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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

3,598 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,598
Reviews: 1,025
rAvg: 4.48
pDev: 9.82%
Wants: 1,339
Gots: 1,127 | FT: 78
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: 3,598 | Reviews: 1,025 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of emerge077
emerge077

Illinois

4.38/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 001 cellared in cold storage.

Forceful pop from the cork, made it a few yards into the other room even :D Gunsmoke emitted from the bottle, thankfully not a gusher. The tawny brown beer produced an uprising of tan foam, that was fizzy and fairly short lived. It faded to an ever present ring that clung to the edge.

Damp leather, tobacco, slight brown sugar and balsamic sweetness in the nose. Reminiscent of best-in-class Oud Bruins like Oerbier Reserva and Haandbaak. Fairly restrained wildness, pretty accessible to the wild/sour ale novice.

Sustained tartness at first, moving into sour territory before dissipating quickly. Lingering aftertaste of leather and tannic dark fruit skins, currant and black cherry. Dry mild oak and wine grapes imparted from the Cab barrels. Pretty clean and full of sour fruitiness. Well carbonated, lending to an effervescent feel.

Paired with cheese, the acidity is more obvious, and scrubs the palate clean.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2010 21:25:38 | More by emerge077
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
westcoastbeerlvr

California

4.5/5  rDev +0.4%

11-14-2011 17:46:13 | More by westcoastbeerlvr
Photo of largadeer
largadeer

California

4/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: 750ml corked and caged bottle, batch 001x4, into a Russian River 'Tion tulip. Pours a beautifully clear chestnut amber with crimson highlights. Incredible color on this stuff, especially when held to the light. The head rises high but is short lived, receding to a ring rather quickly.

Smell: Vinous and chocolatey, big fruit overtones and woody tannins. Restrained funkiness; rather clean actually. Hints of spiciness and alcohol. A touch of raspberry and vanilla sweetness appears at warmer temperatures.

Taste & mouthfeel: Tart fruitiness quickly followed by woody tannins, earth and dry red wine. Hints of chocolate and caramel are present beneath it all, the last remnants of Salvation, perhaps? This all leads into a tart, dry and juicy finish with a blast of black currant. Consecration has nailed the beer/wine hybrid more than any other Russian River beer. While it's good stuff, I do find it a bit overwhelming. 9 times out of 10 I'd rather drink Supplication or Temptation.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2009 05:00:18 | More by largadeer
Photo of JAHMUR
JAHMUR

Connecticut

4.75/5  rDev +6%

11-14-2011 16:03:33 | More by JAHMUR
Photo of nickfl
nickfl

Florida

4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - The beer pours with a small white head on a clear, amber brown body. The head settles slowly and leaves surprisingly good lace on the glass.

S - A musty aroma of damp dirt and cobwebs with sweet fruity notes of dark cherry and (presumably) currants.

T - Tart cherries and sweet, dry caramel malt. Tartness creeps into the fruit character towards the finish and the acidity lingers on the palate.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and a very dry finish.

D - This is a fruity and tart wild ale, but with a lot of dry, thick malt and enough funk to keep it interesting.

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2011 02:22:12 | More by nickfl
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RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +0.4%

10-16-2012 17:15:03 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

4/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired from brewerburgundy courtesy of BA Secret Santa 2011, so a big “Thank You” goes out to him. Poured from a 375ml bottle into a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a bright reddish brown color, with a very thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a very thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains wild Belgian yeast, esters, dark fruit and some light malts.

T: The taste starts out with a tart dark berry flavor followed by the wild Belgian yeast to enhance the sourness. The malt character is thin and the hops presence is very mild but both are where they should be for the style and create a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sour.

M: Crisp and a little smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, well disguised kick, good representation of style, this is a good sour beer to drink for a long time.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2012 04:04:18 | More by TheManiacalOne
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Jason

Massachusetts

4.5/5  rDev +0.4%

10-21-2013 13:49:38 | More by Jason
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk

Minnesota

4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've been waiting on this one for a while. From the same BA trade that got me the Lost Abbey Witches Wit, as well as the Lost Abbey Cuvee De Tomme that I'm sitting on even longer. It's been sitting in the fridge for about six weeks, and I can't wait any longer. Away we go!

Dark plum-red coloration, with no head at all, starts slightly fizzy, then quits quickly.

Aroma: ah, that's the stuff, there's the brett, that funky wild wicked twisted sour and sassy wine-ish nose. Currants are doing plenty of work here, too, it's fresh with the fruit. Lovely, lovely stuff.

