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Supplication - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,378 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,378
Hads: 5,709
Avg: 4.5
pDev: 9.33%
Wants: 2,587
Gots: 1,882 | FT: 130
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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,378 | Hads: 5,709
Photo of hobojon
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
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.

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Photo of gtermi
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: The beer pours a reddish body with a thin tan head that instantly fades.

S: VERY SOUR AND TART! I absolutely love the smell of this beer. It just really reminds me of sour candy. Best smelling WIld Ale I have ever smelled.

T: Wow this is an absolutely amazing flavor. The beer punched my mouth with sour flavors and then goes to a tart bitterness. Like the smell, it reminds me a lot of sour candy.

M: This beer is so sour that it sort of makes my jaw tingle. There is a good amount of carbonation and a strong amount of tingle all inside of my mouth.

O: This beer is absolutely delicious and makes me want to come back for more. This is by far one of the best beers I have ever had.

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Photo of thebreederswow
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

OK, I've said before that I don't really like sours. This beer has converted me. Wow.

A: Light gold with red highlights, lots of thin bubbles clinging to the class. Really beautiful.

S: Tart cherry, strawberry, rich wine-y notes. There's something slightly sweet in the smell.

T: Tartness with slight strawberry flavor upfront, followed by a distinct funk, and bitterness across my whole tongue. The aftertaste is winey, and I love the sweet and aromatic wood flavor at the end. Tartness lingers on the back of the tongue for 30+ seconds, but is never pucker-worthy. End tastes of fresh cut grass, young wood, and maybe fresh pea or something like that. Incredibly refreshing.

M: Really tiny prickly bubbles.

D: This is the first sour that I've been determined to purchase again. Amazing.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy orange-ish/ light amber color, with a light tan head. In the aroma, big tart cherries, with some oakiness. In the taste, SOUR!! cherry, oak hints and a touch of vanilla. A sour bite, and a medium to light mouthfeel, with a dry, tart cherry and white grape aftertaste. Big sour, big cherry, FANTASTIC!!

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Photo of Nesued
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Picked up several Russian River offerings during a trip to California earlier this year. Batch 04X4.

Appearance - A hazy peachy color fills my Great Divide tulip glass. A nice two-finger head formed which resolved to a 1/4in ring. A bit of lacing but not enough to mention.

Smell - Bright and clean aroma on the nose. Cherries, funky brett and lacto along with a complex matrix of malty sweetness and woody/grassy components from the aging.

Taste - Let the first sip coat your palate to prepare you for what lies ahead. You will be shocked by the bold and for many a "non-beer" profile. For those who thirst for wild ales, you have found your holy grail. Lively cherries tart and tangy contributions from brett, lacto and pediococcus coat your tongue with the harsh yet refreshing tastes of a musty barn added to leather and grassy notes. This sits on the back of your tongue and requests that another mouthful joins in on the fun. Snaps of sweet malt and tart intermingle throughout the sampling of this fine beverage. My goodness, this is beer like many of you have never (yet need to) experience. The alcohol is non-existent.

Mouthfeel - The carbonation well transports the offering around your mouth. Very nice density with a crisp finish.

Overall - Why did I only bring six back with me.... This is an outstanding wild ale. Crisp and clean, tart on your tongue. Just try to name all of the smells and flavors you experience with this offering.

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Photo of BeforeNoon
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Batch 007 served in Smuttynose Big Beer Series tulip.

A: dark amber, mild sediment from yeast, thin white head

S: green apples, oak, slight vanilla

T: white grapes, sour cherries

M: mild carbonation, medium body

O: very impressed. After it warmed up I was able to get some great oak aroma. Obviously I love sours or else I wouldn't have bought it, but this is definitely one of the most well balanced sours I've ever had. Amazing oak aroma, semi-sweet and tart body, and dry lingering aftertaste. It's just perfect.

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Photo of Damian
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Drank from a 12.70 fl. oz. (375 ml) bottle
Batch 003
Served in a tulip
Acquired in a trade with mikesgroove

Review #425

The beer poured a hazy, orangey-amber color with a bubbly, light tan, one-finger head that quickly faded to a frothy mass. As the beer warmed, the chill hazed disappeared and the beer turned a brilliant copper-amber color. Odd shaped blocks of lacing cascaded down the glass.

