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Temptation - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
TemptationTemptation

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
98
world-class

999 Reviews
THE BROS
99
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 999
Hads: 3,442
Avg: 4.41
pDev: 16.78%
Wants: 1,768
Gots: 953 | FT: 67
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States | website

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: 999 | Hads: 3,442
Photo of tectactoe
4.52/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Jeff for sharing this one with me. Pours a golden-yellow color, translucent with lots of light shining through the edges. The foamy white head lasts for a bit as it settles and leaves some big, wet lacing.

The aroma is thoroughly acidic and tart. Sour apple skins, pears, light vinegar, faint lactic aromas. There's a mild woodiness behind all of the tart fruits, but there's no denying that this is a sour bomb. I was a bit shocked to find that there was quite a big vinous character in the aroma, too, until I read that this was aged in chardonnay barrel. Makes sense now. Very tingly on the nostrils, this one's gonna be sour - no doubt.

And sure enough, it is. Temptation is very sour, front and center. We're talking puckering sour, not just "mildly tart". Lemons are huge, as are apples and pears. Wow, this is just so, so, so, SO tart. Each sip feels more tart than the last. It hits the edges and corners of your mouth and gets your face scrunched up in no time. Not as sour as Beatification, still pretty damn tart. Light vinous notes, as well as a mild oak flavor on the tail, but the beer has a mostly sweet finish once that godly tartness finally dies down. Medium bodied, heavily carbonated.

I've come to expect a lot from Russian River, and rightfully so. Temptation delivers. It's a sour motherfucker, that's for sure. If you like sours and you haven't had this yet - get some. Now.

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Photo of MarioM
4.23/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330 ml bottle poured into RR Steamed glass

A: Pale yellow, very transparent and crystal clear. Very foamy white head, steam like with a mix of tiny to medium sized bubbles. Good head retention and lacing. High carbonation with large amount of bubbles being created from the dimple on the bottom of the glass. Very unique looking beer but very attractive.

S: Very tart on the nose. Sourness is very apparent and comes across almost wine like, "Is it beer, or is it wine?" (Quote from the back of the bottle). Also, a bit floral and a tad bit sweet but dry.

T: Tartness comes first, sourness is nicely tamed. A bit bitter in the middle and finishes sweet with some bitterness as well. Very balanced and extremely drinkable. Very good example of this style and good intro beer for someone unfamiliar with wilds. Obviously a great intro beer for a wine drinker.

M: Bitterness lingers along with a slight sweetness and dry.

O: Much more drinkable and not as sour as I was expecting. Not a bad thing at all, actually very enjoyable and refreshing. Finished dry and reminds me much of wine, but yes, it is still a beer. Great friendly American wild and would gladly have someone try this in hopes of converting them to the sour side.

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

12oz to a cordial glass

Pours a pale gold with a finger of foam with some pretty good retention for a wild. Little transparency with the yeast floating around. Medium carbonation coats the glass with some decent lacing. Smell of white wine, sour apple, cherry, and citrus. Some funk blends with a sweet malt and a touch of alcohol. Taste follows the nose well, sour apple and cherry with some chardonnay. A mild malt base mixes with some alcohol and citrus. Pretty solid feel, crisp with medium sourness, not much face twisting as the rest of the Russian River sour line. Good sticky finish. Over all another quality sour from Russian River, however probably my least favorite of the line so far. Can't wait to see how this ages

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Photo of Flounder57
4.61/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

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.

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Photo of jvillefan
4.4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Golden yellow with a white lace head.

S: Sour apples and sour grapes are in the front. Pleasant esters from the souring yeast and bacteria.

T: Sour apples with subtle sour grapes and oak. There is a very subtle sweet caramel flavor from the malts present as well.

M: Nice body and carbonation.

O: Great sour. One of the better ones out there.

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Photo of Pinknuggets
4.51/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottle to Ommegang flute

A: Golden yellow to light honey colored with a very small white head that goes away quickly. It looks very clean but it is only semi translucent which I assume is due to time in the barrels

S: you can definitely smell the chard barrels the brett is there as well but it is not as funky as I have seen it before which in another respect makes the smell pretty balanced its good but not great.

T: The first thing that comes to mind is the following the nose with taste of Chard and oak there is a sour and tart flavor that sticks around for awhile and all throughout the finish. The flavor is nice and light as well as being quite delicious and I usually don't like wine. The brett is also present but in the background and adds a nice crisp taste.

M: there is a nice crisp bite to it is smooth, oily and goes down really easy I had to stoop myself from drinking it too fast. The brett and light carbonation adds a champagne line feel that adds to chard flavor and really combines well in this beer.

