Night Owl Pumpkin Ale | Elysian Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
88
very good
344 Reviews
Night Owl Pumpkin AleNight Owl Pumpkin Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Elysian Brewing Company
Washington, United States | website

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
Reviews:
344
Ratings:
1,153
Avg:
3.91
pDev:
22.25%
 
 
Wants:
136
Gots:
225
For Trade:
1
User Reviews
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Reviews: 344 | Ratings: 1,153
Photo of kbeals
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
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!

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Photo of KYFriedChildren
4.85/5  rDev +24%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought this bottle of liquid deliciousness at my favorite bottleshop, Pinnochio's Beer Garden in luxurious Media, Pennsylvania.

Appearance- Pours into my pint glass a vibrant dark orange color with a summer soft and creamy off-white head. It is absolutely delicious looking.

Smell- You get pretty much all of the spices that you would expect in a spiced pumpkin ale. The nutmeg is there. The cinnamon is there and the cloves are also there. While those are expected to have those tingle the nostrils there is a cream-like smell that adds to the pumpkin pie-ness of the scent. Divine.

Taste- Everything a pumpkin ale should be. Creamy, spicy perfection. The spices aren't overpowering and ... I don't even know how to say it, it's perfect.

Mouthfeel- The mouthfeel is just as creamy and smooth as the taste and smell would lead you to believe. It's thicker than something like Post Road Pumpkin but not too thick. Like I said, creamy.

Drinkability- I personally could drink many. Because of the spice factor it could turn some off but I found it to be the perfect balance. Very smooth and drinkable.

I know that there is some hate on the pumpkin beer, but anyone who is into pumpkin beer (like I myself am) will find this as the quintessential pumpkin beer (take that Pumking!). Those who don't think they're fans should reconsider with this wonderful iteration on the style.

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Photo of grittybrews
4.23/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured a muddy amber into a pint glass with two fingers of sticky off-white head. Big aroma with lots of pumpkin and nutmeg.

Lowish carbonation and a slightly thin mouthfeel. Spice flavors are prominent up front with lots of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove. Pumpkin reemerges on the finish with hints of caramel sweetness and hops.

Nicely complex and drinkable, but probably not my favorite pumpkin ale.

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Photo of trevorjn06
4.09/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich copper/orange color with one finger of head that recedes quickly.

As I pour this beer I can smell pumpkins and spice, it's quite pleasant! It really has a nice pumpkin pie aroma, as well as hints of caramel. Other than that most traditional beer aromas are hidden and/or masked behind the spices.

Flavors follows the nose a bit, there is a bit of malt, a nice balance of spices, pumpkin and just enough hop bitterness to cut through and keep this beer from being too sweet. There is a bit of bready malt and hints of caramel. The finish is a bit thin but pleasant with more spices, hints of pumpkin and a very slight hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is medium/slightly thick with slightly below average carbonation.

Overall this beer is quite enjoyable to drink, despite the presence of such strong and unique flavors. The pumpkin and spice flavors are very up front, not over-bearing and very balanced. I found this brew quite drinkable and would have it again.

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Photo of coastiefish
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

from a twenty two into a tulip glass.

A: Bright Ruby, nice lingering frothy head, pretty lacing

S: Strong nutmeg and ginger on the nose.

T: Leads with spices (all spice, cinnamon) pumpkin through the finish and leaves the spices hanging out on your palate.

M: Soft and fuzzy mouth feel. Leaves a bit of sticky on my lips.

D: Its a touch sweet but not a strong sugary sweet, so the 22 is a nice treat and a good selection for tasting pumpkin brews this season. (sure cant say that about some *cough* buffalo *cough* bill)

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue IX:

Brewed with 150lbs of pumpkin per batch (in the mash, boil and fermentor), green and roasted pumpkin seeds bittered with Horizon and spiced with nutmeg, clove, cinnamon, ginger and allspice.

