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Temptation - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
TemptationTemptation

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

980 Reviews
THE BROS
99
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 980
Hads: 3,294
rAvg: 4.39
pDev: 8.2%
Wants: 1,725
Gots: 873 | FT: 49
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: 980 | Hads: 3,294
Photo of Ready4aHeady
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Poured from a 375 ml bottle, bottled 5.18.14
Clear pale golden color, thin white foam, bubbles swim up like a fine champagne
Nose is funk, lemon, and chardonnay grapes
Taste is similar, some grape and golden raisin sweetness followed by a nice sour funky lemon finish
Overall a delicious, complex sour, with nice carbonation, very refreshing... (345 characters)

Photo of draheim
4.59/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Re-reviewing one of my favorite Russian River beers. This is my last remaining bottle of Temptation after Russian River pulled out of Washington in late 2012.

375mL bottle (bottle 7/27/2012) into a tulip. Pours a slightly hazy pale golden color w/ a short-lived 1-finger white head, bright lively carbonation.

Aroma is tart and funky; grassy, earthy, acidic.

Taste follows nose. Sour, clean. The chardonnay and oak come through along with golden raisins and white grapes.

Mouthfeel is clean and sharp; it's light, playful, and utterly refreshing. Finishes clean and bone-dry.

Overall a crisp, bright, drinkable, well-made beer. (634 characters)

Photo of Hophazzard
2.75/5  rDev -37.4%

Wow! This is not what I consider beer. Like a super strong white wine or something. At $11 A bottle, it's priced like wine too. I'll stick to beer, thank you. (159 characters)

Photo of BeerZombies1
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

End of day beer, gardens at Stone.

Temptation - Russian River
BA wild ale
7.5% ABV

APPEARANCE: Pours a kings crown gold with a brilliant star-bright glow coming from the bottom of the glass. Small thin white soapy head that dissipates into a halo that stays the entire time I'm drinking.

AROMA: Beautiful bouquet on this beer, huge sour tartness initially with loads of lemon and hay blended together. Perfectly ripe green apples, grapes, white wine notes and oakiness.

TASTE: My taste buds are playing celestial trumpets. A perfect marriage of sweet and sour. Like drinking a Chardonnay with lemon zest on top. Sour grapes and slightly sweet grassy notes. Nice faint flavors of barrel and malt.

MOUTHFEEL: Light plus body with a medium dancing carbonation. Funky, dry long lasting finish.

OVERALL: This beer was the perfect outside right before sunset 75 degree choice. Super refreshing and easy drinking. I am just starting to explore into the world of sours, out of all the RR sours I've had this is by far my favorite.

RATING: 4.5/5 Zombie Heads! (1,066 characters)

Photo of JohnG190
4.81/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bottled May 2013. Pours a hazy golden orange with a white sudsy head that dissipates quickly into a frothy retention cap that sticks around throughout and leaves some lacing. Its a lovely beer to look at. Lemon on the nose, with hints of oak and white wine grapes. Very light and crisp aroma. Tart and puckering on the front of the palate, with notes of lemon, oak, and sweet grape. Finishes extremely dry with little to no lingering aftertaste. Light bodied with effervescent carbonation. Overall, a supremely well crafted barrel aged wild ale. Well balanced, complex, and extremely drinkable! (594 characters)

Photo of vfgccp
4.2/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Batch 6 (brewed 2009, bottled 2011). Opened July 2014.

A - Golden straw body. Thin, fine white head. Light carbonation in the glass.

S - Ouh. Bright tingly tart nose. Oak, grape skins, minerals, hay, acidic lemons, and wet blankets.

T - Smooth, mouth fillingly tart, and dry. Prominent but smooth oak, tart green apples, tart white grapes, grape skins, lemonade, white sugar, unripe peaches.

M - Medium-light body with light carbonation.

O - A great example of the style; great oak notes with a smooth, bold tart flavor. (525 characters)

Photo of Halfbrother83
4.35/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle poured into a Cantillon flute.

