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

5,807 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,807
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: 5,807 | Reviews: 1,903
Photo of Viggo
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to DrJay for bringing some of these up!

Pours a hazy dark orange/brown, thick off white head forms, settles slowly dropping a nice lace ring, good retention. Smell is nice, chocolate and toffee, solid roast, lots of pine and floral hops, roast, grapefruit, nice balance with the malts and hops. Taste is similar, caramel and chocolate, roast coffee, light alcohol, nuts, oranges, grapefruit and floral, solid bitterness, excellent. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation, bit of warmth. Very good beer! Thanks Jay.

Photo of mcallister
4.2/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark brown with many red highlights. A large off white tannish head of 3 inches if poofy and holds great retention. Not one centimeter of the glass is clean of lacing, producing large bubbles.

Hops emerge out immediatley. Thick with grapefruit and other citrus goodness. Than a bit of a rubbing alcohol aroma is detectable that slightly deters from this beast. Dark roasty carmelized malts with hints of mollasses and floral esters.

Very nice balanced beer here. I think I would actually prefer this with age as one thing I've noticed with all Stone beers is that they all seem to blend into each other when young. Not sure if they only use one predominant hop or malt in everything or what? Burnt malts and blackerry flavors are than overwhelmed with citrusy hops on the middle and chalky bitter finish. Some alcohol shows through in the mouth and throat but evens out in the chest. One of the better Stone beers I've had of late and nearly on par with Stone's 10th. This one had wonderful ageability even with the demise of the hops.

Photo of Drewcifer
3.79/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out dark black, leaning a bit to the brown, with only a slight bit of off-white head, which swettles to a thin ring around the top.

Citrusy hops are dominant in the aroma, with some piney hop back to it. Roasted malts sit down deep, and only come out with a big whiff.

The taste is all citrusy hops off the bat, maintained throughout, with some piney, woodsy hops and a bit of an almost salty, slightly bitter caramel aftertaste. There's a hint of bitter chocolate, but merely a brief hint.

Pretty decent amount of carbonation with a medium body.

Overall, a somewhat drinkable brew. Definitely worth a try for the uniqueness of the brew, but not something I'd look to as a daily drinker. Not bad, not great.

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.47/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber. Pours into my glass a dark black with deep brown hues on the edges as well. An inch of creamy light tan foam sticks to the top and leaves sticky lacing down the glass. Aromas begin with dense hops right off that bat. Citric, grapefruit and tropical fruit aromas weave into pine notes as well. Roasted malt with some toasted bread and a very light smoky quality. A small dollop of cocoa to top it off. Interesting? Yes. Good? Yes!

First sip brings a smooth roasted malt upfront that is quickly taken over by loads of hops. Citrusy grapefruit flavors mingle with pine resins and a tropical undertone. Midway through I get some toasted bread and a very faint smoky cocoa flavor. Flows down with a solid bitterness and lingering piney hop flavors. Overall, a tasty, unique brew!

Mouthfeel is silky smooth and creamy with a medium body. Good steady carbonation. This one really hits the spot. It seems to disappear from my glass and a bomber goes down without a problem with no hint of alcohol in the flavor. Overall, I really enjoyed the 10th Anniversary and I'm happy to say the 11th is just as tasty. Cheers to the continued success of Stone and thanks to warriorsoul for the bottle.

Photo of BMan1113VR
4.09/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Extremely fragrant beer. Port and whine aromas mixed with pine, flowers, rasberry and cherries, and molasses. Pours very dark brown, if not black, with a small off-white head. Excellent lacing. Initial flavor is sweet burnt molasses and over the course of the long finish, it ends with a bitter salty taste, as well as some nutty malts being present. There is also an alcholic presence on the tounge in the finish. Great smelling "Black IPA", but I have had better from Stone.

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.37/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I need a hop fix... and don't want to dive into recent trades or too deep into the cellar.. so I picked out a 11th and am hoping for the best. I haven't had one of these in a couple of months and noticed then, the hops were definitely dying down.

22oz picked up at a variety of places around Boise in the $5.50 range... poured into a shaker pint.

Looong lasting lite tan head leaves crusty lacing for the entire glass.... color of the brew reminds me of a schwarzbier.. near black but still walnut and dark ruby highlites show when held to a light.

Aroma is certainly more subdued than fresh.. but still reminiscent of a big grapefruit and piney DIPA. Black coffee/with sugar notes are more prevalent than before.

