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Fistmas | Revolution Brewing Company

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very good
72 Reviews
no score
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Brewed by:
Revolution Brewing Company
Illinois, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.10%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Red ale brewed for the holiday season with specialty malts to achieve a beautiful deep red hue and the aromas of fresh baked bread, caramel, and stone fruits. Steeped with ginger root and orange peel.

31 IBU

Added by cadaugherty on 12-02-2010

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Reviews: 72 | Ratings: 573
Photo of schoolboy
3.72/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Well, for the first beer of the day, ..., it should be better. This may be a bit too cold. I'll let it warm...OK, that's better.

I don't have a proper glass in this crappy hotel room, so I am drinking from a plastic cup. It still looks pretty good. The nose developed a bit as it warmed, showing mostly a weak spice aroma. The taste filled out closer to room temperature to something nicely balanced and reserved. Nothing over the top and not a big brew. Just a hint of spice.

The aftertaste is very pleasant and satisfying. Like most Revolutions, I will not go out of my way to buy this again, but I wouldn't refuse one if it were offered.

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Photo of larryarms847
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a rusty red with a finger of airy off-white almost cinnamon colored foam.

Baking spices, orange peel, caramel, toffee, and some earthy hop aroma.

Hops come out more to play in flavor than aroma, but there is still a strong character of baking spices, namely cinnamon and nutmeg, with a light citrusy flavor and some caramel sweetness.

Light-bodied, medium carbonation, spiced, warming.

Overall, not my favorite from RevBrew but decent nonetheless.

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Photo of BB1313
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can poured into a tulip. Pours a deep auburn with an off-white head that fades slowly and leaves nice lacing and retention. Very nice nose. The aromas are full of fresh hops. Smells like an IPA. Lots of grapefruit and orange, followed by sweet caramel malts. The flavors are malty, but the hop flavor still comes through. Lots of orange peel. Lots of sweet honey. Subtle pine notes. The holiday spices aren't that noticeable. The sweetness from the malts really cut down on the hop bitterness, but once again the hop flavors come through. Mouthfeel is on the heavier side of medium-bodied. Slightly slick and syrupy with moderate carbonation. Alcohol goes unnoticed.

This is a nice brew from Revolution. It has alot of IPA/Red Ale characteristics. The spices seem to take a backseat. Nonetheless, it's fitting for the holidays. Drink this as fresh as possible.

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Photo of Fcolle2
4.27/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a beautiful clear light brown deep red hue. Leaves a nice one and a half finger off white head that retains nicely.

Smell has aromas has huge fresh hop aromas forward. Really nice potent floral hop aromas forward. There is a light spice aroma that is hard to pinpoint, something herbal, cardamon? Light piney hop aromas over a rich caramel malt.

Taste is great more fresh hops are forward notes mainly of pine and herbal hops. There is a nice floral flavor midway that makes me think maybe some honey. Malt is very lightly sweet and flavors of caramel.

Mouthfeel is good lots of hoppy oil give this a medium body with a fair amount of stickiness. Not much bitterness for all the hops in the nose and flavor. Moderate carbonation, very drinkable.

Overall this was in interesting take on a Christmas ale. Tons of hop which surprised me. With this as hoppy as it is, it should be drank before Christmas.

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Photo of jzeilinger
3.06/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours a dark caramel amber color with calm and minimal foam. Dies down to leave a light lacing ring around the glass. Swirling the glass creates a light, but sticky leftover resin that oozes down the sides of the glass.

S - Juniper, roasted caramel, honey, cloves?, nutmeg?. Overall aroma is light.

T - Juniper, toasted caramel, malt forward, light pine bittering.

M - Thin medium body.

O - Meh

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Photo of wisrarebeer
3.84/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

A: nice clear copper color, poured with decent head that kept thin veil
S: malty with good hop spicy backbone, medium nose
T: well-balanced with roasted malt up front and spicy subdued hop finish, not much spices noticeable
M: very drinkable, smooth, well-balanced, almost sessionable
O: well-made, highly drinkable beer, nothing unusual but decent overall

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Photo of Redrover
3.81/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I picked up a couple of bombers of this one. Served in a standard pint, the beer is dark copper bordering on brown. It has a decent beige head and lacing.

Pine, citrus and caramel malts in the nose.

The taste is similar to the smell; it is slightly sweet but with some decent bitterness. A bit of pine, a dash of lemon & grapefruit all balanced by some light brown caramelized sugar. Maybe a bit more of toffee and caramel in the finish as the hops fade a bit at the end.

Mouth is nice and slightly coating.

Not sure what makes it a holiday beer, but it is a darn good beer.

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Photo of jsulko
3.42/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into a snifter glass

Pours a reddish brown color with a decent sized off white head.

Smell is sweet with carmel and spices. Very strong fragance.

Taste is a bit of a let down after the smell. Slight sweetness and spices but not as much going on as the smell would lead you to believe.

