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Consecration - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,095 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 1,095
Hads: 4,846
Avg: 4.41
pDev: 20.18%
Wants: 1,627
Gots: 1,690 | FT: 125
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Gueuzedude on 10-31-2008

Belgian-style dark ale aged in American oak Cabernet Sauvignon barrels with currants.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 1,095 | Hads: 4,846
Photo of wyattshotmaker
4.08/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

i was pretty hyped up to try this. poured into a tulip, great color. not much head but that was expected.

nose is very earthy, dirt, leaves, touch of dark cherry/fruit.

very dry, dark fruit, bright acidity, touch of chocolate. mild oak, slight vinous character, earthy, vinous, touch of alcohol.

lower carbonation, fairly drinkable. might age my other bottle for a few years.

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Photo of Beaver13
4.07/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, batch 001x2. Pours a deep red brown with a fizzy off-white head that quickly diminishes to a thin collar that leaves some wispy lacing.

The aroma is tart sour fruits and musty yeast. Some sweet vinous fruits come out as it warms.

The flavor is big mouth puckering tart and sour fruits, some wood, with a musty yeast finish. It's a bit acidic. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with low yet sharp carbonation.

Overall, a pretty one-dimensional sour, but boy does it do the sour well. This is right up there with La Folie for my favorite sour.

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Photo of 05Harley
4.07/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 10/17/2010 (Bottle # 005X2E)

Purchased through High-Time Wine Cellars, Costa Mesa, Cali

Price - $11.97/bottle

Pours amber in color with a full head of foam that quickly fades to almost nothing. The clarity is clear with champagne like bubbles rising to the top. The appearance looks authentic to the style.

Hold the doors, I think Parliament just walked into the building led by none other than George Clinton himself. Wow that's got some vinegar funk to it.

A big blast of sour cherries hits the tongue head on followed by cranberries, white grapes and wine. The oak really comes through on this one and adds to the flavor profile. I can't believe this is 10%, wow!!

Puckering from the start but refreshing. Not as smooth as some of the other sours I've experienced. Medium body with a delicate amount of carbonation. In the end it's a little too dry to drink one after another for my tastebuds.

Overall a great example of the style and one I'm working to appreciate.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.07/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

375mL bottle served into an oversized tulip. November 2014 bottle.

Impressive rush of carbonation and head that fizzes and seems as if it will quickly recede, does, but then remains as a quarter finger of thick, light khaki-colored foam. Dark brown color with light amber hues. Fizzy carbonation visible. 4.75

From afar, I perceived some vinegary notes and they're there for sure on the nose, but accompanied by an oaky red wine aroma. Caramelized sugar factors in too. 4

Some vinegary qualities on the flavor too, but light and contained. Light hints of brown sugar and red wine are in the mix. 4

Tart and to some degree sour. Light vinegar and acidity. Drinks with a wine-like quality with a silky body and a dry finish. 4.25

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Photo of philbe311
4.07/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Popped open on the last night of vacation - Batch 004x4

A - One fingers worth of audibly fizzy light to medium tan head fades away in rapid succession... Blink and you may miss it... Zero lacing or collar... A translucent rich medium ruby red color... Scattered moderate carbonation throughout can be seen bursting through the top...

S - Exquisite and regal... Berries... Cherries, both sweet and tart... Cider like qualities... Touches of wood and leather... A very subtle hint of vanilla... Intoxicating....

T - Slightly tart fruit in the form of berries and cherries to start... Bursting with lactic acid... The pinot noir vinuous notes run a muck... A bit of funkiness... Quite intense... A bit of alcohol induced heat...

M - Medium bodied... Heavy... Slightly syrupy and sticky... Puckering... Minimal carbonation... Prickly... On the dry side of the ledger...

D - A serious sipper... The sour tartness is uber potent... Lots of depth and complexity... Teetering on overbearing... I really have mixed feelings on this after each sip...

