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Temptation - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,738 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,738
Reviews: 954
rAvg: 4.46
pDev: 8.97%
Wants: 1,530
Gots: 731 | FT: 43
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:
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 added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-19-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,738 | Reviews: 954 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of axeman9182

New Jersey

4.63/5  rDev +3.8%

375mL corked and caged bottle, batch 05x1E so it was bottled on 7/6/2010 before ending up in my Duvel tulip. Cheers to my friend Jackie for hooking me up with this bottle for my 150th review.

Temptation pours a burnt yellow orange at first glance, but when held up to light it's more of a lemon yellow. At its peak, there's two fingers worth of a frothy white crown. Retention is very good, but the lacing is spotty. The aroma starts out being dominated by the aroma of chardonnay, with just a hint of funk in the background though. As the beer warms though, the balance between the two evens out some. Still, I was looking for a little bit more in the way of complexity. Whatever I didn't find in the nose made itself apparent as I sipped on Temptation. The taste of sweet apples shows up first, before a brief, subtle flash of clove reminds me that brett and other wild critters weren't the only things used to ferment this beer. The back half of the beer is all chardonnay and sour/funk, and the two are almost entirely intertwined. I'm not always a fan of chardonnay, I find it to be a bit harsh in general, but the flavor here has a bit more of a soft edge. The mouthfeel is absolutely luxuriant. For a beer so dry it's not thin at all, and the carbonation is picture perfect, very expressive without treading into fizziness. I honestly can't think of a single thing I'd change about it. With an out of this world flavor and mouthfeel, and a restrained sour/funky contribution from a relatively fresh bottle makes this an incredible easy drinker.

11-22-2010 04:33:40 | More by axeman9182
Photo of egajdzis


4.63/5  rDev +3.8%

RBSG 2005... Poured a hazy orange gold color with a small, white head that left spotty lacing on the glass. Aroma of cherries, brett, chardonnay grapes, and faint diactyl. Taste of oak, strawberries, tart grapes, while finishing nice and acidic. Damn fine brew!

08-29-2005 02:43:22 | More by egajdzis
Photo of ChugginOil


4.61/5  rDev +3.4%

Pours a cloudy straw color with a quarter inch of white head. Lazy lacing.

The nose is pungent and has an inviting tart scent. Peach and apricot juices. No booze, just sour lovin'.

Flavors are very tart and have some lip smackingly good flavors. Peaches, apricots, and sour apples. Vineger and oak. Everything just blends so nicely and balance is achieved.

Mouthfeel is dry and tart with high carbontion. Still smooth.

Overall, never a dull moment with RR's sours. Pleasently blown away and would drink thos on an hourly bases if given the chance. Outstanding.

01-19-2013 04:28:42 | More by ChugginOil
Photo of Flounder57


4.61/5  rDev +3.4%

400th review. This beer has been waiting 16 months in my beer cabinet to be drank.

375 ml bottle poured into a large Duvel snifter.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger head that reduced to a thin layer. It is a hazy golden yellow with slight clarity and slow moving bubbles coming up through the glass.

Smell: Fruity, oak, vanilla, funky orders, musty, and some spiciness too.

Taste: This shit tastes great. It's so frickin funky and chardonnay delicious. What a nice blend of Brett and charfonnay flavors.

Mouthfeel: buttery smooth, low to medium carbonation, crisp, refreshing, light to medium bodied, and easy to drink.

Overall: Awesome wild ale. It doesn't get any better. Great beer for my 400th review.

02-22-2013 03:19:38 | More by Flounder57
Photo of AdamF625


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

A-clear light golden, straw, 1 finger white head that clumps and fades
S-lemon, star fruit, some breadiness, sage, earthy/grassy
T- Brett funk, fresh squeezed lemon, ripe green apple, tart, chard, a bit of oak on the finish
M- medium body and bubbly carbonation, very fizzy clears the palate. Very tart.
O- Russian River never disappoints. Very clean and well blended. Tart and fruity with some dryness from the barrel.

04-14-2014 01:42:26 | More by AdamF625
Photo of AKBelgianBeast


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

Thanks to murchmac/mikesgroove for this one.

Pours a nice slightly cloudy yellow/light orange with a very nice fizzy white head. Nose is tart funk, oak, and pepper. Taste follows with good oak and wine flavors hidden amongst the tart wild flavor. Some ripe granny smith. Crisp. Mouthfeel is a little more carbonated than usual, which I like. Drinkability is certainly one of the finest of the style I have yet enjoyed. A very good wild from RR, as usual. highly recommended.

