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Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Sublimely Self-Righteous AleSublimely Self-Righteous Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,599 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4599
Reviews: 1801
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 10.43%

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: 4,599 | Reviews: 1,801 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Bauzen

New York

4.24/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Black body, tan head. Rings of foam get left along the glass every time you take a sip.

You wouldn't expect a beer that pours black as night to smell as hoppy as it does. Notes of coffee, chocolate, slight citrus, hops and malt. There's a lot going on.

Flavor is odd, it has the bitterness of an IPA, but shares its body with the flavor profile of a stout. Bitter finish, slightly spicy at times. Stone has an interesting way of attacking your palate with overwhelming flavors... This beer is really no different.

Can't quite understand it, but it's certainly different, and that makes it worth trying,

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2013 01:36:17 | More by Bauzen
Photo of CASK1


4.64/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured to a Sam Adams "perfect pint" glass.

A - nearly opaque black with a hint of ruby highlight if held up to the sunlight. Tan head with decent staying power.

S - Hops dominate with a complex blend of citrus, pine, and herbal/woody aromas. Low roast malt in the background with hints of coffee and bitter chocolate. I also get some licorice. Very inviting.

T - Hop forward, but nicely balanced. Lots of piney, woody hops that linger all the way through the finish. Bitterness comes up fast and lingers into a long finish. Roast malt supports the hops, but stays in the background. Hints of coffee and burnt toast.

M - Medium-light body and medium high carbonation combine for a highly drinkable beer. Dry finish with some dark malt astringency. Very low alcohol warmth - very well hidden.

O - I seem to have a love-hate relationship with this style, and this one is definitely on the "love" side. I love the complex, dominant hop profile, but the roast malt supports the hops just right for the style. This beer reinforces Stone as a go-to brewery for me.

Serving type: bottle

05-19-2013 20:44:18 | More by CASK1
Photo of jdhowe


4.48/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

22oz bottle, Enjoy by 08/08/13 (not clearly printed, so it's possible this isn't the date).

A: Pours a deep brown (very minimal light passes through the edges, revealing a deep brown color, but otherwise it's black) with 1 1/2 fingers of foamy mocha head. Plentiful lacing down the glass.

S: All hops. Piney, earthy hop aromas predominate, followed by light alcohol.

T: Strong hop bitterness, a sweet malty backbone filling out the flavor profile, with coffee and roast flavors on the finish. The coffee was undetectable on the nose for me, and is a truly pleasant surprise.

M: thick, oily, and moderate carbonation. This coats the mouth and stays long after the sip.

O: I am very impressed by this beer. While I am far from a huge fan of Stone, this is definitely one of the best beers I've had by them, right up with Espresso IRS and Enjoy By. I would not hesitate to have this beer again, and I will probably purchase it again if I am in the mood for a black IPA-type beer, which is really what this reminds me of. If Hop in the Dark were available year-round, this would have a bit more contest, but as it is, this may become the go-to for me in its style.

Serving type: bottle

05-19-2013 06:43:03 | More by jdhowe
Photo of trxxpaxxs

New York

3.45/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours completely black with one and a half finger of light khaki colored head. The foam takes quite a bit to fade, and a nice rocky layer of small and large bubbles lines the top of the beer and the glass. Great lacing as it drinks.

S: The nose is big citrus and floral hops mixed with a solid helping of roasted malt. It actually smells quite good for a Black IPA.

T: It starts out with a mix of sweet and bitter right away. I get vanilla, toasted bread, citrus, and licorice. It a mix of all sorts of flavors. It's hoppy and bitter, sweet and malt, roasty bitter, and just all over the place.

M: Medium bodied beer. It coats the palate from the first sip with a smoothness and that lasts all thew way through the finish. It dries up a little bit in the finish, but not much.

O: I hate this beer. I'm not a fan of Black IPAs to begin with, and this beer is exactly why I don't like them. The flavors don't mingle well together. It's too bitter (but not in super hopped up way). I just don't get this style. I may never buy another Black IPA ever again. Serious.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2013 18:30:37 | More by trxxpaxxs
Photo of Siriusfisherman


4.51/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Black with some red/brown glints on the sides of the glass, big pillowy, rocky, off-white head. Superb lacing.

A: Resinous pine, sweet citrus, toasty/roasty malt, touch of caramel sweetness, and some fruity esters.

T/M: Smooth bitterness up front, followed by big resiny pine and fruity citrus notes. The malt joins the hop assault in the middle, bringing very light porter-like characteristics of roast caramel. Drying finish and a very slick mouthfeel. Perfect Carbonation.

