Consecration - Russian River Brewing Company

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1,088 Reviews
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Reviews: 1,088
Hads: 4,802
Avg: 4.41
pDev: 9.52%
Wants: 1,610
Gots: 1,660 | 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
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Reviews: 1,088 | Hads: 4,802
Photo of SiepJones
3.9/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Tulip

A: A dark brown with little clarity (same color as the bottle its sold in). There is a half inch ring of head with around the outer ring of my glass and some whispy trails of bubbles through the middle. The Duvel D at the bottom of my glass is creating a swirl of carbonation in the middle that makes the bubbles look like clouds of a hurricane.

S: Acidic sour, some cherry "tang", as well as some earthy oak notes.

D: Sour vinegar with a hint of tartness, slight earthy flavor on the finish. Like the Cabernet barrels the beer is aged in it has a similar finish, earthy and puckering. Sour not dry.

M: Slick, lightly carbonated mouth.

D: I enjoyed this beer and the fact that it really resembled a wine, minus the carbonation. I would gladly have another but for the ABV which at 10 is very high. While I don't notice the alcohol presence in the taste or scent I am sure I will feel it after my first glass.

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Photo of andyfrancis
4.44/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

beautiful deep reddish brown in a tiny snifter. Bubbly and more bubbly. Smells of the currants with some sour notes. On tasting, bubbles attack every exposed part of my mouth, giving birth to a flavor explosion. Is it wine? ale? sour? wood? Delcicious. Best of all, for having a such great, complex taste, it doesn't kill your palate. This my favorite of the Russian River 'tion beers. It's a good beer to give a swill drinker a taste of, exposing them to what's possible with a little creativity and experimentation.

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Photo of Chincino
4.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this beer on-tap at the Russian River Brewing Company in Santa Rosa, CA in August 2010 as part of a sampler of the beers they had on-tap that day.

The beer was amber in color and smelled of berries and spice. The beer's alcohol content was well-hidden in this beer. It was tart, but no strong bitter aftertaste.

This beer is very different from its counterparts Damnation and Supplication and I would rank it second amongst the three. I would definitely recommend this beer-so good! Enjoy!

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Photo of vitALEity
5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Nice head that quickly disappears. Small bubbles line the rim of the glass. Dark mahogany color.

S: Incredible. Ive had this many times and I look forward to the aroma just as much as the flavor. Its sour, tart, tangy, winey, dark grapes, cherries and berries.

T: This is a full-on pucker face sour bomb. Its red wine, cherries, oak and vanilla deliciousness.

M: Full, carbonated, tingly, explosive. Like pop rocks candy.

O: My favorite sour as the interplay between the intense tang/funk/fruit/oak is just perfect.

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Photo of Ezekiel81923
4.08/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A 750mL corked and caged bottle purchased from Matt at Capone's in Norristown. Poured into my Sam Adams perfect pint because, well, it was the only clean glass I had.

Appearance: A pop of the cork and a slow pour into my glass reveals a dark, ruby red colored brew. Very dark, almost black, but not quite as you could pick up the blood colored hues in the light. Only light I see coming through is around the outside of the glass. A tan/brown head develops, about a fingers worth, fizzy like soda or seltzer water, which relatively quickly recedes to a thin layer on top of the beer.

Smell: Funky. Fruity. I could pick up the currants that the bottle indicates are in there, as well as some oak sweetness. Maybe some other dark fruit aromas? Sweetness from the Cabernet Sauvignon/Oak barrels it was aged in comes through as well, it's probably the most predominant smell I pick up.

Taste: Very sour. Puckering, malicious sour flavor, but that's a good thing. This might be the most sour beer I've had. I get a touch of fruity sweetness before the sourness takes over. Once the sour subsides, it's a sweet oaky, red wine flavor, and this is where the currants come through. As the beer warms, the sourness dissipates slightly and the back end of the sip becomes a lot sweeter, and the currant and other fruit flavors become much more predominant.

Mouthfeel: Pretty light. Very fizzy on the tongue. Very puckering. In fact, after swallowing each sip, my mouth would still involuntarily pucker from the residual sourness. Pretty cool.

Drinkability: Wouldn't mind if this was in a 375mL or a 22oz'er. Delicious beer, but the more it warms the more I had to labor through it. Certainly a treat though.

This was my first RR Sour beer, and it has inspired me to seek out their others.

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Photo of Hatzilla
4.55/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark brown, mostly clear body, head settles quickly. Smells sour and funky. Tastes sour and has nice notes of currants and Cabernet Sauvignon. Palate is alive and bubbly. Overall much better than the first time I tried this 3 years ago. Highly recommended.

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Photo of Adamdc
4.79/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch #004x4. Bottled on 3/25/09. Drank on 6/22/10. Poured into Duvel tulip.

A: Deep ruby body with quickly dissipating head. Very active carbonation. No lacing whatsoever.

S: Very woody, bretty aroma---the funk here is very nice! There's a pervading dark fruit aroma that must be from the currants---seems like raisins and cherries. There's a slight vinegar aroma lingering also.