08-26-2008 00:45:14 | More by AKBelgianBeast
Photo of cjgator3


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

12.7oz bottle

A- Corked and caged bottle. This bottle is under a lot of pressure from the carbonation, the cork nearly made a hole in the ceiling. The high carbonation also demanded a slow pour to avoid a foam over. Pours a dark golden yellow/orange color wtih a large off-white head that possesses amazing retention and lacing.

S- The aroma is a thing of beauty! The nose is dominated by a sour funkiness with some golden fruit and oak. Very complex and very "tempting". I'm looking forward to the taste. This is a great smelling beer and one I could easily sit and smell all evening.

T- The taste is extremely complex like the aroma with a good amount of sour flavors, but the sour is not completely overwhelming. The brett is really noticeable in both the aroma and taste giving it that signature earthy/funky character. I can also definitely pick up on a lot of the oak characterics from the French oak wine barrels that this beer ages in. Finally, the earthy finish is very dry.

M- The mouthfeel is light bodied with a good amount of carbonation

D- Temptation is another world class beer from Russian River that I wish was more readily available so more people could experience this great brewery. Highly recommended.

10-28-2008 03:35:18 | More by cjgator3
Photo of DwnTwnBwn


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

Poured into a very wide challis. Bottles were shipped last week, from Russian River.

A - Pours a very pretty frothy/fluffy white head made of tiny bubbles. Streams of carbonation race towards the surface keeping the head covering the surface of the beer. The liquid has an oh-so-slight haze to it, but I can still see through. It's a perfect straw yellow in color and glows in the summer sun. Good lacing.

S - There is a predominate green apple smell to it, with a slight tart acidy finish to it. Chardonnay sweetness comes through and a hint of warm hay follows. Very pleasant.

T - Wonderful cereal wine. There are many different notes of tart and tang up front that clear the palette to . Then a very large sour granny smith apple hits with an acidic and dry finish. There is just a touch of sweetness that remains behind on the lips. Further into the bottle and a bit warmer some yeasty and straw notes come into play also.

M - The Mouthfeel is incredibly light. High carbonation and a very dry finish.

D - This is now my most favored sour beer that I have ever tasted. Each sip takes me further into the complexities of this beer and makes this warm summer afternoon more enjoyable. Its getting a 5 on the drinkability because it keeps getting better. Simply amazing.

08-29-2009 21:10:43 | More by DwnTwnBwn
Photo of CRJMellor


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

Pours a hazy 14K white gold color with a smallish bright white head. Minimal lace but alcoholic tannins visible
Aroma of oaky chardonnay and green apples, with all the complexity that can add. Now that I've learned what Brett smells like it seems very prevalent.
Flavors of sweet white grapes, some deeply oaked and flinty chardonnay along with some tart green apples are prevalent. Incredibly complex and beautifully emerged.
Mouthfeel is fully carbonated but relative light on the palate. Overall the beer glides effervescently down and seems to cover all of the different aspects of taste. Sweet, sour, salty, light bittering, spice . . . finishes with a decent tart kick.
Drinkability is amazing, wine lovers beer for sure but this one is just incredible. Not my favorite style but this one is so unique and delectable to almost be a work of art. Kudos to Vinnie.
Truly world-class.

03-29-2006 21:02:20 | More by CRJMellor
Photo of BeerGodz

New Jersey

4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

On Tap @ Monk's Cafe

Look: Bright golden color, slightly cloudy, thin head, and little lacing

Smell: Oak, vanilla, brett funk, lemon zest

Taste: Up Front: Lemon zest, white grape, malt. Finish: brett funk, oak at the end

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a light/medium carbonation. Like Consecration, it got creamier as it warmed up.

Drinkability: Incredibly smooth, crisp, and refreshing!

Overall Impression: This was a fantastic and complex ale. You could definitely pick up the aging in Chardonnay casks. Again, the brett was not over-the-top, but rather a compliment to its overall complexity. Methinks Russian River has this Wild Ale thing down! Regarding Newbeez: I think this would appeal to ladies more than dudes, due to its sophisticated wine-like qualities.

03-02-2010 15:06:11 | More by BeerGodz
Photo of Xul


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

A: Pours a translucent dark golden, capped by a frothy two finger white head. Retention is good and it leaves massive lacing down the glass.

S: Lots of lemon zest and tartness up front, along with some white wine notes. Light funk lurks in the background, along with green apples and a bready base.

T: Lemony sourness up front - not mouthpuckering, more of a moderate level - gives way to green apples, light bread, and oak. Funk comes in strong towards the end, finishing with a blend of lemonzest, oak, and rustic funk.

