1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Pliny The Younger - Russian River Brewing Company

Pliny The YoungerPliny The Younger

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,130 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2130
Reviews: 835
rAvg: 4.69
pDev: 8.53%

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
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Pliny The Younger Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,130 | Reviews: 835 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of ccrida


4.15/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Update 2/24/2010-
10 oz at County Cork for $5.75 IIRC. I enjoyed three glasses, and over all had a much more favorable impression them my first sampling, and have updated my scores to reflect it. In general, I found it to be exceptionally smooth, with only mild heat on the finish when I really looked for it. I don't feel that it's particularly hoppier tasting then PtE (I assume they've reached saturation point), and is simply a bit thicker and stronger, which detracts from the drinkability and overall enjoyment to PtE, which I prefer. A bit more of that resinous dank bite, but definately dangerous. Still, I don't think this would be the frenzy inducer that it is if it was a regular release. Luckily, PtE is!

Initial review 2/21/2009

10oz. snifter at the Concordia Ale House for a whooping $8 (granted hops aren't cheap now and there are clearly a lot in this, but still...). Clear pale orange with a light sand head.

The aroma is very fragrant and bright, much more resinous then the Elder, and really smells exactly like a bag of dried hops, with a blast of alcohol.

The taste was a let down for me. This beer is too hot and boozy for my taste. The 11% is painful, and detracts from the hop flavor, which ends up falling short complexity wise (e.g. the floral notes I enjoy in PtE), with a firm bitterness and dry finish.

Mouthfeel is slick and oily, solvent like, medium bodied.

Drinkabilty is pretty low all things considering, and overall I was sorely disappointed. PtE is one of my all time favorite beers, but probably I'll never bother having this again. If you can't find this but are eager to try it, take a PtE and drop a shot of vodka in it and you'll get the idea.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2009 20:20:58 | More by ccrida
Photo of writerLJBerg


4.15/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap @ Wildwood last night. 8 oz pour.

A: Melted gold coloration. Very thin head. Translucent. Clear demarcation of the legs on the glass.

N: I can smell this while holding it at chest level. Intense pineapple notes, mango, passionfruit, and a smattering of grapefruit. Caramel sweetness. Very worthy nose.

T: Massive interplay between sweet and bitter. Grapefruit gives way to some onion that is eventually defeated by earth, pine, conifer, and ash. Bitterness is a 10 on a 10 scale. This is the hoppiest beast on the market. Has the caramel of a good bourbon and some honey melon.

M: Dry and desiccating as a desert. Very sticky and washes around in the mouth. Sublime.

O: A beer like this is worth the effort of the chase if you haven't had it. Clearly, this is true. Yet, as I drank the 8oz, the desire for another one diminished with each sip. I've had it 5 times now, and I don't see much reason to continue tracking it down year after year.

Serving type: on-tap

03-06-2013 21:28:40 | More by writerLJBerg
Photo of Hophead717


4.16/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes, enjoyed in early March in Philadelphia.

A: A clear golden, with a fully one-finger head that sticks around.

S: Sweet honey, hops, and orange citrus.

T: Sweetness, with hints of honey upfront. Grapefruit dominates mid-sip before relenting to a strongly bitter finish.

M: Medium bodied, slightly slick, and fairly low carbonation.

O: Great beer (sort of reminds me of Hopslam, only with the strong bitterness in the finish that I feel Hopslam lacks), but not worth the insane hunt.

Serving type: on-tap

03-26-2012 02:15:04 | More by Hophead717
Photo of Rastacouere

Quebec (Canada)

4.18/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Mostly diminishing, but initially generous white head takes position above a straight golden body. Extremely complex hops nose hints at most nuances you can think of, all ahead prefumey and piney, but underneath hinting at a broad range of citrus fruits, leafy and minty in nature. Might gain a bit from being less liquorous, but this nose is truly fantastic, magical hoppiness I’d dare say, with maltiness being certainly felt if not exactly managing to show any flavours all the way through the hops. Palate is oily, full, slick, tannic and liquorous, hence surprisingly sweet, but it works thanks to a controlled level of citric acidity.

