Night Owl Pumpkin Ale | Elysian Brewing Company

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very good
344 Reviews
Night Owl Pumpkin AleNight Owl Pumpkin Ale

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

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Reviews: 344 | Ratings: 1,152
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 spinrsx
3.64/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Bomber from the Potsdam NY IGA for 8$

Appearance - Clear dark copper with an average size fizzy beige coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some decent lacing. The head lasted for around 3-4 minutes.

Smell - Hops, malts grassy, all spice, pumpkin

Taste & Mouth - There is a below average amount of carbonation and I can taste caramel, malts, and all spice. There is only a little bit of pumpkin and a light grassiness. It ends with a malty caramel and all spice aftertaste.

Overall – A little out of season but it's held up pretty well. The carbonation is a little low and the beer seems a little watery. The spice level is good but it needs more pumpkin. A very drinkable fall beer, but nothing that has the wow factor.

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Photo of scruffwhor
3.65/5  rDev -6.6%
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.

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nice clear orange brown with a 1/2 inch of opaque colored head.

S - Smells quite mild yet balanced getting some sweet spices and not very vegital pumpkin. Malts and hops seem level.

T - Wow very nice as other stated it balances the line of pumpkin and beer very well with just the right amount of cinnamon and allspice to keep it from being too vegital. Malt forward is also a plus for the style.

M - Like Fegley's Devious only more sessionable with a light to medium body make for easy drink ability.

Overall it either this or Devious but I am looking to get a case of this stuff. Good pumpkin ale indeed.

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Photo of Immortale25
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mad props to SatlyMalty for this brew! Poured into a Ninkasi Brewing pint glass. No freshness date.

First pour from 22 oz. bomber:

A- Pours a medium amber color with a 1/4 inch head that fails to retain long before becoming a thin ring outlining the glass and fleeting surface foam. Below-average lacing.

S- Heavy fragrance of pumpkin and nutmeg. It's non-sweet, more of the vegetal type of pumpkin aroma which makes sense given the 150 lbs. of pumpkin used per batch.

T- Plain pumpkin flavor with a kick of nutmeg and not much else. Toasty malts keep things a bit interesting. Trace notes of cinnamon and clove.

M- Thin and watery. Barely any snap from the spices. Medium-low carbonation and a body that's on the lighter side for the style.

Second pour:

A- Wow. The bottom layer of this beer contains copious amounts of pumpkin sediment which is made evident by the numerous white specks suspended in the body of the beer.There's a collection of white sediment that's formed which is visible through the bottom of the glass.

S- Not much different. Just a slight bit more yeast.

T- Much more spice and a much heartier flavor of raw pumpkin gourd and seed. Very earthy and yeasty which I attribute to the bottle conditioning

M- Stickier afterfeel with a tad more bite from the spices. The body is also upped slightly.

O- A completely different beer from first pour to second. The second pour is much better.

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Photo of rfgetz
4.17/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at The Institute as part of their "Pumpkin Patch" event...

Darker orange with hints of copper. Decent white head and ok lacing. Smell is of pumpkin pie - spices like nutmeg, clove and cinamon - with a little pumpkin puree thing going on. Tast is very good, as close to pumpkin pie as i have had outside of a ST Pumking. Good body, carbonation does not get in the way, creamy without being sticky or heavy. Very good pumpkin beer, one of the best.

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Photo of tigg924
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
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 Viggo
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle purchased at Premier Gourmet in Buffalo.

Pours a clear amber, a little rough looking, some orange hues, thick off white head forms, drops some decent lacing, good retention, and settles to a thin collar. Smell is neat, lots of spicing, cloves and cinnamon, nutmeg, rich pumpkin aroma, caramel and honey, some toasty pumpkin seeds, biscuit, corn syrup, smells pretty nice. Taste is very malty, pumpkin, caramel, honey sweetness, very biscuity, light toast, slight lemony sourness, and the spices come through in the finish, light spicy bitterness and big biscuit flavour, nice. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with medium carbonation, pretty drinkable. Spices are there but not too much, maybe because its an older bottle. A pretty nice pumpkin ale, I like.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.92/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a pint

Pours a slightly hazy brown/burnt orange with a good amount of lacing for a pumpkin beer. A off-white head rises and fades rather quickly.

This might be the most pumpkin smelling pumpkin beer out there. Alcohol infused pumpkin rounded out by allspice, ginger, nutmeg and clove.

Slightly bitter alcoholy pumpkin body with nutmeg and allspice and caramel malt. A bready, ginger finish on top of all of the pumpkin flavors out there.

Medium body and pretty complex flavor profile.

This might be one of the more drinkable pumpkin ales out there. The spices are all in check, nothing over the top, making it an easy, enjoyable sipper.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.47/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a bottle tonight while grabbing some wine for the wife. Great Pumpkin and Dark O' the Night are in my near future, so I thought I would start here.

