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Supplication - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,834 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,834
Reviews: 1,320
rAvg: 4.56
pDev: 9.43%
Wants: 2,161
Gots: 1,452 | FT: 94
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:
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 added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-25-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,834 | Reviews: 1,320 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of dbossman
4.53/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy reddish-copper with no head and moderate amount of bubbles and some floaties and good lacing

S: Sour amazingness but it's so difficult to pull out specifics: wood, cherries, wine, cider, apples, pears, with some subtle grains but most tart fruits as well as subtle leather and orange rind

T: Tart and dry--not overwhelmingly sour but some funk and cherries; lots of woody character here too; so dry and funky

F: Medium body with a pleasant stickiness

O: Such a nice, not-over-the-top sour: fruity and woody and delicate and funky and awesome

dbossman, Sep 12, 2011
Photo of BBP
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Decent head excellent retention. Decent lacing.

S- apple and raspberry. Very tart and sour.

T- quite sour with raspberry first and then green apple notes. Elegant, yet potent. Finish is a bit more like cherries.

M- thin with carbonation that makes it feel just right. The finish is superb.

O- a solid brew. Simple, But complicated. Worth seeking out.

BBP, Sep 11, 2011
Photo of schwaeh
4.43/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 005X2 into a Jackie O's tulip

A: Pours a very dark orange, nearly ruby in color. I got a massive fluffy off-white head pouring this one. Very lively carbonation, I can already tell its zesty. Its lacing nicely.

S: Huge oak tannins, some acidity, and cherry stand out at first. Lots of bacteria and brett make this as funky as it is sour smelling. A bit sweet and lactic. Pinot still comes out really nice in the aroma. This is all coming back to me, it smells incredible.

T: Cherry is really starting to dominate at this age, the funk is coming through a lot as well. Sourness seems to be calming down a lot. Tartness and acidity are felt after the cherry subsides followed by a very dry finish from the brett and champagne yeast. All of the oaky flavors and the bug linger around on your palate.

M: Thinnish medium effervescent mouthfeel. This is very crisp with a dry finish.

O: This is what American wild is all about. Nice tartness, tons of depth, fruit, bugs, its all here. I might not claim this to be my favorite beer anymore but its still got a top 5 spot. An awesome beer.

schwaeh, Sep 10, 2011
Photo of Bobheed
4.38/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a deep red/dark honey type color. Soapy light tan one finger head that dissipates into a nice ring. Very good carbonation, consistent bubbling

S: Cherries, good bit of funk. Smells a bit like a good shiraz, also a damp smell(don't really know how to describe that one, like a wet towel that's starting to get mildew)

T: As I've come to expect from RR sours, fantastic. Very tart, the most sour of their lineup I've had. Definitely cherries, vinegar, whole grain bread

M: Very good, really soft. Pretty thick, syrupy. The tartness gets you in the jowls and made me salivate a bit.

Overall, this one was lovely. Out of this compared to the other 2 RR wilds I've had (consecration, temptation) I'd have to put this third. Cheers to them though, never disappointed. Will definitely get again and again.

Bobheed, Sep 07, 2011
Photo of Klym
4.4/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: A dark yellow pour that builds into a deep translucent red with a small off-white head.

S: Yeast and ripe cherries with tart funk and strawberry sweetness.

T: Like the nose, initial hit is a very fine dark cherry taste paired with yeast that blooms into a strawberry sweetness tamed by a subtle vinegar touch.

M: Smooth but superfluous carbonation just adds to the high quality of the beer and leaves a dry finish.

O: This is the sort of drink that should come to mind with you think of the term 'fine beer'. Just a pleasure to drink, truly a lovely beer.

Klym, Sep 06, 2011
Photo of cetherid
4.65/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured into a tulip


Beer pours a fairly clear orange/brown color with about a fingers worth of very bubbly off-white head that dissipates rather quickly. A nice ring of head lingers around the glass as well as some decent bubbly lacing going on.


