Russian River Brewing Company

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Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States
Wild Ale
Ranked #21
Ranked #304
4.45 | pDev: 8.76%
May 29, 2023
Sep 19, 2003
Notes: A blonde ale fermented with a special strain of yeast, then aged in French oak chardonnay barrels. Flavors of wine and oak absorb into the brew throughout twelve months of aging. During this aging process, a secondary fermentation occurs using a yeast strain disliked by most brewers and winemakers called Brettanomyces.
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Rated: 3.52 by Holderness from Massachusetts

May 29, 2023
Rated: 4.91 by bowmanad3

Apr 09, 2023
Rated: 4.34 by Humanusfermentum from Virginia

Jan 26, 2023
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Reviewed by MonDak_Joe1953 from Minnesota

4.44/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
375ml bottle. Corked and caged. Label is marked for the bottling date of '021722'.
Mostly clear, pale gold colored body. One thin finger of white head sticks around.
Aroma of oak, white wine and grape, and funk leather.
Taste is chardonnay grapes, oak, and leather/tobacco funk. Lower level of tartness. Really dries up in the aftertaste.
Very soft, medium plus mouth feel. Very dry finish. Very good carbonation.
Prominent Brett qualities along with the oak wine barrel influences. Terrific palate cleanser.
Jan 14, 2023
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Reviewed by hman43 from North Carolina

4.2/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Look: It pours golden and brilliantly clear with a white head. Head retention is low.

Smell: It has a strong wine character from the chardonnay with some earthly flavors. There are some grape notes with a hint of leather.

Taste: It has wine flavors with grapes. There are very low leather and earthen elements. There are some wood elements.

Feel: It has a medium body with moderately strong sourness.

Overall, this beer is quite wine like but not to the point where it drinks like a wine.
Nov 25, 2022
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Reviewed by Hobbs87 from New York

2.58/5  rDev -42%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5
Have to call it as I see it. Just a terrible beer. I’ve had others from Russian River and this should be removed from their offerings. Figure they would have something based on a wine being in the Napa area but just had no enjoyable qualities at all. Most scores from BA have been somewhat accurate but a 98 for this is just stunning. Don’t waste your time or money, IMO this score is completely way off base.
Nov 24, 2022
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Reviewed by UWDAWG from Washington

4.04/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
Poured from 12.68 ounce bottle into a tulip glass.

Look- Pale gold, very hazy, no visible particulate, sudsy white head, below average head retention and lacing.

Smell- White grape, oak, chardonnay, mildly brett.

Taste- White grape, chardonnay, sour finish.

Feel- Thin body, clean finish, very dry finish, sourness induces saliva, gentle carbonation.

Overall- A wild ale with an abundance of chardonnay characteristics. This is a large descent from the beer styles I typically drink, but was an enjoyable new experience.
May 07, 2022
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Reviewed by CarolinaCardinals from North Carolina

4.2/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
A friend of mine visited Colorado for a family Christmas and he brought back a bunch of RR goodies 12-31-21 including this 375ml bottle for $14.99. Bottled 1-14-21; consumed 4-7-22.

Beer poured deep golden with a pretty good white head.

Nose is very nice, a nice combination of horse blanket, white wine, and a touch of sourness.

Taste follows the nose with a light but fairly substantial malt base that initially comes across as a sweet tart but has some funky leather. Finishes very dry and oaky.

Mouthfeel is light bodied and smooth with each sip.

Overall a sour that is very well done and does not obliterate my sour sensitive palate!
Apr 07, 2022
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Rated by pthoolihan from Pennsylvania

4.15/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Pretty color with a nice head on an aggressive pour. Smells fruity, tastes sour and dry. Comfortable feeling in the mouth but a little after bite
Apr 03, 2022
Rated: 4.34 by not2quick from Missouri

Mar 31, 2022
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Reviewed by eluvah from New York

4.32/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
On tap at Iron Abby in Horsham PA. Pours a hazy gold with thin white head. Smells of grapes and oak. Nice tart flavor and finishes with a little tartness on the tongue. A very nice sipping beer.
Mar 22, 2022
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Reviewed by Rug from Massachusetts

4.28/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Bottled 1/14/21

Oh man, it’s about damn time I get to try some of the Russian River Wilds! I managed to wrangle up 4 different ones, and plan to try them in order of lowest to highest ranking, starting here just short of the top 250 at #310. I’m too excited so let’s just get into it

Pours an opaque pale gold with a finger of white head that fades to a thin cap and leaves minimal lacing

Oh man, this is super funky in the nose. I’m picking up on aromas of earthy white wine, wet hay, old leather, sharp oak, lemon juice, pear, apple skin, and light white pepper

The funk really keeps up in taste, it’s soft and delicate up front yet tart and funky on the finish. On the front end of the sip I’m tasting dry white wine, pear skin, white grape, smooth oak, and light apple. The swallow brings notes of earthy white wine, sharp oak, wet hay, clove, lemon juice, apple skin, and leather

A light medium body pairs with moderate tingling carbonation, resulting in a sharp beer. Finishes quite dry and funky

This one is very good, but the straight up funk holds it back just a little bit. Still, it’s masterfully done, and I can’t wait to try the rest
Mar 06, 2022
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Reviewed by drdiesel9483 from Ohio

4.27/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Had a 2014 on tap in 2022
Look - Clear golden color with a nice white head and slight lacing. Shocked it looks this good
Smell - grainy tart citrus. Guessing the aging brought it to this smell but still fantastic
Taste - floral tart with a slight citrus
Feel - medium body with a crisp carb
Overall - really great beer. Would love to try fresh and see the difference
Feb 25, 2022
Rated: 4.59 by dexterk1 from Illinois

Feb 17, 2022
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Reviewed by Gatch from Massachusetts

4.76/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
Had this right after PtY, been wanting to try this almost as long as Pliny. Certainly one of the top sours I haven’t been able to try. Fathom Bistro & Bar on Shelter Island, San Diego. So much funk and delicious barrel character. The definition of a sour blonde. Wayyyy to easy to drink. Wow!
Feb 17, 2022
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Reviewed by ovaltine from Indiana

4.46/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Golden color, nicely hazy, with a fizzy white head that dissipates quickly. The nose is green grape, lemon, oak, and da funky Brett.

