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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.

11,430 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 11,430
Reviews: 3,251
rAvg: 4.65
pDev: 8.6%
Wants: 5,303
Gots: 2,105 | 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
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Ratings: 11,430 | Reviews: 3,251 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brewdenver
4.5/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16oz bottle poured into a .5L spaten mug.

A: Amber gold in color. Poured a thick frothy head that stuck around for awhile. Medium to strong fingers. Good lacing around glass.

S: Hoppie aroma pleasant to smell. Allergies are acting up so a bit tough to get all the floras.

T: Hop florals hit you right away challenging the senses of what your tasting. A mixture of grapefruit, grass, lemon. The middle continues to provide you with hops. More bitter and dry now. The finish is surprisingly not too dry. Very well balanced for a double Ipa.

M: Malty and medium bodied. Carbonation is medium and doesn't take away from the goal of this beer.

O: A really nice balance of hops, abv and grain. A very harmonious Double IPA.

Photo of oline73
4.8/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I had this on-tap at Capone's during the Russian River beer event. Every time I have this beer, I can't believe how much I like it. I never thought it would live up to the hype, but it always does.

Appearance: Pours a clear golden amber color with a finger of off white head. It leaves some nice lacing as I got through my pour.

Smell: I had this next to the younger, and the smell is the only place where I thought younger won. Sweet mildly citrus hops with some malt sweetness in there as well. Not very strong.

Taste: There is less sweetness in the taste than there is in the smell. Bitter citrus peel hops hit the tongue pretty hard, there are also some pine notes in there as well. The finish is quite bitter with hardly any alcohol present.

Mouthfeel: The body is medium with a good amount of delicate carbonation. The finish is sticky and extremely dry.

Overall: I love this beer. You don't pick up the alcohol at all. The hop profile is amazing, and it has just the right amount of sweetness. I'd take this over the Younger if I had to choose just one of them.

Photo of cosmicevan
4.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

HUGE thanks to portable for picking up a growler across country and getting it to me in less than a week (and as a surprise no less...and with a RR pint glass!!!!)

a - Took the growler out of the fridge and let it warm up a bit (as suggested by portable) and then opened it up and poured it into my capt lawrence taster tulip. Beer poured a wonderful orange with a frothy 3 finger white head and nice carbonation bubbling. Nice sticky lacing as well.

s - Unreal. The hops are fresh and perfect. Just as in the bottle, only fresher and better. This beer deserves a 10 for smell. Candied hops and perfectly balanced pine smell. Really awesome!!!

t - WHO HE! My face is blown off by the hops. Pine pine and a bit of pine hops. Finishes a bit bitter. As it warms, the hops back off a bit and the sweetness comes out and the balance in the smell comes out in the flavor. The initial hop in your faceness is a bit shocking to the palette but once you get used to it, amazingness rules. Make no mistake, this is a hop forward beer and might not be for anyone, but if you enjoy an IPA, this is it.

m - Mouth is bitter and a bit watery. Alcohol tingle is nice.

o - Overall when it comes to DIPAs, this one is the king. The smell is the highlight, but the flavor profile is a close second..gets better as it warms. World class all the way. Very happy to have a fresh growler of this to work on tonight (with the wife).

Photo of BeerBuckeye
4.8/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from 500 mL bottle into snifter. Bottled on 3/14/11.

A - Pours a bright orange/apricot with 2-3 fingers of head and moderate lacing. A bit of carbonation from the bottom.

S - Great amount of grapefruit on the front, touches of mango and apricot. The smell is just delicious. Good amount of sweet fruit, mixed with a full amount of floral hops. You can smell this beer as soon as you pour it in the glass.

T - The smell comes forward into the taste. The grapefruit is featured most prominently along with other sweet fruit. Fades into a great blend of flowery and piney hops. An absolutely remarkable taste. It's a hoppy, but soooo incredibly balanced. and blended perfectly. Incredible taste.

M - Perfect mouthfeel. Not syrupy, not dry. The sweetness and bitterness, again, blends just perfectly in this beer. That bitterness stays in the throat and the ABV is completely hidden.

Overall - A beer that lives up to the hype. I actually found it a bit difficult to find the words to describe it. Truly a remarkable, remarkable beer.

Photo of tewaris
4.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

100 IBU's
500 ml bottle, bottled 03.21.2011, poured chilled into a snifter on 04.01.2011. Thanks beerific/ineedbeer.

The Elder pours straw golden, bright and clear, and appears a deep shade of orange in the glass. The crown is big, like three fingers big, and creamy off white. The head retention is very good -- good to the extent that I had to sip on the foam to finally get down to business, and the lacing is great. Belgian ales have trouble lacing this snifter of mine and PtE does an excellent job of it. As noted, this is a clear beer, but not brilliantly so and that's welcome given its hop content.

