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Supplication | Russian River Brewing Company

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1,445 Reviews

Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brown Ale aged in used Pinot Noir barrels from local Sonoma County wineries. It is aged for about 12 months with sour cherries, brettanomyces, lactobacillus, and pediococcus added to each barrel. Flavors from the cherries, Pinot Noir and oak balance each other nicely with a little funk from the brett.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-25-2005

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Reviews: 1,445 | Ratings: 6,197
Photo of gibby
4.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle batch 004x1 purchased at Capone's last week.
Poured into an oversized wine glass. Great copper color with a minimal beige head that didn't last long. Minor lacing down the glass. Smells great, big burst of cherries, wood and some funkiness. The taste is where this beer really shines in my book. It's dominated by cherries with a great sourness but nothing over the top. Very, very delicious beer. I felt like I was flying through this beer so I had to slow myself down to really enjoy it. Mouthfeel is excellent as well. The carbonation is spot on and it has a sort of champagne quality that coast your tongue. Drinkability is off the charts in my opinion. Feel like I could sip on this all day long. Temptation and consecration were very good but I think supplication is my favorite of the 3. I will get more, highly recommended.

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Photo of TheFightfan1
4.82/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Got this from trenton road takeout. Pours a cloudy brown. Thick bubblier then bubbly heading. Some Lacing throughout.

Smell is of a fine wine with a beer twist ending. All cherry and tart upfront but there are some toasted malt notes in it.Subtle fruity yeasty aroma's as well. Different but yet intriguing.

Taste is well EVIL. Am I sure that this is beer? Ridiculous tartiness with a nice punch of sour cherry.There is a a linger in the end of a bready maltiness.

Mouth is full bodied with a champagne bubbliness that never settles completely. Tart feel completely numbs the palate and makes the tongue slap against the roof of my mouth a few times after each sip.

Although I don't think this is a session type beer it surely is one of the best tasting beers out there. A must try for everyone who enjoys unique beer.

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Photo of Duhast500
4.95/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from the tap into a tasting glass.

The color is a light dark red with a nice finger or two of foamy white head and some thick lacing.

The smell is a bit sour and fruity with some nice white grape and some light apple. There is some hints of wet leather and candy apple.

The taste is a bit tart with some light fruit flavor and a really nice spicy hop flavor. There is a really nice green apple flavor that is really sweet. It has some an interesting Hawaiian punch flavor as well that is in back of this apple skin, granny smith flavor. It brings back memories of jolly rancher candies. Some nice sugary sweet flavor

The feel of this beer is really great and pleasant on the palette. It has a nice warming feel with a nice fizzy feel. It goes down really well and is quite refreshing. The sweetness is really light on the palette and is really enjoyable. One of the best beers I have had.

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Photo of BeerImmediately
4.55/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 04x1. 375ml into Duvel glass.

Started rising out of the bottle as the cork was popped. Poured with a massive 4f of chunky off white head, over top of a deep amber body - plenty of visible carbonation. Good lacing.

Overall aroma was not overpowering, but was really top notch for a 'wild ale'. Plenty of oak barrel to start, followed by rich, dark fruit skins, gym sneakers, some red twizzler sweetness, and a bit of cinnamon hiding out in the back.

Tart, nearly puckering at the onset - flavor was full of brett and cherry skins, with lesser levels of acidic / lemon juice and bready/yeasty goodness. Phenomenal carbonation balance, creating a smooth slide over the tongue, with dry, tight finish.

This is really hard to just let sit in the glass... it constantly pulls you back, leaving you quickly wishing there were 5 more of it's sibblings waiting for you in the fridge. But that would be an expensive 6 pack now, wouldn't it.

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Photo of snpub540
4.17/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark copper hue with some ruby highlights. There is a cream colored head that lasts a long time and leaves thin scattered lacing on the glass.

Smell is a mixture of balsamic vinegar, tart cherries, grapes, and some alcohol sweetness.

Taste is of sweet cherries upfront, but a quick in your face sour funk sweeps. A dry woody finish mellows things out. The sour creeps up hard but it balances away very nicely.

Drinkability is good as it is not too sour or overwhelming. Alcohol is not very present. Mouthfeel is creamy and coats the whole palate. Another good sour from RR.

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Photo of Docer
4.21/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Grabbed a couple 350ml bottles at Beaumont Market yesterday shortly after Justin posted this special release on Facebook.

