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Blind Pig IPA - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Blind Pig IPABlind Pig IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,384 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 1,384
Hads: 5,388
Avg: 4.32
pDev: 17.59%
Wants: 1,821
Gots: 807 | 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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 1,384 | Hads: 5,388
Photo of Alieniloquium
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle poured into a pint glass. People have sent me this before, but this particular bottle is thanks to psiweaver.

Appearance - Golden straw colored with a big white head. Hazy, but not sedimenty looking. Traces of head remain with loads of lacing.

Smell - HOPS. Citrusy hops. Orange and grapefruit hops. No malt smells at all.

Taste - HOPS. Citrusy hops. Orange and grapefruit hops. No malt taste at all. This is hop juice. The most pared down way of delivering hop flavor. Not even a hint of sweetness to make it easier to drink. As much as I like hop bombs (like PtE), this isn't balanced at all. It's bitter, then it's bitter, then it's bitter some more.

Mouthfeel - Because of the low malt character, it's thin. Even for a single IPA, it's very thin. The carbonation feels high, even though I don't think it is very high. Just the nature of ti makes it seem that way.

Overall - It's very tasty, if you're into huge hop bombs. It's actually quite impressive that a single IPA at 6.1% can have this much hoppiness. The downside is that it really isn't balanced.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled July 22, 2008; Sampled August 7, 2008
Pours into my New Belgium Globe glass with a nice pungent scent and a two-finger thick, pale tan colored head that has some stickiness to it. The beer is a hazy amber hue that shows a more copper hue when held up to the light. Sticky grapefruit notes mix with sweet lychee notes, which are offset in the finish by a sticky herbal note that takes on overtones of hemp oil, peppery sage and just plain, green, hop-stink. Vivaciously hoppy, this has the fruit character that I like in a good IPA as well as the balancing, dank hoppiness that is needed for balance. Quite a nice example of a beer that captures the essence of concentrated hop nectar. No real malt aromatics are noticeable, if you really dig for them there is just a wisp of toasty, pale malt, but only just.

Sharply bitter up front, then the mouth coats the palate and helps to carry the hop flavor, but the bitterness kicks back in towards the finish and lingers on in the mouth with an herbal edge to it. After my first sip I feel like I was just chewing on some fresh hops. Citrus & hop-fruit flavors of grapefruit, bergamot oil, lychee and bright tangelo make a significant showing, but are ultimately engulfed by the palate coating, herbal bitterness that is what is left lingering on in the palate after each sip has passed down my throat. Impressively quaffable, this has some heft to it with enough body to just carry the hops, but remains light enough to be drinkable like a good IPA should.

This is definitely a beer for the hopheads out there. It definitely doesn't pull any punches and is aggressively hoppy. If in the mood for an aggressive hop experience this definitely fits the bill. It doesn't get overly harsh and it is just so dang quaffable. This is much more aromatic and hop flavorful than the draught sample I had previously.

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Last night provided me with possibly the worst beer experience yet. However, I hope get that sour taste out of my mouth with one of the highest regarded IPA's around, now in bottles! Lots of anti-aging propaganda on the label, so I plan to drink it five days after I purchased it from Old Town Liqour in Temecula. On to the beer:

Poured gently into an Imperial Pint glass...absolutely lovely to look at! Faded washed out orange with a glow to it, and a head with very good retention. The nose has a good kick of hops with a balance of sweet tropical fruits and a malty backbone to keep it in check.

I have to say this is a very impressive tasting beer. Some pear shows up at the door, but gets smacked down by a barrage of hops with a metallic punch to it and a mix of tropical and piney fruits. The bitterness in the aftertaste is long lasting and is the ecstacy to the hophead part of me. Sounds like it would be hard to take another sip, but this is one of the easier West Coast IPA's I've had to drink.

How do you control such a bitter IPA so well? Russian River has it down, which is seen in both Pliny's, and now Blind Pig.

(Come to think of it, they should have named this Manbearpig. I'm super cereal. Alright, excelsior!)