The taste is very refined, with the green grape and funky Brett up front and the oak and lemon at the back of the palate, with a lingering flavor profile that is delicious.

The mouthfeel is bright and fizzy, per the style. An excellent wild ale, IMHO.
Dec 18, 2021
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Reviewed by Patrick2012 from California

4.62/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Bottled 3-27-2020. Poured in Tulip.
Excellent chardonnay aroma with slight earthy notes. Chardonnay is the main note in the taste followed by some apple and pear. Very dry and bitter. Tasty.
Oct 29, 2021
Rated: 4.06 by Quarantinehobby from Massachusetts

Oct 20, 2021
Rated: 4.63 by pdonovan16 from Massachusetts

Sep 23, 2021
Rated: 4.5 by wshinevar from Massachusetts

Sep 13, 2021
Rated: 4.32 by EMH73 from New York

Aug 29, 2021
Rated: 4.25 by rstump24 from Ohio

Aug 24, 2021
Rated: 5 by kblomseth from California

Aug 19, 2021
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Rated by jb_4226 from Texas

4.88/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5
Definitely taste the chardonnay, good stuff!
Jul 19, 2021
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Reviewed by mkh012 from Colorado

4.38/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Bottled 6 months ago.

Pours semi-hazy sunshine orange with a persistent off-white head.

The nose is lemon, peach, pineapple, oak, and light cheesy funk.

The taste follows. Lemon, pineapple, orange, and oak. Low to medium tartness.

The mouthfeel opens medium and finishes dry. A touch too dry in my opinion.

Overall, very good. Delicate and complex. My one knock is that it leans bitter and dry on the finish, which undercuts the fresh fruit notes that are so prominent on the nose.
Jul 11, 2021
Rated: 4.65 by mush from Illinois

Jun 22, 2021
Rated: 4.6 by Ben1313 from New Hampshire

Jun 21, 2021
Rated: 4.68 by JAWS from New York

Jun 17, 2021
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Rated by DucksFan16 from Tennessee

4.67/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
Bottled 01/14/2021. Enjoyed on 05/28/2021.
May 29, 2021
Rated: 4.46 by gefinley from California

Apr 10, 2021
Rated: 4.83 by CAcker from California

Mar 20, 2021
Rated: 4.29 by TimG_0913 from Delaware

Mar 07, 2021
Rated: 4.3 by Lucoli from New York

Feb 26, 2021
Rated: 4.52 by Wisconsin_IPA_Lover from Wisconsin

Feb 16, 2021
Rated: 3.63 by Bugsmcl from Ohio

Feb 12, 2021
Rated: 5 by mrmsmith from District of Columbia

Feb 09, 2021
Rated: 4.37 by eshooshoo from California

Feb 05, 2021
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Reviewed by IBU_Hunter from California

4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
*Aroma: Oaky, white wine, Chardonnay
*Looks: Pale amber, lemony hazy, 1.5 finger head that sticks around
*Taste: AMAZING! What a superbly made beer! Notes of Chardonnay, but slight sour ale notes with perfect dryness, this is a truly well made, work of art! I am speechless.
*Finish: Balanced, delicious, champagne-like but sour ale! Better than most Belgian Sour Ales. And that’s saying a lot.
*Overall Verdict*: A+++ all the way. Russian River has made an instant winner with this beer at 7.5% abv, super smooth, amazing balance, amazing sour notes balanced by carbonation. Perfect style for whatever the style it represents!
Feb 01, 2021
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Reviewed by KeithHartwig from Pennsylvania

4.94/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
RR beers are incredibly difficult to find on the East Coast, especially in PA, where (according to one source) they are randomly distributed. Was very excited to discover a few dusty bottles dated 050118 at Waywood Beverage in Kennett Square, PA. Opened on 1-10-20 and poured into a champagne flute.

A: Clear straw gold. Rocky white head that settles quickly. Some lacing remains after letting the beer open up for a minute.

S: Strong lactic sourness. Vinous white wine notes followed by golden raisin. Initially detected a sweet citrus (tangerine) aroma. Apparent oak tannins on the nose.

T: Carbonic bite followed by golden raisin, citrus and lactic acidity. The acidity is not as sharp as I had assumed from the aroma - its actually far more restrained and well balanced, like a sparkling moscato or chardonnay.

M: The combination of high carbonation and tannins create a full mouthfeel despite the thin body. Some lingering silkiness, perhaps owing to soft water (pure speculation).

O: Very well rounded flavor profile and balanced body. This is an elegant and quaffable beer, with just enough funk and acidity to be rustic and refreshing and not toilet stall and corrosive.
Jan 11, 2021
Temptation from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 98 out of 100 with 3885 ratings