Flavor is abundant citrus .. dark roasted malts are only available on the end of the palate and the finish.. even then, the hops are the heavy hitters... Very smooth from front to back.. the hops resins add nicely to the palate.. Doesn't taste as dark as expected.. just enough interesting espresso/chocolate components that drives everything home.

This brew is going to age very well... don't let the naysayer change your mind .... it may go through a significant muddy period like the 8th, but ultimately, the 11th will be fantastic... I will not drink another for probably 6 months... ooh my.. I have another glass.. cheers. Galt.

Photo of jwolfie70
3.2/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I have had several bottles of this beer. It is definitely changing with age, and is getting mellower. When first released the beer was very raw, with hops overdominating and destroying. The beer is mellowing nicely and the roasted malt qualities are starting to poke through. Definitely still a hop bomb. I am interested to see where this beer will go.

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

22oz bomber received from mikesgroove

A - Pours a dark, brown/amber with a nice foamy off white head. Leaves good lace on the glass. Does not look like most beers it tastes similar too. Not sure where to go with this...

S - Smells of piney hop resin with a very slight maltyness in there.

T - Pine and grapefruit hop flavors. High bitterness. A backbone of roasty toffee type malt flavors keeps it in check.

M - Medium bodied and crisp carbo

D - Pretty drinkable for the alco and bitterness.

Overall, this was an enjoyable beer. Bitterness was balanced enough to enjoy it. Full flavored. Good beer and worth a try.

Photo of arguemaniac
3.76/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A black IPA, hmm, let's see what this is all about...

Rich, pungent hops are the name of the game here. Heavy astringency, oily hop mouthfeel and a bright citrusy character that is quite delicious. What else does one expect from Stone? There is a bit of balance, though: some nice, heavily toasted caramel and a definite chocolate note too.

Though Stone's attempt at to make this beer so "unique," it's well above average as IPA. Rich, hoppy, and very delicious. And, admittedly, the heavy roast and chocolate is interesting.

Highly recommended...

Photo of far333
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Burnished chestnut colored with the huge foamy and dimpled inch high head that most Stone beers seem to have.

Aroma of sweet malt, brown sugar and hops.

Rich flavors of dark malt, roasty flavors, brown sugar and citrusy hops. Interesting mix of rich dark malts alongside bright tangerine hops. Hops morph to grapefruit rind and add a piney bitter finish.

Full mouthfeel, rich and creamy.

Very drinkable, I'm enjoying this one.

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

Stone - 11th Anniversary Ale
September 2007
22 oz brown bottle
Served in a 20 oz tulip glass

Pours a deep & dark brown with an incredible head on top. Excellent trails of sticky lacings that decorate the glassware.

Whiffs of hop bombs & roasting brown sugar.

Yowza...what a delicuous beer, flavors of brown sugar, pie crust and light chocolate with a significant hop snap on the finish. We're talkin' real hop bitterness on the finish.

This beer looks great and tastes great. Not used to the brown-esqe ale from this brewery, but enjoyed just the same.

Photo of plaztikjezuz
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours black with a dense tan head, the head is very pillowy.
the aroma is wondefula seamless mix of hardy malt and intense hops, the aroma reminds me of a barley wine, pungent, spicy, citrus with caramelized malt to put a smile on your face.

the flavor is tremendously awesome full frontal hops exploding in your mouth, intense malt, caramelized malt, toffee, with a hint of cocoa and coffee, a firm bitterness, resinous, mouth coating hops, lingering spiciness.

this is a great beer, i will be buying more.

Photo of PBoegel
4.12/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had a bottle back in September when it was first released. I enjoyed but felt it was young, I was fortunate enough to find a few still available at a local brew store.

Poured from the bomber into a Brooklyn Flute the appearance is as the marketing speak indicates, pitch black. A pretty tannish head sits on top of this porter/stout looking beer.

The sight deceives the aroma. A big whiff of tangerine and grapefruit hops hit the nose and keep coming. There is a malt layer beneath but not the expectation of beer that is this dark. Much more caramel sweet and light faint milk chocolate. I rarely try to name hops that are not called out by the brewer, but I cannot imagine this beer is not finished with a ton of columbus for the aroma. Clean, nothing off, big and bright and inviting.

As when I first had this I am still marveling at how they get this color and the taste profile is that of a double ipa, a nice rich malty backbone to carry those tasty citrusy and slightly piney hops with a bang of very clean bitterness in the finish. There are some touches of chocolate tastes in the middle, but clean caramel maltiness is predominate in the malt profile.

