Punkin Ale | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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2,081 Reviews
Punkin AlePunkin Ale

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States | website

Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
A full-bodied brown ale brewed with real pumpkin, brown sugar, allspice, cinnamon & nutmeg.

28 IBU

Added by NeroFiddled on 09-26-2002

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Reviews: 2,081 | Ratings: 6,452
Photo of Reagan1984
4.3/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Crystal clear amber ale that had plenty of orange tones. A substantial head formed atop the beer that was off white and very creamy. I was able to get this to climb above the rim of the glass. About 2 ½ fingers thick. Very good retention. Only slight lacing which surprised me based upon the initial head. Probably due to the 7% ABV.

Aroma was clearly on point with cinnamon, nutmeg coming through. Does pumpkin have an aroma? I don't know, as we always equate cinnamon and nutmeg with it....

Taste was extremely smooth and surprised me for a 7% ABV. I actually convinced myself that I can taste the pumpkin here. Almost a slight squash like flavor that was actually nice. (orange flavor as I call it...)

Spices come through and really make this enjoyable. First sweet up front, then drifts towards the spices.... After this you are left with a slight brown sugar and cinnamon flavor that lingers.

Lighter in body than I expected and the mouth feel was lighter than I thought. A little sticky... Very drinkable. An excellent seasonal for the fall.

I'll get more and I'm upset I only bought one bottle to try.

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Photo of Scoats
4.3/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hmmm...pumpkin pie beer... hmmmm.... "Pumpkin Pie in a glass" is the best way to describe this beer. It is the color of pumpkin pie. It starts with a nice initial taste of pumpkin and ends with a pumpkin pie spiciness - just like real pumpkin pie.

Ignoring the pumpkin pie thing, it is also a very drinkable beer. A great balance between gimmicktry and general beer drinkability. It is indeed a fine drinkable beer.

Personally I like this beer a lot, especially during the late fall/early winter Halloween/Thanksgiving time of the year.

This easily is the most popular beer that we sell at The Grey Lodge Pub due to its shocking word of mouth cross-over appeal with non-beer geeks and its scarcity. Barrels emptied quickly all over the city. A certain amount of scarcity is important with this beer as there is little demand for it after the Halloween/ Thanksgiving season is over.

Each year at The Grey Lodge the anticipation and legend of this beer increases.From what I can tell due to its extreme scarcity, that is true at a lot of places. This beer is everything seasonal beers should be and should be about. And to think two years ago we got a barrel around Thanksgiving because they couldn't get rid of it. This year all were gone before Halloween.

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Photo of mjw2808
4.3/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One finger head, dissapaited quickly. Very nice dark golden brown color. It smells faintly like pumpkin with some nutmeg and cinnomin in there. Taste is very rich, filled with nutmeg and cinnomin initially and a nice pumpkin finish. Very nice beer, one of my favorite fall brews and one of the most nicely crafted beers ive had.

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Photo of yesyouam
4.3/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Punkin Ale is a very clear amber ale with a small off-white head that vanishes quickly. It's quite sparking. It smells spicy! It's sweet cinnamon rolls with some kind of fruity wooden element, coriander and perhaps cherry. It's a very strong aroma. It's medium-bodied and soft with a large and sparse carbonation. It's syrupy and it leaves the lips and tongue a bit sticky. It boasts a strong and smooth flavor. The flavors are very blended. It's something between garam masala and mole. The malt is a little sweet and a little tart. The aftertaste is alcohol, or black pepper or allspice. It's almost like cake with a spiced liqueur poured on it. This seems like it's in the spirit of Bush de Noel but with an autumn flare. Good stuff. Consider this 4-pack punished!
(rated Oct 16, 2007)

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Photo of Duttonic
4.3/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From notes 10/01/10, on tap at Cricketts.

A- Deep burnt copper, 1 1/2cm head, thick foam, light bubbling.

S- Nutmeg, cinnamon, like a baked pumpkin pie.

T/M- Pumpkin pie, but like it just came out of the fridge, not fake in any way, nutmeg, malty, medium body.

D- This is by far the best pumpkin style beer I have ever had. I can't wait to try it out of the bottle.

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Photo of Bootscraper
4.31/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Well, not only is this my first review since joining the site, but this regrettably is also the only brew from Dogfish Head that I have had the privilege of enjoying. Hopefully more styles from this brewery will stand up to my reviewing in the near future!

