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Dark O' The Moon - Elysian Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dark O' The MoonDark O' The Moon

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

130 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 130
Hads: 526
Avg: 3.89
pDev: 23.39%
Wants: 98
Gots: 79 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Elysian Brewing Company visit their website
Washington, United States

Style | ABV
Pumpkin Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jletts on 11-06-2007

Stout brewed with pumpkin, and pumpkin seeds with cinnamon added. Spookily smooth and chocolatey with a hint of cinnamon - brewed annually for Elysian's Great Pumpkin Beer Festival.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 130 | Hads: 526
Photo of bum732
3/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

S: Slight roasty coffee, touch of chocolate, light pumpkin spices.

L: Very dark brown, bordering on black, light tan head that dissipates.

T: Dry roastiness with slightly spicy malt. No clear hop character. Medium bitterness with a prominent cinnamon spiciness. There is almost like a chili heat present, but very mild.

M: Medium mouthfeel, medium carbonation.

Meh, didn't really think it worked. The pumpkin edge was dull overall.

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Photo of claspada
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampled immediately after sharing a bomber of The Great Pumpkin.

Pours a lighter black color with an inch of dark tan head that slowly recedes leaving some spotty lacing on the glass.

Aromas begin initally mostly on the Stout side, with some roasted chocolate malts and coffee taking center stage. As it warms the spice aspects come out highlighted by cinnamon and then a little roasted pumpkin flesh. The toasted bready, burnt caramel notes also emerge more.

The tastes begin similarly with dark roasted maltiness followed by additional notes of chocolate and caramel sweetness. As it warms you get a subtle burst of pumpkin and cinnamon. The roasted bitter maltiness intensify as it continues to warm.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation. Finish is intially smooth and creamy but balanced but the spice and roasted malt flavors.

Overall this is a very good pumpkin stout. I appreciate the lower ABV because I feel it helps the spice and pumpkin flavors to emerge more. Too much malt would mask the sometimes subtle flavor of pumpkin. This is a great cool weather fall evening beer and would gladly consume it regularly if it was readily accessable to me.

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Photo of NoLeafClover44
4.12/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle poured into a large goblet. Most recent bottling just appeared on the shelf last week.

A - Pours a nearly black color with an inch of mocha colored head. Retention leaves something to be desired, but it sure leaves a pretty lacing on the glass.

S - Smells like the pumpkin beer I have been longing for. Bitter chocolate, pumpkin, and burnt malts meld for a creamy stout aroma with some bite. Bits of cinnamon are the icing on the cake for this brew.

T - My initial pour was cold, probably too cold. As a result, the first few sips were loaded with toasted malts and a bit of a harsh char aftertaste. I allowed it to warm a bit and it turned into a completely different beer. Very smooth chocolate notes transition to the now mellowed char flavors of the malt. The pumpkin comes through in the finish, although it is not very big.

M - Medium body with tingly carbonation. Smooth and drinkable.

O - I was happy to see this sitting on the shelf right next to The Great Pumpkin. It would be a very good stout in it's own right, but it stands out above the rest in the pumpkin beer category. Perfect for anyone who wants solid pumpkin flavors without the cloying sweetness that come with most of them.

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Photo of Domingo
3.58/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I've had samples of this at GABF a few times (on a pretty fatigued palate) so it was nice to see we got a few bottles sent to Denver this year.
Pours an expected opaque black color. Not a whole lot of highlights or light making it through this one. A thin cap of white foam on the top. Looks pretty much like a standard porter or stout.
The nose consists of anise, cinnamon, allspice, and a roasty backdrop.
The taste follows roughly the same path. Unlike a lot of other pumpkin beers, to me the ones from Elysian (Night Owl and Great Pumpkin, too) all have very heavy handed anise notes. It's different, but not necessarily my favorite. This one has elements that I love, but that anise note is just a bit much. The allspice and cinnamon creep up here and there, and the base porter is nice, but it keeps coming back to black jellybeans. The actual pumpkin pie character is mild as a result.
It's not boozy, and the spices aren't numbing or overkill. Some people will likely love this one.
Not my favorite under any stretch, but there aren't too many pumpkin porters that make to bottles out here. I'm glad this one does, even if there are others like I more.

