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Blind Pig IPA - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Blind Pig IPABlind Pig IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,383 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 1,383
Hads: 5,383
Avg: 4.32
pDev: 17.59%
Wants: 1,820
Gots: 806 | FT: 24
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: RedwoodGeorge on 03-26-2005

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,383 | Hads: 5,383
Photo of BIN29
1.87/5  rDev -56.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2

510 ml bottled on 082615. Exactly two weeks old.

L: Clear golden in color. Small head quickly settled before I even get a chance to instagram it :) very nice lancing. Beautiful appearance for sure.

S: Big fail. This one is not aromatic. If there's no date on the bottle I would assume this is pretty old. Very light citrus, light caramel and hint of pine.

T: bland, reminds me of an old english-style ipa. I can't believe the hype of this beer. There's a light spicy/herbal flavors that I can't describe but noting really unique.

M: unpleasantly dry aftertaste, very bitter, and very light. Extremely drinkable but not sticky or juicy. Very good carbonation however, I really enjoyed that part.

O: Maybe the most underwhelming drinking experience. Extremely overhyped beer. This is nothing close to a good ipa, definitely below average ipa.

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Photo of Spider889
2.1/5  rDev -51.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

On draft at the Mountain Sun brewpub in Boulder on 9/24/11. Assuming it was fresh since it was draft and the week of GABF...

A - Appears cloudy and unfiltered. Kinda ugly but some of the best IPA's are unfiltered (usually they smell better anyways) so I wasn't too worried. Has a short cap of white foam atop a thin looking beer of super pale wheat color.

S - Tangerine peel and wheat with some pithy citrus rind. Not bad, but nothing that impressive either tbh.

T - Oi, this was bland as hell. Same mild citrus that I found in the aroma plus a little pineapple to mingle with the tangerine. There's just no body or depth here to carry the positive aspects of the beer through to the finish though. No malt flavor at all.

M - Zoinks, Scooby... it's a mystery why this beer is so widely regarded. This was WAY over carbonated. Drinking it was painful... like a freshly opened bottle of Perrier mineral water except on steroids (pretend you somehow managed to dissolve several of those mini-CO2 cartridges in the beer before serving it).

O - This was unpleasant to drink. I wanted to dump it but we had to consume this outside the restaurant was so damn busy. I really wanted to like this, but hell... it was terrible. The main issue was the carbonation (which I will assume the local tap lines are to blame, not RR). But the flavor was dull and muted, with a lackluster aroma.

All I can think is that this was an old and severely mistreated keg of beer which was then hooked up to improperly functioning tap lines. I definitely want to try this again (preferably from a fresh bottle), but I don't hold super high hopes right now.

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Photo of gregshead
2.63/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A - Light orange color with an inch of head which retained itself quite well.

S - Smelled of strong hops with a little citrus mixed in.

T - Grapefruit citrus at first but then all that I tasted was an overpowering hop taste.

M - Light taste with decent carbonation.

D - Considering RR's Pliny the Elder has become one of my favorite Double IPAs, just seemed to lack the balance I have come to expect from my favorite IPAs and experienced from Pliny the Elder. Not for me. For others that enjoy the large amount of hop taste.

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Photo of ZAP
2.95/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A-An almost glowing golden color...nice lacing on the glass.

S-The smell is sweet citrus...ripe oranges, pinneaples, and tangerines....a mild caramel like maltiness blends in nicely

T-Similar, but different that the nose...where the nose leads one to think sweet fruit cocktail, the taste is actually sharply citrus, with piney notes as well. The fruits on the taste are unsweetened pink grapefruit, and orange peel.

M-Seems one-sided....more of a hop juice style IPA than a juicy flavorful IPA....malt seems to be missing in the body....finishes very dry and bitter

D-Depends on what you want in an IPA and what you like. This is as bitter an IPA as I've had but lacks the overall juicy hop notes I like. I much preferred Pliny to this. I always like to compare the big hitters to our state's best known canned IPA Surly Furious (which is kind of in the middle of the IPA and DIPA area imho). Personally I think Furious is a better beer. The bitterness is about the same but Furious has a better overall flavor to me. I know others really like this and it has won many awards but for me it is not an elite IPA because it is too one-sided and lacks the juicy flavorful hop elements I enjoy.

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Photo of hophopandaway
2.96/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

If the only falvour you expect in a beer is hops then this is the beer for you.

