Pliny The Younger | Russian River Brewing Company

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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

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Reviews: 946 | Ratings: 3,065
Photo of mbudner
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

10oz pour at Monk's Cafe, tapped for their Russian River Mad Monday. I got the first retail pour (not to brag), so I'm kind of a big deal.

A- I have to say that it had a glow about it, sort of a halo, an aura. But seriously, regardless of how it felt to finally have a glass of this beast in my hand, it really did stand out in appearance. Golden with a slight orange hue, impeccable clarity, 1-finger fluffy white head leaving a sticky lacing, but not uncharacteristically think lacing by any means.

S- Great sweet citrus (more orange than grapefruit) with a slight fruitiness of another variety, possibly even bubblegum. It is slightly piney, but the other aromas stood out much more, especially when compared to the Elder, which I find to be dominated by the piney/forest aroma. This definitely has a more complex and layered aroma. Once you really get your nose down in there, the aroma is also of bitter grapefruit.)

T- Huge floral flavor with intense grapefruit and a slight bitter orange rind in the finish. The floral taste is much more similar to the piney ("f*cked in the face by a pinecone" as I have seen some term it) aroma that I expected based on its Elder brother. Really a sensational brew. I found it surprising that with some of the sweetness, it is slight more reminiscent of Hopslam than Pliny which lacks a lot of the citral aromas and flavors I have mentioned.

MF- Nice and sticky on the palate with a slick, oily finish. In some ways, I expected something different on the mouthfeel here, maybe a bit more "chewy," though I am not sure that would be desirable in an IPA. I guess it is equally impressive that it wasn't that much different than the Elder or other great IPAs, yet packed 10.5% abv and a hop profile that could demolish the rest.

D- This beer is absurdly drinkable. I think that is a lot of what makes it such a masterpiece. Granted, if it was 5%, I would like it just as much, but there is something to be said for a beer that drinks like every other IPA yet packs a decidedly greater punch. The closest comparison I often here is Hopslam, but this really does it without the slight residual sweetness making it that much more amazing. Really, a spectacular beer that I feel very fortunate to have sampled.

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Photo of ibbjamin
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Paid $6.25 for a 12oz pour into a pint glass at the Englander in San Leandro, CA.

Small white head with minimal retention and excellent lacing. Glowing orange DIPA color.

Nose is an overwhelming hop bouquet. Grapefruit citrus all the way. I thought this was less piney but more hoppy than the Elder which was my favorite beer up until today.

Taste is unrelentlessly bitter and hoppy. Very pungent of grapefruit and citrus. Puckeringly delicious.

Not quite as creamy and smooth as the Elder, but still quite nice. A long hoppy finish that keeps you wanting more and more. Absolutely no hints of the high ABV which slowly sneaks up on you. So drinkable it is scary. Meduim body and perfectly carbonated.

Easily my new favorite beer. The bar only let you have two 12oz pours, so my third beer was an Elder and it seemed somewhat tame and more malty to me after having the Younger.

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Photo of gbbass16
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Well I finally was able to try this one! I am surely not gonna say anything that hasn't been said already so I will not go into gory detail. All I will say is what a wonderful beer with all the elements. Perfect color, nose, mouthfeel and taste. More on the taste...silky, citrus, and oh yeah the hop profile is perfection. Was able to do side by side with elder. In compassion, elder has more wood and less hops. Younger pours a more golden yellow than elder. A huge highlight getting to sample this! Perfection!!!

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Photo of SpruceFish
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

holy crap i never thought i would ever get to try this but after a six hour drive and a 2 hour wait at the bar and here i am

hold crap is this beer good its just like a hop explosion, every thing you can think of there huge smell and taste of bitter grape fruit and pine. Then there is this malt to unlike any IPA i have ever had not like an acrid sweet but like a balancing biscuity sweetness that is again followed by the biggest hop kick i have ever experienced this beer is not for light hearted but holy crap is it one of the best i have ever had

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Photo of beerdweeb
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Waited in line this year at the brewery. Two hours later we were in the door with the Younger in our hands. The journey, pursuit, and anticipation made this beer all the better. I was expecting a boozy malt bomb but was pleasantly surprised to find neither to be the case. Worth the hype and wait. Get it while it lasts.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

22oz bottle obtained via trade with RedwoodGeorge. Thanks for the opportunity... Brewed 1/3/2006, hand-bottled via counter-pressure system 1/19/06.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 3/8" off-white head over the clear light amber brew. Head fades reasonably quickly, with plentiful lacing. Aroma is a twinge of tangerine, and then christmas tree pine aroma that dominates it all. Flavor is as the nose indicates, with a fruitiness upfront that is quickly shouted down by the piney-yet-somewhat-fruity hops explosion. I can feel enamel dripping off my teeth, and it's great! Mouthfeel is amazing, that for all the hops power, it still has discernable flavors, and drinkability is superb for the style, not just another bottle of hops with a grain hull or two for color. Worth the hype. Thank goodness for "George's Unauthorized Home Bottling Project".

