like artificial pecan extract.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: 1.5 fingers wide. Off-white colour. Average thickness, creaminess, fullness, consistency, and complexion. Above average (~3 minute) retention. Leaves no lacing as it recedes.

BODY: Clear deep dark copper of above average vibrance. Clean; no yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible.

Appears well-carbonated. In short, it looks nothing like a brown ale. It's closer to an amber or even an IPA to be honest. Far from unique or special, but generally appealing, sure.

AROMA: Heavy caramelization. Artificial pecan/pecan extract/pecan flavoring. A hint of orange is present, but it medicinal and off-putting; Delsym cough syrup comes to mind. Toastiness, with a faint burnt character. Definitely seems too sweet, though the artificial pecan notes disguise the malts.

No yeast character or overt alcohol is detectable.

Overall, I find it off-putting and oddly artificial. Aromatic intensity is average.

TASTE: Buttery diacetyl announces itself, which is quite unwelcome - especially alongside the extract-redolent artificial pecan character. No legitimate nut notes are present whatsoever. Has way too much sweetness, as well as overly prominent caramelization. The Delsym cough syrup/artificial orange fruit character I found on the aroma manifests in the taste, and is even worse than I feared. There's a strange absence of brown malts and authentic nuttiness, making this a terrible brown ale - if that's what it's intended to be. In actuality, it drinks closer to an amber - albeit a rather poor one.

Shallow, simple, and uninspired. It fails at the fundamentals; the pecan character is poorly executed and it's largely an unevocative build (regardless of which style you approach it as). I can't say I like it.

TEXTURE: Overcarbonated, unrefreshing, sticky, syrupy, overly thick, overly full-bodied, and overly heavy on the palate, with a poor overall presence. This texture fails to elevate the beer or to accentuate any of the flavour profile's constituent notes. Not a good companion to the taste by any means. In its defense, though, it's not coarse or dry, but instead opts aptly for smoothness and wetness. It's also not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, harsh, scratchy or rough. But boy does it need work.

OVERALL: A poor stab at a pecan ale with few redeeming characteristics, this subpar offering from Abita is best left on the shelf. Not undrinkable, but the medicinal off character combined with its inherent artificiality really brings it down for me. I wouldn't drink another if it was offered to me for free. Ugh.


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Photo of VirginiaBeerMan
3.16/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle
A - Clear reddish amber, almost like iced tea, with thin head and no visible carbonation
S - I actually thought I caught a whiff of apple or pineapple upon opening the bottle which gave way to molassas, brown sugar and nut
T - A bit weak with no real dominance; the smell gives high expectations for a taste that lets you down.
F - Thin, little carbonation, very slightly dry
O - Nothing remarkable; the best part are the smells when drinking, everything else is simply average; I didn't get the pecan nut flavors that I was expecting, which was a bit of a let down

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Photo of bmeehan
3.5/5  rDev +3.9%

I was a nervous excited to try this, knowing I don't love pecan flavored things, but that this couldn't possibly taste like only pecans, and I was relieved to see that it didn't. There's enough of a hint to know it's a strange brew of sorts, but plenty of your typical beer ingredients to remind you this is just a fun experiment that you'd want to drink again.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
2.77/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle into a wine glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark copper color with good clarity. The head is two fingers high, with a pale yellow shade. Retention is quite good, and the texture is beautifully fluffy. Plenty of lacing is left on the glass. (4)

Smell: I'll give Abita credit, pecan comes through quite well. It's backed by a pleasant toffee sweetness, and some gentle roast rounds it out. The nose is dead simple, but it pulls off exactly what it intends. (3.25)

Taste: Sadly, the pecan doesn't come through nearly as well here. It opens up with some caramel and toffee sweetness, though it does finish with some long-lasting pecan flavor regardless. Dare I say, the nut flavor seems slightly chemical. It's both out of balance AND it's bland. Yeah, I'm not enjoying this one much... (2.5)

Mouthfeel: While light in body, it's also incredibly sweet and - frankly - slimy. The trademark Abita drinkability is crippled because of the former. Carbonation is somewhat light. (2.5)

Overall: I've come to expect a couple things from Abita beers: they're usually easy to drink, but they're also really bland. This being no exception. Unfortunately, this also adds an unpleasant chemical flavor to the mix. Just another underwhelming beer from Abita. (2.5)

2.73/5: Why is it that every beer brewed with nuts taste so artificial???

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Photo of JLaw55
3.5/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A pretty good flavor profile, definitely taste the pecans. They are very prominent and it is a very smooth beer, all flavors being well balanced. The only problem I have with this one is the awkward mouth feel of the beer. It is so far off from what I thought it should be with a beer of this flavor profile. It is a darker beer with a hearty flavor profile, definitely a fall and winter style beer. Yet the mouth feel is extremely watery and lacking any sort of body to hold up the flavor profile. I have had other Abita beers and seem to get this same odd mouth feel. The last one I had was a summer brew though, so it wasn't a problem as much, but this time is quite prominent and ruins a part of the experience.

Would Drink Again: Yes
Would Purchase Again: No

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Photo of chefhatt
3.5/5  rDev +3.9%

Has a light brown body with a thin head.
Aroma is of a roast nuttyness.
taste has a upfront nut flavor followed by a malt back bone
mouthfee, is thin and overall a ok beer.

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Photo of ordybill
3.75/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 OZ bottle into a pint glass. Aroma is a faint pecan smell mixed with hops. The appearance is a light brown color with a thin head. The flavor is a slight nut flavor with a malt and hop background The palate is a light bodied beer with average carbonation Overall, this is not a bad beer at all. it is my fifth Abita beer I have had and it is second to Andygator in my opinion.

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Pecan Harvest Ale from Abita Brewing Co.
3.37 out of 5 based on 1,049 ratings.
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