Punkin Ale
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

Punkin AlePunkin Ale
Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
Pumpkin Beer
Ranked #31
ABV:
7%
Score:
88
Ranked #11,355
Avg:
3.95 | pDev: 12.66%
Reviews:
2,209
Ratings:
6,877
From:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
 
Delaware, United States
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  387
Gots
  1,485
SCORE
88
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
Reviews: 2,209 | Ratings: 6,877 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Ozzylizard
Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

3.49/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Punkin from Dogfish Head. Purchased 18/9/21 from Shangy’s, Emmaus, PA for $3.18 (Including tax)/12 oz bottle ($ 0.265/oz). On room temperature shelf at store. Stored at home at 40 degrees. Reviewed 19/10/21. Note that I use DD/MM/YY protocol.
Green ink on neck “Feb 2022”. Served at 45.5 degrees in a hand washed and dried John Smith imperial pint glass. Final temperature 52.7 degrees.
Appearance – 4.
First pour – Pale gold (SRM 3) with slight greenish tint, clear.
Body – Deep gold (SRM 6), faint haze. When rear-lite, same.
Head – Large (Maximum six cm, aggressive center pour), darker than floral white and lighter than Dutch white, medium density, average retention, diminishing to a three mm crown and a complete cap with a few rocks.
Lacing – Poor. A few drag marks as the level drops.
Aroma – 3.75 – Light pumpkin spices, predominantly clove and allspice, no malt, no hops, no yeast, no pumpkin.
Flavor – 3.25 – Flavor follows nose - no yeast, no malt, lightly sweet and no hops. No ethanol (7 % ABV, as marked on container) taste or aroma. No gastric warming. No dimethylsulfide or diacetyl.
Palate – 3.5 – Thin, watery, soft carbonation.
Final impression and summation: 3.5 Billed as “Brown ale brewed with pumpkin and spices” but there are darn few brown ale characteristics and the pumpkin appears imaginary. My fruit fly drinking buddy, however, has a fatal attraction to it.

Wednesday at 02:45 AM
Photo of puck1225
puck1225 from Texas

3.65/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This happened to be on tap at a local Cajun restaurant so I gave it a try. Poured into a shaker pint. Golden yellow color with some head and good curtain lacing. Smell was disappointing but slightly cinnamony. Pumpkin spice flavor subtle but distinct. Flavor of cinnamon and all spice. Overlay, I am happy I gave it a try.

Monday at 07:30 PM
Photo of firesidewithphil
firesidewithphil from Illinois

4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The pumpkin binge rolls on through October. Dogfish is next up with their Pumkin Ale. A totally different approach to the category with no pumpkin sweetness and a strong bitter spice. It is very easy drinking and a lighter fall ale. Rating: 80

Sunday at 07:13 PM
Photo of PathofChaos
PathofChaos from Maryland

3.49/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Appearance:
Pure, translucent amber with a finger of off-white fizz that bolts quicker than a politician faced with a lie detector.

Bouquet:
Stale gourd husk with a cinnamon stick lodged up its buttocks far enough to be considered “distant.” The sad introduction is a forgivable offense because, as it airs, it exudes a mild aroma of sweet yams baked in butter and warming, fall spices.

Feel:
A slick yet girthy medium distinguished by fine, champagne bubbles and a comfy, long-lingered, pumpkin finish.

Taste:
Like being lured into a cozy, life-sized gingerbread house by the scent of fresh pumpkin pie… only to be knocked senseless by a cannibal witch with a tire iron: Starts with pumpkin pie filling on a gingerbread pie crust that’s abruptly interrupted by a savagely acrid, burnt copper aftertaste. This unwanted assault slowly desists as the beer airs but [email protected] if it ain’t a horrible first impression… blegh.

Overall:
Let it breathe or pay the price. Don't wait too long though, gotta drink it while its still cold. Very nice once those harsh introductions are over.

Oct 08, 2021
Photo of blazerkor
blazerkor from Nevada

4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Smells a lot like pumpkin spice and it's malty sweet.  There does seem to be the herbal bite of hops in there too.
It starts a little bitter.  Then the sweetness comes, it's mellow and squashy.

