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Supplication | Russian River Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
99
world-class
1,444 Reviews
SupplicationSupplication
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States
rrbeer.com

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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,444
Ratings:
6,193
Avg:
4.5
pDev:
9.11%
 
 
Wants:
2,711
Gots:
2,147
For Trade:
141
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,444 | Ratings: 6,193
Photo of MrTopher
4.84/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Newer vintage of Supplication served from a 375ml bottle into a tulip.

A: A rich rose/amber color that looks stunning when held up to the light. Small white head that dissipates rather quickly, head leaves a nice lacing on the glass.

S: Smell number one is FUNK, and a lot of it, then the cherry shows up to the party. Then it just is a duet between the two, it’s very enjoyable.

T: First sip makes the mouth pucker from the tartness; this is very dry wild ale also. Then once you get past the tartness and the dryness its all cherry and oak funk that floods the mouth.

M: Ideal for a beer like this, it’s a little dry, but that is just what makes this so enjoyable. Carbonation is on par and the drinkability is amazing.

O: This is one of my favorite Wild Ales on the market, and it’s nice that RR brews this and releases it a few times a year. Always nice to have a fresh back to drink and then a few to age.

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Photo of Parrotshake
4.84/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

One of a number of very special things I had at Russian River recently, and my overall favourite.

Sort-of-murky reddish brown with no head to speak of. Looks like some kind of wood varnish, and smells a little like it too - woody and acidic, with sour cherries, oxidised red wine, apple cider vinegar and band-aids.

The taste is similar to the above description, in the best possible way. Big dark cherries and grapes to the fore, with all the other stuff in the mix. Earthy, drying tannins and a tantalizingly ephemeral hint of sweetness. Complex as hell, and utterly refreshing and invigorating.

Light in feel and briskly carbonated, perfectly balanced and ridiculously complex without ever being a "challenge". I had another few things I desperately wanted to try, not knowing when and if I'll ever be back in Santa Rosa, but I could have had a few more of these, easy. Just dreamy.

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Photo of fatmusic14
4.84/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

While I'm relatively new to sours, I've had some impressive variations lately. At my local brew store, I saw Supplication - and knew it came highly recommended. While I've got some work to do on my glassware game, this was served from a bottle poured into a pint glass.

A- a beautiful burnt orange, like a Colorado sunset - when the sky looks like its on fire. Deep, rich hues that invoke memories of world travel and freedom. Carbonation bubbles constantly float upwards, in a seemingly endless fashion.

S - Wow. Cherries, Sour, smells like winter and spring at the same time. Refreshingly in your face, but the tartness of the ale really comes through your nostrils.

T - A beautifully put-together sour ale. So complex, with flavors galore. Not overpowering, not too tart, very very well done.

M - my mouth is still watering.

O - At $13 for a pint, I'd buy a 6 pack. Highly, Highly recommend.

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Photo of sonicdescent
4.84/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A big thank you to stfun37 for filling this big want.

Looks a murky brown/gold, like unfiltered apple cider. Head is small, but I made an admittedly gentle pour.

Smells fantastic. Wine, apples, vinegar. Beautiful.

Tastes of apples, sour goodness, other fruits dancing in the background, but very crisp. Incredible stuff.

Mouth is spot on, thin/med with relatively high carbonation.

They say sour is the new IPA. Well if this is the head of the sour class, count me in to the new school. May the beer gods bring Russian River to Western PA.

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Photo of DIM
4.84/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I was very excited to split this with my dad. He loved Iron Hill's Barrel Aged Permanent Midnight, another sour beer aged in wine barrels. If he loved IH's I reasoned, surely this would knock his socks off. Sadly this wasn't the case. Too sour for his liking, he said. Oh well, on to what really matters, my opinion.

a: This is a dark golden color with some amber highlights. It poured with a small fizzy head.

s: I should just give up trying to describe sour beers, I just can't find the adjectives that seem to fit. I smell sour cherries that seem to have some floral qualities. I also got wine aromas blanketed by prickly mustiness. As woefully inadequate as it is, that is the best I can do.

t: Incredibly tart without quite becoming obnoxious. Dry overall, while managing to have a little underlying sweetness. Just a hint though. Tastes like red wine saturated with sour cherries. Here again, I just don't have the ability to describe what I'm tasting. I just know I love it.

m: The carbonation is on the gentle side. This has a looong tart finish.

d: Well, my dad looks like he is trying out for a Rolling Rock commercial. He just doesn't like it. For me though, I'm glad I was able to purchase and consume a bottle before the PLCB got ahold of it. Russian River continues to astound me.

