Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine?

Learn more about beer and save over 53% with a 3-year subscription.

Subscribe now →

Consecration - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,088 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 1,088
Hads: 4,801
Avg: 4.41
pDev: 9.52%
Wants: 1,610
Gots: 1,662 | 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: 1,088 | Hads: 4,801
Photo of Cedromar
4.35/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Split a bottle with my lady. Batch 1x003.

Pour gives a lovely ruddy ruby color with mild bubbles that don't stick around, I guess they were feeling shy.

Smell of a nice sour Cabernet.

The taste is wonderful, sour, funky, fruity. Currants up front then the sour acidity followed by the leathery brett.

Mouthfeel is again wonderful, good carbonation.

I could drink this again and again and again. However, this ranks behind Supplication and Beatification for me.

 465 characters

Photo of Westsidebuddha
4.47/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought at 7-11 in Highland Park, Calif. Batch 002X1.

Pop open the bottle and notice the scent of cherries. A very good smell. Poured a dark red color into a glass. Slight head on top with lots of tiny bubbles bursting on top. A very nice sour taste on the first sip. Not overwhelming with a nice sour back end.

I been hearing how good this beer is and I'm glad I tried it. Also glad the price I paid for wasn't wasted (It's a wee bit up there). Overall, this is a very good beer with a nice sour taste. The carbonation is caused by the refermenting in the bottle and it definitely shows in the glass and the way it pops in your mouth. I could drink another one easily but I'm gonna have to break my piggy bank for that. Wow, look at the fizz of that second pour and the smell. This is good!

 793 characters

Photo of nectar14
4.62/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 750 mL, enjoyed with da wife.

A: Dark caramel amber color, piling up a decent lace of foam that fizzes down to just a thin film.

S: Sour funkiness, a bit of dark fruit, slight malt. Inviting.

T: Delicious and comforting. Rich but not heavy with tart fruit, malt, and a small touch of caramel. Lovely.

M: Cuts nicely on the palate and has cleansing acidity. Easy to drink.

D: Though 10%, it goes down nicely.

One of my favorites.

 439 characters

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

Had this several times before, this time was on tap at Pizzeria Basta, Boulder CO.

The head on this beer dissappates quickly, and leaves a few bubbles hanging desperately around the rim and in a Rorschacht pattern in the center that looks like a monkey-cow kind of thing. THe color is like copper and the heart of a big piece of amber.

The smell is amazing, oaky, slightly winey, with some beautiful funk, kind of like if Aretha Franklin sat in with George Clinton and the P-Funk Allstars and did something slow.

The taste is sour cherries wrapped in oak magic, with a tart tang like underripe strawberries in some fantasy world where they were actually something to look forward to. The carbonation is perfect and cleanses and elevates the chorus of flavors.

This beer drinks really well, wish I hadn't finished the last of the keg. To all the Boulderites before me, I salute you, to all those who didn't partake, you missed out. Can't wait to have this again, but I did see a bottle a few days ago...

 1,006 characters

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!

 1,261 characters

Photo of tim9887
4.52/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Small corked & caged bottle, poured into a glass. Pours a deep, dark reddish amber with off-white head that subsides almost immediately. Vinegar, booze, and fruit are evident in aroma. Vinegary flavor combines with a sharp lemony acidity. Dry fruity finish. Light on the palate and has an almost champagne-like carbonation. Very tart, sour, complex. Drinkable for an ale of this strength. VERY enjoyable!!!

 406 characters

Photo of Zaplt
4.42/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer was shared three ways (hobojon and DaveJanssen) poured meticulously and artistically into a tulip La Chouffe glass. Batch - 002X1

Appearance - The color was a deep dark amber, surprisingly clear. Lighter head with a lack of lacing.

Smell - Complex with initial sweetness slowly enveloped by a fruity (raisin), and bready smell with a strong funk ensuing. The sour funk (which I described as barnyard) was not too overwhelming, but quite pleasant)

Taste - The first sip knocked me off my feet. Many layers of flavors - Amazing layers of sweetness/funkiness/mild malt. Tart/sour funk very apparent after first sip - wonderfully balanced - the sweetness was very strong, more so than expected but well balanced with the sour funk and malt and countless other tastes words cannot portray. Wine character and oak evident from aging.

Mouthfeel - Generally high carbonation but not unpleasant. Sweet and full considering.

Drinkability - Lovely beer - one of the most drinkable soured beers I have ever tried. Will gladly recommend to experienced beer lovers and inquiring minds concerning innovative soured beers. Go Russian River go!

