Beer Review: Pliny The Elder

One of the legendary beers of our times, Pliny The (Mother Fucking) Elder. Let’s start with this…

Ratebeer: 100
Beer Advocate: 100 from The Brothers and average of 100 from 2,673 readers
Untappd: 4.62% from 7,360 ratings
2004 Great American Beer Festival – Bronze Medal Double IPA – Pliny the Elder
2005 Great American Beer Festival – Gold Medal Double IPA – Pliny the Elder
2006 World Beer Cup – Gold Medal Double IPA – Pliny the Elder
2006 Great American Beer Festival – Gold Medal Double IPA – Pliny the Elder
Zymurgy #1 American beer of 2012

Next up for our Ohio friends you can’t buy this here. Might be able to get some in PA, or travel to CA, or make a trade like I did. So lets find out what I think…

Brewery: Russian River
Beer: Pliny The Elder
Stlye: Double/Imperial IPA
Alcohol By Volume: 8%

Great Golden orange copper color that reminds me of a beautiful sunset. The head comes up a nice bubbly white.

Smells aggressively hoppy, with some hints of pine and raisins. I’m also getting an earthy whiff like fresh cut grass and a small hint of the 8% alcohol. Very enjoyable smell creating lots of anticipation!

This is one of the most complex hop profiles I’ve had, not intense just complex. The taste is actually very very smooth. But it’s not all hops, there are some bready malts, either pear or something like it.

Uhm, starting to feel that 8% a bit.

It’s a creamy medium bodied mouth feel, with… not carbonation, but crispness.

Overall it’s a good beer, a damn good beer. “Best beer in America” I dunno about that, there is a lot of beer out there. Without a doubt this is one of the better beers that I’ve had. I’m trying to work away from my #/5 rating system, if you want that you can go to ratebeer or beer advocate, but if I was to give it a # I might have to rethink my system. Giving this a 5 feels like a disservice, but maximums have to exist for a reason I guess…

Bottom line here is try it if you can. Just so you know what’s out there and what so many people think is so amazing. Also, that 8% seems low to me after finishing the pint I feel like it’s closer to around 9 or 10%. As a small aside I gave the wife a sip and she made a “meh” face with a shoulder shurg. She’s a cider drinker not a fan of beer at all, but she couldn’t pass on trying “the best beer in America.”

I want more…

6 thoughts on “Beer Review: Pliny The Elder”

    1. I actually ended up working out 2 trades. 1 was DFH positive contact for 1 Pliny (still waiting to receive that bottle), the other was Positive Contact + The record for Pliny + Arctic Panzer Wolf + Extras.


      1. Yeesh, that’s not messing around. I definitely like your payoff. I haven’t even seen Positive Contact at my shop yet, although I did have it in January at the DFH brewpup. Was good/unique.


      2. I got a store to call me as soon as it came in but they would only sell the 6 pack + the record. Positive Contact is good, but not so good that I wan 6 750 ml bottles.


  1. Pliny is definitely one of my favorite beers. Even in Philly, it’s very hard to find. They only ship kegs to philly,and those kegs all go to the beer bars (can’t buy a keg from distributors). Usually the kegs only last 2 days at whatever bar it appears b/c people drink this stuff down might quick.

    What you can get in philly in a bottle is Supplication, another great beer from Russian River. It’s a sour beer, aged for one year in a white wine barrels. Talk about complex…insanely good.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: