Alright alright alrightttt…. This post has been a long time coming. It’s something I’ve been saving for awhile, because obviously – if you’ve frequented my Instagram – it’s a beer that I drink as often as I can get my hands on (which is not as often as I’d like) and a beer for which I am not shy in declaring my undying love.
But today I decided it was finally the right time to officially share on the blog. Why, you ask? Well, I’ve had an insane amount of change going on in these past weeks…all good change…but man the train is a-movin’! Seriously, it reminds me of the lyric from one of my favorite John Mayer songs “‘Cause now I see, I’ll never stop this train.” Things are chugging along and life is moving quickly, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. Today I start a new job with huge potential and infinite horizons. With this new job brings a big move for me and my fiancé. We have to relocate from the area that has been the hub of our 4-year relationship (and a cornerstone for my upbringing for the past 15 years!) and start a new life together in a new city an hour away. So last night, we toasted (most appropriately) with some ice cold Pliny the Elder.
West Coasters will tell you this is the greatest IPA ever made. East Coasters stand firm with Heady Topper (to be reviewed soon!!!). Regardless, there’s no denying that it’s an outstanding IPA. It is my all-time favorite beer. I might claim to have a lot of favorites, but I’m here to tell you that all my “favorites” have their own ranking system and Pliny the Elder is #1. El jefe. Numero Uno.
Hops. Pine. Body. It’s simply perfection. It’s the beer against which I compare all other IPAs. And because of that, I tend to be a harsh critic, I’ll admit it. But it’s so darn good.
I’ve only ever found it on tap once in my life and that was at Tony’s Darts Away in Burbank, CA. Upon ordering a beer that was tapped, the barkeep casually mentioned that they had Pliny the Elder on tap as a consolation. A consolation?! Excuse me, why didn’t you say that before?!?!?! Pliny is never a consolation.
Recently, we came across Pliny in our favorite local liquor store, which of course had a 1-bottle limit. So fiancé bought one, then sent me to buy one, then we repeated the same exercise the next day and our good friend even drove out to grab us one. Then we found it at Whole Foods, which had a 2-bottle limit. And in the end, ended up with 10 bottles of Pliny. That, my friends, is the dream. I do have to admit, though, that we sat on some of the bottles a little too long, because we wanted to save and savor the sweet, sweet nectar. We still have 3 bottles left, but after toasting last night, we could tell it wasn’t as fresh or up to par as when we first brought them home and opened a few. I know what you seasoned Pliny lovers out there are going to say… “It says right on the bottle:
RESPECT YOUR ELDER: KEEP COLD, DRINK FRESH, DO NOT AGE!
PLINY THE ELDER IS A HISTORICAL FIGURE, DON’T MAKE THE BEER INSIDE THIS BOTTLE ONE!
NOT A BARLEYWINE, DO NOT AGE!
AGE YOUR CHEESE NOT YOUR PLINY!
RESPECT HOPS, CONSUME FRESH!
IF YOU MUST, SIT ON EGGS, NOT ON PLINY!
DO NOT SAVE FOR A RAINY DAY!
PLINY IS BEST FOR SAVORING, NOT FOR SAVING!
CONSUME PLINY FRESH OR NOT AT ALL!
DOES NOT IMPROVE WITH AGE!
HOPPY BEERS ARE NOT MEANT TO BE AGED!
KEEP AWAY FROM HEAT!
Moral of the story is – as rare and hard to find as Pliny is – when you find it, drink it and enjoy it! Don’t sit on it. Because you are really, really going to enjoy it.