Propeller Revolution | Propeller Brewery

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Propeller RevolutionPropeller Revolution

Brewed by:
Propeller Brewery
Nova Scotia, Canada

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
This beer was born for greatness. Sent by English brewers via the Baltic Sea to the court of the Czars, Russian Imperial Stout was brewed to very high gravities and allowed to ferment on the long voyage. The result? A dark, strong and bracing brew.

Propeller's version weighs in at a whopping eight percent alcohol content, with a deep, rich, black colour. The taste of alcohol is well masked by the intense hop bitterness, extreme roasted malt and dark fruit notes.

Propeller Brewing Company has brewed and bottled this unfiltered ale each year since 2006, making Propeller the extreme brewing pioneers of Nova Scotia. This seasonal offering is only available at the Propeller Cold Beer Store on Gottingen Street, and select private retailers in Halifax.

Russian Imperial Stout - imbibed by Peter, adored by Catherine and now reclaimed by you, the People. Za Vas!

60 IBU

Added by MMansfield on 01-19-2007

For Trade:
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Reviews: 65 | Ratings: 106
Photo of papat444
4.12/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Rutager for this one.

Poured from a 500ml. bottle, production date Week 3 of January in unknown year.

Appearance: Black as night with about 2-3 fingers worth of foam that settles to a strong thick ring. Color of the head is a not too dark, not too light mocha brown.

Smell: Really good with some licorice, cocoa, sweet roasted coffee and some molasses.

Taste: Has a rich but not too sweet flavor. Coffee grains, light licorice, cocoa liquor with some dark chocolate.

Mouthfeel: Bit viscous with a full body though shows a bit of thinness midway but doesn't really affect the tasting experience.

Overall: Really enjoyed this steady yet flavorful stout.

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Photo of Jeffo
4.12/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this in a trade last summer. I can't remember who gave me this Propeller stuff, but it was solid. Cheers!

From a 500ml bottle into a snifter

APPEARANCE: Dark brown pour yields a small, medium looking, tan head with decent retention. Head fades to a faint wisp and ring. Black body and no carbonation evident. Splotchy wisp and ring remain until the end leaving dots of lacing down the glass. Could be blacker for the style, but this is a solid looking beer.

SMELL: Bold nose with lots of roasted malts, dark baker's chocolate, burnt coffee beans and a hint of molasses for good measure. Bold and enticing.

TASTE: Roasted and burnt malts, dark chocolate and a touch of sweet molasses up front. Lots of roasted and bitter chocolate at the swallow, moving into a big and persistent aftertaste of bitter chocolate and coffe, lots of roasted flavors, and even a hint of red wine. Flavorful and interesting stuff.

PALATE: Medium body and medium levels of carbonation. Enough weight as well. Nicely creamy on the palate, goes down smooth with a little bite after the swallow and finishes slightly dry on the palate. A bit too much burn for the ABV.

OVERALL: Good stuff all around! A nice, inviting nose and lots of good flavor to match. One of the better Canadian imperial stouts I've had so far. Cheers for the trades gents. This one comes highly recommended.

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Photo of DaftCaskBC
4.23/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: 1/2" light brown head over black liquid.

S: Molasses, espresso, caramel, roasted malt.

T: Roasted malt, caramel, espresso and a bit of a pine hop bite. Nice.

M: Medium viscosity and carbonation.

O: Drinkable and tasty, there is almost a nuttiness to the taste profile.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.98/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of cjbmcdon. Served in a Kuhnhenn goblet. I believe this is from late 2010.

A - Bottle is a slight gusher. Ample finger-plus of dark tan foam settles to a mottled near-complete cap, thick collar, and glass-coating lace. Body is dark chocolate brown with some visible bubbles adhering to the sides of the glass.

S - Smell is heavy on the molasses and dark fruits, tobacco, dark roast, baker's chocolate, with some earthy, leathery notes and perhaps a touch of smoke. There's a fruity and musky aroma when the beer reaches room temperature.

T - Taste has more in the way of milk chocolate and caramel sweetness to it. Definitely sweeter, with some mild roasty bitterness and hint of anise and bread in the finish. Charry flavors get increasingly intense over time.

