Night Owl Pumpkin Ale | Elysian Brewing Company

BA SCORE
88
very good
1,256 Ratings
Night Owl Pumpkin AleNight Owl Pumpkin Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Elysian Brewing Company
Washington, United States
elysianbrewing.com

Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed with 150 lbs. of pumpkin in each batch. Made with Pale, Munich and Crystal malts green and roasted pumpkin seeds, pumpkin in the mash, boil and fermenter. Bittered with Horizon hops. Spiced in conditioning with nutmeg, clove, cinnamon, ginger and allspice.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-11-2002

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,256
Reviews:
369
Avg:
3.92
pDev:
12.24%
 
 
Wants:
138
Gots:
272
For Trade:
1
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,256 |  Reviews: 369
Photo of sholland119
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Received this one from pranaferox in Secret Halloween 2009! Thanks!

A-Cloudy amber with some light brown highlights. Lots of off white head and great retention. Some decent lacing as well.

S-Pumpkin pie! The spice blend is a perfect blend of nutmeg, cinnamon, clove and allspice. I think the allspice makes the aroma so right on.

T-A little flat on the tongue. Mostly nutmeg; all the other spice elements are muted. Some nice malt with a moderate sweetness.

M-Medium bodied with a lot of lingering spice.

D-Nice but a bit of a disappointment after the killer nose.

HV

 573 characters

Photo of Whiskeydeez
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of scruffwhor
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks go out to n8dietz for picking this brew up for me.

Cloudy, copper, burnt sienna, pumkin color. Can't really make out any bubbling. Good head after the pour, and thick film of foam lasts for all 22 ounces.

Caramel toasted malts, bread, biscuits, pumkin pie spices, and pumpkin meat.

Toasted pumkin biscuits. Flavor gets thin and watery from middle to the finish. I got some more of the spices in teh middle than the pumpkin. The finish is a little thin, but does have a pumpkin meat and bread flavor.

The mouthfeel starts chewy, then finishes a little thin and watery.

 581 characters

Photo of EnthusedAboutBeer
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of JizackFH
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - This beer pours a clear ruby orange color. It has a 2-finger off-white head on top. The head has good retention, and it leaves behind a nice web of lace on the glass.

S - It smells of bread malts, pumpkin, and fall holiday spices. There are also some notes of brown sugar, caramel, hops, and a little bit of booze.

T - Taste starts off with some bready malt. There is some pumpkin, cinnamon, and nutmeg flavor, but it is more subdued than the nose suggests. There are also some flavors of caramel, brown sugar, and a mild hop presence. The flavors seem a little bit watered down.

M - This has a medium body and good carbonation. It goes down easy, and has a nice smooth feel to it. There is some tingling from the spices, and just a touch of hop bitterness.

O - This has good drinkability. It has a nice smooth feel and a nice flavor. I wouldn't mind a few glasses of this on a nice fall evening. Overall, I think this is a nice beer, and a good representation of the style. The only thing is that some of the flavors seem to be a tad watered down. Fix that, and I think it would bring this up to another level. It is still a good beer though, and I definitely enjoyed it.

 1,181 characters

Photo of Fear4Beer
3.66/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I like a good pumpkin beer! Fortunately I've tried the best that exist, so I know what excellence tastes like.

Look: This beer looks outstanding when poured out. The color screams "fall" to me. That golden/orange/tan color looks great.

Smell: Just beautiful! You get that crust/graham cracker, then pumpkin, and the spices!

Taste: This is where this beer loses me. It is incredibly watery and that to me ruins it. You can taste the components that you smell, but it is to the point of watered down crust, pumpkin, and spices. There's this VERY slight sourness to the beer too which confuses me.

Feel: It has a decent mouth feel but its a bit too watery. I like how this beer has 6.70%abv which is lower than a lot of other pumpkin beers. You don't feel alcohol warmth or taste alcohol. That's a plus in my opinion.


Overall: I'm not impressed with this pumpkin beer. It has the look of a good beer, the smell of a good pumpkin beer, but the taste falls flat (literally). I have to say I'm quite disappointed in the reviewers on Beer Advocate on this beer. They get this one very wrong. Maybe they made a new recipe for this season? Let this beer warm up, don't drink it too cold. Regardless, I thought by these reviews that it could be a good go to beer when I don't feel like paying too much for a Pumpkin beer. The positive is that a 6 pack was cheap. If you want the VERY BEST pumpkin beer in existence try Schlafly's Pumpkin Ale. Once you try that then you know the standard of what a Pumpkin beer can be. That brew knocks it out of the park. I was really hoping that this brew was as good as that. Its not even close. This is just an average beer while Schlafly's Pumpkin Ale is a "world class beer".

The bottle I drank says it was bottled on 08/4/16 and I drank it on 10/5/16.

 1,788 characters

Photo of arini10
3.66/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of tayner
3.67/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle that has been in my DBF for about 4 months as i was afraid to try it.

Poured a crystal clear amber color with a with whispy head that dissipated to nothing and left no lacing. Some head retention would have made this much nicer to look at, perhaps due to age though.