Really outstanding, clean well crafted, carries a near 9% abv with pride.

Stone should consider moving this into regular production.

Photo of chileman13
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a-poured a cloudy dark toffee brown with 1/2 finger head that broke to a ring.
a-Hopsy is the word yet a balance malt could be detected.
t- strong alcohol hops and barley. Very complex and tasty.
m- medium creaminess with great carbonation.
strong alcohol aftertase.
this aint your daddies buttwiser.
I would drink tis again and again.

Photo of ziggy13
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Found this guy once again here late in the season. Loved it the first time and loved it again.

A - Very, very dark, almost stout-like. Some dark reds shing on the bottom. Nice tan head which dissipated quickly. Lacing, however, was excellent.

S - Full of floral west coast hops. Hits you smack in the nose. Smells like a double IPA.

T - Of couse, at first taste you realize its a little more complex than that. Waves of hops and chocolate malts flow simultaneously over the palate. Its citrusy, flowery, and spicy all in one. Actually finishes tart and piney. Fantastically complex and diverse. Obviously many varieties of hops were used in this one.

M - Medium body. A little chewy. The beer coats the palate and lingers for a while.

D - Obviously its tough to drink a few of these, but one is just enough.

Fantastic brew and I can't wait till next year's offering. Cheers!

Photo of Mudpuppet
3.93/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Poured from a bomber into Sam Adams perfect pint glass. Pours a dark brown with about inch of creamy head.

S- Sweet malt and citrus. Lots of hops in this.

T- HOPS! Lots of hops in this. Very cirtusey with notes of grapefruit and lemon. I am not usually a fan of hops but this is pretty good.

M- Good carbonation for this beer.

D- I just opened a bomber so we will see if I get through that. I think that I would drink this again. I am not a huge hop-bomb fan so it isn't my favorite though. Very odd that it is so dark. You don't get many dark malt notes in this. Seems like the color doesn't influence the taste at all.

Photo of beerthulhu
4.45/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark opaque color with a tan head.

S: Theres some citrus nose with some dry pine and a touch of smokiness. The nose is sweet overall.

T: The flavor is a huge dry roasted malt bill, some dry chocolate with some citrusy hopping and sticky pine. Theres a definity pine sticky resin character to the palate with a great roasted malt presence that is deep and very rich. Definitly tastes like they combined their arrogant bastard and smoked porter recipe. Typical Stone hopping with Chinook with some new Amarillo lemon hops used to give it a distinct citrus/lemon hop flavor. A good combination of malt and hopping and very well balanced. There was a nice lingering bitterness from the hops that hung around for a little bit as well.

M: the mouthful was full with a nice dry roastedness.

D: very good drinkability for its abv. could easily drink in multiples, very smooth palate going down, and nicely hidden alcohol.

Photo of pheggeseth
4.68/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Obtained from PHawk in our massive Darkness trade.

Poured into my Aventinus glass.

A: pours a dark ruby brown and quickly forms a big, khaki head, lacing everywhere, looks great

S: almost all hops, but a deep, dark citrus thanks to the huge malt back

T: hop bite up front, but an intriguing almost sweet red berry in the middle, which tapers into an oaky finish.

M: smooth, a little less carbonation than I was expecting, slightly creamy, but still bitey from the hops

D: very hoppy, yet the intense malt backbone compliments it very well. A very unique "IPA" that is a sipper but quite delicious. Had to save some of mine for the next night.

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

Bought this on from Grapes of Mirth in Columbus, OH about 3 months ago. Poured from a 1 pint 6 oz bottle into a tulip glass. A one finger, off white head with moderate retention, which left some decent lace.

Described as an IPA on the bottle. The darkest pale ale I've ever seen, which wasn't a huge surprise as the last sentence of the description on the back reads "Pitch dark". Dark black. Nearly opaque - has similar appearance to a porter or stout. Carbonation not real active.

Hops dominate the nose. I can detect more dark malts and hints of carmel than the typical IPA. Hops are definetely the dominate taste, but not overpowering and are well balanced by the dark malts. Docked a few points for drinkablity, because this is just such a big beer.

Creamy, dense, chewy mouthfeel with a bit of oily hops. Moderate carbonation.

This beer is big in every way - malty, hoppy, high ABV. Although called an IPA on the bottle label. BA lists it as an American Strong Ale. I really appreciate beer like this that are hard to put in a single catergory. To me seems to have the strong hops prescence and mouthfeel of an IPA with the dark carmel malts of a porter or stout.

