Pumpkin prevalent in fall beverages
Fall usually means pumpkin-flavored everything, and that’s no exception for adult beverages.
It’s not all about the big orange gourd, though. Here’s a look at some beverages that are new, or new to Michigan, for the fall season, pumpkin-flavored or otherwise:
New Holland Brewing Carhartt Woodsman: To celebrate the rugged workwear company’s 125th anniversary, Carhartt has teamed up with Michigan’s New Holland Brewing to craft Woodsman beer. The barrel-aged pale ale hit local bars, restaurants and store shelves earlier this week.
Vander Mill Ginger Peach Cider: As the hard cider market continues to go bananas, Spring Lake’s Vander Mill brewery, winery and vineyard have upped the game with their unique and crisp Ginger Peach variety. Look for it in a 16-ounce can.
Our/Detroit Vodka: The local arm of the national Our/Vodka brand, this distillery uses the corporate recipe, but with local ingredients. The result is a very smooth taste with hints of citrus. Check out the distillery and tasting room at 2524 Bagley in Detroit. Purchase a 350 ml bottle to go ($16.99), or order a craft cocktail and sip it on site.
New Belgium Tour de Fall: This Colorado-based brewery blends its love for beer and bikes with its new seasonal beer Tour de Fall. The amber-colored pale ale is made with a dry hopping technique and has notes of pine and citrus and is 6 percent ABV.
Labatt Prohibition Series: Founded in 1847, Labatt has survived many historic events, namely prohibition. To honor this, the Canadian beer company released a Prohibition Series of suds sold in shortneck bottles with attractive throwback labeling. Unfortunately, what’s inside is not very impressive. The Bourbon Barrel Ale doesn’t taste much like bourbon, and instead has strange floral notes. The Apple Harvest Ale works a bit better; it has a mild apple flavor and is more drinkable.
Highland Park Single Malt Scotch Dark Origins: Warm up this fall with this dark and smokey, no-age Scotch whisky, which is more than 90 proof and hits shelves Wednesday. It retails for around $80.
Firemans Brew: This Los Angeles-based craft brewery was founded by two firefighters. Their Blonde (pilsner), Brunette (doublebock) and Redhead (amber ale) labels only recently began getting distribution in Michigan. We liked the Brunette best. Look for Firemans Brew at well-stocked beer stores like Shores Canteen in St. Clair Shores or Bottles N’ Stuff in Livonia.
Roca Patrón: This new line of Patron tequila is made with high-quality ingredients, including Weber blue agave that is crushed using a two-ton piece of volcanic rock, hence the name (“roca” is Spanish for “rock”). This high-end tequila — which comes in silver, resposado and añejo — is also a bit higher proof than standard Patrón. It is $69.99-$89.99 for a 750 ml bottle.
Alaskan Pumpkin Porter: Products from Alaskan Brewery recently started being distributed in Michigan, and that includes its seasonal brew Pumpkin Porter, a dark beer with notes of pumpkin and chocolate.
Saugatuck Brewing Company Pumpkin Chai: Taking pumpkin beer to another level, this Michigan brewery has invented an ale brewed with herbal chai tea along with with everyone’s favorite seasonal squash.
Griffin Claw Brewing Company Screamin’ Pumpkin Ale: This isn’t exactly a new product (it debuted last year), but what is new this year is the cool day-glow can. Inside Screamin’ Pumpkin Ale’s glow-in-the-dark packaging is a quality craft beer with the flavors of pumpkin pie. At Griffin Claw’s Birmingham taproom (575 S. Eton), look for Norm’s Pumpkin Spice IPA and Bourbon Barrel Imperial Pumpkin Stout.
Kahlúa Pumpkin Spice: This limited edition of Kahlúa debuted last year and returns this year for a short time. In addition to coffee and sugarcane rum, it has flavors of natural pumpkin and autumn spices. Mix it with a dash of apple cider or add vodka and cream to make a fall-flavored White Russian.