Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

1,883 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,883
Hads: 5,813
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 9.05%
Wants: 280
Gots: 753 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,883 | Hads: 5,813
Photo of Edjamakated
4.64/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Been wanting to review this beer as my first review for a long time. I am so happy when I see this on the shelf and even happier when I see a fresh date on the neck . In this case 04/04/14

Poured from a 22oz bomber into my favorite chilled snifter

Pours a nice "cola" color. Dark almost syrupy brown. Nice lingering tan head with incredible lacing. Light foam sticks to the sides of the glass as you consume this incredible nectar.

Dominant oak, chocolate, coffee flavors. Extremely balanced! Intense amount of hops but still a malty "stout" like experience.

Strong alcohol content is well masked by all the exquisite flavors. Half way through you might realize it's hitting you fast.

Really enjoy this beer. It is in my top 5 and has been for a while now . (766 characters)

Photo of GordonQuid
4.64/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a sifter.

Black as night witha white foamy head and thick lacing. A bit of "leg" too.

Smells like a punch in the face with a pine branch; POW! Piney with just a hint of pineapple sweetness.

Taste is strong alpha hop piney pleasure blended with roasted chocolate malts. Quite an experience of complexity.

This is a heavy drinker.

Enjoy! (352 characters)

Photo of JerzDevl2000
4.64/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Picked this up in Totowa last week because I heard so many good things about it. Sure enough - they were all true. There's no doubt that this was the best beer that I tried for the first time this year and might possibly be the best offering that I've had from Stone, which is saying quite a bit given their roster!

Much darker pour to this than I envisioned since I didn't know this was an American Black until I logged onto here. There was decent amount of head and a great hop aroma to this beer; maybe one the best that I've ever smelled! The taste was just a nice amount of hops that was neither too strong nor too short-lasting. Warm, citrus notes with some floral accents that reminded me of the Troegs beers that I also enjoy so much.

Who cares if this is strong. I enjoyed it so much that it took a while to work my way through the bottle. I'm used to darker beers having more of a sugar or caramel bend to them but in this instance, this seemed more like a very hoppy ale or an amber ale. The balance is wonderful here and the only way to equate the bittersweet aftertaste is with my feelings as I took the empty bottle out to recycling. This is about as good as beer gets if you're a hophead. Kudos to Stone! (1,222 characters)

Photo of nickfl
4.64/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Pours with two fingers of medium tan head that rests on top of a dark brown body with a hint of tan light showing through. The head settles slowly and leaves thick lace clinging to the glass.

S - A strong, green hop aroma up front with notes of pine, more pine, and perhaps lemon. Some dark malt in the background, caramel and toffee, it has a light transformative effect on the hop character to give just a bit of the mustardy note common in american barleywines.

T - Dark toffee malt with a hint of espresso. Citrus hops come in next with lots of grapefruit and orange. The hop bitterness kicks in towards the middle with a sharp wave of powerful bitterness. Some sweet toffee and bready toast sooth the palate briefly before the bitterness comes back on and swells to a crushing finish. Notes of profoundly pithy grapefruit blend with the moderately dark malt to form a spicy, mustardy hop character that lingers into the aftertaste. Lingering notes of blue veined cheese, cigar tobacco, and grapefruit pith.

M - Medium body, moderately low carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - Wow, this beer impresses from the first whiff of the aroma and doesn't let up until long after the last drop is gone. The hop aroma is spectacular with a very intense and fresh pine note that is much less colored by dark malt than I would have expected based on the style and the color. The flavor is quite a bit darker and more typical of the style, though no less excellent. There is a very nice balance between caramel malts and citrus hops as well as between harsh, acrid bitterness and a subtle, restrained sweetness that appears at just the right moments to encourage your palate to endure the assault and keep the beer drinkable. This is one of the most surprising, complex, and well balanced American strong ales that I have come across and it is one of Stones best efforts (which is obviously saying a lot). A must try. (1,926 characters)

Photo of prototypic
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Dated September 2007

Appearance: Wow! What a shock for an IPA! It's pitched black and amazing looking. Thick, frothy, slightly off-white head is a generous two fingers. Excellent retention and a nice coat of lace.

Smell: Again, this is a drastic departure from what one would expect from an IPA. It has a sweet malty aroma initially (somewhat chocolaty). It's blended with toasted nut and dark fruit. Citrus scents are noticeable as well as a strong hoppy smell. What a mix.

