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Pliny The Younger - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Pliny The YoungerPliny The Younger

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BA SCORE
100
world-class

2,276 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,276
Reviews: 839
rAvg: 4.69
pDev: 8.74%
Wants: 4,042
Gots: 88 | 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
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Pliny The Younger Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,276 | Reviews: 839 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beerNmusic
beerNmusic

Pennsylvania

4.45/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A - served in a tulip glass, clear just the right head, like fabulous

S - Very hoppy, citrus and floral very inviting

T - First sip was too cold, let beer warm for about 20 minutes and then TADA, tasted hops and orange...great representation of style

M - after it warmed it was incredible, balanced from start to finish, no acidity or aftertaste

D - excellent beer, i am not a hop head, but this beer could convert me. I get why it is so well regarded

Serving type: on-tap

04-03-2010 19:52:02 | More by beerNmusic
Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
FeDUBBELFIST

Pennsylvania

4.88/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

(Review from longgg backlog of notes)

Draft pour into a 9 oz snifter. I was lucky enough to have the Younger a few times this year and each time I paid for it, it was right around $8. The hype that surrounds this beer is maniacal... although it is definitely warranted. Sixtels kick in 15 minutes flat.

A: Pliny the Younger pours with an average size head. It is creamy, foamy, stark white & long lasting. Lacing is a notch above good. The light golden orange body is predominantly clear with just a touch of haze. (The last experience I had with this beer was the 66th of around 70 pours and was extremely hazy.)

S: Average level of maltiness for a DIPA, sweet sugar cookie, lightly toasted. The malts are as present as they need to be to avoid being completely overshadowed by the relentless hops. The hops are insanely juicy and sweet, heavy handed in the citrus department (pink grapefruit first, mandarin orange second) & backed up by healthy levels of pine aroma.

T: Additional tropical flavors come through in generous portions: Clementines, peaches and pineapples. The flavor duration is long, with moderately high sweetness and hop bitterness in perfect equilibrium. No shame in a small amount of the 11% ABV coming through.

M: The mouthfeel is medium-full with just the right amount of lively, spritzy effervescence to cut through the sweet/bitter combination and almost completely offset any warming alcohol. The carbonation literally captivates every taste bud on the tongue, front to back, except for those enormous ones all the way in the back, it skips those.

D: Speaks for itself.

Serving type: on-tap

04-02-2010 13:42:17 | More by FeDUBBELFIST
Photo of tmoneyba
tmoneyba

Ohio

4.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler shared by alexsdad06. Poured clear bright copper color with a large frothy off-white head that was lasted with excellent lacing. Heavy complex sour citrus hop and alcohol aroma. Medium to full body with dry slick texture and soft carbonation. Heavy smooth bitter citrus flavor with a heavy bitter finish of long duration with a small alcohol burn as it warms. This is a standout beer. Thanks Brad.

Serving type: growler

03-27-2010 23:46:54 | More by tmoneyba
Photo of femALEist
femALEist

California

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 cbutova
cbutova

Massachusetts

4.75/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at TJs in PA for the pouring event. After PtE, Supplication and Consecration (hour or so rest for my palate), how could my day get any better? Served in a snifter at 4PM, I was #14 on the list and showed up 15 minutes before they opened, awesome. The beer is golden-copper with a nice ring and very sticky suds. Light lacing is left and a really cool looking cloud stays in the middle of the beer for the entire experience. Smell is right up there with the best hop aromas for me. I homebrew but still don't understand how to extract hop notes like this. The hops lend citrus, tons of floral and earthy, fruity and pine to a balance of greatness. There is some malt in the background (11% ABV!) and it balances the aroma to perfection. I have rarely had a 10%+ beer with no alcohol in the aroma, impressive. The taste is also one of the best. First off, while sipping on this for probably over an hour, no alcohol ever came into play, ridiculous. The hop profile is once again very earthy and floral and also citrus and fruity. Even some herbal notes come through. A nice malt backbone helps the beer become whole. The malts are like a very good homebrew wort to me and go in nicely with the hops. Mouthfeel was moderate-heavy with great low-medium carbonation that I prefer in huge beers. A really nice warmth hits the tongue along with the perfect amount of bitterness. The creaminess in the feel was very nice. At $6.25 per glass and 11% ABV, this is probably the most dangerous beer I have come across. The drinkability is frightening. I could session this and think it was 5-6% at most, vastly impressive brew.

