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Pliny The Younger | Russian River Brewing Company

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Pliny The YoungerPliny The Younger
3,101 Ratings
Pliny The YoungerPliny The Younger

Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.25%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Pliny the Younger, the man, was Pliny the Elder’s nephew and adopted son. They lived nearly 2,000 years ago! Pliny the Elder is our Double IPA, so we felt it was fitting to name our Triple IPA after his son. It is almost a true Triple IPA with triple the amount of hops as a regular I.P.A. That said, it is extremely difficult, time and space consuming, and very expensive to make. And that is why we don’t make it more often! This beer is very full-bodied with tons of hop character in the nose and throughout. It is also deceptively well-balanced and smooth.

Added by xlperro on 01-27-2005

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,101 |  Reviews: 947
Photo of bullywee
4.5/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of Mahlik
4.34/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Apex in Portland. Poured into 6 oz glass.

A- Pours a clear golden color with a thin white head. Head dissipates quickly. Minimal amounts of lacing.

S- Glorious amounts of citrus, grapefruit, apricot, pine and floral hops. This beer really brings the hops for sure. I don't detect any malt presence.

T- Apricot, citrus and slight pine flavors become immediately recognizable. It's followed by some resinous and hop oils. Not much going on as far as malts go. So it's basically hops followed by more hops. This one is bitter from start to finish.

M- Medium-full body with a good amount of carbonation. Very dry finish. The alcohol does leave a warming feel on the palate. An odd syrupy feel to it that I'm not used to in an IPA/DIPA. Very drinkable for 11% abv.

O- Pretty damn good beer. While I do think this beer is hyped up too much, it's still well worth seeking out if you can. As a side note, I'm probably in the minority here but I think I enjoy Elder better than Younger. Elder has a little more balance to it. Regardless, get yourself some Younger if you have never had the opportunity to try it.

 1,120 characters

Photo of misterscooter
4.97/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured at Pete's Brass Rail in Danville, CA, on Valentine's Day. I'm in love.

Served in 10 ounce tulips.

A clear, golden hue, small but thick head that hung around but didn't stick to the sides.

Sweet, hoppy smell. Maybe a hint of golden raisin, although fleeting. Hops are there but not overpowering, enough to temper the light sweetness.

A lovely flavor, filled with the hops I want in an IPA but without any strong bitterness. Very smooth in the moth and goes down really well. I had to be careful to take my time because it just wants to slide down your throat and you can't wait for the next mouthful.

I wouldn't even know they were so strong except for how two makes you feel. And I felt great.

 705 characters

Photo of Rckmo10
4.5/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of jvillefan
5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: A perfect golden yellow but it did not have a significant head to go with it.

S: It smelled bitter but was a little more muted considered they claimed to have dry hopped it 5 times. However the high alcohol could be keeping some of the aromas in solution.

T: AWESOME. I did a comparison with Pliny the Elder and the Elder tasted bland in comparison. The IBUs on Pliny the Younger must be over 150 yet there is still perfect balance within the beer with caramel, citrus, and pine.

M: Perfect retention and carbonation.

O: Even if you live in Alaska, the trip to Russian River in February is worth it if you are a beer enthusiast. I will be making the trip every year despite the fact I will be moving out of the area in a couple of months.

 745 characters

Photo of inCASE
4.5/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of kdown
5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of fjl77
5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of mistakebythelake
4.5/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of brianlindman
3/5  rDev -36.2%

Photo of quindog
4.25/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of juhl31
4.73/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

-all the orange hued colors you can throw out...amber, burnt, etc. good head and nice clarity, but not too clear

-the smell is really nice right off the bat. big time hop nose including pine and citrus. the bummer though is this great smell doesn't really last throughout the enjoyment of the entire beverage

-man, this year's batch is pretty killer. huge hop flavor at the beginning, but it doesn't make your mouth and throat bleed hop resin like some 10-12% IPAs. pine and orange are the big players involved with a nice malt round-out. i like that it isn't overly bitter either, yet it leaves your mouth tasting like hops for a good while

-just the right amount of big body on this one, not to mention the right amount of stickiness. i also enjoy the carb level

-this is the most drinkable Younger i can remember from the past 3 vintages. it is really scary how smooth and easy drinking it is. the sun on your neck sitting outside really ups the experience too

 967 characters

Photo of BilbosNuts
4.79/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Reviewed from notes.

Enjoyed on tap at the brewery on 2/11/12.

A: Pours a clear light orange color with light bubble streams rising to the top. There is no head visible, but the glass was filled to the top. A small white ring clings to the sides.

S: It has an orgasmic hop profile. This includes pine, resin, and slight tropical fruits of mangoes, pineapple and peaches.

T: The taste is almost an exact replica of the aroma with the tropical fruits making a stronger appearance. Definitely one oc the best tasting IPAs out there.

