The Fear
Flying Dog Brewery

The FearThe Fear
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Flying Dog Brewery
Maryland, United States
Pumpkin Beer
Ranked #136
Ranked #24,130
3.7 | pDev: 13.24%
Nov 22, 2021
Sep 25, 2011
The FearThe Fear
Notes: Why is there only one time of the year - as goblins, ghouls and ghosts frolic on front lawns - when we embrace THE FEAR? At all other times, THE FEAR dominates us, controls us and prevents us from greatness. What is there to THE FEAR? Disagreement? Criticism? Humiliation? Whatever THE FEAR is that consumes you, embrace it. Only then will the true artist in you rise up.

Malts: Carabrown, Midnight Wheat, Chocolate, Vienna
Hops: Warrior, Willamette
Yeast: American Ale
IBU: 45
Special: 300 pounds of pumpkin added per 50 barrels
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
3.73 by j0hnc2468 from New York on Nov 22, 2021
Photo of Singlefinpin
4.07/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by Singlefinpin from North Carolina

Drinking this at one of my favorite tap rooms, Tapped Craft and Drafts in Greenville NC.
Poured from a tap into a pint glass.
Looks dark brown with a reddish tint, a tannish foamy head that dropped quickly to a thin cap.
Smells cinnamon, pumpkin bread, allspice, nutmeg and chocolate.
Taste follows the nose nicely with a nice malt backbone and alcohol on the back of my palate.
Mouth feel is medium for the style.
Overall a very complex Pumpkin Beer that I would definitely order again.

Nov 15, 2021
3.77 by gwydno from Spain on Nov 12, 2021
5 by Dalkri from Massachusetts on Oct 09, 2021
3.25 by zbooks from Texas on Oct 09, 2021
3.86 by mpolewan from Ohio on Sep 26, 2021
Photo of Franziskaner
3.76/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by Franziskaner from Missouri

Dark brown to light black in color. There's a fingernail of off-white on top. Light lacing is present. The aroma was difficult to seek out, but it's faint nutmeg. I'm tasting cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and pumpkin pie spice. The mouth is heavily spice and the alcohol warms the throat

Sep 13, 2021
Photo of rudiecantfail
3.96/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by rudiecantfail from Pennsylvania

12 ounce bottle poured into a tulip glass. Vintage 21G.

L---Opaque brown with a tinge of orange. Fluffy off-white head faded slowly and left very nice lacing.

S---Pumpkin pie spices as expected. Allspice, nutmeg, cinnamon, clove.

T---This is where I hope I find more than just pumpkin spices. And there's a slight touch of pumpkin and caramel.

F---Medium/full, maybe closer to full bodied. Light carbonation.

O---A nice pumpkin beer. Nothing fancy, but rock solid.

Sep 12, 2021
Photo of nick_perry
2.18/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 1 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5
by nick_perry from North Carolina

Overpowering boozy flavor. Can't get past it.

Sep 11, 2021
4 by cabsandking from Ohio on Sep 10, 2021
Photo of josanguapo
3.53/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
by josanguapo from Spain

De Labirratorium. En copa Teku. Jugando a Darksiders 2. Bastante calabaza y alcohol, resultando en una birra que sin estar nada mal tampoco es algo que llegue a destacar. Se disfruta pero no dan ganas de repetir la experiencia

Dec 04, 2020
Photo of PathofChaos
4.45/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
by PathofChaos from Maryland

Dark, murky brown with twisting shadows of red maple; like a forest lake steeped in autumn leaves. A wisp of cream-hued head retains well but only laces a bare inch, leaving short trail of dainty rings.

The cold, night air over this forest lake is rife with earthy chocolate and Vienna malts. Sharp esters and bitter allspice lurk beneath its mirrored surface.

A lush, full bodied wave followed by a cloud of fizz. Leaves a lingering blend of baking spice and alcohol warmth.

Pungent Vienna lager, wielding a bitter, black cudgel of chocolate malts, bursts onto the scene. Its boozy breath is covered by a musky cologne of clove, cinnamon and nutmeg. For all its bulky strength, it has great poise: No astringent bite, no unpleasant tang, but no pumpkin either.

Hits hard with flavors native to the darkest parts of autumn. Superior craftsmanship merited by the fact that none of the baking spices are overdone.

Nov 29, 2020
4.1 by tpeters from Michigan on Nov 28, 2020
Photo of crhensel
4.24/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by crhensel from New Jersey

Importing from Untappd

Nov 14, 2020
3.53 by Jsalz21 from New Jersey on Oct 27, 2020
4.24 by Cfitty from New York on Oct 12, 2020
Photo of dups68
3.46/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5
by dups68 from Rhode Island

Look: A dark murky brown reminiscent of late night fall swim in Camp Crystal Lake's lake. The one finger foam head quickly builds and sticks around as long as sea foam on a large sharks fin. We're gonna need a bigger boat.

Smell: Intense. The smell of malt rips through the air like a razor blade glove. The scent of alcohol lurks in the background waiting to take a bite.

