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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

9,644 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,644
Reviews: 3,120
rAvg: 4.65
pDev: 8.17%
Wants: 4,425
Gots: 1,393 | 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
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Pliny The Elder Alström Bros
Ratings: 9,644 | Reviews: 3,120 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ManekiNeko
ManekiNeko

Virginia

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap in a pint glass at RFD's

Appearance: Clear light amber topped by a thick white cap of foam. An everpresent smallish layer of foam was supported by the streamers of bubbles. Modestly thick, but overly splotchy, coating of foam on the glass.

Smell: Heady blast of piny resins and grapefruit. Occasional whiffs of skunkweed and rancid cheese, but in a good way. Very very green and vegetal. Hop Ottin' turned to 11, then given some steroids.

Taste: Intensely bitter spruce and acidic citrus hop juice is what this is. Just enough malty sweetness to prevent hop tea syndrome. Exquisitely off its rocker. Alcohol is well masked.

Drinkability: When I win the lottery, I will buy a modest shack across the street from either Russian River or some place that serves it, just so I can have the occasional sip of this hop nectar.

Mouthfeel: A slightly watery medium body, but in a good way. Hop juice and high abv must be less dense that malty goodness.

Serving type: on-tap

02-25-2005 01:40:21 | More by ManekiNeko
Photo of yeahnatenelson
yeahnatenelson

Illinois

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

200th Review -- Thanks again to wavers1 for setting me up with this growler.

Appearance -- Pours a rich orange/amber with two fingers of stiff white head.

Smell -- Lots of citrus and resin, dry bready malt, muskmelon, and a dab of honey. Not too shabby, but as I got the first whiff of this I would've assumed it was any number of top notch IPA; good, but not distinctive.

Taste -- Up front is tons of bright citrus fruit and pine resin. Tempering the hop flavor and moderate resin bitterness is the faintest bit of honey malt and melon. Overall, the malt is dry, but with just enough sweetness to give depth to those hop aromatics. The finish is long and reisnous. Alcohol cannot be perceived.

Mouthfeel -- Medium in body with moderate prickly carbonation. Wish I could somehow go into further elaboration here, but it just felt 'right.'

Drinkability -- One would expect an IIPA with such a cult following to be intense to the nth degree, but what you have with Pliny The Elder is an incredible flavor profile that is perfectly balanced and incredibly easy to drink. I offered this growler up for my best friend's birthday party, but I could have just as easily drank this all by myself. If I lived in CA, this would be in my fridge at all times. A nearly flawless beer.

Serving type: growler

09-13-2010 22:37:40 | More by yeahnatenelson
Photo of crazeguy
crazeguy

California

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottled on 030909. Poured from a 500ml bottle into a Pilsner Glass.

Slightly hazy orange yellow with carbonation still bubbling up slightly. White head.

Smells like a pine tree and a hop garden had baby's. This is that offspring.

Taste is much like the smell, but better balanced. If it wasn't for the lingering aftertaste(which isn't a bad thing) this would be a perfect 5.

Mouthfeel, again that aftertaste comes into affect but its amazing aside.

Drink, I would love to chug this if it didn't taste so damn good.

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2009 08:13:25 | More by crazeguy
Photo of Maxwell
Maxwell

