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Night Owl Pumpkin Ale | Elysian Brewing Company

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very good
362 Reviews
Night Owl Pumpkin AleNight Owl Pumpkin Ale

Brewed by:
Elysian Brewing Company
Washington, United States

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

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 362 | Ratings: 1,236
Photo of mbrando33
4.56/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I'd put this right up with my favorite pumpkin beers. Has a great pumpkin flavor, not too sweet, not too spicy. The look and feel are solid and the after taste has strong hints of clove and autumn spices. If you're into the whole pumpkin beer niche, you will enjoy this wonderful Fall treat.

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Photo of stevoj
3.44/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Strong aroma of pumpkin pie and cinnamon, Pours dark amber with thin beige head. taste again is pumpkin pie, Finish is abrupt and slightly metallic. A good seasonal dessert beer.

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Photo of Jolieannh
4.88/5  rDev +24.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Call me basic but I do love pumpkin beer. I have tried a lot of them and this one has by far the best flavor. Quite a bit of pumpkin flavor with just enough cinnamon and nutmeg. Also the 6.7% ABV makes it the perfect level of buzz from one or two. I look forward to this beer every year.

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Photo of POOGMAN
4.62/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I will keep this simple:

Would be 5/5 taste, but there is a detectable watery quality to it. Note, I gave it a 4.5 for a reason. This is a knock-out autumnal beer. It will be in my fridge throughout the season. Please try it and buy it.

Pumpkin pie in a glass with a spice balance better than grandma's.

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Photo of Ruger_44-Redhawk
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love when the pumpkin beers start slowly dotting the beer aisle at the store to mark the fall season. About 7 or 8 years ago my wife was the catalyst for getting me into pumpkin beers. We would then gather any pumpkin beers from John's Market in Portland and do a tasting of the various offerings of this style. I have to say the more I have Night Owl the more I move it up the list of pumpkin beers. This is a great overall spiced yet balanced pumpkin beer. I still think the Great Pumpkin by Elysian takes no. 1, but this isn't far behind.

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Photo of Collectinguru
1.06/5  rDev -73%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

This beer was good at first. The color of the amber ale was what i expected with most beers. The foam quickly disappears and it smelled good at first. It smelt like a pumpkin ale. I quickly found out I was allergic to this beer though. I read some other reviews online and they said it had lemongrass in it. I am allergic to lemongrass so I won't be purchasing this beer again.

When it hit my mouth, I also found it had lots more cinnamon in it then i expected. It also didn't have a good after taste like most of the non-lemongrass beers I try. After the cinnamon taste left, then came the spices and man did they pack a punch to your taste buds. I do not like spicy foods so this was a real disappointment. I thought they were going to go light on the spices which would have been okay. I was able to finish the beer and then noticed I didn't feel good at all. That's when I found out I was allergic to lemongrass.

One thing I do want to stress is if you try this beer, the taste of the beer stays in your mouth overnight and it is really gross. Most beers don't stay in your mouth overnight and quickly disappear. I will be sticking to fat tire and mens room original red from now on.

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Photo of Mooslerfitness
4.84/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Yum this is a fantastic pumpkin ale

So much flavor this is better than desert pumpkin roll

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Photo of BB1313
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

2016 vintage. Bottled on 7/15/16. 12oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a hazy glowing burnt orange with a light tan head that fades leaving decent retention and lacing. The aromas are very nice. Tons of spices. Lots of cinnamon and ginger. Some clove in the mix. Malts are there. The spice profile is really nice and shines. The flavors seem to follow the nose for the most part. The spice notes are clean and don't overwhelm. The cinnamon and ginger lead the way with some hints of nutmeg. The allspice does its thing. Some caramel in the mix. Malts are there, but don't seem dominant. Alcohol goes unnoticed. Mouthfeel is light and thin with active carbonation. It's very smooth and easy to drink.

This is a very nice pumpkin ale. I know it's still summer and pumpkin ales taste better when the leaves are falling, but I've never had this and I wanted to try it relatively fresh. It's very enjoyable and the spice notes are on point. Well done.

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Photo of JackieKu
3.37/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle. 2015 batch.

