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Supplication - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
SupplicationSupplication

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

4,702 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,702
Reviews: 1,312
rAvg: 4.56
pDev: 9.21%
Wants: 2,132
Gots: 1,408 | FT: 95
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: 4,702 | Reviews: 1,312 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of davod23
4.6/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Russian River, I salute you. Poured from the bottle into my Bruery tulip.

Clear, beautiful ruddy brown with golden highlights. A thin cap forms, but only a collar remains after a couple of minutes. The color reminds me of what a deep sunset on the beach looks like.

Smell: Yep, there's the Russian River signature. Unmistakable sourness awaits me. Tart cherries, wood, musty old attic, and a faint pungent smell of putrefaction. I know that last item probably sounds bad, but I think it's goddamn great.

Taste is exquisite. This bottle is not particularly fresh, but it was stored in cold conditions for a long time. I think this is probably why the cherries are still somewhat prominent here. Cherry, oak, red wine, all taking turns dancing with the buggy acidity. Quick finish.

Mouthfeel is very good. Very dry, crisp finish, with lively carbonation. The carbonation is, at first, a tiny bit harsh... a few minutes into the glass it has smoothed out considerably.

Drinkability: I might drink gallons of this when bottles are released later this year. Fantastically drinkable.

This and Consecration (Batch 1) are my two favorite Russian River sours to date. This is great stuff. I am looking forward to trying it fresh.

davod23, Jan 07, 2010
Photo of FirstMan
4.83/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Although I went to RR to try the oh-so-raved-about-Plinys (with reason), the beer that absolutely floored me was Supplication. This ranks in the top 10 beers I've ever had (which is determined by a complex algorithm involving the beer, where I had it, and the overall experience of drinking said beer).

Color is bronze to orange - darker with hints of evil lurking.

Wonderful sour cherries and wood in the nose. Earthy, musky, clean forest decay. Just what you want from a wild.

Cherry tartness up front as you'd expect, but eased out and rounded by sweet ripe fruit and then the dryness of the oak lingers. The acitic tannins sit on the back center of your tongue forever, just tempting you to mellow them out again with another sip.

Despite the complex flavors and darker character, I found this beer to have a lighter mouthfeel due to its tartness and dryness.

Drank a ton. Too much, actually. Paid for it the next day in the Muir Woods bathroom (or was it the oysters?).

Was worth the payment, regardless.

FirstMan, Dec 28, 2009
Photo of Parrotshake
4.85/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

One of a number of very special things I had at Russian River recently, and my overall favourite.

Sort-of-murky reddish brown with no head to speak of. Looks like some kind of wood varnish, and smells a little like it too - woody and acidic, with sour cherries, oxidised red wine, apple cider vinegar and band-aids.

The taste is similar to the above description, in the best possible way. Big dark cherries and grapes to the fore, with all the other stuff in the mix. Earthy, drying tannins and a tantalizingly ephemeral hint of sweetness. Complex as hell, and utterly refreshing and invigorating.

Light in feel and briskly carbonated, perfectly balanced and ridiculously complex without ever being a "challenge". I had another few things I desperately wanted to try, not knowing when and if I'll ever be back in Santa Rosa, but I could have had a few more of these, easy. Just dreamy.

Parrotshake, Dec 20, 2009
Photo of jrallen34
4.08/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I drank this batch 003 from a 375ml bottle into a Rochefort glass.

The beer pours a brownish ornange more of an orange tinge with a about 2 fingers of head that has a dark orange tint to it. The retention is great, the head lasts about 5 minuts but even after that is a heavy head that lasts forever. The lacing is great as well.

The aroma is slightly disappointing because its relatively light and not overtly complex. Mostly you just get some tartness overall with a little oak at the.

The taste is good not great. Just like the aroma its not complex just a very nice sour note from start to finish. I love sour but I want to be rewarded as well. At the end I get a little wood.

The feel is nice and coats well, drinkability is down a tad.

