Elysian Brewing Company
Washington Brewery Boasts Countless Medal-Winning, Experimental Brews Since 1995
Elysian Brewing Company of Washington is the product of Germany-born co-owner Dick Cantwell. Cantwell developed his passion for beer as a homebrewer while living and writing in the Boston area in the late 1980s. In 1990, when Cantwell moved to Seattle, Washington, he saw an opportunity to make brewing his career.
After jobs working as head brewer for Washington’s Duwamps Cafe, Seattle Brewing Company, Pike Place Brewing Company, and Big Time Brewery, Cantwell was ready to break out on his own. He teamed up with partners Joe Bisacca and Dave Buhler and founded Elysian Brewing Company in 1995.
It was a smart business partnership, and one that has stayed in tact ever since. Dave Buhler was a former spirits wholesaler and Joe Bisacca was a vice president at Seafirst Bank. Now, Joe is Elysian Brewing Company’s CFO/Head of Operations and David is the Sales and Marketing Director.
Together, they opened Elysian Brewing Company’s first location and main brewery on Capitol Hill - Seattle, Washington’s most populous neighborhood. The Capitol Hill location boasts a 20-barrel brewing system and provides the backbone to the continuously growing craft brewery.
In 2003, the brewery opened a second location in the south Greenlake area of Seattle, Elysian-Tangletwon. The smaller space offers an intimate, neighborhood brewery/bistro experience and feels reminiscent of European cafes. Many of the experimental, festival, and specialty beers are brewed on this site.
Known for classic styles as well as flexibility and innovation, Elysian has brewed over 500 recipes since opening in 1996. Of all their varieties brewed with unusual ingredients, they are seasonally notorious for their pumpkin beers, which get featured in their yearly festival, the Great Pumpkin Beer Festival, along with dozens of other breweries pumpkin beers – some beers are even poured from giant pumpkins!
Aside from their seasonal pumpkin beers, Elysian’s year round beers are also spectacular. The most popular Elysian beers include: Space Dust IPA; Dayglow IPA; Contact Haze, Hazy IPA; Rolling Stone Lager; Super Fuzz, Blood Orange Pale Ale; Mens Room Red; Avatar Jasmine IPA; Immortal IPA; Zephyrus Pilsner; Dragonstooth Stout, an Imperial Oatmeal Stout; Perseus Porter; and The Wise ESB (Extra Special Bitter).
The Wise ESB was the first Elysian beer and has done well at the World Beer Cup, along with Dragonstooth Stout and Avatar Jasmine IPA. The brewery’s beers earned it the Large Brewpub of the Year award at the Great American Beer Festival in 1999, 2003, and 2004.
It is these types of beers that have fueled the creative fires and helped build Elysian’s reputation as Seattle’s top brewpub. In August of 2006, Elysian opened its most recent location in the stadium district south of downtown Seattle. This larger space was built to handle the crowds! From game days, to business lunches and everyday specialty dining, Elysian-Fields promises a good time.
In 2015, Elysian partnered with Anheuser-Busch, joining its craft beer brands family. Brewing, events, operations, innovations, management teams, and all five Elysian Brewing locations still continue to be led from Seattle, Washington.
In 2016, the Airport Way expanded into the north building 33,000 square feet for increased storage, and office spaces, while 14,000 of those square feet were dedicated to Elysian Brewing Company’s wood aged beer production. With this, they were able to delve further into a new segment of the craft beer industry.
Elysian’s growth wouldn’t be possible without the talents of Brewmaster Dick Cantwell and his hard-to-beat, award-winning brewing reputation. Elysian looks forward to further developments and innovation in their brewing adventures, as they devise not only new and interesting beers, but also a new and interesting future for the craft brewing industry. We are excited to share this great brewery and their fantastic beers with our beer of the month club members. Cheers!