1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

10,795 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,795
Reviews: 3,191
rAvg: 4.65
pDev: 8.6%
Wants: 4,989
Gots: 1,871 | FT: 63
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:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Pliny The Elder Alström Bros
Ratings: 10,795 | Reviews: 3,191 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of VWBuggirl
4.6/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a nice straw yellow with a small head and lots of lacing. The scent is very hoppy right off the bat, then you get a great floral scent that has a slightly sweat citrus smell, like a ripe tangerine.

As for the flavor, wow! Hops come out right away and quite strongly as anticipated. You definitely get that floral taste at the end and it is very earthy and enjoyable. I don't get much of the citrus that I smelled, but it isn't necessary.

This is decently carbonated and nice and dry. This all goes to making it very drinkable. More so than most.

This is my first of this style and I enjoyed it quite a bit!

VWBuggirl, Apr 22, 2010
Photo of largadeer
4.68/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've had this beer roughly a billion times now, and its aromas and flavors are pretty much ingrained in my psyche at this point. 500ml bottle with a "bottled on" date of 04/05/10 poured into a tall mug, this is much hazier than any draft pour of Elder I've had. It's peach-colored, moderately cloudy and topped by an exceptionally frothy cap that not only sustains well but leaves thick rings of lace around the glass.

The aroma is rich with pine, grapefruit and orange along with a bit of tropical fruit, predominantly pineapple. There's nary a hint of sweetness and any hint of malt is obliterated by the hop assault. Maybe it's because I've consumed so much of this beer over the years, and maybe it's because I'm a drunken hobo, but there's something comforting about the aroma.

Taste mirrors aroma with this one: citrusy, tropical fruit hits the taste buds first - pineapple, orange, grapefruit - followed by a smack of pine (this stuff almost tastes "green"). There's very faint malt presence, biscuit-like, and a bitterness so perfectly balanced with the flavoring hops that it goes almost unnoticed until the glass is half empty. The mouthfeel is arguably where this beer excels the most; it's so light, so crisp and dry, it could easily be mistaken for a beer with far more modest alcohol content.

Drinkability is...well...my pint is almost gone, and it seems like I just poured it a moment ago. It's a beer difficult to savor.

Hyperbole aside, the bottles aren't quite as exceptional as the fresh draft pours, though they're still outstanding and priced quite reasonably given the quality.

largadeer, Apr 22, 2010
Photo of urwithdave
4.33/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tnx to mrstevens for sharing. Poured into a snifter. This bottle is just a little over 3 weeks old.

A- Pours golden orange in color. A inch of a off white head that sticks around for a bit and comes right back with a little swirl. Nice lacing left.

S- Big piney hops and some citus notes, primarily grapefruit.

T- U guessed it....an explosion of hops in my mouth. The citrus is blended in well. The grapefruit aspect is very distinct. I'm missing the malt profile that I love in most E coast DIPAs. I don't think it's as good as hopslam, but I'm not complaining.

M- Bitterness isn't overpowering and it leaves a nice dry finish.

D- Just about perfect!!! The only knock here is the fact that I prefer a little more "sweetness" from my DIPAs. All in all a great beer that I would def drink again.

urwithdave, Apr 19, 2010
Photo of Provocajade
4.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

1st review- had to be something great.

Bought bottles from Total Wine&More in Rancho Cucamonga, Ca. Poured into oversized tulips.

A- golden in color with a moderate head with fine bubbles.

S- hoppyness is obvious, but had also a light sweet/delicate floral note in the background. It was strong coming out of the bottle/during the pour, but was more subdued when in the glass but still nicely fragrant while sipping.

T- I love that this beer has a "evolving" bitterness. The first layer is a bit of a citrusy, green grassy, fresh hoppy bittnerness then leaving on the palette the bitterness becomes a bit more mellow and sweet floral/herbaceous (kinda taste like fresh tree bark/leaves) background and ends almost a bit fruity and honey-ish, with a whisper of a almost tangy bitterness on the back of my palette. Very complex and smooth in transitioning its flavors. I find it a bit hard to explain in a good way.

