I like autumn. Maybe it’s because I hail from the cold north, but it’s always been my favourite season. I love the amber and golden hue of the leaves, wearing jumpers and the recently harvested bounty the season bestows upon us. But this year, what I’ve most been looking forward to is the release of Beavertown’s Stingy Jack pumpkin beer.
There are some key dates in the beer year such as new releases of Stone Brewing Co.’s Enjoy By IPA and Magic Rock Brewing’s Unhuman Cannonball Triple IPA, but I was so blown away by last year’s Stingy Jack that the impending release of the 2014 version has had me on tenterhooks for weeks. I first tried it at The Old Fountain in Old Street, and almost a year to the day picked up a couple of bottles from Bottledog on Gray’s Inn Road. At £6.50 each this compares favourably to the £7.50 price tag at Sourced Market, but it’s even more affordable at the City Beverage Co. on Old Street and Oddbins in Crouch End (£6.00 and £5.80 respectively).
I’d previously only had it on keg so was intrigued to try a “Bomber” or big f*ck off bottle to you and me (660 ml incidentally). As you pop the cap you’re immediately hit with a pumpkin aroma with cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. It pours a deep amber with a fine off-white head, and the flavour is pumpkin and spice, which nicely balances the sweetness. I’ve never been to America but I felt like I had been immediately transported to some diner in the mid-west, and just been served a slice of pumpkin pie and damn good coffee by a slightly cantankerous server. And at 7.2% Stingy Jack is way too drinkable.
My first Untappd check-in of Stingy Jack had the following comment, and the message remains the same:
‘I urge anyone in the locality to get yourself down here and have a pint of this. In the strongest terms.’
I’m no Oscar Wilde but it’s the message that’s important. If you don’t drink Stingy Jack this autumn you’re just plain silly.