A: Hazy amber. Thin foam.
S: Intense cinnamon and spices.
T: Spices. Moderate caramel. Moderate bitterness. Slightly citrus (lemon). Dry. Short finish.
M: Light bodied. Crispy carbonation.
O: I dislike the strong cinnamon candy smells. The flavor and mouth feel are lighter making me able to drink it.

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Photo of vladdswrath
3.07/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours orange and opaque, little if any head. Aroma is pumpkin spices, obviously. Nice, but not necessarily appetizing, for whatever reason. Taste is unique and hits the pumpkin pie mark better than just about any other pumpkin beer I've tried. Mouthfeel is light, which is a good thing, as a thick gooey pumpkin sludge would be a bit off-putting. I don't love the pumpkin ales, but if you forced my hand, this is the one I'd drink.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.94/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L : Festive orange glow with strikes of apricot. 80% opaque. The head is 2 fingers and creamy, off-white. It stays for a little while and then recedes to a ring.

S : Pumpkin and chopped pecans and nuts, in that order, with slight spice and malt. Quite a bit like opening a can of Pumpkin filling.

T : Roast malts infused with clove and allspice. A slight sour character also accompanies it, giving way to a sort of lambic/orange juice quality. Quite a bit of pleasant acidity. It ends with pumpkin scrapings.

Feel : Medium bodied and well-lit carbonation. Ends semi-dry.

Overall : I'd have it again, if I ever saw it in these parts. A good solid pumpkin ale.

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Photo of jooler
4.02/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks is dark with basically no head. There also seems to be alittle bit of sediment in the beer. Maybe pumpkin bits? Taste is pretty damn good. A lot better than the Coronado pumpkin ale. Really velvety texture and creamy taste.

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Photo of DonnieHops
4.9/5  rDev +25%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

For my money the best, most balanced, pumpkin beer...

Had in a bottle and on draft. Outstanding pumpkin pie flavor. Nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon, pie crust.....Darker brown in color than Pumking and Elysian Great pumpkin and less boozy. But at 6.7 it's the perfect punch.

Bartending in NYC, this beer is a constant hit. I give to chicks and people who "normally don't like pumpkin beers" and they love it... People come back just for it.... Pumpkin beers are either too light, soda-Y, not pumpkin-y, or too strong and syrupy.... This one nails it..... If you wanted to show an alien what a pumpkin beer was, this one is the one...... Absolutely delicious!!

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Photo of kojevergas
2.83/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Brief impressions from a 12 fl oz BOTTLE:

A: Head is about a finger wide. Off-white colour. Nice frothiness and creaminess. Good consistency and complexion.

Body is a translucent copper of average vibrance with abundant floating yeast particles plainly visible. Appears lively and inviting.

Seems well-carbonated. Not unique or special for a pumpkin ale, but generally appealing.

Sm: Pumpkin gourd, allspice, nutmeg, amber & copper malts. The pumpkin gourd is vivid and expressive - a surprisingly rare characteristic in a pumpkin ale.

A highly appealing aroma of moderate strength. Suggests a balanced pumpkin-forward brew, though the ostensible spices aren't really coming through.

T: Pumpkin gourd, traces of brown sugar, copper & amber malt-induced sweetness, some allspice. Decently balanced. Could be deeper and expressive.

Mf: Medium-bodied. Smooth, wet, well-carbonated, and unrefreshing. Overcarbonated.

There's no harmony of texture and taste here.

O: Not a gestalt build, nor a remarkable brew. But it's drinkable and satisfies style conventions. I don't dislike it, but it leaves a lot to be desired. That said, I'm satisifed enough that it brings actual pumpkin gourd in its flavour profile; why do so many pumpkin beers get away without actually delivering pumpkin?

C (2.83)

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Photo of the_awesometeer
4.01/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazy orange color with a nice white head that laces the glass. Lots of visible carbonation. Strong smell of the spices with a hint of pumpkin. I really enjoyed this medium bodied beer. I felt there was a nice balance between the spice and the malty flavor of the ale. Wish for a little more pumpkin.

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Photo of JamieDuncan
4.19/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

My first observation is that there is a lot of muck in this beer, not that that is a bad thing. Very nice pumpkin aroma. Excellent taste, the pumpkin is there but not overwhelming, the beer is clean, smooth, and refreshing. Overall, this is an excellent example of pumpkin beer and will be one of my favorites.

