Dismiss Notice
Microbrew Invitational
Join us June 3 + 4 in Boston and help us drink 300+ beers, ciders, kombuchas, meads, sakes and more!

TICKETS: beeradvocate.com/micro/

Stone 13th Anniversary Ale | Stone Brewing Co.

607 Reviews
no score
Send samples
For Trade:
Stone 13th Anniversary AleStone 13th Anniversary Ale

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by seaoflament on 06-29-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 607 | Ratings: 723
Photo of argock
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 22oz brown bomber into a clear pint glass. No freshness date. Purchased from Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA) for $7.25.

A: Burnt amber-red with 2-finger french vanilla head with good retention and ample lacing.

S: Toasted caramel malts are most dominant, but citrus and pine hops move in and compete neck-and-neck with the big malt aroma. Very bready and inviting but not all that original.

T: Big caramel and toasted malt flavor with correspondingly impressive pine and citrus hops flavors. I wish this brew had a bit more originality -- I like most other imperial and dry-hopped reds better because they are more comple and less heavy-handed.

M: Chewy and coating with medium-full body and low carbonation. Aftertaste is toffee and burnt malt.

D: A pretty drinkable 9.5% ABV ale, but I wish this brew had more oomph and character. It is good, but not what I imagined a Stone Anniversary Ale to be. Compared to the other imperial reds like Nugget Nectar, Lagunitas Lucky 13, and Red Rocket Red, this one is a clear 4th place (and maybe 5th behind Rogue's Dry-Hopped St. Rogue Red).

 1,104 characters

Photo of Reagan1984
4.11/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Loved the look of this beer. Have to say it certainly reminded me of a more piney Arrogant Bastard. There was something about the malt profile that reminded me of that beer. BTW, it's one of my favorites.

The beer is just perfect looking. Creamy/full light tan head that is able to rise well above the top of the glass. Excellent retention and clumps of lace... Deep maroon, amber/light brown color. Dark, dark color.

Aroma was awesome as well. Pine, fresh floral aroma. Huge hop smack. Sharp citrus at the end...

As mentioned earlier the malt profile really reminded me of Arrogant Bastard. There is a sweet, fruity caramel background. Lots of depth and the hop profile is wonderful. Resin like Pine some sharp citrus.

Just shy of creamy mouth feel. Thick and bold. The hop profile accentuates this.

Wonderfully drinkable for a hop head.

Another excellent effort by Stone. Happy Anniversary.

 898 characters

Photo of FosterJM
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

34th review on BA
Bottle to Stone pint glass

I'm reviewing this with an open mind. Bottle says to drink in 2009 and don't age it. It's almost 2011 and I just got a bottle of this from a little liquor store who I doubt knew to sell these fresh.

App-This beer poured a dense, thick, rich chocolate brown color. It had a nice tan creamy one finger head.

Smell- It was a complex mess to say of smells on this. You get dried fruit, you get the alcohol, you get some caramel and maybe some other roast in there.

Taste- This is where I think a fresh bottle would come in handy. I don't know how to compare it to a fresh bottle but its like drinking a baby RIS. I saw that because you get so many flavors but the big flavors stand out with the coffee and chocolate of the RIS coming to mind.

Mouth- It's a complex beer and demands to be sipped and enjoyed while flavors go to work on the palate.

Drink- One and done for me. It was like sipping on a fine wine to be enjoyed and remembered.

 986 characters

Photo of jsh420
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours hazy redish brown with plenty of sediment - a big 2+ finger head that leaves notches all down the glass

smells like a pine forest

taste - pine pine pine - AB with grapefruit and lots of pine

mouthfeel is medium with plenty of carbonation

drinkability is great - i love the taste and love the smell - one of the best stone brews i have had

 348 characters

Photo of Bierman9
3.7/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Old "Bro" Artied2 swung by last night (07OCT09) with a bottle of this to try...

Pours a very deep, dark chestnut. Seems clear, and has a rocky, tan head. Foam is short, but leaves decent lace. Aroma is of burnt brown sugar and molasses, and hints at a strong alcohol presence. Medium in body, 13 passes fairly well over the tongue.

Flavor comes across with lots of caramel and treacle, with roasty choco and coffee notes. Hopping is quite earthy, with plenty of bitterness getting into the action. The alcohol is quite noticeable going down the hatch as well. Thnx for the bottle, Bro, but 13 is a one-and-done for me. Prosit!!

look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | drink: 3.5


Reviewed on: 10-08-2009 12:08:44

 731 characters

Photo of TheBeerAlmanac
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a tulip

A: Pours a mahogany color with a tan head.