 1,137 characters

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

Pours a dark ruby with a foamy head that doesn't linger long and settles to a ring for the rest of the drink. Smell is of light sour note of currant. Taste is clean, sour, currant again with nice full oak flavor that balances well to the finish leaving a great aftertaste. Mouthfeel is good as well with pleasant carbonation, a great sour. Drinkablility is lower simply because of the 10% ABV but could easily have a couple of snifters of this.

 444 characters

Photo of JonathanG
4.47/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had a sample of this at Hops & Pie, in a Great Divide tulip. Thanks Leah!

A: reddish brown, with a light sheet of head.
S: a little barnyard, along with currants, and oak.
T: currants, integrated oak, and again a bit of barnyard.
M: nice and sour, with good acidity. An excellent food beer.
O: Reminds me of wine, and that's a good thing. Very food-friendly, and nuanced similarly to a Cabernet with a bit of age on it.

I have only tried a few of the Russian River offerings, to-date, but would definitely seek this out again. Fantastic stuff!

 545 characters

Photo of neobob187
3.95/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle, Batch 006.

A: Absolutely no head when poured from the bottle. You can see a very small amount of bubbles collected at the bottom of the glass, but other then that, no carbonation really looking at it. The color is a deep mahogany red.

S: I don't get as much of the currants as some have described. I'm getting more of a balsamic sour funk with deep fruit notes. As it warms you also definitely get the wine barrels it was aged in. Very dry funk to the nose.

T: For 10% this beer is definitely very drinkable. However the taste doesn't quite wow me. I had a Supplication earlier in the year and despite this beer's amazing description, I found Supplication to be more complex in the flavor. But that's just me. The taste is a really nice tart sour up front, but it finishes with a fruity sweet character. Figs, cherries, and some musty wine notes are all present.

M: Very lightly carbonated and tart on the back of the palate.

O: Overall I enjoyed this beer, but it didn't wow me the way I thought it would. Still, for an American Wild Red Sour Ale I found it to be quite pleasant. I will have to branch out and try the other wild ales Russian River makes because both Supplication and Consecration were very unique and interesting beers.

 1,268 characters

Photo of nniicckkww
4.8/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Batch 005x2F brewed 12/1/2009 bottled 10/17/2010

Poured from a 375ml bottle into a chalice. The corked came out easily with a nice 'pop.' Fizzy rusty head of about an inch quickly dissipated. Reddish, brown color with a slight cloudiness.

Aroma of red wine, musty wet wood and leather. Mouthwatering. Lively carbonation that leads into a fruity, tartness followed by leather and earth. Dark fruits. Finish is long and smooth, yet acidic at the same time. Perfectly balanced sourness. In a blind taste taste, I could not tell if this was 4% or 10% abv. Amazing.

A very complex beer.

 586 characters

Photo of TJBurgess
4.35/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

#20, something special from the fridge for the World Cup final.

Big thanks to Stevefinny for this. 750ml Batch 002x01. Poured into a tulip.

A: Brownish maroon with a head that disappears like a scared turtle's. Nothing great, but the resurgence of effervescent bubbles is pretty cool. 4.0

S: Brett nosebomb with tart cherry and oak. Again, not overwhelming but still pleasant. 4.0

T: Tart fruitiness with a dry, oaky finish. Initial taste has a domineering sweet funk, but the oak comes on strong and dry at the end. Great balance between two opposing tastes. 4.5

M/D: Big carbonation and effervescence keep such a great clean taste. I love the thickness of a stout, but this is the complete opposite and so well done that I really appreciate it just as much. The 10% is essentially nonexistent. I couldn't drink this every day, but the complexity and style is something I would enjoy on a semi regular basis. 4.5/4.5

 922 characters

Photo of Krevee
4.17/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drank on 04/29/10
Poured from 750ml bottle into a Bruery tulip

A - The beer pour a dark red. Looks similar to a red wine. Has very minimal white head that faded away rather quickly. Virtually no lacing while drinking.

S - The smell is very interesting with lots of unique flavor profiles. I can smell the wine barrels that it was aged in. It has hints of oak and a stronger alcohol as well such and bourbon maybe. It has a very tart smell to it as well with dark sweet fruits in the mix.

T - I had one half glass with dinner and enjoyed it but it didn't seem that sour/tart to me from what I had read about this beer, but when I poured myself a full glass later in the evening the second glass seemed much more tart/sour. I can definitely taste the red wine from the barrel aging along with some oak. Has sweet fruit tastes to it as well. I can't distinguish the individual fruits though. I can also taste the current in the beer. The beer is very tart and dry on the back half. It is quite tasty but is definitely a sipping beer.

