Beatification | Russian River Brewing Company

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2,630 Ratings
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BeatificationBeatification
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

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
Ratings:
2,630
Reviews:
560
Avg:
4.47
pDev:
9.17%
 
 
Wants:
3,180
Gots:
566
For Trade:
45
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,630 |  Reviews: 560
Photo of kjkinsey
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of Knapp85
4.57/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Special thanks to DaveHack for opening this one tonight.

This poure out as a hazy golden color with a pretty decent white hea on top. The lacing was thin but the retention held up pretty well. The smell is strong as hell, lots of powerful sour notes on top of some subtle vinegar. Very acidic aromas. The taste follows the nose. I nearly had tears in my eyes from how sour this was. The flavors of violent oak aging with Brett and vinegar all come together in this beer. The mouthfeel is light bodied, nicely carbonated and leaves me with a salavating pucker after each sip. Overall this is probably one of the most sour things I've ever had. It's brutal and not something I would ever drink a lot of. Still it fits the style and is sure to please anyone who seeks these type of beers.

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Photo of t0rin0
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of nmann08
5/5  rDev +11.9%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
5/5  rDev +11.9%

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

I've been sitting on this Batch 003 since Clvand0 brought it back from the Land 'O Liberals, about two months ago. Might be the longest two months of my life. It's finally going down!

In stupid fashon, I pop the cork and take a second to examine the cork. Meanwhile the beer decides to leap out before I can get my chalice underneath. Ok, after trying to capture as much of the beer as I can, the session begins. A bright straw colored beer carries a ton of carbonation that continuously fuels the 1/4" persistent head and helps with a lot of eventual lacing. Mild haze which accumulates as each subsequent pours are made. The look reminds me of Duvel but without that rediculous head.

You don't even need to get your nose that close to begin the study of tart citrus fruits, funky mustiness, and acidity. Lemons, grapefruit, citrus rinds combine with cidery, vineous, and vinegar notes to give the impressions of white wine, wood aging, and grandma's basement. Maltiness takes a far back seat, but there is a detection of herbal and maybe citrus hops. With all the acidity and fruitiness, the beer's aroma remains clean and turns away from earthiness or dirt notes.

Flavors are a direct carryover from the nose except for the slight rise in malt pilsner malt flavor which provides a stable foundation for the crazy yeast. Flavors favor the lemons, citrus zest, and acidity while beginning to abandon the vinegar and cider taste. Rising notes of saltiness and sweat come in and give even more complexity to the beer's depth. Still clean, crisp, and refreshing taste.

The beer remains quite thin throughout, resting only on a timid pillow of pilsner malt to add a touch of creaminess and fullness. Otherwise, a mouth coating layer of tartness and acidity washes over and lingers for quite some time. While hop flavor went unnoticed, the bitterness of which melds nicely with the sourness of the citrus and bitterness of fruit rinds.

What is fantastic about this beer is the very clean sourness that avoids the cheesy, grassy, earthy flavors without loosing the complex Brett notes. Certainly not one-dimentional. But like most great sours, the astringency and sourness hurts a bit in texture and drinkability. Still I'll be hard pressed to ever have a better sour. If you had told me that this was a Berlinerweiss, I would have beleived you.

 2,345 characters

Photo of SocalKicks
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of brentk56
3.94/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 2

Appearance: Pours a cloudy golden color with a very modest head that fades rather quickly, leaving only the vaguest splash of lace

Smell: After an initial whiff of oak and leather, the tartness is overwhelming, with a vinegar/citrus aspect

Taste: Starts out with a mouth puckering vinegary lemon pith tartness that just builds and builds, with a barely discernable oak undertone; after the swallow, the tartness dials back a notch to let the lemon pith through

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with low to moderate carbonation

Drinkability: The tartness of this beer is over the edge for me, although I understand that we are in Geuze territory; I would have liked to see a bit more carbonation as well

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Photo of oline73
4.53/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a Chimay goblet. The bottle is dated 011012.

Appearance: Pours a clear light golden/straw color with a thick layer of fluffy white head. The head fades quickly and leaves a small layer and a ring on top of the pour.

Smell: Very light and extremely sour smelling. Definitely getting some funk and some hay/barn type smells. There is just a hint of lemon juice in the sour notes.