S: Smells strong like almonds and some hazelnut with some light hoppiness and, strange enough, garlic. It sounds disgusting, I know, but it’s not. The aroma is really inviting, if a garlic scent can do that without being in an Italian dish.

T/M: You can immediately taste chocolate in the back of your throat, light traces of hops and nuttiness throughout. Biscuity malts and marshmallow round out the finish. It’s very rich and very good.

I know this wasn’t their intention, but this beer must have gotten better with age. Either that, or I may have peed my pants in ecstasy if I tried it in 2009. Old beer won’t make you sick will it? I hope I don’t get collera or lupus or something. Eh, I don’t care, it’s worth it.

 807 characters

Photo of EgadBananas
3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark red color, head was super creamy and frothy. The aroma is unique and beyond complex. Caramel up from, slight mint, spicy hop remnants, leather, chocolate, and earth. There's a big caramel, almost chocolaty note up front on the taste, some earthy, spicy bitterness still lingering from the hops, sweet malts, and a leathery finish. Full bodied on the feel, creamy.

"Do not cellar".

I never noticed that on my bottle until I decided to crack it...3+ years later.

I haven't had it fresh, which would have been nice, though I was just getting into beer at that time and Stone entered Louisiana the year after. But, this was a nice Strong Ale. Though the said "Don't cellar", I think they knew this would hold it'd own to father time.

 753 characters

Photo of prototypic
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

13th Anniversary pours a deep reddish brown color. It's clear and backlighting gives it a very rich red appearance. A very foamy, caramel colored head tops it off. It easily reaches over three fingers deep. It was very slow to dissipate and left thick, sticky sheets of lacing clinging to the glass. Very nicely done.

The nose is intriguing and very good. It's undoubtedly hoppy. Saying this is a 'hop bomb' is an understatement. It has a deep, diverse hop profile. They're primarily piney, floral, and a little earthy. There are some citric qualities that are apparent through the grapefruit and pineapple scents, but they are secondary. There's no shortage of malt here. Caramel malts are easily noted and smell sweet. They're here, but it doesn't smell very balanced. To a lesser degree, there's a little dark fruit, tobacco, and just a whiff of alcohol. I was anticipating a little more alcohol presence, but this is blended well. This is a good smelling beer. Very good actually. Special? It falls just a little shy of that.

The flavor profile is equally as good as the nose, but no better. A sweet caramel malt flavor kicks it off. But, hops waste no time attacking the palate and attack they do. This is a seriously dry, bitter beer. The hops are very piney and floral. I'll even go a little resiny. There are some light citrus grapefruit and pineapple flavors, but they're mostly overshadowed by the piney and floral aspects. There's more than enough malt here, but it doesn't do much to take the bitter edge off. As a hophead, that's fine by me. It is earthy and a little herbal. A hint of tobacco and light spices are noted. Dark fruit flavors are secondary and subtle, but are effective in adding depth. Alcohol is a little more noticeable here. It is nearly 10% abv. What were you expecting? It finishes bitter, very dry, with a touch of warmth from the alcohol. The flavor here is very good, but never quite comes together enough to drive it to the next level.

13th Anniversary has a medium body that leans thick. It's nice and smooth. Carbonation is light and helps smooth it out nicely. Not quite creamy, but smooth. Drinkability is good. It's a little limited by its strength and aggressive flavor profile. Nonetheless, I'm enjoying the bomber and will have no trouble polishing it off.

Stone 13th Anniversary. I always look forward to this annual release. Is it good beer? No doubt. Very good. But, I was honestly hoping for a little more. I can't help but recall my encounter with Tongue Buckler and compare the two. Frankly, I think Tongue Buckler's a little better. This one isn't quite as aggressively hoppy as Tongue Buckler, but I prefer Tongue Buckler's primary use of citric hops. It just has a slightly better hop flavor. As for this one, it's damn good. If they strong piney, floral hop flavor gelled with the sweet caramel malt just a little better, it just might be special. As it is, it's another very solid anniversary release from Stone. Definitely recommended.

 2,999 characters

Photo of tpd975
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a very dark amber hue that is actually as much brown as it is red. NIce tall tan head, bubbly and vicious. Good retention with nice lace.

S: Lots of malt up front. Sweet caramel and brown sugar. Hints of roast and a big blast of hops. There is lots of gooey pine hops with an equal assault of grassy green hops.

T: Very much like the aroma. Malt sweetness up front. Caramel and molasses mostly. The roast is there to provide depth, before the hop assault takes place. All hops are represented. I picked up a bit of sweet pine up front. It really played well off the sweet malt. Things bitter up in the middle with citrus pushing forward. The finish is big, bold, grassy green, and bitter.

