Oh man, do I love pumpkin. But this past month or so, I've been a little obsessive about it. Like, I see pumpkin ANYTHING and I'm all over it. Muffins, lattes, ice cream...droooooool...And of course, that would lead us to tonight's beer session.
The only pumpkin beer I've had previous to this October is Shipyard's Pumpkinhead Ale. The name, label, and taste all = awesome. It's liquid pumpkin pie, pure and simple. Reading others' beer reviews, I see that this is not considered a sophisticated pumpkin beer. So I move on.
Tonight I first engage in the imbibement of a Dogfish Head Punkin Ale. It's at 7% alcohol and only comes in 4-packs so you know it's a little fancier. Alright, truth be told, I did have one on Halloween. But I had to drink it in my SKULL MUG (see picture) and did not really focus on its finer qualities. I drank it while eating candy and watching "Monsters, Inc" and "The Craft." Both good movies, and both appropriate for Halloween. (Sidenote: why did I ever think there were hot people in The Craft? Totally wrong.)
Anyways, tonight I focus with the Punkin. I drink from a chilled mug. A jar mug, not the dollar store glass, because I'm saving that one. Not much head, but some "lacing." Check out this amusing segment from Carlton Draught - ,"Think of beer and you tend to think of bars, blokes and barbeques, right? You certainly don’t think of lace. But, surprising, lace does hold a place in the world of beer." Just a reminder that this is male-dominated territory, little lady.
But back to the beer...The 7% is hitting me after half the beer. I guess because this time I don't have approximately 40 mini candy bars inside my gut. I don't smell a lot from Punkin. The taste is more subtle than Shipyard. It's slightly sweet, and there is some spice, but it doesn't taste like liquid pie. I do enjoy this but in a different way than the Shipyard. It is a pretty orange color and is very easy to drink quickly.
Reading up on beer and food pairings...Sweet actually goes with sweet! What a relief...Therefore I cleanse my pumpkiny palate with a piece of pumpkin pie between going on to the next beer tasting. MMMMMM...
Okay, next is Southampton Pumpkin Ale. This was a fancy pint bottle purchased at a fancy wine/micro-brew shop that had a tasting this weekend. It was full of fancy people getting tipsy off samples who liked to dominate the sample tables and workers and asking way too many questions about which wine they should serve with their fancy upcoming holiday meals. BUT I did get a couple of wine samples on my way to the beer section. Lo and behold, I saw this big bottle. It was almost $6 but hey, I'm dedicated to the cause.
So far, so good. Again, a rather thin head, but a gorgeous orange/amber color. The fanciness definitely deserved my chilled dollar store Weizen glass. It actually smells more pumpkiny than it tastes. The bottle boasts that it is brewed with real pumpkin and spices. It's definitely more "spicey" than the Dogfish Head. It's tastey, but again more beer-ish than pie-ish. I took my time with this one and enjoyed it.
Conclusion? With pumpkin, you cannot go wrong. But, in the future, I might go back to my old stand-by Shipyard. Or maybe just throw some pie in a blender and call it a day.
PS) Any ideas for election day themed beer? hopefully something celebratory...
I've always enjoyed a beverage or two. But beer is something I have never really understood. Oh, I have drunk it. And I have enjoyed it. But to understand it...that is something else all together. See my "intro" entry from 10/17/08 for details.
Ale Altbier Amber Ale American Blonde Ale American Strong Ale Barleywine Belgian Ale Belgian Strong Dark Ale Belgian Strong Pale Ale Belgian-Style IPA Brown Ale Chile Beer Cider Cream Ale Dark Ale Doppelbock Dubbel ESB/Extra Special Bitter Euro Strong Lager Fruit/Vegetable Hefeweizen Imperial India Pale Ale Imperial Stout India Pale Ale Irish Red Lager Lambic Maibock Marzen Milk Stout Oatmeal Stout Pale Ale Pilsner Porter Pumpkin Russian Imperial Stout Rye Saison Schwarzbier Strong Red Ale Tripel Wee Heavy Weizen Wheat Winter Warmer Witbier