Tasting it: Whoa! Grabs the tongue and pins it down. Puckeration all the way, in this. Does not relent with the intense tartness. Fruit flavor gives some relief, squeezing in between the huge tart bite.

Another sip, another gulp, and in rushes cherries, blackberries, grapes, some sweet, and then sour. grips the tongue, spanks it a bit, slathers it up and down with funk and sour. Luxurious, relaxing, lush and wonderful.

Halfway in, it's getting deep, plummier, richer...moreover. I'm more impressed-er, for sure. Deeee-licious. Mmmm. Mmm. Mm. M.

Serving type: bottle

03-10-2011 05:10:53 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki

Illinois

4.43/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Review #250 - Big thanks to Dave (d0b) for sharing one of these on New Beer Sunday. Batch 001X3 served in a Hopleaf tulip glass.

A - One finger of fairly quick-dissolving tan foam, that doesn't leave a ton of lacing, but settles into a nice ring that lingers throughout the drinking experience. Medium brown color, with firey red highlights at the edges of the glass and lots of tiny bubbles racing upwards. I know that it's possible to do better, even within the constraints of the style and ABV - see my description of Toronado 20th .

S - Lots of bretty funk, tart and sour currants, tobacco, sweet caramel malts, and wood. The mix of Belgian dark and wild ale is reminiscent of the T20th, but this is quite as nice, particularly the wood smell initially gave off a slightly plastic kind of smell before the brew warmed up.

T - The taste is a bit of a revelation, with lovely tartness, no discernible alcohol, a lovely red wine/Cabernet acidity, oak barrel, currants, and sweet caramel malts. There's significantly more sour and less funk here, and the flavors come together in a much more satisfying way. Since so much of this review is going to be ultimately very T20th influenced I'll mention that the oakiness and lacto-sour elements are much milder here, although I'm wondering if that is because of the age or the recipe itself...

M - Sticky, but with a dry finish, moderate carbonation, minimal alcohol heat, and medium body. Some cotton mouth but not where near as extreme as the Lou Pepe Framboise we had. Right on for the style.

D - Shockingly drinkable for a 10% wild ale. Great aftertaste and negligible carbonation burn or bloat. Other than the (slight) problem of getting stupidly drunk from a 750ml bottle this is terrific stuff.

A couple thoughts...
This is a superb substitute for Toronado 20th. While clearly a different beer it does a lot of the same things very well - blending two classic Belgian styles (quad/dark ale with gueuze/lambic), hiding a ridiculously 10%, and marrying a whole host of wonderful and seemingly incongruous flavors. The only place is comes up short is in the appearance, and that doesn't really influence my drinking enjoyment all that much. And when one factors in the huge price differential...

Batch variation seems to be pretty obvious. I didn't get that vague plastic smell from the batch 001x4 bottles I've sampled. I'll comment further when I open up my own bottle at some point. I'm also looking forward to batch 002.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2009 16:30:07 | More by MasterSki
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WVbeergeek

West Virginia

4.1/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured vigorously into my Liefman's Goudenband glass, head quickly dwindles tan head forms thick but fleets me. The carbonation never quits moving, leading me to believe that this beer is still alive. Aromatics are so deep with vinous tones in this case it seems to be currants added to the mix for the super fruitiness. Batch # 004X3 weird stuff that keeps giving off a wonderful nose. Hints of sherry vinaigrette blowing off the rapid bubbling head, mild cider notes with wild funky tones that could only be dreamt about if your not drinking this wild ale...horse blanket barnyard doesn't even do it justice. Flavor hits you with a blast of oak with tart fruits galore seems like currants are the victim once again. This beer dares you to keep drinking it make sure your immune system is up to par it hit's with a very acidic tartness that's probably not healthy for your digestive tract unless your consuming this regularly. If Vinnie just all about vomit acid inducing sour ales I've gone too far, but so far his Damnation was the best American brewed Belgian anything that I've tried thus far. I guess it's a question of do you really like sours? I do...it's so different from your average brew out there this wild fermentation really peaks my interest even if it ends in a sour vinegar lactic pedio WTF?

