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Gravedigger Billy - Revolution Brewing Company

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Gravedigger Billy
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44 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 44
Reviews: 9
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.69%
Wants: 13
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Revolution Brewing Company visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  10.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
A cousin of our Willie Wee Heavy, this strong ale was aged in Woodford Reserve barrels for 11 months.

(Beer added by: MasterSki on 02-08-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 44 | Reviews: 9 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by sidetracked:
Photo of sidetracked
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%

sidetracked, May 26, 2012
More User Reviews:
Photo of tjsdomer2
4.58/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: Brown with a reddish tint. Surprisingly thin.

Smell: Bourbon oak with some soaked apples and plums. Very sneaky smell...alcohol is definitely evident in the finish.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Bourbon and oak/cedar traits. I love the molasses and raspberry flavors...they are extremely faint and subtle but definitely there. Feels like a good session ale, but finishes like bourbon...kind of like a good college party. There is definitely a burn in this. Perfect.

Overall: An incredible scotch ale.

tjsdomer2, May 25, 2013
Photo of Gonzoillini
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Gonzoillini, Nov 21, 2013
Photo of tourdot
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%

tourdot, Aug 16, 2013
Photo of emerge077
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft serving at Revolution.

Wispy khaki tan foam on the surface, there was a thin finger of foam initially but it fades after a few minutes, not surprising considering the abv. Murky ruddy brownish red coloration, semi-opaque with some visible carbonation arounf the edges.

Deep aromas of bourbon and peated malt, mostly bourbon though. Sweet brown sugar, vanilla, toasted oak, some light spirit fumes. The peated malt comes through more in the taste, rich with some earthy peat complexity, still identifiable as the base beer, with layers of bourbon barrel characteristics over the top. Rich and burly with a low to medium carb level. Slight alcohol bite in the finish, but it's tempered by the big malt sweetness, though not fully disguised. In the end the bourbon character slightly overshadows, but at least there was some nuance from the base Scotch Ale. Unique and recommended, this is a fine BA Scotch/Wee Heavy... can't say i've had many of those.

emerge077, Mar 01, 2012
Photo of KDawg
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had on tap at revolution. Poured into a snifter and pours a pitch black color with a nice head

very pungent and though the bourbon notes are there, they are well balanced. Great depth along with aromas of black cherries, raisins, plums, malts and bourbon.

Full bodied with a real polished and smooth feel. It handles the size of the beer well with great flavors of malts, bourbon, black cherries and some plums

It would be great if they had this more often. This was excellent and was really aided by the bourbon barrel.

KDawg, Mar 04, 2012
Photo of jegross2
4.95/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Reviewing the Gravedigger Billy from Revolution Brewing Company out of Chicago. I wonder if this brew is named after the Simpsons' character (no, I am not referring to Groundskeeper Willie). Revolution is quite possibly Chicago's best brewery, and they'll be canning some of their year-round beers for distribution very soon (likely within the next 2-3 months).
Score: 98

9 oz tap pour served in a snifter glass and enjoyed on 02/23/12.

Appearance: This beer is a very deep/dark and opaque brownish red color with caramel colored highlights, not unlike the Founders Backwoods Bastard. Served with a finger of creamy tan/off-white head that ultimately settles into a thin creamy layer around the glass. Solid lacing. 4/5

Smell: Caramelized brown sugar, sweet raisin and sweet dark fruit. A little bourbon, lots of vanilla/oak, "roasty" malt, a hint of chocolate, and a light amount of spice. Some molasses too. A very sweet smelling, complex barrel-forward aroma. 5/5

Taste: Whoa! The flavor follows the nose, but it's even more satisfying. Tons of flavorful barrel flavors throughout. Sweet and chewy bourbon soaked raisins upfront. Then vanilla, malty caramel, plum, fig, and molasses soak the midpalate. A little wood and spice on the midpalate too, in addition to a hint of hops and a light cocoa flavor. No alcohol/boozy flavor present, but some warming effect does occur on the palate. A second wave of malty sweet caramel, vanilla and raisin hits towards the finish and reloads the barrel flavors for a long-lasting bourbon soaked raisin finish. The scotch ale characteristics do not really stand out by any means, but they blend in perfectly with the bourbon barrel flavors to create a truly magnificent beer. As it warms, a certain straight bourbon flavor comes out towards the finish for those who enjoy that sort of thing. 5/5

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, minimal carbonation. Sweet and moderately dry finish. The mouthfeel is damn near perfect. 5/5

Overall: Easily the best Scotch Ale/Wee Heavy that I have ever had. This brew blows Backwoods Bastard out of the water and should be sought after. Sadly, it's a brewery only tap, costs $8 for a 9 oz pour, is not sold in growlers and when it's gone, it'll be gone. In other words, head over the brew pub now -- before it's too late. Hopefully this beer will find its way into a special bottle release once Revolution gets its distribution underway. I would absolutely buy this one again.

Recommendation: Go to the brewery this weekend to have a snifter-full of this beer. You will absolutely regret missing this one. Even casual beer drinkers should love the balanced, sweet and flavorful taste.

Pairings: Beef jerky.

Cost: $8 for a 9 oz snifter pour.

jegross2, Feb 25, 2012
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Gravedigger Billy from Revolution Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 44 ratings.