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Pumpkin beer
October 19, 2007 12:14 PM   Subscribe

Pumpkin Beer : Showing the rest of the world that there's nothing Americans can't turn into alcohol:
"If barley be wanting to make into malt,
We must be content and think it no fault,
For we can make liquor to sweeten our lips,
Of pumpkins, and parsnips, and walnut-tree chips."
But why stop at using pumpkin as an ingredient? Let cog_nate show you how to use it as brewing equipment. (via Projects)
posted by Greg Nog (40 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
Well, fermented pumpkins did the trick with this squirrel!

I've never had pumpkin beer but I imagine it would be quite good. Thanks to your links, I now know I can buy it or make it. (Cool how-to by cog_nate, by the way.)
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:20 PM on October 19, 2007


Cambridge Brewing Company's Great Pumpkin Ale.
posted by ericb at 12:24 PM on October 19, 2007


I'll take this opportunity to say that my favorite Pumpkin Beer is made by Cape Ann Brewing. This is only the second year they've made it, but it's a remarkably well-balanced stout -- the pumpkin flavor is subtle and smokey.
posted by Greg Nog at 12:24 PM on October 19, 2007


"Here's a bevy of beers to try when you're pining for that pumpkin patch."
posted by ericb at 12:25 PM on October 19, 2007


God, I love people. This is awesome!
posted by OmieWise at 12:25 PM on October 19, 2007


Pumpkin beer is interesting.

I was compelled to try it by the things I had read that it tastes like drinking liquid pumpkin pie. I love pumpkin pie, so I wanted to try it. Normally I wouldn't try it because I do not like beer. I drink whiskey and scotch through a central line constantly flowing their sweet juices into my body. But beer just tastes stale and funky to me. The thought that this kind of beer tasted like pumpkin pie was enough for me to try to it, though.

So I went to the greatness of Central Market and bought two brands that I read great reviews on: Dogfish Head Punkin' Ale and Buffalo Bill's Pumpkin Ale. While they were interesting, they still were beer. They were not the liquid pumpkin pie I expected. They tasted like a Budweiser with some nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves tossed in. It didn't taste bad, but it was more beer-tasting then I expected.

For those that like beer, I guess it would be interesting and fun palate change during the season. But if you don't like beer, you might have the same experience I had which is that pumpkin beer is still beer and not a pumpkin beverage that happens to have beer qualities to it.
posted by dios at 12:34 PM on October 19, 2007 [2 favorites]


While making beer from pumpkins can be considered sort of odd, in my mind, it still doesn't beat a liquor made from artichokes (Cynar).
posted by AccidentalHedonist at 12:39 PM on October 19, 2007


Fall beers are the best of the year- Especially Pumpkin- Makes fall so much better.

The Cambridge Brewing Companies Great Pumpkin Ale that is reviewed on the link is THE BEST. I just bought two growlers of it the other day- it must be tried.

Not overwhelmingly sweet. Perfect.
posted by bmpetow at 12:39 PM on October 19, 2007


What's with the olde timye rhyming recipes? Between this and the ham post, Metafilter is becoming one big gustatory poetry slam.
posted by GuyZero at 12:42 PM on October 19, 2007


They used a pumpkin as a primary fermenter?

Politeness prevents me from using any other word for that than "awesome". For it is surely awesome.
posted by gurple at 12:45 PM on October 19, 2007


I've been pretty disappointed with the various pumpkin beers I've tried. And I tend to like creative-type beers.

Buffalo Bill's makes some very good beers. I was really let down when I couldn't find their Orange Blossom Cream Ale in stores this summer. Don't know what happened to it.
posted by ninjew at 12:53 PM on October 19, 2007


Looks like an outdoor meth lab to me! ; )
posted by ericb at 12:59 PM on October 19, 2007


So I went to the greatness of Central Market and bought two brands that I read great reviews on: Dogfish Head Punkin' Ale and Buffalo Bill's Pumpkin Ale. While they were interesting, they still were beer. They were not the liquid pumpkin pie I expected. They tasted like a Budweiser with some nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves tossed in. It didn't taste bad, but it was more beer-tasting then I expected.

I can't believe you thought anything produced by Dogfish Head tasted anything like Budweiser.
posted by proj at 1:07 PM on October 19, 2007


Not just the primary fermenter, gurple, also the mash tun! I've always been intimidated by all-grain brewing, and cog_nate does it in a freakin' pumpkin. Yeah, "awesome" seems too tame a description.
posted by bonecrusher at 1:19 PM on October 19, 2007


I can't believe you thought anything produced by Dogfish Head tasted anything like Budweiser.
posted by proj at 3:07 PM on October 19


My apologies to them. I don't claim to be a great beer aficionado. I thought I made it pretty clear that I'm not a beer fan and think it all tastes like various levels of skunky water. But that's just me, and I don't want to bad mouth it and call it objectively bad. I'm sure among beer crafters, they make some of the best. It just doesn't do anything for me. And trust me, I get frustrated when I hear people characterize all whiskeys and scotchs as tasting the same. So please don't think I was saying "Dogfish Head" sucks and is no better than Budweiser. That's wasn't my intent. I was trying to address my comments to people similarly situated to me that might think these kind of things were substantially different than beers. I guess I was stupidly and wrongly expecting something more like a pumpkin pie liqueur (which sounds delicious) then a beer that had pumpkin pie accents. So I was commenting to other beer non-admirers lest they make the same mistake as I.
posted by dios at 1:20 PM on October 19, 2007


proj - seriously.

ill add another vote for the Buffalo Bill's and a vote against anything made with flavor "extract."
posted by fillsthepews at 1:21 PM on October 19, 2007


