Pliny The Elder | Russian River Brewing Company

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Pliny The ElderPliny The Elder
14,836 Ratings
Pliny The ElderPliny The Elder

Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-24-2003

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 14,836 |  Reviews: 3,743
Photo of GClarkage
4.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11/12/04- Sampled at the Toronado in San Francisco, CA

Appearance- Pours a semi-dark amber with a nice 3/4 inch white cream head and excellent lacing.

Smell- A good amount of hops and malt mixed in. Huge floral and fruity scents.

Taste- Wonderful explosion of hops and a decent malt background. Mostly grapefruit and floral/fruity flavors. I've had this numerous times and I guess it depends on the batch you get. As of recent this beer has been about as perfect as it can get. Sometimes though, it can be deceiving. My second ever Elder tasted like a normal IPA. Didn't have near the kick as it was supposed to.

Mouthfeel- Went down nicely. Nice carbonation. Caresses the mouth nicely.

Drinkability- Very easily could drink several of these. Didn't notice the abv. Went down like a good IPA. Wonderful if not tied with my favorite DIPA.

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.24/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Sampled on draft at Naja’s in Redondo Beach during a recent trip here on a hot and sunny Saturday afternoon.

Appearance: Slightly hazed amber body with some light copper hints. Off-white head that is finger thick but lasts a while. Average conditioning.

Nose: Floral hops, massive sweet malts, fresh citric aroma with some pine oils.

Taste: Malty start, but whilst the sweet malts fill the middle and lay the foundation it is the sharp citric grapefruit as well as the thick heavy bitterness that lingers. Average carbonation gives a big presence.

Mouthfeel: Thick, oily and bold – massive sweet malt middle, dry acidic bitter rasping ending. Lays heavy on the tongue and coats the cheeks well.

Drinkability: Not exactly a session brew, a half-Pint of this could keep me satisfied for a while and accompany me as a sipper with little problem.

Overall: Second time I have tried this, and it tasted a little lighter then the inaugural visit. Still, this is a fantastic D-IPA that is classic West Coast.

Well Worth seeking out.

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Photo of rastaman
3.7/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tap, Toronado, San Fransisco. Full on Americn hops in both aroma and flavour. Massive grapefruit pine, and heavy bittrness. Despite being massively hopped this manages to maintain some balance and softness around the edges. A good beer. Lots of flavour.

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Photo of ChappyCubsFan
4.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is my first review in months, but I need to rave about this near perfect double IPA. I tried it for the first time at O'Brien's Pub last winter, but I was able to visit the Russian River Brewery in Santa Rosa this summer. Pliny is silk smooth with a great hop finish (25% simcoe hops). It reminded me a bit of Alpine's Exponential Hoppiness, which is one of my favorites. In leaving the brewery, I purchased a growler and kept it refrigerated for three days before catching a plane back to Southern California. It held up nicely on the plane trip and was a big hit back home (Gone in minutes!).

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Photo of UncleJimbo
4.3/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on tap at Pizza Port Carlsbad.

This double IPA poured a clear, amber color with white foam that settled but clung and coated the inside of the glass a bit. The smell was fruity, spicy hops with not much malt. The taste was grassy, fruity hops with a good bit of malt to balance. The hoppy flavors lingered very nicely. The mouthfeel was smooth, dry, and very hoppy with medium body and moderate carbonation. The finish was slightly astringent. This was a very nice and very hoppy double IPA.

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Photo of oggg
4.02/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at O'Briens in a pint glass.

This double IPA was hyped up to me long before I walked into O'Briens. It has that great hop aroma that I love in double IPAs, but it's a bit harsh and over the top with the bitterness. Packed in with the hop flavor is some serious bitterness that just pounded my tongue into submission. More than the Exponential Hoppiness. After my tongue began to come back, I noticed a strong maltiness come out and shine. Alcohol is subtle. Full body.

Overall: Hoppiness is a bit too bitter for me, but the maltiness at the end is a great save. A hop heads dream.

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Photo of Gusler
4.34/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Draught @ O’Brien’s San Diego
The beer pours somewhat deep amber; the head is white and full in size, the texture semi-creamy with the lace a velum like sheet to conceal the glass. Nose is hop floral, sweet malt underneath, lime like crispness, fresh and a treat for the nose as well as the eyes. “Zap” the hops slam your taste buds to attention, magnificent is a word I think fits perfectly, stern acidity with a hop spicy dry aftertaste that leaves you puckering and eager for another taste. A beer certainly made for us lovers of hops and another great example of the big California Imperial IPA’s.

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Photo of Boilermaker88
4.45/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When I saw this on-tap at the Carlsbad, CA Pizza Port I had to do a quick double-take and get a pint, fast. In light of my relatively recent love of IPA's and Double IPA's, I felt I shouldn't squander the opportunity.
Arriving in a standard pint glass, this double IPA showed off a murky orange/amber color topped with a firm, resilient off-white head that left clumps of lace down the glass. The aromas of pine needles and juicy grapefruits delivered a slap to the sinuses. Once getting past the pungent hops, I could make out a grainy malt aroma that added an added incentive to taste.
Taste I did. The sweet malts were noticeable briefly before getting shown the exit in favor of an avalanche of fresh hops. Lots of potent citrus flavor, slightly sticky pine sap taste and feel, and the light warming sensation of alcohol in the finish to warn of the well-concealed ABV. The feel was medium-bodied, vaguely prickly with carbonation and quite dry in the finish.
Pliny The Elder is one top-notch example of what appears to be a growing style. You definitely need to have your heart (and palate) set for some hops if you order a pint of Pliny.

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Photo of Mark
4.5/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was expecting a much hoppier taste and aroma. Maybe the keg was near the bottom, I don't really know. Despite this "surprise" I found this a very drinkable beer. At over 9% abv it really went down easy. The beer was a light amber, head was full and left nice lace. At least my sample lacked the hop aroma, taste was very smooth and and did not feel like 100 IBU's. A very interesting beer that garnered a nice rating despite my surprise and questioning of it's being in top form. I tried this again at the pub and I will say wow! A much better sample, hops hops and more palate grabbing hops. Loved it.

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Photo of watermelonman
4.52/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This sat as a bright orange and gold color without much head, and it didn't leave too much lace either. It looks pretty good.

The scent is snappy but has an additional depth to the hops coming out in the smell. There's a lot to it, while being very enjoyable. The taste is very nice; the bitterness is hefty without completely obliterating the malt.

I'll have another.

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Photo of jcalabre
4.07/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this on draught at Stone's 7th anniversary party.
Appearance: this looks like a pilsener, but looks can deceive
Flavor: Can you say hop juice? How about Palate-Cleaner?
Aroman: HOPPPS
Get the picture? this is a hop head's dream. I really enjoyed this one, but it's not for the feint of heart

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Pliny The Elder from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.65 out of 5 with 14,836 ratings