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Cottonwood Pumpkin Spiced Ale | Carolina Beer Company

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BA SCORE
86
very good
144 Reviews
Cottonwood Pumpkin Spiced AleCottonwood Pumpkin Spiced Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Carolina Beer Company
North Carolina, United States
carolinabeer.com

Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by aracauna on 09-18-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Reviews:
144
Ratings:
173
Avg:
3.84
pDev:
15.1%
 
 
Wants:
11
Gots:
9
For Trade:
0
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 144 | Ratings: 173
Photo of cbleary
3.77/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed out of a 12oz bottle into a cold glass mug.

The beer looked great and light orange with a frothy but quickly dissipating head. Some nice lacing in the glass though.

Of the pumpkin ales I've had, this one tastes the most like an appetizing pumpkin pie. The spices are just right and it strikes a great balance in achieving a fun sweet pumpkin taste with out forgetting it's a beer. Even people who hate beer would drink this, and that's a compliment.

A good beer to have once or twice a year to celebrate the season.

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Photo of ppoitras
3.77/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle from hoppedup as part of the East Coast 6-Pack & Shirt BIF. Thanks for the opportunity. *Disclaimer: Not the world's biggest pumpkin or spiced beer fan, but I'll give everything a try once, at least when it comes to beer.*

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 2" pumpkiny tan head above the slightly cloudy orangey copper brew. Head lasts very nicely, with plentiful delicate lacing. Aroma is strongly of pumpkin and spices. Even if I'm not a big fan, hard to fault a brew for delivering what they advertise on the label... Taste is spiced pumpkin bread, with cloves and such coming on even stronger at the close. Mouthfeel and drinkability are what I would expect from the style, and could certainly be worse. As some would say, "Not bad, for a spice pumpkin beer."

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Photo of Monkeyknife
3.77/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to SaCkErZ9 for this bottle.

Poured from the bottle a cloudy orange amber color with one finger of small-bubbled beige head.

Aroma is like a whiff of pumpkin pie. Cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and biscuit make it happen.

The taste is not as bold as the aroma. Watered down with just a hint of cloves and cinnamon.

Thinner bodied and moderately carbonated.

A pretty good pumpkin ale from Cottonwood but I wish the taste had the punch I found inn the aroma.

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Photo of farrago
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very active and frothy head or cream white, the bubbles pop at such a rapid rate that it fizzes down to the surface in no time, no lacing. Deep amber red color, filmy sort of translucency but you can still see through it decently, more copper orange around the rims. The nose is crisp, however, light, the cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg spices jump out at you, the pumpkin isn't too sweet, mild citrus touch as well, throws in a pinch of brown sugar on top. In the mouth it's medium-bodied with broad and fluffy carbonation, the orange and lemon citrus more present and you get edgier clove and ginger notes alongside sweeter cinnamon and allspice. As in the nose, not too much sugar or caramel dolloped on the pumpkin, retains a natural freshness. Once the fizz subsides, and that's pretty much at the finish, it displays a more creamy mouth feel. Avoiding excess sweetness good but the carbonation gets a little annoying.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Creamy crimson coloration, full haze, 1/2" cap of eggnog-hued head.
Aroma: soft, sensuous, spicy...like putting your nose right up to a pumpkin pie. Nutmeg and cinnamon, bright and pleasant, a little hot.
Light on the palate, very mellow, rich with malty flavor. Brisk, tiny hop bite greets the lips and fades fast, just enough to tickle the tongue. Body's about medium, finish is sweet, if slight.
A decent brew, I can stand a few of these.

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Photo of mcallister
3.81/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Got to admit one of the better looking pumpkin ales I've encountered. Rich, deep, nearly opaque amber, orange. A white head fades quickly and leaves a ring around the collar.

Nice balanced aromas. Pumpkin first and foremost as it should be. With the usual spices making the rounds although everything is slightly laid back. Nice mixture of malt as well.

Pretty good pumpkin but lacking depth. Dead on for pumpkin pie great flavors of pumpkin with the usual nice spices not overdone by any means. If not for the thin mouthfeel this would be one for the ages. Easy drinking.

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Photo of CHADMC3
3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This brew pours a hazy copper to brown with an off white head that quickly dissolves to leave just a thin layer to sit atop the beer with almost no lacing.

Appetizing aroma of allspice & cinnamon highlights this traditional autumn pleaser.

The palate is surprisingly sweet, but not too much so and also featuring the traditional allspice & cinnamon highlighted in the aroma. A second visit seems to offer a touch of ginger, but also sweet malt.

Medium to light in body and carbonation with a very pleasant and palatable spice presence.

