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Consecration - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
ConsecrationConsecration

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
99
world-class

3,842 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,842
Reviews: 1,035
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.8%
Wants: 1,358
Gots: 1,198 | FT: 84
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:
Belgian-style dark ale aged in American oak Cabernet Sauvignon barrels with currants.

(Beer added by: Gueuzedude on 10-31-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,842 | Reviews: 1,035 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of hopdog
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

On tap.

Poured a dark brown color with a smaller sized off white head. Aromas of dark fruits -dark cherries-, berries, chocolate, and wood. Tastes of grape skins, dark cherries, wood, lightly vinous, chocolate, and funky. Softer body. Nice tart finish.

Wow, I wish I could get a lot more of this one!!!

hopdog, Dec 09, 2008
Photo of bosco7
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

Dark brown with reddish hues. The head is fizzy and lasts a bit.

Smell is amazing. It has rich sugary notes and figs with this punch of acetic acid. Lemon and dark fruits as well.

Starts with a little sugary sweetness then immediately moves into sour fruity flavors. Sour cherries and lemon come to mind. The finish is what I love about this beer, it's spicy, mineraly, crisp, and kind of reminds me of sweet tarts.

Mouthfeel is crisp and refreshing, the sourness is not so insane that it ruins your palate. I can drink this all night long. What a treat. I still have not met a Russian River beer that hasn't amazed me. Highly recommended.

bosco7, Sep 14, 2009
Photo of brystmar
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

On draft at the RR brewpub.

Dark copper pour, as usual. Consecration really needs to warm up to at least 60 degrees before being consumed. The taste and smell improve tremendously as it warns.

Rich bouquet of Cabernet barrels and Belgian tartness in the nose. Oak in the background. Waiting anxiously for the Glade / RR collaboration for household aroma solutions.

Tart cherries and other fruits start things off. Strong Cabernet flavors bring a wine-like character to this brew. Active body stings your tongue with bubbles. Not sure what else to write -- this is noticeably better on draft, and it's utterly amazing.

I feel so spoiled sitting here and ordering another pour. I'm eternally jealous of you locals who can enjoy this every day.

brystmar, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of khumbard
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

Big thanks to Tieman for this ridiculous EXTRA... you are the man.

Batch 004x2. Pours a dark amber color, little to no head. A constant stream of bubbles coming from the bottom of the glass keeps it from being completely still. Smell has a good amount of funk with some fruitiness behind. Taste is sour, but not over the top. Just enough lactic sourness for my liking. The currents are there, but in good balance. Starts off slightly sweet, and finishes dry, funky, and sour. Delicious. Mouthfeel is lively. The 10% is no where to be found, the nature of the style hurts drinkability slightly... but I could drink quite a bit of this one. RR is the king of American made sours, and this one is near the top.

khumbard, Jan 09, 2011
Photo of HopHead84
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

On tap at Russian River. A silly bar pour leaves the beer nearly spilling out of the glass. No head. The beer is a dark, dark reddish purple.

The nose is of tart raspberries and plums with a touch of vinegar. The currants work very nicely in the beer. This is reminiscent of the Toronado 20th. There are faint alcohol notes, but it relatively well hidden for 10%. Much like the aroma, the flavor is of ripe, tart raspberries and those delicious currants again. There is a nice medium level of sourness to Consecration. The finish is dry and slightly puckering, with just a touch of alcohol.

This is a medium-full bodied sour with low carbonation. The mouthfeel is vinous. This is the closest thing I've had to Toronado. I'd love to do a side by side comparison of the two. The alcohol is well hidden, which leads to a damn drinkable strong sour. I'm glad I stocked up on this.

HopHead84, Feb 17, 2009
Photo of korguy123
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

Special thanks to TheSevenDuffs for this gem.
Batch 006 into my Lost Abbey tulip.

A- Clear grape juice colored pour. Half finger fizzy off white head quickly disappears into obscurity leaving little wisps on top. Lacing is zero.

S- These oak barrels add a sweetness that help compliment the funkyness you find in a wild ale. Currents, grape juice, red wine, vanilla and sour apple with a touch of lemon.

