The Fear Imperial Pumpkin Ale | Flying Dog Brewery

BA SCORE
83
good
585 Ratings
The Fear Imperial Pumpkin AleThe Fear Imperial Pumpkin Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Flying Dog Brewery
Maryland, United States
flyingdogbrewery.com

Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by taylor714914 on 09-25-2011

BEER STATS
Ratings:
585
Reviews:
146
Avg:
3.68
pDev:
13.59%
 
 
Wants:
49
Gots:
123
For Trade:
1
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 585 |  Reviews: 146
Photo of weaselchew
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of wvdfh120fan
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of Oakenator
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of freneticamnesic
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of taylor714914
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Quite excited to see this right next to secret stash!
Great appearance with a dark ruby brown color. A thin head sits on top of this gorgeous beer. It smells of sweet malts, pumpkin, nutmeg, and cinnamon. The first sip blows me away. It reminds me of pumking with less sweetness and more rich maltiness. As I work my way through the glass, the beer warms showing more pumpkin flavor along with the subtle spices. Nice balance between the pumpkin, malts, and light spice. Overall I found this to be an excellent beer, like a darker pumking perfect for enjoying on a cool fall evening outside around the campfire.

 613 characters

Photo of Roberto11232
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of Gehrig13
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of Furley80
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of weezarc
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of samnorton3709
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of 98green
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of DrFunkenstein
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of Saisons-of-the-Abyss
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Very tasty and satisfying beer! Like many other high abv offerings from Flying Dog, you can really taste and feel the alcohol on this one. While the finish can be a bit harsh, it's still very drinkable. The pumpkin is just right, not cloying or artificial tasting.

 265 characters

Photo of sanitarium16
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of username
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

Photo of Lone_Freighter
4.24/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This was poured into a snifter due to the fact that this is imperialized. The appearance was a dark brown color with a creamy to off white foamy head that dissipated within about a slim half minute. Lacing runs light. The smell has a spectacular balance of the pumpkin, pumpkin spices and subtle sweet cocoa to blend together. The taste was mildly spicy over the sweetness making a great effort to bring back the sweetness of the cocoa malt in and all around. A light mainly sweet cocoa to somewhat pumpkin aftertaste runs into the finish. On the palate, this one sat about a medium on the body with a good sessionability about it. Carbonation runs somewhat light allowing the spices to run as the harshness to my tongue. Overall, imperialized pumpkin ale, and a damn good one on top of that!

 792 characters

Photo of DreamInOrange
4.24/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a very dark brown nearly opaque but not quite as dark as a stout. Very little visible carbonation but can be seem bubbling at the top. Small off-white head with decent clinging. Smells strongly of nutmeg, spice, and caramel, not overly noticeable pumpkin smell. This is more of a fall spice beer than typical pumpkin ales. Definitely a warming spiced flavor that reminds me of a spiced pumpkin coffee drink more than pie. Strong but not overly boozy alcohol. This is a nice alternative to other pumpkin beers. I would go back to this next fall.

 551 characters

Photo of Rob3408
4.24/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This is the best pumpkin/fall seasonal beer that I have had! From the first sip to the last sip it was filled with flavor: sweet pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice (cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, ginger), and malty goodness.

Appearance: Dark brown with a hint of amber, off-white foam (hard to tell though with dim lights).

Smell: Grandma's pumpkin pie.

Taste: Big spiciness accentuated by the high abv with a complementing sweetness from the pumpkin to mellow it out through the finish.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a syrupy feel in your mouth. Goes well with some time between your sips making it perfect for an evening in. Alcohol is certainly present (although that's something I enjoy about big beers.

Overall: Like I said this is my favorite pumpkin beer. If you don't like big flavors this may not be your beer but it is now my go to fall beer.

Serving Type: Keg line (in Scotland if that makes a difference).

 918 characters

Photo of MattyG85
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a chalice.

Appearance: Pours dark brown with hints of amber. Moderate amount of bubbles and about a finger of off white head which settles into a thin creamy layer.

Smell: A spicy and sweet aroma with a scent of pumpkin spices and caramel malt. Upfront scent of pumpkin spices with some cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and allspice. Toasted malt with a scent of caramel, biscuit, grains, cracker, wheat, and chocolate along with yeast. Light hints of hops. A pretty solid aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a spicy and sweet taste with notes of pumpkin spices and caramel malt. Upfront presence of pumpkin spices with a scent of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, and allspice. Toasted malt with notes of caramel, grains, cracker, biscuit, chocolate, and wheat with some yeast. Subtle hop bitterness. A solid taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy and fairly smooth with minimal alcohol heat.

Overall: A pretty solid Imperial Pumpkin ale. Nice spice and caramel malt mix with a nice touch of chocolate.

