Pumpkin beers—no other style is so maligned and so exalted so simultaneously. Are pumpkin beers a delicious treat for the season or are they a gimmicky insult to all that is craft beer? Are they a passing fad or are they here to stay? Do the people that argue the issue have a valid point or do they have too much time on their hands? Evidence points to the latter. Love them or hate them, who really cares what one’s fellow beer geeks think? For those who despise pumpkin beer, by all means, ignore this review. Those who can’t get enough of the fall seasonal, however, might consider Pumpkin Ale (5.5% ABV) from Wynkoop Brewing Company.
Color: Pumpkin Ale looks very much like the titular gourd: dark orange and opaque. A froth of mostly white (but with a touch of beige) foam sits atop.
Aroma: More pumpkin than pumpkin pie spice, this beer still retains a certain level of seasoning with hints of cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger.
Taste: Many pumpkin beers go gung-ho on the pie spices but miss the mark when it comes to making it actually taste like beer. Not so with Pumpkin Ale. Sure, the aforementioned spice aromas are also present in the flavor but they are minimal and only pop up in the middle of the taste. Pumpkin is tasted throughout along with noticeable traces of malts.
Mouthfeel: Pumpkin Ale leaves the mouth moist and coats the palate with a semi-thick, creamy texture.
Drink pumpkin beers, don’t drink pumpkin beers, do what one wants but there’s no need to get feisty if others disagree. If one does not enjoy this style of beer, that’s fine, go drink something else. If one does enjoy pumpkin beers, pick up a few cans today because Halloween, the holiday custom-made for pumpkin lovers, is just around the corner!