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Supplication - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,565 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,565
Reviews: 1,309
rAvg: 4.57
pDev: 8.97%
Wants: 2,098
Gots: 1,370 | FT: 89
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: 4,565 | Reviews: 1,309 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mdwalsh


4.35/5  rDev -4.8%

Thanks to a new friend for this one. Batch 005X3. Sorry for the short review.

A: Dense, small off white head with a cloudy, yeasty orange/brown body.

S: Intense sour aroma or apples, cherries and barnyard.

T: Black cherry warheads tart is the main flavor I get. Very intense. There's also a vinegary spiciness.

M: Very nice mild carbonation. Medium body, and the sour lends a nice edge.

D: Great drinkability for a sour.

10-15-2010 14:54:10 | More by mdwalsh
Photo of Gosox8787

New Hampshire

4.83/5  rDev +5.7%

Presentation: 375 mL corked and caged bottle labelled with Batch Number 005X4. Poured into a snifter glass at room temperature.

Appearance: Ruby red with a hint of light brown in color. Pours a really large fizzy head that recedes pretty quickly into nothing.

Aroma: Tart cherries, pinot noir, vinegar, and some nice funk. The aroma really does just fill the room after opening this. Really balanced and complex. The tart cherries are probably the biggest note in the aroma, but all the other notes are definitely present and contributing to teh aroma.

Taste: Really tart cherries stand out upfront. The sourness definitely is the first thing you notice. After the initial blast of sour, the pinot noir, vinegar, and barnyard funk really start to stand out. All some together really nicely. A puckering finish.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied and with a lot fo carbonation. Very crisp. Also very acidic.

Drinkability: I wanted more than the one bottle after finishing. The alcohol was not overpowering at all, but definitely was warming.

Overall, the single best American wild ale I've ever had. Extremely complex and flavorful. All the elements work perfectly together and don't overpower. My highest recommendation.

10-14-2010 12:33:26 | More by Gosox8787
Photo of HosP


4.33/5  rDev -5.3%

Opened this a couple weeks ago to celebrate a weekend of moving. Big thanks to Scottfrie to this wonderful beer.

A- Nice big pop from the cork opening this bottle. Poured nice light brown with good size head to it.

S- Lots of cherry notes to this aroma. Very small hints from the oak aging.

T- Very interesting first sip. The tartness isn't overbearing but allows you to enjoy each drink. The sour cherries were just right and gave a good taste amazingly.

M- Nice tart, crisp, almost a little dry. Medium body with lots of carbonation.

T- Was very excited to try my first wild ale and it didn't let me down. Thought maybe it would be a little to much, but it had great balance and good taste. The acidity to the beer probably would stop me from another bottle that night, but would drink another one anytime.

10-14-2010 02:10:49 | More by HosP
Photo of nomomentwasted


4.65/5  rDev +1.8%

Over the past year, I've had this beer probably six times at the least. Every time I do, I hearken back to a day at O'Brien's Pub in San Diego when a couple of my friends and I were at their Russian River day. We had two goblets of Supplication, a pint of Pliny, and starting to feel the alcohol, we picked up a Beatification. Then, in a moment of stupidity or brilliance (or perhaps both) we decided to drop the $95 bucks and buy the 3 liter Batch 2 Supplication. It was epic, and the bottle crowns my bottle collection. A day I'll never forget.

Anyway, about the beer:

Appearance: Nothing particularly remarkable here. Hazy-red brown brew with an almost oddly white head that laces lightly. The carbonation is mild, and not too much in the way of clingy foam.

Smell: Whew, there's that Russian River tartness. Big sour notes of cherry, oaky wine, leathery and bretty funk, and just general tartness. The pucker is on!

Taste: Man, this is what a cherry sour should be. The Pinot barrels really add the oak-wine quality that just pairs perfectly with the tart cherry and sweet-sour combo that Russian River always seems to do to perfection. Puckering and dry on the back end, finishing with the tart cherry as the lasting flavor. Taste continues to evolve as she goes along, providing a steadily sour, funky, cherry goodness from first drop to the last. Just delicious.

Mouthfeel: Tart, dry, and sour. Nothing too acidic or astringent, which is appreciated. Sometimes I wish it slightly less dry, but still very good.