O: I really liked this beer its not super sour or funky at all but it is really tasty and goes down really easy. The mouthfeel works perfectly with the taste and although the smell is lacking everything else makes up for it. I would highly recommend this beer get it if you can.

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Photo of RaulMondesi
4.75/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

On tap, straight from tha source - Russian River.

Like a perfect storm that Mark Walburn cannot cure.

Raul is at the source, tha joint, Russian River, and hot damn I got the freshies!
Smooth, sexi, sour... It clean. So clean like OJ just clean the Bronco.

Raul like it.

Yep!

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Photo of Immortale25
3.83/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Saint Somewhere wine-style glass. Label says 072712.

A- Pours a hazy gold color with a 3/4 inch white head that retains well before fizzling away to a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a thin sheet of surface foam. Solid lacing. Wispy sediment is found suspended in the body.

S- Lemony, funky wild yeast aroma with a hint of barnyard must. Crisp but fumy.

T- Pow! Massive sourness of lactic acid assaults the palate leaving only traces of citrus fruit notes. Has that strange rubbery aftertaste that I haven't, as of yet, been able to determine what the cause of it is but it shows up in a lot of sours. Drinkable, but with small sips few and far between.

M- Incredibly dry and twangy with a tartness that doesn't let up. Medium-high carbonation and a lightish body.

O- It's a kick in the teeth right off the bat but, once you get into it, it's a pretty tasty sour if you like that sort of thing.

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Photo of MDDMD
4.59/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-clear golden color with a decent white head and some lacing

S-sour grapes, yeasty funk, oak, floral

T-tart grapes, yeasty funk, oak, Chardonnay barrels add but are so well-incorporated as to be unable to taste this as a separate distinct aspect of this beer, has a nice dry finish

F-medium body with nice tight carbonation, crisp and tart mouthfeel

O-a delicious beer, so beautifully blended and well-balanced

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Photo of VelvetExtract
4.76/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A-Pours an illuminated toasted straw color. Body is quite hazy. Puffy bleached head sits atop the body. Looks nearly perfect. Long, attention-grabbing lacing stains hug the glass and dry up.

S-The aroma is Brett at its best. Funky, tart and earthen. Pretty floral notes play quite nicely with the barrel notes. Woody, infected Chardonnay with a light, crisp malty underbelly. Fresh, juicy apples, pears and stone fruits. The buzzing funk encompasses all of the other aromatic components.

T-The flavor is blatantly exquisite. The funky, barny, yeasty tartness rushes over the palate. The sips following the first deliver all the notes from the nose but with much more robustness. Warmth is friendly to this ale. The honeysuckle and dandelion stem flavors add depth. The oak is sneaky but noticeable after a few sips... I may even be getting some oak-imparted vanilla flavors. Tart fruits of course.

M-Perfect body; relatively light and highly carbonated. The first sip seemingly explodes all over my mouth; the bubbles roll over every inch.

O/D-Another royal brew by Russian River. Too complex to ever fully describe. Too drinkable to ever fully feel satisfied. A glass of this at the brewpub was truly inspiring.

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Photo of Satchboogie
4.7/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Review from 2/3/13: 750ml Caged and Corked bottle, batch 004x3 (brewed 5/25/2008, bottled 6/2/2009).

A: Pours light orange with nearly two fingers of a bubbly white head that fairly quickly dissipates to a frothy film. Just a little hazy, but mostly clear.

S: As soon as I popped the cork the sourness practically jumped out of the bottle. White wine, moderate fruitiness akin to peaches and green apples, lots of sourness and funk.

T: As I had hoped, the nearly 4 years of aging turned this quite sour and funky. Semi-sweet chardonnay with mild fruits, a lot of oak. Slightest bit lactic. Has a good bit of that funky-cheese and musty basement quality. Tart bite up front with a mouth-puckering sourness lingering through the finish.

M: Medium body, moderate carbonation. Fairly dry finish. I'd like a little bit more carbonation, slightly lighter body, and a dryer finish. Nitpicks though, it's still darned good.

O: One of the finest examples of it's style and the extended aging made it even better. Near perfection.

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Photo of davey101
4.41/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

375 ml C + C bottle into a tulip glass. Bottled 07/27/12 so nearly six months old at this point. Thanks Wes!

A - Pours an initially clear golden amber body. The second pour is obviously quite hazy with some sediment. Massive fluffy bone white head fills the rest of the glass but dies down quickly leaving behind a gorgeous one finger cap. Sticky and soapy lacing with long retention coats the glass after every sip.

