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Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,231 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,231
Reviews: 1,827
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 10.43%
Wants: 230
Gots: 470 | FT: 6
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Gueuzedude on 09-02-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,231 | Reviews: 1,827 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Blakaeris
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark with only the slightest ruby highlights. Head is thick and creamy, leaving tons of sticky lacing as it dissipates.

Aroma is sweet malt base and rich in light citrus fruit notes.

Taste is initially sweet and malty. Dark fruit appears momentarily. Then leafy tobacco hop takes over. Finishes with a mild woody, earthy aspect, and lingering green hop dark grain bitterness.

Mouthfeel is medium-full.

A very flavorful and interesting black ale. Hops have a strong presence, but do not completely dominate the dark malt grain. Very nice.

Blakaeris, Apr 14, 2011
Photo of bashiba
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep dark black, with a big thick foam.

The smell is big and green, very fresh hops and piney with hints of citrus, no black malt notes to speak of.

The flavor is a nice blend of dark black cacao notes mixing in with a big fresh hop flavor, nice hints of pine and citrus. Very black and hoppy tasting at the same time.

The mouthfeel is light and very resiny with a long lasting hop coating.

pretty good black IPA, stone certainly knows how to do hops right.

bashiba, Apr 13, 2011
Photo of WoodBrew
4.85/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Well its Monday...what the hell....why not have a Self-Righteous Ale!?!?!? This beer has awesome complexity....that I would argue gave birth to a whole new line of craft beers....the Black IPAs, etc. This beer is very dark with ecru foamy head. The nose screams hops like an IPA. The taste is a wonderment that begins like an IPA, but finishes with a roasty malt character. The mouthfeel is decent, but the ABV can be tough to start. I could probably handle two stingers (22oz) fairly easily, but after that someone would have to carry me home.

WoodBrew, Apr 12, 2011
Photo of Snow81
4.55/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Super dark amber almost black

Head: light brown head

Smell: Orange zest right up front with a bright hop and light maltyness

Taste: Bright tropical fruit upfront as the malt washes over the bitter hops bit back and stack on the palate

Weight: Medium frosty body with high to medium carbonation

Finish: Bitter hops with subtle malty sweetness and a hint of heat

Snow81, Apr 10, 2011
Photo of Japerrault
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Opaque dark brown with a tan head. Nice lacing present.

S: Pine, Grapefruit, in abundance. Also, a little toffee aroma.

T: Piney hops mixed in with a mellow sweetness. Grapefruit bitterness through the middle, finishing with dark roasted malt.

M: Full bodied. Nice carbonation. Alcohol warmth in the finish.

O: Complex flavors with a good feel. Nice beer for those who like their hops flavors and aromas.

Japerrault, Apr 10, 2011
Photo of ZAP
4.93/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Outstanding black IPA...awesome aroma..big citrus which reminds of Simcoe and Amarillo....that follows in the taste...really a nice juicy citrus hit....then just enough black malt to make this doubly interesting.

This might rate as one of my favorite Stone beers. An extremely well done Black IPA..wish the price was a little lower because this drinks nicely as a session beer rather than a sipper...

ZAP, Apr 10, 2011
Photo of zeledonia
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown, with reddish at the edges, and a substantial tan-colored head that leaves good lacing.

Smell is mostly citrus hops, and a bit weak. Grapefruit is the dominant fruit, but I have to reach a bit to get it.

Taste is smooth rich malts, rather subdued, leading into a nice citrus hop punch, that finishes out without much lingering bitterness. The hops are the central character, but they're backed up well by some malty richness and sweetness. Looking at it, I was definitely expecting more roasted malt character than I got.

Medium-bodied, decent carbonation, not bad, but nothing special.

This beer was a bit of a surprise for me. Didn't know what to expect, but the dark color without a ton of malt flavor, and the strong citrus hop presence, are just right for a black IPA. Quite tasty, better balanced than many beers like it, and one I'm quite likely to drink again.

zeledonia, Apr 09, 2011
Photo of CaptDavyJones
4.45/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a nice dark almost black color from a 22 oz bomber with ABV on the label. Nice two finger head that dissipates ever so slowly, leaving behind a nice lace.
Aroma is a nice blend of hops with a fruity (apricots, and some raisin) aroma.
This ale is a wonderful assault on the palate. Nice bitterness of the hops up front with hints of sweetness and finishing again on a nice bitter note. However, the bitterness of the finish has a caramel/cocoa like flavor.
An excellent example of how I would want my black ale/IPA to be. Excellent mouthfeel and drinkability.
Absolutely worth a try and highly recommended.

