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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.

5,122 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,122
Reviews: 1,820
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 10.43%
Wants: 224
Gots: 423 | 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: 5,122 | Reviews: 1,820 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of HeyItsChili


3.9/5  rDev -7.6%

A - Poured from a bomber into a pint glass. Pours Coca-Cola brown/black with garnet highlights and a globby, creamy khaki head.

S - Heavy on toasty malt, faint cocoa, coffee, chocolate.

T - Roasted malt, faint dry bitter chocolate, piny hops, sort of an odd caramel foamy finish.

M - Fluffy, fizzy, medium bodied.

07-23-2009 02:58:26 | More by HeyItsChili
Photo of Backer2004

North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +6.6%

Found this on draft at the mandalay bay burger bar after they disappointed me with not having deschutes mirror mirror. Worth it, however. Didn't get the chocolate as much as expressed but an excellent double ipa with some maltiness. Great on draft in a goblet.

07-22-2009 23:07:06 | More by Backer2004
Photo of weeare138


4.33/5  rDev +2.6%

Appears a dark, near black with a fluffy beige head that slowly fades into a mild cap of suds. Scattered streaks of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of cocoa, caramel, espresso, and a huuuge amount of pine and grapefruit.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, caramel malt up front followed by a gigantic bitter dryness during the swallow.

07-20-2009 20:33:41 | More by weeare138
Photo of pokesbeerdude


4/5  rDev -5.2%

22oz from Wilbur's in Ft. Collins, around $7.

A: Dark brown, verging on black with a cream colored head about and inch thick, excellent lacing and really great head retention. Nice looking beer.

S: Extremely hoppy, big blast of citrus in the nose, which is a little shocking considering the color of the beer, in fact, all I can smell is a huge hop presence. Nice.

T: Wow, one of the most shocking flavors I've had in a beer, coffee and grapefruit rind. This is an odd one, hop flavored coffee anyone? Really potent and bitter, both from the hops and from the dark malts at play here. Malt bill is fairly subdued, but the dark roasted/coffee presence is about the only thing going on in that department. Very interesting.

M: Quite thin, medium carbonation, and quite dry, surprisingly no booze in the mouth on this one, even though it weighs in at 8.7.

D: Just a little too out there for me, the flavors pull my tongue in so many directions, not to mention the amount of hops has pretty much decimated my tongue, that this is an enjoyable beer, but is hard to drink. A lot going on, really tasty, but definitely a one and done beer for me. Will seek out again.

07-19-2009 02:59:32 | More by pokesbeerdude
Photo of bdevilbullet


4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

A - Pours a very very dark brown, almost pitch dark, with a nice creamy very light brown head.

S - A strong maltiness comes through along with some piney hops.

T - This bottle has aged a few years now and the hops have become somewhat muted from what they were at bottling, but there is still a pronoucned piney hop flavor to go along with the malt backbone. Also, just a touch of smoke comes through.

M - A full bodied creamy beer.

D - It has a strong alcohol note, so it can be a bit of a sipper, but I still wouldn't mind two of these back to back.

Overall, a really good beer. I'm a fan of India Brown Ales and this beer twists that style up a notch.

07-18-2009 03:33:42 | More by bdevilbullet
Photo of mdagnew

United Kingdom (Northern Ireland)

3.93/5  rDev -6.9%

650ml bottle bought from Beersofeurope.com

Poured a deep black colour. Light tan head poured big, thick and foamy and faded slowly to good thickish covering... lots of sticky lacing most of the way down the glass...

Aroma - Juicy tart fruits (orange zest, pears, lemons) followed by sweet (and maybe slightly toasted ?) malts, light chocolate and coffee notes, faint brown sugar traces, strong piney resin and citrus hopiness, raw nuts - pistachio, some rubberiness, honey, cut wet grass / hay...

Taste - Tons of piney, grassy and citrus hop bitterness blast the tongue... juicy tart fruits (strong grapefruits, lemons, pears, bitter oranges), nice caramel malts and notes of floral honey balance out the hop assault, some chocolate hints, quite herbal, some liquorice, light roastiness...

M&D - Fairly smooth with a little oiliness in the background then some sharpness comes through... full bodied... a bomber of this is a bit much due to the hop assault

Overall - An excellent and slightly bizarre ale - a bit like a blend of Schwarzbier and DIPA... well worth a try..