The aroma was amazingly interesting and complex. Funky and sour with obvious brett characteristics. Semi-sweet, sour cherry and lemon peel notes came through as well. Crisp and musty with a barnyardy twang.

The taste was even more impressive than the aroma. Lots of brett and funk right from the start. Maltier and richer however than your average sour ale. As in the aroma, sour cherry notes were apparent. The fruity, sweet/tart cherry flavor really helped to balance out the beer. Hints of vinegar appeared in the lingering, dry, oaky and tannic finish. White wine-like characteristics (pinot noir?) were also noticeable. Overall, an incredibly complex brew.

The mouthfeel was creamy, frothy and silky smooth with a fine yet lively effervescence. This sour definitely had a bit more heft than I am used to for the style.

Drinkability was outstanding. The beer was funky and tart but well balanced by the rich malts and sweet/tart fruity notes. Furthermore, the 7% ABV was barely detectable. I wish I could have sipped this one all night long.

This was definitely the best Russian River sour I have had to date and possibly the best sour overall. Not only did this beer contain an amazing amount of intensity and complexity but it displayed a level of balance demonstrated by few others. This brew is destined to be a classic.

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Photo of timfc
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

I was walking through SF and came upon a small corner bottle-shop. I went inside and, WTF?!? It was like a beer mecca (there's irony here people); where things I'd only heard about were just sitting on the shelf waiting for someone to purchase. Why, there's a Black Albert, sure, I'll take one. Oh, a Supplication? I would love one...

Have I mentioned that I like sours?

No, well...

I don't know how to put into words the level of love that I have for this beer. It's perfectly balanced, it's got amazing depth, the barrel, the cherries, oh my...

Right, tell you why I like the beer: it's simply one of the best examples of a barrel aged sour beer that exists. The flavor is slightly fruity, puckery, and has these amazing layers that just keep coming. It's one of the best beers that I ever had. I disconnected my analytical beer drinking side, sat, and sipped thinking, "oh god" over and over. Not many beers allow me to do that.

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Photo of E1337JERK
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Best sour I've ever had the perfect combo of flavors. Great amounts of lactic acide balanced by cherry flavor tallowed up with the slightest hint of apple cider vinager. I think the brown malts mix great with the oak aging wish i could have this more than just a few times a year.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5


I've been enjoying the hell out of this beer since its release, so I thought it was time to review it. Bottled batch 004. The beer appears deep orange tinged ruby with a voluminous light beige head, excellent retention, and lots of scattered lacing.

The nose is redolent of tart cherries and lactic character, with a balancing sweet malt presence and apparent wood notes. The fruit is incredibly vibrant, a moderate acetic character is evident, and vanilla is subtle.

The flavor opens with tart cherry flesh and skins, segueing into a moderate lactic sourness and a slightly balancing malty sweetness. Acetic acid character is at a pleasantly restrained lower moderate level, adding balance rather than churning my stomach. Other fruit notes are of grapes and plums, but cherries are most prominent. The finish is tart and lightly tannic with a plethora of fruit and a drying woody sensation. Outstanding. The mouthfeel is dry and soft, with a fitting moderate level of carbonation.

I consumed a growler of batch 004 back in December, but I've been told that a different blend was put into bottles. I enjoy this even more than the first blend, if that's possible, and I shall drink up while the fruit is fresh.

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Photo of muttyd
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Golden amber with a thin white head.

S: Big brett presence with a fruity (cherries, apples, grapes) acidic undertone. This bottle is about one year old and the brett has really had the opportunity to dry this one out.

T: Spot on. Sweet malty brown ale with tart cherry, oak and brett funk. Some vinegar character as well. The one year on this beer has really put this beer into the 5/5 category for flavor.

M: Bubbly, sticky, and has a long sour finish.

D: Very drinkable, throughly enjoyed this one.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Pours a cloudy deep amber color with a 1 inch head that fades to a small cap. Moderate lacing on this one.

S - Smells like sour cherries and vinegarette. The smell made my mouth water. Very pungent.

T - Tastes of mouth-puckering cherries and wine grapes with a vinegar acidity. Very tasty.

M - This is a very carbonated beer and the bubbles kept coming during the whole 30 minutes it took me to savor this beer. The beer has a sort of bubbly coating effect in the mouth.

D - VERY good. Yes, this is mouth-puckering sour but it is a dry taste and very refreshing at the same time.

The one small bottle I purchased was $12.50, so it is somewhat pricey. However, this is a beer I can see myself buying plenty more of in the future on special occasions.

