Pumpkin ale with a cinnamon sugar rim

Pumpkin ale is a popular style of beer in the United States. Pumpkin ale may be produced using pumpkin flesh in combination with malt or other more typical beer grains as a portion of the mash bill, contributing fermentable sugars to the wort. It may also be produced by adding natural or artificial flavor to a finished beer. Spice flavor may be added to evoke the flavor of pumpkin pie, a popular American wintertime dessert.

Many styles of pumpkin ale are produced, including pale ales, wheat beers, porters, and stouts. Often produced as a seasonal beer in the fall,[1] it is produced by several breweries including Sea Dog Brewery, Shipyard Brewing Company, Saint Arnold Brewing Company and Blue Moon.[2]


The brewing of beer with pumpkin in the United States dates back to 1771.[3] The first commercially brewed pumpkin ale came from Buffalo Bill's Brewery in Hayward, California, in the 1980s, the recipe based on brewing studies made by George Washington.[4][5][6] The beer's contemporary popularity has been described as part of a "pumpkin spice craze," initiated by a rash of pumpkin- and pumpkin-spice-flavored consumer food products, such as the Pumpkin Spice Latte.[7]

See also


  1. ^ Crouch, A. (2010). Great American Craft Beer: A Guide to the Nation's Finest Beers and Breweries. Running Press. p. 189. ISBN 978-0-7624-4160-0.
  2. ^ Jackson, Josh (September 26, 2013). "A Guide to the Best and Worst Pumpkin Beers". Paste Magazine. Retrieved 29 March 2015.
  3. ^ Risen, Clay (11 October 2011). "The Divisive Pumpkin Ale". Atlantic Media. The Atlantic. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
  4. ^ "Buffalo Bill's Brewery (Hayward)". 6 December 2006.
  5. ^ "Pumpkin Power: The Rise and Reign of Pumpkin Beer". October 2014.
  6. ^ "Buffalo Bill's Brewery - Total Wine & More". www.totalwine.com.
  7. ^ Brat, Ilan (November 25, 2014). "Haters Call Pumpkin-Spice Craze an 'Epidemic'". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved September 17, 2015.