- Clear straw yellow with lots of bubbles keeping a forever lasting smooth blanket of foam on top... about as pinky fingers depth. Bottle had opened with a healthy pop.. and it is kind of fun watching all the bubbles on the side of the tumbler glass I used.

- Nice tart sourness of front, and underneath is a nice blend of white grape, zesty hops.. and a noticeable brown ale-like malt sweetness... bit of oak and not too much cherry.. unless it is adding to the tartness.

- Wonderful flavors... and I really let this sit around awhile and get warm so all the flavors would come out to play. Zesty sour white grape-like notes for me... a background of currants, oak, and sweet roasted grain and molasses. Hops were there and present... blended perfectly and oh so subtle.... fantastic.

- This is where my judging of this brew drops a bit. It was a thin bodied brew.. perfectly tart and mouth watering... but I though much over carbonated. It would almost be worth letting it sit out a long time to just settle down... what a live beast of a brew.

- Overall I really liked this, and I plan on sitting on others for a long time to see what can happen to this brew, and if the carbonation would calm down a bit. Overall very good. Would still buy Consecration before this one though. Even Temptation too I think.... but either way, I will buy all of them. Love each and every one of them.

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Photo of ShadesOfGray
4.35/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 04x3, new 375ml designed bottles...still corked and caged. Poured into my large Delerium snifter. Pours a ruby/orangish color with smooth creamy one finger head. Head dissapates quickly but remains a layer of cream. Appears to leave thick bubbly lacing.

Aroma is wonderful. Full of tart cherries...obviously. Citrus and brett...no booze in the nose at all. Slight vinegar aroma, overall though, my mouth is watering!

It's a pucker! Solid sour...tons of fermented cherries, carbonation...and very crisp. I guess I should mention I chose to pour slowly at first, and then swirled the setiment and poured in into my glass anyway. I personally love the added flavor. There's a very nice sweet flavor that rests on the tongue well after each sip. A great sour!

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Photo of jjayjaye
4.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a cloudy orange tea color with a thick stiff foamy white head that resists fading, leaving a huge amount of Belgian lacing, some 3D. The smell is aggressive, complex and fruity classic Bing cherries down to the unique tart character. The aroma also has a sweetness that i want to associate with malt but with a creamy vanilla note that i sense may be from the barrel aging. Full flavored, the tart cherry character is intense without being offensive and in fact is exceptional. Visibly effervescent, the mouth feel finishes clean and dry. This is the most drinkable sour that I've experienced...right up there with Brute and LeBleu. The depth of the flavors and aroma of this one exceeds the other two. Really glad that I had the opportunity to consider it!

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Photo of portia99
4.57/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

375ml bottle (batch 04x3) received in trade from Nanoslug - Thanks! Poured into a Russian River Belgian stemmed glass.

A - Cork comes out with a nice pop and a small rush of trapped CO2. Pours a clear, nice light amber color with an overall pinkish hue to it...somewhat reminiscent of unblended cranberry juice. A thick two fingered pillow of cream colored (again with a slight pinkish tint) foam rests on top and shows absolutely no sign of going anywhere. An endless stream of carbonation bubbles rises through the glass giving a champagne impression. Very pretty wild ale.

S - When I popped the cork, I took a quick smell and my immediate impression was...Canada Dry gingerale?...I love this smell so we are off to a good start - although this is not what I was expecting to get. Upon closer inspection I still get a gingerale'y effect, but with more going on as well. Some good lactic sourness and really get the cherries coming thru too. Really nice blend of aromas. Also, as I come back for more, really start to get the brett funk coming out - spicy, horseblankety, tart. Excellent!

T - Not overly sour or tart in the spirit of Beatification, although there are plenty of sour flavors here. Plenty of lactic acid up front. Fruity overall, sour cherries, (still getting gingerale too), pinot grigio, some oaky woodiness, plenty of brett character - quite funky overall. Very enjoyable.

M - Carbonation is characteristically high but has a bit of a creaminess to it. Body is thin, but a bit fuller than I expected and fuller than most wilds I've had. Lactic sourness fills the mouth and gives a drying and slightly puckering sensation, but really feels pretty refreshing overall. Again, quite good.

D - Hmm, very good wild ale...really a toss up between this and Consecration for my favorite RR wild, and up there overall, probably adding Ithaca Brute into the mix. Good blend of fruitiness, sour, brett...sorry that this is only a 375ml bottle...have to try to get a few more of these before they become scarce.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5


I've been enjoying the hell out of this beer since its release, so I thought it was time to review it. Bottled batch 004. The beer appears deep orange tinged ruby with a voluminous light beige head, excellent retention, and lots of scattered lacing.

