There are many joys that the autumn season brings; cool weather, the changing colors, and of course pumpkin beer. Admittedly there are some terrible pumpkin ales out there but American brewers have gone big this year bringing over 200 varieties to the table. Naturally they’re not all available in the area so we have selected 5 that taste great and represent the full pumpkin spectrum.

The Contenders:

Wasatch Pumpkin Ale – We first tried this at the Raven on tap and were surprised how tasty it was. At 4% it is very drinkable and the addition of real pumpkin as opposed to a spice bomb really draws out a great flavor. This is the most ‘traditional’ pumpkin beer in the tasting and sure to be a favorite for many.

Woodchuck Private Reserve Pumpkin Cider – We initially were reluctant to try a pumpkin cider but after trying the Private Reserve Ginger we thought how terrible could it be? Our instincts were correct and this cider is actually quite delicious. It’s big at 6.9% but still drinks smooth while being slightly sweet with a subtle pumpkin finish. This one you’ll have to try for yourselves.

Shipyard ‘Pugsley’s Signature Series’ Smashed Pumpkin – Shipyard’s master brewer produced a surprisingly big (9%) pumpkin that brings forward great pumpkin and nutmeg flavors with enough hops to balance the sweetness.

Dogfish Head Punkin Ale – This brown ale is brewed with real pumpkin, brown sugar, nutmeg, allspice, and cinnamon. As usual Dogfish delivers a different perspective on the pumpkin beer and it works really well.

Epic Exponential Series ‘Representation Without Fermentation’ Imperial Pumpkin Porter – This Epic & DC Brau collaboration starts with a base of strong, roasty, chocolatey porter and then adds 200 pounds of real pumpkin per batch, five spice, and whole Madagascar vanilla beans. This limited release brew is available for purchase but not technically part of the tasting. With that said if you stop in for a tasting feel free to ask Michael or Eric for the ’5th’ pumpkin beer and assuming it’s still around and they like you they will probably hook you up.

Every Friday and Saturday throughout the month, we will be offering a pumpkin beer and fall plate pairing! Come in and sample three pumpkin beers and one pumpkin cider, paired with four scrumptious autumn hors d’oeuvres- each specifically designed to bring out and accentuate the spices and flavors in the beers.
For our patrons who don’t have a taste for beer, autumn sangria will be available, with new flavors each week.

Pairings will be held Friday and Saturday evenings from 5pm-9pm.
Call the Hotel Vendome at 928-776-0900 for more information.