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Blind Pig IPA - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Blind Pig IPABlind Pig IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

4,778 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,778
Reviews: 1,344
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 8.94%
Wants: 1,575
Gots: 545 | FT: 16
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: 4,778 | Reviews: 1,344 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DanOLeary
4.28/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 12/11/09

Aroma: Citrus hop aroma up front with rich grapefruit rind. Crisp and bright, almost harsh hop aroma. Very little malt aroma.

Appearance: Light honey to a golden wheat with cloudiness suggesting the use of dry hopping. A thin white head blankets the beer with consistency. If you swirl the glass the foam will stick to the side but no lacing is present.

Flavor: Initially hits you with huge hop bitterness, a huge citrus bite right on the tongue. After that initial hop stab, the flavor fades out to almost nothing. The beer is surprisingly thin on malt character in the middle. The hop complexity of grapefruit, citrus and some pine are framed up very nicely, but there really isn't much to the malt to drive any sweetness into the mix. As pleasant as I find the hop character to be, you could call this beer unbalanced. There is a tendency to have a bit of a puckering effect, like the feeling of sucking on a hop leaf. The hop character comes off so bright and clean however, for a hop lover this is a real treat.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light with medium carbonation. Finishes clean except it has a puckering tannin effect. Back to chewing on that hop leaf with all the hop bitterness.

Overall: While Russian River considers the Blind Pig one of their standard IPA's, this would be a huge IPA for most breweries. I don't think I'm too far off the mark by saying for a great number of breweries in the country this would qualify as their Double IPA. The hop bitterness is extremely well defined and really does feel like you're drinking some liquid hops. If you're looking for a beer with excellent bitterness that doesn't mess around with subtle malt complexities, then this is your beer.

I'll admit some bias when drinking this beer because I know what a reputable brewery it comes from and how much I enjoy everything that Russian River puts out. If the Blind Pig was placed before me in an unmarked mason jar, I would probably tell you the beer was unbalanced and needed some biscuit malt complexity to back up all the grapefruit.

Photo of MbpBugeye
3.98/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 7-23-09. This might not be the freshest Blind Pig but I got it on a trade with a user from a car related site.

A- Big white thick and cake like head sits atop a clear, pale orange beer. The head has great retention and moderate lacing.

S- Not very powerful. Its hoppy and floral along with a bit of citrus.

T- Very tasty. Its piney and citrusy. The flavor could use a bit more punch but it might be because this beer is 6 months old already.

M- Medium and smooth body. Goes down well.

D- A pretty highly drinkable IPA.

Photo of boothbeer
4.43/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this bottle in a trade from nickd717. Thanks for getting me some great Russian River beers! Cracked this one for the first day of my last semester of law school.

Pours a bright amber; almost orange color. 2 fingers width of large white foamy head that retains well and leaves nice lacing on the glass. But there are some dark specs in the beer that sink to the bottom- hopefully just hops.

Smells of pine, orange peels, and some grapefruit. Definitely picking up citrus smells. Very nice aroma. This is what I look for in an IPA.

Tastes of pine/hops and bitterness and finishes with a lot of the citrus I smelled. This beer is in your face, but in a great way! Its not overpowering; there are a lot of great hops flavors, but the citrus complements them very well.

Pretty smooth mouthfeel for an IPA. Medium carbonation. The hops dont dry the mouthfeel out. Its actually pretty slick for how hoppy this beer is.

I could drink a lot of this IPA. Not too high of an ABV and an all around good beer. Just wish I had access to this whenever I wanted it!

Photo of PeterLemonjello
4.72/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - In between amber and orange in color. Nice lingering head with lacing down the glass. Lots of carbonation.

S - Glorious. Pine, grapefruit, wet/pungent resin, lemon

T - Fantastic. Just enough malt/caramel giving way to lots of hop bitterness and flavor. Pungent, grapefruit, lemon, orange, pine, herbal....just great.

M - Nice carbonation sensation and oily feel.