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.07/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Cellar temp bottle poured into a snifter. BAtch number 002X1 which means it was bottled 3/30/2009.
The beer pours a rich chestnut with deep ruby highlights and fizzy beige colored head foaming up about 2 cm and fading to the thinnest of edge layers at a rapid pace.
Aroma is dominated by tart fruit, cherries and red grapes with some deeper raisin notes. I actually get a little bit of sweetness mixed in on the nose as well. No hops or ABV hits on the scent.
First sip reveals an average body with fine tingly carbonation. Easy drinking physical traits on this beer.
Flavor is tart and sour fruit through and through the sampling. I get red grapes and plums, unripe plums anyway. A little bit of sweet sugaryness but finishes very dry and tart after each swallow.
the 10% is well hidden by the tartness, making this beer go down a little quicker than may be advised.
A nice sour brew, a little one-dimensional, but it is what it is a fruity tart brew.
Definitely worth trying if you like mouth puckering beers!

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Photo of steve8robin
4.07/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Not a fan of sour ales, but have tried some that I enjoy. Might as well try one of the top rated. 375ml bottle, batch 005X2E...

A: A deep reddish brown with no head at all. Decent.

S: Smells of some very tart cherries upfront with a bit of bready rye and energy drink. Some very faint apple on the backend. Good.

T: Hmm, a nice tart cherry blended well with some sugary malts. A very nice blend here, not too over-sour. An earthy breadiness to this one in the middle with some energy drink hints on the backend. Good.

M: Full body with a great carbonation. Finishes with a tartness. Good.

D: For a sour, this is so well blended. Not really overpowering in any area. Very good.

All in all, this one definitely did surprise. This definitely is tart, but is so well blended that it makes this easy to drink. If you like sours, this will be like the holy grail of well blended sours. If you're looking for the most puckering brew around, this is not. It's puckering, but is so well blended.

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Photo of rowingbrewer
4.07/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a reddish brown color with a decent white head. the smell is slightly funky and fruity with a definite sourness to it. the taste is very sour with a definite fruit flavor that I assume is the currants, thought i have never had a currant and do not know what they taste like. the mouthfeel seemed a little heavy, not that it was sweet, but there seemed to be something about the beer that was fuller than most other wilds I have had. overall this is a good beer, would drink it again

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Photo of mentor
4.07/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 004X4. Pours a half finger of off-white head (dirty tan?) over a murky ruby orange-rust liquid. Smells very odd. Brettanomyces, cherries, waxy wood, clean alcohol, mild chocolate, sting that comes across as peppery or ginger-like.

In the mouth, puckering dry and effervescent. Strong lactic tang, lemon, brett funk, white grape, mild acetic, and strong dry wood character. Think cherry balsamic vinegar meets fermented cherry pop-tart-filling 'gone wild'! The finish and aftertaste stings with acid and a very dry lingering cherry and lemon. Light body and very sharp carbonation. Typical american wild ale.

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Photo of drink1121
4.07/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Shared a bottle with kfsv034.
A- Poured into a Duvel tulip, pours a dark brown-red color. Initial couple inch head, then quickly disappears. It fizzes almost like coke. THe looked and everything reminds me of Coke.

S- Sour, not much tart. I get vinegar with some dark fruits. Wine characteristics.

T- Take the smell and exaggerate it and thats what u get in the taste.

M- Very thin, but not in a bad way. Just compared to other 10% beers its just thin. I think its appropriate for the beer though. it fits.

D- For a 10% sour, its pretty damn drinkable. I think the the thin mouthfeel contributes to this.

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Photo of Wetpaperbag
4.06/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- This was a 6oz pour in chalice with almost no head. Dark cranberry red in color. This looks tasty.

S- There really isn't much of a smell, but there is a slight metallic smell, with a bit of a slight acid smell.

T- This is where the magic happens. Very tasty, loads of sour cherry, with a touch of the currants. As this warms up its more of a sour Cabernet Sovereign. For me the sourness is tasty and mostly cherry.

M- Great feeling mouthfeel, good amount of carbination, not too much but just exactly what you would want.

D- Very easy to drink, almost too drinkable. But after 3 6oz glasses it does start to get a bit heavy in your stomach, but it is still tasty to say the least and super drinkable for 10%.

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Photo of akorsak
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A corked and caged 750 mL bottle of Batch 001-3. I received several in recent trades, so thanks to beerbeagle, jw347 and ralflord.

A: The ale is a dark crimson red that has a full wooden brown appearance from afar. A loud pop didn't conjure up as much head as I wanted, nor did what popped up linger for long.

S: The ale has a vinous aroma, the long barrel-aging stint put to good use. The wine is red and very full-bodied. Tartness is behind the red wine but not as strong as I've experienced in other RR wild ales.

