Nose: Spiced. Nutmeg, cloves, faint pumpkin. Slightly woodsy with some pine and oak hints.
Mouth: Heavy, creamy. Again, lots of spice and typical pumpkin pie flavors. Very well balanced but malty, hints of chocolate but heavy caramel flavors.
Pumpkin Ales. They are very popular every fall. For good reason too. They’re fruity beers but not your typical fruity beer. There’s more to it. Like a spiced rum or egg nog with some nutmeg. It screams autumn. Most pumpkin ales do. This one, however, is the cream of the crop! I can think of only one other one that I would put on par with this one.
Weyerbacher is one of my favorite breweries. That’s obvious if you’ve been following my posts. So this has a fighting chance before it even gets started. That aside, this brew is awesome! It’s good. Everyone who tries it likes it. That’s all you really need to know. Why does everyone like it so much though? There is nothing extra special about it. It’s not like they are dusting it with crack or anything. I mean, there’s obviously talent behind the brewing and combining of ingredients but that’s not it.
What Weyerbacher has managed to do here is to bottle a brisk autumn day or a cold autumn night. Every sip conjures up images of a cold, starry, Autumn night with a healthy breeze blowing the wispy clouds by at speeds you’d thing were impossible as they play hide and seek with a Harvest Moon.It’s the earthy, crisp smell of a pile of raked leaves just screaming for someone to jump in! It’s walking in to your grandma’s house at Thanksgiving and getting hit with all the smells of the cause of your impending gastrointestinal distress. Like the first hint of a lawn mowed in early Autumn, that crisp, earthy smell that lets you know it’s football season. Yeah, it’s amazing what a beer can recall for you. Just like when you catch a whiff of a warm apple pie or charcoal slowly cooking a steak on a grill, memories of family, friends and good times come flooding back and make us all nostalgic for different times we fondly remember.
Weyerbacher has taken all of that and shoved it in a bottle. They have absconded with our memories and nostalgia, shoved it in a bottle and have sold it back to us! Weyerbacher’s Imperial Pumpkin Ale is autumn in a bottle and everything that comes with. So might as well enjoy it. I had the opportunity to have it on tap and it’s spectacular out of the tap. But I can’t take the tap to my backyard to sit by the fire with a few friends and family waxing philosophical about autumns past and toasting to many more autumns in the future.
All that from a beer but, that’s why people love it. It has nothing to do with being a good beer. It’s got everything to with the good life…in a bottle.