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Photo of Rzzzzz
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch 003. 375ml pulled from the "cellar" (dark, insulated coat closet) and chilled for 20 minutes in freezer.

Nice pop from the cork. Poured into tulip, producing a beautiful thin, creamy off-white head atop a copper colored, slightly hazy brew. Aroma of ripe cherries and wood punctuated with a good sharp dose of brett funk. Flavor is a well-rounded blend of tart cherries and saturated red wine barrel, with a lingering sweet/tart finish. Has a wonderful mouthfeel thanks to a light-to-medium body--surprisingly heavier than I remember, especially compared to recent, fresher batches I've had--and perfect carbonation with a perpetually replenishing head which leaves an impressive lacing behind.

This is a terrific beer that has aged tremendously. I'd have to say it's my most successful cellaring experience to date.

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Photo of notyourdadsbeer
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from 375ml bottle at Euclid hall into white wine glass.

A: High head that recedes fast into just a little over the top of the beer. Low lacing. Pours Copper with brown hues.

S: High sour and acidic aroma with touch of wood and small wild cherries.

T: Deeply complex but balanced. Sour notes are high and very tart, finish is long and delicious and dry.

M: Wonderful carbonation and medium to full bodied. Tart on the back sides of palate, finishes dry.

D: Fantastic sour meant to be sipped just like a fine dry red.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have had 2 opportunities to try this beer in the last week (once in a great beach bar, and the other in the comfort of my home), and so this review is a mix of both opportunities. In the bar, it was served at perfect temperature, at home I was too impatient and it was too cold when I served it.

Pours a slightly hazy orange-red with minimal head when cold, but a nice off-white head when poured in a Damnation chalice.

Aroma is full, slightly sour, with a wonderful cherry-dark berry overtones. Wood. Complex.

Flavor takes the aroma and runs with it. Tart cherries. Sharp and overly sour when cold, but balances nicely when closer to cellar temperature. It becomes more mellow, cherries more fruity, edges removed from sourness, wood notes more pleasant. Oh, my this is wonderful.

Mouthfeel is rich, but not in the Tripel/Quadrupel way, but just because it sits in the mouth so happy. Dry but more complex than that. And it is so drinkable I thought there was a hole in the bottom of my glass.

One of the best I've had in a long time.

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Photo of unitmonster
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Definitely one of my favorite sours thats readily available.

A: Pours a reddish-gold color with little head. Heavy carbonation can be found after its poured.

S: Sour cherries - WOW! The smells jumps right at you. Possibly some lemon and other citrus fruits in there as well.

T: A fantastic sour balanced with sour cherries and other fruits. The wild yeast they have in here adds a really nice funk to the mix.

M: A little heavy for my taste, but I still love it. I almost need a small glass of water to go with one of these.

O: I love this beer and I hope to get my hands on some older batches of this.

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Photo of rallison
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served initially at under cellar temp into my wonderful Delirium Tremens glass, but consumed over the course of an hour.

A: Beautiful medium red color with a hint of brown topped off by a 1 finger off-white head that leaves just a bit of lacing.

S: Smell is mostly of tart cherries, but with a certain mellowness. Has some woody notes too. Upon warming, it has an almost musty (in a good way) port wine sort of note. Wonderful.

T: Initial taste is of tart cherries. Subsequently, there is some sweetness in the background - maybe some raspberry and woody flavors. As it warms more, the cherries retreat some to let the sweter malts come through. A raspberry-like sweetness is definitely there (and no, not in an artificial way at all). Oh man. This just keeps getting better! The cherry tartness now just peeks out ever so delicately at the end. I've never tasted such a delicate wild ale involving cherries before! Just a bit of earthy funkiness too. Think delicate raspberries with a dash of vanilla and cocoa, followed by a perfectly balanced cherry tartness. The taste of this beer is practically perfect. I don't award many 5s here, but this beer, this divine nectar, is definitely deserving.

M: Coats all of the mouth ever so well with flavor with a medium body and an almost smooth, rich finish. I say this while also acknowledging a quick, sharp bite at the end from the cherries.

D: One of the most drinkable wild ales of this sort. While I enjoy a Duchesse on occasion, this I consider far more drinkable. For the style, I have to give this a 5 for drinkability.

