Posts tagged ‘barley’

O’Fallon Pumpkin Beer – O’Fallon Brewery

OFallon

We had a brief lull in events there for a moment, but now that it’s a stones throw to October, we are back and kicking into full steam. Today’s competitor is a cult classic in some parts, and a major competitor for pumpkin party beer across the country. So with out further ado, lets dig into it!

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Name: O’Fallon Pumpkin Beer

Place of Origin / Brewer: O’Fallon, MO / O’Fallon Brewery

Beer style / ABV%: Pumpkin Ale / 5.60%

Specialty Prep / Individuality: O’Fallon Pumpkin Beer is brewed by adding 136 pounds of real pumpkin to a mash of pale malt, caramel 90, and white wheat, which is lightly hopped with Cluster hops. Once finished it is spiced with cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg.

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Packaging:

There’s a lot to be said for simplicity and O’Fallon, with its Baseball Team-styled brewery logo, delivers. Featuring a skewed Jack O’Lantern and a few fall leaves floating against a black backdrop, the label is clear and concise but sadly lacking any expansion on the style, spice content, or even the ABV. – Tim

I’m gonna be honest here, this label -while unfailingly communicating it’s contents- ain’t sexy. I’m sure it’s tradition, but it might be time for an update. – Mike

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Color: 5.5

Lots of action right away from the carbonation, leaving a nice billowing head. It’s a super clean transparent ale that gives light to a reddish pale and golden malt glow. – Rick

This looks quite a bit more appealing than the label. Gorgeous clarity, nice carbonation levels, and a pillow top ivory head that sticks around for a good bit. An autumn amber the color of turning leaves. Now if only it wasn’t 97 degrees outside… – Mike

M- 7 / T- 6 / B- 5 / R- 4

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Aroma: 6.5

Musty, earthy pumpkin at first whiff, followed by the sweetness of sugar and touch of cinnamon spice. There’s a slight roasted caramel malt quality as well. – Brittney

A bit of brown sugar and some cinnamon really blend well to concoct a nice sense of homemade apple pie crust. A touch of raisin is fairly detectable as well as some toffee. – Rick

M- 7 / T- 6.5 / B- 7 / R- 6

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Mouth feel: 5

Light and slightly slick but not as snappy as I would have guessed from the amount of carbonation when poured. Definitely settles into almost a flatness. – Brittney

Tongue burn from the high carbonation gives way to crisp ale with a bright but slightly thin body. – Tim

M- 6.5 / T- 4.5 / B- 5 / R- 5

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Tasting notes: 6

Cinnamon and Nutmeg soar to the forefront with sweet cream and pumpkin following shortly behind. It’s a pretty spot on semblance of canned pumpkin pie that’s been topped with a dollop of whipped creams, and has a biscuity – graham cracker crusty back. – Mike

With an overall pumpkin pie profile of nutmeg, cinnamon and clove the mixture lacks any real substance which unfortunately matches up with the body. Toasted malt and some hop bitters try to work their complex magic but the lack of any real presence gives the ale more of a late-summer lager profile and not enough fall goodness. – Tim

This one is not overwhelming in any category. Cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove are all there but only the cinnamon really lingers making it fairly dominating. There is a bit of pumpkin serving as a solid foundation for the spices, but it’s a bit sweet for my tastes. – Brittney

I enjoy the subdued mix of flavors here. This beer has some nice qualities but it seems closer to a fruit beer or a cider than a pumpkin ale. The minimal pumpkin allows for some cinnamon, apple, and raisin flavors to take front row. It isn’t too exciting, but I find this beer could make a nice introduction to the style and broaden ones appreciation for pumpkin ales. – Rick

M- 7.5 / T- 5 / B- 5 / R- 5.5

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Finish: 6

Lingering pumpkin sweetness as the spice fades and a touch of the more bitter side of molasses roast and clove give it a drying quality. Fairly lengthy, but pleasing enough. – Mike

This is a very smooth and watery beer with a slightly bitter finish that caps each sip well. It’s easy to drink and light on the palate making it very session-able. – Rick

