1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Levitation Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Levitation AleLevitation Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

3,721 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,721
Reviews: 1,189
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 11.95%
Wants: 138
Gots: 330 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  4.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 09-27-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Levitation Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,721 | Reviews: 1,189 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Enola
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Obtained in the Double Trouble BIF.

This beer poured a cloudy red and there was a fair head. The smell is wonderfull. Hops, brown sugar, maple syrup. Mmm. The taste is smooth with just a little bit of a watery finish. Bitter, this seems to flirt with pale ale. The mouthfeel is smooth and drinkbility inviting. As a lower abv brew, several of these could be consumed easily. This is the shy nephew of an arrogant uncle.

Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass. The color is very nice, a nice amber/red color and it glows slightly lighter when held up to the light. You can see some slight citrus zest floating in the liquid. I couldn't believe the amount of foam in this beer, it probably took about 5 minutes just to pour it. The head is thick and has a buttery look to it and produces crazy amounts of lacing.

The smell is awesome. It's much hoppier than any other Amber/Red Alie I've ever had before. Pine is the dominant feature in the hop and there are some slight citrus notes as well, I'd say 70/30 in favor of pine. There are also some slight notations of sweet grains and malts a s well.

The taste is a full notch below the smell, but it's still good, especially for this style. There are similarities with the pine flavor being stronger, but the ratio is a little different, maybe more like a 60/40. Regardless the entire strength of the hops are weaker than it is in the smell. The malts are a little stronger in the taste than the smell. Overall the flavors blend together pretty well.

The mouthfeel is pretty good, a little lighter than I expected. Pretty well balanced, but like I mentioned, lighter than I expected, for both the style and the brewery. It has a clean bitter finish and even though the head was so huge, the carbonation level is good. Drinkability is good. It would work well if you wanted to sip it or have it as a nice refreshment on a hot summer day. Not as big and bold as most Stone brews, but a very good beer none the less.

Photo of BEERchitect
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to David H. for bringing this beer back from the brewery. I have longly anticipated this brew. It comes as a surprise to me what I'm about to experience. This increadible beer begins with a deep amber / nearly brown hue with creamy off-white head formation, retains very well, and leaves lacing all over the place. Modest carbonation gives the beer a cask ale-like demeanor. Sharp aromas of pine and citrus hops promises agression, while very light notes of nuts, toast, and cocoa tells me that the beer isn't only hops. The taste of the hops hit up front with a juicy burst citurs, then pine. After the hops die down a bit, the dry toast, chesnut, and light cocoa powder flavors come in. Interestingly, there are no real sweetness to this beer- it has fully attenuated so that only the dry malt, hops, and fermentation character shows. The mouthfeel is both creamy and dry, making it very drinkable, albeit bitter. Finishes with a crisp bitterness- part from hops, but part from toast and nuttiness. This beer has a lot of character for a 4.4% sessionable, bone-dry beer. A pleasure to drink, but a bit of sweetness would have scored it higher.

Photo of jsp2
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours brown amber and transparent with a thick white head of foam. Aroma of citrus hops, apricots, and flowers. Tart and bitter approach followed by a balanced barely sweetness with a hoppy and bitter finish. Quite dry and well balanced. Feel is light and watery, very quenching and quaffable.

This one packs a lot of flavor yet somehow is very light and drinkable. Well done.

Photo of stewart124
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark amber to burgundy color with a thick and somewhat sticky tan head. This leaves a nice lace along the sides of the glass.

The smell that I first picked up was cascade hops. There is a certain spice and fragrance that this brings to mind and it's like sniffing a bag of cascade pellets.

The taste is smooth and crisp. It's almost chewy and biscuity. This seems to have a complex malt background and the hops add a great touch. The mouthfeel is big and finishes very dry. Lots of citrus and pine bite the tongue.

Leaves a very nice aftertaste and it's just so chewy. It's nice to see another beer from Stone that doesn't blow you out of the water.

Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Straddling the line between amber and red, this beer pours a burnished, deep mahogany colour, bright ruby when held to the light, otherwise a slightly murky amber. Clarity is great, however, and the head forms lightly into a film of off-white. Lacing is classic. Looks pretty awesome.

Nose is sharp, crisp and delightful, with big citric hop fragrance pounding the nostrils from inches away. Robust characters of other sweeter fruits too, mostly apricot, pineapple and nectarine. It's so fresh, so bright, so powerful and so delightful. I've had far more timid noses in beers double or triple this one's strength. Awesome.

