Russian River Brewing Company

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Belgian Pale Ale
Ranked #5
Ranked #4,711
4.04 | pDev: 10.64%
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States
Reviews: 570 | Ratings: 1,690 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by MaxSpang:
Photo of MaxSpang
3.55/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a St. Bernardus chalice. Batch 11


This brew is a really light straw color. When first poured, it was almost crystal clear, but a bit of yeast came up and added some haze. The head was pure white and about a finger. It disappeared fast, and left no lacing. It looks like a nice refreshing beer.


Fairly light in the nose, but nice. There's some nice banana aroma, sort of like a weissbier. There is some light sweetness and malt, followed by a bit of bread aroma. The Belgian yeat is present, but not as overpowering as other Belgian pale ales. Nice aroma!


Again, very light but pleasant. Very slight Belgian yeast spice, such as clove. It is followed by slight banana flavor. There's just a tinge of sweetness to round it out. There's a bit a malt in there, but overall the flavors are extremely light without being watery.


This beer is super drinkable. It's nice and dry, leaving only a little residual sweetness on the tongue. The carbonation is medium-high.


This is a nice little beer. I don't normally like Belgian style pale ales, but this is nice. It's mild enough to be really drinkable while having enough complexity to satisfy.


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More User Reviews:
Photo of brentk56
4.15/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 002

Appearance: Pours a hazy light golden color with a thin, but rocky head that persists as a film and leaves a reasonable amount of lace

Smell: Fruity (pear, green apple), yeasty with a modicum of peppery spice

Taste: Opens with a tangy light fruit flavor, with green apple and pear flavors forward; by mid-palate, the flavor gets more lemoney and sour; after the swallow, the lemon flavors recede for the moment, leaving the yeasty and fruity flavors in command; at the very end, the lemon flavor provides a puckerish finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with buoyant carbonation

Drinkability: Extraordinarily drinkable, with plenty of complexity; I like the way it stays dry throughout

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Photo of cld253
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of alli4051
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 375ml bottle into a perfect pint, unfortunately didn't have the proper globe as dictated by the bottle.

Pours a bright but hazy golden color with a bone white head. Head is thick and fizzy, recedes slowly, and leaves some nice lacing. Scent is spicy and citrusy. Taste is a nice balance between that funky belgian yeast flavor, a nice spiciness, and some faint hop notes. Clean and crisp and a little fuller than I expected. A solid brew that I would have again.

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Photo of RPH2327
4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of teraflx
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of MOVERTON1284
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of bozebus17
4.12/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A big thanks goes to my pal BeerTruth who got this back to New York from California and then out to Michigan for me.

Batch 003. Pours a somewhat cloudy bright yellow. There is a nice fluffy white head that doens't have a lot of staying power. It dies down and leaves a healthy amount of lacing in the glass.

The nose has many things going for it. There are all kinds of esters from the yeast, hints of citrus, some grainy notes, and a big lemon zest character. Very nice.

The flavor has a lot of yeast influence in it. There is a definite tartness and a hint of clove. Beyond that there is a bit of citrus and some of lemon I noticed in the aroma. The beer has a very soft feel to it. It is slightly creamy and very pleasent.

I enjoyed this brew quite a bit. It was a good Belgian for someone that doesn't drink a lot of them. It was smooth and much cleaner than I expected. I'd definitely recommend it and wouldn't mind having this one again.

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Photo of adamdarcy
5/5  rDev +23.8%

Photo of beagle75
3.54/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 375 ml bottle into a tulip glass.
The bottle is labeled as Batch 008.

A: Hazy, bright golden color with a head consisting of an off-centered iceberg of lofty white foam. Moderate lacing remains on the glass.

S: Yeast and dusty flour combine to resemble something like paste in the smell. Faintly estery, fruity, displaying coconut, breadfruit, and unfermented white grapes. Overall very clean and mild; not a smell of great distinction or character.

T: Begins very dry, intensely grassy, herbaceous, with bright acidity. Fruity esters, sharp black pepper, and mint emerge in the middle. Mild but astringent bitterness is present in the finish as is an occasional whiff of savory cooking herbs (thyme, parsley, coriander) and honey.

