Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sublimely Self-Righteous AleSublimely Self-Righteous Ale

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

5,808 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,808
Reviews: 1,903
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 10.43%
Wants: 277
Gots: 748 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  8.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Gueuzedude on 09-02-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,808 | Reviews: 1,903
Photo of cabsandking
4.78/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Solid black color with a giant three fingers of sticky rocky beige head that last the duration. Big hoppy grapefruit and pine with an outstanding malt character of dark caramel, nutty malt and wafts of roasted coffee. Layers of malt character is evident; caramel, deep roasted grains, pumpernickel bread, and sour grains going into the finish, and roasted espresso. Beautifully balanced hops; mild pepper spice, pine, fresh raw hop oil, and a touch of mint starting towards the end. Fruity tartness mixed in for extra complexity. Sweetness from brown sugar and burnt sugars with hints of dark chocolate. Mouthfeel is full, smooth, and a thick creamy carbonation. Spicy, minty, some pine, charred malt, and espresso all in the finish. This beer is just wonderful, I’ve got to find more!

Photo of YankChef
4.16/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bomber poured into a tulip glass. September 2007 on the front

Appearance: Very deep dark black colored that is completely opaque. It has the appearance of a really dark porter almost with a 1/2-3/4 in. thick head that is offwhite and creamy. Lacing instantly sticks to the glass, doesn't look like an IPA... at all.

Smell: Incredibly strong aroma first of hop oils and fresh hop leaves. That gives way to an incredibly juicy aroma of peaches, mangoes and juicy fruit bubble gum. Strong aromas of rose water and toffee.

Taste: Upfront there is a quick almost overbearing sweetness that is very fruity and juicy, but this sensation is very, very quickly smashed to pieces by intense bitter hops that tingle around the outside of the mouth. There are multiple layers of flavor that includes toffee and toasted malt upfront with a bit of stone fruit that fades into a very dark malt almost stout like flavor. It then finishes with HOPS that just assault your palatte.

Mouthfeel: Medium-Medium high bodied and very creamy for a IIPA. Low carbonation, this beer is all about the richness.

Overall: WOW!! Stone really innovates with this one and messes with your head. Looks like a porter and tastes like a whack in the face IIPA. Enjoy this beer while it's still around. Ill be said to see it go

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

Poured from a 22oz bomber into two pint glasses. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Pours an incredible looking near-black with faint garnet highlights. Creamy, khaki-colored, two finger head that leaves gobby sheets of sticky lace down the sides of the glass.

S: Hops and brown sugar dominate this one with a touch of chocolate and roasted malt as well.

T: Grapefruit hop flavors explode all over this one! Along with the major citrus is a seething undercurrent of brown sugar or molassas, bitter dark chocolate, and roasted malt.

M: Very bitter and spicy. I found an interesting chocolate aftertaste in the finish as well. The hops grab ahold of the tongue and just refuse to let go!

D: Drinkable to the max. What a surprisingly dark treat.

Photo of joe1510
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz Bomber

September 2007

Recieved from the excellent trader known as errantnight. Thanks for looking out Derek. A black IPA? This should be interesting. Stone's 11th Anniversary pours black with some faint garnet highlights along the bottom and up the sides of the glass. A two finger beige head formed on the pour that does not disappear. This head sticks around throughout the glass and leaves big sticky patches as the beer disappears. Really good looking brew.

The nose starts, continues, and ends in hoppy goodness. There's not a whole lot of malt coming through but what does comes in the form of sweet caramel. There's also hints of caramalized-to-slightly-scorched sugar in there. Who cares about the malt right? The hops are where it's at with this beer. Brown sugar coated grapefruit pushes through quickly and leads throughout. My mouth waters as I smell this beer.

This beer tastes just like brown sugar coated grapefruit from the second it hits the tongue till the swallow. That sweet caramel and lightly scorched sugar trys to work through the grapefruit but falls far short. As a matter of fact this beer tastes identical to the way it smells. This beer will do a number on the tongue. You will be numb by the end of a bomber...After this beer gets closer to maybe 55 a mild bittersweet chocolate character comes through that adds a nice depth.

Medium body with a light creamy mouthfeel. I can't believe the weight (or lack there of) of a beer with this high an abv. Good lingering bitterness on the swallow sticks around until the next sip.