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Photo of Mebuzzard
4.25/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

An amber pour with hints of pink and yellow. Fluffly head, good lacing.
Smells of high citrus (gf, lemon) and some leafy flower plants. Hops are in there somewhere.
Taste has the hops; nice crispness and flavor.
Medium body and great mouthfeel, leaves clean with enough taste residue to want more.

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Photo of johnnnniee
4.48/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received in trade from TexIndy, Thanks for the opportunity!

Pours a clear golden amber color with a huge fluffy white head that sticks to everything. Smells of caramel, biscuit, citrus, kind of sweet and malty with a bit of catty, citrusy hops thrown in. Tastes about like the aroma, lots of sweet caramel malts and lots of pine and citrus hop bite. Amazingly balanced brew! Mouthfeel is sticky and resinous, carbonation is crisp, body is medium. Great Ipa I wish I could get this more easily. Great balance great aroma.

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Photo of tempest
4.12/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Ortino's Northside. $5 for a 10 oz pour. Appeared a clear gold with a thick white head. The aroma is an intoxicating mix of pineapple, grapefruit, floral perfume and pine - amazing. I only wish the flavor could match that amazing smell. Yeah, it's pretty awesome, with a more herbal grapefruit taste and hint of biscuity malts, but the aroma is just top notch. The bitterness level is also pretty spot on. This is damn good IPA.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.48/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On-tap at Hollingshead's Delicatessen, in Orange, CA, always wanted to try this one, here's my chance,

A: Pours a golden yellow, out of the tap, with some orange highlights, a good white head makes the experience, good retention and lacing, poured into a German mug.

S: Smells heavily of hops, a lot of pine and citrus.

T: Very good, big pine notes start upfront, melding into some grapefruit and tropical fruit, a bit of pineapple and papaya, though overall pine dominates, with a bit of cedar, the malt is there, but this is a hop beer, very good.

M: Smooth, and crisp for an IPA, lots of tingling carbonation, and the hops give it a bit of an oily feel, a delight to put into my mouth.

D: Great drinkability, one of the best IPAs I've ever had, great sessionability even at 6.0%, Russian River strikes again, making another great IPA for the hophead's enjoyment.

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Photo of yourefragile
4.58/5  rDev +6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

500 mL bottle, dated 6/7/10, eh, fresh enough. Poured into a nonic.

Thought I reviewed this already so this will be brief. Appearance is nearly perfect, a radiant, clear golden copper color with active carbonation supporting an thick off white bubbly head that coats the glass in rings of sticky lacing and has great retention. Aroma is bitter and hoppy, with mild citrus sweetness, but dominated by citrus rind and earthy bitterness. The pale malt backbone provides a sturdy, yet unobtrusive balance to all of the hops. Mouthfeel is also perfect for an IPA, creamy, medium thick, well carbonated and smooth. One of the best examples of an American IPA, loads of bitter hops that are infinitely drinkable.

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Photo of liamt07
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Sammy, 500ml into a tulip. Bottled May 9, 2011. My first RR ever!

Pours almost liquid gold, with a bright white head. Filtered and clear body. Nose has lots of bright citrus, orange, some light caramel and slight sugar notes. Mild tropical notes behind the citrus. Taste hits with some bitter pine and citrus, a bit of grain, and again, some tropical notes behind this. Loads of fruit, a bit of a caramel-sugar cookie sweetness and a bitter pine finish. Smooth and bitter feel, with an immense drinkability. I'm happy to have tried this, but this leaves me a bit of a sad panda (for the time being at least) knowing that Ontario is nowhere close to this quality of an IPA.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.62/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Toronado in San Francisco. Pours golden with some orange highlights- somehat lighter in color than many ipas. Healthy white head that sticks around some. Nice piney hoppiness in the nose with a hint of orange. You can smell the bitterness and tell this is going to be good. Small amount of dry malt in the background. Wow! Super hoppy beer, with lots of sticky resin. Big pine taste with some lesser citrus notes, especially orange, for balance. Much hoppier than most other ipas I've had and absolutely delicious. Long, lingering bitterness. I wouldn't exactly call this balanced, but it does have some malt backbone for support. Its just that the hop attack is so relentless that the malt gets a little overwhelmed. Who cares, its great. Mouthfeel is perfect as well. Good body, perfect level of carbonation, and ends with a spicy creaminess. Love this beer, but it definitely burns the tastebuds out a bit. Use in moderation. I'd buy this in a second if it was bottled and in my area.

