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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

3,994 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,994
Reviews: 1,042
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.8%
Wants: 1,383
Gots: 1,257 | FT: 86
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: 3,994 | Reviews: 1,042 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Rifugium
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%
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.

Rifugium, Jun 10, 2011
Photo of WesWes
4.2/5  rDev -6.5%
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".

WesWes, Feb 21, 2010
Photo of mendvicdog
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

mendvicdog, Dec 11, 2012
Photo of mdfb79
4.22/5  rDev -6%
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.

mdfb79, Apr 29, 2010
Photo of MarkyMOD
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

MarkyMOD, Dec 13, 2012
Photo of beernads
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%

beernads, Oct 18, 2013
Photo of Mora2000
4.78/5  rDev +6.5%
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.

Mora2000, Jun 21, 2010
Photo of jwc215
4.22/5  rDev -6%
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.

jwc215, May 03, 2009
Photo of DrunkinYogi
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

DrunkinYogi, Jul 04, 2013
Photo of Rochefort10nh
5/5  rDev +11.4%

Rochefort10nh, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of Gueuzedude
4.65/5  rDev +3.6%
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.

Gueuzedude, Oct 31, 2008
Photo of kojevergas
3.8/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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 XmnwildX12
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

XmnwildX12, Dec 11, 2013
Photo of Halcyondays
3.75/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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 Gavage
4/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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 GClarkage
4.47/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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 InspectorBob
4.38/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 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 drewone
4.48/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Fathers Office, served in a short flute glass.

Deep red, small head.

Very subtle fruit with a touch of sourness, not a strong bouquet.

Complex layering of fruit, tarts and sours. Small amount of acidity.

Mouth puckering and carbonation play well off of each other. A weird mix of a sipper and a quaff-er.

This is a beer that every time I have I enjoy more, it just keeps getting better. I think I like it more than supplication now.

drewone, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of yourefragile
4.75/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

10.5 oz pour into a tulip at Union Jack's. One of these times I'll do a more thorough review from a bottle, but this will suffice for now....

This is a great beer for catching wine enthusiast's or non-beer believers off guard in what they think a beer can be. Glass is filled carefully and slowly to the lip, leaving no room for a head and initially served a little too cold. Color is a murky, reddish brown, fairly clear and viscous looking. Strong vinous aroma, balanced and alternating oaky, mild vanilla sweetness with acidic funky dark fruit sourness. Flavor is deep, dark and complex. At colder temps the sour and funky dominates ripe apple, cider-like, tart cherries, berries, Brett-funk, etc. Warming up this becomes much more complex as the sweeter wood flavors reveal themselves and turn this into even more of a sipper. Sharp mouthfeel, fuller bodied and moderate carbonation and lingering finish, relatively dry. I still prefer Supplication to this, but that's not really a bad thing. Not easiest to approach of the RR wilds if you're not a fan of the style, but if you are this is exceptional.

yourefragile, Feb 16, 2010
Photo of corby112
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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 orangesol
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap into a mini pint at TJ's 7th Anny. Party. Number one of three in my Russian River flight. An amazing party with amazing beers.

A - Pours deep amber with a thin film of white head that leaves minimal lacing down the glass.

S - Strong tartness up front, strongest of the three. Hints of spices, berries, and oak. Aroma's don't linger for long but they leave a lasting impression.

T - Not the first time I have had this one. Starts with a bit of spice from the currents quickly giving way to a blast of strong tartness. Finish is a lingering funk with a bright acidic note. I prefer the other two, supplication and temptation, but I still like this one a lot. Still one of my favorite wild's.

M - Medium body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Tart finish lingers but not for too long. It wears you down after a full glass.

D - Fairly high. I really like this one but when you put all three of these together you really see how different they really are. I would rank this one last out of the three but it is still so good that you can not go wrong. Glad I have a few bottle of this in the cellar.

orangesol, Dec 05, 2010
Photo of weeare138
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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
Photo of stakem
4.58/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a clear dark amber color with some redness and brown hues about it. Served with no head present and minimal amount of faint spotty lacing. Nose is funky with oak and woodsy characteristics. Alcohol and Brett are apparent. Dry fruit smells riddled with alcohol. Taste is puckering with sourness and alcohol right upfront playing a lead role. Quite drying and tart. Flavors of dark skinned fruit come through as it warms...and warms it does as the alcohol in this beer is there in both warmth and taste. The woodsy flavors mesh favorably with the alcohol. Lingering tartness is left in the mouth that is puckering enough to make you go back in for continuous repetitive sips. Light feel and highly carbed this was one very enjoyable experience.

stakem, Apr 20, 2010
Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Brought back from California wrapped safely in my luggage, cracked open with my bro @LaitueGonflable to celebrate his 500th review on BeerAdvocate.

Pours a dark deep blood red colour, dark grape-juice with a filmy tan head that collapses very quickly. Lots of carbonation swirling up through the depths, which makes the beer look alive, with a nice bead. Looks very heavy in the glass as well, although the carbonation is large-bubbled. Looks very decent.

Big vinous notes on the nose - lots of tannic red wine, tobacco leaf, dark curranty fruits and a hint of musty oak. Slight funk coming off it as well - although the acidity isn't present here, there's a whiff of barnyard and ripe cheese on the nose. Altogether, it's a wonderfully refined nose, sweet subtlety bouncing off rambunctious wildness.

Extremely long and full palate, starting with vinous acidity backed with earthy oak and tannic tobacco leaf. Port like heat seems to well slightly as the palate continues, leaving a warm booze note. Just when you think that's the end, up comes the berry-like currant note flushing its sweet-sour finish like warmed Christmas pudding over the palate. It is ever threatening to burst to extremes, but everything holds everything else together and it just rampages down the middle ground, never veering too far one way or the other. Coupled with this is the complex mouthfeel, that lingers through crewy and ripe at the start, almost touching harsh heat as the alcohol note comes through, before finishing with a cleansing, slightly puckering note. I've possibly never had a beer with a longer and more expressive palate - the fact that long after the beer is gone, there is still a dance of different characters developing is absolutely sublime. The complexity is amazing - the way the palate develops after each sip is absolutely stunning.

This is an absolutely exceptional beer. There's no getting around it. This beer proves why American Wild Ale is a unique style, and why it is such a well-regarded one at that. It also cements in my mind Russian River as an exceptional brewery. The complexity is incredible - I can't believe how much there is going on. Let's just put it bluntly, this is a really, really, really good beer.

lacqueredmouse, Feb 12, 2010
Consecration from Russian River Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 3,994 ratings.