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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

5,719 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,719
Reviews: 1,884
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 10.43%
Wants: 259
Gots: 670 | 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: 5,719 | Reviews: 1,884 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bump8628
4.39/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Almost black with a light tan head that showcases big bubbles before fading to a sudsy ring.

Huge pine with raw citrus and tropical fruits in the background. Hops cover up any distinctive malty flavors that would normally be detectable, but there is a general "maltiness" that is softening the roughest edge of the hop bitterness before a dusting of dark cocoa powder dries out the finish.

All about the hops and not so much the roasted malts, which is how I like this style. The best Cascadian Dark Ale I've tried to date.

Photo of abrand
3.65/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

23 ounce bomber poured into a pint glass shared with a friend.

The Sublimely Ale pours a deep brown almost black color. Nice tan colored head that leaves a decent amount of lacing. Aromas are coffee, malts and slight hints of raisins and prunes. Taste is pretty hot and almost too alcoholic. The alcohol overpowers a lot of the other flavors on the quaff. A nice hop finish rounds out the taste. Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with good carbonation. Drinkability is mediocre. I think this will do really well with a little age on it.

Photo of OakedCanuck
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed this a while ago but just getting around to entering it in.

22oz poured into cervoise.

A - Standard black, off white to light tan rocky head, great lacing.

S - Very roasty initially, like roasted grains. You definitely pick up on the citrus hops, grapefruit, some lemon.

T - This beer slaps you in the face. Huge hops, citrusy grapefruit, orange and lemon zest as well as the pine. Then you pick up on the distinct grainy roasted malt that has sweetness to it. Also some licorice and maybe molasses.

M - This beer is pretty chewy, resiny, bitter. Medium weight.

D - I think this beer is awesome and probably the best example of this 'emerging' style. Stone at it again, well done.

Photo of gueuzeonhigh
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Gorgeous beer. Pours almost bible black with a frothy lasting head that births large and small bubbles as it "works".

Hits of hops and malt in the nose- maybe a hint of toasted oats?

The flavor is sublime. A strong stance ale -- almost a stout-- maybe a stout but it doesn't have the malty underpinnings of a stout. Bitter hops slathered with toasted malt. But in the end after some consideration the over-all flavor isn't that complex.. maybe it's the mouthfeel that keeps me going...

A long long lasting finish and hangs around with a hops flavor reverb bouncing off the walls.

A sublimely enjoyable mouthfeel-- it's a coating not a beer!

Drinkability-- even with a higher ABV there is enough "body" to this beer so I could see myself having emptied several 22 oz bottles and being welded to my seat but in beer heaven.

Photo of bosox941827
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomb poured into imperial pint glass; poured cold and warmed as tasted.
A - Dark as night, w/just a tinge of red around the edges; thin white lacing hangs around down the glass
S - Roasty chocoloate malts, mixed with a pronounced bitterness; interesting for sure
T - Porter at the start with all that comes with that; chocolate roasted malts with just a bit of sweetness. Bitterness is hinted at in the beginning, but really announces itself mid-palate and hangs around for quite a while at the end, very pleasantly. WAY at the end, the chocolate malts make a reappearance, blending nicely with the lingering bitterness. Can't taste the 8.7% ABV at ALL - pretty amazing.
M - Smooth and silky.
D - Not knowing the ABV, you would think this was a 5% beer based on taste along. This is AMAZINGLY (and scarily) drinkable. Great balance in this beer.
Black IPA is one of my new favorite styles and this is a fantastic example. Another hit from Stone, a brewery that can really do no wrong. Will definitely be picking this one up some more.

Photo of cdbooth219
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber poured into Sam Adam's Glass

A: Pours a deep black color, allowing no light through it. Forms a nice 1.5 finger tan head that dissipates slowly leaving some very good lacing.

S: Lots of hops, with floral, piney, and grapefruit notes prevalent. Behind that is lots of dark malts, with chocolate, coffee and licorice notes.

T: Starts of very hoppy with all of the nice floral, pine, grapefruit, and citrus notes. Then comes all the malts. Bitter chocolate, burnt coffee and toast, and licorice. Finishes with licorice and a bit of mint flavor. This has a very complex profile.

M: Medium bodied with lots of carbonation. The hop oils coat your tongue on the way down.

D: The abv is hidden well. It goes down very easy, but i definitely wouldn't drink more than one bomber of this. Its a sipper for sure.

Overall, this is another amazing offering from stone. This is definitely the best black ipa i've ever had and i will be picking up another bottle in the near future.

Photo of mjsheehan08
4.39/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a black sludge with a 1.5 inch head that dissipates quickly. Lacing stays consistent through the beer experience. When the glass is held up to the light, some reddness is seen.