T- Typical lemon, grape skin and cranberry tartness. It isn't over the top sour but still makes your mouth water. Currents are evident but more subdued than the nose. There is a dryness that I would attribute to the oak and the brett. The funk meter is sitting around 7 out of 10.

M- Light bodied, lively carbonation. Mouth watering with a quick dry finish. Slight aftertaste.

O- Another check mark beside the RR "ion" beers and I have yet to be disappointed. This isn't my favorite so far but that does not make it anything short of spectacular.

korguy123, Dec 01, 2011
Photo of spointon
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

I poured this one from a 750ml brown bottle into a stemmed goblet. This bottle was from "Batch 3", sent to me by the great BA Schmittymack.

A= Poured a very clear deep reddish brown color with a short lived 1/2" off-white head. There was a ton of active carbonation release...a constant stream of gas rising out of this brew.

S= A heady, complex array of malt, lactic sourness, brett funk, fruity sweetness, wood, red wine, and hints of chocolate and tobacco. Entirely captivating.

T= Every bit as good as the smell if not better. The acidic sourness was there throughout, but was never overpowering. Lots of malt sweetness and what I believe was a bit of candi sugar made it through to the taste buds. Complex fruity/tart notes of currants & cherries. The wild yeast components gave flavors of light vinegar and a refreshing edge. I was particularly happy with the hints of oak and red wine still lingering in the taste. Subtle yet delicious. Finished dry, tart, and crisp.

MF= Medium bodied with a very active and crisp carbonation. Entirely refreshing to the mouth.

D= This was balanced, complex, and extremely refreshing. Dangerously drinkable for the ABV. A world class beer for sure!

spointon, Jan 18, 2010
Photo of SickBrew
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

My folks brought this back from their "Wine" tour in norther CA along with a few select beers.

Uncorked a 750 ml bottle with my bro-in-law over the weekend and decanted the brew into a couple of oversize wine glasses. It pours a ruby brown and is capped by a finger of off white head that dissipates to a subtle ring. Nose immediately reminds me of beers like The Dissident. Sour, fruity twinges pop up each nostril just daring for another whiff. Aromas are however, a bit milder than some other, almost overpowering sour ales.

Flavor is tart, sour, fruity, acidic, oaky and altogether complex. Besides being a big sour ale, the flavors are a bit difficult to describe and really require an individual palate test. Mouthfeel is medium and supported by some fine carbonation. Overall this is an outstanding beer that masks it 10% ABV. It would go well with some tender hoofed wild game.

SickBrew, Mar 08, 2009
Photo of barleywinefiend
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

On tap at RR
Poured a burgundy color with red hues and a nice white head. Nose is tart berries, oak and just a plain overall sour aroma. Taste followed the nose ery much the same with tart berries being the first thing you taste and then oak, booze and earthiness. This is my favorite RR sour. Very tasty, big, and awesome. Alcohol is noticable but the flavor just tends to bury it. Very damn good.

barleywinefiend, Feb 07, 2010
Photo of cultclassic89
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

cultclassic89, Apr 29, 2014
Photo of tai4ji2x
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

on-tap at deep ellum during the cantillon/de la senne event on april 24, 2009, week's end of the craft brewers conference.

served in orval chalice

dark ruby red w brown tint. creamy, tan, faintly pink head. fades to creamy wisps and ring. lacing doesn't stick.

aroma: richer brett funkiness than the bottle i had from batch 1. same with the vinous and cider vinegar notes - like the bottle, but just more robust. tart, but with fresh fruit tones of grapes and currants. wood and leather hints with trace of oaky vanilla. fresh cranberry, red wine, cherries and possibly more currants show up again in the back.

taste is similar both to the aroma and overall to the bottled batch 1, but richer - even though here the draught lines are serving the beer at much colder temps. tart and dry with a lovely tannic finish, totally reminiscent of cabernet. full of flavors (wood, leather, farmhouse funk, fruit, hay, etc.)

medium body, nice and tart. acidic and astringent with tannins for structure and texture. cleaned up by both the acidity itself, but also the prickly yet fine and delicate carbonation.

whoa - where can i get more of this stuff?! i pray that the bottle sitting in my cellar will age into something like this...

thanks again to max and vinnie for making this happen!

tai4ji2x, Jun 27, 2009
Photo of rhinos00
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

Poured from a 750mL bottle into an oversized wine glass. Batch 001X2.

