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Row 2/Hill 56 - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Row 2/Hill 56Row 2/Hill 56

Educational use only; do not reuse.

133 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 133
Hads: 1,170
Avg: 4.33
pDev: 26.1%
Wants: 281
Gots: 81 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: litheum94 on 01-22-2012

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 133 | Hads: 1,170
Photo of Sean9689
4.28/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler, thanks to lazydeer & company...

A - Pours a bright golden yellow, white head, sticky lace.

S - Nice dose of hops, grass, pine, light onion, citrus. The malts are there, but super-subtle, but this beer isn't overly hopped, it's just right.

T - Lots of hops in the form of grass, grapefruit, citrus, and light tropical notes. Not dank or resiny at all, just clean and crisp hops. The bready malts and lightly toasted, but almost undetectable amongst the bouquet of hops.

M - Light, perfect carbonation, crisp & refreshing, clean finish.

O - Another amazing hoppy beer from RR, who continues to produce some of the best beers in the country. I would drink this all day/every day along some of the top APA's out there (Edward, Parking Violation, Hoppy Birthday, and What Is Enlightenment, to name a few).

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Photo of srandycarter
3.73/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Somewhat murky copper, small white head, little cling.

S - First smell out of bottle was cat piss. It mellowed to light cat piss and malt.

T - Malt is up front, bittering takes a second seat but does a good job.

M - Medium body, good carb, good balance.

D - A little too pissy for my taste, but not a bad beer.

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Photo of Tucquan
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on 2012-07-26 in Columbia, PA from a bottle procured at the brew pub and dated 2012-06-26. It smelled and tasted about the same today as it did last week on-tap at the brew pub. The only difference is the head was bigger from the bottle.

Had this again on 2015-06-28 at the brewery on tap. As delicious as ever.

A - Yellow-gold with a 2-finger white head and moderate lacing.

S - Fruity. Fresh ripe peach, naval orange and lemon. Plenty of hop bud and hop floral. Very inviting.

T - Delicious. Peach, pineapple, lemon-orange, light pine, hop bud herbal but not very dank for Simcoe. Light touch of cracker malt flavor to balance the nice but not overpowering bitterness. Finishes with a touch of fruit and plenty of hop goodness. Really good.

M - Light-medium body and medium carbonation. Smooth and a little oily and prickly.

O - This is one helluva APA. So much flavor for the lowish ABV. As good or better than Zombie Dust. Wow.

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Photo of ehammond1
4.53/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


Thanks, NoSignsOfPain!

Clear, bright, golden orange with a moderately sized near-white head that lasts for a while. This leaves the glass messy with spiderwebs of lace. Perfect.

An incredibly clean, vibrant, wonderful aroma of decidedly fresh hops: floral, citrus, and pine character combine tremendously well. This aroma is nearly as good as Zombie Dust's.

Moderately bitter, floral and citrus hops, slight pine, balanced and completed nicely by enough bready malts to make this incredibly drinkable and distinctly a pale ale.

Medium bodied with high carbonation. Crisp, refreshing, delicious, and incredibly drinkable.

Simply awesome, though I do believe Humulus Wet, Zombie Dust, and Hoppy Birthday are just slightly better.

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Photo of harrymel
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from growler filled about ten days ago.

Nice bronzed ale with a finger of light yellow foam and brilliant clarity. Smells of tropical fruits, pineapple most notably, with grapefruit and mango in there as well. Fantastic nose. Taste follows suit with a really citrusy, fruity flavor and lighter biscuity malts - Fantastic flavor I can only imagine would be even greater a week earlier. Medium bodied with lively carb and a wet finish. Man, this is a great beer, I hope they bottle it as i've heard might be in the works. Really, really delicious beer.

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Photo of flexabull
4.29/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the SF Toronado.

Pours a light and slightly hazy gold color with a pretty nice off white head.

Aromas are very nice. Light cracker and caramel sweetness and a mixture of fresh hop aromas, citrus, pine, and resin.

Taste is much hoppier than I expected, this is more like a lighter IPA instead of a Pale Ale to me, but that's not a bad thing. Light cracker and caramel sweetness up front, slightly dry. Finish is crisp, with some grapefruit bitterness, and a nice earthy and resiny hop bite. Very flavorful.

Mouthfeel is nice, good body and crisp carbonation.

