Punkin Ale
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

Punkin AlePunkin Ale
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Pumpkin Beer
Ranked #25
Ranked #8,336
3.95 | pDev: 12.66%
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States
Very Good
Punkin AlePunkin Ale
Notes: Also known as Punkin Brown Ale

A full-bodied brown ale with smooth hints of pumpkin and brown sugar. We brew our Punkin Ale with pumpkin meat, brown sugar and spices. As the season cools, this is the perfect beer to warm up with.

Punkin Ale is named after the seriously off-centered southern Delaware extravaganza Punkin Chunkin (check out some of these Discovery Channel videos of Punkin Chunkin, you gotta see it to believe it!). In fact, Punkin Ale made its debut as it claimed first prize in the 1994 Punkin Chunkin Recipe Contest. Yes, that was a full 6 months before we even opened our doors for business!

28 IBU
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Reviews: 2,165 | Ratings: 6,759
Photo of Stooven
3.94/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The antithesis of everything I dread about pumpkin beer season, or pumpkin season in general (lattes, Cheerios, etc). Extremely well balanced, malty, subtle pumpkin taste. If anything, it could use more on the nose, but overall this is the flagship of the style.

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Photo of Urtravel
3.71/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: bright golden color with mild head and lace
S: really pumpkin spiciness
T: follows taste but stronger than smell
F: light feel that lets you know ‘I’m here’
O: while I didn’t like the taste of it personally, the beer is excellent in accomplishing what it says it’s about. Great job!

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Photo of Squire
3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear amber brown color with white cap and lacing.

Aroma of sweet malt with spiced pumpkin in the background.

Taste on entry is a nutty sweet malt with spiced pumpkin icing on top. An element of sweetness from start to finish yet the sweetness complements rather than intrudes. The spiciness may be nutmeg or that may be my imagination. It does all blend well together making for a fairly complex beer with all parts singing in harmony.

Medium texture with balancing carbonation.

Pumpkin beers in general, to my tasting, have a routine sort of pattern as of course they must emphasize pumpkin in some way which may result in a single dimension sort of flavor, especially ones that get carried away with the spices. This is round, rich, smooth with low bitterness and very enjoyable for the style.

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Photo of KRug
3.66/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Pours a beautiful clear amber, bordering brown, with about an inch and a half of off-white head settling to a cap

The aroma is more pumpkin forward than the taste, with spices covering the back end of the aroma

The taste is more subtly pumpkin, with a lightly spicy brown sugar malt base carrying this brew

In this case, the mouthfeel is a bit heavier than it needs to be for the style, as I was hoping for a bit more carbonation

Overall, this is a well executed pumpkin beer that is understated flavor-wise and is best as a sipper as the weather cools

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Photo of nick_perry
4.7/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Crisp carbonation. Pumpkin flavor is definitely there, but doesn’t overpower. Cinnamon, nutmeg, and coriander notes. Slightly sweet malt with some chocolate and vanilla notes sneaking in on the finish. The boozy taste and warming feeling create a sensation like I just drank a bit of vanilla extract, or maybe poured some on some pumpkin pie. Extraordinarily smooth and well balanced. One of the finest pumpkin ales I’ve ever had.

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Photo of CuddlyREDRUM
3.96/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Good beer. A bit pricey for what it is, I would like to see it at a buck less for a sixer. Has an initial very weird seltzer taste and feel, but it smells pretty and lays out a nice buzz.

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Photo of EMH73
3.54/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, very dark amber with a thin white head that leaves a little lacing. Smells and tastes of cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, pumpkin, brown sugar, malts and some vanilla. Something quite artificial about the pumpkin flavor. Thick mouth feel, medium to heavy bodied, medium carbonation.

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Photo of mothmanscott
3.67/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From notes 10/14/12: Pour a coppery amber producing 2 fingers of off-white, somewhat lasting head that leaves a thin film of lace. Aroma is brown sugar, nutmeg, clove, cinnamon and vegetal pumpkin wrapped in toasted and caramel malt. Taste is like the nose but a little more malt forward. Finish and aftertaste are spice heavy. Mouthfeel is medium-heavy bodied with moderate carbonation, fairly smooth with a light creaminess but a bit sticky.

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Photo of mj24053
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The first time I had this, a few years ago, it was my favorite pumpkin. They changed something about it. The aftertaste is really weird, almost metallic tasting. The pumpkin doesn't really taste like pumpkin either. Alcohol is up front and can taste that.

