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Damnation - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,977 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,977
Reviews: 1,062
rAvg: 4.12
pDev: 10.19%
Wants: 336
Gots: 600 | FT: 47
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  7.75% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: beerguy101 on 09-19-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,977 | Reviews: 1,062 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Scotchboy


4.05/5  rDev -1.7%

375ml corked & caged bottle from FosterJM in a semi-recent trade. Poured into a Deschutes snifter.

A: Delicious sunrise orange, with a tinge of cloudiness and some nice effervescence; soapy white head which despite my assumptions retained well and clung to glass in patches.

S: Belgian yeast esters; white and green fruit skins, lemongrass, pale malt breadiness. Pleasant although moderately 'boring' for a Belgian pale.

T: Right in line with the nose, this beer hits the tongue with light crispness. The fruit and phenolic characters are the most prominent, with hints of white wine and pear, and finishing with spices and earthy hops; each flavor is light and refreshing.

MF: Crisp (as stated), with a lighter body and relatively soft carbonation considering. The hops finish a touch dry, cleansing the palette in a way and making this beer very refreshing.

O: A good, 'typical' Belgian pale that is quite refreshing and does what (I believe) it was intended to do. Great drinkability, and overall a great summer beer in my opinion.

07-27-2011 00:16:42 | More by Scotchboy
Photo of Stinkypuss


4/5  rDev -2.9%

Russian River : Damnation

Pours a clear golden color, off white fizzy head retains very well and lacing is evident on the glass. Aroma of sweet Belgian yeast, citrus, candy sugar, mild floral notes. In the flavor, a nice balance of yeast fruityness, bubblegum, citrus hops and pale malts. Alittle Belgian yeast spiciness lingers on the palate. Hint of apple skin. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a spritzy carbonation and a semi-dry finish. A "damn" fine Belgian Pale Ale, almost bordering into tripel territory. In either case, a nice belgian golden ale.

07-26-2011 04:55:06 | More by Stinkypuss
Photo of TMoney2591


3.5/5  rDev -15%

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Thanks to AleWatcher for sharing this bottle!

Batch #054. Another unnecessary, though greatly appreciated, extra bottle at the tasting. Right on. It pours a cloudy straw topped by a finger of off-white foam. The nose comprises wheat, light lemon zest, light coriander, and a tough of Belgian yeast. The taste holds notes of wheat, lemon zest, orange rind, lime zest, and a very light touch of caramel. The body straddles the border between hefty light and light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a kinda dry finish. Overall, a fairly solid BSPA, but a bit on the boring side. It's good, but it doesn't bring anything special to the table. Bit of a disappointment, if you ask me (and clearly you did).

07-25-2011 22:24:57 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of ShanePB


4.05/5  rDev -1.7%

Available year-round a very attainable to me, I finally picked one of these up for review. A 375 ml corked and caged bottle, batch #063. Poured into a tulip glass.

A: Cloudy golden orange colored body with a creamy and frothy white head. There is evidence of an unfiltered nature as you can clearly see floating white sediment suspended in the body.

S: Spicy yeast notes along with some bready and doughy elements open up the aroma. These qualities stick around throughout the entirety of the beer but do allow some other subtle nuances to show. Orange rind and a faint hint of spearmint are towards the back end.

T: Perhaps predictably, a big Belgian spicy yeast flavor is the showcase of the flavors. Mild banana hints, white pepper and bubblegum come through mid palate and into the finish. This seems to be right in line with a large number of BSPA style beers. A very light touch of alcohol can be detected in the linger but it's nothing offensive.

M: Well carbonated, lower end of a medium bodied beer. The feel is very rich and a bit creamy for being quite bubbly.

I paired this beer with some lightly barbequed jerk chicken and it went extremely well, enhancing a lot of the spices in both the beer and food. The calming bready and yeasty qualities were great and even on it's own this is a very solid demonstration of the style.

07-25-2011 12:41:27 | More by ShanePB
Photo of blincoln


3.58/5  rDev -13.1%

Appearance: Big fluffy white 1.5 finger head that sticks around for a while with no to little lacing. Damnation pours a heavenly Golden Yellow(no pun intended). Since the beer is fermented in the bottle, I had to be careful not to pour the sediment into the glass.

I like the instructional cork, unfortunately I didn't have a chalice handy and was forced to use a Weizen glass (at least it wasn't a tumbler).

Aroma: Hoppy and yeasty with a fruity, citrus, and spice background.

Taste: Yeasty with a banana and spices flavor. Fruity and sweet. As the beer warms up, a bit of bitterness comes through.

Palette: Light, crisp, and dry. Decent carbonation. Pretty easy to drink. Despite the higher ABV content, its a smooth drink with little notice to the alcohol.

