Headless Heron
Central Waters Brewing Co.

Headless HeronHeadless Heron
Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
From:
Central Waters Brewing Co.
 
Wisconsin, United States
Style:
Pumpkin Beer
ABV:
8.5%
Score:
92
Avg:
4.14 | pDev: 8.45%
Ratings:
398
Status:
Retired
Rated:
Nov 01, 2019
Added:
Sep 25, 2014
Wants:
  34
Gots:
  66
SCORE
92
Outstanding
Headless HeronHeadless Heron
Notes: Generously spiced with nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger and cloves, this barrel-aged pumpkin spice ale overflows with dark fruit, dried fruit, and hints of bourbon. Perfect for settling in to watch a few leaves fall to the ground.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Photo of Luscious_Malfoy
4.43/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by Luscious_Malfoy from Illinois

vintage 2016 bottle aged to damn near perfection. get a little bit of wet cardboard oxidation on the nose but other than that it’s pure pumpkin fall spices with a hint of whiskey. taste is similar but the whiskey has been smoothed out from when i has this bottle fresh. mouthfeel is full, perfectly carbonated. it’s smooth and very easy drinking for the style. overall, this was an aging experiment i went into thinking i had sat too long on. i stand corrected. this beer was incredible. a nice melding of fall pumpkin spices and bourbon. wish i’d saved another.

Nov 01, 2019
 
4.16 by Old_Dead_Oak from Wisconsin on Oct 25, 2019
Photo of GuyFawkes
3.84/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
by GuyFawkes from Illinois

2016 vintage; drank 10/11/16 @ the Yarchives.

Opaque brown appearance.

A rough pour yielded a huge tan head; strong, frothy lace.

Pumpkin pie, cream, oak & faint bourbon notes in the nose.

Creamy, medium mouthfeel.

Pumpkin pie, cream & mild bourbon flavors up front; oak notes on the finish.

An interesting imperial pumpkin beer; perhaps the oak looms too large but at the very least it was drinkable & enjoyable.

Apr 01, 2019
 
4.25 by Nurt20 from Illinois on Jan 21, 2019
 
4 by tittyfish from Minnesota on Nov 29, 2018
 
3.55 by Chilmer from Iowa on Oct 06, 2018
 
4 by Bum4ever from California on Sep 17, 2018
 
4 by rspauldi from Texas on Dec 27, 2017
 
4.23 by drummerdwzp from Connecticut on Dec 10, 2017
Photo of PatrickCT
4.06/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by PatrickCT from Connecticut

Dark, jammy body with a ruby orange hue. Minimal head settles, as quickly as it rises, into a bubbly, thin, wispy cap. The slightly sticky lace slides down the glass not unlike the legs of bourbon.
The Aroma is woody and spicy, with a waft of prunes and dark currents, mingling together to give the impression of toasted prune skins. The bourbon and barrel are obvious throughout.
The taste mirrors the aroma, more hot with alcohol and with the piquant flavor of dried fruit. Finishes with a slightly woodiness and sour end of the fruit.
The body is medium which makes this dangerous. It's heavy and complex aroma and flavor go down easy. On the palate it is smooth until the bourbon influence gives it some bite. It is warm, comforting and should be treated as a sipper.

Overall this is a 4.25 but I took points off because it was given to me by Joe.

Nov 23, 2017
Photo of LongTaco15
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by LongTaco15 from Illinois

Look: Pours dark solid brown with a finger of head that lingered for a bit.

Smell: Bourbon, Barrell, a bit of pumpkin and spices

Taste: Chocolate up front, followed by pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, and bourbon. Very complex and tastes great.

Feel: Medium mouth feel.

Overall an awesome barrel aged pumpkin ale. Really enjoying this one. I can't find a date on the bottom but I think it is from 2016.

Nov 01, 2017
 
4.25 by MTKATL from Georgia on Oct 31, 2017
Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.21/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by TreyIsWilson from Michigan

A - Pours dark brown with a one finger tan head. Good amount soapy lacing.

S - Aroma is nutmeg, clove, cinnamon and bourbon.

T - The taste is pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, vanilla and bourbon.

M - Medium bodied with low carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel with a soft dry finish.

O - A very solid barrel aged pumpkin beer. The bourbon is light and adds a nice depth to the flavor.

Oct 28, 2017
 
4.5 by GreenBayBA from Wisconsin on Oct 22, 2017
Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by JohnnyHopps from Indiana

Appearance - The beer porn a dark brown brown murky color.

Smell - The nose was boozy but far from hot or astringent. It seemed well balanced.

Taste - At the front was t at the front was bourbon which was accompanied by sweet pumpkin spice. Unlike some pumpkin ales, this was not a cinnamon mom. The spices did not overwhelm the pumpkin or bourbon.

Mouthfeel - Though perhaps it was a hair thin, but still had a fairly thick feel.

Overall - I would suggest that this belongs in the upper echelon of pumpkin beers.

Oct 13, 2017
 
4.23 by Muss42 from Michigan on Oct 07, 2017
 
4.2 by peensteen from Canada (ON) on Aug 21, 2017
Photo of REVZEB
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25
by REVZEB from Illinois

People say that all pumpkin ales are virtually the same, and in many cases I tend to agree, but this one stands out. The feel is so rich and luscious, and it feels designed to let the subtle flavors with the pumpkin shine. Bourbon, fall spices, wood, dark fruits like figs and prunes, cinnamon and biscuit. Good sipper for a brisk fall day

Jul 07, 2017
 
3.83 by Phoodcritic from Michigan on Jun 17, 2017
 
3.8 by Chuckdiesel24 from Illinois on May 30, 2017
 
4.16 by SierraFlight from Virginia on May 17, 2017
 
4.25 by tvenne from Minnesota on May 08, 2017
 
4.05 by Krusader from Wisconsin on Apr 25, 2017
Photo of Nugganooch
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by Nugganooch from California

From the 22oz bottle to snifter – 11/29/15
This was sent from mdfb79 – Thanks Dan!

