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Toronado 20th Anniversary Ale - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Toronado 20th Anniversary AleToronado 20th Anniversary Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

152 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 152
Reviews: 94
rAvg: 4.39
pDev: 8.88%
Wants: 477
Gots: 16 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  10.43% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: MiScusi on 08-10-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Toronado 20th Anniversary Ale is a blend of five different beers:

Belgian style Quadruple aged in Firestone Walker (used) Double Barrel Ale barrels
Belgian style Strong Dark Ale – batch A in red wine barrels
Belgian style Strong Dark Ale – batch B in red wine barrels
Belgian style Pale Ale aged in wine barrels with Brett
Sonambic 100% spontaneously fermented ale – (Used to add acidity to the beer)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view more.
Ratings: 152 | Reviews: 94
Reviews by kkipple:
Photo of kkipple
4.54/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Review # 575 is as good a time as any to post this one I guess.

Mad respect to Craytonic for cracking this one ("For your birthday") a whole month after my actual birthday. Consumed from an immaculate bottle on 11/12/2010 at one of those tastings you've heard so much about. Split 3 ways and poured into my veteran Tripel Karmeliet mini goblet.

A. Haandbakkish deep red with a a dash of burgundy brown. 2 centimeter uneven head stays low. Adequate carbonation in the bottle, still. Decent retention. But you didn't come to read about how this beer looks, did you?

S. Since the comparison to Consecration / Haandbakk (same beer, do a side by side sometime) is inevitable, let's get that out of the way right now. This does have the same big "red" sour grape notes and plenty of barrel, as its lesser brethren, but Toronado 20 seems fuller and more malt-rich, sweeter and denser. A hint of metallic twang is the only real misstep here, and easily ignored in the rush of oaked sour complexity. Excellent nose here - bold and berry and rich with plenty of the classic Russian River "house" character you all love. It all works wonderfully well and is a delight to smell.

T. Big! Huge! Reminds me at once of a massive Cabernet, tons of sour cherry & other esters fills the mouth and is held aloft for a very long time with an oaky, vinous, and woody pep... not to mention the heavy, yet never overwhelming, funk. This is an excellent example of a sour with balance, and still maintains a good amount of honest-to-Pete malt spine. Quite probably the highest ABV and richest sour I've had to date, yet it never gets old.

M / D. Very full in the mouth, not *quite* 'creamy', but dense and invasive all the same. Carbonation level is quite good still and the finish is a rolling wave of sour cherry, barrel notes, and lip-smacking tartness that fades softly away. The 10+% abv is barely to be noticed here.

Bottom Line: Toronado 20 is a tremendous American sour, and you are very fortunate if you have one. BUT - and this is where the rubber meets the road for most mortals here - in my very personal opinion, I would not put forth the effort and cash to acquire one this late in the game. Why? Simply for the reason that the several hundred dollars you'll wind up spending on this beer could really get you a few cases of world-class sours from Cantillion, Fantome, Captain Lawrence, HaandBryggeriet, Cascade, etc.

Here's hoping Russian River makes this sort of thing again - surely one of the best beers I've had from them, and that's saying a lot.

More User Reviews:
Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beer review from BA Mag Nov 2007.

Brewed for Toronado's big 20--a famous beer bar in San Francisco--this brew started as a blend of 5 different barrel-aging beers with Brettanomyces and other micro-funk. The final blend was done by brewer Vinnie Cilurzo and Toronado owner David Keene, and then finally re-fermented in the bottle.

Pours a dark brown/amber beer, topped with an ultra-fine, creamy white lice with legs--the lacing is pretty amazing. A bit medicinal in the nose, but soft and pleasant, with an underlying woody oak aroma and suggestions of fruit--cherries and pears, perhaps--and hint of buttery caramel. Even smoother on the palate than it looks with a fizzing build-up to a luscious creaminess. Fairly light bodied. Tart up-front and intensely oaky and acidic, but this is pushed back, balanced, and complemented by a sweet-n-sour cherry flavor, plum, nectarine, and a slight caramel sweetness that folds in and out. Dry overall, tannic and quite vinous at times. Yeasty spice, a linger of oaky wood, and some pear grit in the finish.