This beer is going down far to easy and far to quickly. Amazingly easy to drink for a high abv like this beer has. I would only drink one bomber at a time for the simple fact that your tongue takes a beating and I'd feel like I wouldn't getthe most out of the second bomber.

Another great beer from Stone. I don't think these guys do anything wrong. A black IPA is a cool concept that I hope to see again in the future. Keep it up over there at Stone. I have yet to not be crazy about any of your brews.

Photo of crookedhalo
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks like root beer, smells like hops. Nice fluffy tan colored head that sticks around for a good while. Good lacing. Aroma is mosty piney and sappy with nuances of caramel and suggestive chocolate. Some leafy suggestions as well. Very hoppy with bitterness throughout, yet some malty sweetness comes through, too. Pretty balanced and drinkable. The roasted malts make for an interesting twist on what would be, typically, an imperial IPA. Kind of feels like an "imperial stock ale". I like it, it reminds me of of an ale I brewed 10 years ago, except the Simcoe hop was not around then and Cascades were used and I, accidentally, used a bit too much chocolate malt in the grain bill. Anyhow, Stone's 11th is an agreeable ale worth checking out.

Photo of BigJTrucker
4.18/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark, almost black color. Small head settled fairly quickly. Aroma is chock full of citrusy hops. Flavor is also tilted towards citrus flavors, with hints of coffee, dark chocolate, maybe even some peat somewhere in the mix. Initially the mouthfeel seems a bit harsh, but that fades very quickly to a full boddied brew with a slightly fizzy finish. Another well rounded offering from Stone. I'm not sure if this beer is trying to be a dark IPA, or a very hoppy porter, but whichever it is, it does it quite well.

Photo of delicious
4.18/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Opaque, warm black body beneath a dense and tall mocha-cream colored head.
Prominent, fresh, citrus hops stick in the nose like pine sap, with a backing of faint syrupy sweetness like the sugar smell you get while making cotton candy.
This beer fills the mouth entirely. Up front it's bitter and citrus, and that bitterness lasts and lasts. As the temperature rises, the hops get more piney, a roasted chocolate sweetness comes through, and an alcohol warmth starts to appear.
It's a great looking and great tasting beer, and I really enjoyed the dichotomy between the black body and strong hop character.

Photo of tastybeer
4.62/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very dark indeed. Color is ruby brown, almost black aside from the red/purple-ish glow around the edges. Head is great looking. Its big and fluffy, oily, bubbly and color is an orangy beige. Retention is good too. Aroma is pleasing. Pine woods, leaves, orange skins, and a touch of apple, pinapple, dank fruit sweetness. Not done yet. Hop and malts are everywhere, delicately. Molasses blends great with the citrus all along with robust black chocolate. Flavor is delicious but I can't stop smelling this. I find it hard to believe that the sniffability is the only thing slowing down my drinking. Its extremely balanced. The flavors match the aroma - preeecisely on. This is not an extreme beer, but everything within that boundary....which I probably can't define.

All in all this is another great Stone offering. Happy 12th! They have to start distributing to NC so I can buy their awesome beer constantly.

Photo of wedge
4.53/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A perfect, thick frothy tan head sits atop a nearly black liquid with deep mahogany highlights. The aroma is hoppy, but amazingly balanced: pine, fruit, and a hefty dose of chocolate and dark bread. The flavor starts out with a very resinous, fresh hop quality, yet again has a balancing sweet dark maltiness. Simcoe comes through the strongest with the characteristic piney-citrus flavors, though the sweet chocolate and coffee malts put up a good fight. Very smooth and bitter mouthfeel, a little short of full in body.

Wow, what an interesting beer. Extremely well balanced all around - hoppy and bitter, but not too over the top. Excellent and very well crafted.

Photo of theformula
4.6/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a black, inky body into a tapered goblet, w/ some ruby tones when held to the light. Looks like an RIS, wow. A big tan head quicky forms with excellent retention. Lacing is sticky all the way around the glass. This is a DIPA? Start the revolution!

Pure, unadulterated hops. Massive aroma of citrus, pine and not much else. Those west coast hops have a slight "cat pee" scent, seriously. But it's inviting, not a turn off. Maybe a little charcoal in there but very faint if so. Just a little spicy alcohol as well.

