Damnation | Russian River Brewing Company

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Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.75%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Inspired pretty much by Duvel and other strong golden ales of Belgium. It is medium-bodied, has a fruity/banana bouquet, and a dry, spicy finish.

Pub draft and bottles, local distribution draft and bottles, some draft to some distributors, bottles to all distributors, year-round

Original Gravity: 1.056
Alcohol by Volume: 7.5%
Color: Golden
Bitterness: Mild

User Reviews & Ratings
Reviews: 1,164 | Ratings: 3,887
Photo of Sabtos
3.4/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy golden yellow with little head.

Faint scent of banana candy.

Delicate flavors of spicy tang.

While these descriptors are what I came away with, it's more appropriate to say this beer is its own flavor--with profiles that are not easy to put one's finger on, a nice delicate brew with some decent complexity.

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Photo of KettleBellFreak
4.14/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Not the biggest fan of this mustard yellow look to the beer, not as gold as I hoped, but I'm just whining now.

Good lacing from an excellent carbonation underneath a tight head with oddly uniform suds.

Sweet yeasty citrus smell and a taste that adds in more vegetal freshness and peach/pear sweetness.

Good beer!

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Photo of EMV
4.44/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a snifter.

L: Pours a clear medium golden color. Thick creamy white head with fantastic retention and lacing.

S: Citrus and wheat... bread and yeast.

T/F: Absolutely delicious Belgian Strong Golden ale. Complex citrus notes... lemon and grapefruit mixed with Belgian yeasts. Hints of cloves and spice. Ample carbonation yet smooth.... and absolutely delicious.

O: Just a fantastic beer from Russian River. Would have again any time.

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Photo of anon
4.22/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Billowing head supporting by excellent carbonation, bubble trails constantly rising to the top. Smells excellently spicy and fruity. Peach, banana, apple, bready.

What a treat for the taste buds. Picking up tons of fruity flavour; pear, banana, peach, white grape, slight citrus rind , orange peel. Some yeastiness makes way for the coriander and clove, even some light vanilla notes and bubblegum. Hops wash over at the end and balance this out really well. What a wonderful flavour bomb! Very complex.

Creamy and smooth. Drinks like a champ. I'm a little late to the Russian River boat, Damnation being my first go, but I'm thoroughly impressed and can see that this brewery lives up to the hype. Hopefully I can have more luck finding their other offerings in the near future.

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Photo of Mlkluther
4.7/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of the most complex beers I have ever had. Truly outstanding. If I could get this in Canada I would drink this as often as possible. It is one of the best beers I have ever had the pleasure of drinking.

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Photo of AppaZappa
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

05/2014 bottle poured into tulip glass. Pours rich golden yellow with some haze, generous head that fades after a few minutes. Smell is green apple, white grape, yeast, banana. Taste is sweet up front--grape, bit of citrus-- then ester, pepper, slight yeast and alcohol. Very nice finish that is very dry and comes back a bit sweet. Mouth is light and crisp, fairly effervescent.

This is a really nice beer. Trying to remember it fresh (bottle and tap), but this was great with a year and a half on it in the bottle. Great representation of the style.

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Photo of Johnnyvelvet
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Tap @ Toronado San Diego. Appearance extremely clear and gold. Medium lacing with light head. Citrus and fruity aroma with tastes of fruit, citrus, and a strong Belgium wheat beer. Very tasty and extremely well made!

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Photo of Beerswag
4.09/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pale golden straw color, clear, not much lacing, head is creamy then gone quick. Smell is banana, pear, plum, and a hint of dry hop floral essence. Taste is ripe banana throughout, bubblegum, and a slight dry hop floral essence on the finish. Pair with goat cheese, brie, or chicken.

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Photo of Slack
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Straw to pale gold in color and clear. A lot of head that settles to about an 1/8 inch. Lacing present as it drinks down.

Floral, yeast, hops, and some mild fruit on the nose.

Taste is mildly sweet with hops, fruit, and yeast.

Mouthful is light to medium and smooth with medium to heavy carbonation. Finish is dry and lingering.

A solid drinkable beer with hidden alcohol. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of wdberkley
4.48/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Looks gorgeous in a glass with bubbles dancing in a tornado to the top. Looks like a golden sunrise in a glass. Some fruit on the nose - banana, grape, little clove. Tastes similar, little sweet malt comes through, and the esters are defiantly forward. Almost finishes bitter, yet sweet. Great Belgian Pale.

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Photo of Zonk
4.41/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

No detailed notes but noticeable yeast esters, finsishes slightly sour. Light to medium body, green apple on the palate. This is a very good Belgian Pale

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Photo of VABA
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A hazy Califonia sun hue. Aroma had a lot of fruity overtones and the flavors followed the nose. The beer is medium bodied with a very good amount of carbonation.

