One of the new things I'm going to start doing is posting a brief review/synopsis of all the beers I've tried over the past few years. I have a pretty decent list and I thought it might be nicer to chronicle my beer adventures in blog form instead of a boring ass Excel spreadsheet that nobody sees but me.
The first beer(s) I'm going to talk about are Heavy Seas The Great Pumpkin, The Great'er Pumpkin, and Great'er Pumpkin Cask. Being that I just bought my first fall beers of the season yesterday, I thought a beer like this would be an appropriate place to start.
The Great Pumpkin was actually my first foray into the Heavy Seas. In fact, I had no idea they were a local brewery at the time but the whole Pirate theme jumped out at me. I started off with The Great Pumpkin. The first taste I had was awesome. I can actually remember sitting in my rocking chair starting down into my pint glass amazed that pumpkin beer could be so good and so full of flavor. It actually has the fruity taste of pumpkin in there. A lot of pumpkin beers have a manufactured pumpkin taste to them. With The Great Pumpkin, it almost feels like the fruit was sitting in your beer emitting flavor not 5 minutes before you opened the thing. The other feature that makes this beer stick out is the balance of spices involved. Again, come fall time it's really easy to find beers that pummel you with cinnamon and what not and it makes the beer unpalatable. The Great Pumpkin is a beer that has big flavors but it's put together in the perfect way.
The Great'er Pumpkin is the same as Great with the exception that the beer is aged in Bourbon barrels. This simple change adds an awesome bourbon flavor to an already exceptional beer and it will knock you on your ass if you're not careful. The ABV rises from around 8% with the Great to 9% with the Greater.
I love both of these beers but can't pick a favorite. It kind of depends on my mood. Every year when fall rolls around I hunt for this stuff like a french pig sniffing for truffles.Without a doubt, I look forward to the release of these beers each year more than any other. In recent times, I've even found myself buying extra bottles so that I can age them in the basement.
The only time I've ever been less than impressed with The Great Pumpkin was when I tried the 2011 version on cask. The flavors just became very muddied. All of the things I normally love about these beers seemed to be missing in the cask. But no matter. Before too long the temperatures are going to drop and you'll be looking for a nice fall beer to relax with. If you haven't tried a Great Pumpkin don't wait too long before you hunt one down. If there are others out there like me there might not be much to choose from.
Details for Greater Pumpkin:
Style: Pumpkin Ale