Medium bodie w/ a crisp, moderate carbonation level. M.F. is very full, soft and incredibly smooth. Very nice.

Beautiful, intense and resinous hops. It's strange drinking a pitch black IPA...
Huge grapefruit, lemon, piney hops, very green and grassy which hang around through the finish. An understated yet balancing malt backdrop wraps it up nicely and is lightly sweet and sugary, very similar to Ruination. Some pepper and spice also are biproducts of the hops. Only a subtle, gritty charcoal-esque flavor gives a way the dark malts and a decent, spicy alcohol note makes it warming and more complex.

Stone's done it. A bold, strictly hoppy "DIBA" or whatever, yet not for novices as the alphas are high on the scale here. Great bitterness, very assertive. I'd gladly drink again and will, I bought up plenty (and thanks to trades).
An awesome beer, and drinks pretty well for the ABV.

Highly recommended for the advanced hophead.

Photo of t0rin0
4.57/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at the brewery the day it came out and again repeatedly in the bottle. Its still young enough that theres no noticeable difference between bottle and keg at this point. All I know is that I still have 1 case left, 6 bottles for me and 6 for trade.

Anyway, the beer pours a nice dark brownish color and in the light it has some redness to it. The head is thick and creamy and slightly tan. The beer smells wonderful. Its loaded with tons of simcoe hops, which is one of my new favorites as I'm boycotting cascade until they come down in price. These hops impart some piney smells. Theres also some chocolate and a little fruitiness present.

The taste follows suit. The malt presence is powerful enough to smell just like it tastes. Its half IPA and half brown ale. I'd like to see how the malt/hop balance changes with age but for now its great. Has a nice and heavy body to it with about the right amount of carbonation.

This is a dangerously drinkable beer.

Photo of dreadnatty08
4.65/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a mostly opaque dark brown color with a nice huge, pillowy, off-white head. Tons of resin and pine with a touch of citrus in the nose. A little bit of licorice and chocolate is also there following the hops. A very subtly carbonated beer brings forth a freshly hopped beer rounded out by lots of caramel and chocolate malts. The finish is quite bitter and dry with the hop flavor carrying through. This is an exquisite beer, I'm glad to enjoy it at this date as any more aging would kill the fresh hop flavor. This style seems to be a trend with Avery's Anniversary beer and perhaps started by DFH India Brown Ale. I love hops and chocolate malts, and I love them together. Great job Stone.

Photo of nlmartin
4.67/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was served in a Imperial Nonic. The beer was moderately chilled.

Appearance: The beer pours a delightful chocolatey color. The head of the beer has a pleasing cocoa brown colortion. The head never truly dies down. Thick streams of lacing cling to my glass.

Smell: Pine needles and citrus waft above a sea of vanilla and chocolatey maltyness.

Taste: This beer starts with a very pleasing pine oilyness. The pine gives way to grapefruit citrus. The chocolatey malty backbone of the beer peaks out like an atoll in the ocean. There it is no it has gone under. Well played Stones.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: The beer has a medium plus body. The carbonation is well done. The flavors last a long while. This was a very satisfying and great tasting beer. I expected nothing less from Stones. Thanks to Stones Brewing for a most excellent beer drinking experience.

Photo of alexgash
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark dark chocolate brown with lighter edges. Tall, thick, glass-crawling, light cocoa brown head. Big citrus, pine, and scotch-tape hop nose. Roasted barley and coffee underneath with some dark fruits. Roasted malt and coffee up front; quickly followed by big, juicy pine and citrus hops. Flashes of fig and plum sweetness before numbing hops take over. coffee bitterness in the slightly warming finish. Interesting combination of roasted malt and assertive IPA-ish hops. Delicious. Medium-full body with a slightly oily feel. Another delicious Stone Anniversary ale and an interesting one at that. Happy 11th and keep the good brew coming!

Photo of Trueant1
4.65/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a 3 finger creamy billowing head that STICKS around. Dark dark brown that lets little light through. This looks perfect!

Smells of fresh floral pine hops. Very floral. Smells spicy too. Very fresh hop smelling.

I would call this taste... " A very sweet hop bomb." Wonderfully oily pine hops that are very bitter balanced by extremely sweet malts. I big brew that delivers!

Mouthfeel is thick and chewy from the excessive malts that are ment to balance this hop bomb. A little to overcarbonated for me.

