Review: Abita Pecan Harvest Ale

Review of Abita Pecan Harvest Ale from Abita Brewing in Covington, LA.

Beer Type: Amber Ale  ABV: 5.1%  IBUs: 20  Tried from bottle.

Their Description: “Abita Pecan® Harvest Ale is brewed with pale, Munich, biscuit and caramel malts and Willamette hops. Real Louisiana roasted pecans are added in the brewhouse and give the ale a subtle nutty flavor and aroma. Crack one open for yourself.”

The Reality: This beer starts with a mild nutty malt scent and light brown color. The flavor is a nice blend of mild caramel malt and bitter hop flavors that are bolstered by a nutty richness. The nutty qualities give it a smooth finish and the aftertaste has a subtle rye-like spice to it. Overall I’d have to say their description is very accurate.

Final Verdict: The debate over whether it’s pronounced “Pee-can” or “Pick-ahn” will surely rage on, but there should be no debate that this is a good use for that particular nut. Using real nuts give a nice oily smoothness, richness and mouth-feel to beer that is tough to replicate and yet you don’t see it that often. Abita’s Pecan Harvest Ale has been one of my go-to seasonal beers for several years, because it’s just so drinkable. Not too sweet, not too bitter, and the subtle nuttiness transforms what would be a boring amber ale into something more. Just like adding time to mild-mannered child star Selena Gomez from Wizard’s of Waverly Place has turned her into something much more interesting…