This is a good pumpkin ale that does not overwhelm the senses or approach the "imperial" category that others may. Have a try.

 666 characters

Photo of atsprings
3.84/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served a hazy deep orange with almost no head that quickly diminished to nothing. The aroma was of some pumpkin spice and deep caramel malts. The taste was dominated by pumpkin spice against some mild caramel malts. The beer was light bodied with slight carbonation and a decent spice bite. This beer is a decent local pumpkin ale, but not at the top of my list.

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Photo of plaid75
3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a murky dark copper hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured a deep cooked pumpkin flesh aroma with hints of sweet brown sugar. Perhaps a bit of nutmeg, but otherwise no real spiciness.

The taste consisted of a think pumpkin flesh mixed with brown sugar and a bit of molasses. Some nutmeg dryness. Again, not much in the area of pumpkin spices though.

The mouthfeel was full and coating.

Overall an authentic pumpkin flesh sweetness. However, there could be a bit more cinammon or allspice spiciness to balance out the flavor.

 603 characters

Photo of BrewMaster
3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Cloudy dark brown with an orangish tint. A tan head on top with decent retention.

Smell: Big, spicy, fruity smell. Notes of raisin, cinnamon, nutmeg, maple, pumpkin pie, and pine/evergreen.

Taste: This beer starts out surprisingly roasty in flavor. I did not expect that, but I liked it. Most pumpkin ales focus on the pumpkin and forget the good malty base. In this case I think they exhibit soem good creativity using a darker malt for the base of this pumpkin ale. The beer is sweet with a soft malt profile, notes of apple and spice. The flavor is not as enticing or bold as the aroma though. It's a bit watery at the end. Good flavor up front but hte ending is just empty of flavor. Still, this is a very well done and creative beer.

Mouthfeel: Good feel on the palate, mice coating without being syrupy or uncomfortable, clean after taste since the ending is so watery.

Drinkability: This beer really tastes like a spiced brown ale to me, which is a good thing. Good malty and roasty base makes it a good beer overall, not just a good pumpkin ale.

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Photo of M_C_Hampton
3.86/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A: poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass, amber colored with a foamy white head that dissipates leaving little lacing, clear

S: as expected, pumpkin pie spice

T: nutmeg, clove, and actual pumpkin, the spice doesn't overpower the pumpkin flavor

M: light and crisp

O: pumpkin isn't overpowered in this one

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Photo of daliandragon
3.87/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Been holding this one in the fridge for a week and a half, which is an eon by my standards. Pour looked ggood initially but the head crapped out almost instantly withut a trace. Color is a dark cider with hints of orange. Nose has as much pure pumpkinn smell as any of the style I've ever tasted. Also as nice cinammon/nutmeg backing with malt undertones..mmm..tasty.

Taste is full and well flavored as the nnose with a spicy/clove finish, joined by a smoky flavor. Diifferent, and nice. Unfortunately the mouthfeel doesn't measure up the same way..too thin, without enough body to let the taste really shine. Also, the carbonation burns a bit whiile you're collecting flavor.

Definitely has its faults but this is still an original, well crafted pumpkin, certainly the best I've had besides long time favorite Post Road, and well worth a shot if you see a sixer or single.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.89/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada imperial pint. No date or info.

Thanks to Onenote81 for sending this in a big surprise box!

A - Completely hazed over, this amber-orange beer had a moderately retained off-white head that ended in a lace-less thin pile.

S - The twist of the cap and following gun smoke wafting into the air released a burst of spicy pumpkin ale aroma. Ginger, nutmeg, pumpkin, cinnamon, and allspice combine for a pleasurable pumpkin pie aroma. Bready caramel malts make up a good crusty-like base for the pumpkin.

T - Heavy on the spice as the aroma suggested, it's got a great conglomerate of spice dashed in. Nice pumpkin flavor and smooth maltiness. Never overwhelming.

M - A little on the carbonated side, this pumpkin has a medium-light body, smooth entry, and a sharp finish.

D - This is a good pumpkin worthy of drinking all fall long. Enjoyable and tasty! Thanks Jon!

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Photo of Skidz
3.89/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to AKSmokedPorter for this treat!

Pours out a foggy orange brown and sits a cloudy caramel brown in the glass with a small light tan head.

Aroma is highly penetrating. Cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and allspice line up and march in. Good backing of toasted pie crust and really makes you feel like you've got a big slice of grandma's pumpkin pie right there in front of you, hold the ice cream.

Tastes lightly sweet up front and then enters a mild arrangement of spices. Allspice, cloves and nutmeg make their way into you mouth on a butter coated slip and slide, then after they run and slide, they hit the bump of malt and hops and take a dive into the pool of icy cold water from the garden hose. Caramel, light hoppy spiciness and possibly a hint of vanilla soak in the malts and lead you into the lightly bitter finish.

