As I was brainstorming ideas for this Saturday’s blog (I promised Saturday’s would be Oktoberfest & Halloween themed this month), I may have stretched the interpretation just a wee bit. Oktoberfest always leads me to think of beer and Halloween is filled with pumpkin and ghosts – put them together and we have a 3-beer tasting of Halloween inspired beers!
Our selections for the evening: Southern Tier Imperial Pumpking, Uinta Brewing Punk’n, Sweetwater Ghoulash. Don’t worry, these beers are all vegan-friendly (according to Barnivore).
Since my love of beer came from my love of wine, my tasting notes follow a similar format. If that’s over-the-top for you, just peak at the Verdict section for a quick “verdict” of whether it’s work a buy or not. :)
Southern Tier Imperial Pumpking Ale Brewed with Pumpkins
Quick Note on Imperial: Although the name originates from a specific Russian style of beer, it no longer has a specific definition. It’s used most often to describe a stronger version of a classic-style beer. See this article on The Brew Site for more info.
There is almost no head when you pour this beer and it’s very clear with very little carbonation. This one actually smells pretty sweet – vanilla and cinnamon (like dessert!). The taste is pretty uninteresting, not much flavor at all. There is a hint of pumpkin in the finish. Verdict: Drinkable, but don’t bother purchasing. There are much better pumpkin beers available.
Uinta Brewing Punk’n Harvest Pumpkin Beer
This is a brewery we first discovered when we were snowboarding in Utah – as it’s located in Salt Lake City.
After pouring this beer, there is a small, light head and clear with light carbonation (more than Imperial Pumpking). The smell is delicious – I can actually smell the pumpkin in this one, which a hint of something sweet (maple?). The taste is light, but spicy with cloves and an overall mix of pumpkin pie spice. Verdict: Yum! This is a great Fall beer – good thing we actually got a 6-pack of this one. This one is great for sipping around the fire with friends.
Sweetwater Ghoulash Double Black, Double Dry Hopped, Double India Pale Ale
A local, Atlanta brewery – usually good, solid beer. Quick Note On India Pale Ale: Fun fact for the day! India Pale Ale started when we were importing beer from India. They dropped in lots of hops to preserve the beer during the long voyage back to America (no one like spoiled beer, ew!).
WOW – this is a dark beer! I should have known, as this is a double black, double dry hopped, double India Pale Ale. The smell is HOPPY (it IS double dry hopped!) – it overwhelms any other smells for me, which is not a bad thing in this case. The taste is rich, creamy medium-bodied. Not a whole lot of discernable flavors outside of hops, but if you like hops and you like dark – this is good! Verdict: An enjoyable evening beer – I do love dark beers! This one is really for hop-lovers, if you aren’t a fan of hops you won’t like this at all.
Question of the Day – What is your favorite beer for Halloween (style or specific beer)?