Beer Banter

A blog for beer lovers created by beer lovers.

Best Beer Styles for Fall

Best Beer Styles for Fall

Crisp fall nights call for darker, maltier and more complex beer. Luckily, there are lots of great brands producing seasonal offerings. From sweet and coppery Märzen-style brews to dark and malty brown ales, here are some fall beer styles you should definitely try.

Pumpkin Ale

There is no way we can have a fall beer list and not include this specialty beer. One of the most popular fall seasonal beers is the pumpkin ale. Whether it’s brewed with fresh pumpkin or pumpkin puree, many craft brewers add spices typically found in pumpkin pie, like cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. Sweet and toasty, this is the brew you need to drink during sweater-weather season.

Our Picks: Brooklyn Post Road Pumpkin Ale, Leinenkugel’s Harvest Patch Shandy, New Belgium Voodoo Ranger Atomic Pumpkin, Saranac Pumpkin Ale & UFO Pumpkin Ale


A Märzen or Oktoberfest beer is a sweet, malty lager that originated in Germany. While all Oktoberfest beer is Märzen, not all Märzen beers can be called Oktoberfest. Traditionally the term Oktoberfest was reserved for beer that was produced within the Munich city limits for consumption at Oktoberfest. Today, many breweries use the moniker to describe their fall seasonals. 

Our Picks: Adirondack Oktoberfest, Harpoon Octoberfest, Samuel Adams Octoberfest, Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest & Yuengling Oktoberfest


Fans of the IPA will say that this beer can be enjoyed year round and we agree, but the kick that comes from hops is perfect to combat the colder weather that comes with the fall season. The first known IPAs were said to have been developed with extra hops to withstand the long commute to India. When it comes to IPAs, we say the hoppier the better!

Our Picks: Fiddlehead IPA, Harpoon IPA, Long Trail VT IPA, Saranac Hop Harvest Haze IPA & Sierra Nevada Hazy Little Thing IPA

Brown Ale

The brown ale was cleverly named after its color, which is derived from the use of chocolate and caramel malts. Like most American beers, the American brown ale is similar to the English style but with more hops. While the warm days of summer may be over, the frigid days of winter have yet to arrive (thankfully). The brown ale is the perfect transitional beer to get you through the crisp days of fall.

Our Picks: Artisanal BB Brown, Brooklyn Brown Ale, Druthers Fist of Karma, Newcastle & RS Taylor & Sons Nut Brown Ale


Cider is fermented alcohol made from the unfiltered juice of fruits. The juice of most varieties of apple can be used to make cider, but cider apples are best. Ciders range from clear to brown and dry to sweet and all ciders are gluten free! They make the perfect fall beverage, and pair nicely with savory cheeses, roasted pork and most desserts. This fall, enjoy a glass of refreshing hard apple cider.

Our Picks: Angry Orchard Crisp Apple Unfiltered, Bad Seed Original Dry Cider, Blue Toad Harvest Fest, Lake George Cider Project & Woodchuck Amber

Check out for a full list of different pumpkin ales, Oktoberfests, IPAs, brown ales, ciders and much more!

MacKenzie Zarzycki
MacKenzie Zarzycki

MacKenzie Zarzycki was born and raised in Schuylerville, N.Y., where the beer flows like wine. Now a Certified Cicerone®, MacKenzie is on a mission to further her beer knowledge. When she’s not contributing to, she’s nursing an unhealthy level of attachment to her dog, Kylie.

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