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

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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
Ratings:
571
Reviews:
242
Avg:
4.21
pDev:
10.21%
 
 
Wants:
285
Gots:
154
For Trade:
3
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 571 |  Reviews: 242
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.85/5  rDev -8.6%
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.

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Photo of millerbuffoon
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of mdaschaf
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
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.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.88/5  rDev -7.8%
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.

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Photo of drewone
3.95/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of duceswild
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of mikesgroove
4.18/5  rDev -0.7%
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 mdfb79
4/5  rDev -5%
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 womencantsail
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Jeff for sending me this one quite some time ago.

A: The pour is a cloudy orange color with a fluffy and somewhat soapy white head. A bit of white head.

S: Some slightly tart fruits like apples and lemons, maybe a bit of grapes as well. Some nice oak aromas, sweet bready malts, honey, and some undertones of alcohol.

T: Lots of great fruit flavors along with a bit of warming alcohol. Sweet apples, pears, and some citrus zest. Honey, and some floral notes to it, and maybe a slight spice ester character. Nowhere near as much as the usual Damnation.

M: The body is medium with a moderate to high carbonation and a slightly drying.

D: Very different from regular Damnation, and probably for the best. I really enjoyed this beer. Would love to have it again.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.41/5  rDev -19%
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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Photo of Zaphog
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of TMoney2591
3.88/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a flared pokal.

Big thanks to hannydawg for sharing this bottle!

Batch 69. I didn't even know they aged any of this on oak, let alone on regular intervals, until tonight. Right on. This stuff pours a clear pale gold topped by plenty o' cream-white foam. The nose comprises orange peel, bleached wheat, light soap, light balsa, and light banana peel. The taste brings in more of the same, along with some light orange zest and some light Brett-like funk. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a kinda dry finish. Overall, a very nice bit o' brew, though I feel like the oak was far too subdued for everything's own good (yeah, I admit I was looking for some crispy oak notes in there...). Good times, nonetheless.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 069

The beer is transparent and golden hued, plentiful bubbles rapidly ascending to the surface. Even after a slow and careful pour, the head is a few inches thick, receding to a half inch and holding.

The aroma offers yeast, malt, citrus, spice, alcohol. Not picking up the oak characteristic I expected.

The oak comes through quite a bit in the flavor. A bit tart, with a nice blend of spice and floral notes. Lingering notes of wood in the finish. Well balanced and flavorful.

Alcohol content hidden pretty well. Warming finish. Medium-full bodied.

Overall, a really solid beer. Very glad to have this, as I missed batches 23 and 46.

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Photo of stakem
3.5/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to both MexicanSkittel and BdubleEdubleRUN for the chance to try this one. Batch 69, 375ml bottle poured into a snifter. The cork removes with a loud pop and produces 4 fingers worth of white fluffy froth. The cap fades back to a thin lacing that is supported by constantly rising bubbles. The brew itself appears a hazed golden orange color that is slightly hazed. A light swirl effortless revives more than a finger of slightly off-white froth back to the surface.

The smell of this brew has a lot going on. First it reminds me of coriander with a hint of lemon and orange zest that is sweet and almost candied. More sniffs reveal a deep fruit inclusion with a bit of earth and mild oaked quality. A hint of sulfur and some spicy clove round it out with the alcohol becoming increasingly noticeable as it warms up.

The taste includes everything hinted in the aroma. Some peppery spice mixes with clove, coriander, lemon and orange pulp-like bitterness. Some tannic oak flavoring resides mid-palate bringing out a bit more focus on an earthy/herbal bitterness. The alcohol which was initially quite tamed really comes out with a warming factor as the brew warms up. The aftertaste is a little cheesy and quite earthy with a bit more pronounced oak flavoring that is raw.

This is a medium bodied brew that is very carbonated. It has a solid warming factor about it and a nice arrangement of flavor initially that sort of falls apart as it warms up and more sips are taken. I think the oak and hoppy bitterness clashes with the yeasty spices and it overall distracts from the experience instead of complimenting it. It lingers inside the mouth with almost an oily feel that mixes with a bit of astringency. It isn't a horrible brew by any stretch, it just isn't quite for me and what I expect from a tripel.

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Photo of imperialking
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of chippo33
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.98/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap, so of course I need to try it on the bottle version. Ya know?

This is an excellent tripel, though this particular batch is really striking me as a bit too hot. Maybe it needs some time to mellow out. That issue aside, this is still pretty good. Through the burn I am getting nice character and a good profile. Even though this might need to mellow a bit, it's still nice.

 390 characters

Photo of Lare453
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of BEER88
4.25/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.89/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Batch #69, so the 3rd batch of batch #23, then, I think? Bottled in 2011, I think.

This one pours a darkish golden color, with a small head, and not much in the way of lacing.

Smells like musty cherries, oak, vanilla, pear, old tea, and gritty grain.

The oak aging and time in the bottle has made this one taste absolutely nothing like a tripel anymore. It's got a creamy mouthfeel, pretty thick, with oak, vanilla, cherry, and a decent level of oxidation. There's no real cardboard flavor, but there's definitely some flat, "dead" sherry notes that are fairly nice. There's a bit of pear and apple yeast flavors too, the only real indication that this is a tripel. There's no sign in the flavor that this is 11%.

There's a very low level of carbonation- it's still there, but barely holding on. There's a very creamy mouthfeel, but the low carb is tough.

I feel like this may be *slightly* over the hill, but not overwhelmingly so. It's an interesting effort nonetheless.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Nanoslug for sending me this one. This was the second release - Batch 46. Served in a Westvleteren chalice.

A - Pours with a finger-plus of off-white foam that settles to a thick ring and a near-complete cap. Splotchy fingers of lace slowly slide down the sides of the glass. Body is a murky peach-apricot color. As I got near the end of the bottle, big chunks of yeasty sediment slopped into my glass - yummy.

S - This is a sweeter tripel, with less grains of paradise and coriander than many I've tried. Instead, it's very fruity, with plenty of pear, banana, and starfruit mixed with a mild estery yeast character. The oak comes out a bit as it warms up and lends a spicy wood flavor, along with some vanilla.

T - Taste is more caramel malt, fruits, and vanilla. Alcohol is relatively well-hidden, considering the beer's high ABV. Closer to 4.25 for me.

M - Very soft and smooth body, a touch a of heat, lower but preset carbonation that keeps it from getting cloying.

D - Shared a 750ml bottle and that was a good serving size, although I could have gone for a little more.

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Photo of GClarkage
4/5  rDev -5%

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

This bottle is Batch 69, received in a recent box from BrewerB, thanks Brian. Kudos to Brian for hitting yet another want of mine.

This beer pours a medium bodied honey gold in color with a billowing three finger, soapy white head. It took about five minutes for the head to recede. The aroma consists of some spicy Belgian yeasts, orange peels, coriander, fruity esters, and a slight floral componenet (can't pinpoint the flower). It's nice and aromatic. The flavors are smooth and yeasty. I pick up plenty of fruit esters, slight bubblegum, spicy yeasts, more yeast and slight banana. There is also some slight butter, most likely from the oak aging. Since they don't say, I'm curious as to which oak they used. Local, French, etc.? Regardless, it's solid. It drinks very well for being 11% and the alcohol isn't noticeable at all. This is a nice tripel and pretty drinkable. I'd like to have this again but for me the standard is still La Fin du Monde.

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Photo of IrishColonial
3.5/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of drabmuh
4.17/5  rDev -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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Damnation Batch 23 (Oak Aged) from Russian River Brewing Company
4.21 out of 5 based on 571 ratings.
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