Overall, an awesome Cascadian Dark Ale. Very strong at 8.7% abv, but very drinkable and full of huge flavors. Perhaps my favorite year-round offering from Stone.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2013 23:42:18 | More by Siriusfisherman
Photo of beyah


4.83/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Picture Arrogant Bastard, with a bit roasted barley, and a tad more alcohol. Hops are a bit less forward in this beer. You now have Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale. Tan head Black as night, great lacing, mouth feel just right, delicious. Definitely buy this one next time I see it.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2013 23:12:59 | More by beyah
Photo of rlee1390


4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A-Black in the glass, two finger off white head with some lacing.

S-Good deal of roasted malt, some pine and a nice hop presence.

T-Nice balance of roasted malt and hops. Nice bitterness some pine and citrus with a tad bit of coffee.

M-Medium bodied, nicely carbonated and creamy.

O-One of the best Black IPAs I've tasted, can't believe it took me so long to try this beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2013 01:51:01 | More by rlee1390
Photo of Mittsies


4.56/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Poured into a typical beer glass.
Opinion slightly biased due to tasting several Double IPAs prior.

Minimal head, lacing was decent. Black as motor oil with a light head.

Aroma was very hop-forward, very citrus, somewhat pine, hints of roasted coffee.
Very musky, skunky, dank, pungent smell overall.

Taste was incredibly bitter, very hoppy at first and then lots of coffeebean and dark chocolate.
After slowly enjoying the beverage I found more flavors coming through; strong tea and pine flavors, and an incredibly-satisfying hoppy bitterness.
Very impressed with the flavor.

Heavy, creamy mouthfeel, but not as thick as you'd expect such a dark beer to be.
Very viscous, found myself drinking it very slowly even after thoroughly tasting it.

Overall this has become one of my favorite beers with just one tasting session. I've bought another bottle and will enjoy it again soon. I highly recommend trying a piece of dark chocolate (>85%) with the drink after thoroughly tasting it.

Serving type: bottle

05-05-2013 10:37:35 | More by Mittsies
Photo of hopsputin


4.51/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

out of the bottle, into a tulip

a: pitch black 2/2.5 finger off white head - this looks real nice in the glass. almost like motor oil

s: mmm roasted malts fused with a sweet citrus bitter smell. some vanilla, pine, milk chocolate, orange, something cream..almost like lactose. something almost grassy. smells real nice

t: such a nice mix of milk chocolate and mild citrus bitterness, then fades out to a roasted malt/coffee bean/bittersweet chocolate on the back end. the more you sip, the more the hop bitterness starts to come out to play - piney syrup, tea leaf. the back end is is about the roasted malts and cocoa/bittersweet chocolate. maybe a hint of alcohol

m: medium, pushing to full

o: I know some people are on the fence about black ales - i love them. this is really good, and the flavors harmonize well. not as good as the espresso sublimely self-righteous or hop in the dark, but a close third. plus its year round - that a plus

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2013 04:32:22 | More by hopsputin
Photo of maxcoinage


4.39/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bomber [best by 1/14/14 - just in time ;-) ] - agressive pour into DFH signature glass

a - thick fluffyy off-white colored head, beer is black with an so slight brown hue. There was a ridiculous amount of lacing on the glass as I drank the brew down.

s - pine, some dark fruits, malts

t - dark malts, citrus, enjoyable bitter finish

mouthfeel - great carbonation, medium to strong body, a bit slick

overall - very enjoyable. I don't really drink Black IPA's often but I think I should start, or at least buy this beer more often.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2013 22:21:52 | More by maxcoinage
Photo of BaronVonBeauregard


4.63/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

The color is a very dark with a large, thick head, and the aroma is hoppy with citrus and resin notes showing out the loudest. The taste is bitter, slightly sweet, and reminds me of some imperial stouts out there; the aftertaste combines a long bitter finish, soft carbonation, medium body, and a slightly sticky texture.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2013 01:22:47 | More by BaronVonBeauregard
Photo of JamesQuaff


4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint.

Pours a deep, rich almost-black red/burnt sienna with an ashy grey/brown 2 finger head that faded quickly and left scant lacing. Just a little bit of light comes through showing off some rising bubbles around the margins. Good looking glass of beer.

Smell is bready, caramel-y malts, roasty tones, generous piney hops and great big blocks of chocolate. So much chocolate in the nose! Smells almost like someone made a black and tan with a chocolate stout with an IPA.

It tastes pretty much exactly like someone made a black and tan with a chocolate stout and an IPA. With an awesome version of each style. De-freaking-licious. The hops are pretty intense, but there's enough malty sweetness and nuttiness to balance it out. The 8.7% ABV is very well hidden.

