Pliny the Elder by Russian River

Pliny the Elder at 8% ABV by Russian River is famed to be 3rd best Imperial India Pale Ale in the world…yet somewhat easy to find…if you know where to look. Okay, I got this at Ramirez liquor in East L.A. This is the second time I try this beer and while I admit it is a pretty damn good beer and class… I won’t say a lot to go along with the hype except what is best…. I hope…lol. One of the reasons I think hop heads like this beer so much is because the usual IPA flavors or citrus, grass, grapefruit and pine concentrate more towards the more grassy and herbal flavor. This beer smells like weed. LOL and has this oregano flavor. I don’t know if the true Pliny the Elder took any pot….LOL. According to the label:

Pliny the Elder, born in 23 A.D., was a Roman naturalist, scholar, historian, traveler, officer, and writer. Pliny, and his contemporaries, created the original botanical name for hops, “Lupus Salictarius,” meaning “wold among scrubs.” Hop vines at that time, grew wild among willows. Pliny the Elder died in 79 A.D. while saving people during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. He was immortalized by his nephew, Pliny the Younger, who continued his uncle’s legacy by documenting much of what his uncle experienced during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. This beer is an homage to the man who discovered hops and perished while being a humanitarian. Unlike many of the Russian River Brewing Company beers which are ageable, the beer inside this bottle is meant to be consumed fresh. Keep Pliny the Elder refrigerated and consume fresh to experience the explosive hop character. 
So there you have it, Pliny was the original man to discovered the name of hops. A tribute to the legend. So about this IPA, as I have stated in other reviews about beers, what is different about this IPA? Well it is bitter but sweet. Flavors of the oregano, grapefruit, honey and some minor pineapple. Not overly fruity sweet, but the grass and herbal spices cover up the alcohol very well. Somewhat to the point where this beer is rather smooth. If I were to compare this to the awesome Ruination Imperial IPA, well let’s just say you have choose between what you want…super awesome bitterness or Hopzilla. Hell even Sculpin IPA is great for the extra fruit flavors and well number one regular IPA. Only you can define what is “Gold Standard” of IPAs based on whether your a hop head or a bitter extremist or even a fruit bitter nut. Whichever your choice is, if you happen to stumble upon the Pliny, fresher the better, you have to pick it up and well…just to see what all the fuss is all about. Please don’t take my word for it, just try it :P.

Original Review:
A nice grassy fragrance as well as a sweet hoppy taste. Amazingly, this imperial IPA does not emphasize bitterness but a sweet complex range of flavors. Quite the hype for being the 3rd best beer in the world according to Do not age this as it is enjoyed better fresh 😛

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