Serving type: growler

11-08-2005 01:19:21 | More by Rastacouere
Photo of Onenote81

North Carolina

4.18/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a growler courtesy of tzanio. HUGE thanks!! This guy went out of his way to send me a growler, because he felt he shafted me on our last trade, which he did not. Mega-karma his way!!

Poured this into my brand new snifter (what better way to break it in). Pours a beautiful orange/gold with a sticky, frothy white head on top. Decent amount of carbonation rising up. The webbing on this clings to the glass edge for dear life. Perfect sip rings follow.

This is the best smelling beer I have ever dipped my nose into! Wonderful mixture of flowers, grapefruit, pine forest, and alcohol. Other beers attempt this scent, but fall way short. I wanted to bathe myself in this it smelled so good.

Mouthfeel was creamy, yet still held a nice mellow crispness that I like in my DIPAs. This beer had a high warming quality as I sipped and sipped. Flavor was strong citrus smack smothered in booziness. I could sense the alcohol very much so in this beer. This hindered my drinkability, as I could only drink one glass of this. Curse my feeble palate!!

Besides the high boozy quality in this one, this is near perfect. I'm glad I saved some for the next couple of nights. And I'm glad I had an opportunity to try this. Thanks again, Tzanio!

Serving type: growler

02-18-2009 17:18:00 | More by Onenote81
Photo of MADhombrewer


4.18/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a 10oz goblet.

Appearance- Slightly hazy and straw colored with a very nice white head. Good lacing on the glass.

Smell- Huge piney hop aroma. Not much malt smell. Some alcohol.

Taste- Big piney bitterness all over my mouth. Small malt taste and lots of alcohol. VERY dry as well.

Mouthfeel- This is a lot thinner than I remember. A lot thinner. I did not expect this.

Overall- Very good IIPA. When I first had this two years ago I thought it was good but too boozy. I stand by that now, but I like it better this time around. Could it be my palate or the batch? It is much drier and thinner than I remember. I was glad to get this at the Horse Brass. This tapping was under the radar to say the least. Slow night and easy to get and enjoy quietly.

2012. Better than 2011s batch. Much more of a mouthfeel to it but still not sticky like some big IPAs can be.. Crazy booziness.

Serving type: on-tap

03-30-2011 17:54:33 | More by MADhombrewer
Photo of OddNotion

New Jersey

4.18/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had a 5.5oz serving in a small snifter at Capone's in PA.

Appearance: Beautiful transparent golden color. No head as it was decanted once into a pitcher and again into the snifter. No big deal I think I will live.

Smell: Beautiful hop pungent aroma. Slight amount of booze, but at 11% that is not surprising.

Taste: While there are a ton of hops that hit you right away, there is quite a noticable malt backbone that kind of turns me off. A little boozy, but I guess it all balances out.

Mouthfeel: Even though it was was poured twice it still has a nice bubbly crips clean mouthfeel.

Overall: Very good beer, but IMO Elder is better by a longshot. Hype it huge on this and while it is very solid, I think it is overhyped. Thank you Russian River for another great offering!

Serving type: on-tap

04-04-2011 04:39:57 | More by OddNotion
Photo of Nugganooch


4.18/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Review #200

Younger watch 2012!
No sad sob stories of long lines or pawning off my first born here. Seems like the SD establishments handled this year’s release in stride.

-1st sampled at Pizza Port Brewbies Fest 2012
$5 per 6oz taster – 02-11-12

Aroma and flavor was so on point here – hops were floral, vibrant, and pronounced. Alcohol barely detectable. Could have been Elder if I didn’t know any better! Really great stuff.

