Deviation - Bottleworks 9th Anniversary
Russian River Brewing Company

Deviation - Bottleworks 9th AnniversaryDeviation - Bottleworks 9th Anniversary
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Wild Ale
4.62 | pDev: 6.93%
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Deviation - Bottleworks 9th AnniversaryDeviation - Bottleworks 9th Anniversary
Reviews: 136 | Ratings: 286 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Roguer
Roguer from Connecticut

4.71/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Surprisingly light amber-colored ale. Good head production and retention for the style. Body is ever so slightly hazy, but near transparent.

Quite sour, funky, and oaky on the nose. Peach, apricot, white grape, French oak, funky Brett.

Sharply sour and funky on the palate, growing in both aspects through the sip. Honey, light pale malt and dough, lemon, but this thing is sour, oaky, and funky through and through. Tannins, tea-like notes, vinegar. Musty.

Surprisingly full-bodied for the ABV, coming in on the higher side of medium. Very lively, with a strong pucker.

If you're a fan of straight forward, non-fruited sours, this is absolutely sublime. Deep and complex, rewarding in a way similar to a Flanders Red.

Apr 12, 2020
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Stevedore from Oregon

4.47/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml cork and caged bottle, served in a stemmed glass.

Pours a slightly hazy darker orange-copper body, one finger white head, good staying power, fine retention for a 8 year old bottle; thin wispy lacing. Smells a lot like a souped up version of Consecration. Moderate lactic acidity, red wine grape must, tart cherry skin, oak, musty damp wood funk, minerality. Plenty of heft to the nose still. Flavour is a well-integrated cornucopia of red grape must, tannin, tart cherries, oaky funk, touch of leather, light lemon, plenty of lactic acid. This seems to carry a big hefty depth to it, even more so than the regularly bottled Russian River wild ales. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, effervescent with good carbonation, crisp and complex. A fine example of a Russian River wild ale which seems to have aged extremely gracefully in the Bottleworks cellar (where the bottle was obtained from).

Jun 18, 2016
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kemoarps from Washington

4.17/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Copper body beautiful. Murky muddy deliciousness. Fine film of mystery to top it.

Nose is smoothe sour. Muted with strains of earthiness, wood and lemon sour.

Initially the liminal layer is smoothe raw lemon, but the back of the throat starts puckering immediately. Smoothe balance goes out the window quick and it just slides into a world of piercing bitterness.

So glad Dr. Durf graduated to convince me to buy it, and that Team Debauch could get together and enjoy it!!

Apr 01, 2016
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UCLABrewN84 from California

3.93/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Thanks to GRG1313 for sharing this one at his tasting.

Pours a clear honey orange with a foamy bone head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is sour with malt, grain, fruit, funk, acidic, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with sour grain, fruit, funk, and wood flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of acidity on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink, but you can tell this one definitely has some age on it.

Serving type: bottle.

Jul 28, 2015
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Knapp85 from Pennsylvania

4.56/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This poured out as a nice amber color, it has a fading cream colored head on top. The smell of the beer is loaded with oak and funk. The taste is pretty much as expected, it's got some caramel flavors up front but the lactic acid just crushes that and turns all the sweetness to a tangy funk. The feel is medium bodied and well carbonated. Overall I know this one is pretty rare, and I am fortunate to have gotten the chance to try it.

Feb 28, 2015
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orangesol from Pennsylvania

4.29/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Review #950!!!
Huge thanks to Kramer for sharing this one with us at last nights Christmas Party. A perfectly cellared bottle since purchase is a rare thing with this one it seems.

Pours clear amber red with a half finger tall white head, quickly dissipating down to a light ring around the edge, leaving small streaks of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smells of woody oak, lactic sourness, tart cherries, light barnyard funk, dash of Greek yogurt, caramel sweetness and some wet cardboard oxidation. Taste is holding up much better than the nose is. Cherry skin, mild musty funk, dulled lactic sourness and only a light hint of the oxidation is present. Smooth, tart feel is much lighter than I had heard it would be making it remarkably easy to consume.

Overall I really loved this one. The nose is definitely suffering for its age but the taste is still awesome. I can't thank Kramer enough for opening this one for us to try, thanks again buddy!!!