S - Starts off with huge notes of brettanomyces. Barnyard musk, hay, and oak. Layers of fruit; mainly lemons, overripe pears and grape skins. The finish is powdery and dry with a touch of blue cheese. The white wine barrel adds such a great fruit character. Just phenomenal.

T - Crisp and lively. Sour lemons, ripe pear juice, and tart green grapes. Oak and a musk take over on the finish. Lactic and very tart. Finishes nearly dry. Not over the top sour.

M - Medium bodied with high carbonation. Drinks very easily.

O - Very nice AWA. The aroma is just perfect. Definitely draws some parallels with brett heavy Belgian Pales and the Chardonnay barrel adds a subtle but well implemented angle.

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
4.47/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 072712. Big thanks to Arbitrator for the bottle.

Appearance: Slightly hazed light gold/straw. Lively carbonation. Head is bubbly, bright-white, and drops to a small cap and chunky, bubbly collar. Some nice lacing as the beer dwindles. Head retention stays small, but constant.

Smell: Fruity and funky. Apple and some pear. Nice solid hit of oak. Backing citric tartness. Pushes toward lemon at times. Slight powdery Brett in the back. White wine and grape skin. A touch of earth. Touches of grass/hay and alcohol. Some lactic sourness as well.

Taste: Yeasty funk. Lactic and citric sour jockey for position. Fruity and floral. Apple core and grape skin. Pushes big notes of chardonnay and oak through the back and finish. Earthy Brett. Some hay and grass. Some pale bready malts give it a little backbone. Peach. Fruity up front, earthy and grassy through the middle. Finishes with a lingering lactic bite. Maybe even some lime thrown in for good measure.

Mouthfeel: Lighter side of medium and dryish. Crisp with a smoothness that defies the carbonation.

Overall: A chronic case of the "tions." Bother master and erect.

Another Russian River "sour" that does it right. Massively fruity and bit more delicate than some of the others. Refreshing. Some age will probably turn this in to a distilled version of liquid gold.

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Photo of Seanniek91
4.77/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a bottle into a Kriek Bel-Vue tulip. Thanks Prospero!

Appearance- Poured golden clear until the yeast made its way into the glass and then a lovely hazy golden color presided. One finger white foamy head that lasted a short while leaving beautiful lacing.

Smell- Buttery, oaky flavors- oak aged (chardoney). Subdued vinegar with tart grape. Sweet vanilla.

Taste- Earthy. oakiness mixed with soft vanilla and mild white grape flavors. Not as tart as other Russian River sours, but well balanced through the mild sweetness. Musty flavors finish the taste.

Mouthfeel- Lots of little bubbles bursting all around my mouth. Carbonated and smooth.

Overall- This is another great beer from Russian River. If you want a sour that won't make you whole face change, then this is it.

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Photo of ChugginOil
4.6/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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.

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

Tasted On: 01-18-2013
Freshness: Batch 072712
Packaging: 375ml brown bottle, corked and caged
Glassware: Teku
Purchased: Mail order

Pours a brilliant golden, clear color, with a nice-sized white head. Lacing and head retention are both good. My second pour yields some yeast cloudiness.

Aromas are very wine- and champagne-like, with fruity, grape notes in the forefront. Other smells are sour lemons and some woodiness and mustiness.

It tastes much as expected from the nose, dry, fruity and sour. This coupled with the fruit and grape flavors really bring out the wine notes from aging in Chardonnay barrels.

Mouthfeel has a prickly carbonation on a medium body. It finishes quite dry and sour, but is tempered by the fruits so as to create a balance.

I'm not too experienced in tasting wild ales, but can say this one is really delightful. I'm looking forward to my next beer from Russian River!

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Photo of RoninTK3
4.86/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Poured from a 375ml bottle into a Corsendonk tulip glass. Batch 3.

A - Bright golden color with a thin layer of head. Very nice to look at.

S - Sour, citrus fruits, apples, and a hint of oak.

T - Lemons, oak, chardonnay, and sour funkiness are all dominant in this one. Hints of grapes and sour cherries. Very oaky aftertaste. Extremely well balanced.

M - Light and refreshing with lots of carbonation. Dry aftertaste.

I really loved this one. It's one of the best sours I've had and I thought it was more well balanced than the other RR sours I've had (Supplication and Beatification). Thanks to Douglasjamjak for the awesome extra!

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Photo of tut2528
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch 3 Bottled 7/27/12

thanks to matttYCE and beachstrength49 for this one. you guys are awesome!

A: pours a light yellow/orange, head formation is quick and subtle just like a soda. it builds up to about 1/2 fingers worth then quickly fizzles out. there is a slight film that hugs the glass

S: big Brett funkiness that is complemented well by lemons and orange peel. there is a subtle spice hint (possibly a clove?), and a nice slight oak note

T: straight forward AWA in my opinion. very nice balance of citrus oranges, and lemons. vinegar, tartness, and barnyard funk all intermingle nicely together.