Maybe my sense of smell is off today but I don't get the intensity I was hoping for. Smooth, orange candy like notes, and some pine/resin/yada yada yada but not the pungent hop aroma I wanted to get out of it. Is it too young? Maybe. Vinnie Ciluzro has said that Elder peaks in 2-3 weeks and it might still need time. Fortunately, I have more of it! Thanks again beerific.

Taste, a pure hop assault, but well lubricated. Pliny is bitter but deliciously so. Full of flavor but not fruit, this is how I like my IPA's. I am having a hard time not finishing it. Dank, bitter, sharp, cleansing, resiny, this one has all I want out of a D/IPA. Add to it the fact that it's not creamy-smooth but crisply carbonated and deeply, did I already say bittering? Doesn't coat the mouth in any way but leaves its bitterness right down to the throat after its amazingly dry finish.

What a beer! I could drink it all day. There are times when I crave a hop assault and none of the locally available beers is able to satisfy me; well Furious and Masala Mama do the job but I drink them too often. I wish I had access to this silent killer every day of my lifetime.

Mr. Ciluzro, nicely done!

Scores: Appearance 5/5; Aroma 4/5; Taste 5/5; Mouthfeel 5/5; Overall 4.5/5

PS: Anyone paying attention to my not-perfect-on-all-counts scores, don't. Just buy it and if you don't like it, ship it to me. I'll make it worth your while.

Photo of PintOHops
4.43/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Glass - Tulip

A - Hazy golden/apricot color with soft C02 bubbles. It produced a soapy pillow of head that held decently. A thin ring held atop my beer and left a couple splotches but no lacing.

S - Right upfront I get a wonderful burst of fruity hop aroma's, it smells very very fresh and inviting! I get big mango, papaya, pineapple, orange and lemon & orange zests. I also get a bit of herbal hop quality underneath the tropical fruit basket aroma. Malts are muddled and give off some bread and soft grain notes.

T - Upfront I get all the tropical fruits that I picked up in the smell. I think the juicy orange fruit stands out the most with pineapple and mango following close behind. Right in the middle I get a nice balance of herbal hop qualities with a bit of lemon zest, bready and toasty malt characters, bitterness and hop oils. It finishes with resinous hop flavors and a bit more fresh orange for good measure, the bitterness is balancing and lingers on the tongue for a good while.

M - Smooth and a bit oily with soft C02 and a medium body.

O - Wow this beer good! I think it somewhat lived up to all the hype surrounding it, and I'm happy to finally try as I live in CA for beers sake! This DIPA is definitely worth picking up time and time again, and even though it comes in at 8% ABV, it's still very smooth and can be a little dangerous because of how delicious it is. Very drinkable DIPA that actually tastes like an IPA to me. Highly recommended. Cheers!

Photo of JosiahS
4.45/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

glass: Tulip

Great looking beer when pored, nice 3-finger soapy head with a clear yet hazy golden yellow body.

Smells like fresh hops and certainly a west coast bouquet can be recognized instantly. A little alcohol peaks through for a moment but overall: sweet mango, pineapple, lemon, fresh/wet pine and spruce with soft bready notes. A simple and well blended smell, yet a complex medley of aromas.

It seems as though i've pretty much summed up the taste in the aroma portion of this review. There is a noticeable bitterness that's nice but unexpected. It starts fruity, blends with alcohol and hop bitterness straight through to the end. Lingering bitterness is there and hold off just enough as to not become off-put by it. A zesty quality comes through about mid to finish which i believe is a combination of floral hop bitterness and carbonation, it's an alright feature (if i had to comment on it).

Overall, this beer is doing everything right for me, except for the lingering bitterness. It tends to stick (or be sticky) around a little more than i like and sort of overpowers the taste buds for the next sip. I love hops and the flavors of hops but i can be picky about bitterness, especially when a beer is so mellow and well blended, such as this one. In the end, awesome DIPA.

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

A: Pours a clear golden straw color with a small white head. Minimal lacing is left behind.

S: aroma is flowery and fruity. Grapefruit scent is prevalent.

T: Smack you in the face hops up front, but a nice balancing biscuity sweetness is none too far behind. I taste piney flowery hops mostly. The flavor lingers and, man, is it good!

M: Nothing too special here, but that's not to say it's bad. Good level of carbonation and good balance; this beer is full of flavor, but not so overpowering that it needs to be sipped. Although, maybe it should be since it's tough to find around here.