The mouthfeel is thin and there's plenty of carbonation.  The finish is where it really feels like Fall.  Pumpkin and warming spices.

This is so good.  It's balanced, subtle and nuanced.  I give it a 5.1 out of 6.

Oct 01, 2021
Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
MonDak_Joe1953 from Minnesota

3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle. Bottom neck is stamped for best by date of 'Jan 2022',
Mostly clear, pale gold colored body. Aggressive pour brought forth a two finger milky white head. Attractive tiny rising bubble show. A nearly full wall of lacing follows down the body.
Aroma of toasted malts layered with pumpkin spices and brown sugar.
Taste is a well balanced blend of toasted malts, brown sugar and pumpkin spices. Gives off a gourd vibe.
Medium mouth feel. Good, supportive carbonation.
Very pleasant tasting fall seasonal with reminders of pumpkin with its spices, brown sugar, and a backbone of malts.

Sep 25, 2021
Photo of Dr_Gonzo
Dr_Gonzo from Kentucky

4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tall clear pint glass. Appearance is a dark copper or amber color, with more than a finger's worth of head, decent retention and lacing.

Aroma: pumpkin, cinnamon, brown sugar, toasted malts, nuts, nutmeg, spices/allspice, and clove.

Pumpkin is the most notable note while the nuts, malts, and nutmeg provide a backbone with the sweetness of the cinnamon and brown sugar. Body is medium-light.

Sep 24, 2021
Photo of ThrewRedButter
ThrewRedButter from Massachusetts

3.49/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Look – Transparent copper body with two fingers of off-white head.

Aroma – Nutty aroma with big cinnamon and brown sugar. Pumpkin is solid throughout, but I am digging the toasted malts from the base brown ale

Taste – Pumpkin shines much brighter here and it is the dominant flavor…perhaps too dominant. It’s all I can really taste. Some subtle spice notes try to fight their way to the front of the line, but the pumpkin just keeps pushing it back. Not saying it’s bad tasting, not at all, but it is a one trick pony on the taste

Mouthfeel – Nice and full. Medium carbonation. Good lingering pumpkin flavors.

Overall – I wish the taste had more diversity, but hey, the pumpkin fans will like it. At 7% it is bigger than most standard pumpkin beers, but it still shouldn’t be a challenge for even the most casual beer drinkers to put down.

Sep 17, 2021
Photo of jzeilinger
jzeilinger from Pennsylvania

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

A - Dark orange amber color with thick ivory colored lacing.

S - Punkin, gourds, cinnamon, nutmeg, and brown sugar.

T - Punkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, and a balanced finish with gourds and spice lingering on the backside. Leaves a sugary residue on the palate.

M - Medium body with slight thinness around the edges.

O - Good. Not my favorite, but good.

Sep 07, 2021
Photo of oldmankoch
oldmankoch from Tennessee

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

I rated this as a brown ale with added pumpkin beer elements. I very much appreciate this every year as it is indeed a more mellow pumpkin drinking experience. Subtle hints of pumpkin, cinnamon, clove, and the faintest molasses hint. A great change of pace to more pie-centric ales (ST Pumking, Schlafly Pumpkin, Weyerbacher Imp Pumpkin etc)

Aug 20, 2021
Photo of DistrictElite
DistrictElite from District of Columbia

3.35/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

More of a nutty aroma with a splash of cinnamon, and pumpkin.

Solid carbonation with a light and smooth hint of pumpkin - but not overly pumpkin.

Overall – Needs more pumpkin. Not feeling a pumpkin ale here but it’s not bad.

Oct 30, 2020
Photo of bankboy66
bankboy66 from New Jersey

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

Pours a beautiful copper with a 2 finger head. Smell is subtle pumpkin, cinnamon, grass and some herbal notes. Taste follows but there is also a metallic note. Not overly spiced which I appreciate. More malt than I expected. Finishes smooth but for a pumpkin beer the pumpkin is very subtle.

