Double Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

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Double Bastard AleDouble Bastard Ale

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

6,300 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,300
Reviews: 2,073
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 10.8%
Wants: 444
Gots: 1,139 | 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: 6,300 | Reviews: 2,073
Photo of Gavage
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep dark reddish copper in color with a 1" head. The head quickly receded to a spotty surface foam. The aroma is sweet, as caramel and fruit dominate. The flavor is tremendous, probably one of the smoothest and tasty barley wines I have sampled. Caramel, plum, raisin, toasted nut, and sweet malt are superbly balanced with a sharp hop bite. Hops are very prevelent in this.

The mouthfeel is smooth and lightly crisp at the start. Dry and crisp at the finish. Carbonation levels are just right. The drinkability is quite nice for a barley wine. Find this and try it.

Photo of woodychandler
3.46/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

This poured with an off-tan head with decent retention. The color was a deep amber with NE-quality clarity. The nose was somewhat sweet and sugary. The mouthfeel was thick and full with an extremely sweet taste, like syrup. The finish left me licking my lips and thinking about the extreme sweetness that I had experienced throughout. I just could not get past how rich it seemed and that is not my bag.

Photo of tdm168
4.38/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - dark amber, slight orangish hue in the light; tan, off white head that is dense, foamy, and soft; great retention

S - bread, citrus, floral; a perfect bouquet; smells like a fantastic DIPA

T - bread, caramel, raisins, plums, prunes, pine, mild wood, candy sugar, bitterness in the finish that hangs on the palate for a while, as the beer warms the alcohol adds warmth and body

M - full bodied, smooth, crisp but not overly carbonated, a bit warm

This is a great beer!! It could be a barleywine. It could be an extreme DIPA. No matter what you call it the flavor profile and balance are fantastic. For the ABV it's drinkable based on it's flavor. This is a dangerous, delicious delight.

Photo of BARFLYB
3.68/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Capone's a few weeks ago, found this review in my pocket.

A- DB came to me with a rusty ruby and some dark red blotches. Looks like it has a nice build just from looking at it. A dark tan head swirls up creating a creamy layer for some time which fades, but leaves nice lace patches.

S- This smells strong, I believe this was from a 2009 keg and it shows. Big amounts of hop bitterness and the same goes for malt sweetness. I cant help but to whiff out some alcohol. Some pine with caramel, toffee and dark fruits with apple slices. A lot going on here, but not the most balanced.

T- And so it begins, Im blasted by some alcohol burn and some bittering hops with pine and grapefruit punches. The malt is large and sweet but are not quite winning the battle just yet. The finish consists of some fruit along with some earthy hop taste on the tounge.

M- A little rough around the edges at this young state, but for what it's worth, this is a strong beer and right now it's showing off it's guns. The heat and alc need to calm down. Above medium bodied with ample crisp carb.

D- Cant do much with this one with the high ABV. This has the potential to go down or uphill depending on what a few years will do to it. Right now this is good beer, but my score will be revised when I revisit a cellared bottle or tap offering, Im hoping it goes up.

Photo of Halcyondays
4.02/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

22 oz. bomber, 2007 Vintage,

A: Pours a dark brown/red into a snifter, fair head which left some lacing, but not the most impressive beer I've ever seen.

S: Big mix of hops and malts, raisins, pine, dark fruit, quite boozy as well, a bit abrasive, but complex.

T: The taste is very big and powerful. Huge pine bitterness races across the palate with some pineapple and citrus as well, while the malt and dark fruit add some balance, but still the flavours are a little out of control. Booze also comes across, a bit fusely, but mostly just a smooth solvent character. A little bit of dark/bittersweet chocolate comes out as reaches room temperature.

M: Robust, full of resin and oil, full-bodied, this is a beer that stays with you long after you drink it, it definitely makes an impression.

D: Definitely a sipper, this is one big, powerful, and complex beer. Very tasty, but at times the harshness and brashness got to me and I found it difficult to drink, and I love this extreme stuff. This is a very good, interesting beer, but I have to be in a particular mood to fully enjoy it. Another good production from Greg Koch and Stone, it is very raw at this stage, it will be interesting to see what a few years do to this one.

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

Bomber bottle, enjoyed in paper cups at the Warwick NY Disc Golf Ice Bowl. This beer is the ultimate, huge, flavorful, over the top and strong. Big nose, big malt, crushing hop bitterness. Alcohol obviously present, but well in the background, Thick body feel, dances on and coats the tongue and entire mouth.Stone is setting the standard. Perfect brew for a winter, BBQ. Went great with spicy chili and hot sausage sandwedges.