D - A pleasure to drink. Like most RR beers, it's a big beer full of big flavors but soft and clean at the same time. Just a great great beer.

Photo of cvaypai
4.45/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle to oversized snifter. Big thanks to Womencantsail for hooking this up. Thanks andrew.

Appearance - Pours a hazy golden copper with orange highlights. The pour leaves me with 2 fingers of frothy white head with some very large bubbles. The lacing forms beautiful down the sides of the glass and the head stays for a good amount of time.

Smell - I could smell this beer as soon as I opened it. Tons and tons of grapefruit and resiny, piney hops come right through, this one doesn't even need to be quaffed in the slightest. I am getting a little if any sweet malt on the end but this is overpowered by pine and grapefruity nose goodness.

Taste - Wow, so much grapefruit, this is amazing. Grapefruit and orange come through with other citrus notes right up front, a very nice bitterness that does not overwhelm the beer but wraps it all together. A bit of grassyness and earthy hops in the middle can be found. along with a hint of pine. A small hint of caramel sweetness on the back end.

Mouthfeel - This beer is right where it needs to be for the style, good bitterness, good carbonation and just the right weight. I love how resiny it feels on my tongue and palate, this is a wonderful beer indeed.

Drinkability - I could drink many of these indeed, the only problem being they are sold nowhere near. It is super refreshing but not overpowering and has the right amount of bitterness and weight I want to be drinking all day. If only I could go down to the local shop and pick this baby up.

Bell's and Russian River are right there for IPA's they are far above anyone else in my eyes though. Another great beer from Vinnie and co at Russian River.

Photo of dirtylou
4.43/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

ontap, had 3 pints of this one night at toronado - helped make for a rough flight the following day

cellphone notes

appearance: served in a standard pint, clear copper-amber, beige froth

smell: very nicely hopped, fresh and citrusy, pine resin, lemon zest

taste: great - probably a little behind pliny but a very strong offering...fresh citrus hop presence, lemon zest, tangerine zest, tropical fruit

mouthfeel: medium body, fresh and zesty

drinkability: good

Photo of Anthony1
3.93/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a fogged gold amber with a creme head. Soapy, hoppy nose. Sharp floral and citrus tones. I got a lot on the flavor. Earth, smoke, citrus, floral, and soapy hops. Real thick earthy character mostly. Feel is low on carbonation and the liquid is fine. Pretty easy to drink and an overall earthy IPA.

Photo of Mora2000
4.72/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle provided by Exiled.

Hands down, this is one of the best IPAs I have ever tasted.

The beer pours a light orange/gold with a white head. The smell is very piney and very pungent. Very resinous. The flavor is similar with a huge resinous hop flavor. The hops also provide some earthiness but not a whole lot of bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium to thick and very drinkable. I wish I could drink this more often.

Photo of BuffaloTapHugger
4.35/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Classic "Hethcliff" color in appearance, brilliant egg shell colored head and sick lacing on the pinty.

S: Pine Resins and mellow citrus action.

T: Hop all the way through and through. More of the deep resin characteristics than the bright citus displays other IPA's might have. Has earthly tones which I like the most.

M: Sticky, great carbonation factor, ABV noticed without concern.

D: This is one of the best I've ever had in the style, would drink more if given the opportunity. Thanks RR for strutting across to WNY, and giving me a glimpse of that WC mentality.

Photo of cbarrett4
4.28/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured on tap at Horse Brass Tavern in Portland:

Poured with a great light copper hue and a persistent head. Classic IPA on the nose and palate with lots of boldness and concentration. Pretty great but less intense than the Pliny. The hops are aggressive with notes of fresh pine, citrus, and a tannic finish. If you have a choice, get Pliny the Elder, if Pliny is not available, get this!

Photo of BedetheVenerable
4.33/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My first brew from Russian River Brewing! Many thanks to Tolann for an awesome trade. Bustin this one open to celebrate finally finishing my Hagiography paper.

Presentation: 16.9oz slimline Euro-style brown pop top; bottled-on date clearly marked. This is about a month and a half old, glad to get it fresh. Nice label with little ditty about the beer.