M- not very heavy on the palette, light in its carbonation, alternated to being almost creamy and then gave a dry finish. This probably was a big aid in its "evolution" in its flavor.

D- Drank this twice- once at about 2 weeks old, another time at 6 weeks. The older was very slightly more mellow...a bit less "green" in the front end , but not by much- still a bitter beast.

The drinkability for me is exceptional.I get why it has such a reputation- I seriously love this and I came into opening one and thinking I will appreciate it, but did not expect to love it so. I can't quite see myself drink more than one in a sitting, but it is a beer that I will be excited about and enjoy through and through. I "get" bitter now and respect how its done in The Elder.

My BF on the other hand, appreciated it, liked it, but did not love it. He feels its something that he wouldn't quite seek it out as its still a aquired taste...not quite the flavor for him when it comes to IPA/DIPA.

Still, its a favorite that definitely will be a common occurrence in my fridge, at least for me. Thank my lucky stars that my mom lives in California. Don't tell her I plan visiting her when the beer is low...Ssshhhh!

Provocajade, Apr 19, 2010
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at Beachwood BBQ in Seal Beach, CA.

A - Arrived a slightly cloudy pale orange color with a 1/2 inch head. The lacing is amazing.

S - Smells of delicious flowers and citrus hops. There is also a nice tart fruit smell.

T - Absolutely delicious citrus hops with little bitterness. There is also a subdued fruit essence taste present.

M - Carbonation was somewhat flat but the beer was very smooth and fresh.

D - This is a very, very good beer. I know this is a different style of IPA but I enjoyed this beer much more than Blind Pig. This was a very good companion to my BBQ feast.

I definitely will be going after more of this brew. One of the most aesthetically pleasing beers I have ever had. The lacing was absolutely the best I have ever seen. There were rings from top to bottom that showed my progress. Sweet.

UCLABrewN84, Apr 18, 2010
Photo of Arenbeer
4.93/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks a million to Loki83 for this one!!!

500ML bottle into a DFH tulip glass. Bottle date is 03/22/10. Pretty fresh!

A- Pours a hazy almost cloudy dark golden yellow with a bright white 1 finger head on top. Big bubbles leave decent lacing on the way down.

S- Piney citrus hops obliterate your nose up front with a faint malt background and a slight tropical fruitiness.

T- Strong hops hit you up front with a sweet solid malt background as a base. This brew is balanced pretty perfectly. You get a serious dominant hop bitterness with a great tropical finish that lasts in the aftertaste.

M- Medium bodied with moderate carbonation and man is this a bitter bomb. Leaves you dry and wanting more.

Great freaking IPA, finally understand all the hype over this beer. Probably the hopiest beer I've had that wasn't drowned out by other flavors or alcohol. True hop heads dream.

SkÅL!

Arenbeer, Apr 18, 2010
Photo of TheFightfan1
4.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip. Pours a hazy golden color maybe a touch lighter.Tremendous thick white heading. That leaves nice lacing all around the glass.A little heavy looking.

Smell was extremely bitter as soon as the cap was popped. A very distinct hoppy aroma,equivalent to someone just picking the hops from the vine and stuffing them into the bottle.

Taste starts out with a punch of malt to the chops. Immediately replaced by what it makes you think of a sprinkle dusting of hops. A bit of biscuit and sweet malts try to overthrow the hoppiness but is immediately torn down by a spicey stab to the tongue of bitterness.

Mouth is lighter in bodied, absolutely amazing thay it is 8% ABV and so very light and crisp in the mouth.

Drink is absolutely amazing. I've had alot of IIPA's lately and I've been comparing them to this and the Younger and after all the the great reviews of other IIPA's there simply is only one great IIPA and this is it.

TheFightfan1, Apr 17, 2010
Photo of Pahn
4.97/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

500ml bottle into Duvel tulip. Bottled on 3/26/10, so only 20 days old. Big thanks to BA mob2332 for giving this to me!

Appearance: Moderate pour yields a big, 1.5 inch, fluffy, just offwhite head that dissipates steadily leaving spots of lacing. Pours a hazy, light golden amber. Leaves spots and streaks of lacing all around the glass.

