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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.

11,432 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 11,432
Reviews: 3,251
rAvg: 4.65
pDev: 8.6%
Wants: 5,302
Gots: 2,108 | FT: 67
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:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Pliny The Elder Alström Bros
Ratings: 11,432 | Reviews: 3,251 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Tackle42
5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

Photo of tylerprince
4.47/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Falling Rock Taphouse in Denver.

A: Clear golden amber. White two-finger head resolves quickly but leaves an excellent lacing.

S: Hop oils, grassy, with some floral and fruity undertones. Hints of grapefruit, pine, citrus. Nowhere near as strong or as citrusy as the Heady Topper, but still excellent.

T: Just like it smells. Starts off bitter with hop oils, grassy, fruity undertones, pine; finishes off crisp with a bit more malt. Alcohol is well masked.

M: Crisp, with perfect carbonation. Incredibly drinkable. Bitterness doesn't linger much.

O: I wouldn't say this beer lived up to the hype or to its $7 price tag, but it is to date one of the best DIPAs I've had. I would definitely buy again, but for the price I would say there are some other beers out there that are a better choice.

Photo of jcone17
4.5/5  rDev -3.2%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

Photo of Topher78
5/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The cap came off and I was treated to what I can only describe as heaven in a bottle. No other beer has ever had such a wonderful aroma to me as Pliny. I poured this magnificent brew into a sniffer glass and was rewarded with a medium golden colored brew that gave a fingers worth of fluffy white head and good lacing. The well balanced aroma's of citrus, grass and pine pleasantly greet your nose. The taste is amazing, the crispness of citrus was perfectly balanced with a strong malt backbone that left a slightly sharp aftertaste on the tongue. Despite having a relatively high IBU count and above average ABV, this beer is extremely drinkable. I can't help but think, this is the perfect DIPA!

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4.75/5  rDev +2.2%

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4.5/5  rDev -3.2%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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2/5  rDev -57%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

Photo of Mahlik
4.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

1 pint 9 oz bottle poured into pint glass

A - Pours a clear golden orange with a big frothy white head. Head retention is excellent. Dissipates to leave a small mound of froth in the middle. Great streaks of lacing.

S - Holy hops. A glorious burst of citrus and pine. Pineapple, grapefruit and tropical fruits were all present. A slight sweet malt smell could be found in the background.

T - Copious amounts of citrusy hop goodness. Pineapple, grapefruit and mango all play a role. Piney and resinous hops pop out in the middle. A sweet malty backbone helps balance everything out.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. A nice bitterness covers the palate but doesn't become overbearing. The bitterness lingers around just long enough to be pleasant. Finishes clean. Very drinkable.

O - This beer deserves all the praise it gets. Russian River really knows what they are doing when it comes to beer. A must try for any craft beer enthusiast.

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

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5/5  rDev +7.5%

Photo of kojevergas
3.93/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into De Molen stemware in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live.

A: Pours a 2.5 finger head of nice cream, good thickness, and good retention - especially for the style and ABV. Colour is a transparent yellow.

Sm: Fresh floral bittering hop notes. Maybe cascade? I'm bollocks at guessing hop varietals, but I do know that it's wonderfully pleasant and inviting. A moderate strength aroma.

T: Lovely fresh hop notes and floral notes. The balance is sadly off, with too much bitterness in the 3rd act and finish. It's a shame because the first two acts are so fresh, pleasant, and wondrous. It's quite well built. Deep, layered, and complex for the style. I'm impressed, but it's not without its shortcoming.

Mf: Smooth, pleasant, and wet. I'd definitely stop short of refreshing, but it's pretty good. Complements the flavours really well.

Dr: Very drinkable and pleasant for the style. Hides its ABV very well. I'd have it again on-draught - which is a rarity for me given the style. It's good and pairs well with meat, but it's not quite exemplary. I've had better IPAs.


Having tried many more beers in the style, I decided to revisit this one on 12/21/12. Bottled 11/30/12. 510ml brown glass bottle served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass. Expectations are high. Served straight from the fridge.

A: Pours a beige three finger head of nice froth but little cream, good thickness, and great retention considering the ABV. Body colour is a clear yellow/pale copper. No visible yeast. No bubble show.

Sm: Pine, pleasant citrus and floral hops, lemongrass, and nectary hops. No detectable hop bitterness, yeast, or alcohol. Pleasant and fragrant. Above average in strength. Appealing.

T: Grassy body with complex floral notes across the board balanced well against its subtle pine. A bit nectary. Flirts with a light soapy character but never quite crosses the line. Pale malts lend it body without compromising the well-executed balance. No yeast or alcohol comes through. It's very refreshing and enjoyable, with minimal hop bitterness. Very balanced and tasty, if somewhat simple compared to other beers in the style.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Nectary. Refreshing. Good thickness and palate presence; very light for the style and ABV. Complements the flavours well.

Dr: I know far more now about the style than I did when I last reviewed it a year ago (12/08/11 review above), but I still have to give it the same score. There is more to be done with a double IPA, and this is not the best one out there. I recall liking Heady Topper and Port 15 far more than this. An excellent Double IPA that would pair very well with any food. Hides its ABV well. Well priced for the quality ($3.25-$6.99 in L.A.).


Pliny The Elder from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 11,432 ratings.