My latest taste of Russian River's Damnation golden ale was last night, courtesy of Joe and Liz. My first taste problem came via a trade from California. Here are those notes from August, 2005:
Another strong golden Belgian-style ale, whose name is spun from the best known and original, Duvel. Beyond that, hopes are high, as I've not yet had a Russian River that failed to impress. Uncage, uncork, into the St. Bernardus goblet and away we go...
Hazed, bright yellow coloring, shortish white head, though it lingers long enough...good, good...
Lovely aroma. Yeast, light spices, lemon and other citrus fruits, orange, pear, ...very nice.
Taste/texture: a blast of sour at the front, then smooth and slides down with ease. Peppery spice slide in and ride sidecar all the way through. Fruit and hot spice maintain dominance in the flavor, body is a light/ medium, finish is soft, but leaves a fuzzy, and bold texture on the palate. Abv is light for the style, but peeks through and squeaks a bit, but is no bludgeon.
Very tasty, and I'm more impressed as I get further in, for it's a subtle, sophisticated ale, not a head-banger, no wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am. But zesty, and rewarding, with a unique character.