Top 5 Pumpkin Beers

What to drink with the big feast? A glass of pumpkin pie, of course.



The Pilgrims knew how to turn pumpkin into beer: They cooked pumpkin flesh on low heat (the enzymes convert the starch to sugar, which yeast can ferment into alcohol). But for centuries, it seems our brew-meisters had amnesia. In recent decades, artisan brewers have brought back this seasonal brew—and we’re glad for it. Here, DeCicco’s Family Marketplace Craft Beer Specialists Joe DeCicco, Chris DeCicco, and Andrew Mimran rank the top five pumpkin beers.


 
1. Southern Tier Brewing Company Pumking ($9.99/22-oz bottle; 8.6% ABV)
Brewed upstate, the robustly flavored Pumking is, the specialists claim, like drinking a glass of pumpkin pie, graham-cracker crust and all. It has a beautiful orange color with a nose of gingerbread, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Sweet, Pumking can be enjoyed as a dessert by itself or with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.


2. Dogfish Head Craft Brewery Punkin Ale ($10.99/4 12-oz bottles; 7% ABV)
This very popular beer has a thin to medium mouth feel and an aroma full of dessert scents: cinnamon, nutmeg, chocolate. This beer can be enjoyed throughout your meal.



3. Weyerbacher Brewing Company Imperial Pumpkin Ale ($12.99/4 12-oz bottles; 8% ABV)
One of the biggest and boldest pumpkin beers around, Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin has a gorgeous amber hue that echoes brilliant fall colors.

4. Captain Lawrence Brewing Company Pumpkin Ale ($9.99/6 12-oz bottles; 5.5% ABV)
Brewed locally in Elmsford, Captain Lawrence makes one of the freshest and most flavorful pumpkin beers around. This beer is a golden ale brewed with the usual pumpkin pie spice blend you would expect, some moderately assertive hops, and fermented with a Belgian yeast strain that leaves this beer tasting of cloves, pumpkin, floral esters, and rich, malty sweetness. This year’s batch will be offered in six-packs.
 


5. Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales La Parcela ($15.99/26-oz bottle; 6% ABV)
La Parcela of Dexter, Michigan, is the most unique pumpkin beer on this list—a funky farmhouse-style wild ale. It is fermented with wild yeast. The pumpkin pie flavors are quite subtle. The tart, acidic nature of this beer makes it the perfect candidate to pair with rich-tasting foods.

Still thirsty? Go to our new Westchester Craft Beer Guide.

 

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