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Supplication - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

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5,309 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,309
Reviews: 1,355
rAvg: 4.56
pDev: 9.21%
Wants: 2,404
Gots: 1,713 | FT: 120
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-25-2005

Brown Ale aged in used Pinot Noir barrels from local Sonoma County wineries. It is aged for about 12 months with sour cherries, brettanomyces, lactobacillus, and pediococcus added to each barrel. Flavors from the cherries, Pinot Noir and oak balance each other nicely with a little funk from the brett.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,309 | Reviews: 1,355
Photo of jayhawk73
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 007

Pours a nice dark cherry color w/ a one finger head that quickly disappears to a sliver. Very cloudy and alive looking brew. Good carbonation and decent lacing. Awesome looking Wild Ale. Wow. The nose is fantastic. Cherry, funk, some brown sugar, caramel, sourness, a hint of candy sweetness. Really complex and nice. Opens up really nicely with warming/airing out. Now... on to the taste. Pretty much the same as the nose, minus the candy sweetness. It's really not too sour, just about right. It seems like the taste just keeps evolving the more you get into it. Definitely some wine/oak/vinegar in the taste as well. None of the 7% ABV is evident at all. Very carbonated and dry finish on this beer. A little too carbonated, otherwise a higher score. Overall, this is a top flight Wild Ale. I like Consecration a little better, but this is highly recommended. Cheers!

Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have now had 2 bottles of this, plus once on tap in the Russian River tap room. This review takes into account all 3 tastings.

Kind of a tangerine color split between a goblet and pint glass. Nice head, no lacing.

Hard to detect much other than the sourness on the nose.

Beer out of the bottle was very sour, but I believe this was due to serving temperature. We took it slow and really let the beer warm up and then the other flavors started to emerge aside from the sour microbes. Nice wood notes to accompany the sourness. A little bit of citrus zest, a hint of malt sweetness.

Mouthfeel was surprsingly crisp for a sour. Surprised as to the difference between a sour beer and a hop bomb treats the palate. Hops tend to linger and shred the palate, but the sour doesn't linger too long.

Overall this is a fuck of a beer. Easily one of the best offerings from Russian River. PLEASE be sure to drink this at the proper temperature. Minimum of 55F to let all the flavors emerge.

Photo of vfgccp
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A – Bright orange-brown with little to no head.

S – Dry tart cherry. Relatively soft.

T – A smooth body and prickly carbonation pave the way for a tidal wave of tart, unripe white peach, tanniny fruit pits, and dried leaves. The sourness somehow manages to be both bracing and restrained; pushing your palate to the edge, but not over it.

M – Medium frame with a nice smoothness. Dry finish.

O – A great, uncompromising, sour.

Photo of willjschmidt
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 375ml bottle (batch #2) into my Russian River Barrel Aged Beers glass.

A: Pours a brilliant orange color. Lots of foam after I popped the cork on this one. It overflowed a bit but nothing too bad. Virtually no head at all.

S: Lots of tart fruit aromas in the smell. There is also some funky earthy aromas in there as well.

T: A fascinating beer, probably the most unique one that I've had yet. Starts with some fruity sweetness; cherries, apricots, and lemon. The tartness then shines through in a big way. Lots of complexity in this thing coming from the oak flavors as well as the funky and musty yeast flavors. Very wine like with big bursts of flavors.

M: A totally unique mouthfeel. It's slightly syrupy with very light carbonation.

D: It's definitely a sipper. Would pair very will with food. Not something I'll be having very often but highly recommended in order to demonstrate the wonderful range of beer and the incredible things that are being done by American craft brewers.

Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I poured this from a corked 350ml bottle into an oversized wine glass. Very nice copper/amber color with a small head, not much lace.
The smell is like a good wine. The cherries are right up front with a wine barrel smell that overpowers most everything else. Slight malts and hops but barely noticable.
Wow, this is an amazing Sour Wild Ale. Cherries, wine barrel, sweet, light malts and a slight taste of earthy hops. Very smooth and not overbearing. A great sour for anybody. Wow one more time.
For a sour this has great drinkability. I could easily grab another. THANK YOU RUSSIAN RIVER, and keep up the quality on your amazing beers.