Photo of billab914
4.08/5  rDev -4.2%
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.

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

From a 650ml bomber. Poured a amber/burgundy with a nice off-white head about 1 1/2 fingers. Head didn't stay long and clinged to the side of the glass fairly well; spotty.
Smell of grapefruit and tangerine. Some grassiness and sweet malt. Some good biscuit hints that were checked by the hops.
Felt a bit oily, then sweet, some bitterness and a sweet to dry finish. A bit complex for this ole boy.
Alcohol was a bit much for a bomber.

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

A very intiminating beer. Intiminating alone that it's 1) made by Stone, 2) 10% ABV, and 3) clocked at over 100 IBU's (per Stone's website). The back of the label even warns that if you hesitate, do not buy it. I've been joyeously waiting for this moment for months. The few beers I had in the night were just mere sideshows for this, the main event. From the 2006 release, let's get on to this beer:

For best results, I've given this beer about a half hour out of the fridge to warm up from ice cold. Pours an outstanding head with a rich copper color. Lots of tropical and piney scents in the beer. Now the ride begins, and down the hatch it goes. Oh my goodness! Unbelievably smooth and sweet. Gigantic amounts of tropical fruits in the flavor, a bit of chocolate and sugar, and very warming alcohol. Very syurpy and sticky as it goes down.

What's scary is the drinkability of this ale, so watch out. There's certainly bitterness in there, but it doesn't seem like it's a 100 IBU beer, it's so smooth. A bomber of this and you're done for several hours. It's a beautiful beer that everyone should try....if you can find it.

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

I have to begin by wondering why this beer doesn't have yearly distinctions like Old Guardian. Moving on... damn it's a good beer. Not the beer I've had, but it's very finely crafted.

This will sound a little funny, but at first all I can think abour is pineapple when smelling this beer. It smells like a case of pineapple cores were dropped in the mash tun. Hops can do funny things I guess. For taste there is a lasting dry bitterness that hits you slowly and doesnt leave.there's more pineapple with some citrus and fruit rind piled on top of big, sweet barley flavor. It seems like there is some more room for complexity, but what this beer has is pretty bad good.

My only major qualm with this beer is that it's so damn tasty, but I can't stomach too much too fast. This is a definate sipper. If you can find this beer, be sure to share it with a deserving friend or relative.

Photo of smakawhat
4.11/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 2010 release poured into a pint glass, giving off a massive head from the pour as big as your fist if not bigger. Somewhat brown/tan/honey to tight cream colored head that will not go away. Very dark red brown body but also kind of cloudy. Excellent retention with the head falling evenly throughout the glass.

Kind of a closed nose on this but an interesting one of chewy malt and burnt spices. Fruity mush bananas also. Unfortunately it's not very open and easy to enjoy.

Taste though is a big improvement and a surprise. A giant rush of cinnamon comes through first with sweetness and sugars, even some nutmeg. Hop bitters come next and some lime astringency feel. Silky in the mouth, and some banana comes through in the taste also.

This is quite good, but the nose leaves me a bit disappointed. I would easily have this again but I would have to be in the right mood for it, it isn't something I am going to be dreaming about or reminiscing about for much or if at all.

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

Received from d0ggnate in a trade- Thanks! Pours surprsingly red and cloudy. It's a dark reddish orange, quite hazy, and almost syrupy in pour consistency out of the bottle. There is little head, but what is there settles to a ring. Big, spicy malty aromas up front followed by some nice orangey citrus and piney hops. This beer has a quite interesting malty flavor profile up front- almost as if there were toasted rice and barley in it. This is followed by a fruity sweetness that is furthr followed by a long bitter citrus flavor and a nice oily, piney hop finish. Mouthfeel is pure and clean but big and with a touch of sweetness. This isn't sticky or cloying at all and is quite balanced by the toasted flavors and the hops. Surprisingly drinkable. Not as harsh and more integrated than many Stone brews. I'm not always a fan of all of their brews, but this one deserves its accolades. Huge, interesting, nicely hoppy, balanced, and generally well done

Photo of corby112
4.88/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a dark brown color with a nice tan foamy head that settles into a nice lacing that lasts throughout. Aroma of roasted maltiness, chocolate, nuts and hops. Up front there is a lucious roasted chocolate maltiness that is perfectly balanced by a huge bitter hoppy finish. I love this beer.