Overall, this is a pretty good wild ale but nothing spectactular. I prefer the RR Temptation.

jrallen34, Dec 17, 2009
Photo of Arbitrator
4.38/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Edited to reflect newer batches (at the time of this writing, batch 006). There's always a minor rearrangement every time Russian River releases a new batch of sours. As of 10/26/2011, the latest Temptation is winning, with Consecration next, and Supplication last.

~~~

All right, I should probably review this since I've had in on tap multiple times now. Batch 004 at the Bistro -bal Fest and again on tap at the Rose & Crown in Palo Alto.

A: Pours a murky amber with glowing orange highlights when held to the light. It has a finger of cream-colored head that retains pretty well; it eventually retreats into a clump of bubbles on the brew and a very thin collar, with no lacing.

S: What a fantastic aroma. It has the right balance of tart, sour cherries, acetic acid, and lactic sourness. Tannins come through quite strongly, along with grapes (I didn't pick up on this until largadeer pointed it out, but afterward, it was obvious). Just the slightest hint of brett, with a musty leather undercurrent.

T: Sour cherries and more than a hint of dark red grapes, giving it a vinous quality right from the start. It's lactic up front, with the mid-taste seeing an evolution of tannins and light leather. The finish is acetic and dry, but not so overwhelming that it burns the throat. There is a little lingering sourness in the aftertaste.

M: I was very pleased with the balance of characteristics here. I don't enjoy super-dry or super-acetic beers; Supplication delivers both qualities in moderation, producing a sublime drinking experience. It's light-bodied with moderate carbonation that cleanses the palate very well.

D: I had two 10oz pours of this and strongly considered a third. In fact, as I'm typing this up, I'm tempted to go back and get said third. Probably my favorite Russian River wild ale now that Consecration's recipe has changed.

Arbitrator, Dec 05, 2009
Photo of cptierney
4.33/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at the brewpub in the newer style Russian River glass as opposed to the old tulip style.

This beer came out with next to no head. There was a thin veil of bubbles across the top of the beer but as I drank it down none stuck to the sides of the glass. The color was decided caramel with the translucent liquid having a honey color when held up to a light source.

Boom, this beer smells like Russian River. That Brett funk is here with each waft smelling more and more like the cork of a freshly popped bottle of red wine. with a deeper inhale I get some oak chords along with that indescribable wet barnyard stench.

This is a chewable beer. There is very little carb bite to it and though the beer itself might not be thick, my tongue thinks it is due to its mellow, nearly fizz free texture.

This beer is TART. Like taking a hit of apple cider vinegar tart. It reminds me of that sour feeling you get when you eat dried apricots, minus the apricot flavor of course, a natural sour vibe abounds. There is a bit of tart cherry flavor to this guy and the barrel aging is certainly noticeable with the hint of oak. Truly a sour head's delight.

Not too high drinkability as I find this RR sour in particular to have a cumulative puckering affect. Really only one glass is suitable, but that one glass is really a good one.

cptierney, Dec 01, 2009
Photo of DaveJanssen
4.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap ar russian river

Ar: Classic russian river sour aroma, fruity, grapes, light acetic acid, toasty earth, pleasant mix of acid/fruit.

Ap: hazy light amber, very low off white head, fair retention, light lacing.

F: rather tart, floral, strong acid again the classic russian river sour, tart berries, earthy, light candy sweetness but balanced out by the acid, mild darker caramel, toasty/nutty malt, lots of berries

M: medium/high carbonaiton, medium/light mouthfeel, warming acid end.

O: grapey, subdued oak, lots of acid but balanced well, one of the best rr sours

DaveJanssen, Nov 26, 2009
Photo of hobojon
4.93/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at RRBC 11/24/09.

Aroma- complex sour and tart. Berries, acids.

App- Hazy reddish amber. Very little foam but the glass was filled to the top.

Taste- very tart. raspberries and blackberries. sweet caramel and malt backbone. drying mineral note.

Mouth- dry, warming acids. not bone dry, but well balanced. fine carb.

Overall- my favorite Russian River beer so far. I used to be a Pliny head until had some of their sours. More simple malt than consecration, less sour than beatification but the most refined.

hobojon, Nov 26, 2009
Photo of nickd717
