Double Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

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Double Bastard AleDouble Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

6,299 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,299
Reviews: 2,072
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 10.8%
Wants: 443
Gots: 1,137 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,299 | Reviews: 2,072
Photo of ggroller
4.85/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

22 oz. silk screened bomber. I'd like to add my own text underneath the gargoyle to read "shut up, sit down, and drink."

Pours a dark amber with a nice white head. Great retention and nice sticky lacing. Smells of nutmeg, cinnamon, and chocolate.

Whoa. Sweet Jesus. The text on the back of the bottle doesn't lie. This is one muther effer of beer. Dark chocolate, bitter chocolate, cinnamon, nutmeg, caramel, maple syrup, brown sugar. Very sweet and chewy. The alchohol is certainly present on the palate and it really warms you up.

Delicious and drinkable but I could only handle one.

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

Once again an amazing Double Bastard from Stone Brewing. Hits right away with big molasses flavors and bitter bite. We paired it first with grain crackers, this brought out the dry biscuit flavors, then we paired it with sharp cheddar. This eliminated all bitter flavors and smoothed out the florals, then we had unshelled salted nuts, after this the brew was sweet, bold and flavorful.
All the things I love in a brew, big hops, big malt body, great head, amazing.
Just saying I will have four or five of these stashed for trading.

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

Waited in line for a long time for the special release of the 2006 vintage. It was well worth the wait. The taste of this was amazing. Smooth and complex, the beer took on a different feel from a typical double bastard. The warmth from the alcohol was definitely there as this beer wasn't messing around. My 2L growler was gone before I knew it.

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

A - pours into a murky mass of malt and lupilin, which glows a deep purple-amber in the light

S - rich malt, reminiscent of a decoction mash (but most likely not), notes of coffee, carmel, and a little chocolate, overall hop armoa is very subdued with all the malt, yum...

T - initial burst of butterscotch and carmel sweet falling into the hop bitterness which slowly rotates to hop flavor in the finish

M - rich, with a zesty quality from the high alcohol level

D - very, what's not to love? it's got a lot of hops and a lot of malt, both balanced together, it's luxury for the palate.

Photo of avylover
4.84/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

ruby golden color with a syrupy look to it. This beer looks like it means business, even before you pop the top. Tried arrogant bastard so this could only be better right? RIGHT!! .Smell is malty caramel with a hint of alcohol...nice. Once this beer hits the tongue thats when the hops hit you. This is a great blend of HUGE sweet maltiness and HUGE bitter/citrous hops. I could find something new in the taste every sip and the high ABV is a great bonus.Great mouthfeel, with a nice taste lingering after every sip, coating the mouth with malt and sizzling my tongue with hops!!, and if I had a steel liver drinkability would be a 5, so a 4.5 is fair. One of the best of any style. top notch beer hands down. Whenever you see this beer....BUY IT.

Photo of redteg02
4.84/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Apperance: is almost like a fine scotch with a darker red highlight. poured it the traditonal way (tilted for half the glass, in the center for half the glass), and it produced no head at all, a little disapointing and what kept this beer at a 4

Smell:Wow, a lot better than the regular bastard. strong fruit with just a mild hint of the alcohol. my comments do not do it justice, truly an impressive smell. best ive had.

Taste: again wow, first impressions are fruity, but counter acted by a nice bitterness (nothing too powerful though). very complex in the taste, almost a woody taste in there but nothing too strong. goes down smooth and tastes wonderful.

Mouthfeel: full and just shy of chewy. very nice

Drinkability: i could drink this all night long. however since it is 10% ABV i would not remember drinking it the next day. with that said 3-4 and i'd be set.

Photo of bditty187
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Four bombers of this elusive beast landed in my possession thanks to my cousin Scott in Las Vegas and thanks to DESTRO for all of the information needed to track it down.

Double Bastard seems fitting enough for my 600th review on BA.

Dark crimson-brown in hue with coppery highlight, it is fairly dense in the middle with great color depth, a finger and a half of light beige head was impressively fluffy with great retention. As I quaffed unorganized sticky lace was produced. As a whole this is a lovely beer in appearance. The bouquet has more balance than I was expecting, the maltiness is has great depth, there is a touch of sweetness upfront, toasty behind the sweetness and caramely in the finish, the hoppiness is noticeable but more restrained than I was expecting, in no way is that a negative assessment. The hops in part an aroma of pine and grapefruit. The nose is very inviting. One sip of this nectar and I swear I got misty-eyed! Oh momma is this tasty! Upfront the palate has a quick burst of alcoholic heat that is swiftly encompassed by a rush of thick, hearty hop bitterness with a forest of tasty pine trees and groves of grapefruit. The hoppiness is long-lasting and powerful, as conceived by Stone the massive malty qualities close the beer with a big, sweet, caramely thud. It is huge in sweetness but far from cloying. The threesome between the alcohol heat, hops bitterness, and malt sweetness is beautiful in its grace, threatening in its power, and orgasmic in its taste. The huge flavors all work in harmony, each taking center stage on different sips. The aftertaste is so great you have to sit back in your chair and ponder the beauty that resides in your glass. I might be gushing but it is absolutely worth the praise. Full bodied, period, there is nothing “medium” about it, the strong malt backbone and firm carbonation creates a mouthfeel that is sturdy enough to support the big taste. Arrogant Bastard was great but swill in compassion to its older, angrier brother. Even with the whopping alcohol potency it is highly drinkable. It is quite the belly warmer. What a great beverage, it is as simple as that. If you have not tried this demon yet I highly advise you do. Wow!

