Japanese Name: サントリー クラフトセレクト ザ・パンプキン
Release: Oct. 6, 2015
Type: Type: Happoushu
Purchase Price: ￥213 @Aeon
Volume 5 in Suntory’s Craft Select series is The Pumpkin, given a happoushu classification due to its incorporation of pumpkin into the recipe, but with a malt content over 50% it’s taxed at beer rates leading to its high price. In any case, The Pumpkin is made with roasted caramel malt and of course pumpkin, and is sure to be something different than what you’re drinking right now.
Pouring out a nice deep amber color, The Pumpkin shows off its aroma right from the start, a sweet fragrance reminiscent of one special October night. It has a very refined flavor, not too sweet and more on the bitter side with just the pumpkin aroma showing off on the tip of the nose. The mid-palate shows the malt and on the back end a fair amount of bitterness kicks in. The aftertaste is clean but leaves some of the pumpkin flavor in the mouth for you to savor.
Where as Suntory’s Pumpkin Special shows off a more sweet quality, when you drink The Pumpkin you are first and foremost drinking a beer, and a very good one at that. Suntory has created something truly unique and really shows that pumpkins deserve more respect than just jack-o-lantern status and would-be hooligans better think first before smashing them on the streets. The Pumpkin is a must try, unless you despise the flavor of pumpkin. This one is on my A-list this season.