Holy God is pumpkin beer good, at least when it's made right. My favorite bar back in Knoxville served it every October. Among my favorite beers ever.
posted by absalom at 1:29 PM on October 19, 2007


Not pumpkin, but while we're on the subject of specialty beers that are fitting for the changing weather: kindly heads up that Brooklyn Brewery's Black Chocolate Stout is back again for this year so y'all better stock up before they run out. And they do.
posted by kkokkodalk at 1:29 PM on October 19, 2007


I'm not a big fan of fall beers (I'm more of an IPA or APA kind of guy), but I do drink the odd pumpkin beer when it's available. I gotta say, though, actually brewing in a pumpkin is inspired. Makes me wish I had space at home for brewing.
posted by uncleozzy at 1:39 PM on October 19, 2007


Brooklyn Brewery's Black Chocolate Stout is back again for this year

I also hear that the 2007 Sierra Nevada Celebration is out this week. Yee-haw, I do love me some Celebration when it's cold out.
posted by uncleozzy at 1:41 PM on October 19, 2007


Pumpkin ales are one of my favorite parts of the Fall. I am also a fan of the Cambridge Brewing Company's Great Pumpkin Ale. Very well balanced beer. I'd pass on Smuttynose's version though, it was overspiced for my tastes.
posted by Hutch at 1:41 PM on October 19, 2007


I've been drinking Lakefront Brewery's Pumpkin Lager for about 10 years now. Good stuff!
posted by FuegoFan at 1:50 PM on October 19, 2007


This thread is useless without a protein rest.
posted by slogger at 2:02 PM on October 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


I've had some Jack's Pumpkin Spice Ale. Good stuff. I was afraid it would be too overpowering of a flavor when I tried it but it wasn't. Just a hint of pumpkin. Nothing I want to drink 10 of but it was good nonetheless.
posted by toddbass10 at 2:20 PM on October 19, 2007


Monkeyshine Banana Wine make ya wanna dance!
posted by homunculus at 2:24 PM on October 19, 2007


I had read that it tastes like drinking liquid pumpkin pie

I also love pumpkin pie but that would be disgusting.

A pumpkin stout, though. Mmm. Excellent.
posted by dreamsign at 3:07 PM on October 19, 2007


This thread is useless without Cock Ale (the chicken, not the naughty bit).
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 4:33 PM on October 19, 2007


They used a pumpkin as a primary fermenter?

I'm just a newbie extract brewer myself, but it appears to me that they are using the pumpkin as the mash/lauter tun (not the primary fermenter).

Never had me a "punkin" beer, but gotta find one now!
posted by spock at 5:15 PM on October 19, 2007


Oops, I didn't watch the slideshow long enough. It appears the did use another pumpkin as the primary fermenter. (And the powerpoint on the Projects page is a HOOT). Two thumbs up!
posted by spock at 5:23 PM on October 19, 2007


I had this pumpkin ale. It was delicious. and intoxicating.
posted by jonmc at 5:38 PM on October 19, 2007


I was compelled to try it by the things I had read that it tastes like drinking liquid pumpkin pie.

Have I got the Booze for you.

Well, more like pumpkin pie mixed with moonshine, but there you go.
posted by eriko at 6:57 PM on October 19, 2007


This thread is useless without Cock Ale (the chicken, not the naughty bit).

The one with the naughty bid is called "Schlitz."
posted by eriko at 6:59 PM on October 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


i've got a few arcadia jaw jacker ales - kind of like a wheat ale with pumpkin spices and a hint of pumpkin - it's not bad, but i always want a real beer after having one

like arcadia london porter ...
posted by pyramid termite at 8:46 PM on October 19, 2007


Hmm...
If I had a dog that could piss this stuff
And I was damn sure that he could piss enough
I'd tie his head to the foot of my bed
and suck his dick 'til we both dropped dead.
posted by Smedleyman at 9:39 PM on October 19, 2007 [2 favorites]


And that, my friends, is why the gods invented poetry.
posted by spock at 10:42 PM on October 19, 2007


BRAVO!
posted by Divine_Wino at 6:42 AM on October 20, 2007


Americans have just kept alive a world tradition of making everything possible into alcohol. If it has natural sugars, it can be fermented, and fermentation is a way to preserve liquids. Tasting the world's booze is experiencing human ingenuity applied to the problem of preserving the food value in grains and fruits before the onset of refrigeration. When European settlers arrived in America, they had some problems: the grains of Europe (Wheat, oats, barley) didn't grow as well in the American climate (those crops were often imported until the Midwest was settled -- they doesn't grow easily in either New England or the South). So Americans turned to things that did grow well --- apples, pears, rye, corn, berries - to make fermented beverages.

A time-honored tradition of which I am proud to be a part, in my own small way.
posted by Miko at 6:56 AM on October 20, 2007


Holy crap! That's me!

Thanks, everyone, for the kind words. It was a fun thing to do. We're going to keg it up this weekend and post some follow-up pics and impressions. *crosses fingers*
posted by cog_nate at 2:21 PM on October 22, 2007


Oh, keen! I can't wait to hear how it ends up tasting!
posted by Greg Nog at 8:22 AM on October 23, 2007


If anyone's still monitoring this thread, we kegged up the beer yesterday and updated the photoset. The control batch (mashed in pumpkin, fermented in plastic) turned out really dry and hoppy -- a decent pale ale. The beer fermented in the pumpkin had a unique raw squash flavor. There were, thankfully, no bacterial problems or off-flavors. All in all, not to terrible.
posted by cog_nate at 7:33 AM on October 28, 2007


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