Temptation | Russian River Brewing Company

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3,736 Ratings

Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-19-2003

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,736 |  Reviews: 1,035
Photo of MrBillyMac
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of IvoryFoxhole
4.32/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

375ml bottle poured into tulip glass. Bottled July 27, 2012. Or is it released that date? Should I have let it sit longer?

A: Slow slow pour to prevent yeast sediment. Light foamy 3 finger head with good retention, leaving little lacing but a good cap. Beer is a light copper.

S: Very wine-like, tart grapes, cherries, and apples. Some of the mustiness associated with the Brett yeast.

T: Quite citrus-like, a lot of lemon, orange type flavor. A little bit sour, but not overpoweringly so. Well-balanced.

M: Not overpowering, carbonation present, but not too much. Sour, but not too dry. Very little alcohol presence evident.

O: I always say this: It's a Russian River bottle-aged sour ale. What are you waiting for? Get one if you can.

 742 characters

Photo of yamar68
4.55/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Glowing straw gold body topped with a healthy amount of paper white head, loads and loads of lacing, tiny beading fills the glass from start to finish.

Wow. Incredible... white grapes, clove, funky love, dandelion, lemongrass, incredibly dynamic, complex, like nothing else I can think of.

Lemon zest, loads of tasty pulp, beautifully tart and dry, approachable, hints of fresh wood - incredibly balanced. A remarkable beer.

This beer achieves the same complexity found in Beatification without the overwhelming level of sour patch tart. Phenomenal.

Highly, highly recommended.

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Photo of jlkaufm
4.75/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of cbnz
4.75/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of agaloco9
5/5  rDev +12.1%

Photo of atone315
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of JustinQ
4.25/5  rDev -4.7%

Photo of ScottP
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of psdonnelly
5/5  rDev +12.1%

Photo of Backlash209
4/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of joh04587
5/5  rDev +12.1%

Photo of calvin233
4.25/5  rDev -4.7%

Photo of jimilayne
3.67/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is the first American Wild Ale I've ever had, so with no basis for comparison I will be as fair as possible. Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Golden yellow with a thin head that has staying power. Rests comfortably and consistently throughout the drink. There is a thin tornado-like strip of carbonation rising directly in the middle of the glass. Impressive.

Smell: The aroma does absolutely no justice to the beer. A bitter, dare I say, dry urine tinged smell.

Taste: As expected, a burst of chardonnay but not overwhelmingly or bitingly so. Sits on the tongue before lifting throughout the mouth. A touch sour and unusual (perhaps briny) to the untrained tongue but settles in nicely after a few sips rather than keeping you guessing. However it does bite the back jaw with the sourness the deeper you get into it.

Feel: Nice smooth finish with near perfect carbonation.

Very interesting. My quest to finish the top 100 opens up yet another door that I will be walking back through.

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Photo of Googs
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of mixed_master7
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of beef13
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of Archemedies
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of apocalypsezombie
4.25/5  rDev -4.7%

Photo of mendvicdog
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of DRBiser
4.7/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

9/24/12: Opened right after work. Mail-order beer from the left coast.

Nose reminds me of berliner weisse? But additional Brett and a touch of Chardonnay. Very pleasant.

Pale gold - looks gorgeous. Seems super carbonated yet a nice light head. Interesting how bubbles come up directly from the center of bottom of glass? This actually does look like the champagne of beers...

Taste is wheat, lemon grass and a tiny bit of funk up front...quickly followed by this lovely explosion of Brett and Chardonnay. I’m not even a huge Chard fan, but this is the perfect amount of winey oak in the taste. Very refreshing and in my opinion the perfect amount of tartness.

While carbonation is strong, it doesn't feel overly bubbly like champers would be - really nice mouthfeel.

One of my favorites

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Photo of MarkyMOD
4.2/5  rDev -5.8%

Photo of Hardcore
3.5/5  rDev -21.5%

Photo of dunix
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of tarheels86
4.26/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750mL b3 shared with the family for Christmas. Poured into champagne glasses. Pours a glowing bright yellow that is cloudy with yeast and a decent size white head that has good retention and leaves sheets of beautiful lacing. Aroma is chardonnay, white grapes, champagne. Taste reminds me of a geuze minus the barnyard funk. At first there is a nearly mouth puckering sourness that overwhelms the palate for an instant. Then it goes from sweet to sour to bitter dryness back to wet sourness in all of about three seconds. Woah. There is some hop bitterness that reminds you this is a wild ale and not white wine. Was loved by all the wine lovers in the room. A big hit. Would be an excellent gateway beer to move someone from wine to beer snobbery. 12/27/2009 8/5/8/5/16=4.2


375mL b1. First batch of Temptation has gained quite the phenolic, plastic nose. The body is not too sour but rather sweet with minimal tartness. Finish is very dry. This batch isn’t aging so well.

375mL b2 pours with much higher carbonation and a gorgeous head. Aroma here is such spot on: cotton candy, funk, chardonnay, white grapes. Excellent body with some spicy sourness, sweet tropical fruits, candy. Very nice. This is the best batch by far.

375mL b4 pours with a giant head. Nose is losing complexity with sweet vanilla and birthday cake. Taste is watery, much too sweet. Either too young or just not up to par.

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Temptation from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.46 out of 5 with 3,736 ratings