Dragonmead Final Absolution Trippel | Dragonmead Microbrewery

very good
213 Reviews
Dragonmead Final Absolution TrippelDragonmead Final Absolution Trippel

Brewed by:
Dragonmead Microbrewery
Michigan, United States

Style: Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Dragonmead's signature product! This is the ultimate Belgian style. The very high gravity of this beer is balanced by the smoothness of its finish. Banana and Clove aromas come from the Belgian yeast strain combining with the generous dose of Belgian Candi Sugar. The Saaz hops help to give this beer a balanced bitterness with no noticeable hop aroma.

Added by UncleJimbo on 08-12-2002

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Reviews: 213 | Ratings: 547
Photo of HarrySTruman
4.67/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into a tulip

Gold color, near yellow, small head with minimal lacing. Looks very clear and crisp.

Smells of fruits and malt. Banana is very apparent, other tropical fruits seem hidden.

The taste is truly fantastic. This is the only tripel that I have had from the states that I feel rivals the best of Belgium. It is very close to the Belgian style, but it has it's own unique take. The alcohol is apparent in the taste, but not overbearing. Banana, apricot, tropical fruits, malt, a slight hoppy bitter flavor. It's a very complex taste, but very drinkable.

Not too carbonated. Very drinkable. Slightly "thick", but it matches the style well.

About as good a tripel as I have ever had. Certainly the best I have made in Michigan, and unless I am forgetting one, the best I have had made in the U.S. I honestly believe it competes favorably with La Fin Du Monde for the best tripel made in NA.

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Photo of warnerry
4.14/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours orange brown with lits of suspended yeast, even with a careful pour, and about half a finger of off-white head. Head dissipates quickly and leaves no lacing.

S - Candi sugar, some pepper and clove, bubblegum and faint lemon. Just a touch of alcohol.

T - Taste starts with lemon and candi sugar. This is followed by pepper, clove, and a prominent bubblegum taste. Finish brings a bit more spice, a bit of banana and more bubblegum, along with a faint bitterness. Very tasty.

M - Medium mouthfeel starts with some sticky sweetness and transitions to a semi-dry and slightly bitter finish with a bit of numbing alcohol.

O - Nice take on the style and a very tasty brew. Nice local option when I'm in the mood foe a tripel.

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Photo of vinyljunkee
4.65/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I am not that skilled at waxing poetic on beer characteristics, but I do know beer and very specifically Belgian ales. Like the Bros have weighed in on this one, it is truly an exceptional Trippel. Very balanced and not overly sweet as you can sometimes find. I would like to feel a little more body (mouthfeel).

Lookout Ommegang (Love these guys)...Dragonmead might be in it to win it from right here in Michigan..."craft brewery" capital of the world.

Oh, get back on your feet carefully after a couple of these.

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Photo of Jamesthebrit
4.24/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Nothing good nothing bad. Looks hazy with little head.
S: Great smell. Hints of bananas and pineapples with some yeasty smell as well.
T: Taste like bananas with hints of clove and other spices. Some alcohol flavor but it adds to the overall taste.
M: Sour on the mouth and a little too yeasty.

Overall a pretty good beer. Belgian styles are usually not my favorite but this one was pretty good with lots of unique flavors. I would recommend it.

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Photo of NoLeafClover44
4.27/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Bob for this one. 12 oz. bottle poured into Weyerbacher cuvee glass.

A - Pours a hazy golden yellow color. Half a finger of bright white head sticks around and leaves nice lacing.

S - The aroma hits me as soon as I start pouring into the glass. Huge clove, banana, spice aroma. Also, grass and bubblegum as well as some cracker malts in the background. Fantastic.

T - Begins sweet with some pear and belgian yeast. Continues with some banana, tart lemon juice, and a little grassy hop aftertaste. Very little bitterness and big sour flavor for the style. Delicious.

M - Medium thickness and carbonation.

