Supplication | Russian River Brewing Company

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1,438 Reviews

Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States | website

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: 1,438 | Ratings: 6,122
Photo of WetCoaster
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

*Corked and caged 375 ml
*Batch 001

Appearance: Opened my very unsettled bottle -- basically exploded when opened despite having sit still and upright for 45 minutes -- to find a slightly cloudy cherrywood with honey undertones. Fine champagne carbonation. No real head to speak of, although a thin layer of rose foam was present throughout.

Smell: The scent is wild indeed. Woody, vinous, tartly fruity, but also a bit musty and rich. Probably a good many things I don't know to look for happening as well. Becomes sweet and slightly malty as it warms, a bit more akin to its brown ale heritage.

Taste/Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is thin and again quite champagne-like. The taste is a real joy; tart, dry and fruity, yet wonderfully earthy as well. The aftertaste is literally woody, not vanilla oak, but rather like sucking on a wood chip. Yeast spice and fruit sourness lingers.

Drinkability: Well, let's be frank: if this were available in conventional six-packs, they'd run you about $50, so to say this is "drinkable" might be a stretch. Still, as an occasional treat, it's a unique and tasty example of the craft to be sure. Made me smile. I have another sitting in the cellar -- we'll see what a year does to it.

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Photo of russwbeck
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Cloudy brown pour with a frothy off white head. A nice cap is left atop the brew after the rest of the head has receded.

S: Acidic, cherries, funk. The barnyard funk type smell really overpower the fruits.

T: Like the smell, the taste is more acidic and funky than fruity. The taste, however, is more balanced. A slow drinking beer for sure. Hints of breadiness, oak, Brett. Not getting a lot of vinegar, but it is present.

MF: Medium bodied, carbonated well, extremely dry finish. Not a lot of alcohol coming through.

O: Thought this was great, but well below the quality of authentic Belgians I've had. Well balanced, with a bit of a strange aftertaste. I would get it again no doubt, I just wish it was a bit less funk and a bit more cherry.

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Photo of elgiacomo
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

375ml corked & caged bottle. Batch 008, bottled Nov 14, 2011. Served at around 45F.

Pours cloudy reddish amber with a decent off-white head that leaves very little lacing and recedes to a wispy cap and foamy ring.

Aroma is sour cherries, vinegar, oak, some funk, a bit vinous. Excellent strength.

Flavor starts nice and sour with a lot of cherry notes, dark fruit, apples, oak, vanilla, vinous, a hint of funk but more fruity and sour than anything. A bit of sweetness develops mid-palate but finishes mostly tart and sour. Sourness tapers off the longer it sits in the glass. Minimal alcohol, lingering finish.

Mouthfeel is light/medium bodied, a bit oily and sticky, sharp carbonation bite on the tongue.

Certainly very excited to try this little treat here, and while it was pricey, it was worth it for having a chance to experience this excellent Sour. I’ve only recently begun to dabble in the style and this is one of the best I’ve had so far.

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Photo of Knapp85
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I felt this beer was going to be a challenge for me to get down. Since I'm not a big fan of sour ales if this wasn't a Russian River brew I probably would have just overlooked it. The beer poured out as a sparkling red color with some in there too. The head was fizzy and white and then vanished pretty quickly. The smell of this beer was big, it's stung the nostrils like sex panther a little bit. The smell of tart cherries and oak wood mixed with a big amount of wild yeast explode on nose. The taste of the beer is interesting too, The sour cherries almost make your lips pucker, the sour subsides and leaves you with a nice oak and vanilla smoothness. The mouthfeel is little thin, but has enough flavor to balance out the whole thing. Overall it's a good sour beer, I'm trying to give it praise despite the fact I don't care for the style. I feel that people who enjoy these will definitely enjoy this one too.

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Photo of Kadonny
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a corked 375ml bottle into a snifter glass.

A: A darker golden orange color with a prickly two finger white head. No glass lacing to speak of.

S: Wow, sour and tartness jump with smells of fruit, cherry, apple and some yeastiness.

T: Sour? Absolutely, just plain mouth puckering from the second it hits your lips. Flavors of dark fruit, cherry, some apple, pear with some very slight (I do mean slight) sweetness. Some yeastiness but no funk. Finish remains sour and puckering that just lasts seemingly forever. So this has brett in it? I'm not getting any classic brett flavors.

M: Tart, puckering, full, coating.

D: Medium, it was the perfect serving size but more might not have been better.

