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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

1,885 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,885
Hads: 5,820
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 9.05%
Wants: 287
Gots: 761 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,885 | Hads: 5,820
Photo of tdm168
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz poured into a snifter

Pours a thick black with a heavy, foamy head. Nose is a perfect bouquet of flowers. Taste is a solid balance of roasted malt and bitter hops a little chocolate in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is full bodied and well carbonated.

This beer is amazing. Looks like a stout. Tastes like an IPA..You have to try it. (335 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another limited release! I guess that these are to make up for all of the canned swill that I was downing for a while.

The pour produced a finger's worth of light brown head with good retention. The color was cola-like with ruby highlights. The nose had a malty sweetness to it, underlain by hops. The mouthfeel was medium with a licorice-like bitterness on the tongue. The finish had a chocolaty taste, but also smoky with a bit of bitterness. Mole, anyone? (460 characters)

Photo of Gavage
4.45/5  rDev +6%
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. (983 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
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. (3,477 characters)

Photo of BARFLYB
3.88/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber split with oglmcdgl, poured into a DFH curved pint glaas.

A- Self-righteous was split between black liquid and a frothy tan foam, each taking up about half of the glass. It took over five minutes for the head to die down before becoming a nice sturdy cap. The liquid is black except with light some brownish red spots pop up, good lacing.

S- Very hoppy, almost reminded me of a storm king nose when cold. Big pine and citrus. Maltier as it warms with roasted malt and some minimal coffee. Some dark fruit appeal as it warms even more. This has the nose of a black IPA.

T- And as expected the hops come forth strong and piney. Getting some citrus grapefruit as well. A bit to hoppy so with some time I let the malts come up more which made for a better balance. The malts give off some fruit such as plum with some roast and sweet candy on the low side. The coffee i was getting actually is more of a burnt roast. This is a strong ale though with hops ruling.

M- Very hoppy, bordering on being bitter but this strong is built with a nice malt base. This provides for an easier and smoother drink when it warms. This is not a hot beer but it is a strong beer with legs. A medium body with perfect carbonation.

D- A bit off putting at first and then I remind myself im drinking a fresh west coast strong so the hops dont bother me as much now. Perhaps some short term aging would do this some good as it is a bit "strong" for me at the moment. I could not finish a bomber now but down the line when things have shifted, hell ya. (1,543 characters)

Photo of billab914
4.23/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from a 22oz bottle into my Russian River tulip glass. Pours nearly black with a thick tan head. Very good head retention a d lacing on the glass.

Aroma is hoppy, much like a DIPA. It's citrusy with grapefruit and orange but the dark malts also come through with a slightly sweet presence. Taste also has the citrusy hoppy flavor, but the dark malts come through more in the taste. There is a slight sweet caramel and chocolate flavor going on, it's nearly hidden behind the hops though. This takes on more properties of a DIPA but there is still that dark, sweet, chocolate and roasty flavor going on in the background that adds to the complexity.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good, a very complex and tasty beer that I really enjoy every time I buy it. (804 characters)

Photo of Billolick
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

"A new creation from Stone", happy happy...this one goes into a short wine glass, and pours near black, or at least very dark, under a long lasting dark tan head, tiny bubbles and creamy, each sips reveals gobs of sheeting and then rings of striated lacing, nice looking stuff. Distinctive, herbal, citric hoppy nose, yum. Fresh and pungent brew, plenty o'hoppy goodness, crunching along up front. Full bodied and full mouthfeel, hops continue to carry the weight. Also Some dark maltyness picked up, cafe au lait and mild chocolate, meandering around in the background. Complex, tasty and full throttle, yet more fine brew from the folks at Stone. Washed down a slice of olive bread in fine fashion...go get some and consume. (726 characters)

Photo of Halcyondays
3.69/5  rDev -12.1%
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. (771 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured on tap at Pizza Paradiso Dupont into a tumbler.

Great light cocoa brown chocolate like head that is foamy. Cloudy dark brown body with red character. Just like it's bottle cousin, some good lacing while drinking too.

Hop citrus orange and grapefruit but muted, seems oily, sharp but still tiny and muted, I'll say it's slightly bigger than out of the bottle.

Taste is a little more varied briefly, first a quick sugar of milk chocolate disappearing with hop and grapefruit bitter. Aromatics of oil and citrus fruit on the finish, extremely fruity it never lets up.

A little more dynamic, but mostly just more powerful on tap and still a good example of this style. Can't go wrong with it at all. (706 characters)

Photo of yourefragile
4.16/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle with September 2007 labeled on it poured into a tulip.