Slightly hazy tawny color. Lacing surpasses our expectations with a good amount of clinging action. Smells of fermented pumpkin, a little starchy and melon-like, with a tartness that meshes very well with the subtle yet savory spicing. Incredibly smooth, sturdy medium body. Kicks off with a mild tartness of fermented pumpkin. Malt follows right behind with a mellow bread and faint caramel mix. Spicing slowly strolls hand in hand with the balancing hop bitterness. Nutmeg and clove seem to be the more dominant spices in their small world until the ginger comes along and plays king through the aftertaste. A little bready and toasty in the slightly dry finish.

This has to be one of the most complex Pumpkin Ales we've had to date. And there is a bonus in its drinkability, as most of the style are good for on;y one serving. Sip after sip, Night Owl grew on us. Seek this beer. Enjoy.

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Photo of Nature777
3.59/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pumpkin's are one of my favorite things in this world. They make amazing pies, ravioli and above all else, beers. This smelled like a pumpkin pie, I swear they brewed it with cinnamon! This was very light with pumpkin in the after taste. I enjoyed it, though it may have been to light. This was a nice beer, definitely worthwhile for the low price. But if you do have the money to spend, go for the Dogfish Head Punkin' Ale instead.

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Photo of philbertk
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Night Owl Pumpkin Ale--22 oz. Bottle 2002 Release. 5.50% ABV? (4.5 / 5.0) Clear rich amber red orange color. Light lacy head .Rich spicy pumpkin hop front. Thick sweet rich malty spicy caramel body. Smooth big pumpkin flavor from pumpkin and seeds. Spicy smooth end. Sampled 10/20/2002.

2003 Release. 5.50% ABV. (4.25 / 5.0) Clear dark amber red bronze color. Light lacy head. Pumpkin nutmeg spice mild hop front. Smooth tangy spiced toasted mild sweet fruit rich caramel body. Creamy spicy earthy nutmeg mild hop end. Balanced. Sampled 10/5/2003.

2004 Release. 6.50% ABV.--40 IBU's.? (4.25 / 5.0) Mild lacy head. Clear rich dark amber color. Floral pumpkin nutmeg hop front. Crisp dry sweet toasted spicy mild fruit biscuit caramel malt body. Balanced creamy pumpkin pie hop spice end. Tangy smooth. Sampled 10/3/2004.

2005 Release. 6.50% ABV--45 IBU's.? (4.5 / 5.0) Mild lacy head. Clear thin bright amber red color. Rich nutmeg cinnamon pumpkin mild hop front. Dry sweet mild caramel thin body. Crisp tangy mild hop end. Rich flavor! 9/10/2005.

2006 Release. 6.50% ABV--45 IBU's.? (4.25 / 5.0) Lacy mild foamy head. Clear dark thin amber red color. Rich pumpkin nutmeg spice front. Crisp dry sweet pumpkin caramel rich smooth body. Tangy nutmeg hop spice hot end. Spicy but needs Great Pumpkin malt. Sampled 9/27/2006.

2007 Release. 6.50% ABV--45 IBU's.? (4.5 / 5.0) Mild lace head. Clear bright dark amber color. Rich pumpkin nutmeg mild hop front. Creamy malty mild sweet toffee pumpkin body. Mild tangy gentle hop coarse nutmeg clean smooth end. Rich. Well blended spice. Sampled 8/28/2007.

2008 ELYSIAN Release. 5.90% ABV--35 IBU's.? (4.0 / 5.0) Lacy white head. Clear bright amber color. Mild nutmeg cinnamon pumpkin spice front. Crisp mild dry sweet pumpkin caramel mild fruit body. Crisp hop spice refreshing mild pumpkin spice dry sweet end. Dead Buds, but still good. Sampled 9/6/2008. 4 @ $5.49 Each.

