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Double Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Double Bastard AleDouble Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,054 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,054
Hads: 6,416
Avg: 4.26
pDev: 19.25%
Wants: 477
Gots: 1,237 | FT: 38
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: 2,054 | Hads: 6,416
Photo of waughbrew
3.94/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful mahogany color with a perfect, creme-colored head with great retention. Smell is a medium amount of piney hops, some cherry notes, and little else. Flavor is toffee and toast with a wonderful spciy piney hop presence and big caramelization. More cherry esters with some alcohol in good proportion. Mouthfeel is fine but bothersome at the same time. The carbonation and big body come through all right, but with that Stone characteristic plasticized feel. Halfway through drinking this it started to piss me off. I find it tough to describe, but it is just a rounded, dulled malt flavor/feel that I get from the majority of their beers. Perhaps it is the caramelization of the malt. Hop bitterness and flavor keeps this one very drinkable for its size.

Impressively made, but the malt flavor and feel fails to make a good showing. The great hopping makes up for that deficiency to result in a pleasant creation.

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Photo of AllThingsNinja
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled with a tormented tonque at the hophead throwdown...

Who in their right mind would seek to balance such an incredible malt backbone with bitter and arrogant hops. I suppose it's some twisted sense of propriety, humor, and adventure that drives the folks at Stone to craft a dark ruby brew with a mind twisting alcohol aroma, chocolate, and grapefruit aroma. The flavors of the brew shift back and forth between sour citrus, again grapefruit, and malt notes of chocolate and coffee. Its an intense mélange enlivened by an alcohol that lets the flavors take flight. A most excellent and drinkable brew.

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

This was a beautiful mahogony colored, slightly cloudy beer with very little head on it. There is a delicious sweet malty aroma with a prominent alcohol smell, and a hint of vanilla. The taste is also delicious, very malty with lots of balancing bitterness that helps keep it from being overly sweet. Mouthfeel is excellent. Drinkability is also good, but use caution, as it gets warmer it becomes real easy to gulp down. And that's asking for trouble.

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

2003 edition in the 22oz bomber. The bigger brother to Arrogant Bastard pours a brown color with reddish highlight and a minimal tan head unless poured very aggressively. The head drops quickly to a bubbly ring leaving a nice lacing around the glass. Quite the strong aroma on this one, with plenty of sweet malts, earthy hops, fruits and a touch of alcohol. This one definitely brings a big taste to the plate with a sweet fruity malt upfront that settles into a bitter hop bite. This one has a similar taste to arrogant bastard but upped several notches and a few more complexities are thrown in. A very complex tasting beer indeed, maybe having a 3 liter at one sitting can help unravel some of these complexities. Mouthfeel is amazing, full and creamy with perfect carbonation. Drinkability is perfect, there is only slight alcohol tastes and scents so that never slows the consumption. This is a near perfect beer in my opinion and I look forward to this years release as this was my last bottle. Highly recommended to all except people new to craft beer because this will knock them on their arse.

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Photo of Mitchster
4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2003 edition. 22 oz. bomber. 10.0% ABV.

Pours out to a sparkingly clear deep garnet, and with a heavy-handed pour, achieves a large sticky & clumpy yellow head with very good retention and lacing. Bubbles take their time to meander through the sticky deep red and amber liquid. There are little bits of flittering hop debris. Clumps and layers of sticky head remain until the last drop. Aroma...basically a ton of hops and a ton of malts...immediate blast of mango, then piney, resinous hops with hints of turpentine and shellac, caramel, figs and dates...a pretty typical barleywine aroma with a touch of sour green hop leaf. Carbonation is mild to moderate. Mouthfeel is wonderfully cloying and oily, smooth as silk (though the flavor isn't), and with a dense, firm syrupy body. Taste echoes the aroma exactly. Lots of upfront mango and lots of raisiny malts. Medium bitterness, actually decently balanced and not too over-the-top, with a sustained bitterness in the semi-woody finish kissed with hop-leaf astringency. Alcoholic esters are predominant in aroma and taste, however they are not obtrusive, and a touch of peppery alcohol bites the tongue towards the end. Nice wave of clover honey and vanilla cap it off before the aftertaste. Cleanly fermented.