M - Carbonation is unusually zesty for the style. Body is pleasantly medium-full, with lingering stickiness and minimal alcohol presence - perhaps a hint of warmth on the throat after 6oz or so.

D - The mild gushing and leathery aroma had me concerned there was a nascent brett infection, but the flavor is still quite sweet so I not totally convinced that's the case. Still, it's a very solid traditional English RIS, and it drinks bigger than the listed 8% (other than the mildly obnoxious carbonation). I worked through the 500ml bottle over the course of an hour and would happily consume this again if I were in the Maritimes. However, if you've got this vintage on hand, drink up.

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Photo of NightINgale
4.08/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle I got from a beer mail from Nova Scotia...

A - Deep, dark opaque brown, almost black body, with a reach and creamy mocha-coloured head. Looks nearly flawless. A true RIS look! Very good head retention.

S - The first thing I noticed in the aroma was the well-pronounced hoppiness, with a nice earthy touch to it and some citrus notes. Then I got all the lovely roasty dark characteristics of an imperial stout. Chocolate, espresso, a bit of vanilla.

T - Big on the vanilla and chocolate. Then comes the coffee-like roastiness. Nice level of sweetness. After a while I began tasting some dark fruit; maybe prunes and dates. Fairly bitter after-taste, both from the roasted malts and the hops. Some lingering semi-sweet chocolate notes.

M - Medium-bodied. Perhaps not as thick as some more potent RIS. VERY smooth and creamy, despite the noticeable bitterness. The alcohol is well-masked even when the beer warms up.

O - First and foremost, this is a great example of the style! It's not the most complex RIS, but it's super-smooth, flavourful and drinkable. Highly recommended, if you can get it!

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Photo of ludachris
3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Three fingers of thick and creamy tan head tower over its pitch black body. The head is composed of larger bubbles and has great staying power. No lace is left behind and I question if that has to do with the beer or the glass I'm using.

The alcohol comes through as spicy and dry. Aniseed and a deep roastiness give the trademark impression of a RIS. Alcohol soaked cherries and white and dark raisons add a syrupy sweetness. The nose isn't as intense or pronounced as other RIS's I've had but the weight and complexity is still there.

Spicy alcohol notes mixed with dry roasted malts pinch the sides of the tongue and work there way into the finish where bits of coffee grind come through as well. Soft, understated sweet raisons sit on the middle of the tongue. Mellow notes of anise graze the back of the palate.

Medium bodied with a medium impact. Dry in the finish with a soft creaminess throughout. A little too thin for my liking. The ABV is noticeable but only helps to further the flavour. Well balanced from beginning to end.

Overall, this is a decent, well-crafted RIS but it is nothing out of the ordinary. More weight to the body and feel and more intensity in any or all of the flavours would make this stand out. A good introduction to the style in my opinion.

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Photo of peensteen
3.88/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nearly jet black with some brown notes, one finger mocha coloured head, some lace on the top of the glass. Smell is roasted malt and tons of chocolate, coffee, some notes of alcohol, raisin like dark fruit with more chocolatey bittersweet notes. Taste is deeply roasted malt, slightly smokey, coffee, bittersweet chocolate, roasted finish and aftertaste. Light-med carbonation, full body, good weight. Very drinkable, easy drinking with lots of flavour and really good but is missing something that would make this great, very enjoyable though.

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Photo of mikeyv35
4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Date: 06/06/2011
Type: 16oz. Bottle
Vintage: 2011
Glass: DFH Chalice

Thanks to Brad(Rutager) for throwing this in as an extra in our over the borders trade!

Pours an ink black in color w/ a 1 finger creamy tan head that produces heavy lacing. Aromas of bittersweer Baker's Chocolate, charred malts, molasses, and leather. The taste starts off w/ chocolate and molasses up front, followed by vanilla, and finishes w/ slight hop bitterness. Stylistically a little thin, but I really digged the mouthfeel personally. Medium bodied and very creamy and lush due to appropriate carbonation. This was very easy to drink being on the lower side of the ABV spectrum.

Overall, not spectacular, but a very well put together RIS that is very flavorful and enjoyable to sip on.

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Photo of Rutager
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Apperance. Pours a viscous black with half a finger of dark chocolate head.