Taste: This is an extremely sour beer. The overall flavor is light and crisp. It's full of tart lemon, some white vinegar, and some funk. In the finish I'm getting some slightly herbal flavor that reminds me of aged hops. This one kind of reminds me of a very sour lambic.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the light side of medium with a good amount of fluffy carbonation and a very dry finish.

Overall: This is a really sour, really good beer. It may be slightly one dimensional, but it's really good at what it aims to do. I really enjoyed this and will search out more in the future.

 990 characters

Photo of emerge077
4.62/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review #1500

Typically review "milestones" are meaningless, but right now 1500 seems like an awful lot of beers, endless hours spent tasting and transcribing. This calls for a special one to celebrate, and I have to thank Jason for his help in acquiring this one.

A mild *thwup* from the cork, and immediately wild farmhouse aromas waft out. Cheesy, musty horseblanket, damp straw and barn stalls. In the glass it's a more concentrated citrus, expressed as grapefruit, lemon, and orange peel. A bit of chalky, dry barrel must lingers behind the fruit. As it warms, a yogurty, lactic funkiness becomes apparent.

The frothy ring of bubbles laces nicely around the edges, with a thin wispy skim in the center. Glowing sunset orange color, with a slight natural haze.

Puckering lemony sourness, with the added dimension of grapefruit to take the edge off. Very crisp and finishing dry. Acidic and wine-like. As the palate acclimates to the sourness, more depth and complexity emerges, similar to a traditional lambic. Ripe fruit flesh, crabapple, lemon, and grapefruit blend in harmony. You can still feel the lemon pith sourness clinging in your teeth after it's gone. Very juicy at first, becoming puckering, with dry oak traces in the finish.

One of the closer American examples to traditional Lambic. There were some similarities here and there to Cantillon Classic Gueuze, another all time favorite of mine.

 1,416 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
4.23/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a bright golden color ale with some white hue and a generous pure white bubbly head with average retention and minimal lacing. Aroma of oak with some lactic sourness and some funky barnyard notes. Taste is quite complex with mix of sour lactic notes, some oak notes and some funky barnyard notes as well. I must admit that this is pretty close to some Lambic brewed in Belgium while lacking some complexity. Full body with great carbonation. I would love to have access to this on a regular basis.

 512 characters

Photo of LXIXME
3.25/5  rDev -27.3%

Photo of largadeer
4.82/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch PH1, 375ml bottle, shared with a few fellow BAs at Toronado last night.

Pours a beautifully crystal clear pale amber, a couple shades darker than later batches of Beatification. The head crackles away almost instantly in a champagne-like fashion. The nose is rather acetic with a surprising amount of sour fruit character (strawberries came to mind). Very Rodenbach-like, minus any sweetness. It's similar on the tongue, with much more acetic acid than the other batches, very Flemish, very sour and puckering. Big tropical fruit flavors. Crisp dry mouthfeel, light-bodied, highly carbonated. Nearly a perfect sour in my opinion. The acetic character isn't something I'm always fond of, but it works beautifully here.

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Photo of zestar
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of olradetbalder
4/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of mothman
4.32/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 002

Poured into La Trappe goblet.

Poured slowly producing a thin fizzy layer of white head. Fades quickly. No lace. Color is a bright golden orange sunset.

Aroma: Some vinegar, but has a big funky barnyard aroma going on. A ton of acidic citrus. Very sour of course. A different aroma from what I was expecting, but I like it.

Taste: Sour and tarty as hell, but has a sweet farmhouse funk to it. Hay and vinegar. Very acidic and funky. My mouth waters with every sip. Also has some oak to it.

Mouthfeel: This beer is super sour, maybe almost to sour, but I don't mind it. Light bodied with a high level of carbonation.

Overall, this is a sweet beer. I like the sourness, but it still has a sweet funky farmhouse taste. I can easily drink more of this.

 768 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.42/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Shared with bmanning at a tasting on 09.26.09.

A: Bright golden with a little bit of haze and a little bit of fizzininess on the head.

S: A little bit of lemon citrusness paired with some green apple sourness. A little bit of vinegary acidicness in the nose as well, but nothing too overpowering.

T: Nothing too overpowering here, but in a good way. Some oak flavor to go along with the citrus and acidicness. A little bit of funkiness as well.

