Punkin Ale | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

Punkin AlePunkin Ale
6,620 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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,620 |  Reviews: 2,132
Photo of Ilovelampandbeer
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of BeccaH
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of beerluvr
3.98/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a beige colred head sporting short head retention that settles quickly onto clear amber/light red liquid ( the label says this is a brown ale...but I don't see anything brown about it). Nose is spicy with nutmeg and allspice, malt and hop...with slight "punkin' " aromas lastly. The taste is a sharp blast of goodly hop bitters followed by some ale yeast-based fruitiness, sweet malts, spiciness and a touch of alcohol which leads into the finish, which is lip-smackingly bitter and long. The most bitter example of pumpkin ale I've had the pleasure to drink...a hop-heads' pumpkin ale if you will.

 609 characters

Photo of danthehopslamman
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of Cook82
5/5  rDev +27.2%

Photo of becktone
4.44/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a beautiful amber/orange color. It actually looks just a shade lighter than pumpkin pie. It looks very appetizing, except for the issue of the head. It has little to no head, I'm sure that off the tap it is much different. However as I am drinking it from the bottle I can't really vouch for that.

As soon as i opened this beer I could smell the aroma that it gave off. It has a very potent aroma that can be smelled across the room. Definitely can detect the nutmeg and pumpkin smells here, there are also some other spices which add to the aroma of the beer. Really this is one of the best smelling beers I've ever had, espicially since I could smell it all the way across the room.

In addition to the smell this beer also tastes great. Matter of fact, it tastes just like it smells. The pumpkin and nutmeg are apparent in the taste. I think that this beer would really complement pumpkin pie extremely well. I think that I'll save the rest of these I have for Thanksgiving, seems to me that these would really go great with the finest fall feast in the U.S. (Just thinking about all the wonderfull Turkey Day foods is really making me hungry. It also makes me wish that I knew for a fact that I would have some of this beer on Thanksgiving to see how well it pairs with such foods, I'm sure it will be sweet.)

Feels great in the mouth. The level of carbonation is not excessive, yet this beer is not undercarbonated. The flavor of this beer lingers on the back of the tounge long after you have finished a swallow of this ale.

As to the drinkability, I will most definitely buy more of this brew. Hopefully it is still available by the time I go to pick up beer again.

 1,699 characters

Photo of billshmeinke
3.86/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a shaker glass.

Pours a medium golden hue with a tough of orange. One finger head with plenty of lacing and nice retention.

Smells of typical pumpkin pie spices, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, some biscuity malt, not a lot besides that.

Taste is similar to the nose, pumpkin spices, sweet bread like malt, and a nice spicy hop presence that balances out the sweetness of the malt.

Well carbonated, medium bodied, works well for the style.

Really great pumpkin beer. If you're into pumpkin beers this should be at the top of your list of must tries.

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Photo of Waveoff
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of neckbeered
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of klewis
3.45/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 8/7/06

A: Pours a carmel hue with a modest foamy head. Moderate lacing.

S: Malty smell with roasted pumpkin and subtle spice aromas.

T: Sweet with flavors similar to the aroma. The finish is clean and the flavor quickly dies away.

M: The bottle calls this "full-bodied", I see it more on the medium-light side. Slightly watery and highly carbonated.

D: Probably the best pumpkin ale that I've had, but with that said, I'm not a huge fan of this beer. It seems that this is probably what it is supposed to be, but I'll probably pass on buying it again.

 578 characters

Photo of HopDerek
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at Spinnerstown Hotel.

Poured a clear amber with nice foamy light tan head. Good retention and lacing. Smells of pumpkin pie spice, light pumpkin, brown sugar, and pie dough. Tastes of brown sugar and cinnamon, doughy bread, pumpkin pie spice, pumpkin meat, and slight alcohol. Medium in body with good carbonation. Sweet and malty with good spiciness. A good pumpkin ale with not too much spice or pumpkin to detract from the other flavors, very well balanced. Not something I would drink all the time, but definitely among my favorite pumpkin ales out there.

 576 characters

Photo of Arithmeticus
3.47/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured chilled in short glass at friend's house.

A: good carb action; thin head; slightly reddish copper color, clear
S: the pumpkin is strong up front, then dissolves to malt
T: allspice and nutmeg are very strong, drawn over a very hoppy ale for a base; the pumpkin element is too strong for my taste; had this been more subdued, I would have rated it higher.

 362 characters

Photo of squack
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of mikefuski17
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%

Photo of tmryan21
3.7/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of indianabeerman
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of tswater
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

Photo of PatrickJR
4.74/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into nonic pint glass.

A - Dark, clear copper. Two fingers of light tan head with moderate retention fall to a thick film, with some moderate to light lacing.

S - Amazing. The spice jumps out at first, mainly cinnamon and nutmeg, but quickly I realize that there's a huge malt backbone, with some toastiness and caramel, and dare I say, I finally smell the actual pumpkin! The multitude of scents are as harmonious and seamless as an actual pumpkin pie.