Overall, an excellent hoppy pale. My glass was empty very quickly. If drinkability was still a score here, this would get a 5. Very refreshing.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.69/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - This beer pours a a golden-orange color that is fairly clear with a finger of frothy white head atop. The head fades down slowly leaving behind some nice lace clinging to the sides of the glass.

S - The aroma is full of lots of pine and citrus hops smells. There is some nice grapefruit and topical fruits as well as some floral elements.

T - The flavor starts off with lots of fresh piney and tropical hop flavor with some mellow bitterness that starts to grow on the tongue. Bit of grapefruit as well. Through the middle, the grapefruit, orange, and pineapple hop flavors get quite a bit stronger with some stronger bitterness coming through as well. There is just enough sweet toasted malts to keep a nice balance as well. The finish is full of pine resin and citrus hops with some more bitterness and some light sweet malts.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a really nice dry and bitter finish.

D - Very drinkable. The hop flavor and aroma is just fantastic on this beer. It is so fresh and strong from start to end without being overpowering. The beer also stays quite sessionable.

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Photo of brotherloco
4.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bought this growler at the pub yesterday while enjoying this year's Pliny The Younger. Served in a tapered 22oz glass.

Pours a beautiful clear gold with 2 plus fingers of off-white foam. Bubbles are dense and soapy. Lots of lacing left in glass.

Aroma, ah there's the Simcoe. I always knew this hop was a big part of Pliny The Elder, and now I have it isolated. Pine needles, tropical citrus, floral notes, and a solid marijuana dankness.

Flavor starts out rather mellow with that typical Russian River "malt in the background, hops in the foreground" character. Tons of super-juicy hop flavor appear in the middle and through the finish. All the Simcoe notes from the nose are present along with a very nice top-of-the-tongue bitterness. As with the Pliny's, there so much room for the hops to shine in this beer.

Body is on the lighter side with medium-low carbonation. A lighter overall feel than RR's IPA's, but quite slick and drinkable.

I'm looking forward to "Segal Select", the next in the Hop Grower's series. And I just happen to have a growler of that waiting for me too!

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Photo of elNopalero
4.85/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Revisiting this via a growler that had a weekend’s wait on it.

Definitely tastes better fresh, or at the brewery (from the source) but even from a growler after a weekend’s rest it’s enjoyable.

Pours a clear golden-tan color with some foam lacing.

The aroma doesn’t come across as crisp and hoppy as on draught but I still get a pleasing hoppiness—some straw, some grass, a hint of tropical fruit too. Toasted pine and warm grass.

Flavor snaps, with a clear citrus squeeze and some light bitterness. This goes down all too easily. Definitely one I’ll have again.

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Photo of nrbw23
4.3/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a pale golden yellow with a nice white head. Head is gone pretty quick and leaves a bit of spotty lacing.

S- Picking up quite a bit tropical fruits and a a lot of pine. A nice herbal earthy smell too.

T- Follows the nose pretty well. Tropical fruits for sure, nice amount of pine and the slightest bit of malts. Hop forward for sure.

M- Medium in body and carbonation was nice.

O- Very excellent brew for sure. I'm glad I got to try this one.

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Photo of Arbitrator
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Chilled growler into a glass.

A: Pours a slightly hazy burnt orange body with sudsy off-white head. It lingers and clings to the glass. Just to be safe, I drink the whole growler to make sure the beer remains consistent. It does.

S: Floral and perfumey, with an orange-grapefruit nose. Very light malt presence. This is fantastically aromatic once the beer gets to serving temperature (I usually keep growlers on the colder side to preserve them).

T: Bright, clean hoppy flavors: it is floral up front, grapefruit-driven in the mid-taste, and ends clean and dry with only a light presence of crackery pale malt near the finish. It occasionally has a burst of bitterness in aftertaste, as if exhalation brings forward some hop oils, but it is infrequent and not overpowering.

M: Light-bodied, with velvety carbonation. It is immensely drinkable and goes down very well.

O: Having drank 5 or 6 growlers of this, I think I'm prepared to say I like this beer. However, it's a poster child for craft beer inflation; its $6 / bottle asking price at my local shop is simply too much for an APA. I think Russian River also found this out the hard way, as they distributed more to local stores after it apparently didn't sell out at the pub. I'll drink the shit out of this in growler form, though...