Serving type: on-tap

03-22-2010 02:24:25 | More by cbutova
Photo of ColForbinBC
ColForbinBC

New Jersey

4.75/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

On-tap, served in a snifter

Appears a golden orange with pretty good clarity and some tiny bubbles pushing their way through the viscous liquid. A small, yellowish cap and dots of lacing.

The aroma fills the air, and from an arm's length away, you get strong waves of apricot, papaya and mango. Outside of tropical fruit, you get fresh cut pine needles and sticky, resiny hops. There is a small trace of sweet, toasted malt. The aroma is where this beer really shines, so pleasing and inviting.

Wow, perfection. They found an even better balance than the elder while still delivering a crisp, dry, bitter hop bite. Apricots, mangoes, pineapple, and papaya with fresh cut pine and a resinous, viscous body. These hops stand tall and bright with just the right amount of bitterness to let you know this guy means business.

Resiny, viscous body but not heavy. Creamy and lush. The finish is dry and bitter. Only a touch of warming once you get 3/4ths of the way through the glass.

This was a breeze. I couldn't get it away from nose and I really had to tell myself to slow down. It is just too damn delicious.

Serving type: on-tap

03-21-2010 23:54:52 | More by ColForbinBC
Photo of ecoastman
ecoastman

Ontario (Canada)

4.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to JZED for sharing and bringing this precious resource back to Ontario from California.

Great clear straw yellow colour and great hopped citric and herbal-pine aroma. The taste is complex and has a nice level of finishing bitterness. Smooth to start and semi-dry to finish with low courseness from a good level of carbonation.

Now let's get to the point:
Outstanding aroma when you get half-way through the beer and it warms a little... Suddenly I'm convinced that I'm smelling pineapple juice. Incredible.

I just wish I could get this in Ontario. I know what I'll be seeking when I travel afar...

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2010 01:37:12 | More by ecoastman
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AWolf

Colorado

4.95/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

First beer review, I'd say I'm starting it off right. A thousand thank you's to Hayes for sharing his growler, it was overnighted to him so still very fresh!

The beer poured a deep gold with an off white head. Fairly transparent, not really what I was expecting for a beer with such an awesome rep - I wouldn't have guessed it was such an amazing beer just to look at it. However, this was the only aspect of the beer that didn't live up to or exceed my expectations.

This beer smells awesome, it is right up there with the best smelling beers I've come across. Awesome taste, wow. There's a wonderful balance of fruity citrus and hops. Tons and tons of hops, but enough other flavors to lend it a nice balance and not make it bitter. This is definitely one of the best tasting beers I've had, maybe the best.

The mouthfeel was probably the aspect that exceeded my expectations the most. Really thick, not at all like many IPAs I've had - more like a good stout really. This is what sets the younger apart from my other favorite IPAs for me. Very easy to drink too, almost no bite from the alcohol and like I mentioned before it wasn't unpleasantly bitter. I could drink this all night

Like I said, I'm infinitely thankful for being given the chance to try this beer, but I would love to have had more of it. Visiting the brewery to have it on tap is now on my bucket list, fantastic beer overall I hope you all get the chance to try it!

Serving type: growler

03-18-2010 00:20:50 | More by AWolf
Photo of oregonskibum
oregonskibum

Oregon

4.95/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

From a keg almost seven weeks following the release, poured into a snifter glass.

A: Beautiful golden orange color, very clear. Great string of bubbles swirling up from the center of the glass. Nice white head that lingers nicely on the edge of the glass.

S: Ahhhh. I think this is easily PtE and PtY's strongest characteristic. Huge piney, resiny, sticky hops. I'm very partial to that hop smell, so more is always better and PtY delivers. I would have been happy to stop at the smell (okay, not really).

T: Yes, the hops continue into the taste. Incredibly balanced. For a 10%+ beer that is considered a triple, it does not carry any of the overly sticky, sweet tastes that some big DIPA/TIPAs have (umm, DFH120, for example). The flavor of the hops (more green, pine, resin flavors) continue through the taste without being overly bitter. The taste lingers for a long time (minutes), but seems less bitter than some local IPAs. Just a touch of warming from the alcohol, but man this goes down easy. I don't really notice many typical malty flavors as I'm enjoying the hops too much!