Driinkability: I have had this beer a half-dozen times now, and it's still ringing true as one of the better Wild Ales of its kind. I have had over a liter and a half of this beer in a sitting, and I am positive I'll never do that again for several reasons, namely my digestive tract. That being said, the beer was so fantastic it was very tasty to the last drop. Sure, I tend to like the citrusy sours slightly more, but this beer is nothing short of outstanding.

10-13-2010 14:50:46 | More by nomomentwasted
Photo of SPThirtyThree


3.68/5  rDev -19.5%

Supplication comes in a pricey little 375 mL bottle. (I think I paid $12.00?) The bottle looks neat though, with a long, bulged neck like a miniature version of it's 750 mL big brothers. Corked and caged. Served at 47°F.

A: Uncorked, revealing a swirling mist in the bottle. Pours into my NB goblet a cloudy, light copper, peachy brown, that's too dark for an amber but lighter than a typical brown. A creamy, one-finger sandstone head emerges, with just a tinge of pink.

S: Sour cherries, which undoubtedly had been eagerly anticipating uncorking, fill the room before the pour. This brew is almost overwhelmingly sour and complex. The nose is packed with vinegar, as well as clove, cinnamon, Morello cherries, and a slight, salty, barnyard funk. Overall the smell is an intense sour acid with accents of warm, herbal Christmas notes. The background spice is phenolic and slightly solventy.

T: The taste is predominantly dry, woody, and tart. It's very complex, but it's a well past center on the sour scale, so it's hard for me to decide if I love it or not. The carbonation and sourness hit first, but then a solventy hotness follows. The flavor also finishes with more fresh-cut oak and vanilla than any other sour I've tasted.

M: This wild is highly carbonated, so the effervescence foams in the throat and causes major burpage. The bubbles from the foam nucleate and explode in the mouth, but the cream makes the bursting bubbles and ensuing foam stick to your mouth and throat. There is also enough sourness to bring on some puckering and pangs in the jaw.

D: I would say drinkability is severely limited on cost alone, but as far as the beer itself goes, the real factor is your appreciation of very sour beers. I tend to avoid more acidic beer styles like Flanders Red, but I would consider this to be right at my limit for sourness. Medium.

10-13-2010 00:05:34 | More by SPThirtyThree
Photo of hophead247


4.7/5  rDev +2.8%

Pours an amber color with a medium creamy off-white head that has good retention. The aroma is rich and complex with grapes, cherries and oak. The taste has flavors similar to the aroma, with the cherries being extra tart, the grapes are funky and the oak is a bit acidic. The mouthfeel is smooth with moderately high acidity, and the carbonation is lively and prickly.The finish is long and sour with lingering sour cherries. Overall: A truly great sour ale.

10-12-2010 06:57:19 | More by hophead247
Photo of InspectorBob

New Jersey

4.63/5  rDev +1.3%

Batch 005X5

Poured a reddish/brown color like a port wine with about one finger of an off white head that left lacing throughout. The smell is of cherries with some fruity funkiness, perhaps some fig and some subtle woodness.

The taste was sour but not as sour as expected. A great sour taste that stayed all the way through. A very smooth mouthfeel with the carbonation just right. Very nice and smooth to drink. I need more of this...

10-11-2010 19:36:18 | More by InspectorBob
Photo of bonbini26

New Jersey

4.78/5  rDev +4.6%

Batch #1 on tap at Monk's Cafe at their 3rd Annual Russian River Mad Monday

A- A dark redish/brown color, looks like a fine port wine, minimal bubbles from the top small thing lace.

S- The smell was amazing, cherries, muted with pino nior, oak, and malts, some funk and sweetness

T- The mix of cherries and Pino barrel together is amazing, oak hints as well as a small amount of vanilla sweetness.

M&D- Very smooth with a delicious sourness to it, you almost don't want to swallow it and just enjoy it in your mouth, the alcohol is very light, just an amazing beer, nothing like it out there

10-11-2010 13:24:10 | More by bonbini26
Photo of paulys55


4.78/5  rDev +4.6%

Enjoyed (understatement) at the Spinnerstown Hotel in PA. I had heard of this place and cant believe it took me so long to get there, it truly is heaven. Poured a red/brown/amber haziness into tulip with nice head and good lacing. Aroma is of citrus, wine and berries. This beer hit my mouth and it was like the sour patch kids were dancing on my tongue. Cherry and strawberry notes burst forth from the solid carbonation and leave the mouth tingling with joy. Wine and fruit in the crisp finish and I can only say it was worth the wait. Definitely give it a taste if you get the chance.