An awesome nose on this one. Sour cherries with a hint of a fruity white-wine (almost pear-like) as well as some subtle notes of barrel. I pick up more sourness than funk. All the aromas meld together so nothing really dominates the nose, which I enjoy. Each smell you can pick up something different.


Just as nose. Incredible. Sweet and tart throughout the taste. Flavors of sour and slightly sweet cherries, lemons, slight acidic/vinegar notes hit me up front before finishing off with subtle funk (more detectable in taste than nose) as well as some slight oak. Same as nose, you can pick up something new with each sip which makes this really enjoyable for me.


almost medium bodied...fairly light. Carbonation isn't too high but great for the style. Mouthfeel is slightly dry, but there is a lingering sweetness as well.


Cherry sours are my favorite sours and this one does not disappoint. Definitely one to trade for regularly. Definitely not as stellar as Lou Pepe Kriek (I love the funk!) but awesome for an American Wild IMO.

cetherid, Sep 05, 2011
Photo of KickInTheChalice
4.9/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 375 mL bottle into a tulip. Batch 04X3, caged and corked bottle.

Appearance: Supplication pours a deep ruby color, mostly transparent except for the yeast particles floating around. A dollop of beige foam rests on top and laces up the glass nicely.

Smell: A great balance of sour and funky. There is so much going on here. A bit of dark malt, lots of cherries, some lemon, and a nice level of funk, horse blanket and a little stinky cheese.

Taste: The brief sweetness is accompanied by tart cherries, and the flavor grows even more sour as the sip progresses. Tart, more acetic than lactic, and vinegary, totally bold without killing my palate. Each sip waters the mouth just enough to make me want to go back for more. Notes of pinot noir come in toward the end, as if this beer needed any more complexity, along with some spicy oak tannins. The finish has a nice funk to it, giving me an extra smile.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation starts with a bite but is smooth throughout each sip. A sour puckering sensation causes me to salivate without being overpowering. Lightly vinegary and acidic. A light astringency comes with the barrel but is barely noticeable. The body is on the lighter side of medium. Russian River knows my sour sweet spot.

Overall: I cannot believe it has taken me this long to try my first Supplication. This is everything I want in a sour, I will be coming back to this beer again and again.

KickInTheChalice, Sep 05, 2011
Photo of DigitalDude
4.9/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Batch 3

375 ml. bottle

Appearence: Medium brown with decent head. Some light lacing.

Smell: Oak, brett funk, sourness, barnhouse, sour cherrys, dark fruits, wine

Taste: Tart/sour nose, slight oaky bitterness, wine, more dark fruits.

Mouthfeel: Good, medium-bodied mouthfeel, appropriate (high) carbonation.

Overall: 5/5 acceptional, tasty offering from Russian River.

DigitalDude, Sep 03, 2011
Photo of beerfan99
4.96/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Batch 4x1 - 375 ml bottle

A: Amber/Orange/Red in color and clear. Perfectly carbonated to create a short-term white head.

S: Incredible sour smell, can't miss the brett here. The sour cherries and oak barrel aromas come through. Have a hard time smelling the Pinot Noir.

T: Absolutely amazing. More than lives up to its sour smell. Very tart. This my definition of a sour bomb.

M: Well carbonated to provide bubbly feel to the palate.

O: Currently, this is my favorite wild ale from Russian River. I have been lucky enough to have multiple vintages of Supplication. Based on my experience, the vintages are very consistent and age well for several years. Batch 4 is drinking really well these days.

beerfan99, Sep 02, 2011
Photo of philbe311
4.22/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 005x5

A - The head is non-existent post pour... All that remains is the slightest of collars around the edge of the glass... The color is a light to medium brown... There is a distinct murkiness throughout... A modest bit of moderate to brisk paced carbonation rises within...

S - Some faint brown sugar notes... Dark cherries... Faint vinegar... Simple... Straight-forward... Quite pleasant and effective...