A- Pours a brown-cabernet sauvignon color with garnet hues throughout. A thin layer of cream colored head formed and disappeared quite quickly.

S- Very complex. Nice oak barrel presence. In addition there was a subtle vinegar scent mixed with a more dominant vinous quality that came from the cabernet barrels and currants. Beautifully done, very potent. I could take whiffs of this over and over again.

T- Just perfect. Up front you get a lot of qualities that would most likely be found in complex wines. Very vinous, with grape tannins and currants running rampant. Midway through to the finish there is an oak sourness that balances out the beer perfectly. It takes the sweetness from the initial taste and gives it a sour twist at the perfect moment.

M- This really hampered the beer. Way too much carbonation. Upon reaching the pallet it seemed as if a million carbonated bubbles formed and kept the true taste of the beer from ever reaching the senses.

D- This is one of the most drinkable sours I have ever had. If I could give it a 6 I would. The aging in cabernet barrels really did this beer a favor as it dulled down the sourness until the end. Makes it much more drinkable. I could easily drink a whole 750 mL bottle without sharing.

If you can get your hands on this, buy it. One of the better sours out there. Well balanced and gives a nice sour flavor without being overly acidic. Highly recommended.

rhinos00, May 16, 2009
Photo of hu5om
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

batch 004x3, split in tremens tulips with newk340.

a - deep mahogany. flat cola in appearance. ominous.

s - SOUR! intense. curranys. painfully sour grape and i'm nervous.

t - not as sour as i feared. dark chocolate and wood acompany the currant and sweet/sour grape. not overly sour. tobacco? licorice? i'm outta my league here, but who cares? it's delicious. warhead candy vibe.

m - makes you pucker, but not too much. pretty damn pleasant.

d - mind=blown. this is going to be my gateway sour. i'll go back to this one as the one that converted me to the style. AndrewK, you sir are an enabler! thanks again.

hu5om, Aug 25, 2010
Photo of 2BDChicago
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

Batch # 004X2

A: Golden-amber, with mahagony tones. Clear though bottom of bottle has a slight haze. Little to no foam.

S: The first whiff gives one the indication of a very special brew. Oak barrel influenced, soured, semi-dark fruits. It's inviting and mysterious.

T: First impression is refreshingly tart and dry. The after taste is unbelieveably enticing but I can't separate the various flavor notes. It's a complex blend of taste sensations, and all morphing together then separting, but in the end very inviting. Never would guess the high abv in tastings.

D: RR has taken beers to a different level, which I mean in the most respectfull way. The aroma is as almost as attractive as the taste. As a fan of Imperial Stouts and big IPAs, at times I don't think I have the sosphistication for sours and wild ales, but this brew is easy to understand. The subelty of the complexity of this brew is the amazing skill of the brewer. So, the downside of loving RR is the difficulty in obtaining. Joy of the hunt.

2BDChicago, Dec 31, 2010
Photo of hughesm4
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

Tasting out of a bottle.
a-Pours a very dark brown/red color that is opaque. There is also quite a bit of sediment left floating around in the glass.
s-Very complex smell that has my noise spinning. A sweet oak smell with several berries odors, most noticeably raspberry and cherry.
t-There is a flavor explosion in my mouth. There is a sour taste up front followed by a oaked sweetness and a balance of fruits.
m/d-Very full bodied and extremely drinkable. Goes down really smooth and you could easily accidentally drink your whole glass in 3 minutes flat.

hughesm4, Aug 22, 2010
Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

Poured from a 750 mL bottle to a tulip. Batch # 003x1.

What does one do when he shows up to a bar looking for a quick $5 pint and stumbles upon a big, pricey bottle of Consecration? (That was a rhetorical question.)

