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Blind Pig IPA - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Blind Pig IPABlind Pig IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

4,948 Ratings

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Ratings: 4,948
Reviews: 1,359
rAvg: 4.37
pDev: 8.92%
Wants: 1,664
Gots: 619 | FT: 19
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,948 | Reviews: 1,359
Photo of mryuk
4.52/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

pours a filtered amber-gold with a finger of head.

smell is piny hops, not overpowering.

taste is extremely light and crisp with good strong piny hop flavor start to finish.

mouth is light with good carbonation.

drinkability is extremely good. a toned down version of pliny the elder but just as smooth and enjoyable.

Photo of Rifugium
4/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Monk's, Philly, PA

A fine, fresh, hoppy IPA. Poured a hazy copper with a nice frothy white head that laced well. Big hoppy aroma, floral and fruity, with notes of grapefruit and lemon. Taste is of pine, resin, grapefruit, lemon zest and apricot, with a sweet malty background. Leaves a resinous, bitter aftertaste; crisp and drying. Medium-bodied and very drinkable.

Photo of angrybabboon
4.59/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for this bottle

Review adapted from notes taken 12/23/10

Appearance: An amber/copper/golden color with a nice head and great lacing

Smell: Extremely, wonderfully hoppy - sharp citrus/lemon aromas completely overwhelm the malts... in the best way possible - tangerine and orange flesh, with a touch of pith, some dank notes, resinous pine - nicely pale malts, very clean

Taste: Very, very bitter - I have encountered few beers that provide this level of bitterness - it's a lingering bitterness, too - super hoppy, with mostly citrus (grapefruit) and resin notes - just gets better as it warms, explosive citrus, hops everywhere - juicy, fleshy, resinous - clean, pale malts - some balance

Mouthfeel: Medium body, smooth, nicely carbonated, extremely drinkable

Overall: Fantastic, of course

If I lived within Russian River's distribution, I would buy this all the time. I've had better IPAs, but this really ranks among the best.

Update: 5/2/13

Drinking a fresh bottle courtesy of magictacosinus, my first since 2010. It's just as magical as I remember. This is the definition of world class. I bumped up the appearance and taste, slightly.

Photo of HikerCT
4.31/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Received this in a NOOB BIF from lisomiso - Thanks!

I had a 1 pt 9 fl oz bottle (not sure if they come in different sizes) served in my imperial pint glass, which was bought in England.

I was immediately impressed by both the clarity of this beer and the head, which was creamy white color and lasted a long time.

I can't say that this beer has very much of a nose to it. I can smell some malt and a hint of hops, but no aroma that knocks me off my feet and says, "Here I am!" But at the same time, this isn't bad. It just doesn't stand out to me - could just be one of those genetic quirks of my sniffer.

The taste is all about the hops. It's very bitter upfront and finishes with a sort of herbal - maybe a little fruity - taste, but nothing too pronounced. The bitterness lingers and finishes very dry.

This is a beer that lets you know you're drinking an IPA.

Photo of danieelol
4.45/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours nice yellow golden colour. Decent head and lacing.

S: Pineapple, juicy tropical fruits, bit of pine. Very juicy nose. Smells like a nice fruity jelly.

T: Really pleasant mix of tropical fruit. Subtle flavours, and very drinkable. Bitter but not that bitter. Bit of pine.

M: Feels good, pretty full.

O: Really high quality beer. I bet it would be a cracker when fresher.

Photo of tewaris
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500 ml. (16.9 oz.) bottled 05/09/2011 poured into a pilsner glass.

Crystal clear liquid gold with a good off white dense head. Surprisingly the retention is just average but the lacing is real good.

I am not a big fan of the aroma that although very good, is rather weak, and a tad maltier than the blast I was hoping for. The hops are weedy and spicy, and come along really well in the taste. Very bitter with minty, spicy and pungent notes on the backdrop of a light malt base; somehow Blind Pig feels like chewing on tobacco/tea leaves, but in the most delicious way.