Really enjoyed this delicious seasonal treat! A wintery warmer, barley wine style type strong ale with the perfect amount of pumpkin, pie spice, and barrel influence. Dark brown on the pour with some garnet tones and a moderate cap of khaki tan suds that works its way back down to a swirl in the glass. Light dot works and a few streaks of lace noted. The nose evokes pie filling with cinnamon and nutmeg, maple glazed squash, marshmallow, vanilla, brown sugar, toasty oak, and a light browned malt roast. Flavor is sweet with caramelized goodness but maintains balance throughout. Has some great kettled malt flavor with enough bourbon to produce some delicious vanilla-marshmallow like notes that melds delectably with the candied pumpkin and baked goods here. I find the cinnamon and nutmeg spices are complimentary as well and kept quite manageable. Semi viscous but never too syrupy. Some modest earthy roast to it with a mild peppery hop bitterness that helps dry out in the finish. A very tasty treat and well balanced in all the spice barrel and fruit flavors. Recommended – would love to have this one again.

Mar 03, 2017
Photo of SD-Alefan
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by SD-Alefan from South Dakota

Pours dark brown with a tan head that quickly becomes a mere, wispy cover.
The aroma is cinnamon, cloves, cola, vanilla and roast notes.
The taste is toasty and spicy with vanilla and dark fruit and some boozy warmth.
It's medium and smooth.

Feb 21, 2017
 
4.1 by Ristaccia from Nebraska on Jan 17, 2017
 
4.25 by szmnnl99 from Michigan on Jan 09, 2017
 
3.99 by T_Hass from Georgia on Jan 02, 2017
 
4 by Whiskeydeez from Kansas on Dec 29, 2016
 
4.74 by Best_Enjoyed_In_Texas from Texas on Dec 24, 2016
 
3.75 by Noelito76 from New York on Dec 23, 2016
Photo of GoBearsWalter34
4.4/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by GoBearsWalter34 from Illinois

L- Pours a dark brown with a tan, creamy head.
S- A huge bourbon smell. Maple syurp and spice.
T- pumpkin, vanilla, carmel, bourbon burn, cinnamon.
M- Quite smooth with a slight bourbon and hop burn.
O- Wonderful pumpkin ale with lots of bourbon.

Dec 17, 2016
Photo of Treyliff
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by Treyliff from West Virginia

22oz bottle poured into a goblet

A- pours a dark brown color with a thin foamy off-white headshot reduces to a ring around the edge

S- aroma gives cinnamon, nutmeg & clove up front with a Carmel malty sweetness, along with brown sugar. Undertones of bourbon give spicy earthy wood & vanilla

T- sweet and malty up front with notes of bread crust, fruit cake & caramel. The spices follow, with flavors of cinnamon & nutmeg. Bourbon barrel kicks in mid-palate, providing oak & vanilla. The finish is distinctly brown sugar, with a perfect compliment of cinnamon and barrel

M- medium body with moderate carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel and finish, abv hidden well

O- outstanding mix of sweet malty base beer, slicing and barrel treatment. One of the better pumpkin beers I've had for sure

Dec 15, 2016
Photo of 57md
4.29/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25
by 57md from Pennsylvania

Pours a brownish color with dark copper edges and a half finger of head. The nose has an alluring combination of pumpkin, seasonal spices, bourbon and vanilla. The flavor has many of the same notes as the nose plus the introduction of dark fruits. The pumpkin "meat" seems to be featured quite prominently.

This offering does not ever become overly sweet or cloying. In fact, the finish leans slightly to the semi-dry side.

At 8.5% this offering is on the edge of cellarable. I am going to search out a few more bottles to save for Halloween 2017 as I think that it will only improve with age.

Dec 13, 2016
Photo of GStone899
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by GStone899 from Minnesota

Amazing pumpkin beer. Lots of clove, nutmeg and spices. Pours the same color as coca cola with the same head too. Smell is very pungent and alluring. I haven't had many pumpkin beers in my life but this one hits the spot. Central waters makes some fine beta and this is no exception.

Dec 11, 2016
 
4.1 by tommy5 from Michigan on Dec 04, 2016
 
4.15 by cmwilliq from Wisconsin on Nov 26, 2016
Photo of SerialTicker
4.49/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by SerialTicker from Michigan

Dude, this stuff's a banger! A 22oz bottle for something like $7? Not only is the price right, the beer is delicious -- easily the best pumpkin beer I've had when factoring in quality and price. The spice level is perfect, and the bourbon is flawlessly integrating without taking over the spices or pumpkin flavor. I see some people saying there's too much spice/that it overwhelms, but I think it's great -- the ratio is just on. I'm digging the nutmeg and cinnamon. This is basically the perfect pumpkin beer.

Nov 25, 2016
 
4.75 by BoilerUpNavy from Wisconsin on Nov 24, 2016
 
4.31 by BrewMaven from New York on Nov 23, 2016
Headless Heron from Central Waters Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 398 ratings