Beatification | Russian River Brewing Company

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BeatificationBeatification
BA SCORE
4.55/5
World-Class
2,726 Ratings
BeatificationBeatification
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
This beer is very unique and inspired by breweries in the Lambic region of Belgium and, especially, our friends at Cantillon. It is 100% spontaneously fermented, meaning yeast is not added. Once the beer is brewed, it is transferred to a cool-ship or “horny” tank located in our barrel room at the pub. There it sits overnight and collects whatever funky wild yeast and bacteria may be living in the room. The next day it is transferred to oak wine barrels where it ferments wildly and ages for a few months. The end result is a wild, spontaneously fermented, sour, and tasty hand-crafted beer!

Added by hopsaplenty on 01-25-2006

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#64
Reviews:
573
Ratings:
2,726
pDev:
8.57%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
3,165
Gots:
580
Trade:
47
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,726 |  Reviews: 573
Photo of Zaphog
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of dvmin98
4.54/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of duceswild
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of 22Blue
4.25/5  rDev -6.6%

Photo of mdfb79
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

From 04/14/12 notes. Thanks to everyone who brought this to our DC Sour Tasting; never had it and have wanted to for a while. Got to sample a near vertical, as we had batched 1, PH1, 2, 3, and 4 side by side. I found batches 1 and PH1 very different fro the rest, as they were much sweeter then the others, and found batch 2 to be the sourest, almost too sour. Batch 3 was amazing and my favorite, so the one I'm reviewing. My order went:

3, Ph1, 1, 2, 4

a - Pours a transparent golden color with one inch of bright white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of tart cherries, sour fruits, citrus, lemon, oak, fruity malts, very acedic. Awesome nose, with just a ton of sour fruits.

t - Tastes of very sour cherries, sour dark fruits, and fruity malts, lemon, citrus, light funk, acedic, oak, vinegar. More sour dark fruit, especially cherries, in the taste, and a inty bit funky. Awesome, perfect tasting sour for me.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Acedic mouthfeel.

o - Overall I thought this was an amazing sour; probably my favorite RR beer to date. All batches of this were very good, btu Batch 3 is unreal right now. Highly recommended, definitely looking for more bottles of this one.

 1,221 characters

Photo of mdaschaf
4.82/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to Nanobrew and FosterJM for this one!

A: Slight pop when the cork came off. Pours a hazy golden orange with a nice white, fizzy head on top. Pretty good retention with sporadic lacing that doesn't last too long.

S: Fantastic tartness. Some peach, lemon, apricot, and white grapes. Nice citrus fruits and some nice barnyard funk that blends nicely with the fruit/tartness.

T: Has a very gueuze like flavor, lots of tart lemon and some apricot. Underneath there is some tart green apple and more white grapes. Very mouth puckering and it is amazing.

M: Medium bodied, great level of carbonation. Very tart/acidic, but I am really liking it.

O: Simply put, amazing. One of the best beers I have ever had hands down. Great flavor and extremely tart.

 766 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.09/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 001-PH1. Bright kumquat with Champagnesque carbonation. Too bad the foam cap is nothing to write home about. It fizzes away like soda and is nearly gone by the several minute mark. Needless to say, the glass is virtually spotless. Maybe all those bugs or the acidity is to blame. As with most gueuzes, the lack of a quality head and lace isn't a huge negative in a wild ale.

The aroma is dizzyingly complex and is a pleasure to sniff. Nothing is overdone and pretty much everything is done... exactly... right. Tart fruit vinegar is dominant, with a perfect amount of buggy funk. According to the brewery, the PH1 batch used the highest quality (that is, the most Acetobacter-heavy) La Folie barrels.

If I hadn't picked up that fun fact from the Russian River website, I could have figured it out from the first mouthful. Wow, this stuff is tangy-tart! It isn't so much funky (in a sweat sock or horse blanket kind of way), so it won't alienate those who have a low tolerance for such flavors.

