I SEE YOU are drinking a pumpkin beer, my hipster friend. The pumpkin spice latte of beers.
So, how’s fall going for you? Not that you are into that. You don’t have a Pinterest board full of photos of boots in fallen leaves and recipes for your Instant Pot. Fall, for you, means things like wood chopping and ironic viewings of ’80s horror films, certainly not six-packs of beers with jack-o’-lanterns on the labels and the heady, home-invoking flavor of nutmeg lingering in the tasting notes. But don’t feel self-conscious about that pumpkin-label beer in your hand, just because you won’t let yourself be seen walking into a Starbucks to order a drink that comes with “pumps” of anything.
After all, unlike PSLs, pumpkin beers contain mountains of actual pumpkin, the macerated orange flesh added to the mash that gets fermented along with the grain and hops and, you know, all that actual “beer” stuff. And pumpkin beer is the only really originally American beer style, brewed from a fruit (pumpkins are botanically fruits, you see) that grows only stateside, so there’s something patriotic about it.
Personally, I find it impossible to avoid pumpkin spice in fall, its presence exponentially increasing yearly as manufacturers figure out how to wad cinnamon, clove and ginger into everything from pasta sauce to body wash to breakfast cereal.
But I know you’d never fall for anything the Autumnal Industrial Complex would churn out. I mean, you collect Frank Zappa on vinyl. You’re above that kind of thing.
Oh, you went to the Great Pumpkin beer festival last week? To make fun of the whole idea? Or perhaps it was to have a few sips/several pints of the plethora of surprisingly tasty orange-labeled beers that come out the minute the trees start to go ruddy and the leggings of women carrying those PSLs go from capri to fleece-lined.
But no; obviously someone with a black-coffee-loving palate like yourself would prefer a super-hoppy IPA or a smoky German rauchbier to a brew that, with its mild — yet distinct — flavors of pumpkin and cinnamon, pairs perfectly with such eye-rollingly basic autumn foods as beef stew and pot roast.
You’re above comfort. You don’t even wear socks.
But you say Elysian Brewing Company has four pumpkin beers? And you have all of them in your fridge? I guess that’s a form of irony.
That Great Pumpkin ale seems pretty on-the-nose … and it’s an IPA, for “Imperial Pumpkin Ale.” How droll (yet oddly delicious). And this Dark Knife is a German schwarzbier — that’s a serious, heavy brew for nights spent watching “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” and laughing at their normcore outfits. Oh, I really like this Night Owl beer; the label has a real “Twin Peaks”y-vibe, which fits your personal brand of dry horror while still tasting strongly of cozy winter spices.
But I really don’t get this Punkuccino coffee pumpkin beer. It’s basically a PSL in beer form … oh. I get it now. That’s hilarious. Let me just grab one for … well, certainly not for drinking outside in my crocheted fingerless gloves when you’re not looking. Live, laugh, love; amirite?