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Double Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Double Bastard AleDouble Bastard Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,862 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,862
Reviews: 1,998
rAvg: 4.27
pDev: 11.01%
Wants: 375
Gots: 858 | FT: 28
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  11.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-27-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,862 | Reviews: 1,998 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bamadog
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Another solid brew from Stone, I was not disappointed. Not something that lines up with my personal tastes preferences, but an outstanding beer on just about every level.

Appearance: A beautifl color of reddish copper -- very slight head of about 1/2 finger that didn't really last at all. Not even a lacing is being left on the glass. No carbonation bubbling throughout either. A very thick appearance.

Smell: It smells very sweet - caramel or honey sweet. This is not quite what I expected. Typically I expect a lot more hops, but they're very subdued here.

Taste: Very sweet, much like the smell: strong honey sweetness to it. Very reminiscent of the Old Guardian barleywine from Stone. Alcohol is very much present, but this comes as no surprise since it's 10.5%.

Mouthfeel: Chewy and sticky. I feel like I may need to scrape the roof of my mouth when I'm done drinking this bad boy.

Drinkability: While this is definitely an excellent brew, it is so potent that I'm going to be hard pressed to get through the whole bomber. Also, it doesn't necessarily hit my personal tastes as it's a little too sweet for me. But once again, Stone has crafted something magnificent.

bamadog, Dec 14, 2008
Photo of ESPNman
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2012 Vintage, poured into a Stone IRS Snifter

A - This beer pours a deep rusty orange, leaving two fingers of thick orange-white head that sticks around for a good long time. It leaves less lacing than I would expect given the volume of head produced.

S - There is certainly plenty of alcohol on the nose. It's not surprising, given the 11%+ ABV in this year's batch, but it's still a little overwhelming. Thick sweet malts, and a bit of fruit are there in the background as well. This one will certainly get better with a little time in the cellar.

T - Much like the nose, this one is a little on the boozy side. There's a good bit of aggressive bitterness that attacks the palate once the booze clears. There's a slight hint of the sweetness from the nose. It's a faint touch of roasted malt. From there, this beer features some serious hop punch with a brutally bitter finish. This beer is not balanced, but is delicious.

M - It lacks the thickness that I normally associate with an American Strong Ale of this ABV. It's surprisingly drinkable. Moderate carbonation. It gets better as it warms up, as it can be a little abrasive when served right out the fridge.

O - Double Bastard is one of my favorite beers.... after a few years. I'm looking forward to doing a 4-5 year vertical with these. Fresh, it's a little on the abrasive side. There's great flavor and smell there, but it's all a little overwhelmed by the ABV.

ESPNman, Nov 03, 2012
Photo of chuchoteur
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sheer malt goodness in a 22 ounce bottle, served in my Duvel tulip. Poured a pretty mahogany brown with a one-finger head that collapsed quickly to a layer of foam atop the beer. I was able to see through the beer with some backlighting. Smelled of citrus (orange -- curacao?), malt, sugar... smelled SWEET. Slight alcohol scent. Tasted sweet, malty, toffee-ish, a touch of chocolate. Bready. Notable but not overpowering bitterness. Balanced. Malty finish followed up by pleasant bitter aftertaste. A slight hint of something -- cherries? -- in the aftertaste, too. Mouthfeel was like liquid bread, encouraged me to savor this brew in a manner befitting its ABV. Drinkability was good for ABV. Alcohol not as overpowering and beer not as bitter as I'd expected.

All in all, a beer I can now say I love. Unfortunately, it's pretty tough to get in Seattle this year (the distributor only got 25% what they got last year!) so I won't be drinking much. In fact, I was only able to order one 3-liter bottle for my store, no 22's!

chuchoteur, Nov 17, 2005
Photo of surlytheduff
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Drank from Duvel tulip. Beer poured a deep amber/light mahogany with a finger and a half of light mocha colored head with very little lacing. First smell up my nose was juicy grapefruit citrus and pine, followed by bready maltiness. Some light caramel/toffee aroma also.

Beer was full and very rich tasting. There was a slight fruitiness to it; tasted almost like a sweet and bitter barleywine. There was a warm alcohol flavor to it, and it finished with a crisp bitterness.

