Pumpkick

New Belgium Brewing

Appearance

This pours a rusty orange color and produces about a finger of light beige head. The head sticks around for awhile providing a frosty topping for the first half of the entire experience. It has a beautiful haze to it, helped by a very faint array of sediment. There seems to be some light lacing.

Aroma

The nose is surrounded by a bold spice profile consisting of cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla. There’s also notes of allspice and graham cracker. For the most part it’s a sweet smelling beer. There’s a bright and raw pumpkin quality to it as well as some muffled notes of fruit.

Taste

The front is predominantly spices and sweetness on top of a malty base while the back rounds the foundation out and delivers a dynamic collaboration of pumpkin, spice and lemongrass. Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, clove and a hint of vanilla seem to make for the pumpkin spice bill. These supplement a mild but raw pumpkin ingredient. These sit on top of what becomes a well-balanced foundation as I move to the back. Eventually I’m greeted by some stronger hops, a fairly bold lemongrass character and a bit of pine. It’s a rich taste that seems to be equal parts sweetness and tartness without overwhelming the palate. The finish reinforces the lemongrass collaboration with pumpkin spice, and underscores what I believe is a cranberry-like fruit quality. It’s an oddly appealing mix of toasted pumpkin and zest.

Mouthfeel

This has a light body and produces mild carbonation. It provides a pretty sharp texture thanks to the dynamic created from the ingredients and it leaves the palate somewhat dry in the end. Beyond a bit of tang, it doesn’t seem to make the same pronounced statement as the taste.

Overall

I must say I am surprisingly impressed by this one. It’s a dynamic, drinkable option that provides a plethora of interest to the palate. Its foundation is transformative, it’s flavor is a unique mix of citrus, fruit, pumpkin and spice. And in the end it somehow balances all of these aspects in harmony. I wish the pumpkin was a little more pronounced, but it makes up for it by being a refreshing take on the expected seasonal flavor. I’d recommend giving this one a go, if not just for experiencing such a unique take on the style.

3.75