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Photo of macrosmatic
4.37/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

*Review #100*

Big thanks to eyebereej for this one! Reviewed from notes. Poured from two liter flip-top Russian River growler into pint glass.

A: Pours a beautiful clear gold to dark gold. Forms a two-finger white head that sticks around pretty well. Moderate amount of visible carbonation.

S: Wow, does this smell good. I definitely get orange hop aroma first & foremost, but there are some flower, pine, tropical fruit, and spicy notes with caramel malt also.

T: Citrus bitter hops, tropical fruit, biscuit malt. At the end, though, there is some weakness & drop-off to the flavors & a little thin mineral-y flavor that seems off. This does seem to diminish some as the beer warms slightly (or as I get used to it?).

M: Dry bittering finish. Good amount of carbonation, even from the growler. Nice weight for an APA.

O: This is a very good hoppy APA, and I feel like I'm being a little picky on the flavor profile. Still, it doesn't quite rise to the world-class category in my opinion. I would certainly drink some more, however.

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Photo of hooliganlife
3.95/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a golden yellow with about an inch of very light fluffy head, a bit chunky.

total tropical citrus domination. juicy and sweet

light tropical citrus hop flavor with a very light and thin malt flavor towards the end. very fresh and ripe.

light and easy, mild carbonation

very easy to drink, very flavorful and never overpowering. light malt lets the simcoe shine.

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Photo of Roguer
4.26/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Beautiful brew: orange/amber, slight haze, great head retention. Hoppy aroma (citrus/pine).

Incredible balance and touch. Lots of hops, but not at all overwhelming, and a creamy base to the malts. There's no major alcohol presence, but it drinks much bigger than its modest ABV.

A really excellent APA. I think this deserves consideration alongside the best APAs in the business.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
3.97/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Churchill Pub in San Marcos, Calif., on July 14, 2012. Draft into pint glass. Honey pale color. Two fingers of head once I got it. Gray and tan lacing with good retention. Even on the sides and foamy.

Smelled a sharp whiff of grapefruit right away. Slight pine and lemon as well. Very bitter.

Sharp bitter taste right away. Grapefruit citrus hops dominated as expected after the smell.

Medium-to-light body. Thin texture. Average carbonation. Bitter abrupt finish.

A pretty good beer overall, but I was a bit disappointed overall. That being said, I’d still give it another go.

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Photo of jaasen64
4.28/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled 6/26/12, so less then a month old, but not the freshest. Poured into pint glass

A- Pours a very slightly brownish yellow golden. Nice carbonation with decent size bubbles rising, slightly more then average for a pale ale, continuously from the bottom of the glass. A nice thick foamy white head with excellent retention.

S- Lightly piney, lightly citrusy hops, pale malts, some light spices, and light floral presence. Could have been a little bit more aromatic.

T- Pale malts, light citrus (lemon)/piney hops, lightly sweet with a bitter finish. A light dry citrus hop aftertaste.

M- Light, refreshing, nice carbonation, easily drinkable.

O- This was a very good APA, definitely one of the better ones I've had. I might even say I prefer drinking it over Zombie Dust. I liked how it a nice light lemony citrus hop taste to it. Definitely a nice summer beer. I recommend any APA fan to try this.

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Photo of AleWatcher
4.65/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Growler courtesy of Beerdy-- thanks brother!
Poured in my imperial nonic pint.

Very clear and bright looking golden body with a big 3 finger head of sticky slightly off-white foam. Tons of lacing form huge curtains around the glass and the head retention is spectacular.

I always feel obliged to mention this anytime I review a particularly good (or bad) American Pale Ale: This is handsdown my favorite style.... With that said, I feel comfortable proclaiming that this beer is outright delicious.
Some bready toast malt notes are overwhelmed by huge notes of tropical citrus hops with a piney/resin bite. Good strong bitterness lingers firm on a nice dry finish. Very good.

The body is medium-full with much oily quality to it. Decent carbonation.

Overall-- I continue to be impressed by the hoppy beers coming out of Russian River... Maybe someday I'll be able to make the Younger release (or maybe Vinnie would allow some one a growler fill if I begged him hard enough!)