Mouthfeel was thick and full bodied, and was well carbonated. It is fairly drinkable, but this beverage demands to be enjoyed slowly.

surlytheduff, Nov 24, 2010
Photo of KJK-1
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A- A light tea color or rusty look. Nice head that holds. Lacing on glass is excellent.

S- Big hop and malt, maybe a little toffee or caramel

T- Big malt presence. Nice hop notes begin to kick in midway. I get a little sweet taste that is caramel like. Very good tasting beer.

M- Medium to mildly full bodied and heavy malt presence. Good carbonation. Alcohol is noticeable, but I do not mind that.

O- A very good beer. I look forward to the release of this every year. I usually get several bombers to last a a few months. A good end of the evening beer to enjoy slowly.

KJK-1, Nov 20, 2013
Photo of inspektor
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Pours a crimson myriad of decadence with a moderate head that is accompanied by the same level of lacing.

Hints of alcohol followed by an impressive amount of caramel and blossomy hops upon initial inspection. An array of fruit is present as well to complete the spectrum.

The taste solidifies this double ale's position and superiority over his "younger" brother who is only half as arrogant. Hoppy not overbearing. Strong ABV but not brutal. Well balanced and impressively enjoyable throughout. A bit on the malty side, but that is par for the course in this realm.

The mouthfeel is substantial in girth with lingering traces of malt and hops, followed by a syrupy finish. As the contents of the glass diminishes, the carbonation becomes more apparent, but overall this doesn't detract from the overall enjoyment.

Slightly more enjoyable and vastly more complex than Arrogant Bastard Ale, this is definitely an American Strong Ale that excels at drinkability. Very well balanced between all aspect that comprise a beer that can be enjoyed for multiple iterations.

inspektor, Dec 25, 2009
Photo of Jacobob10
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

On-tap @ Anam Cara in Brookline, MA.

Nice deep reddish-brown color. Poured into a red wine type of glass without much head at all. Did not leave a lot of lacing or retain its head very well. Sweet, malty aroma with the presence of alcohol. Very complex flavor but the alcohol taste and aroma is unavoidable. The mouthfeel is incredible. Very creamy texture which makes it a great after dinner beer. Very easy to drink despite all the alcohol in it.

I was not overwhelmed by this beer, but I feel it would be most enjoyable as a dessert beer or something to sip after a nice meal.

Jacobob10, Dec 05, 2004
Photo of MuddyFeet
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from the bottle. Poured with a thick, foamy head on top. Lace around the glass. The aroma came across as a bread bowl with slight hints of rye. In the flavor I am noticing different qualities/styles of sugars present. Also, there are sprinklings of spices with lots of cinnamon, nutmeg, and something I can't name that has a bit of a kick to it. The alcohol is also very noticable. With the mouthfeel, there is a slight alcohol burn on the tongue. Unfortunately, I tend to prefer beers with such a high ABV that are better at conceeling it, so that kind of took away from the experience for me.

MuddyFeet, Jan 27, 2005
Photo of BigB415
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: 2011 vintage pours dark red into my 22oz glass. Slight head with heavy lacing.

S: Intense hops and I think I smell oranges too. Nothing else for me.

T: More hop bombs and oranges. This time I get caramel notes which I like.

MF: The hops leave an immense bitter taste in my mouth followed by the lingering of the caramel that I can still taste as I type this a minute after my last sip.

O: To be honest I was expecting a hot boozy mess which could only be cured by aging but I found a smooth beer that I really like fresh. I am really anxious to see how the one I put in my cellar turns out.

BigB415, Nov 04, 2011
Photo of msubulldog25
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From the 2007 Release; a 22 oz. bottle, poured to a snifter. For all the Stone beer I've ever tried, this could be the first I've had of the Double Bastard. Oh, the humor in that silk-screened diatribe on the label...

A: Clear, ruddy mahogany. Equivalent of the bottle's brownness and clarity, tinged with a deeper reddish glow. Hardly any head, only a scattering of film whispers and a slim ring of cream. Ominously still, with just the narrowest streams of tiny carbonation...from a distance, could be bourbon in that snifter just as easily as ale. Sliding bits of off-white lace gently fade into the glass.

S: Smells of over-the-top sweetness, hugely malty with caramel and candy. There's some dark fruit in there, syrupy cherry and raisin and a hint of spice. And not all the aromas are big malts; there's a rich, herbally grassy hop nose, too.