CaptDavyJones, Apr 09, 2011
Photo of tewaris
3.85/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

India Black Ale/Black IPA/Cascadian Dark Ale/Gimmicky name # 10
8.7 % ABV
90 IBU's

Received in trade with dvelcich before Stone started distributing to MN. Thanks Dan! 22 oz. bomber with a best by date of 05.04.2011 poured into a New Belgium globe.

Pours dark brown, looks real black in the glass, with a dark-ish brown head, good retention and great lacing. Smells of nothing initially but then leafy fresh minty hops come along. I can swear that there's some overlap in the hop profile of this one and AB. Still nowhere close to what I experienced in the doubly dry hopped version of this beast. Take a sip... shall we?

Yeah baby, this is a black IPA alright! Taste transitions smoothly from an IPA to an incredibly hopped up stout, this is what a "Black & Tan" oughta taste like. It has the fresh, light, and cleansing hop bitterness and the bad-ass, broody-ass depth of roast. This is Robert De Niro playing a trigger happy cowboy. Mouthfeel is sadly a little watery-ier than I'd like. The finish is bitter and roasty, and dry.

I hate that BA has done away with drinkability because this is where I used to voice my opinion on drinkability, obviously and stuff like ABV. This beer is way higher in alcohol than it should be, in my opinion. Overall good, but nothing earth shattering. Still an achievement considering that this is the first beer of a style everyone wants to brew these days.

Score: Appearance 5/5; Aroma 3.5/5; Taste 4/5; Mouthfeel 3/5; Overall 4/5

tewaris, Apr 09, 2011
Photo of socon67
3.93/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown and has a noticeable smell oh hops and grain. I'd think this was a DIPA based on smell and taste. The finish had more of a whiskey-like burn. On one hand this is a very hoppy black ale and has a good blend of hops to go with a sweet, malty flavor profile. But while I like it, I'm not as in love with it as most. It seemed a little too strong on the back end. this is still a very good option form Stone.

socon67, Apr 08, 2011
Photo of MaltsOfGlory
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pretty nice one and a half finger head, which is a light brown color. There are some big bubbles and some small creamy bubbles. The body is black with hints of dark brown here and there, especially when held up to the light. The head is still there, but not as much as I would like it to be. Overall this looks pretty good. The smell on this is really surprising to me, it doesn't really smell like a black ale, it smells like a black IPA or maybe ever a regular IPA, the hops are just phenomenal for it being a black beer. I really don't detect too much malt either, maybe a little bit, but not much. It's mostly just the hops on the smell, I do get a small indication of the high alcohol on the smell. Overall it smells pretty good, not too complicated, but it smells good and powerful! Taste is really good, huge hops in the front end, and a little malt in the finish, not too much alcohol noticeable in this one, which is nice. The mouthfeel is a little light, which is ok for the style, but I do like my beer thicker. It's a very well done beer, which is expected from Stone, but just like the smoked porter, it's not that complicated or unique. If you wanted to look up in the dictionary what a good beer should be, you should (I don't know if you would, but you should) find this beer listed. On the other hand if you looked for creative beers in the dictionary this would be no where to be found. Maybe my opinion is a little biased because I recently had their scotch ale and it was super complex, who knows. We will see if there are any other flavors that come out as the beer warms, but for now, I will leave it as this: great beer, not complex.

MaltsOfGlory, Apr 08, 2011
Photo of KarlHungus
3.8/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a very dark brown color. The head is two inches in height, and recedes slowly into sticky lacing. The aroma is of pine resin, grapefruit, and roasted malt. The taste is similar to the aroma with a sharp bitterness that hides most of the malt character. There is also a harsh alcohol heat in the finish that is unpleasant. The mouthfeel is full bodied with moderate carbonation, and a smooth texture. Overall, this is a nice beer that I could drink again.

KarlHungus, Apr 07, 2011
Photo of ToasterChef
4.18/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A slightly chilled 22oz bottle poured into a NERAX pint. A big brown foam head with cascading bubbles rests atop opaque, dark brown liquid. Once the cascading stops, the foam still fills more than half the glass. As the foam begins to settle, lots of lacing remains.

Bitter hops make up a majority of the nose, but there are also some sweet smells and some roasted malts present. It's an inviting aroma, and one that is different from a typical IPA.

An impressive flavor balances hops and malts. West coast bitterness is present, but it isn't a one dimensional flavor. Some roasted malts add balance and a little bit of sweetness keeps things interesting. Alcohol can be detected as I swallow, but it isn't unwelcome. A dry bitterness with mildly bitter coffee notes are the two flavors that linger on after I swallow. I like that the roasted malts and different bitter flavors make this more than an IPA that happens to be black.

