Compunction - Russian River Brewing Company

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CompunctionCompunction

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

78 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 78
Hads: 220
rAvg: 4.37
pDev: 4.81%
Wants: 353
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: clickpush on 04-01-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 78 | Hads: 220
Photo of ggaughan
4.7/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled with my cousin krkearney. Thanks keith. What a treat this is.

The beer poured a clear golden color with a thin but bubbly white head that stuck around for a bit. There was nice fruity (based on the pluots that are aged in this) aroma and some funky earthy tones as well. the taste is fruity up front, apricot maybe and tart throughout. This is another fine example of a wild ale from RR and I can't see anything wrong with this one. There is a lingering fruit taste that runs around the mouth and sticks on the tongue and some peppery notes that are mixed in as well. I think the plummy taste at the end is a nice finish to this fine beer. I really wish this made it to bottles but this sampling will do me for now. (727 characters)

Photo of mcallister
4.7/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes taken at DLD '08. Didn't know much about this beer when I bought it but must say it was the best beer I had on the four day beer excursion leading up to DLD.

Pours a clean golden color with a brillian white head holding hefty retention.

Aromas are fantastic and fruity with very sour almost vinegar like appeal. Apricot, hints of peach, pear and muscat grapes.

This beer just totally dominates the palate. Fresh sour tart flavors could almost be used as paint thinner (in a good way). Nice carbonation and a great 360 from all the stouts, barley wines and DIPA's I've had this weekend. A vinegar flavor in the middle full of ripe juicy fruits taste like it smells. A fabulous beer that I'm very happy I bought. (733 characters)

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.67/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip side by side w/ Cantillon Fou Fune at Beachwood's Sourfest '11. Nice orange color, less dense than the other. Great aroma, the pluots really came out (plum/apricot) and were complimented by a nice bretty aroma that wasn't noticeable in the appearance. Beautiful smelling stuff.

Epicly pungent sourness, yet a clean, dry and refreshing mouthfeel from it, sticks to the teeth, gets that squeaky thing going, like when you eat fresh cheese curds in Wisconsin. Really like sour blonde ales, the light body allows the fruit and sourness to jut out even further, but never being abrasive here. Mild oak component to it, the furthest thing you have to look for (but don't). (687 characters)

Photo of Ynot2
4.67/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brewery on 12/5/2010.

The color was a pale amber with a decent off white head.

The aromas are pretty full of citrus along with strong ripe apricot. There is a fairly strong hay funky smell going on that really rounds the aromas.

The taste is amazing. This is a sour, not mouth puckering, lemonny mouth drying sour, but more of a green grape, lemonade sour with slight hay aftertaste. The fruits really come through toward the end evening out the initial sour.

Moderate carbonation in the mouth.

More drinkable than Consecration. A nice smooth easy going sour. Will have more of this really good beer. (620 characters)

Photo of DovaliHops
4.67/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at T-25 weekend at RR. Pours a somewhat hazy dark orange color with a very small white head. Scent is absolutely fantastic. Very sour aromas with a good amount of funk. Some nice oaky aromas with tart apricot. I just learned what a pluot was, so I guess the apricot makes sense. Nice stone fruit aromas with some lovely barrel characteristics. Taste is just as fantastic! Great stone fruit flavors with intense sourness. If they had Temptation on draft, I would be able to do a side by side, but I'm almost positive this one is more sour. Funky yeasty flavors with nice oak and fruit. Mouthfeel is dry, light, and puckering. Drinkability is very high. Overall, one of RR's best beers. Wish they would bottle this one. Had it side by side with T-25, and although I really enjoyed both, Compunction is the better beer IMO. (827 characters)

Photo of OStrungT
4.65/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a cloudy orange color, with pretty much no head. What little head that was present was slightly off white. It left some off white leace on the glass.

This beer has a sour aroma. It smells of tart fruit. It has a slight viniger aroma as well, but the viniger aroma certainly did not detract from this beer. I could also smells a slightly spicy aroma when I looked hard.

This beer tastes just like it smells. Sour, with tart fruit and viniger. The slight spicy aroma I detected was present in the flavor as well.

