Punkin Ale | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

very good
6,560 Ratings
Punkin AlePunkin Ale

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States

Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by NeroFiddled on 09-26-2002

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,560 |  Reviews: 2,112
Photo of SmashAdams
2.5/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

The smell is very light spices and slightly vegetal. The taste is decent and a bit spicy and boozy. Pretty disappointed with this. I get no brown ale qualities and no brown sugar. Based on the description I was expectiong something closer to Indian Brown with pumpkin and spice. nb

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Photo of mpenning13
2.5/5  rDev -36.1%

Photo of spikechiquet
2.5/5  rDev -36.1%

Photo of jfcaa193
2.5/5  rDev -36.1%

Photo of Kyrojack
2.5/5  rDev -36.1%

Photo of MgoJohnStamos
2.5/5  rDev -36.1%

Photo of tykechandler
2.5/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Photo of santomark
2.52/5  rDev -35.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.25

A - Had this both on tap and in the bottle, very little head, disappears almost immediately. Color was very amber, a dark bronze, tainted orange.

S - Definitely, getting fall/autumn smells, sometimes pleasant and unpleasant notes. Faintly sweet, boozy from the alcohol, definitely pumpkin tones throughout the smell; however, the smell ends with this rotting pumpkin smell that hits the nose going into the throat.

T - This did not taste like it smelled. I will simply list the good and the bad. First the good, malted great, very light in the brown ale taste though; however, it does make up for it in other areas. Tasting this reminded me of carving a pumpkin; very reminiscent of the good things in fall. Now for the bad, I have a big issue with the finish. Very flat on the palate, this initially smells like pumpkin, but definitely no pumpkin presence throughout the drink, no sweetness from the brown sugar, this souring spoiled pumpkin finish, it reminded me of walking into the pumpkin patch and the aroma of rotting pumpkin in the field would unpleasantly hit my tongue.

M - Nicely done in the body, a light to medium bodied beer IMO. This is not full bodied. Very light from the pumpkin, the brown sugar gives off little carbonation, and a slight burning sensation if held on the tongue. The mouthfeel is very nicely done as always from DFHB

Overall - I am very disappointed in myself for giving this brew the rating I have. I love DFHB, I love the lengths they go for their consumers and for their own quality of product. However, this was unpleasant at times. I understand what they went for here, but a pumpkin is a squash, and I know they are very floral when opened, but if you bite into a pumpkin, it is very watery, little to no flavor. I can see the purpose of the brown sugar, but I would have liked to have tasted more of a sweetness throughout the beer. This was completely unbalanced. All in all, I will not be having this again. This beer needs to figure out what the hell it's aiming for.

 2,018 characters

Photo of lester619
2.53/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Pours a deep orangish copper/brown. Bubbly head that settles at a thin film after about ten seconds. Very strong pumpkin pie spice smell. Clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, anise, all these and probably more are in there. There is also a fresh pumpkin smell like when you carve into a jack-o-lantern. Flavor is malty sweet and fruity at first. More of that fresh pumpking smell/taste comes out. The spice takes over every other flavor quickly. In the end, the only other flavor is a hint of booze on my lips. I've never been a fan of the spiced pumpkin beers. Every fall I try to keep an open mind, but the spices always turn me off. It was hard to finish the bottle. If you are into pumpkin beers, this is a probably a great one. It's just not for me.

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Photo of velkyal
2.53/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

ight - light amber, almost no head to speak of

Smell - very spicy, lots of cinnamon and a slight cideriness

Taste - syrupy, caramel and spices

Sweet - 3.5/5

Bitter - 1/5

This was very sweet, but not cloyingly though sufficiently sweet to be sickly if you drank more than a few ounces. Not what I would have expected from Dogfish Head.

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Photo of nelsonracite
2.56/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Photo of HannahSea
2.56/5  rDev -34.5%

Photo of msante
2.6/5  rDev -33.5%

Photo of JackRose
2.6/5  rDev -33.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Not impressed and probably the weakest of Dogfish Head's offerings (with the exception of the Namaste' which I feel bad about reviewing). Sam and his team of brewers are super creative and have done much to promote and grow craft brewing, but I do not always like their beers.

I tried this beer for three seasons in the past four - always wondering if it was just me or maybe I had purchased a beer leftover from the past year and not in the best shape, but alas it has always disappointed. Fans of it tell me that it is unique in that their is a significant hop presence. I just find it muddled and murky with regards to flavors, although I like their clean lines/packaging with regards to the bottle. I will stick with my choices of The Bruery Autumn Maple (not truly a pumpkin beer), Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin, and Southern Tier's Pumpkin (although it is not as good as past years and it seems that it is has much more vanilla flavor this year). Trying hard to get a friend to buy some CCB Good Gourd.