M- 7 / T- 5 / B- 6 / R- 6

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Flavor balance: 7

  • Pumpkin to Spice balance: 7

The pumpkin is MIA but for the illusion presented in the spice profile. Which, while on paper seems like a fine balance of pie spices, sadly it just doesn’t amount to enough overall bang for your buck. – Tim

There is a solid presence of malt, which lends some presence to the pumpkin, but the spice is very prominent here, making it feel a bit out of check. – Brittney

M- 8 / T- 4 / B- 8 / R- 7

  • Sweet / Dry balance: 7.5

It seems to start with unced sweetnesss, but as the glass warms a pleasant, subtle complexity begins to emerge along with breadier malts and a spicy bite. – Mike

Well done. This beer seems like it could lean towards cloying at any moment and completely ruin it for me, but there’s a nice balance here akin to dry apple juice. The watery body and mouthfeel play a big part in keeping the sweetness at bay. – Rick

M- 8 / T- 6.5 / B- 6.5 / R- 8

  • Multiple Drinkability? 6

While you’re still waiting for the mercury to drop below the boiling point, you could easily put away a few of these ales. The inoffensive 5.5% ABV won’t wreck your afternoon, but with so many other great pumpkin beers on the market, this one is hardly worth running out and stockpiling. – Tim

In a world of gigantic cloying imperial pumpkins, this is a pretty respectable session brew. Not too heavy for milder autumns and enough weight for cooler climates, it plays to both the refreshing and pleasantly boozy crowd. Compared to others in it’s class, it’s nicely balanced and has some notable pumpkin which is a change of pace for anything under 10%. This is an excellent gateway beer to the style. – Mike

M- 8.5 / T- 5.5 / B- 4 / R- 6

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Overall: 6.00

M- 7.16 / T- 5.42 / B- 5.66 / R- 5.58

Pumpkin Spice Moonshine – Corsair Artisan, LLC

______________________________________________________________________________________________

Name:  Pumpkin Spice Moonshine

Distiller:   Corsair Artisan, LLC / Bowling Green, Kentucky

On the list of craft distilling’s rising stars, it wouldn’t be hard to find Corsair. Focusing on a number of quirky twists for old favorites, and particularly oriented to a cocktail making atmosphere, they’ve cranked out some unusual and exotic recipes in the past few years. This one is definitely up there among them.

Moonshine you say. Really? Well, to be fair, this does have a place here. In fact, some of the first words on the bottle claim this young whiskey is inspired by pumpkin ales. So at least you’ll have something to turn to when your friend’s try to give you that sass about pumpkin beer being for lady types. Pot distilled from malted barley and wheat, the vapor basket is then loaded with ginger, nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, and pumpkin, then re-distilled once more for a smoother blend.

From first exposure Corsair’s label embodies slick confidence with geometric psychedelia and three suited and shaded hit-man looking guys in full strut, (looking more Rockstar than Turkish Privateer). Further nice touches include the hand labeling and bottling (we got batch 5, bottle 30/36), as well as the signature of the distiller.

What of the spirit itself you ask? Admittedly, we opted for the more traditional moonshine standard (straight up) rather than the cocktail approach (it’s specifically suggested for a Manhattan). Those of us initiated in the whiskey world quickly found this crystal clear white dog spirit to be heavy on the wheat and fairly smooth on the palate (relatively speaking). While we had a bit of a tough time getting behind the “pumpkin pie in a glass” claim, there’s no denying that the pumpkin and spices make an appearance. However, the pumpkin seems to take on a much more vegetal note (subbing in for the palate of corn in the front of the moonshine, and to a more sour turn in the finish), and the spices appear neatly subdued in the end. Adding a bit of mixer to it certainly brought out the sweeter notes though, laying some legitimacy that this is a craft cocktail oriented spirit. (If you haven’t tried the infamous West Virginia Bomb (that’d be mountain dew and your favorite moonshine), you’re missing out on a party standard).

All in all, Corsair may have on their hands more of a novelty than a staple here, but it’s solidly crafted, and at 42.5% abv, gets you done faster than any pumpkin beer will. It would be hard to kill a bottle by yourself before the season was out though, so take it on your Halloween party circuit, warm some bellys,  and expand a few people’s horizons.

______________________________________________________________________________________________