Smell was of nutmeg and cloves, perhaps some allspice, and roasted pumpkin seeds too.

Taste was like a pumpkin pie smoothie that was strained as the texture was a bit watery. It had all the tastes of pumpkin pie without all the over the top sweetness a real pie has. I cant believe how it tastes like real pumpkin and not pumpkin 'flavored'. nice

Mouthfeel was a bit watery on this one which maybe is good since i have to drink 22 oz of it. I think for drinkability factor if it were a bit thicker and bottled in 12 oz bottles it would be nicer.. or thicker in 22 oz bottles you could pass around after thanksgiving dinner instead of pie!

 926 characters

Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.67/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up in Totowa via the single bottle. Hadn't tried this before and I wanted to give a Seasonal beer like this a go before things cooled off too much. I'm not a huge fan of this style since there are so many examples of this out and I never seem to warm up to any of them that I try. This one was quite good and almost won me over but in short, this was a beer that is a good example of the style and quite easy to enjoy.

This poured decently with a fair amount of head, a somewhat radiant pumpkin hue, and no lacing to be seen. Not quite clear either as there was a bit of sediment to be seen in the beer. The aroma was good with a nice amount of pumpkin that was repeated in the mouthfeel. A good but not overwhelming amount of cinnamon, nutmeg, and walnut were here too but this never felt too spicy or complex. The balanced was nice but if I had to do this over again, I'd tone the carbonation down a bit. This was quite sharp and not as easygoing and filling as other Pumpkin Beers that I've had before, with the bubbles clearing out too much of the heavier notes after each sip.

The alcohol was a bit strong here too but it never felt that way as took my sips down my pint glass. This would go great with a big slice of Pumpkin Pie and Cool Whip on top and for anyone looking for a good beer to celebrate the changing of the seasons with, this would easily suffice.

 1,384 characters

Photo of bigaltemple
3.67/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a hazy, deep orange. Cream-colored cap leaves some decent lacing.

S - Huge pumpkin scent. Sweet malts and cloves are pretty strong. Small hints of nutmeg and cinnamon.

T - Taste is pretty similar. Caramel malt, sweet pumpkin meat and spices.

M - Light to medium-bodied with good amount of carbonation.

O - First pumpkin brew of the season. This one came through pretty much as expected. I'm really quite interested in their "bigger" offerings.

 457 characters

Photo of n2185
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a clear orange with a finger of white head that fades into a frothy ring with decent lacing.

S: Light pumpkin spice aromas along with some squash-like notes and sweet breads. There are also some notes of ginger.

T: Pumpkin spices are a bit more present here with hearty bread flavors following. The finish is slightly bitter and bready.

M: Body is on the lower side of moderate with lowish carbonation, this beer just avoids being watery.

O: A solid pumpkin ale overall, though lacks depth. The spices aren't too heavy-handed, but there's little else going on.

 573 characters

Photo of jakon
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle purchased for $3.99 on 9-24-7 at Cedar Hills New Seasons.

Pours a brightly glowing orange/amber color with an off-white head featuring tightly compacted bubbles. The foam reduces quickly leaving minimal lacing in a beer clean glass. The aroma is very nice. A lot of pumpkin and spices such as clove, nutmeg and maybe a little cinnamon. It really just smells a lot like pumpkin pie, which is very nice. The taste closely matches the aroma. Loaded with pumpkin and spices, and there's also a black tea-like aftertaste that I'm not sure what to think of. The alcohol is nearly imperceptible. The mouthfeel is soft with very little carbonation. This is my favorite pumpkin ale to date.

 695 characters

Photo of BeerFiend2002
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into tulip glass

Dark copper in color, with a light one-finger frothy tan-colored head.

Nose is a lot of cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and allspice. Very inviting.

Tastes pumpkiny as it should given the amount per barrel used, but the spices do not stand up very well against it. Dull bland taste.

Medium-light mouthfeel, kind of watery for my taste.

Decent pumpkin beer. Its not outstanding, but there are worse. Solid, but not spectacular. Its a step below the DFH Punkin and the Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin.

 518 characters

Photo of Arbitrator
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Chilled bottle into a glass. Courtesy of ramnuts. Thanks, Frank!

A: Pours a hazy amber-orange body with a fluffy beige head that retains well, leaving a little lace down the sides.

S: Cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar. Excellent balance, but some other beers at the tasting showed how pungent this type of aroma can be, and that's this beer's main flaw.

T: The taste is nice; it presents a good (if restrained) pumpkin pie approach of the spices noted above. It's mildly sweet (brown sugar) with a lightly vegetal aftertaste, which is probably the pumpkin. The aftertaste is lightly bitter, with an exhalation that is pure pie.

M: Medium-bodied. It helps the beer be more drinkable, but the tradeoff is that it doesn't have that dessert feel I'm looking for in these beers.

O: Pretty darn good. I'd buy it again. But if I had a request, it would be: please brew more Great Pumpkin instead of this (and send me a case of GP).

 929 characters

Photo of drumrboy22
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz. bottle into Shipyard Pumpkin Ale pint glass. Beer was a dark orange color, with a one-finger, tan head. Moderate carbonation and lacing around the glass.