Photo of Treebs
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375ml bottled graciously shared by bulldogp04 in line at the CBS release, thanks Dean! Small pour into my Deschutes snifter.

A: Pours a hazy amber and brown combination with a frothy white head. Pretty nice looking and leaves some sticky lace down the glass.

S: Great combination of barnyard funk, citrusy sourness and peels of lemon and lime. Slighty sweet berry in there as well.

T: Very tart with a burst of sour lemon. Very subtle sweetness that is vine fruit in nature as well. Slight vinegar mixed in and it finishes with a funky yeast.

M: So clean and very crisp. Light bodied. It has incredible drinkability and is very refreshing.

O: This was a winner in my book. Very well balanced between funk and sour and the subtle sweetness really rounded it out.

Photo of DeanMoriarty
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Real nice golden red hue with a light head that dissipates quickly.

S: Sour cherry, woody and peppery.

T: Crisp sour cherry with a well balanced bready and plum-like finish.

M: Light and silky smooth.

D: Exceptionally smooth and easy to drink in large quantities. I only wish I could afford to at nearly $15 a 375ML! Well worth every penny though.

Without a doubt one of the finest sour-style ales i've ever had the privilege of tasting.

Photo of TheHumanTorch
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of csmiley
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ricand for hooking this one up.

A - Appears amber, gold, or orange - the lighting can really play tricks with the color of this beer. Head is just off white and rises to just under half inch. Retention looks good. Lacing is average.

S - Apples and grape skins are evident right out of the gate. Sweeter aromas come through next. Could be caramel and candied sugar. Musty and funky toward the end. Smells a little like old dried up wood.

T - This is where the cherries come in. Mix them with some grapes and that is how the flavor starts out. A hefty dose of oak really comes through well in the flavor and adds a nice compliment to the fruitiness. Oak is quickly followed by the Brett, imparting a very earthy feel. Some malt sweetness comes and goes with hints of caramel and maybe brown sugar.

M - Medium bodied with a nice carbonation level that stays fairly active but doesn't really get in the way. Finish is tart and smooth at the same time.

D - Drinkability is good. The big tart flavors and complexity of this brew make it a candidate for a sipper. The cherries add something different and unique to this brew and pushes the drinkability up a notch. As it warms the Brett flavors start to smooth out and some brown ale qualities start to come through. This is another winner from Russian River. Highly recommended.

Photo of barleywinefiend
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at RR.
Poured a hazy brown colo with red hues, little white head. Nose is sour cherries and a tartness. Taark cherries and a deeper tartness than Consecration. Pretty sweet, booze and all is well put together, creating a good brew. Mouthfeel has a wine like characteristic. Very good sour and I kept going back to this. So good!

Photo of ShadesOfGray
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 04x3, new 375ml designed bottles...still corked and caged. Poured into my large Delerium snifter. Pours a ruby/orangish color with smooth creamy one finger head. Head dissapates quickly but remains a layer of cream. Appears to leave thick bubbly lacing.

Aroma is wonderful. Full of tart cherries...obviously. Citrus and brett...no booze in the nose at all. Slight vinegar aroma, overall though, my mouth is watering!

It's a pucker! Solid sour...tons of fermented cherries, carbonation...and very crisp. I guess I should mention I chose to pour slowly at first, and then swirled the setiment and poured in into my glass anyway. I personally love the added flavor. There's a very nice sweet flavor that rests on the tongue well after each sip. A great sour!

Photo of 100floods
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy copper hue. No head. Nice scents of tart cherries with a faint sweet smell. Notes of red wine are present in the aroma, too and compliment the tartness nicely Big, but tame tartness with a decent acidic flavor. After letting this sit and stir for a while the sweeter notes come to the front. Dark cherries, diacetyl, hints of dry red wine. The carbonation definite helps the tartness of the brew, it makes it sharper. Noticeable notes of brett and diacetyl for a buttery, yet funky finish. The beer's medium body definitely helps your palate deal with the tartness and the acidity nicely so that you can enjoy the complexity rather than focus on how funky it is. Top notch. Very well balanced.

Photo of julian
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Finally reviewing this. I've bought dozens of these for trades but never got around to trying it. It's not even noon on Monday and I'm busting this one out....at work.