The nose is redolent of tart cherries and lactic character, with a balancing sweet malt presence and apparent wood notes. The fruit is incredibly vibrant, a moderate acetic character is evident, and vanilla is subtle.

The flavor opens with tart cherry flesh and skins, segueing into a moderate lactic sourness and a slightly balancing malty sweetness. Acetic acid character is at a pleasantly restrained lower moderate level, adding balance rather than churning my stomach. Other fruit notes are of grapes and plums, but cherries are most prominent. The finish is tart and lightly tannic with a plethora of fruit and a drying woody sensation. Outstanding. The mouthfeel is dry and soft, with a fitting moderate level of carbonation.

I consumed a growler of batch 004 back in December, but I've been told that a different blend was put into bottles. I enjoy this even more than the first blend, if that's possible, and I shall drink up while the fruit is fresh.

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Photo of bulletrain76
4.7/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Draught at the brewpub for the Younger release. Batch four has a really vivid cherry character right now, wth a ton of acidity, but also a great mLt balance that isn't sweet but provides a lot of counterbalance to the sourness. Just a ton of great flavor. Seems more fruit forward than the last batch. I can't. Wait to see how the bottles of this batch are.

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Photo of Ezekiel81923
4.32/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought a 375mL bottle at Capone's...needed to try this before committing to a case. Batch 04x1 poured from the corked and caged bottle into my Troegs pint glass.

Appearance: Small off-white head on top of a copper colored beer with a reddish hue to it. Lots of active carbonation bubbles steaming up the sides of the glass. Slightly hazy. Real solid lacing.

Smell: A lot of pinot noir wine barrel in the nose. Hints of cherry and some tartness and funk in the background. Mild earthy aroma, but pretty sweet. Very complex nose on this one.

Taste: Very interesting. Kind of a sweet funkiness on the back of my tongue with a good amount of those pinot noir barrel and cherry flavors coming through. Not very sweet at all, just mild amounts from the cherry and oak. Finishes with a good sour bite and leaves tart cherry flavors behind.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and medium carbonation. Very refreshing despite its acidity. Sour kick in the back end gives it great balance.

Drinkability: High for a sour. The ABV is not oppressive and its smooth and balanced nature make it easy on the palate.

Very good sour. Perhaps not as good as Temptation in my mind (which is just phenomenal) but a very solid offering worthy of the price (whatever it may be).

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Photo of MrDanno96
4.77/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This was one of the highlights of EBF 2010 for me.

A: Pours a bright golden yellow with lots of carbonation bubbles flying to the surface. A smallish white head sits atop the brew for the majority of the experience. Not much in the way of lacing.

S: As with most sours, I have trouble picking out individual aromas from this. The typical "sour" aroma from the wild yeast and bacteria is of course present. This is balanced by some sweet aromas. Apple is my best guess, mixed with perhaps some white grapes. I don't really get any cherry on the nose.

T: Truly a pleasure to drink. Sour apple dominates the flavor and great balance is achieved between the sweet fruit and sour funk/wild yeast. Each sip brings me to the brink of puckering, but touches of sweetness always prevent me from going over the edge. White grapes and pear can also be found in the flavor.

M: Light with a nice dry finish. Just like it should be.

D: I could drink this all day... and I did! Russian River seemed to have an endless supply of this stuff during both NoTB and session one. I came back from multiple samples :)

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Photo of champ103
4.52/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A huge thanks to tjmodica for the trade.

A: Pours a slightly hazy garnet/red color. A large white head rises to about two fingers. There is good retention, and some sticky lace is left behind.
S: Tart cherries up front and dominate. Lots of other fruity aromas. Grapes, plums, and apples are what I get. A sweet vanilla aroma as well. Lots of complexities in the nose. Excellent.
T: Again, excellent. There is a tartness with a vinous character up front. A light funk, but not overdone at all. Tons of cherries, grape tannins, and apple skins. Again, a sweet vanilla flavor lingers. Could that be the barrels used? Really well made.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Crisp and dry. Smooth, and way to easy to drink. I wish this bottle would never end.

Yep, an excellent beer throughout. I would expect nothing less from a Russian River Wild Ale. Maybe the best I have had from the brewery, which is saying a lot. Worthy of its praise. A must try if you have the means.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.13/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer is brown and slightly hazy. Form an off white head of small bubbles that falls away leaving some lacing on the glass. Carbonation is moderate to low. Looks good, not sure what I expected.