M: Medium carbonation, medium to big body, but not unexpected or out of style. Felt very smooth in the mouth with very little oilyness. It was there, but come on, it's a triple IPA.

D: Excellent. Actually above expectations. This was tasted next to PtE and it's the first time that I felt PtE did not shine. PtE seems harsh and out of balance in comparison. Stuck on a desert island, PtE would likely be a better choice as it's hard to imagine drinking too many PtY's. But I certainly wish this beer was available a little more frequently. It deserves the hype, even seven weeks after release.

Serving type: on-tap

03-17-2010 22:37:08 | More by oregonskibum
Photo of BigMike
BigMike

Pennsylvania

4.75/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly hazy straw yellow color. Not too much in the way of head but what was there was a bit soapy and almost pure white in color. It really clung to the sides of the glass.

Ok, in for the smell. WOW! This is up there with Hopslam as far as Mango and candied pineapple aroma. This thing sure smells like it's going to be amazing.

Lot's of sugar cookie sweetness. Tons of pineapple and mango. Some light caramel also. Very Tasty.

Great mouthfeel. Smooth, very easy to drink. Flavors linger long after the swallow.

This beer is real easy to drink. The 11% starts to show as it warms up. I see why this beer gets its accolaids. It's an amazing beer but the best in the world? Either way, i'm happy that i was able to try it.

Serving type: on-tap

03-17-2010 02:44:28 | More by BigMike
Photo of TheFightfan1
TheFightfan1

Pennsylvania

4.55/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to the Hulmeville inn for this one.Limited to one per person but my wife who is pregant did not want any so WOOHOO!!! Two for me.

Poured a slighly hazy auburn color with a thin white heading. Lacing did stick around through every gulp and until the bitter end.

Smell is a little deceiving at first although the hops are clearly there in the taste there is more a lighter malty body in the nose. Bitter hops blast through with a nice hello.

Taste is smooth and malty as soon as the brew touches the tongue but a heavy citrusy - pineapple blast takes over.Very tasty indeed.

Mouth has excellent carbonation with a nice medium body. The pineapple grassy notes linger around for a long while. Again very alive on the palate.Alot lighter in the mouth than I would have anticipated not like a heavy syrup that you would find in other IIPA's.

Well this is good but honestly I don't know what all of the hubbub is about this brew with you CA folk. This is a very tasty brew but you can easily find other great IIPA's for less the hassle and wait but still a solid brew.

Serving type: on-tap

03-16-2010 23:21:58 | More by TheFightfan1
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

4.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: light orange in color with a short 1/4" head that broke down quickly. No lace devlops.

Smell: grapefruit, loads of hop bitterness, and a hint of sweetness creates a nice aroma.

Taste: big malt profile with a finely balanced sharp bitterness. Loads of grapefruit, caramel, ripe fruit, and a bit of lemon are most dominant. The bitterness does not overwhelm. Alcohol levels are not even noticable.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Lightly crisp throughout with dryness late. Aftertaste is long as the flavors linger in the mouth.

Drinkability: this beer went down rather quicky despite the big flavor profile. Is this beer the best in the world ? I still think Westy 12 would be my choice in a heads up competition, but this is one great beer. Special thanks to the Hulmeville Inn for getting this beer in house.

Serving type: on-tap

03-16-2010 22:57:07 | More by Gavage
Photo of jvanetten
jvanetten

New Jersey

4.88/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Blessed with this on tap Saturday at Tria Washington West in Philly. Waited in the rain for a bit, thank god they had a 1-10oz serving/person rule. Keg was kicked about 10-people after we were served.

A-More gold than I thought it would be, good head that lingered. Was poured from the tap into a goblet and then into a tulip. Thin lacing after each sip.

S-Incredible hop & pine smell. Smell was a great appetizer for the beer.

T- Big, but very balanced hop taste. Sweet as well, but not overpowering.

