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Double Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Double Bastard AleDouble Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

2,042 Reviews
THE BROS
100
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,042
Hads: 6,358
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 9.62%
Wants: 462
Gots: 1,172 | FT: 40
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  11.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-27-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Double Bastard Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,042 | Hads: 6,358
Photo of nogoodreason
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2004 Edition

Deep amber with glowing crimson highlights, startlingly clear. Tan head, fizzes and settles down to a few centralized chunks of bubbles. Nose is of very juicy citric hops, caramel and a powdery sweetness, best described as cotton candy. A detectable piney scent lingers with fusel underpinnings.

Full in the mouth but not really thick, nor particularly sticky the carbonation is just right, keeping it light and bordering on creamy. It hits your tongue with a wave of citrus that's surprisingly lacking in bitterness. Actually, it's quite refreshing. There's a lot of fruity and powdery sweetness and as you swirl it around in your mouth alcohol pops up here or there. Going down, it shows it's true colors with intense caramel maltiness and rough, aggressive pine sap hops. The piney aspect remains and builds in the rear palate throughout the experience, adding an enjoyable aggressive hop presence to this otherwise surprisingly sweet and mellow ale. At points the citrusey hops mingle with the cotton candy in the malt for a flash, teasing you with an easy drinking ale before the bastard rams some more savagely bitter Chinook down your throat. Incredible strong ale. I'm impressed.

A perfect example of attaining balance by going to extremes. Really, really nice. I love it fresh and can't wait to try it with some age on it. (1,354 characters)

Photo of Jacobob10
4.07/5  rDev -4.5%
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. (585 characters)

Photo of WetCoaster
4.12/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

-2004 release

Appearance: Deep copper with a thick, off-white/caramel swirled head. Very active, fine carbonation. Excellent retention. Thick lace and residual head/collar for quite a while. Nice.

Smell: Powerful blend of caramel, chocolate, pine, citrus, floral and pitted fruit. (Peach? That's a new one.) Slightly medicinal/solvent. It all combines to create its own unique, perplexing scent. There's a lot going on here.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Thick, dense, coating but lively mouthfeel. Chocolate maltiness off the bat, with dense hop favors mid-palette. Cherry/plum sweetness emerges periodically. Finishes slightly bitter. There seems to be a hint of diacetyl in this one as well.

Drinkability: Big and brash--one's more than enough. Truth be known, I much prefer the Single Bastard. This one's good, and lord knows it's big, but I'm not finding anything that really wows me. Maybe a bit of aging will help, but as it stands, Bigfoot stomps da Bastard. (965 characters)

Photo of beertaster13
3.93/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The bastard shall set you free. Pours a nice amber cherry wood mahogany with tan head that settles to a thin lacing. The smell is a nice citrus wallop, pine and spice make everything nice. Hints of caramel but are just overmatched. The taste is a lemon lime citrus blast up front, the hops will tingle in the mouth all the way through, you will have a nice robust roasted malt taste afterward with buttered tofee, very nice, medium bodied and dangerously good, the drinkability is down because 2 of these and you will be on your knees. (535 characters)

Photo of Truh
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Was adopted twice with this one on 11/27/2004. 16-oz. pour, the fool of a bartender, in a shaker glass at Sunset. I was sorely tempted to order a second.

Nice, ½ inch plume of initial down feather head. Deep amber to light brown hue that is calm and clear. Candied apple and cherry cotton candy sweetness to nose, underneath which resides a malt clamminess. Gaudy dreamberry fizziness on the tongue, followed by a shot of alcohol heat and a fairly cleansing hop bite at the end. Sort of middling sting to the mouth as it warms. I should have ordered a second 16-oz tumbler. (577 characters)

Photo of RockyTopHeel
4.82/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2004 Release in a 22 oz. bomber.

Dark, cloudy, chestnut-amber in color with a thin layer of foam floating on top. Aroma full of hops, caramel, and many, many other dark, wonderful flavors.

The taste is surprisingly smooth, with a wonderful back-and-forth volley of hops, caramel, brandy characters, and again, millions of other faintly detectable elements, with alcohol warming around the edges.