A: Sitting still in the glass the liquid looks nearly black, stout like. However as it was poured it showed it was a clearer, deep dark ruby and against some light reveals the same. Clear, but very dark and hard to see through dark ruby with a little active carbonation. Large fluffy tan head with lots of tiny bubbles, extremely retentive and patchy lacing.
S: As pretty as the beer looks and as strong as it smells I feel like this falls short. Has a barleywine like smell rich with piney hops and a malt background. Also some dark fruit and light smell of alcohol. However something for me just isn't adding up between the appearance and the smell and I'm blaming the smell.
T: Packs a punch like a good IPA/DIPA and that seems like most obvious reference but there's more going on here and I wouldn't lump this in with beers like that. Still, the strongest flavor is the piney/floral hop taste that is particularly strong in the finish, but doesn't dominate and isn't particularly bitter like other hop bombs. Instead, this has more of a malty sweetness that balances hop. Also in the finish is a slight graininess, mild chocolate and some pleasant alcohol warming, though.
M: Somehow this ends up feeling syrupy to me, yet slightly watery. Appropriate amount of light carbonation. I'm just put off by the slightly thin feeling it leaves.
D: As this warmed up and I spent more time with it I started to like this a lot more. For its complexity and relatively high ABV this is very drinkable and enjoyable. (1,580 characters)

Photo of DoubleJ
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

They had quite a bit of this at the BevMo in Brea and hearing the good reviews of this beer on this site, I grabbed one. Purchased at $4.49, on to the beer:

This is a totally different kind of IPA. It's dark, nearly black in appearance. The piney and esters of an IPA are there in the flavor, but you can't really taste any raw hops, and for good measure is kissed by some cocoa. The checker at the store said he didn't like IPA's, but he really enjoyed this offering. This isn't an aggressive beer like some of the other Stone products, but a rather mellow beer that won't tax your palate too much. (600 characters)

Photo of Mebuzzard
4.13/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ok, pours a black liquid, a bit thick looking with a chocolate shake-foam type head. Huge head. About 3 1/2 fingers. Not quite as thick looking as a stout.
Hops dominate the aroma. A bit surprising given the look of it. A sharp citrus smell, some anise and prune. Some resin as well.
Taste is like an IPA, but not as strong, yet stronger than a PA. The hops, again, dominate.The sharp citrus is more subtle, dry. A hint of molasses with some dark fruit. Not sweet at all, though. Alcohol is noticeable. Some of the anise comes through in the taste, not a fan of that.
A slick feel to it. Feels like a watered down stout, which I'm not sure is good or bad.
I like it, though. 22oz bomber didn't stand a chance. (709 characters)

Photo of tempest
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cool idea here - black IPA. I'd call it "hop cocoa." My only qualm is that there isn't more malt. The hops are near perfect, just riding the line of big, but not too big. The aroma is a very sweet fruity, reminds me of the Avery's big beers. The flavor has a get mix of hops flavors that change as the beer warms. It covers floral, fruit punch, citrus rind, and finishes with an herbal black pepper taste. Yummy. There's a touch of cocoa in the background, sort of like what baking cocoa adds to a mole sauce. So, a pretty great beer, I want more like this. Thank you Stone. (574 characters)

Photo of Stinkypuss
3.55/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Sublimely Self Righteous Ale pours a dark brownish amber. Off white head and lace stickage. Smells of piney hops, some malt, and earthy/woodsy elements. In the flavor, dry hoppiness and some light citrus and pine notes. Sweet caramel malt backing and some booziness. Nothing exciting, more raw and strong flavors. Overall, more of a strong ale than a black ale, would like a more pronounced roasted malt flavor and less booze. Nonetheless this is an ass kicker. (461 characters)

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.32/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at the Brick Store Pub. Pours almost black with ruby highlights and a thin head. Smells very hoppy with citrus as well as burnt sugar, caramel, and some roastiness. The taste is quite an interesting mix of roastiness, hoppiness, and tannins. Tea-like in flavor, with burnt sugar and hops. In the mouth its smooth and a bit tannic on the finish. Very interesting. (378 characters)

Photo of johnnnniee
3.8/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark black that shows some red highlights when held up to the light. Two finger head that dissipates, but never goes away, laces the glass all the way down. Aroma is hops citrusy, piney, grapefruity hops with a faint biscuit/caramel malt in the background. Taste is more of the same bitter hops. Another great offering from Stone. (338 characters)

Photo of weeare138
4.32/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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. (340 characters)

Photo of HopHead84
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

8/1/2010

Poured into my Stone IRS snifter. The beer is very dark brown with a monstrous frothy two finger beige head with excellent retention and scattered lacing.

The aroma is pine resin, grapefruit rind & flesh, and earth (damp forest soil, mineral, desperation). Malt exhibits a moderate roast and a slight toast that compliment the hop profile nicely. Light chocolate notes are evident as well.

The flavor displays an upper moderate level of bitterness up front with aggressive pine resin and grapefruit rind notes. The light roasted malt profile is a welcome addition to the lupulin onslaught. The finish is aggressively hopped with big alcohol notes, a light roast/toasted malt profile, and lingering pine and grapefruit.

The mouthfeel is creamy and sticky. Carbonation is at a moderate level. Great mouthfeel.

A very nice Indian San Diego Dark Hoppy Pale Ale. (871 characters)

Photo of Zorro
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Black IPA...OK I will give it a try.

Super high carbonation level; pour this one CAREFULLY!

Clear super dark brown colored ale with a tall tan colored head.

Smell is a clone of Arrogant Bastard ale. Hyper strong hop aroma with lots of molasses and caramel.