Overall: Not a bad beer. It was refreshing and interesting, but with all I had hear about RRBC I had hoped for more.

07-22-2011 06:27:01 | More by blincoln
Photo of SpillyBeers


3.98/5  rDev -3.4%

Imported from my old handle izoot
My first review
Poured into my Duvel tulip
A-clean pale golden color, clear but mildly hazy if that makes sense, a nice quarter inch of head which dissipates rather quickly. Looks good.

S-strong Belgian yeast lots of citrusy fruit funk, some tropical strange spice.

T-a lot what I would expect from the smell, lemons crisp apples banana clove and yeasty funk.

M-great, crisp, carbonated, mouth puckering, makes me eager for the next sip

O-not my favorite by Russian river but definitely a quality brew, pretty easy drinking for a close to 8% abv beer

07-21-2011 23:27:03 | More by SpillyBeers
Photo of tdm168

North Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -13.1%

Pours a light amber, 1/4" white head. Nose is fruit and spice. Taste is much the same, fruit and spice. However, there seems to be a battle between bitter and sweet which throws me off a little bit; oversweet up front, mildly bitter on the finish. Mouthfeel light to medium bodied, heavily carbonated.

07-19-2011 12:07:31 | More by tdm168
Photo of calebroberts811


3.95/5  rDev -4.1%

The last of a good west coast trade. Wanted to save a solid one for the last.

A - Hazy golden amber with good carbonation. One finger of crisp white head.

S - Banana, ginger, clove, pear, citrus, bready yeasts.

T - A bit sugary for me which surprised me a bit. Strong banana and spice notes with pear and ginger in the background. As a previous reviewer said, it tastes like it smells.

M - A bit cloying but a good cleansing bitterness.

O - Not as impressive as Redemption, which was the other beer from their Belgian line that I had, but nonetheless a good solid beer.

07-16-2011 21:37:16 | More by calebroberts811
Photo of

4.55/5  rDev +10.4%

Batch 64

a-pretty, cloudy, lofty head, lively carbonation.

s-I am getting chardonnay, fruit, pear, cloves, little spice.

t-cloves, some spice, fruit. Has a clean finish, and some bitterness at the end.

m-prickly carbonation, really nice bubbles. Had a dry finish to the mouth feel. Really well done bottle conditioning.

o-great beer and the price is right too. I'll drop one in the cellar and see what it does in a few years!

07-15-2011 00:50:50 | More by
Photo of TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev -2.9%

Bottle enjoyed at The Neighbourhood in San Diego on 7/4/11

A - Poured a golden yellow colour with half a finger of white head.

S - Light citrus notes, some spice, some cloves and Belgian yeast.

T - Some cloves, light citrus, and peachy notes with a slight bitterness and a dry finish

M - Medium body. Medium carbonation.

07-14-2011 21:01:06 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of OPWN3NTSL4Y3R


4/5  rDev -2.9%

375ml corked and caged bottle Batch 065
Poured into silver rimmed Chimay chalice

A- Pours a pale, hazy-golden, slightly-orange with a lovely white 2.5 finger head that dissipates slowly leaving some clingy lace. Lots of carbonated micro-bubbles rising up through the center.

S- Belgian yeast with some citrus, bready malt, and a little hop.

T- I'm getting a pleasant balance of pale malts, Belgian fruit and yeast, citrus, and bitter hops.

M- Luscious, good carbonation, medium body, semi-dry crisp finish.

O- Excellent American brewed Belgian Strong Pale Ale. Very enjoyable and easy drinking brew that pairs well with food.

07-14-2011 05:55:26 | More by OPWN3NTSL4Y3R
Photo of prdstmnky


4.08/5  rDev -1%

375mL ~ Batch 065

Poured into a tulip, golden straw colored body that is somewhat hazy. 3 fingers of fluffy white head has great retention, lasting a good 5 minutes before settling to a half a finger pillow on the surface. Lots of rising carbonation bubbles and nice lacing from the healthy pour.

Lots of yeast in the nose, some citrus, maybe some banana notes. Taste is right in line, citrus and Belgian yeast are the standouts, as well as some bready / biscuit flavors adding some balance, perhaps even some pear or apple too.

Light to medium bodied for the style, and a nice dose of carbonation make for an inviting mouthfeel. It is a bit dry on the finish. Certainly something I'd drink again, another nice offering from Russian River!

07-14-2011 01:20:07 | More by prdstmnky
Photo of Kubus

Ontario (Canada)

4.33/5  rDev +5.1%

355mL corked bottle into a paper cup (Thanks Hampton Inn...)