Taste is unsurprisingly much more subdued, but the hoppy characters translate very nicely into flavour, but not bitterness. This helps the palate, which is very light on—too much hoppiness would leave it unbalanced. Instead, we get bright tropical fruits at the start, before a subtle bit mid-palate and a dry, cleansing finish.

Insanely drinkable, quenchable and quaffable. This is an insane session beer, one of the most flavoursome and exciting beers under 5% ABV I think I've ever had. And despite the lightness on the palate, it never feels empty. Great brew.

Photo of BlindPig
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A-Poured a little hard so got a big 2 1/2-3" off white head. Clear Amber color with bits of brown in it. Good head retention and leaves a bit of a lacing that sticks to side of glass.
S-Mix of floral and citrusy hops. Malts balance it out pretty well. Grassy and piney smells come through as well.
T-Grassy and piney tastes follow the smell. Malts help balance it out and a bit of citrus hop flavor lays under neath. Almost like you have to search for it. Nice light bitterness in aftertaste that grows from the piney flavors. Bit of a dry finish.
M- Bit low on carbonation compared to the bottle and the taster from the brewery. Medium body.
D- It's a very good beer. Goes down with ease and its a good job since I have a 2L growler ahead of me.

Photo of jwinship83
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle with best by 9/21/09 on the bottle. poured into sierra nevada pint glass.

A- beautiful pour. dark red colored body with a small khaki colored head. the head lasts a short while and leaves solid walls of lacing on the sides of my glass. very nice.

S- sweet caramel malts and a lot of citrus and pine hops. looking pretty good so far.

T- sweet caramel and toffee upfront from the malts. a nice and strong hoppy finish. lots of citrus (grapefruit) and a little bit of pine.

M- light bodied and crisp. nice level of carbonation. decent amount of bitterness and leaves the mouth feeling dry.

D- a great sessionable beer. lots of flavor and lots of hops. ill check this one out again whenever i get the chance.

Photo of budsboy
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Very rich red-brown color, clear, with a white head that falls back to an oil spill of foam on the surface.

Very pleasing burnt pine cone hop smell. Really interesting wafts of sugary malt, pine-cone hops, garden soil, and dark fruit.

Very hoppy. All piney hops. Not really well balanced, much more hop bitterness than malt flavors. Finish is dry and bitter, and the pine aftertaste lasts.

Almost light bodied, well carbonated and a wee oily in the mouth.

Exceedingly drinkable. A session beer for the hop lover. Big hop flavor and bitterness and low alcohol. This is a hoppier if not the hoppiest version of an amber/red. I find it wonderfully easy to drink and thoroughly enjoyable.

Photo of microbrewlover
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This brew pours a dark red/plum color with a two finger frothy tan head. The head lasts several minuets and some of it remains on the top of the brew until the end. Good lacing.

The smell is nutty, bready, caramel like along with piney hops.

The taste is hop forward with piney hops dominating, there is some grapefruit taste as well. Caramel and roasted hops come in in the middle then there is a piney and grapefruit hop finish. Some hop oil remains on the tongue after swallowing.

The mouthfeel is thick and chewy. There is a little bite from the hops; a slightly dry taste is left in the mouth after swallowing.

Overall this is a good well balanced ale. A hop forward Red Ale with a malt backbone. It is definitely worth trying.

Photo of chinchill
4.19/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A bit surprised to see the classification of this beer, which was ordered and served with no description to this ignorant customer who, upon consuming this, would have thought it to be an Imperial Red, an IPA or and Amer. PA.

A- Clear, dark brownish-amber body with a generous, durable creamy head.

Aroma - hoppy with what smelled like some marijuana buds (this one is from California, yes, but I'm sure that's not actually an ingredient).

Flavor - Remarkably hoppy flavor given the lack of bitterness or obvious off-setting sweetness. And again the weed.

M - crisp; ample carbonation.

O - I really enjoyed this one. Great strong taste of hops; long finish; and entirely pleasant to consume.

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm always excited to try a new Stone brew, this one with a levitating gargoyle on the front. It pours from the 12oz bottle into my glass a deep amber/red with a solid half inch of light tan foam. Quite appealing. Aromas start with a nice biscuity/bready/doughy maltiness and a touch of caramel. Plenty of pungent citrusy, resinous hops in the mix. Clean, sharp and vibrant.

First sip brings a big biscuit, doughy maltiness right out of the gate with a touch of caramel and a slight sour note. Herbal, citrusy hop tones come in midway through and meld in nicely. Slighty nutty, this one finishes with a mellow bitterness. Another tasty brew from Stone.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with an expansive carbonation that engulfs the mouth and gives a nice creamy sensation. Easily drinkable, would make a nice session brew if I had access to it. Might serve as a nice crossover beer for those new to craft brew as well. Thanks to Callenak for the chance to sample this one.