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2010 09:01:23 | More by WVbeergeek
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russpowell

Oklahoma

4.43/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cheers to Solomon420 helping get this one! Review based on notes

Batch 002X1 pours a hugely effervescent brown/chestnut with a rapidly falling tan head; a great beer to listen to...Nice viscosity to this, a touch of lacing & zero head retention

S: Much sourness, , leather, figs & candied cherries

T: Tartness, cherries, dryness; leather, raisins & figs up front, plus a touch of leafy hops. Oaky dryness & tart cherries dominate as this warms, & a bit of boozey figs, leather & more leafy hops as this warms. Finishes uber dry with leather. figs, vanilla & boozey cherries

MF: Medium bodied, soft carbonation, became oily & sticky once warm

Drinks easy as a wild ale & the ABV, a touch too dry for me to be completely happy with it, another great sour from these guys!

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2009 02:25:50 | More by russpowell
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Kegatron

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at O'Briens (San Diego, CA) on 3/20/09. Part of a full day of Russian River beers here. Served in a Chimay glass.

Pours a deep clear ruby amber color with a ½ finger of creamy beige colored head. Thin wispy retention that flares up nicely into a frothy cascade of rich lacing that clings to the sides of the glass. Just a beautiful looking beer here. The aroma is quite dense smelling with oaky tannins, and a light vinegar sourness. Underneath of that emerges dark cherries, hints of vanilla, and a nice bit of candied sugary sweetness. Light warth invades the profile as well, giving off just the slightest feel of a fume to the bouquet.

The taste is souring acidic oak and black currants up front that really stand out and add a certain amount of denseness to the profile. Vanilla creeps in before a blast of tartness from the wild yeasties makes itself known. The overall profile is a touch souring at first but then lessens into a more tart feel as this warms. Very nice. I'm also getting some underlying sugary notes, that when mixed with the tartness in the profile, gives this that pleasant Sweetart taste that I like so much in these Russian River Sours. Dry tartness lingers lovingly on the palate. Nice. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a lower carbonation and overall slick feel to it but the little bit of creaminess that does reside in the body is pleasant, intermingling with the more viscous character and moving all of those big flavors nicely. Oh, and 10% on this? I would have never guessed. We actually had to check a case of this that was sitting near our table for the ABV and couldn't believe it!

Another Wild work of art here. The melding of the oak, cherries, and wild yeasts in this was just fantastic and the drinkibility was quite good for a beer of this size. Awesome.

Serving type: on-tap

04-02-2009 16:27:19 | More by Kegatron
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

4.43/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An impromptu Consecration vertical broke out at a recent tasting, we were able to sample batch 1, 2, and 3 side by side. I am happy to report that they are very similar.

Batch 001 - Beer is brown and clear, there is no head and only slight carbonation. The aroma is a mixture of sweet and sour (but not of the Chinese food variety). Really great sour / tart flavor with a hint of malt in there, really shocking. Beer finishes slightly dry overall. There is also a hint of oak and funk at the end, very slight.

Batch 002 - Again, it is clear and brown but this time the carbonation a lot higher. Large bubbles rise through the beer quickly, still no head. The aroma is slightly sweeter but is still very sour. The beer has the same sour notes at the batch 001, in fact they are pretty much the exact same flavor but this one has a slight bitterness to it. I think the bitterness helps accent the oak flavors in the back.

Batch 003 - This one appears slightly lighter than the other two, but just slightly. Still brown and clear. Not as bitter as the Batch 002 but just as sour. Some oak notes in the back.

Overall this is a top notch sour, one of my favorites by a lot. All three were great and I would have them again.

Serving type: bottle

01-25-2010 22:06:17 | More by drabmuh
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SocalKicks

California

4.5/5  rDev +0.4%

08-10-2012 03:50:55 | More by SocalKicks
Photo of Slatetank
Slatetank

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap in a tulip at TJ's Restaurant and Drinkery's 7th Anniversary.

A deep crimson color with blood red/copper hues and light orange accent with good clarity for the style. The cap of beige appears when swirled in the tulip, the bead is ultrafine-pin sized bubbles with gentle spots of lace sticking.
The smell of currant and dark wine grapes is immediate when the glass nears my nostrils, there is a sublte sour scent which combines with spice and mild oak aspects but there is mild sweet odors adding to the complex sour aroma w/ mild currant/berry and grape aroms.

The feel is so highly acidic it seems astringent and sharp up front. The sour lingers and makes me pucker and then the acidity and slight alcohol move forward only after a spice tinge do you get any type of sweetness, the effervescence is moderately high. The flavor mirrors the nose and mouthfeel with sweet tarts and bitter grape flavors with a dash of currant sweetness and slight tannic fruit skin elements. The light sour apple flavor adds dimension to the depth of sour and acidic tastes going on here.

This is not a wild ale for the faint of heart, it is strong puckering and I consider it only above average drinkability-wise overall, just not something I could see have many back to back of, a good wild brew and I guess Vinnie has us spoiled because this is great, just not outstanding like his other American Wild ales.

Serving type: on-tap

12-06-2010 17:27:25 | More by Slatetank
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jlindros

Massachusetts

4.7/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

OOoooh yeah! I've been waiting to have some of this for a while now. I tried it a few times in the past and it's so delicious, but now I finally got to sit down, share the bottle with friends, and write a review. Batch #003, aged a bit, not sure exactly. Got this thanks to trades with Solomon420 and RaulMatisse.

A: Light fizzy head fades instantly over a semi clear rosy red mahogany colored beer.

N: Some nice sour fruits dominate. A little wild yeast is on the top with that, not funky barnyard wet horse Brett but more the sour fruit tangy delicious Brett, although there is just a touch of a barnyard aroma. A little oak at first, which seems to come out more as it warms. A little bit of a malty aroma, with slight sweetness. Just an overall great sour tangy fruit aroma.

T: WOw, so deliious. My mouth is watering from the first sip to half an hour after finishing it. Lots of sour fruits and deliciousness just pours out at first. A little tangy sour cherry fruit. The some malty flavors, a little sweet malt and toasty flavor. A slight wild yeast Bretty flavor, again more the sour fruit Brett than wild barnyard funk, but just a touch of the latter. The Brett overall is pretty mild. Some oak comes out as well, mostly in the background at first, but then starts to get a little more prevalent as it warms.

M: Trillions of bubbles, big carbonation, with a good body.

F: Dry finish, with some lingering mouthwatering goodness. It has a hint of sweetness but mostly dry, leaving the mouth ready for the next hit. Lots of lingering sour tangy fruit, a little sour cherry. A touch of wild Brett lingering on the finish, little funk even which seems to be a little more on the finish. Breaddy malts also come through. For being 10% there's no real booze, it drinks so well. This is a super delicious amazingly awesome sour. I wish so much we could get it around here, or even better if I could brew this myself. Sooo tasty.

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2010 02:22:04 | More by jlindros
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

4.2/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a nice amber color with a 1/2" off-white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a mild sourness in the nose along with a nice barrel aged aroma. The crystal malts seem to mellow the overall sourness. The taste is more laid back as well. It's easy drinking. I cannot believe this is a 10% abv. beer. I could drink this all night. It has a more moderate sourness than Beatification. It's also a darker beer with some crystal malt sweetness. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with good carbonation. This is very drinkable. It's tasty and not overly "wild".

Serving type: on-tap

02-21-2010 23:30:44 | More by WesWes
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Mora2000

Texas

4.78/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to hophead101 for sending me this bottle.

Batch 001x1, sampled June 19, 2010.

The beer pours a clear dark red color with a white head. The aroma is awesome. I get lots of brown sugar, oak, vanilla and a low amount of tartness. The flavor is brown sugar, medium tartness, dark fruits, vanilla and oak. Medium carbonation and medium mouthfeel. This beer matured into a wonderful drink. It was tried alongside Sanctification, Temptation, Supplication and Beatification and I think this beer was easily the star of the show.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2010 04:22:28 | More by Mora2000
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Rifugium

Pennsylvania

4.72/5  rDev +5.4%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

06-10-2011 15:26:46 | More by Rifugium
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin

Colorado

4.63/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

my most wonderful girlfriend hooked this up for me. it almost looks like a glass of rootbeer, brownish in color, lively carbonation, and a faint red glow. the head is excited but quickly receding. the smell is a dead giveaway that this is another russian river sour gem. notes of vinegar, decaying wood, dried plums, caramel corn, and cane sugar unite in an aromatic orgy. the taste is incredible, the currants are obvious up front, but the finish is what makes this beer. its so sour it hurts my jaw. sour more than brett too, its sort of like sucking on a lemon for as long as you can, puckery, funky, and delicious. its too complex to finger all the flavors here, but many many more of these need to be consumed to fully appreciate it fully. the mouthfeel is as perfect as it can be, medium body made light by the effervescent carbonation and tart bone dry finish that somehow makes my mouth water for another sip. how the hell is this 10% abv? it is not at all detectable in the flavor or the feel, and im just waiting on my buzz... overall this may surpass suplication as my favorite russian river brew. they do some incredible stuff out there, and this is the cream of the crop. if i play my cards right my girlfriend might get me another...

