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Pliny The Younger - Russian River Brewing Company

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Pliny The YoungerPliny The Younger

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2,656 Ratings

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Ratings: 2,656
Reviews: 905
rAvg: 4.69
pDev: 8.74%
Wants: 5,099
Gots: 241 | 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:
Beer added by: xlperro on 01-27-2005

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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,656 | Reviews: 905
Photo of BOLTZ7555
4.95/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to Sparky27 for the tip on this. Tried at Hollingshead Deli along side it’s older brother. Let’s just say that it’s good to be young!!! This rating would be insignificant but it is my 50th rating in the top 100!!! What a beer to mark being half-way there!!! Bright orange peel, lemon zest, and floral aroma with hints on evergreen. Huge 2-inch tight white foam with an amazing blaze orange body. Lacing clinging mightily to the inside of the glass, a fond memory of the sip that just transpired. Flavor is incredible...definitely more aggressive and profound than it’s older sibling. Orchard fresh nectarine, Ponderosa pine, and a bit of grapefruit rind tartness in the finish. Coating yet not cloying mouthfeel. AN INCREDIBLE SPECIMEN!!!

Photo of Lunch
4.82/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had the opportunity to sample this several times at EBF including a nice little side by side with PtE.

Russian River makes some great beers and PtE has always been a favorite of mine. Even if it is a little over-hyped, it is still a great beer and I really was looking forward to PtY. Pours just a hint darker than Elder at a golden orange with just a faint haze, but this is mostly clear. Nice frothy white head. I'm a fan of dry DIPAs and semi-sweet DIPAs and this falls into the later category. Big cirtus, floral and piny hops with a hint of sweetness. More pungent than Elder with a sweetness. Taste is very much the same. No real malt to speak of which is great and the citrus really shines. Some nice bitterness to counter the sweetness.

Hopefully I'll be able to make it out to the Russian River and sample this again one of these days.

Photo of Soonami
4.52/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Review of Pliny the Younger from tasting notes taken on March 3, 2011.

PtY is a pretty beer, that is a golden amber with just a little whisp of pale white head. It has surprising little cling for a beer of this hoppiness, but that might be due a protein rest or the low mash temperatures to make a highly fermentable malt. The beer smells very hoppy, with good citrus and fruity character as well as a dank piney aroma, probably from the Simcoe. This isn't as hoppy as I thought though, but it's hard to live up to the reputation. The beer tastes surprisingly sweet, although, at 11% I should've expected that. The hoppiness was expressive and very fruity, but the bitterness seems very restrained, perhaps tempered by the malty sweetness. This beer isn't the hop-bomb that I was expecting, I thought it would be a Pliny squared, but is more like Avery Maharaja, an Imperial IPA with big malt flavors. The mouthfeel is absolutely creamy and the carbonation is delicate.

Was it worth the wait? Does it live up to the hype? Would I wait several hours for this beer? The answer is probably no, but it's tasty.

Photo of laxboy3496
4.37/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap at Russian River Brewing the day after the Super Bowl. I'll be honest, it was just too big for me and I LIKE big beers but there was just too much going on. It is still a fantastic beer but I found myself getting through my ordering other RR offerings after finishing my 10oz. pour. I'm glad I tried it but didn't think that it was worth elbowing my way through the crowds.

Photo of ThoreauLikeAGirl
4.48/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer a couple of times at tappings throughout the Philadelphia area.
Review is based off of memory - which I have retained very well due to the amazingness of this beer.

Poured from tap into a tulip glass. About a 10 oz pour.
The color of this beer is amazing. Looks like liquid gold - orange and bright. Not any real head to this. no lacing.

Smell was of very strong citrus fruits, pineapple and whole leaf hops. The citrus was dominating. Very pleasant. Could smell the thing immediately when placed in front of me from 2 feet away.

Taste was glorious. I have NO IDEA how this beer is 11% abv. Dangerous. No real indication of alcohol burn in this, that you would expect from a beer this high in abv. Citrus hops, bitter, but very well-balanced bitterness. A bit of malt in the background.

Overall, this is the best triple IPA out there. Very enjoyable, and mandatory try for any hophead. Definitely worth the hype.

Photo of jdense
3.95/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. pour at Apex PDX first anniversary party 5.7.11, $8.50.