M: On the fuller side of medium. Rich, sweet, with long bitter finish.

D: Pretty good. It's a nice big beer that lends itself to kicking back and sipping the night away.

 871 characters

Photo of alexgash
4.4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle.

Rather dark amber maple syrup body with a dense inch and a half of light sandy head. Great lacing. Delectable nose of pine sap, herbal resinousness, pineapple, and minty hops. Substantial fruit, cookie, and rum backing.

Herbal, numbing hop bitterness right up front. Aggressive and tasty. Undercurrent of fruity, rummy malt mounts a defensive against the hop dominance. Sticky, and slightly sweet, the malt still can't balance the hop bitterness. Piny and resinous all the way through, with flashes of mint and citrus in the finish. Dry and numbing to the end. Reminds me of SN Bigfoot, but with more hops! Medium-full body with a creamy feel. One of Stone's better Anniversary beers.

 701 characters

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.35/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle. Pours a deep reddish brown with a thick light tan head. Aroma of citrus and grassy hops and sweet caramel malt. A touch of iced tea too. Flavor is super hoppy--more citrus and grassy hops with a bitter finish. A solid malt base too. Heavyish palate with the 9.5%. It started wearing on me by the middle of the glass...In the end, boring and heavy.

 355 characters

Photo of hopdog
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle.

Poured a deep reddish brown color with a very large sized off white head. Aromas of pine, floral hoppiness, caramel, and citrus. Tastes of caramel, toffee, pine, citrus, floral, with some toasted nuttiness. Medium alcohol burn in the finish.

 256 characters

Photo of Brent
3.06/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer struck me as not having much direction. Up front some roasted caramel flavors, followed by rather harsh and nondescript hopping that finished with a broad, bland bitterness. Not bad, but discordant and unbalanced. Better luck with next year's edition.

 261 characters

Photo of kwjd
4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Apparently I was supposed to drink this fresh, but whatever, I just bought this a couple days ago. Pours a ruby-brown colour with huge off-white head. Lots of lacing, great head retention. This smells incredibly sweet, like brown sugar, vanilla and burnt sugar. Flavour is really sweet as well, slight bitterness too. Aftertaste leaves the burnt sugar flavour (in a good way). Smooth mouthfeel. This is really good even in 2011, so I wish I had it when it was fresh.

 466 characters

Photo of Boto
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber: This one pours a fairly opaque mahogany brown color. There was a small tan head that doesn't linger long, but does leave some lacing. The aroma is quite good. Pine and citrus hops are up front, but you can tell they are being masked somewhat by the malt. Some caramel and toffee, as well as a bit of breadiness. The taste is bitter, with the pine and citrus hops up front, but malts trying to mask them. I get some bitter chocolate, toffee, spice and some others that can't quite get to the top. Very nice. I missed drinking it in 2009, since it got shuffled to the back of the fridge.

 598 characters

Photo of Monkeyknife
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle a deep clear mahogany giving two fingers of frothy tan head.

Aroma of grapefruit, pineapple, molasses, roasted caramel malts, and a slight medicinal tinge.

The taste brought forth grapefruit, roasted caramel malts, vanilla, dark berries, and molasses. Nice balance of hops and malts. The 9.5% alcohol was present and gave a touch of warmth to the tongue. The finish delivered a bitter bite.

Rich and creamy with a light carbonation.

A fine Strong Ale as one would expect from Stone.

 509 characters

Photo of Florida9
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Served in a pilsner glass with about 1 finger of thick, tan, creamy head that stuck around for the whole beer. Tons of lacing, practically sheeting along the side of the glass. Clear, dark brown in color.

S: Huge floral hop noes mixed with pungency of alcohol.

T: Caramel malt and alcohol followed by grapefruit bitterness. Long complex finish.

M: Creamy and voluptuous. Medium-heavy in weight with medium carbonation.

D: This is a big beer not for the faint of heart. High malts, high hops, and high alcohol, however, all are balanced nicely.

 554 characters

Photo of deapokid
3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very excited to try my third Stone Anniversary Ale as I soak in the wonderful sentiment expressed in the essay on the back of the bottle.

Beer pours a deep, almost candied red with a thick and foamy head that leaves a lacy film on the glass as it recedes.

The smell is a big hoppy aroma, which is expected from Stone beer and packing an added citrus sweetness to the usual hop pungency.

