Elysian Brewing Company

Thursday, November 4, 2010 - 
In preparation for our trip to Seattle, I reached out to Hoosier Beer Geek to get some recommendations on which breweries we had to try.  Though we found Granville Brewery ourselves and La Conner Brewery by accident, HBG sent a map of too many breweries to name via the Beer Mapping Project.  If you are looking to see what establishments are in area to enjoy some craft brews, this is the map for you.  Chatting via twitter, Elysian Brewery was recommended and I put it on my list of "must drinks" and planned to visit.

There are a few locations in the Seattle area, and we ended up in the Stadium District location, which is right by both Qwest Stadium and Safeco Field.  I was so anxious to get inside because their 'Dark o' the Moon' pumpkin stout won a silver medal at GABF.  I love pumpkin, so I was dying to try this great beverage.
This establishment was so much bigger than I ever anticipated.  With an clean and modern industrial feel, it was welcoming - a place I could easily see my friends and I frequenting. 
We grabbed a seat outside since the weather was fantastic and picked up the beer menu.  Not only did they have the pumpkin stout, but another two pumpkin brews on the menu: 
I was ready for a taste of all of them, but was soon to be very disappointed.  I learned they were out of all three of the pumpkin brews.  My heart broke a little, but it picked back up when I received the sampler of brews to try.
The list of brews that were on my sampler included (from left to right):
  • Elysian Field Pale Ale - hoppy with a bite
  • Dragonstooth Stout - probably the smoothest stout I've ever had.  Beyond drinkable, it had great malt flavor and tasted like perfection on a crisp day
  • Perseus Porter - a great porter that was rich in chocolate undertones, very smooth
  • Immortal IPA- a pale ale golden in color that was lackluster to me, a basic 
  • Wise ESB - a redish in color extra bitter brew with an intense malt flavor, but was pleasantly creamy
While enjoying these great brews, we also ordered some lunch.  Hubs ordered a pesto tortellini dish that was on special.  It was a rich dish, full of salty flavor, both from the cheese ravioli as well as the pesto.  I would have enjoyed a few bites (as I did) but would craved something else to satisfy my hunger...

...like my wonderful pastrami sandwich and barley soup.  The sandwich was fantastic and more than a mouthfull.  The thinly slice meat was full of flavor which mixed well with a vinegar tasting grainy mustard.  To bring it all together, gruyere.  The cheese was perfect with this sandwich as it was all held together with some toasted bread.  The soup was warm and filling with perfectly cooked barley and beef broth flavor.  Chunks of tomatoes and celery were the perfect pairing to this fall soup.

For dessert, more beer.  I just had to have a glass of the stout since it was so lip smacking delicious.  I also got a sampling of the Avatar Jasmine IPA.  I absolutely loved it and wished I had sampled it before ordering the stout (though ordering another glass wasn't out of the question.)  The flavor of jasmine was so apparent, but I absolutely adored how it complimented the tastes of a IPA.  I could absolutely see some people not liking it because of that, but it was such a treat and the first time I've ever had a jasmine in a brew.  Delish.

It was a lazy lunch, sipping on brews in fantastic weather why sitting next to the beautiful Safeco Field.  If that didn't make me fall in love with Seattle on day one, I don't know what would have (well, samplings of pumpkin brews would have nailed it!) 

Have you ever tried a jasmine IPA before, and did you like it?  What beer (or other beverage) surprised you upon sampling lately?