Smell: From the bottle there's dank, piny hops. In the glass, the same dank note along with even bigger citrus (grapefruit), floral, grassy hops. There's a lot of sweetness in the smell; lots of tropical fruit, almost melon-y. Smells amazing.

Taste: First sip: a big hit of hop bitterness, characterized by pine and grapefruit, with a dry finish. Not much malt backbone, but huge, resinous hops flavor. Nowhere near as sweet as the aroma suggests. The aftertaste is great; it has more hops complexity than the whole experience of most other IPAs. Halfway through some biscuity malt emerges, but the constant barrage of various delicious hops flavors remains the star. Alcohol is completely hidden.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, alternately creamy and juicy, with a dry finish. Just the right amount of carbonation. The beer fills the mouth, with the mild carbonation, large bitterness, somewhat hefty body, and dry finish all contributing to make the experience huge. I'm noticing more and more that the mouthfeel can really make or break a beer for me, and PtE's is the perfect vehicle for its big hop flavor.

Drinkability: This would *easily* become my go-to (D)IPA if Russian River distributed where I live.

I've started to get mildly self-conscious about the high scores I give beers I like, so I didn't want to throw out all these 5s... but really, the smell, taste, and feel of this beer are just flawless. And ease of consumption? I could easily keep this on hand at all times and make sure to drink all of it fresh.

PtE isn't regarded so highly because it's so difficult to get outside of the west coast. It really is a perfect DIPA.

Pahn, Apr 16, 2010
Photo of Chico1985
4.22/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Well, here it is. My first Pliny the Elder, at 7 a.m., after work. Bottle date is 3-26-10, 20 days old. Pours a bright, fuzzy orange with great rocky, fluffy white head. Looks just like the Blind Pig from yesterday, although the head on Pliny retains better and leaves some more lacing. Very little sediment. Smell is lots of pine and earthy notes. Citrus hides in the background. Taste is the same, pine and earth and lots of it. Dry hops. A bit of a biscuity feel, I don't really pick up any fruit flavors at the start but towards the middle I start to pick up citrus, grapefruit, and lemon. Nice hop burps. The balance here is seriously excellent though, and the mouthfeel is probably the best I have encountered in an IPA, period. Truly a creamy elixir, perfect carbonation. Alcohol taste is nowhere to be found, I would never guess this is 8%. Drinkability is also pretty great because of this. Truthfully I am a little let down, the taste isn't quite what I expected, I actually preferred Blind Pig to this for sure. But the mouthfeel, overall balance of malt+hops, drinkability, and the masking of alcohol are huge highlights, and it succeeds maybe better than any other DIPA I've had in all those categories.

Chico1985, Apr 15, 2010
Photo of hawks10
4.22/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle poured into my Southern Tier tulip...

The classy, simple bottle sitting next to this tulip filled with a hazy golden orange ale is a truly nice sight. 3 fingers of soft white, meringue-like head forms a perfect cap to a great looking beer. The head sticks around for a long time and leaves good lacing down the glass...

Beautiful aromatic hops in the nose. Piny and earthy, resinous. With a couple more whiffs I start to notice a plethora of citrus fruit hop aromas, grapefruit really sticks out...

Sweet, but dry and bitter at the same time. Earthy, pine, dry hop tastes and feel. This gives way to some undertones of tropical fruits, not as citric on the tongue as it was on the nose. This beer leans more towards to floral, piny dry hops with a bit of an oily, resinous flavor...

Medium bodied, somewhat chewy, oily and sticky. Carbonation is there but doesn't really dance on your tongue, somewhat slick, maybe a bit too slick, but still a substantial, pleasant mouthfeel...

Very happy with this beer. Was hoping for a little more sweetness in the taste (I really like Hopslam, OK?!) but definitely enjoyed the West Coast dry, piny style...I still think Hopslam is better though ;)

hawks10, Apr 15, 2010
Photo of DrZot
4.97/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Naja's in the Redondo Beach, CA, marina. Superb beer and decent context. Pliny the Elder was recommended by their most experienced tender as the best double IPA on tap save Pliny the Younger when it is available. After 40 years of tasting ales internationally, this ranks as my all-time favorite.