T: Sugared malts for certain, but plenty of citrus-orange/tangerine hopping. Lots of caramel, a little on the burnt side with subtle nuttiness. There's a remnant of barrel-like woodiness and a bittering of citrus pith.

M: Big and chewy, warm and thickening, layers of hops and sticky malt on the tongue draw in the cheeks. For a 10% abv beer, this has a pleasing balance and has a heat that's quite subtle. Creamy and smooth, with a carbonation that melts away like butter. Not the cloyingly sweet mouthfeel I've experienced before with Stone's big beers.

D: Big, bold & flavorful...but a sipper that I couldn't finish in one sitting. Hops are intense, sweet malts even moreso - after a half-bottle the flavors become oppressive on the tongue. Still, awfully good - a 'must try' for the big beer enthusiast.

msubulldog25, Dec 06, 2007
Photo of Rmbr2
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%

Rmbr2, Jan 19, 2014
Photo of BeerMaverick
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Steve Shapiro for this awesome xmas present!

A - I don't know if I'm deemed worthy...a deep amber color with about a half inch of off-white head that dissipates quickly leaving minor lace on the snifter. Insane amount of thought was put into the essay on the back of the bottle...I'm not worthy.

S - Malts flood the aroma with some alcohol burn and fruit character such as apple. Some slight hop presence is here as well.

T - Based on the aroma, I expected this to be a pro-malt beer, but it is exceptionally well balanced with a strong hop profile to keep the malt bill in check. Slight citrusy flavors combine with the bitterness to create a piney and tangy product. Some apple is present here too. After only a few sips I can feel the alcohol...not worthy.

M - This beer is insanely balanced and the malt/hop clash does a great job in hiding the 10.5% (although not completely). Raisin and brown sugar reside in the aftertaste.

O - This is one of the strongest, and most balanced, beers that I've had. I highly recommend it although it will kick your ass! You must be worthy and deserving of its attention.

BeerMaverick, Jan 16, 2012
Photo of perrymarcus
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

on tap at sunset grill and tap, allston, ma. (review from notes.)

pours a deep amber tone with a good degree of clarity to it. fluffy beige head displays strong retention and nice walls of lacing.

nice bold nose with strong caramel malt notes along with some citric hoppiness making itself known. very nice aroma.

flavor follows the smell; caramel malts lead the way out front, with the hops characters opening up more mid-palate and transitioning into a bitter, slightly boozy finish. an intense, robust beer through and through. also quite tasty. not for rookies.

full, creamy mouthfeel with average carbonation. drinkability is so-so just do to the big and taxing nature of this beer. one per sitting is enough.

perrymarcus, Nov 29, 2010
Photo of Ry_Swell_Guy
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very strong beer in many ways. Bold hoppy flavor and just enough burn (though still surprisingly smooth) to let you know what a strong brew you are drinking! One bomber bottle of this and I was already feeling quite pleasant! Smelled great, cool bottle, looks great in a glass, nice small head and nice coloring.

Ry_Swell_Guy, Jul 05, 2013
Photo of BMMillsy
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Arrogant Bastard tap takeover at House of Beer in Gaiensville. Clear deep amber pour with creamy off white head. Heavy caramel toffee aroma, some fruit, but mostly focused on the huge malts here. Flavor is very dry with malty sweetness, caramel, toffee, biscuits, plenty of bitter to boot. Alcohol warmth is strong with this one, but not overwhelming. Big brew, yet not syrupy on the palate. Nice.

BMMillsy, Nov 23, 2012
Photo of sudsellier
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As soon as I saw this one in the cooler (for the first time ever in our small-ish market) I grabbed one without hesitation. I've been such an ardent fan of Stone and the Arrogant Bastard that there was no way I was going to bed tonight without knowing...

A: Poured out a nice light mahogany (in my Stone "Fizzy Yellow Beer is for Wussies" pintglass... knew I scored it for a reason!) with about a half-inch head of creamy, meringue-colored lattice... mostly small, dense bubbles with some larger forming around the outsides. Even coloration all throughout.

S: When you go to that favorite fancy restaurant of yours... you know the one... you always get the creme brulee even though you think to yourself, "A real DUDE doesn't order Creme Brulee! Eff it... I'm getting the CREME BRULEE!" The caramalized sugar on top of your favorite sissy-girl dessert... that's the smell here but with a noticible hop spiciness. That'll begin to put the hair back on your chest. You big nancy...

