Revolution Brewing

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English Dark Mild Ale
Ranked #17
Ranked #19,214
3.87 | pDev: 10.34%
Revolution Brewing
Illinois, United States
Very Good
Notes: English luncheon beer with toffee and caramel notes. Low in alcohol, high in flavor.
Reviews: 25 | Ratings: 72 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Kurmaraja
3.92/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Really nice take on the style. Dark hues, brown with a reddish copper tone. Modest head. As expected. Smell is, uh, mild - roasted grain, toffee, very little sweetness, some dark fruit. Body is light but a definite notch above watery. This is one you really need to drink a couple of pints of back to back to fully engage and let the flavor build.

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Photo of SD-Alefan
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%

Enjoyed on tap at the brewery taproom.
Pours a dark brown with a tan head. Lots of lacing.
The aromas are very nice, lots of toffee and caramel and bread.
This beer tastes great. Lots of malty goodness with a bit of bitter as well. As you savor it, the taste turns to sweet toffee on your tongue. Really remarkable.
Nice smooth, medium mouthfeel.
To me, this beer is underrated. Great brew.

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Photo of rinhaak
3.65/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Revolution in Chicago.

Nutty in the nose with aromas of toffee and caramel. Very light in body, the beer mirrors the nose in the mouth with the addition of a lightt coffee flavor.

Very pleasant and an excellent lunch beer, it's worth a pint to accompany a noonday sandwich.

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Photo of AJacob81
3.91/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is actually the Revolution beer I've been most interested in. Served in a pint glass.

A - Garnet with cherry highlights and edging. Pours clear with a 2 finger off-white head that leaves behind a thin collar and surprisingly long legs. Looks super.

S - Whiffs of toffee, lightly roasted grain, and a hint of chocolate. Overall, a faint bouquet, but inviting.

T - Toffee, caramel malt, and a touch of gently bitter hops. The lack of any alcohol burn makes this a mellow charmer of a brew.

M - A nice medium bodied beer with lively carbonation, finishes dry and invites the next gulp immediately.

O - The mild ale revolution is seemingly always right around the corner, and if there were more like this and Two Bros. Long Haul readily available, it just might happen. It's tempting just to session this, but there are so many other interesting handles here to try...

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Photo of KDawg
3.3/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a nice light mahogany color

good nose with tones of grains, malts, and bits of toffee. Nose is solid and pretty straight forward

lighter feel that is nice and pleasant with some caramel and toffee with some malts as well

this is a session nice beer. Some good tones but they are lacking some depth

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Photo of gory4d
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Masterski for the growler.

Pours dark brown with a one-finger head. Smell is coffee, caramel, clover, tea biscuits. Taste is slightly tannic, some toffee notes, random herbage, crisp bitter finish. It's moderately carbonated (not bad for a growler over a week old), quite thin - goes down easy. This is a fine beer - wish some local brewer would make an equivalent.

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Photo of AgentZero
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark brown beer with an off-white head that faded to a decent cap. Some minor spots left on the sides.

S - Roasted malt, cocoa, little chocolate. Decent amount of roast, smells pretty good. Has some toffee and caramel, pretty full aroma for something with this low ABV.

T - Light roast, toffee, caramel, little bit of chocolate. Very solid.

M - Light bodied, moderate carbonation.

O - A nice session beer that is pretty fulfilling given the depth of flavor at 3.5%. Easy to drink, and worth trying.

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a glass mug.

Thanks to taiyed for acquiring and sharing this growler!

Been lookin' for a nice [true] session ale lately. This one pours a lovely clear smokey topaz/garnet topped by a finger of sandy oatmeal foam. The nose comprises light toffee, grass, flowers, and a pinch of brown sugar. The taste happily brings in more of the same, along with a bit of calcium, but in a good way (put it this way: normally, a taste of hard water does not help the beer any (generally it's a detriment), but it seems to augment things here). The body is a sorta hefty-seeming light, with a very light moderate carbonation and a rather fluid feel. Overall, a very nice, easy-drinkin' brew, something I can easily see myself downing over a nice, long afternoon at the brewpub.