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Photo of psycHOPathy
3.69/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Clear amber brown body, half finger of fine grained foam
Malts, brown sugar, grain, nutmeg, cocoa
Brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, caramel, cocoa, grain, malt, graham cracker, a little bit of pumpkin
A little abrasive on the tongue
A little bitter, but good

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Photo of JacobusFavier23
4.04/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

L-Pours a beautiful amber mahogany colored beer with a nice fizzy head that quickly dissipates. Very pretty beer.
S-Smells great and fresh. I get notes of pumpkin spice, cinnamon, nutmeg, apple cider, and maybe some graham cracker and biscuit as well. Smells very good, warm, and seasonal.
T- The taste pretty much follows the smell. Bitter enough from the hops, followed by a nice pumpkin spice and cinnamon flavor.
F- The mouthfeel is relatively thick. Thicker than I expected at least. There's a nice fizziness to it. Not too bad at all!
O- Overall this beer is extremely well made for a pumpkin brown ale. I'm typically not a huge fan of these, or really never a fan at all. But this is by far the best I've had from the style. Overall an extremely well made and enjoyable ale. A pleasure to drink, and it gets me in the mood for halloween. I think I'll get another sixer this October.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Punkin Ale has a thin, off-white head, a clear, bubbly, orange appearance, and no glass lacing. Aroma is of faint spices and pumpkin meat, with some strong malt. Taste is similar, with a sort of high-gravity malt liquor back note. Mouthfeel is light to medium, and Punkin Ale finishes mostly crisp.


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Photo of jphallenbeck
4.37/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

My favorite pumpkin ale so far this year. Pumpkin flavor is detectable amidst a cocktail of spices, including cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla. Where this ale excels the most is it's body as a brown ale, which creates a naturally rich platform for pumpkin without the overbearing muddiness of a porter.

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Photo of Nvrmind16
3.84/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A spiced brown ale,(closer to a scottish ale) not overly pungent, but still has a good fall taste. For 7% ABV it is very smooth and easy to drink. Great for halloween parties.

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Photo of lukaspodolski
4.19/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Bronze body with light brown 2 inch head. Good lacing.
S: Malty with nutmeg and pumpkin
T: Seasonal spices with strong pumpkin finish. Flavor stays on the palate for a while.
F: Smooth, just the right amount of carbonation

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Photo of beersampler6
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Surprisingly delicious pumpkin ale - this from someone that doesn't really like strong pumpkin flavors and all the spices that go along with it. Nice orange color with some fluffy white head and very spotty lingering lacing. Smells of pumpkin, spices (nutmeg and cinnamon), some vanilla. Tastes similarly, along with some caramel, brown sugar and malt. But boy that pumpkin taste is well-balanced with the beer, and never overwhelms it. Smooth mild slightly creamy mouthfeel. Good carbonation. Dogfish Head does it again! I already have many more pumpkin beers from other breweries to try at home.

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Photo of chitoryu12
3.6/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Look: Clear orange with a thick white head of foam that quickly dissipates.

Smell: Savory sweet. Pumpkin pie and malt.

Taste: Not as strong as I expected. Mild malt, almost unnoticeable pumpkin pie, and a twinge of bitterness on the tongue from hops.

Mouthfeel: Average thickness, high carbonation.

Overall: While not bad, it's disappointing that the pumpkin flavor isn't stronger.

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Photo of rudiecantfail
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass.

L---Clear, orange/amber color with a medium, off-white head that faded quickly and left ok lacing.

S---Malty. Fairly slight aroma. Pumpkin pie is there, but not strong.

T---Much stronger than the smell, thankfully. It's nice that they actually use pumpkin in brewing instead of just the spices, like everyone else. It makes a difference. Has a real pumpkin pie taste.

F---Medium body, decent carbonation, refreshing. No bitterness of note.

O---Overall, a quality pumpkin ale.

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Photo of GuyFawkes
3.25/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Bottled 8/14/18; drank 9/5/18 @ the Yarchives.

See-through orange rust appearance.

A rough pour yielded a nice khaki head; frothy lace.

Mild notes of pumpkin pie, clove & even fainter hints of cinnamon in the nose; not much of an odor.

Medium mouthfeel.

Mild pumpkin & cinnamon flavors up front; macro lager aftertaste on the finish.

Not much flavor here and a bad aftertaste; although this isn't abhorrent, I'd rather have a glass of water.

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Photo of YungAnejo
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

‘‘Tis the season.. oh wait, wrong season...