A pretty solid effort from Stone. I tend to prefer my barleywines maltier than hoppier. This one is actually somewhat easy to drink (but still a sipper like Batch 6000) and makes a good nightcap. Pleasant buzz, too. Although it has taken me some time to get used to Stone's Brews (at first they were all one-dimensional over-hopped monsters), I am now starting to get more comfortable with what they are, 'specially their pungent IPA (which is my favorite). Recommended, at least to try it. A love it or hate it kinda brew.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle obtained via trade with Pisskynights. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed 1 1/2" of tan head over the clear deeply copper brew. Head is resilient, long-lasting, and laces amazingly, with solid foam being left down the side as the head recedes. Aroma is the solid, sweet scent common to most strong ales, tending towards a bit of fruitiness if one can bypass the obvious alcohol presence. Taste is, as expected sweetly malty, but well contrasted by the strong hops presence, which almost seem to provide a grainy feel to the tongue, they are so strongly present. Mouthfeel is great for the style, and drinkability is good, although I fear eventually the malt sweetness might get a bit tiring. An excellent strong ale.

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Photo of RocketWidget
4.55/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Mmm, mmm! I’ve heard lots of good things about this beer, and I’m very excited to try it. Comes in a beautiful 22oz painted bomber, with the most hilarious label I’ve ever read! See here for more


Pours an outstanding dark red amber. Unfortunately, head retention is little to none. Smell is malty and sweet, damp like a cave. Taste is bitter and yummy. This is a HEAVY beer. Has the grapefruit taste of the regular Arrogant Bastard ale, but I find this particular taste to be complementary and blend smoothly with the other tastes, unlike the regular AB where the grapefruit seems harsh and out of place to me. This beer also has subtle spiciness to it, perhaps even ginger undertones?

A very smooth and drinkable beer, this is highly recommended. Cheers to Stone!

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Photo of kmo1030
4.8/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

nice dark ruby brown in color with a tan head that laces the glass. piney floral sweet hops dominate the smell. very fruity too, i pick out cherry, raspberry, and apple aromas along with brown sugar. a little bready and a little bit of a coffee aroma too, but it's buried in there. as far as the taste goes, this is what beer should be. big piney, grapefruity hops. additional citrus flavors are present along with rich caramel and some chocolate malts, especially toward the end and aftertaste. some thing reminiscent of peanut butter in the after taste as well. there is some nice fruit character in there too with a cherry raspberry flavor dominating there. the spicy alcohol is apparent some of the time, but i've always liked a little of that in my beer, so it only adds in my opinion. full bodied and well carbonated, perfectly complmenting the huge flavor. an exceptional beer from an exceptional brewery. if big beers are your thing this is a must try, cause it's humongous.

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Photo of sponberg
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Three pints and two bottles later, I've finally figured this one out.

Deep amber with a head that dissipates rather quickly. Hoppy sweet aroma - it smells like it wants to stick to your nose. Big time malty sweetness.

I prefer this one 5 to 1 in bottle over the draft version. On tap it's almost sticky, cloyingly sweet, with a caramelly malt sweetness that's palpable and a distant citric hoppiness. It's missing its balance somewhere. In bottle it all smooths out - caramel malty sweetness in a big way, but the balance between the malt and the hops is far better, with a lot of drying alcohol and darker, spicier malts to balance things out. The finish - a fine balance between caramel apple sweetness and citric PacNW hoppiness split by alcoholic fumes - simply rocks. 10% and I'm looking around the house to find another somewhere. What's that? A Stone IPA? That'll work...

Get a bottle. Toss its ass in the back of the fridge for 6 months. Pop it and enjoy - one of the finer 10% ales in existence when the situation's right.

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Photo of egajdzis
4.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a clear ruby color with a medium sized off white head. Interesting aroma included hints of fruit (pineapples, strong pineapples), spicy hops, and peanut butter, very strange. Very bitter hops are dominant, followed by caramel malt, finished with more hops. Very full, very good.

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Photo of vladtheimpaler
4.16/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Beat me over the head with a rubber chicken! This beats ruination for palate slaughter, fer sure! Red color, tan head. Clear. Carmel and hop aroma. Big, chewey, malty hoppy flavor. Lingers. Massive bitterness that lingers even to the next day. Hop flowers, BABY! Special thanks to Eyedrinkale.

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Photo of Sammy
4.03/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nicely bitter taste, ameloriated by malt. Crimson with hops suds best appearing in a trappist glass. Floral and pine strong hoppy aroma. Grapefruit mid-sip, cheese aftertaste. Alcohol warming, feels like vodka.. Good with strong meat and caution not to have competing patatoes.

perhaps overrated.

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Photo of pheurton
4.15/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2003 edition tasted in May '04: opaque burnt sienna topped with a cake-like toffe colored head. sticky webs of cream colored lace coat the glass. huge malty aroma of pineapple, mangos, and crystallized sugar with a pine needle undertow. steady carbonation. thick and full bodied yet still quite zippy....an admirable acomplishment. massive screaming avalanche of malt flavor flexes its muscle. tropical fruit and crystal malt flavor dominate. spicy resinous hop bite in the end ties this package together. underlying piney hop flavor remains ever constant in the background. zero citrus character. alcohol stays hidden for the most part, but with the searing characteristics of this brew, that ABV is never far out of mind. the mouth stays coated with crystallized sugar and resinous hop flavor long after the glass has been put down.

massive and not for the weak of heart, this beer is well put together and managable for its sheer enormity. bucketloads of flavor. a must try for any big-beer lover.