Another awsome west coast type beer from Stone. Loved this sweet hop bomb. Am I becoming a hop head?

Notes: The darkest IPA I have ever seen/smelled.

Photo of ElGordo
4.37/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the 22oz bottle into a pint glass. Body is a deep dark brown color with ruby highlights when held up to the light. Two fingers of creamy, tan head remain on the top for a good long while. Nicely balanced aroma of dark malt and assertive floral hops, with notes of chocolate, brown sugar, dark fruit, and a hint of grass.
Palate is quite complex - a sharp hoppy bitterness comes through up front, yielding to a rich malty character on the swallow. The hops come through again on the finish, leaving a pleasant bitter finish. Flourishes of brown sugar, dark fruit, balsamic vinegar, and potent, grassy hops come through at various points.
Body is nice and creamy, more like a stout than a strong ale. Nevertheless, it fits the big malt profile and high abv of this beer quite well. Although it runs a touch strong for everyday or session drinking, this is a very drinkable ale. Hail to the folks at Stone! I look forward to what they come up with during the next 11 years.

Photo of ALESwhatCURESya
4.62/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a couple bottles of this while I was in Boston for work. With first pour, I knew this was an entirely different beer than one normally gets their hands on. I recently brewed a double black IPA and thought it was wonderful, but it pales in comparison to this. This is, undoubtedly, an Imperial Black IPA. The unbelievable hop powerhouse aroma unleashes itself immediately. Massive pine and grassy overtones explode in the nose. Sticking your head in a bin of freshly picked hops is comparable to this smell. Jet black body with beige head. Lacing was intense and carbonation was lively. The taste was all IPA from beginning to end. Wonderful hop presence throughout with a warming alcohol taste. Maltiness is there but well hidden behind the hops. Sharpness is intense but very enjoyable. The high abv is hidden behind the IBUs. This is a wonderfully crafted beer that hop heads need to try. I would love to know how they managed to get the dark body without the roasted bitterness. For my Black IPA, I cold steeped de-bittered black malt for 2 days. This a superb beer.

Photo of aerozeppl
4.48/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pured from a 22oz bottle.

A Pours dark brown with some hints of amber. Chocolate head on top.

S Hops which is weird considering the color. My mind is having a hard time matching up the sight of the beer to the taste. Once past the initial smell of hops you get some malt. The sweetness really compliments the hoppy smell. There is some fruit and choclate in there too but they are very subtle.

T Everyone keeps talking about dark IPA and I am inclined to agree. The malt and alcohol keep the hop taste in check. It really is well balanced. Incredible so actually.

M Incredible feel in the mouth. Nice and creamy with the hop and everything else bouncing back and forth on the way down.

D While I am not a hophead I do enjoy an IPA from time to time. This is something completely different that if the good folks at stone see fit to brew more of I could drink this all the time. The beer is so enjoyable you hardly notice the 8.7%. If I happen upon another bottle it shall be mine.

Please make this beer again stone. Wonderful.

Photo of NCSUdo
4.72/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle courtesy of tayner.

A: Pours a thick looking opaque black under a tan head. Pretty good retention and some pretty good lace.

S: Hoppy. A lot of citrus but also some soft undertones of darker fruit. A nice creaminess hidden away here too. Seems to be a big malty sweetness underneath as well. Really a lot going here. Maybe even a hint of chocolate.

T: Big hop bitterness with citrusy tones. Nice sweet berry like fruitiness up front. Really well done. Finish is bitter and it sticks around.

M/D: Carbonation is just right, full bodied. Drinkability is fine on this one but it is definately a sipper. This is a damn fine beer.

Photo of becktone
4.72/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

After talking from reps from Stone at Stone Pint Night at the Comet I learned that they (I'm assuming that this is Stone's POV) classify or consider this beer to be a Dark IPA (perhaps it was a "Double Dark IPA" don't remember exactly which-given the ABV I'd say most likely Double Dark IPA).

Eye: The brew pours a very dark brown or black if you like. When the light strikes it just right garnet highlights appear at the bottom of the glass. The head is tan in color and leaves some nice lacing, retention is stable, but a large head would be nice, looks very much like a stout except for the fact that the head isn't as creamy.

