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Consecration - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,094 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 1,094
Hads: 4,844
Avg: 4.41
pDev: 20.18%
Wants: 1,628
Gots: 1,688 | 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: 1,094 | Hads: 4,844
Photo of CampusCrew
4.67/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: off brownish with garnet tint

smell: sour cherry, balsamic

taste: oak aging is noticeable and well done. lot sof red fruit flavors bledened with balsamic

mouthfeel: medium bodied

drinkability: probably one of the best sours I've, very pungent, but also very drinkable.

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Photo of lhaqq
4.67/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured into a goblet with a small off-white head and an opaque brown body, reddish-brown on the edges.
S: Sour apples, oak, red wine, gum (ever had Bubblicious before? Something like that).
T: Strong taste of a cabernet sauvignon, sour light fruit (white grapes and apples), yeast, and a bit mango chutney.
M: Dense, compact carbonation. Sharp sour kick at the end.
D: A pretty intense but delicious beer, so couldn't have too many. My favorite sour ale as of yet. Would've got a growler of it but a bit too spendy.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.67/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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.

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Photo of tai4ji2x
4.67/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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!

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Photo of rhinos00
4.67/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

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.

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Photo of hu5om
4.67/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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.

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Photo of flexabull
4.68/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

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.

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Photo of WYVYRN527
4.68/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750 ml. bottle. Batch 003x3. No bottling date listed on the label. Thanks to 7ways for the trade on this one! Poured into a Russian River Belgian style glass.

A: Deep crimson hue with a thick off-white head that settles rather quickly. Lacing and head retention are minimal, as expected, but carbonation is fierce.

S: Barnyardy funk shows up first, but it's soon overtaken with some sour currant, caramel malt, and toasted oak. Hops are almost non-exixtent here.

T: Much like the aroma, but more. Hints of cherry, cassis, and spice dominate, while caramel-like malt lies behind. The brett adds earthiness, along with some funk. It's what I would call "terroir driven." Finish is quite tart, dry, and the influence of cabernet can be noticed.

M: Rather full-bodied for the style. However, one wouldn't notice it's strength just by sipping it. Flavors are complex, and the finish lasts a lifetime.

D: I could drink this one everyday if I had access to it. It's probably in my top five brews of all time. If beers were to be classified like wines, this would truly be be at the top tier. Russian River is the Domaine Leroy or DRC of beer.

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Photo of Bendurgin
4.68/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Huge thanks to a generous BA that set me up with this. Right now I'm so excited to try this. I poured this into a tulip, just as Russian River instructs me to. The pours is lively! Fizzy and awesome with a small head the does quite the vanishing act. It's here then gone! The body looks stellar, a beautiful dark cherry red with lots of lively carbonation. Smells sour. I like it! It starts with a sour cherry with a bit of vinegar; oak aromas with nice earthiness. This smells a bit funky with a sweet finishing aroma. I'm down with this. Tart right out of the gate! This is great, oak and earthy flavors with tart and sweet cherries. This has some solid funkiness to it. This is really well balanced, it's not overly tart and the mild sweetness is a welcome finish. The mouthfeel is nice, a bit drying to the end but the light body and the carbonation makes this really enjoyable. I could drink this all the time. I get a bit of heat from alcohol but this is so good I don't even care. It's easy to drink and this glass is lasting me a while. This is a really nice sour and I will certainly be seeking out more.

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Photo of RaulMondesi
4.69/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

All around, all good things. Like at my cousin Gesamina's wedding, there is nothing but glorious Cabernet Sauvignon flavors poppin' everywhere. My sweet hell...like if Mount Pompeii erupted this goodness instead of lava, this dang sucker is on full blast like roar.

No more, just get this, my peeps.

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Photo of DoctorZombies
4.69/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Opaque brown/reddish draft pour with off white foam. Sour cherry nose. Red wine and sour cherries with a little funk from yeast. Medium mouthfeel, tongue is bathed in tart funky fruit. This is simply terrific.

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Photo of BeerAficionadoMCMXC
4.69/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A- Well you cant knock color, red, light carbonation and clear.
S-clear brett and cranberry fruit smells
T- much more tart than I expected. The fruit balances nicely but it does seem a little harsh. The bacteria comes through but it com9letely covers up the belgian yeast strain it starts with.
O- A must have for a sour lover, not a great introductory sour. Ill take any bottle up for grabs, it sucks.

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Photo of spointon
4.69/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

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!

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Photo of bmeehan
4.69/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is the best sour I've ever had. I joked that it tasted more like red wine than beer after each sip, but it really does combine the best of both very effectively. It's sweet and it's sour and it's easy to smell all the complex goings-on from the currants fermenting in the oak barrels. I'd drink this again and again.

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Photo of deebo
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at RR.

A-Fairly clear dark amber with a white head clinging to glass.

S-Subdued funky Brett, Tart cherries, currants, and chocolate aroma.

T-Dark fruits, hints of tobacco with and ending with sourness and funky earthy yeast. Can tell this was aged in a cab barrel.

M-Fairly smooth, alcohol extremely well hidden for a 10% beer.

O-A very complex beer combining flavors found in guezue, cabernet, and a dark ale. The most complex sour I've tasted from US. Easy to drink with something new to discover in every sip.

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Photo of hughesm4
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bottle shared by Ben last night, thanks man. Batch 008, bottled in 2011. Sheeeeitttt.

This one pours a clear dark red, with a small head, and no lacing.

This one smells super tasty, cherries, currants, red wine vinegar, oak, and red wine.

This has clearly aged very nicely, it's nuts that it's 10% ABV, you wouldn't know. So much sour dark fruit here, lots of currants, and a nice sour cherry flavor as well. There's some dry mustiness, along with a pretty puckering sourness, about a 7/10 on the unofficial sour scale. So. Good.

This is light bodied, with a crisp, super tart, and very juicy mouthfeel, along with a moderate but lively level of carbonation.

Probably the best sour I've had from Russian River, it was just so enjoyable.

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Photo of supercolter
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
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.

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Photo of cbarrett4
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
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)

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
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!

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Photo of BeerTwins
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
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.

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Photo of silentdonkey
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
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!

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Photo of Rifugium
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
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.

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Photo of womencantsail
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
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.

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Photo of bowzer4birdie
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
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!

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Consecration from Russian River Brewing Company
98 out of 100 based on 1,094 ratings.