A: Pours a rich gold with a bubbly, white crown.

S: Dry, white grape, dry oak, barnyard funk.

T: White grape/chardonnay flavors dominate at first, followed by some lush, light fruitiness, rounded out by tart, funk notes in the finish.

M: Medium bodied with abundant carbonation, not unlike a spritzer or wine cooler - works very nicely with the taste of this beer.

O: I definitely prefer the darker RR sours, but this was a nice change of pace and one I'm glad to have tried. (518 characters)

Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.69/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Appearance - The beer was a handsome golden color with a bubbly white head crowning the glass.

Smell - The grapes from the aging really come through in the aroma. Sour notes reveal the intentions of the grapes.

Taste - My initial impression was sour grapes, largely from the aging process. Further, the taste evolves to notes of grape skin and some citrus notes. The taste finishes with dry sour notes.

Mouthfeel - I found myself wishing the carbonation was a little more muted which would allow for the taste to be extended.

Overall - It would be close between Temptation and Supplication to determine my favorite Russian River. (633 characters)

Photo of dgilks
4.58/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Slightly hazy golden colour with a nice, creamy, off-white head.

Rich and rounded aroma. Quite tart with some goaty barnyard notes and then fruitiness. Quite a bit of oak. Vanilla and buttery oak. Interesting and very nice.

The palate deliversa moderate tartness backed up with the woodiness of the aroma. Fruit follows to cleanse and add complexity. Not as earthy as the aroma. Still very good.

Medium body with moderate carbonation and some tannin. Good.

A really excellent beer. Not as great as I remember it being last time I had it but still very enjoyable. (567 characters)

Photo of BWED
4.53/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Chalice pour at Via Marconi's, Hatfield, PA.

A- Light gold in color. Off white head stays thin, but sticks around for the entirety of the drink.

S- Tang in the nose. Citrus and some apple. Not overly sweet.

T- Tangy again, like the nose. Apples and citrus is what I pick up. Just a faint toasted malt.

M- Light, tangy, and a dry finish. Much less sweet than the other sours I've had from RR. (Consecration, Supplication)

O- Spectacular. I really love the tang and dryness this one brings, and the flavor profile is great. (527 characters)

Photo of MrMoose916
4.23/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Final Gravity in Granite Bay, CA

A: A very clear and glowing golden appearance.

S: Whoa, I got tons of lemons, very nice funk aroma but the lemons dominate through out with undertones of grass and oak.

T: Follows the nose. Big tartness up front with the lemon/citrus flavor dominating the palate then falls into that nice funk. Again underneath you get that grassy, oaky flavor to it.

M: Light body, high carbonation and a very dry finish.

O: Very enjoyable, not going to blow your socks off but I would definitely buy this if I could. (553 characters)

Photo of Bouleboubier
4.12/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

(on tap at Resurrection Ale House and Local 44 two days later - served in tulips)

A: light-golden liquid with a bright, jewel-like glow... brilliant clarity... initial feathery foam, falls out leaving a scattered collar

S: mild black pepper and grassy white wine... soft, elegant sourish tartness

T: subtle white grape, perhaps a dry peach... nice, delicate balance of lactic tartness, hardly puckering... quite dry, light-moderate balance of dry oak grain

M: very light, dry... crisp but not sharp... mild tannic finish (wood grain)

O: not explosively flavorful, but fantastically savorable and sessionable (612 characters)

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

Batch 5

A: 4.5 Slightly hazy golden yellow with a small off-white head that dissipates rather quickly.

S: 4.5 Lots of lemon and funk at first with some light pine and a touch of vanilla. Funk opens up a bit more with bringing some dry, aged cheese aromas; it sounds weird but it's really pleasant.

T: 4.25 Fairly tart with a little sweetness. Lost of lemon and orange, a good amount of funk, and some grassy earthiness. Not quite as much going on as the nose, but still very good. Vanilla and oak come through a bit later on. More citrus on the aftertaste along with some herbs, green apple, and more oak.

M: 4.5 Nice carbonation with a fairly light body. Has a very nice, dry finish.