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Photo of grittybrews
4.36/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured near-black with two fingers of dark khaki head. Roasty aroma of chocolate and cinnamon.

Moderate carbonation and a thick, creamy mouthfeel. Big cocoa up front with hints of caramel/molasses sweetness. Big pumpkin and cinnamon bread backbone followed by light espresso bitterness on the tail end.

For a 6.5% stout, this had some pretty huge flavors going on. Really nice.

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Photo of hreb
2.88/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

22oz bomber served in pint glass. Beer pours a deep brown with a very thin layer of lighter brown head. Faint aroma of pumpkin and spice (cinnamon or cassia?)

Flavor is flat and unremarkably bitter. Pumpkin provides some texture/body but not much in the way of flavor. Cinnamon flavor is muted and reduced to an unpleasant spiciness in the aftertaste. I can't imagine what pumpkin seeds could be bringing to this brew.

As a stout, this beer is the right color, and has a relatively heavy mouthfeel, but otherwise it doesn't hit any of the right notes. Though only hopped to 20 IBUs, there's a surplus of bitterness from the other ingredients. It got the bitterness levels of a Russian Imperial stout but doesn't have nearly the grain bill that that style requires. Pumpkin beers are a challenging style, but they can be executed well. Bring me back to CBC's pumpkin fest!

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.97/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from 9/2010 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours dark, dark red amber. Thin tan head and light lacing. Dark malt aroma. Dark and toasty malts, light smoky malt, dark fruit, light chocolate with a slight pumpkin background. Finishes with pumpkin, spice and light hop bitterness. Very nice. This and the Great Pumpkin are must have annual beers for me in the fall.

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Photo of Spider889
3.92/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Elysian Pumpkin event at Falling Rock on 9/28/11.

The version we got was listed as 7.3% abv.

This is a rich and dark beer.

The aroma is full of chocolate and cinnamon with a warm and inviting pumpkin bread aspect to it.

The flavor has some roast coffee and chocolate goodness going on. bitter ash on the finish. Not much hint of pumpkin here.

Chewy mouthfeel with a warm alcohol component (I also find that cinnamon can enhance this perception). Dense and sticky.

Overall this was a cool brew. I felt that the base beer is a stout or porter. Wishing for more pumpkin flavor.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to 5000 for sending me this bottle. Reviewed from notes.

The beer pours a very dark brown to black color with a large tan head. The aroma has a ton of cinnamon in it, as well as some pumpkin, nutmeg and allspice. The flavor also has a lot of spices in it. I get some cinnamon, clove, allspice and nutmeg, as well as some pumpkin and quite a bit of roasted malt. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of draheim
3.92/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into a snifter. Pours a dark cola brown w/ a rich mocha head that settles pretty quickly.

Aroma is a nice mellow roasty sweetness, some cinnamon, nutmeg & clove. Molasses and an elusive earthy, nutty aroma emerge as it warms.

Taste is malty and slightly chocolatey w/ just a hint of cinnamon. Pumpkin may lend a pulpy, sticky sweetness but not a dominant element by any means. Just the suggestion of pumpkin, which is about all I ever want from a pumpkin beer.

Mouthfeel is smooth and semi-dry, but a little thin.

Overall a good pumpkin beer and an average stout. Not sure I'll be looking for this again next year though.

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Photo of projectflam86
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this through a trade with youradhere. Thanks Jim!

22oz bomber poured into a snifter.

A- Pours an absolutely ink black color with a thick brown head that leaves good lacing.

S- Very sweet with roasted malt and dark chocolate aromas leading the way. A touch of spice is noticeable in the nose but it is very subtle.

T- The pumpkin notes come through much more in the flavor than in the nose. Rich bittersweet chocolate and pumpkin pie spice upfront with a touch of char and roast in the finish. The alcohol is mild but it adds a little bite.

M- Medium bodied with slightly low carbonation. Silky mouth feel.

O- Overall easily one of the best pumpkin stouts I've had. Really one of the better pumpkin beers in general. I'm glad I got the chance to try.

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Photo of BillHilly
3.52/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber poured into a duvel tulip at 55 degrees.