O - My first DragonMead beer. The aroma is great and flavors are a complex mix of tart and sweet. This is probably the best tripel I have had in my limited experience with the style with the possible exception of La Fin Du Monde. Highly recommended.

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Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.2/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer was poured into a snifter from the bottle. A cloudy gold color was observed during the pour with hints of banana growing during the pour. The banana scent is a reflection of the Belgian yeast that is very apparent in the scent and taste. The initial taste was a pleasantly tart banana taste that danced along the sour borders of the tongue. A hint of spice may be observed by some during the initial sip. In the aftertaste, a hint of butterscotch becomes somewhat apparent but the banana continues. The trippel is smooth yet thick enough to stick to the tongue and allow the taste to linger. As the alcohol warms on the way down the gullet, it becomes apparent that the beer looks, tastes, and feels good.

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Photo of CHickman
4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Chimay goblet, it pours a cloudy amber/light orange color with an off white creamy 1 finger head that faded quickly and left decent spotty lacing.

Smells of banana, clove, spices like pepper and cinnamon, sweet malt, light caramel, herbs, bread, yeast, light floral hops, grains, lemon, tea leaf and coriander; the aroma was nice and sweet and had some funk and yeast dominance that let the banana and clove really shine in a very pleasant way.

Flavor is very sweet and complex, with yeast, banana, sweet malt, clove, spices like pepper and cinnamon, lightly roasted grains, light caramel, herbs, bread/biscuit, light floral hops, lemon zest, sour apple, tea leaf and coriander. Good amount of yeast funk to go with the sweetness, it’s almost got mead-like characteristics and honey in the finish which would seem appropriate with this breweries mid-evil themed artwork.

Mouthfeel is creamy and very smooth, with carbonation that’s both zesty and mild at the same time, a medium body and a funky finish that has a bready sweetness to it, which allows the ABV to peek through; well balanced and extremely drinkable for this style, this was a very good beer and worth trying.

7/1/2015: Had a 3 year aged bottle poured into a Chimay goblet and it looked the same, but the head that faded slowly and it had a lot of yeast particles floating around in it. Better looking than when I first had it in 2012. Smell is a lot more malty and sweet, like wheat bread dipped in beer then booze and rolled in mild spices and dry hops; enjoyable still, just pretty different. Flavor is again sweet and complex, with yeast, light banana, sweet malt, pepper and cinnamon, lightly roasted grains, light caramel, bread/biscuit, faint floral hops, fruit and coriander. Mild yeast funk shows up again, but the malty sweetness is more dominant likely from the aging. Overall good again, this brew aged well.

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Photo of ribby
4.32/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This poured quite cloudy, despite my careful decanting, as there was a good quarter inch of sediment on the bottom. There was definitely a yeasty sourness to both the aroma and taste. The sourness ends up accenting the strong but well balanced malt and hops. On the whole, this tastes more like a strong farmhouse ale than a tripel, and although it's not my favorite style, this is one of the best examples I have tried.

12/3/2016 Just tried another bottle. I concur with my previous review. Great beer, highly recommended.

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Photo of scottbrew4u
4.14/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden/ amber color with a bubbly white head that settles to a nice white layer.

S: Green apples, spice of cardamom, clove, fresh apricots dipped in honey, and light citrus notes are nicely brought over a fresh biscuit and bready malt base.

T: Sweet and spicy on the tongue and in good balance. The sweet is of fresh apricots, honey, light vanilla, and fresh baked bread and toffee for the grains. Some cardamom and light clove meet with bitter grapefruit and tropical fruit esters from yeast and hops.

M: Medium body with lively, prickly carbonation and light alcohol warmth.

D: All ingredients are in a fine balance and this beer really surprised me for it's many fine qualities like, aroma, flavor and superb mouthfeel. Alcohol is where it should be for this style and not overwhelming. if you see this one out there do try it!!

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Photo of tyamhydrogen
3.92/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy gold color with a 1 finger off-white head. No real lacing.

Smell is dominated by the Belgian yeast with some fruity lemon and sweet candy.

