The best pumpkin beers of the fall season

Thanks to the rise in popularity of craft beers, here are some really good options for you on the market right now.

Fall brings many changes, including seasonal variations on traditional foods and drinks. If you love a good pint of ale, then this is the time of year you can expect to see a nice assortment of pumpkin beers from which to choose. Thanks to the rise in popularity of craft beers, here are some really good options for you on the market right now.


The term “imperial” was used back in the 1800’s for ale brewed in England and shipped to Russia, and usually referred to stouts. It’s now used by American craft brewers as an indication that the beer is going to be bold in flavor and higher in alcoholic punch , regardless of style. These beers are going to have an alcohol-by-volume range from 8 percent to 12 percent.

  • Shipyard Smashed Pumpkin : A yummy autumn beer that hints at pumpkin with an apple pie and light spice flavoring.
  • Long Trail Imperial Pumpkin : A thick and seriously malty beer with a subtle pumpkin flavor and mild spices that’s perfect for sipping.
  • Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin Ale : A sweet, aromatic ale that’s mild on pumpkin yet big on spice.
  • Wachusett Imperial Pumpkin : Sweet and spicy with significant pumpkin flavors with a smooth, full texture on the way down.
  • Southern Tier Imperial Pumking : A thicker-textured beer with a strong pumpkin taste and a hint of candy corn flavoring and spice.


Stouts are dark beers made using roasted malt or barley, hops, water, and yeast. There are a number of variations of this style of beer.

  • Fisherman’s Pumkin Stout : A smooth stout with a hint of unsweetened chocolate and pumpkin that goes down easy.
  • Southern Tier Warlock Imperial Pumpkin Stout : Reminiscent of pumpkin-pie with hints of coffee and dark chocolate that’s velvety smooth.
  • Elysian Dark O’ the Moon Pumpkin Stout : An excellent stout with just a taste of pumpkin, cinnamon, cocoa, and gingerbread, with minimal bitterness.
  • Harpoon Imperial Pumpkin Stout : A full-bodied stout with an aroma of baked pumpkin pie and dried fruit chocolate that’s perfect for chilly nights.
  • Pioneer Pumpkin Stout : Infused with blueberries and pumpkin spice, this stout has a wheat malt flavor that is hardy yet smooth.

Mainstream Craft Brands

This collection includes craft beers that are commonly found throughout the United States.

  • Blue Moon Harvest Moon Pumpkin Ale : A light, citrusy wheat ale that’s mild on the pumpkin and spices.
  • Shock Top Pumpkin Wheat : Another wheaty ale that’s mild on both the pumpkin and spice flavoring.
  • Dogfish Head Punkin Ale : A sweet, brown sugar and molasses-flavored ale with a hint of nutmeg and allspice.
  • Samuel Adams Harvest Pumpkin Ale : A spicy ale with molasses sweetness and a smokey aroma.
  • Samuel Adams Fat Jack Double Pumpkin : A rich, malty brown ale with a nutty aroma and a hint of cocoa, pumpkin, and spice flavoring.

Food Pairings

Pumpkin beers can be paired with a variety of foods, like smoked or roasted turkey, duck, or lamb ; roasted root vegetables; and mole dishes. They also pair well with desserts like caramel flan, carrot cake , banana or pumpkin breads , and certain chocolates.