This is an unbelievable offering, truly exceptional to its core. A fine sipper after Turkey Day leftovers, too... (518 characters)

Photo of WesWes
4.37/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a beautiful ruby red color with a thick frothy offwhite/tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is perfect. It has a rich and intense malt offering that is balanced well with an equally intense hop aroma. It is quite floral to the nose as well as warm smelling. The taste is good. It has a very bitter hop flavor which seems to carry the taste. The malts compliment the palate, but take a backseat to the hops. It goes down easy and finishes warm and sweet. The mouthfeel is awesome. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn good beer. It is full of rich flavor and aroma; a good drinker. (637 characters)

Photo of shippos
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2003 vintage, poured with a hazy dark amber rubish brown color witha dark tan head that fades to a skim after awhile. hoppy alcoholic aroma, but what of course this is the double bastard after all. some hints of sweet malty background in there but they are fairly hidden until you taste it. warming alcohol up front followed by a good solid hoppy bittereness that isn't too overdominating. nicely balanced malt flovors that seemed to have desintigrated over the course of a year in my fridge. I would have like it if this had a little more malt background, but it's still one hell of a barleywine.

2004 vintage poured in an arrogant bastard glass both courtesy of Gueuzedude, poured with a creamy off white head and a deep garnet hazy color. resiny hoppy aroma with underlying malt sweetness and some raisins then there's the alcohol. nice sweet thick body that balances out with an intense hop character that is really bitter-a little coarse but not harsh. still an awesome beer. (983 characters)

Photo of Reidrover
4.58/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Ahhh at long last I have thee in my clutches!! Long have I waited for the Bastard to "set me free".
What an absolutlly gorgeous beer to look at,dark red,garnet in the light,small streams of carbonantion, great frothy off white head, that recedes to leave luxurious lacing, excellent..when the entry "beer" comes up in an encyclopedia this should be the one in the picture.
Very vineous,toasty aroma,sweet,smells of prunes,figs and fruitcake.
Again quite sweet indeed, to taste but its a dark,slightly decomposed sweetness, like prunes,figs and dark wild berries,after the sweetness a great bitterness,and a warming alcoholic tang.Warming all the way down, but in reality the 10% alcohol is barely noticable.
Exceptional mouthfeel on this creamy smooth and a great warming after taste.
I have to say this a beauty of a beer and very drinkable,,maybe dangerously so, for a 10% beer.
review was for the 2004 release. (919 characters)

Photo of sideshowrob
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brew poured into a fitting 22-oz Stone AB flute. Very nice color - a deep orange/red/amber. Almost glows. Complex nose and sent profile - lots of malts and hops hit you all at once - carmel, orange, hint of pine. The smell can be overpowering, but becomes balanced once you take it all in.

Flavor was out-of-this-world. Not sure why this is called a barley wine by BA, but I guess it fits as well as any style. The massive malts are balanced , fought over, and eventually displaced by the hoppy sweetness of this brew. Very complex, with many, many notes and flavors vying for attention. Carmel and buttery notes come through most strongly for the matls, with orange and "hoppy sweet" coming through for the cone-leaning. Beautifuly crafted beer!

Mouthfeel is good, with tons of interplay occuring on the palate. For all of its power and complexity, DB is still very drinkable, though it demands respect while doing so. (925 characters)

Photo of oxmasterscream
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2004 bottle courtesy of mrpicklerelish, big up.

App: Very clear, cherry brown with a viscous, light tan head. Nice.

Smell: Equally malty and hoppy. Some citrus and roasty, caramel malt. Even sweet pastries and raisin bread at times.

Taste: Whoa. The huge flavors one would expect from Stone. Brown sugar and candy sweet but searingly spicy as well. Fruity at times... cherries perhaps? Finish is wickedly bitter like other Stone brews. Grapefruity bitterness simply tears through your mouth and right into your throat. Leaves the mouth slightly dry but wanting another sweet sip. Extremely balanced. Well done. This stuff would rock with some age on it.

Mouthfeel: A real whopper. Big and chewy, full bodied and nicely smooth. A welcome warming from the high ABV and spicy hops.