The mouthfeel is not as crisp, but that could be the temperature. Finish is bone dry and the body is below medium. A real easy drinking, lower alcohol, low gravity, hop heavy IPA. Belongs in the league of Masala Mama and Furious in every respect but aroma. But then, I have always had the said beers fresh, and even on cask so the comparison might not be fair.

I like it, very much!

Appearance 4/5; Aroma 3.5/5; Taste 4.5/5; Mouthfeel 4.5/5; Overall 4.5/5

Photo of SFGuy187
4.97/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is up there in my Top 3 single IPAs at the moment, and I actually prefer Blind Pig over Pliny the Elder. Poured from a 500 mL bottle, freshness date prominently displayed. This was bottled less than 2 weeks ago.

A: Muted yellow-orange with a nice fluffy white head. A little cloudy. Plenty of lacing.

S: Very floral bouquet of hops. I don't get any of the sweetness from less balanced IPAs ... just a nice and potent blast of fresh hops.

T: A little bitter, but very well balanced against the malt bill. No single note overpowers the other (i.e. citrus vs. pine), and a very subtle hint of honey.

M - Very smooth, balanced, creamy and light (for an IPA).

O - I don't know if it is just me getting older, but I enjoy the fact that Blind Pig is so balanced with a lower abv% than a lot of IPAs out there. Very drinkable and one of the best IPAs on the planet. A perfect example of the west coast style.

Photo of jmeyers78
4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Glass ware: Pint glass

A - Pale gold with a nice 1/4" thick white head

S - Hops, hops and more hops. More specifically citrus and pine

T - Right off the bat I noticed the bitterness...a very pleasant bitterness. This offsets well with the malt backbone. Very, very drinkable

M - Nice. Creamy and balanced.

O - A very good IPA. I can definitely see where the hype came from. If this beer was more readily available to me it would definitely be a staple of mine

Photo of soze47
4.3/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a month and a half old bottle today on a trip to Southern Cal. Surprised to find it with that much age on it, but I'm not going to complain. Still delicious.

Appearance: Nice golden color with a pearly head that is quite sticky, especially after the second glass.

Aroma: Interesting blend of subdued, yet potent hops and malt. If the malt sweetness was not there, the hops would be less sweet than they are. As it stands, there is a nice tropical nose that leans towards clementines.

Taste: More bitter than the nose would have you believe. Nice hop/malt combo right off the bat for an initial burst of flavor, then a nice subdued secondary taste calms down before the bitter linger kicks in. The aftertaste is not so bitter that it ruins anything. It actually plays a big role in keeping this beer balanced.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: If this were in a six pack, it would be dangerous! Highly drinkable as it has a light body for the style and easy to gulp. The linger actually develops throughout the bottle in a nice way that helps lend some nuance.

Overall: Easy to understand the hype on this beer. It is obviously well crafted. The hops and malt combine for great flavors that hit in waves and build in complexity throughout the bottle. Great beer!

Photo of Dope
4.5/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Nice clear, golden amber color. Decent head that fades fast but leaves nice lacing.

S: Very hoppy as you might imagine. Nice orange aroma.

T: Very hop forward as you might expect. Orange and grapefruit it seems. Maybe a tiny bit of pine in there. Surprisingly well balanced with some bready malt coming through.

M: Mid-range mouthfeel with a surprisingly heavy aftertaste despite the otherwise clean taste.

O: Quite good IPA, top 5 easily. Very clean, crisp and well balanced. More or less perfect if you like citrusy IPAs.

Photo of evilinc
4.05/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drinking this from a Delirium Tremens snifter as I type this.

Bottled on 04/14/11, so I think it could* be a bit fresher, but it's still considerably fresh.

Cracked open and poured a nice orange-y golden liquid, slightly hazy, with off-white head. Very fine bubbles and a few bigger ones. Head does die down and and the drink retains a nice thin top layer of suds. Swirling around the glass produces a nice fine head. Left very nice lace around the rim of the snifter. Very shimmery in the light, with bubbles consistently rising to the top.