This beer was highly carbonated, suiting the style. It left a sour aftertaste.

I am not sure this beer would make the best session beer. It is not high in alcohol, but it is sour, and aggressive.

Overall: I loved this beer, and could probably drink it all night. I wish this beer would be made more available. (843 characters)

Photo of Westsidethreat
4.65/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Just now getting my reviews for Stone Sour Fest into the old CPU.

A: Hazed hay colored brew with a medium off white head on top. Pretty straight forward.

S: Grapefruit, coins, limestone and pineapple.

T: Starts tangy like vine ripened green fruit. More tangy flavors, this time pineapple, starfruit and mango puree comes next. A beautiful brett wave crashes in, bringing with it apricot, peach, banana and yogurt flavors. Vitamin C crystals pop in the mouth, bursting with flavor. Finishes spicy with aspects of dried hay and floral yeast.

M: Medium body, hard water mouthfeel yet soft carbonation.

D: Superb. Simply tremendous. (633 characters)

Photo of Halcyondays
4.65/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On-tap at Beachwood I,

A: Pours a clear goldenrod with a light white head, good lace.

S: Strong pluot/apricot notes, stone fruit with a lot of lemon.

T: The stone fruit here is superb. The yeast adds more complexity with a hint of spice and fruity esters. Complex, very interesting with a strong undercurrent of lemon and lactic acid.

M: Medium-bodied, medium strong acid, well put together, but very easy to drink.

O: This is an impressive beer. It's delicious and thought provoking. Anyone who finds this on-tap needs to try it, this is what American Wild Ales are all about. (582 characters)

Photo of scottfrie
4.62/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Consumed at the brewery. Reviewed from notes.

A: Served a slightly hazy citrus-amber with a thin white collar of a head.
S: Sweet tart fruits, cranberries, currents and prunes. This has a fruit juice sweetness to it along with some vinous white grapes and a touch of citrus. Very delicious smelling.
T: Follows the nose with flavors of cranberries, plums, citrus and other fruits. The finish is full of sweet apricots and sweaty sock funk. The aftertaste has some citrus sourness to it and just a touch of lemon. As it warms more of the cheesey sock funk comes through.
M: Exceptionally clean mouthfeel, very refreshing with a manageable amount of sourness.
D: This one probably falls just after Temptation in the RRiver sourness scale. I really really hope they bottle it because I think this would do wonders with a little bit of age on it. One of the more uniquely flavored sours I've had. Well done! (905 characters)

Photo of rudylaw
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Another winner I tried on-tap at DLD.

I knew nothing about this beer before it was handed to me in line. It smells like vinegar. Really tart and fruity like the previous review stated. I also detected some melon as well.

Upon first sip, my lips puckered like alum. Holy cow is this sour. Easily the most sour beer I've had in a long, long while. But delicious! I had to pull back because I kept sipping and I needed to savor it.

I love tart everything and this was a tart beer. It was perfect after all of the heavy beers I had been drinking to stay warm before the sun came out. Kudos RR! (592 characters)

Photo of juhl31
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

-foggy, yet clear gold color. pours with a fluffy white head

-the sour lemon jumps out first, then the pluot rolls in. some banana and a bit of malt which is nice

-good tartness up front, then the fruits roll in - pluots, lemon in the back, the farmhouse taste finishes the in the aftertaste. some actual bitterness to it which is nice as well

-very dry with some tannin mouth as well

-wow this stuff is good. amazingly drinkable. i also like that it still has a lot of actual "beerness" to it. you still get maltiness and bitterness to it behind the wild ale forefront. have been back on a couple more occasions and couldnt pass this one up (645 characters)

Photo of younger35
4.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Tried this on tap at Dark Lord Day compliments of emerge077. I love Russian River and these wild sour ales are pretty much kick ass. Drank from a nice classy plastic cup (the way Vinnie intended).

