Final Pumpkin Beer Review of the Weekend. Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween everyone!  I hope you enjoyed reading this year’s pumpkin beer reviews, and even the one review without any pumpkin.  Thanks for reading.

The final review of Halloween weekend is…

Southern Tier Brewing Co. – Lakewood, NY

Pumking – 9.0% ABV – 22 oz. bottle

Imperial Ale brewed with pumpkins.  (Yes, this pumpkin beer actually has pumpkins in it!)

Pumking pours a deep copper color that formed an off-white head quickly.  It also vanished just as fast, leaving a thin trace of foam on top.  This beer leaves so much lacing on the inside of the glass, that even the fading head left lace.

The aroma reminds me of pumpkin candy mixed with honey from candy corn.  There are also some spicy notes; possibly allspice, nutmeg and ginger.  Cinnamon aroma is noticeably absent, making this smell much more balanced and full-bodied than other pumpkin ales I’ve had.

As I taste this, all I can say is, “now THAT’s a pumpkin beer!”  This is the first pumpkin beer that tastes like actual pumpkin pie.  The maltiness of the beer resembles the crust of the pie with a buttery flavor.  After the sweet, buttery beginning comes the full-on pumpkin mixed with the spices.  The pumpkin is definitely in the fore front with the spices in the background just to enhance the flavors.  They don’t overpower this beer at all, but are fully complimentary of the luscious flavors. 

There is a slight vegetal aftertaste that I could do without, but the overall balance in this is excellent.

The mouth feel is light to medium-bodied with a pleasant amount of carbonation.  Maybe just a little less than average… it works well here.

Pumking is deceptively drinkable, especially with the 9% alcohol.  It makes for a nice Halloween night.  Originally, the 22 oz. bottle was to be shared among a few family members, but that didn’t work out… too bad for them.

Pumking is, by far, the best pumpkin beer I’ve ever had and I can’t wait for next year’s batch.

Overall:  A

Happy Halloween!!!

Published in: on October 31, 2010 at 9:12 pm  Leave a Comment  

Southern Tier Brewing Co. – 2XIPA

Southern Tier Brewing Co., Lakewood, NY

2XIPA- Double India Pale Ale, $1.99 for a 12 oz. bottle.

“Brewed with 4 varieties of hops and 3 types of malt.”

A recent purchase right off the shelf, this was recommended by someone who simply heard it was good… Sometimes, that’s good enough for me!

First off, this had an excellent first impression. I poured it into my glass and it was gorgeous! Crystal clear and golden honey-colored with a moderate amount of carbonation. The off-white head was thick and foamy. It really looked good. It was so clear and golden; it reminded me of a different style of beer.

The aroma is strong in hops. Nice, fruity types with just a hint of pine. Great aroma.

It tastes very balanced, which can be uncommon for a double IPA because they usually have tons of hops that tip the balance of flavor. There are also some bready-malt flavors that are interspersed with the fruity and bitter hops. There is just a bit of alcohol bite.

Incidentally, it’s a bit mellower than other double IPAs I’ve had. They often have a stronger alcohol kick. All the extra ingredients used to make an IPA a “Double”, gives the yeast a lot more food to eat, resulting in more alcohol. The 2XIPA still has a good amount of alcohol. The bottle isn’t labeled, but I’d guess it’s around 7 to 7.5% ABV.

The mouth feel is average, similar to the feel of a Lager type of beer.

Overall, it’s a nice, inexpensive and easy to drink Double IPA that isn’t harsh.

Let’s give it a B+.

Published in: on August 5, 2010 at 9:04 pm  Leave a Comment  
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