M - Mouthfeel is medium to high amounts of carbonation with a lighter body to the beer. Good for the style but you can't take very large sips of it.

D - This beer hides its ABV well, but is not something that I can drink a lot of in a sitting. Because it is so tart it much be sipped and savored so I don't think I would have more than a glass or two at a time. Its refreshing for the first glass but after that the ABV starts to hit you. Good beer overall and for the style.

 1,516 characters

Photo of pepsican
4.27/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

hand bottle from Joey, thanks a lot! High light of the night for me at our tasting. Amber pour with a nice little head coming off of it. Flavor was up front cranberry, plums, an plenty of tannic wine notes. Very tart, mildly refreshing.

update on the batch 1/04

Starting to overcarbonate, champagne style large bubbles muddle up the complexity of this one. Touches of unwanted acidity are also coming forward, and the fruit has definitely died off a bit as well as the sharp tannic bite from the wine barrels.

 512 characters

Photo of SeasonalBrew
4.32/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 004x5

A: Poured into my La Fin Du Monde tulip. The color is a deep brown with mahogany hues when held up to the light. The half inch of white head I got faded just as quickly as it built.

S: Wow, it packs a tart punch. I can pick up tart cherries and grapes paired with some funk and a definite oak backbone. Really intriguing.

T: Follows the nose almost exactly. Immediate sour and tart cherry notes. Funky Brett and oak follow, but don't completely take over. It all blends together pretty well. A definite bite from the alcohol is present in the finish, which is still just as tart as the start.

M: Loads of carbonation and a light body. Finishes like a dry wine.

D: Fairly drinkable. Still a lot to handle alone. I am new to the sour dept, but this one still leaves me wanting to try more, so that's good. I was a bit worried.

 841 characters

Photo of avaccani
4.73/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch 004X2

Poured into a New Belgium Tulip.

A - Pours a crystal clear Mahogany with a very small off white head that vanishes into a fine ring that follows the glass down.

S - I am getting some Brett funk, leather, barnyard, some dark fruit, figs, plum, and a touch of oak.

T - Sour, Tart, Puckering Tart, oakey, and fruity in that order. Sourness starts off on first sip, followed by a nice tartness that increases until it puckers you. Then some of the oak is shining through followed by the dark fruit. Simply amazing. An incredible showcase of flavors.

M - On firt glance your thinking full bodied, but this is really light on the tounge. Very deceiving on carbonation. The sourness makes you feel like it has alot of carbonic bite, when in reality it is very lightly carbed.

O - This is the best sour I have ever had. The complexity is overwhelming. This is so masterfully crafted that it rivals the finest Bordeaux blends. This should be on every beer lovers bucket list.

 984 characters

Photo of lionchow
4.32/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours orange-amber with thin white head.

Aroma is sharply and brightly funky, not barnyard, but more tart.

Flavor is nicely tart. Sourness is full but not overwhelming. Currant flavor is mild, just the right level of sweetness to add some balance to the tartness. The flavor is simple, straightforward, but right on.

Mouthfeel is dry, with low-medium carbonation.

Overall, an excellent beer. Uncomplicated, enjoyable flavor, with just the right number and combination of notes to hold your interest, without being pretentious or muddled.

 544 characters

Photo of Swimsum
4.35/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Found some old reviews. This was sampled with ThreeWiseMen on 10/18/10. Batch 2 into Duvel tulip.

Pours out a nice dark red, almost mahogany like color. Ivory colored head emerges from this. Held to the light can see very active carbonation. Head settles to thin layer on top of beer. In light the body lights up to a brilliant ruby. Head stays around for whole session but no lacing is present.

Most sourness with red currants that are very prevalent. This is the first time having this and it honestly smells amazing. Really like the red currant smell.

Tart and sour just like the smell. Much more sour than I thought it was going to be (haven't had a lot of sours up to this point). However, as the session went on was able to get used to the sourness. The currants make themselves known as well. By the end of the glass, this became really balanced for me and I really wasn't even noticing the sourness, was more of a subtle sourness. Very nice.

This was pretty well carbonated. I have no idea if it is too high for the style or what but I felt a good amount of carbonation when the beer was on the tongue. Regardless, I really like how this feel goes down.

Amazingly drinkable. I wasn't sure what to expect in regards to sourness but this is very well done and taste great. I'll be buying this a lot many times over and over.

