Pumking | Southern Tier Brewing Company

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7,687 Ratings

Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: Pumpkin Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.60%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
19 Degrees Plato
8.8 Degrees L
2-row Pale Malt
Caramel Malt
Pureed Pumpkin

Kettle Hops: Magnum
Aroma Hops: Sterling

Added by BeerBeing on 08-26-2007

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 7,687 |  Reviews: 1,999
Photo of Monsone
4.19/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nice copper collor with a tan head. Pretty good looking beer

S - WOW! This beer smells like grandma baking on Thanksgiving. The nutmeg and cinnamon come through big time. Smell is almost like graham crackers. Really great smelling beer.

T - Spices are not nearlly as dominant as I expected after smelling the beer. The prevalent flavors are cinnamon and nutmeg. Balanced spice flavor. Slight sour finish.

M - Feels creamy if not a little light.

D - Where is the 9 percent? I detect hardly any alcohol at all. Dangerous beer, but the spices will probably keep you from drinking more than one.

Pretty great Pumpkin beer. I don't know if I have had better. It just smells so damn good.

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Photo of pattyhopp
4.95/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pumpkin pie + Beer= Pumking
I knew this was a great brew as soon as I popped the top and took a whiff, then continued to pour and consume. This was dessert in a bottle, I would love to try the draught if I can find it. The 9.0 abv is sure to warm your cool fall nights, try it if you find it.

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Photo of YonderWanderer
4.47/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a deep rich orange with a thin layer of foam. A bit of lacing, but not much is left on the glass.

S: Just smelling this beer makes you want to drink it and get a slice of pumpkin pie. Nutmeg, cinnamon, and other pumpkin spices dominate, but not in an offensive way.

T: Wow! This is excellent. The aforementioned pumpkin spices come through - cinnamon, nutmeg, sugar, and more. It's almost creamy in a way, but it's so damn good. Even my non-beer drinking girlfriend liked it. And I personally love it. Very well done, imparting a lot of good pumpkin flavors in a way that isn't too subtle or too overpowering. The alcohol is well-hidden behind these flavors.

M: Creamy and smooth, with an equally nice finish.

D: This is a damn tasty pumpkin and one I would gladly drink anytime. I hope ST keeps this one in rotation every fall and that more of it makes its way to MA.

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Photo of ZappaCat
3.3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

As soon as I see a new Southern Tier bomber on the shelf, I automatically grab it to try it out. While I'm not always totally blown away, I've never once been disappointed with any of their offerings, despite their somewhat dubious attempts at imperializing every single beer style on the face of the earth.

Pumpking poured into the suggested goblet a rich, orange hue, with the tiniest bit of head, which doesn't hang around for long at all. A ring of lace sits on top of the beer along the edge of the glass, but doesn't stick to the side as you drink it down.

Smell is all pumpkin spice and nutmeg. Maybe it's just the spices, but the beer has an almost creamy eggnog smell. Definitely the strongest, most unique of the style I've sniffed.

Tastes almost exactly like it smells. Nutmeg and other assorted pumpkin pie flavors fist your pallet's ass. This is nice if you are a fan of all the tastes associated with pumpkin desserts, but this brew probably won't do much for hardcore beer fans (although if you don't like pumpkins, you probably wouldn't buy a pumpkin beer to begin with). This just doesn't taste like beer. Even the steep 9% ABV is completely lost in the haze of pumpkin-spice until the beer warms up a considerable amount. Even then, nobody would guess 9% without being familiar with Southern Tier in the first place. Whether or not all of this is a good thing depends entirely on the drinker's preference. While I'm a fan of the fruit, this isn't what I'm looking for when I want a beer. With that in mind, there is a time and a place for Pumpking. This is a rich, after-dinner alcoholic treat.

Save one of these for after your Thanksgiving meal. It'll pair well with dessert. More than one in the same sitting would be nauseating for me.

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Photo of morebeergood
3.99/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Popped open a bomber of this last Sunday night and poured it into two pint glasses. The first thing you notice is the smell. This is one of the best smelling pumpkin beers I have ever had. It almost overwhelms your nose with smells of pumpkin and spice. This must be where the "imperial" name comes in, as it seems to be a notch more that other beers. The taste is what I expected from a good pumpkin beer, and it's only amplified by the smell. The only drawback (minor) with this brew is that since it's so aggressively spiced, it would be hard to drink a few of these. This beer was a nice one-glass accompaniment to a nice fall season dessert we shared.