Appearance- Pours a hazy golden yellow with a small bright white head that sticks around for quite a while. Leaves a decent cap and collar and some good lacing although it's hard to tell in on these stupid plastic cups.
Smell- Like you'd expect plenty of vinegary goodness stings the nostrils. Tart and fruity just the sharpness of the nose makes my mouth water. Light melon fruits such as watermelon and cantaloupe are the first thing that come to mind (it's hiding under all that twang but it's there!). Lightly funky and coarse (not as much as some) but not the focus like some other Russian River brews.
Taste- Wow, the smell prepared me for what was about to come but damn! Super sour and tart with a vinegar splash that puckers the lips. I thought it would be a bit fruitier but the amount of Brett in this badboy covers most of it up. It gets better as my mouth adjusts to the tart and the picks up a bit more. Something reminiscent of pomegranate and apricot are noticeable but all in all the acid dominates.
Mouthfeel- Medium to light body with sharp aggressive carbonation.
Drinkability- At first the beer is a little tart and is definitely a sipper. Once you adjust and the nuances begin to appear though it's a fantastic brew. Probably the most sour/tart brew that I've ever tasted and I loved it. Really tasty and a great beer that I'm glad I got to enjoy while waiting for my Dark Lord. (1,598 characters)

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.59/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So excited to try this. Shared at Starr's bday tasting.

A huge thanks to my buddy for the hookup on the sly. What an incredible gesture.

The beer is golden orange and mildly hazy with a soft head of broken bubbles. The aroma is fantastic, offering apricots, stone fruits, wild yeast. Smells like a fantastic Russian River beer. The flavor is distinctly Russian River. Well balanced and fantastic, with apricots and plums. Sour and tart, and very easy to drink. A very anticipated beer that definitely delivered. (513 characters)

Photo of BARFLYB
4.55/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On Tap at Monk's Cafe in Philly, what a place.

In the Tulip Compunction looks like a mix of bronze and a lighter blue shaded color. It's very dark in Monk's so that could be way off. a nice set of white bubbles that kinda die off. Smell is very fruity and somewhat acidic. Rockpile yeast and pluots, whatever those are. I do get alot of berry and some underlining malt with the warmth. This reminds me of supplication alot, only different fruit. the oak is big and the smell is lovely. Taste is really really good, I love it, just what Im looking for. berries mixed with pulots, apple skin, and a sourness that's is somewhat stingy and soothing if ya dig. A lot of oak and if i were to guess, pinot flavors from the barrel. Very similar to supplication again. the feel is at about medium and the carbonation is stiff yet not scorching. Very well rounded body You get a bit of everything towards the end. i had two glasses and could of easily drank more of it. Depending on the price of pulots, Vinnie should consider bottling this even if it is a small batch, I could see this doing something nice in a bottle. If you ever see this on tap, do yourself a favor. (1,161 characters)

Photo of starrdogg
4.54/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Geist for bringing this forbidden growler the tasting.

Beer pours a hazy golden orange with a thin white head. Smell is incredible - it's one of those sour/vinous beers that really gets my mouth watering. Flavor is fantastic as well. I don't get a ton of fruit, but the wine characteristics are excellent and it's very sour and awesome. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and quite nice. Overall, this is yet another awesome wine barrel aged sour from Russian River. These guys consistently roll out the best sours in the U.S. and this is another one in that vein. (572 characters)

Photo of flexabull
4.53/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I feel lucky that I got to try this last night.

Beer pours a crisp gold color with a faint head.

Aromas are dusty, tart, and with a fair sour fruitiness.

Reminds me of a lighter Supplication. It has a more dry flavor then Supplication. But it still has a very sour fruity character. It's certainly dry, as mentioned before. .. and it finishes with a tart, dusty, and with a puckering quality. Another complex and well put together Russian River Wild Ale.

Mouthfeel is top notch. Every time I try a Russian River beer, I am always reminded at how full and thick they feel in your mouth. Excellent!

Drinkability is WAY up there. This one easily competes with Temptation and Supplication. Great stuff! (703 characters)

Photo of DeanMoriarty
4.52/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on draft last week at Russian River Brewing Co. listed on their board as "Blonde Ale with Pluots (Apricot/Plum hybrid) aged in Chardonnay barrels . 5.80% ABV / 1.048 O.G / 25 BUs" for $4 -poured into a tulip glass.

