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Temptation - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

982 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 982
Hads: 3,318
Avg: 4.41
pDev: 16.78%
Wants: 1,741
Gots: 888 | FT: 52
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-19-2003

A blonde ale fermented with a special strain of yeast, then aged in French oak chardonnay barrels. Flavors of wine and oak absorb into the brew throughout twelve months of aging. During this aging process, a secondary fermentation occurs using a yeast strain disliked by most brewers and winemakers called Brettanomyces.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 982 | Hads: 3,318
Photo of ChrisPro
3.98/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Draft for Sourfest 2009 at Brouwer's.

Pours clear golden with white head. Wonderful citrus and sour lemon aroma along with the horse blanket smell the brett. Sour is definitely dominating with some apple and grapefruit coming through. Pretty simple and straightforward sour, but a good sour with a great citrus finish.

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Photo of Wisconsuds
3.98/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap at the Falling Rock Tap House in Denver during Colorado Beer Week (4/10/11). For a WI guy, the RR -tion fest was heaven on earth. Expertly poured into a RR tulip.

Appearance is a brilliant golden color. This beer WANTS you to drink it. Absolutely stunning look. A billowy cloud of white foam crackled at the top of the rim. Yes please.

Aroma is a blend of floral spices and fruity citrus, a little hop note dances around as well. A sour funk typical with RR beers is apparent.

Temptation, for me, had a sweet taste up front with a sour finish. A sweet then sour then, fruity progression almost defies logic. You're drinking a classy beer here, folks. An impossibly crisp ale.

A fizzy, bubbly carbonation fits this beer nicely. Lemony yeast tastes linger as well, but isn't annoying - but inviting.

Haven't had a beer like this ever - haven't had anything like it since. Overall a very new experience and would love to imbibe in again. An interesting, bold 'American Wild Ale'/

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Photo of zoolzoo
3.98/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pale golden, straw colored. Massive white head, excellent retention.

S: Sour grapes, brett, wine barrel.

T: Can really taste the chardonnay here, crisp and dry. One dimensional in its sourness. Impression of lemon and perhaps some other ripe fruits, but never fully materializes. Brett funk adds some zing.

M/D: Big carbonation keeps tart and sour flavors "popping", lively on the palate. Straight forward, easy drinker as far as sours go.

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Photo of tewaris
3.98/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

27 IBUs
OG 1.062
Batch III. Blonde Ale aged in French oak chardonnay barrels with Brettanomyces. 375 ml cork and caged bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance: Honey golden and bright, with hues of ripe oranges in the snifter. A very good off white and creamy textured head with excellent retention and good lacing. 4.5/5

Aroma: Sweet malts at the very beginning, followed by soft fruit and unmistakable sharpness of a sour beer. Brett notes seemed absent at the beginning but emerge with warmth. Still very estery, and an accomplishment in the sense that the base beer is not lost at all. Strong aroma of Belgian ale is always felt in the background. Toasted fruit is strong, so are rum raisin and oak. 4/5

Taste: Light and sweet on the palate with tartness eclispsing the bitterness often felt towards the end of a beer, and evolving into a tannic, dry and clean finish. Superb! The sour character dominates many notes of the aroma, but does not demolish the palate. I feel that this one could have been more complex if all notes of the aroma came through. 3.5/5

Mouthfeel: Medium body, high-ish carbonation and a dry and long woody finish. 4.5/5

Overall, I quite like it. Like Supplication, subtly sour and never overpowering, but very very clean, refreshing, and enjoyable. 4.5/5

EDIT: Dammit, the -11.5% seems to indicate that I didn't like this beer enough. Far from truth. I love it. Perhaps not as much as Supplication, but I still loved it.

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Photo of ChadQuest
3.98/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Batch 3

Pours a very clear straw yellow, so i hold it up to my computer screen, and am able to read the text through the glass, albeit upside down and backwards, lol. The lace is like a wall on the glass, like curtains closed around an actor. but the show is just starting this time.
Characteristic Brett funk, both in the aroma and mouth it comes and goes not subtly but not lingering or overpowering, much less sour then other RR sours i've had. The natural raw fruit and granny smith character plays out in a grassy and wet straw like way, like you threw them all together in a bag in the sun during a hot summer day, and that's your lunch salad, covered in vinegar.
The mouthfeel is light and quick with a dry finish that stops short of puckering, which makes this one very easy to drink, while this is only a 375ml, a 750 would be easy still.

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Photo of xpimptastikx
3.98/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml Batch 004x1

A - Pours a slightly hazy golden with fluffy white head that leaves minimal lacing.

S - sour bacteria, a little brett funk, and slight oak.

T - A moderate tart start resides quickly into a smoothly malted pale ale. Light oak flavors, apples, and funk.

M/D - Moderate carbonation and very dry finish. I like my wilds a little more sour, but this is a decently funky beer that was very easy to finish.

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Photo of Tripphop
3.97/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 5, 375ml bottle.

Pours a hazy golden color with quick white foam. Leaves a sticky lacing in the glass. Aromas are funky and tart. A bit of wet hay and lots of grainy and herbal smells. Taste matches aromas, funky, tart, and vinous. Refreshingly crisp with a balanced sour that isnt over powering. Light acidity and vinous smooth finish that leaves a dry, citrus rind aftertaste. Overall a solid sour, but much more restrained than the other RR offerings.

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Photo of mltobin
3.97/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

375 mL bottle from a trade with PinkFlag, thanks Brandon !

Appearance is a golden yellow tone which is nearly clear with a thin white head. The nose has apple, lemon peel, chardonnay, oak and funk. Its` taste is fairly similar to the nose , along with some grapes and more of the funk/brett. As others have noted, it has many characteristics similar to a sparkling wine. The mouthfeel does not have too much sour or too much of any characteristic really. It is nice and crisp, a very good wild ale that I had waited too long to try.

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Photo of woosterbill
3.97/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

375ml bottle of Batch 5, poured into a tasting glass. Big thanks to Guy for sharing this solidly Top 100 brew.

A: Cloudy gold body with a thin wisp of fine off-white foam. Looks inviting enough.

S: Dry, winey fruit. Plenty of oak. Green, floral, and woody. Nice.

T: Much more sour than the nose, with rather prominent lactic sourness leading in to vanilla, lemon, and oak. Tasty.

M: Smooth, substantial without being sticky, and mildly carbonated. Pleasant.

O: I enjoyed this beer thoroughly, but really wasn't blown away like I have been by other RR sours. I'd really like to try an older bottle, and I'll definitely be holding on to my lone B5 bottle for a while. I hope it improves, but I'm sure it will be tasty regardless.


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

This is an old review that was stashed away in a notebook that I just recently found. Batch 003 (375ml) thanks to ThreeWiseMen. Sampled on 10/18/10 and poured into tulip.

Pours out a murky golden color. A white head emerges and then dissipates to virtually nothing. When compared to the Consecration we just sampled, don't see as much carbonation when held to the light. Body clears up a bit in light but still cloudy.

Much different from Consecration. This is much more white wine smelling and sour. There is a bit of spice here but I'm not sure what it could be.

This is very white wine heavy in the taste. Also has much for funk/sourness to it than Consecration. This is also isn't too complex, sort of a let down when compared to the Consecration. This is a great sour but perhaps the darker ones are the ones for me.

Good carbonation here and it feels much lighter to me than Consecration. I do think the carbonation works well for this but at times it felt a bit thin. Finishes with a white wine taste that I'm not sure I'm liking.

A very good, drinkable beer, but it is much different from Consecration. While I did enjoy this, I think that the darker sours are going to be what I end up liking a lot more. This is still a great example of the American Wild style and I'd pick it up.

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Photo of s1ckboy
3.95/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Big fluffy white head, light amber body.

S - Brett funk, sour, lemon

T - Good amount of sour, some barnyard funk, a bit of sweetness, touch of lemon, some alcohol on the back end.

M - Light, and a lot of carbonation

O - Not my favorite of the -ation beers but quite nice.

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Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
3.93/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this in an 110z. Belgian glass at the Russian River brewhouse.

Appearance: Golden yellow. Slightly unfiltered. It has little to no head that evaporates quickly.

Smell: White wine grapes. Faint balmy notes that are really overpowered by the Chardonnay barrels that the beer is aged in. Hints of bread. This beer gets better after a few initial sips as the ale notes begin to compete with the intial shock of the wine smell and taste:

Taste: This is a weird experience for me because I am not much of a wine drinker. I appreciate the idiosyncrasy of this beer and am willing to overlook its aging process. The belgian qualities of this beer become discernible if you concentrate hard enough. Banana esters develop with time in the cup.

Mouthfeel: Mediu bodied. Swishes well in the mouth. finishes well.

Drinkability: I am personally turned off by the wine taste but I do think this is a good ale. I'd reccomend it to people who like wine and would like to try a fine beer.

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Photo of clvand0
3.92/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light golden color with almost no head at all and doesn't leave any lacing on the glass. The aroma gives a swift kick of sourness with a little alcohol and fruit. Sourness dominates the aroma. The flavor is much less sour than the aroma would allow you to think. Actually, there isn't a ton of flavor in this one. At the beginning there is a small bit of fruitiness and some sour notes along with a large kick of wood, but the flavor quickly disappears. The mouthfeel is moderate and the drinkability is good, but I'd like to see some more substantial flavors.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.91/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Russian River- Temptation (batch 002)

Big thanks to SpaceCoyote for this 1.

A- Bright hazy yellow with a big frothy head. Thick lacing down the glass.
S- Sour mix, funky wet barnyard hay, and sweet citrus.
T- Big sour grapefruit, lemon, grape, and granny smith apple. Tart cherries and grapes through the body with a sweet funky hay/ straw flavor in the end.
M- Very sour and tart with a big sweet citrus feel. Dry funky sour finish leaves a touch of alcohol in the throat.

Overall- Another funky sour/ tart beer from RR, and another tasty, unique sipper. I enjoyed.

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Photo of jacobseyb
3.9/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Light yellow golden color, with quarter inch white head that laces well. Some licorice on the nose along with a white grape. More grape in the taste than the aroma. Feel is very light and crisp. Drinkable in that the abv is not overpowering, though the taste is different and might take some getting used to.

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Photo of DennisD
3.9/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

It poured from the bottle with a nice head. It is pale-yellow straw color. The aroma had sour and wine-like notes. Flavors included floral, lemon, maybe a touch of grass, and white wine characteristics. Smooth clean finish. Wow, what a great beer. Absolutely delicious. Very nice.

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Photo of dbalsock
3.9/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

App: Golden yellow with hints of orange. Had a thin white head that stuck to the sides and provided a minimal lacing.

Smell: Musty oak, a hint of apple and grape. Smelled a little like wine. The aroma wasn't very intense, unfortunately.

Taste: The apple and grape come through again, along with the oak to provide a very wine like experience. This was very similar to a lambic, but without a lot of the tastes I would be expecting. When I took a quick sip, the oak came through a little too heavily.

Mouthfeel: Very sour and tart, kinda like sucking down a warhead candy. There was good carbonation and it was highly enjoyable to let this sit on my tongue and think about it.

Drinkability: After each sip I found myself wanting more of this beer. It was complex and tasty, but not so much to keep me from wanting another bottle or two.

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Photo of Kkottonmouthkngz
3.9/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

375 of batch 05x1f.
this beer appears to mingle with the best, its got a wonderful golden hue and just looks immensely tasty sitting in front of me. the head is thin and white and doesnt last very long. it smells like a good mix of funk, lemon, and hay. despite the fact that i gave it good ratings across the board, i feel like it really went downhill from what i expected. by no means does this mean its a bad beer, because its not. i guess its just the first example of one of many hyped beers that i was just expecting more. hopefully my second bottle with a little time on it will prove me wrong. it tastes delicious initially, but the backend lets up quite a bit and im left looking for more of a finish. the carbonation is just right. i enjoy drinking it, and were it not for the pricetag id be more willing to experiment more with it. perhaps i needed to have the whole bottle to myself but alas i shared with my girlfriend.. and she seems to feel the same way. also duely noted, as this beer warms up, it shines a bit more and starts to come a little closer to true form. ill remember that for next time for a better experience.

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Photo of DrunkenMaster
3.9/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from O'Briens. Cloudy gold color with good head and nice lacing. Smells very oaky with grapes and funk. Tastes pretty good, almost like a sour white wine. The mouthfeel is very dry with some fizziness. Good carbonation with a heavy acidic finsih.

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Photo of Fugazme
3.9/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had some very high expectations... they weren't entirely met.

Pours very orange/coppery/slightly cloudy. Some big bubbles in the head. Very white. Great stickage to the glass. Looks very, very nice.

First whiff was pure chardonnay... apples, pear, oak, alcohol. Wow. Second whiff was the same, only with a slight hint of some malt... finally reminding me it was a beer.

The palate was very dry and gone quickly. This is where I got a tad dissapointed. It was very good, but was gone. Tart, tannic, and appley, but not a great finish. That's the only draw back in my opinion.

It really is hard to tell this is a beer. I would drink it again.

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Photo of jeffjeff1
3.88/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this at Russian River Brewery as part of the sampler.

Appearance- golden color

Smell- kind of a sour smell, no too strong though

Taste- oak, citrus, kind of a sour flavor but not too strong

Mouthfeel- medium bodied

Drinkability- It was pretty good. It was the first sour beer for me so kind of hit me lol.

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Photo of froghop
3.88/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a semi-hazy yellow-orange with a large white fluffy head, and very good lacing.

smell is of sour malt, fruit, citrus, a little floral, and some yeast.

taste is tart, apricot, citrus fruits, orange, a little woodiness, some granny smith apple, and some sour malt.

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Photo of SkeeterBoganski
3.88/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

'Batch' 072712

A - golden straw in color with noticeable carbonation and a half-inch pale-white foam head

S - Belgian yeasts and sugars; champagne; Chardonnay; grapes; green apples

T - sour grapes; Chardonnay; citrus and tarty; musty lemons; stanky funk all up in it; flowery

M - light bodied; pleasantly carbonated; sour tart; crispy

O - as a noob to sours and wilds in general, this is probably a pretty solid introduction; this beer is certainly not for everybody...and I'm not even sure the style is for me; but this is pleasant, complex, and generally pretty refreshing

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Photo of johnbjaeger
3.88/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am a believer in Russian River. I like their labels. I like their beer. I hate them for being far away and not distributing to Chicago, but that's really not fair at the end of the day.

This one pours out and looks like frothy thoroughbred horse wizz. Ultimately, that's not as bad as it sounds, but it really was the first thing I thought of.

In fact, it also smells as I'd imagine thoroughbred horse wizz might smell. Not overly sulphuric and not altogether unpleasant, but not exactly something you want to smell unless you are expecting it. I pick up a little stale wine on the nose that reminds me a lot of how my wine bottles smell when I forget to rinse them out after using them.

As for the taste, it charges through the door like a magnificent gay friend yelling, "well hey, I brought the Chardonnay!" The most interesting thing about this after the wine slaps the palate around, is how damned balanced this brew is. The citrus notes, the sour, and just the right amount of fizz. I like this. I could drink this nightly.

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Photo of BeerStine
3.88/5  rDev -12%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Batch 003. Poured a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Cork comes off explosively. An aggressive pour produced a ton of white fluffy head. Color is yellowish tan with champagne like heavy carbonation. The smell of apple and chardonnay are amazing. Also the malts smell of tree bark. Smells kind of like a musky white wine. The taste of wine is the first thing that went through my head. Makes my cheeks tingle upon swallowing. Taste is also similar to the smell: apples and chardonnay. Doesn't really wonder on my tongue but maybe its not supposed to? Mouthfeel is great: heavily carbonated with a lighter body. Drinkablility is good. Just like champagne, I'm not so sure that I'd want to drink more than one bottle (unless it were new years eve).

Overall, a very well crafted beer. Russian River definitely broke the mold with this one.

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Temptation from Russian River Brewing Company
98 out of 100 based on 982 ratings.