M: It is medium bodied with a perfect amount of carbonation that allows the flavors to dance across the palate. A nice, crisp, bitter finish creates a very refreshing feel.

O: This was really a treat. No wonder this is considered one of the best beers out there right now. I'll definitely be back next year.

 843 characters

Photo of SgunnarW
5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of tizride
5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of d4114
4.4/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2/9/12 at Stone Brewing

A- very clear golden orange, very similar the elder but a little more on the orange side. Nice white head.

S- Really astringent hops, big everything. Tropical fruits, grapefruit, sweet orange, pine, some actual bitterness and a sweet caramel.

T- Big citrus notes with a ton of bitterness but not in a sharp way it is just there. Not nearly as sweet as the smell which surprised me. No alcohol to be found but there is a slight warmth in the back of your throat. Citrus lingers slightly but has a very dry finish.

M- Pretty standard here, the exact medium light feel a refreshing double should have.

O- I was really really excited to try this but I have to say i'm not really sure if this holds up to the hype, for me anyhow. I think I was still expecting something a little different I guess but this is for sure an awesome A+ beer with insane drink ability. Also didn't have to wait in any kind of line or by a ticket (it wasn't even that busy really) which was a big plus.

 1,005 characters

Photo of crazyjoedivola
4.94/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at falling rock taphouse.

Appearance is a clear golden orange with good carbonation but surprisingly very little head. No sign of what's to come.

Smell is wonderful! Hops, with lots of hops and more hops. Scents ranging from tropical fruit to huge pine aromas some grassy hops.

Taste just keeps getting better. At first it opens with a fairly soft balanced sweet maltiness. As the glass warms however the hops emerge and the flavor gains miles of depth. Sweet malts play with the tropical fruit and resinous piney hops to create a wonderfully balanced composition. No trace of alcohol.

Mouthfeel at first fairly thin but after a few drinks i noticed that the mouthfeel changed and thickened. After about half of the glass I ran my tounge across my teeth and inside my mouth and found that the inside of my mouth was coated with resinous oils from hops.

Overall, aside from the head (which i suspect is the bar trying to prevent any waste by overflow) this is a perfect beer. Easily the best I've ever had. Well worth the travel and expense.

 1,052 characters

Photo of Boonedoggle
4.5/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of DocJitsu
4.39/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Color was a golden light orange.  Citrus bouquet. No head at all, but nicely carbonated. Nice mouthfeel.  An immediate blast of pine that yields to alternating grapefruit and floral flavors. Finishes with distinct grapefruit. No discernible alcohol warmth despite having an ABV of 10.7%.  Great beer, but not my own personal number one--certainly not the best on the planet. 

 379 characters

Photo of ColonelW
4.5/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of LaneMeyer
5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of SoCalStout
4.79/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

on Tap at Toronado San Diego

Appearance: Crystal clear honey-orange body with an extremely tiny white foam head. Some moderate to low lacing, no retention really, either.

Smell: Monstrous hop aroma, with big pine notes accompanied by grapefruit, orange, and a little apricot. Bright, vibrant, and exceptional. Smells great, a lot like elder with a fuller smell.

Taste: Hops, hops, hops! Bitterness is pretty big, but balanced and met with a strong malt backbone, only to be swept away with more hoppiness. Citrus, grassy hops both take turns attacking the tongue, but are always smooth and balanced. I cannot believe how well this beer fuses together.

Mouthfeel: The feel is somewhat sticky, and resinous with hops. Incredibly smooth, very surprising. No sign of the apparent 11% ABV. I didn't think that such a hopped-up beer could be so drinkable and balanced.

Overall: This is an absolutely amazing beer. Pliny the Younger is indeed an excellent TIPA. Hype is huge on this and while it is very solid, IMHO there are other beers out there that are comparable. Glad I finally got to try this and am now satisfied.

 1,120 characters

Photo of mikul93
4.88/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A Pours a beautiful orange with little head.

S Hops, malt and citrus. I thought it would be more floral than it as, but still has a wonderful nose

T Holy smokes! This beer is decadent! The hops and the malt are strong, but marry so well together. It all just comes together beautifully. Alcohol is hidden so well.

M Medium body, crisp with a gentle bitterness lingering.

O I need more! It is a shame this beer is only available once a year for such a small window. I drank as much as I could, but it still wasn't enough. The best beer I have ever had!

 558 characters

Photo of ajramirez1
5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at APEX pdx. 11% of greatness. I've had tried over 900 beers and this 1 takes the top spot by far. Incredible taste, not as hoppy as i would have guest, but thats what makes this beer unique.

This beer is quite amazing. Worth the wait, will be trying this beer every year/every chance i get...recommend everyone who appeciates beer tries this at one point in your life.


 391 characters

Photo of buffs9
5/5  rDev +6.4%

Pliny The Younger from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.7 out of 5 with 3,101 ratings
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