Half finger white head due to full pour, pretty quick dissipation with minimal lacing. Clear orange amber body, very little visible carbonation. Big pine hit in the nose, resiny, any fruit aromas are subsumed by the pineyness. Taste mirrors nose, very bitter on the back end, like chewing on pine needles. Despite this keg being a few months old, quite a bit of alcohol heat. Medium mouthfeel, decent effervescence. To be honest, I don't see what the big deal is. Frankly, I'd rather have another Tankslapper!

Photo of Alex1976
4.47/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had an 8oz pour just like the previous reviewer and from the Eastside in Olympia. I thought the beer was pretty good. Good frontal, and finishing hoppy taste with a light malty taste. The Pliny was several months old so I am sure this affected the taste quite a bit since Russian River does say it has to be fresh, so probably not as hoppy and nice as a fresh Pliny the Elder. Regardless of the freshness I still thought the beer was better than almost any IPAs, double IPAs I have tried. And the Sanctification was really good btw.

Photo of CharcuterIAN
3.38/5  rDev -27.9%
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.

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

I have to say I was very skeptical about this one. I've been to the RRBC several times, and overall arn't a big fan of too many of their beers, including the elder (OK, imo). Maybe it was the waiting in line on a warm california day that makes you appreciated a cold beer more, but I have to say that for the most part the hype is true. I agree with the prev reviewer, it's 11%, and you can't taste the alcohol AT ALL. This a truely DANGEROUS BEER. The best description that I could come up with at the time was that you take the Elder and add the subtle, yet complex taste of a Belgian and this is what you get. I'm not a big IPA fan, but this one is definitely the exception (and I've tried a lot of IPA's looking for one I like, but so far this one is IT).

Photo of chugalug06
4.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Yep, it's good... I had a YOUNGER and Elder side-by-sde. Younger was in a Tulip and Elder was in a snifter

A - Very average "looks", clear orange with very little head. Zero lacing. Thin white head sits; when awaken. Almost looks like a cider. Much lighter than the Elder

S - Great scent. Smooth orange-y citrus with lavender and other spice... Perhaps some raisins too??? Raisins would explain the lack of head. Better than the Elder

T - Zero alcohol taste, smooth, and citrus. Much more bitter than I thought it would be. But, for 11% it sits very well. Better and smoother than the Elder

M - Low carbonation, almost to the point of being flat, but carbonation fits the style well. The flavor goes well with the carbonation too. It goes though your mouth much better than the Elder

D - GREAT! Hardest brew I've ever had to put down, perhaps it's due to it's "stigma". Better than the Elder

Not at all over hyped... It's a great beer and I prefer YOUNGER! Worth the anticipation. I'm Very happy I took the time to try this delightful brew. $8 for a 14oz pour, not bad. Thanks @TrinityBrewing for making this tapping possible.


Photo of ghetto90007
4.84/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had this one in early March on tap at Stone Brewery in Escondido. I had no idea that I was in for such a pleasant surprise on my first visit to Stone. I had one glass on my way down to San Diego when it wasn't on the menu yet. I decided to stop by on my way back the next day to see if they still had any. It was on the menu now so I quaffed three servings of the stuff. Needless to say, I liked it.

That's Pliny the Younger in my Avatar over there, sitting next to my Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous.

Pours orangish-golden with a clingy white head. The head dissipates fairly quickly, but lacing still sticks to the glass all the way down. I love the look and color of this beer, but I fear I may have lost objectivity here. I think I now associate this color with the wonderful smell, taste and mouthfeel of this beer, which makes me correspondingly love the color and appearance.

A sweet, floral, citrusy, piney aroma just flows from the glass. It is so pleasant, yet so powerful. There is a lot going on, but it is not a jumble. It is a bouquet of olfactory succulence.

This is way up there in the IBUs, but is also pleasant to drink. Once again, so pleasant, yet so powerful. In the taste, it's the pine and grapefruit that come in the strongest. Hints of floral perfumes, but there is a great tempering sweetness - this is not just hop juice, they've remembered that malt goes into beermaking too.

This is a medium bodied beer, carbonation is on the low to mid-range. Super drinkable beer for such a hoppy concoction.

