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Respect your Elder

With all this talk of Pliny the Younger coming out, I had to put a word in for Pliny the Elder, Russian River Brewing's famous Double IPA. This beer is year-round, so you don't have to get stressed out if you forget to seek it out. It's an exorbitantly hopped beer that expresses bright, fresh flavors of pine, grapefruit, white flowers and lemon zest. The Maltiness is perfectly balanced with the hops and the beer, and despite its brash flavors and 8% alcohol, it feels crisp and tight (no doubt thanks to it's very high 100 Bitterness Units -- to compare, Budweiser has, like, 10 BUs).

This is what I drank during the Superbowl, and it was just the charge to match the intensity of the game. And while you're at it, don't ignor the Blind Pig IPA, another classic from this outstanding Sonoma brewery. Look for the beers at any good shop, like the City Beer Store or Whole Foods.