22oz bottle poured into a Pint glass.

A - Clear, red-brown with a thin light tan head that fades to the edges very quickly.

S - Light cinnamin and cloves.

T - Graham cracker, cinnamin, malty, spices linger for a bit.

D - Heavier to medium body, low carbonation, very spicey aftertaste.

O - Pretty mild for a pumpkin beer.

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

A - Pours a an amber red dark orange color with a mild lacing ring around the top and minimal carbonation.

S - Brown sugar, pumpkin, and nutmeg in a bread crust sort of way.

T - Mimics the nose...brown sugar, pumpkin, and nutmeg.

M - Light bodied and somewhat watery with a spicy sugary finish. This beer leaves an annoying artificial and chemical-like aftertaste.

O - I revised my original review because I now have a fresh bottle, the original was done with a stale bottle. This is a really solid pumpkin beer!

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

Aroma is of baked spiced pumpkin, candied ginger, and nutmeg. Some breadiness and sweet caramels mixed in as well.

The taste is like Thanksgiving dessert. Rich pumpkin goodness with a some gingerbread and a harmonious mixture of pumpkin pie spices. Medium bodied with a smooth medium level of carbonation.

Overall this is a great pumpkin beer. Definitely top 5 in my book.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.8/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours an orange color with a two finger white head. The head is rather billowy, but fades relatively fast to a persistent cap on the top of the brew. Once faded, the head leaves only a lighter level of lacing.

Smell – The aroma is a nice pumpkin pie aroma. There is a good presence of caramel sweetened pumpkin with pumpkin spices. The heaviest of the spices are of cinnamon and nutmeg, but aromas of allspice and clove are there as well.

Taste – The taste hits heavily upfront of roasted pumpkin and some flavors of cinnamon and allspice. As the taste advances, a light brown sugar sweetness mixed with clove and ginger come to the tongue. The sweetness then fades as more roasted pumpkin comes to the tongue, and in the end, a dry roasted spiced pumpkin flavor is left to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the chewier side with a carbonation level that is on the slightly above average side. While traditionally I like smoothness with a pumpkin brew, the more chewy nature of this body is actually quite nicely compliments the more average to above average carbonation level.

Overall – A more roasty and dry pumpkin brew with a very interesting feel. Give it a go if you have a chance!!

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Photo of dirtylou
4.18/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber, split

appearance: served in a lakefront shaker pint - rich orange-bronze body, nice creamy tan cap with strong retention

smell: pumpkin pie, ginger, allspice, cinnamon, pale malt

taste: solid pumpkin offering - lots of good pumpkin pie spice ala nutmeg, allspice, ginger, cinnamon. Not really an abundance of pumpkin flavor but very nicely spiced and a well rounded pale malt profile.

mouthfeel: medium, creamy. very good for the style which tends to be a little bland

overall: good - looking forward to the other elysian pumpkins

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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 AgentMunky
3.13/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a St. Bernardus goblet.

A: No head. Pale, dark copper. Translucent.

S: Ginger? Very strange. Rice? Spicy, dead yeast.

T: Interesting. Heavy pumpkin, but only on the foretaste. Still tastes like rice though. Lots of subtle spice. Enjoying the ginger and cinnamon.

M: Thin and a touch sour.

O: Not a bad beer, especially in gulps, but not as tasty as I was anticipating. Wouldn't recommend, even if I'd have another.

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Photo of ccrida
4.49/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had a pint at Elysian Fields on draught, where it's listed as 6.1% ABV.

Appearance is burnt brown with the slightest haze, a thin khaki collar and light lace.

The smell is sweet, and when colder, is exactly like Pez candies. As it warms, it goes from cotton candy to more sticky, caramel malt and spicy aroma. Weird, but awesome!

The taste is more restrained then the nose, making for an incredibly tasty balance of malt, pumpkin and spice, coming across like a smooth american style ESB or brown. This is the best pumpkin ale I've had (of granted, only maybe 5 or 6 ), and the fact that the emphasis is more on the actual pumpkin rather then the spices is probably the main reason why.

Mouthfeel is very creamy, with a medium body. There is a lager like crispness, although the fruity esters suggest otherwise.

The most drinkable pumpkin beer I've ever had, two pints in this sitting was no problem at all. Very apropos for fall, a great seasonal for sure!

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.52/5  rDev -10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a 12oz bottle which was good because a bomber or a sixer would be way too much. Orange color with good lacing but it also has a lot of particulate floating throughout. Strong smell of the typical pumpkin pie spices. Flavor is pumpkin, nutmeg, spicy. This is good but I really don't want too much of it, kind of overpowering.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
4.09/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Pours hazy pale copper with a fading head.
Nose shows currants, fruit cake, candied fruit, golden syrup and soft pumpkin.
Pretty similar flavours, although the pumpkin is more prominent and there's less sweetness. Still a lot of the christmas pudding-like spices. Finishes a little short, could use a longer lasting malty finish.
Nice moderately high carbonation.