A: Crimson amber in color with a nice lasting almond colored head that forms a thick ring around the edges. Clarity is medium to good.

S: Obviously the first thing I smell is the funky brett aroma. It's not something you can really cover up, although it has to be one of the more pleasant brett beers I've had the pleasure of smelling as it's not overwhelming and compliments the other aromas nicely. There's some tartness to the nose too, probably from the pinot barrels, some cherries and a faint vanilla aroma along with an oaky woody essence.

T: Taste is of cherries, oak, kind of a sweet malt/vanilla backbone but very, very subtle. The wine/pinot essence comes through too as a kind of tartness, although this could be from the brett too. There's a slight alcoholic warmth to this as well. Very complex, and very balanced for the style.

M: Mouthfeel is great. Not too dry, just right. Carbonation is perfect. Finishes smooth.

O: Probably one of the best wild/brett ales I've had. Very delicious. I can't really complain about anything on this one.

Photo of ottovon
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

batch 005X3. shared with whiterascal:

A: It pours out an amber color with an off-white head that lingers. leaves some lacing down the glass.

S: smells acidic with hints of cherry and caramel malt. i also get a little vanilla and oak in the aromas.

T: mouth puckering tartness. very acidic. hints of cherry, vanilla, and wood. finishes off dry with nice cherry notes.

M: it has a thin body with a good amount of carbonation.

D: this is a great beer that I could drink a lot of. The acidity would be the only thing keeping me from drinking it all night.

Photo of EnemyWithin
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Supplication Batch 006X1. 375ml bottle into Duvel tulip.

Appearance: 4
Brassy brown red body with 1’ white head that slowly dissipates to nothing. Mild faint lacing.


Definite sour aroma with notes of lemon, minimal dark fruit, and faint funkiness. Not really barnyard smelling though as I thought it might be. Also a slight toffee note of sweetness, I imagine from the malt.

Taste: 4.5

A great sour with amazing balance. It’s definitely a moderate-strong sourness, but the overall profile seems so refined. It’s not harsh or caustic, but instead very pleasant. Get a mild almost woody funk with notes of lemon/citrus, presence of pinot noir grapes as well as faintest of sweetness of the malt. Lingering sour aftertaste with touch of malt and bitterness. Nice crisp, bright mineral presence in sour component, like a good white wine; this really adds a nice level of complexity to the flavour

Mouthfeel: 4.5
So delightfully sour, but again somehow balance. Great champagne-like soft, fine carbonation that leads to almost pillowly sensation. Mild thickness. Perfect amount of slimily acidic feeling ( which sounds weird I know, but seem spot-on appropriate). I really love how this beer feels actually.

Overall: 4.5
A surprising, subtle, well balanced beer that is definingly sour, but in the same breath incredibly balanced. It’s a little different than I anticipated, much less in-your-face. But really its just such a good beer.

I wasn’t 100% sold of sour beers before this, but now I am. It was just so enjoyable. In fact, super easy drinking and I was very quick to finish it, wishing I had more.

Must Try Recommendation.

Photo of SQNfan
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This poured an orangish copper in color with tinges of red and brown. It had a fluffy head of beige bubbles with faded to leave some island lacing from the constant bubbles. The nose showed off the sour cherries along with other red fruits, "brown" wood and an herbal funkiness. In the mouth this is extremely sour and acidic with the tart cherries being the domminate flavor and a tannic grip on the finish. While acidic, the midpalate does come off as balanced with a nice combination of carbonation and supple edges.

Photo of MusicaleMike
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I love living in Philly and having this beer easily accessible all the time. This was the first American Wild Ale I ever tasted, back in 2008, and I remember actually liking it despite the total sourness of it all. I had a college buddy whose Dad was a beer collector and he broke these out randomly one night for me. Great guy...

This is Batch 8. Poured into a wine glass.

Very attractive beer, with a robust off-white head, and an excellent clarity. Beautiful hues of red, orange and copper. Careful not to pour out any of the yeast!

Smells like sweet cherries and funky funk. Definitely has a sweetness to the aroma which is quite a pleasant contrast to the obvious "wild" aroma.

The beer is actually less sweet than anticipated and is only slightly less great than I remember it to be. Soft notes of cherry are present throughout and become more predominant as the palate becomes more adjusted to the sourness.