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Photo of Zorro
4.07/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled thanks to RedwoodGeorge and his most Excellent trade!

Pours a clear golden beer with a slightly off white head. This looks much like a good lager in my glass.

Smell is agreeably very hoppy. Strong very pine and eucalyptus hop aroma with no citrus scent in it at all. Additional hop aroma of mint is very strong to the nose here. Malt scents are minimal here but there is a faint light aroma of malt that is slightly honey like.

Taste is fairly light malt wise like a golden ale. While the malt is doing a whole lot of nothing the hops are quite busy entertaining your tongue! Good strong West Coast style hops provide lots of pine and grapefruit flavor. This is an assertively bitter beer but not a harsh one. In my book I cold almost call this a strongly flavored Pale Ale but it really is an AIPA to non-warped West Coast palettes.

Mouthfeel is good but a bit light.

A nice drinkable IPA here that is strong but not too over the top. This here is a beer that shows West Coast hops in all their glory. But to be honest this is a rather strong beer that probably will shock many and delight all the hopheads. If you are not a hop head drink 3-4 of these and you will be!

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Photo of Gobzilla
4.42/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: poured a golden orange with yellow highlights which had good retantion with a 2 finger head that left great bubbly sticky lacing on the glass.

S: big floral sweet piney hops dominate the nose with good malt character that had citrus, caramel, and grapefruit notes. There also seems to be faint tangrine and mango notes as well.

T: great flopral piney hop flavors with grapefruit that helps intesify the bitterness which had citrus caramel accents. The malts are not as powerful but do help out on the balance; great taste.

M: medium body with a good amount of carbonation which had a slight sweet but bitter crisp finish.

D: Russian river really know how to brew an IPA an this one is no exception. Blind pig is very drinkable and love the fact that I have access to it on a daily.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.67/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pint glass. I'm surprised this is my first rating of this beer. It's medium golden with a nice frothy white head. Retention is good and scattered lacing is left on my glass.

The aroma is that of a near perfect IPA. Blind Pig has a strong citrus hop presence, imparting notes of bitter grapefruit as well as orange rind. There's also a lot of pine in the nose too. There's no noticeable alcohol, and the malt backbone is faint and crackery.

The taste is very bitter and packs a hell of a lot of hop flavor. It oozes pine and citrus hops. There' not sweetness. The crackery malt profile lets the hops run the show. No sweetness is detectable, and alcohol flavor is nowhere to be found. Bitterness is medium-high. The finish is crisp and clean. It's also very dry, and bitter. It leaves pine and grapefruit lingering on my palate.

Blind Pig is light bodied with good carbonation.
The mouthfeel is bone dry, crisp, and leaves my mouth sticky.

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Photo of biegaman
4.39/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Yellow complexions this bright and clear are usually reserved for pilsners and pale ales. IPAs tend to be more amber in tone but then again a Blind Pig doesn't see colour. And I like to think I don't view the world that way either. So I say this light body is good - it probably means unencumbered hoppiness and isn't that what we're here for anyhow?

There are beers that have this level of flaming citrusy, candied fruitiness. There are beers that have this level of pungent, grassy herbals. There aren't many beers, however, that have this level of both, and very few that can pull off the dualism so well. Malts don't even cross the mind in this soapy, bitter, stinky scent. Good riddance to 'em! I'm under a hop spell.

The malts are about as consequential to the taste as the Diet Coke is to a Big-Mac combo. According to the flavour, they don't exist at all. In this world, all there is is pink bubblegum notes and bitter renditions of breakfast citrus fruits and just a faint token of Northwest forest pine. The entire mouth becomes a cocoon of soapy, acidic hoppiness.

