10/8/22: Alexandria Brewing Company’s Flesh of Pumpkin

5:46 PM

We’ve finally, at long last, come to Spooky Finger Puppet Ghost Month’s first (and, quite possibly, only) porter. For those who are fresh to the blog, or those of you who need a reminder: Porter is my favorite style of beer.

I love the roasted malt that’s not as powerful as you’d find in a stout. I love that they’re primarily associated with autumn. I love how crisp, cool, and (generally-) mildly boozy they are. When you throw pumpkin into the mix? Yes, please.

This is, somehow, my first ever post about an Alexandria brew. The Northern Kentucky brewery features a family-friendly taproom with a rotating taplist of their quality beers. Head brewer and CEO, Andy Reynolds, got into brewing and beer when he was deployed overseas. A graduate of the Siebel Institute of Technology's brewing program, he brings passion and experience to the Alexandria, KY brewery.

Flesh of (the, a word that used to be in the name) Pumpkin doesn't have any writeup that I can find on Alexandria Brewing's website, so I'll pull my info from Untappd.  It's a 10.5% (according to my can, it's Untappd page lists it as 10.89%) ABV Baltic porter brewed with pumpkin, pumpkin pie spices (cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg, as printed on my can), and brown sugar. It's supposed to be at home with Halloween and all those great year-end holidays.

That good proter roastiness is the first note of my initial waft of the beer. Coffee and dark chocolate deliciousness. Beyond that, I find cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, and, at last, before the booziness (which is much higher than that standard mildly boozy quality I like from the style) creeps in, the pumpkin hits with no small amount of gourdy warmth. Purrl gave my can three whiffs, so, while I love the bouquet, she doesn't particularly care for the porter.

The flavor is one that grows as each swig progresses. First, I find some solid pumpkin, nearly pie-like and complete with crust. After this, there's a rush of coffee and chocolate (thanks, porter!) that are quickly drowned out by those hearty pumpkin pie spices. Next comes the booze, a hard hit, and some mild, bitter hops that linger with the booze in the finish that's not as long as I'd thought it'd be.

Flesh of Pumpkin's mouthfeel is robust and rich, like a dessert in a can. Full, hearty, and bracing against these cooling nights.

Speaking of nights, have you ever driven down a haunted road at night? Maybe stopped on a crybaby bridge to see if you can hear a newborn's wail? Or looked for some long-ago scorned bride around a sudden, sharp curve?

When I was in high school, I lived near a church where the ghost of a little girl was said to stand, crying each night. On more than one occasion, I took a long way home at night, just to drive by the church to see if the girl was there. As I drew near, I'd slow my car, my heart would beat faster, and my hair would stand on end.

I never saw the spectre, but the idea of the haunt was exhilarating.

I really like everything today's beer has going for it. Alexandria Brewing's Flesh of Pumpkin's a fine example of a boozy baltic porter, with a phenomenal autumnal spin. Now that I'm at the end of this post, I'm finding prevailing lingering tastes of nutmeg and cinnamon, not pumpkin or roastiness. This lends the whole affair an almost nutty quality. The beer nets an 8.0/10 from me. Look for more Alexandria Brewing offerings on the blog in the coming year!

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