M: Light to medium body with moderate carbonation, smooth on the tongue but finishes crisp.

D: Unbelievably drinkable for a wild ale. No sign of the ABV and ridiculously refreshing.

05-31-2010 01:48:54 | More by Xul
Photo of FtownThrowDown


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

Batch 002
Pours a light golden in color. Has a nice thin head sitting atop.
Taste is almost the perfect combination of sourness and carbonation. This is really enjoyable. There is a definite impact from being aged in wine barrels. There are subtle hints of oak and wine. Nice and medium creamy on the mouthfeel. The Bret is perfectly done here. This is my first Russian River beer, and I'm quite impressed.

02-24-2008 22:13:09 | More by FtownThrowDown
Photo of Casey10


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

A great beer.

I cellared this for over a year and a half.

I decided to open it finally, wonderfull brew with some amazing taste, tart, champagne, all words that could be used to decribe this brew have been done.

Appearance clear yellow carbination like a champagne.

S - More wine like than typical beer amazing though your can really smell the grapes.

T - You can taste the tart garape like you would a wine but even better as it is beer.

A must have. If you can get this or trade for it you must do it so worth it great brew !!1

02-02-2011 03:42:26 | More by Casey10
Photo of meathookjones


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

Batch 001. Appears a cloudy golden yellow with a quick forming tall fizzy white head. As the head dies down streaks and some rings remain. Tart fruity aroma with some interesting white wine notes that are integrated nicely. A bit of lemon and some funkiness to it as well. A bit lambic like and very unique. The flavor starts with a bit of sweet fruit with a nice tartness along side it. Some woody notes and funky Brett things are going on as well. Similarities to wine and lambic show through. All the different flavors pull together very well. Very smooth and well carbonated. For the complexities going on in this its really drinkable stuff. A unique and delicious beer that everyone should try.

10-14-2005 19:53:40 | More by meathookjones
Photo of neonbrown82


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

This is a very exceptional beer from batch #001. I believe it is my first American Wild ale, and one of the best of the style. Many thanks to dogfooddog for sending it.

The beer pours to a clear golden yellow with a thin white head. Retains to about a centimeter throughout the duration of the drink. Lacing is not the greatest. Carbonation is good, as expected.

The aroma is fairly light. A hint of sweet, though primarily oak and chardonnay. Some tartness as well, from the brett.

The taste is very good. A hint of sweetness up front, but it quickly fades into a very dry tartness from the brettanomyces. Huge oak flavor -- probably among the oakiest beers I've ever tried, if not THE most oaked. Also a light hint of chardonnay grapes.

The mouthfeel is light and crisp with a nice tartness. Bone dry, with only a feint hint of residual sweetness. Very enjoyable, and quite drinkable as well. The alcohol is nowhere to be found. I'm very much considering ordering some more of this from the RR website. Thanks again, dogfooddog!

01-03-2007 06:36:46 | More by neonbrown82
Photo of sukwonee


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

I tried a few sours before... and hated all of them (including RR's supplication).

This one, on the other hand, is much more drinkable and pleasant to drink. In fact, I actually liked it! If it was a bit cheaper, I would drink this more often.

Medium body, high carbonation, I love the bitterness at the beginning and dry finish like Saison... very tart throughout.

This is the best I can describe it. Not much head though. Best sour I had so far.

01-11-2012 06:06:32 | More by sukwonee
Photo of movingtrain


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

Staying in Philly for a few days, and stopped by Eulogy, a Belgian bar down the street. Grabbed this one to go.

12.68 ounce corked and caged bottle sampled from a hotel wine glass!

Pours a hazy yellow with a minimal, but steady head. Good carbonation throughout.

The aroma is quite sour...very earthy. Lots of goo funk in the smell. Hints of apples, sour grapes, funky yeast, light hops, and some really yeasty notes. There are some other complexities at play here, too. Lemon zest, cocoa powder, macadamia nuts, fresh cut grass, and wet leaves.

The taste is incredibly sour, but with a nice bittersweet finish. There are definitely notes of grape, cranberry bitterness, and something like a fruity, cake batter-esque flavor. It's a bit hard to define. It is aged in Chardonnay barrels, and there is some good winey notes to this beer, as well. It is complex, perfectlly sour, and delicious.

Overall, I'm glad I got to try this beer. I can't find any Russian River in Ohio, so this is a real treat. This is a perfect example of a finely-crafted sour beer. Well-rounded, flavorful, and drinkable.