Back to beer, poured from 12oz bottle into a Bruery stemless snifter, reddish clear copper body, white head with light retention

Aroma is definitely there, pumpkin forsure but also some spicy cinnamon and sweet granola, even some faint earthiness

Taste follows the nose but just a tad bit light on the pumpkin for the finish, still solid, pumpkin spice followed by a semi sweet malt

Mouthfeel is smooth, normal consistency but has a slightly sticky lacto feel to it, no alcohol presence detected

Overall for being my first pumpkin style, I’d say it was a good experience and a great example of the style (from the style description)

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Photo of MikeWard
3.59/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a pint glass. bottled 8/13/18, so not even 2 weeks old here.

crystal clear deep yellow/orange/amber body. decent carbonation. small off white head leaves light lacing.

The aroma of pumpkin spice is not strong on the nose.

..but it is strong in the taste. and pretty bitey on the tongue. slightly sweet, with a somewhat sour bitterness towards the end. dogfish advertises this as a "brown ale" brewed with pumpkin and spices. But any brown ale taste is buried by pumpkin spice.

around medium on the mouth, slightly sour spices on the finish.

Overall, and I freely admit that the spice side of pumpkin ales is less appealing to me that those brewed primarily with the vegetable itself, this one was a little to bitter and spicy to be enjoyed by this particular palate.

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Photo of lastmango
3.78/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured an orange amber color with a one finger white head that dissipated quickly to a thin film. Light spotty lacing. Faint vegetal aroma with little spice and malt. Light pumpkin pie spice flavor. Clove is more prevalent with brown sugar close behind. Light hop bite on the tail. Overall, this is a very drinkable brown ale. However, there are better pumpkin ales out there. Although not a big fan of pumpkin ales, I do like brown ales and this is very balanced. I would buy this again.

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Photo of DoghouseReilly3946
3.56/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Dogfish Head Pukin’ Ale - 7.0% ABV - 28 IBUs
Date: 08/02/18, consumed on 8/22/18.
Appearance: The color is a mix of amber and orange, curiously not that brown. Its fairly clear and produces a finger of off white head which dissipates rather quickly. Additionally, something I rarely mention is artwork, but the 2018 label is gorgeous.
Aroma: Vegetal pumpkin, some spices, and a good strong caramel malt backbone. Clove sticks out most among the spices, a yeast aroma is also present. Surprisingly, there isn’t a ton of brown sugar sweetness either.
Taste: Big toasted brown ale malt flavors up front, a little pumpkin flavor, some pumpkin spices, which are thankfully used conservatively. The pumpkin pie qualities are all here, but this is a more subtile take on the style. Punkin’ has a medium full mouthfeel and does get a little sweeter as it warms, but its still no sugar bomb. The style helps to beef this beer up, negating the need for over spicing or sweetening. A very pleasant, if unremarkable pumpkin infused brown ale.
Biased comments: I believe using a brown ale as the base produced better more rounded beer that also more closely resembles actual pumpkin pie than the pumpkin ales I’ve come across. I’m also thankful it has some actual noticeable pumpkin flavor as well, I just wish it had more. A worthwhile beer, but honestly, Oktoberfest beers are slaughtering pumpkin beers this year.

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Photo of bbtkd
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Dogfish Head Punkin Ale, 7% ABV. Pours pale red with a half-finger tan head, which dissipated quickly leaving no lacing. Nose is pumpkin and slight spice. Taste is pumpkin/squash, pie spice, and light citrus, with moderate bitterness. Light carbonation, so good mouthfeel. Overall excellent. One of the better pumpkin beers I've had.

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Photo of Billybrewer
2.86/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer smells better than it tastes. As it’s marketed as a pumpkin beer, you would expect to taste pumpkin. Sadly, it’s almost nonexistent. It’s a brown ale basically. You will smell the nutmeg and a little pumpkin, but the taste is disappointingly flat. Dfh was a pioneer of pumpkin, but my opinion and the opinion of others I know is that this recipe changed. Something is drastically different from Punkin of old. It used to be better. We don’t know if it has to do with pumpkins or something else, but it’s been a topic of discussion. There are many many far better pumpkin beers on the market in my opinion, once’s with more prominent pumpkin and spice. That said, one thing has never changed and that is DFH Punkin is the best Punkin to make chili with. Again, I don’t know why but I have tried many other pumpkin beers and there is no better beer than dfh Punkin to make chili with. So all is not lost. I would drink dfh Punkin if I wanted a low alcohol brown or if I am having chili, so not very often. Usually I want a mor3 flavorful Punkin or a much stronger Dark brown ale. That’s my opinion. I hope that you will make some chili with it.

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Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 6759 ratings