BEER Run #2: Elysian Brewing’s 9th Annual Pumpkin Beer Festival

By | October 9, 2013

I will be the first to admit that too much time has passed since CYCLEBUTTCRACK BEER Run #1.  The air has changed to the crisp chill of autumn.  The leaves have begun to turn.  Most importantly the summer seasonal BEERS have given way to the fall beer seasonals.  Fall is the time of Oktoberfest, Crisp Ryes and Pumpkin ales.  In the spirit of the harvest, BEER Run #2 would be going to Elysian’s 9th Annual  Pumpkin Beer festival.

The Route:

Like the last BEER Run, we started at the Tukwila Community Center.  Why?  It was convenient and put our big climb early in our adventure.  From there we hit, Burien, Boulevard Park, Alki, Spokane Street and up to Elysian in Georgetown.  The weather was FANTASTIC, surprisingly hot for early October.  Sunday traffic even in Alki was very light!   Who could ask for anything more from a Leisurely Sunday Ride.  After the event, we rode up Airport Way and back to the Tukwila Community Center for a well deserved nap. What a day!  Here is the Route!

The Event:

  • Cost: $28 for 6 tasted and a real glass souvenir glass.
  • That seems rather steep for only 6 tastes.  The Tacoma BEER Festival gives 10 tastes for $30.
  • 60 pumpkin beers on tap.
  • Giant pumpkins filled with beer.  Samples are free once pumpkin is tapped.  We missed this 🙁

We arrived at the Festival not long after they opened at 12:00.  First matter of business was food.  Amazingly enough they thought to provide food for the BEER drinking masses.  There were three food trucks on site.  I had the Cuban Bowl From Snout and Company.  Mmmm. Tasty goodness! 

Now that the we had padded the BEER landing zone, it was time to get to the serious business of BEER Tasting.  With only six tastes, we had to choose carefully.  My favorites included:

  • Georgetown Brewing’s Pumpkin Porter  blended with Theo Chocolates, chocolate juice and aged in whiskey barrels.  Smooth happiness in a small glass!
  • Fremont Brewing’s Pumpkin bourbon barrel aged barley wine. Blew my mind.  When I think barley wine, I think intense flavors that overpower.  Usually all I can handle is a taste.  This barley wine was subtle with hints of coconut and vanilla.  It was smooth subtle and changed everything I thought I knew about barley wine.
  • Elysian’s Punkuccino Coffee Pumpkin Ale.  A stong coffee flavor with very subtle hinds of pumpkin spice characterizes this very dark ale.  Very tasty!
  • Elysian’s Great Pumpkin Imperial Ale I have talked about this before.  My favorite fall seasonal.  I could not pass up my favorite.

Sadly I have one complaint other than the cost of the event.  Beers were poured by volunteers instead of brewery representatives.  This is fine.  I think it would be fun to pour beers, I did not like their methods.  Every beer was dispensed from the keg into a pitcher.  There it sat, and sat and sat until I arrived for my taste.  Many of the beers were flat and very warm.  These are NOT ideal conditions for tasting!

After we had sampled our 6 tastes, we headed to Full Throttle Bottles where I bought a 22 oz pumpkin beer for home consumption.  The jersey pockets work perfectly for folding a 22 ounce bottle.

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