O: 4.5 Great sour blond. Reminds me a lot of some classic Belgian guezes, with a bit less tartness and more citrus. (808 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
4.09/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Corked and caged bottle dated 5/30/13 from Homer321. Pours hazy golden colored with a one finger fizzy white head. Sweet and sour aroma, sour vinegar, pears, apples, citrus, hay, dry oak, tart brett notes, vinous white wine notes. Flavor is big sour vinegar, juicy apple, dry oakiness. Medium body with prickly carbonation, smooth and dry finish. Really nice brew. (364 characters)

Photo of Bowers-Brew
4.56/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 5-30-13

A - Light orange with ~2-2.5" worth of white porous head.

S - Grapes, wine, vanilla, sour fruit.

T - Grapes, tartness / pink grapefruit, oak, vanilla. Tartness lingers.

M - Like Champagne, bubbles from first sip to swallow.

O - Very interesting. You can certainly taste the wine like qualities, but that Brett makes for some interesting sweet fruit and sour acidic notes. Very drinkable and seems to have aged nicely. Prost! (450 characters)

Photo of RachelZ
4.36/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyable beer!! This beer pours a light golden yellow with a small white head. Aromas in this beer are very interesting with hints of yeast, fruit, sourness and acidity. Flavor is complex and medium bodied with a sour aftertaste. Overall this beer is very refreshing!! (269 characters)

Photo of abeeronthebeach
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Sunshine orange mixes with light golden-blond.

S - Peach, musty sour green grapes. Aromas of peach blossoms.

T - Very sour. Lemons, unripe cox apples. Almost mouth-puckering. Not a huge amount of oakiness with a mildly astringent finish. The tartness overpowered the fruit and the funk from the brett.

M - Crisply carbonated which enhances its refreshingness. Body was medium and much less sparkling than champagne, for example.

O - Obviously expectations were fairly high with this one, and as is wont to happen from time to time, they were not met. I found the acidity ate away at the other characteristics which the beer might have offered. Not mind-blowing, and for this drinker, probably not worth the effort required to get hold of the bottled form. Will revisit in the future to see if my palate has changed. (823 characters)

Photo of AdamF625
4.57/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

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. (420 characters)

Photo of dar482
4.8/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

The beer hits of white wine and a strong tartness in the front. It's very lemony and citrusy with a general theme of apricot. A light crackery malt in the middle along with a nice touch of cherries. After the citrus, the barrel gives some oak notes and drying.

A very tart, yet well balanced sour. One of my favorites from Russian River. (339 characters)

Photo of thecommonman
5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - A bright, golden orange. Nicely carbonated, very clean. Slight lacing along the glass, minimal head that stays.

S - Almost like Champagne, with a nice citrus and tropical aroma. This aroma is quite bright. Not much of a malt smell, but not necessary.

T - That oaky, barrel flavor hits first; it's a nice sweetness of slight vanilla. Then the citrus-orange-tropical flavor strikes the middle of your tongue and joins the oak. I get a slight sour grape/mild green apple there, too, as you go to the finish. The finale is nice and dry. You definitely get a tiny bit of bitterness from the hops, too, which is a surprise.

M - Medium, fizzy mouthfeel. Nothing too strong, though. Light bubbles, again, like champagne. Smooth and bubbly at once.

O - Probably the best-balanced, wild/sour ale I've ever had. It has a wine-ness that's pleasant at first, then a great, light-citrusy beer finishes you off with a fizz. It's very fresh tartness is balanced very well, and the whole beer in the glass is a top-notch experience from pouring to tasting. (1,047 characters)

Photo of mikem0487
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 5/30/2013 and poured into goblet.

A-Bright Golden body with a head that quickly fell back into the beer and went missing. No lacing/retention. Clarity would be great for this beer but there is sediment floating throughout my glass. That was probably my fault due to my anticipation of wanting to try this for so long that I poured it a little to rough.