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Photo of RedDiamond
4.59/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cracking the bottle, the escaping gas made the sound of a big wet smoochy kiss. Either that, or I’ve become a little too attached to my beer these days and need to get out of the house more often.

There is much hype surrounding this beer, but you can’t drink a bottle of hype. Beyond the mythos and hyperbole, this is truly, ultimately a world-class beer. It features a profound malty fragrance that is very sweet and bread-like. The brew itself is clear until you spill the yeasties. It has minimal carbonation and a deep honey-garnet color.

This one sat in my fridge for two months, which probably wasn’t a very healthy idea. It wasn’t very healthy for the potato salad that sat next to it either. But I was still able to taste everything this big fat Bastard aspires to be. It is muscular and profusely malty with a full-bodied mouthfeel, an alcoholic undertow, and an understated but complimentary bitter finish. It lacks a bit of lace and the head fades quickly, but the potato salad more than made up for this.

And as for that “You’re not worthy!” stuff, let me tell ya. Even the mighty Double Bastard isn’t half the full-blooded sonofabitch that I am.

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Photo of proc
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

To quote an old rock and roll adage..."...Meaty Beaty Big and Bouncy."

Yep, that is how I would describe Double Bastard. Its a "meatier" version of its "Arrogant" relative. Pours out to a dark brown in the glass with a nice head. Excellent lacing all the way down the glass. The aroma is that of a sweet malt and is very enticing. The beer isn't as scary as the name implies, but rather a flavor powerhouse of a beer. The malt is so thick you can nearly chew it and is so well-balanced by the hops, which grab you hard, but don't over do it as you might think. Its drinkability is near perfect and if you like pales, IPA's and barleywines, then you'll enjoy the aspects of this one. It is such a well brewed beer. Kudos to Greg and the crew at Stone. Yum. Now get those Stone beers to Michigan...

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Photo of FranklinPCombs
4.26/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a really damn good beer. I myself am an avid drinker of the Arrogant Bastard, and this was actually my first taste of the DB. My brother and I broke this out along with the Stone Vertical Epic 03.03.03 for a mini tasting. This beer is absolutely beautiful to look at. It poured a clear dark ruby color, with a thick foamy tan head. The smell was heavy on the sweety syrupy hops, with other sweet smells such as honey, pine, and maple sap in there as well. The taste is a huge sweet hoppiness just as the smell would indicate. There are some more subtle hints in there, with some earthy tones barely noticible, but really most of the flavors are masked by the wonderful hoppiness. The mouthfeel was smooth with plenty of carbonation. If i remember correctly, this beer was in fact a gift to me, so for whoever got it for me (I seem to have forgotten), thanks. A great beer overall

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Photo of GreatPondBrewer
3.7/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a dark chestnut like color with tons of red stains mixed in. There was yellow like head typical of some of the stronger barley-wines and Old Ales (Big Foot). Smell was huge with notes of juicy fruits, esters a plenty, big hops and a blackstrap mollassas sweetness. Taste started off with more sweetness and moved to a big alcohol kick with the hops there, but the malts doing a lot of the work for once in a Stone beer. I feel that the alcohol was too brash for now and luckily I have another bottle of this, which I will keep in the cellar for at least another 2 years.

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Photo of GreenCard
2.21/5  rDev -48.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

22 oz. bomber delivered by LBB and tasted by myself and BelgianBeers.

Appearance: quite dark amber, good clarity, a nice layer of tan head which depletes quite slowly to a thin film

Aroma: malty and bready, very light hop scent, a touch of wet carboard (aerated at bottling!?!?), acetone, a thimblefull of coffee, not a really "overt" aroma (which is the opposite of what I expected)

Flavor: butterscotch malt sweetness up front with an interlacing off-flavor (sour milk, rancid butter?), one dimensional hop flavor and bitterness, big hit of peppery alcohol that blooms into your palate like nail polish, cardboard here too, finish is sweet with a burnt caramel aftertaste

Mouthfeel: full body, terse carbonation, alcohol warmth

Overall Impression: I don't know... might be an off bottle? Probably committing beeresy with this review, but come on! Cardboard and sour milk!? This is either not at all what I expected or completely disappointing. A case of not living up to the hype?

Not worthy? That's OK with me...

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Photo of jvajda
3.9/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Dark red-caramel color, with a two finger head that slowly retreats into a creamy cover. This beer is intimidating.

