SDbruboy (1864) - San Diego, California, USA - SEP 8, 2008
3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 10/20
375 ml bottle, from Whole Foods in Berkeley. Okay, maybe I just need to stop rating beer, or maybe I just need to admit that my tastes have changed, or maybe I’ve somehow now become a beer troglodyte... I have to say it, I don’t like the taste of this beer very much. Can I appreciate the slightly hazy topaz color and the smallish white head that leaves a trace of lacing? Yes, I can. Can I acknowledge the craftsmanship that obviously went into producing this beer with the curious aroma of sour fruits, wet wool, tannic oak, with vinuous notes and wet moss? Yes, I can. Can I recognize the amount of time and effort that it took to create an ale with this character of sour, puckering berries, dry funky fruitiness, wet wood, pie cherries and funk? Yes I can, it’s a well crafted, beautifully handled and uniquely flavored beer. I don’t like it very well at all - too sour, too funky, and overly tart. This beer is a chore to drink, not a joy. So let me not rank any longer among the elite of the beer world, ’cause I don’t want to have to wince, blanch and work so hard at drinking my favorite beverage. These extreme brett and sour ales are just gettin’ too much for my simplifiying tastes. Am I impressed by what wild things a brewer can do? Yes I am impressed. Woulld I buy it again to drink for the sheer joy of it? No, no, no, no.
JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - AUG 27, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Batch 2, purchased online from Russian River. Wow, is this beer amazing right now. Dusky brownish-red pour, with a fine frothing head. I let some yeast droplets find their way onto the top of the head, giving it even more character. Sweet smell of intensely sour black cherries along with the deep funk that sits between a Flanders red and an oud bruin. Of course, it’s bretty as hell too (this is Vinnie, right?) and also has a shit-ton of oak in the flavor. Mouthfeel is delightfully full, and the carbonation is nicely lively, not distracting at all. A very piquant, dry finish to this superb brew. Do these guys just rock, or what? Glad to make y’all my 1000th.
SuzyGreenberg (1603) - Seattle, Washington, USA - AUG 27, 2008
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
draft @ brewery - this brew hits you are hard and thick as lesh’s baseline in the namesake song; dark brown and murky with thin, tan head; thick, resinous aromas of wood, brett, funk, wine and cherries; though cherries are mild in the aromas; lacing as it goes down with lots of funky, thick sours in the flavors; cherries come out more here and also some oaky sweetness; not my fav sour, but very nice
StefanSD (2370) - Ouray, Colorado, USA - AUG 22, 2008
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
375 ml bottle from lb4lb. Pours an amber color with a medium creamy off-white head that has good retention. The aroma is rich and complex with grapes, cherries and oak. The taste has flavors similar to the aroma, with the cherries being extra tart, the grapes are funky and the oak is a bit acidic. The mouthfeel is smooth with moderately high acidity, and the carbonation is lively and prickly.The finish is long and sour with lingering sour cherries. Overall: A truly great sour ale. Thanks Deniz.
ditmier (1508) - Boise, Idaho, USA - AUG 21, 2008
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Batch 3 - Pours dk brown with a small off-white head - aroma is all sour malt , flavour follows....tart tart oak with nuances of old cherry and tobacco, lasting flavour and nice lacing, good sour..
cbkschubert (2901) - BFE, Arizona, USA - AUG 19, 2008
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
375 ml bottle (batch 2) via trade from jason when he was still jasonmech77 - Pours a slightly hazy copper color with a small off white head. Faint lacing. Aroma is tart cherries. The flavor is tart esters (cherries) and very light oak. To be honest, this beer, and most RR Sour ales do nothing for me. They all taste the same. With that being said, I will continue to try them when I get a chance. I just can’t jump on the Sour bandwagon when I just don’t like them. My score is very generous. Thanks Jason.
cquiroga (371) - Tujunga, California, USA - AUG 18, 2008
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
I hope nobody minds this placeholder rating for the purposes of the DD Top Ten list. l’ve got a real rating somewhere, and l’ll enter it one of these days, but for now l hope it’s enough to say that this is one of my very favorite beers ever. Batch 001 and its Pinot-focused bliss, of course. Batches 002 and 003, while good beers, mostly just make me sad.
PilsnerPeter (3045) - Flushing, New York, USA - AUG 15, 2008
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Bottle Batch 3: (Thanks golubj!) Pours a deep hazy copper with the slightest pink hue and a pillowy off white head that retains perfectly. Aroma is amazingly complex. Oak, dust, vinous qualities, touch of leather, currant, almond notes, acetic/vinegar, earthy old wood, and some tart kriek-like qualities. The mouthfeel is crisp and creamy with a sharp cleansing character. The flavor has a powerful, Lambic-like acidity, as well as vast funkiness of cork, dried oak, sharp rind-like sourness, and a subtle almond note comes through under all the complex dryness. There is also red wine tannins, currant, leather, acetic vinous notes, cherry skin tannins, more woody character, and just a myriad of enigmatic layers of complexity into the dry, delicious finish. An unbelievable Sour Ale!
Angeloregon (2055) - Portland, Oregon, USA - AUG 14, 2008
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
ON tap at Belmont Station in Portland, OR--Glad I saved the bottle I brought back home from San Diego--Poured a murky hazy brown-orange body with a small whitish head. Sweet fruity (cherry) nose and flavor/palate. Sticky, sharp, carbonic, tart, sour (God, was it sour!) profile. tongue dazzling with liveliness. Not so terrible.
nhorween (645) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 13, 2008
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
thanks cmubeerman. batch 2 and 3 side by side. Batch 2 is really excellent - sour, funky and tart, lemony. Extremely well balanced and outwardly Russian River. Batch 3 is much more subdued, but still similar. Oily in the mouth, especially when compared to the fresh tartness of batch 2. (batch 2 = 4.3, batch 3 = 3.7). What a fun vertical.