How badass! Someone named a beer after our blog. What? A beagle and some kids? Ahh…Well, Linus is probably a little under age for this one, and if that face popped out of the pumpkin patch, he’d probably need some new britches. Still, you can get your very own in one of Elysian’s Pumpkin Patch four packs, and celebrate Devil’s Night with us, or, you could sit in the yard and wait for someone to bring you one. Your call.


Name:  The Great Pumpkin Ale

Place of Origin / Brewer: Washington, USA / Elysian Brewing Company

Beer style / ABV%:  Imperial Pumpkin Ale / 8.1%

Specialty Prep / Individuality:  The Great Pumpkin is brewed with both Pumpkin and seeds, Pale, Munich, Cara-Hell, Cara-Vienne, Cara-Munich and Crisp 45° L Crystal malts, Mangum hops for bittering,  then fermented with cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and allspice, along with additional pumpkin in the fermenter. It’s considered the worlds first imperial pumpkin ale, and took the silver medal in 2007’s Great American Beer Festival.



Obviously we’re all a little bit partial to the “Great Pumpkin” moniker. But, I like the wicked scarred Jack O’ Lantern on display here too.  He’s a little tore up, maybe from some naughty trick-or-treaters or maybe because the dude who carved him had a few too many “imperial” ales before he started slicing an dicing (stay safe out there friends!). – Tim

A sack stitched jack o lantern gnaws menacingly on Elysian’s The Great Pumpkin logo. A quick description, a few nods to the beer and the brew house and away we go! – Brittney


Color:  6.5

This one is a little bit different than the norm. Bright orange butterscotch coloring makes it reminiscent of a shandy style. A cloudy body with some yeasty sediment swirls beneath a bone white creamy head. – Rick

Maybe the most intense orange color we have had this year.  The last of a larger head makes me think I might be about to partake in a glass of orange juice, pulp and all. – Brittney

M- 6.5 / T- 7 / B- 7 / R- 6


Aroma:  7

I like that I really get oven fresh roasted pumpkin seed on the nose, along with respectable amounts of fresh pumpkin and a subdued spicing. An intriguing hook to those disenfranchised by gobs of pie. – Mike

It smells fruity and sweet, kind of like a gummy citric candy, yet still retaining a yeasty quality to it. Not bad, but unexpected from a pumpkin ale. – Rick

M- 8 / T- 7 / B- 7 / R- 5.5


Mouth feel:  7

Deep end of medium bodied with a hefty bit of burn. It’s definitely an imperial ale, and even has a bit of an ice cold pumpkin vodka vibe. – Mike

I didn’t expect a full body from it’s initial appearance, but this one delivers. It’s really smooth and creamy with just a slight bite from the ABV. – Rick

M- 6.5 / T- 7.5 / B- 6 / R- 7


Tasting notes:  8

Full flavored and quite fruity on the pumpkin end. The spice is incredibly mild here, not in a bad way, but very much subdued, playing a more astringent and drying role. – Mike

Earthy and nutty, the pumpkin seeds add wonders to this ale, the spices are full, with cinnamon, clove and ginger, sweet malty bread and a vanilla sugar blend together for bold fall beer, but that ABV isn’t nearly as well masked as I think they’re hoping for and with everything going on this beer could really start to overwhelm you. – Tim

Looks like we might have another one that knows how to present a earthly vegetal ale other than a spiced beer that might happen to remind you of pumpkin pie.  I get a lot of earthy notes and a remainder of a whisper of spice. – Brittney

For an imperial ale, there’s a great fruity sweet character here that’s a bit unique.  It’s a nice full body that has a warm buzz about it. Citrus, with an almost barrel aged sweetness to it, I can almost taste pumpkin Jolly Ranchers. An novel approach for sure. – Rick

M- 7.5 / T- 8 / B- 7 / R- 8.5


Finish:  7

Finish is long with  immense carry-over from the actual pumpkin in the body.  I can’t remember the last pumpkin ale that finished with pumpkin.  Unfortunately, it’s also competing with alcohol trails. – Tim

The  honeyed pumpkin finishes with an almost mead decay here, transforming into a sour and earthy flesh with hints of pumpkin seed, and cinnamon prevailing. – Mike

M- 8 / T- 7 / B- 6 / R- 7


Flavor balance:  7.5

–         Pumpkin to Spice balance: 7.5

More pumpkin than spice in the realm that we are used to tasting. – Brittney

The nuttiness from the seeds and the earthy vegetal gourd are very well set in the spice mix here and the spices never overwhelm the squashy goodness on display.  Very well done.  – Tim

M- 7.5 / T- 8 / B- 6 / R- 8

–         Sweet / Dry balance: 7.5

This one is deceptive. With a cheek-full, it’s cinnamon-fruity –sweet, but on the swallow you’re left just a touch breathless, and a bit parched. – Mike

This imperial ale really shines in this category I think. There’s a nice vegetal sweetness that isn’t too syrupy, and it’s able to end with nice a dry finish. – Rick

M- 8 / T- 7 / B- 6 / R- 8

–         Multiple Drinkability?  7

The alcohol isn’t very well-masked.  It’s clear you’re drinking an Imperial ale, and it feels like it could get your lit up faster than Detroit on Devil’s Night.  I’m not sure my palate could handle more than two glasses in one sitting, but if you ever see me out, I assure you I wouldn’t pass up sharing a bottle with you. – Tim

I like to drink my beer not chew it. – Brittney

Overall, it’s a great beer period. The fact that it’s a unique twist on the pumpkin style really helps it stand out. – Rick

M- 7 / T- 7.5 / B- 5 / R- 9


Overall:  7.17

M- 7.33 / T- 7.33 / B- 6.42 / R- 7.08