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Compunction | Russian River Brewing Company

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88 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by clickpush on 04-01-2007

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Reviews: 88 | Ratings: 285
Photo of benclimbs
4.42/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

on tap @ RR brewery
pours light yellow, golden clear with a slight head and a bit of lacing

taste is really nice, wonderfully balacned blonde sour with some dry niceness and some incredible, unique earthy, woody, delicious notes throughout

feel is very good, dry not slick - pleasant

drinkability is fantastic, what a beautiful, refreshing blonde sour. mmm

 360 characters

Photo of bosco7
4.28/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap yesterday at the brewpub. The waitress warned me of the sourness and asked me if I would like a sample before purchasing the beverage. I declined and explained to her that these beers are why I visit the establishment.

Served in a tulip glass. Golden blonde in color with superb clarity. Head is lacking. Nice lacing.

Big acetic acid aromas with some woody smells, and pluot (plum X apricot hybrid that this beer was aged on) aromas.

Lots of sour! If memory serves me this beer is twice as sour as Temptation. Still not overwhelming. Apricot, oak, and white wine flavors stand out. Very refreshing.

Slight pucker from the sourness and tannins. Delightful. Yet another finely crafted sour ale from Russian River.

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Photo of SolomonGrundy
3.83/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

No link because I'm at the brewery dudes...pours a hazy amber, middling carbonation, and the bubbles are tiny! Champagne like...tiny wisp of head adorns this, like melted marshmallows that are just starting to cool...nice so far...only 6% ABV, I'm surprised...nose is dominated by sour peach...and tart cherry...very typical for their sours, but peachier....not much else in there but it's crisp and robust...flavor is mostly brett sourness and a lot of that peach from the nose....apparently they used pluots in this brew, and I'm getting that now that I think about it...the carbonation is super crazy on the tongue...like a Black Metal blast beating...it's all over the place. Did I mention I'm going to see Steve Smyth, Lance Skitzo abd all the rest as Sweet Leaf tonight?? Well I am...in any event..this beer is a subtler version of their various sours...I like...

What I like most: the subdued brett profile and beautiful color.

What I like least: the price at $6.75/glass and lower ABV

Verdict: fans of sours must try it...nuanced and excellent...

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Photo of DJButters
4.47/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The pour significantly darker than its Sanctification counterpart. I had a pour of Sanctification prior to this pour of Compunction.

S: The nose starts off with lots of tannins from the oak and pluots. Significant amounts of sour fruit smell gets the salvation glands kicked in to high gear for what is coming.

T: Smooth for a sour beer - perhaps a bit too smooth. Lots of dry oak notes along with pluot/sour fruit notes. A mild acidity and less bitterness than San.

M: The body is medium with a moderate to high carbonation and a very crisp finish. Think green apple bite.

D: I will be back for more as I was very impressed. Watching the Chargers/Raiders game at the brewery left a sour taste in my mouth... but I think this beer was sourer.

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Photo of kajerm
4.37/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewpub. Pours surprisingly light-- straw-colored with two fingers of fine, dense white foam. Carbonation rushes up the center of the glass in a continuous column of tiny bubbles, champagne style. Lots of lace. Holy shit, it even LOOKS sour.

The aroma is pure acid, lots of vinegar and a little lactic acid character. In the background is Brett funk, definitely musty and cidery, although I'm not getting "horse blankets" in this beer (if I ever actually smelled horse blankets in any beer.)

The flavor opens up fruity, with loads of stone fruits-- peaches and apricots, definitely. I didn't know what the fuck a pluot was at the time (it's half plum and half apricot, according to Wikipedia) but apparently this is what it tastes like. Mid-palate, finish, and the next three days are all dominated by sourness. I can honestly say that this is the sourest beer I've ever tasted in my life, and that I honestly mean this in a good way.

Mouthfeel is ruled by sourness, with only a little room for the bright carbonation.

I think the extreme sourness of this beer might cut into the drinkability a little bit (which means a lot coming from a guy who thinks that Girardin Gueuze is a session beer), but it kicks so much ass I'd keep drinking it until it corroded away my last tooth and burnt a hole in my throat.

 1,326 characters

Photo of phichifiji00
4.42/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a taster glass at Beachwood BBQ's Sourfest.

Appearance: Dark Coppery color, clear, decent white head, good lacing.

Smell: Funky, sour, oak, plums, store fruit.

Taste: Sour, funky, stone fruit, oak, berries, red wine, very complex.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied, good carbonation.

Overall: A great beer, as are all of Russian River's -tion beers.

 357 characters

Photo of SacoDeToro
4.97/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to Matt for bringing the growler to Beachwood for Gabe's birthday. Full pours for everyone!

Poured a brilliant pale yellow with a small foamy white head. Many bubbles throughout the glass.

The aroma was of some brett funk, but a ton of that great lambic acidity and some nice acetic notes. Not really any fruit in the aroma, but damn, it reminded me of 99 Bellevue Selection Lambic. Very fresh aroma.

The flavor was intensely tart and acidic. It had a promient acetic note, much like the Bellevue and Rodenbach that was amazing. The maltiness was light, but full enough to round things out and create a very balanced profile. Some biscuit and wheat. A little grapefruit citrus quality as well. I didn't really get much fruit in this beer, but the other flavors were so intense and well-developed that it didn't matter.

The body was light as was the mouthfeel, but in no way were they thin. The carbonation was bright and lively.

An outstanding sour beer that very well may be the best I've had from Vinnie on this end. Hell, it may be the best American sour I've ever had. What a magnificent creation.

