Pumpkinator & More
It's getting to be that time of year, although you wouldn't know it by Houston's temperatures or utter lack of autumnal coloring.
But lest you get fooled into thinking it's summer again, there's a host of breweries both local and national here to remind you that it's mid-October with their pumpkin-infused brews.
So brush the moth ball smell off your pea coat and settle in with one of these autumn ales:
Saint Arnold Pumpkinator — It sold out quickly enough that Spec's imposed a four-bottle per-person limit, although the demand is nothing like Divine Reserve Day delirium. Spec's midtown is sold out, but you can reportedly (at time of posting) find it at Anvil, Benjy's on Washington and at the Kirkwood and Westheimer Spec's. Shipments are still going out, so never fear!
Shock Top Pumpkin Wheat — A Belgian-style wheat with pumpkin, nutmeg, cloves and a hint of cinnamon. Basically, pie in a pint glass. Still available at the Midtown Spec's.
Dogfish Punkin Ale — This one's also sold out at Spec's Midtown but is much more likely to be available elsewhere than Pumpkinator. It's a heavier brown ale with a nice brown sugar component. Bonus fact: It's named after Punkin Chunkin, an infamous event that I think we should establish locally.
Buffalo Bill's Imperial Pumpkin Ale — Brewed at Cali's Buffalo Bill brewpub, this pumpkin amber ale is available year-round. Fun fact? It's 9.8 percent alcohol by volume — perfect for family get-togethers.
Brooklyn Brewery's Post Road Pumpkin Ale — This ale is said by reviewers to be less predictably cinnamon-heavy, with citrus layers in addition to pumpkin. This brew is only available through November, and Spec's midtown has it now.
Sam Adams Harvest Pumpkin Ale — The only Sams Adams Harvest we saw at Spec's Midtown (sorry, it's our neighborhood locale) was in a variety pack, but that seems more like a plus than a punishment. Sam Adam's Halloweenie concoction has more than 11 pounds of pumpkin per barrel and a rusty amber hue.
Woodchuck Private Reserve Pumpkin Cider — We had reservations about this one, being that cider is usually tart and fruit-based, but this seasonal is gourdeous (did that work? say yes.) Snatch it up at Spec's.