We've got more good/bad news on the beer nerd front, as Russian River Brewing Co.'s Pliny the Younger is a little more than a week away from landing in Philly. The first batch was poured on February 3rd at Russian River's Brewpub, and reports have it making its way across the U.S. right now. Officials with Russian River and local distributors are staying mum (this is an insane time for them), but more than a few bar owners have whispered that they're getting theirs at the tail end of February. Brewer Vinnie Cirluzo kegged 30% more this year to keep up with demand, so we're hoping for more than the 18 or so sixtels we saw last year.
Expect Monk's, The Sidecar, Teresa's Next Door, TJ's Everyday, Capone's, Memphis Taproom, The Bishop's Collar, City Tap House, Devil's Den, The Grey Lodge, Khyber Pass Pub, and Varga Bar to be some of the lucky places that will receive the golden treasure, as they're often stacked with RR product and have had it before.
But, before you start calling around and asking who has it when, put down your damn phone. No one is going to talk, and they might even give you fake info for bothering them about beers that aren't even tapped yet. It's happened before.
Word of warning to those gearing up for the big day: Philly is the nation's capital for Overhyping Pliny the Younger. Expect to see two-hour lines and $25 pours in some places. But, before you balk at the sticker price, understand that many bar owners—Tom Peters from Monk's is one—donate the keg, and pass on all cash to a local charity, so everyone wins.
Make sure you follow us on Twitter, as we will be doing live updates when the madness starts, so you can find a glass for yourself. These kegs have kicked in as little as 27 minutes (last year at Monk's), so real-time info is going to be a boon this year. While we may not be into the evangelism of PTY ourselves, we know that many of you are, and we're here to help your habit.