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Photo of biggied
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: A beautiful clear golden color with a nice foamy head that quickly drops to a few off white bubbles on top of the beer.

S: Unbelievable. Smells a lot like the other Pliny, but with a little bit of a tropical flare. Lots of piney hops, some mango, apricot and a lot of pineapple.

T: I was expecting this to just be a bigger version of PTE, but as other have said, it doesn't taste "bigger," just better. The balance in this beer is uncanny. Citrus hops and grapefruit hit the palette first along with a sharp peppery bite and then it gets mellowed by the malts and finishes pretty crisply. It takes all of the rough edges that PTE has and polishes them into a masterpiece. One of the best beers I've ever had.

D: After a few half pints I don't remember getting back to the hotel, but I don't remember drinking a strong beer either. Awesome!

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Photo of Bubba83
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I'm scoring this from when I had it on tap at the 2010 friday release at Russian River. I am going to pick out the aroma/flavors from a growler pour at home during this review, but I wanted to give it the on-tap score because the mouthfeel is better on-tap.

Body color is an enticing light orange, with some hues of dark yellow. Clarity is really good. Bright white 2-finger head with spiderweb lacing. The head is quite creamy looking. Retention is good, but it does mellow quicker than Elder down into a thin ring that stays until the bottom of the glass.

Initial smell is all pine, that's really the chief characteristic, and it's beautiful. Underneath the absurd amounts of pine there's some grapefruit pith and an underlying sweet caramel aroma. I smell no alcohol despite the fact that this is a fresh 11%er.

First sip tastes of the caramel I got in the nose, but quickly transforms, first into lemon, then grapefruit, then pine needles as the bitterness starts to creep up. Finishes up with a little bit of a spicy peppery kick with some faint alcohol in the background. I can't envision any hoppy beer ever surpassing this in the taste department.

Big chewy mouthfeel, while remaining oily and extremely smooth. The creamy head will bathe your upper lip and give you a hop mustache :) Somehow despite being pretty thick, it has a lot of small bubbles that remain active. This is the big difference of having it on tap. I still achieved a good amount of head from my growler, but the body of the beer did not retain the small bubbles that kept the beer popping in my mouth. The growler pour is more like a 4.0 in mouthfeel because of this.

Drinks EXTREMELY well. I should qualify that statement by saying that being a hophead is required though. Frankly, my lupulin threshold has shifted to such a point where I don't get any real bitterness here and I just taste all the delicious hop qualities instead. It's so damn smooth. There is absolutely no alcohol bite at all, and I don't get how that's possible. I could go on and on about this beer for days, but I'll stop so you can continue onto the next review.

A heart-felt thank you goes out to Vinnie and Natalie for all their hard work over the years to make beers like this a reality.

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Photo of cassanoj
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Monk's amidst the chaos. Here we go!

Poured into a tulip glass, the color of honey. Vanilla head diminishes slowly, leaving a sticky coating of lacing - serious lacing.

Smells like hops, hops and more hops. Pine, pineapple, not too much citrus, more other tropical fruits like mango, banana, peach - pretty glorious.

Now for the real does the Younger taste?
Answer: Freakin great. Hops, hops and more hops! Round 2! Sticky and sweet, absolutely demolishes my palate. Good luck tasting another beer after this guy. Though it is a hop fiend, I'm surprised by the amount of maltiness the Younger brings. It is more balanced that I expected, but don't expect a complex, deeply layered beer here. Pliny the Younger is predominantly a hop bomb, and I couldn't be happier.

Mouthfeel is great, decent carbonation, sticky and full on the tongue. Just the right amount of bitterness that lingers for days. Good, good stuff.

I'm not sure if this is the best beer in the world. It is the best I've had thus far but my beer journey is far from over. However I will say this: I had the highest expectations for this beer, and those expectations were blown into millions of tiny hop pellets. Bravo, Vinnie. Bravo, Russian River. And thank you Monks for giving me the opportunity to taste one of the best.