Simply sublime. The end.

Photo of ggaughan
4.97/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle shared with friends and family at a tasting party we had. The beer poured a nice amber color, clear, with a solid head that gave way to a solid ring on the edge. The nose had some funky notes, refreshing. The taste was an excellent mix of sour, tart but also a strong Belgian strong ale presence. After this beer warmed up a bit, more complex tastes came out and just added to the pleasure of drinking this fine beer. Out of all of the RR beers I love, this one is right at the top and if I had a few more bottles, it would probably be on top.

Photo of beerfan99
4.47/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Toronado San Francisco
Russian River 'tion night 2011

A: Dark red in color and clear. Carbonated enough to create a small white head, which was gone by the time I made it back to my seat.

S: Very strong earthy aromas, oak being the most prevalent. Of course, the expected Russian River sour aroma is definitely there.

T: Outstanding taste. Fills the mouth with sour, oaky, and a small fruity taste in the background. Obviously compares a little to Consecration, which I have been drinking for years. However, this is quite different. I think this beer is better balanced. Taste is long lasting.

M: Medium bodied with perfect level of carbonation. Sour and tart finish leaves the mouth on the dry side.

O: An extremely rare beer that I was lucky to have. There was only one sixtel of this beer at Toronado SF Russian River 'tion night 2011 and a big line to get it. It didn't have a chance and only lasted about 20 minutes. This beer definitely lived up to its hype and I would love the chance to have it again.

Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.23/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Never thought I'd get to try this one... but alas... Opened at a tasting 5/29/10. 4oz. pour from a 750ml corked and caged bottle into a snifter. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a 1/2 finger semi-coarse off-white head with great retention. Beer is a cloudy reddish-clay. Lacing is patchy and supple and with great cling.

S: Nose is cherry, wood, funk, peat, and a slight ethanol in the background. There's not that much going on here which surprises me, but the flavors that do come through are very clean and crisp even after all that time.

T: Great balance here. Cherries, raspberries, and other red fruits with a slight woody overtone. Tartness throughout with a building spiciness from the carbonation at the end. Yeasty bitterness accents the finish along with a tiny bit of booziness.

M: Light to medium bodied, superbly carbonated, and incredibly lively. Its like a party in my mouth! Beer is slightly dry and finishes clean. Aftertaste is near non-existant. At 10.43% this beer doesn't drink anywhere near as boozy as its abv. Instead, it's light and carbonated enough so that the nuances of all the flavors are still relatively easy to detect.

D: Again, I'm thankful to have had a chance to try this. Having said that though, even though the beer is very solid with great flavor, spot-on feel, and a thoroughly pleasant nose... it was a bit of a disappointment. A joy to have for sure and I'd no doubt jump at the chance to try it again, but at the end of the day, not worth the trouble. Try it if you get to but don't be too disappointed if you dont.

Photo of mikey711
4.13/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Opened today at a tasting. Thanks to brianbrick for hooking me up with this bottle.

A: Very nice clarity and slightly ruby in color, looks a little like apple cider. Very nice carbonation on it with a nice lingering ring at the.

S: Tart notes of cherry to start. Very mellow funkiness and some wood as well. There is also a bit of heat going on in the nose

T: Acidic up front then tending into some ripened cherries and raspberries. Some citric tartness. Some great wood notes, a touch of vanilla. Some wine notes

M: Prickly carbonation feel. definitely a fusal alcohol note but for the most part it is mellow.

D: Very happy to have tried this beer as i may never have the opportunity to do so again. The sourness is very mellow at this point and im sure if i could handle more of this.

Photo of nickd717
4.2/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into flute (glass, not the instrument) at Toronado for Belgian-Inspired beer dinner.

A - Nice cloudy reddish-brown color with an off-white head.

S - Brett, tart, funk, figs, and wood.

