Dogfish Head Punkin Ale
With me being the last person on earth to try this beer, there’s nothing left for me to say that hasn’t been said. Fortunately, I can redeem myself from yesterday’s awful post and write about how amazing this beer is. Unfortunately, so can everyone else. I have always been intrigued by Dogfish Head and I am so happy I chose their Punkin Ale (which is just as much fun to say as it is to drink) to start out with. It really set the bar high. I have never had a pumpkin flavored beer, and this was such a treat, I will most likely be getting a 6-pack to share with my mom when she visits this weekend. She needs a good lesson in craft beer – her favorite mass-production is Bud Light Lime over ice with lime juice and salt. Mom, it’s beer, not a margarita. Regardless, you see what I have to work with?
Poured into my snifter (I’m still really hesitant to pull out my Pilsner glass…is it time yet?), it holds a wonderful polished cherry wood color in the depths with orange accents swirling around the outside. There was a small head of off-white foam, about a finger thick, that quickly dissolved to a bubbly ring with islands in the middle. I was hardly disappointed as the little foam that lingered didn’t vanish, but stuck around through the whole drink, keeping it together just right.
Much like the Sonoran White Chocolate Ale, the aroma permeated the air around the glass almost immediately. The Punkin left a seductive trail of fresh-from-the-oven pumpkin pie, banana bread, and cinnamon toast that I continually wafted over myself in ecstasy. Closing my eyes, I imagined myself in a warm, inviting kitchen baking scrumptious desserts in preparation for a family Thanksgiving. Slinking among the amazing eruption of baked goods, I found some caramel malt, allspice, and a dash of spicy nutmeg.
To continue with the perfection of this favorite brown ale, the taste was the complete embodiment of the nose, only with the liquid sustenance. It was lightly spicy right off the bat, keeping my tongue tingling with happiness while cinnamon, pumpkin pie, and a generous amount of caramel washed over it. All of this was accompanied by nutmeg, brown sugar and allspice – all of which are extremely complimenting of each other; no one flavor tries to dominate the others. The mouthfeel was smooth with a medium body, like a heavy silk, and everything is supported by just the right amount of carbonation. It ends slightly dry with very little bitterness, and pulls everything together with a comforting warmth from the 7% ABV…which gives it an A+ in my book.
Pumpkin in beer? Yes please. I only wish I had some home-made pumpkin pie to go with it! Or even some pumpkin cheesecake. Or just cheesecake. With cherries. As for the rest of the meal, anything you serve at Thanksgiving dinner will suffice. I am really looking forward to trying more Dogfish Head, even though it’s not local. Consider me punk’d!