You either love or hate pumpkin beers. Personally, I’m on the love it side. But in recent years pumpkin beers have started to appear on shelves as early as June. Which is far too early for my taste. Who really wants to be drinking a heavy spiced beer when it’s 90 degrees F out? Not me, that is for sure. Anyway, fresh pumpkins aren’t available in April or May, the months in which beers released in June would have been brewed.
This year I decided to brew my own version of a pumpkin ale. It was my first attempt at any kind of fruit beer. I picked up a neck pumpkin at a local farm and did my research. I started with a base recipe from the October 2005 issue of BYO magazine. Then did some additional research on what spices to add. The original recipe only called for .75 TSP of pumpkin pie spice which I didn’t feel was anywhere close to enough.
Craft Beer and Brewing magazine has a list of recommended spices. They also have a pumpkin ale recipe that I used as guidance in selecting spices and amounts. Finally I also looked at several pumpkin pie recipes to get a better idea on what really goes in to a traditional pumpkin pie.
The final beer is toasty and flavorful. It really does smell and taste like fresh baked pumpkin pie. There is still plenty of time to get out there and brew this up for the holiday season.
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