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Photo of Brenden
4.12/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is a slightly hazed, opaque, ruddy sort of brown. On top grows a light tan head that sets up just over a finger high, displays good retention, and leaves good lacing mostly in patches as the beer falls.
The aroma shows depth and promise, offering all the balance of plenty of pumpkin flesh with moderate spicing at a good level, enough to satisfy without going overboard. There's just a bit of sweetness with a bready back and even a touch of peppery spiciness underneath.
The flavor is nearly as good, just shy of the level the aroma's on. The breadiness takes over a bit, though the spicing certainly isn't lost. There's even a noticeable touch of hops sitting beneath it all. The focus is clearly lots of pumpkin, both meaty and almost nutty.
The medium body supports it all well. It smooth enough with a nippy crispness that doesn't fade. Neither too sweet nor too dry, the feel works well in this beer.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
2.8/5  rDev -28.4%

12 oz bottle into a wine glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy burnt copper color. The head is a finger high, with an off-white shade. While the head has a nice creaminess, retention isn't very good. A slender ring of lacing is left on the glass. (3.25)

Smell: Yeah, this one comes off overspiced. I'm picking up a ton of ginger, nutmeg, and allspice, somewhat overpowering the notes of pumpkin, cinnamon, and pie-like sweetness. I have to say, the spice levels here are somewhat offputting. (2.5)

Taste: This works a little better. The harsher spices are toned down, while the notes of gourd, cinnamon, and cream come through. Still, there's too much ginger and nutmeg on the finish - a problem many in the style suffer from. Ah well. (2.75)

Mouthfeel: It's somewhat crisp and dry, giving it solid drinkability. The latter is its crowning feature - even if the flavor profile isn't fully agreeing with me, I can still get it down very easily. Carbonation is restrained nicely. (3.5)

Overall: Not really enjoying this. There is a decent pumpkin pie character, but it's overshadowed by the spicing. More for others, plain and simple. (2.75)

2.8/5: It's not your fault I (generally) dislike this style, Elysian

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Photo of andrenaline
3.87/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cheers to joemcgrath27 for the variety from his latest BC haul and for sharing this bomber with me.

A - Pours a slightly hazy golden orange colour, finger of head with decent retention and no real lacing.

S - Some light pumpkin and leafy hops off the top, but the spices tend to dominate with nutmeg and cinnamon coming through.

T - Much like the scent, the nutmeg and cinnamon dominate the flavour with the fresh cut pumpkin coming through on the finish. A bit of a buttered caramel flavour lingers on the palette.

M - Medium bodied ale the goes down smooth and finishes nice and wet.

D - The flavours are quite tasty, but the spice presence is a little too strong and takes away from the drinkability of this particular one. A worthy offering to any Pumpkin Ale fan and I'm glad I was able to try it.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
3.32/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy orange-ish to yellow color, a bit chunky, and a small to no white head. In the aroma, big cinnamon and allspice all the way through. In the taste, big spice, quite heavy on the cinnamon, with nutmeg and allspice, and notes of gourd. A spice bite and a medium to lighter body, with a dry over use of cinnamon and ginger in the aftertaste. Overuse of cinnamon and big spice presence, although, just about average.

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Photo of tavernjef
4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Blurry dark orange shade. Husky firm top of light tanned foam sits for a stay before dropping to a solid skim and a firm collar ring. Drippy lacing with a minimal amount sticking; only a few big globs closer to the top.

Aroma is quite nice, very cookie, bakery-like with a snappy cinnamon sprinkled pumpkin pie spice with a slim candied malt undertow. Nice.

Flavor is pretty good, as a steady stream of flavor begins in a pumpkin pie pond and ends in a small lake of Thanksgiving dessert spices. Well rounded pumpkin tone sets the stage with great additional spices of cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger to round off little cookie-like delights as it roams around the palate at good length.

Feel is just shy of medium, perhaps a tad thin in the front and middle. Gains a nice firm malting and tender fluffyness as it goes. Finish lingers with a very nicely held spice of pumpkin pie.

Another solid offering from the folks at Elysian, and another big thanks to cvschaller for the many samples! This was a hoot!

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Photo of RoyalT
3.62/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – The deep, orangish-brown color of this liquid promises a malty brew. The head was white and moderate but very creamy.

Smell – The malts were thick and heavy here and mixed with some light citrus hops. It all come together nicely to form a classic, pumpkin nose.

Taste – The pumpkin flavor was solid here with a nice spicy hop compliment.

Mouthfeel – This medium-bodied Pumpkin Ale has some light tingly carbonation to the mouthfeel.

Drinkability – This is a good, solid, very malty ale with a bit of PacNW leafy bitterness to boot.

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