Beatification has to be the most gueuze-like of all the RR wild ales. That will be a positive for some and a negative for others. My impression is that the big blast of acidic tartness overpowers what might have been a deeper, more complex, oak barrel-aged blonde ale. Others may (and probably will) respectfully disagree.

The beer is reminiscent of an extremely tart white wine in many respects. Yes, I would have thought that even without knowing that white wine yeast was used. Flavors include immensely sour fruit (white grapes, green apples, lemons), cider vinegar, tannic oak and a mild-moderate, bacteria-derived grunginess. Can a beer taste both clean and dirty at the same time? Dirty in a good way, of course.

The mouthfeel is good because it fits the gueuze... er, wild ale... style very well. It's light to light-medium and has a sneaky slickness that keeps the flavors from fading away until long after the swallow. In spite of the guillotined look, the carbonation is gently energetic. Actually, by the bottom of the bottle, things are pretty calm.

This buggier version of Beatification Batch 001 won't be everyone's cup of tea. It's pretty uncompromising in its tart acidity, which will tend to put some people off. I appreciate and respect the skill that went into its creation, but there are quite a few Russian River brews that I find to be superior.

 2,374 characters

Photo of Jason
4.25/5  rDev -6.6%

Photo of drewone
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of Slatetank
4.72/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I tried this on tap at Russian river

The color is golden with great clarity and thin white head that collapses. The smell is fainlty citrus with funky lemon lactic yet slight floral aroma with mild wood. The feel has a great balance of sourness with a light sweetness and dry quality in the finish.

The flavor is a mildly sour yet enjoyable lemony tart mixed with a woody tannic flavor and some malt toward the back. This was a great treat I can't wait to have this again.

 475 characters

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.89/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I shared this at my tasting on August 7, 2010. Served alongside six other Russian River wild ales.

Batch 003

A: Beatification appears a very hazy yellow hue. There is a small head comprised of white bubbles that leaves a little lacing on the glass.

S: The aroma is simply amazing. I was expecting great things, and was not disappointed. Sour funk, lemons, hay, and brettanomyces are the basic makeup of the scents.

T: Not surprisingly, Beatification tastes phenomenal, as the fine aroma would indicate. Really tart, this is almost like a lemon gueuze. The aroma is staggering as you get the glass near your face, then the flavor is just awesome. The taste was an instant 5. World class.

M: As sour as this beer is, there is no harshness or astringent aspects to it. A pleasant pucker and lingering aftertaste with every drink.

D: I would drink this every day if it were feasible. Wow.

 891 characters

Photo of SadMachine
4.56/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes from 6/10/14

Batch 05
A- Pours clear and golden with a half-finger of bright white tight foam. This recedes to a collar and leaves some lacing. Some nice alcohol legs are observed when swirled.

S- The aroma is very sour and there is a lot of Brett funk. Overripe apples, tart cherries, pineapple, and oak tannins. Some Granny Smith apple and lemony sourness. Very complex, refreshing, and inviting aroma!

T- Wow, this is warhead sour! Crazy amounts of cherry and lemon sourness. The oak tannins are the only thing restraining and mellowing the sourness. Very acidic and lactic. Refreshing, but bracingly sour!

M- The mouth feel is delicate, medium bodied, and lightly carbonated.

O- This is an excellent sour, though not for the uninitiated! Maybe lacking the complexity and subtleties needed to make it truly world class, but wonderful none-the-less!

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.97/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow, what can I say about this, I have been waiting to try this one for what seems like forever. Almost impossible to get a bottle of Batch 001, so I just waited it out and received my Batch 002 supply yesterday. Wasting no time at all I threw one in the fridge and let it chill down to a respectable temperature before pulling it out at about 9:00pm last night. The 375,l corked and caged bottle looked wonderful and I practically started drooling before I could even get it open. Needless to say I grabbed the closest snifter I could and found my new Belgium one and slowly poured the contents inside....