T: The currants are strong up front, sweet and juicy. As the currants fade, red wine and oaky tartness come through. The red wine is cabarnet, full and rich. The barrel has added a subtle tartness that goes well with the wine. The tartness is citric, very acidic. The bite is nice, a natural flow from the fullness of the red wine.

M: The currant/red wine/oak barrel interplay is interesting. Tartness follows full barrel and sweet berries. The currants are a nice deviation from grapes.

D: The 10% alcohol never rears its head. The ale is very approachable with a pleasant tartness that never makes me pucker too much.

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Photo of jacobseyb
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A=Pours a deep mahogany with a surprisingly bright head for the color

S=smells very much similar to a merlot, a very interesting floral and fruity smell

T=much like the aroma, and very much like some merlots, sweet, with a tartness.

M=nice, carbonation seems just right, with an aftertaste that lingers

D=good, the bomber was ok, but more would be tough given the sweetness (personal preference) and the alcohol.

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Photo of claspada
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of HimerMan. From the second bottling ever, LA website says 12/26/08. Let's see how it has matured.

Pours a dark red/amber color with an shade darker that totally white head. Pretty good soapy lacing.

Aromas begin with a good/deep sourness that is not at all overpowering; more of an inviting scent. Behind that, sweet and tart fruits. Not sure what a currant smells like but I am not getting much of an actual fruitiness beyond the sour aromas, but that is to be expected from a 3+ year old sour ale.

Flavors begin with an excellent level of sourness. A lot of complexity in the flavor. Lots of tartness paired with some citrus and sweet fruits. Some darker maltiness as it starts to warm, but the long drawn out sour flavor comes back and dries out the palate and really pushes the flavor to the next level. While I love the flavor it is still fairly one dimensional at this stage of it's lifespan.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with the perfect amount of sourness. Good carbonation but not overwhelming which can happen with certain sours overtime. Drink WAY WAY lighter than 10%, drinks like 6% max; this stuff is straight dangerous.

Overall this was a nice treat for me. I really loved the flavor profile despite it being fairly one noted. I would have liked to sample it fresher to see if I could have tasted more currants or some actual fruits beyond the sourness. Drinkability is off the charts expecially for how high the ABV is on this beast. A really solid sour and worth seeking out for fans of the style. Nothing mind-blowing, just super solid.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a tulip, the beer pours a deep, dark amber color that appears to be clear, and starts with an inch of bubbly head that quickly vanishes down to nothing. The beer smell is an uncanny comparison to a light merlot. The currants are definitely apparent when you raise the glass to your nose. The beer has good carbonation throughout drinking, which helps to keep the heavy flavors light in mouth. The beer is sour on the tip of the tongue, and continues down the tongue, almost puckering at points. Dark fruit flavors abound throughout the mouth, with a slight peppery spice every once in a while. Very tasty, and again, the lightness and crispness provided by the steady carbonation make this a nice, smooth drink. The beer leaves a sour grape-type flavor in the mouth after each sip, but light. The sour aftertaste and the lingering finish pucker the mouth a bit, and it begs for another sip. Delicious!

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Photo of AgentMunky
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a footed 'Belgian' glass at the brewery. From notes. Reviewed 14 April 2012.

A: No head. Translucent brown; a glowing honey-amber.

S: Fruit and Brettanomyces. Winey/grapey. Not amazing.

T: Hmmm. Very puckery-tart, with a vinegary aftertaste, but there's some very nice fruit right in the middle. Deep, rewarding, wine-like flavours. Sparkly mouthfeel.

O: Good, but not great. I'm not sure I understand the fuss. Not worth the price, but worth drinking. Good wild ale!

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Photo of AdamBear
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A-dark ruby brown with a light cream colored head. very pretty except the head quickly fades to nothing

S-a light scent of dark currants

T-hits the tongue with a stingingly tart taste of dark currants. its almost a bitter tartness. it transitions in to an oaked taste of burnt currants and vanilla.

M-medium to high carbonation with a dry finish

O-gets more complex as i drink this. its definitely a tasty and well balanced wild. its very easy drinking considering the high ABV. there is no warming which is nice. i could drink a lot of this.

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Photo of cooch69
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Consecration pours a deep amber brown. It has a small and tight yet pretty fluffy head. A wee bit clouded as well.(We don't need no stinkin filtering).

