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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

5,739 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,739
Reviews: 1,888
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 10.43%
Wants: 266
Gots: 699 | 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: 5,739 | Reviews: 1,888
Photo of MarkyMOD
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of Rifugium
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Miller's Pub, Chicago, IL

Poured into a pint glass a coffee brown with a nice, foamy, beige head that retained and laced decently. I really love this style of beer. Dark malts and dark fruits in the aroma, but a definite citrus hop presence like you'd get from your typical IPA. Smooth dark malts in the taste, molasses, brown sugar, quickly overcome by lots of citrusy hops, though the maltiness lingers on in the background. Flavorful and medium-bodied. Another highly drinkable beer from the consistently excellent Stone Brewing Co.

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.47/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark red, almost black. Smell is extremely hoppy, I swear when I opened the bottle the sweet, sweet bitterness exploded out underneath the cap and my whole room smelled like hoppiness. Nice thick head in the glass, taste is medium to full bodied. Hop heads delight with some smokiness flavor coming through. Super creamy and somehow well balanced. Goes down way too easy for a 8.7% ABV. Fantastic beer, will definitely be picking this up again when I need a hop kick.

Photo of MasterSki
3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Since I can't make it to Stone Winter Storm I thought I'd pay tribute by having my bottle of Stone 11th Anniversary today. Served in a Stone pint glass.

A - Pours with two-plus fingers of soapy light tan foam. Excellent retention and a few chunks of sticky lace. Body is a transparent dark ruby red-brown with some visible bubbles.

S - Wow, there's still a good amount of pine and citrus hoppiness, even after two and a half years. Actually it's quite shocking, as this doesn't seem significantly less hoppy than the Sublimely Self-Righteous I had six months ago. There's a spicy malt backbone with some burnt sugar and a touch of cocoa.

T - Taste is quite similar to Sublimely Self-Righteous, with intense grapefruit bitterness and some peripheral cocoa sweetness. It seems a little mellower, but not by much. Aftertaste is a stupidly strong amount of grapefruit bitterness.

M - Mouthfeel is pretty much identical to SSR - "Moderate carbonation, medium body, lots of residual stickiness and hop oil character. Maybe a touch of warmth after I finished half the bomber."

D - I get the sense this isn't going to get any less bitter - however if you really loved this beer then you can rest assured it's holding up just fine. Same criticisms as I had about SSR - "The bitterness is kind of crazy - I'll finish this bomber, but this isn't something where I'll be rushing out for more bottles. I think it could have used a little more malt sweetness to keep things in balance."

This was nearly identical to SSR, but without as much lacing. Not my favorite Stone offering, but an interesting experience nonetheless.

Photo of drewone
3.5/5  rDev -17.1%

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

Stone 11th Anniversary, in the dark with this IPA, pitch dark, so they say...what's that mean? Let's open and find out...

Hey, that is dark...and hoppy...big aromas, leaping out at ya...just about black, this one, with a smallish dark brown head.

Aroma: bright hops, mixed with rich, dark malt...ripe fruit melds with cocoa and coffee tones...interesting, to say the least...and I like it!

In the taste, big hop smack, taking a dark turn, feeling hot, roasted, and full. Tangy, twangy, tingly hops, meet roasted malt...overloaded with character and confidence. Some trickles of molasses and a hint of spice linger in as well...hops are everywhere, this is in IPA territory, definitely, but those dark malts take somewhere else entirely...and I like that!
first bitter fruit feel, then dark roast burning the palate...again, I like!

8.7%? I'm hardly feeling it...or, am...I?

A bit of bright orange and grapefruit pith, then a round of chocolate and coffee grounds..I'm enjoying that!

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

Beer poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass. Beer is dark black. A tight brown head forms from moderate carbonation. As head falls away lacing is left on the sides of the glass. As the beer is drank, the head becomes more diffuse and remains as a thin layer on the top of the beer.

Aroma is strong with pine-like hops. There isn't much else I'm able to pull out. I would expect some malt / roast character but the hop aroma pushes it all out.

The taste of the beer is really interesting. There is a lot of backend bitterness from the hops but its balanced well with the roast character from the dark malts in the beer. Not a lot of front end sweetness to speak of. A full bodied beer, a great feel and high drinkability.

Photo of mdfb79
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass.

a - Very dark brown color with hints of red. This had moderate carbonation and about 1 finger of head that looked great.

s - I definitely smelled some roasted malts, and also smelt some coffee, toffee, and chocolate. Smells great.

t - Wow, really liked this taste. Tastes of roasted malts, some chocolate, but also some bitter hops. A nice contrast of sweet and bitter tastes.

m - Full bodied with small carbonation, this beer feels very creamy and smooth.

d- I really liked this strong ale. I thought the taste was very complex and interesting, and I really liked the roasted malt and chocolate flavors. I would definitely buy this again.

Photo of kojevergas
3.56/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pt 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a generic hefeweissbier glass in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Revewed live.

A: Pours a five finger head of lovely tan creamy lacing and great thickness. Retention is very good, especially considering the 8.7% ABV. Colour is a solid brown-black, very dark indeed. It's very appealing.

