This Day On The Street
Continue to site
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Is All That Halloween Candy and Pumpkin Beer Going To Keep?

PORTLAND, Ore. ( TheStreet) -- There's been Halloween candy in grocers' seasonal aisles since the kids went back to school. There was still Fourth of July cookout remnant on your grill when the first pumpkin beers started appearing on shelves.

What's the chance that any of it is going to taste good when the first trick-or-treaters start ringing the doorbell?

Seasonal creep affects just about all corners of the retail world, as evidenced by anyone who's ever sighed at a Costco (COST) Christmas display in August, only to buy three rolls of wrapping paper and an illuminated reindeer lawn ornament. We drank our first bottles of Full Sail Brewing's Wassail and Deschutes Brewing's Jubleale in September and realize we're part of the problem, but this is basically what shoppers are forced to do if they want a seasonal offering at its peak.

We wrote our pumpkin beer preview back in August and went into great depth on exactly why brewers hustle that particular beer out so seemingly early. As countless threads on message boards for beer websites such as BeerAdvocate point out, pumpkin beers often made with pumpkin puree and spices -- and little to no fresh pumpkin -- hit the shelves early because you basically stop drinking it after Halloween.

Pumpkin beers are increasingly popular, sure, but brewers including Schlafly Beer, Weyerbacher and the Pacific Northwest brewers grilled about the topic by New School Beer last year routinely explain that the only reason it's on shelves in July in August is because drinkers have already switched to winter seasonals by November or even late October.

Not that the beers being released early wouldn't keep, mind you. Because even beers produced with copious amounts of fresh pumpkin tend to be fairly malty, that profile keeps them relatively fresh for about 180 days. In the case of Pumking, produced by Lakewood, N.Y.-based Southern Tier and released in July, its 9% alcohol by volume makes it worth keeping in a cool basement spot until next Halloween. It's not necessary to do so, however, as the puree-based imperial is brewed specifically to sell out by October -- and has, despite the brewery increasing production from 400 barrels in 2008 to 1,100 barrels last year.

Even if you found yourself with a July bottle of Shipyard Pumpkinhead or an old keg of Post Road Pumpkin, it wouldn't necessarily be undrinkable. It takes a long while for beer to outright spoil, but its character can change the longer it stays in the bottle or keg. A typically sweet, spicy pumpkin-pie brew can take on an earthy, tepid character when it lingers a bit too long -- almost akin to soda flattening. Brewers and casual drinkers alike hate this because it robs the beer of its original odor and flavor and destroys the consistency. Folks inclined toward cellaring high-alcohol, high-gravity beers, meanwhile, bank on that kind of evolution.

1 of 2

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
AAPL $131.78 -0.20%
FB $80.14 -0.50%
GOOG $539.78 -0.00%
TSLA $251.45 1.62%
YHOO $43.07 -0.71%

Markets

DOW 18,126.12 -36.87 -0.20%
S&P 500 2,120.79 -2.69 -0.13%
NASDAQ 5,097.9760 -8.6170 -0.17%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs