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

Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged)Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged)
Liked This Beer
4.26 w/ 571 ratings
Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged)Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged)

Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States

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

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 571 |  Reviews: 242
Photo of rlee1390
4.38/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Cloudy orange/yellow with a two finger head that leaves behind some lacing.

S-Lemon, yeast, some wood and spices.

T-Lots of lemon, spices, wood is present and there is a noticeable amount of bitterness.

M-Light, fully carbonated.

O-Like the regular Damnation a fine brew. The wood flavors creep in ever so slightly and once again there is a solid hop backbone in the finish.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.73/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12.68 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a translucent light orange with a full pillowy white head, good retention and nice lace.

S: Lots of spice, white pepper and orange peel. Nice citrus notes with a note of sugar cane.

T: Light oak with a lot of yeast esters. Spicy with some pear and bready malt. Fairly hoppy finish.

M: Full-bodied, smooth, long aftertaste, not a bashful beer.

O: A nice beer to try, I like it better than regular Damnation. Nothing to get to excited about though, overpriced, but not a bad effort in an of itself.

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

On tap at the brewpub.

A: Pours a brownish/golden color with some amber hues. Provides a small white foam head that quickly dissipated to a film and then went away completely. There is some spotty lacing.

S: There is some citrus, mostly pineapple and lemon zest, cloves, alcohol, wood and some lightly buttered bread.

T: Starts off with a good amount of malt, mostly buttered bread, caramel and toffee. In the middle there is some citrus flavored hops that balance out the sweetness. On the backend the wood and oak really come through along with some alcohol.

M: A full bodied beer that is quite heavy on the tongue and mouth. Leaves a thick oak feel on the palate.

O: A really nice Tripel. The oak is not overdone and adds nice balance. I enjoyed this more on tap than in the bottle. Certainly would enjoy more of this if I could get my hands on it.

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Photo of impending
4.12/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5


375ml into a tulip. Pours a slightly hazed slightly diluted Tang, towering off white head, nice lacing.

Aroma is sweet yeasty goodness, peach skins and tiny citrus, spicy.

Lip smacking notes of citrus. Very minor bitters. A dash of pepper appears at the beginning of the aftertaste. Ends mildly dry, wish it was more. Medium to full bodied slightly cloying yet lively mouthfeel. The oak chips are nearly imperceptible, little to find. No sense of alcohol. Doesn't strike me as a tripel. I indeed like this but inferior to Damnation. Best near room temp.
Batch 69

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Photo of 20ozmonkey
3.7/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Grabbed a bottle from Healthy Spirits. Poured into a tulip.

Damnation 23 is a hazy vibrant orange with a small layer of head that sticks around well.

Smells first and foremost of apricots with an earthiness coming from the oak chips. Definitely sweet, definitely fruity.

Complicated flavor. There is a sweet fruity apricot flavor and a flavor that I would say is coming from oak kind of clashing with each other. On the finish a cloying sweetness comes in and takes over. The mouthfeel is medium carbonation with a bit of viscosity.

Interesting beer. I was incredibly excited until I tasted it. The taste is alright, but not great.

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Photo of John_M
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewpub. Not having had this beer in some time, I was really looking forward to trying this beer on tap.

The beer pours a solid gold color with good head retention and decent lacing. The nose is attractive as well, showcasing honey, clove and vanilla. The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty closely in this moderately sweet beer, though I confess I was expecting a bit more flavor from the barrel aging. Frankly, this doesn't taste all that different from the regular damnation... I get a bit more vanilla, but that's really about it. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and the 11% alcohol is amazingly well disguised and integrated into the flavor profile.

Shrug. A very well crafted beer, no doubt, but I guess my expectations were a bit unreasonably raised, given my experience with the bottle version a few years back.

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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 Beerenauslese
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The long awaited Batch 069 has arrived. 375 bottle. ABV is 10.75%.

Body is a hazy, amber/gold. Poured into a Bruery tulip glass, easily produced a half inch foamy white head that dissipated fairly soon to a cap and ring. Some sticky lacing, but not a lot.

Smells of light malt, lemon, toffee, tropical fruit, a little metal, and spice--coriander and ginger, and some alcohol.

A good expression of the Belgian tripel style. A complex spiced tripel with rich malt taste, butter, toffee, metal, coriander. Starts on the sweet side, but finishes more dry, with a light bitterness and lingering light floral and grassy hops, metal, and pretty strong white pepper notes. Alcohol is not very evident in the taste despite the 10.75% ABV. Oak expression is more in the background, but gives this a noticeable vanilla taste. It's the Belgian yeast that is definitely taking the commanding role here.

Body is light and the carbonation is fizzy, giving this a scrubbing, refreshing mouthfeel. Has a spritz on the tongue like a dry ginger ale.

This is a tripel that is light in body yet complex in flavor. I wish Vinnie made this regularly, instead of making us wait through 23 batches of regular Damnation.

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Photo of brotherloco
4.57/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

375 C&C Bottle. Batch 069. ABV is 10.75% in this batch. Served in a tulip.

Pours a hazy dim gold. Big three finger head of white foam. Stays pillowy for awhile. Big swaths of lacing.

A bright, sweet, Belgian-style aroma. Honey and floral notes. Earthy oak, and lots of orange/lemon peppery spice. Obvious high carbonation. Fantastic.

Initial flavor is sharp and medium sweet. Citrus and pepper kick in around the middle and then things get a lot sweeter through the finish. A pleasant tartness kicks in on the finish as well. A touch of booze in the aftertaste but overall it's well buried in the full flavor.

Body is medium-full with high carbonation. This beer really fills the mouth. Only complaint is that it gets a touch sticky.

The regular edition of Damnation is one of my favorite beers and no surprise, I absolutely love this spin on the recipe.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the brewery. Third brewing, meaning batch 69.

A: Served a cloudy golden apple juice color with a thin what film that quickly faded into a lasting collar.
S: Sweet golden fruits, white wine, peppery spices, and golden raisins.
T: Similar to regular Damnation but with more alcohol and fruit and a bit of a barrel quality reminiscent to white wine. There is a honey sweetness in the finish as well as a splash of apple juice. The beer is also very spicy overall, with notes of pepper, yeast, and coriander.
M: Thickish body, dry viscous mouthfeel and creamy carbonation. This was wonderful to drink, and I could not detect the double digit alcohol at all.
O: Really fruity and flavorful with a great mouthfeel. Can’t wait to see how it is out of the bottle.

5/18/11: Batch 23, thanks Mike.
This has held amazingly. Ultra smooth and integrated. No alcohol flavor. The fruit has really blossomed. Drink 'em if you got 'em!

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

Batch #69

A-Bottle opens with a loud pop. Even with a gentle pour, it's about 75% fluffy,rocky off white head. Clear medium amber body. Spotty, sticky lacing.

S-Vinous, white wine grape sweetness, with a hint of tart fruit acidity. Bready malts, oak.

T/M-An excellent tripel, on the dry side, with light fruity esters and a faint layer of barnyard funk draped on top. The subtle oak flavor comes in towards the end. It's buttery, and rounds out the finish well. Leaves you wanting more. Medium bodied with vibrant, prickly carbonation.

O-This is great stuff.

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Photo of litheum94
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap. Batch 23/69.

Pours an opaque golden leaning towards amber body. Some off-white head, but not much at all. Leaves some bubbles on the side of the glass.

Aromas of oak, Belgian yeast and citric sourness. A vague fruit sweetness as well.

Very woody with tons of oak flavors right away. Raspberry like sweetness. Sourness is very subtle, presenting itself more like a lemon zest. Lots of earthiness as well, with that classic taste of Belgian yeast. Slow alcohol burn on the finish.

Not as bold as their other sours, but a great take on an already pretty good beer. Very tasty. I'm interested to see how it ages.

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Photo of animortician
4.85/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Been eyeing this on the coming soon list for ever. One of the few RR beers I haven't been able to try yet.

A: Rich Golden color. One finger head that dissipated quickly. Great clarity and appearance overall.