10-17-2010 00:00:39 | More by movingtrain
Photo of champ103


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

A: Pours a clear golden/yellow color. A white head forms and leaves some lace.
S: Wonderful Brett aromas. Funky barnyard, hay, grass, and some yeast. Very tart and sour, though it is never overwhelming. Lots of fruity aromas as well. Awesome.
T: Funky barnyard, hay, grass Brett flavors that follow the nose. Fruity flavors and dry biscuit. Again, very complex and awesome.
M/D: A light to medium body that is crisp dry and very refreshing. Though not watery at all. I can drink this all day. So easy and smooth to drink. I can never get enough of this.

I have had the pleasure of trying this several times now. I just love it, and highly recommend.

09-16-2009 00:23:02 | More by champ103
Photo of bifrostguard


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

A - Pours a hazy yellowish orange color with a tall white head that hangs around for awhile. Minimal lacing left and noticeably effervescent.

S - Sour, tart and lemony with a very mild oak scent in the background.

T - Not as sour as I expected from the smell. It's like taking a bite out of a lemon topped with salt. Tart and drying.

M - This one makes your mouth water in between sips. Highly carbonated and somewhat drying.

D - I really enjoyed this one. It was so well balanced and interesting that I found it difficult to put the glass down in between sips. I like it more each time I have it.

12-14-2008 05:24:54 | More by bifrostguard
Photo of nlmartin


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

I dont remember who sent this beer to me. Big time thanks to my forgotten benefactor. Batch number 002. This beer was served in a wide mouthed wine goblet. The beers scores are from initial impressions. I may have been a bit tight. This is an exceptional beer treat.

Appearance: The beer poured a very clear orange/ peach coloration. The head was about one finger high delicate biege foamyness. The lacing left behind on the glass was light but lovely.

Smell: The beer hits my nose with a melange of lemon, very funky fruityness, peppery coriander, no aspect of this beer is excessively dominate.

Taste: This beer is very fruity under ripe apple and pears. The chardonay wine barrels have worked there magic and flavors on the beer. Pleasant oakey flavors peak around. Corriander pepperyness mingles with tart Brett funkyness and a bit of grassyness.

Mouthfeel: This beer is smooth and well carbonated. The beer seems to have a light body but still commands the attention of my palate.

Drinkability: The beer departed my glass at an alarming pace. This truly is a master work.

06-19-2008 00:00:51 | More by nlmartin
Photo of TheLongBeachBum


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

Batch 001
(Brewed on 27-Mar-04 and Bottled on 14-May-05)
Primary: Bastogne Ale Yeast (White Labs)
Conditioning: R.R. Wine 1

Listed as:
7.25%ABV / 1.062 O.G / 27 BUs

Presentation: 12.70 fluid ounce (375ml) greeny-brown glass bottle which has a rather unique look to it, flask like the dimpled underside and wide base with the tall proboscis like neck lend it a wine bottle feel. Single grey-white obverse label has a picture of the Grim Reapers Scythe and is quite literally saturated with information about this brew. Principle data is that this is a Blonde ale aged for over 12 months in used French oak Chardonnay wine barrels. During this period Brettanomyces is added. Refermented in the bottle, it is listed at 7.25% Alc. By Vol.

Listed as Batch 001. Cork and Caged with a white steel cap which has the words Russian River Brewing Company on it.

Appearance: I followed the guideline pictures of the preferred dispensing glass on the label and opted for my trusty Duvel Goblet. The head is white with a spumantean presentation that rings the glass edges with tidelines and produces a central volcanic eruption that produces a centrally located Hawaiian island which forms and rescinds constantly. The lacing is a sight to behold. Low level radioactive orange glow exhibits a healthy shine with a rustoleum blooming sheen from the body. Massive levels of dissolved carbonation impart a fluidic soda-like crashing oceanic wave on the shore feel when the glass is gently swirled. Pornographic looks.

Nose: Shattered aromas, sharp natural lemony citric elements fight hard with organic yeasty oak soaked white wine flashes which exhibit a light vanilla odor. Warm odors of recently full blown piss stained underwear reeks with a urinary tract acidity akin to that of the urea as it cools. A mild funky alcoholic woody trait lingers throughout with a smidgeon of Oak-aged Brett stained toilet paper. Urophilian Quercus odors with a disturbing urolagnian attraction - Funckin great!!!

Taste: Vanilla and Dill entrance the silky smooth, almost oily, Oak stained starting line. The naked white haired Chardonnay-stained oak lingers and plays a multi-racial cross-border game of “hide the sausage” with its long lost funky blonde haired Brett laden beery cousin, this one has six fingers for sure, but it also has two sets of genitals….a shockingly appealing Hermaphrodite of a fermented libation. Grape buggers Grain, I should be repulsed by that, but I keep one eye on this one throughout.