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Photo of cokes
4.86/5  rDev +20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Sometimes, when you sit yourself down with something you've otherwise written off, you come across something like this and it makes all the failure and disappointment worthwhile.

I could go into a spiel about Pumpkin beer, and how- thus far- only DFH's has produced something I'd re-taste. I won't, though. This shows that I can appreciate the style and it rewrites everything I know. And not merely because it's an "imperial" version. I dare a person to smell this and not think it is extraordinary. Then, double-or-nothing, to taste it.


The pour produces a limpid golden orange fluid with an ephemeral beige cap.
But the aroma is buoyant beyond belief, all full of crusty, whipped-cream drenched pumpkin pie, gingerbread, and honey-glazed cashews and almonds. Take this image and crank the volume up as loud as it goes.

The nuttiness ensues into the mouth, as, at first, it is full of that same, lightly toasted and honey-dripped mixed-bag of nuts, plump with cashew, almond, and walnut, and dashed in caramel. Nutmeg-spiked pumpkin adds a meaty, wet and pulpy rind induced spicy-cum-sourness. Then it becomes truly ridiculous. It morphs into gingerbread doused in mounds (and mounds) of vanilla-tinged whipped cream. And not just a hint or impression. That's literally what it tastes like. Are there honestly no spices used here, as the label of ingredients fails to list any? I doubt it, but If so...this is absolute alchemy; and if not, it's still fucking alchemy. Hops merely add a congenial impression of dried autumn leaves to offset a lingering cinnamon spice (this cannot seriously be illusory??). I don't care if I'm hallucinating at this point. My eyes are fucking open.
Medium bodied gaining heft after the pour as carbonation flutters its way out. It never clots or cloys up, though. Its imperialness is inconsequential. Even at 9% I could drink godless amounts of this, easily more than any other gourd-augmented brew I've ever visited.
Its pagan spirit shines through and easily overpasses anything else pumpkin-related I've ever tasted. And not by a small margin. This is head-and-shoulder-and-chest-and-abdomen-and-thorax-and-thigh-and-kneecap above its peers.
It has turned a hater into a disciple. I'll buy this whenever and wherever I see it.

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Photo of Jmamay22
4.19/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

King? We'll see about that...

Clearly labeled at 9.0% abv and marked to be enjoyed at 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Ingredients include pureed pumpkin, lovely.

Pours orange amber with a swirling thin white cap. The 360 degree collar leaves minimal, but some spotty lacing. Pumpkin ales are typically nondescript in this department.

The nose on this is hugely different from other pumpkin ales. Smells mainly of sweet cream and a freshly carved pumpkin for All Hallows Eve. Instead of an intense spice experience this brew features a dash of honey in the nose. A layered complex and interesting nose.

Tastes of bready pumpkin pie. Loads of pumpkin. This is the only pumpkin ale I've had that has managed to include flavors of pie crust. As in the nose, there is a distinct lack of spices, which I find enjoyable.

Mouthfeel is smooth and medium bodied. This isn't a highly drinkable brew due to its rich qualities, but enjoyable with dessert or as dessert.

The true King of pumpkin ales!

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Photo of dirtylou
4.4/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber, rileys

abv clearly listed at 9%

this beer was somewhat of an ordeal...i opened and poured half of it into a great dane imperial pint glass but then dropped it on the carpet so i'll be reviewing the 2nd half

appearance: the pour is standard enough...orange-amber body, decent beige head with light lacing

smell: pumpkin and lots of cream, cinnamon and nutmeg, brown sugar...this is pumpkin pie all the way! hints of dough, corn, allspice, and ginger round out the aromas

taste: big cream pumpkin pie flavour that isnt damaged by spices...nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon and allspice provide nice compliments this one well. The 9% abv is nowhere to be found for me...lots of toasted malt, caramel, not much on the hop front. A wonderfully enjoyable pumpkin beer, hooray

mouthfeel: super creamy and smooth

drinkability: good

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Photo of BeerTruth
4.41/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

22 oz. bottle poured into my Chimay goblet as suggested by the bottle.

I'll start off by saying I'm not really a pumpkin beer fan, but I'll put that aside as best I can to review this beer.

