Brooklyn “Post Road” Pumpkin Ale (2012)

Brooklyn “Post Road” Pumpkin Ale is 5.0% ABV.

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

Appearance: A careful pour produced about 1/8 of an inch of off-white and thin foam. This was gone very quickly and left just a small amount of foamy but thin lacing. The color is a fairly bright medium orange/amber. This appears to have heavy carbonation.

Smell: At the front I get vegetal pumpkin that has a pronounced sour presence, along with some light and grassy malt and spices. The spicing seems to include cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice; but the strong sourness and the grassy notes make it a little difficult to discern the spices so clearly in the smell. This smells more sour than sweet, but does have some light sweetness of malt and honey.

Taste: At the start I get clear and bright vegetal pumpkin that is complemented by some grassy notes from malt and some sourness. It has a prominent spice presence that seems to include cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice. I am not so confident on all those particular spices, but I seem to be getting those, anyway. This has a sweetness of light malt and light honey. As this finishes, you get more of the honey and malt sweetness, which trades some of the grassy malt for a sweeter and smoother flavor that is complemented by some small bitter notes. The aftertaste holds on to some of the slightly unpleasant sour flavors and  some of the light bitterness from the spicing.

Feel: This is medium bodied, with medium to heavy carbonation. This also has some complexities to the feel from that come from the sourness, bitter notes, and light sweetness. The sour notes detract a bit from the feel, which is otherwise fairly smooth with enough complexity to also keep it from being monotonous or boring.

Drinkability: This is low in ABV, and has some relative smoothness to it. That is nice, though this is troubled by the sourness. Were it not for the sourness that dominates the aftertaste and maintains a decently strong presence even towards the front, this would be really quite drinkable. As it stands, it is alright but nothing to write home about on this score.

Overall: I like this one, and think it has some decent complexity to it. I like the wheaty and grassy elements in the malt, and the light sweetness. This also, unlike a good number of the other “middle of the ABV road” pumpkin ales, keeps the pumpkin flavor. The main downside is the sourness which hangs on and dominates a lot of the other pleasant flavors. I’m not so much a fan of sour pumpkin, especially in a beer that doesn’t seem to be working within a lambic or sour style.

Overall Rating: **1/2


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