T - Red wine like tannins... Red grape skins... Dark cherries... A bit of vinegar... A bit of brown sugar... Layers of complexity... Lots of funkiness... Some faint woody oak notes...

M - Medium bodied... Light to brisk carbonation... A subtle touch of dryness... Even and consistent...

D - Loaded with layers upon layers of complexity in every facet... By far my favorite Russian River "tion" to date... Excellent brew and a challenge to even the most developed palette...

philbe311, Sep 02, 2011
Photo of sixthglass
4.4/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I found out quickly I'm not much of a sour fan, Maybe my tastes haven't fully developed yet. But it was fantastic for its style.

A- Hazey orange color, alot of carbonation, and good amount of lacing.

S- It really does smell sour ! I smelled some funky grass type stuff, the carbonation bubbles actually got in my nostrils while smelling this... almost died.

T- Cherries, malts, wood, yeast, and funk.

M- It coats the mouth, but fades quickly.. leaving a tart funky aftertaste.

D- As I said earlier, I will need time to warm up to this style, but it was really good... just unusual for me.

sixthglass, Aug 31, 2011
Photo of ehammond1
4.43/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle (2011/Batch 7)

K&B Wine Cellars
San Diego, CA

A mixture of cherry red and dark auburn. Golden red edges. No head whatsoever and flat as can be. Disappointing, mainly because I've had this beer a dozen times before, and it's never appeared so flat. Oh well. I hope the rest of it doesn't disappoint!

Tart and sour aroma and lots and lots of cherries! The oak aroma is present as well, but only in the background. I love this stuff, though Consecration still ranks a touch higher.

Sweet and tart cherries, plenty of biting sourness, wood, earth, and brick provide a rich balance. Alcohol is hardly detectable. Delicious stuff.

Although the body appeared nearly flat as can be, the body is still rich and full--surprising!

One of my favorite beers of all time, even with its flaws. I'd be a happy, happy man if this were the only beer I'd ever be allowed to drink. For all I know, all they serve in Heaven is Supplication! Even though no individual aspect of this beer is the best in show, it's one of my absolute favorite beers to drink, ever.

ehammond1, Aug 31, 2011
Photo of jmarsh123
4.72/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Been waiting to try this one for a while.

Pours a bright amber/copper with a thin white head with lacing.

Cherry is the predominant smell, but also some oak and a touch of tobacco. Also some other lighter fruit smells.

Wow usually don't like sours, but this is unique like nothing I've ever had. Starts out very champagne like with just a hint of cherry and lots of oak. As it goes down, the cherry flavor brightens significantly and leaves a good pucker by the time its down.

Fairly light mouthfeel and a very dry champagne like finish with high carbonation.

This beer is amazingly complex and delicious. Finally a sour I could drink every day and it has to be one that's expensive and comes nowhere near the midwest. I've got another coming in trade and will definitely seek this one out again.

jmarsh123, Aug 30, 2011
Photo of bfields4
4.08/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Copper to amber with a slight reddish hue. thin lacy head.

Tart cherry aroma. Nice oak whiskey-ish notes.

Very tart cherries are balanced by oak and tobacco. A lingering sweetness is present.

Light very highly carbonated body. Rolls along the tongue nicely.

A good sour that comes together nicely, but I probably should have let it age a little longer to help the flavor really come out.

bfields4, Aug 29, 2011
Photo of claytong
4.03/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

batch 006 x1

appearance - head wasnt too big but my god does it stick around. very fizzly, and an odd orange, amber, burgandy in color. lacing was really solid, everytime i took a drink itd stay on the side for several minutes.

smell - sour cherries, some charddonay, pinot noir, some pears, minor vinegar, nothing comes out strongly, a bit too light for me.

taste - much like the smell. not as impressed as i hoped. not as much wine as i hoped. quite a bit of cherries.

mouthfeel - very light body. great carbonation. a bit puckering.

claytong, Aug 27, 2011
Photo of jm1229
4.93/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle poured into my Stone IRS tulip. Batch 7.