T - Very complex. Dark fruit, figs and berries, red wine, lots of oak and some vanilla. Very good, but not as intense and flavorful as the Consecration Batch 1 I had next to this. More complexity than Consecration though.

M - Medium body with a smooth finish despite the tartness. Mild sour bite.

D - Pretty drinkable for a sour ale. This is a shame because it's gone quickly and from what I hear, bottles are now being priced in the triple digits (cough, ripoff, cough!).

Overall, nice and complex, but not quite as much of a standout as I was expecting.

Photo of MiScusi
4.4/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Russian River pub. The chalkboard said 9.93% alcohol, but the website says 10 and the bottle says something else. This beer poured a dark but fairly clear brownish-red. A light but frothy finger head sat on top with ok retention. Very good lacing as well. The smell was tart, grapes, maybe a bit of sour cherry. The taste was almost exactly like the pinot noir barrel aged Supplication. However the blend gave this one a little more body and a little less acidity, though it is still quite tart and acidic. That little bigger body gave it a nice mouthfeel, still light and spritzy but not as harsh. A very nice beer to drink though the acid gets to me after a while.

I didn't read the flyer they had posted about this by the bar, so I'm not sure what beers went into the blend but my best guess would be that Supplication was the biggest part.

Photo of davod23
4.71/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

My only bottle of this, drank with the girlfriend at midnight of our one year anniversary. No better time to finally open this one. Poured into my Russian River glass.

Beautiful dark golden color, ruby highlights. Positively glows in the light under the proper angle. A small off-white head forms and persists for a couple minutes, but eventually dissipates. Outstanding clarity. This is a great looking beer.

Sweet cherries, oak, brett, a bit of barnyard, and a touch of vanilla in the nose. Nice.

The taste is much like the smell, only amplified. This beer explodes on the palate. A blast of sweet and sour cherries, vanilla, oak, other dried fruit (prunes?). Though sour, not nearly as sour as other Russian River beers I've had (i.e., Beatification). This beer actually has a sweetness mid-palate. I usually like my wild ales to be bracingly sour; this beer is not quite there, and yet I'm not disappointed in the least.

Mouthfeel is excellent. Slick, medium-bodied, with a lingering sticky finish.

Drinkability is just too much. This is way, way too easy to drink. My glass is almost gone and it's been way too quick. Over 10% abv? Ha, I almost cannot believe that.

This beer is awesome. It's exceptionally well done. Perhaps the only Russian River sour I've enjoyed more was a batch 3 Temptation. Consecration reminds me of this beer, but only when it's at its best. Highly recommended, if you can possibly get your hands on it.

Photo of akorsak
4.47/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 750 mL corked and caged bottle shared with Spacecoyote, BankerJoe and others in the parking lot at Weyerbacher Brewing.

A: The ale is a dark red-brown ale, opaque due to the color and some sediment throughout. A finger of head emerged on the pour.

S: The aroma is quite tart, sour with a black cherry undertone that had some vanilla throughout. Thar tartness is much stronger here than in Cable Car.

T: The brett is not afraid to dominate the taste, jabbing at the tastebuds with an intense funk that causes a partial pucker. Dark fruits run rampant, black cherries and raisins, with a surprising amount of lighter fruits, including apricots and touches of grapefruit (from the tartness, not the hops). Green grapes and apples also pop up throughout. The tartness is the lasting memory of this beer.

M: Delicious! The funk and fruitiness are palate-appeasing.

D: Even at an abv over 10%, this beer is a great drink. The tartness doesn't overwhelm the tastebuds but is strong enough to please you. A million thanks to Spacecoyote.

Photo of abfraser
4.92/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this had Toronado's Russian River night on 2/10. This one is about as perfect a sour as I've ever had.

A: Beautiful brownish red with a nice thin white head.

S: Amazing. Clean sour aromas, no sweaty socks here. A little aged lambic style aromas too. Dark fruits also very prominent, including cherries and currants. I could sniff this stuff all night...

