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Sanctification | Russian River Brewing Company

617 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.75%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bierman9 on 10-27-2004

User Reviews
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Reviews: 617 | Ratings: 2,648
Reviews by bigfnjoe:
Photo of bigfnjoe
4.73/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a corked & cage bottle into a Duvel tulip

A- pours a very cloudy shade of dark yellow with an INSANE four finger pure white head. The head is very puffy, and while lacing is minimal, the sheer size of the head is enough to negate that factor. As for the beer itself, it looks a lot like your standard witbier...maybe a little darker.

S- getting a lot of lemon out of this one. Honestly? It smells like a top of the line witbier. Of course, I know it's NOT a wit, but that's what I'm reminded of so far

T- sour, sour lemons. It tastes like one of those awesomely fresh Italian gelatos made with lemons off the tree. The pucker is definitely there, and it's a much lighter one than you'd get with a Sanctification or a Supplication. I love it

M- the texture is perfect. Again, I come back to the witbier analogy...it has the feel of a witbier, but with a little more thickness. Can't get much better

O- dear Russian River, thank you for making this beer again. It is absolutely amazing. I want as much of it as I can get. Fantastic stuff

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More User Reviews:
Photo of RoyalT
4.62/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – This one is light orange in color with a beautiful white, puffy head that was just enchanting. I just couldn’t stop staring at this ale.

Smell – The wonderful Belgian yeast was dynamic. I can’t tell you how excited I get when I find a true, authentic yeast smell in an American effort at this style. There’s a rich sourness there too that’s way off from a Flanders Ale but big nevertheless.

Taste – The yeast is terrific at the taste, and the sourness is similar to what you’d find in an Unblended Lambic. It’s not overpowering and comes on more complimentary. The hops give a light tartness to the ale. The flavors work together in perfect harmony.

Mouthfeel – This one is medium-bodied with a light tartness and very pleasant sourness that is mixed with some lively carbonation.

Drinkability – If there’s such a thing as a session Belgian Ale than this is it. I could have drank this one all night.

Comments – I was in town one week early for the release of the next batch (last batch was out) but Vinnie the brewmaster was nice enough to bring some out from the back room. What a treat it was drinking this incredible ale with the brewer, my wife, and rapopoda who was also in town for barrel tasting weekend.

Vinnie described it as a “sour blonde Belgian ale”. It is primarily fermented with 100% Brettanomyces and bottle conditioned to create lush carbonation. It may not fall perfectly into a BJCP Guideline (other than Belgian specialty, of course) but this is one of the most drinkable ales on the planet. I kind of see it as an American made Belgian equivalent to a German Berliner Weisse, but that’s just my own take on it. Whatever you call it, this ale is good good good.

 1,730 characters

Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.85/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I believe this was batch 003.

Pretty much perfect. Sanctification could have been be an unblended lambic from one of the Belgian grandmasters. It was so wonderful that I drank four or five glasses and bought half a case on the spot. It’s simply that good. Appearance wise we are talking about a very pale, almost white golden ale body with a healthy white lacing. The aroma is powerful, previewing sourness, and boasting of perfectly created and utilized yeast strains and lots of funky, living organisms. Barnyard funk, rotten lemon peals, and apple vinegar are huge. The nose also plays at tobacco and citrus. The first taste is pure heaven. It’s tart in a lemony way, sour in a bret/funky yeast sort of way, slightly bitter in a hoppy way, light and spritsy. Sweet, very ripened grapefruit that has been eaten away at just a touch by bacteria, hay, damp corn husks, rotten melons, wood roundedness, dashes of lemon and orange zest, etc… Bone dry and fairly light body. Musty and astringent. Sourness is not over the top and although this doesn’t enter the battery acid or sweaty donkey hair area, this is at times very geuze like. Sessionable indeed. Pretty much perfect.

