Pliny vs. Topper

Strictly looking for personal preference on this one…

I did a batch of the Pliny clone last year, which was incredible. I was getting ready to do another batch, and lo and behold, I come to find out that they created a Heady clone as well. As expected, both recipes have been getting exceptional reviews, and I’m now torn on which to brew.

Has anybody brewed/sampled both, and if so, what’s your preference?

That’s a tough one. I think both are really good in their own way. If I was force to pick 1 I would probably go with Pliny.
:cheers:

EDIT: sorry, I guess I was still asleep when I replied this morning. Even though it was clearly stated I didn’t catch that you were talking about the kits. I haven’t brewed either one so I really have nothing to offer :slight_smile:

The Off the Topper will be carbed and ready for sampling this weekend. The Plinian Legacy will be ready in 2-3 more weeks (first batch of dry hops went in keg Monday). It will be hop heaven at my house very soon. :stuck_out_tongue: I will be happy to post pics and a side by side comparison view. I brewed two batches of Plinian Legacy Extract last summer, both were phenomenal. This year I finally converted to AG so both of these are AG kits. I did do a starter for the Topper with the Yeast Bay yeast. The Plinian I used US-05. That may also factor into your decision because from what I’ve read you definitely want to use a starter for the Conan yeast.

:cheers:
Rad

[quote=“Radagast”]The Off the Topper will be carbed and ready for sampling this weekend. The Plinian Legacy will be ready in 2-3 more weeks (first batch of dry hops went in keg Monday). It will be hop heaven at my house very soon. :stuck_out_tongue: I will be happy to post pics and a side by side comparison view. I brewed two batches of Plinian Legacy Extract last summer, both were phenomenal. This year I finally converted to AG so both of these are AG kits. I did do a starter for the Topper with the Yeast Bay yeast. The Plinian I used US-05. That may also factor into your decision because from what I’ve read you definitely want to use a starter for the Conan yeast.

:cheers:
Rad[/quote]

I’m excited to hear your reviews of the final products, and jealous that you’ll be swimming in all that good beer. Prost!

I have not brewed any kits from NB, only because when I started brewing I purchased everything from another online vender before knowing that NB existed.

Anyway…the other place (morebeer) has an all-grain kit that I’ve brewed twice. It’s amazing! I have had the opportunity to drink an original of both Pliny the Eldger and Heady Topper, and while I love them both, I probably preferred Heady.

I have cultured the Conan yeast just recently from 4 fresh cans, so my all-grain clone of Heady will be brewed within the next couple of weeks. I did not purchase a kit, but rather researched a variety of different recipes and purchased the grains/hops individually. Even if the clone of the Heady is close to that of the Pliny, I’ll be a happy man.

Ok, so I finally have both carbed and ready for a comparison. I have attached a picture of the two side by side. The Off the Topper is definitely more cloudy than the Plinian Legacy as you can see from the picture. I used the Yeast Bay Conan yeast for the Off the Topper and US-05 for the Plinian Legacy. If I had to describe the differences, I would say that the Plinian Legacy finished a bit drier and the Off the Topper finished a bit smoother. I would also say that the Plinian Legacy finished more bitter than the Off the Topper. This is not at all a bad thing, just a difference between the two.

I used a whirlpool immersion chiller (pumped wort through chiller counterclockwise around kettle for 15 mins before chilling) for both. Both have an amazing nose. The Off the Topper had two separate hopstands (one at flameout, one below 180), the Plinian Legacy only had one. I would say if you are torn on which way to go, both are excellent beers. If you prefer a drier west coast IPA, brew the Plinian Legacy, if you prefer a smoother east coast IPA, brew the Off the Topper. I haven’t figured out the best language to describe flavors yet so this is my rookie attempt at descriptions. :lol: Both kits I did AG and averaged about 75% efficiency.

Off the Topper OG: 1.070 FG 1.010
Plinian Legacy OG: 1.069 FG 1.010
Both batches I dry hopped in a muslin bag and left in keg (although I took the larger one out of the Plinian Legacy after 2 weeks and left the smaller one in)

I will update this once I’ve had a few more of my beer nerd friends evaluate the two. :lol:

:cheers:

Rad