T/M: And drink it all night too. This is an awesome beer. Extremely well-balanced, with sour fruit and nice acidity. I'm really impressed by how clean the flavors are here.

D: Unbelievably drinkable. I can't tell where the alcohol is. The $50 price tag was exorbitant, but I'm selfishly happy that they didn't allow bottles out the door as it gave me the opportunity to try it.

Photo of hoppymcgee
3.93/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to mikey711 for sharing this at an epic tasting on 5/29/10. Poured approx. 4oz. from a 750ml bottle into a small snifter.

A: Brown-red-orange blend, not much head but this beer does not stop fizzing.

S: Cherry forward, not medicinal but candy-like and sweet. A little booze still comes through.

T: Tart and funky, leathery, a little raspberry in the backbone. Not as complex as I hoped.

M: Overly carbonated, prickly, dry finish.

D: With so much carbonation and such a high ABV for a sour, this one is not all that drinkable.

Overall, I see a little conundrum with this beer - it's apparent that it can handle age in the carbonation and ABV department, but not country of origin department. American sours just do not hold up like European sours. In my opinion, they almost all taste the same after enough time.

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.85/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ditmier asked me if I was in... I say, "Uhhh... Fuck Yeah!!" We shared this with the boys about a month ago.. reviewed from pretty good notes.

Pours hazy orange.. okay white head flecked with tan yeast globs..

Nose shows a bunch of fruit and funk.. lemony, apricot and lite pear with good sour notes... hints of chardonnay.. Though everything seems really flat and just doesn't gel.

Flavor is brett and some Belgian phenols with a bright tartness.. green apple .. I get some sour cherry with barrel tannins.. more malt presence than I was expecting.. vinous elements let you know it has some woody backbone.. complex I guess.. but seems pretty flimsy.

No alcohol and a surprising body with good everpresent small bubble carbonation.

Wow.. My mind had built this one up waaaay too much. Good.. arguing with great, but in nooo way world class. I know that time can sap a sour's potential, but the Toronado was no where near as good as I was hoping. I will drink my Supplication bottles with Gusto from now on, they are much better than the fabled Toronado 20th (I still wanna try a tap sample :-)

There is nothing wrong really, it is just a pretty well made big boned sour that hides the alcohol well. It is never going to fart rainbows or rewrite Shakespeare... Despite the great chance to try this Whale (probably my top whale to this point), I wish I still had my share of the trade back. Thanks Eric for making this happen, I know you did it for me.

3.5/3.5/4/4/4

Photo of largadeer
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear reddish-brown with two fingers of head that lasted the entire hour I sipped on this.

Smell: Tart and very oaky with a backbone of funk. There's a ton of barrel character here; vanilla, toffee and a hint of red wine. Incredible complexity.

Taste & mouthfeel: Sour up-front but not overly so. While it's on the dry side, there's a hint of caramel and vanilla sweetness from the oak along with a strong tannic presence. Fruity flavors (cherry, plum) mix nicely with the oak and funk, making for a beer of incredible depth and balance.

Notes: Enjoyed this one at Toronado's 21st anniversary party. Among all the amazing beers I tried that day this stood out as the best.

Jan 2011 update: While still good, this beer has fallen off quite a bit.

Photo of NittanyBeerFan
4.75/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Trey (treyrab) brought this out to kick off our Pittsburgh tasting that was supposed to up the ante even from our Philly tasting earlier this year. Poured this into a tulip.

The body is a dull brick red with a hazy translucent quality. It is capped beautifully by a thick and creamy head that is more reminiscent of a stout than it is a 10.4% wild ale. The retention is unlike any sour I have ever seen. Lacing comes in a thick wall along the back of the glass with a large parabolic ring complemented by spotty gobs of foam in front.

Prominent aromas of white grapes and a dry funk that is closer to the aroma of a spontaneous fermentation than any American sour that I have tried. This is certainly not easy for any American brewer to accomplish. There are esters of alcohol, but not any astringent aromas. On the palate, the depth of this beer really shines. Bitter and dry cocoa powder, red vinous notes, lemon zest, and a geuze-like earthiness spring to the forefront. There is a strong presence of oakey tannins, but very little vanilla to be found, despite the barrel aging.

