Fans eagerly await the triumphant return of Pliny the Younger to Santa Rosa on Friday, Feb. 5.

For those of you who don’t recognize the name … no, Pliny the Younger is not the latest hot rock band.

It’s a beer, but it’s a special beer, made only once a year by the Russian River Brewing Company.

And if you don’t think beer is a fit subject for an arts blog, you haven’t tasted this stuff. Vinnie Cilurzo, brewer and founder at Russian River, is an artist.

Pliny the Elder, a double India Pale Ale named for the ancient Roman philosopher, is on sale year-round at the brew pub,  725 Fourth St., in downtown Santa Rosa, managed by Cilurzo’s wife Natalie.

Pliny the Younger is a triple IPA, unusually potent for beer, at 11 percent alcohol, but extremely smooth. Because it’s strong, Pliny the Younger will be served in 10-ounce glasses for $4.50.

(Be smart and bring along a sober designated driver for the trip home.)

Take-home jugs, or “growlers,” will be sold for $42 new, or $36 for refills. Only Russian River growler jugs can be refilled. Growlers from other pubs can’t be used.

In past years, Pliny the Younger fans have mobbed the pub and supplies haven’t lasted long. A year is a long time to wait for a beer.

Information: 545-2337, russianriverbrewing.com.

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  1. Id

    I just came from the place, and the wait is more than an hour long just to get in and check it out. I had no idea that this beer was such a big deal. There’s a couple who flew in from Switzerland for it, and one person had driven up from SoCal today. A bunch of other people had come from very long distances to check it out, and some were trying to buy barrels. I’m hoping to check it out in a day or two when the crowd subsides. I’m betting it’s well worth the $4,50 taste.
    Thanks for the update on this.

    February 5th, 2010 6:01 pm

  2. randy

    Wish they would bring something decent to the battle of the brews in SR. What a fun night but RR always seems to be the first to run out of beer every year. What a fun event, big concert and lots of beers to try i go every year. I like seeing the local breweries that i frequent support such an event. I’ll be down tonight to pick some up. Wonder what they will bring to the battle beer festival this year

    February 5th, 2010 8:08 pm

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