Smell. Coffee, roasty malt and dark chocolate. A hint of grassy hops.

Taste. Bitter chocolate, tobacco and coffee. Some lasting bitter coffee and little smokey wood.

Mouthfeel. Medium body with medium carbonation. Some warm alcohol.

Overall. A good drinking stout. Rich and thick and pretty tasty.

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Photo of canucklehead
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice RIS from one of the best East Coast brewers. Not the most complex but still well made with lots of luscious notes on the finish. Instant drinkability with no need for aging this is on the money for the mouthfeel and the nose. Would purchase again

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Photo of chickenm
4.12/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours jet black with very little head. Malty aroma with some chocolate and coffee. Taste is quite roasty with lots of coffee and dark chocolate. Body is a little thinner than I'd like in a Russian Imperial Stout, but the mouthfeel is still decent. Good drinkablity, this is not as complex as some other Russian Imperial Stouts, but still a great beer!

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Photo of LazyL
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Big Bobby D for this brew from the East Coast. He's leaving the beer Meca of the West Coast for the Seas of limited variety of the East.
This looks as black as a night in downtown Moncton. The large pillowy toffee coloured head flatened out quickly and left a rootbeer float style lace on the glass.
The nose is Stout all the way. Good molasses, coffee and a bit of smoke. I get a bit of sweet alcohal here too.
There is a little bitterness that balances out the sweetness and the boozy flavours.
The carbonation and the body are quite light.
I get a nice sweet/bitter fight on the after taste that is appealing. Over all, this is a good big stout that will definately warm those cold East Coast nights. At least there is one beer worth drinking that I have tried from the other coast. Half way through my bomber and the 8% is starting to kick in. Nice. I'd say its growing on me.

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Photo of PEIBeerGuy
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The windchill is about -30 degrees Celsius tonight, so I thought, "Tonight'd be a good night to try a gut-warming 8% RIS."

This beer pours about as black as an 8-ball. There isn't much head to it - a finger's worth at the top, after a hard pour. It's a small-bubbled creamy brown. It doesn't stay that tall for very long.

When I first smell from the bottle, a bit of hops comes out - a nice surprise. Once in the glass, you can smell some chocolate (with some dark cherry notes... possibly from the alcohol), roasted coffee, and some oats.

The flavour is mostly chocolate... like a dark chocolate mousse with a roasted coffee finish that has the bitterness of a mild IPA. Rather nice. Quite nice, in fact, that the 8% is hidden well, and that there's nothing in it so sharp or sweet as to make it difficult to drink. You could down a bunch of this right before you go down (unexpectedly to you) on the floor.

This one feels pretty good, actually... the bitterness is mild enough that it doesn't overpower the aftertaste of coffee... it calls you back for more, rather than making you think about taking a smaller sip the next time. It might be a little light body-wise, but that's part of what helps to make it so drinkable. It's more than medium in body, and the finish is just a bit sticky.

Overall, I was really pleased with this one. I was braced for a sipper, maybe something that would be unbalanced... what I got was a well-balanced RIS. A little light, but tasty, and easy to drink.

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Photo of ZorPrime
4.27/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Long813 for sending me 2 bottles of this craft beer. I was eager to taste this one.

Very dark color with a brown head (think and creamy). The head sticks well to the glass.

Aroma: Roasted malts with some floral hops. Nice aroma. Not much licorice there as I'm accustomed by RIS. Nevertheless this is a great smell. The second bottle had some woody hops aroma too that I didn't recall getting in the first bottle.

Taste: Chocolate with a hops touch... woody in the taste. The finish is like a good coffee.

Mouthfeel: I would prefer this one to be heavier, however it is not very bad... a medium body beer.

Drinkability: High.

A robust and complex RIS in my opinion. A good beer overall.

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Photo of Long813
3.93/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Dated: Decemeber, week 3
From: Premier Wine and Spirits

A: Pitch black body with two fingers of dark mocha head. Head retains for a good while and leaves thick blotchy lacing

S: Dark roasted chocolate, roasted coffee and a sweet taste of caramel

T: Much like the aromas, tons of dark chocolate, mild roasted coffee beans a a hint of caramel. Very balanced tasted and alcohol is not noticeable.