 1,113 characters

Photo of juhl31
4.6/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

-foggy, yet clear gold color. pours with a fluffy white head

-the sour lemon jumps out first, then the pluot rolls in. some banana and a bit of malt which is nice

-good tartness up front, then the fruits roll in - pluots, lemon in the back, the farmhouse taste finishes the in the aftertaste. some actual bitterness to it which is nice as well

-very dry with some tannin mouth as well

-wow this stuff is good. amazingly drinkable. i also like that it still has a lot of actual "beerness" to it. you still get maltiness and bitterness to it behind the wild ale forefront. have been back on a couple more occasions and couldnt pass this one up

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Photo of d0ggnate
4.3/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A recent trip to Russian River provided the oppourtunity to try this great brew. I wanted to take some home with me, but growler fills were $50+.

A: Golden / orange pout with nearly no lasting head.
S: Strong nose of sour cherry.
T: Sour taste but smooths out towards the end. A mild, light woodiness. Strong brett characteristics.
M: Sharp feel with high carbonation. This lined my moath and throat with alcohol and taste.
D: A funky sour that packs a punch. Glad to say I have tried it, but I don't see being able to put down more than two in a sitting.

 556 characters

Photo of dmk82
4.82/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This was my personal highlight of Pliny the Younger time @ Russian River, and that includes the Younger. The pluots absolutely shine in this sour, which looks unassuming at first glance. But oh man, that taste just wallops you in a way that is unforgettable. I enjoyed this far more than Beatification, Supplication, and Consecration, which are all outstanding in their own right. Others are saying the base beer is Temptation, which is probably correct, though I'm too ignorant to judge (despite having had Temptation).

Seriously, I'd be willing to wait in a Younger-length line just for this beer. Without exaggeration, this is the best sour I have ever had.

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Photo of TheEremite
4.2/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Golden yellow, slightly cloudy/opaque with a small white ring of small bubbles around the glass.

S: Lactic acid! Tart, acidic nose with some apple and esthery fruitiness. There's also some apparent acetone aroma on here. It's not strong or distracting, but it's there.

T: HooWaah. TART! now, that's a lambic. It's the cleanest, most straight forward lambic I've had that was made in the states. Powerful acidic bite, but then finishes with some slight citrus and apple fruit flavors. No perceivable pluot/plumquot character here. The tartness is outstanding, but for a fruit lambic, I would have liked to taste some fruit.

M: Lively, dry, as a lambic should be.

D: I guess it's drinkable. But, after one or two it may eat through your stomach lining... Still, it's very refreshing on a hot day.

 801 characters

Photo of bgramer
4.15/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drank this on tap at DLD.

A golden-orange/apricot color with minimal head. This beer is very sour and TART... Delicious imho, it's tartness takes some getting used to. Very fruity and light and the carbonation is aggressive.

This is one of these beers that when you realize how sour it is, you slow down and sip it, and along the way, you notice different flavors revealing itself as you keep sipping. This isn't just a "sour" beer... it's complexity reveals itself over time.

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Photo of fireazzi
4.85/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Was lucky to try this a few months back at the Toronado in San Diego. The best sour I've had from Russian River. Wish they would bottle this one as I have never seen it in the bottle. Great taste, great smell, perfect amount of funk.

 237 characters

Photo of Ynot2
4.67/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brewery on 12/5/2010.

The color was a pale amber with a decent off white head.

The aromas are pretty full of citrus along with strong ripe apricot. There is a fairly strong hay funky smell going on that really rounds the aromas.

The taste is amazing. This is a sour, not mouth puckering, lemonny mouth drying sour, but more of a green grape, lemonade sour with slight hay aftertaste. The fruits really come through toward the end evening out the initial sour.

Moderate carbonation in the mouth.

More drinkable than Consecration. A nice smooth easy going sour. Will have more of this really good beer.

 620 characters

Photo of Estocker
4.82/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Oh, my, goodness... If Vinnie doesn't add this as a regular bottled sour, I will forever miss the day I had Compunction on tap.

Pours a hazy golden color. I can smell the tart citrusy smell before the bartender even sets it down. I'm not sure if that's making the beer look greenish or if this beer has a slight lemon-limy tinge to it. Anyways, it looks pretty.

This has, by far, my favorite aroma of any of the RR sours I've had so far. Lemon and grapefruit and some other weird citrusy fruits are exploding in my nose. I am so ridiculously amped to taste this that I have to literally take a few breaths and calm myself before I can have a sip.

Hallelujah! This monster tastes like someone melted a lemon and a grapefruit warhead and threw them in my face. It's delicious. I have found my new favorite sour, sorry Supplication.

 832 characters

Photo of bkrueger
4.71/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at Russian River served in a tulip glass, 07/31/12.

Pours a honey orange with little to no head.

Smells similar to Temptation but with some stone fruits, primarily apricot and pluots. Subtle nose and not bursting with fruity smells but you can tell they are there.

An initial chalky (similar to Temptation) mouthfeel, grainy almost. Chardonnay like barrel qualities. Blonde sour, once again tasting similar to Temptation but with apricot flavors.

Very drinkable, thirst quenching, with plenty of carbonation. Has a good sourness level and a fruity bite to go with it.

The pluots are amazing. Please have this available more!

 636 characters

Photo of BrewBakerE
4.87/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer at Stone's Bistro and Gardens. I wont waste any time and just say I LOVE THIS BEER. Poured golden yellow with a white head that quickly dissipated into a nice lace. The nose was fairly sour, and drew me in. For being as sour as it was, I found compunction to be very drinkable. I would love to drink this beer again.

 330 characters

Compunction from Russian River Brewing Company
4.4 out of 5 based on 285 ratings.
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