Full bodied with medium carbonation, the beer leaves a good coat behind and has some stickiness. It is above average considering the ABV. I wouldn't mind if the coat had more flavor.

This is a tasty beverage that can act as a good introduction to this relatively young style. The fact that it is available in most states surely helps. I would pick up a bottle if interested, but I also wouldn't go out of my way to obtain one if it isn't sitting on the shelves of your local store.

ToasterChef, Apr 06, 2011
Photo of flavorshark
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm gonna be honest; were I blind-folded, it'd be hard for this noob to tell the difference between this and Arrogant Bastard. That's an enormous compliment.

Smell: Apricot, pineapple, hops. People are saying pine; I want what they're smoking.

Taste: Fruity and hoppy. We are disappointed in our inability to adequately describe whatever else is going on, but it is good.

Appearance: Brown. We're drinking from the bottle.

Overall a very solid beer. Not quite as good as Arrogant Bastard but a nice change in pace.

flavorshark, Apr 06, 2011
Photo of MattyG85
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22 oz. bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: Very dark with a thick foam head with good retention. A little light comes through at the bottom. Very good lacing.

Smell: Strong pine and citrus hop aroma with a hint of grapefruit.

Taste: Caramel sweetness and roasted malt followed by hop bitterness. A hint of cherry in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a bit of cream and medium carbonation.

Overall: An interesting beer that seems like a mix of an ipa and porter.

MattyG85, Apr 04, 2011
Photo of bsp77
4.2/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Nonic Imperial Point. Best by date of June 14, 2011.

Appearance: Near black with thick foamy tan head and nice lacing rings.

Smell: Very hoppy and roasted aroma. Pine, citrus and molasses are at the forefront. Somewhat floral as well, like roses.

Taste: Roasted malt backbone with molasses and coffee. Complex, bitter hops override the malts, especially on the finish with loads of pine and grapefruit. Doesn't mesh quite as well as I hoped.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, pretty smooth body with a dry, warming finish.

Overall: This is a style that I really like when it strikes the proper balance between roasted malts and citrusy hops. This one just misses that balance, but is very good nevertheless.

bsp77, Apr 02, 2011
Photo of Mdog
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Black, but some light comes through, gigantic head.

Smell: Very hoppy, pine and citrus.

Taste: Crisp hoppy flavor-lots of citrus. The roasted malts do make a short appearance before a bitter finish.

Drinkability: Doesn't feel too strong, pretty good pricing.

I finally get to try Stone's 11th Anniversary/SSRA since they came to Minnesota. Very good beer, very hoppy but not bruisingly bitter. Glad to finally get to try this one.

Mdog, Apr 02, 2011
Photo of pburland23
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into my Portsmouth bubble glass.

Beer pours a deep, dark black with reddish hues around the edges. Produces a very thin and slightly underwhelming tan head. To no one's surprise, this beer looks like a stout when poured.

It sure doesn't smell like a stout however. There is a funky, pungent hoppiness aroma that leaps forth from the glass. The taste is very bitter. When the beer was first out of the fridge, it was almost too bitter for me but as it opened up, the bitterness subsided and melted into a pleasing and well balance hoppy tasting beer. There was more than enough roasted malt flavor to compliment the hops. A big, robust beer.

The mouthfeel, I thought, was a little thin for what is essentially an IPA.

Overall, I'm trying to wrap my mind around all these new American Black Ales that need popping up on the market. I like stouts. I like IPAs. I'm still not sure how much I like this style though. If more American Black Ales were as good as this one, I could see myself coming around quickly.

pburland23, Apr 02, 2011
Photo of azdback
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The bottle is a Stone Gargoyle silk screen master piece! Poured into a Stone Imperial glass from which I can see no light through. Just a hint of highlights at the bottom edge of the glass. Head is coco colored and almost three fingers. The lace looks as if it's gonna stick around like the vacuum salesman. Other than a bit watery look this pours just like an Imperial Stout.

The smell is rather complex. There is some dark malt smells that are almost sweet. There is alot of citrus hop smell, grapefruit/orange. I am getting a bit of caramel too.

The taste is even more complex then the smell. First thing I get is a roasted malt taste, that is followed closely by some bitter tastes of the grapefruit. The bitter hop taste then turns into some sweeter tastes of an orange or pink grapefruit, and then turns a bit tart. This is all followed by the chest warming of the alcohol. Just fantastic!!

The mouth is as great as the rest of the beer. It is evenly carbonated and very silky on the tongue. I wouldn't classify this a stout or and ipa. but some kind of hybrid.

Overall I must say this is fantastic beer, that I am able to purchase whenever I want. Lucky Me!!

azdback, Apr 02, 2011
Photo of HitokiriNate85
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Black with some red and brown highlights around the edges. Thick tan cap that's receding but leaving nice lacing as it goes and continues into a sheet the entire way down the glass.

S - Big initial contrast shows it's not just a ABA/BIPA/CDA/whatever in name. There's a perfume-like burst of some darker grains and citrus. Great hop bouquet that Stone almost always nails. Amarillo is noticeable, there's a big citrus rind note along with some floral notes.

T - The roast note in this really reminds me of GL Edmund Fitzgerald, even though it's incredibly subdued in comparison. It has a light roasted grain flavor without the bitterness. There is plenty of bitterness, though. What works so well in is how the hops stand out clearly against the light roast flavor. There are some grapefruit and citrus rind notes that are common in their other beers(from the Chinook, I guess), and also a sort of grassy/intoxicating floral flavor.

MF - Medium bodied and pretty nice considering ABV. Ample carbonation, which I really like in pales and IPAs.

O - I rarely have this beer because I don't see it around all that often, but I walked into the store the other day and it was just sitting in plain sight, so I had to grab one. Glad I did. Stone is consistent and they handle hops better than most. This is one of the few hoppy black ales I've had that I think is more than just someone jumping on the bus.

HitokiriNate85, Apr 02, 2011
Photo of BrewCrew2010
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a black body with a rocky cream-color head. Leaves great lacing.

S: Thick hoppy aroma with notes of pine & grapefruit.

T: Roasted chocolate malts and caramel sweetness upfront followed by bitter and floral hops. Smooth & nicely balanced.

M: Sticky resin mouthfeel, medium carbonation, medium-full body.

O: Great beer. Easy to drink! Definitely for CDA lovers!

BrewCrew2010, Apr 01, 2011
Photo of jjjeremy
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into wheat beer glass
Appearance-Black,fast pour led to three inch head that lasted forever with nice lacing
Smell-Heavy graipfruit/amongst other citrus aromas
Taste-Not nearly as pungent as the smell led me to think it would taste,of course a bit of grapefruit but more of the pith of an orange taste,mellow malt,slight candy taste.Bitter cherries,simple coffee,really quite complex
Mouthfeel-Very enjoyable,does not over stay its welcome
Overall-LOVE IT!!!Its brand new to st cloud,mn and getting a good positive reaction!!!

jjjeremy, Apr 01, 2011
Photo of claspada
3.03/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Aromas of strong piney hops and roasted malts with hints of caramels and toffee, however the hops dominate the nose.
The tastes begin with full flavored maltiness with flavors of burnt brown sugar, light coffee/toffee and caramel maltiness but the hops creep in and steal the show to this beer's detriment. The intense hops flavors of pine and grapefruit are just not melding with the dark malts. I do not enjoy the roast mixed with pine.
Overall the stickiness and resiny qualities dominate the mouthfeel and linger far too long for such a dark beer. I have had good, bad and average Black Ales. Unfortunately this is in the bad dept because the hops are just too dominating.

claspada, Apr 01, 2011
Photo of tigg924
3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass at Avenue pub, New Orleans

Appearance: 1/2 inch head, black in color, opaque

Smell: caramel and pine hops

Taste: big pine hops, charred malt, and a bit of cream

Mouthfeel: medium carbonation, medium body, sweet with a bitter aftertaste

Drinkability: I could have a couple over a long night. I like the nice deep charred malt and pine--my favorite ipa flavor. One of the better in style, yet I think I would reach for others in style first.

tigg924, Apr 01, 2011
Photo of Krakistophales
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a very dark brown, minimum carbonation and just a slight lacing around the glass with no persistent carbonation.

S: A mix of piney hops and caramel malt, a touch of toffee, though the hops dominate in the nose.

T: A nice malt and caramel middle with a strong hoppy aftertaste, which is reverse to the usual order of hops/malts. The aftertaste is a lingering of powerful, mighty hops, and the whole thing feels like drinking a hopsicle with some malt sauce.

M: Slight carbonation with a sticky, resiny mouthfeel, but goes down smoothly

O: This is an awesome beer. A powerful hopsicle that offers just a brief respite in a caramel, toffee, malt middle and only continues along the road to palate ruination a la hops.

Krakistophales, Apr 01, 2011
Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 5,231 ratings.