-2nd encounter at Stone Brew – happened upon a “silent tapping” & quite the dumb luck.
$8 per 10oz - 02-21-12 at time of review

A: Served in a chilled 10oz goblet by Dr. Bill himself. Pours a golden straw-amber color with decent clarity. Tiny white rim of head and a bit of leggy lace down the glass.

S: Smells of citrus peels and various stone fruits like apricot. Some evergreens and light caramel sweet malts. Noticeable Alcohol notes.

T: Tastes of citrus fruits with predominant grapefruit and tangerine flavors, loads of resinous pine, and a smooth caramel malt backing. Alcohol definitely present and warming but not too overbearing. Moderate bitterness levels overall. Not too sweet. Smooth drinkable and delicious.

M: Med. body but rather light for such a big brew. Smooth overall with a decent creamy texture. Some sticky hop resin coating. Nice crisp drying finish. Signature Pliny.

D: A really great TRIPA that isn’t cloying in any way. Solid in balance. Hoppy yes but definitely enjoyed this more just 10 days prior. Went from really great to just really good. Not sure if it is Stone’s use of chilled glassware that muted the hops a bit here but alcohol seemed much more evident to the point of being a touch boozy.

All in all Younger will kick your ass!

Snootch Out!

Serving type: on-tap

03-05-2012 23:03:00 | More by Nugganooch
Photo of Salena

4.18/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

One of my bf's favorites, i heard so much about this beer and heard also that it was not sold much and that it would not be in stock much longer, so of course i had to have some. I'm not usually into this heavy of a beer, but boy was i shocked to taste it and want more. Yummm! Boys sure do have a set of extra taste buds just for beer! I'm glad my bf is such an advocate otherwise i'd be missing out on a lot!

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2012 16:10:13 | More by Salena
Photo of Imstillthegman


4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on-tap at The Drafting Room. My glass was filled with a golden copper color liquid with a thin white head. Some lacing was left but not like the amount left by the Elder. The aroma was filled with pine and citrus from the hops and a sweet caramel / tofffee scent. The flavor followed the smell. Hops were there but so was the sweetness. Somewhere in between a 90 min. and a 120 min. with the sweetness. Very smooth and not as bitter IMO as the Elder. The abv in this one (11%) limited me to only two glasses but they were tasty. Great brew, but I think the Elder comes out on top.

Serving type: on-tap

08-20-2006 17:21:07 | More by Imstillthegman
Photo of Enola

North Carolina

4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Many thanks to redwoodgeorge and mntlover for making this possible.

This beer is like Elder on steroids. The beer looks the same, smells much the same but there are some differences. The higher abv of the younger is evident. This takes just a touch from the drinkability because caution is needed. Much like the Elder, this beer is worthy of the hype and and I will likely try and get some more in the future.

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2007 21:22:53 | More by Enola
Photo of Proteus93


4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

With CrellMoset's before mine, it would make this #200 on here. Shared with Chris and dkachur with Clare.

A: It is an pretty clean amber. Nice creamy head that has great retention, and a nice spotting of lace.

S: A fruity and floral aroma - peach, pear, clementines. A sweet citrus scent and a scent similar to that in a florists shop.

T: Fruity sweetness is not as apparent in the flavour. It's a lot more piney on the palate, with a soft fruit peel flavour. Very little alcohol, quite smooth despite the hefty bitterness.

M + D: Body is medium and slightly tacky. A tasty beer, though admittedly I prefer the Elder, and found the scent to be more attractive than the flavour. I do look forward to another opportunity to drink it.

Serving type: growler

02-14-2009 05:26:21 | More by Proteus93
Photo of craytonic

District of Columbia

4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours an enormous sea-foam head that takes quite a while to subside, I quickly gave up the wait and fought my way through. Nice lacing all the way down the glass. I prefer a dirtier IPA with spots and flecks, this one was a clear peach-orange-lemon-amber. I love the sound of a RRBC growler opening.