M-Perhaps my favorite part. I put off swallowing the beer as long as possible. Aftertaste was the most unique I've experienced. The hop flavor lingered strongly between each sip. It was like you were still drinking!

D-If not so rare, this beer would be permanently stocked in my fridge. I'm looking to order some of the elder now just to scratch teh itch!

Serving type: on-tap

03-16-2010 12:53:23 | More by jvanetten
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ShadesOfGray

Pennsylvania

3.7/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at a "secret" tapping, Gray Lodge in NE Philadelphia. Poured into a stemmed pint glass, whatever that may be called! Was fortunate to get the first glass! Pours a bright copper/yellow color. Very small white head that dissapates to a thin ring, pretty quickly too. No real lacing to speak of, but could be due to the "bar-glass" washing methods.

Aroma was not as strong as I expected, but good! Piney hops, obvious grapefruit, and honey. Other than that, similar to most big name DIPA's.

Flavor was a little let down to be honest. It's good, but too sweet IMO. I hate to say it, but I prefer Elder better. The hops come fore front immediately, followed quickly by the intense sweetness, and finally followed again by another wave of hops and a dry boozy finish. I had heard that the grapefruit is very well detectable in Younger, they weren't kidding! Very carbonated and thin light, yet crisp mouthfeel. I actually enjoyed Younger less as it warmed up, it got even more sweet. Over all, a very good beer, but way too hyped! Again though, another good beer from Russian River!

Serving type: on-tap

03-14-2010 04:10:38 | More by ShadesOfGray
Photo of Bluetick
Bluetick

California

5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Live review from the toronado (sf)

The younger is so smooth! Silky smooth. It smells good and is absolutely delicious.

The hops are exceptionly balanced; and the alcohol is too well hidden.

It deserves all the credit and hype!

A very welcome surprise, I didn't expect it to on tap. It the king of beers!

Serving type: on-tap

03-14-2010 02:17:17 | More by Bluetick
Photo of rawthar
rawthar

Pennsylvania

4.47/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Just got back home from the PtY event at Tria this afternoon, was one of the lucky ones who got in before the keg kicked. Review based on my notes.

A- I was expecting red, but this was a nondistinct gold. The head was fairly impressive, a finger of very creamy white that hung out for a long a time, and when it was finally tamed, still left some pretty lacing.

S- Unmistakably hoppy. This was the first hint at the greatness of PtY. It was all citrus from the hops, with a subtle malty balance that kept it from going full on bitter. Impressive.

T- And this is where PtY becomes significant. Just the kind of citrusy, hoppy, well balanced flavor that the smell and the hype made me expect, but there was something else going on here that I had never detected before. Maybe it was umami, the fifth taste, maybe it was the hop concentration taking the flavor to a whole other level, but the middle of this beer's flavor was one of the most unique beer tastes I've ever had. Hard to put the finger on it, but in a blind taste test, I'll never have a problem picking this one out of a lineup. Bangin'.

M- As creamy as it looked, but with a light character, and a really sweet tingle on the tongue. Awesome.

D- There was a one per customer limit in effect (though I cheated with my wife's beer when she was in the bathroom) - wish I could have gone back for a second. Could I drink this all day? I think it would ruin my appreciation of just about every other beer. The rarity is definitely part of the equation here.

So did it live up to the hype? Yes, I think so. It was transcendental as far as beer goes, but it did not necessarily transcend beer. But who can really ask for anything more than that? Maybe I'll have it again next year, but in the meantime, I can't say that Nugget Nectar is much of a drop off.

Serving type: on-tap

03-13-2010 20:28:38 | More by rawthar
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Seanibus

California

4.47/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours clear with a slight head. Aroma is powerful , fragrant, with strong grapefruit and lily and jasmine. Flavor is huge: hops, grapefuit and lily, with a sugary malt backbone. The mouthfeel is prickly and sharp. The bitterness is slow and sweetish, like a bitter tea. Alcohol is totally hidden, making this a quiet killer.

Serving type: on-tap

03-11-2010 18:54:43 | More by Seanibus
Photo of JerryBullfrog
JerryBullfrog

Oregon

4.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Drank this on 2/15, two 17 oz. mugs at Hollingshead's in Orange, CA. From the notes I took at the time:

An orange, golden color with copper shades at the edges. A small, slightly off-white head that dissipates quickly.