Mouthfeel is about what I want for what I'm drinking here. If it were any easier drinking, it would be too sneaky for the ABV. It has some thickness to the body. Carbonation is medium.

Overall... Boom. Friggin' awesome black IPA. Was thinking about inviting the neighbor over for a taste, but after getting halfway through the first glass decided I'm finishing this bomber myself.

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2013 01:12:29 | More by JamesQuaff
Photo of vette2006c5r


4.69/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale pours a black color, with a small lacing head. There is a nice smokey, but mostly floral aroma. The taste has a sharp hoppy kick, then finished smooth and smokey, with hints of a burnt like malt flavors. Good full flavors. Overall this beer is soo incredibly enjoyable, great full intense flavors.

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2013 03:31:47 | More by vette2006c5r
Photo of erialbill

New Jersey

4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours black but not too thick. Very nice creamy tan head that left ample lacing on sides of the glass. Nice job of combining a great stout with a great IPA. You get to enjoy all of the complex flavours of both beer types in just the right combination. Another great Stone offering. Would highly suggest giving it a try.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2013 22:22:42 | More by erialbill
Photo of thecheapies


4.01/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours black-maroon. Lacing is good. Head is meager.

Piney earth, roast, leafy hops, anise, grapefruit, and greens.

Rugged hoppiness with a sting. The sting is booze and big latent bitterness. Nearly spicy. Pine and grapefruit, foremost. Roasted grain supplements the malty underdog. Fresh leafy hops with an electric zip. Bready notes. Bitter greens, bitter orange, Angostura Bitters... an exercise in bitterness. Yet, very flavorful.

Gushy soppy feel. Sluggish body tones down the want to guzzle. Heavy in the mouth with all sorts of carb action.

Classy ale with that Stone intensity. Dark and satisfying. Delightful.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2013 13:50:19 | More by thecheapies
Photo of Roman5150


4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

bottle purchased from Total Beverage in Murfreesboro, TN

appearance: very dark, mocha colored one finger head

smell: great mix of malt and hops, none is too overwhelming. i smell some apple and cloves as well.

taste: very malty backbone, with a very hoppy finish. smooth and well balanced. hints of coffee, caramel, apple, and piney, earthy hops.

mouthfeel: not over carbonated, this sits well on your tongue

overall: I will be buying this upon seeing it, tastes amazing. I would say this beer tastes very similar to Sweetwater's Happy Ending seasonal, if you've had that (or this), you will love the other. Except this one is a tad bit more malt heavy. Either way, I love dark beer with lots of hops, and if you do too, Stone did a great job with this one. Well crafted beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2013 23:04:34 | More by Roman5150
Photo of BeerKangaroo


4.16/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanx Aaron (I'm glad I'm finally able to mention your name on here and will from now on every time you hook me up):

Into a pint glass:

A: black body with a film of a head; some light sticky lacing clings to the sides

S: up front powerful hops i.e. grapefruit, pine and then adds some subtle chocolate and malty undertones

T: mostly bitter yet somewhat sweet as it warms a bit through the previously mentioned flavors

M: medium, semi-sessionable though the alcohol isn't really felt, somewhat creamy

O: big wow here, I wasn't expecting this American Black Ale to be as good as it was, I will definitely have this one again

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2013 00:30:09 | More by BeerKangaroo
Photo of dbossman


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

A: Black with a steady two-inch head; lacing is fantastic

S: Intensely hoppy: grapefruit, pineapple, pine cones, weed; so fruity and dank with subtle chocolate, anise, and malty undertones

T: Wow, that's good; not nearly as bitter as expected--all the hop forward flavors but also some semisweet chocolate and coffee to round things out

T: Pretty creamy, sticky viscous

O: This is a damn good black IPA: big but not boozy; hoppy as hell but not overpoweringly bitter; some maltiness and oh, so much mmm

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2013 02:35:01 | More by dbossman
Photo of KYGunner


3.69/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Black at the body, you get dark ruby hues around the edge. Great color and a bubbly yet firm, khaki head creates a very nice appearance.

Sweet candied fruits and dry fruitiness hit the nose. Hints of chocolatey sweetness and breadiness hide inside prune, raisin and must.

Strong hop flavor and dry pineyness assault the tongue. Dried fruit flavors such as prune or raisin are enveloped in strong pine and metallic tastes. No roast, no toast and no malt flavor can be found in a very dry to the palate feel. Strong metal after taste sits in the mouth and a harsh dryness stays for some time.