Dec 21, 2014
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rowingbrewer from Massachusetts

4.94/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Opened last night with friends along side some other outstanding beers but this one was the high point of the night for me.

Bottle opened with a nice pop, very well carbed. Poured a golden color with a small white head ( was a fairly small pour so it didn't kick up to much foam). The smell was acidic with definite funky cheese notes. The taste was sour and surprisingly bright for a 5 year old American Wild Ale. The mouthfeel was light and well carbonated. Overall this was tied with beat b3 for the best beer of the night. Beat out cable car 2012 DDG b1 and b2. The Russian rivers beat out lost abbey the whole night.

Oct 20, 2013
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Alieniloquium from Florida

4.05/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Hazy deep orange. Tiny head.

Smell - Sharp lactic acid. Some lemon and hay. Slight acetic note.

Taste - Nice lactic acid. Citrus sourness. Hay. A little lambicky. Grainy. Funky and a little peppery.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Medium carbonation.

Overall - This is still really good. Impressive for an American sour.

Jul 02, 2013
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BucketBoy from Pennsylvania

4.64/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Review from notes from the original time I had this. Brought a bottle received from draheim (thank you!) to my first epic Philly tasting 3-26-11 to share with some great BAs. Sad everyone has moved away. I had this again a couple months ago (thanks Chris) and it was still drinking splendidly.

L - Golden copper glowing sour with a frothy, almost pink sand 1/2" head that receds to nothing but cotton candy wispss of lace atop the beer and freckled bubbles spatting my chalice.

S - Typical RR funk mingles with vanilla oak, lemon cream, fresh chopped wood, apple cider, apple cider vinegar, some fresh berries, and a hint of oxidation.

T - Wow, so good! Much like the nose, with so much going on. Apple cider and apple cider vinegar, fresh cut wood, lemon and lemon oil, buttery chardonnay, hint of vanilla, strawberry and strawberry wine vinegar. Just lovely!

M - Just right - nice carbonation, soft tannins, gentle and smooth, with a clean, clear finish.

O - Fantastic stuff! The quintessential American Wild - complex yet eminently approachable, luxurious, super drinkable, and clearly special.

Jun 30, 2013
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Jwale73 from Rhode Island

4.42/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I cannot thank jedwards enough for bringing this back from his Seattle cellar and sharing. Pours a burnt orange hue with a slight haze. Head is a quarter inch, frothy and bright white and eventually dissipates into a semi-consistent skim. Nose expresses citrus, a salty quality and cork. Taste consistent with nose with the addition of some medicinal notes - nicely tart and full of character. Mouthfeel is lively, tartly acidic and bright. Overall, I am so glad to have had the good fortune to revisit this beer again. The first time I had it, I chose not to rate it because I knew I couldn't do it justice. What I can say now is that this is one of the best, if not the best, American Wilds I've ever had and it has held up surprisingly well.

Jun 11, 2013
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jegross2 from Illinois

4.94/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Reviewing Deviation (Bottleworks IX) from Russian River Brewing Company out of Santa Rosa, California. Major thanks to Ben for sending me this rare treat!

Score: 99

Bottle is from the spring of 2008. Served in a Cantillon stemmed balloon glass and enjoyed on 11/16/13. Review is from iPhone notes.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber color with yellowish hue highlights towards the edge of the body. Pours two to three fingers of white head that settle to a nice layer coating the top of the beer. Splotchy lacing, below average retention. 4/5

Smell: Oak, Brett, lemon, and then Bretty funky. The Brett qualities act like a book end on the nose. The funkiness is shockingly pleasant for a five year old beer, and not medicinal or crazy weird or present to the degree of being an "acquired pleasure" like a funky cheese would be. 5/5

Taste: Sour lemon, then wood and a light, familiar mustiness. Has a hint of mildew that adds a little something extra, without making the beer taste "off" or overly funky, like the magnum of 2004 Drie Fonteinen Oude Gueuze that we drank on my birthday this year. Light vanilla notes and a dash of vinegar too. Lingering lemon and wood in the finish. Has a nice level of tartness without being bracingly sour a la aged Beatification. Not nearly as complex as Mimosa, Izzy or CCK, but (1) is that really a fair comparison, and (2) Deviation nonetheless delivers big on taste and drinkability. 5/5

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus bodied with more carbonation that expected, though it does not come across as being "over carbonated." Feels quite "full bodied" for an American wild ale. Nice tartness, dry finish. 5/5

Overall: I have heard from numerous people that this beer is "over the hill", but be they wrong or this bottle ideally stored, this brew was magnificent. Even side-by-side with Mimosa, Cable Car Kriek and Izzy, this beer stacked up nicely. I wish I could obtain another that tasted exactly like this with relative ease. Drink 'em if you got 'em.