10-11-2010 00:03:45 | More by paulys55
Photo of gabeerman


4.75/5  rDev +3.9%

A:Pours a slightly cloudy dark ruby with rusty orange hues around the edges. Head comes to about 2 inches then dissapates quickly and remains at about 1/4-1/2" for the rest of the brew.

S:Can definitely smell the tartness of the Brett and cherries but something else sets this wild apart from others. It has a scent as though it has been intensely purified. It has a sense of clear, crispness while most others of this style are murky with a tart outline.

T:Cherries, slightly sweet cherries at first, lingering into sour cherries then Brett.

M:Beautiful. As though this brew were created in layers so that we could taste it that way. This brew seems to cascade across my tongue, revealing each layer of flavor in a methodical sense.

D:This wild is highly drinkable as the more in depth I get into this brew, the more characteristics are uncovered.

This was my first brew from RR(thanks to my good friend Jay & his bro for importing this from Philly), and while it isn't the beer I'd most like to try from them(PtE,PtY, hint;anyone want to trade?), nor a style I try a lot, I was highly impressed as I have had my fair share of wilds and this one FAR exceeds any of the others.

10-09-2010 05:00:51 | More by gabeerman
Photo of ZX6Chris


4.95/5  rDev +8.3%

This review is for batch 4.

A-A very unassuming pour. Not that bright just a yellow-orange liquid with a little white head that dissipates quickly.

S-Awesome. You first get the sour then the cherries come through.

T-SOur! Just like I like it. Kick you in your pants kind of sour. SLightly acidic with a little vinegar and of course the cherries are there.

M-Light bodied and highly carobnated.

D-So sour you can't drink a ton of this but that in no way is a bad thing.

10-08-2010 00:59:16 | More by ZX6Chris
Photo of david131


4.6/5  rDev +0.7%

A- A clear, deep ruby orange liquid with a thick and creamy peach-white head that has excellent retention. Very nice.

S- Oh snap, this is amazing. Extreme sour/acidic aroma with hints of oak, cherries, and flowers. Very aromatic and very intriguing.

T- Very tart and acidic. The flavors or cherries, flowers, and oak are fantastic. A little heavy on the oak flavors and falls just a tad flat on the finish. Complex and tasty.

M- Very tart, acidic, and dry. The carbonation level is nice. Extreme but excellent.

D- A bit of a sipper, but this is absolutely stunning. This gives Jolly Pumpkin a run for their money. Very impressive.

10-07-2010 01:37:17 | More by david131
Photo of Chizoad


4.1/5  rDev -10.3%

My second time having this one. Batch 005x2. The first time I was not prepared in the least. I love both Temptation and Consecration, two other sour beers from Russian River, and I was excited for the comparison.

The pour brought me a beer with about a 1/2 finger head that I thought would disappear after time. It didn't. The head gave a little lacing, which was nice. Clear amber beer. Looked good but not outstanding.

Amazing aroma of sour cherries, hints of malt, dust.

The first sip really got me excited. Big pucker to start, then mellowing to cherries and actually a little sugar. That was very short lived. Within a few sips it was nothing but bright sourness and sour cherries. Done well, but missing that little twist of complexity. Or maybe it's me.

Good mouthfeel and carbonation. Big bubbles, but still bright. Relatively light body, fitting the style.

Drinkable, but I'm only ever having one. And at this price, there are many better offerings.

10-06-2010 04:41:02 | More by Chizoad
Photo of andrewinski1

New Hampshire

4.38/5  rDev -4.2%

Got this as an extra from nerd. Poured into a tulip. Batch 005X1. Light brown with a reddish tint to it. There is a light brown head that rests on top; about a quarter inch thick.

Smells slightly sour, a hint of oak is noticed in the background. I get a good whiff of cherry vanilla as well. This doesn't smell overly sour, allowing a more complex aroma from the other scents.