Overall this is one sour beer (like I expected anything less), but a great beer at that. RR is amazing with their sours as they are just so damn good. I might like Consecration better, but this is one great beer too.

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Photo of ragnar3
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2014 Vintage, poured from the bottle into a taster. Nice blend of sour, funk and cherry, although the fruit wasn't pronounced. Oak and wine notes contribute to the dry feel. Solid beer!

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Photo of Fux
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Clear amber with red / ruby glints. Quite thick foam which quickly let room to a thin collar.
S: Subtle aromas of red fruits, cherry. Woody with a some floral scent (violet) .
T: Light tartness, a bit vinous, woody. Red fruits among which cherries, grapes, redcurrants. Sweet caramel malts come after. A bit of astringency too. A bit rough on the aftertaste.
M: Slightly light carbonation. Quite velvety. Quite dry also.
O: A well done sour ale through its woody, slightly vinous aspect. Quite sober all the same.

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Photo of jamie2dope
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thankyou goes to jw347 for sending this bottle my way. This will be my first time drinking a beer from Russian River Brewing Company. Poured in to a wide mouthed wine glass a strawberry color, with a very nice, sizable white head show. Aroma is wonderfully funky, with those micro bacteria showing themselves early on. Lemon juice, sour cherry, vinegar, and a slight dry champaign character are in there too. Taste hits the palate with a wave of sour funk, tart fruit, and a lovely, almost spicy feel. Carbonation is just right, giving it even more of a champaign feel. This is one to let warm up a bit as well, as many more complexities push themselves forward. Drinkability is quite good for this style, as the carbonation helps things out. For me, this resembles a Cantillon beer, which is very impressive, because their beers are so complex. I would say that if anyone wants to get an idea of what this beer tastes like, to grab some Cantillon, assuming that it is available in your area. This is an exceptional wild ale. I cannot wait to try some of the other offerings from Russian River. Cheers

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Photo of siege06nd
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my Jackie O's tulip...

A: Supplication is a dark, somewhat cloudy copper color. This particular copper, however, has hints of red towards the center of the brew and some straw gold on the edges. The head on this is gorgeous, with a consistent, tight half finger of the bubbly stuff. For the most part, it forms a neck around the edges of the beer. A hard swirl, however, brings it up to a full finger that covers the top. Very nice lacing, a moderately thick slick is left behind with each sip.

S: Classic wild ale smells on this one: tart cherry, grape skin, musty hay, funk. The herbal notes in the bouquet here are fairly unique...I'm getting some lavender and faint traces of sweet spice, almost like potpourri.

T: Cherries, grapes, little bit of tomato sauce and lots and lots and lots of barrel. The wood is all over this, providing quite a bit of astringency along with the cherries. The finish is almost all wood and pucker, though I also get a surprising bready malt presence, almost grainy.

M: The sour fans will be happy, as this one packs a bit of a punch. Well-balanced, though, with the fruit and barrel flavors. Wood may be just a little too prominent for its own good, as I think the finish is bowled over by tannic and oak notes. Carbonation also seems just a touch high, covers up the flavors ever so slightly.

O: A very well-crafted wild ale by Russian River. It's not as good as Consecration, but it is still one of the better Wilds I have had. I am officially pumped to get into Beatification now.

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Photo of chalsk
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Another great sour from Russian River. Damn tasty brew. Pours a lighter amber color with a thick white foam head. Has an aroma of vinegar and cherries. Has a nice frothy, medium mouthfeel. Has a sour taste with some bitters and notes of cherries. Really enjoyed this sour.

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Photo of Kevinpitts
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Nice cherry flavored brown ale. Not overly sour. Cherry blends nicely in this ale. Slightly effervescent champagne quality. Enjoyable slightly tart beer.

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Photo of nvsblman
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Hazy, reddish-brown color with about a finger or so of off-white head. Musty aroma, full of cherries, and also a slight tartness. Almost like a little lemon zest has been added. Nice and funky flavor, with a great sour cherry flavor. A little oaky and some vanilla. Also a little bit of lactic acid flavor. Velvety mouthfeel, great carbonation. It seems like there are new flavors coming out with every sip. Very nice offering!

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Photo of tmoneyba
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by alexsdad06.

Poured a hazy reddish brown color with an average frothy off-white head that mostly lasted with fair lacing. Moderate to heavy tart cherry, yeasty and wood aroma. Medium body with a smooth texture and soft carbonation and small particles. Medium to heavy sour & sweet flavor with a medium to heavy sweet & sour finish of moderate to long duration.