Cost: $20 for a 750 ml bottle (but good luck finding one at that price nowadays).

May 02, 2013
Photo of AlexFields
AlexFields from Tennessee

4.24/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Opened at TN whales tasting 3/16/2013. Thanks to waltonc for trading this to me.

Pours a really hazy bright orange, not the appearance I would expect from a blend of so many different beers.

Lots going on in the nose, sweet malt, some ketchup, some acidity, smells a bit confused but pretty nice.

Taste is more focused than the nose and a lot more sour. Very sour, very dry, pretty funky, hints of wine and dark fruit. Still a little muddled but damn tasty.

Mouthfeel is soft and well carbonated, very good for a five year old blended sour.

This is maybe slightly past it's prime--not oxidized or "over the hill" really, still damn tasty, but seems like it probably hasn't really benefited from the last few years in the bottle. I never had this fresh but I imagine it was a world class beer--at present it's still great but a little shy of being really top tier.


Mar 17, 2013
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stakem from Pennsylvania

4.43/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks go to BA mymrnngjckt for busting out this long time want of mine during a recent tasting. Poured into a snifter, the brew appears a hazed copper color with a creamy yellowish finger of froth. Some spotty lace sticks to the glass. A light swirl revives the cap which holds with impressive retaining power.

The aroma is surprisingly oaky upfront that blends into some funky notes of cheese. There is a rindy fruit character that changes to something more bright and tropical and more whiffs are taken. This is for the most part a pretty straight forward smelling wild ale that is very atomatic and enjoyable with no one character outshining the rest.

The taste is tart with plenty of barrel presence being noted with oaky flavoring that integrates well with the rest of the profile. Some rindy fruit flavored elements blend into earth and funk. Almost a cheesey or yogurt sort of lacto feel to this before going back to the rindy sour flavors somewhat reminescent of oranges.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. There is seemingly no alcohol inclusion. This is one very easy drinking brew. Perhaps its most noteworthy atribute is how all the character blends together so perfectly balanced. It was awesome to get a chance to try this. And even more awesome that a hyped up beer lived up to expectations. Thanks again Kevin.

Feb 27, 2013
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kevanb from Illinois

4.26/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Served on tap at a Russian River take over at Toronado SF on February 12, 6oz pour into a stemmed tulip. Review is from notes.

I was very excited to try this beer, first time for me, and to have it on tap is a great treat. It pours a murky burgundy color, touches of reds, browns with a soft fizzy off white head that dissipates immediately, no lacing. The aroma is nice, sour fruit, light funk, mild citrus and light oak character. The nose is nice, balanced, not too sour, not too funky, not too oaky, but not that pungent or dazzling. The flavors are right in line, light citrus, juicy sour fruit with lighter acidity, touch of vinegar, oaky funky, a bit of brett character, a little bit of vanilla is in there as well. The flavors again fail to really pop or resinate in a meaningful way, clearly age is starting tone things down in this beer. The body is really nice, light, lively, zesty, coats the mouth well but finishes so smoothly and with almost a creamy texture, very easy to drink.

Verdict: A very good beer, but one that has probably seen better days, I would have really liked to have tried this fresher, but better late than never. A fine beer, but not a world beater.

Feb 14, 2013
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yamar68 from Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Ryan for opening this bottle up with me on a whim! This is a long time want that I would have never thought I'd have the chance to try.

Pours a cloudy burnt amber gold with a thin, noisy cap that retains far better than I would have guessed. Leaves a bit of sticky lace... lovely.

A massive wallop of acidity is noticeable before I even think to sniff at the glass. Warhead status sour punch cleans the nostrils, transitioning into a smooth sense of bright fruit and old oak. A bit of vanilla if you really hunt for it... something sweet on the tail end.