Massachusetts

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours an oranging yellow with amber highlights, kind of like a sunrise… The beer forms a big, pillowy head of rocky white bubbles that are slightly off-white. The head lasts nicely, but does mellow down from its initial height to about a half-finger’s width. As the head dissipates, it leaves a nice sticky patchwork of lacing on the glass. In body the beer is crystal clear and clean, but does present a slight haze from the malt. On the nose, the beer smells of citrus and spicy pine. Floral and herbal notes dance around the edges of the nose but big citrus tangerine and grapefruit are the primary players in the beer. The nose is not blowing me away, but is just a very solid example of a hoppy beer dank pine and a touch of sweet caramel can also be sensed in the smell. As a whole, the smell tends to remind a little of a fresh pineapple blended with pine. On the tongue, the beer tastes surprisingly balanced. The bitters are big and coat the mouth, but there is a strong bready sweetness to add balance. Light stone fruit notes can be picked out in the hop character, as well. The finish sees the strongest bitter kick, which is a bit over powering and should feed any one’s bitter cravings. Acidity in the beer is light but bright on the sides of the cheeks. Again, this beer tastes like a classic DIPA. In flavor, the beer begins as sweet, candied citrus, expanding into fresh Florida oranges, with a touch of orange peel and rind. Grapefruit, pine needles, and pineapple dance in the back along with the malts superbly balanced sweet caramel bread, which helps to give the hops their candied quality. I wasn’t that taken with this beer on the initial sip, but that was foolish of me. Pliny is a subtle beast, building simple complexity from its hops, and making each sip different. Soft boozy heat can be felt in the back of the throat, but that is just another part of the complexity of this beer. This flavor is one I could sip all night. In the mouth, Pliny feels surprisingly on the light side of medium in body, with a fluffy carbonation that pillows the tongue nicely. Mouthfeel is slick, and crisp, making the beer dangerously easy to drink. Slight astringency can be felt as the beer moves across the tongue leaving the mouth only softly tingling with bitters. Saliva does gently pool in the cheeks, but overall the mouth is left rather clean and ready for further sips. Overall, this beer is a whale worthy of whaling after. Beautiful complexity and subtly make this a beer I could drink several of, which is dangerous for its ABV bracket. Where many of the modern DIPA’s slam you in the face with juicy hop character, Pliny is subtle and perfectly balanced. This will please the hop heads and even those that are skeptical to hops. My mother, a diehard stout fan, but “pale and hoppy beer” hater, actually loved this when I brought one over last night. My only complaint is that the nose is mild compared to some DIPA’s, but to be fair to Pliny, its recipe was developed before the designers of those other DIPA’s even knew they liked hops. Pliny the Elder is a pleasure to drink. I can’t wait to get my hands on more Russian River beers.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2013 23:34:54 | More by Maxwell
Photo of oddb0d
oddb0d


4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Just a great solid West Coast IPA. They just do it very well. It is pretty traditional in it's taste compared with some of the newer beers. That being said, it's a great beer. If PTY is on tap I'm drinking that. It's a no brainer.

Nice amount of carbonation, great hoppiness without a bitter after taste. If you can get it, definitely try it. That being said don't beat yourself up to get this beer. A really good local IPA craft brew in many cities (at least on the west coast) can do something that is really just as good in my opinion. There is a lot of buzz which I think is making people over sell this beer.

Serving type: on-tap

02-19-2013 03:21:03 | More by oddb0d
Photo of jmdrpi
jmdrpi

Pennsylvania

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

had on-tap at a Russian River event at a local bar. Finally get to see what all the hype is about. Served in a tulip glass.

Bright golden in color, with 1/2" white head that dissapates after a few sips. aroma is of piney hops, not much else. taste is hop forward, but very balanced. moderate carbonation, very smooth mouthfeel. went down very easy for an 8%abv beer, with no hint of the increased alcohol.

Do I think it's the #2 beer in the world? no, there are plenty of beers I'd rather have in my favorite styles. But I give this high marks when rating to style, as it is the best DIPA I've had.

Serving type: on-tap

09-11-2010 03:12:19 | More by jmdrpi
Photo of natelocc787
natelocc787

California

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I'll be the guy who says that for me-this beer didn't live up to the hype. Great IPA but I was expecting something legendary like the Pliny to be phenomenal and it wasn't. It was simply as good as other great IPA's. Which lucky for the Pliny's score, I happen to love great IPA's.

The appearance was impressive. Great retention and lacing-we all know the color of an Imperial IPA, no need for me to try and discern what shade of whitish color the head is or what shade of golden orange the beer is and find some new color of crayola to name it.

The nose was outstanding. My homeboy (who apparently has a much higher sense of smell than me) said he could smell it as soon as he cracked the bottle. I however, had to actually get the poured beer closer to my face, but wow. Really well crafted. All the floral, herbal piney and citrus aromas really stand out. Hoppy as heck! Reminded me of the Ruination methinks.

The taste was like the smell. I enjoyed the pineapple aspect in addition to the tangerine and key lime pie flavors. Nice balance I must add between the citrusy and and pineyness of the hops. If this was a seesaw battle I suppose it would lean a little more closer to the ground on the piney side. Tasted siimilar to a better balanced Ruination or a slightly more floral Hop Stoopid.

Mouthfeel was nice and silky but lacked crispness. Could have been thicker and more syrupy for me as well. A little bit too watery for me to give it the 4.5. Maybe my bottle was slightly affected by it's long journey to the Pliny-less state I dwell in, Texas.

Very drinkable. No problem putting this back and the alcohol was well hidden. Very tasty as well, I look forward to many more next year when I move back to Cali.