So pleasant, yet so powerful. I think that is the factor that makes this beer world class for me. You can do pleasant. Or you can do powerful. But so many times they are at odds with one another. To reconcile them in perfect harmony as Russian River has done with Pliny the Younger is to demonstrate true craftsmanship.

I don't know about all of this hate - I don't get the Westy 12 versus the PtY versus the PtE fanboy mentality out there. Hype informs me of what's out there, but it does not make me love nor does it make me hate a beer. This beer spoke for itself. I would have reacted the same way - neither more positively nor more negatively had I tried it out of pure ignorance. It was wonderful. Can't they both be wonderful. Would it be so wrong to have numerous wonderful beers in the world?

Photo of mmercede
4.51/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Capone's served in a 6oz snifter. Big shout out to Matt Capone and employees for putting on an amazingly smooth release!

A: Golden color with an slight amber hue. Small head with little lacing. However, the small snifter doesn't promote a large head or lacing.

S: Compared to elder this is much less piney, however has a much stronger fruity/citrus aroma. Strong notes of various citrus, pineapple, and mango. Strong fresh hop smell like no other. It literally smells like a bag of leaf hops. No detection of malt or alcohol...exactly how a big west coast IPA should smell!

T: Not quite as mind blowing as the aroma. Flavor includes strong tropical fruit and candy notes. Not quite as dry as elder with more of a malty flavor in the finish. The bitterness and alcohol content is much less than one would expect. This is the best example of strong aroma/flavor hopping I've ever tried.

M: Full body mouthfeel with a medium amount of carbonation. However, not quite as oily or coating as one would expect.

O: Simply the best Triple IPA out there. It never lives up to all the craziness and hype. However, what beers really could? I'm honored to have been able to try it in the last three releases!

Photo of timobkg
3.5/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an 8oz tulip.

Had this on tap together with Elder and Blind Pig, so I'll compare to those.

Younger is the cloudiest of the three, with quickly dissipating head. I was surprised by the lack of head, given the amount of hops involved.

The aroma was surprisingly mild, again given the amount of hops in here.

Younger tastes maltier and sweeter than Blind Pig, but hoppier and more bitter than Elder. Whereas Elder is well balanced, Younger tips that balance towards the hops. The alcohol is hidden, but you can feel that this is a potent potable.

Overall, I feel this beer is over hyped, and the hype and rarity drive up the scores. It's a good beer, but it's not great, and I prefer Elder.

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

For my first BA review, I humble myself in the presence of PtY. I realize giving a perfect score is a dangerous move, but it truly represents my experience and what the beer deserves as an example of the style.

PtE was largely my entrance to craft beer, and after trying many more fine brews and gallivanting around BA I knew that PtY was a must-have.

I tried it on-tap at the RR brewpub in Santa Rosa (mid-february), Ben and Nick's Bar in Oakland (early march), and the Trappist bar in Oakland (late march).

Servings: at the brewpub, a 10 oz pour into a nonic pint. Ben and Nicks served a 10 oz in a stemmed tulip, and the Trappist poured 8 oz into a RR tulip.

Appearance: it glows. It was darker each time I tried it, but overall a deep golden orange.

Aroma: incredibly potent. Wonderful tropical bouquet cut with that familiar pine. Compared to PtY? More sweet and fruity than dank/musty/bitter. Fresher.

Taste: I'm very hop-tolerant, and this is clearly a celebration of a carefully constructed hop profile, but it isn't trying to prove anything. It's been said before, but the real triumph of this beer is the balance. You can taste hops inside and out, you can feel the buds prickling in your throat, but JUST enough malt presence carries you through to a graceful, ever so slightly dry finish. It's a big beer, but there is nothing cloying about it.

Mouthfeel: Just a bit heavier than the uncle, but clean and smooth still. The Trappist uses 30% NO in their taps, which imo countered the dryness a bit and left a more lingering mouthfeel. Carb is right on.

Drinkability: the beer is highly enjoyable; it's only extreme in its freshness and balance--it goes down like mother's milk. However, I felt the effects after each glass, humbled like Icarus.

