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

5,805 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,805
Reviews: 1,903
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 10.43%
Wants: 277
Gots: 746 | 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: 5,805 | Reviews: 1,903
Photo of zealot
4.62/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I live in MN, and don't get access to the Stone gems. I was going to trade this to a friend without tasting it, but he surprised me by opening it and letting me try it with him. Thanks, Jeppe!

I knew this was going to be a black IPA, or an India Black Ale, however you want to call it. I am a big fan of expanding the definitions of traditional styles, and Stone did just that with this brew. Poured dark and opaque. It had a healthy head on it, like any IPA should. Not viscous like an Imp. Stout, but just very different from most beers.

I was too eager to taste this one, so I forgot to dissect the nose. I apologize. But I'm not going to make up a fake one. I'm going it assume it was good, based on my other ratings.

At first I felt a little let down because it just tasted like a regular IPA, but ... wait for it ... the roasted barley showed up. I am pretty sure it was roast barley and not chocolate or black patent - but maybe I'm wrong. But it was a subtle flavor that just boosted the malt profile to round out the flavor and balance the hops. Truly elegant.

Creative and artistic with this beer. Fantastic stuff. It left the great sticky tackiness of a good IPA, but with some added depth from the darker grains. I could have drank the whole bomber, but I just appreciated my taste.

I guess the only criticism I might have would be that I was hoping for just a little more from the dark grains. As stated above, they made their appearance, and it was great, but perhaps just a touch more would have been nice. BUT, the subtleties are what make this the beer that it is.

Get it. Drink it.

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

Found this at my local liquor store and thought it looked interesting. Went in with no idea of what it was supposed to be.

I found a dark beer, appearing black in the glass but actually a brown with no visible particulates. I found a somewhat persistent frothy white head with the slightest of brown tints. I took a whiff and a got a noseful of hops, yet was not offended. It seemed to me like it smelled oddly familiar. Up-front hop bitterness in the taste seems to overwhelm the slightly roasted-tasting malt, but after about 1/4 of the glass I became accustomed to the bitterness and it was quite pleasant to drink. It was also about this time that I realized that this beer is a less-intense Arrogant Bastard. I should of guessed that from the name, but I guess I'm just a dumb bastard. ; )

Photo of AlexTheAleMan
4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a stone ipa glass. big, slightly dark head. very dark, but not quite as dark as a stout.

smells slightly metalic and very hoppy. i might be getting sick or suffering from allergies so i dont really smell too much.

tastes very smooth. there is a bitter upfront bite like an ipa that slowly turns into a coffee stout flavor. the bitterness lasts for a long time. very good black ipa.

considering the 8.7% abv it is very drinkable. it is fairly carbonated and finishes very smoothly.

over all this is not my favorite beer, but it is definitely delicious and worth trying. i would most definitely buy this beer again.

Photo of BlueCat1
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The dark color of this strong ale belies the hop kick it brings. Very tasty, excellent mouth feel..velvety...nice aroma. But still very drinkable, not heavy tasting...even on a warm summer evening. This is definitely a benchmark example of this style.

Photo of HopMasterFlex
4.42/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a go to beer for me. When the 11th anniversary came out I must have drank 20 bottles. It was my first time with a black ipa and frankly I never looked back. Though I feel the 11th was better than the sublimely I was still stoked to have it available year round. It bours black with a root beer hue. The head is an inviting tan. Smell is pure hops and I love it. The subtle toasted malt are present as well. This beer is the definition of an iba. The color is black bit it drinks like an ipa. Super hoppy and delicious. Nothing bad to say about this other than the smaller batch of the 11th was better. I still have 4 bottles of the 11th and I drank one the other day. The profile is completely different as you'd expect. The piney hop flavors are gone and the malt flavors are huge, it's almost choclatey. It is a completely different beer but still delicious!

Photo of BeerT3ch
4.2/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a really good beer! The unique name fits it's character. Stone Brewery strikes again! Deep/Rich in color, perfect exagerrated biterness, small head, but heavy lacing, malty and all around well balanced. Two of these you will be alright! lol. (Don't Drive)

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

A Black IPA? and a fine one at that! It pours as Black as the Ace of Spades, with a nice head, that reduces to fine lacing that holds for the entire beer. The aroma is sweet hops that strike the nose. The first sip gives wonderful mouthfeel as the hops explode in your mouth. The aftertaste was great, leaving you longing for the next sip. This was an exceptionally great beer that can only be improved by year round production from now till the end of time!