 1,335 characters

Photo of 2BDChicago
4.72/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Batch # 004X2

A: Golden-amber, with mahagony tones. Clear though bottom of bottle has a slight haze. Little to no foam.

S: The first whiff gives one the indication of a very special brew. Oak barrel influenced, soured, semi-dark fruits. It's inviting and mysterious.

T: First impression is refreshingly tart and dry. The after taste is unbelieveably enticing but I can't separate the various flavor notes. It's a complex blend of taste sensations, and all morphing together then separting, but in the end very inviting. Never would guess the high abv in tastings.

D: RR has taken beers to a different level, which I mean in the most respectfull way. The aroma is as almost as attractive as the taste. As a fan of Imperial Stouts and big IPAs, at times I don't think I have the sosphistication for sours and wild ales, but this brew is easy to understand. The subelty of the complexity of this brew is the amazing skill of the brewer. So, the downside of loving RR is the difficulty in obtaining. Joy of the hunt.

 1,017 characters

Photo of cmadd
4.29/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

The Sept 2012 bottle pours with little head but a decent ring of lace atop a body the colour of American Mahogany. The nose leads with lactic acid, wine, and funk and is balanced by the smell of currants. When you take a sip the beer explodes with a lactic sourness rounded by the oak and a slight astringency from the tannins. Currants and acrid vinous notes hold the middle leading to a slightly sweet finish. With lively and sparkling carbonation, this is a great sour.

 472 characters

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

Like Supplication on steroids, you get flavors of cherries, oak, chocolate, cognac and sour citrus with a deep, caramelly malt backdrop. Appearance is a deep, dark amber with almost no light penetration or head. Thick, chewy mouthfeel and a deep, vinous smell. Worth over penny. A perfect beer.

 294 characters

Photo of hobojon
4.4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle 002X1 picked up at RRBC tasted with davejanssen and zaplt. poured in tulip glass.

Aroma- oak (cinnamon, woody), dark fruit, sour, dark crystal malt, sweet, alcohol (subtle). great aroma.

App- clear, fine tan head. dark brown/red color.

Taste- sweet fruity malt to sour dry finish. oak is present. lots of complex sourness and currants come through. better than on tap.

Mouthfeel- dry enough but sweet and some alcohol is present. fine med/high carb.

Overall- very good, more oak and less sour than on tap at RRBC and Toronado. one of my favorites RR beers.

 569 characters

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

poured in to a snifter bottle from batch 2

A- dark crimson darkest sour i have yet to see an i love it of white head yet does not stick around

S- sour grapes, currants, cranberries the brett starts seeping though super funky (barnyard wet hey) and a little oak

T- freaking amazing just like the smell sour grapes, currants, ect funk and oak one of the most complex sours i have had and very balanced

M- carbonation great and really dry

D- perfect i would not know this had a 10% ABV

overall one of the best beers i have ever had russian river really knows what they are doing when it comes to sours i cant wait to try the rest of them

 645 characters

Photo of Airyk12
3.47/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep brown with a slight ruby tint. No head to speak of.

Smells tart, followed by fruit; cherries and currants, with strong vinegar.

Taste definitely follows the nose, with strong fruitiness and vinegar tartness. Too much brett... Hints of cherries and currants, but mostly vinegar. Alcohol noticeable, but not strong at all.

Highly acidic feel, with some carbonation. Not too smooth, but that's a sour for you.

After all the hype, including the price, I was unimpressed. I was expecting an eye-opening sour experience, and I got what I consider an average experience. Maybe some more aging would have improved it; I don't know. Just underwhelming all around.

 673 characters

Photo of EliottJW
4.4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I've had a fair amount of this stuff by this point, so I think it's time to buck up and write a review!

I think the weakest part of this brew is it's appearance. It pours an almost root beer brown and it's head leaves a bit to be desired. while it's plenty carbonated, the bubbles are a bit large, almost soapy in nature. as this one goes down, the lace left is a bit runny. It's still an attractive beer though, so the fact that this is it's weakest point really speaks to it's strength overall.

The nose is sweet and tart together. sour cherries poke their head out first and give way to a sweet and mild bubblegum.

This is a complex beer to say the least... flavors of those sour cherries come out right at the front, giving way to red grape tannins and then grapefruit. There's a real bite to it, both of the grapefruit and warhead variety... it really is wonderful and ends up sweetening substantially as it warms and the cabernet shines through.

overall, I'd say this is an extremely light, very drinkable beer... almost indescribably so considering it's heavy hitting ABV... you wouldn't know it was 10%.

 1,115 characters

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