Highly recommended. Truly masterfully crafted. This is a beer you give to someone who says all beer tastes the same. One taste and they'll beg forgiveness for spouting off such crazy fallacies.

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Photo of angrybabboon
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for half of this bottle

Review adapted from notes taken 12/20/10

Appearance: Hazy amber/copper color with a really nice head - fades to some nice lacing

Smell: Complex - funky, sour, tart, with a hint of cherry - some pale malts in the background - the overall smell is great, and it gets better as it warms

Taste: A thing of beauty - an intense amount of flavor, with so much going on - sour, with different kinds of sour - hints of fruit, hints of somewhat clean barnyard funk, hints of red wine, hints of wood - very tart and sour, but the toasted malts actually add a remarkable level of balance - beyond excellent

Mouthfeel: Medium body, sticks to my lips with funky, sour, delicious tartness - magnificent

Overall: Perhaps the best "ation" from Russian River

This beer is truly excellent, and I think I enjoyed it slightly more than Consecration and Temptation. It was that good. I remember getting this at a BA fest (before I even was interested in sours) and I liked it even then. Someday, I will acquire more bottles!

Update: 6/23/12

Another half a bottle courtesy of Goblinmunkey7. Score unchanged. This is legendary. I want to write love letters to this beer.

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Photo of tturaiders
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance - Reddish honey copper hue with a nice white head on it. The lacing is really nice as the head recedes.

Smell - Strong scents of green apple, cherries, and an overall sour fruit aroma. You can pick up on a slight oak note as well.

Taste - Amazing sourness. Reminds me of a Warhead candy. Lots of intense sour cherries, green apple, lemon, and the end has a nice earthy balance that makes your mouth water.

Mouthfeel - Very good carbonation. It has the "pickle-effect" that makes your mouth continue to water long after you've had a drink.

Drinkability - It's very smooth considering the sourness. The acidity and carbonation help balance it out and make it a smooth drink amid the sour fruit flavors.

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Photo of OrestesMethuon
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 5

On tap at Toronado in the Haight; served in sipping stemware.

Supplication has a *very* light mouthfeel for the depth, with incredibly crisp, delightful, complex, softly thick sourness imparted by its mix of adjuncts and agents. A clear, mahogany-gold color, with reddish-brown strains clearly reflecting the pinot barrel-aging; a sour, cherry-inflected, very refreshing aroma; a pleasantly sticky, slightly sweets-laden mouthfeel all coordinate to create a really intricate, delicious, chimerical quaff.

Unsurprisingly, a really well-executed effort by Russian River, and just the sort of sour even those who aren't sour fans would love. Meanwhile, as an inveterate sour fan, I would've loved to consume a lot more than the (approximately) six-ounce servings poured at Toronado's bar.

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Photo of cbutova
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On-tap at TJs yesterday in PA for Pliny The Younger and Friends, reviewed from notes. This beer was a life changer for me. I have had a decent amount of sours but nothing that remotely compared to this one. I think I may become addicted to sours in the next months just because I have always enjoyed very sour foods. Anyways... Served in a large flute like glass. Pours like wine with not much head or lace but a pretty awesome looking orange-copper color. The smell is nice. The lambic-like sour/funk notes are there with oak and cherries. Wine notes come through and also grapes. This balance became more evident as the beer warmed up and I fell in love with it. The taste of this beer was the real life changer for me. Very smooth. Starts out with an absolutely fantastic amount of sour fruits. The wine notes hit me soon after. The aftertaste is what really killed me, out of this world. From the time I swallowed the beer to a few minutes after the taste of cherries just grew on my tongue. Eventually it just tasted like a mouthful of fresh cherries (mind you there hasn't been beer in my mouth for a minute now). The oak and grape notes only add to a flavor that really needs no assistance. God.. the cherries are so good. Mouthfeel is suitable and enhances the beer for me. The body is moderate and nice and creamy. The sour makes my cheeks pinch but I like it. A coat of fruit sour, grapes and cherries stays on the tongue for a long, long time. Do I have to explain the Drinkability? The taste was perfect for the whole glass, the price was great. I will never view sour beers the same after this and will have a new standard to judge them to. I can only hope to have this beer again sometime in my life.

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Photo of rpstevens
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to JDV for this bottle, batch 003. Poured into a dogfish head signature glass.