Photo of Raugupatis
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is only my second review here and I decided to do it on a favorite brewery of mine, Stone. They seem to get the need for body and hops in a beer.

That being said, their 11th anniversary is not a typical Stone Beer. When I think of Stone I think of the nearly-bitter hoppiness of their Arrogant Bastard or Ruination.

In the 11th Anniversary Ale, the hops are mingled with the chocolate/coffee taste from porter, but not flawlessly so. But it is a fun diversion and I am glad I came across this one.

Photo of Vansmack
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Last night went to Stone Brewery and was able to get a few glasses of the 11th anniversary. I'm not a huge fan of the black beers, but I have to say that the hoppiness of it being an IPA shined through and had a balanced mix of dark and hops.

The appearance on this sucker is absolutely appealing. It's doesn't break up like a guiness or have a nasty smell like most darks. It has a clean hoppy smell.

I have to say, the only downer for me was mouthfeel. I didn't get the usual amazing burst of hops I get when tasting an IPA. It was very drinkable though and I could have sat there all night pounding one after another.

Overall... if you're at Stone any time soon, I'd definitely get a few glasses. It's only $4 a pop and its definitely worth it.

GO UCLA!

Photo of AlexCuse
4.77/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was doing some spring cleaning tonight, and this included going through all the beer in my pantry and trying to organize it. I bought a case of this last February after having the extremely rare pleasure (for the east coast anyways!) of having it on tap.

I was never too impressed with the bottle after having it on tap, but it was still a very solid beer. I probably hadn't had one for about 6 months, maybe longer. The time has treated this beer extremely well.

Hops have mellowed considerably, but there is still a nice grapefruit-like smell with a hint of pine. It takes me back to the time I had it on tap the second I smell it.

The mellowing of the hops have really helped it to get some balance, actually bringing the taste closer to what I experienced when I had it on tap. Its' hard to explain but in the bottle they never really seemed to mesh. Until now. Between the rich dark malts, the abundance of fruity flavors, and that intoxicating aroma, it is almost overwhelming to drink. Almost ;)

The alcohol taste remains pretty strong, but at 8.7% that is hard to avoid.

Mouthfeel is about the same, but the improved balance has really let
Like a fine wine, this is getting better and better with age. If you get a chance to drink it, don't let the age turn you off. Even though its' getting old, it still won't disappoint! I don't even have a basement either, I bet this would be even better if it had been sitting in ideal conditions.

Now, time to go drink the other half of the bottle :D

Photo of freescribbles
3.85/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Was totally caught off guard when I poured as I was not expecting a black ale. Reminded me of a porter from the looks. Dark coca-cola like coloring with a thin caramel toned head.

Some nice lacing on the glass and a pleasant carbonation level. It definitely walked the line between a traditional ale and a porter. Hints of grapefruit and some nice subtle hops without the syrupy feel.

Definitely piqued my interest in darker ales.

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

Stumbled across the Sublimely Self Righteous one day at my local beer store and was instantly intrigued by the black color of the so called American Strong Ale. Upon purchasing, some rapid cooling and then a satisfying uncapping; the beer poured a thick almost creamy black with a thin dark tan head. After taking a sip I was hooked.

So imagine my shock and joy upon having Sublimely appear on tap at a bar near me. When delivered it had all the velvety appearance of the bottled version and more. The aroma coming off the glass is something akin to a IPA surviving a very mild lumber yard fire (primarily ceder and oak, maybe some pine) fire; with just enough heat and smoke to darken and roast without driving off the hops. The tap better preserves the roasted character of the beer and the subtle hop aroma while enhancing the mouth feel. As with the bottled version this beer is very drinkable and something I recommend to people new to beer and more seasoned drinkers alike.

Photo of oxnard111
3.73/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Very very dark brown. Cannot see through liquid what so ever. 1 finger medium tan head. Head is thin in consistency.

S - Sweet caramel and vanilla, maybe even an almond extract type smell. Woodsy/earthy/burnt smells. There is some other smell in there that I just can't identify but can be detected on the exhale.