T: More toasty caramel with a nice, brassy hop tang. Slight touches of vanilla, oak, just-barely-burnt apple... ok, ok... I've got a wicked sinus infection right now... my palate's off a tad. Not noticing any alcohol heat despite the 10.5% abv. Rich, dark hop flavors with enough sweet malt backbone to cut through the bitters and leave a perfectly-balanced brew. Think of Stone's Ruination with a suntan.

M: Strong-enough malt presence gives this one a nice, rich texture. Carbonation is even throughout without one thinking they've got Pepsi in their mug fizzing away.

D: Yes. Someone who knows me please buy me more for Christmas. And while they're at it....

sudsellier, Dec 18, 2009
Photo of Seanibus
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is one strong Bastard.

Pours a deep reddish, slightly hazy, with a huge, thick, fluffy head that lasts a long time and leaves rich lacing. The smell is thick, non-specifically hoppy, and slightly sticky sweet. It is so rich it almost has a milk-like quality, like the aroma of some kind of unholy hop milkshake. The flavor is malty and raisiny with a strong bite of alcohol, almost like a creamy brandy. There is a vast bite of hop in here, but what exactly it is, or how to describe it's character, isn't clear. There is a vast, slow developing bitterness on the finish. The mouthfeel is heavy and creamy, with a bitter cling on the end.

This is a good beer, enjoyable on a lot of level, but not perfect. It is for sipping slowly and savoring. The sting of alcohol somewhat limits its appeal.

Seanibus, Jan 23, 2009
Photo of dpodratsky3
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into pint glass

A: Amber brown, nice fluffy, light tan head

S: Bready, malt is dominant, hops are in background but definitely present

T: A nice bready malt provides the backbone for some serious hops, surprisingly I'm not getting as much flavor out of them as I expected, just lots of bitterness and some flavor, not unpleasant at all though

M: Medium, definite dryness

D: Not as high as some IPA's could be, however it is much easier to drink than the typical strong dark ale

Notes: I definitely want to try this one again. While it was very good, I'm not sure it was excellent. The smell didn't quite come through to me and for some reason I was expecting more from the taste as well too. I'm not sure if it was over-hyped to me, or if the bottle was a little old. A very good beer, and one that I will try and also rate again.

dpodratsky3, Dec 30, 2009
Photo of fastsrt
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

this guy poured deep brown rose a 2 finger head that diminished to little islands in my sniffer. It smelled of strong of hops and booze i could not get anything else out of the aroma. the tastes is malt as it enters the pallet then is quickly overpowered as the booze and hops take over, but it is a good thing the alcohol and hops are balanced quite well which makes this one an easy drinker but a sipper none the less. this is a powerful beer and it lets you know it, it doesn't try to hide anything what you taste is what you get. This one is very unique and will buy it again.

fastsrt, Jan 14, 2010
Photo of Jmoore50
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Did a five year vertical of 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010. My personal preference put the 2009 first, 2006 second, 2010 third, 2008 fourth, and 2007 last.

We started with the 2006 first and we worked our way to the most recent version. All of the versions have a great amber color that gets darker towards the heart of the beer. The most recent versions own a very fluffy white head that actually sticks around for awhile. The 2006 version had the viscosity of honey, every vintage just resembled oil more and more the older it was. The older vintages had thick, wine like legs that were beautiful.

The smell of the 2006 was of incredibly sweet malts, light alcoholic booze, honey, and belgian candy sugar. I should just say that the 2006 and 2007 versions just smelled like booze and sugar. The 2009 and 2010 versions had more hop presence in it, and I would have to say the hops start to develop into an almost fruit punch smell in later vintages. One thing I did notice is that the alcohol booze smell is a very strong character in all of the vintages. The hops died out, the malts and biscuit flavors developed into sweet candy sugar, booze stays the entire way.

I love the fresh hops that are in the 2010 version, but I also love the almost 'liquor' characters that the 2006 has. Like I said in the smell category, this is probably more accurately described as a barleywine, not only because it fits the general characters of the style but it also ages like one. It owns a very strong hop character when fresh, and that fades pretty fast. What a really great beer that is such a great candidate for aging.