T - Amazing as well. Initially I'm hit with the spices, again cinnamon and nutmeg (I am trying to identify the allspice though) but there's also a pleasant vanilla flavor backing things up, and it's all tied together with a hefty sweetness from the brown sugar. As the spices subside, the pumpkin itself comes through. Not overly vegetal, or rotten, or disgustingly bitter like some pumpkin ales I've had, but in a beautiful marriage with the strong malt character of the brew. Everything is wrapped up with a long, mellow bitterness and some chalkiness from the spices.

M - Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation. Falls slightly short of perfect; I want it thicker and less carbonated! No real problem here though.

D - Until now I though pumpkin ales were something to have with a meal or start (or end) a night with. This stuff is excellent and I wouldn't mind drinking the entire 4-pack in one sitting, though it is a heavier, slightly intense brew with a healthy ABV.

This is what all pumpkin ales should aspire to be. An absolutely delicious beverage, fit for those who don't even like "beer." I love this stuff.

 1,613 characters

Photo of SFNC
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of Patrick999
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at The Room, Miami Beach - a nice surprise that I was not expecting.

Poured to near the top of the pint glass with little head. Very clear pumpkin orange-amber.

Aroma is big on pumpkin pie spice - cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, along with a little alcohol.

On the palate, it comes across as drinking an alcoholic pumpkin pie, with all the spices listed above combined with some good pumpkin and whipped cream. Good strong malty brown ale base as well. I've had this quite a few times in the bottle, and it still remains my favorite pumpkin ale.

Feel is much more robust than your typical pumpkin-soda beer. Nah, this one is a real beer, but you knew that.

It's easy to drink and very sneaky at 7%.

 708 characters

Photo of AndyAvalanche
3.8/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pretty good looking beer. Pours a color that's darker than amber, but slightly lighter than tea with excellent clarity. Doesn't really have much of a head. There was very little left by the time it was brought to me and what was left pretty much stuck around the edges. Had far less than average lacing, but all in all looked pretty nice. The smell was pretty good. Spices from pumpkin pie or pumpkin bread, followed by some roasted malts. I'm not really a fan of Pumpkin styles beers (with the exception of Cape Ann's Pumpkin Stout) but this was pretty good. It has the sweet taste that you would expect. However it's not overly sweet like most pumpkin style ales. I kind of wonder if there are roasted pumpkin seeds in this brew instead of the sweet pumpkin spices of most pumpkin beers. It actually tastes like a beer as well, not like it should be warm with a head of whipped cream topped with a little nutmeg and cinnamon. Mouthfeel is good, no carbination or alcohol bite at all. I'd say the drinkability is good too I'm giving it a 4 instead of a 3.5 cause I'm generally not a fan of this style but it was way better than I expected. All in all pretty good. I would not get this regularly but certainly get it again if in the mood and given the opportunity.

 1,266 characters

Photo of JohnnyChicago
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tumbler.

A: Pours a translucent orange with a one-finger head.

S: Lots of pumpkin. The allspice and nutmeg come through as well, but its pure pumpkin meat that dominates here.

T: Yup, pumpkin meat alright. You do get a little hops in the aftertaste that don't come through in the nose, but other that that, the taste follows smell.

D: Nice and drinkable. Its crisp and pretty low carbonated, but that's good for this style, it leaves a little coating in the mouth.

Overall: If you like pumpkin, you'll like this; end of story. A lot of people think they like pumpkin, but actually like all the spices that pumpkin dishes are prepared with. Remember, pumpkin is a gourd; a vegetable, not a sugary cinnamon pie. That being said, I like this beer. Definitely one of the better pumpkin ales. It tastes natural and fresh, nothing artificial about this one at all. Make sure to let this one warm a little because the sweetness comes through with warmth.

 985 characters

Photo of JayKay412
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of dd43
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This is just a straight up good ale from Dogfish Head. The first aromas that hit me were a vegetal smell of the pumpkin, and a baking spice medley (cinnamon, clove, nutmeg). This beer looks great in the glass, nice creamy off white head and a hazy appearance that makes you think you're about to drink a meal. The brown sugar and pumpkin pie spices are nicely attenuated. This beer is not a spice bomb like so many seasonal pumpkin beers are relegated to. The finish is really appealing, mouth coating but not too heavy. That said I think I'd only have one of these in a session. It's a nice thing to start off with as the mercury drops and Halloween approaches.

 662 characters

Photo of jettjon
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 12 oz bottle with "packaged on" year available but not marked. Into my Sam Adams glass (thanks, guys!), it's an attractive deep coppery amber clear color with moderate precipitating carbonation. 1 finger off-white head quickly fades to a thin cap and ring. Some lacing remains. Nose is bready and hints at allspice, cloves and biscuits. Flavor of mild toasted malt, lightly buttery diacetyl, and finishes on a mild alcohol burn. Mouth is full and just about right: middle of the road viscosity with a smooth, creamy finish. Drinkability is good: it's a tasty brew though not remarkably so. Not so much as I'd want another. 7% ABV detracts from having too man.

Overall: Almost more like a spice amber ale than a true seasonal pumpkin ale. Worth a try but not spectacular.

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Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 3.93 out of 5 with 6,620 ratings
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