A fall classic

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First Posted: 10/14/2014

Description – Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale pours a slightly cloudy orange color reminiscent of a fall sunset with small amount of white head that disappear quickly and leave little to no lacing on the glass. The aroma is full of pumpkin spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves) but in a more reserved way as compared to other pumpkin beers, suggestions of hops and malt make their presence known as well. The taste follows the aroma, but is not as cloying as other pumpkin beers can become. Instead, this is a beer that has a pumpkin spice presence up front across the palate but is followed by a subtle hop bite and smoothed out by a wonderfully balanced malt character. The medium-light mouthfeel and moderate carbonation work perfect in tandem with one another to deliver the perfect vessel for the spices and aroma. Do yourself a favor and try Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale, in a world full of super imperial beers; it makes a strong case for the arguments that less is more.

Food Pairing – The lighter characteristics of this pumpkin ale make it a real treat with a wide variety of grilled foods. The spice from the cinnamon will pair up nicely with BBQ sauce; a real treat is pairing this with BBQ chicken. The caramelized flavors from the meat will blend seamlessly into the malt bill and the smooth mouthfeel and carbonation will cleanse the palate every time regardless of how spicy the sauce may be. Desserts, of course, are also great with pumpkin beers. If you enjoy spending time with friends around a campfire on chilly fall evenings be sure to bring some of this beer along and don’t forget all the right ingredients for a perfect s’more. This is one of the best beers to pair with s’mores; the cinnamon spice from the beer will make itself known at the first bite of the warm and melting s’more and almost seem to be part of the s’more itself. The sweet malts will pick up on the chocolate and marshmallow and will melt into one another while the strong carbonation will cleanse away any of that sticky hot mess left behind. A truly perfect fall evening requires that this beer be in attendance.

The Final Word – While many pumpkin beers can become spice bombs and leave behind the long lingering taste of pumpkin spice that becomes taxing to the palate over time, Smuttynose has brewed a pumpkin ale that is both light and refreshing. The pumpkin spice aroma and taste are certainly present throughout this beer, it does not linger too long on the palate. Instead this is a beer that can be enjoyed all night instead of the one-and-done issue that many pumpkin beers cause. Smuttynose is a brewery that consistently brews well balanced world-class beers so it should be no surprise that their Pumpkin Ale ranks as among one of the best available. Do yourself a favor and grab a six pack before they are all gone.

Where can I get it? – Currently available in 12 oz. bottles cans at: Aurants- Duryea; J&H Beer- Plains Township; Wegman’s- Dickson City and Wilkes Barre; Joe’s Six Packs to Go- Dunmore; Tomato Bar- Pittston; and Weis Market- Clarks Summit.