A: Pours a slightly hazy blonde/apricot hue with a decent head that dissipates quickly leaving a ton of lacing in its tracks.

S: Smells like the forest - piney woody and earthy (from the chard barrels no doubt), some funk and fermented fruit.

T: Wow - this one's unique! Fresh cut lumber - sweet resinous earthy pine up front big time (from the barrels, not from the hop), some sour funk that mixes very well with the woody aspects, there's some peppery citrus in the mix as well, and right when you think the pluots were a waste of time, they come through strong at the end and linger in the aftertaste. Tastes like Nor-Cal for sure!

M: Light/medium-bodied, crisp, well carbonated lending the the dryness, extremely refreshing leaving a lingering lactic bitterness that is nice.

D: Extremely easy to drink. If you don't like the flavor of wood in your ale, you won't be diggin this one and may get sick of the dry oaky presence like my buddy did with his. I absolutely love it though and could session these no problem. (1,249 characters)

Photo of Lothore
4.52/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a deep golden color with a thin, off white head that fades quickly.

S- Very tart, ripe fruit, cranberry, lemon

T- Apricot and lemon up front leading to a fairly deep tartness.

M- Medium bodied with lots of carbonation.

D- This is an excellent sour and i'm glad I had the chance to try it. I would definitely order it again if I saw it on tap. (355 characters)

Photo of SpdKilz
4.5/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drove up seven hours to Sacramento to stay at Abel's (abecall98) in Sacramento this past Friday, then drove another two hours Saturday morning to go to Santa Rosa. I have heard about this beer for quite some time and am extremely pumped I was able to try it on tap.

Appearance - Poured into a standard tulip at the RR brew pub. Pours a wonderful golden hay color with less than a finger of head that dissipates relatively fast leaving slight lacing.

Smell - Woah! Tart! The smell of this immediately makes me realize this sour is different from the others Vinnie has made. Great barnyard funk, must, wet hay, and great tart fruits. This beer is making my mouth water way more than other RR sours!

Taste - "Drool"...wow. My mouth puckers up immediately with the initial sip. A very complex sour/wild ale. The barnyard funk hits the palate first which is followed almost immediately by the citrus fruits such as peaches, berries, and green apple. A bit more acidic than other RR sours out there but I really enjoy it. Finishes a hint dry. Wow.

Mouthfeel - lighter bodied, prickly carbonation, refreshing.

Drinkability - This one actually took me a while to drink, but that does not downplay it's drinkability. An amazing beer. Very glad I was able to try it. (1,261 characters)

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.5/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap @ Beachwood Sour Fest on days 1 & 2.

A: Pours a nearly clear pale yellow with a very fine white head and beautiful puzzle-like lace.

N: Fruity, oak, grass, and mild funk.

T: Stone fruits (yes, pluots) up front, oak tannins, floral notes. Complex tartness.

M: Prickly fine carbonation, dry finish.

O: Been wanting this and so glad to finally have tried it. Very good - wow. Thanks Gabe (and Vinnie). (410 characters)

Photo of DefenCorps
4.5/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Before I get to my review, this beer was the first Russian River beer as well as the first American Wild Ale I'd ever had. That was at Dark Lord Day 2008, where my reaction was "Man, that's sour" and I went back to drinking more imperial stout. Since then, I've had a fair number of RR beers and AWAs, and I'm curious to see what I think. Thanks, C-dogg.

Pouring a brilliantly clear light amber with a dense, frothy, off-white head, this beer looks pretty excellent. Some lacing is present as well.