The beer pours a muddy/ruby red with a one finger off-white head. The beer is very carbonated and looks very appealing.

The smell is all tart/sour cherries with a little malt in the background. There is definitely some funk in the background, nothing extreme, but a nice earthy funk that blends with the slight oak barrel scent under all that tart cherry.

The smell is sour cherry followed by some more sour cherry!! What an awesome wave of sour, bordering on bitter, flavors. The sweetness from the brown ale along with the slight oakiness come through to balance the tart cherry at the end, but that is very minimal.

The mouthfeel of the beer is perfect for the style, it is well carbonated, dry and crisp. This is a beer that I wish I had multiple bottles of, and something I would like to drink all the time for sure.

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Photo of pnkRed
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

When I poured it into my tulip glass the active carbonation danced and propped up a frothy head. I expected the added cherries would have the overly sweetened bar cherry flavor. This is not the case. The cherries taste just as natural as if I had picked them from the tree myself, and the wood from the oak barrel aging adds a layer of complexity to the flavor that's just right. What is most interesting about this beer, and what I enjoyed the most was the sourness of it. When you finish your sip the tartness begs you to take another and leaves your mouth watering for more.

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Photo of bosco7
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch #002. Poured in a tulip at Monk's Cafe in Philadelphia.

Burnt redish brown color with a thin yet creamy head. Perfect clarity.

Rose, lemon, cherry,yeast, acetic, floral perfume and sour grape in the nose.

Lots of vinous character in the start. Sour cherries, lemon, toasted almond, and slight yeasty earthiness. This is intensely sour and bone dry- in the best way. Tastes so good. Amazing.

Crisp yet smooth mouthfeel coupled with the refreshing sourness make this beer highly drinkable. Probably my favorite RR sour ale, maybe even my favorite sour ale. If you can find this, consider yourself lucky, and do the right thing and buy it. I spent 18 dollars on the 375 mL bottle and feel that it was well worth it. Highly recommended.

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Photo of TenHornsProud
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Ruby, peach mahogany with a fine white head

Brett mixes with a red wine character with notes of oak and sweetness...cherry also appears in the nose with hints of pineapple and other lighter fruit. A perfect blend of brett funk and other aromas.

Taste is cherry, light fruit up front...almost sweet-tart like that goes into a bigger fruit, cherry character and ends on a slightly bitter, funky brett character. The sourness is just fantastic; it is quite sour in a pleasing way. The bacteria really blend into a sourness that does not stand out as just brett or just pedio...the red wine and barrel character sit in the back to add insane complexity. The best American sour I've had.

Lighter body and high carbonation work perfectly.

I'm not going to recap here. Just an amazing beer.

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Photo of bballmj2k
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Have had a fair number of Geuzes/Sours so I figure my palette is ready for the holy grail. Props to BottleTrek in Oregon for shipping this all the way out to New Jersey (and a Temptation...)

Appearance - Orange/ruby red with a bit of haziness. Minimal carbonation, vigorous poor yields half finger head of loose bubbles that recede quickly.

Smell - Apples, cherries, grapes (all of them tart). Vinegar, sweet red fruits. Hint of oak/woodiness. Smells like a sour.

Taste - Bam. Intense tartness/sourness and acidity upfront followed by sweet fruity flavors. Ends with more tartness. Super complex with some oakiness, maybe some hints of the pinot barrels? Probably a bit too cold right now but as its warming theres more depth to the taste.

Mouthfeel - Great carbonation with a lingering bitterness. Really nice aftertaste.

Drinkability - Well it cost a pretty penny to get out here. I think the depth/cost/sourness would prevent me from drinking more than one. Definitely intend on savoring this one. Really impressed with my first taste of Russian River.

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Photo of MisterClean
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

375 thanks to Duffman069, ooh yeah!

A - Light to solid copper, off white foam, dissipates slow, and leaves little to no lacing. Slightly carbonated.

S - Lacto, brett, honey, and light bitterin hops.

T - Can I marry this beer? Same as the smell, but with funk in the yeast and very smooth tasting.

M - Moderate bodied, malt and bacteria dominated, oh so good. Very sweet and smooth finish.

D - This is the most perfect sour I've had to date. Awesome.

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Photo of Foxman
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

It pours a hazy amber brown with a fat finger of creamy light tan head. Tongues of lacing lick the inside of the glass.