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Photo of Vdubb86
4.01/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a pint glass

Thanks to my buddy taiyed for hooking us up with this growler from his recent visit to Rev

This beer pours a gorgeous red mahogany color clear body with a decent finger of ecru foam. The aromatics are faint in nature. There are hints of some mild fruit but with a biscuit backer. The flavors of this beer have some caramel notes with a touch of brown sugar and faint red apple. This is a solid beer. The mouthfeel is a touch bitter but only enough for you to know that there were hops put in the beer. Other than that it drinks fantastic. At 3.5% how can you lose with something this tasty. It definitely makes me wanna head on over there myself.

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Photo of kbutler1
3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler courtesy of Dunt on BA. Poured into a DFH tulip glass a dark clear brownish color with the slightest tinge of red. Starts with a 1-2 finger head of tan that quickly settles out to form a collar around the glass. The nose has notes of roasted malt, coffee, and chocolate all pretty subtle. Some slight lace left on the glass. Medium/light mouthfeel. A very easy drinking beer with light notes of coffee, caramel, and roast. Not as flavorful as I was holing for but a nice drinker nonetheless.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler shared by Thorpe429 and Amyliz4. Thanks Mike and Amy! This kicked off a nice day of brewing.

A: Toffee brown color with orange highlights and a half inch of light tan head. The head had good retention and left some nice lacing on the glass.

S: The aroma is fairly weak, with some subtle hints of toffee and malt in the English style.

T: The beer is very tasty and flavorful, with enjoyable light roast and a very mild bitterness. The beer is just ever so slightly sweet. This is a really well done brew. Workingman is my first experience with English dark mild ale, so I have no other point(s) of reference, but this seems like a great genre of beer that I will be returning to as soon as possible.

M: Light, thin body, which comes as no surprise with a 3.5% alcohol session beer.

D: Very drinkable. I could throw back several pints of this pretty easily.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.98/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Revolution.

Pours a fairly-dark brown color with a nice off-white to tan head with moderate retention and a nice cap as it falls. The nose brings forward a good dose of roasted malt. Also there is a bit of coffee and mild chocolate. The flavor is a bit more robust than the nose with all components being a bit more pronounced. Some mild bitterness along with the roast in the finish. Light body and really nice drinkability. Certainly a powerful session beer.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.93/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler provided by Thorpe at his inaugural brew day, thanks Mike. From the source in Chicagoland. Poured into a shaker pint. This beer is currently the #1 English Dark Mild ale, a largely ignored style.

Beer is brown with a decent head (especially for a growler!) of off white medium bubbles that leaves some lacing on the glass. Beer is moderate to light in carbonation. Fun.

Beer has this toffee / roasty malt aroma to it, overall the aroma is a little light but it's pretty much exactly what I expected.

Beer is thin in body (expected) but not dry in the finish. It has a roasty bitterness at the end that is nice because it does not approach something that is really bitter like coffee or too much hops. There is a mild lead off of sweetness at the beginning and finishes nicely as well. I seriously could drink this all day long.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(served in an American pint glass)
A- This beer has a pretty dense warm brown body with a garnet glow at the base and a thin creamy head of light tan. There are a few bubbles of gentle carbonation that glide up the side of the glass.
S- The roasted coffee malt notes are dark but not bitter with some black malt aromas that are not really chocolaty but more of a dark biscuit note underneath.
T- The light coffee malt and dark roasted note has a dark dry toffee quality underneath and a finish of dry spicy with a gentle roasted note that lingers for a moment.
M- The light mouthfeel has a tight little fizz finish.
D- This beer has a lot of nice schwarztbier qualities with good roasted characters and pretty clean with no real yeast characters, but still delicious and drinks very quickly.

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Photo of samie85
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Reviewed from notes; originally 10/07.

A-This one is a medium brown color with a thin half, finger head.