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2009 23:26:00 | More by natelocc787
Photo of blackcrow911
blackcrow911

California

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on: 02-07-2011

Pour in a pint glass.

A: Dark orange, a white head, and left nice lace, although the head did not last to long.

S: A very strong grapefruit smell. Very nice!

T: Just as with the smell I taste the grapefruit upfront, and a bitter end. I liked this very much.

M: Good carbonation, very smooth.

D: Very easy to drink, even with its bitter kick.

The first bottle I had of this I did not like at all, but this 2nd one was well worth it. Pliny the Elder is a beer well worth the effort to find. A great smell and taste, a head that will leave great lacing, although the head did not last to long. Over all I will take the 2 hour drive just to find it when I want to pick up some more.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2011 06:23:43 | More by blackcrow911
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sharply citrusy and bone dry- Russian River knows that these halmarks are the only ones that matter in this simple and strong style.

Pouring a highly carbonated and creamy overall appearance, the beer delivers the most supple of haze upon a strong golden, light copper hue. A creamy ecru head builds on the beer and coats the sides of the glass with sheets of lace as the beer falls for a very charming and stately appearance.

Aromas of every citrus fruit that you have ever known rushes to the olfactories with an onslaught that's extremely zesty, ripe, and fresh. Only the most supple of malty caramel notes inform the sweeter notions of fruit but intently stray from the focused citrusy notes of oranges and grapefruit.

Flavors follow suit with a strong emphasis on hoppy oils that remind the tastebuds of ruby red grapefruit pulp, freshly grated oranges, and tangerine succulence. Citrusy overall, but it's the underlying malty sweetness of thin caramel that gives the fruity hop flavors just enough sweetness to not become sour, acidic, or overly sharp. Lightly salty in taste, the beer's water profile gives a rounded element that's sometimes lacking in these dry beers.

But the dryness doesn't only manifest in taste, it also presents a quick evaporative feel just after the early creamy notion of malt whisps away and leaves a bitter, resiny-dry finish of citrus sharpness and lightly herbal/grassy bite in aftertaste.

Pliny is a quentessential IPA that displays all the finnese of hop oils and resins for ultimate clean citrus flavor and resiny bitterness. This only happens because of the understated and clean caramel malt base. Although this would normally expose a lot of hop and alcohol harshness in merely mortal beers, it's surprising that none of those show here. Russian River nails this one!

Thanks also bbehr and hopluva1!

Serving type: on-tap

10-29-2008 20:06:58 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of gfthree7
gfthree7

California

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pliny the Elder finally makes it's way to Apple Valley, CA! At $10 per pint it's not cheap, but I can't pass up the opportunity to try one for the first time.

I've shared a couple Ellder Plinys with friends, but this time I have the whole pint to myself, poured into a chilled chalice.

The appearance is strikingly clear golden with a small bit of froth that disappears quickly. What a great looking clear beer! It doesn't have the thickness/haziness that many DIPAs, but mysteriously still packs a tremendous hoppy punch!

Pliny the Elder smells great, though there are some other DIPAs with a stronger smell, like Left Coast Hop Juice and Green Flash Imperial. Pine and citrus come through the nose here.

It tastes great! Getting better as I progress through the pint, this is probably the most balanced DIPA I've had. Don't let the clear appearance fool you, this is a championship DIPA. Mouthfeel is also great.

Elder Pliny is dangerously drinkable! Here in the High Desert/San Bernardino county area it's hard to find though, so I'll probably stick with Green Flash Imperial @ $5 per 22oz bomber for my DIPA fix.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2011 00:14:51 | More by gfthree7
Photo of MrMcGibblets
MrMcGibblets

Illinois

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

bottled on 4.29.09. golden orange, slight haze, nice creamy white head and lacing. incredible floral notes dominate the nose with some honey, citrus, grassy and tropical fruit notes underneath. lemony, sharp but not harsh bitterness overpowers the very light sweetness of the biscuity malts. seems almost completely dry/attenuated. body is on the light side of medium, nicely carbonated, with a spritzy/prickly mouthfeel. long hoppy bitter finish with some aspirin-like astringency. thanks to natasharai for this one.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2009 18:01:42 | More by MrMcGibblets
Photo of IronLover
IronLover

Pennsylvania

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bright amber yellow in color with slight haze. Poured with a fluffy white head with excellent staying power that ultimately reduced to a pillowy white cap. Nice sticky lacings on the glass. Very smooth with a slightly resinous feel toward the finish. Big tropical/citrus aroma, grapefruit and orange the most prominent, with a hint of pineaapple. After your nose gets accustomed to the hope aroma intensity, the sweet malt aromas begin to show through. Burst of citrus hops on the palate with a delicate malty feel underneath. Finishes with a touch of piney hop bitterness. Although this a showcase of hop aroma and flavor the flavors and feel are smooth creamy and delicate. Excellent!

