Elysian Night Owl Pumpkin Ale

elysian_pumpkinBrewer: Elysian Brewing, Seattle, WA
Style: Pumpkin Ale
ABV: 6.7%
IBUs: 18

Description: Elysian’s Fall Seasonal Pumpkin Ale is brewed using Pale, Munich, Crystal malts, which are then lightly bittered with Magnum hops. Roasted and raw pumpkin seeds are then added to the mash, while pumpkin flesh is added in the mash, in the kettle, and during fermentation.

Tasting Notes: This is a good take on the Pumpkin Ale. The nose is indistinguishable from pumpkin pie, and the flavor is not far behind. There’s plenty of pumpkin flesh to complement the smooth malt and just sweet enough malt flavor, and the spice comes through nicely without being overpowering.

Appearance: Amber-orange, slightly cloudy, good foam retention and carbonation
Nose: Pumpkin pie nose! Allspice, smooth malts, cinnamon and nutmeg
Taste: Smooth malt, pumpkin pie, mineral tang, mild sweetness, ginger, allspice
Aftertaste: Lingering spice flavor, sweet and smooth malt, minerals
Overall: 8/10

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Double Mountain Pale Death Belgian-Style Imperial IPA

doublemountain_paledeathBrewer: Double Mountain, Hood River, OR
Style: Belgian-Style Imperial IPA
ABV: 9.3%
IBUs: 93

Description: This apocalyptic-themed ale features a combination that is growing in popularity of late – the fusion of Pacific Northwestern and Belgian-style ales. In this case, pale malt and a very generous dose of Northwestern hops co-mingle with strains of Ardennes yeast to create a beer that is very powerful, but strangely balanced.

Tasting Notes: I was a little wary of this beer to begin with. An Imperial IPA that embraces elements of an extra strong Belgian ale is sure to be powerful and potentially overwhelming, maybe to its own detriment. But I really like the way that Pacific Northwest hops (Cascade, Centennial and/or Columbus for sure) play well with Belgian flavors. You’ve got the citrusy and tropical fruit flavors of of a Northwestern IPA, which are nicely balanced by the spicy, citrusy flavor of Belgian yeast. And the strength, while considerable, doesn’t intrude on the flavor. Things finish smoothly and warmly!

Appearance: Amber, cloudy, sediment, good foam retention and carbonation
Nose: Rich malt, citrus, passion fruit, pineapple, spicy yeast, coriander
Taste: Strong malt, citrus bite, grassy, piney, yeasty, orange peel, coriander, alcoholic bite
Aftertaste: Lingering spice, yeast, alcoholic and hop bitterness
Overall: 8.5/10

Alameda Klickitat Pale Ale

alameda_klickitat-Brewer: Alameda Brewing, Portland OR
Style: Pale Ale
ABV: 5.3%
IBU: 36

Description: Named in honor of the Klickitat people of the Pacific Northwest, this pale ale is part of Alameda’s regular lineup. It is fashioned using Caramel and Munich malts, and then bittered with 3 different additions of Northwest-grown Cascade hops to emphasize the different aspects of their flavor.

Tasting Notes: All told, this was a very descent and well-balanced pale ale. The mouthfeel and smooth malt flavor reminded me a red ale, but the hop bitterness – which really comes through in a variety of flavors – was that a good solid pale. Added to that is the nice amber hue and a cloudy profile that makes it an all around pleasurable drinking experience!

Appearance: Amber, cloudy, good foam retention and carbonation
Nose: Rich malt, baked bread, herbal hops, grassy and citrus notes
Taste: Smooth malt, chewy mouthfeel, grassy and piney hops, mild citrus bite
Aftertaste: Lingering hop bitterness, citrus rind, smooth malt finish
Overall: 8.5/10