A: The body is dark, murky & pruney-brown colored with a small bubbly head, light brown in color. It made an appearance and then, all at once, took off like it stole something. Interesting to say the least but I'm not at all impressed at this point.

S: Thank goodness...Nothing short of phenomenal! First and dominant aroma is the yeast bill which is heavy barnyard, sweat and meat. The bottle boasts of the brettanomyces, lactobacillus, saccharomyces & pediococcus, all wild yeast strains as far as I know. And why not? They combine to assist in one of the most uniquely aromatic brews I've ever tried. The malt and hops are hard to separate but I get hay/straw and flower respectively. An entire orchestra of fruit flavors: dark and ripe fruits of raisin, plum, red grape, currant & date provide the sweet flavors while the white grape & raspberry supplement with sour and tart. A bit of prune and dried fig come to mind as well. No mistaking the vinous nature of Consecration either. The oaky wood and earthy cabernet sauvignon components (plus hints of tobacco) are deep rooted.

T & M: The flavor duration is tantalizingly long and slow, making it impossible not to savor each sip. Moderately sweet and harshly acidic (but in a stimulating way). The mouthfeel is somewhere on another planet. The carbonation level is atmospheric. The finish is WILDLY astringent. The body is fuller than a woman in a 'plus-size' department store. I love it!!!

D: If I can drink an entire 750 by myself, you can too.

FeDUBBELFIST, Jan 03, 2010
Photo of supercolter
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

So I had batch 1 and 2 side by side.(I know, I am a jerk) 1x3 and 2x1
Here is my conglamerate review.
Appearance is very similar between the two, dark black cherry color with small head and some lacing.
Smell was very distinct- batch 1 had a deep dark fruit nose- currant and fig... whereas batch 2 was very similar to a Cabernet Saugvinon wine- drier, tobaccoy, with some grapes and prunes.
Taste was out of this world, more of the same but just full flavor and perfectly balanced.
Mouthfeel was very good, thick but nicely carbonated.
Drinkability was great.

supercolter, Jul 24, 2009
Photo of cbarrett4
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

Poured from tap at Belmont Station into snifter ~ comparison tasting with Consecration, Supplication, and Temptation.

This was my personal favorite of the trio. This is one strong mother! Absolutely amazing.

The appearance is lovely with a dark, deep hue and decent carbonation for a barrel aged sour/brett beer.

Nice aromas of currants, oak, spice, and red fruit delightfully frame the funky brettanomyces core.

The palate is lovely and takes the drinker through a magical land of red fruits, tart cherries, fig, and yeast. Lots of complexity and many layers of flavor evolve and change as the beer slightly warms towards room temperature.

The beer has a lovely medium body, with just a slight overbearing kick of alcohol (hence the 4.5 not 5.0 for mouthfeel). A little more body or slightly less alcohol perhaps? Nonetheless, near perfection here.

So delicious and packed with flavor that you can't put the glass down! And I recommend that you NOT put your glass down if you won't want to share! (as I found out)

cbarrett4, Dec 02, 2010
Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

This is quite possibly my favorite Russian River beer. I absolutely love this one.
Pours a dark reddish brown in color. A very nice inch and a half of off white head forms on the pour. Smell is sour/tart and has a very nice vinous note as well.
Taste is off the charts incredible. This second batch bottle is more tart and sour than all the first batch bottles I have drank. I'm actually digging it more. Even with the more pronounced sour and tartness this beer is still every bit as drinkable as it always has been. The currants give a very nice vinous quality in the flavor.
Full, with perfect carbonation this is a pleasure to drink. One of my favorite beers of all time.
Well done and keep up the great work Vinnie!

FtownThrowDown, Nov 25, 2009
Photo of BeerTwins
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

We really enjoyed this ale. The label does not mention that is a sour. But it turned out to be an excellent example of the style. Poured a rich burgundy color with a faint aroma of currants. The sourness is very refreshing. Currents and rich cabernet wine flavor is evident from the start. The flavor grows more complex as the beer warms adding hints of tobacco and figs.