Appearance: Attractive dark gold beer with lots of super fine sediment in suspension, nice ivory cap with good stick and retention; already laying down some nice lace.

Smell: Wow. And I do mean wow. It's like a drop-kick to the senses, there are THAT much hops in there. Uber-intense, super sticky, resiny grapefruit and dark herbal hops. Delicious. Sharp, fresh, prickly. This is gorgeous. Malt, what malt? No seriously, what malt?

Taste: Nice, big hop presence. Bitterness is high, but not overpowering. The flavors are more piney and and leafy than grapefruity, but there's a twinge of citrus in here as well. Ends dry, bitter, and cleaner than I'm used to, I'm assuming they use a really neutral American Ale yeast here? The hoppiness and mild dry, crackery malt dry up the palate quickly, making you want another sip. Wonderful, puckering bitterness on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Light side of medium bodied.

Drinkability: For hopheads (and I can be one at times) this is quite quaffable.

Conclusion: My first RR brew, and even with my immense expectations, I am not dissappointed. This is one of the better American IPAs I've had, and definitely one of the more over-the-top. But not in a bad way. It's just in your face and doesn't apologize for being that way. As it should be.

Photo of Sixofsigmas
4.7/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Beautiful brownish orange pour. 2 inch head which supports the bottle cap without sinking. Beautiful lacing as the beer progresses.

Smell: Strong tart fruity grapefruit aromas mixed with pine and the bold scent of wonderful hoppyness.

Taste: Strong piney floral hoppy slap in the face with some nice caramel-like malt and finishing with grapefruit and citrus that is a wonderful end to a roller coaster through your taste buds.

M: Excellent carbonation, very pleasing in the mouth. Clean taste.

D: This is an extremely pleasing beer to drink, and I will continue to return to this one for solace...and as a regular beer to enjoy with friends.

Photo of morimech
3.58/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My first review from my Secret Santa 2009 haul from brentk56. Surprised by the pale golden color. This tells me this is going to be another hop centric beer. A large white head forms and has excellant retention. The head slowly settles to a thick cap. Heavy lacing is left on the glass. Very hoppy aroma with hints of grapefruit, orange, and lemon. Nothing from the malt. The flavor is likewise one dimensional. Citrus hops do shine however in this hop display. Fresh citrus and pine flavors. I would of liked some malt to balance this out a little. The body is on the lighter side but has very good carbonation that gives this beer a nice texture. Nice hop flavors but I would like to taste a little malt in my IPAs. If someone is looking for a better American IPA, I would suggest a few Midwestern beers.

Photo of soupyman10
4.45/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ordered a bottle from Joey at South Bay Drugs in Cali. Very excited to partake of my first Russian River brew.

Golden-orange color with a finger of slightly off-white head. All kinds of excellent visible rising bubbles going on. Ends up leaving a nice film and solid lacing.

Nose is glorious piney citrus hops. toffee malt. Really fantastic aromas. Lost of grapefruit all over the place.

Flavor is similarly excellent. Biting hops on the tongue to start the drink. Hops are piney and somewhat drying. Malt is there, somewhat caramel-y, but definitely takes a back seat. Strong sort of dirty hops that comes through.

Body is a touch thin, with nice busy carbonation. Good for the style.

Overall, a really tasty IPA that I'm glad I finally had the change to try. Not quite the top of the style (still occupied by Hop Rod Rye, Celebration, Two-Hearted and probably Furious), but still really delicious.

Photo of SanDiegoBeerLove
3.75/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on Date 10/30/2009. Drank 12/5/2009.

A - Middle Amber/Golden color with light head that faded quickly.

S- Good smell of Citrus, Pineapple, Lemons, Pine, Hops, Malt. Expected more Hops smell.

T- Light malt, citrus, grapefruit, more bitter than expected

M- Kind of watery with high carbonation.

D- A beer I will definitely drink again especially for the price.

