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Punkin Ale | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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very good
2,092 Reviews
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 brewed with real pumpkin, brown sugar, allspice, cinnamon & nutmeg.

28 IBU

Added by NeroFiddled on 09-26-2002

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 2,092 | Ratings: 6,495
Photo of kmcnair
3.45/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Light copperery color, offwhite head. Malty aromatics with heavy pie spices including nutmeg, clove and cinnamon. Sweet flavor of pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon, all spice, roasted malt, caramel, slight hop bitterness. Medium palate, finishes syrupy. Overall, a pretty good brew, worth trying once.

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Photo of shapudding
4.44/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tagged as packaged in 2004. Dark honey golden and unclear. Can barely see through the pint glass to the shadows of my fingers on the other side... No head at all, just a thin white ring at the edges. Wonderfully spicey scents with a ton of raisin coming out. Karo sweetness. Makes me think of eggnog, must be the nutmeg that just wafts out of it. Such a nice smooth mouthfeel, the carbination gives it a bit of bite, but it really is just a perfect feel . This is just the right amount of carbination for me, not too much, just enough for the style. Malty and spicey, almost tastes a bit peppery at times. Caramelly/honey sweeness, but not intensely so. The spices really come out alot in the end, you are left with alot of clovey-nutmeg flavor in your mouth. This has been a longtime favorite of mine since the first try, and I have always described this as being like having a bite of pumpkin pie and following it up with a sip of good ale.

This was a Christmas gift from my Father, who is appreciating all the beer I have been letting him explore with... -My Dad who thought that he was finally a beer snob when he found Molson, but now is obsessed with Double Bastard! My darling Father who must have remembered me saying that I love Dogfish Head, and knows I call people Pumpkin, and gave me this 4pack at Christmas Eve. -Which was the first of the experiments with my beer opener beltbuckle (ask my horrified and wet friends, and ex-friends), and my punkin coated step-brother Ian...! -Well, everything was punkin coated, but hey, what are holidays for!

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Photo of KroMagnon
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Crystal clear, golden amber color, with an off-white head that sticks around a little while (perhaps surprisingly long lasting given the 7% alcohol). Aroma features a dash of pumpkin spice and malt, and some slight fruity esters. The aroma is a little underwhelming in its intensity, however. The flavor is very nice, featuring a full bodied beer definitely tilted toward malt with complimentary pumpkin spice flavors taking the place of strong hoppy notes. Enough bitterness at the end to balance. A pretty good spiced ale, but I think it would be better if it were more spicy.

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Photo of UncleJimbo
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle.

This ale poured a clear, coppery color with off-white foam that settled quickly. The smell improved as the glass of beer warmed. It was slightly sweet and malty with hints of spices (allspice and cinnamon) and a whiff of alcohol. The taste was slightly sweet (brown sugar) up front followed by a tangy maltiness with a touch of spices (allspice and cinnamon?) and hops in the finish. There was a touch of alcohol and the hop bitterness and spices lingered in the finish. The mouthfeel was smooth and tangy with medium body and moderate carbonation with some pumpkin texture. It was ever so slightly warming as well. This was a decent pumpkin ale, and improved as it warmed up.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.29/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a deep amber color ale with a medium head with below average retention. Aroma is quite spicy (probably some cinnamon and the pumpkin) with some malt also noticeable. Taste is also quite spicy with cinnamon being the most recognisable spices with some pumpkin on the side. Not bad but I wouldn’t drink a whole lot of this either.

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Photo of walleye
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured a nice copper color with off white head that stayed around for a little while. aroma nice rich pumpkin pie like grandma use to make. flavors pumpkin cinnamon,nutmeg, nice smooth mouth feel. this is one of the better pumpkin beers I have had so far

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Photo of RockyTopHeel
3.87/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hazy amber with a thin white head. Aroma of pumpkin and spice is echoed in the taste. Smooth and not too heavy, which is nice for the style. Instead of a molasses-baked sticky-sweet brew (which wouldn't be bad, either), this is like pumpkin pie light. Pretty easy drinking, but not too complex, with just enough cinnamon, nutmeg, and other spices to keep it interesting.