Photo of Kelp
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this out on tap into a goblet.
Deep caramel color with a slight head and little lacing.

Unfortunately I was a bit stuffed up to get a real good smell of it. I got hops, a malty caramel, and a sweet smell to it.

Hops in the front followed by a malty taste and finished by the sweetness on my tongue. A bit of alcohol can be detected throughout the taste.

This thing is thick, almost chewy. Still somehow smooth in my mouth.

I could have enjoyed at least one more of these if I hadn't been driving. Better safe than sorry.

Photo of weeare138
4.37/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to egajdzis for this...
Appears a dark amber with an ivory white head. Spotty lacing is left on the glass .
Smell is of tons of malt, hops, along with some oaky vanilla going on.
Taste is of the same aromas. Very nice and hard to put into words. All I know is that I like it.
Mouthfeel is super smooth with a sweetness that comes through.
This is awesome but some abv is evident and you'll be able to tell.

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

Pours an absolutely lovely burnished red-brown-gold colour with a thick head of yellowish white bubbles, which cascade up and then down in the glass. Very pleasant indeed. Lacing is great, and it looks as thick as a elephant sandwich. Very nice indeed.

Oh yeah, masses of hops. Extremely pungent, but they veer to the side of sweetness. Lots of pineapple, pear, musk and passionfruit, and not nearly as much pine resin or citrus. Very rich and mellow for a high hoppy beer. Very nice again.

Thick and full on the palate, initially sweet, crescendoing with hop bitterness mid palate, and then declining to a very mellow rich toffee sweetness on the back. Perhaps just a light hint of heat on the back, but it's very subtle. The lovely toffee note on the back is what makes this for me. It makes it more than a highly hopped ale - it gives it gravitas and complexity. Very nice. Mouthfeel very smooth and delicious.

A classic American craft brew. Peppered with the wonderful American hops lusciousness, but with a deep complexity underlying this. This is not simply a beer brewed to the extreme for the sake of it. There is a clarity of purpose and a wonderful structure to all of the big flavours. Once again Stone has given me an extreme, but philosophical American beer experience.

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!”

Photo of HopHead84
4.17/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2/19/2011

On tap at Stone. 2010 Double Bastard dry hopped with Simcoe.

A: Dark brownish red with a big off white head. Good retention. 

S: Big floral presence, with ample grapefruit and pine. Hops are expressive, and accompanied by a rich caramel profile and bready notes. Nice combination of caramel and hops.

T: Slightly sugary caramel with notes of grapefruit and pine. Booze is restrained for the ABV. Midpalate ephemeral sweetness. Firm bitterness with low astringency. Finish is dry.

M: Upper medium body with upper low carbonation. Mouthfeel is sticky and smooth, with some astringency and warming.

Overall: Slightly mellowed Double Bastard with added dry hopping makes for an enjoyable beer in small quantities.

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

On tap at JJ Brewskys
Poured a hazy caramel color, but sits more brownish-red in the glasswith a light tannish head. Nose is deep malts-- caramel, toffee, flowery and mustard. Although massive in flavor, the taste is very balanced with oranges, red apples, beef jerky maple syrup to represent some heavliy guarded sweetness. The finish is very piney, resinous hops.

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

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- The beer pours a reddish-dark copper body with a light creamy head of light tan foam that last and last. There are a few random bubbles of carbonation that rise to the surface.

S- The smell of fresh crushed pineapple is strong in this one. There is a green floral hop aroma in the finish with some crystal malt flavoring as well.

T- This beer has a big juicy hop flavor with citrus, pineapple, resin and notes of green grass in the taste. The hops are so big that I taste a kind of dark earthy hop flavor that I have never tasted before. There is a bitter hop finish with a alcohol flavor that boost the hop bitterness and the hop flavor alike. There are flavors of crystal malt with notes of darker caramel malt that start to come through as it warms a bit.

M- This beer has a medium-full mouthfeel with a creamy texture. There is a nice smooth alcohol warmth in the finish.

D- This is not a session beer. The hops are big and dark like a black storm cloud that has just opened up. The alcohol and toasted malts only enhance the big crazy hops. Even when I exhale after each sip the flavor of citrus, pineapple, and bitter hops hang on my breath.


Thanks to karengarys for finding this brew for me.

Photo of John_M
3.7/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Perhaps I would have enjoyed this beer more if I hadn't had it right after the 10th Anniversary DIPA. For that matter, I wonder if Stone has tweaked the recipe over the years, as I've found this beer far more appealing in the past then I did at Frisco's last night.