Photo of Jayli
4.43/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had at Russian River on 11/27

A: This beer pours a clear copper color with a 1/2 finger of offwhite thick creamy head. Decent head retention that leaves spotty lacing along the glass.

S: Nose is of floral and piney hops with a nice muted maltiness.

T: Taste is bitter up front. A real floral bouquet of hops at the forefront that blends in to a nice rich maltiness in the middle. Finish has a sharp pine and grassy hops that leave a nice bite to the finish.

M: Lighter side of medium body, medium carbonation, slightly creamy at first with a nice dry and bitter finish.

D: Another damn highly drinkable beer from Russian River! Well blended, goes down easily, and is certainly sessionable.

Photo of ThirstyBird
4.28/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Toronado SD - from notes
Appears golden yellow in color with a thin white head. Some lacing.
Smells of grapefruit, obviously hoppy.
Taste is very well balanced -hoppy malty. Yum. Citrus, pine..
Light/med body with nice fine carbonation.
This is a great IPA.

Photo of drink1121
4.68/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Mauerhan for this one.

A- Straw colored with light head. Slight retention.

S- Good hops up front, which is what I was looking for. Melon, apricot hops, not too much citrus. Very easy smelling hops.

T- Hops up front with light malt, very light malt. Slight bitterness at the end. Wow, this was good.

M- A little light, watery almost.

D- I could have a bunch of these. Great taste with lower abv%. Great beer.

Photo of Dijeriduster
4.95/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The beer that started it all....for San Diego County. Originally brewed by Temecula Brewing this beer inspired Stone, Ballast, Alpine and all the others to start brewing. Thank you Vinnie!

A - Slightly hazy, golden to amber colour. Nice creamy head and lacing from both the tap and bottle.

S - More subtle hop tones smelling of ample dry hopping. Reminds me of a casked IPA even though its straight from the tap.

T - Wonderful citrus flavours with a well rounded malty base. Hops aren't quite as bitter as in Pliny, but well established.

M - Slightly thin vs. more "modern" IPA's from San Diego. Still retains an almost creamy, full feel with a little swishing.

D - Spectacular brew! Easy to drink IPA with plenty of hops for hopheads and a more moderate alcohol content then IIPAs. While hop flavours are more pronounced with warmth, mouthfeel does suffer a little. My only complaint on this, perhaps the archetypal CLASSIC West Coast IPA.

Photo of Ek0nomik
4.05/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured In: Snifter Glass
Attained through a trade.

Bottled on 02/02/2009

Appearance: The pour is a clear copper gold color with two fingers of head as the result from my non-careful pour. I hold the glass up to the light to see what the carbonation will have in store; it's relatively clear. No bubbles are rising up to the top of the glass, but there's still a nice puddle of frothy bubbles on top of the beer. The head is pretty much gone except for that puddle of bubbles. After a few swirls in my snifter I can see a few streaks going from top to bottom, and a few small splashes all around the glass.

Smell: For having a relatively old bottle the nose is still there. A very tropical one too. A little bit of sweetness from the malt, but otherwise it's fruit notes like mango, pineapple and orange. After another whiff, there's some earthy notes too including pine and grass.

Taste: The first wave to cross the palate is sweet sticky caramel malt and pale malt. It has the malt backbone to be an IIPA. I wasn't expecting that strong of a malt backbone from the color, but it's there. After the malts disappear it turns into a hop festival. A blend of earthy and citrus hops. The notes include grapefruit, mango, orange peel, grass and pine.

Mouthfeel: A medium bodied beer, slightly on the full side. A nice crisp and thin carbonation that makes it easy to drink.

Drinkability: Although Pliny is definitely my preference, this was a good beer. There are other IPA's that I'd take over Blind Pig, but it's a well put together beer that has a nice hop character and malt backbone.

Photo of drabmuh
4.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle dated 091509, poured into a goblet. Beer is yellow and clear, light amber, head is white and tight, falls away leaving some lacing on the glass. Carbonation is low to moderate.

Aroma is filled with sweet hops. There is some other sweetness in there, maybe some malt, maybe some alcohol. It smells like a great IPA.

