This pumpkin ale from Great Lakes Brewery in Etobicoke, Ontario is pitched with saison yeast and pours a hazy golden orange colour with a small, but frothy white head that settles as a collar and thin, moldy-looking film. The smell of Saison du Pump is vibrant with aromas of yeast and a blend of spices. A mild pumpkin tone blends with the honey-sweetened malt base to give the air of a honeydew melon.
Saison du Pump has a fairly sweet taste that quickly yields a burst of yeast and traditional pumpkin ale flavours such as cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and clove. This ale has an earthy and very yeasty body with temperate carbonation and minor oiliness. The finish has a somewhat sour funk to it before imparting a lingering, peppery dryness and hint of gourd.
Pumking from the Southern Tier Brewing Company in Lakewood, New York pours a clear golden-amber colour with a scant white head that sticks around as a thin collar, but leaves no lacing behind. This strong pumpkin ale has more of a pumpkin pie aroma than any other pumpkin ale I’ve tried to date; it has a real buttery pastry tone that compliments the pumpkin and spices nicely. Freshly cut grains and honey poke through after warming.
The taste of Pumking is nicely balanced between the pumpkin and the dry, peppery spice notes. Again, a pastry-like butter flavour defines the taste and makes it distinctive amongst pumpkin ales. The finish is peppery and bitter. The mouthfeel is on the thin side with a low, but noticeable carbonation. A grainy note comes through on the tongue and the aftertaste is dry tasting, but also has a syrupy quality. Pumking is extraordinarily smooth and drinkable given its ABV.
This truly unique craft-brewed beer from Toronto, Ontario pours a lovely golden colour with amber tones. Great Lakes Brewery Pumpkin Ale gets a sweet and spicy aroma from having nutmeg, cinnamon, clove, allspice and real pumpkin added during the brewing process.
The natural sweetness of the pumpkin balances the blend of spices. Underneath the overt flavours are a rich maltyness and finely-balanced bitter hoppy finish. Great Lakes Pumpkin Ale is an excellent example of a seasonal beer that captures the spirit of a beautiful Fall afternoon.