M: Pretty dry and fairly light-bodied. Very refreshing to have a very nice sour without too much alcohol content.

D: Exceedingly drinkable. This one was fantastic and hopefuly I'll get another try some day.

 656 characters

Photo of nickfl
4.25/5  rDev -4.9%

Photo of jlindros
4.27/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had at the huge whale-ish tasting at Chris's. Thanks to ShogoKawada for this one, batch 3.

A light fizzy head that barely exists, slight hazy golden wheat color.

Nose has lots of sour tart, some barnyard funk, bready funk, light citrusy as well.

Taste has a weird banana like fruit at first, then tons of acidity, some sour malts, mouth puckering!, light bit of fruit, touch of creamy malts, little bready and a touch of light funk, then some oak rounding, but just long sour and tartness, gland bashing sour.

Mouth is medium bodied with decent carbonation and super sour.

Overall very sour and acidic, hard to drink but great flavors and light funk.

 655 characters

Photo of Kurmaraja
4.75/5  rDev +6.3%

Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of dbrauneis
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of Kegatron
4.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 002. Corked & caged bottle 375 ml bottle into a Russian River Barrel-Aged Beer Tulip glass. A very classy presentation (as always) from Russian River.

Pours a hazy light orange (with almost a golden sheen to it)and a thin head of brite-white foam that left a smattering of lace behind. There is still a good bit of carbonation release well after the pour that keeps the retention firm for a good while, which is a credit to the conditioning of this. As a matter of fact, things don't slow down until about half way through the glass and then it went immediately still. It was a pretty cool to see the contrast in the body between when it was poured and when I finished the glass. The aroma is straight up fresh funky Brett, that gives off a tingling, pleasant pungency. There is also a fairly prominent sensation of sour fruits (like apples) behind all the funk.

The taste profile initially starts out with a fresh tasting crip blast of Brett tartness. What I love about this, is that never gets to the point of being sour. It takes things right to the threshold but brilliantly knows right when to pull back to keep things at a tart bite. And then what I REALLY love about this beer is that as it warms, the tartness melds with the sour fruit notes (that have been lingering in the background)to achieve a flavor not unlike a Sweet Tart of Sour Apple Jolly Ranger. Complete with an almost sugary sweetness that is felt in the finish along with a lingering tartness. The mouthfeel is fantastic, being medium bodied with a crisp feel yet dry finish and is smooth across the palette.

This Wild Ale really is out-freaking-standing and remains a spontaneously fermented work of art. Jammed packed with all the tartness and funk that you would expect from a beer like this but it is never overbearing and retains a fantastic drinkibility. God bless Vinnie and Russian River for beers like this!

 1,901 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.47/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes taken 4-9-11 for review #100.
2 bottles shared during Adam's "toothed aquatic mammal" tasting.
Batch 002.

A: Pours a hazy, straw yellow with a faint white head which fades quickly.

N: Super funky and horse blanket, pungent musty hay.

T: Throat clenching sour, lemon, peaches, oak notes. Very tart.

M: Lip smacking sour. Bright, clean.

O: Just crazy good. This could be the best american wild. Gueuze-like. So pleased to have tried.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.89/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've had this before, but this review is for a recent tasting. I drank this alongside a Temptation and Supplication, as well as various ratio'd blends of the three with a pluot muddle to christen my vintage Temptation/Supplication/Beatification/Compunction glass.

Batch 5.

Slightly hazy golden-yellow pour, with a finger or so of white head that retained nicely and streaked the glass with thin lacing. Aroma was pretty intense: lactic, acetic, sour, green apple, citrus. More intense sourness/tartness in the taste...I was told this batch gets "sour in a bad way" with age. I didn't really think it was "in a bad way," but it wasn't exactly smooth. Flavors of green apple, crabapple, lemon, oak, brett, hay, vinegar, white grapes; lactic and tannic notes came out more as it warmed. Medium body, moderate carbonation, heartburn-inducing. Overall good, but probably one of the lower beers on the "-ation" totem poll for me.

Cutting this with Temptation and Supplication really took the edge off. And that's kind of scary.

 1,030 characters

Beatification from Russian River Brewing Company
4.47 out of 5 based on 2,630 ratings.
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