Solid, but not spectacular.

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Photo of filabrazilia
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light brown with a nearly non-existent tan head that rings the glass. There is some lace left on the glass.

There is a definite spice aroma to this brew--nutmeg is the most prominent, followed by cinammon and cloves. A sweet caramel malt joins in as well. This is a nice smelling beer.

The taste is sweet and spicy and a bit nutty in the mouth (pardon the Austin Powers reference). The finish is punctuated by a slight touch of alcohol. As it warms, there is an almost roasted malt flavor in the finish. Very nice.

This is a pretty thin beer for a seasonal. However, the flavor counters the lack of "substance" in this beer. You can really sense the hops in the finish--they are not obnoxious but assertive enough to balance the sweetness of this beer.

This is a good Pumkin beer--it is not overwhelmingly sweet but a very nice example of the style. I thought this was a very good beer that was worthy of another sample.

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Photo of 57andcounting
3.94/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an amber brew with a short-lived head. Very little carbonation. Smell like a spice cabinet. Nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice and some lingering malt and a lot of alcohol as it warms. Doesn't sell like pumpkin pie to me though it does remind you of the season.

Taste is nice, a little spicy, a lot of alcohol, doesn't taste like a bear. More like a special mixed drink. Not bad. Great season brew. Has a real nice light mouth taste with just a nip of spice after taste. I might drink two, but no more. Then, I don’t think the folks at Dogfish Head thought they were brewing a session beer.

This is one of the better special flavor beer.

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Photo of Mitchster
1.79/5  rDev -54.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Pours out to a sparkingly clear orange(pumpkin)-amber, forming a soapy off-white head with good retention and average lacing. Aroma is spicy with cinnamon and nutmeg, reminding me of a Xmas ale which I brewed many years back (I hated it so all my friends drank it)..no real pumpkin aroma. A touch of smoky ham becomes evident when swirled, and is the best part of this brew. Carbonation is mild to moderate. Mouthfeel is soft with a medium-dense body. Taste starts with off-putting herbal hops, followed by the nauseating spices, followed by amber malt husk bitterness, brown sugar alcohol bleh, and nasty Dogfish Head ruddiness. Aftertaste is limited to wet cardboard, diacetyl yuck, a mouthfull of copper pennies and sickening spice.

This beer sucks pumpkin ass.

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Photo of Bierguy5
3.8/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle, packaged in 04. Pours a slight hazy amber liquid with a thick foamy off-white head. A few small bubbles coming off the bottom of the glass. Good head retention, there was a fair amount of lace on the glass. Smells of pumpkin pie spices, cinnamon, nutmeg, etc. Sweet toasty malt combined with the spices make for an interesting brew. Only slight bitterness. Medium body with moderate carbonation. Good mouthfeel, not overly carbonated like other pumpkin brews. This is the best of the pumpkin beers that I have tasted. Nice mix of spices with a slightly darker, more flavorful malt character than most. Decent drinkability, but really isn't a session beer. Another hit from DFH.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.43/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - golden orange hue, a finger or so of thick soapy head, leaves some spotty lacing.

Aroma - cinnamon and sweet spices. Fades after initial burst to a light cinnamon and spice aroma.

Taste - lots of spice, mostly cinnamon. The pleasantries of pumpkin pie are abruptly, if not expectedly, hit by a hefty dose of hops. There's enough malt to contribute to a toasty, mellow spiced aftertaste. Warming alcohol notes at the end as well and the occasional detection of brown sugar. Always the unique style interpretation from DFH. I could use less hops, but the abv makes for a nice winter-type warmer.

Mouthfeel - heavier body, alcohol-induced vapory residue. A cut above.

Drinkability - good stuff, but not my favorite. A good Halloween beer for next year's party, but a little too pricy for regular consumption.

