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Flossmoor Station Restaurant & Brewery
 
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Review by joe1510 on 11/16/09  
 
Score Appearance Smell Taste Mouthfeel Overall Impression Year
88 2 11 18 4 9 2009
64oz Growler
$13.95
Flossmoor Station

I've been dying to try Midnight Sun's Imperial Chocolate Pumpkin Porter for 2 years now, the mix of pumpkin, chocolate and porter sound delicious to me. Now that I finally have a bottle on the way Flossmoor Station came out with Big Black Pumpkin, a big porter made with pumpkin, cocoa nibs and pumpkin pie spices (ginger, allspice, clove, nutmeg and cinnamon). I can't wait to dig into this.

The filled to the brim growler fills my snifter with a solid black beer that doesn't let a hint of light through, even when directly backlit. The head easily grows to a finger + of instantly creamy mocha brown. It slowly fades to a solid cap with a thick collar that leaves behind sheet lacing after each drink until the glass is empty and the walls are covered in foam.

The nose is full of rich pumpkin pie filling and dusty cocoa. I can't decide if the pumpkin or spices get the nose running, either way what's there is good. Pumpkin, nutmeg, allspice, ginger, mild cinnamon and mild clove jump from the glass all in that order. The cocoa nibs bring along the dusty cocoa character while the base porter brings along more of a dark chocolate quality. Each swirl of the glass really brings the ginger forward but as the head dies back down the other spices lead. Black licorice and moderately roasted malts find their way through the spicing with each deep pull. Sticky molasses and a faint spicy alcohol come along as this beer warms.

The nose was led by spiciness but the flavor is led by big rich porter and cocoa. Don't get me wrong, the spices play a major role but the roastiness and dark chocolate of the porter make their stand with an excellent spine of maltiness. The pumpkin and spices play off the cocoa nibs and dark chocolate to make for a semi bitter sweet flavor that works really well. The ginger stands out nicely in the spicing along with allspice, thankfully the clove is mild. The pumpkin pie goes great with the chocolate and it's just the combo I've been waiting for.

The body is on the heavier side of medium, bordering on heavy, with a smooth creaminess which is nice to come across in a growler. The spiciness fades from the tongue rather quickly while the cocoa nibs leave a chocolate residue and a slight bitterness.

For being a pumpkin beer with a big porter base this beer goes down incredibly easy. There isn't the faintest hint of alcohol and this bomber is disappearing like no one's business.

Big Black Pumpkin is the ultimate pumpkin beer, for me, up to this point. The spices fit in with the porter nicely instead of overtaking the beer like 90% of the pumpkins out there. I'll look forward to this every year from now on.

Reviewed: 11/15/08

Price: $13.95 Served In: Pint Glass

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