Consecration - Russian River Brewing Company

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ConsecrationConsecration

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BA SCORE
97
world-class

1,076 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 1,076
Hads: 4,696
rAvg: 4.38
pDev: 8.45%
Wants: 1,588
Gots: 1,588 | FT: 121
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: 1,076 | Hads: 4,696
Photo of SeattleBeerBlog
4.84/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Pours an amber with almost a purplish hue. Great head that stays. Pretty unique and looks awesome.

S- Dark Cherries, Sour Apple, Sweet brown sugar, and a whole lot more. This is getting exciting. Probably one of the best noses on a beer.

T- Exceptional, if all sours tasted like this I would be a happy man. Tastes of slightly tart green apples, dark fruits, sweet malt, and has a nice dry finish with the sourness shining through. Killer.

M-A little thick but should be expected in such a complex beer, great carbonation.

D- My favorite Sours and now one of my favorite beers hands down. (595 characters)

Photo of Admbmb92
4.84/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Poured into snifter. Bottle date 2-11-14. Excited for this one, here we go!
A-beautiful dark red without any head. Almost exactly matches the color of the label.
S- cherries, vanilla, musky funk, oak
T-sour cherries, vanilla, chocolate, fizzy carbonated funk, dark fruits
M- light to medium, fairly fizzy. No head.
O- so well balanced. I don't normally enjoy sours but this is easy to drink and delicious. (406 characters)

Photo of bonsreeb85
4.84/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Garnett/maroon with tons of active carbonation. Not the best head retention though.

The nose is a thing of beauty. Very fruity(cherry, currants, rasberry)oak, funk, tart, brett, barnyard.

THe flavor is just as if not more complex than the aroma. Vinous, tart(not overly so) fruit sweetness adds complexity, but tartness rules this castle. No alcohol detected!

This beer is well carbonated. It is very interesting in the way that the body drinks medium, but it definately has some weight and depth to it. Wow! this is one of the best MF in the biz!

Wow, if I was ever on the fence about sours, this beer has officaily converted me. Wallet: I am sorry, get ready for a beating. (679 characters)

Photo of tmbgnicu
4.83/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Just outstanding. Bottle dated 11-4-14 poured into HF stem glasses. Smell is red wine dominated, with oak and a hint of sourness making an appearance. Taste is incredible, like a sour, carbonated red wine. I received both this and Supplication together in a trade, and I actually preferred this. My "desert island" sour. (332 characters)

Photo of MarcWP
4.83/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Re-review for the sake of seeing how it stacks up nowadays. Fresh bottle poured into Russian River stem.

Pours a murky brown with mahogany highlights. Head to one finger and settles to a nice full ring around the edge of the glass with froth islands in between. Sharp tan colored head.

The aroma like Supplication is very wine barrel forward. Awesome Cabernet marries blackberry, raisin, black cherry, tart plum, and whiffs of cola. Oak and vanilla join the party making the nose on this about as enticing as they can get.

Flavor is on the same track as the aroma. Everything is there with the Cabernet still having a major influence. The dark fruits are leathery and sweet. Oak muscles through from the mid palate to the finish and the vanilla teases at being creamy but that whole circus is shut down quick when a dry, tannic grip takes hold on the finish. The 10 percent abv is hidden very well. Still tastes worldclass.

Body is a solid light medium. Carbonation is still velvety and prickly given the higher abv encountered compared to its siblings. Dry, mouth puckering finish and overall mouthfeel. Never too sour.

This still hangs with the best of them. My preference has always been Supplication and I've had many more Supplications than Consecrations in my life. But this right now is tasting as good as the Supplication I had the other night. They are really toe to toe and I may even be enjoying this a bit more but possibly because I hadn't had it for a good while. A classic, a legend, still wowing to this day. (1,531 characters)

Photo of OneBeertoRTA
4.83/5  rDev +10.3%
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. (351 characters)

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep dark cola brown pour with 1/2" of khaki head on top. Lots of active carbonation in the glass. Aromas of dark Belgian malts exhibiting brown sugar and tobacco accents. Cabernet and black currants combine in a great unity. Woody barrel accents weave in and out as Brett funk kicks in with mild sourness and a puff of alcohol. Deeply complex.

First sip brings semi sweet dark malts with a hint of earthy tobacco moving to dark berry / black currant and lush Cabernet wine flavors. Quite woody overall with oak barrel tannins rushing through. Acidic tones move in with Brett funk as it flows down and puckers with sourness in the mouth. Lingering tones of red wine and currants. Wow, just wow. Simply divine.

