Pliney the Elder is a DIPA by the folks out in Cali at Russian River Brewing. It has 8% alcohol and 100 IBUs. The bottle was very specific, I don't think I have seen a bottle quite so specific since Stone's Enjoy By IPA. All around the label it says things like "Respect your elder; keep cold, drink fresh do not age! Pliney the Elder is a historical figure, don't make the beer inside this bottle one!..." and so on and so on. It had a bottled on date of 4/17/13, and I did not let this bad boy sit. As soon as I got it, it went in the refrigerator and I popped it open almost as soon as it was cold. It was right around three weeks old.
Pliney poured out a straw yellow color, which was shockingly light after some of the deep orange DIPAs that I have had lately. It had an alluring hop aroma and smelled like grapefruits, pine and delicious. It smelled light and fruity with almost no malt aroma.
The flavor was outstanding. This was probably the lightest DIPA I have ever had. It was clean and smooth and absolutely perfectly hoppy. The malts were light and faded away to create the perfect backdrop to truly let the fresh hops shine. It was only moderately bitter- the hops were the star without hitting you over the head. I can see why they want you to drink this as soon as possible since the hops flavors tend to be the ones that fade away or bitter first. I loved Doom, but it was a malt forward DIPA that was then barrel aged allowing the hops to fade even further into the background (great for a guy who isn't really a hop head), but this one really tasted like a DIPA should taste, just a beefed up IPA. DIPAs almost always come off as a big malt explosion followed by some heavy hops, where IPAs tend to be a nice fruity, bitter hop experience.
I can't say enough good things about this beer. It was light and sweet and bitter in all the right ways. It was the easiest drinking DIPA I have ever had.
I give it a solid 5