Oct 18, 2020
Photo of RUSSRGR
RUSSRGR from Delaware

4.24/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Reddish amber color poured from a bottle. Very small head. Nice smell of cinnamon and nutmeg, but not over done. Taste follows the smell. Nice malty flavor without too much spice. Very soothing on the palate. My favorite pumpkin ale, but then I live in Delaware.

Oct 15, 2020
Photo of IPAs_for_days_13
IPAs_for_days_13 from Texas

3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a cloudy copper/amber with very little head. Smells of cinnamon, nutmeg, molasses, & of course... pumpkin. Tastes of pumpkin, brown sugar, & cinnamon. Full bodied beer, slightly spicy, goes down smooth. This beer is very interesting to say at the least, I would like to try more pumpkin styles in the future.

Oct 02, 2020
Photo of Scotchboy
Scotchboy from Idaho

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

12oz bottled in August and served in a NB globe; clear copper with a quickly-dying head and no lace; subtle impressions of brown sugar and baking spices, ghostly notes of toasted malt; flavors are balanced between sweeter malt and those pumpkin pie spices with a yammy undertone. Smooth and light.

Sep 26, 2020
Photo of jmbrill81
jmbrill81 from Virginia

2.96/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Honestly, this beer is just way too sweet. Idk if it's lactose or what (although it tastes like lactose), but it's out of balance, and it has a slimy mouthfeel. I'm not like anti-pumpkin beer, but this one is for people who don't like beer.

Sep 23, 2020
Photo of JohnniEMc
JohnniEMc from Pennsylvania

3.73/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A rather crystal clear copper liquid poured out of a 12 oz. bottle into a clear pint glass. With it came, surprisingly, very little of the spicy aroma expected from this style. That's not such a bad thing. No noteworthy head nor glass lacing. The taste is of a pleasant brown ale, with but not entirely overwhelmed, by pumpkin pie spices. Pumpkin was likely the starch used when English settlers made their first beers in the New World. It's very unlikely that any of the spices we now associate with pumpkin were included in the mix. Unfortunately, they're noticable in this beer. Fortunately, this one isn't as offending as most and has a bit of a brown ale base to carry it.

Sep 18, 2020
Photo of iguanodon
iguanodon from Utah

3.79/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle. Pours clear amber with a small off white head. Aroma: sweet caramel, malt, earthy, faint spice and alcohol. Taste: malt, caramel, nutmeg. Aftertaste is nutmeg and cinnamon. I’m not a fan of pumpkin, nutmeg or cinnamon in beer but this one is very well done. None of these flavors are too strong. It’s a strong brown ale with some fall flavors.

Sep 12, 2020
Photo of MacMalt
MacMalt from New Jersey

3.87/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. It pours a hazy, pretty, amber-orange color with a half finger of creamy, ecru-colored head and a thin but creamy sheen of lacing. The nose is fragrant with aromas of pumpkin, brown sugar, nutmeg, and clove. There is also a buttery malt that is reminiscent of pie crust. The taste opens with fairly strong clove and nutmeg with milder notes of pumpkin. There is also a strong malty backbone. While it's initially quite sweet, there is a surprising bitterness that starts mid-palate and remains to the finish. It's clean and crisp with pleasant carbonation, and it's easily drinkable at 7% ABV. Overall, Punkin Ale is a good representation of the style but I prefer Schafly, Pumpking, and Weyerbacher.

Sep 11, 2020
Photo of trevormajor
trevormajor from Ohio

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

Bottled 8/2/19. The flavors have softened in a year, especially the spices, which is a positive for me. You can now taste more of the malt flavor indicative of a brown ale. I like this beer better one year in.

Sep 07, 2020
Photo of MaltsOfGlory
MaltsOfGlory from Oregon

3.98/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle x2

Pours two fingers of fluffy white head into my willi becher glass. A little soapy, and I can hear it slowly fizzing, though the retention isn’t terrible. Initial lacing looks imperfect. Body is more of a dark orange than brown, nearly crystal clear, almost no bubbles coming up. Looks sub par so far.