Smell: Best and sweetest smelling hoppy beer ever. 5.0 without a doubt. Pure sweet hops, citrus, tangerine, pineapple, grapefruit, and pine/evergreen. Incredibly juicy, but I would like to be able to smell at least some of the malt. I buried my nose in the growler for a solid five minutes every time I returned for a pour.

Taste: Pure wet hop. Still, there is a sweet maltiness to it, lots of grapefruit, tangerine, orange, pineapple, citrus, and a floral element. Did I mention the hops? There is some malt, but it is understated and provides some balance.

Mouthfeel: Near perfect, if not perfect. It is like liquid, creamy candy. Very creamy and full with a nice hop stickiness; you can feel this one on the teeth. Near perfect carbonation; I might want a tad more but it could be the growler.

Drinkability: Despite the 11% ABV, this beer is highly drinkable - like a creamy, hop candy.

-- Updated for 2010 release; a bit of a step down from 2009 IMHO. More bitter, less sweet. Still smells like hop heaven but other scores adjusted accordingly.

Serving type: growler

02-20-2009 19:12:32 | More by craytonic
Photo of bunnyhustle


4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Fathers Office in Santa Monica, CA. A nice suprise on a recent trip there. Pours copper, looks virtually clear, with creamy head and decent lacing and retention (note: bar lighting was not the best so this is the best I can get to the look). Smell was superb. A nice kick of piney hops with some caramel maltiness. There is a presence of alcohol but nothing terrible. Taste was great as well. A strong citric kick to it, stong tastes of pineapple and grapefruit I thought. Strong malt backbone, a bit of a sweet caramel taste. Warming on the way down and leaves behind a nice hop bitterness to it. The first sip is pretty intense I must say. The mouthfeel was perfect I thought. Very smooth, somewhat silky...just great. Not too light or thin, but not too thick or creamy. Overall a great beer, not that anyone is suprised. I could easily have a couple in a sitting. I, unfortunately, had to drive so I could just enjoy the one. But between a great beer and a great bar, this was an amazing beer experience.

Serving type: on-tap

02-25-2009 03:52:27 | More by bunnyhustle
Photo of Patrick999


4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Well, here it is, I finally get to try more than a tiny serving of this much-coveted beer. Poured into a tulip. I'm actually a little nervous because I know the reviews for this beer are scrutinized. While it does pour an attractive semi-clouded gold, the foam recedes rather quickly, leaving a few large bubbles on the surface.

The aroma is outstanding, it's all you ever wanted in an IPA. Apricot, orange, grapefruit, pine, a little mango. For aromatics, it easily deserves a 5.

I get a lot of intense stonefruit on the palate with a zippy pine backing. Hop character is of course very good...but I find that there's somewhat too much alcohol here. It can be harsh, on occasion devolving to what I can only describe as a peach-vodka character. That would be my knock on this beer. I don't think it needs 11%; it doesn't quite have a strong enough malt backing to mask and/or carry it, in my opinion. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. I don't see how people can say the alcohol is barely noticeable....I think it's quite noticeable, and it does this particular beer a bit of a disservice in its harshness.

Feel-wise, it doesn't seem to be that well-carbonated, but it is from a growler that made it all the way to the East Coast, so I have to give it the benefit of the doubt. Plus, it has the requisite resiny feel that massively hopped beers have.

While it's got great hop character - we all know that - I honestly couldn't drink that much of this. For me, this is a sipping beer in a single 6-8oz serving. It's good in that context, I think. Not my #1 beer, though, not even my #1 DIPA. Even within RR's own stable, I think Pliny the Elder is the superior beer.

Serving type: growler

02-24-2010 03:43:35 | More by Patrick999
Photo of DaveHS


4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Toronado SF.

A- Pours rusty orange with 1/4 inch of brilliant white head.

S-Piney, resinous hops, grapefruit, weed.