Taste is yeast dominated again. Not overly peppery. Lemon and sweet malts are the most noticeable here to me. The alcohol is well-hidden. No noticeable hop flavors aside from the just enough bitterness providing balance to the sweetness. The taste becomes more enjoyable toward the middle of the beer.

A fair amount of carbonation and medium body and a small amount of residual sugary stickiness, but not to the point that the beer feels syrupy.

This is a pretty good tripel from a brewery I'm totally unfamiliar with. It doesn't strike me as top-notch, but if I saw it on tap and was in the mood for a tripel, I would have it again. I'm curious to try more brews from Dragonmead.

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Photo of buschbeer
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle
Served in a pint glass

A - It pours amber with some sediment floating in it. I got a skim of off white to beige head.

S - The aroma is banana, clove, some pear, and even a little apricot.

T - The taste seems more centered around the spices. I get a little banana, but this is a spicy beer. I get the cloves and even some pepper.

M - Smooth. Low carbonation

O - I enjoyed to olfactory and taste aspects of this beer. It was a nice spicy smack in the mouth before going to a family dinner.

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Photo of morimech
3.31/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Amber color with a slight haze. Half finger of head forms and quickly settles to a thin film. Moderate amount of spotty lacing is left down the glass.

Does not smell like a tripel to this drinker. Smells like popcorn. Just the slightest hint of yeast esters in the background.

Thankfully it tastes better but far from the classics in the style. Did the yeast misbehave in this batch? Pale malt flavor with some phenols. Some honey flavor as well. No sign of alcohol.

Good amount of heft to the body. Nicely carbonated.

That concludes my reviews of Dragonmead beers I collected during my recent Michigan trip. I would put Dragonmead on the 2nd tier of Michigan breweries. Consistancy seems to be their issue and that is probably the case with this beer.

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Photo of Chaney
4.2/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this one from lewis1rg a little while back. Thanks Ryan!

"Tis better to curse the darkness than to light thy hand on fire."

A: Peppery orange, cloudy, and with a nice finger or so head that died down leaving a cloud of spider web-like froth in its wake.

S: Classic trippel, through and through, with a bit of spice and not much sugar on the nose. Subdued.... yet effective.

T: Citrus, with a mild pepper note, with honey-like sugar content. Hmmm... somehow, I kept coming back to the common theme of honey, honey, HONEY. Considering the fact that I like honey, I was totally cool with that.

M: Didn't coat my palate much, but my glass might beg to differ. Not much booze on this one.

O: Really nice Trippel. I love this style, and this is a great addition to the already great repertoire....

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Photo of n2185
3.95/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a murky yellow-orange with two fingers of white head that recedes into a thin ring with no lacing.

S: Some spice notes up front followed by sweet light fruits like pears. Bubblegum and candy sugar aromas are in there as well. There are some bread and yeast aromas towards the finish. It smells quite nice.

T: Again, some spices and light fruit flavors up front along with light bubblegum and candy sugar flavors. The yeasty characters kick in then, fairly bitter with lots of bready flavors.

M: Medium-light body with medium carbonation, this beer isn't thickly sweet like a lot of American tripels, but is a little on the thick/bready side.

O: A good tripel, overall. The yeast characters are a bit too strong and it's slightly too thick for my tastes, but still good.

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Photo of jayhawk73
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a yellowish-orange w/ a nice two finger head. Good carbonation and lacing. On the light side for the style, but still a nice looking tripel. Nose is fruit, banana, spice, yeast, malt. Very pleasant, although not quite up to the best Belgian tripels. Taste is the same profile. It's a nice beer, just not a 'great' beer. I'd like a little more complexity w/ this one. Feel is good- although I'd like it to be a little smoother, too much carbonation. Overall, I liked this one- it's just not world class. Still, I'd have it again.

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Photo of AleWatcher
3.37/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a duvel tulip.

Dark clear gold color with some small white chunky particulates floating in suspension. The head wasn't big or fluffy, but did hit the 2 finger mark-- for a while. After 2 sips we have nothing but a small collar of white bubbles left. Virtually no lacing.