T - Strong barley. Wood tastes with a bitter aftertaste. Seems like the hops would have been more detectable when it was fresher but has been bottled for almost 2 years so they have lost some of their potency.

M - Very thick almost chewy. Very low carbonation.

D - This a pretty strong brew. Alcohol taste is pretty apparent. This almost seems like a desert beer. I could imagine having this with a ice cream covered hot cookie desert.

Photo of rickards9
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My buddy brought over a 22 of this beer last night. Poured from the 22 oz bottle into one Sam Adams glass and one Long Trail pint glass.

Appearance: Very dark brown, but with some ruby red along the edges of the glass. Normal pour provided a decent head, probably one finger, and it dissipated very slowly.

Smell: Chocolate. In your face chocolate. My buddy said he smelled some bourbon too.

Taste: I had read that it's classified as an American Black Ale, which usually to me means Black IPA. This one did not have the hops to classify it as an IPA. I got a whole lot of chocolate in the aroma and no hops. The flavor was of sweet chocolate syrup, which gave way to a more bitter aftertaste with some heat from the alcohol (it is almost 9% after all). Not hop bitter, but rather dark malt bitter.

Mouthfeel: Good body on this beer. Pretty thick and heavy.

Overall: I'm giving this a 4.5 right now, mainly because I drank it thinking it was going to be hoppy, and that it was at least 90 degrees in my kitchen. This would be an AMAZING late fall or winter beer, but mid-July? I'll stick to my IPAs and keep this cellared for a few months.

Photo of davidsumner
3.91/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hmmm... "strong ale", "black ipa", "dark cascadian" or "black ale" ... ???

Doesn't really matter much to me... I'm not a stickler of beer identification, all I know is that this stuff is pretty good.

It reminds me of Sierra Nevada's Torpedo and is a lot alike Stones' bastard ale.

this ale's very malt centric and has a nice dark brown or "Cola" tint to it. The head is thin and there's very little lacing.

The nose is pretty decent; again malt centric, with a good sweet candied, cake like feel. You definitely get a light roasted malt scent. The hop is lurking in the background; not exactly sure how to identify it; I want to say piney/citric; but there's a little floral too. All in all, a delightful nose with a good balance.

The taste is very nice. Not overpowering but not light either. A good medium to heavy flavor that is distinctly lightly roasted malty and candied fruit. When I say candied fruit I mean a nice candied dry fruit; mostly cherry, apricot and orange.

I hate to say this, but I'm going to anyway... the finish on this reminds me of fruit cake, but in a good way. Not the "what you hate" about fruit cake; but the actually "ok there's something good in here" aspect of fruitcake. But the finish also has that classic roasted malt taste. But a light roasted malt... not like a porter or stout.

The hops are there too; just a little hard to pin point. But there is a bitterness and it's very balanced with the sweetness of the malt; making it seem less bitter then what I'm sure it is.

All in all, a very pleasing ale. Not my favorite, but certainly not bad and I don't mind drinking it at all. This ale in my opinion is a great after dinner drink.

Photo of jchain
3.58/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

MUCH better on tap than in the bottle. In the bottle -- for me -- it had a strong aroma of urine that really lessened the drinking experience. However, on tap, this aroma was not present, making it a very nice beer ... ON TAP.

Photo of dankman38
4.2/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is one different beer, but it’s really good. This beer drinks, smells and tastes like a mellow IPA but with the hints of roasted cofee and carmel you’d expect from some porters or a quadrupel. Quite unique, if you get the chance I suggest trying it.

Photo of PoolhouseRebel
4.22/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bomber into my Stone RIS Tulip. Pours brown and slightly transparent but sits in the glass almost black. Hold it to the light and a bit of reddish brown comes through.

Smells of big citrus hops right off the bat, grapefruit, like their Ruination IPA, and with a little agitation I get some toasted chocolate behind caramel malt.

Got this in a trade so who knows how it was stored and what it went through en route from Cali to Jersey. I also burnt my tongue on some pizza earlier which may affect my palate, but as you can see, I am not a patient person. Taste was definitely full blown double IPA from the start, as I keep drinking the dark malt starts coming though but its still all hops front to back, start to finish. Actually come to think of it, there is more bitterness in the mouth than actual hop flavor.