Taste: Malt dominates the initial wave. Spice bites at the tongue like a Dracula preying on a unsuspecting victim. In the aftertaste a boozy alcohol flavor rears it head and rips through the profile like a texas chainsaw massacre.

Overall: Woof. Beer hits like Cujo. Big n Boozey but flavor is not what I expected. I didn't get much pumpkin. Sorta malty and some spice. Not a bad cool weather fall beer but if you're looking for pumpkin keep on looking. The after taste was off putting to me as well. Left my palate the sensation that I just took a shot of cheap vodka. Just a dry taste of gain alcohol.

Sep 25, 2020
3.7 by chicagoish from Pennsylvania on Sep 24, 2020
3.99 by saymike32 from New Jersey on Sep 03, 2020
Photo of Ernald_Elbertson
4.07/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
by Ernald_Elbertson from Delaware

A pretty interesting beer, and one of Flying Dog's better offerings in my opinion.

Look: Standard brown ale look, decent lacing and tannish head.

Smell: Put me off a bit at first. The Vienna Malt is pretty overpowering in the smell, so I initially thought of Vienna Lager, which I felt was uncharacteristic. If you look deeper you get some sweeter toffee notes and some of the Chocolate Malt as well.

Taste: I would say Chocolate Malt and spices dominate, despite the strong Vienna Malt smell. Definitely getting the roasted bitterness from the Chocolate Malt, as well as some clove, maybe nutmeg toffee, and cinnamon. Not really cloying or overly sweet which is nice. Unfortunately I really am struggling to find the pumpkin in here, but that doesn't inherently make the beer just might not be what you're expecting. I would prefer this to a very overly-pumpkinated beer. The malt bill on this is actually pretty interesting and complex if you're a malt-head. Little in the way of booziness though, if that's what you're after.

Feel: Very full bodied, but perhaps a bit too carbonated for my taste. Not watery at all though, which Flying Dog seems to have an issue with sometimes.

Overall: a pretty solid fall beer for sipping on. Depends on your local store, but maybe a bit pricey for what you get? 15 dollars for a six pack should be something a bit more outstanding in my opinion; I've had better beers for cheaper.

Aug 29, 2020
3.22 by FelkertheBelcher from Wisconsin on Aug 22, 2020
3.96 by BuxMontBeerLover from Pennsylvania on Aug 21, 2020
3.65 by HopBelT from Belgium on Jun 12, 2020
Photo of klarcbarr3
3.92/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
by klarcbarr3 from Michigan

I poured 'The Fear' into a pint glass. A one inch head with some staying power laced the glass as I drank it.. pleasantly surprising, because most pumpkin ale heads immediately disappear. The color of this beer is kind of odd for the type, too.. a cola colored pumpkin ale, but the lacing really adds visual interest. The smell is mild, but good. Notes of vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and general nuttiness are apparent. These aromas gain power upon tasting. The Fear is liberally spiced, and some maltiness and hops are also present. The mouthfeel is quite good, and the 9% alcohol seems appropriate for a pumpkin beer with some boldness. The more I drink of this brew, the more I like it. Bold the word here! Color, Texture, Taste.. strength and character pervade. It is aging nicely in the basement, and this beer tastes better than when first bought six months ago. Don't be afraid to try 'The Fear".

Feb 16, 2020
3.7 by desint from Belgium on Dec 15, 2019
Photo of hopsputin
3.81/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by hopsputin from New Jersey


A: dark dark cherry and light brown with a nice 2 Finger creamy tan head

S: sweet malts, squash and pumpkin flesh, toffee, and some roasted malts

T: pumpkin, roast malts, sweet caramel, grains, and some brown sugar. And some creamy smoothness. Sweet finish

M: creamy nitro mouthfeel with a solid medium mouth

O: ok beer. Pumpkin isn’t so prevalent, definitely maltier and brown sugar

Oct 26, 2019
3.87 by mrosenfeld32 from Pennsylvania on Oct 21, 2019
Photo of Bluerabbitbell
3.77/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by Bluerabbitbell from Pennsylvania

DARK! On tap at Puccini's in Cumberland MD. A heavier IPA for sure. Borders a brown ale. Spice notes present. Average pumpkin IPA, but it separates itself with it's color.

Oct 20, 2019
3.66 by CruzinCooler from New Jersey on Oct 15, 2019
4.5 by M_Leo from Pennsylvania on Oct 14, 2019
Photo of q33jeff
2.25/5  rDev -39.2%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25
by q33jeff from New Jersey


Update of Pumpkin Beer from 2013-2019 Blind Tastings.