Taste starts out mellow with a strong melon flavor and a quite bitter after taste. Melon remains the dominate flavor here with a subtle citrus hop flavor of grapefruit and just super fresh hop flavor, so fresh it is like chewing up a hop bud in my mouth. Some hop flavors simply taste like nothing else on earth, this tastes like that. Lots of flavors under the hops, chocolate and coffee mostly. This still has a rather strong melon flavor, I am curious about how this might age.

Mouthfeel is quite full.

Good and drinkable but I REALLY don't think this has reached its best quite yet. This is a lot like a mix of Barley Wine and IPA and I think this will be better in two years after the melon flavor mellows out some. (983 characters)

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.7/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured on tap at the Stone Brewery into a pint glass. The beer is a dark brown, glassy, thick coloring, almost black in the depths. The beer has a 1 inch creamy, thick, tan head. The nose is hop heavy, with grapefruit and resinous forward notes, followed by a solidly smoked and roasted note that helps to balance it. The taste is hop forward, very bitter and resinous, and these characteristics are enhanced by the roast and smoke characters. The hop-heavy feel continues into the finish, where there is more of a citrus hops linger, but still plenty of bitterness. The beer is light and crisp in mouth, despite the boldness of the flavors. This is a big beer, with very heavy characteristics. Damn tasty, and not for the faint of heart. (739 characters)

Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased in the US and brought back to Australia to share with @LaitueGonflable and @tobeerornottobe.

Pours a dark, but tempered deep brown colour, with a frothy and voluminous head of light cocoa-coloured foam. Some sudsy speckled lacing. Body looks surprisingly light, but overall, it looks pretty decent.

Nose is fresh and sharp with big American hop characters. Forget the appearance, this is all about the IPA aroma dry-hopped West Coast goodness, giving lots of Cascade-like citrus and fruit characters. Once it warms, it does start to give off slight hints of chocolate and dark malt as well, which provide an interesting, but dichotomous counter to the hoppiness. But there's no doubting what is king: it's hops all the way.

Taste is also, surprisingly hoppy, with only light caramel chocolate characters coming in at the very end once the hops eventually grant them a fleeting audience with your tastebuds. Rather, there's big hp bitterness throughout, leaving hop oil residue and crisp biting bitterness throughout most of the length of the palate. The chocolate and darker characters only deserve a mention as the palate as a whole dies out.

Feel is rather light, but this just underlines its true nature as an IPA, not a dark ale.

A very strange and one might say extreme example of the IBA style. It's a wolf in sheep's clothing--an IPA masquerading in the guise of a dark beer. The hops almost perfectly mute everything but the colour. (1,455 characters)

Photo of PEIhop
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

My amazing wife gave this to me as part of a Valentine's Day gift....Sweet!

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a tulip glass.

A - Poured a deep, rich, leathery black with minimal lacings and a small carbonated head.

S - Due to the color, I wasn't expecting the abundant hop presence in this ale. Along with the hop presence, dark fruit and hints of chocolate permeate throughout.

T - The initial wave is dominated by the "pineyness" from the hops and a secondary wavy leaves hints of chocolate and plum/dates.

M - Full-bodied with a very appealing creaminess.

D - This ale was extremely enjoyable (shared with my wife) because of the unexpected hop presence. Extremely well-crafted ale with high drinkability. (715 characters)

Photo of barleywinefiend
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from tap and had a nice brown head over the clear dark brown brew. Frothy head lasts and lasts, with ample sticky lace. Aroma is pungeant piney green hops. Taste is bit lacking in the chewy malts one might expect for such a dark color, but hops character and bitterness is excellent. It did have nice chocolate taste to it with that hoppy kick. Mouthfeel is extra smooth, and drinkability is great as well. Yet another anniversary brew from Stone that is worthy of the milestone. (486 characters)

Photo of John_M
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Concordia Alehouse the other night.

The beer pours an unexpected darkish color with very good head retention and lacing. The nose is pretty interesting, sort of a dry citrusy bitter aroma. On the palate this beer comes across as a dry dunkel, but with a significant hop wallop in the mid palate and finish. The beer is not heavy and is medium bodied, with a hoppy dry finish. The abv. is well disguised, and this beer is really prettry drinkable for a beer with 8.7% alcohol.

Very nice effort from Stone. I preferred last year's edition of this beer, but this is not bad. (592 characters)

Photo of rhoadsrage
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a tulip glass)
A- This beer pours a jet black body with a deep beige thick head that sticks to the glass in rings after each sip.
S- This beer has a pungent musty Northwest hops that comes through even during the pour. Wow. The roasted note of malt is a little hint in the big hop aroma and there is a green watermelon rind quality in the finish of the hops.
T- The green pungent pine flavor to the hops has a roasted note that blends nicely. There is a pine pungent finish with a minty quality and a pungent herbal hop flavor that lingers.
M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with no alcohol heat and a slight slippery texture in the finish.
D- Although the bottle reeks of arrogance the beer inside is good. The big hop flavor has lots of nice depth with a little black malt for support. This is my first beer purchased in Chicago, would it taste better if I had to drive 2hr to buy it? Luckily I don't have to find out. (937 characters)

Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 1,885 ratings.