2009 ELYSIAN Release. 5.90% ABV.--35 IBU's.? (4.5 / 5.0) Lacy off white mild head. Clear rich bright pumpkin amber color. Rich nutmeg, clove, cinnamon, ginger, all spice, mild hop pumpkin front. Crisp smooth malty pumpkin pie infused caramel malt body. Smooth lingering spice rich tasty balanced end. Quenching PIPA. Sampled 9/6/2009. 4 @ $4.49 Each.

Elysian Brewing Company, Inc.--ELYSIAN Night Owl Pumpkin Ale--Ale Brewed With Pumpkin & Pumpkin Seeds & Fermented With Spices--2010 22 oz. Bottle. 5.90% ABV. 20 IBU's. (4.25 / 5.0) Amber Ale--Pumpkin. Dense foamy lacy off white head. Clear bright fizzy dark amber roasted red pumpkin color. No sediment. Mild pumpkin hop nutmeg all spice front. Dry sweet crisp CO2 toasted pumpkin spice infused caramel fruit malty body. Lingering spice mild hop end. Smooth. Sampled 8/21/2010. 2 @ $4.89 Each

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Photo of woodychandler
4.52/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Transcribed from undated notes.

I simply got very little head from my pour before it dissipated into wisps. Color was an orangish-amber with NE-quality clarity. It had a great cinnamon-spice nose. Mouthfeel was medium with a sweet spiciness on the tongue, very pumpkin pie-like. Between those of us drinking this one, we guessed nutmeg, clove, cinnamon, ginger, and allspice. The nutmeg was prevalent throughout. The finish was very dry, no doubt from the presence of all of the spices. I would put this as # 3 for me in terms of pumpkin ales, behind Southern Tier's Pumking and Weyerbacher's Imperial Pumpkin. Heady company, indeed!

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Photo of kirkmichel
4.4/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml Bottle purchased at Oak Tree Discount Wine & Spirits in S. Plainfield, NJ. Label was not the same as in the photo on BA, but still had Owl and correct title. Date stmp said bbd 29 Jan 2010.

A-reddish amber, suspended sediment, not much head (off white)
S-stupendous spicy pumpkin; just like fresh pumpkin pie filling (not the garbagy canned kind); also sweet and fruity, almost raspberry with a browned sugar
T-wonderful & spicy - lots of cinnamon and clove, and though it is prominent, it is not overpowering. It is also balanced nicely with a lemony citrus tone. I love it.
M-Very Good - evaporates quickly and not overly carbonated.
D-Very well-balanced. I could drink a lot of these, but it is definitely a fall beer.

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

a - poured a two-fingers thick eggshell colored head into a snifter that settled into a creamy thick sheet and left some nice clingy lace. the body was a dull reddish-brown.
s - sweet, malty pumpkin with a hint of spice.
t - various spices with a hint of pumpkin.
m - thin to medium on the tongue.
d - very good beer. i love pumpkins a lot and this is the best i've had other than southern tier pumking.

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Photo of prsguitarsr4me
4.07/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I love pumpkin beers, and this is one of the best I've had. Dark orange color, strong and sweet aroma of spices and cinnamon. Taste is very pumpkin-ey.. with lots of spice and hoppy flavor. One of the more complex pumpkin ales I've had. The beer was a little over carbonated for me -- not very smooth or warm feeling... a little sharp. I enjoyed this a lot and would get more for the price I payed for sure!

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Photo of vacax
4.62/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Glad to have a new pumpkin ale in SoCal, even if it is a little bit late to the pumpkin season. I have really enjoyed this one in the past, and hope to see more soon from Elysian. Brewed at New Belgium Brewing. Dated best buy 19Feb10.

