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Sanctification - Russian River Brewing Company

SanctificationSanctification

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

1,661 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1661
Reviews: 561
rAvg: 4.33
pDev: 9.24%


Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  6.75% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 10-27-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,661 | Reviews: 561 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of madtowndmb1
madtowndmb1

Wisconsin

4.83/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Russian River

A: poured a cloudy straw color with a frothy white head.

S: Wow, Brett. It has the trademark funk scent, along with tart green apples.

T: One of the best Brett beers I've ever had. The apple tartness is right up front, then moves to the middle of your tongue and the funk takes over! Seduces you right in for your next sip. Fabulous

M: The beers made your taste-buds almost dance next time you were about to take a sip.

D: I could drink this beer for days on end and not get sick of it. It was one of two at R.R. that did that but the other was 10%. This was great!

Serving type: on-tap

02-23-2009 20:54:37 | More by madtowndmb1
Photo of HopHead84
HopHead84

California

4.6/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at Russian River. The beer is effervescent pale golden with a one inch, fluffy head. Really nice lacing is everywhere once the head finally recedes.

Brettanomyces are very strong in the nose. The aroma is nice and tart with some spiciness, lemon notes, and horse blanket funkiness. The flavor is very sour with some barnyard funk from the Brett and light citrus. This is quite tart. Delicious! The finish is very dry with a long lingering tartness. I recall the last batch I had was a bit more sour, but this is fantastic.

Light bodied, very dry, and great carbonation. This is an extremely drinkable sour. I drank a growler of this the weekend afterward and enjoyed every sip.

Serving type: on-tap

02-17-2009 06:39:28 | More by HopHead84
Photo of antilogic
antilogic

California

4.47/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap at O'brien's TION night in a 13oz Chimay.

Less sour than I expected (next to beatification, etc). Straw colored, Like a saison meets sour, medium bodied, almost no head, aroma of funk and sours. Some tastes of fruits, apricot maybe, dry finish, but crisp. I'd love to get my hands on more of this.

Serving type: on-tap

02-02-2009 06:21:55 | More by antilogic
Photo of paytoplay
paytoplay

California

4.05/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brett bomb. Yeast, bready a bit. A little tart and would be a treat to find this beer properly stored 5 years down the road. sampled from keg at o'briens 15th annv. Complex mid palate, aroma was just funk and brett. Creamy though. A treat to try this brew.

Serving type: on-tap

02-01-2009 00:52:08 | More by paytoplay
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

4.03/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at O'Brien's,

A: Pours a hazy yellow, with a fizzy, hissing acidic head.

S: Light fruit notes, orange perhaps, acidity is prevalent.

T: Fermented and sour citrus fruit, with a lighter acidity than Beatification which I had before. Apricot for sure. A hard beer to get a hold of, has a lot of things going on. A beer I would like to try again.

M: Medium acidity for an RR sour, the acidity is quite smooth and makes for a damn drinkable sour brew. Closest thing to a session sour I've found.

D: A top 100 beer and I was anxious to try it. Didn't quite live up to the hype, but very tasty and worth the purchase. I hope to get a bottle someday and delve into it more.

Serving type: on-tap

01-31-2009 05:21:42 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of MisterClean
MisterClean

California

4.75/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A special beer for review #300. On tap at Vinny's.

A - Pours a light blonde, with 1 fingered head. Dissipates fast.

S - Bretty, fruity: maybe peaches and nectarines, and slight caramel.

T - Pretty much matches the smell. Very consistent beer.

M - Holy crap. Has full mouthfeel and great viscousness for a lightly colored beer.

D - So good, probably could not drink more than a snifter at a time.

Serving type: on-tap

01-19-2009 17:55:40 | More by MisterClean
Photo of bifrostguard
bifrostguard

California

4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Hazy golden yellow with minimal head that left no lacing.

S - Citrus, mainly oranges and lemons. A mild wheat smell followed.

T - Sour and tart. Lemons and oranges are the fruits of note in this one. Much less sour than expected, but still very enjoyable.

M - Dry and medium bodied.

