Pumpkin Ale 5.8% ABV

Ballast Point Pumpkin Down Scottish Ale

The label of this beer is pretty awesome: a pumpkin bagpipe-playing skeleton faceplanted down on the brick road as his fellow marching musicians look on (a clever take on the Piper Down label). Good stuff.


The strongest characteristic to the aroma of this beer is a sweet, caramel malt scent that is almost syrupy smelling…perhaps a bit molasses-like at that. There are definitely pumpkin and pie spices that mix in with the sweetness as well, though they are fairly subtle.


Surprisingly, the flavor of Pumpkin Down is very subtle and even. The strong sweet maltiness that I smelled made me think this would be a really heavy, syrupy beer that drinks more like a meal than a beverage. Not so — it’s on the lighter side of all the pumpkin ales (and fall seasonals in general) I’ve had. The pumpkin pie spices are even more subtle in the flavor than they are in the aroma.


I really enjoy this Pumpkin Down. It’s a nice change-up compared to the other fall seasonals and pumpkin ales out there in that it’s a pretty low-key and light weight beer. It drinks really easily and doesn’t have a ton of strong flavors or sweetness that just sits in your belly. It’s supposedly brewed in the Scottish Ale style, and while the flavor tilts that direction, the body of it doesn’t follow, in my opinion. That’s not a bad thing, though…this is a very clean, easy-drinking, and well brewed beer.

Brief Sheet

Ballast Point Pumpkin Down Scottish Ale

  • StylePumpkin Ale
  • ABV5.8% ABV
  • BrewerBallast Point Brewing Company

Brief Score