Pours a clear light copper hue with a one finger white head that quickly dies down to a very thin layer with a bit of stickiness. Smell is pumpkin pie through and through with sweet cinnamon, whip cream, bready crust, and a hint of cloves. I love this smell, absolutely love it. Wow, on the tongue it's very creamy and tastes like real pumpkins unlike most others of the style that seems to be very artificial. Amazing spices makes the taste of this like I'm eating my very own grandma's pumpkin pie. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. I have absolutely no clue where the 9% abv comes from, but I can easily put this one down. No artificial flavors, no overpowering spices or pumpkin flavors, Southern Tier has perfected this style. Pretty skeptical about this style, but Southern Tier has completely reversed my feelings about pumpkin beers. Do whatever you can to get this beer. Southern Tier once again amazes and continues to make big beers that satisfy. One of a kind beer, truly the "King" of the style.

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Photo of tempest
3.41/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at the Farmhouse in Emmaus, PA.

Looks nice and what do I get on the first sniff? Pie crust. Pie crust? Yeah, and nutmeg, lots of nutmeg. Same goes for the flavor, lots of nutmeg. there's maybe a touch of vanilla, and biscuit crust-like grains, but mostly nutmeg. I'm a little disappointed I didn't really get much pumpkin, but at least this beer was pretty unlike anything I've had before.

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Photo of brewcrew76
4.32/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Clear amber orangewith a thin white head and spots of lacing.

S - Fresh baked pumkin pie, fresh baked ginger bread Very fall holiday smelling. Smells fresher and less spicy than other pumkin beers.

T - Fresh pumpkin, some spices like nutmeg, allspice and cinnamon but very fresh tasting.

M - On the light side of medium with nice carbonation and a creamy mouthfeel.

D - Best pumpkin beer I have tried. Not sure how many other places use real pumpkin but I think you can really tell the difference. The real pumpkin creates a fresher taste and a different spicing.

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Photo of EliteDigger
4.07/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I hadn't seen any Southern Tier in the area and I've been searching for a really good pumpkin beer for a long time... usually the spices are waaay overdone and you can't taste any pumpkin. Let's see how this stacks up....

A=Pours an ever-so-slightly cloudy golden orange color. Thin head disappears quickly leaving a ring around the edges of the glass.

S=Pumpkin pie pure and simple. Vanilla, clove, nutmeg, marshmallow, pumpkin all hit the nose. Like the previous reviewer, it does sorta remind me of a fake pumpkin-y candle smell, but I don't mind that so much. I love the smell but let's see how it tastes....

T=Now this is what a pumpkin beer should taste like. Huge notes of Pumpkin with the spices riding shotgun. Sweet graham, clove, nutmeg, cinnamon, and sweet malts all ride the tongue on a wave of pumpkin. I detect sweet hints of marshmallow and vanilla like they put a little cool whip on top of the pie.... alcohol, for being 9%, is not apparent at all.

M=Medium, maybe a bit thin, but not bad at all. If this was much thicker, it might be too much so it's just about right. Good carbonation that fits in with this perfectly. A thin coating clings to my mouth for awhile after drinking...

D=The ABV, the sweetness, and the spices all conspire to hinder the drinkability of this one. On their own, they wouldn't be bad, but altogether, they prove a bit much. I'll be able to finish the 22 oz. bomber, but wouldn't be able to drink much more of this. This is exactly what it should be... an excellent representation of a pumpkin beer that should be consumed once in awhile on a nice cool fall evening. I also bought a couple to put away for a bit... we'll see what some age does to this. Great to see brewers try beers like these. I will buy more...

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Photo of OWSLEY069
3.85/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a orange-ish color with a white head that does not hang around. Aromas of allspice, cinnamon, and brown sugar. In the taste, a small spiciness but all pumpkin. A nice balance of taste. A smooth and somewhat watery mouthfeel with a big pumpkin and spicey aftertaste. Hides the alcohol very well, nice spice, and big pumpkin flavor. It might be the best one I have had yet.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.59/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber. Glad to see this beer in the Chicagoland area as I've always enjoyed Southern Tier. Pours into my glass a clear orange with amber tones and a half inch of white head. Plenty of rising bubbles. Aromas start with a mega blast of pumpkin pie spices. Nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, brown sugar. Pumpkin / squash aromas are there as well. I get a sense of baked bread. Some caramel and hops lurk in the background. Wow, this is aroma I have never experience in a pumpkin ale before. Reminds me of opening up a Yankee Spiced Pumpkin candle and taking a bit whiff.