Drinkability: It's deliciously balanced and you'd never guess the ABV was so high. I drank the 22oz pretty quickly. Tasty. (916 characters)

Photo of HappyHourHero
3.48/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Malty, hop infused alcohol aroma. Big, foamy, cocoa colored head leaves some pretty serious lace. Mahoganny colored beer with a ruby hue, tiny bubbles lazily float to the surface. The beer is dark, but transparent which creates a really cool effect, kind of like a gem stone. Beer is slick and coats your tongue with flavor. Malt bomb up front that barely holds of the alchol. Stong bitterness kicks in half way through. There's a sweetness floating under the surface that pokes it's head out long after the last swallow. It's what I expected, a big strong american barleywine, but not my bag. (593 characters)

Photo of 99bottles
4.7/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured slowly without disturbing the sediment, this beer has a very clear body of deep reddish copper. Very low carbonation, if any. A head of 2 inches rises with a light tan tint, and falls with average retention. Sticky lacing on the inside of the glass.

Smell: This has a really nice smell; there are strong sugar notes that bring to mind brown sugar, carmel and maple candy. Some fruity esters (citric hops?) try to pull through, but can not overcome the cookie like sugar smells.

Taste: There are the Stone trademark hops. In the taste, the hops come to the front and oddly enough, come to the front of the flavor. What remains is a rich and alcoholic taste of plum, brandy, and more of that decadent sugar. Is it actaully unfermented sugar? I doubt it, seeing the amount of sediment left to bottle condition this guy. But, seeing as this is only a few weeks old, perhaps the conditioning has yet to really take hold. This does have memories of the AB ale that is so popular; only it refines all the little qualities that make the little brother so arrogant and at times, unrefined. This is a really complete ale; I can't call it a barleywine with a clear conciense. Instead call it an American masterpiece. Stone's best, by far.

Mouthfeel: For such a sultry ale, this is great by not cloying. Though the carbonation is quite minimal, it works perfectly with the character of the beer. Nicely matched.

Drinkability: I love the subtle tastes, the nicely refined flavor, and the quality of this beer. That being said, I don't think anyone ought to have more than one of these already large 22 ounce bombers. It would be disrespectful to binge such a nice product. I can drink this easily, though quantity remains low due to quality. Take that as you will. (1,783 characters)

Photo of santoslhalper
4.85/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a winterish red with a nice tan head. Very inviting looking. Smells fruity and spicy. Great chocolate and cherry hints in the nose. Now, this beer is one of the best representations of an american barleywine I've had. Very smooth and mellow to start, and then bites you in the back. Ridiculously well rounded. Very sweet and bitter at the same tame. Fabulous. A complete attack on the taste buds, but not in a bad way. This beer will set you straight and put you in your place. It kicks ass without taking names. This is not just a beer, this is the nectar of the gods. (575 characters)

Photo of ejquin
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2003 Release
Appearance: Deep copper color with thin white head that fades quickly.

Smell: Carmel and malt with a tinge of hops. Definitely smells wonderful.

Taste: Hit first with the malt and carmel flavors. After that the hops come through and stay to leave a bitter aftertaste. Flavors begin to open as beer warms. Not much of an alcohol sting on this one. Very complex beer. One thing I noticed about this beer is that when it is cold it has a very bitter, almost disagreeable aftertaste. When it warms it really smooths out and becomes quite phenominal.

Mouthfeel: Pretty thick and smooth with the right amount of carbonation.

Drinkibility: For a 10% beer this is highly drinkable. The flavors begin to open as the beer warms and it really keeps your interest.

Overall this beer improves upon the already fantastic Arrogant Bastard. A complex enough beer to keep you interested, yet potent at 10% abv. (924 characters)

Photo of bigchris1313
4.52/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: That medium brown but drifting towards red color. Nice off-white head.

Smell: Somewhat sweet, like Arroganst Bastard on drugs.

Taste: Delicious. Definietely sweentness, almost syrup-like sweetness, but minimally offset by a fair amount of hops. Again, like Arrogant Bastard but overcharged. The alcohol is basically undetectable: quite an accomplishment for a 10% brew.

Mouthfeel: This thing is smooth like silk. It just flows into your mouth with a moderate amount of carbonation and somewhat thick.