This resembles an IPA with little Black qualities in the taste. The scent got my hopes up but the taste and feel really let me down.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2013 20:51:18 | More by KYGunner
Photo of artoolemomo


4.05/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance- Pours up a good amount of head and a pretty one a that. It's very gritty looking with very tiny bubbles. The color is light tan/beige. The body is a dark chocolate brown with garnet tones around the bottom that become more pronounced when held up to the light. The head is dissipating slowly while it leaves a good amount of lacing. Almost a sheet of lacing is left on the second pour. This is a slow one.

Nose- Very nice aroma with lots of grassiness, pine, and citrus. Very classic IPA smell but I haven't detected any soapiness yet. I've been skeptical of the black IPA but the reviews (and smell) are promising. There is also some orange and wood on the nose.

Taste- Starts off with very typical IPA notes: citrus, pine, wood. This has a very pronounced bitter finish of wood and something akin to coffee. It's not overbearing and right now is quite enjoyable. There is a lot of grass and wood in this one and the alcohol is not present. This is definitely a beer for hopheads. There's nothing wrong with it but at the moment, I can't find anything that sets it apart from you basic good to very good IPAs.

Mouthfeel- This one ends up just on the light side of medium and is quite creamy for IPA. This is definitely a twist on a style which is generally fairly light and crisp. I'm liking it so far. The mouthfeel is one aspect that is definitely unique.

Drinkability- This will take time for those who are not acclimated to serious hops. This will take some time for myself as well- the bitterness of the wood really lingers.

Overall- Right now, this seems like a B+,A-. It's closer to a B+ for having a typical IPA flavor profile but strives toward an A- because of its unique mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2013 00:21:30 | More by artoolemomo
Photo of Flounder57


4.19/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served in a tulip at Stoddards

Appearance: The beer is black as night. It poured a minimal head, but left some nice lacing on the glass. No visibility or vision of bubbles coming up through the glass.

Smell: roasted coffee, chocolate, and pine.

Taste: Same as above with nice bitterness in the end.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, medium bodied, low to medium carbonation, tingly bitterness, and a little dry.

Overall: Where's the 8%? Drinkability and taste are awesome. More please.

Serving type: on-tap

03-27-2013 00:24:50 | More by Flounder57
Photo of Samuel906


3.89/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a super dark mahogany with a thick fluffy head that is plastered to the side of your glass. Very mild nose, some faint hops and malt but fairly underwhelming. Taste is great: lots of roasted grains and cereals, carmalized sugar, baking chocolate and a strong hoppy finish. Pretty complex, and a pleasure to drink. Smooth and full bodied with lots of carbonation. None of the 8+% comes through. Absolutely terrific beer, and one of my favorite black IPAs.

Great pizza beer!

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2013 00:49:38 | More by Samuel906
Photo of BBQSteve


4.46/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a stem bubbly white head immediately.

Hop smell up front but not in taste.

Great mouthfeel medium heavy.

Early notes of molasses then malt and hops and a bit of sour.

Glad I tried it. It is readily available and it will be on my list again in the future but no hurries.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2013 00:23:32 | More by BBQSteve
Photo of FlemingVSKing


4.9/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Unless you just don't like dark ales, it's hard to call this one anything much less than perfect.

It has great complexity, ranging from a deep flavorful ale to a bright floral hop. Just simply put it offers a wide range of complementary flavors that really make each sip a different experience. I'm excited by drinking it.

The visual appeal is all there as well. A nice head from an average pour and great retention. The coloring is deep and black with some reddish tints near the edges of the glass.

My first reaction was "wow this is going to make a strong case for being my favorite beer." And that holds true. I had it on tap but can't wait to pick up a case.

Serving type: on-tap

03-12-2013 05:48:09 | More by FlemingVSKing
Photo of Oxymoron


2.56/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Pours a midnight black color with brown hues throughout. A soft brown head with limited retention but some lacing.

Hop forward in the aroma. Some pine and citrus notes. Some herbal and bit of cat pee. Some yeasty notes, esters, rose peddles and tropical fruits and a light fig. Some buytic notes, dirty feet.

The taste follows suit per the aroma. The hops come out at first and leave a balance taste. Mostly a pine earthy almost woody note. But a strong bitterness and astringency mute the finish. Again some off yeasty notes are a bit deterrent. Fruity esters and herbal floral. Some tar like tastes that were off setting and noticeable dirty feet finish. So much so I felt this was a drain poor.

The body was moderately light. Some drying finish and ashy. astringent finishes. Carbonation was light. Overall good hop presence but because of the off yeast notes I couldn't finish it.

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2013 01:10:55 | More by Oxymoron
Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 4,599 ratings.