S:Spicy and peppery. Hint of Coriander. If I didn't know what this beer was my first guess from the smell would be a Tripel.

T:AMAZING, How is 10.5% hidden so well in this.? Amazingly drinkable. Very well balanced Tripel, not to sweet not to boosey. Malty and almost tart at the same time.

M: Smooth and Buttery.

O: Well Done Vinne! This beer lived up to my expectations even though I've been waiting for a few years to try it. Carbonation, Malt, Alcohol, and flavor all balanced very well!

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Photo of FosterJM
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

791st Review on BA
Bottle to Goblet
750ML C/C

@Woodshop Classix

Thanks Greg for sharing this one!!

App- I got a hazy, cloudy orange. Very thin head only about 1/8" and perfect white. Great lacing and very carbonated.

Smell- Deep citrus with oranges and lemons. Huge twist with the oak behind it, in turn it became floral in the nose as well. Has that lush and full Belgian style nose I love.

Taste- Not at all what I was expecting. It added some many dimensions to the flavor of an already great beer that I liked a lot when I 1st had it. This was still floral and citrusy but became more assertive and complex with a little spices/vanilla .

Mouth- Medium bodied and medium carbonation in tune with the layers here. It still is a bit dry but becomes a bit damp and a lot of residual bubbles.

Drink- Well Greg I can't say thanks to you enough. Never thought I would see a bottle of this and you pull out likes it nothing. Till 46 comes along I wait with bated breath.

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Photo of ehammond1
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Belgian Beer Festival 2011
Pizza Port
Carlsbad, CA

A slightly hazy, bright yellow golden ale with a relatively stiff and persistent white head. Coating lacing down the glass.

Bright aroma of citrus, particularly lemon, and some tangy but not overly powerful Belgian yeast character, perhaps a touch of oak, though this one smells far sweeter than the original.

Sweet citrus, Belgian yeast, mild oak character all come together very nicely. As with the nose, this version seems far sweeter than the original Damnation--the sweetness seems honey-like.

Medium to light mouthfeel, plenty of carbonation, a touch velvety, very nice.

A far sweeter, slightly more woody, version than the original Damnation. A different beer entirely, in my mind. I prefer the original Damnation.

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Photo of jwinship83
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked and caged bottle. batch 23. traded to me from user mashmaster. thanks again! drank from the recommended russian river "tion" glass.

A- the beer pours out a hazy glowing orange colored body under a finger and a half of bright white head. the head lasts for quite some time, and leaves behind a solid wall of lacing. very nice.

S- very sweet smelling. lots of candi sugar and sweet fruits wafting from my glass. peach, apricot, white grape, pear, and a touch of banana. after that i pick up a little bit of vanilla from the oak. pepper and clove spiciness. earthy and spicy hops. the alcohol is apparent, but still well hidden.

T- the taste starts out with more of the malted wheat and pale malts that i could smell before quickly moving onto the sweet candi sugar and fruits. pears, white grapes, peach, and some light green apple tartness. moderately spicy with clove and white pepper. a touch of vanilla from the oak barrel it was aged in. earthy hops move in at the end. moderate alcohol throughout.

M- medium bodied with a nice and subdued level of carbonation. for an 11% ABV beer, the alcohol is remarkably well hidden. only a slight warming can be felt.

O- looking at the reviews, this beer is just over 4 years old. time has been very kind to it. id love to try a fresh bottle from the next batch and compare. i also wouldnt mind picking up another one from this batch. check this one out if you can. be warned though, the alcohol will sneak up on you.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


Thanks to Jason for opening this.

A: Hazed orange with a creamy white head. Fades to stray bubbles.

S: A light oak presence with bread and caramel. Faint oxidation and alcohol. Moderately sweet. Earthy hop profile.

T: Bread and caramel with a little sweetness and oak. Light booze. Alcohol is faint. No harsh notes. 

M: Upper light in body with lower moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is creamy, sticky, and smooth.

Overall: A very nice beer. I've had this many times but am happy to finally review it.