A- Lively carbonation quickly settles and leaves no lacing. Rusty orange color with hints of red.

S- Cherries, oak, grapes, apples. SOUR! Oh man, this smells amazing. My mouth is watering.

T- Follows the nose completely. Cherries, oak, grapes/wine (no doubt from the Pinot). It's so sour; more so than any other sour I've had to date. World class.

M- Prickly carbonation coats the tongue. Perfect amount. So drinkable, I'm afraid this bottle (or my other 3) will not last nearly as long as they should.

O- One of my all time favorite beers. Ever since I had this with my friends at RR, it's been on of "those" beers for us. Wish it was cheaper (and easier to find), but I'll take what I can get.

jm1229, Aug 26, 2011
Photo of SWMeyer4141
4.78/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Aaron for hooking me up with a beer I've really been wanting to try.

Poured into a Claret...

Appearance-Amber body with a bubbly, champagne like two finger off white head. Nice retention and about a 1/3 finger head still sits atop the beer throughout the whole drink.

Smell-First thing I get is the Pinot Noir(my favorite wine). Apple, Pears, Sour cherrys. Some vinegar and a nice amount of pepper. Made me eager to dig in.

Taste-Wow. Big Oak and Sour Cherry. Pinot Noir really comes through. Light bitterness. It's amazing how simple this beer is but how amazing this beer tastes.

Mouthfeel-Extremely drinkable. Medium bodied, champagne like carbonation. Refreshing and easy to drink.

Overall-If this were available in Tx and not so expensive I would drink one every night. The sour and tartness of this beer did not fright me off like others sours I've tried. Crazy drinkable. If you can get this beer and haven't tried it yet, go get it now.

SWMeyer4141, Aug 23, 2011
Photo of Rzzzzz
4.88/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch 003. 375ml pulled from the "cellar" (dark, insulated coat closet) and chilled for 20 minutes in freezer.

Nice pop from the cork. Poured into tulip, producing a beautiful thin, creamy off-white head atop a copper colored, slightly hazy brew. Aroma of ripe cherries and wood punctuated with a good sharp dose of brett funk. Flavor is a well-rounded blend of tart cherries and saturated red wine barrel, with a lingering sweet/tart finish. Has a wonderful mouthfeel thanks to a light-to-medium body--surprisingly heavier than I remember, especially compared to recent, fresher batches I've had--and perfect carbonation with a perpetually replenishing head which leaves an impressive lacing behind.

This is a terrific beer that has aged tremendously. I'd have to say it's my most successful cellaring experience to date.

Rzzzzz, Aug 21, 2011
Photo of seeswo
3.58/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Casey. Thanks man.

Pours a light amber/brown. The nose is big cherries, a yeastiness, red wine, grapes and a bit of straw funkiness. The cherries and the funkiness come together in a slightly medicinal way. Sour, tart cherries dominant the taste, intermingled with red wine, that yeastiness, a touch of grape and that straw funkiness. The body is medium but the carbonation is quite high, though it works. This isn't my favorite wild, though it is one of the better ones that is readily available. Everyone else liked it better than I did, but that is not uncommon for wilds. Solid.

seeswo, Aug 20, 2011
Photo of dgilks
4.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clearish amber/brown colour with a tiny off-white head. Nothing entirely unexpected for a sour ale.

Tart, crisp and fruity aroma with lots of dark berries. Mild funk. Nicely complex.

Slightly sweet upfront before giving way to underripe grapes and tart raspberries. Nice lush fruit on the back end not unlike a fine Marlborough Gewurtztraminer.

Medium-light body with moderately-high carbonation. Very good for style.

A really great wild ale with a nicely balanced and complex fruity flavour. Well built and a damn fine ale.

dgilks, Aug 20, 2011
Photo of dannyancient
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served in a tulip.