M: Chardonnay is extremely evident here in the mouth feel as it leave a nice dryness on the palate. its on the lighter side of medium bodied, and along with the Chardonnay note, it leaves a nice sourness that creates salivation for balance

O: drinking this makes me wish RR was easier to come by. Its a solid AWA, not overly complex and very nicely balanced. Will definitely want to seek this one out again in the future.

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

Batch 3 I believe, bottle date 072712.

Bright white creamy/foamy mixed head, good retention and lacing, with a beautiful pale golden colored beer beneath. Slightly tame aroma, or should I say more tame than I expected from RR. White wine, lemongrass, hay, slight funk, yeasty, earthy, light notes of what I can only describe as damp basement must, light oak, hint of green apple and lime. The taste runs along the same lines but with more white wine/grape, more grassy notes, more lemon tart and sour than the nose, and pleasantly so. Again plenty of earthiness, hay, light oak, and how I can only imagine a damp musty basement might taste. Light medium, slightly filmy consistency, medium carbonation, and a smooth, light body. Finish leaves the puckering sourness just lightly coating the mouth and throat.

Once again, a stupendous American Wild Ale from Russian River. As I've said previously they have all been wonderful but had their own great twists and I find myself craving each at different times depending on my mood. Temptation is a bit more subdued compared to Consecration or Supplication but is probably a bit more intense than Sanctification. Take that with a grain, but give any of them a try if you get the chance.

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Photo of BBP
4.27/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours hazy blonde like a wheat beer with more sufficient lacing.

The aroma is white wine, funk and some yeast. Similar to RR's other wild ales, but slightly more tame.

The taste is moderately acidic with slight vinegar. Lemon citrus forms a background but doesn't impose itself. I get some grapefruit notes as well. Balanced, but it seems to be fairly simple.

The body is medium thin with slightly more carbonation than the norm. Finishes dry.

Overall, this is quite well balanced and well made, but I feel like the wine and Brett dominated it. Not a bad problem to have, but it made it harder to find the underlying beer.

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Photo of Oakenator
4.72/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden yellow with two fingers of head. Head is white and persists well throughout consumption. Smells like white wine and definitely sour style brew. Taste is amazing and definitely brings forward Chardonnay, sour fruit - maybe cherries - and a long sour note to finish. Great beer/wine brew.

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Photo of fdig23
4.62/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

375mL Bottle 7/27/12 on the label.

Appearance: Typical golden belgian blonde color with a medium-sized pure white head

Nose: Initial aromas are of bitter lemon and sour cherry with a sweeter green grape undertone. Deeper in the nose hints of the classic Chardonnay butterscotch oak characteristics and a bit of smoke comes though.

Taste: Tart lemons and cherries with toasty bread and apple cider underneath. Finish with that vanilla, woodsy oak flavor and a hit of funky gasoline.

Mouthfeel: Nothing special overall but for a sour it was surprising lively.

Overall: Really refined, complex, tasty wild-fermented sour. A standout in a recent tasting of wine-barrel aged brews.

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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 n2185
4.08/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear straw yellow with three fingers of white head that recedes into a thin cap with decent lacing.

S: Sweet Belgian notes up front with aromas of bubblegum and candy sugar. Agitating it produces some tart and sour fruit aromas with slight barnyard notes.

T: Tart cherries and lemony sourness dominate the flavor with some musty and funky flavors underneath. Simple, but enjoyable.

M: Medium-light body with medium carbonation, this beer is crisp enough to accentuate the sour and tart notes well.

O: A good wild ale, overall. It's a bit lacking in complexity, but is refreshingly tart and sour.

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Photo of WiscoBrewsco
4.4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance - Golden in color with tons of carbonation, looks identical to champagne

Smell - Lots of yeast notes with a mix of that barnyard smell you would find in a saison. Also a hint of sweetness lots brings to mind white grapes

Taste - An explosion of wild tart right off the bat. Tons of white grapes and champagne like flavor. Middle of the sip you start to notice the yeast and slightly bready notes. Aftertaste is that of a saison with the wood presence making itself known. Leaves the mouth quite dry after

Mouthfeel - Very carbonated and thin, exactly like champagne. Perfect for the style though

Overall - Another Russian River sour and another fantastic beer. This always seems to be the case with them and I am once again extremely pleased and could drink this one all night.

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Temptation from Russian River Brewing Company
98 out of 100 based on 999 ratings.