D: Like I said above, this beer is very drinkable. Great aroma flavor and mouthfeel contribute to a beer I could drink 'till incapacitation.

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

The bottle i had was bottled on 2-24-2011. Everything abut this beer was Very Nice. The pour was very nice clear and clean. The smell off this beer was very inviting. There was a rich body and clean finish. There is nothing i can say bad about this beer except i can not get it on the east coast. HA HA

Photo of goofyfootrr
4.97/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One word: AWESOME.

OK, I tried to keep it to one word but apparently I have to come up with 250 characters, damn you beer advocate. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah (only 169 characters, huh). Anyway great beer that should only be shared with fellow beer enthusiast.

Photo of dankendall8888
4.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had on tap at Russian River on a recent trip up to Santa Rosa (not my first)

A- Crystal clear and slightly orange

S- Half the attraction is the wonderful aromas emanating from the glass. Huge floral and citrus hop aroma - bright and clean, piny, resinous, hunger inducing.

T- Exceptionally balanced despite the hop overload. Hops flavor is typical west coast- clean and bright and not at all muddled. Alcohol plays in the background but does not interfere. Vinnie is the man.

M- Reasonably high carbonation keeps the beer light on the tongue, finishes clean and refreshing.

O- Pliny is the real king of beers. in my opinion better than Pliny the Younger (and far more available).

Photo of richalexander78
3.9/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired this via trade. Bottled 12/17/10, drank 3/31/11. Great head. Nice citrus aroma and tast. Even better(fantastic) balance of flavor and hops. I would Def drink more if available in Florida. Did not beat my current fav DIPA Unearthly. Rock on Russian River!

Photo of davesway10
4.4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I received this in a trade with dsgolovin (as an extra no less). Usually I won't drink a trade beer until both sides are complete (mine is still en route) however I couldn't pass on Fresh Pliny. Bottled 3/21/11. The beer pours a beautiful amber/gold with a nice tall head. The smell is citrus and orange, the taste is the same. I don't know if this is my favorite DIPA of all time, doesn't really matter it's damn good. I wish it was available locally. I've wanted to try this beer for a long time and I wasn't disappointed.

Photo of blackie
4.43/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: served in a wide snifter, clear golden-amber in color, an initially thick off-white head falling to a nice layer

s: lush tropical/citrus hop nose on a background of pale malts and careful caramel dosing, a touch of malt sugar but carefully controlled, kiwi, pineapple, passoinfruit, red grapefruit, peach - juicy and oily, fresh and vivid, fantastic balancing between malt and hop

m: carbonated to just under moderate in level, the body holds some weight but remains light on the palate

t: a simple pale and caramel malt body pushes the hops to the fore - juicy and tropical from the start, grapefruit zest and other rich citrus, full pithy bitterness in the finish, it's quite dry for the "double" style - was expecting a touch more malt complexity, but this works

o: a great beer with a stellar hop presence, it's not a knockout at first glance, but there's plenty of layering here, still - the hype on this one is a little much (a knock on the machine, not the beer, though honestly I think there are others out there equally as good but widely distributed and easily available), what's lacking in complexity is made up for by the contrast of pungent citrus hop over simple malts, as for drinkability - this could pass for a standard ipa any day

pint-plus bottle from Mondo Vino, Denver

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

Poured into a New Belgium snifter

A - Beautiful golden sunset, very minimal white head and pretty lace

S - Wow, the hops and the malt are so balanced. you can smell a bit of the alcohol, but very pleasing. The hops are all so complementary, pine, grass, some fruit, flowers and a bit of citrus. The malt smells really sweet, but the sweet is perfect smelling. Doesn't smell to toasted. Wheat and yeast are noted as well

T - Perfect balance again. Not to malty, to hoppy or to sweet. Just right. The yeast is nice, a bit of wheat. The grass and flowers are up front, really nice citrus and fruity hops in the middle, the yeast and sweet malt on the back end. The water used is so so fresh. Awesome

M - Perfect. Light, fluffy, a bit of carbonation. Sits on the palate nicely. The taste only gets better and it lingers in the mouth. Nice sweet meets bitter

D - 8%? Wow, this drinks like water. It's so nice and pretty much perfect. Great beer.