Wow. Holy sugar covered bananas. Like those dried bananas from a trail mix. That note dominates the nose, but a light yeasty doughy quality and grainy malt comes through as well.
The taste is exactly like the nose, but adds a slight spicy note-- peppery?

The body is kinda heavy feeling-- and low carbOmarion levels don't help here.

Overall -- not a terrible version of a triple, but nowhere near my favorites of the style.

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Photo of prototypic
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Final Absolution pours a very hazy copper color. Light cuts through and gives it orange highlights. A soft, white mass of bubbles collects on the surface, but doesn’t rise much further. It dissipates quickly, leaving very light strands of lace lining the glass.

The nose is pretty impressive. It kicks off with a really nice, spicy yeast scent. Clove and pepper are easily noted and are complemented very well by a healthy dose of banana. The yeast smells somewhat Belgian in character, but I’d like it to be a little closer. It does have a sweet smell to it. Maybe a touch of caramel. Alcohol is noted and seems maybe just a tad strong.

The flavor is likewise good. The yeast has a very strong impact on the flavor throughout. It is spicy, featuring nice clove and pepper flavors. There’s a little banana, but not as much as the nose suggested. Still tastes nice. It is definitely on the sweet side. It does taste like caramel and seems to separate itself from the authentic Belgian Tripels in that regard. Secondary flavors include light apple and floral hops. Alcohol is a little too strong in flavor. It isn’t warm at all though. Good stuff.

Final Absolution has a medium body and light carbonation. Feels nice and smooth. Not quite authentic Belgian smooth, but good nonetheless. Goes down pretty well.

Final Absolution is my first beer from Dragonmead Microbrewery. For an American Tripel, it really is pretty impressive. It’s not quite on par with the elite Tripels out there, but it’s definitely good. Its biggest problems are that it’s overly sweet and a little too boozy in flavor. Other than that, it really does perform pretty well. If you’re in a pinch for a pretty solid Tripel, Final Absolution is worthy of your attention.

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Photo of ryantho00
3.93/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured bottle to a deep hazy golden orange color. Two finger falls quickly and has nice lacing throughout.

Slight citrus aroma and small hints of hops.

This has a nice citrus, orange, hops, slight maltiness, with a peppery dryness. Its a nice full bodied beer, well done on the Belgium style. Alcohol is well hidden for the high octane level. Good biscuits and dryness aftertaste.

Overall, very nice Belgium style beer.


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Photo of drtth
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial pint glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As poured the beer is a lightly hazed nicely golden apricot color with a ½” off-white head that soon recedes to a layer of foam on the liquid and that leaves some patches clinging to the sides of the glass. Sipping leaves

Smell: The aromas include some spicy yeast with citric and banana notes. Along with this there is some nice subtle malt with traces of vanilla.

Taste: The flavors are much as expected from the nose. There are some light white pepper notes along with some citrus and subtle banana. The malt contribution is a light sweetness with traces of vanilla and green orchard fruits. This is a very complex collection of flavors that come and go and dance about the palate.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium bodied with a soft creamy character from the gentle, persistent carbonation. The finish is gently sweet with a flowery character that slowly fades into a bit of dryness but no bitterness shows.

Drinkability and Overall Impression: I’ve enjoyed sipping this one. Each sip leaves me so ready for another and I’ll be happy to have this beer again in the future. My overall impression is that this is a very well made beer which is deserving of its awards and is an outstanding beer that is a nice expression of a Belgian style.

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Photo of FanofHefe
4.17/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No dating on the bottle or label. Pours a slighly hazy golden color with a one-finger white head. No lacing.

Nice aroma of spicy Belgian yeast, with some light fruit - mostly pear, not getting much apple. Some light grainy notes in the background.

Solid tripel flavor that does feature plenty of the light fruitiness and spiciness from the yeast. Much more apple in the flavor than the aroma. The spiciness combines well with the light, sweet malt.