 1,069 characters

Photo of CraftBeerTastic
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ba Review #77
Served On: 10/13/2011
Glassware: Snifter
Labeled ABV: 9.0%
Date/ Code: 2011

I can’t believe I ran into some of this. Perks of working right down the road from Flying Dog’s brewery in Frederick – I guess.

Look: Poured a rather dark color for a pumpkin ale. An almost porter brown consistency with a thick 1 finger tan head. Carbonation seemed rather good, but bubbles were hard to detect through the murky appearance of the brew.

Smell: The aroma made me feel like I was actually smelling pumpkin pie. No real artificial notes or extreme spices like some pumpkin ales I’ve had. Granted - spice and pumpkin meat were apparent, just not way overpowering or fake. I also got some hops and a somewhat earthy potpourri that promised some balanced sweetness. Not much booze in the nose.

Taste: First on the palate were soft notes of pumpkin meat with some typical pumpkin pie spices - like allspice and nutmeg. The middle offered more spice with pleasant alcohol warmth that confirmed the 9% ABV. Finish had an unusual bitterness mixed with lingering spices. I would have to guess the unexpected bitterness was from the Warrior and Willamette hops making up the 45 IBU’s. This beer certainly had the imperial qualities I was hoping for. What a treat!

I’m hoping I can pick up more of this. My bottle shop said distribution is extremely limited and they were only able to get in a couple cases.

___

Vintage Tasting Notes:

Ba Review #77.5
Served On: 10/17/2012
Glassware: Duvel Glass
Date/ Code: 2011

This bottle had been in my cellar since last year around this time.

Look: Poured the same very black color. Think pumpkin porter. Sandy head reduced down to a clump that floated around. Head lacing almost looked like flames rising up from the dank scary liquid. Alcohol legs everywhere along the sides of the Duvel glass.

Smell: It seemed as though the spice intensity was turned down a bit and replaced with some dark chocolate notes. The aroma could have reminded me of a Stout. Some of the pumpkin meat character was still vaguely noticeable.

Taste: First off was a creamy dark chocolate note that was followed by a bitterness found in the fresh version. I have to say that most of the pumpkin and spice qualities went away over the past year and left my palate with very basic stout or porter notes with minimal spice. Also the bitterness level seemed more intense. A slight hit of cinnamon or nutmeg did hit right before the finish. The aftertaste was just more bitterness.

I can't say that I'll ever cellar a pumpkin beer again. I've heard where spices seem to subside, and I can see first-hand that is true.

 2,656 characters

Photo of endincolorado
4.18/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- Deep brown with ruby highlights and a nice pale-tan head that settles slowly and leaves behind a satisfying lace. Uniquely dark for the style.

S- Aromas of nutmeg, cinnamon, a little allspice coupled with a nice, bready malt.

T- Nice and toasty for the style, with spices complementing, but not overwhelming the flavor.

M- Mouthfeel is nice and creamy; also refreshingly satisfying. Carbonation is just right.

Overall, I'm glad to have picked up a six-pack of this stuff. I wasn't even aware of this beer until tonight, and though I turned down a few other pumpkin ales (there are a lot nowadays) in favor of this label, I'm glad I chose this one.

 654 characters

Photo of Spiral517
4.18/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of happydrunk
4.17/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BarryMFBurton
4.16/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Amber vs. porter, mellow pumpkin vs. assertive American hops, rich and boozy vs. light and drinkable - a beer that effectively bridges any of those gaps could be called a hybrid. Here, FD takes on all three. The result? My favorite fall beer in a long time.

Pours muddy brown with a beige microfoam head that quickly deflates. Aroma is sweet and nutty, with notes of almond, nutmeg, and cinnamon. A bit of warm pumpkin puree in the backdrop gives it a hint fresh-baked pie, but it's only barely there (honestly, if I didn't know this was a pumpkin beer, I might not have even picked it up). Taste is all malt at the start, an interesting (and surprisingly satisfying) combination of pie crust, maple sugar, toasted wheat cereal, mocha, and toffee flavors. Think brown ale with a shot of imperial stout dropped in the glass. As soon as the grain bill piques your interest, though, the palate tightens to a bitter, spice-and-hop finish: crisp, hoppy pine tastes rise quick, but they're soon overtaken by the more traditional cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Pumpkin is, once again, in the background, but there's much more of it in the palate compared to the nose - the fleshy, nutty flavor of roasted pulp is ever-present, and especially apparent under the bitter hop character. Carbonation is velvety-smooth, propping up a body that's just a hair on the light side. Overall, this is a wonderfully easy drinker.

It's been a while since I've had a FD brew, but they certainly have my attention again now. What a way to start the pumpkin beer season.

 1,547 characters

Photo of Gatordaddy
4.16/5  rDev +13%

The Fear Imperial Pumpkin Ale from Flying Dog Brewery
3.68 out of 5 based on 585 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.