The slightly off-white head instantly dissapated to leave my usual 12 ounces of beer in my pint glass. As an aside I asked for a top-up, didn't get one again, and thus left no tip.
Anyway, the smell was all floral, and I got nothing else, although I have to say that I think the rating of ice-cold beer on its nose is a slightly futile task. The taste was all hops, it;s bitter without balance and there is nothing else going on bar a bit of orange and a tiny bit of malt fighting, unsucessfully, to show its face.
On the finnish you get a really dry tongue that doesn't feel great. I had two because it was this, Anchor steam or hoegarten and it got no better on the second.
I'm flabbergasted this is rated as one of the world's 100 best beers.

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Photo of Damian
2.98/5  rDev -31%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Drank from a 1 PINT .9 FL. OZ./500 ML bottle purchased at City Beers, San Francisco, CA
Bottled on 070908
Served in a pint glass

The beer poured a crystal clear, yellowish-amber color. Rather light for the style. The two-finger, bubbly, bright white head left thick rings of sudsy looking lacing all down the glass.

The aroma was hoppy and fruity. Citrusy with strong notes of orange, grapefruit and a hint of tropical fruits.

The taste was super hoppy and bitter from start to finish. Somewhat astringent. I could hardly detect any malt presence in this beer. The hops were crisp, spicy and grapefruit-like up front and they turned super piney by mid-palate. This intense, piney, bitter flavor carried into the dry and pithy finish. Overall, not a terribly complex beer.

The mouthfeel was medium bodied (a touch lighter than expected) with an average amount of carbonation.

This was unquestionably one of the most bitter beers I have sampled to date. I can appreciate a wide array of IPA's but there needs to be some semblance of balance for me to find them enjoyable.

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Photo of Buddha22
3.01/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 1/03/2011 poured into tulip.

A honey gold color with one finger head. Floral hops in the nose, but not as strong as I was hoping. On the front end of the taste seems extremely watered down which is disappointing. The hop bitterness kicks in on the back end, but I still cant get over the water down flavor. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with decent carbonation and the drinkability is average. I just don't like the watered down taste in the beginning mixing with the bitter end.

Maybe This IPA is a little past its drink by date, but I have had double troubles 3 months after bottling and it still tasted amazing.

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Photo of travolta
3.02/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

App: White, foamy head. Bright/light copper, very clear except yeast. Minimal retention and lacing.

Nose: Biscuits, citrus, big profile, a bit of vanilla and banana nut bread. Sweet nose with a hint of pear at the end.

Taste: Perfect carbonation. Slightly syrupy finish, dry in the middle, pineapples and mangoes, not much else.

Notes: Not as good as it was when brewed in Temecula.

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Photo of Beaver13
3.08/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

500 ml bottle. Pours goden yellow with a frothy white head that quickly diminishes to a thin film that leaves some lacing.

The aroma is pretty subdued (esp after Pliny). There are some sweet sugary malts and a little melon and some peppery hops.

The flavor is some sweet malt and fruits with a kind of abrasive charcoal hop bitterness in the finish that has a good amount of bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, I didn't really care for the hop flavor profile. I was surprised considering how much I liked the Pliny (which was much more balanced). Given the same price, I would take the Pliny over this any day of the week.

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Photo of VWBuggirl
3.09/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

So, I am sure many of you will disagree with me on this, but personally, I did not enjoy this beer. Though, I can understand why so many people enjoy it.

I never understood why smell was a category in these rating, but this beer is why! I have never smelled a drink that had such a great aroma. It has a very strong floral scent that I find refreshing.

The problem (for me) is that it has such an unpleasant bitterness to it that I couldn't enjoy it. I was quite disappointed, but as I said, I can understand why others enjoy it.

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Photo of champ103
3.11/5  rDev -28%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a hazy reddish/orange color. A two finger white head forms with good retention. Light lace is left behind.
S: Huge resiny pine up front and center. A large bitterness. Nothing else.
T: Again, huge pine that dominates. Bitterness lingers on for ever. Nothing else but a sharp bitterness.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Really sticky and syrupy. Pretty hard for me to finish. I just get fatigued trying to finish this.

I really like RR. PtE is one of my favorite DIPA's. I thought I was going to like this, but there is nothing to take away from the palate burning pine and bitterness. Not for me.

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Photo of claspada
3.14/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Aromas of extremely pungent pine, fresh lemon, grapefruit, and faintly resinous hops. No malt at all; fairly clean.

The taste is completely and utterly dry, with nothing but wave after wave of citrusy and resiny hops assalting your tastebuds. I really cannot stomach such a hop bomb with no malt balance or detectability for that matter. If you are into this kind of thing you will love this beer but I prefer the ability to taste my next beer without having to eat a meal to cleanse my pallate.
The mouthfeel is fairly light bodied with very low carbonation. Smooth and slick, but not memorable.

