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Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged) | Russian River Brewing Company

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Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged)Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged)
BA SCORE
4.26/5
Outstanding
571 Ratings
Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged)Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged)
BEER INFO

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

Style: Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
We turned our regular Damnation recipe into a Tripel. It is bittered with Tomahawk and has Sterling and Cascade in the mid-boil and finish. The beer was then aged on new American oak chips for two to three weeks.

Added by bosco7 on 07-07-2007

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#877
Reviews:
242
Ratings:
571
pDev:
10.09%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
284
Gots:
153
Trade:
3
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 571 |  Reviews: 242
Photo of kojevergas
3.8/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on draught at Beachwood BBQ. This was batch #69 of damnation, so obviously the third iteration of batch 23. I was very excited because Russian River is me favourite US brewery, and I love the regular damnation.

A: Pours a half finger head of smooth slight cream, slight thickness, and bad retention. Colour is a nice hazy yellow gold; nontransparent.

Sm: Light orange esters. Some hops. Very light malt. Pleasant and appealing, but light.

T: A very complex build for a golden ale (or tripel). Pleasant orange esters, lightly toasted malt, and full barley. Layered and nice. Delicious. Balanced.

Mf: Smooth and wet, but a touch thick. Suits the flavour.

Dr: Very drinkable. Expensive, but quality. I'd have it again. It was a real treat to enjoy it on draught.

 776 characters

Photo of emerge077
3.86/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 69, 12.7 oz. bottle, served in a wine glass.

Hazy pastel orange, champagne streams of carbonation. Creamy whipped meringue foam that lasts forever, leaving impressive irregular peaks and crags that rise above the rim of the glass.

Flowery aroma, lots of Belgian yeast esters.

Flavor is pretty wine-like, as if the barrel/chips were freshly soaked in chardonnay. Lots of fruity flavor, apple, white grape juice, and peach, coupled with white pepper and perfume. Estery and spicy, charged carbonation, full bodied with a hint of vinous alcohol. Oak character seems to get lost behind the wine and Belgian yeast flavors.

Honestly this batch wasn't all that tasty, but regardless of personal preference it's well put together. Had a batch 23 750mL of this years ago (thx Dave) and it wasn't really the same. This was much more estery and wine forward. edit: Sampled on tap next day at the brewpub also. Seemed a bit less yeasty and a touch more drinkable, but still had the same dominant white wine flavor.

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Photo of brentk56
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a peach-colored liquid that is capped by an inch or so of foam; plenty of speckles remain on the tulip as the liquid is consumed

Smell: The vanilla and oak is clearly discernible; underneath, there is a range of fruit - pineapple and melon, with a hint of mango

Taste: Spicy and herbal, with fruit and grain flavors underneath; the pineapple, melon and mango arrive prior to the swallow, but the oak and vanilla arrive in the back; all of the flavors linger in the aftertaste for quite some time

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with prickly carbonation and some warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: I am impressed by this beer but all things being equal, I think I would prefer to drink the regular Damnation; somehow the oak and the extra alcohol are not adding to my enjoyment the way I though they would

Thanks, madtowndmb1, for the opportunity

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Photo of oline73
4.17/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a goblet.

The beer pours a clear amber color with just a layer of off white head. I'm getting lots of Belgian yeast spice in the nose along with a sweetness. The taste is a bit more interesting. I'm still getting the Belgian spice along with a malt sweetness, but there is also an oaky note and a fruity note. I would say this is a well balanced beer. The head sticks around all the way through the pour.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a hazy bright golden color ale with a super huge foamy had with excellent retention and some very good lacing. Aroma which consists of citrus and floral hops are well balanced against the sweet notes of the malt bill. Taste is a great mix between some citrus and floral hoppy notes and some semi—sweet malt notes. Oak is very subtle but seems to bring a rounder taste at the end. Yeast strain a somewhat fruity and can be detected. Body is full with great conditioning and some excellent carbonation with no apparent alcohol. This is a great improvement IMO over the regular version which is just too fruity.

 625 characters

Photo of SocalKicks
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of largadeer
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Drank both batches of this side-by-side at 'Tion Night at the Toronado. Both are great, but the new batch struck me as being a little better, so I'll review that one.

A: 13 oz pour into a tulip glass. Golden and clear with only the slightest haze. A thin white cap is all that formed for a head, more a result of a gentle pour than a lack of carbonation.

S: Peppery yeast, soft oak, rich pale malts. Slight graininess and a touch of tropical fruit.

T&M: Malty sweetness hits the palate first, grainy and fruity. The oak is very well dialed in, not overbearing on the palate but present enough to add some pleasant notes of vanilla, earth and soft tannins. Medium-light in body, crisply carbonated; spot-on. Really dries out in the finish, becoming more peppery and crisp. I really enjoyed this one, it's got a very authentic Belgian tripel character that most American breweries fail to achieve.