Aroma is sweeter than I was expecting for sure. There is also a funky spiciness to the whole thing. I'm interested for sure. What's going to happen next.

OK, I like this beer but this is not my favorite sour, not at all. This was sweet and there is a lot of carbonation in the mouth that accents the sour notes. It ends rather tart but overall its not as sour as the other offerings. Its citric and lactic in nature with a pretty dominant sweetness overall. Mouthfeel is good and drinkability is high. Still a great beer.

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Photo of westweasel
4.7/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sent to me from my favorite relatives in San Francisco... Thanks Nor!

Poured from a 375ml bottle into a New Belgium globe.

The aroma is filled with sour cherries, some malt sweetness, and a little bit of hay. The beer pours out a tannish red color with a thin but long lasting off-white head that leaves lacing along the glass.

The swallow begins with sweet malt and cherries, and is quickly followed at the mid-point with aggressively sour cherries and a touch of oak, and then finishes dry with a soft wheaty, saltine-like flavor that lingers for a few moments.

The mouthfeel is medium with a high level of carbonation. This is a very drinkable sour beer with lots of complexity. A real treat.

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Photo of Patrick999
4.65/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a wine glass. I feel pretty privileged to be reviewing a beer with 803 wants as of this writing. Small bottle, corked and caged. Minor foam upon pouring, but it retains very well, I find. Clear brown.

It has that sour aroma that makes the palate pucker up immediately. Concentrated Sweet-Tarts. Boiled-down Nerds. Lemonheads. The smell of every sour candy I can think of is in here. Some cherry and wood - smells Cantillon-esque. Almost a birch syrup aroma as it warms, I think.

This has excellent flavor. Moderately sour, with just a little apple and cherry, (and I swear some of that birch syrup!) sweetness to set it off. In fact, the more I drink, the less "sour" I notice, and the more I notice a vanilla-cinnamon-birch thing going on. Who knows exactly what the pinot noir barrels did to this - that's probably what I'm tasting. Odd. But exceedingly tasty.

It has a spiky, bright mouthfeel similar to many very good lambics.

It's a given that you will wish this had come in 750s. It's a fun beer to drink, and comparable in quality to the best Belgian lambics, I have no doubt of that.

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Photo of Oxymoron
4.19/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A prayer to a deity to provide something, what? Pours a murky dark amber color almost boarder line brown. A soft pour did not leave much for a head. Not much on retention or lacing either.

The nose is complex. Some soft malt character with a hint of sourness. A very light subtle fruit aroma with a hint of cherry. Don't know if I would be able to pick it out if I didn't read it on the bottle. Some minor horse blanket but would have liked a touch more. Some oaky note on the back end. Some yeasty notes but kind of hidden with everything going on.

The taste is representative overall. The first taste is a light malt followed quickly by a tart taste with a lemon cherry mix. The tart taste lingers into the finish but blends well. The cherries note is light but hints are there. Some nice sour notes that come out but make way for a funk in the finish. Some leather and horse blanket notes. Some minor butyric notes and a touch of oak notes. Light vanilla. Good acidic finish.

The body is light to moderate. Limited carbonation but ok. The tartness leaves a good finish that really helps. But I would like a bit more complexity.

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Photo of abrand
4.47/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review number 100! Much thanks to JesseTheHut for sending me this bottle.

375 mL cage and corked bottle from batch 04x4 poured into a tulip glass.

The Supplication pours a hazy amber color. A nice frothy 2 finger head with great retention sits atop after a very delicate pour. The aromas were noticed immediately after popping the top. Lots of cherries make up the sweetness that dominated the nose. Some grapes are also noticed most likely from the wine barrels that are used during the aging. After allowing the brew to warm up from the 45 degree fridge shelf the first quaff was taken. The mouth is not nearly as sweet as the nose with a very balanced sour tartness. Not a lip smacker like some sour ales can be. Again, lots of cherries are tasted up front. Other fruits that make up the quaff are pinot noir grapes and plums. The brett also come through with the quaff which is expected. Mouthfeel is crisp and well carbonated, much like a champagne. This is by far the best sour I have sampled. Very fortunate to have tried this brew and can only imagine how it tastes with a year or two on the shelf. Thanks again Jesse for allowing me to try it.

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Photo of Xul
4.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a slightly hazy amber with some golden hues on the edges when held up to the light, capped by a two finger cream colored head with great retention that leaves tight lacing down the side of the glass. Beautiful.