First sip brings a wonderful caramel malt upfront that is densely infused with a mix of spices. Nutmeg comes to mind first followed by allspice, cinnamon and brown sugar. As it flows down the pumpkin meat shows up along with a little nuttiness. It finishes with a kiss of hops and a touch of breadiness. Spicy pumpkin pie in a glass, a great tribute to the fall season.

Mouthfeel here is medium bodied and creamy with a sturdy carbonation. Goes down really smooth with no sense of this being a 9% brew either. This is a damn fine pumpkin ale and quite possibly my new favorite as it keeps me coming back sip after sip. Intensely spicy and perfect for fall after a day at the pumpkin patch. Keep kicking ass Southern Tier! Glad to have ya in Chicago.

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Photo of 100proof
3.82/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Great amber color. The nose is impeccable with pumpkin pie laced by whipped cream. On the palate, it has the same characteristics of the aroma on the front, but the 9% abv shows up on the back. Overall, a great brew for those cool autumn nights and old pagan rituals.

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Photo of drseamus
3.82/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured into my Sam Adams glass it has a crystal clear amber orange body with some white lacing on the surface.

S: Pumpkin pie.

T: Pumpkin pie, but with more malt and bitterness than a real pie. Could have been a bit sweeter.

M: Medium bodied.

D: I was actually very surprised when I saw that this was 9% ABV. This is a pretty decent pumpkin beer all around.

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Photo of franksnbeans
4.47/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear pumpkin orange with a thick white head that dies quick and doesnt really lace. Such a shocking smell. I thought Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin was huge but this takes the er.. pie. Literally like a fresh one of Grandmas famous pumpkin pies was shoved in my nostrils. Tastes the same as the smell. I feel like I should be putting whip cream on this beer. Big pumpkin, nutmeg, maybe cinnemon. Unbelievable. ABV is non existant. Full in the mouth and is thick but delicious. I didnt sip this, I ate this beer up.

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Photo of kmpitz2
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber. I like to take a sniff of the brew after I pop the cap to see what the first aromas to escape the bottle are, and this one surprised me. Creamed corn. Okay, moving on. The brew is a deep copper color with a small head that falls to a light coating over top. Clarity is excellent and there are a few bubbles in the liquid. The aroma is really giving me impressions of corn. Sweet cornbread, creamed corn, maybe some butternut squash with a mild to moderate nutmeg spice. These are all corn aromas I really enjoy, so it is not bad, just not what I am expecting from a pumpkin brew. The flavor brings definite pumpkin flesh flavors, but this one has a lot more sweetness that I can attribute to the pumpkin than others in the ilk. It still just strikes me as cornbread and creamed corn. The spicy nutmeg comes through well into the finish, and there is just a hint of bitterness on the finish which compliments the nutmeg. Mouthfeel is moderate with a solid moderate carbonation of fine bubbles. This is a nice brew. I like the contrast in how the pumpkin is manifested in this one, as a more sweet flavor. I just can't get away from the corn description on this one. A fine brew.

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Photo of riversider76
4.87/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a golden orange,with a thin white head. Not much retention,with just a bit of lacing. Aroma is of a pumpkin patch.This beer just smells like autumn.It is is a medium bodied beer with light carbionation. Taste is of spiced pumpkin pie.This is by far the best pumpkin ale I've ever had.Excllent!!

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Photo of oberon
3.33/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

9% ABV per label.I like the concept of the Imperial pumpkin ale but in the end it just didnt seem to hit home with me,poured into an impy pint glass a clear deep copper with some dark orange tint a thinner wispy head atop.Full on spice and alcohol in the aroma maybe even a bit much in the spice department,heavy cardamom and clove with a dose of vanilla bourbon it becomes a bit boozy after it warms a little.Spice and booze overpower the palate in my mind very spiced like the nose cardamom and clove with a lingering cinnamon that bourbon vanilla booze hits and hits hard making a bit tough to swallow after awhile for me some dryer toastiness tries to show thru but it faint.I think a little over the top for me I still like the concept but this was just to much for me.

