Supplication | Russian River Brewing Company

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6,501 Ratings

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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,501 |  Reviews: 1,486
Photo of madtownnutbrown
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of ktenneydenver
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of TruePerception
4.1/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Previous review, transferred from beer journal)


Russian River's Supplication: sour ale aged in Pinot Noir barrels with tart cherries added, 7.75% ABV, very carbonated;

Appearance: deep orangish-amber with plenty of grey sediment, no head;

Smell: sharply pungent, acidic fusion of Pinot Noir and cherry, faint woody notes;

Taste/Mouthfeel: sharp acidity, very raspberry-like fruit, red wine dryness, minimally bitter, orange-y citrus on the finish; good.

Poured into a pint glass.

 496 characters

Photo of Shmeal
4.25/5  rDev -6.6%

Photo of lovindahops
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of JesseLara
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of SierraJosh
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of soonerchamps
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of Tamaquadan
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of Lakemonster
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of bitterbeerguy
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of GraduatedCashew
4.25/5  rDev -6.6%

Photo of VinsanityDiesel
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of PackPride
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of TaraBrynn
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of mtpHokie
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of Philousa
4.31/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pale brown with a good amount of brown head that dissipates very quickly, leaving nearly zero carbonation at the top of the brew. Active, visible carbonation in the brew. Sweet fruit in the nose, cherries and apricot come to mind. Some Belgian yeast and and subtle bitterness from hops are present with a little bread aroma with a swirl. Fresh baked white to be exact, for you perfectionists (goes with the pale malt). Grape aroma is very evident, especially with multiple whiffs; pinot is very evident and some might argue a little overpowering. Dark fruit hits the palate at first: cherries, apricots, sour date (is that possible?), then light fruit, such as green grape and pear, then sourness and bitterness. This last combo is face-punching. Seriously. The mouth feel is wet and sloshy, very thin, which is a contrast to the flavors.

This is a very flavorful, complex beer. Then comes the sourness! Woah! I ain't kidding! This needs to be more balanced for me. I really wanted to like it, especially after having consecration, but it just didn't hold up. If you really enjoy sour beers, then this is for you. I guess I'm just not up to the task right now.


After nearly two years since my initial review, I felt it time to revisit this one.

Pours a leathery copper color with big, effervescent head that fades quickly. The aroma is complex, but not overreaching. Cherries, dates, plum, and other darker pit fruit along with cranberries, lingonberries, and other tart berries. The malt is subtle, but there with a dark bread presence, like pumpernickel. The light berries (cranberry, etc.) dominate with a subtle bit of overcooked wheat crust. The sourness is most like vinegar, but the darkness in the flavor offsets it a bit. I also get some oak and it's not too subtle. The dryness of the finish really helps balance the oak, as I'm one that can think it's overbearing too easily. Sourness is substantial but not overpowering. I hardly puckered my face this time. The finish is only somewhat bitter, and I can tell the hops are not their best, which really helps keep the focus on the sour and barrel aspects of this brew. The feel is light, even for a sour.

This is a great beer, but not one to reach for other than a special occasion. The sourness isn't overpowering like before, though maybe I'm just more used to sours. The only big flaw is its lack of depth. This beer can wear on you quickly, especially when warmed.

 2,446 characters

Photo of peetza1210
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of geuze_gone_wild
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of hoppytobehere
4.26/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

375ml bottled on 4/11/2013.

A: Gorgeous ruby red body, hazy. Some floaties at the bottom of the glass. Thin head that has some decent retention.

S: Tart cherries, good amount of oak, pinot. As advertised and amazing!

T: I'm not a sour connoisseur, I've only had a few. This isn't as sour as the others I've had, but I'm OK with that. The pinot/oak flavors hit the tongue first. Then puckering sour cherry that finishes sour and dry. Very unique and RR did a great job with this.

M: Heavy carbonation, which works for the style. Dry like a red wine.

O: Awesome beer, glad I got to try it.

 592 characters

Photo of VACraftBeerLover
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of P-Rod
3.5/5  rDev -23.1%

Photo of sfr26
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of MighHighBrewer
3.84/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle dated April 11, 2013. Tried on August 23rd, 2013.

I had very high expectations for this beer. But in comparision with some other sours I've indulged in lately - Cascade, Crooked Stave, etc - this one was lacking. I have two major complaints:

1) The bottle I tried just wasn't very sour. On a 1:10 sour scale, this one probably ranks a 2 or a 3. Definitely not as sour as Cascade and Bruery's sours, for example. I was expecting much more of a acetic kick and this beer just didn't deliver.

2) The complexity was somewhat lacking for my taste. Again - with the batch I tried - the red wine/Pinot overpowered the cherries. To my palate, it tasted much more like a wine/beer hybrid than a sour beer brewed with cherries. I'd take down the barrel aging a notch and kick up the cherries.

Supplication is a good - maybe great - sour. But when measured against its reputation, the bottle I had fell short. To that end, it reminds me alot of Pliny - a very well-regarded beer surpassed by other beers in the same genre but still highly regarded based on name recognition. For sour-heads, this bottle is a must-try simply based on what it is. But for my money, there are better sours out there.

 1,213 characters

Photo of scxcrunner
4.96/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Supplication from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.55 out of 5 with 6,501 ratings