The taste starts with just the slightest bit of vanilla sweetness, and follows with a nice sour finish. Nicely balanced, but still sour forward.

The mouthfeel here his nicely done. The carbonation has a nice prickliness to it, and the body fills the mouth nicely when quaffed.

As far as sours go, this is highly drinkable, but I will resist the urge to gulp it down and make it last.

10-06-2010 02:55:07 | More by andrewinski1
Photo of John_M


4.13/5  rDev -9.6%

On tap at the Blue Dog Tavern the other day.

Supplication pours an apricot amber color with fairly good head retention and lacing. On the nose, this beer is quite vinous, showing an iimpressive array of grapes, vanilla, wine and light sour. The flavor profile replicates the nose for the most part, except I'm getting a bit more wine vinegar and sour funk. The sour component definitely dominates the flavor profile, though it's not so over the top as to be unenjoyable. This beer is hugely flavorful with no more than a medium bodied mouthfeel, and the finish is long, winey and sour. This beer has almost an electric component to the flavor profile, at least that's how the sour hits me on the finish. Drinkability is pretty good, with the alcohol nearly unnoticeable. Am not a huge fan of sours beers, but this is pretty fun to drink (though I can't imagine drinking a whole lot of it). However, I confess the sour component does seem a bit more intense on draft then I recall experiencing from the bottle.

10-05-2010 15:13:41 | More by John_M
Photo of calir1


4.72/5  rDev +3.3%

Probably my favorite sour around. As far as a taste review, I cant name everything in it, it is just sour tart and awesome. It has some great wine characteristics and a go to sour when I am at the pub. Russian River makes some wonderful sours but this one is on the top of them all

10-04-2010 13:51:02 | More by calir1
Photo of 7ways


4.18/5  rDev -8.5%

Batch 04x5

Pours a purplish brown with a fluffy off-white head. Nice lace.

Smell is a little alcoholic, but includes pleasant notes of musty wood, cherries, and strawberry. Kind of like a weak Oud Bruin.

Tastes... not too good. There is nothing but sour abrasion that tastes like Band-Aids and vinegar. Not the yummy vinegar, but the stuff old wine turns into. It is not extreme, but is at the forefront. Now I love hugely sour beers, but the tartness should be balanced by sweetness, not adhesive. The cherry flavor, if it is there at all, is completely buried. It's like this bottle was picked off the beer tree before it was ripe.

Mouthfeel is wonderful, just like every other RR I've had.

This isn't terrible, but it's a pretty poor showing that I won't seek out again, at least not this batch. I'll edit my review if a future or past batch comes my way.

***UPDATE*** Re-Review, batch 5 x 3

OK, maybe it was a batch issue, maybe I had an off night. Whatever the case, here is the edit.

The beer in my glass right now tastes pretty great, and smells less like alcohol and more like a chocolate cherry Avery Brabant. The adhesive and white vinegar flavors are nowhere to be found, and the sour cherry just shines, along with notes of currant and strawberry. There's also a striking (red?) wine component behind the tartness. It's about as sour as Temptation and Ithaca Brute, which to me is perfect.

Changes I made in the scores:
Aroma 3.5 to 4
Taste 2.5 to 4.5
Drinkability 2.5 to 3.5

10-04-2010 02:18:41 | More by 7ways
Photo of SiepJones


4.43/5  rDev -3.1%

Batch 4
Poured into a Snifter

A: Pours a reddish brown with a small head on top. Supplication looks like a glass of apple cider with a light topping of foam. The head dissipates very quickly.

S: The Brett, Lacto, and Pedio blend together to give this a good musty, funk on the nose.

T: The Brett and Lacto create a musty barnyard flavor on the front, while the sour cherries add to the tartness of the finish. I am picking up slight notes of pinot noir on the finish as well.

M: Very carbonated as the bubbles tingle the tongue.

D: This is a sipper as the funk is strong but not overpowering on the taste. ABV is not too high at 7%, but the flavor will keep you drinking this beer slowly. Complex, sour, and very enjoyable.

10-04-2010 02:09:55 | More by SiepJones
Photo of laituegonflable


4.3/5  rDev -5.9%

Pours a vibrant orange colour with delicious dense head, about 2cm thick, retaining well with craters bubbling on the top. Stunning ring of lace is left behind. Slight haze shows a slow but steady stream of bubbles. A few floaties chunks which are a bit unnerving, but otherwise damned nice.