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Photo of zestar
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of Kurmaraja
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of mothman
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Damnation Batch 46 into tulip. Side by side with batch 43

Pours 1 finger of creamy white head. Great retention. Thick lace. Active carbonation. Color is hazed burnt orange gold.

Aroma: Bananas, cloves, yeast, bready malts. Some dry spices show. Some light bubblegum. The oak shows, but faintly. A hint of vanilla.

Taste: A lot of yeast and bready malts, cloves, coriander, dry spice, vanilla, bananas, orange peel, pears, and dried red apples. The oak shows a little more hear, but not overly dominate.

Mouthfeel: Very dry and spiced with some bubbles rolling over the tongue. Medium bodied with a higher amount of carbonation. Ends a bit dry, pretty clean.

Overall, a pretty solid trippel. Not as oaky as I was expecting, but it didn't sit too long on the chips. It is pretty drinkable for the abv. I like it.

 817 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to TurdFurgison, who decided to destroy quite a few of my wants last night. Served in a Bruery tulip.

Pours a slightly-cloudy golden color with a large off-white head with good retention and nice lacing. The nose brings forward a bit of bready malt and then carries through with some oak. Beyond that, there's a good amount of yeast coming through with nice notes of banana, bubble gum, and some clove. Medium body. Light dryness from the oak. Light booze in the finish as well. Really nice beer that I was thrilled to finally try. Thanks again, Eric.

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Photo of mactrail
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fruity with a big pineapple flavor. Brewery says Tomahawk, Sterling, and Casacade hops in the mix, but it certainly isn't overly bitter. Aged in American oak but I don't taste much vanilla or woodiness. Rich flavors, sweet and sharp. Fragrant with caramel and flowers.

Hops are really fragrant but it's not a bitter beer. Hugely drinkable for a strong beer. Nice lacing and carbonation as well. On tap at Pizza Port in Ocean Beach.

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Photo of ygtbsm94
3/5  rDev -29.6%

Photo of billab914
4.15/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 69 poured into my Lost Abbey stemware. It poured a murky orange amber color with a huge, frothy, off-white colored head to it. Great head retention and lacing as I drank it.

The aroma shows a lot of the earthy Belgian yeast spice to it. A good amount of the oak comes through in a woody, slightly vanilla like flavor. An herbal, somewhat grassy hoppiness is there as well. Nice aroma for the style.

The taste also has a good dose of the earthy, spicy, yeast flavors to it throughout. Some sweeter, pale malts start to come out in the finish and mix with some of the woody, oak flavors. A little bit of an herbal hoppiness is there as well.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied for the style with carbonation being high. Overall it was a very good beer of the style. The oak seemed a little more subtle, but did provide a little more depth to it. It had a nice range of flavors to it and was a very good tasting beer overall.

 930 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of PhineasMcClintock
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.85/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours out a cloudy, hazed orange with a frothy, white head.

Smell: Aroma of an oaken banana boat crossing your lake-going path, notes of sweet-scented, bready pale malted barley, phenolic spiciness, orchard fruits, and with a fleeting hint of lavender on the nose.

Taste: Moderately sweet in the fore with a taste of bready, candyish, honey-glazed pilsner malts. Small, quick dash of 99 Bananas for bit of sting over sliced pears and gala apples. Slight citrus. Very minute hop bitterness. Spicy, butter American oak character late and into the semi-dry, persistently fruity finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation. There's an ever so slight, tongue-coating creaminess to the mouthfeel.

Overall: A solid, oak-aged tripel. Yes, that's what we call it.

 779 characters

Photo of mdaschaf
4.03/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to bentwookie for this one!

A: Pours a hazy peach color with a massive white head, about three fingers in height. Great retention, slow dissipation to a thin layer of white on top. Spotty lacing remains on the glass.

S: Some apple, a little lemon and some orange, spicy yeast, some bready, and a good bit of grass. A bit more pronounced than regular Damnation.

T: Very fruity, some lemon, apple, and a little bit of pineapple and orange. This transitions to some spicy yeast and a little bit of buttery oak.

M: Medium bodied with high carbonation. Slightly creamy texture. There is a little bit of alcohol in the middle.

O: A pretty good beer. Nice fruit flavors and the oak brings a nice component as well. Not something I would go to all the time, but would certainly drink it again.

 801 characters

Photo of duceswild
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 023. Sunny daffodil yellow with multiple stately bubble streams wandering up to a wonderful looking crown of alabaster colored cream. Once the foam starts to melt, fine sheets of lace can be seen gracing the glass. A Belgian brewer would be proud.

The nose takes time (and warming) to open up... and still isn't that powerful. There's a bit of golden fruit, almost no spice, and little to no oak. In the end, the next highest score wasn't even considered.