Russian River is a truly great brewery. PtY does not compete by being heavy-handed, so I regret the constant need to compare it to other hoppy beers. There is no need for skepticism; it is a masterpiece. Like Mark Starr said, when you get to this level, it's just a matter of preference. If you're looking for the most extreme hop experience, your search doesn't end with PtY. Most likely it will simply take a detour into the rest of what RR has to offer.

Photo of OddNotion
4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
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!

Photo of BillRoth
4.85/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had at Capone's at yesterday's Russian River Fest.Frankly, had come just to check off PTY from my wish list after many years of wondering. Fortunate to get four 5.5oz servings, and transfered 3 to a decent size tulip glass. My wife insisted on having 1 for herself. This might have been "sharing the love" a bit too far.

Descriptions noted before cover it pretty well. But I am writing this because I expect many who have not tried it may have the same misimpression that I had before tasting.

Having had PTE ...and can't keep track of many, many other excellent IPAs (Imp, double imp, DIPA, etc etc etc)from West Coast and otherwise I was expectig just a bigger/supposedly better beer...what a mistake.

The first impression was so surprising...that the hop profile was excellent; absoltutely delicious, vast ( no surprise)... but no haymaker/slap to the mouth. No jolt, just so full of flavor. The malts were big and very present in taste and mouthfeel, but not distracting or bullish.

Thought it was very good.

Half way through the glass it struck me that this might be the best balance of big hops and big malt that I had ever had. The arome remained so pleasant.

Thought was exceptionally excellent.

Finished glass. So smooth, hops and malts so married, so well. Wow.

But this was an IPA...Here I was expecting a rock concert...and instead I got artistry.

I found it the most drinkable and enjoyable IPA I have had...or at least in so long a time that comparison is moot.

Hope you get a chance to try this special beer.

Photo of danglin85
5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Striking honey colored amber. Wasn't expecting the look of this beer to be as beautiful it was.

S - Pine & Grapefruit notes, classic DIPA smell, very fragrant

T - The classic hoppiness of other great DIPAs was there, but it was incredibly smooth, almost subtly sweet. None of that bitter or funny aftertaste you usually get with heavily hopped beers. Exceptional!

M - Despite its malty notes, it maintains the crispness you expect from an good DIPA.

O - I bought into the hype before I tasted this beer, so you'd think it I'd be at least a little let down, but I kid you not, I teared-up a little. It's that good. If anything, I think I expected something more aggressive, like Stone's Domination IPA, but the magic of this beer is how it marries the wonderful hoppy qualities of an DIPA with a smooth, sweetness that I've yet experienced in one of its peers. Hands down the best DIPA you will ever experience, and maybe, dare I say it, the best *beer* you will ever experience (outside of Belgium, of course... respect to the Trappists)

Photo of oline73
4.72/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had this on-tap at Capone's, poured into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a very clear golden amber color with hardly any head at all. A ring of white carbonation clings to the edge of the glass.

Smell: This beer smells awesome, one of the best I've run into. The smell is quite sweet with tons of citrus hops, I'm smelling tangerine and clementine. There is some malt in there with the hops as well. I would describe it as crisp.

Taste: Again, there are a ton of hops here too. The taste is not nearly as sweet as the smell. Pine and citrus hop bitterness smothers the tongue. The malt is adding some sweetness. The finish is super bitter with a hint of warmth from the alcohol.

Mouthfeel: The body is medium with a very low amount of carbonation. Just enough to feel a tingle on the tongue. The beer sticks to the tongue, and there is a super dry finish.

Overall: This beer is very good, one of the best in fact. I really enjoyed the hint of alcohol along with the other flavors. Given the strength of this one, it is super easy to drink. The hop profile is wonderful.

Photo of ShanePB
4.3/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a 6 oz mini snifter glass at Capones in Norristown. After waiting in line for 1.5 hours, let's see if this was worth the wait...

A: Crystal clear honey-orange body with an extremely tiny, almost non-present, white foam head. Some moderate to low lacing, actually - no retention really, either.

S: Sweet and prickly pine sap notes and pink grapefruit up front. Slightly bitter, with some lemongrass and a very faint whiff of honey in the back end. Really an outstanding smelling beer.

T: Up front are some rather harsh pine notes, a slight bitterness though not as much as I was expecting from an 11% IIPA. Melon sweetness, generic citrus qualities and prominent orange flavors complete this bitter to sweet flavor profile.

