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Pliny The Younger - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Pliny The YoungerPliny The Younger

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,358 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,358
Reviews: 844
rAvg: 4.69
pDev: 8.74%
Wants: 4,314
Gots: 111 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Pliny the Younger, the man, was Pliny the Elder’s nephew and adopted son. They lived nearly 2,000 years ago! Pliny the Elder is our Double IPA, so we felt it was fitting to name our Triple IPA after his son. It is almost a true Triple IPA with triple the amount of hops as a regular I.P.A. That said, it is extremely difficult, time and space consuming, and very expensive to make. And that is why we don’t make it more often! This beer is very full-bodied with tons of hop character in the nose and throughout. It is also deceptively well-balanced and smooth.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 01-27-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,358 | Reviews: 844 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jellikit
1/5  rDev -78.7%

jellikit, Aug 15, 2014
Photo of ryno09
1/5  rDev -78.7%

ryno09, Dec 17, 2011
Photo of Amysantiago
1/5  rDev -78.7%

Amysantiago, Apr 13, 2014
Photo of Talkie85
1/5  rDev -78.7%

Talkie85, Mar 20, 2014
Photo of reclaverjr
1/5  rDev -78.7%

reclaverjr, Jul 05, 2014
Photo of louback45
1/5  rDev -78.7%

louback45, Mar 06, 2014
Photo of porkinator
1/5  rDev -78.7%

porkinator, Dec 18, 2011
Photo of wattoclone
1.75/5  rDev -62.7%

wattoclone, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of BeerSociety
2/5  rDev -57.4%

BeerSociety, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of Bbates
2.61/5  rDev -44.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Ok guys.... This beer is pure marketing hype. I hate to be a buzzkill here, but anyone can create a beer that is so over-hopped that it kills the taste of a mediocre brew. When did overly-hopping a beer become the gold standard? This started in California and has unfortunately spread to other states. Hops do nothing but mask the true flavor of a brew, and have classically been used to cover up mistakes. In the case of Younger, a hop EXTRACT is used, ala Anheuser-Busch. Look, I LOVE beer- all styles but just as hops can set a brew off they can ruin it very quickly. It seems Belgian an German brewers, with centuries old tradition, have a firm grip on the concept of the judicious use of hops to complement a beer without overpowering it. The only explanation I can come up with is the fact that lupulin, a compound found in hops, works on the same receptors in the brain that THC does. At one point I had great hopes for the direction of brewing in the states, but am dismayed at the current school of thought that hops equals great. I know I may be ruffling a few feathers here but let's keep it real. This brew is pure viral marketing and nothing more. The best thing about Pliny the Younger is the sense of camaraderie it creates among those waiting 3+ hours in the rain for it. This is what people really love about it. That and the feeling of exclusivity they get from the unreasonably difficult process of obtaining it.

Bbates, Feb 21, 2014
Photo of mentor
2.88/5  rDev -38.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to Redwoodgeorge for the opportunity...I was part of the unauthorized bottling project he undertook. Pours a one finger white head over a nearly clear orange amber liquid. Smells clean grapefruit pith. Sugar sweet and cherry. Underlying caramel accompanied by buried apricot esters.

Tastes buttery (blech). Caramel. Acidic. Mostly piney hops with some softer citrus. Cotton candy. Brutally woody dry with a taste of fresh 'morning cobwebs' in the forest. Fruity esters are lost under the hops.

Md thick mouthfeel and moderately carbonated. I swear I could feel the hop oils on my tongue. What I didn't like was a prominent and unpleasant diacetyl (buttery) that I found completely distracting. Ruined the beer for me, and it's reflected in the 'taste' portion of my rating. I found this same flavor in the samples I had at GABF last year (2005). In front of the brewer (knee-jerk reaction), I actually spit the beer out and said 'pediococcus!'.

mentor, May 14, 2006
Photo of RichardMNixon
3/5  rDev -36%

RichardMNixon, Mar 04, 2013
Photo of tjfinkle
3/5  rDev -36%

tjfinkle, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of brianlindman
3/5  rDev -36%

brianlindman, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of DimensionX
3/5  rDev -36%

DimensionX, Sep 28, 2013
Photo of HitchSlap
3/5  rDev -36%

HitchSlap, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of boxcar01
3/5  rDev -36%

boxcar01, Nov 15, 2013
Photo of henryspam
3/5  rDev -36%

henryspam, Jun 14, 2012
Photo of RViator325
3/5  rDev -36%

RViator325, Feb 17, 2012
Photo of Aakundi
3.2/5  rDev -31.8%

Aakundi, Yesterday at 04:04 AM
Photo of hiphopj5
3.25/5  rDev -30.7%

hiphopj5, Mar 05, 2014
Photo of CharcuterIAN
3.33/5  rDev -29%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served 8oz pour, red wine glass @ The East-side club, OLY, WA.
Nice orange/gold color, no head/lacing. smells of mandarin orange, rose, malts up front, medium hop.
Taste much the same as smell, hoppy, malty sweetness, light alcohol tinge. sticky mouth feel...
SOOO much hype about this beer...but is it all manufactured obscurity? Frankly, this beer (for me ) was BORING! I'd much rather spend 5.50 for a full pint of the elder rather then 7.50 for a half pint of this. Don't get me wrong, it's "good" beer...but, it didn't knock my socks off.
Not the best beer in the world.
Looking forward to trying Sanctification.

CharcuterIAN, Apr 19, 2011
Photo of rustycentipede
3.33/5  rDev -29%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had this on tap at Apex in Portland. Was surprised to find it a very average imperial IPA.

A - Poured a very pale clear gold with no head and lots of bubbles.

S - Citrus and pine

T - I did not find this beer to be nearly as hoppy as I was hoping it would be. It was a pleasant taste, definitely nothing to complain about, but nothing stood out as special about this beer. A standard piney bitterness but very little residual hop flavor.

M - Very nice, almost champagne-like mouthfeel.

O - I am glad to that I got to try it, but I would not make any effort to have it again. It is by no means a bad beer, but I don't think I would have thought twice about it if I had not heard so much about it prior to drinking this. It's true that this beer "doesn't taste like it is 11%", but in my book that is not necessarily good. I found it to be lacking in both malt and hops flavor.

rustycentipede, Feb 12, 2012
Photo of Dubbercody
3.35/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Got a glass with lunch today....12 oz glass.

Clear amber golden with a fantastic nose, smooth and with a nice malty edge.

Certainly nice to try, but I doubt I'll drop the amount of coin it cost to get this beer.

Good, nice tasty beer, really phenomenal ...but like Girl Scout Cookies...if they were available all the time wouldn't be such a big deal or so costly.

Dubbercody, Feb 21, 2009
Photo of DT509er
3.38/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I'm a IPA guy, but my taste buds are over-loaded from the alcohol on the triple IPA's.

PTY was a rather surprising taste for me, I found it to have a subtle alcohol effect with a sweet taste overall. Texture was creamy, reminded me of a Cream Ale soda (texture only). No real head to each pour, its beer in the glass top-to-bottom.

This is a good beer but if I had to stand in line as others have done, and continue to do, this is not the beer I would wait for.


DT509er, Feb 16, 2014
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Pliny The Younger from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 2,358 ratings.