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Photo of wordemupg
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

375ml corked and caged bottle poured into tulip 17/4/12 batch 007 even James Bond would put down the shaker for a glass of this one

A great dark reddish amber with so many bubbles I can't tell if there going up or down, this one is very much alive, two fingers of light tan head hold on for a little while stopping at a well retained thin film that doesn't allow you to see the liquid, just a few random dots of lace

S right out of the bottle as I pour I get some woody vinous notes, the funk is mild and blends in perfectly with the oak and some sour strawberry and cherry, there's a little vinegar and cider notes but everything just blends together so well after a few minuets I struggle to pin point anything it all just meshes together, what amazing stuff

T it mimics the smell very well thankfully, one second I'm getting some oaked vinous notes, then it morphs to sour cherry and the next sip the funk comes out to play, just wonderful stuff

M sour but not turning my mouth inside out, plenty of pin prick bubbles no doubt about that, leaves the mouth a little slick, and a little cherry vinegar lingers

O an epiphany in a glass of beer? this one's an eye opener for me, what else in life have I been missing out on?

This ones changed the way I look at sours, such a well made brew, many things needed to happen in just the right proportion and order to make this what it is. On top of that it also needed to be well packaged and sent to me by the most generous and awesome Rutager

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Photo of rfbenavi80
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Batch 10. Poured into a tulip.

A- Pours a cloudy burnt orange amber color, with 3 fingers tan head that leaves some nice lacing as it goes down.

S- Smells very vinous. Sour grapes, and tart apples add a fruitiness to it. Mild funk factor. An extremely aromatic beer.

T- Tart, sour, cherries hit first followed by a pleasant earthy taste. This is unlike any beer I have ever had. A wonderful sour mixed correctly with wine characteristics as so they both compliment each other. Well done.

M- Lively carbonation dances on the tongue, for a short time upon drinking. Nice dry finish with sticky flavors.

O- Very impressed. Russian River is successful in merging the fine characteristics of wine to the fine characteristics of beer. A must try sour. Glad I have another bottle.

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Photo of jm1229
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
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.

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Photo of Radiodred
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Russian River, if you see, it you grab it, its great on tap or in a bottle.
The creativity and perfection on this brew is amazing. I nice tasting brew... some sweet and sour/tart, with a nice bubbling effect for your mouth.
Its worth the hunt, go get one.

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Photo of patm1986
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at several locations, including the RR Brewpub earlier this month, multiple bottles, and even from a growler--thank you isaac newton's--and the beer has remarkable consistency both in and out of the bottle each time.

This is from bottle batch 006.

Ruby. Crimson. Beautiful deep reddish-brown when swirled in some light. Mellow, light brown head, thin and faint in retention.

smells of mild oak wood, sweet tart, smoke, mild pepper, raspberry/cherry. pungent stench in general with a little stinky cheese funk, like a goat brie.

sooo goood. good god, man. lemon and berry tartness. sooo tart. a faint amount of something smoky and oaky, then tart again. it just tickles the sides of your cheeks. fruit, barrel, funk, fresh. damn.

easy drinking. with how sour this beer is, and after the initial tart-shock, it's amazingly smooth. love in a glass. sheer love.

absolutely fantastic. i hear a lot of complaints about the pricing on this one--14.30 total for mine--but it's unique and exquisite, and sitting on a glass for an hour ingesting its complexities is worth any 6- or 4-pack or anything in the vein of being more economical in comparison in that same frame. it reflects the wildly fermented lambics and guezes of belgium with a twist of sonoma homeland love. it's pure insanity that this beer could serve as an introduction to "sours," all the while standing head and shoulders among most others toward which it'd lead you. beauty.

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Photo of wd40
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Batch 005x2

A really exceptional beer as I have come to expect from Russian River, especially their wild ales.

The appearance is a dark and slightly hazy honey-amber without much lasting head.

It smells of pear and apples when first poured, and once the carbonation calms down a little, then the sour cherries emerge.

The taste has a bright acidic quality from the sourness, but also a sweet earthy balance from the pinot noir oak barrels.

The mouthfeel is very good, although not quite as spectacular as some of RR other brews. The carbonation isn't harsh, but it's not as soft and fuzzy as say their Pliny. Still excellent though.

Very drinkable beer despite having a wet finish of lingering pinot noir and cherries.