Nice and creamy in the mouth with easy handling carbonation. Medium bodied.

This beer hit a home run for Aroma City, then switched teams, but only hit a double for Flavor Country (baseball....eh...too much). Still, a great pumpkin beer all around.

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Photo of CBlack85
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass

This beer pours an amber copper color with a very active off white head that never quite goes away.

A very unique sweet aroma. I couldn't place any real pumpkin but very pumpkinish? definately hints of allspice, nutmeg and cinnamon. Gets me ready for Thanksgiving dinner

Sweet, very noticable pumpkin flavor, smooth, very nice...complex

Good enough to add to my regular seasonal rotation.

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Photo of ncbeermonger
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a dark copper color

Smells like pumpkin and cinnamon, outstanding!

tastes like pumpkin pie, far better than any other pumpkin beer I have ever had, I could drink a six pack of this no problem!

The mouthfeel is clean and crisp

This is a very drinkable pumpkin ale, if you can find it you should try it!

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Photo of RedwoodGeorge
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My first pumpkin ale and it was something of a surprise - much better than I'd anticipated...

The brew poured a deep reddish brown, somewhere in the neighborhood of a dark amber ale... Thick off white head that stuck around for a bit but then completely disappeared. No lacing on the glass - it looked like I was drinking a cranberry juice.

The smell was incredibly inviting and perfect for autumn - somewhere between pumpkin pie and mulled cider. The nose was almost entirely cinnamon and allspice with a little bit of that pumpkin funk.

The taste was heavy on the malt - plenty of toasted bread notes with a faint hint of pumpkin followed by a strong finish of cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice. No hops notes that I noticed but the spicing provided plenty of zing.

Mouthfeel was okay but a little flat. It seems all the carbonation left in the head leaving only a slight tingle on the tongue. Slightly dry finish (so there must be -some- hops in there) and leaves a surprisingly clean palate.

All in all tasty and pleasant - I can easily see drinking this at holiday meals and gatherings. A good preview of the winter warmers to come and a tasty seasonal style.

[Thanks to mntlover for another interesting NC brew - proving once again that low ABV beers don't have to be boring]

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Photo of willjansen
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks fist of all to Big78CJ, the BA who introduced this beer to me and more recently gave me a couple of these to take back to Australia. Served from a 12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Definitely a holiday favorite of mine...

Appearance: Initial nice head which quickly subsides to light lacing. Dark, somewhat cloudy amber - average carbonation.

Smell: Pumpkin Pie hands down. Smells a bit sugary with obvious hints of the basic pumpkin pie spices: clove, cinnamon and nutmeg. The smell makes you excited to dive in and taste it as few other beers do.

Taste: Basically tastes as it smells, but without the exepcted spice kick in the face... pumpkin flavor tucked in the middle with a dry, sourish finish leaving plenty of pumpkin and spices on the pallate to enjoy breathing for a few minutes. Interesting, but not exciting, play between the malt, hints of hop and the comparatively heavy spiciness - they seem to battle, but only shortly as the malt and hops quickly bow down to the spices - though it's understood that for this style, this doesn't necessarily mean it's unbalanced. Heavier spices would, however, quickly lead to imbalance.

Mouthfeel: Nice medium-heavy body with average carbonation - slightly oily with drying finish.

Drinkability - Considering it's a holidy spiced ale, it's extremely drinkable for the style despite the fact that it's probably meant for moderate consumption. I've managed to down a number of these in a sitting, but beware that the "pumpkin and spice" magic fades as your pallate numbs to the flavors.

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Photo of Proteus93
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Quite a deep amber - quite a bit darker than many others of the same style. Head fizzled up quickly and dramatically, but drops just as swiftly.

S: A big pumpkin pie aroma... plenty of spices, but the pumpkin is there as well (rather than being drowned out in spices, as can happen!) A nice, toasty malt aroma adds a pleasant touch.

T: Pumpkin and spice... plenty of cinnamon and nutmeg. Quite sweet compared to others. It gets a little close to being TOO sweet, and maybe just a little tart, but a pretty tasty beer. A bit of a 'smokiness,' but without truly tasting smoky - that doesn't really make a whole lot of sense, but I can't quite find a description to match what I'm thinking on that matter.

M + D: Wet... slippery... a little touch of dryness. A mellow carbonation tingle. Low alcohol makes it incredibly sessionable. It COULD get a little too sweet, but I'd risk it. A surprisingly decent take on the style, really.