Nose is surprisingly heavy on nutmeg, brown sugar is present as well, a little bit of pumpkin which starts to dominate as the aroma opens up over time. Getting some fruity notes as well, orange, maybe from the allspice. Smells on the sweeter side, almost perfume like, but well attenuated. Pretty nice, balanced, aromatic.

Flavor is centered much more on earthy pumpkin. Spices linger in the background, with some sweetness. Balanced, flavorful, authentic, solid.

Mouthfeel is pretty standard. Carbonation is high, very lively. Body is medium. Sugars are present, but generally well attenuated and it drinks pretty crisp - balanced. Bitterness is not noticeable. On par for a major craft brewery.

Drinkability is pretty high, it’s tasty and not cloying.

Appearance turned out somewhat poor. A little rim of foam lasted all the way down the glass, but the head overall was average, and accompanied by no lacing.

This beer represents the key flavors well, while not getting too cute, nor artificial. Overall a solid pumpkin beer, which is often easier said than done.

Sep 06, 2020
Photo of sjdevel
sjdevel from Utah

4.21/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

LOOK - beautiful crystal clear golden/light copper in color - 1-2 finger head - ok retention but not the best - nice foam around the edge of the glass - some lacing fights on
SMELL - sweet pumpkin pie and spices - some caramel - brown sugar - smells dessert-like
TASTE - a bite of bitterness at first - a touch of sweet brown sugar comes in along with a powerful amount of pumpkin - spices (nutmeg, clove, cinnamon) strengthen - the sweetness is short-lived as it slips into dry tartness
FEEL - slick and oily - low carbonation and less interesting - medium body
OVERALL - a decent pumpkin brew - this is supposedly the one that originally kicked off DogfishHead - its pretty good but not outstanding - maybe it has slipped a bit over the years - its still better than a lot of Pumpkin brews that I have had

Aug 31, 2020
Photo of Mindcrime1000
Mindcrime1000 from South Dakota

3.61/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a Nonic pint.

Pours crystal clear light copper with a nice creamy foamy head and good lacing.

The brew has a restrained but sweet aroma, with plenty of pumpkin spice and honey/brown sugar.

Sweet on the tip of the tongue; caramel malts and brown sugary sweetness. In midstream, the spice rack arrives. It ends up a little "muddy" as a result--like when you put a little too much dry herbs or spices into something. The close is just a touch boozy and provides some welcome earthy/grassy bitterness. I didn't find this as sweet-toothy as some others have.

Medium full bodied. Smooth and creamy yet with a touch of drying at the finish.

Overall, it has some great aggressive notes on the palate, but there is so much spice that no one spice note can get enough breathing room to clarify what it is. It's just "punkin pie spice" on overload.

Aug 30, 2020
Photo of Amendm
Amendm from Rhode Island

3.97/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A sturdy pour is needed to reach a finger of short lived fizzy white foam, no lasting lace, typical of the style.
Chill haze clears to a bright and almost clear light orange amber body, a few small bubbles rise and form a lasting ring.

Not a lot to the nose, pale malt and a candied melon sweetness with pumpkin pie spice are faint.

Neutral on sweetness with average bitterness, crisp with a pumpkin-cider boldness. The spice (big on cinnamon) cancels the pumpkin sweetness but doesn't overpower it. Crystal malt breaks away from the melon sweetness of the smell, pumpkin gets a chance to be noticed as a spicy/peppery bite develops late in the taste and stretches the finish and the aftertaste.

Lighter bodied, carbonation is soft and reserved. Alcohol is well hidden. Very well balanced and true to style. This Beer transcends the Ale/Lager boundary.

Bottled on 7/28/20.

Aug 27, 2020
Photo of Seanjohnhunt
Seanjohnhunt from California

2.86/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

I have had this a few years back. I feel it was more brown ale than and now more pumpkin now currently. I like how they use all natural ingredients. But it's now what I think of when I want a pumpkin beer. Maybe I have been drinking too many great pumpkin beers but this one falls short and not one I would reach for over better tasting ones.

Aug 27, 2020
Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 6877 ratings