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

Pours a very dark, almost black body, with a big frothy tan head. Nice rentention and generous lace left behind.

Hoppy aroma - bright with lots of citrus and grapefruit. Some malt sweetness lies in the backround.

Powerful blast of hops kicks things off. Very citric with a touch of pine. Sweet maltiness comes in to add a little balance. Mild roast and brown sugar. Alcohol shows just a bit, adding some spice and a little heat towards the end of the bottle. Hops are definitely the showcase here, powerful but not harsh. Damn tasty and very refreshing.

Medium bodied, crisp, and prickly on the tongue. Very drinkable - could be a session beer if it wasn't for the high ABV. Alcohol is fairly well hidden.

I enjoyed getting a hop fix from a dark beer. Great brew - more then just a gimmick.

Photo of lackenhauser
3.54/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Deep ruddy brown. Somewhat muddy in appearance. Floral and fruity aroma. Sort of "burnt" smelling. Quite bitter up front against a mellow malt flavor. Very grainy tasting. Long lingering bite in the finish. Mouthfeel is ok. A decent enough beer but I am not sure what its trying to be. I would like to see Stone do something with a little less hops in it. I mean, I am worthy and all but its time for a change in spots.

Photo of Scooter70
4.03/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark with smells of alcohol and malt. Thick, tan head with good retention. Taste is mostly malty with a hint of hops. The alcohol smell doesn't really come through in the taste. Overall, the taste didn't match what I expected from a dark IPA. (What the heck is an IPA doing this dark anyway?!?!) I prefer more hop and less malt but overall I like this beer. I don't think I've had a beer from Stone that I didn't like. ;)

Photo of medic25
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a generic pint glass. Pours a dark, almost black body with a big frothy tan head. Hoppy aroma. Taste is impressive; big powerful hit of hops, but a touch of sweetness and maltiness that is balanced very well. This beer reminded me of a DIPA and an imperial stout that got together to make something new. The alcohol is present, but pleasantly welcome. Goes down quite nicely; another great offering from a brewery I wish would come to Connecticut some day.

Photo of littleshamrocks
4.8/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz brown bomber with September 2007 printed on the bottle. Served in a snifter.

Pours a very dark brown to black in color with a solid one finger of creamy looking head. It is fairly dense, but from what I can tell the carbonation is plenty active. Head leaves behind an impressive amount of sticky lace. The first aroma that I identify is grapefruit rind, but I can tell that there is much more going on here. The malt smells are, at the same time, roasted and semi-sweet. Certainly, there are some coffee tones in there. In addition to the citrus, I also picked up some evergreen notes and some fruity esters. Bold flavors abound here. The hops are very assertive and pack plenty of bitterness, and the malts, while they do take a backseat to the hops, are still sufficiently represented as well. The malt flavors are as advertised in the smell- roasted and lightly sweet, but it doesn't take long for the powerhouse citrus hop bitterness to steal the show. The bitterness lingers in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with a mostly smooth texture and lively carbonation.

Kudos to Stone for being creative and taking a chance. This is a finely crafted gem to commemorate their eleventh anniversary. Admittedly, I am a sucker for over the top citrus hop taste and bitterness, and this beer satisfied that immensely, but unlike most super hopped up beers, this one added considerable nuances from the malt as well. Not only did I think it cool to have an almost black IPA (or is it a IDA or IBA?), but the malts added a lot to the overall character of this brew. In all, I would say this is one of the best beers that has ever passed through these lips. My wish is that Stone will bring this one back in the future, but for now, enjoy it while you still can.

Photo of ommegangpbr
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A black IPA? You gotta give the Stone folks some credit for that. T'is very porter like in appearance with a light tan head that isn't skimpy with the lacing.
Scent? Smoked Ruination. Maybe if you mixed their smoked porter with Ruination you'd get something like this out of the nose. Sparkly hoppy scents with deep roasted coffee scents.
The flavors make me think of a wood aged IPA of some sort. Shades of Le Coq stout but dominated by a ballsy IPA profile. The malts make for a pleasing sweetness that rounds everything out.
For drinkability, all I can say is yes, more please. As far as strong ales go I probably would enjoy this more than Arrogant Bastard... is that blasphemous to say? A fitting tribute to a lucky number 11 years and going strong.

Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 5,807 ratings.