D - Sours really aren't my thing so I'll usually call it a day at one, but could drink more if choices are limited.

Serving type: on-tap

11-23-2008 11:19:07 | More by bifrostguard
Photo of lhaqq
lhaqq

California

4.38/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: An opaque light golden body with a white head.
S: Couldn't smell a whole lot; mainly could pick up wheat and maybe some fruit.
T: Sour oranges and wheat with a bitter wheat-like finish.
M: Smooth, round, good amount of carbonation.
D: Not as outstanding or intense as their Consecration and, as such, much easier to drink.

Serving type: on-tap

11-09-2008 05:29:34 | More by lhaqq
Photo of abfraser
abfraser

California

4.8/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at CBS in San Francisco. Heard they weren't bottling this batch, so very happy to get the chance to get some.

A: Straw yellow to yellow, hazy, with a minimal head. Looks like pretty active carbonation

S: Brett sour, with tart lemon and citrus, pear. Some muskiness and earthiness.

T/M: Excellent. Exactly like the aromas and then some. Brett sour nicely balanced with a tart citrus and subtle muskiness. Mouthfeel is light bodied, dry as hell, with nice active carbonation. This is the RR sour that most closely resembles a Belgian gueuze.

D: Exceptionally drinkable. Perfect balance, low-ish abv. Refreshing. I could drink this all night

This is my favorite RRBC sour beer, perhaps because its not over the top mouth-puckering, but more subdued. Awesome stuff. If you like sours, seeks this out.

Serving type: on-tap

11-08-2008 01:03:53 | More by abfraser
Photo of younger35
younger35

Minnesota

4.13/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Drank on 1/26/08, taken from notes.

Was lucky enough to try this delicious brew on a recent visit to Russian River. This was my first taste of anything from them and I'm glad I started with Sanctification. Drank from Russian River snifter.

Appearance- Pours a pale yellow with excellent clarity and about a two finger white foamy head. Excellent cap and collar is left for the duration of the beer along with some decent sticky lacing.
Smell- Plenty of dirty funk in this one! Wet dog and musty basement ooze out of the pores of this brew. Banana, sour apple and lemon zest add a bit of citrus fruitiness that is more than pleasing. The yeast dirtiness dominates though leaving a spicy lingering white pepper in the nostrils.
Taste- Starts off fairly normal with a soft banana like quality that quickly gets drowned out by the sour apples, lemon and hay like yeast. Sour but not to the point of puckering. Dirty in a most excellent way that seems to coat the mouth in this raw citrus like funk. Finishes with a lingering woodiness that is very dry and acidic.
Mouthfeel- Fairly thin but crisp and refreshing with fairly aggressive carbonation and a very dry finish.
Drinkability- Not being the biggest fan of Brettanomyces I was really surprised how much I liked this. It's not over the top sour but just enough that it's the centerpiece of the beer, not the whole beer. There's enough going on around it to keep everything in check. Great beer that drinks way to easy.

Serving type: on-tap

01-31-2008 19:12:08 | More by younger35
Photo of johnmichaelsen
johnmichaelsen

Oregon

4.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at the brewpub in Santa Rosa...

The beer pours a brilliant gold color with fair head retention, but very good lacing. On the nose, I'm immediately worried, as it smells pretty sour. For the most part, this smells like a hard cider, but with some underlying sour. On the palate, what can I say. This beer is very complex, with a sour component that (thankfully) is not over the top. Up front one gets a lot of honey and cherry, but then the sour kicks in. However, it's not over the top, and interestingly, the sweet honey and cherry kicks back in on the finish. Pretty impressive really. Unlike some over the top sour beers from Jolly Pumpkin and New Belgium, I can drink this and enjoy it, though certainly it's not exactly my cup of tea. Drinkability on this beer is pretty good, with the abv. well disgusied.

This is a solid beer, although there's no denying it's not quite my style.

Serving type: on-tap

01-27-2008 03:40:23 | More by johnmichaelsen
Photo of brewmaster411
brewmaster411

California

4.83/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sanctification is a beer brewed with 100% Berttanomyces yeast.