T: There's a lot going on here and it's changing with each sip. There's no doubt about the barrel-aging here---lots of oak. The brett (again) is very nice and raisins, dates, cherries, plums and even a touch of lemon. Through all this I'm even getting some of the yeast. No perceived alcohol whatsoever.

M: I would say that the mouthfeel is thin to medium. The beer actually coats the palate somewhat but I wouldn't say that it's 'thick' by any means. Just right for the style.

D: Well, at 10% abv I'm not perceiving any alcohol and the 'sourness' is by no means 'over the top' so put me down for a few more. Very drinkable!

I haven't had alot of sours so I'm no expert but this was a very enjoyable glass of beer. The science behind these sour ales really amazes me. Thanks RR!

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Photo of natemort13
3.69/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Batch 007

Pours a dark ruby bordering on maroon. What little head there was dissipates right away. Not super inviting but I'm not at all familiar with sours.

Smell is very pleasing if you like wine. Smells much smoother than a mediocre bottle of cab (I'm talking cheap mediocre...not sommelier mediocre). I get a lot of oak and spicy notes. Dark fruit and funkiness.

Sourness is present right away and lingers well into the finish. In between there's bright and tart cherry. As it warms there are very nice oak notes that come out. Some tobacco.

Mouthfeel...The RR website tells me its full bodied but I would call it medium. The sourness may be throwing off my perception but that's how it seems to me.

Overall...Not my cup of tea. The beer might've been too young, and I don't know anything about aging sours or the style in general. It's not too harsh or intense. Just not pleasant to me. Gonna stick to PtE for now, but I'm glad I tried it. Any insight to sours is welcome through beermail.

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Photo of fastpass17
4.43/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cork and Caged bomber bottle.

A: Strong vibrant carbonation, head clings to the glass, crimson in color.

S: Oak, tart, strong raison presence, vanilla, slight mustiness in the end.

T: Begins with a warming nuttiness, oak, cream and cherry comes through in the middle, sour completes the drink.

M: At first taste it stings slightly, then warms the palate, the alcohol is there yet it is muted.

D: When in the mood for a sour I would enjoy a big bottle or two, it is delicious.

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Photo of blindtiger24
4.3/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Wow! Awesome ruby color, thin lacing for a head, some cherry and currant aromas. Slight pucker, dark stone fruit flavors, but amazing finish that is dry and melts away the sourness. Manages to have a fizzy and light mouthfeel without too much tartness. Reminds me of La Folie, but I think this trumps it based on how smooth it finishes.

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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 kfsv034
4.22/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured into a duvel tulip shared with drink1121 thanks to zestar for the bottle

A - it poured a crimson color with huge head that bubbled down quickly. almost like a coke fizzes down it was weird never seen anything like that in a beer.

S - smells of vinegar, raisin, fig, plum, slight funk smell

T - pretty much the same as the smell, strong vinegar, raisin, fig, plum, pretty sour, some cabernet flavors, and a hit of oak on the backend.

M - wine like

D - alcohol is masked very well, but I'm feeling it after only half of the beer.

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Photo of sherm1016
4.33/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 04x2, 375ml Bottle purchased at LaBodega Wine and Spirits in Riverside CA. Pours a clear, beautiful reddish-brown color with little to no head. Aroma is fruity and sour. Medium on the palate with average carbonation. Flavor is a clean sour with hints of fruit and oak. Extremely smooth. I said it about Supplication, and I'll say it about Consecration: I would drink this every day if money and availability would allow.

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Photo of JWD
4.53/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked these up on the Consecration/ PTY release day.

A- Outstanding ruby reddish dark brown color with a frothy tan head on it.

S- i think i am wine tasting, very strong red wine hint here, little funky and definently going to make you pucker!!

T- Great, I have had all but the ultra rare RR sours and this is my favorite right there with beatifacation, This offering bring so much more to the table, Starts sweet fruit wine and leaves you sour and dry, tons of changes here.

M- High carb and all else it what is to be expected.

D- Love it, i could have 2 750s easy, great sipper that improve as it warms.

Overall, great RR offering that i will be stocked up on for a while if i can resist the temptation to drink, so far i am not doing good and at $25 a bottle i cannot afford any more!!

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Photo of schmoopsbeer
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 5
served chilled into bruery tulip.

Color: A deep mahogany with shades maroon at the core. Forms a clear bubbly head that disappears quickly. No visual lacing left behind.

Nose: Sourness form the brett and other wild yeast and bacteria used to brew this beer. Dark cherries are evident along side the currants and faint tobacco. Oakiness creeps up toward the end.

Palate: Nicely carbonated makes for an easy drink. The abv is well masked through the beer, hardly noticeable. The dark cherry coat the tongue followed by little waves of oak and tobacco. The currants are not very evident here.

Finish: Long and a tad dry. Crisp with oak and cherry. Complex and drinkable, really well crafted beer with the right amount of sourness.

Rating: 94 out of 100. Not as good as Supplication or Temptation, but extremely solid.