Poured from bottle into pint glass, at mildly chilled temperature.
Beautiful orange to golden hue, getting darker as a near-amber towards the top. Very sparkling carbonation allows for a 1cm even, fairly-uniform head. After about 5 minutes, the head became quite a thin layer that stayed even across the glass the whole way down. Lacing was spotted, but only slowly fell with each sip.
The smell was subtle, and composed of alcohol and slight sweetness. Somewhere in there I finally noticed a pinch of spiciness after a couple good whiffs.
The first thing I noticed upon tasting was that the spiciness in the aroma was now the center of the action, and really came alive in the aftertaste, drawing hints of nutmeg and also a bit of cinnamon and even brown sugar. Very slight accents of pumpkin were found throughout the entirety of each sip. There was a pinch of alcohol, but it seemed to blend well with the soft spiciness of the flavors, so it almost came across as an illusion that the alcohol was actually well-masked... something I enjoy. The key part of this beer, IMO, is the lengthy aftertaste. It makes it one of those great beers where you can sip it, use the bathroom, come back, and still be noticing some pumpkin pie in your mouth. Even with dabbles small enough to just wet your lips, you can make one of these beers last.
The Mouth feel is what really makes this one of my favorite beers, aside from that aftertaste. Smoother than melted butter and very creamy, the texture does not command too much of you, and it glides right down.

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Photo of JJStout83
4.31/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a nice copper (almost like tea) with an effervescent, quickly dissipating head that settles into a perfect little ring around the glass.

S: Pumpkin pie spices (nutmeg, cinnamon, clove - DUH!), mild esters, brown sugar

T: Nutty, a little creamy, earthy nutmeg and cinnamon, some alcohol (rum), caramel & allspice

M: Lively/tingly on the attack. Settles into rummy esters with caramel & pumpkin pie spices. It warms the back of the tongue and throat on the back end.

Overall this is an awesome pumpkin brew. I enjoy how playful this beer is. I get nostalgic for mom's kitchen because it could almost be pumpkin pie in a glass. Huge props to Dogfish Head for their seasonal heavy hitter. You cannot argue with a beer that can invoke childhood memories. I enjoyed this one from start to finish.

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Photo of pants678
4.31/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This one goes in a standard pint and I pour smaller than a single finger head that almost immediately recedes to a thin lacing. I thought it would be more clouded, denser perhaps, but it's a clear orange and amber body with a white head.

Distinct and complex, the nutmeg stands out and is sharply spiced. I also get hints of brown sugar and, of course, pumpkin pie.

The flavors are not as sharp as the smell. Well spiced pumpkin pie that's complimented by vanilla and cinnamon. The front is bitter, but not more so than is welcomed. Stains the tongue, as opposed to the top of the mouth, and lingers nicely. A substantial part of this brew waits on the back end. It's all very well mixed, nothing really overtaking anything else and the alcohol is hardly even an aftertaste.

It's a frothy brew and the vanilla takes well to that with the cinnamon and brown sugar playing opposite. Hits all the taste buds. My only complaint is that I may have liked something harsher in there somewhere.

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Photo of TeamMathis
4.31/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A little more bite than I remember. Beautiful color. Great carbonation. Head remains nicely. Spices are big. Huge smell. Aftertaste has almost a slight burn to it on the back of the throat. A little citrus orange mixed with the cinnamon and nutmeg. Nice change from typical pumpkin. Love it.

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Photo of weaselface89
4.31/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L- a darker shade of brownish orange, with quite a small head that dissipates quickly and leaves a few spots of residual bubbles after only a minute.
S- getting the pumpkin and spices up front, exactly what you would expect for the style. smells somewhat sweet, maybe the brown sugar.
T- very well balanced, with all the flavors working well together. malt, and cinnamon, pumpkin, and a slight alcohol taste.
F- medium feel, with low to medium carbonation.
O- personally im a fan of pumpkin beers and im glad I tried this one. traded a friend a terrapin pumpkin fest for this one. I believe this is my first year trying this beer and I will look to buy it again next year

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Photo of MrSmoogle
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - A nice golden amber color to very pleasant. the head sits around for quite sometime nice and foamy.

Smell - a toasty nutmeg and caramel with an all spice kick to it.

Taste - a nice nutmeg and caramel kick to it, didn't taste to much of a pumpkin flavor like i had anticipated, more of nutty feel to it then anything. Overall an explosion of pleasant flavors to it.