4.4/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was my review #1300 on ratebeer, and I'm saving it for big number 342 on here. Waited forever for this beer since I didn't want to ever pay $20 for a 375ml bottle at City Beer. Now that I've had it, well, I should have been willing to pay that and then some. I had this on tap at the Bistro Barrel Aged Fest in Hayward.

Pours a brilliant reddish amber with slight haze and a half-inch of creamy off-white foam.

Aroma is amazing with sour cherry, bretty and lactic notes, leather, oak, and some sweet malt.

Flavor is tart, with brett, lacto, pedio, funk, and some sweet caramel malt, sour cherries, oak, and spice. Complex and just amazingly good flavor. Sour but not overly so like Beatification can be. Just absolutely heavenly. Best sour from Russian River BY FAR in my opinion, and that's saying something.

Medium body with a sharp, acidic palate and a long finish.

Drinkability is very high and the ABV is very well-hidden. Went back for this two more times despite all the other great barrel aged beers there. Great beer, Vinnie! Worth the long wait.

nickd717, Nov 17, 2009
Photo of tmoneyba
4.28/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by alexsdad06.

Poured a hazy reddish brown color with an average frothy off-white head that mostly lasted with fair lacing. Moderate to heavy tart cherry, yeasty and wood aroma. Medium body with a smooth texture and soft carbonation and small particles. Medium to heavy sour & sweet flavor with a medium to heavy sweet & sour finish of moderate to long duration.

This is a standout beer for style. Thanks Brad.

tmoneyba, Oct 20, 2009
Photo of mothman
4.6/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Review #500. Decided to go with a nice treat from RR.

Batch 3

Poured into tulip glass.

Opens with a nice big pop very easily. I should have been a little more careful opening this guy. I took one small wif from the bottle and my mouth is already watering.

Poured slowly but a nice big near 2 finger head that is colored very slight tan. Decent retention leaving some nice lace walls down the glass. Aroma is a clear peach hued copper.

Aroma: Vinegar/acidic aromas, tart cherries, oak/wood, tons of wild notes. Mmmm it is delicious.

Taste: These sour beers are quite awesome. Not as much vinegar/acidic flavors here as I was expecting from the aroma (not that it's a bad thing). Cherries are tart, but not overly tart. The oak is a lot more dominate here and takes over the cherry flavor a bit. The wild yeasts obviously make this one tart. The taste is very dry.

Mouthfeel: Very sour and tart, but not as tart as others I have had. Still makes the mouth pucker. Medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. Ends with a very clean sour cherry flavored aftertaste.

Overall, one of the best sours out there imo. Very drinkable and I wish I had more of this. I will probably have to get some of the next batch when it comes out. All around a good beer. I really enjoyed that it wasn't overly dominated by vinegar and acidic tastes.

mothman, Oct 18, 2009
Photo of pepsican
4.22/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

batch 003. Brown pour with a thin off white head. Aroma was mild cherry and a bit of funk. Flavor had more cherry, lemon, funk. not nearly as acidic as I thought it would be.

UPDATE, old score fresh = 3.6. Opened one recently and it had gotten nice and sour, and the lemon had really started coming out. The funk was spot on, not dominating but making itself known. REscored 4/2/09

pepsican, Oct 07, 2009
Photo of JRhode
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

.375 bottle split w/ JHamel. Poured into Duvel tulip. Batch 3.

Amber in color with a light red cherry tint. Small, bright white head that leaves minimal lacing. Slow/steady stream of carbonation from nucleation site.

Acetic acid/vinegar aromas are primary. Some oaky/vanilla impressions with tart cherries coming out of the glass secondarily. I could already tell from the smell that the cherries were fading into the background.

This is a changed beer (not a bad thing). When fresh I think of these as very Kriek like. With some age, the taste is dominated more by the acetic acid and wood tannins with sour cherry being more of a background flavor. Lacks the juiciness of the fresh bottle. Still packs great sour flavor.

Mouthfeel is prickly with sour/tartness. Seems to be medium/high carbonation for the style which keeps the beer lively and bright.

High level of drinkability with the light cherry flavors and carbonation balancing the sourness.

I may like this beer better fresh, but this was still great.

JRhode, Oct 04, 2009
Photo of brownbeer
4.85/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I was lucky enough to try this on tap.

Rusty amber color without much head.