T/M-You'd never peg it for 11%ABV. If you're familiar with the Elder, the Younger is Elder times two. A beer whose hop profile shifts from piney to earthy to tasting like a mouthful of sticky weed, to tangerines and mouth watering bitterness, all held together by vibrant, chewy carbonation.

D-Don't get me wrong, this is an awesome beer. But it's not worth the hype. The way people trip over themselves trying to get their little 4oz sample doesn't add up. Yeah, it's a really good DIPA, but there are plenty of really good DIPAs, and most of them are available for more than 2 weeks a year.

Serving type: on-tap

02-14-2011 06:59:15 | More by DaveHS
Photo of johnnnniee

New Hampshire

4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes: Sampled at EBF 2010. Pours a murky pale golden color with a stingy off white head that dissipates quickly. Wonderfully complex hop aroma, lots of citrus grapefruit and orange being in the forefront. The flavor is big with lots of caramel offset with plenty of hop flavor mostly of the peach/grapefruit/orange vein. Medium body with a light level of carbonation and a sweet resinous mouthfeel. Very nice big IPA that I waited much to long in line to taste. I’m glad I got to try this its a great beer, but I think I prefer the elder.

Serving type: on-tap

08-17-2012 01:16:54 | More by johnnnniee
Photo of magictacosinus


4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Waited in line a little over an hour at the brewery to enter the all-you-can-drink Pliny the Younger outing today! Hell yeah! Poured into a 10oz pint glass on tap. Served with delicious pizza made by the fellows at Russian River, who use their own beer batter for the dough. Does Pliny the Younger hold up? Oh, yes. Yes it does.

Pours a golden, copper-tinged amber orangish color with a slight amount of head. Glasses were arbitrary all around in terms of good head retention, and it seemed as such depending on the pour. I would have really preferred to see this in a snifter, but with the massive amount of people drinking this beer PER MINUTE, I doubt that would be the most feasible option. Nevertheless, the color is extraordinary. It's similar to PtE, except it looks far darker and intense in appearance, as if it spent time soaked in oak. There are bubbles that glide to the top of the glass in a graceful, near poetic manner. No alcohol legs on the glass, which is nothing but extraordinary. Has a syrupy, thickened look resemblant of wine. This is art, first and foremost.

Aroma is a little difficult to capture in a glass this small, or while it is too cold, but when it finally reveals itself, it's incredible. The triple hop markup from the original PtE recipe is evident, yet not as explosive as you'd think. There are tons of tropical notes here. This continues later in the flavor, which I will vividly explain. Mango, papaya, and pineapple soaked with pine needles, huge citrus lime flavors, and awash with alcohol sweetness and malt hearty goodness often resembling light toffee.

As for the flavor... My God, the flavor. I can't describe how amazing this is here. While the aroma was a little bit more subtle in showcasing the aspects of this recipe, the flavor is outstanding in every respect. The juicy mango notes continue, as well as other tropical varieties, and yet a huge backdrop resembling tangerines appears after every sip. There are playfully tinged pine/citrus flavors at the tip of the tongue with every sip, but they soon are replaced by the tropical flavors and bready, crisp finish aided by the malts. The more this warmed up, the more the flavor resembled taking a spoonful of fresh grapefruit right on the palate. For a beer this crazy, this is so easy to drink that by my second I was passively taking huge gulps while chatting about (contrary to the first glass, where it was respectfully sipped). The aftertaste goes on forever. Other than being easier to drink than water, the texture and body is out of this world. After each sip, the mouth slightly salivates, floral notes numb the cheeks, and the tongue is coated with a mango-hemp buttery texture. It creates a chemical reaction that makes you smack and lick the walls of your mouth and teeth, and then immediately takes you to straight to Beer Heaven.

This is utter bliss. I've had plenty of beers that far more exaggerated that this in flavor, and yet, this wins in being so ridiculously EASY to consume, especially considering the amount of flavors and complexity that goes with this. I'll be looking forward to driving up to Russian River every year when this comes out as my personal Mecca in beer enthusiasm. It's because of beers like this that I eventually took up homebrewing. Don't miss out any chance to have this if you can. It's worth every penny spent.