Pours a dark orange to amber with around an inch of head the color of butternut squash. Decent retention and lacing displayed. Smells of baked spiced pumpkin, candied ginger, and nutmeg for among the absolute best pumpkin beer scents on the market. Tastes of rich pumpkin goodness with a backing of gingerbread and a harmonious mixture of pumpkin pie spices. I'd have to say this is in the running for top pumpkin beer I have had. In the realm of similar beers, the only one definitely better for me is Barrel Aged Autumn Maple. Medium bodied with a smooth medium level of carbonation. Highly recommended, best pumpkin beer out west.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
3.6/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I heard great things about this beer. it was nice, but not outstanding. I think one reason was the 22oz bottle. a lot of pumpkin beer to drink. Still, the good about this beer is the non-over-the-top taste and nose.
Pours a dull orange, reddish, clear body topped with a dull foamed up head. Looks good.
Pumpkin nose, with hints of brown sugar, toasted bread and faint figs.
Spice isn't bold, but enough to know this would go well with a nice holiday meal.
A bland feel to it. Would like to see more excitement here.
Does not meet expectations. had better, and definitely had worse.

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Photo of Haybeerman
3.79/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear copper/amber color. Poured a 1.5 finger tan head that settled to an even skim. Laced in thin rings.

S: Grassy hops and mild pumpkin. Big spices; nutmeg, cinnamon, clove.

T: Heavy spice flavors and sweet bready malts. A bit of pumpkin in the middle. Bitter, hoppy finish.

M: Light body. Medium carbonation. Dry and smooth.

D: Spice was pretty heavy; not as pumpkiny as many. It was a nice change.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle shared and poured into an American Tumbler. BBD 29Jan10.

Thanks to Beerwolf77 for sharing this bottle!

A - Pours a hazy amber orange with a light tan head. About two fingers tall and decently retainted. A bit of lacing on the glass too.

S - Light grassy hops float around in the background with a mild pumpkin nose and lots of pumpkin pie spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, clove. A good pumpkin ale nose.

T - The malt body is a good background to the heavy pumpkin spice flavors but the flavor is a tad thin. A bit of pumpkin blends well with a slightly hoppy finish.

M - Smooth and lighter-bodied with a slightly thin feel. A bit dry in the finish with a big spicy feel and carbonation crispness.

D - The spice could be a bit cloying but it's a very good pumpkin I wouldn't pass up if given the opportunity to have again.

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Photo of beerwolf77
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Shared bomber with BeerFMAndy. Since beer tastes better when shared with friends.

Poured into my pint glass the beer is cloudy amber brown with orange edges. Full inch of light tan head. After settling a smattering of lace is left around the rim.

The aroma is a pleasant array of cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, roast malt, and just hint of hops.

The flavor is way more in line with what a pumpkin ale should be. Sweet pumpkin and light spices. Malty with a cinnamon and vanilla finish. Hardly any bitterness. Which is a feat compared to the other pumpkins out there.

Medium to light body. Moderate carbonation.

Overall one of the better pumpkin ales I've had this year. Definately worth another visit.

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Photo of Ezekiel81923
3.51/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found this at Capone's, bought for a girl who wanted to try some Pumpkin Ale's. She bailed, I drank. Poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Amber/Brown color with a 2 finger foamy tan head. Head receded very slowly, never completely, and left great lacing.

Smell: I didn't get much spiciness out of this one. Slight roasted aroma that I would assume is the roasted pumpkin seeds, pumpkin itself is in the nose as well, and some faded cinnamon and nutmeg.

Taste: Again, I can't find much of a spiciness in this one. It can't be that old of a bottle, it couldn't have been on the shelves more than a few months. But anyways, a definite pumpkin flavor does exist, along with some nutmeg. Kind of an awkward aftertaste, kind of like spoiled pumpkin and alcohol mixed together.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and creamy on the tongue. Light to medium carbonation. Just that awkward aftertaste of too much pumpkin without any spice.

Drinkability: Drank the whole bomber, moved on to other beer. I guess that means it's drinkable.

Would like to try again next year to make sure I didn't have a bad bottle. This one scores high in the areas that don't matter, but misses where it counts. In my opinion, any assertion that this could overthrow pumpking is just way off base.

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Photo of Beaver13
2.79/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

22 oz bottle. Pours a hazy amber bown with a thin head that quickly goes to a thin collar.

The aroma is bready malts, a touch of fruit and some spices (nutmeg, allspice).