M: Smooth and creamy, low carbonation (strange) but overall, pleasant. Not as wonderful as the mouth feel I got with Pliny the Elder.

If I'm being completely honest, this was very good but wasn't worth the 1.5 hour wait in line for. I was fortunate enough to get two pours of this beer, totaling around 12 oz, but this doesn't really need all the hype surrounding it. In my opinion, Pliny the Elder wins the battle against Younger, although I was hoping it would be the opposite. Oh well.

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

I will change the score when I find a better beer. I enjoyed this beer because it was sooo similar to pliny the elder, yet bigger in every way possible. the malts were not prominent and the hops smashed the pallet but in a very gentle way. The bar went crazy when they ran out. I am grateful for the people who were there early and appreciate the beer. I will be around next year.

Photo of MADhombrewer
4.2/5  rDev -10.4%
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.

Photo of tarheels86
4.25/5  rDev -9.4%
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.

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

On draught at Oskar Blue's Liquids and Solids in Longmont, Co. Poured into an 8oz snifter.

A: Deep gold with amber hues but more on the bright side of amber then the dark. Solid head retention that fades into a spiderweb like lacing on the glass.

S: Massive piney hops is the first aroma to hit your senses. It's as if you too a wiff of the biggest pine tree in existance and let the flavor wash over you. Touches of citrus grapefruit also take shape behind the chronic and pine notes.

T: Massive pine to match the nose. Comes across somewhat sticky and resinous but the bitter is truly there. Citrus fruit such as mango and pineapple are present but pine and chronic flavors are dominate. The malt is solid and doesn't subdue the hops but instead balances them very well.

M: Because of the prefect malt backbone this beer weighs heavy on the palate. Top of mouth is coated but the bitterness creeps from the back of the palate to the front. Citrus notes linger on the middel of the tongue and the finish just doesn't stop. Almost no booziness present.

D: Having the oppurtunity to taste this beer is up there with getting superbowl tickets. It's worth the time, effort, and money. It's exceptional in all standings for what an Imperial IPA should be. It's not over hopped nor is it over malted, it's perfectly balanced- just like all the beers RR does. I only wish it were made more often or in higher quantities because 8oz's is just not enough.

Photo of BieresDesMoines
4.54/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours with a small but solid head with a good effervescence. The beer couldn't smell more like pine, just wonderful like walking in a pinewood forest. I love aromatic beers and I could smell this one five feet away when the growler was opened. This is one of the driest hoppy beers I have ever tried, and now I fear I am going to crave it constantly. The beer is bracingly bitter and piney with some great complimentary mango and very mild citrus flavors that lend a hand in the complexity, this is not to say that the fruit notes sweeten the beer at all. There is just not a trace of the huge alcohol , just one remarkably well put together beer.

Photo of dmsohyea
4.33/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

2/15/11 on-tab at San Diego Brewing Co

Spent about two weeks watching Facebook to actually get a taste of this beer. Luckily I found it at the SD Brewing, a fantastic establishment with good beer of their own.

A: Pours a deep orange with a small amount of head that dissipates quickly. Clear and crisp, little to no lacing.

S: Nothing beats the smell of this beer. Simicoe hops, pine, citrus that you can smell from several feet away. You have to get it right off the tap or the smell will diminish in a hurry. As the beer warms up you start to get a bit more of the scent when drinking. Edit: I stand corrected. The nose on this beer is somewhat muted compared to other DIPA and TIPA's on the market. It's still great, but the smell isn't as strong as it should be. Lowering this from 5 to 4. I have had this at four different tastings now, and my opinion only of the smell has lowered. Everything else is is accurate. Still extremely smooth and wonderful.

T: Sweet and malty with upfront bitterness and an alcoholic finish. Complex flavor without being too overpowering. That being said, I didn't give the taste a '5' because the alcohol is still there and so is some astringency that I wasn't expecting.

M: Mouthfeel is fantastic. Bar none. Creamy and sweet without feeling like you're eating a malt sandwich. Goes down smooth.

D: It's actually quite hard to session this beer. Besides being quickly intoxicated, the strong bitterness lingers on the back of the pallet for a long time. A great beer that I wouldn't want to have more than 2 of.

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Pliny The Younger from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 2,656 ratings.