A: dark brown, very little head, fainted to rim, etching brought out very little yeast bubbles.

S: burnt coffee, slight cinnamon, molasses

T: starts off sweet and decent roasted malt, finishes with a bitter & burnt coffee finish

M: Much better feel than look, solid carbonation.

O: Glad I tried it, worth a try, but nothing to trade for IMO.

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4.12/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep brown, small tan head. Thin organic lace.

Clove and cinnamon, pumpkin pie. Chocolate and heavily-toasted marshmellow.

Roasty chocolate, toasted marshmellow. Pumpkin and pie crust. Clove, Cinn, molasses. some excess sweetness. moderate bitterness.

Full body. Smooth and sticky.

A little sweet, otherwise a very great brew. Very drinkable and good for the winter season.

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Photo of tcampbel1
3.65/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Review from notes. 22oz. bomber poured into a snifter on Oct. 31st.

A: Dark O' as night. No light could get through. Nice looking brown head.

S: Roasted chocolate grains with pumpkin pie spices. Dark fruit flavors and some fig notes.

T: Sweet pumpkin with some bitter chocolate/coffee flavors as well. A good roastiness, but not overly smokey.

M: Medium mouthfeel and carbonation. Good carbonation.

O: Probably my favorite pumpkin beer of the year. A bit overpriced but worth a try.

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Photo of suncrust
3.97/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz poured to a snifter glass.

A- Thick pour and pitch black in color. Has dark purpley colors with a creamy mocha head. Brown, grainy, and bourbon-like muddy appearance.

S- Notes of raisin and dark chocolate, with hints of black licorice. Light pumpkin, cinnamon spice and molasses. Kind of smells like a toasted cinnamon raisin bagel.

T- Rich dark coffee and chocolate. Burnt flavors (especially burned coffee beans) with some smoky charcoal on the throat. Tones of clove, cinnamon, tobacco, and chocolate covered raisins. Pie crust and pumpkin flavors linger in the aftertaste, though light. Chocolate chilies on the tongue as it warms. Great flavors.

MF- Creamy and smooth, but not nearly as thick as the smell would imply. Not much coating, with clean drinkability for such a dark, complex beer. Sort of a dry irish stout finish. This would be awesome on nitro.

O- Has that Elysian texture and blend, not bold or aggressive, but not underwhelming. This years version was much better than last- a bit more complex and rich.

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Photo of Arbitrator
2.56/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Chilled bottle into a glass. A generous gift from hopsbreath. Thanks, Jason! And thanks to ramnuts for shipping it down.

A: Pours a dark maroon body, nearly black, with a small beige head that slowly lapses into a thin film and vanishes. No lace.

S: Coffee and roasted grain, as you'd expect from a stout. Cinnamon and an earthy, vegetal note that evokes the pumpkin used here.

T: Coffee, roasted grain, cinnamon, and a pronounced bitterness that isn't appealing. I'm expecting a pumpkin beer, not a stout-gruit hybrid.

M: Dry, which is unusual for some stouts I've been having lately. The dryness unfortunately lets the bitterness shine through, which isn't appealing. A nice cinnamon exhalation brings the beer to a close.

O: The Great Pumpkin and Night Owl were so much better than this. I was disappointed. I really thought we had a trifecta of winners here.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.82/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a Duvel Tulip glass.

A - Pours a dark brown with a dark tan head. Good retention and lacing.

S - Chocolate and cinnamin.

T - Smooth chocolate and coffee, a stout with some pumpkin and cinnamin.

D - Low carbonation, heavy body. Thick, but smooth.

O - Nice pumpkin stout, low flavor profile.

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Photo of snaotheus
3.5/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle split into a couple large snifters

Pours dark, little head. Smells like dark licorice and sweetness. A little booze and cough syrup.

Taste is chocolatey bitter, more black licorice. There's a little cinnamon in there.