S-It's roasted and coffee notes front and center with some caramel notes and a little bit of earthy hops.

T-It's the most flavorful beer that I'd at this ABV; tons of roasted notes with some chocolate and an earthy hop bitterness.

M- Pretty smooth and medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation.

D-I could probably go on drinking this one all night. Insanely drinkable and interesting enough that I want to keep drinking it.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.01/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On hand-pump at the brewpub. Served in a pint glass.

A - Transparent mahogany brown with nice cherry highlights. Two fingers of persistent light tan foam that leaves behind plenty of lace and a thick cap.

S - Treacle, spiced toffee, a touch of earthiness, a bit of noble hop bite. Not the biggest nose here.

T - Taste has a little more overt caramel sweetness. Finishes slightly nutty and bitter. It's not very complicated, but it's plenty flavorful for a 3.5% brew.

M - Soft, slight gritty body, and low (duh...) carbonation. Finishes with some dryness as well as a touch of residual sugar.

D - This is pretty easy drinkin'. If I were in a particularly English mood I could probably go with this one all through a good football (or even cricket) match.

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Photo of mdwalsh
4.52/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This really was a phenomenal beer for sitting around drinking. I was going to get a pint, then decided on a flight of all the beers offered that day. I would have been happy with the pint.

It's a nice deep hazy brown, small head that could have been bigger. The haze could've been dialed back a bit too to make a more visually appealing beer, but that's alright.

The smell was heavenly. Full bodied grain and caramel breadyness with just the slightest bit of hops. Nothing overpowering or unpleasant, just something I would enjoy having in front of me wafting up into my nostrils for a long time.

The taste matched. Lots going on to give you something to think about if you wanted, but all of it very nice, so you could just sit back and be happy if you don't want to think about it. Again, a sort of toasted whole-grain bread and caramel-ness to it that even on a 90 degree day was nice, and would be phenomenal in the winter.

The beer didn't feel as big as it smelled or tasted, which isn't to be unexpected, and is actually pretty nice, but I felt it lacked a little something here.

It was however one of if not the most drinkable craft beers I've ever had. Lots of flavor to be enjoyed, but easy going down, and at only 3.5% abv, not much to be afraid of upon leaving. This is what I want to see more of from American Brewers.

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Photo of bruachan
4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

the ale has a rootbeer mahogany hue and was served with a good head

aromas are dark and occasionally dry but hardly astringent

the ale has excellent nutty flavors (at least as you would find them in a beer--i think one would struggle to locate a nut that tastes like this "nutty") with a touch of pumpernickel crust as well. bitterness is restrained, functional. the malt profile and body are tame in the perfectly sessionable mild way--ideal for downing dozens

simple is the name of the game

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Photo of nickd717
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brewpub.

Pours clear dark brown with a small, lasting tan head.

Aroma is rather roasty with caramel, nuts, and floral hops.

Lots of flavor for the ABV, as the brewpub's description says. The flavor is roasty with chocolate, caramel, and earthy hops.

Pretty nice palate - a somewhat light body with a dry mouthfeel.

Very drinkable. A really solid mild ale overall. Great session beer, in any sense of the term.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.59/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I drank this on tap into a tasting glass.

The beer pours a clear light brown with a off white/tan head that rises a couple fingers, good retention and lacing.

The aroma bursts with tons of sweetness. There is caramel, toffee, mixed with a little toastiness.

The taste is pretty much spot on with the aroma, lots of sweet toffee notes with a toasted finish. Its a little too sweet for me and its got a slight alcohol taste to me, which is surprising giving the abv.

The biggest problem with this beer is the feel, super light.

Drinkability is ok, a little too sweet for me.