S-Vanilla, oak and a huge punch of freshly squeezed grapefruit mix together for a aroma that is different but intriguing and beautiful at the same time. The grapefruit is the from the sourness and also get some nice funky/musty notes with subtle peach aromas.

T-This is a sour beer and I love it. Mouth puckering goodness once you take it all in. Starts off as a simple belgian-esque beer and than you hit the middle and back palate and it shows you that it is a sour. Sourness turns into funky barnyard back into sourness with hints of that vanilla/oak from the barrels.

M-Medium-thin body, high carbonation and a super dry finish.

O-Enjoyable beer. Have had this cellaring for a couple months now and decided to take it out. Wish I had another one or two of these in my "cellar" so I could age them and see how they progress and change overtime. Lovely sour beer and cannot wait to have this one again. High price where I got it($20 for the 375mL) but happy with the purchase! (1,347 characters)

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

375ml corked and caged bottle. Bottled on 5/30/2013 and poured into a "tion" beer Russian River
stemmed goblet.

A- Yellow-gold murky brew. A 1/2" head fades away to nothing quickly. Heavy carbonation as evidenced by the strong string of tiny bubbles arising from the bottom of the glass.

S- Sourness, tartness, mild acidic vinegar appears immediately in the nose, followed by a wine
aroma from the oak wine barrel aging. Tart cherry, peach, red grape, and a hint of citrus are all there, along with a bit of malt from the base beer.

T- The wine barrel taste is right there at first with the sharp, sour cherry and fruit tastes holding up their end nicely. A hint of malt base keeps the sourness in check, and makes for a great all around blend.

M- Tart and sour, but not overly so. Strong carbonation allows all facets of the beer to dance around on the tongue. Nothing overbearing here.

O- A well balanced wild ale. Like I'm diving into a glass of wine for a split second, then quickly into sour, tart and fruity goodness. I prefer a couple of the other RR sours, but would never turn this one away. (1,105 characters)

Photo of markchristenson
4.39/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first experience with this, and quite an enjoyable one.

Poured into a Riedel Vinum Pinot Noir glass, it showed a sudsy, soapy head and a brilliant lemon/gold color. Smelled incredibly fresh and tangy, with citrus and hints of vanilla. The flavor was really good, but was a bit one-dimensional (I'm thinking of it compared to a Pliny the Elder that was consumed last night). Nice acidity, hoppiness, and vibrancy on the palate, with a clean aftertaste. Good stuff and I need to find some more :-) (499 characters)

Photo of MCImes
4.31/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - who cares what a beer looks like?

S - Citrus citrus citrus. Lots of lemon aroma. A little funk, a little wood

T - When its cool-cold, its a lemon bomb. Not overly sour, but lots of lemon/citrus flavor, but not in a hoppy-citrus way. Its more of a tamed down lemon kind of citrus. As it warms up it improves, as with most sours. As it approaches 60* more wood and funk emerge.

M - medium-light body; what a bright sour should be.

O - Another very good -ation for RR. I have tried Supplication and Concecration also. In order, I prefer Supp, then Conc, then Temp, so its my least favorite of the -ation's that I've had, but its still a great beer. Im really splitting hairs. It mostly depends on what flavor profile you are in the mood for, as those 3 are all fairly different, so its not an entirely fair comparison. (825 characters)

Photo of roger617
4.49/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into tulip.

A: Light golden, pours with 2 fingers of white head that reduces slowly and leave a little bit of lacing.
S: Citrus funky goodness. The aroma is well balanced, giving enough fruit notes to balance out the funk.
T: Very similar to aroma, but the sour punches through the citrus. The after taste is very mellow, making me crave even more.
M: Carbed very well, very similar to champagne, but not quite as much.
O: The balance and complexity of this beer is very well crafted. There aren't many sour beers (which I've had) that are all around this easy to drink. I'm slowly turning into a sour fan, and it's beer just like this one that is the reason why. With all the hype around super hops and bourbon barrel stouts, it's nice to have a world class beer like this that stands out in it own way.

Cheers! (830 characters)

Temptation from Russian River Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 980 ratings.