Taste: Excellent. Chocolate malts are sweet and mixed well with a bit of dark fruit (somewhat raisiny) and toasted nut. Hops kick and provide a bit of bitterness, but it's not over top. Perfect for this beer. There are some slight citrus undertones. This is a very complex and beautifully crafted beer.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's medium bodied. Carbonation is excellent. ABV is relatively high, but it's perfect for this beer. Extremely drinkable. I really think I could drink this all night. Overall, fantastic offering from Stone. Pick it up now. (1,029 characters)

Photo of tattooedtolley
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an awesome slick looking black. A friend of mine described the smell and taste as a black grapefruit smoothie, which I find kind of perfect really. Big hop nose, tons of grapefruity hop resinous smell. On the tongue its got plenty of bitterness to satisfy or scare, just a delicious mix of hops. I loved this beer as the anniversary and this was my first beer when I visited Stone (it still hadn't hit shelves here in VA). I'd buy a couple cases right now if someone here had it. (485 characters)

Photo of FLBeerGuy
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pitch black with a creamy looking tan head which leaves nice lacing. There is a decent amount of carbonation, but it's not too much.

Smell is piney and grapefruit, lots of hops in there.

Taste is plenty of hops with a nice balance of malt. This is a big beer but well balanced. More balanced than AB.

This is a great beer, AB like, but even more over the top and better balanced. (390 characters)

Photo of M_C_Hampton
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass, dark dark brown almost black with a 2" light tan head that is thick and lingers leaving great lacing, clear

S: has an amazing floral nose of hops blended with coffee, caramel, dark fruits, prunes, raisins, cherries

T: taste is very pleasant and follows the nose, bitter sweet, hops and grapefruit blended with sweeter dark fruits, bitter up front, sweet in the middle, dry finish, missing some malt flavors though

M: I expected this to be thicker., medium with lower carbonation, alcohol well hidden

O: this is a well made beer with terrific flavors, well hopped with dark fruit sweetness for balance, an excellent black ale (677 characters)

Photo of climax
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Black like a stout, could definitely fool ya, with a nose this full of hops. The head was massive and receded two a constant finger of lumpy foam.

Roasty notes from a stout or porter seemed to be at the forefront, while the hops made up the backbone, stinging the nostrils to let me know it's not kidding. Interesting, and a certain joy to whiff. Very sharp grapefruit and tropical citrus showed off the muscle, and lesser notes of clove, bubblegum, and alcohol lurk within.

What a flavor explosion! It starts out with an assault of hops, slightly soapy, but none too harsh. Perfect. Yea, I had it at a 4.5, but I gave in. This is excellent. Grapefruit, floral notes, and bubblegum flavors at the beginning made it seem like a typical Imperial IPA. Then the sweet and roasted flavor of dark chocolate, brown sugar, and a bitter coffee finish took over.

There was maybe a bit more body than a strong IPA, but this is no thick brew. It's incredibly smooth, and the carbonation is spot on IMO. It finishes surprisingly clean, and not too dry. Sublimely easy to drink, with righteous flavor, Bravo Stone. (1,106 characters)

Photo of alphaking
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is probably the best beer i have ever had. I love double simcoe and thought it was perfect on tap, but this is pure excellence. The smell is definitely fresh simcoe hops, and I have to stop to smell every time I go for a taste. The taste is perfect. There is a strong dark chocolate taste, and bitter like unsweetened chocolate chips, but goes very well with this. There is a lingering and pleasant bitterness in the aftertaste that seems like a perfect balance of dark chocolate and fresh hops. I can't get enough of the fresh hop taste. The chocolate taste really reminds me of FFF Alpha Klaus, but the overall flavor is definitely DIPA. After smelling this when I first poured it, I thought for sure there is no way it will taste as good as it smells. I was very wrong. I picked up two cases of this and have already called to set aside a third. Hopslam and Un-earthly will always have a special place in my fridge, but this stuff is hoppier, and just plain delicious. This brew has impressed the shit out of me. Excellent job with this one Stone. (1,055 characters)

Photo of dreadnatty08
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
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. (696 characters)

Photo of Seebs847
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Surprising offering from stone! Pours a deep black with a 2 inch tan, creamy looking head. Leaves incredible lacing down the entire glass. Has incredible hop flavor that quickly turns into incredible chocolate maltiness. Creamy and smooth mouthfeel with an intense hop bitterness! Overall an incredible beer, very interesting as always with Stone! Poured into a pint glass from a 22oz bomber (391 characters)

Photo of jampics2
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark black pour into my snifter from a 22oz bottle, a recent batch - this arrived in town the day before my pour. Eggshell head, looks great.