DrZot, Apr 14, 2010
Photo of spoons
4.83/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On Tap. Fathers Office.

Hazy orange in color. Great white head. Looks great but unassuming.

Smell... and thats where it happens. You know this beer has hops. Tons of grapefruit, citrus, pine, weed.

The taste mimics the nose with th grapefruit and citrus with a piney finish. Definitely has a hop bitterness on the swallow. However, the first thing you taste is the sweetness that the hops seem to take a ride on. One of the most balanced dipas you can ever have.

Great beer. Drink it often if you can.

spoons, Apr 13, 2010
Photo of bpfishback
4.68/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

In a DFH snifter, bottled just over a week ago.

A- Light honey color. Pours about an inch of great looking head. Fairly fine bubbles.
S- A lot of Resin with some sweetness. A little bit of citrus.
T- Nice. A pleasant bitterness on the finish, certainly not overly bitter. This pleasant bitterness sticks around for ages. My mouth is now watering.
M- Feels light bodied and airy . This and blind pig are the only beers where I have actually felt that enamel assaulting feeling on my teeth. I love it.
D- Extremely easy to drink. I could go through week old bottle after bottle after bottle after bottle ...

Want to rate it all fives but, could it get better? I can only imagine.

bpfishback, Apr 13, 2010
Photo of SDHoffers
4.72/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What is there really to say...
It ranks up there with the best of the best and with almost 1,400 reviews it can't just be "follow the leader." The pour, taste, smell, feel, and look of this brew is just flat out gorgeous. It has all of the things I love about Double IPA's and none of the things I dislike. Enough alcohol to just barely taste and not over hopped like many DIPA's. Basically, this beer lives up to all the hype.

SDHoffers, Apr 12, 2010
Photo of antoines15
4.47/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks again B Rob. The distinction between Pliny and all other DIPA's is that people who generally don't care for the hop bitterness will still love this beer. It has all of the taste nuances of an ipa without that bitter bite at the end that tends to push away some people from this style. Its like Jay-Z but not "Reasonable Doubt", more like "H to the Izzo." At the end of the day, its awesome, but inviting enough for everyone. Also, the label is one of the better beer labels around.

antoines15, Apr 11, 2010
Photo of WhatsNewinBooze
4.72/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I love this beer, it is just such a shame that it is hard to come by. It pours a great golden amber with some orange highlights and bright white head. The nose is complex showing great hops, citrus, grapefruit, sugar cane and sweet malts. The palate is well layered with sharp hops up front, sweet malts in the middle and finishes with fresh bitter hops. I love how there is a small amount of sweetness that balances perfectly

WhatsNewinBooze, Apr 11, 2010
Photo of Reaper16
4.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served on-tap @ Falling Rock Taphouse, Denver, CO, into a pint glass

Pours a light and golden shade of honey yellow. Maybe its the pint glass, but the lacing was unimpressive compared to how the bottled PtE pours. Still, this was a prototypical DIPA in appearance. I can't fault it for being the color that it is with the fluffy white head that it has.

The immediacy of the aroma is quite impressive. Oily resins -- the pure distillation of the hop flower -- tingle your nosehairs. This smells like pollan and earth and vines and petals and medicinal secretions and astringent roots and maybe a little bit of gauze or band-aid. All at once. This is served into a pint glass and perhaps that is subduing the aroma... because bottles versions tend to be a wee bit more intense. Still, this is lovely.

"Oh, fuck me!" Pardon the coarse language but that is exactly what I uttered after my first gulp of this wonderful stuff. Its just so exquisitely intense in its hoppiness. Leafy, floral flavors smack you on the tongue with all of the strength of eating a garden. As you swirl the beer around in your mouth, the fruity lupulin flavors develop. Grapefruit and, unmistakeably, passionfruit coat the tongue. They aren't just passing mentions; they are deep and resonating with juiciness. With fruit throbbing on your palate, the pine-dominated finish spreads like a pandemic all over your mouth. The aftertaste is surprisingly low-key. Its bitter, sure, and pleasantly so but it isn't harsh. As the beer warms, you can appreciate some of the toasty and caramel malt flavors but let's be real with it -- they are an afterthought, exactly where they are supposed to be. This beer features all aspects of the HOP like few other beers. This might be the very Platonic form of the hop flower.