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Photo of kimcgolf
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Oh YEA!! This was all it was purported to be. Had it on tap at Russian River last week. Poured (in a 10 oz. glass) to a bright orange-red color with good head and lacing. Strong nose of hoppy citrusy grapefruit hit me as the waitress approached. As I nursed it along, the 11% abv also became much more noticeable. Mouthfeel was very full and slightly tingly, and the taste was a very dominant bitter grapefruit blended perfectly with alcohol and a touch of malt to round things out. I sipped toward the finish, which was long, very smooth and warming.

A GREAT beer.

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Photo of John_M
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Local 44 and Memphis Taproom in Philly yesterday.

The beer pours a striking golden peach color with good head retention and lacing. On the nose... this beer is just heaven. There is a huge blast of pine and dry bitter citrus, with a hop presence so intense that it imparts almost a slight skunky, marijuana aroma. Have seen this in a few over the top wet hop bombs in the NW, but suffice it to say that such an intense, gorgeous nose is extremely unusual and impressive. The flavors on the palate replicate the nose, except there is an intensity of flavor that is just astonishing. Tried this side by side with the elder - the elder was almost light and watery by comparison!!! The finish just goes on and on in this beer, and there is an underlying creamy smooth mouthfeel to this beer that is, once again, astonishing.

At 11% alcohol, drinkability is of course a problem, but this great beer carries its alcohol very well. Ended up drinking three 10 ounce glasses of this great beer, before I was finally worn out. For a hophead like myself, this beer is a wet dream in a glass. Fabulous stuff!

Edit from 2/11. Was fortunate enough to have several glasses (three if the truth be known) at the brewpub on the release date (friday). Nothing really to add to my review, except to note what an incredible treat it was to have this beer so fresh. Fresh at the site; a couple weeks old in Portland; roughly a month old in SEPA... younger is consistently excellent and delicious.

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Photo of misterscooter
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
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.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Local 44 and the Memphis Taproom yesterday

Pliny pours a bright golden orange with a thick, white head with good retention. Lacing was a little patchy but the way this beer glowed was rather unique. On the nose... well, it's just like I remembered. An explosion of hops - pine, citrus, hop resin, mild fruit. Dank hops. On the palate, it is just that, a riotous explosion of hops, semtex and hops. Medium-light in body with a mild sweetness to counter the hop bitterness, this is spectacular.
The past 6 weeks seems to have taken it's toll on the mouthfeel, the hops aren't as vibrant as I remember them being. That said, it's still a perfect 5 (fresh Younger deserves a 6) and drinkability? I had 4 glasses, over a liter of this stuff, and I wanted more. Fabulous stuff.

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Photo of brotherloco
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Hit the RR brewpub for lunch today. No lines, just a pleasantly packed pub. I loved how the sever immediately said "What can I get you to drink? Younger?". I'm sure they knew they would be right 99% of the time.

2011 release, on tap at the source. 10oz pour. 10.5% ABV this year.

With so many great reviews on this site, I'll give a fairly relativistic review. DIPA's are my favorite style of beer and Pliny The Elder is my favorite beer hands down. Nothing original there, but that's where I was coming from for my absolute first taste of The Younger.

Poured the expected bright orange, smelled of wonderful bright citrus and pine. At this point I wish the glass was bigger just to take in the sites and smells. Initial flavor is very much like The Elder, but the middle and finish are what really set this beer apart. The beer just explodes on your palate with wonderful hop flavor but never gets heavy or sticky. It shares what I think is the best quality of The Elder, there is "room" in the beer for the distinct flavor to shine. Nothing weighs it down to take away from the drinkability.

As others have said, you'd never believe the ABV on this one. There was maybe one tiny moment, out of three glasses, that I got a bit of the alcohol, but it was fleeting and faded fast.

The last thing that really cements this tasting experience, is sipping from the growler of The Elder that I brought home with me and realizing that as good as a beer it is, it takes a back seat to The Younger.

Hats off to Russian River for their new policy this year. You sure helped at least this beer lover get my chance at Pliny The Younger. Cheers!

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Photo of randawakes
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks treyrab for the growler hookup connection... living in Alaska, this is a dream come true for me, the anticipation was...well, you know what it was. to the beer:

Appearance: Murky golden with brown shades and amber highlights on the rim of the glass. White head was slow to form and the carbonation seemed mildly present coming from the bottom of the glass. Remnant lace indicated an intact and fulfilling body.