Aromas of grapefruit, orange, tangerine, apricot, and pine needles. It's got a boozy kick to it as well, but it dissipates after a while. Everything I could want in an IPA.

Perfectly carbonated with a medium body, but the alcohol is definitely there. Like the aroma, it subsides after some time. There's a whole mess of piny flavors followed by grapefruit, apricot, and a hint of the finest herb. The bitterness lingers for quite a long time.

It's a hoppy, bitter, and just plain angry IPA. Damn near killed my taste buds and killed my appreciation for any other IPA for the next week, which hampered it a bit (hence my wait for the review)... can't drink too much of it. But the best IPA I've ever had? Well, I have a lot of IPAs left to try, but compared to the ones I have tried, this ranks #2, right after Exponential Hoppiness.

Serving type: on-tap

03-11-2010 07:58:58 | More by JerryBullfrog
Photo of olympuszymurgus
olympuszymurgus

California

4.43/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

after a year...finally we meet again.
this nearly clear golen beverage is wanted. a fine floral aroma like the garden of eden - BUT - do not taste of the fruit of the tree in the middle! oh dear god, i did. it is too smooth. an intensity of bitterness and hop flavor, but not quite the shapness of the elder. a little citrus fruit in the nose and mouth. so nice for 11, doesn't feel like it, so little sweetness for an imperial. i wish i could drink it, but i put the 8 oz glass in a museum instead. ahh, posterity.

Serving type: on-tap

03-11-2010 07:36:59 | More by olympuszymurgus
Photo of mpensworth
mpensworth

Oregon

4.97/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Beautiful in the glass, nice and golden orange with a slight white foam head. The lacing was perfect in my glass as well.

S: Powerful citrus and pine aroma, makes the knees weak.

T: Ka-pow! My palate didn't know what hit it. Lots of pine and grapefruit flavors here, super fresh on the hop taste.

M: Good bitterness, feels pretty light for the amount of hops and alcohol.

D: Amazing flavors with a light balance makes it hard to have just one. I was lucky and got 3 glasses... and definitely felt like I had 3 glasses of it.

Overall it is an incredible beer. I don't think it would be so popular if it were readily available every year. But honestly, part of the enjoyment of this beer was the hunt... and kill.

Serving type: on-tap

03-10-2010 20:09:11 | More by mpensworth
Photo of Domingo
Domingo

Colorado

4.83/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Ah yes - one of the beer holy grail items. I might as well be a geek and review it.
Got this on tap at the Vine St. Pub in Denver. I lucked into actually getting two servings since it was a Monday afternoon.
Honey golden with a cap of white foam.
Smells like hops - lots of them. Unlike many others (even my favorites), there isn't much malt popping up in there. It's just straight ahead west coast hops.
The first thing you'll notice with a sip is that again, the malt takes a backseat. Hops add both fruity flavors and herbal ones. Resiny pine, pineapple, a little spearmint, even a little bit of a cannabis. Slightly sweet, but not nearly as much as you'd expect. Every sip is just great - and it avoids having too much going on.
This beer hides its 11% as well as any strong beer can. No alcohol smell, taste, or heat. It has the drinkability and texture of a beer half its strength.
I could've handled a pitcher of it (and yes, I did ask...) but obviously that isn't happening. Still, rarity is the only limiting factor.
Best beer in the world? Maybe! For a hoppy one I think this beats out Dreadnaught on my personal best list.
If you like DIPA's and American hops - I can't imagine them getting much better. Deserving of the hype. It really is THAT GOOD.

Serving type: on-tap

03-09-2010 02:13:56 | More by Domingo
Photo of Arbitrator
Arbitrator

California

4.58/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Rewriting my review from the ground up.

From a two-week-old growler. It was waxed and refrigerated after release while my shipped ones landed. From notes.

A: Carbonation held up surprisingly well. I'd attribute that both to the wax job and to Russian River's choice of excellent glass. This is the first time I've ever filled a growler at RR, since they're too far away to visit more than a couple of times a year.

The pours crystal clear in the glass: it's a dark amber body with orange hues against the light. The head is fluffy and off-white, filling the snifter with crackles and pops. It leaves some register marks down the glass. This doesn't look quite as nice as the tap form, but for an 11% TIPA, it's impressive it even has head at all, much less this much.