Floral and bretty notes with wonderful cherry notes.

Taste is sour cherries, subtle vanilla, and pinot noir.

Mouthfeel is where it really blows up. It's a medium mouthfeel that finishes acidic with superb dry, red wine tannins.

Probably not really drinkable for a lot of people considering how sour and dry it is. For me, bring it by the pitcher.

brownbeer, Sep 30, 2009
Photo of Deuane
4.43/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is a review of Batch 003.

A-Slightly hazed copper with a thin white head that left spotty lace.

S-Dry oak and sour cherry. Not intensely sour, more tart, Lightly aromatic but quite pleasant.

T-Cherry flavour up front and very prevalent. Comes through as a super tart cherry. Oak notes meld throughout adding a nice amount of depth and dryness.

M-Light bodied, crisp and tart, Drying finish with long lasting sourness.

D-This one simply works for me. Like a light, dry, cherry wine! Another American wild winner from the genius mind of Vinnie!

Deuane, Sep 28, 2009
Photo of schinebd
4.83/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Batch 3

A - A cloudy burnt brownish color that sits squarely between a belgian pale and belgian dark. A moderate brownish white head builds and recedes quickly, with a little that retains and remains. Unique.

S - Certainly a tart aroma from the cherries and smorgasbord of other fruit underscored by biscuity spice and some wet leather brett aroma. Sweet, earthy, funky and spicy, with each facet taking its proper place.

T - Having had Temptation recently, I was anxious to see if Supplication was both as distinct and excellent as her blonde sister. Amazingly the answer is yes. Up front is some intense sour and tartness. It takes a few sips to get past the sourness and get the heart of this brew. The sourness gives way to some caramel malt bread taste. Some mild funk sticks its head in to say hello somewhere in the middle, but the Brett makes a quick visit, and goes as fast as he came. In the end is a nice rise of pure sweetness from cherries, grapes, melons oh my which goes against some yeast spice. Some oakiness lives in the breath.

M & D - Light/medium bodied with just the right balance of carbonation and smoothness to enhance the flavors. The sourness dries the tongue right out, and the flavors make you yearn for the next sip. A winning combination, but I'm not looking the empty glass that my future soon holds.

schinebd, Sep 24, 2009
Photo of Aenema
4.95/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch 003
Appearance - Pours a reddish-orange brown with a slight tan head that quickly fades.
Smell - Tart cherries, hay, brett funk.
Taste - Puckeringly tart, cherry, some pinot and oak. Awesome, complex flavors.
Mouthfeel - Light to medium-bodied and highly carbonated with fine bubbles. Very nice dry, crisp finish.
Drinkability - Very smooth with great flavor, I could drink this all day.

Aenema, Sep 11, 2009
Photo of rpstevens
4.88/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to JDV for this bottle, batch 003. Poured into a dogfish head signature glass.

The beer pours a muddy/ruby red with a one finger off-white head. The beer is very carbonated and looks very appealing.

The smell is all tart/sour cherries with a little malt in the background. There is definitely some funk in the background, nothing extreme, but a nice earthy funk that blends with the slight oak barrel scent under all that tart cherry.

The smell is sour cherry followed by some more sour cherry!! What an awesome wave of sour, bordering on bitter, flavors. The sweetness from the brown ale along with the slight oakiness come through to balance the tart cherry at the end, but that is very minimal.

The mouthfeel of the beer is perfect for the style, it is well carbonated, dry and crisp. This is a beer that I wish I had multiple bottles of, and something I would like to drink all the time for sure.

rpstevens, Aug 30, 2009
Photo of auroracrisis
4.58/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Got this in a trade from MrChopin. Poured into an oversized wine glass from the bottle. Batch 003

Pours a reddsih brown with no head which isn't surprising. I don't think I've ever had anything with a wild yeast that has had a head. It's a bit murky too. Definitely true to the style, a good looking beer.

Smells acidic with some barnyard funk. The cherries come through a bit with the funk.

Tastes acidic but not overly so. This is a perfect amount of tartness and sourness. The cherries come through as well but not too much. If you didn't tell me to look for them I may have not tasted them.

Mouthfeel is great. Almost the perfect body for this kind of beer. It isn't thin and it isn't thick. Probably because the base beer for this was a brown ale.