Mouthfeel and drinkability are great. Sometimes IPAs, even for a hop head like me, get to be a little much but this dark malt is a great balance. Definitely a unique brew and I'm definitely looking forward to Stone's new Sublimely Self Righteous Ale which is apparently the same recipe but hopefully a little more fine tuned which would make this beer a favorite.

Photo of caddyshack199
2.43/5  rDev -42.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Stone sublimely Self-Righteous Ale
220z
A-dark almost black in color
H-wispy thin head nothing or any significance.
N-
T- heavy stout like, roasted malts, chocolate, HOPS!!! Strong
lingering hop character.
I- not very drinkable. Between the heavyness of the roasted malts and
the bitter hops it's a mouthful.

Photo of mmmmmbeeer
4.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A -- Absolutely beautiful pour. Black beer with a lovely creamish-coffee thick 2 finger head. Nice lacing as well

S -- I tried my best not to read any of the reviews on this nor did I read the back of the bottle. The way this poured I expected a heavy malt, coffee stout. Imagine my surprise when the nose was filled with a hop explosion of pine and citrus.

T -- Incredible. Big ups to Stone for this one. It's like an IPA-Stout hybrid on the palette. Hops kick in right off the bat and continue to scream all the way down but lurking in the background is a fantastic coffee/chocolate malt that leads to an incredible balance. I'm not sure if the malt is as present as I think, as this is rather bitter, or if it's the appearance playing tricks on me.

M -- very heavy with mild carbonation.

D -- With how smoothly this goes down, and sporting an 8.7ABV, this could be trouble.

Photo of Leviathan
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Stone rarely disappoints and this beer is no exception. Picked up this bomber several weeks ago and forgot about it in the fridge. Got home from the golf course today and found it behind some Williamsburg Ale Works...

Appearance is dark brown/black with a nice white head when poured into a pint glass. Smells like roasted, malty deliciousness...

The taste is like a strong ale bordering on stout-like proportions. This beer is well balanced with flavors of chocolate, coffee, and hops coating the palette. The beer laces nicely down the glass and leaves a nice crisp hop aftertaste.

I've always been a fan of Stone and will definitely throw this beer into the rotation now that the weather is cooling down. At nearly 9%, a few of these will have you melting back in your chair...

Photo of jlpayne
4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark, dark brown with a subdued red tint. Huge, 3-finger, slightly off-white head. Dissipates slowly, leaving trace lacing.

S: Big. Hoppy. Notes of citrus.

T: Relative to the nose, the taste is quite understated. Slightly boozy and pleasantly bitter.

M: Svelte.

D: Very drinkable.

Another champion beer from Stone. Sublime indeed.

Photo of KMDouds
3.73/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Whoa, Stone has done it again! Sublimely Self-Righteous plays like a sacred union between an IPA and a Porter. Apparently such a union between these 2 styles yields a very favorable Black Ale.

Think big hops meets big malt. The slightly sweet slightly burnt malt flavoring is off set by the characteristic Stone hoppiness.

I experience this as a sipping brew: a beer to enjoy with time and conversation, something that warms with time, and actually improves upon it's initial taste. Strong across the board. The only thing that precludes a very high rating is it's fragrance, and that's perhaps the most subjective of the categories.

Photo of BrewDocCT
4.57/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle (glad this one is in 4 packs now) into my Bell's pint.

Appearance is black. Black coffe black. Some light barely squeezes through.

Smell is floral and burnt.

Taste is jarring. Smacked with hops. Finishes with a coating bitterness and awesome roastiness.

Mouthfeel is sticky and resinous.

Overall just a great beer. One of my favorites. Stone really nailed a 'style' that can be hit or miss.

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

Ruler of all Black IPAs!!!

Sorry, I've had many and there is just no comparison. There are some great ones out there like the Wookie Jack and Mountain Standard, but they Tremble before the presence of their Blue Demon Labeled Master!!! LOL sorry, I'm just having too much fun here.

Its the Hoppiest of all the Black IPAs I've had and the Black Malt sweetness brings it all home to the most unique flavored Black IPA I've had. it might best too sweet for some Hopheads, but its so hoppy it just doesn't matter. This is what a Black IPA should be. The only Competition is has is something Lagunitas did and I can'remember what its called. Bring on the 5s!!!

Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 5,805 ratings.