I generally prefer single IPAs to doubles because I prefer the thinner, juicier mouthfeel that singles feature. The thickness of the doubled malt bill is, while not exactly a put-off, less pleasurable for my tastes. Pliny the Elder, like no other good double/imperial IPA that I've ever had, is like a single IPA in mouthfeel. Its perfect for my preferences and perfect for carrying home the essential hop flavors. As far as drinkability goes, well, I drank three pints of PtE tonight. This is brilliant and oh, so tasty.

Pliny on-tap was, without a shadow of a doubt, the best beer on-tap that I've ever had. I don't see how any beer could better express the flavors of the hop flower. Perfection in taste.

Reaper16, Apr 11, 2010
Photo of ocmpoma
4.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured out a buff copper, bronze golden hue into the old Duvel tulip. Thick, slightly off-white head that faded eventually. Strong lacing. A good-looking brew.

Pliny's nose is strong; lots of citrus up front with a good hint of orange rind and a toasted undertone. The hops, of course, also make their presence known. The hops dominate on the palate, too, but not at all in an off-balancing way. The citrus and malt sweep in to clean up the mid-palate and prevent the beer from being overwhelmed, but the bitterness hangs in there for a long, delicious finish.

Mouthfeel is excellent; just the right balance for the bitterness and the alcohol level. A very drinkable beer which deserves the respect that it gets.

ocmpoma, Apr 11, 2010
Photo of Florida9
4.33/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 3/22/10

A: Dull, dank yellow with a huge, billowing, white head. Good retention and decent lacing.

S: Very aromatic. Incredibly aromatic. Floral, citrus, grapefruit, pine. While predominantly citrus and grapefruit, this one showcases practically everything.

T: Light malt with grapefruit and floral hop flavor. Surprisingly mild bitterness and with a rather quick finish. The taste is good, but it fails to back up the huge nose.

M: Medium in body. Chewy, but with a good bit of carbonation.

D: A very good DIPA, that is all about the hops. Not sure it lives up to the hype, but I would agree it stands with the best of them.

Florida9, Apr 10, 2010
Photo of chickencoop
4.78/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sometimes you take for granted the things in your backyard, and Pliny is one of them. You start trading and trading to see whats out there, and your'e all, Hopslam is the best beer ever, then you have a Dreadnaught and your like..thats was awesome, but when it's all said and done, Pliny the Elder is and will always be the benchmark for the big west coast IPA. Worthy of all the hype, this is one of the best beers in the US, and in my opinion, top ten in the world.

chickencoop, Apr 10, 2010
Photo of jpmclaug
4.53/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

My friends picked this up in LA, drove it to me in Vegas and I took it back with me to SC. Really stoked to try this brew. Poured from a bottle into my Duvel Tulip

A - orange-amber with a head that quickly turned into a white circle around the glass,

S - Hops, hops, hops. At first I really can smell the citrusy hops with a hint of floral hops in the background. A little pine can be detected.

T - Once again this is all about the hops. Citrus hops are balanced with the piney hops perfectly. I like my DIPA's citrusy and this one does not disappoint. I'm really impressed with the bitterness the pine flavors bring without dominating the beer. I'm sure there is malt in here but I honestly can't pick out any specific flavors!

M - Medium body with a slightly sticky syrupy quality. The carbonation level in this is spot on.