S: Sour cherries up front with a lot of complexity backing it up - vinous characteristics, some oakiness, a hint of yeasty aroma, a bit of funk (although there's more sour aspects than funk), earthiness that could be from the hops or the funk. Every whiff reveals a slightly different balance of the components.

T: More tartness than the aroma lets on, but far from overpowering. Sour cherries are the first taste, giving way to oaky notes, grapes, some funk poking out from behind the sourness on the backend, even a bit of leather. All of it is backed up by a slight caramel malty aspect. Strongly sour, but balanced in the sense that it doesn't hide the complexity of everything going on in this beer.

M: Good medium carbonation and a smooth feel balance the mouth-puckering sourness. High in acidity but remarkably refreshing.

D: If not for price and rarity, I could drink this like water...and that's only a slight exaggeration. An amazing beer, and I can't wait to see how it evolves over the next couple years.

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Photo of NYCWheatFanSC
4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a surprisingly dark and malty, hazy ruby copper with a smallish light tan head that recedes at a slightly slower than normal pace to a thin fiml of microbubbles.

S - A pretty sour cherry kick in the nose that gets stronger as it warms. Only hints of funk with a slight vinegar character, a tad musty.

T - Sour sun-turned cherries, lime, and lemon zest. Oak has rounded this beer nicely. The barnyard indeed comes out here too as it warms, but never too much.

M - A little heavy for the style, but the relatively high carbonation helps to create a nice balance.

D - This brew is delicious, but far from the most complex sour I've had. It's a kriek alright, but not much more. I would seek out again, but wouldn't go too far to get it.

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Photo of koopa
4.38/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 4 375ml bottle received in a trade with abecall98 thanks!

Appearance: Pours a caramel copper with honey bursts and red folds. The crown is white, billowy soft, about 1.5 fingers, shows some retention and serious lace.

Smell: Very soft and delicate yeast, cherries, white grapes, lightly toasted oak and leather.

Taste: Lots of cherries, white grapes, and some lemony brett. Moderate pucker and sourness but quite tart and acidic!

Mouthfeel: light bodied with velvety small carbonation.

Drinkability: The acidity is the only thing that holds this back from being sessionable. Good stuff.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.33/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 375mL bottle into a tulip. Batch 04X3, whatever that means.

Appearance: deep, woody amber color with a finger of compact tan head. Looks good enough to eat. There is a very nice lacing left on the glass as I drink.

Smell: tart and woody with a little sweet malt aroma coming through. Complex and tasty smelling.

Taste: this is one tart wild ale. Flavor moves from tartness to woodiness and, finally, to the sweet fruitness of the cherries. The cherry flavor is more of a hint or suggestion, but it proves a very nice contrast to the brightness up front. The cherry lingers on the palate a good long time. This beer is quite delicious.

Mouthfeel: medium body with big carbonation. While not really creamy (it's too acidic for that), it is still a very smooth effect which I find appealing.

Drinkability: this is incredibly drinkable. Were I to win the lottery tomorrow, I'd definitely try to get my hands on a few cases of this stuff.

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Photo of WYVYRN527
4.67/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 001. Poured into a flute from a 375 ml. bottle. Bottled 5/28/2005.

A: Beautiful hazy amber color with a thin white head that settles quickly, but leaves great lacing on the glass.

S: The cherries have diminished greatly, leaving behing the aroma of great Burgundy. Spice, forest floor, and some ripe cherry flavor is present. Hops are no longer there due to age and preservation.

T: A bit of the cherry flavor is present, but dominating flavors are tart and barnyardy, with some caramel, spice, and a big dose of oak. The finish is tart, dry, and refreshing.

M: Light, tart, and very complex, this brew dances around the tongue and leaves flavors that last almost a lifetime.

D: If one happens to get ahold of this brew, buy it! Don't mind the cost. It's amazing, and is the pinnacle of this style. I would like to try a younger example, just to see how it compares.

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Photo of nectar14
4.55/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: clear gold amber with lingering white head

S: detailed and complex, with tobacco smoke, vanilla, cherries, malt, and funky Brett

T: cherry, malty grains, vanilla oak, tart acidity carrying well-balanced flavors

M: finessed, gentle, and broad. Really lovely.

D: not too heavy at all and I could drink a few of these.

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Supplication from Russian River Brewing Company
4.5 out of 5 based on 6,197 ratings.
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