A bit of a letdown, the first beer from Revolution that was not a hit for me.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on Oct 24,2012
(Served in a tulip glass)

A- This beer pours a slightly dense reddish-brown body with a thin bubbly ring of foam and a strong carbonation of big bubbles.

S- The slightly tart lemon hops has a strange bitterness to it with a soft clean toasted malt note in the finish.

T- The soft tart flavor has some orange zest notes that come through when it opens and some lemony hop in the finish. There is a hint of taste and malt sweetness that grows with a soft pungent hop bitterness that lingers with a ginger spice warmth aswell.

M- The medium mouthfeel has a finish that coast the mouth and not enough fizz or alcohol to cut it.

O- There was an interesting blend of tart hops and toast notes but the aroma was really clean and the flavor was pretty light. I didn’t really get any of the spice flavor that was in the beers description.

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Photo of mecummins
3.42/5  rDev -10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Fistmas poured a semi clear light brown color with hints of orange amber to it. An off white, one finger head rose quickly and gave a reasonable amount of light lacing. I took a sniff and my first thought was of a freshly cut pine tree. I could also detect some cardamom and ginger scents.

The first taste was very similar to the aroma. There was also a bit of malty sweetness and a back note of orange peel under the pine and spices. This balanced out the earthiness of the beer nicely.

It sported a well carbonated light to moderate mouthfeel and a medium finish, but I think anything heavier would have felt very out of place.

It was a decent spiced ale and showed some well thought out work by the brewers. I'd drink it again.

Bottled date was 11/19/12 and I consumed it on 12/16/12

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Photo of udouche
4.15/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bottle into Das Santa Boot

A - Pours a reddish brown that lets through lots of light. Crispy two finger thick off white head. Thin fast moving lacing

S - Comes at you like a fresh cut Christmas tree. Lots of grapefruit and citrus coming through from the hops. Hints of brown sugar and spice.

T - The juniper/citrus hits you from the front and doesn't let go. As it settles you get a little of the spice and malt that starts to melt into the overpowering hops to form a nice marriage. Washes a little sweet.

M - Medium bodied with a light carbonation. Leaves a little stickiness.

O - This is a pretty big beer for a holiday ale. Not your typical all malt and spice blend. Offers some complexity that was not real predictable, but that becomes less potent and very easy to drink by the end of the bottle. I plan on grabbing another bottle before the season is over.

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Photo of jtierney89
3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear deep amber with a craggy off white head. Smells reasonably hoppy with an underlying maltiness.

Slightly sweet leftover sugar with a good dose of hoppyness. Burnt caramel, buttered toast and piney hops. I like it. Lingers in the mouth pretty nice. No detectable alcohol.

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Photo of ChugginOil
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a translucent nut brown color with a fingers worth of white head that leaves behind just a bit of lace.

The nose brings notes of piney hops, a bit of nutmeg, and sweet caramel malts.

The flavors are well-rounded and balanced as the hops meet with sweet malt. There is that same pine hop note as the nose suggested but when tasted, there is also some citrus fruits offered by the hops. The malt acts as a backbone here and has a nutty and sweet flavor to it. Nice finish.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Pretty smooth.

Overall, I was impressed with this beer and found it easy drinking. Definitely not over the top but definitely one I would purchase again.

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Photo of homebrew311
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into Darkness snifter. Appearance is crystal clear red with a thin collar of white head. Sticky lacing present, poor head retention. Nose features deep earthy spices, notes of spruce, earthy hops, pine, candied fruit, and brown sugar. Taste leans heavy towards the bitter hoppy side of things with a decidedly earthy profile. Spice and herbs are present, but not in the spice-rack-dumped-into-the-kettle kind of way that many Christmas brews are. The hops play nicely with the spices. A touch of clove and spruce in the middle which prevent any sweetness from coming through. The finish is dry and quick. Mouthfeel is moderate carbonation with a medium body. I was hesitant to try this as I often times am not a fan of spiced xmas brews, but this was a nice surprise. The spices are present, but tame enough to let the beer qualities shine through.

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Photo of Etan
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First bottling just appeared on the shelves. Let's check it out. 22oz into a tulip.

A: Pours an orange-ish brown with a nice egg-shell head. Good lacing.

S: Assertive tropical hop notes - pineapple, mango - and some minor slightly roasted maltiness in the background.

T: Hops come in first, with some mild citrus and mango notes, followed by spice (ginger?) and some hop bitterness. Pleasing bready grain comes in at the end to round things out.

M: Between light and medium-bodied with fine carbonation.

O: This is ok; everything's pretty well-balanced and it tastes fine. The hop + spice combination is a little weird but it sort of grew on me.