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Photo of homebrew311
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: arrives in a pint glass with a dark brown toffee color, dense tan bubbles form a 1 finger head, some streaky lacing

S: very mild toasted malts, bread, caramel, and a slight smokiness

T: Wow! Huge caramel and malt profile with an interplay between sweetness and toasted notes, notes of toffee and nuts, extremely tasty

MF: creamy and smooth with low carbonation, feels silky on palate

D: this beer is the definition of perfect drinkability. Bold malt profile with great balance, smooth and delicate mouthfeel, and low alcohol. This beer challenged my thought that low alcohol beers can't have robust flavors- this one most certainly has them!

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Photo of jvande7
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a fancy glass, from the hand-pump at Revolution.

A- this beer was poured/pumped right and had a gorgeous off-white 3 finger head that stuck around. dark brown colored ale, not overly carbonated.

S- gentle bready/malty smell to it. mild and mostly-balanced smelling (some, though not a lot of hop aroma detected) this is a mild ale afterall. proper smell for the style I would think.

T- this beer was cool (not cold), just like a cask beer should be. the temp definitely helps the flavors come out. it's a mild so there isn't supposed to be a whole lot going on. it tastes slightly bready/malty just like it smells, with just the right amount of hops there to balance things.

M- thin mouthfeel, but not in a bad way at all. proper mouthfeel for a 3.5% abv mild ale.

D- drinkable as they come. that's the whole point of the style - sessionable brew. mild but delicious. not my all-time favorite of their brews, but still a damn fine one that I enjoy regularly when I want delicious beer but not tons of alcohol.

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Photo of diabecktic
4.11/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Though the glass which was served to me had slightly less than 1 finger's worth of head, the retention was minimal, but lacing was pretty good. You can't really see through this beer, as it is an extremely dark brown color with tinges of dark red that become visible when held to the light.

I found the aroma to be very, very subtle and I couldn't quite figure out exactly what it was until I took my first sip. My first impression was a "dark" type of sweetness; I would describe it as a mild coffee/toffee scent which I found to be very subdued. This isn't bad, though - I found the beer to be all the more intriguing.

The complexity of the flavors became more apparent upon warming. Coffee and toffee tones from the nose were immediately apparent; the aftertaste left a somewhat "smoky" sweetness which became obscured by a subtle bitterness. The latter component was somewhat remniscient of a roasted caramel malt.

I found the body to be somewhat heavier than what I expected after swirling the beer in its glass. The medium thickness is lighter than that of a stout or porter, but it fits the style well.

This beer is very drinkable. The assortment of flavored malts doesn't weigh this beer down, so it's easy to sip at a variety of paces. My mouth became dried out after each sip, leaving me wanting more.

If I have to summarize this brew in one word, I suppose it would be "complex." It's a very "smoky" beer with an excellent mix of malts. I found the scent a bit underwhelming relative to the intensity of the flavors, but this didn't negatively influence my review. I noticed that another reviewer mentioned some fruitness; I didn't notice this myself, but perhaps I'll detect it next time (you'll also recall that my pour didn't seem to have as much head as was mentioned by the previous reviewers). This is an excellent beer which you must try at least once.

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Photo of philberinghele
4.26/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Excellent Mild Ale. Toffee and caramel flavors. Very thin body but hits the mark for the style. Huge foamy head from the cask that settles and sticks to the glass. Has a deep brown color that you'd expect from a decent brown ale/mild ale. I will drink this again and again and again.

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Photo of emerge077
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had a cask pint on my first visit to Revolution.

Dark russet shade of brown that had a copper red glint in the light. The clarity was nice, and the head stuck around, leaving random flecks of lacing.

Aromas of musty malt, apple orchard, fairly restrained but pleasant.

Soft apple flavors with a vaguely woody must, mild toasted caramel malts on the back end with a light and pleasant bitterness in the finish. The cask rendered it smooth and supple, extremely low carb, yet a session ale in the truest sense.

As a "Workingman", I heartily endorse this Mild ale, blue collar, white collar, or no collar. Looking forward to drinking this again for lunch at Revolution...

edit: Make sure you get a full pint, the 2nd time I had this, it was short poured with 3" of foam.

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Workingman from Revolution Brewing
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 72 ratings