The nose is absolutely fantastic. Clearly, Relative Brewing needs to work on how they fill growlers, 'cos this smells rather incredible. The RR pale sour base is immediately noticeable, with a moderate Temptation-like character with grass, hay and a moderate lactic character. There isn't much barrel character, at least not a wine barrel character. And then there's the fruit. Beautifully expressed, in some ways this reminds me of fresh Fou'foune. Having had a chance to travel through CA farm country earlier this Fall and sample 4-5 different varieties of pluots, this beer brings back memories. Fruity light plums, apricots, a mild floral character, this is pretty close to perfect. A touch of acetone (just a hair) rounds out the nose, and this is one of the few beers where I like it. Brett and funk character are mostly hay-like and part of me wonders if the mild floral character is a blend of both a tropical Brett character and the pluot.

The palate opens rather bracingly sour, surprisingly so, and more than I was expecting. Very clean with a blend of lemon and lactic acids, there's a moderate Bretty leather, dry and mildly musty. This leather character is rather surprising, given the rather pale base beer, but that's Brett for you. A touch of fruity pineapple is also present, along with a nice light-plum fruitiness in the mid-palate. Light in body with moderate carbonation, this beer finishes dry and a sour with a moderate acidic character. Acetone and acetic acids are really low here, and that's not surprising given Vinnie's history brewing sours. The fruit character isn't as strong as I was hoping, but it was still rather excellent, reminding me of a Fou'foune at 2-3 years. Again, that moderate leather character lingers on the finish, working quite well with the fruitiness, a combination that is unique. Some tannins are present too. Just a little slick on the finish as well. While the acidity is high, I can see myself going through a quart of this. Excellent stuff.

Ultimately, I ask myself - how does this compare to the other RR sours? I'd say that while it isn't as good as the better batches of Beatification, Temptation, Supplication or Consecration, it is still fantastic right out of the gate. In that regard, it beats out Temptation, which needs a few months to come into its own. I hope to god Vinnie bottles this, as it is something I'd love to try again. (2,903 characters)

Photo of DJButters
4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The pour significantly darker than its Sanctification counterpart. I had a pour of Sanctification prior to this pour of Compunction.

S: The nose starts off with lots of tannins from the oak and pluots. Significant amounts of sour fruit smell gets the salvation glands kicked in to high gear for what is coming.

T: Smooth for a sour beer - perhaps a bit too smooth. Lots of dry oak notes along with pluot/sour fruit notes. A mild acidity and less bitterness than San.

M: The body is medium with a moderate to high carbonation and a very crisp finish. Think green apple bite.

D: I will be back for more as I was very impressed. Watching the Chargers/Raiders game at the brewery left a sour taste in my mouth... but I think this beer was sourer. (752 characters)

Photo of oglmcdgl
4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at monks in philly after the rr dinner.

A- a small cap of off white head that settles rather quickly and leaves no lace. Deep pink red brown in color with some haze to it.

S- nice sharp sour hit and a good funky woody punch. Fruity and tart with some berries and grape notes.

T- opens up with a solid fruity sour and wet funky oak. surprisingly fruity with some berries and grape must. The oak keeps developing as it warms and really shows its depth.

M- a bit less then medium in body. Not heavy but brightly carbed with small bubbles. Awesome tannic semi dry quality.

O- another great sour from the man that can't brew a bad beer. For a non fruited wild ale the fruity character of the beer is impressive. I'm so glad I was able to enjoy this with by good bud onix1agr, rip little black. (805 characters)

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.45/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Been a while since I've had a new sour beer from Russian River. I, of course, have no objections.

Lactic tones are most prevalent on this one. Woody funky tones are in there also with a mildly fruity edge. There is a vibrancy that is nice also.

Gotta love the RR sours. This is in line with all the great ones. Makes your mouth pucker with a bit of dryness that might detract for some. (388 characters)

Photo of pmarlowe
4.44/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at O'Brien's RR TION Weekend. Chalice.

A: Golden, clear, some off white head. Not much retention or lacing except for a few dots.

S: Funk, malt, stone fruit, cantaloupe (?). Really inviting.

T: Apricot and other fruit. Nice puckering tartness. Juicy, like biting into a ... pluot? Some sweetness really pulls this

together. Some oak in the secondary. A long tart finish.

M: Medium body and lively medium-high carbonation.

O: Delicious and well executed. Highly drinkable. (485 characters)

Compunction from Russian River Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 78 ratings.