Final thought - Wish you could find this beer more often. Other than that. Can't say enough good stuff about this beer

Photo of Preismj
4.9/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to badboyrsl84 for helping me get my hands on this. Never been more excited to get something in the mail.

a: like liquid gold. A nice rich amber that is perfectly translucent. Easily the fluffiest head I've ever seen on a beer. Thick creamy lacing with moderate retention. Edit: This guy is sticking all over the glass as I drink it...

s: Very floral scent. I am getting a lot of initial hoppyness here with a small bit of malty sweetness and a fruity citrus smell. Hints of orange and peach.

t: quick shot to the palette of hops. Bitterness right up front but it quickly clears the path for a rush of roasted malt...gives off a presence of toffee and butterscotch. Not at all an over powering malt flavor though...very mild and it doesn't stay long. I get a hint of peach, mango and orange...very tropical fruit flavor mixes at the end and is welcomed back by the floral taste of hops. As it warms, the fruit flavors come out to play much more...the initial hop flavor fades. Leaves the palette very dry yet it is incredibly creamy. You don't even know when it is gone.

m: creamy, fluffy, thick and sticky. This coats the palette so well you don't know that it is gone.

o: tremendous brew...the creamy layer in the aftertaste is what I love most about this. the first few sips hit you very hard with the bitter hops, but as this warms and your palette adjusts this becomes easily the best IIPA I've ever had and you can see why so many people search for it and love it.

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

I had this beer on tap at Falling Rock in Denver....

Pours a golden orange with a slight haze that leaves awesome trails of sticky lacings.

The nose is phenomenal with a floral aroma and whiffs of freshly cut citrus fruits and pure dank hops.

Syrupy sweet with a strong malt backbone and a super aggressive hop presence with flavors of oranges, pineapple, freshly cut grass and peaches. A rather medium body and the finish is interestingly dry.

This is only my second on-tap review out of 800+ beer reviews on this site, but I had to document this world class beer.

Unfortunately, Russian River doesn't distribute to Massachusetts. I can only hope for the day when they do.

I noticed myself developing an insatiable thirst for this hop juice. An absolutely amazing beer and highly recommended, Pliny The Elder is one of the best beers out there.

Photo of StoneTSR
4.53/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thank you so much to Robb at Poppy's Pizza in Estas Park, Colorado for this one. Check out my review of Poppy's and please go there next time you're in Estas, had a great time and he is one of the friendliest beer-geek restaurant owners I've ever met.

Also, I figured this is an appropriate beer to review for my 100th.

After searching for almost two years for a pint and having several close-call disappointments, Rob finally delivered two gorgeous tulip glasses full of Pliny to my girlfriend and me last Friday night. What a great find.

APPEARANCE: Orange and ever so slightly hazy. The head was not enormous, but bubbles continued to flit to the top of the glass throughout the pint. The lacing was very solid, with a thick wall of lace on the opposite side of the glass.

SMELL: My notes say that the Pliny "smells like flowers. Like delicious, hoppy, magic flowers." I had my nose in the glass for about five minutes before taking my first sip and I kept sticking it back in throughout the two beers I had.

TASTE: As I mentioned in my review of Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout I mentioned that sometimes the greatest beers in the world are not as shockingly different as we might expect, rather they are simply exactly what we are looking for within a certain style of beer. This concept would apply to Pliny in my mind. It takes the palate on the precisely balanced ride that it is supposed to go on with every DIPA. It may sound odd to say, but it is a very technically sound Double IPA. Starting out sweet and piney, but not quite as sweet as a Hopslam, it slowly dries throughout the sip. The hops kick towards the end of the sip along with strong floral flavors with just a hint of honey. Elegant is Pliny the Elder in a word.

MOUTHFEEL: As I mentioned above, bubbles continuously floated to the top throughout the entire pint and that seemed to keep the beer lively during the whole experience. It was certainly better carbonated than many DIPAs, but it also had a slightly oily feel to it.

OVERALL: I am very happy I finally tracked down a couple pints. The hype is well-deserved, but may have served to disappoint me just a bit. This is everything a Double IPA, and in my mind, a beer should be - almost perfect balance with an absolutely spectacular nose, but not quite the life-changing event some have made it out to be. That said, I thoroughly enjoyed this beer and it would have been easy to keep drinking this stuff all night.

Photo of Brad007
4.3/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Finally, the day has come where I can sample the word-class Pliny The Elder.

Pours a amber-gold color with a decent head into my glass. Absolutely thrilling presentation for the style!

Hints of grapefruit and tropical fruit tingle the nose. The malt stays in the background.

Bursts of grapefruit and biscuity malt coat the mouth upfront. It's not too overpowering and the malt seems to balance it out.

Mouthfeel is full of lingering grapefruit, alcohol heat and biscuity malt. It's one of the most mellow examples I've had.

It's excellent but quite honestly, it's certainly not THE best. Worth it though!

Photo of cr0ckett
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.