Citrus nose, pineapple, pine, dank, stinky hops dominate the scents I'm detecting.

Taste is awesome. Dank pineapple tinged bitterness followed by a nice chocolate roast. Such a great mix of two flavors that are difficult to make jive together the right way. I loved this as the XI Anniversary and love it even more as fresh SSR.

Mouth is lively, nice on the tongue but a bit prickly in my throat. Nice thick body.

Graded on a curve for it's strength and dominant, ruinous hop taste, this "luscious velvety hop bomb" may be the best black IPA ever. (693 characters)

Photo of Saisons-of-the-Abyss
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Delicious and smooth. It smells like chocolatey, roasty goodness with some mocha. I wish I could wear this as perfume. The taste matches the aroma, plus great hoppy flavor and bitterness. This is a wonderful, good looking brew that I could drink every day (if not for the price; haven't seen this bomber under 10 dollars around here!), my only complaint is the slight aftertaste. It's a bit astringent and aspirin like, more so than other IPAs/APAs I've had. Still, pretty amazing! (481 characters)

Photo of SawDog505
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I chose one of the most influential beers as my 20th review. This beer really opened my eyes a year ago. Poured a 22 oz bomber into my 13 oz tulip glass. Pours a gorgeous black, with a 3 inch light tan head. Crazy amount of lacing. Smell is heavenly. Piney, citrusy hops, with a hints of chocolate. It is amazing that they work so well with each other. The taste is similar, with some burnt malts & a hint of booze in the finish. Has a fairly thick body for such a easy drinking high abv beer. Plenty of carbonation. This is an amazing beer and did the same for black IPAs as Nirvana did for grundge music. (606 characters)

Photo of Trueant1
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
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. (662 characters)

Photo of jizfiasco
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Have had this brew many times and the consistency amazes me always the same. The beer pours black like a stout with a great lasting head. The smell is a hop explosion like an IPA with a tad of sweetness some roastyness and a mild smoke character. Taste is absolutly what a black IPA should be and the best I've had in the style. I can taste candied hops perfect roasted malt flavors and the best part is the coffee taste is minimal. Will continuously go to this beer to get my fix of dark malt as its excellent and easy to get. (527 characters)

Photo of AmitC
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Awesome beer. Had it at a tasting.

Pours heavy dark brown with a good amount of head. Leaves a lot of lacing. Decent amount of carbonation as well.

Smell : Well very unlike a black ale, hugely filled with hops, floral and piney. A little bit of roasted malt, coffee, porter type of smell.

Taste: Here lies the magic. The bitterness is not at all felt but you know it is bitter, very bitter. Hops are huge. All sorts of taste, very complex, yet delightful. It has a lot of piney, spicy, citrusy, floral taste. A little amount of porter like taste and some grapefruit. Awesome.

Medium to full bodied beer. A good presence in the mouth. Mainly, a bit oily of course but good feel, nonetheless.

Sublime, it truly is. Stone, as usual, never disappoints. Not only that, it over delivers all the time. Excellent stuff there. Highly recommended for hop heads for winter drinking. (878 characters)

Photo of ksullnh
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tasted 10/29/07 with dfillius

Poured pitch black like a Coke, with a finger of milky-coffee-colored head. Delicious hops in the nose, lots of pine, with a bit of citrus that changed into a candied or dried pineapple smell as it warmed a bit.

Tasted of coffee in the front, but with sweet dark malty notes. The hop bitterness was a piney citrus flavor, a bit like the taste of white fir needles. A dry aftertaste, with slight bitterness and coffee flavors that reminded me of espresso.

The beer was quite smooth and easy drinkin' for a "Dark IPA" with the high ABV.