Overall a miss for me just because of my style preferences, but I can see how some would enjoy.

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Photo of RunDWP
3.2/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

It's one of the hardest beers I've ever rated. Some things about it are great, but I'm afraid other things about it are not so great. I'm in the minority here, when I say this isn't one of the better West Coast IPA's. What's even more surprising, at least to me, is that I love Pliny the Elder from Russian River, but really have not warmed up to this at all.

Things start well with a chunky light tan head that refuses to go away floating on top of the hazy orange brew. And the aroma works for me, with mostly floral and slightly citrus hop notes dominating. And then I take a sip and...well, there's some citrus and floral character to the hops, but also a lot of bitterness there that really isn't pleasent, almost like chewing on a tire. Some malt is in there, but I just found this a bit harsh and astringent, and dare I say, a bit watery. I could drink this OK, but not as easily as a lot of other IPA's I've had.

I call them as I see them and sorry to say, I don't think this one deserves all the praise people heap onto it.

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Photo of JAXSON
3.2/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

2009 rate. I think something was wrong with this bottle so I should revisit this. I really dig both Plinys so I understand this should be a beer I enjoy given how great the brewery is.

Pours a strangely-light clear straw with a quickly receding head. Not the burst of hops I expected. Really subdued. A bit watery in the mouth, with a strange, harsh finish. Some nice characteristics, certainly drinkable, but absolutely below-average. I’ve had a dozen better IPAs in the last week. I have really enjoyed Russian River, but this is a strange offering.

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Photo of MyThoughtsExactly
3.22/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle 8/10 poured into a sniffer on 9/4

Look: Appears a golden-orange color. Lots of very large soapy bubbles with small bubbles coming from the bottom of the glass
Smell: Aroma is honey and malt with some citrus elements. It also has a “dirty” water smell to it which I haven’t experienced before with a beer.
Taste: Taste is malt flavor followed pine and sap notes. Bitterness rolls during the middle and leaves the mouth dry. Maybe it is the age of the bottle but the taste disappointing giving the “prestige” around this beer
Feel: Crisp. The malt gives it a nice feel in the middle of the mouth
Overall it definitely has the balance I expect from RR but this was way too muted in flavor for my taste. Maybe I need to drink it fresher but given this experience I wouldn’t purchase it again if given other choices.

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Photo of Phelps
3.23/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottled 12-06-10 and kept in refrigeration until I bought it last week. Poured into a tulip.

Russian River makes some beautiful IPAs. Blind Pig pours a pale gold, lustrous and awe-inspiring in its clarity. A half-finger head of foamy off-white crowns the gorgeous nectar, collapsing slowly to a top layer that -- while thin -- is rather sticky, gripping the sides in impressive webs of lace.

Nice hops in the aroma, but I'm more impressed by the malt: crackers and caramel in decent portions. There's a bit of sweet lime, grapefruit and a good amount of dank character.

The flavor is nice, though very subdued. Crackers, grapefruit peel, some honey, maybe even a hint of basil. A light bitterness grabs the sides of the tongue without much strength.

The body is a soft medium and a fizzy medium-light carbonation bubbles up the brew as it moves about.

Pliny and now this. Russian River's IPAs age like milk, even when they're in the fridge the whole time. This is drinkable enough, but it seems it's become a rather middling IPA. I'll seek it out on tap in the future.

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Photo of BucBasil
3.27/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured from the pint bottle into a large snifter.

A: The beer is a hazy dark orange color with 2 fingers of incredibly quickly dissipating off white head.

S: Slightly citrusy with a good balanced character. Odd sort of medicinal smell in there somewhere and a soapy (?) character. Very hoppy. Not much balance.

T: Wow - intensely bitter with no balance. Not my cup of tea, but strong hop character. Sappy bitterness all the way through - I feel like I'm chugging sap and earwax. Slight citrus flavor in there somewhere of orange rind and pulp. This one is all bitterness. Jesus.

Notes: I don't think I'll be coming back to this one. I very much enjoyed Pliny and the bitter yet balanced character it brought to the table. This one is way too unbalanced brutally bitter-for-no-real-reason way. Hard to get through the whole bottle.

The bottle explains that a "Blind Pig" was a term for beer you would get during prohibition. This definitely could pass as moonshine...

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Photo of Philousa
3.29/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Imbibed on 2/6/2012. Bottled on 1/6/2012.