Medium body, beer is hoppy hoppy hoppy. There isn't much of an aftertaste that comes from the throat but you can taste the bitterness that has coated your mouth for several seconds after you have finished the beer. Second taste, beer is definitely not dry, but its also not overly wet. There is some nice connectivity between the front and the back of the mouth.

This is a great great IPA.

Photo of GbVDave
4.6/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 16.9oz bottle into two pint glasses. Extra special thanks to LarryG for sending this in our recent trade. Special thanks to pops for the assist.

Bottled On 091509

A: Pours a crystal-clear, pale gold with a huge, soapy, slightly off white head perched on top. Crazy amounts of lace were left behind!

S: Pungeant, rank, stinky hops. Pine, pineapple, apricot, grass clippings, and mango. The inside of my nose felt like it was coated with resinous hops!

T: Unholy amount of hops! Slight caramel sweetness, for balance, spicy pine, and tropical fruit. Spicy floral/piney hops...unbelievable!

M: Sticky, juicy, and perfectly astringent. Snatches of spiciness and caramel sweetness keep things in total balance.

D: Holy crap! This really is one of the best in the world. So incredibly drinkable and only around $5 a bottle? I. Need. More.

Photo of MrDanno96
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to bret27 for sending this to me :) This review in its current state has also been modified following several other samplings of this brew. Thanks to my friend Dave for the additional bottles.

A: Pours a nice golden-yellow and has some subtle amber hints when held up to the light. Started with about 2 fingers of foamy white head. Slowly dissipated to a little less than a finger. TONS of foamy lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: I was already getting whiffs of pine and hops as I poured... This smells great. The nose is pretty sweet: grapefruit, orange, pine, and of course hops. The hops, however, is not overpowering. It's not even really the primary scent. Can't wait to taste it!

T: Grapefruit and other citrus up front gives way to the piney hops finish that I've come to expect from elite IPAs. Quite resiney. Balance is very good and the hops are not overly bitter.

M: Medium bodied, appropriate carbonation, and a dry hoppy finish.

D: Great drinking IPA. If this was sold around me I would definitely session with it. Blind Pig lives in the shadow of the Plineys and does not get the full respect it deserves. One of the best representations of the style out there.

Photo of JTahoe
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 16.9oz. bottle with 10/30/09 bottled-on date... six days after I sampled this for the first time on tap at the brewpub.

A - Pours a clear golden amber with an impressive surging head with nice retention, settling down to a nice one finger layer with brilliant lacing sticking all over the glass long after I drained it.

S - Fresh green herbs... actually, a real kick of quality cannabis buds to be perfectly honest. Nice floral and citrus notes and just a hint of tropical fruit coming through as well.

T - Nice and bitter from start to finish, but not harsh at all. Fresh green grass and herbs with very pleasing traces of grapefruit and pine with the malt coming through subltly.

M - Medium body and carbonation... nicely prickly. A touch dry, but not overly so.

D - Just a great beer; very drinkable for the hop lover. Quite different from PTE, and nearly as good. I will pick this up often and hope to sample on tap again soon.

Photo of Lunch
4.22/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Served from a 16.9oz. bottle (thanks to davidsk for the trade) into my new Blind Pig mason jar at around 45 degrees (11/17/09).

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden color with a slight orange hue capped out with a nice and chunky two finger head with decent retention and exceptional spider lacing. Almost identical to it's older brother, Pliny.

S: A nice bouquet of pine, flowers, grapefruit, lemon, pineapple and tropical fruit.

T: Similar to the smell with pine, flowers, grapefruit, lemon, pineapple and tropical fruit hitting the palate with a nice bitterness, which is never harsh.

M: Medium-bodied with nice carbonation and a slightly slick mouthfeel.

D: Exceptionally drinkable and only 6.1% abv. Easily sessionable.

Overall this is a nice beer that I would certainly pick up quite often if it were available in my area. Recommended

Blind Pig IPA from Russian River Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 4,778 ratings.