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Photo of DanGeo
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of tectactoe
4.29/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Thanks again to Jeff for splitting his RR sours with me. Sanctification pours a hazy, golden-apple color, appearing translucent as light shines through it, although it's impossible to see through to the other side. A soapy and foamy white head leaves some light dredging along the glass as it falls.

The aroma contains a ton of funk - wow! Musty cellar, cork... just huge amounts of Brett left and right. Makes sense, since as this is brewed with 100% Brett. Some mild sour fruits back up the aroma, but the more and more I sniff, the more and more Brett becomes the only thing I smell. Mild oak and wood on the tail end, still wet and funky smelling, with a touch of tart and sweet apple skins. Certainly a funk-head's dream, but I can't accurately judge how sour this one's gonna be. It smells more funky than tart, but RR sours have been known to play that trick on me. I guess we'll see.

Up front, the taste is extremely sour, even more so than the aroma would lead you to believe, so I guess there's the answer to that question. This bad boy is puckering right from the start - green apples, white grapes, super-ripe and sour pears. The assertive tartness is not alone, however, as the funk is very nearly as strong. Wet wood, cork, damp cellar, and huge barnyard notes, left and right. The sourness seems to tone down a bit as the beers warms, and the finish is pretty dry overall. Medium bodied, medium-high amount of carbonation with a slick mouth feel.

Another damn good Russian River wild ale. I don't think it's possible for them to put out a bad one. This is probably one of the more funky ones that I've had, but it still had an intense sour element right off the bat, so nothing was lost in that department. Thanks again to Jeff for breaking this one out.

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Photo of DavyJones
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of t2grogan
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of CavemanRamblin
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of kevindrosendahl
1/5  rDev -76.7%

Photo of Schlais
4/5  rDev -7%

Photo of SkiBum22
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of readicculus
5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle. Batch 002. 100% Brettanomyces fermented.

Pours into my tulip glass a beautifully vibrant clear golden orange that reminds me of a fall harvest. Two fingers of creamy white foam sits atop the brew and the plentiful active carbonation makes it linger on. Can't ask for much more looks wise, downright enticing. Aromas start with fresh pale malts showing a bit of sweet grain scents. Fruit, lemon and honey come through with a bit of a floral accent. Tartness and a barnyard hay backbone emerge with the Brett. Lovely.

First sip brings wonderful sweet and tart malt upfront with a mix of fruit flavors including peach and lemon. Barnyard funk, honey and hay flavors roll through with a bracing tartness that engulfs the mouth. Woody oak tones along with a bit of dryness. The flavor lingers on after each sip of this tasty Brett enhanced golden ale.

Mouthfeel is smooth, velvety and effortless with an effervescent carbonation throughout. This beer is simply amazingly crafted and downright delicious. I would drink this constantly if it was more available. A tart, funky, beauty in a bottle. Russian River knocks it way out of the park once again.

 1,162 characters

Photo of lateralundertow
3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of NWer
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of andyfrancis
4.44/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

cloudy straw with a pretty white head, nice clumping and lacing. A little lighter in color than I expected.

Smells yummy. Some fruity esters, with a hint of the sour funk.

Sour/fruity eruption blossoming on my tongue. Tart all the way through.

Carbonation starts with a low rumble, peaking in a sharp bite on the tip of your tongue. Crisp, fairly clean finishing.

Almost sessionable. I like it a lot. Not quite as much character as some of the other 'tions but very good and highly recommended.

 499 characters

Photo of MaybeSoMaybeNot
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of heddar33
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of Afroman
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of Callmecoon
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of bishopdc0
3.94/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Shared the bottle with my wife.

The beer pours a light yellow, golden straw with a light carbonation at the edge of my tulip glass.

The nose is sweet but mostly a Brett tart, apples hints of oak and a little vanilla.

The carbonation is upfront and reveals more tart apples, and Brett funk. The soundness lingers as the beer dries. There are also white wine note

Good beer but not russian rivers best

 405 characters

Photo of 77apm
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of Pooles26
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%

Photo of Dbrulet
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

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Sanctification from Russian River Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 617 ratings.