 1,008 characters

Photo of MKE_nickr
2.61/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Photo of Treebs
2.62/5  rDev -33%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into my DFH signature glass. Bottled in 2011.

A: Pours a perfect amber, leaning towards the darker side, with a small half finger very light khaki head that that fades into a thin ring and small pillow of film in the center from the etching.

S: Pretty disappointing. It's hard to pick up anything. Slight pumpkin and a slight cinnamon, but that's about it.

T: Very light pumpkin and then the spices take over. The allspice is leading the way with a slight cinnamon. Malts are the backbone for this. So far my expectations have not been met.

M: Nice mouthfeel. Good carbonation, medium bodied. Slight spice left on the palate.

O: Wow was I let down. After having Pumpking I was very happy to get a 4-pack of this and try them side-by-side. Punkin did not show up at first and when it did it left with its tail between its leg. Very disappointing.

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Photo of Erdinger2003
2.64/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance looks great! A clear crisp and inviting brownish orange with a thin foamy head with a strong lacing. Smell is strange and sour with pumkin flavors. The taste is very sour pumkin rind flavor with the sweeter pumkin aftertaste, I'm not fond of this style I don't think. Mouthfeel is a bit watery and light bodied with much carbonation. Overall this was a bit dissapointing and I don't think I'll ever try this again.

 425 characters

Photo of DLSheidy
2.64/5  rDev -32.5%

Photo of kraut6363
2.64/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Photo of TTripp725
2.65/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

Photo of Wetpaperbag
2.68/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- Clear orange/copper colored brew. The head was a half a finger width that stayed to play for a while.

S- There is a nice roasted nutty/earthy smell coming from this beer. I'm also getting some of the 7% abv though the smell as well.

T- The roasted nutty/earthy smell is there in the taste as well. The taste is sharp and almost feels like a shot of cheep vodka was dropped into this beer. The after taste is bitter and not appealing.

M- The bitter after taste is not what I was wanting in this beer and it has its way with your tongue.

D- I've had much better pumpkin ales such as Night Owl from Elysian.

 614 characters

Photo of charlesw
2.7/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Perfect light amber color with a small whitish head that is gone within the minute leaving nothing. I suppose this isn't surprising given the light and fizzy body. Smells like sweet maple syrup - maybe a touch or coriander thrown in for good measure. Tastes, ah, shucks. Bummer. Well, you know, I read the bottle and I was expecting a horror like the Shipyard. Thankfully, it's not that. The spices are light and easy. Ok, half way through the bottle I now get a whiff of pumpkin pie spice on the nose. But the flavor... It's awfully dry (and crisp) - which I find very surprising. Then there are these Thanksgiving spices floating around, and all, but there is an overwhelming sour note to it all. Is that the hops? Do I have a bad bottle? I don't know! I don't know what it's supposed to taste like! I'll certainly be fair and give this one another go at some point, but, whoa.

 879 characters

Photo of mrunseen
2.7/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured into a Leffe glass.

Appearance: Poured a golden / bronze color with an initial head of about two fingers which disappeared during the session. Very little lacing.

Nose: There is some spice in the nose, which I was able to detect in the taste as well ... sweet and spicy smell with a hint of alcohol.

Taste: Not as spicy as the nose would allude to, although, admittedly, I am not a pumpkin ale fan. I did not taste pumpkin in this beer.

Mouth: Thin and a bit watery. The alcohol was detectable. Overall, I was unimpressed.

Drinkability: If you like the taste, this would be a drinkable beer. However, as it's not quite my type of beer, I will not be having this particular beer again.

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Photo of MisterClean
2.7/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

On tap at pacific beach taphouse.

A - Poured copper-golden with 1 finger of head that dissipated fast. Left no lacing.

S/T - Honey and subtle notes of cinnamon and clove. Where is the malt complexity and the hops?

M - Light bodied and malt dominated. I could not get a smidgen of hop goodness out of this beer.

D - Sam needs another go at this one. For a brewery that sells beer at a premium, this one needed some help. It lacked distinct pumpkin flavors, the spice aroma was faint, and the ale was lifeless.

 512 characters

Photo of Minkybut
2.7/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I poured this pumpkin beer into my tumbler at 45 degrees. I had seen it on the TV on a show about the brewery and wanted to try it as it sounded pretty good. I would have to tell you no I do not like it it at all. Poured it out in fact and will not buy again.

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Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
3.91 out of 5 based on 6,560 ratings.
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