Wow this beer is a trip to the wild side. And I'm a big fan of that side. The nose is really Bretty and musty. Scents reminiscent of a barn in the fall.

Taste was much more exotic than the nose would suggest. Almost like a big sticky semi strong cheese. The beer clung to the palate as well as a cheese would too. This beer was not that sour(if your looking for a Gueuze like tartness don't come here) however it was very balanced between sweet, sour, and even a bit of saltiness. The sweetness was in the finish as the initial sip is pretty dry. A little bit of caramelly bisquit malts in the back and no hops to speak of.

This beer was a nice addition to the quality and craftsmanship of not only RR but what American beers are and what they are becoming. Good quality beer but is it worth the price tag? You be the judge.

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Photo of ChugginOil
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Small bottle shared with a few BA's.

This brew pours very still. Zero head, a few bubbles, no lace.

The nose is a deep current scent that is sweet prominent. There is also an amount of toffee-like notes that add to the sweetness.

The taste surprises me because there is a nice tartness that went unnoticed when smelling this brew. The sweetness offered by the currents is soon matched with an abundant amount of semi-sweet tartness. I am enjoying the balance here for sure.

The mouthfeel is pretty awkward for the style because the way this beer sits in the glass. It is so calm without any sings of carbonation but once the sip is taken, boom!, a lip smacking tartness is soon experienced .

Overall, this is a very unusual, wine-like brew that takes on some unfamiliarity in the visual department but makes up for it when tasted. I was uneasy but now satisfied.

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Photo of Lothore
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a deep crimson color with a fizzy, off white head that fades fairly quickly.

S- Smells of dark fruit, plums, raisins, currants, figs, with a hint of sourness.

T- Tastes of currants, slight oaky cherry flavor and a nice funky brett flavor to round it out.

M- A little overcarbonated, semi viscous and fairly creamy.

D- This one was very drinkable. It definitely wasn't a standout for me as far as russian rivers lineup goes, i'd much rather grab a temptation. At 22 dollars a bottle id venture to guess this will be the last bottle i'll buy for a while.

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Photo of Reagan1984
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big POP of the cork starts the fun with this RR classic. A thin & active light tan head forms then immediately vanishes. The beer is a ruby/amber color. Some rapidly rising carbonation can be seen along the edges of my tulip glass.

Aroma is tart, slight cherry. Oak makes an appearance as it continues open up.

Initial burst of tartness is followed by lots of cherry notes. A hint of vanilla and wood in the background. Only the slightest sense of warming from the ABV. There is an interesting lingering bitterness that remains and mixes with the wood notes. Very nice. Nutty notes now and again.
I obviously know this is brewed with currants, but I have no idea what currants taste like. I am thinking they are similar to cherry. I get this sense of pencil eraser in the flavor. I remember being a kid and sticking the end of the pencil in my mouth. Something here brought back that memory.. More wood is evident as it comes to room temp.

Carbonation is somewhat champagne like. Body is medium.light and the carbonation really brings the flavor to life.

This is a very nice beer and fairly complex.

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Photo of dukedevil0
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this bottle from an excellent trader Dajtai007. Was able to bring this and spread the love to the April BA Gathering and Beer Share at Goose Island - Clybourn.

A: Pours dark brown with very little khaki colored bubbles around the edge, possibly due to a careful pour.

S: Smells sour/wild fruit, specifically like funky apple cider, yeasty

T: Similar to the smell, very much like funky apple cider with some yeasty flavors and a sour bite, very tart

M: full and highly carbed

D: At this point, one 12oz bottle would be more than enough for me until I got into the style.

I think at some point I will be able to appreciate this style, but it's too radical to me right now to feel comfortable with it. I can totally see how people enjoy this beer a lot though, but I think it's an acquired taste that I just haven't acquired yet.

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Photo of Dope
4.04/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle dated 071813

A: Pours a beautiful dark ruby red. Tall and short lived fizzy tan head. Head fades out very quickly as mentioned, with nary a speck of lacing in sight. Decent retention at least, oddly enough.

S: Very fruity - berry-like mostly. Not very sour, just a little tart red wine and some leathery and oaky tannins. Currants are there but very subtle.

T: Okay, definitely more sour in the flavor. Lots of tart berries up front (presumably the currants). Not super vinegary but a very distinct underripe sour fruit flavor. Mild and tart red wine adds to the affect in the middle and also adds some complexity. Not a whole lot of oak, just a little bit of dryness in the aftertaste.