Sm: It's extremely hoppy - I get citra and maybe cascade. Nothing gets through other than the (overly?) dominant hop aroma. Aroma is moderate in strength.

T: Hoppy goodness is dominant, with a soft blanket undertone of light cream. It gets too bitter on the climax due to the hop overload, but they did what they could to compensate. For the style, it's really quite nicely built. It's simple, which lends itself naturally to easy balancing. For what it is, it's quite lovely.

Mf: Smooth and wet, but also very soft and light without being thin. I might call it velvety if I were more pretentious.

Dr: Incredibly drinkable for the ABV - which itself is cleverly hidden. It's priced right (at least in California) and though it lacks complexity, I'd certainly have it again, particularly if I found it on draught. A nice offering from Stone that every beer fanatic should try.

Photo of jwc215
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black with dark ruby highlights. A thick, foamy head leaves plenty of lacing.

The smell is of citrus and pine - a PLETHORA of citrus. The "dark" part is more subtle - with just a touch of smoke...

The taste is citric and resiny. The alcohol comes through in a hefty way, adding a sweet fruitiness. Charcoal smokiness lingers in the back. Some light chocolate enters too, but this show is led by the hops. Finishes with a walloping punch from the hop spiciness and alcohol with dark sweetness lingering in the back.

This is full-bodied, smooth and intensely hot.

Nice - a bit much - but, oh- so nice...hefty West-Coast hops with a charcoal, dark backing. Unique and ... well - get some of this!

Photo of smcolw
3.8/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nearly black in color--no light shines through. Nice, tight beige head. Spotty lace.

Very strong grapefruit hop aroma. Reminds me of Double IPA. Given the darkness of the brew, I'm surprised not to smell any burnt or roasted malts.

Tastes like super-hopped IPA. Relatively thin body. There's a mild level of roasted malt in the aftertaste, otherwise it is all bitter, bitter hop.

Photo of DrBier
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of InspectorBob
4/5  rDev -5.2%

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

The beer pours a black color with a thick frothy tan head that lasts. The aroma is great. It's loaded with rich malt aroma as well as tons of hops as well. It's quite complex with bit of roasted and black malts as well. The hops dominate the aroma. They're bold and add balance to a hefty malt bill. The taste is awesome. It has a pronounced roasted malt character. It's dark with a warming finish. It goes down hoppy and ends hoppy. What a beautiful beer. The hops resinate after the finish, but a lingering roasted malt taste remains. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a kick ass beer; one of the best IPA's I've ever had, black or not. I do enjoy the roasted character.

Photo of Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of Mora2000
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to hudsonphotog for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours black with a cream-colored head. The aroma is piney hops with roasted malt. I also get a touch of citrus. The flavor is pine, chocolate and roasted malt. Medium, creamy mouthfeel and low carbonation.

Photo of imperialking
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of orangesol
4/5  rDev -5.2%

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

9/23/07- Purchased at Dart Liquors in Stateline, NV.

Presentation- 22oz bottle, September '07 release. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Not quite as pitch black as the label memo says, but still pretty darn dark. Nice 3/4 inch fluffy head upon the pour which settles at a slight off white rim. Leaves behind very sticky patchwork lacing.

Smell- Scents of dark and roasted caramel malt. Pretty intense chocolate notes as well. And it wouldn't be Stone if it didn't have a nice bitter tear your nose hairs out hop aroma.

Taste- Hmmm, combo of a bunch of flavors. Coming up with a schwatzbier-ipa combo. Has a nice dark chocolate-caramel mixed flavor which is combined with a fresh grapefruit hop taste. Maybe even a slight note of coffee beans as well. Very interesting combo. I like it.

Mouthfeel- A bit in the higher carbonation range, but has a nice thicker and viscous dark malt and bitter aftertaste.

Drinkability- Pretty sweet to be a session brew, in fact one bomber was almost a bit too much, but I wouldn't turn down a pint if offered. Another quality and interesting style brew released by Stone.

Photo of nathanmiller
4/5  rDev -5.2%

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

Sampled September 2007
Well carbonated, even a careful pour produces a five-finger thick head in my Tulip glass. The head is a creamy light brown color and leaves spotty lacing patterns on the sides of my glass as it slowly recedes back into the beer. The beer is an opaque, almost black color that shows brilliantly clear, chocolate brown notes around the edges. As expected the aroma is quite hop focused. Dominant citrus / floral hop notes mix with pine-like / menthol-esque hop aromatics. When you dig for it, noticeable toasted malt aromatics become noticeable, but the dark malt character is certainly well masked by the hop onslaught. Interestingly enough, even up front there seems to be a noticeable chocolate character; it is extremely subtle & I almost wonder if my eyes are trying to pull a fast one on my nose. I don't think so though, there is a slight note of chocolate that intermingles with notes of grapefruit, freshly zested tangelo skins and lychee. With time the sharper pine / menthol hop aromatics seem to fade a bit. The hops here really capture the essence of freshly zested citrus peel, I almost feel like I got to close to the grater while zesting some sweet citrus fruits and ended up with a nose full of citrus oil.