This is a standout beer for style. Thanks Brad.

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Photo of nickfl
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours with one finger of light tan head that rests on top of a perfectly clear, amber-brown body with delicate streams of carbonation rising to the surface. The foam settles down to thin layer after a minute or so and leaves moderately thick rings of lace on the walls of the glass.

S - An acidic aroma that is reminiscent of a Flemish red beer. Notes of dry caramel malt and black cherries blend with balsamic vinegar and earthy licorice.

T - Tart pie cherries up front with some lightly sweet caramel. More sour cherry notes in the middle with a deep, earthy funk note beginning to come out. Things finish up with more tart fruit and caramel along with notes of plum, white wine, green olives, and earthy hop flavors but only light bitterness. Lingering wild yeast character along with stone fruit and oak in the aftertaste.

M - Medium body, moderately high carbonation, and a very dry finish.

D - An excellent beer that really show off the potential for non traditional sour beer matured in barrels. Nothing is wasted or excessive here; the cherry contributes a great deal of complexity while the wine barrel aging is a background note that briefly pops out as a distinctive, vinous character in the finish. The sourness and bone dry finish both work to enhance the drinkability of an already very quaffable beer.

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Photo of BS68280
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From a bottle khiasmus was kind enough to hook me up with. I decided I might as well open this one up on Christmas day, I've been waiting a long time to try this one. Poured into a snifter.

A: A cloudy slightly orange brown with about half an inch of off white head. The head stays around in a thin layer (at least it has so far) and leaves nice lacing behind.

S: First smell and I get that nice mouth watering sour smell. Smells very tart and some cherries. Maybe hints of sour apple.

T: Very sour but not quite pucker up forehead sweat sour. The sour fades and leaves a great cherry aftertaste.

M: Pretty thin, very strong lactic presence makes me think my teeth are losing enamel with each sip. Perfect level of carbonation leaves adds to the great mouthfeel.

D: Gets easier to drink as it goes. I have to think a couple bottles would tear up your stomach though.

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Photo of fear025
4.24/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aroma:Tart with a little vinegar. There is some mustyness in the aroma.

Appearance:Deep amber. Tons of white frothy head. Behind the sourness lies a nice sweetness.

Taste:This tastes like a tart cherry sour patch kid.

Mouthfeel:Tart and puckery, with some alcohol warmth.

Drinkability:An amazingly drinkable sour beer.

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Photo of alli4051
4.24/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 350ml bottle into a red wine glass (it was all I had).

A: Pours a hazy orange/amber color. Produces a finger of brownish white head that recedes quickly leaving some faint lacing.

S: I think this may be the most aromatic beer I have had to date. Vanilla and cherry up front. Some oak and spiciness in the background.

T: Tart cherries and currants take the forefront here. Some oak and spices (cinnamon maybe?) are present as well.

M: Medium/full bodied brew with a clean finish. The finish is surprising considering how sour this is, after a second or two its like it was never there.

D: I will admit I am not a fan of the style but had to try this due to the hype. The sourness was a shock at first; however, after a few sips it all came together and I could easily see how fans of sours could crush this and beg for more.

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Photo of StaEva
4.24/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Damn good beer...that being said, I think so much of the ravenously devout following that RR has is based so much around the hype of the company, and thus societally imposed interpretations of the beer manifest. But, that being said, this is a great fucking work of craft.

The beer looks like Pinot Noir: slightly translucent ruddy brown color, good haziness, nice carbonation visible in the frothiness of the head.

Smells of beautiful vinous cherry, subtle oak, and tangy yeast.

Taste follows smell, almost to the letter. A bit more tang from the wild. very subtle and refreshing, not terribly funky.

Yes, there's a reason, objectively, that there is so much hype surrounding RR. But, you can pay 2 dollars more for a 750mL of Jolly Pumpkin and support a smaller, still-growing independent producer that makes a beer that's almost as good in a very similar style.

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Photo of OddNotion
4.23/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 006X1.
Poured into my newly acquired Russian River belgian glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep reddish/brown mix. About a three quarter finger off white head. A lot of carbonation bubbles from all over the glass. The head does not recede quickly at all. Bubbles in the head are tiny and tightly packed together, looks very nice. However the head has grown to a full finger and will not recede at all, getting a little annoying.