Serving type: on-tap

05-24-2011 20:39:09 | More by IronLover
Photo of cr0ckett
cr0ckett

Michigan

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Huge thanks to Jlt6116 for sending me 6 of these in a trade.
500ml Bottle poured into snifter; bottled 2.17.11
A: Pours a beautiful clear amber. One finger white head dissipates within a couple minutes; light lacing through out beer.
S: Pine, resin, little bit of citrus: grapefruit maybe?
T: Great pine hop tones throughout. Little bit of malt sweetness in beginning and middle to balance but hops linger on in the end.
M: Medium bodied and a slightly syrupy viscosity with good carbonation; exceptionally smooth.
O: I tried not to let the hype surrounding this beer affect me too much, but this really is an exceptional beer. It's the most perfectly balanced DIPA I've had. It's not so much better than other IPAs/ DIPAs I've had (for example, Hopslam) that it blows them out of the water, but again, it is an exceptional beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2011 01:45:59 | More by cr0ckett
Photo of tyboxr
tyboxr

Washington

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Definition of a hop bomb! Not only that but one that has set the bar very very high. Well balanced, delicious and so very drinkable. What everyone wrote holds true. Yes it has a bit of a cult following but it has earned it. You don't have to be a hipster to enjoy this cult classic. If you stumble across some bottles grab them and hold onto them!

Serving type: on-tap

07-15-2013 07:26:18 | More by tyboxr
Photo of Onenote81
Onenote81

North Carolina

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to tzanio for sending me out 3 bottles of this splendid beer! This was the very same tzanio that hooked me up with a growler of the Younger a couple months back. Great trader!!

I thought this would be the perfect brew to rate for my 200th review! I've been daydreaming of this one since I got it about 2 weeks ago.

Bottled on 3/9/09, so it is very fresh. Pours a murky, cloudy orangish gold. Huge frothy white head billows on the top of this beer. Gorgeous. Great fluffy retention. Some globs present on the glass edge. Little whisps left behind as well. Really a beautiful beer.

The nose on this is like no other. Just a perfect bountiful smack of pine, grapefruit, pineapple, hibiscus, and a nice spicy finish. I just wanted to dip my nose in deeper and deeper. I could snort this froth. Mouthfeel is nice and crisp, clean, and slightly wet. Very easy to drink. Not thick, not thin.

This beer packs the punch on the flavor, no doubt about it. Huge grapefruity hop presence that finishes with a hint of burnt toast. Slight alcohol zip mixed in as well. Just an absolutey magnificent beer! This is dangerously drinkable as well. Much more so than the Younger. With the alcohol value where it is, this could do some damage for sure. I'm glad I got 3 bottles; I just need to spread them out a bit. This beer lives up to the hype.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2009 03:09:19 | More by Onenote81
Photo of domtronzero
domtronzero

California

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 7-28-10. Enjoyed out of a New Belgium tulip.

A - Pours a clear orange-copper with a big, average-lasting whitish head. No lacing left on the glass. Typical of the better examples of this style. I like slightly lighter-colored DIPAs (a little less malty).

S - Big piney, citrusey hop forward aroma with a little bit of pale malt character. Low esters.

F/M - Along the same lines as the aroma - piney, citrusey (oranges and grapefruits). Low bready malt character. Fermentation characteristics are kept in check, which makes this a well-balanced, extremely clean example of the this style. Medium bodies with moderate carbonation, aftertaste is clean and pleasantly hoppy.

D - Excellent. This beer finishes clean, with no astringency and plenty of carbonic bite.

Overall this is one of the best DIPAs around. A must-have world class example of the style.

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2010 05:44:38 | More by domtronzero
Photo of beersheppard
beersheppard

Texas

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: deep golden color, good head retention, good lacing.

Smell: citrus, pine, big on the hoppiness. Big nose.

Taste: oh yeah! Such delicious citrus hop flavor a little pine. You can't tel that it is eight percent alcohol.

Mouthfeel: full, substantial, good feel.

Drinkability: Why can't this beer be in TX?!?!! So good. TABC, I will be waiting for this one.

