Fun Fall Flavors on Tap

Photo © Dreamstime

By Dana E. Neuts

With the lazy days of summer behind us, local brewmasters are cooking up tasty concoctions in fun fall flavors, ranging from traditional pumpkin ales to coffee-inspired brews. Here are some tasty treats to tantalize your taste buds.

Elysian Brewing in Seattle brews a trio of pumpkin ales in its fall specialty line: Night Owl Pumpkin, The Great Pumpkin and Dark O’ The Moon. Night Owl Pumpkin is the brewery’s original pumpkin ale, made with roasted and raw pumpkin seeds. The Great Pumpkin is on the more flavorful side with roasted pumpkin seeds and extra pumpkin in the mash and seasoned with cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and allspice. Dark O’ The Moon is a fuller-bodied pumpkin stout with hints of malty bittersweet chocolate, coffee and subtle pumpkin and spices.

Wallace Brewing of Wallace, Idaho, serves its Huckleberry Lager year-round, but when huckleberries ripen in the fall, the brewmaster adds an extra pound and a half of pureed huckleberries to the original recipe, turning the base purple and leaving it full of delicious berry chunks. While the year-round fruity brew is available throughout the brewing company’s distribution area, the “hunkified” fall version is only available in the tap room in Wallace, Idaho, one more reason to visit the town that calls itself “the center of the universe.”

This fall, Big Sky Brew in Missoula, Montana, will unveil a limited release of its Slow Elk Oatmeal Stout. Available only in September and October, this oatmeal stout has a smooth, creaminess to it, making it seem almost chocolaty. Nearby bars and restaurants serve it over vanilla ice cream, a sweet way to welcome the fall weather.

Iron Horse Brewery in Ellensburg, Washington, is offering a fall seasonal brew this year called Mocha Death. Offered October through December, this concoction combines the brewery’s popular Irish Death (a dark, smooth ale) with fresh, locally roasted espresso beans and pure cocoa, an unusual and delicious combination.

For the first time ever, Alaskan Brewing Co. in Juneau, Alaska, is releasing a fall seasonal beer, Pumpkin Porter. The flavor was originally released last year as part of the brewery’s Pilot Series and it was so popular that the company decided to bring it back. Starting with its award-winning smoked porter, the brewmaster adds 12 pounds of pumpkin per barrel as well as clove, cinnamon, brown sugar and other fall spices, making it a full-flavored, rich ale ideal for cool, crisp fall evenings.