Hail To The Dark Gourd | HammerHeart Brewing Company

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23 Ratings

Brewed by:
HammerHeart Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States

Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.60%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by XmnwildX12 on 12-13-2013

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Ratings: 23 |  Reviews: 4
Photo of justinm4bama
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of NilocRellim
3.89/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a black colour. Alcoholic nose, syrupy, fermented pumpkin, earthy squash, muscovado sugar, and a hint of smoke. Heavy-bodied, syrupy, cloying mouthcoat, black banana, pumpkin pulp, muscovado sugar, and a light smokey finish that lingers.

 243 characters

Photo of GRG1313
4.75/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Tyecko
4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MattyG85
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2016 batch from a 750 ml mini growler from the brewery. Poured into a Hammerheart tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark blackish brown with a moderate amount of bubbles. Slight finger of light tan head that slowly fades away.

Smell: A nicely boozy and sweet aroma with a scent of rum, bourbon, and pumpkin spice. Upfront barrel presence with a scent of rum, bourbon whiskey, vanilla, oak, and wood. Hints of pumpkin and spices including cinnamon, clove, and allspice. Nice hints of smoke. Malt hints of wheat, grains, caramel, and biscuit with some yeast. A really nice aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a nicely boozy and sweet taste with big notes of rum, bourbon, and pumpkin spice. Big barrel presence with notes of rum, bourbon whiskey, vanilla, oak, and wood. Some nice notes of pumpkin along with spice notes of cinnamon, clove, and allspice. Some notes of smoke. Malt notes of wheat, caramel, grains, and biscuit along with yeast. A very good taste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy, slick, and fairly chewy.

Overall: A very good Barrel Aged Pumpkin Ale. Big barrel presence with some nice pumpkin spice.

 1,155 characters

Photo of RichH55
3.88/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of kylehay2004
3.92/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of terabin
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%

Photo of Twotonsandwich
4.75/5  rDev +11.8%

Photo of barczar
3.74/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep brown black weigh garnet highlights and a lingering, frothy khaki head.

Toasted nutty malt, clove, cinnamon, and a touch of roast counter sweet pumpkin and ginger.

Flavor is dominated by clove, fairly phenolic, and ginger at the base. Notes of pumpkin weave throughout, with light roast and tar rounding out the bitter finish. The plasticy notes are a bit offputting.

Body is on the thick side, with low carbonation and substantial alcohol warmth.

Phenols detract from the experience, and spices are too overwhelming for my palate, but there's nice pumpkin presence.

 584 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.68/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A half year removed from pumpkin season, we break from the winter cold with those memories of Halloween, fall festivals and looming snow deep in the recesses of our minds. Yet instead of fondling the fodder of blooms, warmth and barbecue, HammerHeart drags us back to autumn kicking and screaming.

With little of its gourdish hints, the dark ale opens with a bark-brown and shaddowy hue. Laced with cocoa-like haze, the ale shakes off a creamy, sand-stained head. Its strong retention ensures the session well while lacing the glass with broken collars.

Prominent bourbonesque aromas waft about with the undertow of heavy toast, nutty coffee, cocoa, campfire and roasted pecan that all simmer beneath. The decorative scent of allspice counteracts the dark malt notes and bridge into those caramelly and charred booze notes that rise, just ahead of the first sip.

The toasted and charred flavors seem wrapped in a blanket of starchy sweetness. Light caramel and the freshly baked flesh of pumpkin give the early palate a burnt sweetness with dense bready taste. Yet its toasty dryness develops across the middle to open up the kona-type coffee, smoky cocoa powder, toast and pecan series of more robust nuances. Its warm and spicy finish is a medley of cinnamon, nutmeg and clove that bridge into bourbony warmth with seared caramel, vanilla and soft coconut cream pie.

Upon the palate, the beer's depth of creamy starchiness is perfectly suited to balance the pang of wood and grain derived astringency and those powdery tannins. Its bready texture holds onto the creaminess of carbonation deep into the session and is slow to dissolve. This also protects the palate from the spicy prickle of alcohol head, en route to a long and toasty-starch linger.

Hail to the Dark Gourd is a robust beer that works hard to capture the essence of the season. But with its layers of complexity piling on, the finesse elements of pumpkin pie get lost. The search for praline, graham cracker and whipping cream are dwarfed by the toast and the char.

 2,038 characters

Photo of millelacsmark
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Snow81
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of DaveMiller
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Hopstout
5/5  rDev +17.6%

Photo of Can_if_you_can
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of SortaAmbivalent
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of IchLiebeBierZu
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%

Photo of architects
5/5  rDev +17.6%

Photo of uglypirate
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of jera1350
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of DaveAnderson
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of XmnwildX12
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Hail To The Dark Gourd from HammerHeart Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.25 out of 5 with 23 ratings