Photo of BasilBock
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I am really impressed by the Stone Brewery on this one. They made a nice hoppy beer with an explosive mouth feel. Only having one so far, I wont review in much detail until I can get a second one.

Although only aesthetic, the bottle design and texture is very nice. I think the artistic style matches well with the taste of its contents but it still caught me off guard on my first sip. The Name of the beer fits perfectly. The beer most certainly shows an "apparent defiance of gravity" with its texture featuring a bubbling brew with carries fizz all the way through your drink - even out of the bottle. There is a spice to this drink with pairs great with the hops. I enjoyed in a bottle and will certainly take the time to clean a glass for the next drink. The carbonation is possibly too strong, but sometimes a great product will break the standard rules.

Im going to buy a case next time and I will try to update. One interesting note is the modest ABV. The beer tastes strong and powerful but with a listed ABV of 4.4% it is a step back from the 6-10+% brews that fill the rest of my fridge. A strong beer would fit this drink well, but the Levitation Ale sits right. Its the perfect mid-afternoon drink.

Photo of mjaskula
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a pint glass. Pours a nice clear amber with a thick soapy tan head that laces significantly. The aroma is bright and hoppy with floral and citrus and a hint of malt. The flavor is fruity and malty sweet with a nice balance of hop bitterness. Carbonation is perfect, and it's really easy drinking. I find it much easier drinking than some of Stone's other hoppier beers.

Photo of dborginis
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a glass, very foamy head which is thin in texture. Color is a turbid brown copper. Light smell of roasted malt and hops, like a mini DIPA.

The first sensation in the taste is the light cremy watery taste. This is followed by a tasty amount of hops and roasted malt. Almost sublime. This wouldn't be acceptable for a higher ABV beer, but based on the low ABV and the intention of the brewer to make a quality light/low alcohol beer, this is spot on.

This is a fine session beer!

Photo of rpardon7
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I will be rating this beer probably higher than the average BA. Poured from the bottle a dull amber to dark orange color with a thick rocky head that receded slowly and left nice laicing on the glass. Smell is wonderful for a red ale pine and grassy hops mixed with tropical fruit notes. Taste is so complex for such a simple low abv beer. Hops up front fresh cut grass and sour apple with a malty middle that has a dry hoppy finish. Mouthfeel is light and dry not too heavy like some red ales are, good carbonation that brings out the hop. Drinkability is fantastic and for a low abv this is a great session beer for hop lovers!

Photo of hellomcfly
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

From bottle poured into tulip glass

A - Poured a HUGE fluffy tan head. Attractive dark brownish-amber color. I dunno if it just definitely not be served in a tulip with an etching at the bottom but this thing is over flowing with foam like crazy. The beer that I do get is tasty and tastes fine. I've had several other bottles of this and it doesn't taste off.

S - Nice grassy, piney hop smell

T - Nice well balanced beer. A lot of grassy/piney hop flavor but not all that bitter.

M - Nice medium bodied with appropriate carbonation.

D - Fantastic drinkability here which is exactly what this beer was designed for. Plenty of flavor and only 4.4$ abv. This beer is different from anything else I've ever had but it is good.

Photo of elmocoso
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This one came from a 12 oz sixer I smuggled into Nebraska when i moved.

The color is a copper come ruby with a nice off-white head, not to big, that settles into a nice splotchy blanket with a clinging collar.

The nose, like most stone beers is citrus galore, and i love it. Maltiness co-mingles and together it is quite a smell. Ah...beer.

The taste is a nice malty base with a great hop zing and aftertaste. A nice meal in a bottle.

Mouthfeel is somewhat creamy and the carbonation seems dead-on for a great beverage.

Good beer.

Photo of Tromba
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a chilled pint glass.

A: Pours a very clear deep red/brown. Head is white, partialy dissipates quickly, but leaves a thin loose layer on top with some loose lacing as you drink.

S: Not strong, but still a nice earthy hopiness with a touce of sweetness.

T: The perfect balance of hop bitterness and subdued malt sweetness (well, perfect balance for a hop head). The hop presence doesn't hit you over the head and is not extremely bitter, but rather brings out the almost sweet, floral, and earthy quality of the plant. A bit of lingering bitterness at the end.

M: medium-light body, clean finish, and a little more carbonated than expected...maybe just a hair too much.

D: Very drinkable!!! This is one of my favorites because of the low ABV despite a TON of flavor. Maybe my favorite session beer.