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side with a crisp smoothness that runs throughout each sip. Good, steady carbonation throughout. A contemplative sipper of a beer...let it meander it's way across your palate with each sip to get as many as the nuances as possible. Complex, tasty and a masterpiece of the brewing and barrel aging art. Chalk this up to one of my favorite Russian River creations yet! (1,106 characters)

Photo of SPLITGRIN
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Amazingly fast fading deep tan bubbles reach three fingers and then fade to nothing in just seconds. Body is a deep brown mahogany tone in color, really romantic. Nose is lovely with up front raspberries, so lush and slightly tart. Rich dark fruit tones come through with some oak and even a hint of sweet bourbon. With first sip you get some vanilla and oak then quickly comes the tannin based dark fruit sour feel that really embraces the tongue completely. Raisins, figs, blackberries and citrus rind all mark a wonderful tart fruit profile. The bold almost rich tannin feel really rounds out the taste perfectly. Superb balance and complexity make this beer a real standout. Mouthfeel is very red wine like, really making you want the next sip. Off the chart drinkability for a beer in this category. (804 characters)

Photo of StarshipPoopers
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Orange with a reddish hue. Retention reduces to a ring. Good sticky lacing.

S - Much less sour in the nose. Definite cabernet sauvignon aroma, oak is quite pronounced as well. Smells like a slightly sour cabernet sauvignon.

T - Strong sour grape in the front, much like a wine with a lot of tannins. Lush dark fruits like cherry, residual sugars, oak comes through in the finish.

M/D - Smooth with a fair amount of carbonation. Great mouthfeel, the sour notes give it a nice pucker. Feels almost like a champage.

O - Fantastic beer. A+ (543 characters)

Photo of ZX6Chris
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was the first I've had of this style and I was surprised.
A - A beautiful dark hazy brown color. Great carbonation due to the refermenting in the bottle(kind of like a shampagne). Poured well with a nice white head that lasted for awhile.

S - It had an amazing sweet fruity aroma(very vinous).

T - The fruit smells come through in the taste. It's sweet, but not too sweet. And has some tartness on the backside.

M - Light, crisp, refreshing like a shampagne. Bubbly in your mouth.

D - Overall the beer looked great, smelled great and went down easy. The 10% alcohol was enjoyable as well. This would be a interesting beer to share with others. (654 characters)

Photo of dar482
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

The color is a red brown bubbly beer. It almost looks like a dark Shirley Temple. Tons of big bubbles and carbonation.

The aroma has a sour funk, but there’s tons of wine tannins, lots of vinous, oak, a bit of dark fruit. However, the tartness does really stand out on this. It’s vinegar and Flanders sourness.

The flavor is vinegar tart, but then there’s tons of red wine and then some oak character. The tartness is actually hidden away as the beer warms up and blossoms to become a very red wine flavored beer. There really is not an alcohol flavor as it is like 10% ABV.

The mouthfeel on this is almost like a Coke-Cola. Tons of large bubbled carbonation that just rolls all over the tongue.

The huge wine flavors mean that you want to share this beer. I wouldn’t want 375ml myself. A good amount is to share it with someone.

This beer really stands out for me having had it next to Supplication. I preferred this actually. It’s so interesting because I’ve never had a beer that has had more red wine character in it that this. This for me is probably the best Wild Ales I have had. What a treat. It’s so different and amazing. (1,152 characters)

Photo of notchucknorris
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at O'Brien's

A: Hazelnut brown. The color actually reminded me a lot of maple syrup.

S: Shows a lot of effects from the aging in cabernet barrels. Along with the smell of cab, I picked up dark fruit aromas, currants, black cherries, blackberries and a hint of caramel.

T: Jammy with an oaky presence, brett, a nice sour bite, currants, raspberry, black cherry and some of that wonderful cab flavor. This is a wonderful beer and shows absolutely none of its high ABV. Scary drinkable. (493 characters)

Photo of Feedbacker
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12.68 fl oz bottle, 04x04.

Poured into an Urthel tulip glass. A deep red in color, not quite as dark as but definitely resembling a nice red wine. The smell is intensely winey and funky, the wild yeasts not being concealed in the slightest. The taste acidic, sour and funky, with the currants coming through. Very carbonated, fairly light mouthfeel considering the 10% ABV. I can easily put back more than a few of these, and have done so in the past.

Overall, this is one of my favorite beers and definitely my favorite sour ale. It's a little pricey here in Philadelphia, but it's worth every penny. (603 characters)

Photo of alpinebryant
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

002x2 6/18/2008 3/31/2009 Abbey Ale Yeast Rockpile

Pours a dark cherry red with very clear body, a white head that laces around the edges and stays.

Smell of sour cherry, brettynomyces, oak, grapes , currants, and raisin.