Pours an orangish amber color, with a white head that dissipates rather quickly. No real lacing, but it leaves a nice white ring of bubble around the edges.

Smells of oak and fresh cherries, with a crisp champagne-like nose.

The taste is of cherries and tartness, and there is a nice caramel malt backbone that plays very nicely off of the sourness. Nice oak character ties everything together for a really stellar experience. The mouth feel is very smooth, with nice carbonation

This beer is truly incredible and is a pleasure to drink

dannyancient, Aug 20, 2011
Photo of richalexander78
4/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this in a bottle in Oregon. It was fairly cool bottle and had the taste of eating a dark freash cherry without the pit. You do get a hint of the p.n wine barrel. This was an easy drinking sour. I would recommend it for the ladies paired with cheeses.

richalexander78, Aug 16, 2011
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.31/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

tasted this beer with friends on friday night while trying other RR beers!

reviewed from notes.

Appearance: dark amber to mahoganey bodied beer with a small white head that fades quickly to nothing.

Smell: funky sour cherries with a musty smell. Oaky.

Taste: moderately sour right up front and continues throught the entire taste. Cherries! Its got the barnyard funkiness to it as well. you can taste some yeast in the back of all that sour vinegar note with a touch of barrel.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied beer with low to moderate carbonation.

Overall: Another nice sour from RR.

4DAloveofSTOUT, Aug 15, 2011
Photo of orangesol
4.33/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I decided to open this one and share it with a few friends during one of the recent UFC fights. Bottle of Batch 4 poured into an over sized snifter.

A - Pours murky brown, with hints of ruby red around the sides, with a stark white one finger tall head leaving spotty lace down the glass.

S - Smells of tart cherries, damp basement must, light vinegar, funky brett, and some dry oak tannins. This one has aged quite nicely.

T - Starts off with lots of tart cherries up front slowly giving way to a mix of light sweetness, funky brett, strong sourness, and some must. The finish is a mix of tartness and quite a bit of dryness, lingering on the pallet for some time.

M - Medium body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Dry, tart, feel with plenty of it lingering through the finish.

O - I still love this beer and it only seems to get better with age. I just wonder how long it can go for. If this one is any indication I would say quite awhile.

orangesol, Aug 11, 2011
Photo of Drazzamatazz
4.43/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Recently received this in a trade with pwoody11 (thanks again), and since it was the newest batch and I have some older stuff in the basement I figured it'd be worth drinking soon and adding the dregs to my oude bruin in secondary. Cracked this one open after a hearty dinner of rich beef stew. Really cut through all the rich robust flavors, though I'm glad I waited to drink it as an after dinner drink.

A: Nice auburn with your typical barrel-aged sour head, a quick pop that fades right away.

S: The bugs are present, but I'm still getting a lot of yeast character. Its certainly got an acetic punch too it, but not much of the funk I sometimes get from this beer. Sour cherries are very pronounced. There's a nice rich brown sugar sweetness in the background as well as a bit of oak character to be found. Pinot noir is kind of hard to miss.

T: A bit more funky than the nose first made me think. Lots of sour tart puckering (three adjectives, you are warned) cherry flavor. There's a strong spice not that I'm guessing is from the Pinot Noir barrels. For being sour there's enough residual brown sugar & molasses sweetness to overcome any notions of straight vinegar.

M: Lively carbonation carries this light to medium bodied beer. That said, as it warms a lot of body is lost. Due to the tartness and slight tannic nature finish is very dry. Alcohol becomes more present as it warms as well.

O: Reading over my review I keep thinking it sounds like I didn't really enjoy this one. I did, I always do. It was different than other bottles I've had, which is of course to be expected. Its not a perfectly balanced beer, but its an extremely enjoyable one that fully deserves the praise it gets. It really was a nice contrast to dinner, and I'm hoping it'll do some great things to my conditioning beer.

Drazzamatazz, Aug 09, 2011
Supplication from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 4,834 ratings.