The flavor is vegetal malts with spices. It has a bit of an off metallic finish. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with a little spritzy carbonation, but is mostly watery.

Overall, it sounded and smelled so good - just didn't taste good to me. I like pumpkin beers but this was a bit off (vegetal and metallic).

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.75/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance - hazy, orange/amber, a finger of yellowish white foam with good stick and good resilience.

Aroma - rich, spicy, pumpkiny aroma, just like I like it.

Taste - huge mouthful of pumpkin and spice. Roasty and delicious, wow! A bit of crustiness in there, clove and allspice on the swallow and into the aftetaste. I'm in heaven. Nutmeg and background ginger make this one hard to leave alone, it's disappearing fast.

Mouthfeel - sturdy body, good weight to it. Low carbonation and easy going down.

Drinkability - the best new pumpkin beer of the season so far, better than Pumking which had an off year IMO. At any rate, one of the best I've *ever* had. Huge thanks to Matt for recommending this one.

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Photo of Murchmac
3.6/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Scores may be different, but this is the exact review arbitrator gave because I agree with it and am lazy.

A: Pours a hazy amber body that reminds me of an IPA. The bartender brings it with half a finger of cream-colored head; it collapses evenly over a half-minute into a scattered cap and a thick donut on the edges of the glass. Some lacing down the sides.

S: "The Rock likes.... pie." Boom, pumpkin pie right in the nose. Pumpkin is very strong, but so are cinnamon, nutmeg, and brown sugar.

T: Tastes like pumpkin pie, too. The characteristic cinnamon-pumpkin punch dominates, with brown sugar sweetening the mid-taste. Nutmeg and cinnamon once more in the finish, with a pumpkin-y aftertaste. There is an underlying hop bitterness (kind of vague, I know, but I can't pick out a descriptive flavor) that balances it nicely.

M: Medium-bodied... A bit disappointing, as I'd love it to be fuller and thicker. Moderate carbonation.

D: Went down really easily, and I brought a bottle home to share. Nice stuff. (I didnt share any though)

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.42/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Part of the Elysian Halloween spectacular. Split all three of these with multiple members of my family over the house on Halloween. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 10/31/2009.
 
The last of the trifecta for the evening, it was really fun going through all of these during the course of the day. Really just fun stuff. Poured out the lightest of the three with a hazy orange tinted amber color and a nice soft off white head that reached a height of around an inch or so before it settled down with some nice lacing on the side that really just surprised me with how well it hung in there to be honest. Really quite the solid look. Nice aroma of pumpkin spice, hints of cinnamon and nutmeg, all the usual characters here with a touch of a west coast hop flair to it, especially as it warms. Crisp and super clean flavor here. Starts with a touch of a light malt note and then swoops in with a big hit of cinnamon and nutmeg which dries out the palate very nicely. Very even consistency I have to admit as it comes together very nice. Light drying of palate leaves a touch of light spice and the lightest hint of hops on the back of the tongue. Super drinkable, in fact out of the whole night I enjoyed this one the most out of all of them.
 
Overall a very solid light beer for the evening. Fit in very well with the rest of the lineup and I would have no problem at all with going after all three of these again. Great job from the boys up north.
 

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Photo of sholland119
3.65/5  rDev -6.6%
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

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Photo of cvfish
4.54/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - This beer poured a pumpkin orange color that produced a white fluffy head that had good retention and laced the side of the glass nicely

S - The aromas produced by this beer were, in short, Grams's pumpkin pie, pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, this was a great smelling beer

T - I could say a whole lot about this beer, but the nose says it all, I will say the taste is only second to Pumking

M - The mouthfeel of this beer had a medium body with a light to moderate amount of carbonation

D - This was a very good pumpkin beer, although not enough to dethrone the Pumking from that status

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Photo of drumrboy22
3.68/5  rDev -5.9%
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.

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Night Owl Pumpkin Ale from Elysian Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 344 ratings.
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