Consecration - Russian River Brewing Company

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ConsecrationConsecration

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BA SCORE
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world-class

1,076 Reviews
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Reviews: 1,076
Hads: 4,702
rAvg: 4.38
pDev: 8.45%
Wants: 1,589
Gots: 1,588 | FT: 121
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
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Reviews: 1,076 | Hads: 4,702
Photo of supercolter
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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. (560 characters)

Photo of cbarrett4
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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) (1,020 characters)

Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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! (720 characters)

Photo of BeerTwins
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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. (371 characters)

Photo of silentdonkey
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Beachwood BBQs cellar. Consecration #2. Bottle 2x1.

A: Beautiful deep cabernet reddish brown with a nice one finger head upon pouring that diminishes almost immediately. Leaves little to no lacing as you drink it down.

S: Unbelievable nose of oak, currants, leather, dark fruits, slight brett funk, and vinegar.

T: Exactly what I was hoping for! It follows in the footsteps of the nose but is so much more complex. It starts off with a nice tart and vinegar sourness with a hint of leather that mellows into plum, currant, chocolate, truffle earthiness, cherries, and cranberry. It finishes with a little tinge of oak and red wine. There is a nice warming effect mid taste from the alcohol that does not burn or linger. Just enough to let you know its 10% abv.

M: Medium-full body with the perfect amount of carbonation. Coats your tongue and pallet perfectly so you can pick up on all of the nuances.

O: Such a fantastic beer. I'm glad I had one of the older batches that has had time to develop. I could see this beer having a more upfront sourness and vinegar taste. Since it had time to mellow out a bit the sourness is quite faint and upfront. It allows the flavors of the dark fruits, chocolate, and oak to really shine in the finish! (1,261 characters)

Photo of Rifugium
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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. (771 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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. (579 characters)

Photo of bowzer4birdie
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I am by no means a sour aficionado; rather, label me a neophyte at best. I AM, however, a big wine lover (cabs especially) and the cab barrel influence in this beer really strikes me, as do the currants. The ABV is hidden very well. This is one of the better dark sour ales I've ever had. Seek and enjoy! (307 characters)

Photo of Nachojon
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Beautiful beer. The deep brown, like a Koa wood color aged in the cab barrels gives this one an amazing color gradient. Light this head offsets this color. Stunning in a white wine glass.

S- Funky prune or fig juice is the standout aroma here. Pomegranate and some oak.

T- I love the flavor profile here. Starting off with some of that rich fruit figs, cranberries, prune before leading into that tart raspberry and even some strawberry. Then it's the pomegranate smoothness and some real oak dry finish. Immaculate.

M- So nice. Puckering, with the juice there in the middle and the dry finish.

O- Russian River is out of hand. Love it. (644 characters)

Photo of Hoptometrist
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served on tap at the Russian River Brewpub into a snifter

A- Poured an opaque dark brown with ruby highlights with no head, but tiny carbonation bubbles around the top.

S- The aroma was very strong of a cabernet, it was pretty surprising at first, I did not expect the cabernet aroma to be some prominent. Also a nice sweet cherry aroma

T- Strong cabernet taste, strong very sour cherry taste, and dark fruit, and vinegar acidic notes

M- High acidity and very high carbonation, my tongue was in heaven

O- This beer is unlike anything I have had before. The wine characteristics were so prominent and the sourness and acidity of the beer made this a very tasty and memorable beer. This is the first beer my wife has ever enjoyed too, so I was pretty impressed. (767 characters)

Photo of Hojaminbag
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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. (1,522 characters)

Photo of sk8man121
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bach 002x1 - this bottle has some time on it.

750 ml bottle obtained via trade with craytonic; thanks, Matt!

Poured into Allagash chalice.

A: Pours a deep russet-brown with a champagne-like head that dies down just as fast. Settles with no head whatsoever. Completely opaque and mysterious.

S: Smells just like I thought it would - vinegar, tart apples, a hint of red grape and oak. If the smell of a wild ale could ever truly be balanced, ever balanced, this would be it.

T: Beautiful. Sour upfront, yet the finish kicks in fast and mellows everything out. Flavor profile is so complex that I don't know where to start - vinegar, bright fruit, citrus, vanilla. This is beautiful.

M: Carbonation is medium-high, yet flattens quickly. Overall, this is a fairly toothsome beer that goes down like silk.

D: This is my first offering from Russian River, and I couldn't be more impressed. I could likely drink 2 bottles of this.

Looking forward to more Russian River after a splendid first experience. (1,004 characters)

Photo of CaptainTripps
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375ml bottle poured into a Duvel Tulip

A: If you look at the label on the bottle, that is damn near close to what the body of this beer looks like. Dark-amber brown body with slight velvet hues on the edges that you would see in a Cabernet. Small off white head is produced. Little head retention and no lacing.