07-15-2009 11:11:32 | More by mdagnew
Photo of DiabolikDUB


4.18/5  rDev -0.9%

Poured from Bottle into Tulip glass.

Pours jet black with a booming, fluffy light-tan head that never fully dissolves and creates a dense layer atop the glass. The aroma is filled with sticky, resinous hops and has some hints, although very subtle, of chocolate. Flavor is piney hops and sweet malt upfront and is accompanied by some touches of roasted malt and dried fruit. Its a medium bodied beer that is sticky and has a good amount of carbonation. Out of all the "Black" IPA's that I've tried this one certainly sets the bar. I had no idea what this beer looked like before I poured it into my glass and was surprised it was as black as it was. The aroma is purely delicious.

07-14-2009 04:59:12 | More by DiabolikDUB
Photo of jdense


3.93/5  rDev -6.9%

22 oz. bottle from Belmont Station into pint glass.

Pitch black brew, tan two finger head with significant lacing-this looks good..Chocolatey, roasty malts predominate in the nose and beginning of the taste, with a dry hop finish. More of sipper than quaffer, one bomber is sufficient, thanks. I certainly like this more than Arrogant Bastard and hope Stone decides to brew on a regular basis. A nice example of the style, most certainly worth seeking out.

07-14-2009 03:36:58 | More by jdense
Photo of GatorBeerNerd


4.33/5  rDev +2.6%

22 oz bottle purchased at Green's on Ponce and poured into a Sierra Nevada Hop Tulip.

A: Pours what appears to be black, but on closer inspection you see its a really dark brown with amber highlights around the edges when held up to the light. It has a nice large frothy small bubble head that leaves ring after ring of lace as the beer is consumed.

S: Just like in my tap experience with this one, I do not really pick up much in the way of hops in the aroma. However, they do seem a little more prevalent in the aroma than the tap pour did. Also, the malt sweetness is not so forward in the nose as the tap version.

T: Just like the tap version, the initial sweetness is quickly washed away with a load of hops which leaves quite a bitter after taste. The after taste is very similar to what I get when I drink a black up of coffee.

M: Medium body with a very smooth and creamy feel. I do not recall it being this smooth on tap.

D: Judging it based on the style listing here, there are quite a few Strong Ales that are probably more drinkable. If you threw it into the DIPA category, I think the score might be a bit higher.

07-14-2009 02:16:08 | More by GatorBeerNerd
Photo of TexIndy


3.65/5  rDev -13.5%

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a pint glass. Lasered enjoy by date on bottom of 8/18/09. Was dark brown almost black in color with some mahogany edges against the light. Good lacing. It had a massive 3 finger than head that ever so slowly settled to a constant foam.

Being Stone, the aroma was heavy hops - floral and pine resin. Also had some darker fruit aroma in the back. Not much else could escape the hops. The taste was really good but definitely a hop attack. Tonuge is shredded barely a 1/3 of the way into it. I like bitter hops but this one just goes over the enjoyable line into the pain area. Makes it tough to finish since numb at the end.

Overall, a really good beer that definitely brings the hops. For me, this is a good sharing beer as it's painfully bitter after awhile. Glad I got to try it as I missed getting the Stone 11 (this is that just re-released and re-labeld) but one is enough.


07-12-2009 03:02:24 | More by TexIndy
Photo of Gyle41386

South Carolina

4.1/5  rDev -2.8%

Poured from a bomber into a 24 oz mug. Awesome bottle. So far, it's my favorite.

Pours a very dark brown, practically black. A finger of light brown foam retains well and leaves behind some nice lacing.

If you had no prior knowledge of this beer, you'd be absolutely floored by the aroma. Huge burst of west coast hops, plus bitter ground coffee and roasted barley. Tons of citrus. Amazing aroma.

The taste to me doesn't seem to follow the nose at all. There's a big piney hop character, rather than the citrus I had been smelling. An absolute in your face, aggressive bitterness. Six months ago, I would've hated this. This is more bitter than any beer I've tasted so far, moreso than Ruination. 13th Anniversary is in the fridge, so I'm interested to see how the bitterness compares. There's the aforementioned pine hop bitterness, then a chewed up coffee bean bitterness, and bitterness from the roasted barley that borders on harsh.

The texture is nice. It's got the body I'd expect from an IPA. Surprisingly smooth. There's a nice creaminess. Well done. The alcohol isn't present in the taste, but just as a warming sensation on the way down.