Appearance - A slow pour, being careful not to disturb the sediment left the most hazy golden, amber colored liquid imaginable. No head at all on this, well minimal at best with just a slight quarter inch layer of white coming across the top, good news was that it never did get any lower then that. Great side glass presentation on this one as nice silky smooth looking, cascading layers of white fizz, almost looking like sea spray just swirled around the sides of the glass. Some light carbonation could be seen coming up from the bottom throughout the session. As would be expected there was a bit of yeast sitting at the bottom of the glass after it settled. I was impressed but what would happen next would be off the chart....

Smell - The aroma was simply to die for. I love me some Brett, but this was literally taking it to a whole new level. I knew this would be nice, but my wife chuckled as I sat there for an hour sniffing this, as if...well you could imagine. Just the most grand, funkified, tart, sour, vinegar like smell you could come across, but in a good way. Rich and complex there seemed to literally be no end in sight for the depth of this one. Towards then end of the session, I may have just gotten used to the funky sour Brett, when I noticed some light fruit maybe coming into play, this was like a fine wine almost in aroma, I mean just insanely good. I am almost speechless, but I had to eventually stop smelling it and actually try it....

Taste - If I thought it smelled good, I do not even know how to put into words the flavor of this one. It was just wonderful. Started out with a full on assault of sour, Brett funk, that rolled through the mouth, sucking up and puckering anything that it came in contact with, but once it got past, it opened you up to a whole world of woody flavors that were hidden underneath. There was some light fruitiness of some sour, perhaps grapes, or green apples, that you could start to pick up as it rolled along, and there was a touch of sweetness there as well. This was not entirely unbalanced, far from it. In fact I think if you do not let this one warm up a bit, you are really cheating yourself out of how good it could be. It was remarkable in hour tart it was but just how well it blended. The finishing notes were really starting to show hints of the barrel aging, with nice wood notes coming through and it really getting a nice earthy feel to it.

Mouthfeel - Such a wonderfully rich and complex taste, would be nothing without the accompanying good feel. And, this one did not disappoint in any way. Nice medium bodied ale, there was more then adequate carbonation put through on this one. It never did get flat, or dull in any way, in fact it seemed to get better as the session wore on. Silky smooth in its consistency, I was in love with this one right away.

Drinkability - In a word it was outstanding, the flavors were so rich and complex that I literally could not stop sipping on this one if I tried. The feel so delicate and smooth that I literally just let it sit there and roll around to absorb the most out of it that I could. This was truly remarkable in every possible way.

Overall I was simply blown away by this one. It was easily the best sour ale I have ever had, and easily one of the best beers I have ever had hands down. I can now see why people rave about this one as much as they do, it really is that good. It has a light texture to it that is unmatched, and the Brett, is just perfect. Go out and get this if you are a fan of the style, if its not your thing, and you do not like the style, you are not going to like this, it's the epitome of the style. Simply astounding.

 4,287 characters

Photo of orangesol
4.57/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

We decided to do a segmented vertical at ffej of july this year. I brought my Batch #2, Deuane brought his Batch #3, and Jwiss22 brought his Batch #5. This review will be a combination of the three.

A - Pours hazy golden yellow with a small half finger tall white head leaving very small streaks of lace down a small portion of the glass.

S - Smells of lots of acidic sourness, white grape, lemons, green apples, oak and some barnyard funk. Batch #2 is mostly sourness at this point, Batch #3 has all the flavors in near perfect balance and Batch #5 is probably the "fruitiest" of the three.

T - Starts off with an intense sourness that never really goes away. The fruit - the lemons, grapes and apples from the nose - combine with some musty barnyard funk and dry oak to offer some contrast to the sourness but they can only do so much. Finish is quite dry, lingering on the palate long after consumption.

M - All three batches possess a light body with intense flavors and moderate to moderately low carbonation. Very sour, dry finish on all three batches.