The beer is served cool at about 58ºF (14ºC), this produces an almost creamy mouthfeel up front, but of course the hop character is the most noticeable aspect here. Bracingly hoppy from the get go, towards the middle with a little malt help the sweet citrus notes become really noticeable. The finish has a bitterness that only becomes more biting & sharp the longer the beer has been gone from my mouth; almost as if the bitterness sticks harshly to my palate while the malt character melts away. The bitterness in the finish seems to be accentuated a bit by some dark malt derived acidity; in fact this is where the dark malt character seems to come into play. The dark malt flavors are drowned out by the hops. This is quite easy drinking, there is a sort of creaminess to the beer, but it is still quite quaffable if not quite light. I would not even guess this was almost 9% alcohol, as it captures the drinkability & relatively light body of a West Coast IPA. The citrus hop flavors are definitely the dominant flavor contributor here. They are not quite so over the top as the aroma was (that citrus oil character is muted a bit), but still ample notes of tangelo, ruby-red grapefruit, orange zest, and lychee are quite noticeable. As the beer warms and my palate gets used to it, subtle notes of roast coffee and chocolate start to become noticeable.

This is most definitely an IPA inspired beer; the lingering, tongue flagellating bitterness in this beer is huge. Astringent at times, bracing, palate dominating, but thoroughly enjoyable for the hop heads out there. I really hope this beer lasts longer than the 10th anniversary beer; for some reason that one had a 2 week window where it was a zesty hop bomb, but after that it became a train wreck of flavors (though I'll have to revisit it as some have said it has mellowed recently). Anyway, if you only have one bottle drink it now, cause it is at it's peak fresh hoppiness right now. It will be interesting to see how the dark malt character plays out; it is very subtle right now and if this was put in a blind IPA tasting (you would actually have to be blind folded though), most would have a hard time guessing this was not a typical, albeit supper hoppy IPA.

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

22 ounce bottle into tulip, best by 2/14/2012. Re-reviewing my first rating ever from 6/3/2010. Pours almost pitch black color with a nice 2 finger dense khaki head with great retention that reduces to a thick cap that lingers. Some nice soapy lacing on the glass. Aromas of grapefruit, pine, biscuit, chocolate, caramel, roasted malt, floral, and herbal hops. Nice and well balanced aromas with good strength. Taste of big grapefruit, pine, toasted biscuit, caramel, chocolate, roasted malt, herbal hop, and coffee. Nice sized smooth spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of pine, toasted biscuit, chocolate, caramel, citrus, and herbal spiciness on the finish for a while. Fantastic balance of hop bitterness to roasted malt flavor for a black IPA. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a fairly creamy and sticky mouthfeel. Very smooth to drink but is still a sipper. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming after the finish noticed. Overall this is a delicious Black IPA as expected. Big hop flavors with a great balanced malt backbone that I usually prefer in black IPAs.

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

Appearance: pours a black color with a thick two finger head that produces some thick lacing.

Smell: big malt sweetness, brown sugar, prunes, grapefruits, and a huge hop presence that leaps out of the glass. Soft alcohol tones are also picked up.

Taste: this is a bold brew. Huge malt profile produces a nice sugary sweetness, but the pine resin, grapefruits, prunes, and soft bitter chocolate tones balances this out wonderfully. Alcohol levels provide a warmth in the throat and belly.

Mouthfeel: lightly crisp at the start, smooth and a bit dry at the finish. Aftertaste is very long as the strong malt and big hop bitterness wraps itself around the tongue and doesn't leave for minutes. Heavy in body.

Drinkability: definite slow sipping beer, but extremely satisfying on a flavor front. This could be considered a meal if one had an empty stomach. The alcohol does come through as you finish the bottle, so more than the one bomber bottle would be dangerous. Awesome beer.

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

Served on tap at Idle Hands in New York, NY

A: Pours a very dark black with some garnet hints when held up to the light. There is a finger tall beige head that last throughout the entire beer - great head retention on this one. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Not as strong a nose as I expected after some of the other Stone beers, this beer had a decent amount of pine hops with subtler notes of roasted malts and caramel.

T: Dark roasted malts with a lot of pine hops in the flavor. Huge bitterness in the finish that is really enjoyable.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: I really like this one and I will have to get it again. Very sessionable and I enjoyed the flavors and the aroma.

Photo of Halcyondays
3.69/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On cask at Beachwood BBQ, the re-release of Stone 11th,

A: Pours black, with a creamy off-tan head, good retention. Soapy lacing.

S: Not getting huge notes here, light scent especially for a cask offering. Some chocolate and roasted malt.

T: Dark chocolate hits immediately, but is soon overwhelmed by sharp pine needle bitterness that sticks and tingles on the tongue. Roasted malt is an undercurrent, though the hops tend to dominate much more than I remember in the 11th, perhaps it is due to the serving style.

M: Smooth, relatively light-bodied/light carbonation from the cask. Sticky resin with a long aftertaste.

D: An interesting beer to have on cask, another solid offering from Stone, a tasty imperial pint to be had if this beer is found cask-conditioned.

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Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 5,739 ratings.