Holidaily Brewing Patchy Waters Pumpkin Ale
Gluten Free Pumpkin Ale
As much as I begged for it not to happen–the Fall season reared its head anyway. So here we are. The temperatures are dropping, my trees are naked, and winter beers are on the way. BUT first…let’s celebrate the blip in the calendar that is late summer/early Fall beers. Predominately Fresh Hop and Pumpkin beers.
Today I have my sights set on the Patchy Waters Pumpkin Ale brewed by Holidaily Brewing in Golden, Colorado. It’s named after the founder’s family sailboat, and is brewed with millet, buckwheat, and Organic pumpkin. It has an ABV of 6% and is sold in 4-packs of 16 oz. burnt orange cans that fit right in with their flagship branding. Same simple (mostly) black and white sketch drawing format on the front.
The 2020 Taste Test
Patchy Waters Pumpkin Ale
This year’s Patchy Waters Pumpkin Ale pours with a burnt autumn red color with twinges of orange and brown–depending on the lighting situation. It has a healthy head that’s not excessive, but it does linger for an incredible amount of time! This ale is pretty cloudy on the transparency scale, and it shifts to orange when you hold it up to the light.
The nose is packed with spices and plenty of pumpkin. I’m picking up on more malt than hops in the aroma. There’s a touch of sweetness there too.
I don’t feel like this is always the case with pumpkin beers…but this one tastes incredibly similar to how it smells. I feel like the pumpkin is a bit stronger than in past years, but it still tastes completely balanced with a savory blend of pie spices like ginger, nutmeg, and clove.
The beginning of the tasting experience is faintly sweet, and a little fruity with a wonderful dose of carbonation to kick off the texture. As the beer moves to the middle of the palate, the malt shines through more thoroughly, the sweetness fades and its medium body carries it to the throat. Once at the back of the palate, you’re left to enjoy the after show of pumpkin pie—minus the sweetness.
This pumpkin beer tastes rich without being too much. Somehow they manage to pull of the perfect balance of so many ostentatious flavors. No one overpowering another. I like that the beer finishes slightly dry after enjoying a splash of sweet through the palate, allowing the spices to shine and the palate to feel a bit refreshed in between sips.
This may be my favorite Patchy Waters release yet honestly. I think it fully embraces the pumpkin ale style better than any before it. It’s not holding back, and it doesn’t have to because its taste, texture, and body are so well balanced.
If you’ve had the opportunity to try this pumpkin ale over the years, would you agree with my memory? Was this your favorite year yet? Let’s discuss below!
The 2019 Taste Test
Patchy Waters Pumpkin Ale
This beer looks very similar to last year’s batch of Patch Waters Pumpkin Ale. It still has that cloud copper hue. The muted brownish-orange shade is an absolutely perfect Fall color. The cloudiness reveals some light and shadow shapes when held up to the light, but overall, the appearance is pretty opaque.
The head was moderate, much like last year’s. The aroma seems to be even lighter on the pumpkin this time though. The taste is bright, and reflects the lighter pumpkin notes that I observed in the aroma. There is a wonderful presence of Fall spice that coats the tongue and lingers in the back of the throat after swallow.
The 2019 Patchy Waters Pumpkin Ale has a medium body and a smooth finish. Tasting it again reminds me just how much I like this beer. It’s carbonation is delicate and supportive of the beers overall texture. The sweetness is mild and pleasant, making for a very easy-drinking pumpkin ale.
This is simply a fantastic gluten free take on a seasonal ale, and I highly recommend anyone within its grasp to snatch some up before the preciously short Autumn season comes to an end! To watch the NEW 2019 Patchy Waters beer pour video, head on over to Instagram for the speed pour, or to Patreon for the real-time, sound-on version! If you want to know what I thought of the 2018 version, keep reading…
The 2018 Taste Test
Patchy Waters Pumpkin Ale
The Patchy Waters Pumpkin Ale pours a deep and cloudy hue of golden-copper. Actually, the color of the beer is shockingly similar to the color of its can. It’s head wasn’t remarkable, but it did form a small one during the pour. It didn’t stick around for long.
The beer smells lightly–but not overwhelmingly– of pumpkin. Like a bowl of pumpkin pie filling, before it’s been baked. The aroma has a warm cinnamon and clove presence to it as well, an appetizing quality for a Fall seasonal. It doesn’t smell like a heavy beer. The aroma somehow conveys a freshness to the brew.
Upon first taste, I discover the pumpkin flavor is mild, similar to my experience with the aroma. The first sensation to hit my palate is the undeniable crispness of the (fairly light) carbonation. The soft onset of flavors allows the carbonation to be showcased right up front.
That sensation fades quickly though, and what follows is the smooth and unoffending flavor of pumpkin. There’s virtually no bitterness, and I must say, my favorite part about the Patchy Waters Pumpkin Ale is that it is not particularly sweet. It does have a molasses-like sweetness, and it lingers on the palate for awhile, but its intensity is low.
There’s also plenty of spicy clove, nutmeg, and cinnamon notes. It prompted me to check the ingredient list, where I discovered that there’s ginger in this beer too. The pumpkin is certainly there, but it’s not stealing the show and it doesn’t cross the threshold of a sweet dessert beer. It doesn’t taste like a pumpkin pie in a glass. In fact, dare I say it, this beer actually tastes healthy with all the squash and spice it contains.
One thing I’ve noticed myself saying repeatedly during my Holidaily Brewing taste tests…this beer is so damn smooth! Their Patchy Waters Pumpkin Ale is no exception. How do they keep doing this? Every beer style I’ve ever tried of Holidaily’s (even the ones I don’t particularly care for) are SO SMOOTH. It’s remarkable.
In fact, some might find it too smooth! Some beer drinkers may prefer it to have a little more density or spice behind it’s pumpkin label, but I find it quite refreshing and drinkable. It is indeed an ale…not a dessert.
Have you had the opportunity to taste this beer? If so, leave me a comment below to tell me what you thought of it! Again, don’t forget to check the beer pour on our Instagram or Facebook. If you want to browse more Holidaily reviews, check out their Buckwit Belgian, Fat Randy’s IPA, Riva Stout, and Favorite Blonde. They even did a fun collaboration beer with Aurochs Brewing and Grouse Malt House. It’s called the Brewnited IPA, and you can see the review here.