Smell: bright citrusy fresh hops, light caramel toffees and roasted glaze. Bottom line is that this was the freshest smelling Imperial i have ever had.

TTTasteWow: first impression was TOO drinkable! Went down like a mystic haze of fury without leaving the pallet with much to discern. Second sip: creamier body with hops totted with pine resin and syrup sticky mouthfeel. After more sips the bitterness seems to linger on the roof of the mouth, and bam, the first glass is already gone! wtf! The is a salute to the drinkability of this 11% masterpiece. Goes down way too smooth I wanted it to last. The hops do hang around however, well after the glass turned empty.

Drinkability: for a high ABV beer, this brew disguises the warming superbly, if a 5.5/5.0 on drinkability was permitted for 1 beer, this would be that beer.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks very much to Grant for sharing this growler at the Brick Store Pub. I've somehow missed this every year in California even though I'm usually there every time it comes out- sadly I'm usually working too hard then to seek it out or go up to Santa Rosa. I love the Elder, and this beer is every bit as good as I'd hoped. Pours golden with okay head and some excellent lacing. Very nice for a growler. A beautiful blast of pine on the nose with some lovely sweet caramel malt providing a nicely layered backbone underneath. For me, the taste is perfect. Sweet malt and a heavy dose of extremely fresh tasting piney hops that have just oozed their oils into this brew. Some nice citrus on the finish as well that combines with the sweet malt for a nice slightly candied finish to the herbal explosion that came beforehand. Deep flavors that roll on and on. Exquisite. The mouthfeel is at first prickly with hops and then smooth with creamy malt. Looong finish. Utterly delicious. I could drink this all day and pay for it later. Not as dry as the Elder of course, but even more deeply flavored. A masterpiece from my favorite brewery.

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Photo of axisjones
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured a clean light orange with a nice fluffy head. Laces all the way down. This smells like hops. Hops, hops, and more hops- it has the signature cascade piney hop smell, very citrusy. This is what God must drink when he wants an IPA. Massive hops, but very very smooth. Whereas some IIPAs are over the top and almost undrinkable, this 3IPA is bitter but very flavorful, with fruity notes and floral-piney-citrus-juicy taste with a clean bitterness in the back. Its well balanced and not overly extreme. The drinkability is high. Too high. So high in fact, that the bartender (who knows me very well) warned me that it would go down easy for an 11% brew. I could not taste a single % of that 11. I could drink this all night, but that would probably result in alcohol poisoning.
Overall, an outstanding IIPA, probably the best I have had. Drink at your own risk though.

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Photo of DrewOSU
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I got to enjoy this monster of a beer, thanks to beachbum1975!

A: Pours dark yellow to amber, with ¼ inch of frothy tan head. Layers of white sudsy lacing on initial pour.

S: The smell is amazing! Strong hop, citrus and pine notes on the nose. Very fragrant

M/T: Medium, syrupy body. A sting of alcohol with a clean but hoppy finish. This beer is HOT! Full flavored, with a strong alcohol presence on the tongue, that proceeds to the back of the throat. After initial hit, I get an explosion of bitterness, with a citrus finish.

D: For such a large beer, it drinks very well. The hops dissipates in the aftertaste, leaving you wanting more.

Monster beer through and through and the best double IPA I have ever had.

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Photo of sholland119
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at TJs Everyday. Saved my notes so this could be review #400.

A-A beautiful clear orange, with a generous pillowy white head and lots of lacing.

S-Best. smelling. beer. ever. Pine hops, grapefruit hops, even some floral notes. Each swirl of the glass yields another burst of aromas.

T-Lives up to its hype, and the promise of the nose. As with the nose, all of the hop flavors are present at one time or another. Citrus, then pine, then floral, then pine, then citrus, etc. A nice, almost honey like sweetness in the finish is the final delicious touch.

M-And yet, for all of the flavor, this is still medium bodied, a little oily but not overly so.

D-Well the sixtel kicked in 26 minutes so I can only imagine the second would have been exceptionally drinkable like the first. Given the ABV, one is certainly the right number.



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Photo of ncvbc
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a crystal clear and glowing amber orange. Big carbonation bubbles come up and a thin white head caps it off, leaving sticky spots of lacing all down the glass. I can only imagine straight from the tap.

An unbelievable fresh citrus nose. It's like a mix between Pure Hoppiness and Summer Yulesmith, toss in some pine sap and you have it. Earthy, green hops at first, just incredibly clean. Then big bold citrus scents come through. Bitter grapefruit, tangerine, orange, and hints of lemon. A piney undertone is there for sure as well.

