Arcadia Ales – Battle Creek, MI
Jaw-Jacker Ale – 6.0% ABV – 12 oz . bottle
“Ale with spices added – cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg” www.arcadiaales.com
So… interesting story…
A little bit of research on Arcadia’s website says there’s NO pumpkin in this beer! Based on the label, which has an awesome scary pumpkin on the front, I think that’s a bit of a rip off. It’s also quite misleading. Especially when I’m trying to review 3 pumpkin beers. And it was such a cool label, oh, well.
Anyway… This “Non-Pumpkin Spiced Fall Beer” pours an amber shade of brown with an off-white head. The head leaves a thin layer of foam after fading.
It smells strongly of the included spices with some malt aromas.
The flavor has large amounts of spices, with a bit of sugary malt flavors. It has a strong, malty backbone. I can’t taste much hops, but I think that’s a good thing in a beer like this.
Interestingly enough, the flavor improves as it warms up a little. Pour and wait a few minutes to make the flavors a bit bolder. Warmer temperatures definitely bring out the toffee like flavors, while mellowing out the spices.
Unfortunately, there are a couple of negative aspects. First, is that there is a bit of a burnt taste that I don’t like in there somewhere. Second, there is a mild astringent that wouldn’t be out of place in an IPA, but I don’t find it very pleasing in a fall spiced beer.
The mouth feel is light to medium-bodied, and the carbonation is average.
Jaw-Jacker isn’t too bad, and also falls around the middle of the pack of seasonal fall beers. There’s just not much balance or subtlety. But, there’s NO pumpkin!