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Photo of Keananmichael5
4.31/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This beer is so overlooked because it is hidden behind Elder and Younger and Blind Pig but this is a great beer! Easy to drink and great hop flavor. Has a similar taste to the ipas that overshadow it but it more mellow. Tasty stuff!

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Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.88/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to mlaroche for this extra

Pours a pale yellow color, good sized white head with good retention, not much lacing on the glass.

Smell is primarily a lemony citrus hop, its not overly strong or complex in the aroma department but it does its job.

Taste is similar to the smell with the citrus hops being at the forefront, light sweet malt presence, it not smack you in the face hopy like Russian River typically does but instead is a well rounded APA.

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Photo of hopsolutely
4.12/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes taken at brewery pub last night:
Pint is a clear and light amber with golden highlights, decent head that leaves lacing as the glass empties. Pure Simcoe aroma is stunning and resinous. Flavour is full of tropical fruit hop tones, with an abject bitterness that actually dries the back of the throat in the finish.

Not as well balanced as the other Russian River beers sampled last night, but I enjoyed it enough to buy a second pint and am disappointed that bottles weren't available.

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Photo of kawilliams81
4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 510 ml bottle into 16 oz chalice.

A- pours a nice caramel color with a 2" off-white head. Big trails and waves of lacing.

S- caramel, light toast, light spicy hops

T- caramel and toasted malts, light lemon, lots of spicy, grassy hops

M- light body and medium carbonation. Slight oily, slick feel.

O- nice pale that's not overpowered by the spicy hops which is good by me.

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Photo of jdense
4.2/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Toronado SF, $4 during Happy Hour "is for whores" (Don Younger) 7.4.12.

One finger pure white head, small bubbles, over medium gold clear body, multiple streams of rising carbonation. Nose is a combination of fruitiness, grapefruit pith, clean non-assertive malt with a bit of pine resin. Taste mirrors nose, more fruity than malty until the pine notes set in on the back end, increasingly so as it warmed. Mouthfeel on the light side of medium, good effervescence. A real revelation re single hop APA, glad I got the last glass before the keg blew. One of the hoppier APAs I've had, and one of the best tastewise. Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at brewery for Beat release. Pours a nice, clear, bright, golden orange color with an inch of white, frothy head. Scent has that typical Russian River hoppy beer aroma...so fresh and piney. Lovely citrus mixed with sappy pine tree aroma. So inviting! Taste is just as good... probably the most user-friendly pale ale they offer (from ones that I've had). Not as flavorful as the nose would seem to imply, but so much complexity to make this beer as light as it is...it's ridiculous. Lovely "in your face" DIPA flavors, just mellowed out a pit to suit the pale ale profile. Very tasty. Mouthfeel is light bodied and crisp...refreshing. Drinkability is very high. Overall, this is one fantastic pale ale from RR...as expected.

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Photo of beagle75
3.8/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Draft service into a nonic glass at Russian River Brewing Company pub in Santa Rosa.

A: Clear, light amber color with less than one finger of white foam head. Moderate lacing remains on the glass.

S: Mild and clean, showing a mix of toasted bread and simplistic pine.

T: Begins dry, with refined under-toasted malt and hops aromatics that are dank and coniferous. Sweetness increases during the middle, drawing attention to the remarkably clean malt. The finish exhibits moderate bitterness with a spicy, drying edge that reminds of rye.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, balanced on the palate, with moderate carbonation.

D/O: This pale ale is enjoyable for the balance it displays, despite also featuring focused--if a little simplistic--hops qualities. Side-by-side it matches the look of Russian River's Pliny the Elder immediately after pouring, although that other beer coats the glass better. Although the aroma is shy and tends to hide, the flavor stands up to expectations.

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Photo of WesM63
4.6/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 16oz bottled into a tulip.

A: Pours a nice golden straw with a beautiful 2finger white head. A fair amount of retention and plenty of lacing.

S: Smells of citrus (mango, pineapple) and some pine/resin.

T: Hops, pine/resin, citrus in the middle and just fades off with citrus and some light bitterness.

M: Light bodied, medium carbonation. At first I thought it was a bitter watery at the end, but it's not, the flavor just fades out as it should.

O: Overall, excellent. Big citrus and pine, although not as profound as say an IPA or IIPA but the citrus and pine are profound above anything else. Delicious and session-able. A real winner here.

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Row 2/Hill 56 from Russian River Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 133 ratings.