Pours a clear gold straw with visibly active carbonation. One finger head settles to a thin layer. The nose is mostly bready with some tart American yeast and a good amount of piney hops. Some floral notes in the hops, but it's mostly pine. Well balanced in the nose, unheard of in West Coast IPAs! Honey biscuit, pale malt up front, turns very tart and quickly bitter. Grassy, piney hops on the tongue. Thin mouthfeel and flavor profile. Dry finish, and a bit chalky.

This is much more thin in feel and flavor than I expected, and ultimately that's what holds it back from being great. It's easily quaffable, dangerously so. I think I'm ultimately disappointed that the complexity in the aroma is not matched in the flavor. This is just a simple beer with lots of hops in it, but it's crafted well and has its own corner in the IPA world.

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Photo of HeadyIPA
3.3/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This IPA is average at best. It's good, not great. I don't understand the hype and people falling over themselves to get it. I'm sure it's because of the lack of accessibility outside of California or simply because it's a Russian River brew. Either way, I'd pass on this any day over Pliny. There are far more better IPAs out there that the average Joe can pick up at their local beer store or super market. So in summary, don't believe the hype on this one.

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Photo of GRG1313
3.33/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Lucky Baldwin's IPA Festival 6/13/09 - ON TAP

Pours nice orange honey color with a white head.

Light grapefruit nose with light resin character.

Medium body and medium balanced. This appears on tap to be a straightforward albeit relatively thin and simple IPA.

The strong citrus/lime character with intense hops found in the bottle was not found this time on tap. Good IPA to start a tasting; over powered, however, by others you may taste at same time.

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Photo of Skeeter
3.38/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

First off...let me just say I really wanted to like "the Pig." But, despite its catchy name and highly reputable maker (Russian River Brewing Company), it left much to be desired. Too hoppy for my simple palate. Kinda overpowered my other senses.

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Photo of MrVonzipper
3.4/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Nice dark golden color with a good eggshell colored head and solid lacing. very noticeable carbonation.

Typical IPA hoppy notes on the nose; bitter citrus-grapefruit, pine

Flavor notes are exactly the same. Piney and grapefruit-citrus. It's very One Note. Flavor only coming from the hops. No malt balance.

Mouthfeel is medium bodies with solid carbonation and a fresh aftertaste.

Overall I'm a little disappointed from this! I had a feeling I was going to like this a little more than Pliny the Elder, especially after reading about the two in a forum. I was very let down by how it's so just one note, being all hops. Clearly the defining character of the style, but I believe there should be more balance. I will always grab a Pliny instead of Blind Pig.

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Photo of Elendinn
3.4/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

On tap at Venti's Cafe, served in an imperial pint glass.

Appearance - amber honey, effervescent, and a half-finger's worth of white head -- thin, but retains well. Looks perfect, for the style.

Smell - like a forest; pine and floral hops, shortcake, and some faint malt. Gorgeous.

Taste - grapefruit; a very astringent, bitter, piney hop flavor; some faint, lingering malt, ultimately overpowered by the hops.

Mouthfeel - very carbonated, light-bodied, and refreshing, but far from smooth -- burns the tongue a bit.

Drinkability - the astringency makes this a difficult beer to drink for me. Refreshing on a hot day, but relegated to those who like their tongues decimated by hops.

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Photo of steve8robin
3.4/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Got this bottle on a recent trip to CA. 1 PT bottled on 01/03/11. Let's see...

A: A super clear light honey golden with a huge 1+ inch tan head that fades at a decent pace. Very good.

S: Smells og a very good blend of earthy hop and malty bready citrus. Very, very well blended smelling. Hints of lemon and mild cherry on the back. Very good.

T: Wow, this is a bit of a disappointment at first. After the nose, I expected much more. I get a slight metallic hop upfront with some bready citrus in the middle and some grapefruit on the backend. Ok.

M: Medium body with a heavy carbonation. A very dry finish. Decent.

D: Goes down harder than it should for the ABV. Eh.

All in all, wow! This brew started off stellar, but ended up mediocre. The appearance and smell were so good! The other categories is where this brew falls short. Definitely try if you like RR, but Elder is better IMO.

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Photo of JoshuaCain
3.4/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

pours a surprisingly vibrant and bright coppery lemon color with a immense frothy head. great retention and lacing.
could smell the hops coming from the glass while it was still on the table. very floral and citrus notes up front.
taste is pure hops. pine and resin flavors up front, with an appealing grassy/earthy type of finish. not much in the way of malt at all.
mouthfeel is nice, a medium body with very lively carbonation, very enjoyable.
overall a very solid IPA, worth trying if you can find it, but I wouldn't go out of my way for it.

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Blind Pig IPA from Russian River Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 1,383 ratings.