Sunday, September 5, 2021

Elysian Night Owl Pumpkin Ale & Great Pumpkin Imperial Pumpkin Ale

Seldom do I combine multiple beers in one review, but there's a very good reason for this: other than both Elysian Night Owl Pumpkin Ale and Great Pumpkin Imperial Pumpkin Ale having slightly different ABVs, they are essentially the same beer. Night Owl's ABV is 6.7%, while Great Pumpkin's is a measly 8.4%. Each of these pumpkin ales is pretty good, even an excellent sample of the seasonal style, but I'd expect an imperial anything to have a higher alcohol and/or hop content. Now this is the odd thing: on Elysian's website the notes for Great Pumpkin indicate that it has 0 hops! I don't know if you can even call it beer if there aren't any hops. If this is true, there is no detectable difference between Night Owl, at 18 IBUs (very mild hop bitterness) and Great Pumpkin at an alleged no IBUs. 

These pumpkin ales pour a distinctive hue - just like a pumpkin pie, with a scanty tan head. The spices are a perfect blend of cinnamon (which holds a prominent place in the spice pantheon), allspice, nutmeg and ginger. Both versions have a smooth consistency, and even the lower ABV version has a whiskey-like quality to it. Very smooth. I'd recommend either of these beers for anyone's Autumn beer drinking!


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