Taste was just shocking to me. It was so much bigger than the smell lead me to believe. The inviting nose had lured me in and now I was getting slapped across the face with hops, laughing as my cheeks turned red with embarrassment. My forehead began to sweat, I got chills down my spine, and from that point on I knew I was in love. Seriously, there are still great citrus flavors and it's super fresh but wow, the piney hops are coming through full force. It's like pure hop juice glory without the overly oily and resinous body. As it warms, malts (huh?) do come through. A light caramel sweetness doesn't so much tame the wallop but it's there.

Bitter but not drying, tingling but not numbing, full but not oily. When I got this growler I was drinking it within an hour. Within the next hour, I had consumed nearly three pints of this addicting serum. A few hours later, after I took a nap, I couldn't help but come back for more.

This is truly a dream come true for hop lovers and I'm fortunate to have tried it. I put it in the realm of Yulesmith and Pure Hoppiness as my favorites. Not really in a class of its own but for now, it stands at the top. Andy, you are quite the generous soul, thank you!

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Photo of Radiodred
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Huge fan of Vinnie and Russain River. I went to the TION night at O'briens and the line to get a tast was out the door, to the street, then down to the back of O'briens, and almost to the restroom. No joke!
It doesn't get any better than this.
Looks good, smells great, taste like heaven, smooth with a punch!

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Photo of Erikshegda1994
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Light golden color with little to know head on draught. It has a nice floral hoppy smell. Tastes crisp with a nice hoppy bitter finish with such a great balance making this beer so smooth and easy to drink that I drank two in less than an hour. Great west coast IPA and easy to see why this beer is in the top ten.

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Photo of walows
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Oh my!! This beer was hands down the most amazing beer i have ever had. This beer sent me to beer heaven. I feel really bad for the beers that i haven't tried yet because they don't stand a chance!

Appearance: I wonderful golden color, with a very night tight white head that was about an inch thick. It laced all the way down.
Smell: This beer was so pungent! It smelled of those wonderful little hop flowers and lots of them! First comes the malty sweetness, like caramel and the hops come in, which smelled like if you blended a grapefruit and a pine tree together.
Taste: Tasted just how it smelled, tasted as if you blended grapefruit and pine needles together. It had a wonderful sweet caramel malty taste and the hops come running in, it was so wonderfully bitter! Following this wonderful parade was a nice alcohol hotness. The aftertaste was my favorite part of this beer, the hops just got stuck all over my mouth and it was such a great experience.
Mouthfeel: This beer sat on my palette just so amazing. It was so thick and sticky with hops! You could chew this beer!
Drinkability: Even though this beer was very high in alcohol and was so thick and sticky, this beer was very drinkable, it was scary easy to drink. What an amazing beer!

I thought that i total lost my chance to try this beer, but i got so lucky and was a the right place at the right time and got the the first pour off the freshly tapped keg. I thought that this beer was all hype, but i was so wrong! This beer was AMAZING!

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Photo of Gargamel92886
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

At first I was concerned this beer would not live up to the hype. It did.

A: Straw colored, clear with thin white head

S: mild, citrusy

T: hoppy, not overly bitter

M: nice, crisp, fine carbonation

D: very drinkable. The alcohol hides so nicely within the beer, I didn't notice it until I stood up.

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Photo of Overlord
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I enjoyed a half liter of this at Hollingshead today. I have never had a sip of alcohol at work for my entire life, but given that I expected this to be a once a year opportunity, I made an exception. Halfway through, the barkeep casually mentioned that they actually received five kegs instead of their usual one. So it goes.

Pours a bright burnished orange. Clearer and more uniform in color than I expected. Little to no head. Smells like grapefruit and pine. Some tropical pineapple/passion fruit notes in the aroma, but little to no malt. Oily, viscuous, and perfect mouthfeel.

The flavor is robust and awe-inspiring. There is definitely tons of sweet, pink grapefruit-y tropical-ness and caramel malt to balance out a truly explosive pine and grapefruit hop backbone. That's right: this the rare beer in which the dominating characteristic is hops, and yet it actually is balanced by sweeter characteristics. Very drinkable.

I'm not sure what else there is to say. This beer has been well reviewed. This has joined Dreadnaught at the top of my DIPA chart.

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Pliny The Younger from Russian River Brewing Company
4.67 out of 5 based on 3,065 ratings.
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