In the aroma, the yeast is a force, with a barnyard straw element that yields...well, funk. Lemony tart grain, Bretty sourness, and leather keeps things down to earth.

Upon sipping, a tangy grain flavor is sweet and bolstered by molasses. Sour lemon and pie cherries snug up through the center, along with wet oak and a hint of vanilla. A touch of vinous grapes join with a broader and more vague overall fruitiness as a light blush of alcohol warms the palate. The sourness is countermanded by an equal residual sweetness that leads to a puckering, peppery finish, complete with a gritty crispness and even a hint of coconut. This is simply a tremendous yeasty display of sweet and sour dueling with the best parts of earth and its grains.

Medium bodied, it has a lithe creaminess that intrigues as the glowing dryness puckers the mouth for some time indeed.

No, it is not the beer for every drinker, but if this is what you crave, then it will give up its bounty with glee and make you among the happiest imbibers out there. It's balanced on a knife's edge between the sweet and the sour, with the earthy goodness that damp, fertile soil of a barnyard will provide you. It has a manageable ABV, and it drinks as though it were devoid of anything that would caution you to have a care. Not only do I appreciate the style, I appreciate everything it entails. It's beers like this that make it oh so easy to do exactly that.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750ml bottle, test batch #1.

Dark orangeish/red with a nice head of light beige/tan foam that dies kind of quickly, but is easily revitalized by swirling my oversized wine glass. Some lace is present as well and it is quite sticky and leaves some interesting patterns. The aromas are all brett, lacto, and sour cherry/oaky funk. Beautiful. The taste is a beautiful blend of funk, oak, cherries, acidic notes, and more. The mouthfeel is super creamy, smooth, and this beautiful brew just slides down ones throat. Drinkability is perfect as well. This is similar yet different than Alexander Rodenbach, but man this stuff is probably better! Just a brilliant Flemish red sort of hybrid oaky cherry brew.

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Photo of mynie
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Batch 002.

Awful nice pour. Incarnadine, light specks of yeast floating upward against a cascade of champagne bubbles. Bigass, sticky white head.

Smells of very sweet malt--almost a little rye, if that doesn't seem too odd--along with chewy french bread and fresh, tart black cherries. Smells like candies, pie, and beer.

Tastes amazing! Belgiany yeast, europsice, and cherry juice dance all around each other all throughout as it the beer starts tart, moves into a dryer, sweeter middle, and ends on a kick of candy sour. The flavors blend so well! It's like some sort of candy syrup only it's not so sickeningly sweet as most candies.

Absolutely fantastic. Blows away any other sour beer I've had. Amazing. The first beer I've had from Russian River and already I am absolutely in love with this brewery.

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Photo of studentofbeer
4.86/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz. batch 001. poured a pretty, super clear red/orange mahagony color with no head whatsoever. this was just a few degrees below room temp.

aroma is yeasty, deep cherry, berries, dried apricot aroma, combined with complex earthy, barnyard and brett aromas. very inviting.

wow, great penetrating sour taste hits the tongue. didn't pick all that up in the aroma. super dry, with sour cherry, bitter lemon, sweet berry, cassis. tons of minerality and acidity. carbonated and zippy, but smooth like a fine champagne. finishes with a slightly bitter, funky barnyard note.

basically, an amazing beer. i wish i had a case of this stuff, and that this was a 750ml bottle. i don't know how long ive been hiding it in the cold (at least a year, maybe two), but it's perfectly balanced and wonderfully complex. perfect as an apparatif or with food.

combines the best complexity of a lambic with a friendly fruity flavor and a minerality reminiscent of great champagne.

near the end of the beer i swirled the tiny bit left in the bottle and poured the yeast in, creating a murky orange color. surprisingly, more of the cherry sweetness came out in both the aroma and taste. the beer became softer and creamier. this was not what i was expecting. good, but i prefer it without the yeast because of its racy, sour characteristics (even tho many beers i prefer adding the yeasties).

this was truly a perfect pairing with a thick cut pork chop with a sweet and sour pan sauce (sweet vermouth, smoked bacon, shallots, plum tomato, butter, etc.), some roasted yams and a salad. just amazing.

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Photo of Erikberglund
4.86/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A delicious sour. Look beautiful copper. Smell of cherries and pinot noir. Taste of cherries and delicious sours. A very pricey beer but worth it one of the best sours I've tasted.

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Supplication from Russian River Brewing Company
4.5 out of 5 based on 6,193 ratings.
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