Harpoon Imperial Pumpkin

rating_excellent82 points

Molasses. If we could sum up our review of Harpoon Imperial Pumpkin in one word, that’s it. Molasses.

Of course, we have a hard time writing these reviews in short form, so we’ll continue. But if you hate molasses, you can stop reading now.

harpoonimperialpumpkinGood. They’re gone. It’s just us now. What’s wrong with them? Am I right?

The imperial in Imperial Pumpkin, in Harpoon’s case, is imperial stout. Thick, syrupy, black-as-night stout. Intrigued? Yeah, we were, too.

This witches’ brew pours with the opaqueness of black coffee with a brownish head that dissipated quickly. Our panel found it very attractive, but we would have liked a little more carbonation.

Smell was rated high, with huge aromas of molasses and smoke, immediately invoking visions of drinking it around an autumn campfire.

Taste and drinkability are where Imperial Pumpkin grabbed big points. The mouthfeel is thick and syrupy, almost that of a sipping liqueur — which our panel agreed is exactly the way to enjoy this beer.

The taste is pure molasses, through and through. There is a smokiness and slight roasted bitterness, like many stouts. But the molasses notes and high alcohol content (10.5% ABV) augment the taste wonderfully.

What’s missing is a notable pumpkin flavor. We assume that it’s in there, and most of our panelists docked the beer points on its absence. But the ghost of pumpkins past did little to dissuade our panel from raving about the taste.

Aftertaste was judged fairly high, dominated by a sweet smokiness accompanied by a warming sensation of the high alcohol content.

So, we suggest that you grab a bottle of this, light up a campfire, and enjoy this autumn masterpiece as slow as…yup, you guessed it. Molasses.

(Appearance 7.17, Smell 8, Taste 25, Aftertaste 16.33, Drinkability 25.33)

Harpoon Imperial Pumpkin Appearance (10) Smell (10) Taste (30) Aftertaste (20) Drinkability (30) Total (100)
Jon 9 9 25 18 26 87
Mike 8 8 24 15 25 80
Bob 9 8 27 16 24 84
Amy 6 8 26 19 26 85
Sue 5 8 25 16 27 81
Ken 6 7 23 14 24 74
Average: 7.17 8. 25. 16.33 25.33 81.83