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Photo of Myotus
3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a tulip.
LOOK: Pours with a finger's worth of white foam that refuses to die. Lacing is thick and high.
SMELL: Mild aromas of sour yeast, green apples, pears, white grapes, bready malts, and cloves that entangle with subtle aromas of bananas and earthy yeast
TASTE: Initial taste is composed of mild flavors of bready malts, green apple, pear, white grape, and banana along with subtle flavors of sour yeast. Mild notes of cloves, subtle flavors of earthy yeast, and the slightest hint of alcohol enter right after as all initial flavors persist.
FEEL: Light-bodied and highly carbonated. Goes down somewhat rough and finishes with a subtle dryness.
NOTE: It was a great beer. No further comments.

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Photo of Wowcoolman
4.01/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Spot on Belgian Pale with classic aggressive carbonation. If you like the phenolic yeast one two punch this one will deliver. Some nice subtle fruit esters, a little banana, a little pineapple.

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Photo of The_Kriek_Freak
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

One of the best beers I've had. On tap at Monk's Cafe in Philadelphia. Hazy blonde, floral aromas and a bitter bubblegum-like aftertaste. Hard to put it in words but this is a beer that you simply gotta try even if you're not a fan of the style.

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Photo of lic217
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Look: golden color, quick fading white head
Aroma: banana, peppery esters
Taste: sweet, then estery, clove like flavor, finishes dry, with a touch of alcohol, little citrus
Feel: high level of carbonation, medium body
Overall: a really nice golden ale, as another poster pointed out, it's not quite up there with delirium tremens

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Photo of SABERG
4.07/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle dated 02072015 into a chalice.
A - Light colored honey, viscous body resists a train of carbonation. Light cap clings to the edges throughout the experience.
S - Sweet, sugars, light malts with an Abbey thread runs through.
T - Wonderful, base, strong esters, and a complex triple series, sweet malts, Belgian sugars and a touch of ops.
F - Surprisingly light in body, a medium mouth feel, and sweet finish that dries up quickly.
O - As billed, a wonderful Triple style, Abbey Golden with enough heft to lure you in to trying another at your own risk.

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Photo of Franziskaner
4.06/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light gold to straw yellow and plenty hazy. There's a fingernail of eggshell white covering the vast majority of the top of the beer. Moderate lacing. I smell Belgian ale yeast with plenty of fruity esters and I also detect some light Belgian candy sugar. I taste plenty of lightly bready malt and sweet, light Belgian candy sugar. The mouth is fairly carbonated and crisp.

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Photo of MHurley
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I love the over all look of this beer. With a corked top with the great Russian River twist cover. Thick neck and great art work. Pour a clear yellow with amazing head that give off a great aroma of peppery and fruit all in one. The taste though wasnt for me, kinda earthy but with some hop taste and booze. But a great beer to add to the collection! I love this bottle. Its like the ideal woman

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Photo of AnalogErik
3.87/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Mouthfeel was flatter, smooth - the carb didn't get me, which is contrary to some reviews on here. The beer doesn't hide the booze too well, but the spices and malts come through well. Wasn't thrilled with this, but I can appreciate how well it represents the style.

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Photo of tigerbeer90
4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Pours golden with lots of tiny bubbles forming a large white head
S: Mild, some spices and slight fruit
T: Belgian Pale. some lighter fruits. Some banana and pear
M: very light and dry with a lot of effervescence
O: This is my first Russian River beer. It was an excellent representation of the style, but not what I would say was spectacular. Don't get me wrong, it is probably a top 5 BPA, just not sure if I would pay to have another. Looking forward to trying more of theirs!

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Photo of Kinsman
3.94/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours as expected with a nice golden orange body and a big fluffy white head. Slightly fruity on the nose but not nearly as much of an esters note as some similar beers give off. Taste reveals a bit more of the peppery character of this yeast but it's well balanced overall. Not quite on the same level as Duvel or Delirium, but solid nonetheless.

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Photo of fitzy84
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had this on tap at Monks Cafe in Philly. The beer had a murky, pale yellow appearance with visible carbonation and a good sized head that dissipated. I smelled a combination of fruity flavors, but especially a fruit like a pear, mixed with cloves and yeast. The beer tasted slightly hoppy with earthy wheats and that advertised banana flavor. But, the aftertaste had a bitter citrus and grape flavor that was a bit strong for my tastes. The body of the drink was airy with a light carbonation. Overall, the aftertaste was a bit much for me, but I liked the combination of flavors and the body of the drink.

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Photo of Johnct
3.32/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

Eh... just a typical wheaty belgian ale. Don't shell out money for this. Probably the worst of the ---ation beers from RR. I'll have to try the higher-rated ones

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Photo of WunderLlama
4.16/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yellow with stream of carbonation

White foam ring, foamy lacings

Peppery aroma

Peppery spice taste , wine like taste ,Belgian qualities

Good beer

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Damnation from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.12 out of 5 with 3,887 ratings