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Photo of RedBaron
4.37/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Good Thanksgiving beer by the always-nutty brewers at Dogfish Head.

Appearance: Pumpkin bronze; Good off-whit head which sustained nicely.
Smell: Heavy and pleasant autumnal spicing (clove/cinammon), easily conveyed by the aroma.
Taste: Wonderfully spiced beer. The label states allspice, nutmeg, etc. and I agree. There may be some carapils malt here that add a base sweetness, but the spices win the day. There is a nice bitter finish, suggesting a pretty darn good hop presence.
Mouthfeel: Nicely balanced -- not at all cloying, but not thin or watery either. The palatte is left with a great cornacopia of wonderful spices.
Drinkability: Very good. Not to sound cliched or trite, this is one pumpkin ale that gets my respect. Very complex.

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Photo of rajendra82
3.62/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This bottle was sent by clvand0, as part of a trade that has provided good beer in spades so far. After drinking a few bottles of Post Road Pumpkin Ale this year, I have realized that these beers have to be warmed up close to room temperature, before they become truly enjoyable, so that’s how I am going to do it.

The pour was clear, and orange in color with a fizzy head that vanished pretty rapidly. On par with the other pumpkin ales I’ve tried in terms of the looks.

The aroma had the pumpkin pie effect going, with brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg mingled in with pumpkins.

The taste was light and spicy, with the pumpkin pie flavor, and some hop bitterness. Alcohol was only an afterthought, however at 7%, it is not too shabby.

Nice beer with a singular mission. Not my favorite taste in a beer, but enjoyable enough for an occasional detour.

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Photo of bigbubba
3.17/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A nice dark amber beer with a very small tan head. There was a sediment at the bottom which I didn't pour into my glass. It smells like a good ale, but with a heavy nutmeg aroma. This isn't as bad as many other Pumpkin beers I've tried. The taste is ok, I just don't like this kind of crap in my beer. The mouthfeel is good, without the decent body and 7% alcohol this beer would be undrinkable (by me). As for drinkability, yeah I might have another one- next year.

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Photo of GreenWBush
3.4/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This is the best pumpkin ale i've ever had. That isn't saying much. I didn't even add my reviews of Buffalo Bill's and New Holland's because they were completely negative.

Darker than true pumpkin, Punkin' is also lighter than the brown ale it partially claims to be on the bottle. A poofy head on a very vigorous pour and none on a pedestrian pour. No lace.

Hints of brown sugar about on the nose, with a bit of fishy pumpkin. Heavy cinammon and nuts as well.

The taste is like most pumpkin ales, a liquefied Gingerbread cookie. But in DFH's model the hops keep everything interesting and prickly. Lots of herbally biting hop to shut up the cookie quality of the style.

Mouthfeel's a bit astringent with all the spices and hops.

Mildly drinkable - a complement, IMO, to the style!

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Photo of steinlifter
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This poured a light amber, slight head with little retention, smell was very interesting, pumpkin and spices!, taste followed, really nice, and light as well, mouthfeel was fairly thin, drinkability I would rate as high! very nice, captures the spirit of the season beautifully!
best pumpkin ale I've had yet!!!

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Photo of ken3c
4.12/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

So Clear I can read through my pint glass. Copper color with a solid layer of creamy foam. There is some slight lacing.

Pumpkin pie spice aromas with some serious fruity smells. There is another smell that took me awhile to pin down: Brown sugar. I used to put it on everything: cereal, peanut butter sandwich or just straight. I've never had this smell in a beer. I love it.

A sweet brown sugar taste is followed by bananas oranges and bitter orange peel like finish.

Medium carbonation, medium body and warming.

It seems like they threw everything but the kitchen sink in this beer. Some things work quite well. Others are just a distraction.

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Photo of TAMU99
3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Not a bad beer.
From the respected Dogfish Head brewery, I would expect a well crafted beer.
This pours a clear tawny orange. Kinda what you'd think a pumpkin beer should look like. There's a thin, rapidly fading head from which arises the aroma of cinnamon and pumpkin pie.
The flavor echoes the aroma with a strong malt backgound and just a touch of balancing hops rounds it out. There are hints of spice, but not too sweet.
This a clean, soft beer that goes down easily. I'd rate it as highly drinkable and a nice addition to the holiday fare.