UPDATE (1/6/2014): The more I think about this beer, the more that I feel that I was way to swept up over the hype to review it objectively. This is a fun brew, very experimental in nature, and fully reflects the great diversity of the beer landscape in America. However, with that said, it lacks so much balance for any practical consumption if this were, say, a year-round beer. It's exclusiveness makes it fun to drink, but there's a lot of stuff whacked out with this overall - slightly under-carbonated, syrupy, extremely bitter and fruity, but no bready or dry profile to back it up. It's kind of the antithesis what makes PtE such a perfect beer to begin with. Nevertheless, it is really good and I will give this a proper revisiting this year. Until then!

Serving type: on-tap

02-07-2013 08:32:23 | More by magictacosinus
Photo of mykie73


4.22/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Horsebrass

A - Apricot in color, and very transparent.

S - incredible and my favorite part of this beer. pine, spruce, and lots of vitamin c.

T - The balance of this beer is quite an achievement. delicious hop goodness. I can for sure taste the elder in there. slight alcohol burn on the very back of the throat but very well hidden...actually amazingly well hidden...it was very hard to notice.

M - light and well carbonated.

D - Very drinkable, you can get through one fast. But after two, I'd much rather move onto a pale ale. If it was availabe all the time, not sure I would seek it out.

Perhaps a over hyped, but this is due to its rarity and it's unique Triple IPA status. I prefer other Big IPAs but this is an amazingly well crafted beer. I can now say I tried it, and very much enjoyed it, but I will go for something else at any bar with rotating taps...actually, I would order it again.

Serving type: on-tap

02-18-2009 07:14:55 | More by mykie73
Photo of femALEist


4.22/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at a few places during SF Beer week but this review is based on the pint at had at Pi Bar during Russian River night.
Pliny the Younger- Imperial IPA & 10.75%. It poured a golden vitamin pee yellow with a touch of white cream for a head. It smelled of lemon, lime peel, pine, grass and hops. It tasted surprisingly sweet with a bitter grapefruit peel on the back of the throat. It left my mouth tingly and dry.

Serving type: on-tap

03-25-2010 19:29:32 | More by femALEist
Photo of UA8


4.22/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light orangey amber color with minimal head

Big grapefruit notes on the nose with a light background of caramel.

The taste while cool is dominated by bitter pine hops however as it warms semi sweet grapefruit comes to the front with hints of a very minimal malt presence. Not very complex.

Mouthfeel is somewhat thin especially for a beer sitting at 11%. Carbonation is moderate yet somewhat coarse.

Overall just like elder overly hyped. The beer is solid but far from the best dipa I've had. There are several dipas that are much more easily acquired with much less hoopla than this. I will say that as it warms it does improve significantly. Oh well now I've had it and won't have to feel like I've been missing out.

Serving type: on-tap

03-03-2011 02:25:13 | More by UA8
Photo of chicano4craft


4.22/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap at Falling Rock.

Pours a very clear golden,orange color. A small white head drops to a thin crown very fast. Good lacing. Looking at the beer it's hard to imagine the hugh flavor and alcohol it holds.

Nose is very dank. Big pine and some citrus. Resinous with sweet malt balancing in out. Alcohol is definitely present.

The first sip hit my taste buds with a bittersweet and hop oil feel. Really good. Very hoppy with the sweetness of the malt doing it's best to keep things in check. Not as balanced as Elder. The hops do scrap across the palate with the alcohol providing a burn. I love an in your face IIPA so I loved it. The only negative was that as it warmed the alcohol became hot and started to compete with the hops.

Good mouthfeel and drinkability for the style. 8-10oz is enough to satisfy with completely wrecking the palate.

Serving type: on-tap

03-05-2011 19:45:37 | More by chicano4craft
Photo of tarheels86


4.22/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tap at PtY 2011 release.