2003 Release.

4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2005 bottling. This is the third year in a row Ive been lucky enough to have this beer cross my tongue.

Deep blackest red body is sinfully beautiful. Thick golden tan head sits at almost 2 inches thick and stays well. Leaves a slight lace.

Zesty sweet malt on the nosewith sweet dark fruit and a nice mix of spiceyness.

Thick rich darkness enters the mouth on first sip. Long burnt malt is even and well spread out. Palate is blessed with spicey dark fruit, so well mingled with the malt. Amazing balance. Mouthfell is a begging for the next drink, taste buds electric from slight hop notes, mouth watering for more. You hope you never see the bottom of the glass. Another unique, arogant, Double huge success from Stone. Yum!

Photo of techdiver
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2006 release.

Beautiful dep mahogany with a substantial creamy head that dissipates slowly leaving rings of lace behind.

Dominant hops over a barleywine nose.

Great taste, so smooth and creamy. Complex, with a sweet start leading to a bitter hoppy finish. Some alcohol presence, but very well hidden.

Thick and full mouthfeel.

Sublimely drinkable. I thank Robert at State Line for this 22oz. bomber; just so I didn't have to open my 3 l. yet.

Photo of jdklks
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I was surprised to see that I had never reviewed double bastard when having it fresh (i reviewed the 2005 last year from the brewery, but not the 2008). anyways, here goes:

This is beautiful and unique looking beer. Different lighting produces anything from dark brown to bright orange, and at all ends of the spectrum it looks great. it's murky and difficult to see through, except when directly backlit. the head is an off-white-nearly-tan color that compliments the body and laces the glass nicely. This one smells much better when it has a little age on it, but nevertheless it smells great fresh. hops and alcohol dominate here, though the malty goodness that shines as the beer matures is already apparent. a nice combination of dark and citrus fruitiness.

The flavor is, of course, the best part of the beer. if i were to classify this beer i would call it an old ale or a barleywine. it is overly-hopped for either style (something which of course changes over time), but, unlike most other overly-hopped old ales and barleywines, it doesn't matter here. The hops are most pronounced in the finsh and grapefruit-like bitter aftertaste. up front there is a deluge of sweet dark fruitiness (figs, red grapes, prunes) that evolves into a roasty(?) and sweet (brown sugar) maltiness that makes the transition to overwhelming hops nearly seamless. this is a very complex beer that is just so fucking good all the way around.

The mouthfeel is thick, but perhaps over-carbonated in its youth. this progresses favorably as time goes on. drinkability is nothing other than constantly reaching for more.

Photo of PhiloPsych
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a big, bubbly head that leaves lacing around the whole glass. When cold, the taste is much sweeter than the regular Arrogant Bastard. As it warms the other flavors come through. Not as harsh as the regular Arrogant Bastard, but there is just as much complexity. Maybe a bit smoother and more drinkable than the regular Arrogant Bastard, which is surprising since the alcohol is heavier here. As far as I am concerned this is a really great beer. Very good. Very nice. Very Stone Brewery. I love it.

Photo of Metallix6403
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from the trusty 3 liter Double Bastard growler! Tapped in December 2009. Poured into a pint glass (multiple times).

Appearance - Screams bitchin' beer! Dark and rich amber / copper body with three fingers of a strong tan head. Retains very well.

Smell - A double punch of thick and intense malts and hops. I usually smell some tropical fruits whenever I break open the growler or the bombers.

Taste - Fantastic fruity and sweet flavors. Sugars, caramel, and a hint of butterscotch pairs well with citrus and other fruits. Finishes with a great touch of hops. Beefy yet so delicious! Yeah I said delicious, so what? You wanna fight about it????

Feel - A thick, smooth, full bodied monster. The alcohol is warming even on a cold on a cold pour. Carbonation is delicate and feels like it is cleaning the palate for the next drink.

Drinkability - Amazingly easy to finish multiple pours. A 3L growler goes quick with two or three people. Alcohol is noticeable yet with the taste and experience, it just doesn't matter.