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Photo of Raymond69
4.54/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz poured into large snifter. Orange hue, small head , no lacing.

This beer smells like pumpkin pie , probably the finest example baring an actual pie.

The taste manages to hold on to the pumpkin pie flavor nicely. I also detect a sweet caramel/ cotton candy taste.

The body of this sweet beer manages to stay medium, decent carbonation.

Probably my favorite pumpkin ale so far , highly recommended.

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.55/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber, served in a goblet, as suggested on the bottle.

A - clear, copper color with a small white head that settled to a ring.

S - no second guessing here, this is a Pumpkin Ale fo' sure. Sweet Pumpkin bread aroma.

T - the "Great Pumking" has arrived! Delicious Pumpkin bread and nutmeg flavor. 9% abv is not detectable in any way, shape or form.

M - full bodied with perfect carbonation, very smooth.

D - very good after dinner beer. 9% abv will sneak up on the drinker, so savour the wonderful flavor of this brew carefully.

Final Note: It's no wonder that this is the #1 brew of this style. If you like Pumpkin Ale, this is one brew worth searching for or trading for, by far, the best Pumpkin Ale I've ever had.

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Photo of soupyman10
4.47/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

10-1-08 - 4.5/5/4/4.5/4 - Interesting to see that non of my numbers are the same as last time. Honestly, I feel like the beer tastes quite differently. Look is fine - amber, crystal clear, with a big puffy head that dissolves slowly leaving a ton of lacing and a fine film. Nose is huge, one of the biggest I've ever smelt (and this doesn't ring a bell given my prior review). Huge spices, pumpkin pie, bread, nutmeg, caramel, some cookies. So much in the way of aromas that I can't even pin them all down. Taste is...well, this beer is huge. Huge pumpkin pie, nutmeg, spices, and caramel. Solid alcohol presence in there as well, which is no real surprise given the ABV. Mild hop presence on the finish. Flavor's amazing, although it doesn't quite live up to the aroma. Body is big, thick, and creamy on this one, with very subtle, smooth carbonation. Overall, a delicious beer, again, and totally deserving of the "Imperial" designation.

9-22-07 - 3.5/4.5/4.5/5/4.5 - Got this one because I've been consistently blown away by everything I've had from Southern Tier (save maybe the mediocre Tripel). I was not disappointed here. I'm not even a big pumpkin ale fan, but this one was just incredible. Pours a red-orange color, with a samll head that drops quickly, leaving no real lacing. Nose is crazy spices, nutmeg and some citrus. Flavors are similarly excellent - tons of full caramel malt, pumpkin, nutmeg, allspice. Light fruit flavors floating around. Great body, full and creamy, with perfect carbonation. Overall, I really loved this one. A great dessert beer.

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Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Folks, this is way better on tap. If you catch wind of it being on at your local watering hole, drink it. If you hear about it being on tap on some far distant establishment, this is worth the drive.

This beer, in my tulip, appears a clear, dare I say, pumpkin color. The head is a delicate film with a sizable collar.

Smells like a slice of freakin' pumpkin pie. Damn. Let me sniff this all night long. Nutmeg and allspice, pumpkin and brown sugar. Ahhhh! Amazing! It's so fresh and vibrant, there's really nothing on the market that I've had or have heard of that can compete. The quintessential pumpkin brew aroma.

On tap, it's much more smooth and sweet, but in the bottle it has all of the same robust autumnal spices and a surprisingly pronounced pumpkin, but there's a numbness to this one, almost as if a stale toast creeps in and flattens things out with a CO2 sting. Still, the flagrant pumpkin pie of this is simply amazing.

Feels light and clean, but a bit slick which works with the pie elements of this beer splendidly.

It's my favorite pumpkin beer, what can I say. Far better on tap.

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Photo of nortmand
4.59/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours brilliant copper tinged orange with a quickly disappearing white head.

Smells exactly like a freshly baked pumpkin pie. Toasty, spicy, absolutely fantastic.Ginger, allspice.

Doughy, biscuit flavor, balanced pumpkin pie spice, a perfect sweetness, even a little butter, which works here. Leaves a spicy tingle in the back of the throat.

Full bodied and smooth as silk, one of the tastiest pumpkin ales I've had.

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Pumking from Southern Tier Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.05 out of 5 with 7,687 ratings