Mouthfeel is chalky and thick. Overall, this is a pretty decent beer. Nothing too exciting, though.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber, made sure to stock up on this guy and the great pumpkin from the Tangletown outpost before the public caught wind

appearance: split and served in my great lakes goblet, dark brown body, creamy mocha head with a light ring of lace

smell: relatively subdued nose - some baking spices that line up with those coming from my oven at the moment - nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon. light roasted malt, baking chocolate

taste: rich and velvety - creamy chocolate, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, roasted pumpkin and pumpkin seeds. A very lovely ensemble of flavor resulting in a great stout that would be a favorite of the style year-round

mouthfeel: rich and creamy

overall: solid stuff

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Photo of cbarrett4
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from tap at Saraveza Portland during Elysian Pumpkin Festival into spooky little Elysian Halloween snifter.

Pours deep brown/black with short cream colored head that slowly fades leaving not much lace.

Smells of roasted coffee and autumn baking spices - cinnamon, clove, nutmeg. A little fig and dark chocolate thing going on as well. Really the spices are what shine here.

On the palate I finally meet the pumpkin. Though it is light, it's there. The spices really add a nice note. The cinnamon and clove really come to the front. Some dark roasted malt, coffee and chocolate notes back it up. Terribly complex.

Texture is full on the medium to full side of the scale. Not a heavyweight. Alcohol is moderate and kept well in check. Nice balance. Shorter finish though.

Overall one of the better pumpkin ales I have tasted, and a proper stout to boot. Worth a taste if you come across it. Even if you're not a fan of pumpkin.

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Photo of chpueblo22
3.55/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pour is pretty average for a basic stout. Very dark but not viscous. Small white/tan head around the edges. Nose is very sweet, caramel mostly. Trying for the pumpkin and spices but really just get a sweet, caramelly aroma out of it. Taste is a sweet stout that resonates with the nose. The backside is where the pumpkin really shines. Dry pumpkin tones and seasonal spices prevail which compliment the roasted stout flavors well. Pretty heavy on the cinnamon, hard to distinguish the cinnamon flavors from the pumpkin. This is not a heavy brew. The mouthfeel is a little light and it definitely fits into the 5 or 6% sweet stout category.

Definitely enjoyed this brew. Improved as it warmed. Looking forward to trying a heavier stout with pumpkin but I really enjoy this take on a pumpkin brew.

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Photo of aficionado
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Tulip glass - Thanks BuckeyeOne

Midnight black with a dark cream colored head and minimal lacing.

Smoky smell. Chocolate malt and earthy hops.

A sweet beer, not dry. Not Southern Tier or 120 minute sweet, but more on the sweet side nonetheless. A different take on a pumpkin ale. Smoky, dark, drinkable, mild pumpkin notes, smooth, chocolate, coffee, cinnamon, firewood, chocolate and acidulated malt.

Easy drinking, moderate body, low carbonation.

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Photo of NWer
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bomber into pint glass.
Dark. Very dark. Coffee brown head with nice retention and lace.
Lives up to description well. Chocolate, coffee, pumpkin, cinnamon notes throughout. Slight tangyness in the mouthfeel reflective of the alcohol.
All in all, a game changer for me. Didn't think much of pumpkin beers until I tried this one.

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Photo of chumba526
3.97/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears nearly black with a small deep brown head.

I get strong aromas of mild roasted coffee, cinnamon and pumpkin. There is a slight sour smell to the stout as well.

Tastes of mild roasted chocolate malt. A mild bitterness appears that pairs well with the mild fall spice blend. There is a nice pumpkin flavor. But the pumpkin quality of this beer is not as strong as most other pumpkin beers I have had and adds both richness and a mild bit of acidity. This is a great innovative stout though.

The ale has a moderate low carbonation and a smooth and creamy mouthfeel.

Overall a nice smooth stout with a nice twist. Perfect for a cold October night.

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Photo of harrymel
3.14/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3


A: pours dark brown with no real head formation and only a ring of tan foam with a mirrored center. No lace.

S: Hops, dark malts, some cinnamon, some coffe tones.

T: Tastes like a stout with some cinnamon. Some hops, some oats, some coffee some malted milk. Meh, okay.

M: Full bodied with lower carbonation. Dry finish.

O: Well, this is a beer with cinnamon, not a pumpkin stout. Although this is a good beer, it is a stout, not a pumpkin beer.

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Dark O' The Moon from Elysian Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 130 ratings.