A: Pours a very pale, pastel yellow with a respectable 2 fingers of head which grows like a chia pet out of the glass, but does not spill oddly enough, leaving me with a tower of beer suds in the shape of Marge Simpsons hair.

S: Fermented Wheat, grass, malt, biscuits, bread.

T: Lots of really mild fermented wheat and bread, tastes like it smells.

M: Light, very bubbly and smooth. Definitely a very good example of a Belgian style ale.

O: A very tasty beer, in a beautiful bottle, and for half the price of either Consecration or Supplication. This beer is the best taste for the best value that I have seen from Russian River. A real winner.

07-13-2011 05:07:29 | More by Kubus
Photo of CharlieMurphy

New York

3.2/5  rDev -22.3%

A: Looks like a dirty aquarium. Golden yeller with solid dark orange yeast spots immersed throughout and some clingy lacing tan... I mean tan lacing

S: Smells more wheat and white than pale. Some orange mint comes through.

T: More balanced, mellow pale ale characters combine with the apparent belgian whiteness of this beer. Thin - Alcohol is pretty non-existent, I was definitely not thinking this was 7.75%. No hop presence and virtually no carbonation tingle/bite.

M: Mild, carbonation is soft and paralyzed. its foamy in a kind of chewy way.

O: Very drinkable and a good beer, however not at all special. Corking this was wasteful.

07-13-2011 04:22:51 | More by CharlieMurphy
Photo of cetherid


4.33/5  rDev +5.1%

poured into a tulip


Beer pours a golden straw color that is fairly clear. Nice bubbles floating from the bottom to the top. An attractive thick frothy white head leaves a a little foamy lacing around my glass as it dissipates to a thin ring after a minute or two.


Aromas of Belgian yeast, light bready malts and a little lemon and pears with just a tiny hint of alcohol. Very light aroma but works well for this golden ale.


Pale malts, a little Belgian spice with some subtle fruit notes. Flavors are relatively mild but perfectly balanced. It's a very refreshing and highly drinkable beer...for the style this is pretty damn good.


Light bodied with loads of carbonation that tickles the tongue with each drink. Maybe a little too much carb but still very crisp and refreshing going down.


Another solid showing by RR. Nose and taste is a little on the lighter side but everything is balanced and works well together. A great beer to drink on a hot day like today. For the style, I'd definitely recommend this one.

07-12-2011 01:52:39 | More by cetherid
Photo of Bierlerner


4/5  rDev -2.9%

A- Cloudy hazy golden straw color. 1 finger of creamy white head. A couple small patches of lacing when drank.

S- yeasty, citrusy, and biscuity. Very light and very pleasant. Little bit of spice and little bit of floral notes as well.

T- apple and citrus. Lots of spice and sweet maltiness. But there is a great peppery spice balance as well. Interesting.

M- Crispy and clean. Medium-light body with lots of bubbly. Finishes a bit bitter and dry.

O- Pretty good BSPA. The peppery presence kinda threw me off. It was a nice surprise. Another good beer by RR.

07-11-2011 14:59:27 | More by Bierlerner
Photo of papat444

Quebec (Canada)

4.13/5  rDev +0.2%

***Batch 044***

Thanks to MasterSki for this one. Shared with my wife.

Poured from a 750ml. bottle.

Appearance: A not quite clear honey-gold body that gets infinitely cloudier as the pour nears the end of the bottle. Foam lasts long @ 2 fingers with a nice thick lacing coating the glass.

Smell: Flowery, citrus and a host of other spices that my tired nose can't decipher. Shy at first but gets fairly heady as it warms.

Taste: Tropical and citrus fruit, lots of banana and some spices. Yeast character gets strong as it warms as does the light spice finish.

Mouthfeel: Light feel yet retains a full body. Really smooth though the finish is medium in range.

Overall: I enjoyed this brew. I would have liked the flavor to linger more between each sip yet this is still a fine ale.

07-11-2011 00:30:48 | More by papat444
Photo of oline73


4.2/5  rDev +1.9%

Poured from a bottle into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy golden amber with a finger and a half of white head that leaves a layer and some lacing on the glass.

Smell: Sweet and crisp malt with lots of Belgian spice.

Taste: As in the smell, there is a strong spice from the yeast. Mildly peppery with a bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: The body is a bit on the thin side. Fluffy carbonation with a mildly dry finish.

Overall: This is a really nice Belgian and quite mild given the abv. Quite well balanced and I'll have another when given the chance.

07-10-2011 16:33:21 | More by oline73
Photo of zaphodchak


4.03/5  rDev -2.2%

On draft at Yard House.

1 finger white head, hazy yellowish body. Laces elegantly but faintly.

Belgian yeast and lemon zest on the nose, along with some apple and faint plum as it warms.