M: Thin viscosity, fluid and cleansing on the palate, with moderate carbonation.

D: Described on the bottle as an abbey "single", this beer is a challenge to judge against others of that category due to their rarity. The practical alternative is to compare it to some of Russian River's other low-gravity offerings. Unfortunately it is found lacking--Gaffer's bitter, Little White Lie, or even OVL stout are all more worthy and interesting. This beer comes across as a very light saison, with little more character (and possibly less) than the Bruery's Seven-Grain saison. Ultimately it is a less than perfect comparison as Redemption fails to cross a threshold of appeal for that style. A curious choice for bottled distribution, to say the least.

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Photo of codynevels
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of chalkfullof
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of LinzBrit
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of webmouth247
2.5/5  rDev -38.1%

Photo of meathookjones
4.48/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750ml bottle from batch 001. Quick erupting big white bubbly head over a cloudy golden orange color body. Good sticky lace was left coating the glass. Light yeasty funkiness with a good spiciness filled the nose. A bit of citric scents as well as some sweetness from light fruit notes. Light fruity notes with some of the expected funky yeast notes. Light peppery spice over some fruit. A bit bready and herbal peak through towards the end. A milder flavor but still packed with plenty of taste. Lighter and crisp in the mouth this seems like a perfect fit for a lighter beer like this. Extremely easy drinking stuff too boot.

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Photo of tclapper
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of modernartblues
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received as an Extra from cduckett (thanks Chris!)

Reviewed from Notes

Poured into a Duvel Tulip

A: clear straw yellow, fizzy and bubbly- champagne like body, thin head retention---last pour got some yeast and made it a bit hazy

N: meaty, spicy, estery, not getting much funk from the bret

T: lemony, estery, touch of yeast, --funk on the finish, gets more complex as warms

M: light, but slightly chewy, interesting, feels good on the palate

D: high, with the light mouthfeel & complex flavor profile, I could definitely session this one

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Photo of mc4z
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of lizfig
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of kvgomps
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Clemskis
4/5  rDev -1%

Photo of DrJay
4.09/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 008. Bottle courtesy of mikesgroove. Thanks!
Clear, very pale yellow with a white cap that started out fizzy, but settled into a thin skim and collar of fine bubbles. Notes of pale malt grain and pears in the aroma, slightly floral and spicy with a bit of apple apparent as it warmed, faint lemon zest. Light bodied with a light leafy bitterness that only appeared in the finish. Before that, it was fruity (apples and pears) with a pale malt character, perhaps a hint of yeast. Carbonation was moderate, but felt slightly aggressive, which worked in this beer and kept it lively. Overall, quite good. I really liked the aroma - refined and complex without having the kitchen sink thrown in.

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Photo of youradhere
2.66/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pours hazy straw blonde with a fluffy white cap, fine carbonation creeps up the side of my pint glass (ya thats right, I disobeyed the instructions on the cork deliberately, my tulip is sitting dry tonight!) Smells kind of like a bock, sort of metallic, slight hay, sulfurous aromas, not very appealing for me. Taste is bock like, but with a pleasant bitter twang to offset the metallic sulfur notes. Sligh grain flavors, followed by delicate hop presence. Mouthfeel is light, if this were more slick like SN Glissade I'd end up dumping it. Carbonation is medium and prickly, overall not my cup of tea but I'll finish it. Not sure I'd revisit it though. If it werent for the dry bitterness, this beer would be undrinkable for me.

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Photo of Kaiser81
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 008
375 mL bottle poured into my dad's frosty mug. It was the best glassware I could find @ my parents' house.

A - Blonde color (maybe a hazy straw) with less than a finger width of head. The head settles, but has nice retention and some nice lacing.

S - Light malty swells with a touch of funkiness. I also want to say some light grapes and other light fruits...maybe apples and pears.

T - Light fruits and malts with a touch of earthyness to it. There are some funky notes going on as well. It really packs a good amount of flavor for a 5.15% beer.

M - Light body, but high on carbonation with a semi dry finish.

D - I easily fnished the 375 mL bottle and could have drank more...not that it was the best beer I've ever had, but I could have drank more. It's got nice flavor for a light ABV beer.

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Redemption from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 1690 ratings