Serving type: on-tap

05-21-2010 05:40:10 | More by beersheppard
Photo of wchesak
wchesak

South Carolina

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into my Spiegelau tulip. Thanks to pastradul for this one.
Bottled on 040510

A - golden amber orange color, decently hazy, fingers worth of small bubble filled white head that almost like a heavy cream sitting on top of the beer, lots of lace all over the inside of the glass

S - clementine, grapefruit right off the bat, like they were just peeled and cut up, then you took said cut up fresh fruit and enjoyed them in a pine forest, some pineapple upside down cake-ness comes after the initial smell

T - right off tons of citrus that dissipates to the malt section that is pretty caramelly but rather time, then the hops come back and its back to citrus (grapefruit forward) with some grassy elements that sits on the back of your palette and doesnt leave, however its not to the point where it becomes annoying it makes you want to take another sip

M - above average carbonation, medium bodied, finishes clean malt wise but hops stay on palette well after leaving nice dryness

D - this is the quintessential DIPA, plenty of hops, but never overbearing and your taste buds survive, hard to stop from finishing off the 1 bottle i have too quickly

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2010 21:59:15 | More by wchesak
Photo of coldriver
coldriver

Texas

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Russian River brewbub in Santa Rosa Dec 22. Poured a deep amber, they actually handed it to me with out much head, but great lacing. Fantastic citrus pine hop aromas matched by the outstanding grapefruit, citrus pine taste. For me the mouthfeel was the most impressive aspect - how are they able to get such a juicy hop finish with it being so very dry at the same time? I was somewhat skeptical with all the hype, but this one (and every other RR beer I tried) was wonderful.

Serving type: on-tap

12-23-2011 15:38:16 | More by coldriver
Photo of montecristo2
montecristo2

New Jersey

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at the Russian River Brewery. Found out they not only make great beer, but awesome pizza and "Pliny Poppers" which are jalapeno poppers made in a Pliny beer batter. Awesome!

Beer arrived with a nice two fingered head.

Smells strong of piney hops. Others mentioned grapefruit- I really got the pine and nothing else. I was cool with that, it smelled awesome.

My anticipation to taste this beer was great-I had heard such great things, and I was not let down. The taste was really balanced and delicious. A perfect blend of piney citrus and bready malt-nothing too powerful on either side.

Left nice lacing on the glass.

I had another, bought a six pack for travel, and was a happy man.

*Adding to previous review-had this in bottle format. Totally taste the grapefruit now, and the pine mixed together makes for a splendid smelling and tasting beer. Top notch!

Serving type: on-tap

08-21-2011 03:27:55 | More by montecristo2
Photo of ghetto90007
ghetto90007

California

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Spectacular golden-orange color, white head - chunky when on tap, foamy and even from the bottle. Usually about two fingers. Beautiful, beautiful lacing.

Good God, this beer smells good. Floral, citrus, pine hop aromas. Just wafting in your face.

Puckery grapefruit, and in comes the deliciousness - a cocophany of bitter but tasty hop aromas - flowery perfume, oily pine resins, citrusy grapefruit with the rind. Mild sweet undertones from some malt, but not as forthcoming as the sweetness in the Pliny the Younger.

Medium-bodied and spectacularly drinkable. Make that dangerously drinkable. A bomber of Sculpin and a couple bottles of Pliny the Elder in my fridge spells a lot of trouble for me. Just begging to be quaffed. Good carbonation.

This is a great beer. If it could be believed, I would say this is like Pliny the Younger with slightly muted flavors and a little less balance. A world-class, year-round offering from Russian River.

Serving type: on-tap

04-17-2011 03:54:55 | More by ghetto90007
Photo of mobyviacheslov
mobyviacheslov

Washington

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Russian river Pliney the Elder IMP IPA, Jakes, 20Mar10, narrow pint, ??%, 45deg
A - Opaque, thick, orange. Looked like a screwdriver almost.
S - Pine trees...strike that, a pine forrest! Subtle citrusy grapefruit came through as well, but this truly smelled like a glass of pine.
T - Very complex, full bodied, yet mild American imperial IPA style. The hops delivered exactly what the aroma would predict. A lot of pine flavor, a little citrus and grass, but somehow, not a lot of bitterness to this one. Not sure what the IBU's claim, but the malt, while not a prevelant flavor, must have been doing something to balance the bitterness. The hop flavors were powerful and dominant, just not overwhelmingly bitter. This was an incredible balance between extreme flavor and mild bitterness. Very well done.
M - Thick, but not creamy.
D - I could drink this as a session beer, discovering new flavors each sip. The lack of extreme bitterness means no need for salty snacks in between, leaving the gut open for each unfiltered sip.