This one toes the line between bitter and unpleasant. Had Stone made this any bigger, I don't think it would work out at all. It's definitely a beer that grows on you. Those first few sips are almost overwhelming. I know they already used the "You're not worthy" line for Arrogant Bastard, but it's more applicable here. All in all, this is a pretty bad ass beer.

07-12-2009 01:37:47 | More by Gyle41386
Photo of atsprings

North Carolina

4.55/5  rDev +7.8%

22oz bottle at Flying Saucer poured into a Duvel glass a nice opaque black with a nice frothy light-tan head that diminishes and leaves slight lacing. Aroma is a subtle amount of black malts and crisp hops. Taste is very nice balance of black malts and citrus and pine hops. Very nice complex amount of flavors with bitter cocoa and espresso showing up nicely as well. The beer is medium bodied with the alcohol present, but somewhat hidden. I got to try 11th when it was a year old, and this one is certainly better fresh.

07-09-2009 22:51:29 | More by atsprings
Photo of Swimsum


4.13/5  rDev -2.1%

Consumed on 6/28 from a growler into a pint glass.
A: Pours out black and fairly thick looking. Good size head emerges from initial pour. Head texture is creamy and ivory brown in color. Head is pretty sticky but not much lacing is left on the glass as the brew is consumed. The head stays around for awhile and finally settles to a thin layer.

S: Mostly pine but some floral/grassy notes are there as well. Roasty notes very very faint (maybe be my mind playing a trick). Orange zest is also present in the smell.

T: Pretty much the same as the smell. Big pine taste upfront followed by a slight bitter finish. Grassy notes linger in the aftertaste. Alcohol isn't present when brew is cooler but as it warms up alcohol is more present.

M: Great mouthfeel, creamy but not thick. Good amount of carbonation but it doesn't take away from anything. No harsh alcohol taste when cold but as it warms, slight alcohol taste can be detected but by no means is it harsh.

D: This is a damn drinkable beer. The growler was gone all too quick, glad they bottle this. I really enjoy this beer, goes down smooth and overall just an amazing beer. If you loved the Stone XI fresh, you'll love this beer.

07-08-2009 21:16:48 | More by Swimsum
Photo of Bung


4.03/5  rDev -4.5%

22 oz. Anniversary ale bottle. Dark brown/black pour. Frothy tan head. A little musty smelling, with piney hop and some roast and burnt malt. Taste has plenty of roasted malt, some dark chocolate. Very clean finishing with biter coffee, bakers chocolate, pretty dry. Medium bodied with good carbonation. I think 1 year of age would have been about perfect, this was just a little over. The 2 years really mellowed the hops, which was good for me. Good balance of malt, roast and hops. A real nice drinker, with only slightly high abv, which is not noticeable at all anyways. From what I understand this is now the Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale.

07-07-2009 00:38:02 | More by Bung
Photo of Jmoore50


4.13/5  rDev -2.1%

Got this little guy at a BevMo in San Francisco, just visiting for a while. I really wish that Stone graced us with this brews presence, this thing really surprised me with a few of the different aspects.

The appearance is mind rocking. It is brown, meaning brown ale brown and it has no IPA characteristic to it at all. It is a thicker Strong Ale and just insane with the look and taste. No real head and goes away really fast.

The smell was great, I got a few scents of brown sugar, alcohol, lots and lots of malt. Just an overall trip.

This is where somethings did not give me the best impression. It was hoppy, and malty, just overall good. But it was just good. Nothing great at all. I thought that it was going to have one overbearing characteristic that would make it stand out, but none showed. Why I gave it a 4 is because it was balanced, something that Stone does not really do that often. Like ruination the hop bitterness just pops. This is almost too balanced to make it stand out in my mind. I liked it and thought it was very enjoyable but I might forget about it down the road.

Overall a good beer but nothing too special that I would make a point to buy again.


07-04-2009 02:50:51 | More by Jmoore50
Photo of Docer


4.05/5  rDev -4%

Grabbed a bomber,.. probably too tossed to review this already as I have just had a bomber of their 13th anni. ale...

- Is this a porter? Sure looks like one... dark dark black and brown... mocha head... rich looking.. listening to Greatful Deads Whiskey in a jar...

