My first visit to Halifax was several years ago when I, a late twenty-something, thought it would be fun to haul my parents, late sixty-somethings, across three provinces in a crammed Pontaic Sunfire. While it had its problems it was a great way to explore uncharted territory and create unforgettable memories with my parents. In a short week we packed in as much Maritime tourism as we could with stops at Potato World, a drive through the World's Longest Covered-Bridge and a freshly cooked lobster dinner, enjoyed with a rainy view of the Atlantic Ocean.
Besides eating all of the fish and rappie pie I could, I made sure to drink my (and my parents) share of local craft beer and stock up on bottles at the local breweries. In Halifax I took the Alexander Keith's brewery tour and made quick stops at Propeller Brewing Co. and Garrison Brewing Co. While the actors and costumes were fun at Keith's, I fell in (beer) love with the small Propeller Brewing Co. located in the North End of Halifax on Gottingen Street.
Lucky for me, my visit to Propeller was timed perfectly with the release of their popular Pumpkin Ale and it's where my obsession with the seasonal started. Made with Howard Dill's Atlantic Giant pumpkins, Propeller's Pumpkin Ale pours clear orange with a fizzy white head and smells mostly of pumpkin with a nice spice kick in the background. It tastes almost like it smells with lots of real pumpkin flavour at the front with plenty of spices blending in and a big bitter finish at the end.
Admittedly, it isn't the best pumpkin beer I've tasted this year - although very light and easy to drink it seems almost off balance with big pumpkin and spice flavour overwhelming the malt. However, one whiff of those Atlantic Giant's I'm transported back to Gottingen Street stashing cases of Propeller beer in my car, hoping my parents don't realize how much I've bought.