Smell is very funk-é, with a lot of tart yeast aromas coming off that, hints of cranberry and citrus zest with a slight paw-paw note as well. Slight brassy fragrance as well. Seems a bit simple, but decent, yeah.

Taste starts out sour, stays sour. Kind of vinegary on the front, with more of that brassy metallic character, then gets really pleasantly sweet actually, early on the mid, with a sweet-and-sour-sauce flavour and maybe some lemon squash. Lemon juice is the dominant flavour on the back, lots of citric acid with a very slight rubbery character as well. Nice fresh zest on the very back kind of clips off the sourness so there's isn't much tartness left lingering. Yeah, very nicely done - potentially repellent but is made crisp and refreshing. Good sipper for flavour but also very good for just throwing back - again, like lemon squash.

Good body to it, and no harshness from the wild yeast. Pretty damned nice texture, actually.

Yeah, I like this a lot. It's sour and interesting, but really nicely quaffable. A very steady and skilled brewing hand is behind this. Great Summer or Spring quencher.

10-01-2010 02:28:06 | More by laituegonflable
Photo of armock

New York

4.83/5  rDev +5.7%

A - Poured a brown color with a tan head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is a nose full of sour cherries

T - This is awesome tasting just like it smells lots of tart sour cherries

M - This beer has a medium body with medium carbonation to it

D - After drinking a few different bottles I think this is one my favorite beers to drink now ignore the price and get your hands on a bottle or two

09-30-2010 21:56:51 | More by armock
Photo of stingrayvr6

New Jersey

4.85/5  rDev +6.1%

Poured from a bottle I picked up at Monk's Cafe in Philadelphia. Poured into a chalice, showed a beautiful hazy golden with yeast visible, good frothy white head. Smell of bitter fruits, cherry slightly present in the nose, super earthy and yeasty smell. Taste was refreshing and crisp up front, sweet then balanced out by sour fruits and dry finish that left me wanting more after every sip. Fantastically crafted complex brew, one of the best I've ever had.

09-30-2010 05:41:36 | More by stingrayvr6
Photo of CMW


4.93/5  rDev +7.9%

Had the opportunity to crack on of these this weekend thanks to a buddy's haul from GABF.

A - Beer pours a dark brown color with ruby highlights. Head is a good 1 inch but fades rather quickly.

S - All I can say is wow. Tons of sour cherry and even some oak notes. Filled with beautiful funk.

T - Heavily acidic kick upfront that makes me pucker. Sour fruits soon come pouring through and it finishes with a mustiness that tastes like your breathing in a cave.

M - Carbonation danced on the tongue.

D - I could drink these all night. I waited what seemed like forever to try this and it was worth every minute.

09-29-2010 01:48:40 | More by CMW
Photo of Anthony1


4.15/5  rDev -9.2%

The beer is a light reddish golden brown color, with a large off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass. The aroma is full of cherries along with some yeast, light malts and a touch of hops.The taste is very tart and sour up front with a strong cherry flavor. There's a thin malt character and a mild hops presence. After-taste is also quite sour. If you're into the sour beers, this is a good one for you. Smooth and very crisp, light body, medium carbonation, clean and dry finish.

09-28-2010 15:54:28 | More by Anthony1
Photo of Brent


4.83/5  rDev +5.7%

One can be fortunate to come across many beers that are very good, but the beer that makes you pause and marvel upon first sip are rare indeed. Bitter cherry and oak notes drum a steady sour/tart backbeat while the yeast flavors lend a funkyfied harmony that melds into a delightful experience. Must find more.

09-27-2010 17:21:28 | More by Brent
Photo of rhodeska


4.75/5  rDev +3.9%

Great beer, really interesting sour.

looked different, not something that I would normally see. Darkish brown, good strong apple smell and sour too.

The taste was pretty much exactly what the smell seemed like, was very full and delicious, quite apple-y.

Great beer, excellent way to mix it up between normal styles, and I highly recommend it.

09-27-2010 01:52:41 | More by rhodeska
Supplication from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 4,565 ratings.