- Roasted burnt chocolate malt...sweetness... coffee w/ creamer... bit of tomato soup... rather interesting.... bitterness maybe..

- What an interesting ale!.. seriously smooth... fruity, zesty and yet has a bit of a tomato soup sweetness and flavor to it.... bit of pine hop... and whatever they flippin' used to adjunct... wow...

- Great mouthfeel w/ and interesting aftertaste....

- Hugely drinkable as most strong ales are from stone brewing....

07-03-2009 00:17:41 | More by Docer
Photo of alleykatking


3.95/5  rDev -6.4%

22oz bottle got in a trade with bkrefetz...thanks for everything Brett!

A- Poured into pint glass. Deep brown color with some lighter brown highlights when held to the light. Nice 1 finger tan/mocha colored head. Soapy style lacing that slides down the glass.

S- I can tell this has some age on it. The hop profile has faded with this beer over time. More sweet malt aroma makes up the forefront of this beer. Sweet bready chocolate malts to be exact. This is followed by hints of piney hops...very faint though. Even with age this beer as a alright smell.

T- Right off the top all the hops it has left in there come crashing to the front with a slight pine taste followed almost at the same time with a sweet alcohol malt taste declining into a bitter hop taste. Sipping on this makes more malt flavors (chocolate, burnt sweetness) than hop (bitter pine) of course but still it is almost balanced out after almost 2 years on it.

M- This has a medium to medium-heavy mouthfeel to it. The carbonation to this is dead on and makes for a pleasant drinking experiance. This beer still has a hop presence and you can tell with the oily resin it leaves on the tounge making for a slick feel. Good aftertase leaving you wanting more.

D- Well sadly this is my last 11th from Stone so I can not drink anymore of this. Too bad cause it tastes good with some age on it.

07-01-2009 04:08:06 | More by alleykatking
Photo of BattleRoadBrewer


4.22/5  rDev 0%

Served (too) cold on tap in a small taster. Took repeated samples!!! It was that good, kept going back.

Dark brown, almost jet black with a modest head.

Nose is big with grapefruit hops. Some hints of dark fruit, not much in the way of malt.

Flavor is just fantastic, complementing the nose. Hint of chocolate malt, but not really like an American brown, more like a Black IPA. Mouthfeel is perfectly balanced for an IPA.

Overall this is a really fantastic beer. I like Stone XI, but I love this. Whatever the subtle difference is, it's for the better. Definitely something to stock up on.

06-28-2009 13:04:03 | More by BattleRoadBrewer
Photo of gunnerman


4.33/5  rDev +2.6%

Had this at a recent tasting, poured into a taster glass. Pours a dark brown to black in color with a fluffy head. Smell has a nice hop profile, tangerine, pineapple, grass. Taste is as good as the smell, exploding with a refreshing hop bitterness of grapefruit and tangerine. This has a nice malt character with maybe a bit of smoke in the finish. Overall I didn't know what to expect from Stone on this one, it really met my expectations.

06-28-2009 11:18:08 | More by gunnerman
Photo of rajendra82


4.58/5  rDev +8.5%

The pour surprised me at first, because I had not read the full blurb on the back of the silk screened label, and was expecting an IPA. But the last line gave the clue to what this looked like, dark, pitch dark. When held up against the light, some ruby highlights showed up, but otherwise this was pretty much a black beer in terms of look. The head atop seemed small but stable, and was quite light in color, which was in stark contrast to the body. The smell was like a hop field, which pine and grapefruit smells being quite prominent. Underneath them, there was some chocolate lurking there. The taste was quite hoppy indeed, which made me wonder if this was not a year old bottle, but rather a fresh brewed batch for us on the East coast. The spicy, prickly, earthy hoppyness was just as intense as any IPA, however the black patent malt astringency, and some chocolate flavor were unusual, but went surprisingly well with that. The body was more in line with IPA than the looks suggested, and this was very drinkable for me, since I like hoppy beers. Quite a unique combination, but it works.

06-28-2009 04:26:24 | More by rajendra82
Photo of GarrisWH


4.18/5  rDev -0.9%

A - Pours an opaque, very deep brown/almost black color with a big, thick tan head that dies down slowly, leaving pretty nice lacing as it recedes.

S - Nice hop aromas which consist mostly pine and some slight citrus and earthy/herbal hints as well. Fairly subtle malty sweetness in the background, with coffee and maybe some chocolate tones.