Smells like mango, pine, citrus peel. I think it smells good, it's not the most intense aroma I've ever had from an IPA, but still a solid nose. (Do I detect a little bit of smoked cigarette?) Not like the 4-weeks fresh Pliny I just recently had, but I'll review that one later.

This is the way I like an IPA, with the hops forward, piney and citrusy. I am a big fan of that style of hopping.

Tastes great. Bitterness on the sides of the tongue with the sweet, fruity flavors from the front of the tongue and all along the middle. It's not too bitter, it's nicely balanced. A drinkable IPA. Orange/lemon zest sweetness and dryness remain, slight pine resin. What can I say, it's a great IPA.

Mouth feel, like above, produces a lingering bitterness on the sides of the tongue, nice oily remainder after every sip. Not too thick, so it stays drinkable, but it does dominate the palate.

Perhaps I am just associating it with when I used to smoke a cigarette here and there (when I'd usually be drinking an IPA), but I keep thinking tobacco. Like after a quality, fresh cigarette, after you haven't had one in a long time. Not right upfront, but mixed somewhere in with the hop oils, sweet malt, a hike in the woods, and some exotic fruit.

Overall, I would drink this regularly if I could. Looks, smells, and tastes great. 6.1% abv is nicely balanced with a lot of hops, and a juiciness that keeps you coming back for another sip.

Photo of MrVonzipper
3.4/5  rDev -22.2%
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.

Photo of chumba526
4.42/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appears translucent gold in color with a small white head.

It smells of pine like and grassy hops. I also get a bit of a mild dry bread like malt smell to the ale.

It tastes of citrusy (grapefruit mostly) hops, and earthy grassy/ pine like hops. There is a mild malt sweetness that pairs nicely with the citrusy and pines like hop flavor of the beer. The beer ends with a forceful amount of bitterness. Though it is not overwhelming.

There is a crisp mouthfeel to the ale.

Overall a flavorful hop forward light refreshing and smooth tasting IPA. I have been liking that more bars around town have but putting this on tap.

Photo of mikul93
3.72/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a golden orange with light head. Carbonation streaming from the bottom of glass.

S- This beers smells WONDERFUL! Pine and hints of oranges.

T- Bitter and hoppy. Very dry.

M- Clean and dry. Smooth at first but bitter aftertaste lingers.

O- I enjoyed the beer but I definitely won't be seeking it out.

Photo of kevanb
4.57/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Blind Pig pours a lovely clear copper color, hues of golds and oranges with just a touch of light amber, a few bubbles rise from the bottom of the glass while a nice thick white head rises about 2 fingers high out of the glass that has great retention and leaves behind a great sticky network of lacing. The aroma is great, bright and vibrant floral hops, juicy grapefruit and tangerine with some nice pine and grassy flavors at the back end, just a touch of sweet pale cereal grain comes out. The flavors are just as nice, huge grapefruit presence on the tongue, light floral notes with a big burst of bitter earthy pine and grass flavors but the brightness is still there which is remarkable, a touch of sweet pale grain at the finish reminds you that there is some malt used in this beer but this is all about the hops. The body is great, medium carbonation, a touch higher than anticipated and moderately prickly with a full body and and great dry bitter finish.

Verdict: An absolutely fantastic IPA from Russian River, it should come as no surprise that they have mastered the art of hoppy beers. The flavors across so wonderfully with such mild bitterness, this really is one of the most drinkable IPAs on the planet. This really is a must try for anyone who loves hops.

Photo of ColdPoncho
4.18/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to baycat for this one.

Bottled on 04-04-11

A - Clear golden amber body, big white head. Really good look.

S - Grapefruit, pine resin, pine wood, fresh cut grass. Nice complex hop aroma.

T - Bitter, citrus, pine, dry, Bit of tangerine on the back. Nice complex hop flavor. Well balanced with the nose.

M - very smooth, dry. An excellent mouthfeel.

O (D) - this is a great IPA. I am happy to have it. I wish I lived in CA.

Photo of kevinv
4.8/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle dated 04/16/2011. Consumed late April at ~2 weeks old. Reviewed from my backlog of notes...

Poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours a slightly hazy orange-copper with a huge 3-finger fluffy white head. Great head retention and delicate lacing.

S - Grapefruit, lemon, pineapple, orange, light pine, and just overall terrific. Powerful floral hop aromas with a slight malt profile to back it up.

T - Extremely fresh and crisp hop flavors of orange and grapefruit. This one brings the bitterness and ample hops that hop-heads crave. Wonderful. Again, a nice pale malt helps round out the sweetness in this IPA. Dry and bitter finish. Slight oily resinous feeling lingers in the aftertaste.

M - Smooth, creamy, medium bodied brew with a medium carbonation.

O - Overall, this is a clear favorite of mine. I honestly try to be conscientious about how many "5.0" scores I give out, but this one really hits the mark and is every bit deserving of the high scores BA's give it. It's amazing how drinkable this IPA is. There's no question that this would be my go-to-IPA all year long if it was available locally. I know this comparison has been made plenty of times, but even with as good as Pliny tastes, Blind Pig takes the cake for me.

Photo of brotherloco
4.38/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml. Bottled 04/14/11.

Pours a beautiful slightly hazy gold with a two finger off-white head that settles to a thin covering.

Oh I love the aroma of fresh hops. Smells of pine and citrus. Orange and tangerine emerge. Bright and resinous, some floral perfume as well. Sweet caramel mixed in the background. If you've enjoyed a Pliny, there's no doubt this is a sibling.

From the first sip the taste runs deep. Resinous dank hops and orangey citrus. A bracing bitterness moves in to the middle of the flavor and lingers on after the swallow. There's a great aroma to this beer, but it tastes even better.

Medium bodied and highly drinkable. A slightly oily texture that makes it very pleasant in the mouth. Gains some thickness over time. Great bite in the finish.

Sometimes it's hard to pick up this beer when it's sitting right next to a Pliny, but it shouldn't be ignored.

Photo of whitemomba
4.35/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my FFF glass from the 500ml bottle. Dated 5-9-11. Drank on 5-22-11.

A - Clear orange color. Vigorous pour leaves about a finger and a half white head. Small amount of head stays throughout the whole beer. Some sticky lacing. Stays pretty bubbly.

S - Not much on the nose. I get a decent amount of citrus and floral.

T - Delicious. Not as fruity as other IPA's but very nicely balanced. Nice amount of bitterness. Pretty dry. Bits of grapefruit in the aftertase.

M - Medium carbonation. Not too sticky. Perfect amount of body.

O - Great IPA. Very high in drinkability. This bottle went pretty fast.

Photo of alenonbeeradv
4.42/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a - a frothy sticky head. nice bold but clear body.

s - piney and resiny like the bottle but more fruit and vivid floral aromas from the tap.

t - a lot more malt taking over. the bottle seems a little more bitter and hoppy where the tap seems a lot more earthy and handleable. very clean.

m - pretty mellow and smooth but still an adventure. as i said before a lot mote tame than the bottle in terms of taste and mouthfeel.

o - of my favorite go tos of ipas. pliney rarely dissapoints too. quite a privelege to try on tap.

note: i kept this review brief due to a future review of
the bottle. for now this will suffice.

Photo of djeucalyptus
4.3/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours a beautiful golden caramel color with hints of lemon. Nice thick one-finger eggshell head with decent sheets of lace.

Aroma is impressively strong; floral and citrus hops backed by pine hop notes. Juicy floral and citrusy hops dominate. smells even fruitier and fresher on tap than I remember in bottles.

Juicy. hefty fruit, orange, lemon, grapefruit, floral hops and some herbal green hops. malts are prevalent, for sure, but the hops really shine through. The sugars of the malts keep the hops from overwhelming. impressive.

Mouth is perfect for an IPA. it tends toward the thick and viscous side like grapefruit juice. I can almost taste the pulp. Thick yet it seems crazy drinkable on tap. smooth, light, and almost refreshing.

Overall is wow. if this were still drinkability, it'd get a 5. On the whole, it's hard to find a fault with this one. While I might get slapped in the face for saying this, blind pig casts a shadow over the cowering, pretentiously over-hopped Pliny. Blind pig is king.