Taste is complex: vegetal body with some faint peppery spice, a bit of woody undertone and a bit of fruit, dry apple. Exceptionally well-balanced and easy-drinking, would pair very well with food. bitter character comes to the foreground as it warms.

Mouthfeel is spot-on, smooth and creamy.

Overall a nice brew-- not extreme or off the wall, and would go great with pasta.

07-09-2011 01:57:46 | More by zaphodchak
Photo of whatthehull


4/5  rDev -2.9%

Tasted June 23rd 2011 (from notes)

Poured into a la chouffe tulip

A - a cloudy golden/orange, two and a half finger white fluffy head and little lacing

S - nice hops, very fruity, mulling type spices, yeasty, soil, grass and flowers

T - Really earthy up front, woods, spices and grassy notes. Lots of yeast. Nice subtle, yet nicely bitter hops, lots of citrus and tons of fruitiness, but surprisingly not very sweet

M - very carbonated, medium body, medium acidity and a very long finish

D - very nice ale. Bitter, fruity, great spring and early summer beer. If you like any craft ale, you would probably like this one

Final thought - at $4 a bottle and a nice 7%+ ABV. You have to try this one and maybe age another

07-05-2011 16:49:11 | More by whatthehull
Photo of zrab11


4/5  rDev -2.9%

A- Pours a nice golden yellow color with a thin white head

S- Has a nice aroma of vinegar and citrus. also picking up some lemon and yeast

T- Has a citrus lemon flavor up front followed by a yeasty flavor in the middle and ends with a nice little bite

M-Medium to light bodied with good carbonation

D-Overall this brew was good. very drinkable and the flavors came together nicely. RR has alot of other brews in this style i would pick before this one but can't complain its a good brew.

07-02-2011 18:36:11 | More by zrab11
Photo of GodOfBeer

Ontario (Canada)

4.2/5  rDev +1.9%

Pours a nice hazy golden-orange with lots of carbonation and wonderful lacing.

Smells of cinnamon apple, yeast, candy, pineapple, coriander, citrus and lots of herbs. Very complex, the alcohol is barely noticeable. Very enticing.

Tastes of apples upfront, some various spices, candy sugar, some mint and cinnamon, nutmeg, pineapple, and finishes with a grapefruit bitterness derived form the hops.

IMHO I like this better than Duvel. It goes down smoother and seems more complex. Well done, can't wait to try their other beers!

06-28-2011 22:09:30 | More by GodOfBeer
Photo of beerdedpunk


4.43/5  rDev +7.5%

I popped the cork on Damnation and poured it into my glass and felt happy though being damned. I really liked the fuzzy golden color with two fingers of head, nice and pearly white. I first put it to my nose and inhaled, pleasantly surprised. Light and citrusy with a definite hint of banana, and just a speck of spice. Very pleasing. Upon tasting again was quite pleased. Has a very light feel in the mouth: mild carbonation, nice linger that gets all the taste to the senses. Doesn't coat the mouth heavily. The taste comes across like the smell, citrus notes, a hint of spice in the back. The taste is not overpowering but very good. Overall I really like Damnation and would definitely buy this beer again.

06-27-2011 22:17:13 | More by beerdedpunk
Photo of bld81


4/5  rDev -2.9%

Bottle Batch 059 poured into a Unibroue tulip:

A: tough cork today, easier to push it out rather than twisting, hazy/cloudy appearance with lots of active carbonation

S: bready and yeasty, mild floral funk

T: banana and pear, peppery with yeast

M: light, biting, crisp and dry, slight burn
been in the bottle for nearly a year, according to the RR website, really a nice treat, hope to find again

06-23-2011 21:10:51 | More by bld81
Photo of Vancoubeer


4.65/5  rDev +12.9%

Was bored last night so I went to Apex in Portland with 7 dollars in my pocket. Was more than surprised to see 12 oz pours for $3.50. Got two. I love this beer. If I was someone looking to start drinking Belgians, this is the best tasting around. I normally like bottle conditioned beers better but this was outstanding. It looked good from the start. It smelled great. Not too much funkiness and slight spice notes present. Really makes me want to drink instead of regret like some Belgians. The taste is amazing. Nice sweet tones with a touch of spice that is expected but not too strong. The good mouthfeel really helped this quench my thirst on a warm summer night. Amazing beer with the high abv. It is not present at all. It almost made me wonder if Russian River is accurate with their calculations. Nevertheless, this is a beer to have bottled or on draft and normally I designate one or the other but never both. Exceptional experience and most likely will go back for more this week.

06-22-2011 17:23:16 | More by Vancoubeer
Damnation from Russian River Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 2,977 ratings.