S: Sweet currents paired with sour red grapes, apples with hints of cherry, oak and Brett. The Cabernet Sauvignon is really coming through nicely paring well with the currents. You can smell a slight tartness.

T: Pretty fantastic array of flavors that hit your tongue from beginning to end. Sweet fruity tastes paired with a decent amount of tartness. Cherry and grape are the stand outs along with Cabernet and hints of oak.

M: Light to medium bodied with a great amount of carbonation. Smooth, very smooth.

O: A fantastic beer that I can't believe I have left sitting on the shelves all these times. I have always been skeptical of the price for these but now i know they are the real deal. Will be coming back multiple times for this. (1,059 characters)

Photo of corby112
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes:

Pours a deep ruby color with golden mahogany edges and a two finger frothy off-white head. Good retention, only slowly fading into a lasting ring that coats the glass with large chunks of soapy lacing.

Funky, musty aroma with lots of earthy oak tannis, dry brett and vinous dark fruit. The barrel aging is very prominent in the nose with lots of red wine character. Hints of grape, currant, tart cherries and other dark berries as well as oak and subtle vanilla. This is complimented by the funky/barnyard/horsey notes.

Full bodied, intensely tart and puckering with slight acidity and some soft carbonation up front. Very funky with lots of musty, dry brett/bugs as well as a sour vinegar flavor that lingers over the barrel and vinous dark fruit notes into puckering dry finish that leaves me drooling for more. As in the aroma, the barrel character is prominent with earthy oak, slight vanilla and a prominent red wine/dark fruit flavor. Hints of grape, currant cherry, plum, raisin and other dark berries.

This beer has an incredible balance of tart, acidic, funky sourness and sweet, vinous dark fruit and it is the perfect blend of the wine and craft beer worlds. (1,187 characters)

Photo of larryi86
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

375 mL bottle poured into a tulip, Batch 004x1

A- Hazy reddish/brown color with almost no head.

S- Sour barn yard funk, hints of fruit and oak.

T- Sour and tart lemon/citrus flavors up front at really dominate taste in a great way. Juicy citrus fruit flavors. Nice funky finish that has some bitterness and hints of oak.

M- Crisp, smooth, refresh.

D- Almost too easy to drink. 10%ABV is not noticeable at all. This is just a great sour ale that is worth trying if you like sours. I wish this was easier to find around me, so far this is the best sour that I have had. (572 characters)

Photo of jampics2
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle split with friends at a New Years tasting. Batch 2x3.

Pours a dark plum color with no head. White ring circles what appears to be a tasty wild beer!

Smell is James Brown Funky. We're talking "can I count it off?" kind of funk. 1, 2,3, 4, Brett, Sachh, Lacto, Pedio - hit me. Vinegar, lemon, and cherry join the funky foursome to make a great nose complete.

Taste is perfect. Seriously. Perfect. Deep sour backed with oak, dark fruits, tobacco, cabernet, and a touch of vinegar make this so deep and defined that there really is no comparison to other beers out there. This IS that good.

The brilliant, lively carb and finish combine with a great body to make this beer simply a pleasure to drink. Someone should let Maurice Sendak know, the Wild Things are at Russian River.

Honestly, one of the most enjoyable beers I've ever had! (844 characters)

Photo of RedSpecial1
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a reddish caramel with a fair bit of tan foamy head initially which rapidly dissipates.

S: Oak dominates, but there are also notes of red currant, caramel, and a touch of alcohol heat.

T: Strong burst of sweetness quicly overtaken by a lactic tartness. This fades into an astringency with notes of oak and vanilla.

M: Thin, but also a bit syrupy. Very sharp on the palate.

O: It has a depth of flavor that is much more interesting than many in this style. These different flavors play off of each other well enough that it doesn't overpower you with any one of them. (579 characters)

Photo of JimmyTango
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

To me this is everything geat about Roddenbach Grand Cru time a thousand... more complexity, more sourness, more leather, more better. Clear brown with a dark red tint. Amazing! Currants, jucy, sour, balanced, tobacco, oak, and clove. Its hard for me to describe just how much you’ll like it. Subtle and delicious but crazy complex. Get it! (342 characters)

Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
4.71/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

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. (1,723 characters)

Photo of glid02
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Batch 001x4 at Naja's in Redondo Beach, CA.

Pours a clear dark ruby/brown color with a half-finger tan head. The head dissipates into a thin layer on top leaving light lacing.

Smells of tart cherries and currants - though I'll be the first to admit the latter is noticed primarily from reading the bottle - with a solid funkiness and hints of oak. As it warms the oak flavors gain some steam but the tart fruit never wavers.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Mildly sweet light to medium fruit flavors up front are overtaken quickly by tart fruit flavors that become more tart as the beer warms. There's a hint of raisins and other dark fruit in the taste that wasn't present in the aroma. Ending is solidly tart and mildly dry.