Mouthfeel - This beer i have to say is one of the most pleasant on the mouth, perfect carbonation, little foam action, and little breakthrough of warmth from the alcohol.

Drink - Absolutely smooth

A top 3 pumpkin ale in my opinion

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Photo of Soonami
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on-tap at Local 44

DFH Punkin Ale poured a crystal clear amber with ample white foam that quickly dissipates. The aroma is dominated by pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg and allspice especially with an vegetative green smell from pumpkin. The beer is sweet up from with scant bitterness but a nice spice kick that lasts through the finish. The malt provide ample body and complements with a graham cracker flavor. The pumpkin also provides some body with a carbonation that is spot-on. For those that like pumpkin beers, this is good drinking.

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Photo of ggaughan
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The sight of this beer is a good sign that summer is on the way out. I had this years edition at the brewery in Milton last week. The beer poured a hazy dark orange color with a medium tan head and solid lacing. The aroma is spicey. Nutmeg and cinnamon dominate the nose but also leave way for a pumpkin aroma. The taste is equally spicey and some really good pumpkin flavor but is it not overwhelming and doesn't taste like a slice of pumpkin pie, it tastes like a pumpkin beer and that is why I enjoy the DFH brew so much. It is well balanced and has a nice mouthfeel and they do a very good job of hiding the 7% abv.

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Photo of weasbri
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the first sniff, this reminded me of one of my favorite fall beverages, the Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks. I'm not a fan of pumpkin pie, but I do like pumpkin spices, and this has them all over. Cinnamon and nutmeg abound in the aroma, and again in the flavor.
Good finishing hop bitterness to counter the sweet malt and spices. Very nice effort from Dogfish Head.

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Photo of Heatwave33
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle to a Dogfish Head Snifter.

Color: Medium brown with an off white head.

Smell: Pumpkin (obviously), cinnamon and malt.

Taste: Nice malt taste with a hint of sweetness. The cinnamon and sugar are present. The pumpkin is not overwhelming.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth with a light dry finish.

Overall: I have never been a big fan of pumpkin ales. Dogfish definitely did this one right! The pumpkin is not the main flavor and not too strong. Best pumpkin ale to date. Cheers!

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Photo of ebby82
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light amber into a DFH snifter, with a slight head. The smell is where this beer becomes impressive. Brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and a sweet aroma that may be pumpkin. The taste, however, is even better than the smell. Nutmeg, Cinnamon, pumpkin, and a delicious lingering brown sugar taste. It has a medium body, very drinkable. The only thing that prevents me from drinking several at a time is the price and the ABV.

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Photo of branimal9
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 Vintage, on tap at Barley's Greenville - 5/20/2010.

Hazy golden orange in color. Smells wonderfully of brown sugar, nutmeg & cinnamon. Not much in the hops department, but that's not really expected. Flavor is caramelly, spicy and warming. Almost makes me wish it were fall already instead of late spring. Almost. Has an interesting souring finish. don't know if that is a product of a bit of age or not. Regardless, this is a very nice pumpkin ale, probably my second favorite behind ST Pumking. Happy to finally have this soon in SC.

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Photo of bradleyp
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bought a single bottle from the Bier Stein in Eugene.

A: Light hazy brown

S: Smells like pumpkins. What more could you ask for?

T: The pumpkin is very front, but there is also so many spices like cinnamon, cloves, and some other stuff I can't really recognize

M: Very tasty, I really enjoyed drinking this beer

D: I would probably drink this beer again, I'm glad I got to try it at least once.

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Photo of Minotaur
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color of pumpkin pie with very little head after only a few seconds. It is clear and crisp looking. On tap it is slightly frothier but into a pint glass is very still.

The appearance and aroma - pumpkin pie spices of clove, nutmeg, cinnamon - combined with the appearance evoke autumn.

The taste is sweet and malty with only very light hop bitterness. It is loaded with spice flavor: it truly tastes like a mouthful of spice and the soft flavor or squash holding it together. There is also a slight alcohol presence that adds warmth.

It is extremely smooth with a thin mouthfeel, making it very drinkable.

This is by far my favorite autumn ale. It works extremely well with just a little bit (or a lot) of age.

