Russian River Brewing Company makes some of the best beers you will ever try (if you can find them). The names of their beers range from Sanctification to Beatification and from Pliny the Elder to Little White Lie and the styles this brewery tackles are just as interesting. Having tried Pliny the Elder (a Double IPA) and Supplication (a Sour), I decided to go for another one of their beers.
Damnation is labeled a Belgian Strong Pale Ale. I don't know that I've ever tried one of these before, so here goes.
The head swells up in the glass as soon as the beer touches it. I haven't seen one like this since the Saison Dupont. The color is a pale golden hue with a nice foamy head that had good retention.
The smell of the beer is really different. I definitely got a bunch of the yeast, but it doesn't smell as full and in your face as a lot of beers that use Belgian yeast. It also doesn't have that sort of bready smell that some yeast-strong beers tend to have.
The taste is a lot like the smell- full of yeast, but not in a way that's overpowering. To me, it almost felt like I was drinking a cider. This beer is no slouch at over 7%, but you wouldn't know it from the taste. It does a remarkable job of feeling light while not tasting light. The only thing I wasn't sure about was the almost total lack of carbonation. I could see bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass, but there was almost no carbonation in the taste. I don't know, maybe there was just something wrong with my bottle. Still, I enjoyed this beer a lot. Can't wait to try more from Russian River.
Final Grade: A-