Mouthfeel is great. This is one of the best I can remember from an AWA, a very nice thickness with active and grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is very good. I finished the bottle surprisingly quick and could easily have had another.

Overall this was a very good AWA and my first foray into RR sours. A good way to start. (1,066 characters)

Photo of mudbug
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours like a soda pop with a quickly dissipating bubbly froth.
What is this?A dark brown clear liquid no head at all, beer?
The aroma is perplexing, I would describe it as the insides of a discarded yeasty/moldy jar of raspberry jam.
Taste is what it's about, YEE GADS thats sour, Like the best lemonaid you ever had,sour cherries, unripe apricots, strong carbonation hammers down the sour taste-buds until endorphins take over and calm everything down again, must have another taste, then another
Addicting, mesmerizing flavor.
Ye Gads! BRAVO! (549 characters)

Photo of mikey711
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had my sister bring me a couple bottles back for me from colorado. Definately worth it.

Poured a 22oz bottle from batch 001x2 into an oversized wine glass. much darker than i had expected, deep mahoney to purple i would say, providing little head that dissappeared quickly leaving minimal lace.

the smell is pleasantly sour, with fruity notes (raisins, currants, grapes) some spiceyness to, a bit dry...maybe even a little candied sugar.

this is a wildly delicious ale. a nice fruity tartness, dry from the cab sav. very pleasant as the fruitness lingers on the tongue. incredibly drinkable for a wild ale and 10%er. Not harshness.

definately need an open mind for this beer(most non BAs need not apply), but you will definately reep the benefits of a unique and delicious beer. not much to improve on only wish i had more... (829 characters)

Photo of 4000qtrap
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Source/Serving: Draft

Smell: Sour grapes, rich ripe dark fruit, tartness, some cellar / wild yeast character. Delightful.

Taste: While its full frontal sour without a doubt, this is tempered by incredibly juiciness....grapes, apples, plums. There's even some banana flavor. A bit of spiciness and low lying woodiness and dryness add interest. No alcohol presence. Finish is very, very fruity, slightly oaky and slightly dry.

Notes: Like a great Cabernet but sweeter, fruitier, and more delicious. (499 characters)

Photo of hillvt4me
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bottled on 7/18/13. Poured into Hill Farmstead tulip.

Appearance- is dark ruby to mahogany hue. Minimal head. Good lacing.

Smell- dark fruits, red wine, ripe berries and oak.

Taste- dark fruit, currants, red wine tannins, some tartness, some oak character.

Mouth feel is medium to light, dry finish like a wine. Moderate carbonation and excellent balance.

Overall spectacular wild ale; favorite to date. Russian River always has a flavor profile that is complex! (468 characters)

Photo of afausser
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: A loud pop as it's uncorked. Pours into a Brooklyn tulip as if it's quite alive, with about two fingers of very volatile and quickly dissipating head. Heavy soda-like carbonation is evident from the bubbles, and is, I'm certain, the only reason there's any bubbles around the edge of the glass, and in fact, across the top of the glass. I'm curious to see how this one will hold up after sitting out for a bit--right now it seems to be something to be contended with. The color itself is almost mahogany, but it's slightly closer to brown tones than red ones. The brew is dark, but clear--just hard to see through because of the depth of tone. How fascinating.

Smell: As I've been writing the appearance notes, the smell has diffused into the rest of the room and I can smell it from several feet away. Smells amazing--sweet and sour all at once, and particularly reminiscent of sour power on sour skittles (down to the little bit of sugar that is throw into that mix). White vinegar notes are also heavily present, and quite mouth-watering, as well as sweet and sour cherries, slight red wine, and balsamic vinaigrette. Below the surface are slight leather and tobacco notes, as well as a bit of oak. Slight chives in the smell.

Taste: Excellent sour taste that manages to blend in wonderful vinegar notes without being overwhelming and tasting like straight white vinegar (though I don't necessarily mind those, either...). A lot of dark and earthy notes--bitter tobacco, leather, earth, and oak--are nicely blended in, and I'm getting a lot more fruit out of it than i did in the nose--sweet and sour cherries, grapes, raisins, bitter cranberries. A LOT of red wine notes in this one--which I suppose makes sense given the barrels. Slight bitter aftertaste that makes the darker notes and red wine stand out as more prominent. I don't want to understate the sour notes, as they're definitely there, but this is so extremely well-crafted that the complexity and depth of the other notes is almost surprising. Gets sweeter as it warms. Wonderful.

Mouthfeel: Mouthfeel is very nice. The intense, soda-like bubbles mentioned in the appearance are not nearly as daunting as they appeared. It's nearly perfectly--if not undercarbonated. Slight very pleasant aftertaste as described above. Light to medium bodied and goes down smoothly and quickly.

Drinkability: Drinkability is extremely excellent given the 10% ABV. Extremely well crafted and delicious, and the alcohol is not at all apparent. (2,507 characters)

Consecration from Russian River Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 1,076 ratings.