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Photo of HopEnthusiast
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an excellent winter beer, perfect for the holodays. It pours a hazy amber color with a nice frothy, sticky head that about 1 finger. Also has decent lacing. As for the aroma spices, spices and more spices. There are hints of hops, citrus and pumpkin, but boy are ther spices. As for the taste here we go. It starts out with the taste of hops and citrus and finishes with the spices. The mouthfeel is awesome. Absolutely delicious with thanksgiving dinner. This is a light bodied beer that is very drinkable. A must try in my opinion.

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Photo of Celt44
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear orangey amber. Nice frothy head with lacing that lasts throughout...

Aroma is typical Dogfish - unique to the style. A lot of cinnammon up front, giner, pumpkin spice...and the patented peppery dogfish aroma...

Taste - Pure pumpkin pie - cinnnamon, pumpkin spice, ginger, and that dogfish pepper hit at the end. Nice malty body in the middle...

Mouthfeel - Smooth like pumpkin pie....

Overall my favorite pumpkin ale so far. Enthusiasts usually reject this seasonal...but not me...

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Photo of SixpointJMH
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i was quite wary of this one, as i had only had one pumpkin ale in the past (forget which one, but it was a while ago) and it was simply awful. the DFH punkin' ale is quite the opposite of that. this could surprisingly be a fun session ale. it pours a nice amber colour with a minimal head that does not hang around for very long, but leaves a solid lacing. the smell scared me at first...ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon and of course pumpkin. it reminded me quite a bit of harpoon's winter warmer, a beer that i loathe. thankfully, the taste of this one made me forget the similarities to the winter warmer. it echoes the smell, relying a bit moreso on the pumpkin flavour upfront with a spicy finish, but everything is quite subtle and subdued. flavour is not shoved down your throat, but hinted at throughout, which made this brew that much more enjoyable. i'll definitely be looking to sample this every fall from now on.

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Photo of eclaycamp
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into my dimpled mug. Punkin pours a relatively clear orange fading to amber, with a small head made up of very tiny bubbles that rise maybe a quarter of an inch above the liquid. The aroma is at once arresting and intoxicating; liquid pumpkin pie. Spices hit the nose first, with nutmeg, clove, and spice arriving simultaneously. Pumpkin follows, though there’s also this candied yams type character as well. From the moment the beer hits your lips you know you’re in for a treat, as a crusty malt backbone holds all of the pumpkin pie flavors in place. This beer is roughly a month old; and the taste is somewhat faded. My previous experience with this beer was near euphoric; the age on the beer hasn’t done it any favors, and dropped it into the echelon of very good. That’s not to say this beer is no longer worth your time, as it remains one of the shining examples of this style. The malt in this beer acts as a framing, much as a pie crust does in a pie. There are no hops here, and why should there be … this is a unique beer and hops would just get in the way of the flavor profile of the spices and pumpkin. Too often brewers get heavy handed with spicing beers of this type, luckily the folks at Dogfish have not fallen prey to this mistake. A very enjoyable take on the pumpkin beer style and one I wish that I could sample more often.

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Photo of Antihippy6
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Am inviting amber color with a 3/4" head that faded fairly quickly.

S- The smells are definitely all that are listed on the bottle; pumpkin, brown sugar, allspice, cinnamon, and nutmeg. I can't really put my own spin on that truth.

T- The first thing I taste is the nutmeg, then that fades to the other 4 tastes I listed above. Again, it's hard to put it better than the bottle says. It isn't like a lot of pumpkin ales you may try, in that it isn't like eating a piece of pumpkin pie or some other pumpkin desert (note: I'm not saying this in a negative manner whatsoever).

M- Medium mouthfeel. The plentiful spices tingle the tongue on the way down.

D- Overall a very good beer in my opinion. It went down pretty easy even with all of the spices. "Would I have another?" why yes I think I will now. I will be sure to buy some more to make sure I have some for Thanksgiving dinner!

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Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Kickbacks in Jax. Poured into a Unibroue tulip. Kegged in 8/2008. Aged for 15 months, in my opinion the perfect age for this ale. Head quickly disappears. Brown sugar, nutmeg, pumpkin and sweet malts seem to dominate as the hops have faded into balance. (If you want the hops, get it fresh.) Taste is also very sweet, much more so than fresh. ABV is totally hidden by the sweetness of the malts and spices. Great rounding off of the sharp edges with a bit of age. Love it fresh, and really love it at a year.

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Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
3.91 out of 5 based on 6,452 ratings.
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