Punkin Ale
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

Punkin AlePunkin Ale
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Pumpkin Beer
Ranked #27
Ranked #9,685
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
Reviews: 2,194 | Ratings: 6,825 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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.

Today at 12:24 AM
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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.

Wednesday at 04:15 AM
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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sjdevel from Colorado

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
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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
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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
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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
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HopHippie from Wisconsin

4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

L: Brownish orange with a big rocky, creamy head.
S: Pumpkin with sweet malt and wheat.
T: Nice base beer with good hops, malts and gives it a nice balance.
F: Refreshing, good carbonation.
O: More of a good beer with pumpkin hints and as a secondary flavor. Prefer pumpkinhead over this for the sake of pumpkin flavor but this is still very good.

Aug 16, 2020
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HoppingMadMonk from New Jersey

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

Medium bodied with light carbonation
Aroma is malt,earthy , nutmeg and other spices but not in an overpowering way
Taste is mildly sweet with an equal mild hop bite in the finish that lingers. Definitely malt and spice dominate but it's done well and didnt make me gag on an abundance of pumpkin spice
The base beer was probably very good and helped make this a better than average seasonal beer

Oct 31, 2019
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mngermanshepherd from Minnesota

3.78/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark orange colour with a foamy head that dissipates quickly. Nose is spice (coriander and cinnamon/clove). Taste is a bit spicier than I expected, with carbonation on the tongue.

Oct 24, 2019
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MattDecker from Texas

3.77/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L: light orange, tan
S: pumpkin, ale-ish, slight spice, Belgium sugar
T: pumpkin, nutmeg, slight slight spice
F: light body
O: pretty good. Not amazing, but I like it

Oct 19, 2019
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jrc1093 from Connecticut

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

Bottled on 8/5/19

Pours a deep, slightly foggy copper body with a a few fingers of foamy, off-white head; very good retention sees a frothy collar and webby gobs of dense, soapy lacing form against the glass.

Aromas of pumpkin spice open, followed with robust hints of sweet pumpkin and toasted malts, and even lighter coffee roast and earthy tones; fall spice is more prominent as the bouquet closes.

Taste follows the aroma to a tee, with pumpkin spice meshed with toasty caramel malts, nutmeg, cinnamon, and lightest notes of earthy, roasted coffee rounding the profile out.

Mouthfeel is just a shade shy of medium bodied with moderate, semi-spritzy/semi-gritty carbonation; largely dry across the mid-palate into the finish, with touches of sweetness and roasty char appearing throughout.

The brown ale base definitely comes through, imparting a noticeable malty quality that leverages the spices in favor of overall drinkability; a satisfying pumpkin ale delivering on an all-around balance for a fall seasonal.

Oct 17, 2019
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capehaze from Florida

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

I've tasted this pumpkin ale since it first debuted. I swear the first year was brilliant. Every year after, noticeably less brilliant. Yet I try it every year, hoping it will return to its original brilliance. Yet it never does.

Quite simply, it's a very rugged-tasting pumpkin ale compared to the top 10 offerings. And alcohol seeps through it, like most pumpkin ales, even the very best. I feel pumpkin ale brewers must overcome this challenge like the IPA brewers have done.

Edit: A few days later, I pull this beer from the fridge and it smells and tastes almost totally different. I can smell and taste the pumpkin, as though it was somehow magically fresher than last time. Good grief.;)

Oct 15, 2019
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b_hail from South Dakota

3.96/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Kind of like an Oktoberfest meets pumkin beer. The pumpkin taste starts off strong on the first half of a beer but then fades very quickly on consecutive sips. Even though the pumpkin taste is there, it fades very quickly to a standard ale/Oktoberfest taste. The beer is light, crisp, and refreshing. It’s a solid beer, but I’m left wishing it had a bolder, more lingering pumpkin taste to it. Hints of roasted malts, brown sugar, and cinnamon can be tasted, and there’s even a sweet almost fruity taste that I can’t pinpoint. Tone back the pumpkin, and you have a very delicious Oktoberfest beer.

Oct 15, 2019
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singletary from Mississippi

3.94/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It pours a deep cooper color with a off white head. It has a mild pumpkin smell with a pumpkin spice taste maybe some cinnamon also, the spice flavor is more prevalent in the aftertaste. The feel is medium but mild we'll balanced. Overall a easy pumpkin drink for the fall.

Oct 12, 2019
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kevanb from Illinois

3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle, dated 08.29.19, poured into a 16oz tumbler glass.

The beer pours a nice amber color, copper hues that has a nice clarity and a bone colored head that rises about two or three fingers tall with good retention and nice spots of soapy lacing. The aroma is very pleasant, amber grains, caramel, nutmeg, pumpkin, pie spicing but with a nice nuttiness underneath. The flavors are good, smooth and toasted amber grains, caramel and brown sugar with a really ample fall spice character, soft pumpkin pie with a little nutty character of the underlying brown ale. The mouthfeel is good, coating and lively medium body that is smooth and full with a soft finish.

Verdict: A nice pumpkin beer from Dogfish Head. One of the classics of the style, not quite as boisterous as Pumking but a well rounded beer that plays off the adjuncts as well as the brown ale base. An annual treat.

Oct 12, 2019
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EnderFett11 from Virginia

3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Guinness pint decently hard, resulting in a couple fingers of frothy off-white head. The head faded within a couple minutes leaving behind a bit of residual bubbles on the surface. Color is a fairly clear amber. Smell is a faint pumpkin/pumpkin pie spice. Taste is similar, with a bit more spice variety in the beginning but more just pumpkin pie spice as it warms. Mouthfeel is medium with some carbonation. A slightly above average pumpkin ale, not too brown-ale heavy which I like.

Oct 10, 2019
Photo of Boyce77

4.53/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is my pumpkin go-to when I’ve had too much Southern Tier Pumking. It’s got great pumpkin spice flavor, perfect 7% ABV and isn’t too heavy. Love this beer.

Oct 06, 2019
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jkblr from Indiana

3.89/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottled 08/02/19 (2 months ago) poured into a DFH branded teku glass at fridge temp 7% ABV. The beer pours bright medium amber in color with khaki head. The head recedes to a thin layer of bubbles and leaves a little lacing. The aroma is pumpkin pie spice, pumpkin and some malt in the background. The taste is more of the same with nutmeg, cinnamon and slight pumpkin up front, ending abruptly with a drying, mildly bitter finish. The mouthfeel is medium to thin bodied, adequately carbonated and mostly dry in the finish. Overall, good. I sample and rate one pumpkin beer a year and this was the one for 2019. A fairly tame brown ale with lots of pumpkin pie spice and a little pumpkin.

Oct 04, 2019
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dd53grif from Michigan

3.94/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours slight brown color with a minimal head that disappears quickly. Aroma of pumpkin pie spice. Taste is smooth, a bit creamy with a hint of rum, pumpkin and spice. A pretty good pumpkin beer.

Oct 03, 2019
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mothman from Minnesota

3.75/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle. Khaki head. Lace. Autumn leave golden color.

Light pumpkin with spices. Cinnamon, cloves, coriander. Cocoa and caramel malts. Medium bodied. Not over the top pumpkin which is nice.

Sep 22, 2019
Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 6825 ratings