The feel is much like the appearance would insinuate...a creamy, medium consistency, full-bodied drink. This is a home run, as there isn't even a touch of the 10+% alcohol. The sourness is nicely balanced by the natural funk that, as I said before, really impressed me. This is definitely one of the top American-made sours, and I wish that it was easier to come by.

Photo of oline73
4.05/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was lucky enough to get to try this one at the DC Lost Abbey Tasting. Poured into a 5.5 oz. snifter.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy reddish amber with a very thin ring of off white carbonation.

Smell: Like a flanders red or an oude bruin. Vinegar and tart berries with a touch of sweetness.

Taste: Quite tart with red berry sourness and some oaky wine notes. There is a sweetness from the malt along with a mild vinegar note. There is a funk in the finish and it gets more sour as you progress through the sip.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with very aggressive tingly carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: This is a very complex sour. It seems to have held up well, but I've never had it before. Consensus was this one reminded us of consecration.

Photo of pepsican
4.35/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Murky brown/amber pour with a thin white head. Aroma was heavy oak, caramel, toffee. Flavor was caramel, toffee, wine tannins, vanilla, oak, rum, limes, flower, butter, booze, maple syrup, lemons. I'm serious. Sour, dry finish. This was oddly complex with a ton of things jumping out at me and throughout the experience. Very complex but somehow pulls itself together just enough. Very good!

Photo of jwolfie70
4.7/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Shared a bottle of this with some friends. Poured an amber reddish brown, with a good size white head. The beer had a fair amount of carbonation, but was not too carbonated. The smell and taste were both exceedingly complex, with a funky spoiled fruit aroma/taste mixing with a sour cherry/citrus. Probably my favorite wild ale to date, and a must try if you ever have an opportunity.

It hides the alcohol very well, and was surprised to learn how strong it actually was.

Photo of thickerfreakness
4.72/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Many, many thanks to bgramer for meeting up and sharing this with me while he was in Houston. Pours a hazy ruby color with an eggshell head that never faded away completely and left some awesome lacing. Aroma had big funk at forefront, some pepper and oak; slight berries, tart grapes, cherries, green apple; as it warmed there was a slight buttery/creamy note, some brown sugar and some grape juice. Flavor was bleu cheese and sharp oaky tannins at first; cherry, blueberry, peppery; as it warmed strawberry and sherry became present for me. The aftertaste seemed like a bit of candied brown sugar with butter. Full bodied carbonation with a slightly slick finish. Mineral like water qualities and a slight bit of alcohol as it warms. Overall this was an amazing experience of a beer.

Photo of Habmike
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to craytonic for opening this whale in honor of kkipple's birthday.

Light head and retention with hues of brick and burgundy. Not much clarity.

Light funk and tart aroma. Not powerful. Similar to consecration. Like a more malty consecration nose.

Dark fruit notes and an easily quaffable tartness. Light carbonation and very low booziness. 10.43%???

Excellent creamy mouth with a smooth flow of carbonation. Not a sizzle or a snap just a flow.

I'm sure I could drink loads of this its just kinda tough to get my hands on it!

Photo of Thorpe429
4.47/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle at the DC Lambic & Sour Tasting on April 14, 2012. Served in a Russian River TION goblet. Big thanks to Brad for bringing out this long-time want of mine.

Pours a clear amber-red with a small off-white head with pretty good retention. Average lacing on the way down as it makes its way to a collar.

The nose carries some really nice cherry and earth notes with a touch of port and vinous red-wine character in the background. A touch of woodiness to it as well.

The flavor continues down that path with a nice mix of earth, cherry, black currant, and light plum, resulting in something that's reminiscent of some red wines.

Long duration with moderately-heavy acidity and light-to-moderate funk. Medium body with a slight chewiness to it. Carbonation is average. Finish is dry.