Mouthfeel: Slick oak aged vanilla feel on the tongue with some light alcoholic woody tones. Moderately huge, a low flying high baller, big but small, it has it both, hard to mark accurately, but it really is an easy 4.5.

Drinkability: This is extremely thirst quenching from the get go. Temptation is a great name for this one. Highly Suppable!

Overall: Simply Superb!

White West-Coast Wine meets Blonde Belgium Beer.

Russian River. Once Tasted – Always Loved - Never Forgotten.

Another inspirational creation from the master brewer Vino-inie Cilurzo that I am sure the Beer Whore-Pimps will eulogize and remorselessly trade for all the wrong reasons. Get some and try it for the right ones!

Definitely not a Dumb Californian Blonde!!!

07-01-2005 07:20:01 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of fiver29


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

Shared with Miketd. Thanks for sharing this bottle Mike! Bottle batch #3 pours golden with a white head. Has a funky smell to it. The sour smells are wonderful. Musty. Mouthfeel is light with a lof of carbonation. Has a sour, tart, and yet sweet taste to it. All rolled into one. I like this one a little better than the depuration I just tried. Its a really nice brew. Thanks again.

08-21-2009 20:00:33 | More by fiver29
Photo of nniicckkww


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

Poured from a 375 ml bottle into a chalice. Pleasant cork 'pop.' Fizzy with a hard pour with quickly dissipating head. No lacing on the glass. Yellow golden color with the slightest haze. Sour apple aroma very similar to a chardonnay (crisp, not the buttery kind).

Lively carbonation. Slight funk dominated by sour apple, lemony citrus and wine. Delicious. Clean, crisp finish. Almost more wine like than beer. I'm amazed that this doesn't have any grapes fermented in it and is composed of grain. The malt has been transformed into something that doesn't resemble malt based fermented beverages. I want a wine snob to try this. Utterly complex. No perceivable bitterness, but not sweet. Dry finish with a mouth smacking tannic undertone. Yum.

An amazing sour. My wife LOVES it as well.

02-08-2011 15:39:54 | More by nniicckkww
Photo of Hojaminbag


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

Yet another of the many Russian River Brews JHenry04 sent me in a trade a little bit ago. I'm slowly working my way through them (rationing them actually), and enjoying every one of them. Thanks a lot Jason!

Batch #003

A cloudy, golden body that has a bunch of fast moving carbonation bubbles. Slightly hazy, not translucent, but not completely opaque either. A big, thick white head that has very good retention and leaves thick, sticky lacing along the glass. A couple of yeast particles also float around in the beer.

Smells excellent. Lots of tartness in the aroma, along with a tart green apple smell. Chardonnay definitely comes through here, along with an oaky smell.

Taste, as usual, is very similar to the smell. Very tart up front with the Brett coming through. Pear and green apple are noticeable. Chardonnay and oak notes come through in the middle, followed by some more fruits and sourness toward the finish. Before the finish there are also some grassy notes that are noticeable. The aftertaste reminds me of the candy Warheads. A complex and great version of an American Wild Ale.

Mouthfeel is slightly puckering and a litle bit dry at the same time. Highly carbonated. After drinking for awhile makes the mouth feel like a very sour candy (warheads for example) would. Once again a kind of lasting dry, puckering feeling that makes the tongue feel like it is covered in ridges. Interesting.

This beer is excellent, and the drinkability is no exception.

11-19-2008 03:21:00 | More by Hojaminbag
Photo of Brian700


4.6/5  rDev +3.1%

This beer made me smile...nuff said, but I'll say more.

It poured a golden yellow with a nice white head that sat just high enough to look funny in a pinot noir glass.

The aroma was bleeding Chardonnay and Oak into my nostrils and I couldn't get enough of it. This beer smells so good you don't even have to drink it. But do.

The flavor was Gueze-esque with lots of oak, grape (chardonnay), a little acidity which was right on. This is one of those beers that you will most likely have a love/hate experience with. I feel sorry for those that hate it. This beer made a Chimay cheese that we had sitting on the table (that no one was eating cause it smelled like dead worms and feet) become the most incredible thing in the world. Perfect pairing.

The mouthfeel of this is perfect. light/med body with just enough carbonation to enhance the acidity (and make the aroma humungous) enough to give it that wine quality that I feel is what really makes this beer.

The drinkability is near perfect for myself. Near zero for someone who is expecting your traditional beer out of this.

01-22-2007 05:57:29 | More by Brian700
Temptation from Russian River Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 2,738 ratings.