Harpoon “UFO” Unfiltered Pumpkin Ale (2011)

Harpoon “UFO” Unfiltered Pumpkin Ale has 5.9% ABV.

I poured all of a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: A conservative pour gave just a bit of foam that dissolved almost immediately, leaving a thin ring around the glass and minimal lacing. The color is a hazy light slightly-orange amber, with visible sediment hanging throughout the body of the beer. There is light carbonation visible.

Smell: I get a honey pumpkin aroma, with some spices and good malt. The honey is pretty strong, and it takes force first. Past the honey, you notice a good bit of roasty malt. The pumpkin is also clear, with light spices. The spices discernible are cinnamon and nutmeg (though, these aren’t very strong). I can smell a little bit of hops, though this is second to the strong honey and malt scents.

Taste: This is sweet, with the honey coming through significantly. The pumpkin is noticeable, and you get some wheaty and bready elements with it. The malt comes clearer towards the middle and on the finish, which brings in some very mild and well incorporated hops. The aftertaste is a little dry and very slightly bitter. Overall, the flavor profile is somewhat mellow, with notable malt and honey.

Feel: This is light to medium bodied. It has a good amount of sweetness, and a dry finish that gives it a crisp feel. It doesn’t hang on the palate long, and feels mostly smooth. It has light to medium carbonation, which seems to be just the right amount.

Drinkability: This drinks pretty well. It is smooth with appropriate carbonation. The honey sweetness isn’t too heavy or syrupy, and gives this an easy drinking feel. At this ABV, I could go through a couple of these.

Overall: I think this beer is tasty. The honey and malt work nicely together, especially with the light spices and subtle hops. Even so, the flavors are sort of subdued. It drinks pretty smoothly, but isn’t dynamic or all that interesting. It could stand to have a bit more hops, a bit more pumpkin, or something to break up the profile. I like the unfiltered qualities of the beer, but wish they were given more of the spotlight. It would have been nice for this to taste more wheaty and raw, and less honey-like. I think of this beer as comparable to Saranac’s Pumpkin Ale, but a little less interesting. Saranac has a bit more of a bite to it, while Harpoon comes across as a little flat.

Overall Rating: **


Leave a comment

Filed under Reviews

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s