This was poured from the tap into a tulip glass. It poured a nice goled color with a white head and a bit cloudy.

The aroma was a pronounced lactic tang with some floral hops and a light bready character.

The flavor was definately lactic tang up-front with some bready malt character. For the lover of unique Bellgium beer,s this is a trancendant experience.

The first time I tried this was Feb 2005. My latest tasting was Nov 2007. It still is a good as I first remembered it.

Serving type: on-tap

11-03-2007 16:50:56 | More by brewmaster411
Photo of bennetj17
bennetj17

Arizona

4.22/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Medium gold, slight haze, thin foam with good retention. Thre are very nice streams of carbonation plus there is a sticky lace along the glass. Wonderful tangy aroma of sour lemon and Brett yeast tartness. Mmmm, enticing.

The flavor is sour, slightly dry with more tart fruit like lemon and sour apple. The finish sort of hangs there without much change or closure. The body is very smooth with a softer carbonation than expected.

I enjoy this type of beer anytime, and this was no exception. This doesn't have the sheer puckering tartness nor the complexity of some of their other Wild Ales, but it is a good, straightforward sour ale worth enjoying time and time again...

Serving type: on-tap

10-09-2007 19:12:53 | More by bennetj17
Photo of dbalsock
dbalsock

Vermont

4.45/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had this while stopping in Santa Rosa at the brewpub... amazo.

App: Pale golden yellow, very similar in appearance to a belgian pale ale, with similar monumental head. Very thick head with a little lacing, but mostly clean glass sides. Once I started eating, the head disappeared from the grease, but I'm sure it would have lasted an eternity otherwise.

Smell: Very geuze lambicesque with a slight mustiness and a citrus aroma that wasn't fruity.

Taste: Quite yummy and amazingly balanced. It was like they combined a strong belgian pale ale with a geuze. It was sweet and malty with a definite belgian malt backbone which was balanced not by hops, but by the sourness of the mouthfeel:

Mouthfeel: Medium sour, not the most sour I've had from them or anyone, but it does a great job of balancing the malty taste. It's very well carbonated which provides a well rounded experience.

Drinkability: This is an amazingly drinkable beer. I could go for this again and again, and can see picking up a case of this if funds permitted (I never buy cases, but this one would be a rare exception). I like it.

Serving type: on-tap

08-03-2007 04:06:59 | More by dbalsock
Photo of DaPeculierDane
DaPeculierDane

Wisconsin

4.88/5  rDev +12.7%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

07-31-2007 20:05:17 | More by DaPeculierDane
Photo of SacoDeToro
SacoDeToro

California

4.7/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap poured by Vinnie himself at the NHC in Denver.

Poured a pale straw yellow with a generous merengue head.

The aroma of the beer was full of the wonderful brett goodness. Tart fruits and barnyard funk dominated the nose and damn did it smell good.

The flavor of the beer was assertively tart and crisp. The floral hops came through nicely in the finish. The maltiness was very light and a good proportion of wheat tartness came through as well. This beer presents an interesting juxtaposition of funky brett flavors while being a very clean beer at the same time.

The carbonation was dialed in just right. The mouthfeel was light and slightly creamy.

This beer was masterfully brewed and formulated and the brett did an amazing job of creating a truly unique flavor profile.

Serving type: on-tap

07-19-2007 17:28:05 | More by SacoDeToro
Photo of WeisGuy
WeisGuy

New York

4.5/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on-tap at the brewpub in Santa Rosa. Batch 003.

a - bright golden/amber color, one-finger head with slight retention but great lacing, fairly transparent

s - sour, funky smell from the big bad brett, heavy on the green apple, not much alcohol in the nose, aroma is slightly subdued

t - much like the nose, very funky/sour smelling, lots of green apple with a little pear in there as well, slight lemon, no alcohol detected, the only real knock I have is that the finish does not last long...this is where the Temptation is slightly better

m - lots of carbonation, light-bodied, fairly dry finish from the sourness

d - this style is not super-conducive to being highly drinkable, but I could sip on Sanctification all night, the dry finish is not palate-destroying at all, very interesting taste and smell as well

It's been a few months since I last had Temptation, but I think Sanctification is fairly similar. A great wild ale and another fine example of RR's mastery of the style.