A lot of IPAs float like butterflies but sting like bees - not Blind Pig. It's as sweet-natured as an actual blind pig (can you imagine? The poor thing. SO cute!) except for the fact that it's only menially sweet and is, in actuality, quite bitter. But not too bitter, mind you. I bet a lot of novices would find this as refreshing and tasteful as the connoisseurs that praise it.

Vinnie Cilurzo is kind of the Leonardo of the beer world: he is both artist and scientist, a masterful creator at everything he does. While Blind Pig is one of his simpler works, it is no less absorbing. It is a salt-of-the-earth agreeable, true grit hoppy offering that I could drink until I was a blind pig. This and it's brothers Pliny are rightfully royal family in the IPA world.

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Photo of weeare138
3.89/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I missed this while at Russian River last year. I've had the opportunity to have this in the bottle, and on tap at three different locations.
Appears a hazy light gold with a small white cap that slowly fades into a mild cap that never fades away. Spotty bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of super hop juice, citrus, grapefruit, pine, herbs, and black pepper.
Taste is a big drop off with the flavors. From the samples I've had, it just seems to be a bit watered down. It's a let down from getting excited with the kick-ass aromas to actually getting to taste it.
Mouthfeel is bitter, medium bodied, citrusy, with a bitter finish.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to cstrack for this brew.

Pours a very nice cloudy golden yellow color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy/thick, off-white head, lots of nice thick/creamy sticky lacing follows. The nose is hoppy, very hoppy, slight touch of malts, very nice touch of citrus with some pines. The taste is slight sweet, hoppy, bitter, very nice citrus/pines. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is an awesome IPA for sure, glad I finally got a chance to try it, highly recommended. Thanks Casey.

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Photo of Duff27
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 08/01/11

A- Two inches of frothy white head. Beer color is golden with a an orange hue. A few effervescence streams float slowly upwards. Clumpy, scattered lacing. A+ head retention.

S- Citrus immediately...think grapefruit and oranges.

T- Yum. Overpowering citrus, with a hint of that danky onion-character that shows up in certain IPAs. Nice sweet malt backbone but the hops overpower if just by a bit. Would guess at a higher ABV.

M- Well carbonated with tongue-stinging bubbles. Medium mouthfeel.

D/O- I thought long and hard about it and came to the conclusion that this beer has no weak spots...maybe even could have given the 'appearance' a perfect '5' rating. Well deserving of the status it carries in the beer world. I found this to be slightly more enjoyable than Pliny The Elder...I know, blasphemy. Thanks stupac2!

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.39/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very clear, very light amber gold, with a huge and frothy head of yellow-white bubbles. Lacing is good, and the head retention is quite incredible. I'll have to chew through some suds to get to the beer, no doubt.

Deliciously hoppy nose - massive sweet fruit backed with gritty, resinous hops. Hints of bitter cherry, apricot and plantain, with pine resin and sawdust over the top. Extremely fragrant, and powerful.

Palate is less robust, with a subtle, but pleasant hop character riding over the top of a smooth, buttery sweetness. Some pepper mid palate, with a light, sweet afterpalate. No grittiness on the back. Mouthfeel is deliciously smooth, adding to the soft, comforting nature of this IPA.

Not an extreme IPA - certainly not packed with bitterness on the palate. My guess is the hop quota in this brew is used up late, imparting massive fruit aromas, but little bitterness. This leaves it extremely drinkable - very smooth and refreshing. An excellent and tasty little IPA.

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Photo of John_M
4.74/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I know Vinnie is not a big believer in "aged" IPA's, and generally I tend to agree with him. However, I recently came across this beer at my "home town" Market of Choice in West Linn, a store notorious for not rotating its stock in a timely manner. This particular bottle of Blind Pig was dated 7/29/08.

The beer pours a protypical peachy orange color with good head retention and lacing. On the nose, what can one say? This is IPA perfection. The beer has an incredible nose of wet tobacco, earth, allspice and hoppy bitterness. On the palate, this beer is off the charts. Maybe it's because the alcohol is so low (relatively), but this beer has not gained any malty sweetness, which is a typical problem for IPA's that have some bottle age. Instead.... this beer has flavors of fuji apple, wet tobacco, wet earth and a hint of cinnamon. As with the fresh version, the finish is just unbelievably dry and bitter.

