Pliny The Elder | Russian River Brewing Company

14,492 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

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 14,492 |  Reviews: 3,698
Photo of nrb1
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of lear456089
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of Samuel906
4.97/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Before I had a chance to have this for the first time, I was worried that it was going to be over hyped; I thought my expectations were going to be too high, and I was going to be disappointed. Nothing could be further from the truth. This beer is simply fantastic. It puts all of my other favorite DIPAs to shame. It pours a rich golden amber that is perfectly transparent, with some bubbles effervescing. It has a nice thick dense, white head with great retention and lacing. The smell is amazing: fresh pineapple, mango, hops and grapefruit. The definition of fresh. The taste follows suit: sour citrus up front, some sweet caramel and mango in the middle with some herbal hints, and resiny hops to finish it off. Absolutely no booze. Silky smooth, crisp and refreshing. This beer is simply fantastic, and considering its price point, and availability (check local listings), I would go on a limb to say it is probably the best beer overall on the planet right now.

 968 characters

Photo of JulianB
4.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of Timmomyces
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of Moose90
4.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bottled On: 021913
Tasted On: 032013

A – Bright pale yellow, with some light green hues almost. Head is generous and leaves great lacing.

S – Explodes out of the glass, can smell it from a measurable distance away. Notes of fresh lemon, lime, mango, and pine.

T – Fantastically fresh and juicy. Orange, pine, and lemon. Crisp bitterness and light sweet malts.

M – Crisp, clean, and smooth. Bright hop notes destroy any lingering malt notes – great!

O – Great as always. Fantastic value, and a top notch example of the style. One of the all time greats.

 569 characters

Photo of Chou
3.25/5  rDev -29.3%

Photo of Lothar666
4.85/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A special thank you to Taylor Ross for hooking me up with this rare and hard to find brew.

A- Poured a beautiful semi-translucent body with a creamy bone-white head that left muddy lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Sweet woody pine, citrus, and delicious hops. Notes of grapefruit and pine-cones dominate the nose profile.

T- More pine and less citrus in the flavor profile than in the nose. Strong hops and sweet grassy malts in equal measure make for a phenomenally well-balanced brew. While definitely present in the delicious lingering aftertaste, the bitterness from the hops is not so overpowering as to numb the taste buds like some other examples of the style. What shines through instead is a pleasant complexity that makes this brew a true credit to the style.

M- Crisp, refreshing, not at all cloying or syrupy and with a perfect balance that hides the relatively strong ABV incredibly well.

O- This is an incredible brew. Not at all what I was expecting from such a legendary beer, though the surprise is not at all unwelcome. This is definitely a brew that lives up to its hype, and one that I only hope I can get my hands on again at some point in the future.

 1,182 characters

Photo of lucas1801
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of tomakeanend
4.88/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

So bloody good. This beer showed me that brews can be flavorful in a very broad sense, crisp and refreshing on the pallet, and without any of that nasty Pale Ale/IPA aftertaste that we all so love and enjoy.

Russian River seriously needs to expand their operation.

 265 characters

Photo of artoolemomo
4.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of flyingtoaster
3.86/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottled 3/8/13. Enjoyed 3/15/13
Poured into a Piraat Tulip

A. Clear golden yellow with a medium head
S. Citrus rind, Peach, and flowers
T. Fulfilling hop bitterness but not much hop flavor. The individual notes are lost in the carbonation. Some malt in the background.
M. Dry, medium-high carbonation and a little watery

O. This beer is well balanced, but balanced rather like a Miata than a GTR. There is a lot of hop bite but the juicy tropical flavors that jump out at you in more substantial DIPAs are there to a much lesser extent and they are subdued by the carbonation. This beer would be nice served extra cold and it would pair well with buffalo wings or mexican food. I would not recommend giving it to anyone as an example of a DIPA, as there are American IPAs that are less bitter yet have more hop aroma and flavor. It is, however, very consistent. I have had dozens of PTEs and they taste similar from draft to bottle, and whether they were bottled 5 days ago or a month ago.

 991 characters

Photo of HoppyDaze1127
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of semaj
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of tom10101
4.25/5  rDev -7.6%

Photo of sbenzzz
4.72/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

What can you possibly say about Pliny the elder....this beer is awesome just too hard to find in socal!
Appearance: Golden clear with a bit of crimson and little white
Smell: The smell is amazing an array of different fruit with a distinctive pine hint
Taste: Still very fruity, booze is masked completely, citrus taste with hops....awesome!
Mouthfeel: The best of any beer I have had! Crisp. light, carbonation is perfect
Overall: It is Pliny the Elder what is there to say, this brew is worth the hype and then some truly one of the best brews in existence

 558 characters

Photo of SoCalBeerIdiot
4.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of drewburning25
3.5/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of Drag0nz
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of SDStoneEnthusiast
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of LB22
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of drz955
4/5  rDev -13%

Photo of gratefulbeerhead
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of RelentlessLefty
4.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Pliny The Elder from Russian River Brewing Company
4.6 out of 5 based on 14,492 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.