Last year I endeavoured to taste test as many pumpkin beers as I could during a stretch of a couple weeks in October. For my efforts I learned if you enjoy a certain style of beer it is best not to exclusively drink said style for weeks on end as routine consumption is a surefire way to cure your fondness – in other words the very sight of pumpkin beer this year made my stomach turn.
Fortunately (or unfortunately depending on your stance in the controversial pumpkin beer debate) I could really not help myself when I spotted a can of Fall Hornin’ from Anderson Valley Brewing Company. I mean it was just a wee little can, it is not like I had to drink a big 650ml of pumpkin flavoured beerness, and it was an ale to boot so all should go well and my faith in the power of pumpkin should be restored right?
Fall Hornin’ (6% ABV) pours a dark reddish brown with lots of off-white head that really sticks to your glass. This beer is clear with good carbonation. There is some earthiness on the nose reminding me more of roasted pumpkin than pumpkin pie. As you drink the pumpkin pie spices emerge but it is not an overly sweet beer by any means. Fall Hornin’ has some body and depth that carries the spiced flavours well (I find beers that are too light can be overtaken by the earthy pumpkin pie spices). A roasted malt finish and just a hint of hoppy bitterness finishes this beer off.
Overall I have to say this beer redeemed pumpkin beer a bit for me and while I won’t be going on a pumpkin bender again any time soon I think a pumpkin beer or two might find their way back into my fall rotation.