Taste of currants mixed with grape juice, a non educated beer drinker could think it passes as a wine. Extremely tart and sour flavors from wine barrel aging with 4 different strains of wild yeast, this beer is very complex and tasty. Where some wild beers taste slightly offensive, this one tastes delicious and has balanced flavors where one particular side doesn't overshadow the other flavors, oak perhaps being the strongest. Wine barrel aging, lacto, and fruit additions all complement the flavors in this delicious treat. (759 characters)

Photo of mikereaser
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a clear reddish brown with with a tiny bit of tan foam that stuck around for awhile

S - the aroma is dark cherries, raisins and grapes with a hint of the sour to come

T - nice tart flavor of the cherries and and a dryness that reminds me of wine

M/D - overall, I think this is an amazing brew. I'm just getting into liking sours and this one is a hit for me. (371 characters)

Photo of birdman200
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Ruby red and dark mahogany color. Head dissipates fast, with minimal lacing.
S: Huge red wine and rye smell, with dried fruits. Absolutely phenomenal smell, unlike anything I've ever had before.
T: Huge cabernet sauvignon taste, dry like wine with woody taste (from barrels).
M: Huge carbonation, plays well with other nuances of the beer.
D: AMAZING. By far best beer I have ever had. For $17 for a 375mL it was totally worth it. Thank you Russian River. (458 characters)

Photo of Tawnos
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into Duvel Tulip glass. Batch 002x3

Pours a pleasing woody red/brown, 1 finger head quickly diminishes without lacing. Nothing out of the ordinary for a wild ale.

Smells amazing, black cherries and funky oak. It's highly reminiscent of a great Gueuze I sampled in Belgium - perfectly aged.

The taste is awesome. My girlfriend calls it a cross between sour gummy worms and red wine. I get what she means - there's a pleasant fruitiness, but it's not overly sour, more a tart sweetness, balanced with the minimal beer undertones. A wild that even the Belgians would drink proudly.

The slight bite on the mouthfeel is all that keeps this from a 5, there. It's well rounded with a puckering start that gives way to a mouthwateringly-sweet finish

I'd drink more if they weren't 20 each ;). This is a beer I cannot think of a food to pair with. It stands alone to be tasted, enjoyed on its own merits. (908 characters)

Photo of Wackyfoot
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brewpub, shocked that I got a 16 oz pour when I was expecting a 10, but it was a bargain at 6.75. Dark cherry red pour with a hazy tan head that lingers. Very sour aroma of cherries and plums with a light vinous smell to it as well. The flavor is like a sour fruit explosion in your face: cherries, grapes, blackberries, and a nice wine thickness. Very nice carbonation in the mouth and a nice malt profile as well. Hopefully my future experiences with sours will match up to this one. (499 characters)

Photo of 3sheets2wind
4.81/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

this is a fantastic beer. I had a vertical tasting at toronado in San Diego in August 2012. That was an amazing experience. Served from a bottle aged 1 year in my refrigerator beer pours dark purplish brown with very little head but a lot of fizzy carbonation. The mouth feel is fizzy with a pleasant tart puckering. The taste is vinegar and very little malt and granny smith apple peel. In my top five sours of all time and proof that Russian River is one of the best breweries in America. (490 characters)

Photo of wogreen
4.81/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch 005X1E

A - reddish brown, 1st pour was very clear, though the bottom definitely had some murkiness

S - a very pungent sour smell

T - sour cherries, a hint of wine flavors. id note that i originally drank 1 from this same batch 1 year ago and the wine notes are much more pleasant and mellow than they i remember

M -tannin-like mouthfeel, tart though again mellower than i remember

O - a phenomenal sour if you like sours, a nice blend that blends the best of wines and beers (486 characters)

Photo of Hendry
4.81/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This was part of a tasting, and my friend who saved the bottle along with some Pliny, treated me to some of the finest beers I have ever tried.

Okay, this one was a bit over my head as it is true connoisseur Ale, but it was an amazing tasting. Deep ruby red color, strong aroma of stone fruits,nicely effervescent and really wakes up your palate with a tremendous currant flavor that is incredibly tasty, with a nice dry finish.
There is a delectable tartness that is unique to this Wild Ale.

Thanks to great beer friends that appreciate sharing with others! (560 characters)

Photo of ThirdLap
4.8/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

There are few beers that served as 'eye-openers' for me, that is, they forever turned me on to the style and helped me realize what they were capable of being. Stone IPA, The Elder, and Stone IRS are all examples. Consecration joined this list several months ago, as it was the first wild ale that really caught my attention.