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Photo of tigg924
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours hazy, orange-brown with minimal head. Taste is ginger, white sugar crystals, and nutmeg. Very nice and sweet and clean. Elysian is becoming my favorite brewer of this style and this one is right up there with the best in the style.

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Photo of J30wang
4.49/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Heavy cloves when you take a whiff of the bottle lips. Smells a little burnt, but in a good way. Pours a brilliant brown with an amber/reddish tint, this beauty is a lot more spice than pumpkin. Cloves, cloves, cloves, all the cloves! The pumpkin appears when you breath out after the actual drink--the purest pumpkin flavor, none of the modified stuff. This is a great pumpkin ale, very grounded and without all the fluff like the Pumpking from Southern Tier (which tasted quite like medicine, by the way; not a hater here). It essentially captures what a hearty, grounded pumpkin ale should taste like.

I'd recommend this as a solid pumpkin ale alongside Greenport's Leafpile Ale.

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Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
3.05/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Trying to get into spirit and try a "local" brew and a pumkin ale.

Beer smells ok. Some pumpkin with lots of spice.

Tastes mirrors the smell, but comes up short in the malt balance. Beer is light and watery, all I can taste is spice--specifically the ginger is sticking out (not good). This beer really could have used some malt complexity and residual sweetness to round out the spices. Unfortunately I bought a 6 pack of this. Not looking forward to the rest of the pack. Not impressed with this beer.

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Photo of Furlinator
3.61/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Black Horse Tavern, Norco, Ca.

Pours a murky rust orange with a half-inch cream head and strings of lace. Pumpkin and Fall spices abound. A fairly straightforward but, well done pumpkin ale.

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Photo of Marraybay
3/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one seems to deliver more of what's promised on the label, as compared to some other pumpkin beers I've tasted; Mainly that it smells and tastes like pumpkin! The question of course is whether that's a good thing!

A pretty lively pour that's copper-orange in color, with a decent +1/2 inch of white foam. A bit thinner overall than I imagined and a bit cloudy. The pumpkin-pie spice potpourri is definitely front in center in the nose. The taste has a little of that pumpkin pie spice involved, including a touch of sweetness, but I felt like I was getting more of a plain or roasted pumpkin note. A little bitterness and alcohol burn in the finish. Overall, a little undecided as to whether this was a success for me or not. Would probably need to resample. (Food Pair note: I thought the addition of ketchup in the meal I was eating, somehow accentuated what the brewer was trying to deliver.)

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Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
4.19/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.25

Look is hazy brownish with orange yellow highlights. Little to no head.

Aroma is straight pumpkin pie, but no just pumpkin pie but meaty awesome pumpkin.

Taste is kinda thin but full of pumpkin spice flavor. Maybe a little pumpkin sour taste at the end.

Really excellent, I just wish the body held up to the flavor.

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Photo of drinkin-beeers
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

My first pumpkin beer. The nose on this was pretty spectacular. Nutmeg, cinnamon are very noticeable like pumpkin pie obviously. Pretty light body and as it warms the flavor balances out. I enjoyed this and am looking forward to other Elysian pumpkin beers.

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Photo of lastmango
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a hazy burnt orange into a pint glass with thin head that dissipated quickly. No lacing. Nose was a very mild pumpkin pie. Light carbonation. Malty with a more pronounced allspice taste further on while sipping. I have not had too many pumpkin ales but this is nice and well balanced.

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Photo of Pete_2112
4.67/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

The Elysian Night Owl Pumpkin Ale is a truly tasty beer. The first smell you get is pure pumpkin pie. You can even smell that toasted crust aroma. The look of it is a nice dark Amber color, looking almost exactly the color of a pumpkin. The taste is really nice. Delicious spices and a lot of pumpkin flavor come through. The mouthfeel is alright. Carbonation is just a bit too light for my liking, but that does not stop this beer from being excellent. As the beer warms up, the pumpkin really starts to show itself even more. This beer is one of the best pumpkin beers I've had. A VERY close second to Schlafly Pumpkin Ale, which as of right now, reigns over all other pumpkin beers. But Elysian has got something special here.

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Night Owl Pumpkin Ale from Elysian Brewing Company
3.92 out of 5 based on 1,236 ratings.
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