M: Medium bodied and medium-low carbonation. Has a water like texutre that I am not fond of for a RIS, but it's still good. Has a bitter malt after taste.

D: Great local RIS and easy to drink. It's not the best RIS I've had, but it is easy to drink and well priced. Props to Propeller.

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Photo of wordemupg
4.05/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

341ml bottle poured into pint glass may6 2010

A dark as night with a two finger mocha head that slowly falls to a 1/4in film that leaves a few partial rings of lace

S lots of bakers chocolate with some mild coffee and booze pretty much what you expect in a good RIS

T not far off the smell but with a little ash and just a touch of licorice and molasses

M a little thinner then I expected but not watery by any means, decent carbonation helps its cause

D would not have guessed it was 8%alc there's little evidence of it so it may be a little too easy to drink

thanks Moniker for sending this one my way, a solid beer from out east that I will drink again. I have a bottle lined up in another trade so I may set it aside for a while and see if it improves

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Photo of Buebie
3.97/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this beer from NASH in an in person trade.

Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pub glass. Off the pour only a thinnish brown head forms. But as I look agin 30 seconds later, its now a solid inch. Receding somwhat quickly to leave a collar of retention. Slick lace drapes make its way back into the brew, leaving spotty thin lace down the glass.
The beer itself is black like a moonless night, no penetration.

Aroma is of roasted chocolate, molasses, loads of roasted grains, chocolate malt, and a hint of grain alcohol.

Taste is all about roasted chocolate and plenty of it. Loads of smokey roasted chocolate grains, a touch of coffee after the swallow. Lingering with coffee, bitter chocolate and a semi-sweet candy honey flavor.
Molasses through the middle with something resembling candy sugar, or beat sugar. Alcahol in the flavor is non existant. This beer is a very easy drinker.

Mouthfeel is ultra slick with a super creamy feel, mixing with modest carbonation.

Hops have dropped out, although I'm not sure how old this actually is. The lable is clipped with January, week 2, but no year. Its a solid RIS repping the traditional form. I recommend picking this up if you are in the Halifax area. Its a solid contender to many of the better RIS's I've had.

Thank you greg for this very kind extra! I'm ecstatic I was able to try this.

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Photo of Seanstoppable
3.48/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pouring into a glass resulted in very dark stout, with a small amount of chocolaty tinged head. Smells slightly of roasted coffee. Flavor is also slightly coffee like, somewhat sweet, and finishes with a moderate lasting bitter aftertaste. Based on taste and feel, I wouldn't have guessed it was 8% abv.

Overall, not bad, but for some reason I can't see myself having more than a glass or two at any given time.

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Photo of bobsy
4.19/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Black body with a small mocha mocha head that provides a decent lace. Delicious aroma of chocolate, dark pitted fruit and tobacco. Raisin, toffee, and chocolate flavours dominate a rich palate, before moving to a rich tobacco smokiness. The alcohol is very well hidden. Medium-heavy mouthfeel with restrained carbonation.

Very nicely done imperial stout from this Halifax brewery. One of the beter imperial stouts in the country. In fact, the alcohol is so well-hidden that this stout could almost be sessioned, which is pretty dangerous!

Thanks to Troy for the bottle.

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Photo of nighthawk
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

341mL bottle, freshness date would be notched on the label, but it appears they have had some trouble with their label cutters. It's local though, so I know it's a fresh bottle.

Pours an opaque black, with just hints of a very dark ruby-brown at the edges of the glass. A mocha-coloured head is about one finger thick at its height, and quickly sinks to a very thin haze on the surface.

Nose is roasted grains, with some muted coffee and dark fruit.

Taste is roasted-charred grains, dark fruit (mostly raisin or date, maybe some sweeter blackberry), coffee, toffee and very dark chocolate. Alcohol is warming but not overpowering. Charred-grains re-assert themselves in a mildly bitter finish that is quite long.

Medium body, very mild carbonation gives it a bit of creaminess, but not as much as some examples of the style.

Surprisingly drinkable, the alcohol is not hidden but mild enough that I have to remember to slow down.

A solid, if not exceptional example of a RIS. I'm putting a couple in cellar to see where they go.