Drinkability: I'm sure you're wondering why I gave this thing a 4.5 for drinkability when it clocks in at 10% alcohol by volume. Quite simply, it tastes damn good, even if it is strong. Furthermore, you can enjoy it over a long period of time, as it's flavor actually betters as the beer warms. It took me 30 minutes to savor 1 bomber of this stuff. I could qute easily do a few if I had purchased more than 1 case. Because this brew should be consumed so slowly, it will take hours to drink loads of the stuff, but it is definitely quite drinkable none the less. (1,088 characters)

Photo of mntlover
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice dark red with a tan head that falls and leaves spotty lace looks like a total lack of carbonation except for the head of course. Ahh fruity and malty hell even smells like some vanilla thrown in the mix. Hops also but not as big as I imagined them being mostly grassey smelling but light pine also coming up. Taste lightly like regular bastard that has been hit with malt steroids. This beer is big on malt, fruity sweet chewy caramel malt at that. Hops are present but not as in your face as regular bastard due to addition of extra malt ofcourse. Taste is big and at 10% you would think some alcohol would be present but it is very well hidden underneath the malty flavor. This is not a beer that begs to be sipped, man this stuff is good enough to drink, as long as you do not have to stand up afterwards. Mouthfeel is big chewy find myself smacking my lips after downing a swallow for some reason. Drinkability is great I bought 6 bottles now I have only 5 :( in my opion it is better then Old Guardian this is one hell of a beer a great barley wine love it almost as much as my Bigfoot and looking back should have rated Bigfoot a 5 across the board. I was thinking of cellaring some of this but the hops profile is not that intense and would hate to loose any bitterness so will no doubt drink them all before next year. Hell of a beer get some if you can. (1,375 characters)

Photo of cerevisiaephilus
3.72/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Decent looking beer. Nothing special. Crystal clear, nice deep red mahogony color. Small but relatively persistant head.

Nose is very nice. Very full. I get some deep caramel and alcohol notes and definately big brashy hops.

Wow. Very big tasting beer. Extremely bitter. Extremely. Like fresh Old Crusty bitter. Leaves my mouth all taught and upset. Some nice malt notes too, caramel most prominently, but really can't hold a candle to the bitterness...really really bitter. And its a harsh bitter too. These ain't no low cohumulone hops. I've heard Stone loves the Chinook and I imagine that's what this is. Maybe I'd celler this for a year or two in an attempt to tame the hops a tad. This is pretty much straight off the truck...arrived I think in Indiana November 1st or so.

With the fairly strong alcohol and ridiculously bitter harsh hops in the finish....its definately not smooth.

Mouthfeel is decent. Thick but not creamy. Definately thicker than thin however.

Not very drinkable. Last year I barely managed to finish a whole bomber. This bitterness is just unreal. (1,093 characters)

Photo of Krovtar
4.57/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What drew me to this beer was its label “Double Bastard”. I read the bottle and thought, who cold make such statements, Stone brewing has proven it does have the right, as I have tasted Arrogant Bastard, Russian Imperial Stout and others. But just the same, very bold statements. Well I fancy myself a judge of beer having homebrewed for 6 years.

Let’s start with this, this beer blew me away; enough so to make it my first ever review.

Appearance: gorgeous a beautiful reddish color with a nice creamy head of amber which quickly dissipates, followed by a decent trail of lace.
Smell: I had some issues with the smell although it was so refreshing it reminded me of a spring rain and fresh grapes. The exact aromas I could not pinpoint, perhaps on a second tasting.
Taste: the taste as with the smell gave me the same but more powerful feeling, I had my first bottle with some French soft cheese and I plan on opening my second bottle of heaven when finished here, and I can assure you I will be buying more tomorrow.
Mouth feel: excellent very mellow near perfect not sure if I should say it but potentially my new favorite beer.
Drinkability: Whoa watch out for this one 10% abv, one and I'm happy two and I'm toast but only because my wife doesn't make dinner, so empty stomach and all sans the French cheese. I am going to have another and then tomorrow purchase six more for another day, more likely six other days.
Overall a great beer which blew my socks off, and now please excuse me as my feet are cold and I'm opening another bottle. (1,559 characters)

