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Pliny The Elder - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Pliny The ElderPliny The Elder

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

9,640 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,640
Reviews: 3,120
rAvg: 4.65
pDev: 8.17%
Wants: 4,416
Gots: 1,391 | FT: 52
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-24-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9,640 | Reviews: 3,120 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by rickyleepotts:
Photo of rickyleepotts
rickyleepotts

Arizona

3.7/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Boy, am I excited about this one. We ended up in San Diego for Thanksgiving this year, and being so close to the Russian River Company, I just had to track down a bottle of this. This beer is VERY rare, but not as rare as Pliny the Younger. That beer, from what I hear, is only available at the brewery and is only available a few times a year. But this beer is bottled, but is also rare. I didn’t realize that until I started calling around. I called BevMo! first, and was informed they don’t even carry it. I started calling liquor stores around the area (we were in La Jolla) and found a really small wine shop that had two bottles left. It was 10 miles away, but we went to find it and grabbed the last two bottles.

The guy behind the counter suggested we try one right away, and then try the other bottle in two weeks. This is a beer that will NOT cellar, and actually tastes better the quicker you drink it. Ours were bottled on November 1st, 2012. So tonight, after a long wait, we are drinking a bottle of Pliny the Elder. I. Can’t. Wait. Bottoms up, people!

In the Glass: It looks like a domestic in the glass. Thin, mostly clear, but a nice, impressive white head. I read on BeerAdvocate that the lace was nice, but I am not seeing a good lace here. But who cares? When I started to pour this, I could smell it. That is my focus! Let’s see what happens when I stick my nose in the glass. I might actually stick my nose in the beer this time… it is Pliny after all!

Nose: It smells like an IPA. That’s good, because I like that style. It is my favorite style, actually. But the nose isn’t overwhelming. People say this beer “isn’t worth the hype”. I hope the nose isn’t a prelude to that. I am sick of waiting. Let’s drink!

Flavor: It’s an IPA. I will give it that. It’s good, but it’s not overly hopped. The aftertaste, which I will get to in a minute, is the best part. They call this a double IPA… and like other double IPAs on the market, I wouldn’t consider them “double” based on my ideas of the word. The bottle reminds us to drink this fresh, and not to age it. Our bottle is nearly a month old, but it shouldn’t/wouldn’t be bad… yet. We will be trying our second bottle in two weeks.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is elegant. Very thin on the palate, and easy to swallow. This is what some might call a “chugging” beer. Don’t chug it, though. it’s too expensive. The bottle also recommends drinking this cold. We did. For a beer with this much hype, I must admit… I had bigger expectations.

Aftertaste: This is the best part of this beer. The aftertaste is big, and hangs on for several minutes after you swallow. That is my favorite part of a double IPA… the lingering bitterness that the beer brings. This one packs a punch at the beginning, and lingers… but always reminding you an IPA has been enjoyed. This isn’t a beer I would recommend trying first, as it will destroy your palate.

Pliny the Elder is good. But it’s not great. The beer is VERY hard to find, and while not very expensive when you do, not that impressive. There are some unique characteristics here, but nothing to write home about. I wanted to like this more than I do, and while it is still a good IPA… it’s just that. An IPA. I wasn’t impressed with Dark Lord, either. There is too much hype over beers like that. Maybe that is what spoils it for me. Not sure. But Pliny the Elder is just that… a hyped beer that doesn’t live up to the hype. BeerAdvocate rates this 100. So do the bros. Would love to discuss this beer with them further. I can’t give it more than a 3. Bottoms up, but only because this beer is rare!

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2012 16:49:54 | More by rickyleepotts
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The beer pours lighter than expected with a white, fluffy head that quickly gives way to the army of bubbles marching to the top of the glass. A big, fruity nose, expected from one of the world's best IPAs, is no less welcome without the surprise. Bright grapefruit, pine, and lemon notes dance up from the glass. Even the bottle cap smells like delicious hops

The first sip is "wow" smooth. Grapefruit and pineapple -- hello, citrus -- are predominant, and the earthy, forest-floor flavors that you get from some IPAs, even good ones, are absent. I expected balanced and bitter, but I didn't expect the mouthfeel to be so light. For an IPA of 8 percent and around 100 IBUs, this is just about perfect.

I've had a lot of good IPAs this year, but Pliny stands out as one I could happily drink day in and day out without growing weary.

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Pliny The Elder from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 9,640 ratings.