Photo of drewba
4.4/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - translucent sparkly golden yellow with a white finger and a half head after an aggressive pour. The head dies quickly but has some bubbles along the edge and some nice legs for the duration of the beer.

S - Fresh citrus, most notably lemon and mango with some pine resin in the back end. Not a big aroma, but it does smell nice.

T - Very floral, soft grass, dull lemon & lime, with a subtle grapefruit and pineapple flavor towards the end that slowly grows into a nice building bitterness. Very minimal malt presence - i'm getting a little bit of buttered toast (not in a roasty, or charred way) but that doesn't bother me in the least. This is super tasty and incredibly easy to drink.

M - medium bodied, with a creamy mouthfeel thanks to the perfect carbonation.

O - Delicious, spot on mouthfeel, low bitterness = me flying through a bottle. One of my shorter reviews thanks to me drinking this really quickly. Not a terribly complex or nuanced beer, but really enjoyable.

Photo of bobhits
4.03/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled 4/14/11 and consumed on 5/14/11. Thanks to UCLABrewN84 for this in a recent trade!

There is something about the color of this beer I just love. A hair darker than the lightest IPAs but far lighter and more orangey than some of the darker almost ruby colored ones. Tall white head and good lacing is here and clearly a must.

The aroma isn’t as powerful as other reviews I’m seeing. This stone IPA glass generally does wonders for enhancing the nose so I’m not sure. What is here however is splendid. Fresh floral hops with the lightest of malts backing it.

This non imperial IPA at 6% is showing perhaps why most IPAs are still a bit stronger. The malt back is a touch weak and the hops aren’t nearly as strong as many are claiming. Instead this is a delicate hop flavor, very floral and certainly bitter. The malt truly is here just to make this beer work but like a child seen and not heard. If I could get this on tap in the summer I could see this being just about perfect.

The mouth is very good for the style. A touch lighter in body than some of the bigger IPAs, but perhaps a bit more carbonated. This makes for as I said above a great summer beer to drink.

I want to like this beer more. I want to get why this beer makes the top 100 and frankly I don’t get it. An extremely good IPA, but it just doesn’t have that something special to put it in the exceptional category.

Photo of Retsinis
4.08/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle recently (dated 3/28/11) since the Total Wine near me is always out of Pliney, but this will do.

A: Poured from the 500 ml bottle into a Bruery tulip glass. The beer pours a cloudy, and rich orange color with a creamy off white head, that quickly settled, but left a good half inch of foam on top throughout, depositing some decent lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: I get scents of pine hops, citrus, bread, orange zest, tangerine, grapefruit, and some mild pineapple.

T: Mirrors the nose quite nice, with a moderate initial bitterness that is not too dry, followed with complex layers of tropical fruit, backed by a mild malty bread sweet backbone. Notes of grapefruit, lemony zest, orange peel, and pine. The mellow bread and mild caramel malt provide a good backbone to the hops as well.

M: A medium cream and oily texture, with a soft medium level of carbonation. Very clean, and drinkable.

O: Great IPA. Fresher the better of course, but this was not too bad. Have had it fresh on draft at Russian river in April 2010, which was great too. I prefer Pliney the Elder, but this is not a bad consolation either.

Photo of Chaney
4.12/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on 4/14/11.

A: Almost clear, but not quite, melted orange sherbet, with about a finger or so head that died down to a nice froth rather quickly.

S: Citrus air freshener: orange, candy sugar, apricot, and a decent bit of malt... more than I was expecting anyway.

T: I got a bit of lemon mixed in the citrus concoction, with added some complexity. The hops hit the palate hard initially, but the finish was surprisingly smooth.

M: The carbonation was spot on, the bitterness was quite the palate wrecker, but the yeasty finish washed over the grapefruit alkalinity, making it highly drinkable.

O: The hype was warranted!... especially considering the fact that this was only $4.50/bottle. Yummy!

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Blind Pig IPA from Russian River Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 4,948 ratings.