What kind of pumpkin beer will I like
September 14, 2016 1:12 PM   Subscribe

I don't like beer, but a couple years ago at a gathering I had a Shipyard Pumpkinhead that wasn't too bad. If I liked that, what other pumpkin beers would I like?

I never took to the taste of beer, preferring Gin-based drinks (though I'm getting into whisky now as well). I tried the Shipyard when, at a get-together, there wasn't a lot of other beverage options and I wanted to be polite with what was offered. I was surprised that I liked it as much as I did.

Now that it's Autumn the liquor stores are offering up a plethora of pumpkin-based beers. I would like to see if I like any others, but I don't want to buy a 4-pack or 6-pack and end up with something I wouldn't enjoy.

So, if I liked Shipyard Pumpkinhead what else might I like? What should I be considering in picking a pumpkin beer (or any beer, as maybe there are others I would like as well?)
posted by jazon to Food & Drink (13 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Their Smashed Pumpkin is pretty great.
posted by o0dano0o at 1:15 PM on September 14, 2016

Shipyard Pumpkinhead is not a pumpkin beer. It is a wheat beer flavored with pumpkin pie spice. There is no actual pumpkin in the recipe.

This is important because it will help you know what to look for. There are many beers brewed with actual pumpkin. Many of these also contain pumpkin pie spice. Many do not. Smashed Pumpkin contains both pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice, for instance, so I would tend to think it's not what you're looking for.
posted by pupsocket at 1:29 PM on September 14, 2016 [1 favorite]

We have been on a similar hunt! Our hypothesis is that most pumpkin/pumpkin-flavored beers are very heavy on the nutmeg/pumpkin pie spice notes while Shipyard's is more cinnamon-y.

Southern Tier's Pumking is a close second but nothing has come close to Pumpking yet.
posted by juliplease at 1:31 PM on September 14, 2016 [3 favorites]

Harpoon Winter Warmer is also cinnamon-y and I like it despite not liking most beers.
posted by rmless at 1:39 PM on September 14, 2016

You'd probably enjoy Blue Moon's pumpkin ale, or one of their spiced beers.
posted by hydra77 at 3:51 PM on September 14, 2016

It's not pumpkin, but rather gin based, if you can get your hands on Seattle Cidery's Gin Botanicals - Daaaaaaaamn!
posted by humboldt32 at 4:43 PM on September 14, 2016

I'm not a huge beer drinker, but I love Rogue's Pumpkin Patch ale. It has actual pumpkin flavour but with a good deal of spice as well. It's like an unsweetened pumpkin pie.

Every year is a little different though, as they grow their own pumpkins for brewing. The last two years have been awesome though so I hope this year's batch will be just as good. It's worth a shot if you can get it in your area.
posted by InkDrinker at 6:40 PM on September 14, 2016

Our local market does a "make your own 6-pack" that allows you to, well, make your own 6-pack. It's a great way of trying new and different things without committing to buying a lot of them (my last trip I grabbed a couple ciders, a pear cider, and 3 pumpkin flavors). Might be worth checking around to see if any stores around you that might have a similar deal?
posted by bowmaniac at 7:46 PM on September 14, 2016

Seconding Southern Tier's Pumking. It's probably the best pumpkin beer I've had. Ballast Point is more of a beery beer company, but their Pumpkin Down (based off of their Scottish Ale called Piper Down) was also pretty nice.
posted by Ghidorah at 8:00 PM on September 14, 2016 [1 favorite]

As for a recommendation, do you like cider more than beer by any chance? Ace Cider has a Pumpkin Cider that I haven't tried but based on their other stuff I would think would be worth a try.

Avery's Rumpkin and PumpKYin are pretty good stuff and I would assume available locally for you. Big fan of Avery overall.

Dogfish's Punkin is always very good as well.
posted by bowmaniac at 8:17 PM on September 14, 2016

I do like the Southern Tier Pumking, but surprisingly, I like New Belgium Pumpkick even more. The spices are really front and center, and it has a little tartness from cranberry. If you're not usually a beer drinker I think you would still like it.
posted by fiercecupcake at 6:31 AM on September 15, 2016 [1 favorite]

I strongly recommend Arcadia's Jaw-jacker (pending you can buy their beers where you live). There isn't any actual pumpkin in it, and I think it sounds similar to what you like about the Shipyard beer.
posted by anthropophagous at 8:01 AM on September 15, 2016

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