All is as expected, until the subtle flavor kicks in. This beer is mellow and soft on the palate, refraining from the massive hop wallop of brews like the Double Bastard. Don't get me wrong, the hops are present and still resonate, but in a different way, without the tongue scraping, which has been replaced by an uncommon smoothness. The heavy 9.5 ABV is well disguised, making for a very smooth and drinkable beer experience.

This subtlety and complexity is new for Stone and it's good to see that one of the best breweries in the US is still trying new things.

 956 characters

Photo of david18
4.68/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

i wasn't sure if this was a new beer. Sounds like it is. I was very surprised to see this was consider a red/amber ale. It's nothing like any of the beers in that category. It's much like a couple of the previous dark dipa anniv. ales release by stone.

A little hot but the malt is oustanding.

Tried this again in a bottle and I think this is their best Old Ale yet. Not as strong as the double but more than the regular Arrogant, this beer has excellent color, flavor, aroma and drinkability.

I changed my rating from the original review above.

 550 characters

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle served in a snifter.

Deep brown color with a creamy tan head that stayed as a cap and left streaks of lacing.
The smell is strong piney hops with a hint of dark fruit sweetness in the background.
The taste is borderline on being too hop heavy but there's just enough malt to make me want more.
Medium/Full bodied with a smooth feel on the finish.
Enjoyable brew.

Happy 13th Anniversary Stone, Many More!

 417 characters

Photo of arizcards
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a bomber in early August from AJ's for $6.39.

Beer poured a deep amber with a very strong long lasting head. Nose suggests hop bomb, floral hops dominate. Taste is toffee caramel malts, huge piney and citrusy hops. Finish is slightly unbalanced. Mouthfeel is full bodied and very satisfying. Drinkability is good. This is a very good brew that is a must try for fans of hoppy reds.

 392 characters

Photo of merlin48
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The bomber pours a slightly hazed dark garnet body with creamy tan head that stands two fingers tall. Good retention and some island chain lacing.

Aroma is bold, with pungent cedar, grassy hops, a whiff of grapefruit, and some boiling toffee.

Mouthfeel has a creamy medium texture with a resinous hop bite and satiny carbonation.

Taste opens with a pine hops bitterness that lasts to the finish. Toffee and toasted caramel malt backbone struggles to match the hop bitterness and ultimately caves in. Hops develop a myriad character midway through that has earthy, leafy, and citrusy elements. Finish is long and bitter, with a resinous aftertaste.

This one has hints of Old Guardian, Double Bastard, and Arrogant Bastard woven throughout, but manages to hold on to a distinct Stone identity. Very well done.

 811 characters

Photo of FLBeerGuy
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dark amber with a very small tan head that leaves no lacing on my Chimay goblet. Stone's website says this is a imperial red ale.

Smell is piny and grapefruit hops and a little sweetness .

Taste is a strong hop bitterness with a sweet malty backbone, like a kicked up Double Bastard. You can taste the alcohol in this one, but it's not too overpowering. Stone says they used more hops in this beer than any beer they have ever brewed.

Mouthfeel is medium with decent carbonation.

While this is a tasty beer, it's not one you would drink a lot of.

This is what you would expect from a Stone Anniversary Ale, a bit dose of hops with some malts to balance it out.

 678 characters

Photo of srandycarter
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Brown, tea like, almost cola in color. Head light brown root beer, leaves fast. Some light suds remain on surface. Clingy lace remains.

S - Sweet malt, lush fruit and the threat of hearty hops.

T - Sweet caramel surrounded in bitter. Malt barely can balance out the hops. Yowzah.

M - Medium body, very coating, full flavored and fairly balanced.

D - Up to a point, but it would get me with the big flavors or the ABV eventually.

 436 characters

Photo of ehammond1
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle (2009)

Stone 15th Anniversary Celebration
CSU, San Marcos
San Marcos, CA

(Aged 2 years at the brewery)

Dark auburn and near brown with ruby and red highlights near the edges. Khaki head and lots of lacing left on the glass. Very pretty.

The piney and pungent hops I remember this beer having when fresh have certainly faded, leaving lots of sweet toffee and caramel and a sweet and powerful tang from the yeast.

Little to no hop punch is left, leaving a dark, sticky caramel, yet delicious ale, letting the yeast and roast really shine far more than they did in the fresh version. Obviously, this will never happen with a beer only brewed once, but I'd love to drink this one next to a fresh bottle. If memory serves me correct, they seem to be vastly different beers two years apart from one another.

Medium to thick mouthfeel, though a touch still and heavy.

I enjoyed this beer I think more than the sum of its parts would indicate. Though the hops had certainly faded, this was actually one of my favorites of the Stone Anniversary Celebration.

 1,064 characters

Stone 13th Anniversary Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 607 ratings.