As the Al Jarreau song goes, "Anyone who's ever had sweet potato pie don't want pumpkin again."
Is it possible the same adage holds true for beer? It is if, like me, you're suffering from post-pumpkin-brew-stress syndrome. The clever beer minds behind Yardley's Vault Brewing have taken Jarreau's advice to heart and created a very worthy tuber-centric seasonal reply to the ubiquitous pumpkin craze. Using 60 pounds of roasted local sweet potatoes, which have considerably higher fermentable sugars than pumpkin, they've brewed an orange-amber ale that's still dry but vivid with well-balanced pie spice - Saigon cinnamon, nutmeg, and Mexican vanilla - and that doesn't overdo it. What really takes this ale to the next level, though, is the use of low-fizz nitro for a softer carbonation. Vault, which has been brewing the beer for three years, issued its first batch of sweet potato ale in cans - and the 2,500-can batch sold out within three days. Thankfully, it will remain on draft at the pub until Thanksgiving. With a Guinness-like nitro head creating what looks like a cloud of whipped cream on top, you might as well just order this sweet potato ale by the slice. - Craig LaBan
Sweet potato ale, $6 a pint, Vault Brewing Co., 10 S. Main St., Yardley, 267-573-4291; vaultbrewing.com