Damnation Batch 23 is now slightly more than 3 years of age (bottled 6/4/07). According to the brewery, it can be aged 4 years. While it doesn't taste over the hill at this point in time, neither does it have much flavor boldness and complexity is lacking. The alcohol has mellowed nicely, however.

Flavors include pears macerated in Poire Williams, a Chardonnay grape vinousness, and a wee sprinkling of white pepper. Oak is still difficult to appreciate. I'm not sure what sort of yeast strain 'R.R. Wine 1' is, but it's doubtful that it's a Trappist ale yeast given the lack of the usual tripel/BSPA esteriness.

Reading the previous few paragraphs, one could be forgiven for thinking that Damnation Batch 23 is not good beer. Nothing could be further from the truth, it's just that it isn't up to Russian River's usual standards. This is one my five favorites breweries in the world if you want some idea of what I consider their 'usual standards' to be.

The mouthfeel is more American big beer than Belgianesque. It's roughly medium-full and feels sugary slick rather than airy and fluffy and expansive. Carbonation that is too laid back is the most likely culprit. At least it isn't a bottle-conditioned, overbubbled mess.

Russian River brews the single best beer in the known universe (Pliny The Younger) and plenty of others that are special as well. Damnation Batch 23 is solid, and has aged well, but it isn't the outstanding effort that I was hoping for.

 1,932 characters

Photo of drewone
3.95/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of mdfb79
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Actually batch 69. Poured from a 12.7 oz. bottle into my Lost Abbey glass since I don't own a Russian River glass yet.

a - Pours a somewhat transparent bright orange yellow color with two and a half fingers of fluffy off white head and high carbonation evident. Head lasts for several minutes and leaves some spotty lacing on the glass.

s - Smells of Belgian style yeast, spices, citrus hops, oranges, floral hops, fruity malts, bananas, and cloves. Not getting any oak, seems very much like the normal Damnation in the nose to me.

t - Tastes of bananas, cloves, spices, pepper, Belgian yeast, citrus hops, floral hops, earthy notes, sweet fruit, a hint of wood or oak, and alcohol. Again, almost no oak. Tastes has more bananas and sweet fruit than the nose, and a tiny bit more alcohol.

m - Medium body and moderate to high carbonation. Pretty smooth and just the right level of carbonation before it gets too much. Tiny bit of alcohol.

o - Overall I thought this was a good beer, but I don't think it was an improvement on the base beer. It's very similar and there is not much oak at all. I think the normal Damnation looks a little better so this rated slightly below it (4 vs. 4.03), but both are good beers. Interested to see what happens to it with some time on it as the alcohol was there in the taste.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Been waiting a long time to try this one and decided to grab it out of the fridge last night and go for it. Served chilled and poured into a snifter, this one was consumed on 07/28/2009.

Appearance - The pour was magnificent. Huge white foamy head crowns over the top of the glass, easily coating the sides with thick globs of foam. Hazy and bright golden in color. Really something to behold I have to say. After a few moments it settles down, but still it was a really well done example of the style.

Smell - Aroma is bright, really nicely done again here. Hints of light woody notes lay upon a touch of funk and light notes of grassy hops and grains. A touch of light fruit now coming forward as well.

Taste - The flavor was light at first, but it built up considerably over time. Light banana and clove at first gave way to a smooth and comforting sour toasted that rolled into a nice blend of earthy oak notes and hints of grassy flavor. Rich and very subtle at the same time. What actually impressed me the most was the lack of high abv in the flavor. Really well done here and I have to say, quite nicely blended.

Feel - Near perfect carbonation kept this one from being too heavy while at the same time, thick enough so that the profile was easily distinguished. Nice balance with a frothy feel towards the end letting me know this one was alive to the last drop.

Drinkability - For as big as this was, wow. I never would have been able to tell. It was impressive to say the least that it was as drinkable as it was. Very smooth and the flavor far overpowered any boozy quality it may have had,

Overall - Very nice, and a quite a bit different then the regular version. I would have no issue at all with having this again and I could see easily why people rave about this as much as they do. Very well put together and really a very nice offering from them. Look forward to trying another.

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Photo of Zaphog
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.41/5  rDev -20%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

375 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Batch 69.

Appearance - Big white head after a very difficult cork removal. Thick collar. Wispy surface. Golden orange hazy body.

Smell - Bready and estery. A little phenolic. Kinda fruity. A little earthy. Quite oaky. Very odd.

Taste - Belgian sweetness and yeastiness. Extremely oaky. Sweet and estery up front. Doughy malts. Gets earthy and bitter in the back.

Mouthfeel - Boozy. Bitter. Medium heavy.

Overall - An odd beer. A smell I can't quite place. The flavor is complex, but not really a tripel. Points for being interesting.

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Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged) from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.26 out of 5 with 571 ratings
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