Serving type: on-tap

07-08-2007 19:06:57 | More by WeisGuy
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

4.72/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch 002; Sampled October 2008
A reasonable pour produces a two-finger thick, pale tan colored head in my large Tripel Karmeliet tulip. The beer is quite clear and has an orange tinged, pale amber color that shows a perfectly, brilliantly clear, rich gold color when held up to the light. The aroma is absolutely delightful, bone dry and has a complex mix of aromas that remind me of tart pear, sour apple, but with some aromatic Macintosh like floral notes, lactic acid, ripening cheddar that is taking a turn towards funky, musty wood, even some spicy oak (despite this never having seen wood) and some touches of musky, dried-sweat like character that I wouldn't quite characterize as barnyard, but close. The funky, farmhouse cheese note is actually quite prominent here and is quite appetizing and there is also a fair amount of fruitiness, despite the fact that the aroma seems devoid of sweetness.

Shockingly tart to my palate, though I wouldn't say this is particularly because this is overly tart; it is more a statement of where my palate was upon my first sip. Lots of lactic acid mixes with fruity esters to produce flavors of grapefruit, a touch of Meyer Lemon, and even some sour orange. Extremely quaffable, there is a persistent, prickly carbonation that adds some texture and the body is very light, the acidity almost adds a touch of viscousness to this brew that at times can develop a sort of creamy softness. There is a light ripe cheese note to the flavor, though the expressive sourness seems to mute this quite a bit (though it becomes more and more noticeable as the beer warms up from its initially cool temperature). Other fruit flavors are found here, all without having any sweetness in this beer, of musk melon, cantaloupe and some Macintosh flavors.

A second pour of this brew sees a touch of yeast sediment that lightly clouds up this beer and adds a touch of yeast-like roundness to the flavor. I really am enjoying the aggressive sourness in this beer, it is not as much as a "hard" Lambic, but is quite significant. Suffice it to say that my 750ml bottle of this disappeared way to fast. Fantastically drinkable, with an amazingly complex aroma, simply a great beer.

Batch 1, Sampled April 2005
4.5/4.5/4.5/4/4, Total 4.4
This beer is madly carbonated, intense streams of cascading bubbles rise through this lightly hazy straw-gold colored brew. It holds up a frothy pale head that is quite thick and becomes quite rocky after a short bit. The aroma is spritzy and funky at the same time. I get notes of lime peel, coriander, grains of paradise, a hint of cinnamon, as well as funky notes of musty-moldy leather, clay, a hint of sharp vegetal notes, and damp cellars. The aroma is quite complex and quite interesting, it is definitely worth smelling and appreciating for a couple of minutes before tasting.

The taste is light and spritzy up front with a sharp lemony acidity that has a nice sweetness to it that almost tastes artificial in nature. This beer foams quite a bit on the tongue as it goes down. The finish is slightly funky, though not nearly as much as the aroma would suggest. The finish is slightly earthy with a musty cellar note. This beer really is quite light and refreshing, it is almost as if a lemon has been added to my Duvel glass. While I really am enjoying this beer, I am starting to think that Brettanomyces is better employed as a supporting cast member in beer. Granted I have only had two of these 100% Brett beers, but as the beer gets older than a couple of months the beer needs some more complexity that would be supplied by a funky Belgian yeast.

Serving type: on-tap

04-10-2005 04:09:55 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of BrewMaster
BrewMaster

California

3.93/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Golden glowing color with a smooth and creamy head that lasted a looong time. This beer has one of those perfect heads made up of even, small bubbles that lasts forever. This is beautiful beer to behold.

Smell: Nice malty aroma with a yeasty aroma mixed in. It is a little light in quantity of aroma though the quality is nice.

Taste: Sour up front, but not too tart, with a rich malty sweet ending. There is a refreshing citrus flavor that gives the beer a nice fruity character.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, subtle. There is a cleansing wateriness (in a good way) that comes up after the sourness. For a beer of decent strength like this it is remarkably refreshing and light.