The beer pours a darkish amber color with very good head retention and lacing. The beer looks quite impressive. On the nose I get sweet malt, cider and roasted nuts. Again, this beer smells very impressive, although the high abv. is noticeable even on the nose. On the palate the beer is sweet, rich and very alcholic, but with a drying hop burn in the finish. The beer is impressive, but frankly I don't feel as if the high abv. blends in all that well with the very sweet malt and hoppiness. I found the beer somewhat tiring on the palate, with this beer coming across as a sweet, but then ultimately very hoppy, barleywine.

The beer is very warming and, while impressive, is just not all that enjoyable. In the same style I much prefer the Bigfoot, where the sweet malt has been dialed down a tad. A good beer, but not what I would call terrific.

Photo of johnnnniee
4.14/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle from Bert's
Pours a brilliantly clear deep copper color with a decent sized off white head that shows moderate retention and lace. Aromas of pine resin and grapefruit pith atop brown sugary caramel and hints of cheery and toffee. The flavor is heavy on the pine, resin and brown sugar. Slight warming alcohol warns of the abv. Caramel, toffee, light plum and prune round out the flavor. Assertive hop bitterness but never harsh. Medium to thick body with a light to moderate level of carbonation and a sweet slick almost syrupy mouthfeel. Very nice strong ale, I enjoyed sipping on this for most of the night.

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

Pours a one-finger cream head that goes quickly and leaves no lace. Clear, red/amber color. Strong carbonation and medium bodied. Nose is malts, raisin and alcohol, starts with a distinct alcohol flavor some sweetness, finishes sweet & sour. 22oz bottle for $5.95 from Colonial Spirits Acton, Ma.

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

This is an '05 vintage served on-tap at the Blind Tiger's 12/12/12/12 Stone event.

A: The ale has an amber color, showing off red highlights that add a nice splash of color. Little head resulted from the pour but there is a clear stream of carbonation in the glass.

S: The nose is malty thick, having lost a majority of the bitter hops that define Double Bastard. Aging has done wonders on this beast, softening it significantly.

T: As the nose hinted, this beer has become a solid barleywine, with the hops mellowing out significantly and allowing the malts to come through. A sip reveals a whole mouthfeel of grain, thick in its strength. The malt flavors are as strong as ever but they are more noticeable because the hops have receded significantly. While Double Bastard burns the tastebuds when fresh, with two years under its belt it has softened and smoothed itself out. This is a good sippin' beer for in front of a fireplace on a cold night.

M: The mouthfeel has come around 180 degrees, from a hop bomb to a malt bomb. That change makes for a really good, complex drink.

D: This was my 4th offering at 12/12/12/12. I would gladly have tried any of the four again. I was especially fond of the smoothness that this beer picked up. If you've got a DB from '05, let it sit a bit longer and really enjoy it.

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

2007 Vintage - sampled 17/03/09

Raw sienna and burnt umber combine (along with a splash of clamato) to make for a very murky yet extraordinarily gradient colour scheme. In fact, the beer fragments into many different tones when held into the light, this outpouring of colour is radiant and bright despite the dismal clarity. Head is minimal but signs of carbonation are quite apparent (and sticky).

Prepare to have your nose barraged by an onslaught of succulently sweet malts and an enormous eruption of bitter, resiny hops. This has as much caramel *and* as much pine serum as is likely possible to find in a beer, not to mention the sheer amount of grapefruit. I'm always impressed by beers that can manage to be both extremely hoppy and malty. I'd probably rupture a 'pleasure gland' if there was such a thing...

This hoppy/malty concoction is deliciously tasty. There is a giant flaring up of dark fruity notes (plum, currants, red grapes, figs) as well as sugary confectioneries (brittle, truffles, sweets and sticky toffee pudding). The suggestion of cinnamon and nutmeg combine with the above to resemble plum pudding. The hops also impart distant but discernible notes of citrus.

Despite all these fireworks of flavour, the beer's composure and alcohol content never rupture. It is smooth, mellowed, and deceitful about its real strength. Some of this may have to do with the bottle's age although not all. The people at Stone definitely deserve credit for disguising such a big, aggressive-minded beer as something so ripe, softened and mellow.

Don't listen to that write up - go home with a bottle whether you feel worthy or not. If you are worthy you'll certainly appreciate it and if you aren't, you soon will be. Double Bastard is at least twice as good as most beers on the shelves. A beer like this really raises one's standards about what they put in their body and how they choose to spend their money.

Double Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 6,300 ratings.