S: Starts off with tropical citrus (pineapple, oranges, tangerines) and grapefruit. There is a wet pine needle aroma behind it. Malt isn't that pronounced, but it does have a sugar cookie backing. Very simple, I guess, to let the hop flavors come out. I also detect -- and this is different from the tap version -- a hint of booze.

T: Citrus, citrus, citrus. Grapefruit primarily, but it's followed closely by pineapple, tangerine, orange. The mid-taste progresses into dank pine flavors and light, perfumey floral hops. The sugar cookie aroma I noticed is apparent underneath as an underlying, lightly bready sweetness; but it doesn't add much as far as flavors go. Light spice in the finish. This is simply an ode to the hop. As in the nose, it's lightly boozy.

M: Medium-bodied; with carbonation a tad higher than medium. That helps suppress the bigness of this beer, but I have to say I noticed that the first glass and a half out of the growler were hot, which I did not notice on tap. The finish is semi-dry, with light lingering bitterness and not much oiliness.

I had HopSlam next to this, since the tropical citrus flavors make for a natural comparison. The sweetness of HopSlam made it taste like a barleywine in comparison. And I LOVE HopSlam. It really speaks to how well-attenuated PtY is.

D: I'm not sure whether it was worth it to go up to the release. I found this on tap very easily at a number of places, and like I said in my other review, the beer is delicious on draft. Out of a growler it's still good, but if this were my only experience with the beer, I wouldn't (and will not) give it all 5s. Even with this one waxed and sitting in the back of my fridge, it dropped off noticeably in quality. I can only imagine how much unrefrigerated transit takes out of this beer.

Still, it's easily a top-tier Imperial IPA; I haven't had a better one.

Serving type: growler

03-08-2010 17:34:19 | More by Arbitrator
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

4.58/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The beer pours a beautiful golden color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is outstanding. It's your typical West Coast DIPA, but done to perfection. It has your standard pale malt base which seems to provide adequate balance. The hop aroma is sublime. It's citrusy with hints of pine. It's very bitter, yet not as much as I thought it would be. The taste is great; so smooth and drinkable. The alcohol is nowhere to be found. What there is , is a damn tasty beer that's relatively light and loaded with hops. This is a thing of beauty. The mouthfeel is great as well. It's a medium/full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. The drinkability of this beer is off the charts. There's not heat whatsoever, just heavenly golden nectar.

Serving type: on-tap

03-08-2010 14:03:03 | More by WesWes
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cbarrett4

Oregon

4.83/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Okay... had FOUR glasses while they had it on tap at Henry's. Here goes:

Lighter it seems than Pliny the Elder. More complex, subtle... which I enjoy. Shows a gorgeous color, though slightly clear surprisingly. Good head retention and lace. Lots going on the nose. The pine and citrus from the hops are subdued, allowing more subtle fruit and yeast aromas. Has a slight bitter funk from the yeast used. Pretty amazing. Flavors are elegant with the pine from hops and funk from the yeast playing well together. Finishes with finesse and balance. Tannins, acids, and alcohol all in check and balanced. I thought this was 8-9% abv... it was well hidden.

I recommend this beer highly... though not getting drunk at the strip club afterwards...

Serving type: on-tap

03-07-2010 23:46:15 | More by cbarrett4
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Habmike

North Carolina

4.78/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to klevelandrocks, marshalzhukov, and craytonic for all sharing growlers with me this year!

reviewed 2/8/10

beautiful golden with great clarity, bubbles, head retention. White frothy head.

Wicked citrus and hoppy aroma. Smells like cali bud.

Invasive and penetrating hops ninjas entering my chest cavity. Tastes similar to hopslam after it drank the ooze. Little to no heat whatsoever. Great drink! Really glad this one wasn't a let down in flavor.

A bit oily in the mouth (expected). Syrupy and carbonated. Without the carbonation it would come down below a 4 in mouthfeel but it helps a bunch.

This one goes deep and stays there, great drink!

Serving type: growler

03-06-2010 19:31:50 | More by Habmike
Pliny The Younger from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 2,276 ratings.