Great amount of carbonation for the style and it has that characteristic enamel-stripping quality. Medium body.

This is a favorite beer of mine, and has remained very close to what I remember from before. I consider this to be my current benchmark of the American Wild Ale category.

Photo of craytonic
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 003

Appearance: rusty amber mahogany with a bit of orange on the edges. Some lacing.

Smell: Very complex - Oak sour cherries, pinot noir, and a delicious funk with some horse blanket, mushrooms, etc

Taste: French oak, dry with strong tannins, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, hint of molasses, sour cherries, pinot noir, leather, bit of tobacco, plum, dates, a bit of vinegar and funk. Amazingly integrated. Nice, big malt backbone.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with light carbonation.

Drinkability: Why isn't this a 750ml?!?


Just tried batch four, moved mouthfeel down a notch as it is overcarbonated (and will probably get even more so).

Photo of KMani
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of ChadQuest
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sunburst orange but on the darker side of the spectrum of fade, with a light collar around the edge.

Light aroma, smells great and inticing, like hay that sat in the barn a few wet seasons with a leaky roof, there is a light fruity aspect also.

Bottle says cherries are added and that is there but there is also a darker taste possibly from the malt, like currants maybe, just some darker fruits and funky brett character melded together, not the most sour beer i've tried from Russian River but very up front nontheless, has that spring grassy field character i really enjoy.

It's a sour ale, so yo know it's dry and puckering, not the most sour but enough to satisfy and make you desire it on a hot day.

Photo of veinless
4.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this a couple months back, but decided to rereview while sharing with AwYeh.

Vintage: Batch 005x1

Pours a darker orange/red than I expected, with a foamy head that retains pretty well and leaves decent lacing. This looks a lot like Pliny the Elder actually.

Smells of tart cherries, Brett, and a bit of barnyard funk. Cherries are lacking that cordial sweetness and are definitely of the sour variety. Oaky wood comes through as well.

Tart, sour cherries assault the palate at the start but fade to a semi-sweet fruity body before it gets to be too much. Acidic, puckering and awesome start. The middle is very juicy cherries, plenty of Brett, a lot of oak, and a fair amount of sour citrus as well. Winy character is present throughout and a great complement to everything else. Finish is a solid 50/50 of sweetness and sourness that lingers until the next sip.

Mouthfeel is acidic, but not overly so. The feel is balanced by some sugary character and the fruits somehow. Drinkabiility is very, very good for such a strong, sour beer - the balance mentioned earlier is a boon to this category. Your mouth doesn't get killed by the acidity in this as much as in some other strong sours, and it lets the beer be drinkable for a long period of time. If you haven't had a wild ale, have this and you'll be sold on the style.

Photo of dvmin98
4.36/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of JDice20
4.36/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JoshVandy
4.36/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Smarcoly and Tieman for providing me bottles of this. Thanks guys!

375mL corked and caged bottle into a Cigar City snifter.

Batch 006x1

A- Pours a deep ruby red color with about a 1 finger cream colored head that stays for a ridiculous amount of time after the initial pour, never going below about half a finger. Fantastic lacing on this one as well.

S- Strong cherries with a nicely integrated sour funkiness to it that I really enjoy. Wild yeast is definitely present as well, with a nice funky wet hay/barnyard scent, with slight oaky undertones. Very appealing.

T- Great sour and tart cherries up front with that funky wild yeast I come to expect present in spades. The sourness becomes more subtle as it warms, giving way to a little of the oak from the barrels. It's very subtle, but it's there and I love it.

M- Semi-smooth, light, and soft, with decent carbonation. Provides a nice and dry finish that lingers for a while after the last sip.

O- This is my second of the Russian River sours, and this one was more enjoyable than Consecration to me overall. Love the use of the cherries and the nice oak presence as well. A fantastic example of a wild and a great introduction to wilds as well. Very well done.

Photo of ajramirez1
4.36/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Not a big fan of Sour beer. Ive tried just a limited amount, but this was the best so far. Amazing look of a beer, color blends make this beer look stand out. Overwhelmed with sour taste and it was apparent from start to finish. Sour smell, sour taste, etc. definitely a
Tasty sour but not my preference.

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Supplication from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 5,309 ratings.