Excellent overall. (589 characters)

Photo of Mojo
4.66/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

12 ounce bottle -> World Market Tulip glass

This is almost just exactly perfect. It pours up a deep ebony black with a generous foamy tan head, good retention, and lacing just about unlike any ever seen before for this style. The smell is a powerful and satisfying dark chocolate, caramel, and coffee. Taste is an initial malty sweetnesss giving way to a big coffee taste of a finish, well balanced. Mouthfeel is very thick and lucious. Almost just exactly perfect. (469 characters)

Photo of Brubaker
4.66/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Pours black with a 3+ finger light mocha colored head. Slight deep red hues on the edges. Slight head persists.

S- I could smell it the moment it was opened. On closer inspection the intense spicy hops are first immediately followed by strong malts. No alcohol in the nose.

T- First flavor is sweet as it roll over the tongue. The fruit & flower of the hops fight the coffee roast for second. Alcohol pops in for third flavor. Then the hop bitter show up forth. The coffee comes back fifth surrounded by sweet, bitter, & alcohol persisting for a very long time. The roast & bitter accumulate as one drinks.

M- Smooth in the mouth. Fine textured with light but prevalent carbonation.

O- Wow! That's enjoyable. Great range of big flavors as equally balanced as 3 UFC fighters playing King of the Hill. This is good for any occasion.

Would Drink
Would Buy
Would Make (872 characters)

Photo of KSac4115
4.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an almost completely opaque black/brown with a very minor brown foam head at the top. Lacing is immaculate.

Smells very hoppy as I have come to expect from Stone ales. A sweet malty smell is also detected. Very floral aroma that hits you even before you put your nose up to it. The scent already is getting that bitter bite into my mouth. My mouth is watering.

Exception taste and blend of flavors. Hops are very prevalent. Not at bitter as I had expected. There is a good sweetness to it too. Very well managed flavors and bitterness all around.

Incredibly smooth. Carbonation levels are perfect for the style of beer.

This beer is REMARKABLY drinkable for this imperial ale. At 8.7% one would expect a stronger bite, but instead gets perfect contrast of bitterness and drinkability. As a big IPA/ale guy this is right up my alley. So very smooth I'm pretty sure I could drink this all night if I had the cash.

Enjoy! (929 characters)

Photo of soupyman10
4.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this one out of the bottle the other day and enjoyed it immensely - figured I'd take the step to the draft version since it was available. It's basically a mix of a double IPA with a double stout, all huge chocolate, roasted malt and caramel, but simultaneously a huge drying hop bomb. Body is perfect for the what the beer is. Would definitely pick it up again.

Pizzaria Paradiso/$7/12 oz (395 characters)

Photo of cameraman
4.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A light brown color, with touches of red along the sides of the glass. A two inch thock head foems, beige in color, and lacing slowly down the glass. An incrdible aroma of citrus, mostly grapefruit, pine and grass scents, with a earthy mellowness. There is a surprisingly feint scent of malt at the end. At first taste that malt is very apparent, with a sweet, nutty flavor. That flavor is overtaken by a dominant hop presence, with grapefruit and grassy tastes being the strongest. A medium bodied feel all the way through, very consistant, coats the palate evenly and a dry finish lingers for some time. WOW! What else is there to say, this is an excellent beer. I thought the tenth anniversary brew was outstanding, this beer surpasses that one. (748 characters)

Photo of chefboy812
4.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A love child of a Stout and an IPA?!?!

Stone has done it again, taking an extreme and making it extreme(er?).

Upon opening the bomber, befor I even poured it into the glass, the aroma hits you and gets your mouth watering.

It pours chestnut brown with a mild storm that builds a light caramel head that rises to a finger or so then starts to fall and holds to a lacey ring.
I was impressed by the balanced battle of grainy roasty aroma with hints of coffee and molassas with the hops spicey piney strength.

My first sip dissappointed me with a lack of vicosity that my mind was preparing for. but that dissappointment was quickly slapped out of my head by the intence continuation of the aromatic battle for the nose.

usually(to me) flavors come in and fade out with different highlights throuout the taste and the glass. But this; everything is there the whole time, the malt, the hops pushing against each other for pallete dominance. neither gaining advantage over the other, until the very end. long after the sip is swallowed, the hops fade out leaving a satifying roasty bite that lingers until the next sip.

All in all agreat beer, but it is a thinker. (1,165 characters)

Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 1,883 ratings.