Really an excellent beer and its complexity has withstood the test of time. After having this, I'm all the more motivated to seek out T25 this summer. Vinnie can really do some great things with wild ales.

Photo of grub
4.63/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

jgaston deserves huge thanks for helping me to aquire this one. thanks andy!

750ml bottle, (barely) corked and caged. sampled sept 1/08.

the plan with this bottle was to bring it home and share it with several people at a tasting this fall. however, when i got it i found that the cage had slipped up over the main lip of the bottle and the cork was already more than half out. as a result, we really didn't think this would stand up to a plane ride home and had to drink it in california. a good thing too - as soon as i gave the cage a single twist the wire snapped and the cork popped right out. andy also said that mine was in better shape than the bottle he purchased for himself. be careful if you have one of these in the cellar...you might want to check how it's holding up.

pours hazy red-brown with a big bubbly tan head. the head drops fairly slow and leaves tons of lace behind.

aroma is great. bit of butter. big malt vinegar and a bit of lemon. leather. green tobacco leaves. bread and cracker. sour cherry. dried cranberry. touch of date. bit of vanilla. bit of toasty character too.

taste is great. solid bready malt base. bit of cracker. malt vinegar and lemon, but restrained so the other elements can still come through. nice mix of fruity character too - sour cherry, date, bit of fig, dried cranberry. bit of horse blanket. leather. touch of light citrus. hint of alcohol.

mouthfeel is great. medium-high fairly well integrated carbonation. medium body with a dry finish.

drinkability is excellent. excellent brown ale/sour balance. the alcohol is very well hidden for such a big beer. great stuff that i wish i had more of!

Photo of hopdog
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle (tasted at a gathering and a bottle acquired in a trade).

Poured a dark and muddy amberish / brownish color with a small sized off white head. Aromas of yeast, funk, brett, wood, citrus, and vanilla. Tastes of vanilla, oaky woodiness, yeast, vanilla, nutty, and some grapes.

Notes from and tasted on 12/16/07

Photo of AgentZero
4.17/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to madorb for sharing this at our Epic Chicago Tasting.

A - A very dark, rusty red, almost brown. Nice head that dissipated very quickly to basically just a thing ring. Bit of bubbles, but looks slightly undercarbonated.

S - A funky smelling sour, a lot darker than I was expecting. Nice amount of brett funk on this one adds a lot of depth to this smell.

T - Huge wood influence on this one. If this is a sour it reminds me a lot of a flanders red or olde bruin. Lot of meat on the bones of this one, really hefty sour with a lot of breadth on it. Lot of brett funk mixed in with the sourness on this one.

M - Really full bodied for a sour. Slightly less than moderate carbonation.

D - Slightly on the lower side of drinkability for a sour, but that balances out when you realize this one is over 10+%. A good sour that was supposedly better when it was fresher. Not the best ever, but a good one I am glad I got to try.

Photo of AleWatcher
3.53/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed from notes-- still trying to get caught up!

Petesphi sent me this because Vinnie gave him a bottle and Al had already tried it. He posted that he wanted to find a tasting group that wanted it, and we were lucky enough to get it. Shared with several Ba's at my house a few months back.

Dark dark color... like a copper/amber red. It opened with a big pop, but it didn't gush. nice two finger frothy head has remained and leaves amazing sheet of bubbles in the legs and some spots of lace cling behind.
It's acidic. It has a nose like thick dark candied sugar as well as some vinegar and a possible touch of oxidation. This is being opened up at an epic tasting with many whales and this one just seems to fall a bit short of some of the best beers of the night-- and that I've had prior.

I get a weird peppery note on the finish-- it's like dried blackpepper... there is also a little boozy alcohol warmth back there too. Could there be cinnamon here? This is the damndest thing.

There is good carbonation, and yet this comes across as a bit syrupy.

Overall-- I'm glad to be able to try this beer, but I am missing out on the reason for all the hype. I would not go too crazy looking for a bottle in the future!

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Toronado 20th Anniversary Ale from Russian River Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 152 ratings.