boboski (1095) - Alabama, USA - NOV 15, 2007
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Batch 1 - fresh, at 6 months and 1 year. After 1 year Batch 1 started to lose its lustre, and batch 2 never was anywhere nearly as exciting. Deep amber pour with varying red highlighting and a cloudy swirling center. A bold, frothy head is beige and recedes quickly. The nose is spectacular! Grapes, brown sugar, twisted funkiness, vinous qualities everywhere, tart cherries, light must, vibrant yeast including loads of brettanomyces, horseblanket, ginger and a formidable blast of old oak. Alcohol is almost undetected. The flavor is astonishing! This completely destroys just about all of its sour brethren, concerning taste, drinkability and mouthfeel. Sparkling carbonation evenly disperses malts and sourness to the farthest reaches of the mouth. Tart fruits and brazen acidity battle funk like itís the last chance either will have to propagate their future. Sweetness is mild and soothing, cooling the fiery spice and complimenting the funk that gives this beer the feeling that itís been brewed by dozens of dedicated generations. The finish is very tart and highly acidic, breaching into a refreshing sourness and leaving cherry and oak notes to dry out the tongue. I dream of the day a fresh batch of this is re-released that shares the assertiveness and glory of the first bottles of this I sampled. A profound, startling experience. Russian River is the best brewery in the United States.
csbosox (1223) - Prairie Village, Kansas, USA - NOV 7, 2007
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: DEC 28, 2007 GABF 2006-Tart cherries & oak aroma. Taste is tart at first with sour cherries followed by brett (horseblanket), finishes dry. 7/3/7/3/17
#002 Bottle. Thanks John. Wonderful tart cherry, wood, lacto, all in perfect harmony and just beautiful. Cherry, wood, vanilla, nice tartness and fruitiness. The flavor is well integrated, no flavors overpower any other. Score went up quite a bit.
wetherel (1836) - Encinitas, California, USA - NOV 5, 2007
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Had at Loganís Oceanside beer tasting with AlohaC, and Hair, and Matt, and Ken, Jeff, Colleen, Bill, and others. A real pleasure to try this gem. Iíve been very eager to get a hold of a bottle. Iíve seen it at two other tastings, but didnít get to try it for one reason or another. Very small sample. Great, great sour cherry aroma. Sourness is mild. Light red color. Tempted to bring my rating up, but 4.5 is pretty high.
piscator34 (1968) - Winnipeg, Manitoba, CANADA - NOV 3, 2007
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Red-orange in colour with a few floaties, and strong carbonation. Aromas of mild sour cherries, old wood, balsamic, and leather. Intense sourness blends seamlessly with the mild fruit (cherry and a bit of citrus) and light malt flavors. More oak in the mouth too. Tart finish. Fantastic stuff. Huge thanks to oakbluff for sharing this one.
Kevin (2084) - New Mexico, USA - OCT 25, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
bottle murky orange body with a thin head. sour nose with a fruit scent. ah yes, my jaw locks up on first sip, hooray, this is good. cherry is very noticeable. damn the sourness is great and lingers with a strong acidity.
3 8 7 5 16
pantanap (3357) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - OCT 22, 2007
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
bottle (batch 002)....lost my notes on this one but i know i enjoyed this one immensely. overall impression: awesome cherry tartness and the brett added a favorable sourness funk that added more to the character of this ale. level of acidity and carbonation was perfectly matching to the aforermentioned qualities of this brew.
BeerandBlues2 (9701) - Hanover, Maryland, USA - OCT 19, 2007
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
GABF í07. Pours hazy tawny with an average, frothy, off-white head, lasting with good lacing. Aroma is average malt (bread, caramel, hay, straw), average hops (flowers, citrus), average yeast (earth) with notes of cherries. Medium bodied, sticky texture, average carbonation, and a bitter finish. Average duration, light sweetness, moderate acidity and bitterness.
kreepindeth (404) - Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA - OCT 12, 2007
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Sour and tart aroma. Mouthfeel is sour and tickling. Vinegar, cherries, wood, some mild "horse", warming finish. Very satisfying beer.
GeneralGao (3614) - Iowa City, Iowa, USA - SEP 28, 2007
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: JUL 4, 2012 375 ml bottle purchased at the brewery. Batch 002. Poured a hazy sunset orange-red color. Head was two fingers high, fizzy, and off white. It reduced to a thin film after a minute or two. Aroma was of oak, sour cherry, and cereal grain. There was also a whiff of red wine vinegar. Effervescent on the tongue with assertive acidity. Tasted of sour berries, dry white wine, lemon, lime, and vinegar. Sour throughout. Delicious.
tyler_mn (1475) - SLP, Minnesota, USA - SEP 27, 2007
4.4 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: OCT 5, 2009 Bottle via trade with MrBendo. Aroma or crushed sour cherries. Sweeter malt vinegar. Wine tannin. Oak and sour yeast. Pours bright ruby/pink with a thin white head. Initially dry and quite tart on the palate. Definite vinous and oak notes. Some sour cherry as well. Well balanced. Really great stuff! Rich and creamy with lively carbonation. My first Russian River, and I look forward to more. Thanks Todd!
Batch 3 has dried out an incredible amount. Assloads of acetic acid throughout. A screamingly brash finish. Tons of funk, tons of barrel and all shades of deliciousness.
Batch 2. Wow, wow, wow. Absolutely heavenly aroma. The perfect amount of acetic acid, wine tannin and tart fruit skin. Rivals Castleton for aromatic complexity. Flavor in this batch is absolutely at itís peak (maybe, just maybe starting to go downhill)? Still fantastic, though. Nearing zero fruit presence. The cherries have all been eaten up by the yeast. Wood tannin is still quite strong. The acid, though not as bracing as some other RR sours, is still quite present, especially on the finish. Hot damn... this beer sneaks up in my ratings ever time I drink it! Thanks for the most recent taste Jake!