Drinkability is high, I want more of this but I couldn't see myself craving this all night.

auroracrisis, Aug 25, 2009
Photo of fiver29
4.28/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle batch 003. Pours a cloudy dark amber color with a thick white head. Smells musty and sour. Has a medium mouthfeel. Taste is very complex and has many flavors including: oak, sour, fruit, tartness, pepper spice, and some acidic spiciness. Overall this is not a punch you in the mouth sour like some of the other sours out there. Its more subtle. Its more drinkable. My drinking buddy commented its like eating a piece and candy and wanting more. That's what its like between sips. Overall a great brew.

fiver29, Aug 21, 2009
Photo of MMAJYK
4.75/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Supplication Batch 3

A. Light copper color with a thin ring of foam covering the top.

S. Cherries, lemons, funk-tastic-ness (Brett, Lacto, etc etc). Sherry like oxidative notes with some woodsy aromas thrown in. This beer is uber complex.

T. Orange and lemon tartness with some barnyard funk. Lime peel, sherry, slight bubblegum and a touch of caramel sweetness is about all I can pick out. This beer is crazy, over the top complex.

M. Thin to medium in the mouth--quite zingy in terms of carbonation. Somewhat puckering but that's what I wanted with this beer.

D. On this hot, summer brew-day, this beer really does myself and mrandypandy well. So complex and lively. This beer has like 2000 different tastes going on. It feels like a sour pogo-stick jumping around on my tongue. Nice job, guys!

MMAJYK, Aug 11, 2009
Photo of spointon
4.38/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I poured this one from a 12.9oz brown bottle into a tulip pint glass. This was batch number 003.

A= This sour ale poured a very hazy orange/amber color with a now-you-see-it-now-you-don't 3/4" off white head that appeared and disappeared completely in a heartbeat. No lacing to speak of.

S= This one gave a general aroma of sourness and tartness for sure, but I also found grapes, wine, and some background sweetness. The sour character of this beer lent a certain baryard funk to the initial smell that was pretty complex. The barrel lent just a hing of wood smell.

T= Some fairly faint malt shot underneath a big sour tartness. Though throughout there are hints at a myriad of flavors like grapes, cherries, wood, etc I found the sourness and the spicy yeast character to be most prominent. Though I am not well versed in sour ales, this definitely has a great deal of appeal to me in the flavor department. Finished very dry and tart.

MF= Medium bodied made to feel lighter by a near-magical carbonation level. I say that because after 10 minutes in the glass, there is not a bubble or sign of cabonation to be seen yet this ale felt dry and very crisp on my tongue.

D= This was easily the best sour I have had to date...world class for sure. I really appreciated the flavors without being overwhelmed by them. Despite the challenging nature of this sour, I believe it would be easy to have a couple in one sitting.

spointon, Jul 24, 2009
Photo of rfgetz
4.6/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Sunburst amber, no real head save for the bubbles rising to the top

S- Earthy notes of grape, must, leaves, dark fruit, leather and hints of spice

T- Tart and acidic dark cherry fruits with hints of oak, leather and earth but like a fine wine where it was fully balanced and smooth

M- Smooth and perfectly carbonated. Nice tart coating

D- Amazingly balanced and smooth for a sour. A leader in its class.

rfgetz, Jul 20, 2009
Photo of philipquarles
4.6/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

375ml bottle from Batch 3. Pours an opaque dark copper with a fluffy white-orange head that isn't quite as substantial as one would hope. Some sediment. Smells heavily acidic with plenty of leathery brett character. Earthy with some cherry notes. Sharp, acidic taste with noticeable barnyard character. Woody and tannic. The cherry flavors are much stronger here than in the nose. Unapologetically sour and dry. Medium body with high carbonation. Fantastic.

philipquarles, Jul 01, 2009
Photo of brdc
4/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 003, thanks muenchnerkindl for this one.
Small corked bottle, opens with a very loud pop, poured into a tulip.

Dark golden, medium sized white head good retention and lacing.
Aroma is tart and acid, fruity, funky, with a hint of oak and vanilla.
Medium bodied yet refreshing; tart and acidic notes dominate the flavor. Fruitiness, some spiciness, with faint vanilla and oak.
This is a very nice beer, but IMHO, not nearly enough for the top 50. Certainly worth a try.

brdc, Jun 21, 2009
Supplication from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 4,702 ratings.