Final Thoughts - This IS my brew of choice when it is in season. On tap, growlers, or bottles, I haven't had a bad experience with DB. As my brother said, "This beer is rocking my fucking world!"

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

I bought this as a single at Union Jack's on the Manatawny. I drank it in a goblet. The back of the bottle has words on it I don't know, and I'm a crossword puzzle junkie.

Pours a clear ruby red with a tan colored head of foam. Head falls to islands and a ring, with decent enough lacing. Carbonation looks steady. A pretty beer!

Aroma is HUGE fruit and caramel, with giant amounts of floral/spicy hops. Notes of dark cherries, dates, figs, prunes. Some sweet solvent, but pleasant. There is a ton of stuff happening in there.

First flavor is (WOW!) huge dark caramel/Munich malts, followed instantly by a big dose of hop bitterness. Warm heat is next, indicating a big alcohol presence. Fruits are here, like cherries, dates, and plums/prunes. (All prunes are plums, but not all plums are prunes!). For as huge as this beer is, it definitely works. Aftertaste is sweet, bitter, warm, and caramelly.

Mouthfeel is a huge body, smooth and creamy for its size, with an oily feel on the tongue. The back of my throat is under attack from hops and alcohol. Finish is very long, sticky sweet, and warm.

Well, this is certainly an incredible beer. Stone isn't afraid of offending you with their stuff. Thank goodness I'm not easily offended! Huge malt, hops, alcohol, fruit, everything. I love it!

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...

Photo of unskinnyhop09
4.82/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is really one of the only A+ beers a man can drink. 22oz. bomber.

It is a cloudy beer.

It smells like heaven. You can smell everything there == malt, hops, and alcohol. Perfect balance.

The taste is something for which one could die. I thought Ruination was amazing---this is the end-all if I have ever had an end-all. BUY IT, DRINK IT.

Mouthfeel is thick. The 4.5 is there just to keep it real.

Drinkability==drink two or more and you will be as $h!+f@ced as anyone...but is it not the best feeling EVER? 4.5 is so you know that you may not know exactly what you are doing after two bombers. You may not taste the 10.5 right away, but it will show up in your decisions after the fact.

Do yourself a favor---buy and drink two. You will smile for a while.

Double Bastard is it. Really---the only thing close is Pisgah's Hellbender (and I bet you will have a difficult time finding that).

Thank god for DBA. Stone is king.

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

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a goblet. 2008 version.

A: Dark brown, cloudy, dark colored thick head.

S: Strong hoopy scent with malty/fruity scents evident as well.

T: Big beer. Big malt backbone with classic Stone hoppiness. Floral & citrus tastes....maybe some spiceyness as well. Can taste the alcohol some. This is awesome.

M: Chewy. Low carbonation. Smooth.

D: This will warm you right up! Sipping beer but not for the faint of heart. this will be a regular for me.

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

A- Extremely hazy and murky caramel brown with a thick tan head. It actually looks like apple cider with the same thick and fuzzy appearance

S- Very hoppy with lots of caramel and some orange and spices, cinnamon I think

T- Lots of caramel and oranges as well as a spicy's tremendous...even better than Arrogant Bastard

M- Thick and smooth as most Stone beers and the aftertaste is no less than perfect

D- If you don't know it yet, Stone is my favorite brewery and this may be their best output yet!

Photo of vic21234
4.82/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2011 Vintage bomber poured into a snifter.

A- Pours a cloudy, dark red, borderline brown color. Not much head on this one, maybe a half fingers worth which quickly fades to a thin film along the top. Some lacing can be seen along the sides of the glass.

S- Lots going on here with the smell. First off and most notably is the alcohol sting. I then get hoppy aromas consistent with what one would get from an IPA. The hoppy aromas seem to be mostly of piney resin, with some citrus. I also get slight hints of dark fruits.

T- I'm biased here since this is one of my favorite beers. A nice hop hit up front, with great piney characters. I also get some hints of an oakiness in this beer. There is also a good alcohol bite, with each sip finishing with a nice warming sensation from the alcohol.

M- Medium bodied, good alcohol bite. A great sipper.

As stated above, Double Bastard is one of my favorites and has been since I got into craft beers. I enjoy all of Stone's "Bastard" variants, and this is by far my favorite of them.

Photo of Duhast500
4.82/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was unable to go to the EBF so I decided that I would have my Double Bastard to celebrate even though I was left out this year.

Poured from a 1 Pt. 6oz. bottle. into my Guinness pint glass.

The color is a dark orange/red and a little amber and gold at the same time. Not clear but cloudy with a thick off-white head.

The smell is very hoppy. Is a bit floral and a bit sweet with malt but also has a bastard of a smell that I can not place. It is the signature smell of the Arrogant Bastard brew.