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Photo of CampusCrew
4.54/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

appearance: lovely amber glow with nice white fulffy head rentention

smell: vanilla, major oak, sweet mapley oatmeal

taste: the most oak flavored beer Ive had. amzing

mouthfeel: medium bodied, perfect amount of carbonation

drinkability: a rare treat, Thanks Eddie!

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

Big thanks to Alex for the share. Been wanting to try this for quite some time. Batch 46.

A - It pours a glowing peach-goldenrod hue, and is capped with a moderately lasting white head, leaving clingy lace rings on the glass. First pours are fairly translucent, second ones are fairly hazed out.

S - The nose shows quite a bit of sweet alcohol, along with pear, apple, white grape, and some bready-doughy malt. The requisite clove-coriander-white pepper is muted by, or at least fused with, the oak treatment.

T - The taste is big and intense, revealing notes of bubblegum, banana, pear, and sweet-ish caramel malt. Oak is noted, but only very slightly, spiciness is relatively minimal for the style, and hops contribute an earthy tone. The caramel is throwing me off a bit here, because otherwise this is a phenomenal Tripel.

M - The feel is fantastic; it is big, silky and luscious with an expansive creaminess. Tremendously enhancing.

O - I wish this brew had more of a dry pale base, because the caramel notes are detrimental for me, to an otherwise fantastic beer.

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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 drabmuh
4.17/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by TurdFurgison. Thanks! A Russian River beer I've never tried? Yes please. I'm a huge RR fan, this beer was served in a Bruery rastal glass.

Beer is golden with a white wispy head that sort of swirls with the beer, never really disappearing but rather late to the party for a head, some lacing, moderate to low carbonation, beer is really hazy too. Interesting, looks like beer.

Beer is a little oaky in the aroma, perhaps some sweetness in there too, slightly too sweet in the nose for a tripel but it smells nice, decent yeast esters on the nose. Smells nice.

I should look up to see if RR calls this a tripel or if this is some BA nerd that added this as a tripel. In my opinion it is too sweet and not dry enough to be a tripel. This is probably better called a strong pale or something in that family but I digress. Beer is medium to light in body, moderately carbonated on the palate. The beer leads off with this sweetness and the mid palate of the beer is quite fruity, like apples or white grapes. Some nice oak overall, a great beer. I really enjoyed it, not quite my favorite tripel or strong pale and not my favorite Russian river Belgian ale but this was really good and I'd have it again.

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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 TurdFurgison
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle, corked and caged, batch 46. I recently received 2 of these bottles, one from ipa247 and one from westcoastbeerlvr (thanks Jeff & Craig!). Brought one to a tasting at Jackie O's, and it was VERY well received.

It poured a murky looking pale golden color, with some yeasty bits and a solid head of foam. I went back to the bottle for one of the last pours and it was darker, with more floaties in it.

This smells a lot better than the regular Damnation, the oak comes through strongly. Behind the oak this seems less "tripely" than the normal Damnation, although it still returns a strong Belgian character. It comes across more as an oak-aged Belgian Strong Pale than a tripel.

And same with the taste, light fruits like apples or pears, a very light malt character, and nice spicy oak. No real spices that I could taste, and very little hoppy spice, I think.

Low carbonation but adequate to the task, a soft or creamy mouthfeel, excellent. I liked this SO much better than I expected. I'm gonna save the other bottle for another 8 months or so, and see if the oak diminishes a little (even though it's delicious now).

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Photo of Urbancaver
4.32/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice crisp yellowish orange with a nice amount of head. Smells oaky and yeasty. Lots of floral aromas and yeast but the oak is most present. Tastes oaky. Oak oak and more oak. Very nice yeasty profile. Nice light fruity flavours. Incredibly drinkable and very smooth. So so much better than damnation.

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Photo of brew3crew
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Party of our epic tasting at jackie o'swith brad and Co

A-golden yellow with white head that sticks around
S-very okay and a hint of vanilla. Really interesting
T-alot like it smells. Great finish. Heavy on the oak
M-medium body and smooth
O-very good. Wish I could get more

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Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged) from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 92.5% out of 100 with 571 ratings
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