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

Special thanks to kingkong for hooking me up with this bottle. Dated 2-24-11

A: Deep amber in color, great clarity for a style that is overrun with hazy brews, and prevalent lacing. Head looks great to begin with, but fades to a thin film quickly. Its saving grace, however, is the fact that it leaves the layers of froth on the side of my glass that I have come to expect from an IPA.

S: Bouquet is vibrant, with tropical fruit, pine, herbs, and resin all playing their part.

T: There is a slight sweet note from the malt right at the beginning, but it is almost immediately overwhelmed by an onslaught of hops. As promised by the nose, pineapple, mango, juniper, and rosemary are all presented in the finish.

M: Medium body, great carbonation, and a touch of astringency on the finish.

O: A great brew, for sure, but I'm not sure it is really worth all of the hype. It is also guilty of a new trend that I find to be exceedingly annoying; demanding that the customers consume the product immediately. I know, I know; hops fade with time, but does 6mos really make a huge difference over 3? All this nonsense achieves is the production of a new breed of ultra-annoying beer geeks.

Photo of cpetrone84
4.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A-pours a hazy golden color with a thick two and a half fingers of white head that has solid retention and leaves a nice lacing on the glass

S-the nose is a little on the light side but provides a great subtle hop presence of grapefruit and bitterness with a touch of caramel sweetness. the aromas are well balanced and nice, nothing that isn't perfectly integrated.

T-the taste is so well integrated and smooth. the flavors really just play together and nothing seems out of touch at all. the hops are strong, lots of grapefruit and notes of pine. hints of malt underneath with a touch of sweet caramel but this is a minor presence to present the perfect balance for a hop lover.

M-lighter body but still full feel, not thin, soft on the palate with a creamy note up front and lively carbonation in the back. hint of driness and very crisp clean finish.

D-the hop flavors are in perfect proportion, nothing stands out and creates an unpleasant hop flavor. the grapefruit is so smooth and the malt is light but just present enough to allow this to be extremely drinkable. this is a world class beer, one of the best around.

Photo of devilishprune
3.78/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pliny the Elder-Reviewed 1/21/11, Bottled 11/30/10
A. Light amber in color and not as hazy as I expected; head is almost nonexistent.

S. Pine explosion covering up slight grapefruit.

T. Taste follows the smell, but not as much hoppiness as I expected due to all the hype. This beer is well attenuated, which is something that I can appreciate and probably my favorite characteristic of this beer.

M. Light mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

D. Couldn't see myself having more than one of these due to the aggressive hoppiness of the beer.

Overall, it didn't live up to expectations. I don't know what beer could have. It was a good IPA, but it was lacking something that I can't put my finger on to set it apart. That said, I would like to try a fresher bottle.

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

Poured from 16.9 oz bottle into a Duvel Tulip. Bottled on 2/24/11 (approximately 1 month old). Thanks to HEADYGLASSdotcom for the trade.

A: Wonderful amber/golden mix. Frothy white head was about 3 fingers tall after a mildly aggressive pour.. Disappeared about 8 minutes after pour but remnants of the head remained throughout the beer as I drank it. Steady stream of bubbles from the bottom of the glass to the head.

S: Obviously hop-forward, strong grapefruit presence, smell of the fruit as opposed to the smell of the rind. Hint of orange smell at the end of the sniff with pine and malt.

T: Bitter hops , sweet malt and strong citrus combine for the best tasting, most balanced IPA I've ever had. The aftertaste, which is quite welcomed, lingers for several minutes after I swallowed it.

M: Wonderfully balanced just like the rest of the beer. Coats the mouth with the creamy, but not syrupy. Tiny little carbonation bubbles coat the mouth for a few seconds before disappearing.

O: This is the best beer I've ever had. Quite frankly, I don't know how an IPA gets much better than this. I probably, unless a miracle occurs and I'm in the right place at the right time, won't get the chance to taste Pliny the Younger but I can't imagine beer gets much better than this.

Notes - It makes me really happy to have tried this beer, however it makes me ambitious to find ways to move to California so I can have it all the time.

Photo of legalpete19340
4.93/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Bright yellow bordering on gold. Thick sea foam head that stuck around and laced the glass beautifully for the entire drink.

S: Lots of citrus with lemon and pine sap coming through. There is a lot here but I cant place it all. Maybe some fresh cut flowers too.

T: Wow. Lots of bite upfront with immense orange and lemon. The pine sap comes around in the end with a final bite of pure bitterness. The malts really stand up throughout this thing without ever coming over the top. The alcohol slowly warms me up at the end.

M: Lighter than expected but not light. Not syrupy. Just medium.

O: Awesome beer. Get me another now. Huge hops but well balanced and layers of flavor. I wouldnt change a thing about this beer.

Pliny The Elder from Russian River Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 11,430 ratings.