Smell: Smells sweet and fresh, with piney, floral hops, but is juxtaposed with dark, almost burnt malts and dark chocolate. A really interesting whiff that I'm hoping it is replicated in the taste

Taste: The hops in this cascadian hit first, and they are dry and delicious. A very fresh taste, that develops into the darker flavors beautifully. The middle has hints of dark chocolate and roaster barley. The taste ends up with some dark licorice. Alot of complex flavors that really work well together.

Mouthfeel: a poppy mouthfeel, with a snappy feeling in the back of the mouth as it goes down, coats the tongue even after it goes down.  

Drinkability: Not a huge ABV, but Stone hids it well. There are so many different flavors at every turn in this beer, that I wouldn't want to drink a lot of them, I would just want to dedicate some time to drinking one.

A really good Black IPA, maybe the best one I have ever had in that style.

Photo of CaptainIPA
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

An aggressive pour yields a dark chocolate hue with a massive tan head with decent retention. Aromas of citrus hops, grapefruit, pineapple and pine, with subtler notes of chocolate and coffee.

Opens with a wallop of bitterness and a pronounced fruity, floral and herbal hop character. Juicy grapefruit and resinous pine meld with caramel, brown sugar and dark roasted malts. High ABV announces itself with a slow burning presence. Well balanced with a medium body. Suggestions of dark chocolate and coffee emerge. Notes of rich molasses and sharp licorice surface before finishing with a lingering blast of bitterness that numbs the back of tongue.

Sublime? Indeed. Self-righteous? Uh...it's brewed by Stone. Nuff said.

Photo of machostacos
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from chilled bomber into tulip glass. "Best enjoyed by" date is: 8/31/10 - wish I would have noticed that when I picked up this bottle. Alas.

A: Pours a very rich practically-black brown, with slight ruby highlights peeking around the edges when held up to a light. A small soapy tan head forms, though doesn't last long, leaving little lacing.

S: Surprisingly enough it's retained a lot of fresh hop character (though I'm sure it's not nearly as impressive as it would be fresh); lots of pine, resin, and the classic Simcoe cat-urine-ammonia aromas on the nose, with a hint of citrus (grapefruit mainly - maybe a tiny bit of pineapple, though it could all be in my head.) A rich roasty and chocolaty aroma pulls up the rear. Smells great even though it is a bit past its prime.

T: Wow. A harmoniously cacophonous tug-o-war between a rich stout and an IPA all the way. Strong chocolate character shows first, wrestling with the strong pine and resin flavors from the hops, back to a toasty, slightly smoky char from the roasted malts, giving way to a delicious blend of sweet and bitter from both the malts and hops. Finishes long, dry, and quite bitter. Both characters are at war, yet equally share the spotlight without one side really overpowering the other. A fantastic balance between opposing styles.

M: Pretty much exactly what I was expecting; medium body with lively carbonation. Quite literally what you'd expect to achieve by pouring a stout into an IPA, though maybe a touch on the thin side.

D: Though delicious, this isn't the most drinkable beer. It's quite bitter with a long finish, has lots of flavors going on that get a tad cloying after a while as they don't really evolve (each flavor profile is easily identifiable and sticks out from the others), and it has a restrictive ABV of 8.7%. I managed a bomber by myself, but that was certainly plenty. I would pick this up again in a heartbeat (especially a fresh bottle), but I'd want to share a bomber with a friend.

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

A. Deep, dark, and enticing, with perhaps a dark chocolate hue. The fluffy head is dingy, almost dusty looking, it lasts a while and slowly fades to reveal better than average lace.

S. The nose is piney, almost grassy at first followed by sweet caramel malt and a hint of vanilla.

T. This beer tastes like an epic battle between malty and hoppy. The hops are piney and a little floral, with a sharp bitterness. The malt is sweet and smooth with hints of coffee, burnt sugar, and a little mint.

M. Average mouthfeel and good carbonation help to accentuate a well balanced beer. This is an excellent hoppy beer as well as an excellent malt-forward beer. The dichotomy of the two is what sets this one over the top.

D. An excellent beer that would be one of my go-to beers if not for the high ABV. Still an excellent choice!

Photo of decafron
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a - deep dark sludge with a beautiful huge head. lacing seems to be everlasting. can't wait to dive into this.

s - bright citrus hops lead with a wallop of chocolate malt on the finish. smells as good as it looks...

t - this where this ale really explodes! a perfectly balanced marriage of cocoa and piney hops. it's subtle and huge at the same time...easily the best thing i've tasted from stone.

m - the perfect amount of bitterness, carbonation, and hoppy resin. not a hint of that high alcohol which could be a blessing or a curse.

d - holy crap...where have you been all my life? black ipa's are easily my favorite style of the last couple years and SSR is exceptional. i'm not the biggest fan of stone so i usually walk by them when i'm making a purchase. this beer has given me a new found respect for them. BUY THIS NOW!