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Photo of KDawg
3.73/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

had this on tap and it was poured into a pint glass. Pours a medium brown/amber color with a quick head

good aromas of fruitcake, malts and citrus peels. Kind of straightforward and slightly muted as well

Medium bodied with a nice feel and very good flavors of spices, fruitcake and malts

A very good christmas beer. If the aromas were more pungent this would be extremely good. It's enjoyable, but doesn't lend itself to being drunk a lot

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Photo of uwmgdman
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This ale pours brilliantly clear ruby amber color with an off-white head. The aroma is moderately hoppy - mainly citrus as well as moderately malt, sweet and caramel. Orange peel also comes through in the nose and melds nicely with the hops. The flavor hoppy, bittersweet, and rather citrusy, quite pleasant. The beer finishes with hop flavor and bitterness balancing out the sweet malt. The carbonation is moderate as is the body. Overall a very flavorful ale, orange peel/ginger component is nice but still subtle allowing the hops and malt to shine, well done.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Revolution. Served in a 5oz taster glass. I'm not sure you can even consider this the same beer, as this year's batch used Nelson Sauvin hops instead of Chinook, and that's a pretty substantial difference.

A - A thin white foam settles to some wisps and a thick collar, leaving behind plenty of splotchy lacing. The body is a transparent garnet color.

S - Smells like straight up Nelson Sauvin hops. There's the faintest hint of a beer in the periphery, but it's pretty hard to get past that signature hop aroma. Perhaps the faintest bit of chocolate malt and ginger in the background. In any case, the usual suspects for the hop character - tropical fruits, earthiness, white grapes, cat pee.

T - Unfortunately the taste isn't nearly as compelling. The Nelson Sauvin hop flavors fight with the orange peel, ginger, and overall spiced character of the beer. The roast and chocolate malt flavors also seem incongruous with the hops. Complex, and not overtly 'bad', but clashes and confuses more than it challenges and stimulates.

M - Medium bodied, moderate carbonation, no alcohol, and a lightly sticky finish. Pretty easy to consume, but not particularly memorable.

D - Strange experience. I liked some aspects of the beer, but only insofar as they were reminiscent of another (far superior) beer from Revolution - the Nelson Sauvin-hopped Mr. Crowley. As far as Christmas beers go, this is actually one of the best ones I've had in recent memory, but I wish they'd just used the hops in an IPA of some sort instead.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brewpub - December 27, 2010.

Pours a nice reddish-brown color with a fairly-large head that sticks around for awhile before fading down into a thin cap. The nose is intriguing, blending spices and hops quite well. Really enjoy how the spices mix in with the Chinook hops. The taste does this really well also, though it is a bit of a step down from the nose, which is reflected in the mouthfeel, where everything doesn't meld quite as well. Drinkability was pretty good, but not something I'd want a full pint of.

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Photo of beertooth
3.51/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the hand pull into a branded Imperial pint glass.

This beer is absolutely stunning, sharp ruby red. There's a finger of billowy khaki head that leaves thick lacing after every sip. It's a really great looking winter brew.

Those nose is a bit faint. I'm picking out orange pith, flat cherry cola, sweet malt, slight cinnamon, some pine from the chinook hops, and alcohol. The cherry notes are really poking out now that I keep smelling it.

The taste doesn't quite give me what I picked up in the nose. I'm getting those flat cherry soda notes, some bitter citrus, a little heat from the ginger. The pine flavors from the chinook are not showing up. The overly sweet, oxidized cherry soda notes are making themselves known and I'm not digging it as much.

Sticky, slick mouthfeel.

This beer was much better on draft than this cask version. Not terrible, but not something I'd get again.

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Photo of HerrFaust
4.25/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-pours garnet with a generous head. I had in the wide-mouthed Mug Club mug.

S-Festive. Christmas wreath. More going on in the aroma than taste. Spot on for an American Christmas beer. I had first in a flight with, among others, the Great Lakes x-mas--a fave--and the Rev blew it out of the water.

T-The hops (chinook) really dominate. Crazy, the beer really approaches as a winter warmer, but the hops hit as crazy pine in the front, with the citrus and spice coming in at the end, some sweetness.

M-the Chinook and generous carbonation really lift this beer off the palate. Think of a SN Celebration mixed with a fuller Anchor Christmas.

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Photo of cadaugherty
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A nice addition to the RevBrew Lineup served in a big mug.

Appearance- Red/Amber hue with a big frothy head that holds for quite some time. The look of this beer just says holidays to me as it seems to glow in the mug.

Aroma- The ginger and orange peel come out immediately in a very pleasant way (not overwhelming the way many spiced beers can feel). For me the smell is the best part of this beer.

Taste- The spice notes are there along with just a touch of bitterness from the hops (which I am told are chinook). Again the spices are far from overwhelming and begin to fade about halfway through the beer.

Mouthfeel- Perhaps a bit thinner than I would like but the creamy foam helps round it out a bit.

Drink- This is a beer that goes down easy and could easily be sessioned over the course of a long evening at the brewpub.

Overall this was a great beer to be greeted by after walking in from 25 degree weather and strong winds, which in my head is what a Christmas beer should be about.

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Fistmas from Revolution Brewing Company
3.8 out of 5 based on 573 ratings.
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