It's no more forgiving to the palate... big funky overripe fruits, white wine vinegar, some sour citric flesh, that oak really shines in this regard... finishes beautifully dry, keeps you thirsty. For how sour this one is, I could easily drink the entire bottle to my dome slice. Delicious indeed.

I am forever indebted to you, good sir. Wow!

Jan 10, 2013
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stx00lax from Washington

4.48/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle graciously opened by me and shared with Mego and Ross. Thanks me!

A- Clear light amber with thin white lacing. (bottle has been upright and undisturbed for over a year)

S- Oaky/bretty funk. A little bit of white grapey effervescence and lemon. Pretty mild but interesting

T- Similar to smell. great balance between lactic sourness and bretty funk which is impressive. Not as complex as a great geuze, but cant find any flaws with the taste. Its just really balanced and refreshing. The more i drank, the more i wanted. As good as american wilds get

M- Spritzy carb combined with a balance of sweet fruits and drying wood keep you wanting to drink more.

Overall- Awesome. I wasnt immediately blown away, but the more I drank , the more I was able to appreciate the amazing subtleties of this beer. Its ranked highly for a reason

Nov 06, 2012
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cosmicevan from New York

4.35/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Notes taken from 9/29 from the craziest bottle share that i have ever been a part of. Thanks so much to the NYC and Hoboken crew for letting me participate in this incredible day of drinking long time wants and insanity.

Thanks kindly to Dan for sharing.

a - pours a murky orange brown. thin fizzy head with slippery lacing. swirling rebuilds the fizziness.
s - nice balanced sour cherries. brett. pungent.
t - really nice. some cherries. nice sourness. brett. nothing outrageous, but really balanced. some notes of peach and lactic. oaky.
m - puckering but not overly so, fairly easy drinker.
o - overall nice sour, extremely nice and enjoyable. finish is a bit dry but delicious and enjoyable.

pretty sure i had this one time prior, but looks like i haven't gotten to that part of my notes backlog...stay tuned.

Oct 25, 2012
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Dennoman from Belgium

4.37/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Shared by forgetfu (Bill) and Matt at our crazy Antwerp tasting. They touted it as the best beer ever to come out of America, and me generally not leaning towards sours, it had some big shoes to fill.

A: Hot damn this is a beer you want to dive into. Muddled and cloudy as can be, with a beautiful yellow vibrancy. Head holds strong and true. You just can't help but notice this is an expertly brewed beer.

S: Big wild yeast carried by the most amazing honey aroma. Some peach and ripe peach, but the honey is the absolute star here. It's like those bars of honeycomb you had as a kid, without the inconvenience of having to pick wax from your teeth.

T: Lactic acid is the first thing to coat the palate, followed by ripe peaches and that beautifully sweet honey.

M: Medium carbonation makes for a beautiful lively beer that fizzles and pops in your mouth. A joy to have in there, shame you have to swallow it at some point really.

O: Hot diggity, even for a non-sour fan this is great. I have to see it didn't quite reach the level of some lambics I tasted that night, but it got mighty close. I wouldn't call it the best thing to ever come out of the States, but they have their own strengths as we Belgians just can't seem to whip up a decent stout!

Aug 26, 2012
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HuskyinPDX from Washington

4.62/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750ml bottle split three ways between myself, Jake and Greg. Thanks Greg for sharing this!

A - Pours a murky light brown with a thin white head that sticks to the edges.

S - A very soothing funk, slight sweetness. A touch of booze and slight wood. Very nice!

T - Funk that is creamy smooth, some nice oak, sublte flavors that just roll around in your mouth.

D - Slight tartness with a nice smooth silky finish.

O - So smooth and just plain solid. I don't know if I have ever had anything that compares to this.

Jul 27, 2012
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NWer from Washington

4.85/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Like dirtylou, I too ticked this beauty off at the Seattle Beer Week Sour Fest at Brouwers Cafe in Fremont.
What a surprise! I had no idea what I was in for when I landed a glass of this gem.
Nice too that it was a full pour into a snifter and not the small 6 oz thing. Savored this all the way through lunch.
Sour, dry, smooth.
I'll leave the subtleties for others.
The thrill of a lifetime.

