Thursday, March 8, 2012

Pliny the Younger - The Review

 Alright So now that I've come down off my soap box about the whole PTY event thingy, I'll get back to the important part. How good is Pliny the Younger really?

Well to my palate it's damn good and worth the short wait in line. Just not worth getting disappointed over. As you can see in the picture it's a looker and does all the things right to your senses.

It has a clear golden color reminiscent of the woman in Goldfinger who was dispatched in that most creative of ways. It has a tall doughy head that foretells a strong malt backbone, like you might see in a robust porter or stout. But in addition you can see it billowing up to the top of the glass with large bubbles on top.

The nose is grassy and piney. Like a pine forest after a spring rain. You smell fresh grass, earth, and pine needles. Like spring in Seattle (or fall or winter). The freshness and complexity of the hops really come out and confirm that this is something special and you are indeed, not waiting for a dud.

The first sip is heavy on the carbonation and foamy head. You get a big hit of strong fresh piney hops.
The second sip...much stronger malt as the head recedes. Now we get back in to balance. The stronger malt backbone that supports a moisture sucking piney earthy hop profile shows up and doesn't beat it in to submission as much as, wrap it in a warm blanket and hug your tongue a bit. As if to say, it's alright, everything is just fine. The malt backbone is fresh and supportive. It's one of those flavors and tastes that you only get with fresh beer that has not traveled that far or sat in a warehouse. The hops linger on your tongue and the back of your mouth. They don't build and overwhelm like the boys from Port tend to but just lingers and allows you to sit back between each quaff, and take it in. You can roll it over in your mind and immerse yourself in the flavor and the beer. It beckons you back but not in a hurry, and doesn't overwhelm. This is a precision crafted piece of beer art. Something that stirs emotion and allows you to sit back and just take it all in. And when you're done and there is no more to be had. Russian River is always accommodating by sending along Pliny the Elder to help cushion the blow. Which, on any other day, would be an event on to itself.

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