Photo of JizackFH
3.98/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - This pours a very dark brown color, with a huge than head. The head left some lacing on the glass as it fell.

S - The smell is very citrusy. There are notes of hops, pine, chocolate, and coffee. It smells like a good blend of an IPA with dark malts.

T - The taste follows the nose. It has dark roasty malts, and a nice bright hop flavor. The hops are the dominating flavor, but the dark malts definitely makes their presence known. The finish has some roastiness and a touch of alcohol presence.

M - It has a medium body with a good amount of carbonation. It is very smooth and has a silky feel to it.

D - The drinkability is good. It goes down easily, and has a lot of flavor. This was my first black IPA , and I think it is a good and interesting style. I can't wait to try some more. As for this beer though, I would pick it up again for sure.

Photo of imagese
5/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This should be the benchmark for all black IPA's/CDA's

A- dark dark ruby with a two finger tan head that sustained a thin head that laced the whole glass

S- this is the best part of this phenomenal beer. Bold piney hops just assault your sinuses followed by a sweet hint of chocolately malt

T- awesome hop slam to the front of the tongue, followed by a great stout-esque sweep across the back.

M- perfect carbonation accents the high IBU of this beer. The bitterness lingers in your whole mouth and makes you crave that next sip

D- very drinkable for a rather high ABV and IBU. I've downed several bombers in a session.

If you're lucky enough to find the double dry hopped version of this on tap, drink as many as you can. Rare you find something that makes a perfect beer "perfecter"!!!

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

Poured into a tulip.

A: Pours a rather thin, but increasingly black color with 3 fingers of huge beige head that fills the Duvel tulip. Nice, thick sheets of lacing.

S: Juicy grapefruit and piney hops with a faint touch of chocolate on the end.

T: Nice bitterness upfront - pine mainly with hints of citrus. Not near as much hop flavor as the smell leads on. Chocolate malt rounds out the flavor defining this one as a Black IPA.

M: Moderate carbonation and medium body - a little creamy on the finish. Hops are sticky and resinous.

D: Dangerously drinkable given the ABV. Great beer overall and another solid selection from Stone.

Photo of chalsk
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black brown color with a caramel colored head. Looks like an IS but has an aroma of a DIPA, grapefruit and pine. There is a very subtle roastyness to it, but very distant. Tastes like a DIPA. Sweet up front, then hit with the harsh hopiness. A resinous brew. If you look for it, you can taste hints of the roasty malts. But I have had DIPA's that are more malt forward than this brew. Excellent beer. You will notice the maltiness kick up as it warms.

Photo of bbeane
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Poured into my DFH snifter... A pitch black liquid pours from the bottle producing a finger thick creamy off white head with nice retention and moderate lacing

S- Not overwhelming but nice... smells mixed grapefruit and floral with a bit of sugary malty sweetness

T- Starts with a hint of sweetness before the dryer coffee flavor takes over. Finishes with with a nice citrusy hop bite. Not a hint of the 8.7% abv

M- Light/medium carbonation with medium body

D- I hear so much hype about Stone beers and for some reason without trying many of them, feel like its overdone... this one definitely lives up to the hype. A delicious Black Ale worth trying

CHEERS!!

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

Very dark reddish notes in black, 1 finger chocolaty brown head with some med lacing.

smells of Pine Hops, dark roasted sweet malts, dark fruits, raisings, prunes, rich!!

taste of bitter chocolate then big earty and pine hops, dark fruits, malts lend some mild sweet notes, alcohol more present as it warms. nice complexity.

full body, good zesty carbonation start to finish, good hop bite and dry finish, medium alcohol warmth.

A bold brew with big hops, full bodied and bold. Good complexity. This one get's your attention.

Photo of bierkoning
4.71/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Served in a bomber poured in a mug, black as night, wonderful lacing.

I'm a big fan of Stone as a general rule, but this Black IPA is outstanding!

All the wonderful look and mouthfeel of a top-notch stout, but through some sort of magic it still has the fire and bite of a world class IPA!

Would drink this beer any day.

Photo of DmanGTR
3.98/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes.

Poured dark chestnut brown with an off white head. Beautiful garnet hues in the light. No lace. Very assertive citrus, less assertive pine, and finally, a light touch of coffee and roasted barley, which I can't quite comprehend with my nose at the moment. The taste, however, seems to put it back in place and is actually quite good. The grapefruit lasts throughout, but fades into pine in the finish, followed by a touch of astringent coffee-like bitterness. How odd. I could call this an India Porter Ale... or an IPA with an identity crisis? Whatever it may be, it fools me nicely and I'm having a blast enjoying this beer.

Photo of Anaz
4.55/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love this beer, and it's probably my favorite of the Black IPA/Cascadian Dark Ale type so far. The color is intensely black, fading to dark cola at the edges. The head is a huge coffee-and-cream beauty that resolves into generous lacing.

The bright citrus and resin aroma of the hops blend so well with the roasty coffee and chocolate aromas that it's amazing. This is where the style started to make sense for me, and the aroma of an IPA is supported and enhanced by the dark malt aromas very well.

The flavor is so like the aroma it's fantastic. The bright clean hops that Stone is so well known for mingle with the dark malt flavors, but are never overshadowed by them. The hops rule here, but the malt expresses itself nonetheless.

The rich, bitter mouthfeel finishes clean with at lovely citrus peel bitterness and faint toffee sweetness. There is a slight booziness that gently warms, but doesn't burn. This is a very drinkable beer for the ABV, it's so delicious that it's hard to stop drinking. I Love it, and am very glad that Stone has added this to it's year round releases.

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

A: Really dark brown, almost back. Small darker tanned head, hardly any lacing.

S: Bright floral scent with hops and deeper notes of honey and caramel malts. Some chocolate and roasted coffee beans also. Tingly aroma of alcohol.

T: The smell follows the flavor. Huge floral hop flavor, burst of bitterness mixed with the sweetness of the honey and caramel malts. coffee and chocolate are definitely apparent. Enormous flavor. Heavy on the presence of alcohol, but it certainly fits.

M: Full body and on the stronger side with carbonation.

D: A lot of flavor to handle, utterly delicious. It's name says it all.

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

From notes 11/11/10, growler fill from Dancing Bear pub 11/09, served in a pint glass.

A- Jet black and shiny/oily. One finger tan head, ample lacing, and slow bubbles.

S- Alcohol, chocolate/coco nibs, crisp smell of hops, roasted malt, floral, and faint citrus.

T/M- Light/medium body, bitter and slight alcoholic finish. Extremely smooth texture, similar to chocolate milk, but tastes better.

D- This wasn't the first time I've had SSSRA, but it was the first time I've had it from a growler, let alone it was the first thing I put in my new Stone growler. This is one of my go to beers when I'm in the mood for a change up from the usual IPA. The richness of a complex porter or stout with the great flavor of a solid IPA combined seamlessly. Highly recommend.

Photo of Sachsenfreude
3.33/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

appearance; very dark brown to almost black. When poured a little bit rough, a stiff tan head will form and dissipate slow, leaving great lacing, looks to me like the walls of a quarry.

smell; fir tree like resin and camphor, oh no not one of these over hopped crap-brews, that everyone seems to love, I hope. Some malt sweetness is present but mostly dominated by the hops.

taste; evergreen like hop bitterness that carries into the finish and leaves a bitter aftertaste. Look for fir trees, they have smooth bark and blisters, pop one of the blisters and suck out the sap, that's the main flavor of this beer. Yet some sweet malts are also there and try to round out the intense hops but fall short. Keeping the style in mind, this is quite a well made beer and the alcohol is well hidden but the balance is off and the hop bitterness hangs around too long after the beer is consumed.

mouthfeel; like velvet, really feels nice in the mouth with lovely and gentle carbonation. Almost perfect, well done here.

drinkability; a very smooth and crisp drink but the bitterness from the hops hangs around for too long and one is enough for me.

Note; I'm trying to be nice and keep the style in mind, but in general, I hate IPAs of all kinds. However this one was not so bad and I could certainly appreciate the bitterness. I'll never be a hophead but this was a fine drink to be sure.

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

Poured a deep cola black into a tulip with two fingers of dark khaki head (good retention and lots of clingy lacing). Strong hoppy aroma of pine and grapefruit with just a touch of caramel.

Moderate carbonation and a full, creamy mouthfeel. Wonderful balance of toasty bittersweet chocolate and coffee malt up front with a touch of caramel sweetness. Subsequent blast of hops with grapefruit and citrus peel. Long finish with an equally pleasant balance of sweet and tart that becomes steadily more bitter as the beer warms.

Full flavored and very easy-drinking with a well-masked alcohol presence. Wish I'd tried this one sooner...!

Photo of alexpkoehler
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was like an American take on a Theakston Old Peculier for those of you familiar with that particular Yorkshire ale. It is rich dark smooth and malty without ever being heavy. An awful lot of brown-ish head when you pour this into the glass that takes a while to dissipate (probably has something to do with it coming from a bottle and my walking it home from the store.) I will definitely have some more in the future.

Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 5,719 ratings.