Overall, I liked this one. A good showing from this good brewery.

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Photo of donnebaby
4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Streaming bubble active body holds up a light tan head that mostly hazes over (into long-lasting drifts) a bold orange body. I thought to myself that it was a good color for a pumpkin ale.

Allspice rocks the nostrils and made me think that this would taste like a particularly spicy pumpkin pie. If there was such a thing as allspice candy, it would taste like this beer smells. Also some dry thickness in the background.

Tastes not nearly as spicy or sweet as the nose portended. Round and excellently mellow. Taste is set up as a combination of sweet and flavorful and dry and hoppy. Full mouth flavor of nutmeg, cinnamon and allspice--tinged with sweetness quickly shifts over to a spicy, dry hop aftertaste. Sweet malt medium body. Very balanced brew and the alcohol being mostly imperceptible. Mellow and mild.

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Photo of ybnorml
3.97/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A clean amber beer with a foamy off white head that flattens out quickly. The aroma is mostly pumpkin with subtle hints of spice in the background. I belive I could pick up cinnamon as the predominate spice. The spices start off the taste, wrapping themselves around the tip of your tongue. This is quickly followed by the sweet pumpkin flavor finishing off on the back of your tongue.

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Photo of Winter
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden brown with a fluffy off-white head. Aroma consists of malt, cinnamon, nutmeg and "punkin". Mouthfeel is full-bodied. Biscuity malt, pumpkin and a slight sweetness upfront. Cinnamon, nutmeg and pumpkin pie spices follow. The 7% alcohol is noticable in the finish.

This is one of the more solid pumpkin beers I've tried. I like the combination of added pumpkin spice and flavor to a brown ale. The slightly higher abv, than most other pumpkin ales, is fitting for a cool autumn night.

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Photo of ngandhi
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This herbal American brown ale base balances well with fresh flavors of candied ginger and nutmeg. With a medium light body and dry, nearly tannic brown sugar finish, the spices clean up nicely -- this is not Christmas pudding.

The color is gorgeous with nearly no haze contributed from the starchy, beer-unfriendly pumpkin. In my head, I like to think the gourd is actually adding something to this beer because, though the spices are so wonderfully controlled, there is a long, lingering element of pumpkin pie that goes beyond the spices.

Beer first, Punkin comes to rely on the alcohol as it warms with a growing, Colheita-like emergence of toasted walnuts and almonds as well as dried berries. Though only 7%, the overall dryness of this beer leaves it open the torturesome nuance of truth -- everything that is in this beer is clearly revealed, from the spices and chocolately malt to the grassy 60 Minute IPA-like hops and dry adjunct.

If I take anything away from this beer, it's the nose so fresh of clove you'd think this were a hefe, yet so subtle and elegant that pies and reindeer never come to mind.

Relax, relax.

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Photo of proc
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this one out on a cool fall evening after raking leaves and watching college football on TV. This one pours out to a dark gold, almost brown in the glass with a slight head. The aroma is that of spice, which reminded me of a cross between a pumpkin pie baking and a pork roast loaded with thyme and rosemary. Weird? Yes, but true. The taste is quite good, with a nice dose of malt mixing with the spices. One of the best pumpkin ales I've tried.

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Photo of redmosquito
3.36/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This pours an awesome orange color. It's clear with not much head at all. I get a mild spice aroma off this, with malt and maybe some pumpkin, sorry punkin', in the background. The flavor is definitely sweet with a nice toasted malt flavor carrying through to a spice finish. The spices seem more of a mouthfeel than an actual flavor, without any one spice dominating or even coming through at all. It finishes a little warming. Overall this is a decent pumpkin beer.

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Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
3.91 out of 5 based on 6,495 ratings.
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