Smell: Apples all the way.

Taste: Loads of carbination. This is a very hearty, creamy beer. It starts with hops and a good shot of malt then finshes with an astringent alcohol flavor. The alcohol is present but welcome. I taste apples, bananas, and walnuts in this.

Mouthfeel: A creamy massage for the tougue! Best mouthfeel I've experienced in my short history with craft beer.

Drinkabilty: Not sure I could drink it everyday, but it works well as a dessert beer every once and a while for me. A sipping beer to be sure.

This beer is a real kick in the pants.

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Photo of Rastacouere
3.28/5  rDev -23%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Merci Psychprof! Clear copper hue over which lies an off-white head. Aroma is very harsh on alcohol surprisingly so. It took me a while to get over those vapors and get to studying the rest which had a big caramelic malt profile and a fruitiness approaching orange or watermelon. There's also an earthy/peaty aspect in there, but of course, besides alcohol, the bold hops dominate. In mouth, there's evidently intense hoppy grapefruit juice, caramel, crystal malt and still a moderate alcohol taste. Finish is huge, monstruously bitter, mouth-grabbing, memorable for a while. Mouthfeel is rather thick, closing onto syrup. Definitely worth a try to experiment it, but masochism as they say, is to be consumed in moderate amount. Not quite my bag, give me an Old Numbskull or HOTD Fred if I want a hoppy barley wine. I'll never brush my teeths again.

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Photo of deejaydan
4.21/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thank God to Skyhand so I can have this again. Pours like a rich, dark Amber. Taste of hot alcohol and, well, hops. Tons of Hops. The one real problem with this beer is that it tastes like the normal Bastard but has one heck of a kick to it.

I hope to trade again with skyhand in the future.

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

Pours a cloudy medium brown colored brew.

Smell is heavenly! Sweet malts and fragrant flowers and grapefruit hops smell!

Taste is malty and hoppy at the same time. Very thick brew, as a barley wine should really be. Malty with a rounded bitterness. I would like a bit more malt but this is good. Could have a more complex flavor, there is a point at which "More Hops" becomes a LIABILITY! This brew is right at that point.

Mouthfeel is the thickest brew I have yet tasted.

Drinkable? More like sipable. Tasty brew that could learn some thing from Belgian brew masters about balance.

Still it is Light Years more balanced than “Arrogant Bastard!”

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Photo of dippy
4.23/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A Good beer, but not all that the name implies.

A hard pour from my bastard bomber into the glass left a nice light brown slightly rocky head. A deep reddish brown beer with light carbonation.
An arousing aroma on this beer, very sweet slightly piney notes as well.
Taste is sweeter than expected due to the higher alcohol. More malty than hoppy. A little fruity , I'm thinking plum? . The hops are a kick in the teeth but this is necessary to keep up with the sweetness. The fact that the malt and the hops are outrageously out of balance brings balance to the beer.That is If you follow illogical logic.

This is much thicker/syrupy than the Arrogant Bastard, which I liked. This was a great beer. But I think I will Stick with the Single Bastard

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Photo of TinusTime
4.32/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

2001 model tasted.

Poured a ruby brown with a wisp of a head. Smells of dark pit fruits and vanilla and a bit of dark hatian rum. Taste echos the smell.. Definately the taste of fruit in Cuban or Hatian dark rum.. Some woody notes as well.. Tasty but alcohol noticable. minimal evervecence. Could drink one and then its over. I need to try this again to give a complete report. But this is definately a belly warmer. Good stuff, but not sure its worth the huge rating. Perhaps the 3 years in the bottle mellowed this thing out as i didnt taste the hoppyness that others have.. Tasted much more like a belgian ale than a hoppy old ale.

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Photo of marburg
4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I think this is clearly a better and, perhaps strangely, more drinkable, balanced brew than it's little brother. Pretty clear but intense garnet, ruby, darkened rusty vermillion color. Very clean, well-defined aromas of sweet alcohol and space invading hops with a citric acid twist.

Thick and chewy brew. Syrupy, lip-smacking goodness. Big fruit flavors up front, slathered in malty caramel sauce. Alcohol is well-integrated but plainly obvious. In keeping with its Arrogance, it's a blatant exercise in extremes. But somehow, I find this version a bit more drinkable than Arrogant Bastard -- more balance being the key, I think. Citric fruit and pine sap bitterness mingle well with the fruity, estery flavors up front, and it provides a great transition to the finish. Most plainly stated, this is largely sweet beer with a big bitter backend to it. But it's quite complex, full of rich fruit, alcohol, citrus, and caramel. Pretty damn good.

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Double Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 2,054 ratings.