Nose: Great nose on this beer. Lots of things going on in the aroma of beer. First aroma to hit you is the hops, lots of hops...citrus aromas emanate from the bottle and glass once opened and poured. I'm guessing that there are some cascade hops going on in here. After that there is a very fruity aroma that blends very nicely with the hops. Took me a minute to determine that what I was smelling was pineapple. These two aromas pretty much dominate the brew but there is a bit of a malt backbone in there to support it all, I get a very faint chocolate malty type aroma deep within the aromatic profile of this brew. (or I could be imagining its there). Very unique aromatic profile here.

Tongue: Definitely would classify this one as a Dark IPA myself. The flavor of hops dominates the profile of this beer, makes up the majority of what I'm tasting here. Citrus and floral, citrus and floral... Once the beer is swallowed after a few moments that pineapple comes back just enough to hint at a pineapple flavor. Once the beer starts to go down the throat the hop flavors drop off giving way to malt flavors, as I mentioned with the aroma there is a bit of chocolate in there and also some toasty/lightly roasted flavors-more so the tell-tale bitterness from them, though it is not as nearly as strong as it is in a stout.... all pretty faint though. A slight spiciness from alcohol also adds to this brew's flavor.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: Kudos to Stone for the Mouthfeel on this brew, I don't think that I could imagine it any other way. The beer is incredibly smooth, has low carbonation-which one doesn't notice until one thinks on it, then realizes that it is the perfect amount. This is a beer I'd drink all night, alcohol is hidden pretty well, slight spiciness as formerly mentioned and a slight warming in the stomach. This is a beer I'd definitely buy again, think that I'll grab another bomber next time I see one. Too bad it is a limited release, I'd like to see something like this around more, seems to me that Dark IPAs are pretty rare.

Photo of hopsleeroy
3.83/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Took a vacation to Santa Fe and found this at the Whole Foods. This beer pours very dark although not completely black and forms a nice looking tan head. A very nice looking beer. It smelled of piney hops with dark malt flavors underneath.
Hard to desrcibe the taste other than a dark IPA. It really worked for me. The piney hops with some of the typical darker flavors (chocolate/coffee) worked very well. The alcohol starts to creep in after a few sips and warmed me nicely on a cold night. I would seek this out again and encourage any beer afficianado to do the same.

Photo of BillyB
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark brown to black color with a thick, foamy, beige/tan head.

Very big, but nicely balanced bitter hop and sweet malt aromas. Piney, citrusy, hoppiness dominates with a sweet caramel/mollasses maltiness following closely behind.

Tastes of sweet caramel, mollasses, maple syrup with a hint of brown sugar.

Mouthfeel is sharp and bitter in all the right places.

A very big, but drinkable offering from Stone. Check it out if you can.

Photo of abcsofbeer
4.72/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22oz bomber with the painted label and no drink by date. The color is very dark brown/black that is topped by a two finger creamy head, tan in color. The head holds with excellent retention and lots of sticky lace. There is a sweet citrus aroma that is abundantly hoppy with a nice bouquet of hop oil freshness.

The taste is superb with a very good blend of hops and malt. The bitterness and alcohol flavors are apparent and get stronger toward the bottom of the glass. The mouthfeel is light bodied and very very taste. This is one of the best beers I have tasted.

Photo of PhiloPsych
3.97/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cola brown as it poured from the bottle. The head was active and bubbly at first, then settled to a thin mousse; left no lacing on the glass. In the glass, the color was dark brown with some deep red visible against backlighting. The smell is rich with both sweet malt and spicey hops. The mouthfeel was fluffy as though this were a cask-conditioned beer. Interesting! There are definite dark-roasted, slightly burnt notes in the flavor. The burnt malt flavor dominates the hops hops somewhat, so the hops in the smell are stronger than in the flavor. This is a very interesting hybrid style. I wouldn't want to to drink it all the time, but it is fun as a one time brew.

Photo of sweethome
3.35/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown to black - porter darkness. Off white creamy head.

Piney hops in nose with malty sweetness and lsight nuttiness.

First taste is hops, the malts are medium, not as big as color. Malts fail to develop a unique or complex flavor. The hops are piney with medium bittering - why add the dark malts if they aren't going to add complexity? Why have the significant hop load if it's just dressing up a meiocre dark beer?

For an IPA, hard to drink much, for a porter, not enough satisfying malts.

I'm disappointed in this offering.

Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 5,808 ratings.