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Photo of hrking
3.83/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is one of those beers that drinks more like a wine than a beer. Aged in wine barrels and carrying the flavors over into the finished product with a unique character added to the tartness of this beer. All the RR products are made to the highest of standards by one of craft beers true master brewers! I recommend trying all their brews if you can get your hands on them..

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Photo of WCBCFrank
2.3/5  rDev -47.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Russian River's Consecration Ale pours a deep, ruby red in a goblet or Chardonnay glass. Good carbonation and massive Beethoven's 5th notes of very ripe fruit and dark cherries. Lots of wine like qualities - more like Muscat-beer like qualities. Good amount of sourness and kinda like a blended cocktail of Muscat, sherry, Belgian dubbel, and a lambic. One of the few beers that is STRICLY an after-dinner thought.

For the novice: You probably won't like it.

Personally: Up front, I am not a fan of the oak barrel infused types of beer that tastes like wine or whiskeys. Consecration is in this category. Although, I can see drinking this over Temptation Blonde, that's not saying much. Not worth the price, I rather just buy a Flemish Sour.

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Photo of biga7346
4.15/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Shimmering ruby-like color, very turbid, murky, rusted metal, apple cider.

N - Cider vinegar-like acidity, massive tart cherries, red wine vinegar and lots of winey notes folds into an almost clove-like suggestion, possibly whole nutmeg, green peppercorn, maybe figs or rose hips; the nose roams wildly and is pretty perfumy not like a Supplication which was more subtle. Wafting herbal aromas balanced with sour milk, wet and old hay, top soil.

T/M - Wow...teeth chattering tartness, cloying sour and irony mouthfeel; blackberries, raspberries, black peppercorn and figs; lemon skin, much more drying tannins in a lasting finish than the Supplication; leather strap, blackcurrants.

D - Not sure if I could drink more than one of those but this is definitely the most interesting sour beer I have had. I think I prefer the sessionable enjoyability of Supplication. We had both of these back-to-back in a recent sour tasting.

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Photo of chalsk
4.52/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Batch 4. Pours a deep amber brown color with a medium off white foam head. Has an aroma of vinegar and cherry. Has a sour, tart taste with hints of cherry, some grapes as well. Very excellent sour brew. I have been very impressed with this brewery. Ready to move to Cali and hang with Vinne. Just good stuff.

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Photo of KBS
4.37/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The first few sips were not fantastic for me but thought it was a completely different experience as it opened up and warmed. Loved the 2nd half as the barrel came through. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of humanawho
4.79/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A - nice deep red color with a very active head of cream and good lacing but dies away quickly

S - lots of fruit aromas including currents, grapes and some strawberries there is also a woody component that balances the sweet aroma of the fruit

T - again a lot of fruit with currents and strawberries and blueberries with a great but light sour component and again some clean woody, leathery flavors

M - a little thin on the mouth and somewhat weak carbonation

D - amazing drinkablity with just the touch of sour and no way to tell its high in alcohol

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Photo of alpineclimber
4/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A big thanks to rmaste6282 for this bottle.

A 375ml bottle caged and corked, poured into a tulip glass. A good frothy head attempted to form but quickly dissipated to a ring of bubbles.

The nose on this one is very interesting, sweet like bubble gum, phenolic, sour and tart cherry.

Taste is great, a nice balance of tart dark fruit with a dry finish. Not much sweetness in the taste as the nose would leave one to believe.

Pretty good overall. The bottle lacks carbonation but I am not complianing, that's a reality with bottle conditioned beers. The alcohol is very well hidden in this one.

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Photo of wd40
4.57/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Very dark, deep burgundy hue in glass. Has a sweet fruitiness of raspberries and currants balanced by sour tartness. Consecration is aged in wine barrels and there is definitely a hint of red wine in the aftertaste. Although it's sour, it's so delicious I found myself almost gulping it down.
What makes this beer work so well is the balance between dark/sweet flavors, and bright/sour flavors. The dark/sweet flavors coming from the fact that the baseline beer for this brew is a Belgian style dark ale with currants added, that has been aged in Cabernet Sauvignon barrels.
The yeast used, Bretanomyces, also adds some earthy flavors to the mix. This is then counterbalanced by the bright sourness produced by the bacterias: Lactobacilius and Pediococcus. FWIW, that kind of sourness I can only relate to candy like sour patch kids, but the sourness has a lot of flavors competing for attention. This brew has some real complexity and depth of flavor. Highly recommended.

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Photo of OneBeertoRTA
4.83/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Out of all the non limited release RR sours this is the bees knees.

The pour is dark much more so than Temptation, the abv is whopping and well hidden.

This was the beer that turned my wife on to sours and her favorite to this day. When this is available at my local stores I get it ever time.

Highly recommended to any entry or veteran sour lover.

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Photo of jmadrigal2
4.33/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this out of the bottle.

The appearance was brown/red color with little head.

Smelled of cherry, hint of alcohol and a hint of tamarind

Taste is similar to the smell. Sweet fruity taste at the start but quickly turns tart. The tartness does not linger long and ends mildly sweet.

I like this beer a lot and always pick up a bottle to enjoy whenever I can.

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Consecration from Russian River Brewing Company
98 out of 100 based on 1,088 ratings.