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Photo of BigBry
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to MMansfield for the trade. Got 2 bottles, have been saving this one for a while. LAbel as pictured above, gold foil covered cap.
Desciption from the label - "This beer was born for greatness. Sent by English brewers via the Baltic Sea to the court of the Czars, Russian Imperial Stout was brewed to very high gravities and allowed to ferment on the long voyage. The result? A dark, strong and bracing brew, imbibed by Peter, adored by Catherine and now reclaimed by you, the People. Za Vas!"
Black as used oil, dark tan foam. Head slowly recedes and leaves thin sheets of lace. SMells of burnt toffee, cocoa, coffee. Lots of flavor, coffee, raisins, smoky/burnt malts. Lots of levels of flavor, with more coming out as it warms. I would say medium bodied, which keeps it from being too cloying, and easy to drink. Not overly carbonated makes it smooth and slightly creamy. A well balanced mix of roasted malts and earthy hops.
Excellent pairing with barbequed steak dinner.

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Photo of bloberglawp
4.42/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black, off white head that settles down to nothing. Aroma of malt, black malt and delicate fruity esters. Flavor of delicious dark and acrid malt, some anise and spice. Proper carbonation and warming alcohol fell.

A very typical russian imperial, but a exellent ale still. Thanks to NASH for this bottle for CanLIF 4!

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Photo of irishkyle21
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Has a large good looking tanned head fades to a small reflection of its former self. Not much lacing and a dark black color.

Smells of roasted malts, coffee, dark fruits and molasses.

Tastes of chocolate malts, bitter but not coming from hops and fruits.

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Photo of demcorhip
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Viva la revolucion! And thanks to mmansfield for the bottle, 2007 version.

A nice looking RIS. Black and opaque, half finger dark tan head formed on the pour into my Darkness tulip. Quite mildly carbonated, head quickly faded to leave a thin collar.

Toffee, char, anise, and the underlying aroma of milk chocolate are the most noticeable scents. Some rum soaked raisin and earthy, leafy hops also present.

Big on toffee and dark rum soaked raisin, fruity hint of blackberry also present. Then the charred malts show up with a hint of smoke and more noticeable anise. Flavours of espresso gradually reveal themself and build as i drink, adding another level of complexity to this tasty brew. These flavours are asserted over top an underlying bed of softer roasted flavours of milk chocolate. Some woody bitterness with notes of decaying leafy organic matter show up in the finish.

A solid, medium bodied brew. Subdued level of carbonation makes it seem even heftier. Slightly smooth and creamy in feel, with some noticeable alcohol warmth. A nice balance is reached between the malts, charred malt, and earthy hops.

Pretty drinkable for what it is, a fairly big and solid, more traditional RIS in approach styled beer. While certainly not session fare, this would be a solid stout for those looking to get into the style as well as those who favour the more traditional interpretation of the style. What a treat it would be to be able to sip on this all night long on a cool night in February like tonight. The more I drink the more impressed I become, wish i could say this with all the beers I dirink. Thanks Matt!

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Photo of markaberrant
3.73/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled Jan 08.

A - completely black, dark tan head forms and quickly recedes to a thin cap, but holds up well.

S - not overly strong, more malty chocolate than roasted coffee, mild fruity esters, some alcohol

T - comes on strong, but overall taste is somewhat laid back. I can taste the alcohol. Bittersweet chocolate in the finish. More fruit and maltiness comes through as it warms.

M - chewy, almost too full, low carbonation

D - a solid interpretation, but not a stand out.

I expect an RIS to be assertive, powerful and complex. This seems somewhat reserved, the brewer definitely took an English approach. Improves as I work my way into the 2nd half of the glass. The alcohol should smooth out with age, I shall see how my 2nd bottle cellars.

Thanks to NASH for the bottle!

UPDATE: Tried another bottle on Dec 9, 2008 from same batch, so about 1 year old. This is a beautiful beer, powerful aroma, tons of licorice and cherry flavours, with a complimentary smooth mild roast. Alcohol is completely hidden. Rates much higher than my original 3.8

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Propeller Revolution from Propeller Brewery
3.97 out of 5 based on 106 ratings.
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