Photo of BEERMILER12
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Very nice amber/red color with a 1/2" head that fades quickly. Leaves some great lacing though

S: Very hoppy and grassy, with some malts to balance it out

T: Not surprisingly, another hoppy beer from Stone. Not a bad thing though. The malts balance this beer very nicely

M: Medium bodied and fairly smooth

D: I would consider this an ideal session beer, great tasting compared to BMC and other alternative session beers

Photo of cooncat
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served at fridge temp into my SA glass.

On the pour, you get a beautiful, and it *is* gorgeous, amber/copper colored brew, with a decent sized sand colored head. The head isn't long lived, but does leave very nice lacing on the glass.

The nose is easily as hop-forward as many IPAs, and that's a compliment. At 45 IBUs, this is a bit out of BJCP style guidelines, but, heck, I'm a self confessed hop head, and I love it. Columbus, Amarillo, Simcoe and Crystal hops make the nose citrusy and spicy at the same time. Amarillo dry hopping really makes this one to wake up to. Maltiness is subdued in the nose.

Taste closely follows the nose, with big hops up front, and a mild smooth caramel maltiness in the background. I would call this balanced, but no doubt your typical BMC drinker would find this a bit bitter. Mouthfeel is medium light. As the beer warms up, I'm getting a little more roasty malts, but the hops dominate clear to the finish.

At a mere 4.4% abv, with the huge flavor and aroma, this is definitely a great session brew. I could definitely drink this one all night long, and feel safe doing it. I've been waiting a long time to try this offering from Stone, a brewery which has never disappointed me with their craft brews. This is another fine example. By all means, if you've not experienced this one, seek it out. *Highly* recommended!

Na Zdravje!

Photo of armock
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Reviewed from a pint fresh from the brewery at the Stone World Bistro.

A - Poured a ruby color with an off white head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is of piney hops with a solid bready malt backing

T - Follows the nose nice piney hops that are slightly balanced out by the malt

M - This beer has a medium body with medium carbonation to it

D - I for one like big beers and refers to 5.5% abv beers as session beers because most under that lack flavor in my experience however this one kicks some ass its one of those beers that if I had to choose five beers to drink for the rest of my life it would be one definitely worth trying

Photo of msubulldog25
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A beer I've tried a few times before, this a pint glass-full at The Mezz (part of Whole Foods-Pearl in downtown Portland).

A: Deep and alluring auburn, weighted heavily towards the 'amber' side. Gorgeous pile of yellow-tinged khaki foam, good staying power and lace in broad, sticky sheets. Refined clarity and steady carbonation.

S: Husky grains get shoved around by sweet, floral pine - wow, what a nose. Spiced apple and a nose-tweaking dry pepper. Again, wow.

T: Toasted dark grains lend a spice and hops bring a twist of citrus and resin. A deft balance between malty char, ghostly fruit, sweet caramel and raw hops. Quite a treat.

M: A step or two on the 'light' side, body-wise, which detracts from mouthfeel but adds to its 'refreshing' side. A sparkle of carbonation, clean and drier in the finish, though a coating spiced hoppiness keeps the saliva flowing.

D: Wonderful flavor made that much more attractive by it's session-worthy strength. Stone packs a ton into this 'little' beer, making it certainly among the most 'drinkable' of any I've had to date.

Photo of TommyW
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Dark Amber body with golden hues when held up to a light. White head is very sticky and has a decent retention.

S- Hop aroma is the most prominent giving off notes of citrus and pine. Some sweet malt notes are also there but well hidden.

T- There is a very fine mix that occurs between some caramel flavors from the malts and the citrus flavors from the hop. They harmonize well. Some pine notes from the hops jump in sporadically as well.

M- Medium and smooth body with a soft carbonation.

D- Really a terrific session beer. One of Stone's only sessions, but a damn good one.

Photo of JAZwara
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

After reading the typical Stone description on the bottle I had to review this one...a beer this tasty and complex at only 4.4% absolutely blew my mind.

Poured a 12oz bottle into a goblet.

Sturdy head atop a a cherry brown body. The smell is mostly malt, caramel and some chocolate. Initially malty on the taste, however a surprisingly big hop profile, although honestly that's what I've come to expect from Stone, they could hop up absolutely any style.

Enjoy the mouth feel, pretty smooth and malty, but just sharp enough to remind you you're drinking a Stone.

Love this one, might have to start picking up sixers just to keep in the back of the fridge.

EDIT: oh yea, also drinking it with a snack of swiss cheese and wheat crackers...certainly a great night snack

Levitation Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 3,721 ratings.