The mouthfeel of this one gets better with aging. The early vintages does have a great hop bitterness with the malty sweetness, but with age this develops a more oily character and for me becomes more enjoyable. Really glad that this one finally came together and I was able to enjoy it with some great friends.


Jmoore50, Dec 01, 2010
Photo of quine
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, 2010 release

A: Poured a deep ruby with a white head.

S: Aromas of caramel, citrus, and hops.

T: Prevalent taste of hops up front, with a receding sweetness. Only a slight taste of alcohol is noticeable.

M: Smooth and creamy, with a nice medium carbonation.

D: Amazingly drinkable. The slight taste of alcohol is well balanced with the other flavors. A great sipper.

quine, Feb 28, 2011
Photo of stephenjmoore
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2011 Vintage

A- A murky amber/caramel colored body with a bubbly tan head that leaves a thin layer.

S- Tons of sweet caramel malt, slight burnt hop aroma, lots of booze.

T- Really similar to the aroma. Just a huge amount of sweet caramel malt. Lots of grainy, bready aromas with some boozy flavors in the back.

M- Moderately smooth, still a little bite, but not as harsh as when it is fresh. Full bodied, medium-low carbonation.

O- The nearly two years of aging changed this one. When fresh, this beer is incredibly hot and the hops, malt and booze all fight each other. The hops are not as prevalent, the malt is in the fore front and the booze has diminished slightly. This almost drinks like a barleywine.

stephenjmoore, Apr 26, 2013
Photo of TheViolator666
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 fl. oz. bomber poured into pint glass

A: Pours A nice cloudy amber hue with a full two-finger cream colored head. Tons of lacing and nice retention.

S: Huge piney and citrusy hop aroma, well balanced by some nice toasty malts. Alcohol as well.

T: Interesting. Tons of bitterness that lingers on the palate for quite some time, slightly astringent. Finishes with a weird pineapple-like tartness. Nice sweet and slightly toasty malts as well as some signs of citric fruitiness. Pretty boozy, this one will probably hit you hard. After just a few sips, I'm already feeling the effects of this one.

M/D: Smooth and appropriately carbonated. The alcohol hits hard, but is appropriate for the style.

TheViolator666, Nov 13, 2009
Photo of billab914
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Dogfish snifter. Poured a caramel brown color with a little bit of a cherry tint to it. it had a frothy thin head covering the top of the beer that receded a bit as I drank it, only to cling to the edges of the glass.

The aroma has a pine and citrus flavor to it with a fairly strong zesty, orange and lemon peel flavors. It also has a pretty big malty, caramel and somewhat sweet flavor to the nose as well. I really like that it seems so unique and doesn't really fit into a style, although it probably comes closest to an American Barleywine in my opinion.

The taste has a nice big malty and caramely backbone to it but also has a big bitter, citrusy, hop presence to balance out the sweetness. The zest that the nose had is definitely present in the taste as well. It finishes a little on the bitter side with a little bit of earthy spice to it. Little bit of alcohol to it but not a lot.

Mouthfeel is on the heavier side with below average carbonation, which worked well for the style. Drinkability is good, it's a very nice beer overall. It's a very good tasting beer but what I really like about it is it's uniqueness.

Another Stone release that I will purchase a few bottles of every year. I can only imagine my score on this one would increase with some age on it as the alcohol bite fades and the malt comes through a bit more.

billab914, May 08, 2010
Photo of BMoldy
4.08/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2009 release served in a St. Bernardus chalice.

A: Deep orange with slightly reddish hues. Surprisingly clear for such a dark brew. A thin light-brown head takes about a minute to settle but leaves behind excellent lacing.

S: Lots of toasted and caramel malts here, with slight undertones of fruit (pineapple?) and oily hops.

T/M: Bold, but very well-balanced, this beer exhibits very little overt trace of alcohol. A nice malty smoothness also stems from a very mild carbonation, making it a good sipper. It's also surprisingly fruity and floral despite being roughly two years old. The body isn't heavy as I would expect and the warmth of the alcohol feels subdued. Tastes a touch syrupy, but otherwise remains relatively drinkable. Ends with bitter smack, then a long sweet finish.

O: Good but not fantastic. I might pick it up again.

BMoldy, Jan 16, 2012
Double Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 5,862 ratings.