A very satisfying beer that has both the bright acidity of Temptation and the sweet complexity of Consecration. Liquid awesomeness.

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Photo of IceAce
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

375ml bottle labeled 'Batch 001'

Immediately upon uncorking, the nose became most evident. Chardonnay tone from a distance, saison/gueze-like up close with a formidable Bret presence as well as sour cherries and Belgian yeast. Simply exceptional.

Reddish/orange body capped with a full finger of tiny-bubbled white foam with decent clarity for an unfiltered offering.

Silky carbonation tickles the underside of the tongue upon entryand the sour cherries are the first impression...quickly overtaken by the funky Bret and an unmistakable dryness on the center/rear of the tongue. Layer after layer of funky Bret, sweet fruits, and oak inspired dryness constitute the midtaste.

Mouthfeel is light and airey and the finish champagne dry with the funk of Bret and other bacilli lingering long after the swallow.

As this brew warms it becomes even funkier...simply out of this world!!!

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Photo of JustinMatthew
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

At the Hulmeville Inn's Russian River & Taco Bonanza.

On tap poured into a 10oz goblet. Pours a reddish amber in color with no head whatsoever and no sediment. Smell is faint but of mild vinegar and sweetness. taste is of potent vinegar and oaky vanilla. A little bit of cherry coming through not much tho. Not much lingering at all. Love sours and this is one of my favorites!

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Photo of Morris729
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy deep orange amber color with a tall foamy off-white head that settles into a creamy lace. Sour cherries dominate the nose along with additional notes of sweet malt, leather, wet wood, and a barnyard / horse blanket funk. Quite “sniffable” actually. Taste is sweet lightly toasted malt and a bit of brown sugar delicately balanced by a tart cherry sourness along with a wild yeastiness and an earthy woodiness. Notes of oak and vanilla are detectable in the background. This was a real treat to drink—I only wish I had more than the one bottle.

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Photo of oakbluff
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Batch 3- poured into a RR barrel glass in celebration of a shitty week at work and my washing machine breaking today. Yee ha. Pours a orange amber colour, with reasonable clarity. Frothy one finger vanilla coloured head with good lacing. Nose- cherry, wood, musty, sour and just damn inviting. Taste- sublime lacto sourness, citric zing, and green apples. Very dry, earthy and woody finish. This brew has dried out quite a bit since the last time I've had one. The cherries are more of a complementary player than in the forefront which is fine by me. Drinkability is superb and the spritzy carbonation dances across the tongue. Very well crafted brew.

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Photo of schmoopsbeer
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from bottle to my RR goblet
Batch 5

Color: A hazy copper color with hints of brown at the core of this beer. A nice nickle sized head forms of the off white color. A good amount of lacing is left behind in the glass.

Nose: Complex and intense! Tart cherries hit first followed by hints off oak and wild yeast funk.
Rounding off the aroma of this beer are apples and a slight vinegar smell.

Palate: An amazing mouth feel. Sour/tart with a great level of carbonation. The cherries coat the tongue and are then washed away by earthy tones and barnyard flavors.

Finish: Wow! Dry and complex. An immaculate beer that offers plenty of texture and surprises. One of the better beers in the world.

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Photo of hopfacebrew
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Picked up the last bottle on the shelf at a random store for under $10? What!? Batch 009. Wondered if something was wrong with it, but for the price I was willing to find out. Poured to Duvel tulip the beer is a beautiful ruby amber with a thin white head, some retention, some lacing. Looks great for a beer aged 15 months in pinot barrels. The nose is even better, nice cherry, apple, pear fruit character mixes with with a mild brett funk, sour tartness. I don't know how this could be more inviting. The flavor is complex and perfect, really. Tart sourness at first that blends to a mild sour cherry to lightly bitter caramel with a light biscuity background. So much flavor, so much going on, it's amazing this comes together so well. Phenomenal. Good carbonation and medium to full bodied. Overall, this beer is classic. I think I am in love. I won't wait so long between bottles next time as I forgot how memorable this is.

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Photo of icepik
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: dark amber color, slight chill haze, almost no head.

S: Fruity aroma of cherries, wood and sourness, wow!.

T: Very nice sour – tart flavor with cherries, complex, yet very smooth, has a refreshing astringent flavor. Love this!

M: high carbonation, bubbly mouth feel.

O: This is a great sour!

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Supplication from Russian River Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 1,378 ratings.