DRINK IT DOWN: Cold Press Coffee Pumking by Southern Tier Brewing Company
The Pumpkin King
Brewer: Southern Tier Brewing Company
Style: Imperial Pumpkin Ale
Description: Cold Press Coffee Pumking pours a deep copper/amber hue with a frothy off-white head that leaves a little lacing on the glass. The aroma is a veritable cornucopia of fall favorites, with pumpkin spices front and center, followed by roasted coffee, vanilla, and sweet malts. The taste follows the nose with smooth coffee hitting the palate first, followed by clove, allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, cocoa, and hints of roasted pecans. The entire experience is akin to enjoying a slice of pumpkin pie with a cup of cold brewed coffee. The full body and moderate carbonation also aid in the smooth body of this beer, making a memorable drinking experience.
While there are no shortages of pumpkin beer this time of year, Cold Press Coffee Pumking truly reigns supreme and is an absolute must-try beer for all beer lovers.
Food pairing: Cold Press Coffee Pumking is certainly an incredible beer for pairing with desserts, but it is not a one-dimensional beer by any means. The fall season ushers in cooler temperatures and warm comfort food, and this is a great beer to pair with them all. A rustic butternut squash soup makes a great appetizer companion; the squashes and spices will meld into one for a great way to start any dinner.
If you want something heartier, try pairing with a roasted pork dinner. The natural caramelization of the meat will find a home within the sweet malts, while the spices and subtle bitterness from the coffee will act as the perfect balancer within the dish.
Again, though, this is a dream beer for desserts. Try with a decadent cheesecake, especially one of the pumpkin persuasion; this will highlight the creaminess of the beer itself. Other excellent desserts to try are spiced carrot cake, pumpkin muffins, gelato, or pumpkin bread. It should also be noted that Cold Press Coffee Pumking could act as a dessert all by itself with its rich creaminess, sweet coffee flavor, and wonderful pumpkin spice aroma and flavor.
The final word: Pumpkin beers can be a divisive topic. Many craft beer “purists” still claim that they are, in fact, not beer at all, while others wait anxiously for their release every year. Regardless of which camp you fall into, we can all agree that they are a sign of the fall season. Southern Tier’s Pumking has long been a fan favorite in the pumpkin beer category and, in recent years, the brewery has begun to build out from the original Pumking base beer.
A few years back, Warlock was introduced as a dark counterpart to Pumking, with a similar spice bill but in an imperial stout. More recently, the brewery began producing a delicious rum barrel aged version of Pumking in bottles and now Cold Press Coffee Pumking in bottles.
While Pumking is a favorite for many, the variants of this beer are even better, with Cold Press Coffee being one of the best. The smooth coffee flavors are the perfect counterpoint to what can be harsh spices, creating a beer that is incredibly balanced and easy drinking. This is the perfect beer for fall evenings around a campfire, watching horror movies with friends, or enjoying with a slice of pumpkin pie.
Where can I get it? This beer is just coming back to the market now, so be on the lookout, but it is currently available in 12 oz. bottles at: Beer Boys (176 N. Washington St., Wilkes-Barre), Sabatini’s Bottleshop & Bar (1925 Wyoming Ave., Exeter), The Nyx (218 Depot St., Clarks Summit), Tomato Bar & Bistro (7 Tomato Festival Dr., Pittston), Kildare’s Irish Pub (119 Jefferson Ave., Scranton), and Krugel’s Georgetown Deli & Beer (720 Wilkes-Barre Twp. Blvd., Wilkes-Barre).
It is also available on draft at Beer Boys and The Loading Dock Bar & Grill (1206 O’Neill Hwy., Dunmore).