Freaktoberfest Big Ol’ Pumpkin Ale

Coney Island Brewing Company

Appearance

This pours a golden amber color and produces a small but frothy, chestnut-colored head. It eventually reduces to a fizzing surface coat. The body is quite clear, broken up only by moderate carbonation.

Aroma

This is a beautiful aroma of cinnamon, nutmeg, clove and earthy pumpkin mixed with vibrant notes of espresso. It’s a rooty smell that does a great job of meshing its ingredients, though the espresso beans are most noticeable.

Taste

I’m greeted by a balanced stage of pumpkin spice and espresso beans. Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and clove all follow the nose and are most distinguishable early on. As I continue, the espresso beans begin to take the spotlight, as does a sturdy base of malt and hops working seamlessly together. It’s mostly sweet from front to back. The spices, beans and a more earthy pumpkin seem to work in harmony on top of this foundation as I move into the back. It’s here where I recognize¬†a rooty pumpkin most. It’s vibrant and lays on top of the espresso and spice profile without friction. The finish continues to provide an enjoyable marriage of pumpkin, spice and espresso.

Mouthfeel

This is a medium-bodied beer with moderate carbonation. While the taste is quite nice, the mouthfeel lacks a bit of character. For such rich flavors I’d have expected a bit more of a textured feel. Instead it’s oily, wet and practically frictionless. Smooth and drinkable, yes. Just not anything overly interesting.

Overall

Like last year, I was pleasantly surprised by this option. It’s rich, flavorful and provides great balance among the expected ingredients and the unique espresso trait. The foundation is sturdy, fairly sweet without being overwhelming, and the pumpkin is definitely present. Unfortunately the mouthfeel was nothing to write home about. I think it could have perhaps pushed this option even further. However, that doesn’t detract from its enjoyable experience overall. As for a pumpkin and coffee mixture, this is right up there with the best. Definitely grab it if you can find it.

3.5