A- Into a small nonic pint, the pour is a clear, deep orange with a small, white head that leaves some big sheety lace.

N- The aroma on PtY is a little hard to get at served in the miniature nonic pint glass. But once it warms up a bit you get some serious jackfruit, bitter mango, candied oranges, fresh blood orange.

T- Taste is fresh mango hoppy like biting into a raw mango. Lots of bitter mango skin and juicy mango pulp. Dank, fruity tropicals abound but the seriously dense body here is hard to get through. Some quick, spicy alcohol is present but a non sequitor.

P- Syrupy and dense. Spicy and full.

Obviously the king of DIPAs, but that doesn't mean it has to be my favorite.

Serving type: on-tap

03-30-2011 15:29:20 | More by tarheels86
Photo of kojevergas


4.25/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served on-draught into a 10 oz glass at Russian River's taproom during the 2012 release. Reviewed from notes. Expectations were through the roof given the brewery, site ratings, and how good Pliny the Elder was.

A: Pours no real head - but with a floater. Colour is a nontransparent gold. I'm disappointed by the lack of a head; you could blame the glassware, but the brewery chose it. It's vibrant and appealing, however.

Sm: A citrusy hop aroma. Quite powerful and fresh. Clean and inviting. Floral hops. Pine. Juicy citrus; grapefruit. Refreshing and appealing.

T: Hoppy, but delightfully well balanced with a citrusy body and relaxed mellow balancing climax. I really like it. Layered and complex for an IPA - surprisingly so. Some hop bitterness comes through in the aftertaste. Crisp and fresh. Pleasant. No alcohol comes through. Quite subtle. Really refreshing. Would pair well with food. Supple. Quite enjoyable. Orange peel comes through, maybe citra hops as well. The structure is nice, with a subtle body, unobtrusive open, and nice finish.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Just the right thickness, until the finish, wherein it's a touch too thin. Suits the refreshing feel of the flavours quite well, but not perfectly. A touch sharp on the finish.

Dr: Delightful. Well priced for the high quality, but evidently difficult to acquire. Very refreshing and enjoyable. Best served fresh - of course. I'd definitely have it again if I could find it. I'm shocked as how well it conceals its ABV. Certainly amongst the best IPAs I've ever had (not to mention imperial IPAs). The only IPA that comes to mind immediately that compares is Sculpin.

I was skeptical of the hype, but while it's not a perfect beer - nor the best beer in the world - by any means, it's a great beer worthy of any beer fanatic's time. Well brewed, Russian River.


2013 Batch: High A- (Consumed at Verdugo Bar in Los Angeles) 16 oz/$16

Serving type: on-tap

02-17-2012 05:00:22 | More by kojevergas
Photo of BrewsoBrewco


4.25/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is my first official BA review. PtY on tap at the Bier Stein in Eugene OR.

A- Great golden almost orange appearance. No great head but the color was fantastic.

Smell- After being poured it was very piney with a good citrus note. Delicious hop smell that can be smelled from distance. Can tell that a hop punch is going to come with the taste.

Taste- First sip the citrus comes out very clearly with a still piney/ fruit hop aftertaste. Delicious. After it started to warm up the pine settled and the a lot more tree fruit comes out. I got green apple and pear.

M-Good mouth feel for an IIPA. Much better then the elder which I feel lacks in mouth-feel. Really felt as if something was going down.

O- I think it is a great IIPA. Best beer in the world...EEHH? It really does mask the alcohol incredibly and tastes great. Since we only had one 8oz pour and this is my first taste I don't think I can have the same review as people who have had it multiple time. Great beer. Would definitely have it again? Yes. Would i fight huge mobs of people. Probably not, unless it was from the source.

Serving type: on-tap

03-02-2012 02:18:18 | More by BrewsoBrewco
Pliny The Younger from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 2,130 ratings.