Brew Review-Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale

Oh fall.  How I love your weather.  The heat starts to fade away, the humidity drops, football season starts (even though the Redskins blow), the leaves change.  Honestly, here in DC, fall is the best times to be here.  Spring is a close second, mainly because it’s only about a week long here.

The fall also brings the pumpkin beers.  Many people don’t like pumpkin beers, I’m not a huge fan myself.  Pumpkin beers tend to be a little too much.  Most of the time I feel like I’m drinking pumpkin pie.  Too much pumpkin, too sweet, too much cinnamon and nutmeg.  So, before even ordering the Shipyard Pumpkinhead, I was skeptical.

Let me preface this story a bit.  This past weekend I traveled up to New Hampshire to visit my parents.  Whenever I make the trip up there, my parents always bring me to Maine.  Once we’re there, an insane lobster eating extravaganza happens.  First, we go to Barnacle Billy’s and get lobster rolls for lunch while wandering the coastline.  Then, for dinner it’s off to the Lobster Pound.  As an appetizer, it’s lobster stew which makes lobster bisque look like baby food.  Tons of lobster meat just soaking in butter and heavy cream.  That’s then followed by a nearly 2 pound whole lobster.  When I leave, I’m sick of lobster, but it’s TOTALLY WORTH IT!!!

So, at the tail end of the lobster extravaganza, I got a Shipyard Pumpkinhead to accompany my 2 pound lobster.

This pumpkin beer far exceeded my expectations.  The pumpkin is very low key and instead of overpowering, gently compliments the beer.

It’s a pale golden color, with a citrusy hop aroma and mild pumpkin pie notes.  The flavor was nice.  It had a mild cinnamon and nutmeg flavor, but maintained that citrus hop.  It was very crisp, which surprised me.  I’m used to the sweet syrupy pumpkin ales.

It turned out to be a surprisingly good beer and it’s light pumpkin flavor kept me from panning it.  So, if you’re getting a pumpkin beer, look for the Pumpkinhead!



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