Oct 12, 2019
4.17 by chiefz1 from New York on Oct 06, 2019
3.63 by Nunya from Ohio on Oct 05, 2019
Photo of Bouleboubier
4.22/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
by Bouleboubier from New Jersey

(12 oz bottle, VINTAGE19C; purchased single off shelf... poured into

L: chestnut-brown, garnet-brown liquid with brilliant clarity; tall, tan, rocky foam on the pour with a bouncy, lasting retention... spongy collar keeps, random splotchy-bubbly cap as well, plus a bunch of thick, crusty lace

S: basic pumpkin spice, perhaps with nutmeg and clove jumping out ahead... after a moment, it's apparent the dense, brown ale-like malt construct in its foundation... maybe a dark grape-y vinous ester in the mix, but nothing overtly boozy; excellent intensity overall

T: cinnamon and clove seem to jump out immediately; phenolic front-to-back, with the spices up front, and bitter-boosted spicy booze closing it out... malt is moderately roasty-toasty, but not too sweet... roast, toast, peppery spice, woody bite, with subtle fragrant floral/spice essence hanging in the aftertaste... after a few sips, some vaguely nutty/chocolaty notes creep into the finish

F: silky, slightly oily viscosity to its medium body; bit of a carb prickle up front; fades away in its finish with little residual slickness... nice lil peppery, boozy heat slowly swells after each sip... savor territory; take your time

O: certainly an interesting, uncommon pumpkin beer; hitting a lot of my malt buttons, and wonderfully dry on top of it... not so much a pumpkin beer as it is an imperial brown ale with the pumpkin spice nicely woven in... I do believe I may actually pick up a sixer - well done! (1537)

Oct 02, 2019
4.06 by Mickt465 from New Hampshire on Sep 28, 2019
Photo of akaizer
3.73/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by akaizer from Virginia

Pour left a surprisingly nice off-white foam head of a little under a 1/2 inch that slowly faded down to leave a bit of lacy foam. Color was deep, dark brown with a great ruby-red reflection visible where light refracted. Scent is spiced with what comes across as cinnamon and cocoa along with a pumpkin secondary. Perhaps even a bit boozy in the scent. Taste is a bit more boozy than it smells, with a bit more cocoa bitterness evident along with the robust cinnamon flavors coming across. Pumpkin is less obvious, but still comes out at times. Feel is somewhere just shy of full bodied. Would recommend as a less sweet pumpkin beer.

Sep 13, 2019
Photo of MikeWard
4.02/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by MikeWard from Pennsylvania

12oz bottle into a pint glass. 2019 fall release.

Looks like a Stout with a small tan head leaving nice lacing. When held up to the light, it's a clear deep burgundy color.

The aroma is a nice light pumpkin spice mix, favoring cinnamon.

Upon tasting, the spice mix is a little bitter, but not overly so. The abv is well nigh invisible. Rolls nicely around the tongue. Later in the drink, there are some coffee notes. No actual pumpkin taste.

Mouth between medium and full. Finish a light spice burn with a hint of coffee.

Overall, I usually prefer actual pumpkin rather than pumpkin spice, but this one is pretty good. thanks FD.

Sep 07, 2019
Photo of teromous
3.86/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4
by teromous from Virginia

From the side of the bottle: "ENJOY BY: VINTAGE 19B"

Appearance: The beer is a very dark brown with some highlights of deep red. The head is short and pale manila. Good retention.

Aroma: There is a light aroma of toasted nuts and a touch of clove.

Taste: The beer slams the palate with coffee, alcohol spirit, rich burnt toffee, a bit of clove, and finishes with a subtle cinnamon flavor. It has very impressive malt character.

Mouthfeel: The star of the show here is the mouthfeel. It's smooth and full bodied with just a touch of heat from the alcohol. It drinks like a dream.

Overall: It's an awesome beer because of the rich and powerful flavors that bombard the palate. It is very luxurious to drink when it comes to the texture and overall feel on the palate. This isn't your standard Pumpkin Beer so I would only recommend it to those who want something much stronger and richer in malt character where the spice complements the beer rather than being in the forefront. I would drink it again.

Sep 06, 2019
Photo of Radsonnn
3.92/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by Radsonnn from Pennsylvania

L. Very dark, almost stout like with hints of dark orange all around the glass. Very light colored head, great retention. Nice lacing.

S. Very sweet, cinnamon hits me very strong. Smells very boozy on the deeper notes, but all together. Reminds me of a nice fall night.

T. First I want to say, given the ABV and the strong boozy scent. This is much smoother than anticipated. A nice pale chocolate flavor with hints of something a bit sweeter. Toffee like. I am getting some "pumpkin" spice, but not much on the actual pumpkin flavor. You could say its all spice, no pumpkin but it works! Very Tasty.

F. Bigger body given its not a stout or porter. Very Full given its an american ale. But for comparison, I would considered it pretty light to a stout or porter.

O. Right off the bat. The only take away I have is, where the pumpkin? Maybe its just me, but I get no actual pumpkin type flavor. NOW other than that. This is a fantastic fall beer. Nice and strong, hearty compared to other ales. But smooth, and relaxing to drink. Amazing fall beer, but not much of a pumpkin beer. Though the spices GREAT.

Sep 06, 2019
The Fear from Flying Dog Brewery
Beer rating: 84 out of 100 with 673 ratings