Aroma was clove, allspice, cinnamon and licorice.

Taste was allspice, clove and pumpkin pie.

Heavily spiced, but pretty good for the style. Good drinkability.

 335 characters

Photo of Michael6490
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of BeerMeColorado
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Seriously...aroma is that of classic pumpkin pie spices - nutmeg, clove, allspice and cinnamon. Possibly too much? No malt or hop aroma to speak of. Appearance...pale burnt orange, slightly murky. Head fades quickly. Flavor...those spices come fast and furious with a hint of bitterness, giving way to a sweet malt finish. Not sure about any pumpkin coming through but those spices still convince you there’s a pie in there somewhere. Mouthfeel...low to moderate carbonation with medium body. Overall impression? If your idea of a solid pumpkin ale is that of classic pumpkin pie spices yet with a definite "this is still a beer" ale finish, then you’ll really enjoy this pumpkin ale. I know I did!

 702 characters

Photo of Rayek
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Becker.

A: Slightly hazy amber with mild carbonation. A fizzy eggshell cap comes and goes fairly quickly as it retreats to a ring at the edge of the beer. Leaves bits of lace.

S: The aroma of this beer is quite strong. Pumpkin pie spices dominate. Cinnamon, nutmeg, clove and anise all vie for predominance. The clove wins out in the end. The pumpkin can be sensed, but only slightly.

T: The pumpkin pie theme continues. A raw pumpkin flavor starts things. It's backed up by a mild toasted malt flavor. The aforementioned spices come on strong in the middle and linger through the finish. The clove continues to stand out as it combines with ginger to clear the sinuses.

M: The medium body is dry and could stand having the carbonation turned down a notch.

D: Pumpkin beers are a style I'm slowly getting into. Overall, this seems a nice example.

 866 characters

Photo of HopHead_
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%

Photo of Samp01
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark cloudy burnt orange caramel with a medium beige head. Aroma and taste is of sweet pumpkin pie, nut meg, some fruity notes with some toasted malt and caramel malt. Palate is a medium body, good carbonation and slightly crisp mouth feel. Finishes with a sweet pumpkin pie nutmeg flavor with some toasted grains and caramel and mild hops bitter notes for balance. This brew was quite good not overly sweet for pumpkin ale and nicely balanced, a good drinking brew.

 474 characters

Photo of jsanford
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into a Pint Glass.

A - Pours a slightly hazy burnt orange with a creamy khaki head that settles to a slight ring and haze.
S - Sweet aromas of pumpkin, toffee, and spices (typical blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove).
T - More sweet pumpkin, toasted brown bread, toffee, and spices make up the flavor profile. Nicely balanced between the pumpkin and the spice, and quite drinkable.
M - Smooth and a touch creamy, with a medium mouthfeel and decent carbonation.
O - A solid Pumpkin Ale that does everything right, but doesn't stand out from the crowd much.

 576 characters

Photo of stratusjeans
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%

Photo of Foam
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Got a few single bottles at my local bottle-shop and was floored/amazed at how good it was (and i'm not even a pumpkin beer guy, really.)
I had grabbed 3 other Pumpkin beers to compare and contrast and the Elysian easily was night and day , better than the rest.
Forward to today (Labor Day) I went down to distributor who only sells cases and got a case .
Good balanced malty not too spiced, not too sweet, not too bitter pumpkin ale .
A perfect session ABV of 6% . This seals the deal, for me .

Thumbs up .

 509 characters

Photo of kbeals
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Jerriko sent me this tasty treat a little while ago, thanks man!

A- Pours a dark copper color with a generous amount of fizzy white head sitting on top. Bubbles slowly rise to the top resulting in good head retention and lacing.

S- Good doses of spice and pumpkin. This beer really comes alive as it warms up. The ginger really begins to stick out as well as the pumpkin. Pretty close representation of pumpkin pie.

T- Extremely similar to the smell but the flavors don't come through quite as good as the aromas. Still has nice amounts of spices, once again ginger seems to stick out more than anything. Pumpkin comes through nicely, has a touch of sweetness to it as well.

M- A little watery, but good amounts of carbonation. Appropriate for the style.

D- Pretty easy drinker. I'm still pretty new to Pumpkin Ales but this one definitely seems to be a good one. Thanks again Evan!

 887 characters

Photo of mfavoino
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a bomber poured into a pin glass.

Appearance: Amber-orange color with a fizzy 1 finger head that settled quickly.

Smell: Nutmeg, licorice, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Smells sweet.

Taste: Sweet, but not overwhelming pumpkin flavor. Gets more spicy and herbal with noticeable cinnamon and nutmeg. Finishes with spicy flavor that I can't quite put my finger on.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with just a touch of carbonation. Nice mouthfeel.

Overall: Good pumpkin ale that is not quite on par with Elysian's Great Pumpkin and Schlafly's Pumpkin Ale. Looking forward to opening a bottle of Great Pumpkin soon to compare.

 629 characters

Night Owl Pumpkin Ale from Elysian Brewing Company
3.92 out of 5 based on 1,256 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.