Monday, November 8, 2010

Pumpkin For Once

Wow, what the hell have I been doing with my life lately? Clearly not drinking enough beer...Or at least not blogging about it. Since getting into this beer thing, I've certainly gotten excited about pumpkin ales. The last 2 Octobers proved that. This year I have failed to drink pumpkin ale so far, except I got to try Sam Adam's pumpkin ale when I was in Wisconsin (and I was a fan). When was that, September? That's it! So this past weekend I decided to make up for lost time.

Where have all the pumpkins gone? Yippee yi, yippee yay.

On Sunday I indulged in a pint of Michigan Brewing Company's Screamin' Pumpkin. This was at Leo's Lodge, which by the way, is delicious. I'm gonna skip the beer for a sec and just focus on the cheese bread. Yeah, check out that grease.


So, Leo's serves their beer in super chilled glasses. Like, frostified to the max. When I first started to learn about beer, I read that chilling glasses is frowned upon because it can dilute the flavor, plus most beer is better closer to room temperature. I scoffed at this pickiness...But yeah. The overly chilled glass totally bothered me. I mean, there were actual ice chunks of beer floaties! It's a good thing that cheese bread was so delicious, Leo's! Geez.
Frozen beer chunks---------->
Anyways, MBC's Screamin' Pumpkin was a clear orange beer with a small light brown head that dissipated quickly. When the barkeep put down the glass in front of me, the smell of pumpkin immediately hit me, along with some mild notes of spice (nutmeg). This was a nice tasting ale! The flavor of pumpkin was not too sweet, and there was a little bit of bitter hops flavor for balance. The spice was present but not overwhelming. It was...Pumpkin-y! I actually would have liked a little more sweetness, cuz I have a sweet tooth like that. It was an easy-drinking and pleasant beer. I'd like to try it again at a better temperature. God, what a Snobby Mcsnobster.

Anyways, that evening I decided I needed another pumpkin ale in my day, so I busted open this Buffalo Bill's, a brewery I have not tried previously. It as billed as "America's Original Pumpkin Ale" that is brewed with real baked pumpkin and spices. It poured a light hazy orange with a fizzy off-white head. It smelled like pumpkin and mild spices. The taste was surprisingly tart! Again, pumpkin is dominating along with some spice presence. I found it to be tasty and well-balanced. A little different than other pumpkin ales. It was on the thin side with plenty of carbonation. I had it with another seasonal treat, pumpkin brownies. Homemade. Obviously I'm gearing up for hibernation.
Overall, I enjoyed both of these pumpkin ales. However, Southern Tier's Pumking remains as my absolute favorite. I'm gonna give them both a B+.