BeerTwins, Sep 05, 2011
Photo of Rifugium
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

First had: bottle at Eulogy, Philly, PA

First had this in a 750ml bottle, but I have had it on tap as well. A tasty, dark, sour ale wood aged with black currants. After Pliny the Younger, this is my favorite RR brew.

Pours an attractive vermillion-mahogany color with a delicate beige head with some tinges of ruby here and there. Sour aroma, dark fruits, leather, and vinegar. Flavor starts out sweet almost like a kriek or framboise, with notes of cherry, blackcurrants. Soon turns more tart with the more sour qualities of cherries, red wine, and hints of vinegar coming through. In turn moves to more dried fruit--figs, prunes, dried cherries--soaked in wood-aged wine. Finishes acidic and bitter overall, yet still smooth. Medium body, complex, and very enjoyable.

Rifugium, Jun 10, 2011
Photo of womencantsail
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

A: Opaque, dark brown with a very noticeable reddish tint.

S: The nose is sour in general, but specifically sour cherries. The oak barrel also really comes through.

T: Again, lots of sour cherries. Quite tart. Maybe also some grapes and you definitely get the currants. The combination of the Brett, barrel, and fruit give the beer a very dry and tannic character..

M: The body is rather full with a high level of carbonation and a very dry finish.

D: Incredible. You would never know the ABV strength of this beer as the alcohol is completely covered by the wonderful taste.

womencantsail, Jul 06, 2009
Photo of flexabull
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

Hopefully a fitting beer for my birthday, (3-3-09... a square root day!) I am thinking this will be a good one to finish off the day.

Pours a dark and bright amber/brown color with a nice solid off white head.

Aromas are of very bright fruits, almost a cranberry like character, sour, tart, and with a faint hint of vinegar. A little lighter than other Russian River sours I have tried, but still quite pleasant.

Taste and character come off on first sip as SUPER dry. Beer then settles into some bright fruit flavors, cherries, currants, and cranberries. Finish is very tart, crisp, and with a light wine like bite, and some nice cider vinegar sourness. The sourness is very nice, I really like how the fruit flavors dominate more than the sourness, which is more like an interesting backdrop. Dang... another top notch tasting sour from Russian River.

Wonderful mouthfeel, maybe a touch to dry. But still has a great full feel.

Drinkability is exceptional. If I didn't notice the bottle, I would have never guessed this beer pushes 10% ABV. It drinks more like a 6% or 7% beer. This is more of a refined sour, not like the big blast of sour you get from something like the Supplication and Beautification. It's like this one is better "put together". Wow... yet another super offering from Vinnie and crew. It's currently my #2 sour from them, Sanctification still wins by a nose though.

flexabull, Mar 04, 2009
Photo of Hojaminbag
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

Batch 002x3

Consecration has a deep ruby-colored body that appears to be brown in the absence of light. The tan head is very fizzy, appearing and disappearing more quickly than head on a soda would.

The aroma has a lot going on, with all kinds of wild yeast providing musty and sour notes, a little bit of sweet malts, some wood and a dose of currants.

Two distinct flavors that I notice right away are the piquant sourness of the lacto, and the musty, horsey flavor from the brett. Between the two, the sourness from the lacto is definitely more powerful, as the brett lingers in the background, adding complexity. Next I notice a little bit of oak and a good currant flavor that I would guess has faded over the couple of years since this beer was brewed. A little bit more sourness comes next, but it is more acidic and a little less sharp than what I encountered in the beginning. A bit of moderately dark sweet malt pops up, but only for a second before the finish is big and dry, with notes of dry red wine in it.

The carbonation is fairly high and almost champagne-like when it first hits your mouth.

Having bought this bottle in PA, I paid quite a bit for it. Looking back, I wish I had bought a whole case of the stuff. It certainly isn't the type of beer you could drink a few of in a night, but it is the type of beer you could drink one of all night. 10% ABV? I would have believed it was 6% if someone had told me, the alcohol is nowhere to be found amidst the layers of yeast, barrel character and malt.

Hojaminbag, Dec 22, 2010
Photo of dagubna
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

dagubna, Aug 22, 2014
Consecration from Russian River Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 3,842 ratings.