Pumpkin Down

Scottish Ale Ballast Point Brewing Company


Pumpkin Down, a Scottish Ale by Ballast Point Brewing Company

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Pumpkin Down is a Scottish Ale by Ballast Point Brewing Company, and for the purposes of this craft beer review, the ale was served in a nonic pint glass from a bottle.


Pours a clear, dark, auburn brown with a thick cap of tan foam that offers modest retention. Droplets cling to the glass while a soapy residue gathers at the collar.


The aroma is pleasantly sweet with a scent of pumpkin and brown sugar; spiced with cinnamon. It’s rounded out by a hint of floral hops.


The palate begins with a taste of lightly toasted bread and spices. A subdued bitterness picks up from there, providing a mild hint floral hops and orange citrus. Finishes dryly with lingering flavors of pumpkin and toffee.


Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with a medium-light body and a little less than moderate carbonation.


The use of pumpkin and spices aren’t overpowering and nicely complement the toasty malt. Some craving a pumpkin beer might be disappointed but within the confines of the style, the Pumpkin Down makes it work. For Ballast Point, this is a nice take on their original Piper Down Scottish Ale.

Recommended Pairings

Ballast Point recommends the following food pairings with their Pumpkin Down Scottish Ale: truffle risotto with butternut squash, sage gnocchi, and jalapeño cornbread.

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About the Scottish Ale

Scottish Ales (also known as Scotch Ales) are often enjoyed during the winter. Their flavors are rich and malty with sweet notes of caramel and toffee.

Historically, the Scottish Ale encompasses the four sub-styles Scottish Light, Scottish Heavy, Scottish Export, and Wee Heavy. Their names were indicative of the beer’s gravity and its expected cost for a barrel of beer.