Photo of bultrey
4.52/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2001 Vintage.
I received this fine aged bottle of liquid arrogance from EyeChartBrew in a East/West coast beer trade, and what a treat it turned out to be.
Poured into a Bourdeaux-style wine glass. Excellent carbonation and head, with some fine sticky lacing along the side of the glass. Smell is reminiscent of maple, vanilla, soy sauce, and chocolate-covered dark fruits, such as fig and raisin. There was also a bit of a musty basement smell.
The first taste I got was the maple, which was when the beer was slightly chilled. Some dark fruit is there, plums perhaps, and a dusting of cocoa powder. As it warms, some of the soy sauce comes in, much like the Sam Adams triple bock. Only in this beer, it's not overhwelming and sickening; rather, it's delicate and complex. The hops have been tempered by the aging, and the only evidence that they exist is a nice, lingering bittersweet aftertaste. The mouthfeel of this is like a thick, creamy chocolate milk. The alcohol is so well-hidden that I could drink this until I passed out, which wouldn't take long, I'm sure.
Take a couple of these and cellar them. This is a fabulous beer in the current vintage, but it totally transforms upon proper aging. Superb for fans of barleywines, old ales and the like. (1,262 characters)

Photo of twelvsies
4.57/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The color of this beer is almost identical to the color of the bottle it came in; dark but clear brown, seaglass brown if you will, with a nice tan head leaving behind a trail of lace. Smells ripely malty, and of dried sticky fruits and raisins. Taste is insane, in a word. The complexity comes at you in levels, and challenges the drinker as promised by the blurb on the back of the bottle. Out front sweetness is followed by a bitter hoppy kick contrasted with a sturdy malty backbone. Getting a lot of syrupy molases sort of tastes and the contrast of that to the bitterness is fricken great. A fun beer to drink for sure. Super slick smoothness in the mouth. For a beer this big it's surprisingly easy to drink, though it's not a beer to pound by any means... it pounds you. Word. (784 characters)

Photo of beerceller99
2.82/5  rDev -33.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

22 oz. Nov. 2003 bottling. Pours a rust color with an off white head that fades to a smattering of sheen. Smells bready, yeasty, with plums and spicy alcohol. Lightly carbonated with a sticky, syrupy mouthfeel. Has a fruit juice bittersweet caramel flavor with a strong grapefruit hop and alcohol taste to finish.
This brew doesn't cut it as a Barleywine. The Bastard is best quaffed in it's original ( and more drinkable ) formula.
Maybe a couple years of cellaring will help. (481 characters)

Photo of danadeny
3.06/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2003 edition. nice brown body and decent head for a 10% beer. Smells very malty and fruity, classic barley wine smell. strong alcohol and roasted malt flavor, not much fruit at all. astringent alcohol aftertaste. mouth feel is decent, but the lack of flavor besides alcohol and malt turns me off. (296 characters)

Photo of crookedhalo
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2003 edition. Pours a deep copper color with a fluffy beige head. Molasses-like caramel maltiness and a good backing of west coast hops. Bold flavors roll across the tongue, richly malty, lightly fruity and plenty hoppy, taking on an astringency similar to grapefruit. Hops linger into the finish. Alcohol is noticable, but melds well with the overall experience. Sticky, syrupy mouthfeel, but you'd expect that from a barleywine. Another fine-tuned beer from the Stone Brewery. (478 characters)

Photo of Skidz
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2003 edition obtained from ppoitras in a trade. Part 4 of the 4 part Stone tasting done with my bro. By this point, we we up to our ears in Stone.

Pours out amber brown and sits dark orange-brown in the glass with a nice foamy tan head, leaving a light skim.

Smells malty with brown sugar and a light hint of diactyl. Some light citrus and alcohol becomes more prevalent as it warms.

RICH and malty up front. Hops come in the middle with grapefruit and lemon. Sweet, rich, but light, in comparison with the rest of the beer, dark fruits. Loads of barley. Alcohol brings more sweetness and fruity character. It's a ride.

Rediculously smooth and creamy with light carbonation.

A bottle of this a day would keep me happy, two bottles would make a perfect start and end to any day, and this bottle made the perfect end to our tasting.

4 beers averaging a 4.5 rating. Well done. (891 characters)

Double Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 2,042 ratings.