Medium mouthfeel and very little alcohol presence. Solid tripel and one I would gladly have again.

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Photo of Bierguy5
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Hazy golden color. White colored head holds for a minute, then fades away. A few tiny streaming bubbles, but not the visual carbonation I was expecting.

Spicy Belgian yeast, ripe fruit, pears and apricot. A hint of alcohol in the nose. Earthy notes finish things off.

Pale, cracker malt up front. Nice amount of ripe fruit follows. A spicy, earthy feel from the yeast goes along very well. some warmth from the alcohol. A hint of sweetness up front, but dries at the finish.

Seems to have a bit heavier body, or perhaps the carbonation is not as strong compared to others in the style. The fruity notes go very well with the character the yeast is contributing. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of PhillyStyle
3.85/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer appeared a nice golden color with hints of orange with a nice white head that dissipated too quickly. The aroma was sweet and spicy as a good Belgian should be. The taste follows the nose well, but with a distinct banana and spice notes. There was also a slight pepper flavor that appeared during the beer. The beer was very smooth and easy to drink. The beer had a moderate mouth feel and good carbonation. Overall, a very fine brew and one that I hope to enjoy again.

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Photo of MbpBugeye
4.27/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Rochefort Chalice.

Semi clear, pale gold. White head, one or two rings of lacing. Doesn't looks bad, doesn't look amazing.

This is nice. Lots of good fruitiness and not much at all of the weird Belgian yeast aromas that can happen when the yeast isn't done properly. Light levels of clove and pepper build a gentle spiciness. Lots of pear, peach and apple make a luscious fruit aroma.

Wow, this is a DAMN fine Tripel. Very balanced, but leaning towards candied fruity esters. Phenols and strange flavors are low, but a gentle spiciness breaks up the sweetness of apple sauce and honey glazed notes.

Full bodied, especially for the style. Carbonation is lively enough to keep the beer from being a burden but light enough as to not be sharp. A slightly dry, spicy finish is exactly what I wanted from this beer.

Dragonmead. Yes. I've had a small handful of their beers. I only get to try them once a year in July. Next year I need to hit their pub. Dragonmead is an extremely solid, unappreciated brewery in MI, a state FULL of extremely solid, unappreciated breweries.

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Photo of lurpy1
4.67/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Tuba Museum in Okemos. Final Absolution was the big revelation of the night, as most of the drinkers in our large contingent gravitated towards drinking this beer.

In both smell and test, there's an intriguing combination of banana (normally I hate nanners, no problem here), spice, and caramel, all carried through in a nice smooth texture, which masks the alcohol wallop this bitch carries.

I'm no expert on Belgian beers (yet), but I have to think this is a damn solid rendition of the style.

The Dragonmead footprint seems small, and that is a shame. In my opinion, this is a candidate for Michigan's top beer. Go get.

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Photo of sweatervest27
4.17/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a burnt yellow, almost orange, with a quickly fading one finger head. Slight lacing, I swirled the last bit in the bottle to release the yeast from the bottom which added a nice haze to the rest of the beer.

Smell is strong of buttery banana bread, sweet with some spice notes coming through. Extremely pleasant, reminds me of the holidays as a kid.

The taste follows the nose, thankfully. The typical banana/clove Belgian yeast flavors are very prominent which is kind of surprising as most American brewers don't often capture this quite this well. There's a slight peppery bite midway through with a mild citrus finish. I'm also picking up banana again but moreso in the form of dried banana chips with some nutty aspects.

This is very smooth drinking, the carbonation is just about perfect for the style. Medium to light bodied and just damn tasty. Belgian ales are usually sweet and spicy, the flavors are what make this style and final absolution doesn't fall short within this category. If you happen to come across one of these pick it up, dragonmead has done an awesome job replicating the flavor profile of a classic trippel.

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Dragonmead Final Absolution Trippel from Dragonmead Microbrewery
4 out of 5 based on 547 ratings.
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