Summer time is saying its final farewell, and the crisp days of fall are upon us. As the seasons change, so can our beer choices. One of the fun things about beer is that with each glorious season comes an equally glorious batch of seasonal microbrews. While summer rings of citrus notes and light frothy pale ales, fall calls for pumpkin, darker ales, hard ciders, and fresh hops. Nothing beats a cold brew when you're sitting around the campfire, especially when enjoyed on a crisp fall day. Here is a breakdown of the very best beers for you to enjoy on all of your fall camping adventures.
Photo: Austin Trigg
1. Punkin Ale, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery.
This tasty brown ale has hints of pumpkin and brown sugar. It doesn’t get more cozy than that. But don’t be fooled by it’s cute name - Punkin has a 7% ABV. It’s no joke. Hurry and grab some of this full-bodied beer for yourself before it’s gone. It sells out fast!
2. Evil Dead Red, AleSmith.
With it’s deep blood-red color this beer should be a go-to for fall, especially come Halloween. With a sweet, rich, and bready flavor, this rich brew so good - it’s scary.
3. Tumbler, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
A fun take on a classic brown ale, Tumbler is full of roasted malt flavor. You’ll pick up hints of toasted bread, smoke, and chocolate, which - despite how this combination of flavors may sound - actually comes out quite nicely. This beer just tastes like fall.
4. Night Owl Pumpkin Ale, Elysian Brewing Co.
This pumpkin ale isn’t screwing around, and it’s certainly not skimping on the pumpkin. Each barrel of the Night Owl Pumpkin Ale is brewed with seven and a half pounds of pumpkin. You’ll pick up hints of cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, and allspice. This beer is full of festive flavor and has a 6.7% ABV.
5. Best Brown Ale, Bell’s Brewery.
This ale has hints of cocoa and caramel. Tasty and not too heavy, this medium-bodied brew is a fall must.
6. Zombie Killer, B. Nektar.
This is actually not a beer, but this list would not be complete without at least one hard cider. You’ll get the sweet taste of cherries and honey, which nicely compliment the crisp cider base. It’s lightly carbonated and oh-so-refreshing, like a cool fall day.
Photo: Whitney James
7. Punk’n Harvest Pumpkin Ale, Uinta Brewing Co.
Pumpkin and spice and everything nice, this ale is TASTY.
8. Fall Harvest Just Like Apple, Woodchuck Hard Cider.
Ok, so let’s throw another cider into the mix. Apples and cinnamon - a perfect combo.
9. Big Leaf Maple Autumn Red, Anchor Brewing.
Inspired by the Big Leaf maple trees that grow along the California coast, this red ale is one of a kind. The Big Leaf maple has an unusually flavorful syrup, and that flavor comes through in every single batch of this beer.
10. Pumpkin Down, Ballast Point.
This pumpkin ale breaks the mold. You’ll taste toffee, caramel, and yes, pumpkin. But rather than getting an overwhelmingly spicy and pumpkin-pie-like flavor, you’ll instead find the taste of this Scottish ale to be earthy and just damn good.
11. PUMKING, Southern Tier Brewing Co.
Perhaps the absolute best pumpkin beer out there, the flavor in this brew is out of this world. Enjoy this in a cold glass with cinnamon sugar on the rim. Can’t be beat.
12. Autumn Maple, The Bruery.
Mix things up a bit with this autumn brew that is made from yams, rather than pumpkin. The flavor is bold and spicy with the tiniest hint vanilla. Track this beer down if you can. You wont regret it.
13. Pumpkin Cider, Harpoon.
One more cider to finish off this list. Real pumpkin; Freshly pressed apples; This cider is light, crisp, and unlike anything else out there. Added bonus: it is also naturally gluten free.
Photo: Conor Barry
Please enjoy your favorite fall beer responsibly.
Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.
Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph.