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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

3,840 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,840
Reviews: 1,035
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.8%
Wants: 1,357
Gots: 1,196 | 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: 3,840 | Reviews: 1,035 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Slatetank
4/5  rDev -10.9%

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.

Slatetank, Dec 06, 2010
Photo of drabmuh
4.43/5  rDev -1.3%

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.

drabmuh, Jan 25, 2010
Photo of StonedTrippin
4.63/5  rDev +3.1%

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...

StonedTrippin, Aug 31, 2012
Photo of jlindros
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%

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.

jlindros, May 26, 2010
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 oline73
4.8/5  rDev +6.9%

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.

oline73, Apr 02, 2011
Photo of WesWes
4.2/5  rDev -6.5%

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".

WesWes, Feb 21, 2010
Photo of Mora2000
4.78/5  rDev +6.5%

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.

Mora2000, Jun 21, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
4.22/5  rDev -6%

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.

mdfb79, Apr 28, 2010
Photo of mendvicdog
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

mendvicdog, Dec 11, 2012
Photo of jwc215
4.22/5  rDev -6%

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.

jwc215, May 03, 2009
Photo of Rochefort10nh
5/5  rDev +11.4%

Rochefort10nh, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of DrunkinYogi
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

DrunkinYogi, Jul 04, 2013
Photo of Gueuzedude
4.65/5  rDev +3.6%

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.

Gueuzedude, Oct 31, 2008
Photo of MarkyMOD
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

MarkyMOD, Dec 13, 2012
Photo of XmnwildX12
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

XmnwildX12, Dec 11, 2013
Photo of Halcyondays
3.75/5  rDev -16.5%

On-tap at O'Brien's,

A: Pours darker than a beet red, with a small cap of white foam.

S: Got some interesting cherry and wine notes, but wanted a bit more. Some chocolate in there too.

T: Heavy balsamic vinegar and wine character, almost had a rancid fruit characteristic, in a good way though. Fig and dark fruit notes. Not light on the funk. Sweetness comes out in the finish to the beer which I liked. Not the greatest flavour for me, but certainly interesting.

M: Upfront acidity, then the mouthfeel lightens up a bit, a little too thin at times.

D: An intriguing beer from Russian River. I don't think I liked it as much as everyone around me did, but I enjoyed trying it.

Edit - I've had this beer a few times since the original review, still not wowed, but I've found myself liking it more and more. Upping the taste score to a 4 (from 3.5).

Halcyondays, Jan 31, 2009
Photo of beernads
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%

beernads, Oct 18, 2013
Photo of Gavage
4/5  rDev -10.9%

Appearance: dark amber in color with a short 1/4" head that falls to some thick surface bubbles.

Smell: yeast, sour fruits, and some woodiness makes up a pleasant but different aroma.

Taste: yeast, red wine, woodiness, tart cherries, and a moderate bitterness. Alcohol is mildly noticable. Sourness is strong here.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Crisp throughout with some significant dryness at the finish.

Drinkability: slow sipping beer and the sourness is a bit strong so one will not look for more than a glass in a session.

Gavage, Jun 06, 2010
Photo of kojevergas
3.8/5  rDev -15.4%

375ml brown glass bottle with an intricate cork+steel wire cap served into a hefeweissbier glass in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations were high as this is me second favourite brewery in the world and me favourite in the Americas.

A: Pours a three finger head of slight cream, fair thickness, and poor retention. Colour is a dark copper with the potential for overcarbonation, judging by the bubbles. It's appealing in a generic sense.

Sm: Aroma consists of souring hops - which aren't overpowering like some lambics, wine, grapes, mild wood notes, and some lactic notes. Aroma is of moderate to mild strength.

T: A very complex taste, consisting primarily of souring hops but with a wine "shell" around it. Some cedar comes through, particularly from the midpoint through the climax. If berries are present, they're buried. The finish smacks of grapes, which closes out the flavour nicely. No alcohol comes through.

Mf: Very smack your lips pleasant due to the grape finish - sort of a slight Welch's commercial effect. It's smooth and wet all around, but perchance a touch too thick. Overcarbonation is slight but existent.

Dr: It hides its ABV very well, and has some great complex flavours, but does suffer from some minor issues, namely overcarbonation. I could see this getting better with age, but it'd be very difficult to drink more than one. It's nice to kick back and enjoy after returning from work, but sippers only go so far. Excellent value in California.

kojevergas, Sep 10, 2011
Photo of GClarkage
4.47/5  rDev -0.4%

11/15/08- Had on tap at the Bistro Barrel Aged fest in Hayward, CA.

Presentation- Via the tap into small taster size glasses.

Appearance- Auburn colored pour, slightly murky but ultra fine yeast sightings if any. No real head and slight lace remnents.

Smell- Large amount of sour berries and lots of brett sourness and barnyard notes.

Taste- Unlike other supperb Wild Ales by RR, this one has some serious depth. Or at least thickness and a more fruity base other than just sourness. Cherry, raspberry, blackberry...can't really tell what berry (although I think it's cherry). Very sour with sharp acidic flavor. Winelike taste due to the cab barrels used for aging. Almost seems like some mild sweetness trys to creep in, but can't get it's head through the door.

Mouthfeel- Very full mouthfeel for a Wild Ale. Sharp and ultra clean with a medium crisp carbonation level.

Drinkability- Right up there with all the other Wild Ales Vinnie brews, one of my new favorites. Winner of the fest IMO.

GClarkage, Nov 17, 2008
Photo of imperialking
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%

imperialking, Nov 30, 2011
Photo of corby112
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%

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.

corby112, Jan 27, 2011
Photo of InspectorBob
4.38/5  rDev -2.4%

On tap at Eulogy Belgian Tavern, Olde City during their sour week.

Poured into a tulip, dark ruby red color with about one finger of hesd which dissipates quickly leaving very little if no lacing.

Aromas of dark fruit, cherry/fig. Red wine gone bad.

Taste is sour and tart. A slight bit of sweetness for balance.

Mouthfeel was medium bodied with some carbonation, dry, very dry.

Very drinkable, you hardly notice the 10% ABV on the finish. Becomes more funky as it warms. I like this beer...

InspectorBob, Nov 28, 2010
Photo of weeare138
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%

Bottle at Capone's...
Appears a dark amber with a small white head that quickly fades. Tiny speckles of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of tart strawberries, funky barnyard, sugary fruit, vanilla oak, and rhubarb.
Taste is of the same aromas with strawberries, currants, wine and raisin flavors taking over.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, funky, chewy, with barnyard funk sticking to the palate.

weeare138, Apr 15, 2009
Consecration from Russian River Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 3,840 ratings.