The taste is strong, it is at first sip a little citrusy, has a great hanging aftertaste that is reminding me that this is a true to form craft beer. Is very creamy and is a bit flavorful than the orignal bastard.

This beer has a nice finish. It has a nice bite but is not overwhelming in it's texture. It is just right is it's combination and is very mush the brew worth the wait..

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

Pours a clear orange/brown, with very nice looking head, and a lot of lacing. The smell is HOPS, but a very fresh hop smell, floral citrus, very little alcohol can be detected in the nose. The taste is a dense malty backbone balanced perfectly with hops. This is the most perfectly balanced beer I've ever had. You know theres a shitload of malt and a shitload of hops, but neither of them have the advantage. Insanely full mouthfeel, and just an excellent ale. Thanks a lot DrJay!

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

This is one wicked brew! I don't usually favor the barley wines, but this one rips! It's got a very beautiful Dark red color, almost of blood, but darker. The head was pretty thick at first, but died down to a laceing. The head was a creamy white color. I thought that the taste had a little bit of a bite to it at first, but mellowed out after a while. It had a nice fruitt flavor, probably of the citrus origin, mixed with some caramel or lite chocolate. The aftertaste was kind of peppery, but not too bad. Being a bastard myself, I must say that this is one bastard of a beer, a double bastard that is. hehehe

Photo of Stunner97
4.82/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance- Nice thick white foamy head, with dark brown beer with slight carbonation and bubbles that can be seen on the edge of the glass, relatively clear in body and can be seen through

Smell- Beautiful sweet strong malty nose, lots of caramel and molasses just rip out of this beer, very sweet sugary nose, slight hops, and maybe slight hints of a milk chocolate,

Taste- thick creamy flavor at the jump off, lots of sweet sugar and malts lead off the early taste, similar to nose to lots of sugar, malts, caramel, and even hits of chocolates smash you up front deliciously, on the finish though you get that ever so slight bitter hops that slowly and slightly build up, an amazing beer with very complex flavors that would be interpeted different by people on each taste, good slight bitterness on finish matches sweet start

Mouthfeel- Very very very soft, creamy smooth and definitely heavy bodied, though so soft it has illusion of light, a nice beauty of a mouth feel

Drinkability- Scarily drinkable considering the 10.5 percent alcohol, its so soft smooth and delicious you want more and more with each sip, a classic beer to me, one to savor each sip, I could find a flaw what so ever in this beer to be honest, so well rounded and yet so complex, hard to put into words just how good this beer is, infact i feel me trying to describe it now isnt doing it justice, if you like the regular bastard try the double its like the ultra reserve of whats already a reserve, enjoy! you wont regret it!

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

2004: Mostly clear, deep red with orangish highlights. Thick, dense, off-white head that showed very good retention and lacing. Big, balanced aroma profile combining rich maltiness with fresh citrus and piney hops. Again, the flavour was a wonderful balance strong, caramel maltiness and aggressive hop bitterness and flavour. There's also a very light fruitiness present. Complex finish, dry and long with plenty of bitterness, alcohol warmth and pine resin flavours. Full bodied with medium carbonation and a smooth, creamy texture. This is an awesome beer, surprisingly well balanced and drinkable considering the huge flavours and high abv.

Photo of beergeek279
4.82/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2003 Edition, served in the 22 oz. bomber. The color is a dark amber, with a wisp of head, more than expected for a 10% beer. The smell is a nice sweet (barleywine) malt mixed well with hoppiness. The taste starts with a malt sweetness, then the hops hit like a sledgehammer, and a lingering bitterness remains long after the sip is gone; alcohol is barely even noticable. Mouthfeel is fairly heavy, but more than acceptable. Drinkability-wise, I'd drink these till my mouth went numb (which sadly might be sooner rather than later!)

I didn't think it was possible to improve on a classic like Arrogant Bastard, but apparently I was wrong! Despite the 100 IBUs and 10% ABV, the beer somehow manages to remain well-balanced, and a true treat for the coming cold season (and for those in San Diego, the chilly 70 degree season ;) ). A truly great beer and one that I imagine I'll be waiting for every year!

Photo of fox227
4.82/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Didn't get much head, pouring into a snifter, but its traces are off white, and the beer is a deep dark amber.

S: Dark fruits, caramel, maple syrup, fig newtons.

T: Taste follows the nose, and happily! But the big payoff is the fresh hop burst on the palate - resinous, piney, and maybe some very subdued grapefruit.

M: Very full bodied and bitter, with a long lingering (good) aftertaste. If you don't like aggressive hops, then I would recommend cellaring this beer for a couple of years.

O: A year ago, Stone's Double Bastard Ale was my first real "big" beer, that being above 10% abv, and my fond memory of that first bottle now has to stand up to my far more experienced beer palate, and I'm happy to report that it's still awesome.

Double Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 6,299 ratings.