Five Alternative Autumn Brews

Posted on October 20th, 2009

autumn beer

We’ve already taken a look at a few of the most well known beers of the fall season, such as pumpkin ales and the Oktoberfest style. They’re plenty of lesser known styles of beer that go great with the autumn also. Today we’re going to take a look at few of them.

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Pumpkin Ale Flights Soar At Sunset

Posted on October 8th, 2009

pumpkinFlights

As we discussed recently, pumpkin beer is by far one of the most popular beers of the fall. Each autumn countless brewers from the smallest craft brewer to the big guys over at Anheuser-Busch release their own take on this seasonal style. With so many different pumpkin beers out there to choose from the task of which one to have next time you’re at your local pub can be a bit daunting. In order to find your favorite pumpkin beer you certainly could simply try a full pint of each brewery’s version of pumpkin beer. With so many out there though that process could take you right through the fall and into winter and spring. A more manageable approach to becoming familiar with a style might be to try a flight.

A flight is several smaller portions of a beer served at the same time, typically four or five glasses containing 4 or 5 ounces each. It’s a great way to try several beers at once without investing a whole night’s worth of drinking, or the money associated with it.

Although still fairly uncommon, many beer bars will offer flights of their draft offerings in any combination of your choosing. One such place here in Boston is Sunset Bar & Grill, where Team Beeriety recently ventured to try some of this year’s pumpkin’s ales. This style typically fall into two schools: beers which taste like actual pumpkins, and beers which taste like pumpkin pie. Although beer which replicates the taste of real pumpkins is generally more difficult and sometimes more respected by beer snobs out there, both types can be wonderful and a great way to celebrate the fall.

pumpkin flight

Our flights consisted of four beers:

1. Clipper City The Great Pumpkin - At 8.5% Alc./volume this one packs a punch, but with its balanced flavors you’d never notice how strong it is.

2. Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin - Another great brew with subtle notes of nutmeg mixed with roasted pumpkin

3. Dogfish Head Punkin – This fantastic brew takes it’s name not from punk rock but an annual pumpkin shooting contest in southern Delaware

4. Wolavers Organic Pumpkin - While this one was a bit sweet, we applaud the effort to make it organic which is tough for many brewers.

They were all great, but the two that we liked the best were Clipper City and Dogfish Head with Weyerbacher coming in a close third. These beers fell into the first school of beer which tastes like actual pumpkins.  They each had a crisp, mild sweetness combined with strong pumpkin flavors that gave the beer a clean, roasted quality, which is what we like in a pumpkin beer. We all agreed that Wolavers Oragnic Pumpkin was the least favorite of the batch. Even though it was more of a pumpkin pie beer than a pumpkin beer it was still way too sweet with not nearly enough pumpkin flavor to it. All and all though it was a great way to get a taste of the season and discuss our favorite beers.

Have you ever tried a flight of beer? What’s your favorite pumpkin beer? Next time you have one let us know by tweeting your beer and adding the ‘#mybeer’ hashtag.

Style Profile: Pumpkin Ale

Posted on September 10th, 2009

pumpkin

With the fall quickly approaching it’s time to begin looking at the beers of autumn. September is traditionally harvest time, in which the fruits and vegetables of the summer are collected and there’s plenty of good food and good cheer to go around. The root vegetables gathered this time of year frequently make for great beers; the most well known of these is of course the pumpkin beer.

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