Hipp-O-Lantern

River Horse Brewing Company

Appearance

This pours a burnt orange color and produces a finger of fluffy, white head. Its retention is great and there are signs of mild lacing to come. The body is hazy and there’s a light, evenly distributed layer of sediment throughout. It looks like a creamy beer.

Aroma

The nose is greeted by cinnamon, nutmeg and clove as well as a vegetal pumpkin undertone. Notes of both malt and hops swirl in between the spice and faint aroma of booze.

Taste

Up front I get a spice bill that follows the nose with cinnamon, nutmeg, clove and a noticeable brown sugar. There’s a brighter, mild pumpkin puree mixed in that does well to utilize the base to draw attention. In the back, the foundation and the imperial qualities come forward. The base is a balanced combination of sugary malt and nutty, earthy hops. There’s also the introduction of a clear booze content that rounds the taste off and sends me into a flavorful finish. The finish and aftertaste are characterized by pumpkin spice, nut and a alcohol saturated base. It’s quite nice.

Mouthfeel

This is a medium-bodied beer with mild-to-moderate carbonation. It’s got a nice chewiness to it but isn’t cloying. The spices and alcohol garner a bit of sharpness while the base character provides even more texture. You feel this one, but it’s nothing unpleasant. It’s obviously somewhat warming as well.

Overall

This is a good imperial pumpkin option. The pumpkin is present, though could be a bit stronger. The spices are bold and play well with the base. It’s nicely balanced and fairly complex. Lastly, it’s alcohol is pleasant and considering its ABV it’s surprisingly drinkable. While there’s no real distinct dynamic to the experience, it’s very reminiscent of a solid brown ale. Solid all around. Marry that thought with some pumpkin spice and alcohol and you’ve got an imperial option worth indulging in.

3.75