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2012 21:19:25 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of oline73
oline73

Maryland

4.8/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had this on-tap at Capone's during the Russian River event. Poured into a goblet. This was Batch 1.

Appearance: Pours an opaque reddish brown color with a layer of off white head that goes away completely.

Smell: Sour fruity vinegar with a hint of sweetness. I'd say it is very wine like.

Taste: Just like the smell, I'm picking up sour fruit and vinegar notes, but much smoother here than in the smell. I can taste oak, and red wine. All the flavors are in perfect balance. The finish is warm from the alcohol, very nice.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with tingly mild carbonation. The finish is dry and woody.

Overall: I haven't found a sour beer that I like better than this one. The flavors are so well balanced, and the alcohol isn't anywhere to be found. Very smooth.

Serving type: on-tap

04-02-2011 21:20:29 | More by oline73
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mdfb79

New York

4.22/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 4/25/10 notes. Poured from a 750 ML bottle into my Duvel tulip.

a - Pours a dark amber color with one finger of white head. Light carbonation evident.

s - Smells of red wine, sour dark fruits, some sweet fruits, funk, and oak.

t - Tastes of sour fruits, wine, sweet malts, and some funk. A little disappointing from the smell.

m - High carbonation and medium body.

d - Pretty good and better than temptation, but not as good as supplication. Worth checking out and I would have again. Thought it smelled a little better than the taste.

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2010 23:51:44 | More by mdfb79
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jwc215

Wisconsin

4.22/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jcwattsrugger for this one!

Batch 001X2, cage-corked bottle.

Pours hazed deep mahogany with a styro-foamish head that thins.

The smell is of red grape - vinuous with currants and oak. Some tart black cherry as well.

The taste is of tart black cherries with black currents. Some and sour, funky with some wood. A firm darkish maltiness supports it. It has a vinuous, dry finish.

It is effervescent. Alcohol there, but reasonably well-hidden.

In some ways wine-like, but with a funky, malty character. Well-balanced - sweet and sour but not too much in one direction. An interesting, delicious, unique, sipper.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2009 03:04:02 | More by jwc215
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

4.65/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Sampled Falling Rock, GABF week 2008
I was able to sneak into a spot at the bar and got one of the first glasses of this, the first keg blew in 5 minutes (before Chris even had a chance to announce it was on tap) and the second only lasted an additional 15 minutes; I was definitely quite lucky to get two glasses of this beer. The beer arrives with quite a clear appearance, it is the hue of a raisin with a rich concentrated color and shows a deep red hue when held up to the light. It is topped by a pale, ring of a head that after a bit forms a brown tinged, full tan colored head that just covers the beer. The aroma definitely has a tartness to it, but also has a rich, thick fruitiness to it that reminds me of a mix of concentrated tamarind, syrupy-fruity balsamic vinegar and rich raisins.

As the beer first hits my tongue it is chewy and rich; a sour beer with a substantial texture (at the time I didn't realize how strong this beer was, but in hindsight the richness makes a lot of sense). Tannins coat my teeth and there is a soft, yet noticeable barrel character in the finish that adds a spicy oak bite. Rich raisin flavors, a substantial berry-like wine note, as well as some rich dried fig and prune flavors all combine to provide a big, fruit-driven backbone that anchors the flavor of this beer. The rich fruit and oak flavors is tempered by a mouth puckering, somehow rich, sourness that is mostly lactic in character but sees to have some acetic overtones to it that reminds me of some sort of berry vinegar as well as hints of a rich, grape balsamic notes. The beer almost develops a raspberry flavor at times, and this actually is pretty nice (says someone who generally shies away from raspberry flavors in beer). As I contemplate my second glass of this beer I start to notice more of the oak flavors coming to the fore with flavors of vanilla, light coconut that is sort of Bourbon-like somehow as well as a structured wine character and a definite berry note that seems like a wine signature.

I haven't said this yet, but this beer is just fantastic. It has an incredible balance of tartness to rich fruit and light, though structured oak character. The flavor is just so well integrated, everything just seems to work together to carry this beer up to another level of complexity and interest. The oak really does add lots of structure, which goes a long way towards helping the overall balance of this beer. I like that the incredibly rich fruit character never gets overwhelming (back to that balance again). This is an awesome beer, whose enjoyment I am sure was magnified by the setting as well as the prior afternoon session of the GABF.

Serving type: on-tap

10-31-2008 04:37:11 | More by Gueuzedude
Consecration from Russian River Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 3,598 ratings.