Smell: Dark fruit. Tartness. Some nice funkiness, the brett character really sticks out.

Taste: Strong sourness right off the bat but the sourness seems to fade quickly. Sour cherries. Mouth waters with every sip. Characteristics of the wine come through moreso in the aftertaste. Following the wine is this mix between brett and breadiness. Every sip leaves me wanting more. Tangy. Sourness decreases as the beer warms, but the tartness remains strong.

Mouthfeel: Nice body but it changes over the time spent in the glass. The carconation is released quickly so the first sips are quite carbonated and has a bite from the bubbles. Later on, the carbonation bite is less but the beer smoothes out.

Overall: I am loving sours and this sure helps my experience with them. I liked Consecration more than this but this is still a solid brew. I would gladly take more. I cant wait to see how the other one in my "cellar" matures.

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Photo of glazeman
4.23/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from a 375 ml bottle into a snifter

A: There is a 1.5 finger off-white head on this amber beer that has a slight pinkish tint. There is excellent head retention and lacing.

S: The main smells that I get from this beer are cherries and grapes. There is also a bit of yeast earthiness on the nose at the end. Not quite as intense of a smell as I had anticipated.

T: Lots of sour cherries up front. A decent amount of earthy funk in there with some tannin as well. It's strange, because for a brief second, right in the middle, I could swear I was drinking a wine; somewhere right between the sourness and the hit of carbonation.

M: I know this is supposed to be bottle fermented and a higher carbonation style, but for me this was still a bit over carbonated. Otherwise, a very nice mouthfeel.

D: With the high level of carbonation and intense sourness, this one is not all that drinkable for me. It was nice to try, but was a slow sipper and I feel like I would quickly develop a stomach ache if I had to much or drank it too fast...Kind of like sour skittles.

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Photo of k3n
4.23/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

New 375ml bottling, Batch 4x2

Clear reddish-amber. Plenty of head upon pouring which dies down to a steady cap of bubbles. Plenty of lacing. Swirling the glass brings back a really nice head again.

The aroma is bright and tart. The tartness is acetic, and smells slightly oaky as well.

Taste starts bracingly sour (duh). More vinager-y tartness. Cherries are evident in the middle, and then finishes with a tannic dryness. Sour, yet very drinkable and refreshing!

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Photo of GregA135
4.23/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Batch 011615

This was my first American Wild Ale I have ever tasted and pretty damn good.

Definitely could taste the cherries, pinot noir and oak - Since this was my first time trying this I expected this to be super sour and tart, but it was perfectly balanced and not overbearingly sour. Definitely will have to get more of RR's beers!

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Photo of zhanson88
4.23/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Supplication pours a medium orange color with copper highlights and about 2 fingers of white head. This beer is extremely effervescent; tons of carbonation. Both lacing and retention are great. Very good looking beer.

Smell: Lots of funk shows up immediately here, as well as lighter vinegar and sour lemon notes. I also get quite a bit of fruitiness to offset the sour; mainly tart cherries, but also some citrus.

Taste: The taste is decidedly more sour than the nose is. Lots of funk and sour lemon notes. The tart cherry flavors are there, but are more muted, and I get less citrus components on the palate than on the nose. Great tasting beer though, the funk and sourness are quite pleasing.

Mouthfeel/Overall: Mouthfeel is light, carbonated and bubbly. Very crisp and refreshing. Overall, this is a great wild ale. Really nice balance between fruit and sour. I've got both Temptation and Consecration and am interested to see what I like the best.

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Photo of kingcrowing
4.22/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

375ml corked & caged bottle poured into a hill farmstead wine glass Batch 003.

Pours a hazy light brown/dark amber with a small white head that's quite thin with little to no lacing. Nose is tart, funky, and very sharp - a bit of vinegar finishes it off.

Taste is very tart and funky, pretty mouth-puckering and slightly fruity although it's not overtly sweet. There's almost no barnyard funk to it which makes it a bit more drinkable. Very dry and fairly crisp finish. Very good beer.

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Photo of BeerZack
4.22/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

375ml bottle thanks to chadspivey

Reddish amber color with decent spotty head for the style.

Intense Sweet Tart aroma. Sour candy. Generic fruit.

Really extreme tartness, not as sweet as the nose. Generic sweet & sour fruity candy flavors ala Spree or Sweet Tarts, maybe cherry stands out a bt.

Nice and refreshing. Great example of RR wild ale.

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Supplication from Russian River Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 1,438 ratings.
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