M: Surprisingly medium bodied, light and dry for 10% ABV.

O: Big sour fruits in this one. No major acetone, vinegar or even the typical citric acid. Just mouth puckering sour fruits. Very interesting. Big, sharp, bold flavors throughout. Almost no sweetness, all tartness with a drying aftertaste. Pretty unusual for a 10% ABV beer of any style. I'm not a huge fan of wine barrel beers but this is still a quality brew.

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Photo of AltBock
4.04/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle that was corked and caged. On this bottle is a large burgundy colored label of a knife with black lines running all of it and the number 23 near the tip. It's a zebra knife! At the bottom is a brief description of the beer and in the right hand corner is a barrel with 6 months in the middle and 4 scientific names surrounding the barrel. To the far left is Russian River's address and to the far right is everything you want to know about this beer. That's where you'll find the Government warning, phone number of R.R., a batch number, a picture of the correct glassware, and a novel sized history and description of the beer. They also threw in the definition of Consecration in case you didn't know what it meant. Before I forget, this bottle was from batch 002X3.

Appearance: With a loud pop of the cork followed by gun smoke, this beer erupted like a volcano. It's a good thing I opened the bottle near the sink and my glass. Due to this eruption, I lost about 1/4 of the bottle. Once I finally got some of the beer into my wide rimmed Unibroue Tulip, I saw that Consecration was not what it appeared to be. From a short distance away, I looked to pour a dark mahogany brown, but when held into the light, I found out that it was an extremely dark currant red with some raspberry red highlights. It was a little murky due to a few yeast particles floating around at the bottom of the glass. With this beer erupting like it did, surprisingly there wasn't much of a head of foam on this beer. The initial head of foam was 1/4 of an inch of just fizzy bubbles that disappeared in a blink of an eye. I shouldn't say it completely disappeared because it left behind a string of rings around the edge and a spot or two of lace. The head of foam that I was expecting must have flowed out of the bottle with the eruption.

Smell: Now this is the aroma I was expecting from a sour R.R. beer! It wasn't an over the top sour aroma that made you cringe every time you took a whiff. it had its fair share of sour fruity aromas, but it never went over the top. It was pleasantly sour with currants, cherries, green and red grapes, and even raspberries. I'm surprised that my nose couldn't find any yeast in the aroma. Not even a subtle amount of yeast was found in here. When this beer is swirled around, that's when the oak with its friends the anise and black licorice comes out to play with all the sour fruits. A great potent sour aroma that wasn't over the top. It was perfect for this beer!

Taste: The taste of Consecration had something in common with the aroma. It too was all about the sour fruits. It wasn't an overly sour taste, but it was getting there. It was one sour fruit away from being overly sour. This beer was sour and tart with currants, green grapes, green apples, cherries, and raspberries. If you name a fruit that can either be sour or tart, then you'll find it in the taste. If you wait long enough for your taste buds to reach the end of the sour fruit wave, then you'll come across some charred oak and yeast. No anise or black licorice in the taste like there was in the aroma. I think that if there was, that would have made the beer a little more funkier. If you like your sour and tart fruits as much as I do, then wait till you wrap your lips around a glass full of this beer.

Mouthfeel: This was a medium bodied sour and tart Wild Ale with a decent amount of carbonation and with a long lasting sour and tart aftertaste. The aftertaste was chock full of delicious sour fruits like currants, cherries, green grapes, and raspberries. I also noticed that there was a touch more yeast and oak in the aftertaste than there was in the initial taste. I felt that this beer really didn't show it's 10% ABV. You'll be distracted by all the sour fruits to notice the ABV%.

Drinkability: Russian River always does a great job on sour beers (as well as DIPAs) and Consecration is up there with the best of them. It started off with a bang with the bottle explosion, slowed down in the appearance, and then kicked into high gear with its top notch sour and tart aroma and taste. Of course, like every other Russian River Beer, it's expensive as hell! It's worth a shot once if you can pry open your wallet far enough.

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Photo of NWer
4.03/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottling 004x5.
Sucks your cheeks out sour. Dark red pour into my chalice with nice rusty head and adequate retention. Currants show through with intensity intended by the brewers. This was a great representative of the style and one that should be experienced before you die.

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Consecration from Russian River Brewing Company
98 out of 100 based on 1,095 ratings.