Drinkability: A very good and drinkable beer that is welcome in my mouth anytime!

Serving type: on-tap

03-31-2005 00:31:35 | More by BrewMaster
Photo of meathookjones
meathookjones

Virginia

3.53/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I sampled this at the wet-hop tasting at RFD’s in Washington, D.C. This came out a slightly cloudy golden orange with a decent bit of head to it that left some lace. Aroma was fruity and had a little spice and sweetness to it. Taste was similar with various fruity flavors over a layer of sweetness and spiciness. There was a nice tartness to it as well. Mouthfeel was a bit light and drinkability was ok. Interesting take on the style that I would try again.

Serving type: on-tap

11-30-2004 20:03:22 | More by meathookjones
Photo of watermelonman
watermelonman

California

3.7/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This arrived in a unique orange and gold color, not looking like anything else I've seen of the style. The head and lacing are both pretty minimal.

The taste has some of the expected esters, but what's unique is the tangy citrus twist it has. Alcohol is somewhat apparent. Hop content is minimal. The front of the taste is dominated by the tangy esters and the finish lets some hops through.

I gather that this one was a bit of an experiment from the brewer. While not outstanding, I would say that the result was a pretty good beer.

Serving type: on-tap

10-27-2004 18:52:27 | More by watermelonman
Photo of ISmith87
ISmith87

Arizona

4.6/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - 4.25 - nice golden amber color with a white head that dissipates down pretty quickly. Hazy but probably because I poured the entire thing aggressively into the glass.
S - 4.5 - Green apple, sour lemon, barnyard flavors from the brett. Hay, bread, wheat.
T - 4.75 - Great sour beer. Sour green apple, lemon, white wine, bready yeast, barnyard flavors lingering in the background. White grape.
M - 4.5 - Sour, but not as sour as some other beers. It still allows you to taste some of the citrus and barnyard flavors. light-medium mouthfeel. alc covered. Aftertaste is bready/wheaty and still a little tart.
O - 4.5 - Good beer. Not that much alcohol flavor. Sessionable. Expensive and not available in most places though.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2014 19:08:43 | More by ISmith87
Photo of More_betterness
More_betterness

California

4.65/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy golden body with 1 finger white head that sticks around forever. High levels of carbonation.

S: Very vinous. Tart green apple, lemon, and a bit of tropical fruit. Brett funk in the background. Could almost pass as a fruit forward white wine.

T: Tart peach and juicy pear initially, followed by more white wine. Meyer lemons and mango. Only minor funk from the Brett, as expected in a 100% Brett fermentation. Beautifully tart and fruit forward, could literally drink this all day.

M: Thin bodied and effervescent. Finishes dry and slightly tannic, further emphasizing the white wine characteristics.

O: Just a beautiful beer. Refreshingly tart and drinkable, yet provides a solid array of flavors and aromas. Not as complex as its bacteria inoculated cousins for obvious reasons, but is a fantastically balanced example of a 100% Brett beer. Right on Vinnie!

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2014 00:40:43 | More by More_betterness
Photo of SHODriver
SHODriver

California

4.75/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bottle from Nov 2012

A: poured into a snifter to a clear light orange with a half finger of soapy white head that is slow to fade
S: smells of funk and lemony tartness
T: Taste is surprisingly tart with citric acidity, funk, and a bit of barnyard. Swallow is more tartness and some more funk
M: light body with effervescent carbonation and a drying finish
O: This is a phenomenal beer fresh and on tap. After a year it gets a lot more tartness going on but it still drinks fantastically.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2014 04:12:09 | More by SHODriver
Photo of BierJager89
BierJager89

California

4.36/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Light golden yellow color, a bit hazy, with a white head.

S: Orange, mango, and a touch of lemon.

T: Sour lemon, chardonnay, and a general citrus flavor.

M: Medium bodied, a bit astringent as most sours are.

O: A great sour from Russian River, but not nearly the best. Worth a try, as are all their sours.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2014 18:20:01 | More by BierJager89
Sanctification from Russian River Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 1,661 ratings.