IMO, a bit of bottle age has given this beer an element of complexity that the fresh version does not have. Not that there's anything wrong with fresh Blind Pig, but I'm amazed at the subtle flavor difference the beer seems to have undergone with some bottle age. Very, very impressive.

Mouthfeel is pretty light and drinkability is exceptional. As good as it gets when it comes to domestic IPA's. Excellent stuff.

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Photo of WoodBrew
4.9/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Blind Pig was awesome....sometimes it pays to trick or treat at a neighbors house that just got back from California!!! YEEEE HAW! It was perfectly balanced with notes of pine and orange peel citrus. It poured a copperish with white head and wonderful lace. The mouthfeel was medium in body with good carbonation. Overall....YUMMY!

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Photo of plaid75
4.47/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On draft at the brewpub, Santa Rosa, CA.

Poured a light copper hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured a resinous balmy citrus hop.

The taste consisted of an assertive piney and sweet orange hop with a full doughy and subtly sweet malt framework.

The mouthfeel was full for the style.

Overall a superior IPA.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.62/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a couple bottles of Blind Pig at Belmont Station a couple of weeks ago... shared one.. tonight.. this one is all mine.... poured into my Chimay goblet.

1" bubbly head.. nice cap and a surprising ring of lace.. the brew is only slightly hop-hazed pretty clear honey..

nose is lemon and tangerine zest dominated by pineapple hoppiness.. some grapefruit.. and just enough pale malts.

not what else to say about the flavor other than.. WOW!! Mirrors the smell identically... huge fruity hop flavors... Kaffir lime leaves.. clean.. yet oily.. just enough pale malt goodness to bring the hops to their full glory... never ever goes over to the bitter side.. just very very drinkable.. body is fairly lite.. lending very much to me wanting another sip.. quaff.. bottle.. (can I get a keg?)

There is no doubt Blind Pig would be a household regular if I had it locally... now... we just need to make sure, somehow, that Idaho is the next state on the evergrowing list of places to get Russian River.


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Photo of vfgccp
4.18/5  rDev -3.2%

A - Crystal clear, gold body. Bright, almost neon, white head with great retention and nice lace.

S - Herbal nose; pine, sage, parsley. Touch of banana and starchy plantain.

T - Bold woody hops up front with cardamon, bitter dandelion, and parsley. Lightly sweet bread crust and orange center. Pithy bitter finish.

M - Bright carbonation with a creamy and surprisingly thick body for a single IPA.

O - About as big as single IPA's get. Assertively bitter with a really nice flavor profile. Better nose on tap than in bottle.

4.18 Blind Pig
Jay Jon Anth Vin Avg Weight
A - 4.25 4.25 4.25 4.25 4.25 10%
S - 4.00 4.00 4.00 4.00 4.00 20%
T - 4.00 4.00 4.25 4.50 4.19 40%
M - 4.00 4.25 4.50 4.50 4.31 10%
O - 4.25 4.25 4.25 4.25 4.25 20%

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.65/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to my man rhertan for bringing this back for me.
Poured a deep orange with good carbonation and nice white head. Nose is pine, grapefruit and orange peel. Taste is citrus, piney,toasted and caramel malts and a hop bite on the end. Mouthfeel is noce and chewy with the hop bite and some citrus notes. Drinability is good. I can get a sixer of Union Jack for the price of two Blind Pigs. A good IPA but not one I would seek out again.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.53/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from 10/2010 notes. Poured into a Nostradamus flute glass. Pours a medium orange amber with a moderate, fast dissipating head, leaving lacing. Hoppy aroma. Hops, citrus; hoppy finish. Somewhat muted, like a watered down Pliny the Elder. OK, but don't see the point. I'm not getting the same positive experience as other reviewers. Purchased from a rarely visited store, so maybe an old bottle. If I'm lucky enough to see this again, I'll revise the review.

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Blind Pig IPA from Russian River Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 1,384 ratings.