May 17, 2012
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dirtylou from New York

4.8/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Damnit - I'm a ticker :(

on-tap, sourfest 2012 (1st keg to kick)

appearance: served in a 12oz snifter, rich light amber-mahogany body, 1/2" residual tan cream

smell: smells like a whale...oak-forward, tart cherries, funky lemon rind, earthy and wild

taste: seattle beer week has long since exceeded all expectations - this was the first beer i ordered on a glorious thursday morning at brouwers. It was my favorite of the day, as well as the favorite of the relative-sour novice i beerfriended next to me. Really a terrific sour brown - oak, tart cherry, leather and wood, funky yeast, lemon rind. This has aged wonderfully - a great honor to bottleworks and russian river

mouthfeel: deeply acidic, funky

overall: a whale with a cause

May 17, 2012
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brentk56 from North Carolina

4.47/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber color with an inch or so of foam that leaves quite a few strands and clumps behind

Smell: A blend of caramel, sour lemon, yoghurt, and barnyard funk

Taste: Tart lemony fruit, up front, with a developing lactic sourness that brings along some additional citrus; after the swallow, the acetic sourness, barnyard funk and vague caramel undertones arrive; the finish is puckering and acetic

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with crisp carbonation; mouth puckering

Overall: Loads of tartness with underlying complexity; a great beer that has developed nicely since it was bottled four years ago

Apr 04, 2012
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DJButters from California

4.3/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at Russian River 'TION Night at Toronado 2012. Finally able to try after many years of searching. The refusal to part with my -bals has paid off. A 6oz pour, for $5.

A: Seems very light in color compared to other RR brews. Somewhere in between Temp & Sup. A dirty light brown, copper. Head disappears quickly after pour.

S: Oak, Cherry and funk. It better have some level of funk, this beer has been waiting in a keg for 5 years waiting for me.

T: It is amazing that this beer is 5 years old. It gives me hope for my 3L collection and the age will not harm it. I have to say that I feel Temp and Beat age very well in comparison. A keg of 08 Temp seemed to provide more funk, while the Deviation was highly acidic. Still a very solid taste where the oak and cherry shines through. As the beer warmed it obviously got better and the flavor profile changed and become more pronounced.

M: Acidic and very well carbonated.

O: Very good beer. Notice how I said very good. I don't think it could match up to the hype and rarity that has been placed upon its narrow shoulders. The keg was blown in 40min. With so many good AWA offered by RR don't stress if you cant get one. Just stick with the standards and you will do just fine. Beat however is a different animal entirely. Thanks to Natalie for popping a few 3L b3 btls.

Feb 16, 2012
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jethrodium from California

4.72/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Toronado. Pours a clear golden amber with a small white head that settles quite quickly and leaves little lacing on the glass. The aroma is musty oak, apricot, green apple, earthy funkiness, some light tangerine, and some grapefruit. Simply wonderful. The taste is quite tart with lots of musty oak, apricot, tangerine, grapefruit, an earthy funkiness, and green apple. The finish is dry with more oak, apricot, and green apple. Amazing. Medium body with a slick mouthfeel. Relatively low carbonation. This was a great beer. The flavors are really balanced with nothing dominating the other flavors. Certainly one of the best American sours.

Feb 15, 2012
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drgarage from California

4.82/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at Russian River 'Tion Night at Toronado. What a treat!

A: Gorgeous, glowing brown. Pours with abundant head receding to light sparkling. Color keeps shifting brown to red to gold and back. Just stunning.

S: Intense sourness, bright cherries, oak.

T: WOW. Simply stunning sour brown with red fruit. Intense complexity, puckering sourness, a little funk, and a crisp finish. I cannot believe this beer is five years old. Tastes nearly as intense and fresh as Toronado 20 did when it was new.

M: Perfect body for the style. Light and carbonated and effervescent.

O: Absolutely phenomenal. I'm honored to have had the opportunity to try it. Thank you, Russian River and Toronado for breaking out an unbelievably rare keg! This just made beer week for me.

Feb 15, 2012
Deviation - Bottleworks 9th Anniversary from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 100 out of 100 with 286 ratings