The fall season is in full swing especially on the shelves and taps at your favorite places to enjoy craft beer. While pumpkin beers seem to get all the glory this time year there are some craft beer lovers that turn away from them, but there great fall seasonal beers that don’t involve pumpkin.
Seasonal beers tend to share a similar style in other months but with the fall season they range a great deal from hop forward offerings to sours to smooth brown ales and everything in between.
Regardless of the style though fall beers act as transitions into the colder weather and bridge the gap from light airy summer beers into dark thick winter beers. Whether you are a fan of pumpkin beers there are many great beers to choose from on this short list of fall seasonal beers and none of them have pumpkin in them.
Great Lakes Brewing Company- Nosferatu: This imperial red ale offers a sweet malt backbone with hints of roasted malts present throughout. However, what truly shines in this classic horror inspired beer is the hop bite. The spicy hops give this beer its signature crisp taste that is an absolute must have each year!
The Bruery- Autumn Maple: This is The Bruery’s take on a pumpkin beer, but it does not have pumpkin in it! Instead it is brewed with 17 pounds of yams per barrel with cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, vanilla, molasses, and maple syrup, and fermented with a traditional Belgian yeast strain. The result is a beer that has hints of being pumpkin ale, but with a twist that make it unique and perfect on a cold autumn evening.
Bell’s Brewery- Bell’s Best Brown: Brown ales are textbook for the fall as they have wonderful roasted malt notes but aren’t as heavy as their porter and stout brethren. Bell’s Best brown has light roasted coffee, toffee, caramel, and the perfect amount of roasted malt characteristics. This is an extremely drinkable ale made for the fall!
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales- Fuego del Otoño: Translated to Autumn Fire, this sour beer offers the perfect touches of the wonderful puckering sour quality with a balance of spices and smooth, sweet malts. Hints of spices are present but sit perfectly with the sweet caramel malts and sour qualities of the beer. Surprisingly easy drinking and a perfect twist for a fall classic!
AleSmith Brewing Company- Evil Dead Red: This amber ale boasts an impressive 6.66 percent ABV with a deep blood red color and huge hop bite. The artwork portrays the living dead walking the earth in search of brains, or beer, your choice. The beer is yet another stellar release from AleSmith who have garnished a great reputation and Evil Dead Red is a must try for all fans of zombies and great beer!
Pumpkin beers can be a divisive topic among many beer drinkers with those who either love or hate it firmly planted in their respective camps. However, this short list of great fall beers has something for everyone and all are delicious!
Derek Warren is a beer fanatic, avid homebrewer and beer historian. Derek can be heard weekly on the Beer Geeks Radio Hour at noon on Sundays on WILK 103.1 FM with past episodes available on iTunes.