O - All three of these were really good. My Batch #2 was definitely the most sour, Batch #3 was probably my favorite since it was the most balanced and Batch #5 just tasted a little raw compared to the other two. This was a seriously delicious test.

 1,313 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
4.58/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Batch 002 375ml bottle.
Received in trade from largadeer, thanks for the opportunity.

I can smell the funk as soon as I pop the cork. Pours a crystal clear deep golden color with a good sized white head that sticks around for a while. Smells of barnyard funk, lemon, tart fruits, and leather. Smells very tart, I think I'm in for a treat. The taste is mouth puckering sour and dry with lots of tart fruits especially lemon and sour orange. Hints of horse blanket and tobacco round it out. Leaves a bone dry finish in which you can feel the lactic acid burn down your throat until it splashes into your stomach. Every sip leaves your mouth watering for more. Medium low carbonation, Medium light body. Wow that's a great sour beer! Lots of acid, some funk, very little vinegar. Vinnie you've done it again.

 807 characters

Photo of VeganUndead
3.25/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of womencantsail
4.85/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A bottle from Batch 002 opened up by Bobby yesterday during our tasting (you can never have too many Russian River wild ales).

A: A disappointingly quiet popping of the cork on this bottle. Despite that, the beer seems to still be fairly well carbonated. The pour itself is a hazy light golden color with a thin white head.

S: The nose is still very, very acidic. The lemony, lactic tartness is really the star of the show with some white grapes and green apple notes as well. There's really not much in the way of funk, but that's not really a problem for me.

T: The flavor picks up where the nose leaves off with a really intense lemon sourness. There are some flavors of green apple and white grape as the nose would indicate, but this bottle is not quite as puckering as others I've had.

M: The level of carbonation is just about perfect, with great effervescence really allowing the acid to really come through. The finish is very sour and dry, as you would expect.

D: I've always been a huge fan of the intense sourness that Beatification has, and this is no exception. I always enjoy the opportunity to open up a bottle.

 1,132 characters

Photo of stakem
4.42/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 5, 375ml corked and caged offering poured into a long stemmed tulip. The brew appears a hazed golden color with a finger of white head. The cap slowly fades but maintains a layering across the top from continuously rising bubbles of carbonation. A light swirl revives the cap and paints some patches of lacing on the glass.

The aroma of this brew is pretty darn fantastic. It smells lemony and lactic with a fruited quality that is almost like white grape juice. More smells bring out a greater focus on the barrel aging with a scent of moist cork and a bit of sweetness mildly reminiscent of vanilla that integrates so well with the previously described white grape juice scent. This brew has me salivating pretty bad even before I take my first sip. As the brew warms up and is swirled, a bit of a funky cheese note evolves.

The flavor of this brew is quite acidic. This ranks up there with some of the most sour offerings I have had. A flavor of lemony tartness blends into a tannic bacterial spike of acidity that rips the moisture right out of your mouth. The lactic edge gives way to some barrel flavor of moist cork mingled with layers of funk that are somewhat barnyard-like and earthen almost like something along the lines of must and cobwebs? The finish is a mixture of earth and acidity that is so sharp yet dry that you have to dive right back in for another sip. When small sips are taken, this brew really drives home flavors of lemon juice. When bigger gulps are taken, more earthen flavors are present with almost a bit of mineral edge.

This is a light bodied brew with a lively amount of carbonation that is not over done. It is light and lively in the feel with a brutal dryness and acidity to it. This is really a fantastic brew that nearly borders on being too much. I have waiting a very long time to try this and it has met my expectations quite well. The nose on this is unreal and while the flavor is deep and complex, it is a harsh bugger that is not for the faint of heart. I guess this goes without saying, wild ale fans, this is a must-try.

 2,078 characters

Photo of chippo33
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of PA-Michigander
4.25/5  rDev -6.6%

Photo of t2grogan
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of smartassboiler
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of thatoneguymike
4.87/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of imperialking
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of BMart
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

Beatification from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.55 out of 5 with 2,726 ratings