Serving type: on-tap

03-28-2010 19:49:32 | More by mobyviacheslov
Photo of Cuzco
Cuzco

New York

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received this beer from steadydose in a trade. HUGE thank you Russell! Immediately put it in the fridge to chill for tonight.

The hype/anticipation of this beer had be slightly worried. Would it live up to my expectations? No, it didn't, it surpassed them.

A: It pours a crisp clear orange color with a "fluffy" white head that dissipates quickly but leaves a beautiful white lacing around the glass that stays throughout the experience.

S: Pine and citrus hits the nose immediately. Think freshly cut Christmas tree decorated with dried citrus fruit. This is a very good thing.

T: The pine and citrus continues from the nose to the mouth. This beer lives up to the smell. It has a dry finish that lingers on the tongue after each sip.

M: The mouthfeel is slightly lighter than expected with the appearance and smell. This isn't a bad thing at all just a bit lighter than expected.

D: This beer could go down way to fast. The alcohol is masked completely and you would never guess this beer was 8%. I am sipping this beer slowly knowing that it may be a long while before I get another chance to taste this exceptional beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2009 00:12:49 | More by Cuzco
Photo of bonkers
bonkers

New Jersey

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured from a 500 ml bottle into a tulip glass. The aroma was noticed before the appearance. Intense pine notes are released when the bottle is opened. After I poured the first bottle, my brother in law could smell the pine 10 feet away. The beer pours a deep yellow, when held up to a light it is very clear. The head is impressive and leaves a respectable amount of lacing. The taste follows the nose. The pine flavors are up front and intense. The aftertaste lingers well after the beer is sipped. The beer is a medium bodied sipper. An excellent brew! The finest DIPA I have had the pleasure of drinking.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2008 21:22:36 | More by bonkers
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Gueuzedude

Arizona

4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Bottled On Date July 10, 2008; Sampled July 17, 2008
A soft pour produces a three-finger thick, light tan colored head in my 25cl tulip glass. The beer is just so expressively pungeant with hop aromatics that just jump out at me as I am pouring this beer. It sits in my glas with a light amber, copper hue and shows a clear, bright gold hue when held up to the light. The aroma is just sticky with hop character; huge lychee notes, super ripe apricot, bright tropical fruit notes, candied grapefruit, expansive tangelo and Curacao orange peel are all easily noticeable. The other side of the hop aroma spectrum lurks just below the fruit notes with herbal notes that are quite floral, some pine that adds some backbone to the aroma and a light, dank, hemp-oil like note that adds just a bit of an edge to this brew. What I love about the aroma is the focus on the fruity hop notes, but it still has some of the more herbal notes that add a touch of offset and a touch of contrast. If you really dig for it some cracker-like malt notes are just noticeable underneath all of the dominating hop aromatics.

Aggressively bitter up front, though not overwhelmingly so, this is quite herbal as it first hits the tongue, but becomes redolent of super ripe hop fruit flavors through the middle and finish. At this point the bitterness kicks in again and a clean, biting hop note lingers on the tongue for quite some time after the beer has left my mouth. Pine-sap flavors up front yield to tropical fruit notes of lychees, almost pineapple and other fruit flavors of apricot, peach and ripe tangelo. The explosive up front fruit flavors seem to get scraped from my palate by the aggressive herbal and pine notes that seem to get more pronounced with every sip. A short respite from the beer seems to accentuate the fruit notes a bit more again, but it is still as if my tongue has been scraped by some very herbal hops that have left a permanent mark. Still this aggressively herbal hop character (that is definitely riding the edge of being laden with hemp oil) never buries the hop-fruit flavors. While certainly not light, this is eminently drinkable; not so heavy that it has not business having the letters of IPA on the label; this is my definitive example of what the texture and heft of a double IPA should be.

The aroma of this beer is just so nice; the dominant hop fruit notes are perfectly controlled by the softer herbal hop character. The flavor is a bit more herbal in balance and is quite scathing in its hop attack. Still the bitter, sharply herbal hop notes never get out of control, but this beer still makes me feel like my tongue has been abused and scraped raw by the aggressive hop character. This is most definitely a well constructed brew, and in some aspects this is quite definitive for the style. A benchmark for the style that I will never get enough of.

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2008 03:28:21 | More by Gueuzedude
Pliny The Elder from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 9,644 ratings.