T - A bit more mellow than I expected from the smell. Pine and grapefruit hops balanced with slightly smokey, sweet, mostly chocolatey malts with a hint of coffee as well. Somewhat bitter finish and a crisp, piney aftertaste.

M - Fairly full-bodied and smooth, with pretty minimal carbonation.

D - I really enjoyed this one, and while it is definitely a sipper, it is quite drinkable and has a nice combination of flavors. For almost 9% abv, it goes down easy. I will probably enjoy one of these again, and I think it would make a great winter brew.

06-25-2009 03:11:40 | More by GarrisWH
Photo of DanielClouser


4.13/5  rDev -2.1%

22 oz bomber into Duvel tulip.

A--Black as pitch, but putting a lightbulb directly behind it, you can see a very little bit of the beautiful ruby red one sees in a backlit glass of arrogant Bastard. Nice head retention, with a little bit of billowy asymmetry at the top. It may not approach the Belgian head standard, but it's very good for an American beer.

S--Surprisingly, the nose is almost exactly like Sweetwater IPA, just with a little less grapefruit (and actually, that grapefruit is the first aroma to fade in Sweetwater IPA, so I've smelled many that match this Stone brew's nose exactly). It's a good smell.

T--Bitter! But it's a very nice, balanced bitterness, emerging from both hops and malt. Indeed, the malt really seems to be working with the hops' bitterness, rather than balancing it. Dark it may be, but it's nice and dry. In this case, it seems that hop aromatics play more of a balancing role than malt sweetness. Deep piny, resinous, grassy bitterness is very much the star here, and it's done well.

M--Mouthfeel isn't a category I go crazy over, unless it's been screwed up. I have no complaints, so it gets a 4.

D--Well, obviously, ABV and overwhelming bitterness hurt the brews' drinkability, but I could still drink these all night, just rather slowly.

Overall, an excellent brew, like every other Stone brew I've had (Ruination, Cali-Belgie, AB, and Oaked AB). Still, if Arrogant Bastard is too much for you, you're going to want to avoid this even more arrogant brew.

06-22-2009 21:31:49 | More by DanielClouser
Photo of Anthony1


3.2/5  rDev -24.2%

poured into a snifter

pours a black with a tan head, not much lace.

smells a bit like chocolate with a dark mix of fruit, but not anything special.

taste was a bit upsetting, bit piny with chocolate/coffee medium feel, but not great after taste,

was kinda of upset with this beer, not going to repurchase.

06-22-2009 01:30:28 | More by Anthony1
Photo of nrbw23


4.13/5  rDev -2.1%

A- Pours a dark brown color, almost black with red edges. A nice tannish brown colored head. Head has decent retention and leaves some really nice lacing.

S- Smells of floral and citrus hops. A touch of chocolate, smoke, caramel malts and darker fruits.

T- An amazing balance between the hops and malts going on here. A ton of hops mainly citrus with just a touch of piney. Alcohol is invisible and a bitter finish.

M- Medium in both carbonation and body.

D- Super easy to drink. I really like this one probably one of my favorite Stone's brews. I compared this one to Southern Tiers Iniquity and this one blows it out of the water.

06-18-2009 10:36:35 | More by nrbw23
Photo of thryn


4.05/5  rDev -4%

Dark, dark reddish-brown. Nearly black. Nearly opaque, once it's in the goblet. Head doesn't last, but a cappucino-colored lace hangs out on top and forms a lovely halo. An attractive beer. Some loose-weave lacing.

Tons of citrusy hop character in the nose. Faint roasted malt in the background, but I really have to search for it. Smells pretty much like a good DIPA, but doesn't reach "wow" levels.

Basically, it's a mindfuck -- it doesn't *look* like a DIPA, but it *tastes* like a DIPA. It's good, but I was hoping for the roasted malt to come out a bit more. It's present right when the beer first hits my tongue, but then the powerful hop flavors overwhelm it, sending the poor malts screaming for the hills. Hop character is mostly citrusy, bitter grapefruit with some oily pine involved as well. A tiny bit of raisin character and a little more roastiness comes out as it warms. Still, I would, indeed, call this a black DIPA.

The mouthfeel is outstanding. It's fairly thick, and of course oily from all the hops, but creamy nonetheless.

This is drinkable, but it is also powerful.

06-16-2009 07:43:25 | More by thryn
Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 5,122 ratings.