If you’re feeling in the festive spirit, there’s no better way to celebrate than with a good old-fashioned Pumpkin Beer. This type of Craft Beer is a popular companion for Thanksgiving meals, watching your favorite football team, or sitting on the patio enjoying a beautiful fall day. But, even if it is not Fall, this is a great beer to be enjoyed if you’re a fan of pumpkin flavour! Following on from the pumpkin spice trend that has swept the nation (and the planet), here’s everything you need to know about Pumpkin Beers.
Pumpkin Beer’s beauty is its versatility, and crafter breweries can add the pumpkin flavor to any beer they please to give it a seasonal kick. From IPAs to stouts by way of amber lagers or your standard pilsner, the possibilities are endless. But what actually is Pumpkin Beer? Well, because pumpkins themselves don’t have a discernible flavor compared to the likes of mango or grapefruit that you might find in tropical IPAs of sours, brewers need to get creative. The result is the addition of various pumpkin spices and flavors that you typically find in a delicious pumpkin pie, such as clove or cinnamon. However, many brewers will still use the pumpkin flesh during the brewing process to give it a more authentic feel, although they can top off this with additional flavorings to bring the pumpkin taste to the forefront.
Where Did Pumpkin Beer Originate?
Although many people consider craft beers something relatively new, the origins stretch back much further than you’d expect. The same goes for Pumpkin Beer. You can trace its origins all the way back to 1771 (long before our fascination with Pumpkin Spice!), where brewers brewed beer with pumpkin to make pumpkin ale.
The first Pumpkin Beer that was brewed with commercial intentions came over 200 years later, where Buffalo Bills’ Brewery, located in California, used a recipe that was based on brewing notes by none other than George Washington.
What is the Best Way to Enjoy Pumpkin Beer?
Any craft beer aficionado knows there’s never a wrong time to sample the delights of their favorite brews. But, as Pumpkin Beer is typically a seasonal release (mostly released around Fall, but you can also find late-summer releases if you know where to look), the best time and place to enjoy a Pumpkin Beer is surrounded by friends and family after sufficiently stuffing yourself with the Thanksgiving turkey.
You’ll also need to consider the type of beer. Pumpkin Pale Ales, Pilsners, or Lagers go well with your dinner, whereas a Pumpkin Stout could be a little too heavy to enjoy with the main meal. Feel free to indulge in a pumpkin-flavored stout once the food has settled and even pair it with some camembert for a delicious post-meal treat.
Why Try Pumpkin Beer?
The real question is, why not try Pumpkin Beer? Their versatility means that they can appeal to everyone, even those who aren’t on the craft beer train (yet). As we said, they make a fantastic pairing for the traditional fall treats and meals, especially if you want to cut down on your pumpkin pie intake this year while still enjoying all the flavors that make the Thanksgiving season something to look forward to every year.