D - Not a real easy drinker but it isn't difficult either. If available to me regularly I would pick this one up pretty often. While not the best DIPA I've ever had (that honor would belong to Coast's Boy King) this is definitely one of the better one's I've had!

jpmclaug, Apr 10, 2010
Photo of hckyfn9999
4.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy golden orange color with a soapy white head. The head leaves sheets of lace as it slowly disappears. Aroma is of full of citrus. Taste is more of the same, citrusy hop overload. Lots of fresh grapefruit and orange flavor along with some pine. Plenty of bitterness. A great beer. One of the best Ive had. After having a couple of Blind Pigs and PTE's, I think the PTE is just a notch above the Blind Pig, but both are beers by Russian River.

hckyfn9999, Apr 09, 2010
Photo of thisisxxmyIPA
4.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Golden straw color. Thin bright white head with beautiful lacing.

S- Amazing hop profile. Citrus, bitter grapefruit, pale malt, sugary sweetness, alcohol. Extreme hop aroma is perfectly balanced with sweet malt aromas

T- Sharp hop bite on the front, pale malts in the middle, and finishing with one of the more intensely fresh bitter hop bites that I have ever experienced. Grapefruit tastes last throughout and the fresh taste of the hops is impressive. I'm glad I got this fresh as RR recommends. (It's only two weeks old). Just a bit of sweetness to round it out, though a bit more malt backbone would have been welcome. Warming alcohol makes Adam's chest feel NICE.

M- Mouthfeel is just full enough to keep this from being hop water, medium carbonation.

D- For as bitter as this is, it's incredibly drinkable. Almost laughably drinkable. A special thanks to tbadiuk for scoring me this trade, and to the fellow from Cali who has remained unnamed thus far who sent the 4 bottles of Cali goodness.

thisisxxmyIPA, Apr 09, 2010
Photo of Bulkman
4.5/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This one was bottled on 1/14/10. Obtained this 500 ml bottle from raoulduke37 (Art) in our trade. Thanks Art!

Poured into my Tilburg footed stick glass with an active, 3 finger head from a semi-aggressive pour. As the head gradually recedes, it leaves behind abundant lacing that sticks to the glass & does not fall, even as I finish the last of the beer about 35 min. later. It is a brilliant light amber color, with excellent clarity.

The aroma is a great meld of citrus & piney hops. Since the hops dominate, malt is not noticed, but that is in no way a negative with this beer. Amazing.

Taste is as you might expect from the aroma, but the malt does make it's presence known here. Moderate malt backbone contributes to the medium-bodied mouthfeel that also delivers with perfectly balanced hop bitterness, followed by a crisp, tangy finish.

Drinkability is exceptionally high, and I easily finished this bottle by myself in just over 1/2 hr., even with the time spent typing this review.

I have eagerly anticipated trying this brew for a long time, and it was everything I expected. It takes the hype on & scores a knockout, which is why I gave it 4.5 across the board. Bring on PtY!

Bulkman, Apr 07, 2010
Photo of Lazerlobe
4.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Got this from South Bay Drugs online. Thanks Geoi. Bottled 3/21/10.

A: 2 fingers of eggshell head crown this ruby-orange brew. Thick lacing left behind as this recedes.

S: First whiff made me squint to avoid getting some of that grapefruit in my eye. I can't believe how potent this is. The Pavlovian trigger made me begin to salivate. There is definitely the expected tangerine and pineapple players on the field too. This is a sweet smelling beer, rapidly approaching nectar. Underneath the citrus I get some light malt sweetness but I actually don't care too much about the smell anymore, I need to taste!

T: Some piney bitterness is mixed in this fruit-punch but quickly is overpowered by the puckering citrus. The grapefruit is present in flavor too, as well as unsweetened lemonade, baby tangerine and some other fruits that morph too quickly to catch. The pine resin leaves a thin coat over the palate too but it is not as bitter as others. Some sweet light malts attempt to balance the hops but it's like a toddler and the circus fat lady on a see-saw. Still, this ratio is ideal.

M: Medium carbonation and a moderately and surprising light body make this a sipper that I am using rapidly fading self restraint not to gulp.

D: Yes. Drink=All the time. My first thought was "Curse you west coast, and all that get steady shipments of fresh PtE." That was over 10 minutes ago and I still feel the same way.

The hype is warranted and I will try to work this in to my trading rotation. This is what I want my IIPAs to taste like.

Lazerlobe, Apr 07, 2010
Pliny The Elder from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 10,795 ratings.