The color is deep ruby-red, with a short-lasting off-white head. I'm working from notes at the moment, but I'm inclined to say the Consecration I've had many times on tap appeared to be a deeper red, almost opaque. I only recently had the opportunity to try it from the bottle, and it appeared a bit more translucent than what I remember having on tap. No lacing remains as the Consecration quickly disappears.

The nose is tart berries, wine, and pure funk.

Consecration is a shock if you are new to the style, so don't try to win any craft beer converts with this one. Huge tartness from the currants are the first thing that hits you, followed by citrus, sweetness, and dark fruits, followed by a sour but clean finish.

Body is medium to full, with the on-draft variety seeming slightly fuller-bodied. Alcohol is present but very well muted for such a huge beer. Carbonation is well-balanced, and the finish is wonderfully clean. Drinkability is through the roof, especially if you're accustomed to the style.

At a recent tasting, I remember a friend's 60+ year-old father continually commenting 'this isn't what beer should taste like' after sampling Consecration for the first time. Not in a mean-spirited or angry manner, but in a rather shocked and confused way. It certainly is different, and far-removed from what most beer drinkers envision beer to be.

The best comparison I can think of is when a person tries something very sour for the first time, for example, a sour candy. Sweetness is expected, but this is the complete opposite! Shocked and slightly turned off, the candy is immediately removed from the mouth. Some time later you found that you actually enjoyed the variation in flavor and the effects it had on your tastebuds.

It's an oversimplification, but it illustrates how sours must be approached. There's a wealth of complexity hidden in them, one that you'll hopefully find just as exciting to explore as any other big beer.

Don't miss this one. As I've said before, Consecration is to wild ales what the Younger is to Imperial IPAs. If sours weren't so darn polarizing, this would undoubtedly be on the top 10. (2,476 characters)

Photo of Sandstone
4.8/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another Russian River homerun.

Having long been a lover of sours, I couldn't have been more excited to try this beer. Thankfully my girlfriend indulged me and we made the pilgrimage up to Toronado's for Russian River TION night.

The first sip of this beer, I knew I was in for something special. I've had beers that tried to toe the line between beer and wine before (Craftsman's Cabernale... I'm looking at you) but never have I had one that did it this successfully.

I took a sip and handed it to my girlfriend, the wine snob to my beer geek, and waited for her verdict.

"Wow, this is really good."

"Yeah, I know!"

Trying to describe this beer, it is just so difficult to do it justice. The flavors are many and layered. Probably one of the most complex beers I've ever had.

My attempt: Notes of black currant, sour cherry, oak, all with a perfect touch of acid and funk that compliments the beer, rather than defines it.

This is going to be a tough beer to find, but trust me, the search will be worth it. This is one of those breakthrough beers that really pushes a new style to the forefront. (1,107 characters)

Photo of biggied
4.8/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- pours a dark reddish shade of brown with a half finger head that fades nearly instantly. Some of the head sticks around on the top of the glass and around the edges...it just LOOKS evil, like some sort of witches brew...god its awesome, constantly bubbling.

S- strong cherries with a bit of a tartness to them. Getting some of an aroma of a wine type flavor as well. Great.

T- Awesome sour, tart, killer cherries. Its only mildly puckering...but I don't care. It kicks ass. The oak flavor seeps through a little bit too. Perfection.

M- well carbonated, great body. Balance is fantastic with the tartness.

D- the sourness could be a little too much for some...but not me. I love this. It packs a punch though, but you can't really taste the booze at all. First class sour from RR. (786 characters)

Photo of DCon
4.8/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Enjoyed on-tap @ Naja's Place in Redondo Beach, CA for $8. Tapped into a 12oz Wine Glass from the Another RR Cross Tap Handle but couldn't make out what colors it was or any description because it was so far down the line. This brew was also not on the "Tap List" Here! It was available in bottle so I just asked for the hell of it to see if it was a secret one as well, and it was!

Aroma- Starts off with an enormous wild and sour cherry aroma. Has the normal goaty/earthy hints and is blended well with the cherry. Very acidic and great to sniff at.

Appearance- Received with a 1 finger head that dies quickly. Light amber/reddish color body that has great clarity. Effervescent and leaves good lacing.

Flavor- Strong cherry from the beginning of the drink. Extremely sour and acidic and just for what the style calls for! All the barnyard characteristics appropriate and has a light sweetness but is then forgotten because of the puckering finish.

Mouthfeel- Light-Medium Bodied, High Carbonation, High tartness, and leaves sharp cherries on the tip of the tongue.

Overall Impression- A very straight forward Wild/Sour! Pleasant, nice cherry taste/aroma, and well balanced. I am excited I got to try these two RR brews @ Naja's and will be keeping my fingers crossed to enjoy many more in the future. (1,311 characters)

Consecration from Russian River Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 1,076 ratings.