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Photo of gabe23
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Cloudy, honey colored brew with a dense off-white head. It fades quickly to a thin cap with no lacing.

S - Very pleasant spicy aroma. Ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and pumpkin with a gentle caramel sweetness and a touch of earthy hops. Not really very beer like, but nice.

T - Cinnamon and ginger up front, with a mild pumpkin flavor following. Fairly sweet but with ginger bite that balances things out at the finish.

M - Fairly thin with moderate carbonation.

D - This is a unique take on the style, and one that I'll try again. The spices are a bit strong and linger on the tongue, so I doubt that I'd ever drink more than a couple at a time.

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Photo of hunteraw
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I figured this one wasn't going to get any MORE seasonal until like September, so I'd better drink it now! Thanks to ipa2xs for sending this one to me in the course of the No Name BIF.

Appearance: A dark orange/honey/amber color with red tints. Nice one or two finger off-white head. Some floaties poured in, despite a careful pour. From my own experience brewing a pumpkin beer this year, I sympathize - it's hard to get all of the pumpkin and spice out! Retention is fair. No lacing.

Smell: Lots of pumpkin aroma, acidic-smelling, with brown sugar and pumpkin pie spice notes. The brown sugar makes it stand out from other pumpkin beers I've had.

Taste: Not as flavorful as the smell, I'm afraid. Acidic, with pumpkin, very minor caramel in the finish. Spices are balanced enough that no one in particular dominates. Finishes dry from the acidity. Very nice aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Light body, carbonation a bit on the high side.

Drinkability: Not the "perfect pumpkin beer" as described by some of the reviews, but very solid. Easy drinking with low alcohol, light body. Still a novelty beer, however.

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Photo of pentathlete
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark orange with small quickly dissipating head. Opaque, with tiny bubbles and no columns. No table or lacing. Smell is pumpkin pie all the way...nutmeg, cinnamon, light clove. Delicious smell...should I float some whipped cream on this? Taste doesn't quite live up to the nose. Malty, spicy flavors fall short due to a watery thinness that belies the nose. Easy to drink and a fine beer to serve for a fall get together.

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Photo of Luigi
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very rich amber color and a light tan thin lace for a head. The aroma is like pumpkin pie. Nutmeg, pumpkin seed, with sweet malts. The flavor is about the same. Sweet malts and pumpkin pie spice. A perfect balance of maltiness and spice. Goes down easy and taste great. This is a brew that I look forward to every fall.

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Photo of blitz134
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cloudy, murky brown-orange brew. Off-white head with a slight orange tinge to it. Head was an inch of loose foam to start with and finished in a thin dense layer.

Smell is strong of pumpkin spices, gingerbread. Definate pumpkin flesh underneath. Smells as I think a pumpkin beer should. Pretty inviting.

Flavor is slightly different but still pretty good although it is a bit light. Pumpkin flavors and biscuity malts form the base then a good mix of spices come in again similar to the smell. The spices hold on in the finish and linger for a bit.

Mouthfeel is maybe medium bodied. Carbonation levels are good, not too crisp. Flavor coats the mouth alright, but I'd like the flavors to hold on a bit longer.

Good drinkability for the pumpkin brews I've had. This one tastes alot like pumpkin pie to some extent. I'd have this seasonally, but probably have a hard time drinking it all the time.

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Photo of asabreed
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Semi dark and hazy from the yeast, though I didn't even pour. A more amber or copper color depending on what kind of light you're putting on it. Immediately frothy head sinks down not rapidly but more quickly than I expected, though the brew's still a bit cold.

Smell: Nice peppery pumpkin spice instead of the overly sweet variety. Citrus hops melds well with the cinnamon sticks, maple, and vanilla too. Not too sweet either, with a citrus hop sourness melding nicely with the spices. Quite nice, especially for this rainy fall day in Richmond.

Taste: Initial blast of citrus hops, pumpkin spice, lemon grass, and cinnamon. An odd but very nice combination. Being not too sweet, the flavors are melding nicely, letting the spice come out through the hops rather than the malt outdoing itself. Again, peppery spice melds nicely with the sweeter aspects of the malt, gingerbread, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice, making it quite odd but really good, with a long, semi-sweet and sour finish.

Mouthfeel: A little slick and oily, with maybe a bit too much of a carbonation blast. Could be better, but doesn't influence the beer negatively really.

Drinkability: A solid, quite different, and easy-going pumpkin ale, especially nice, as I said, for this rainy day. Not a high alcohol content, very flavorful, and hard to put down overall.

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Cottonwood Pumpkin Spiced Ale from Carolina Beer Company
3.84 out of 5 based on 173 ratings.
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