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Levitation Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Levitation AleLevitation Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

3,799 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,799
Reviews: 1,209
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 11.95%
Wants: 145
Gots: 396 | 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:
Beer added by: xlperro on 09-27-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,799 | Reviews: 1,209
Photo of birdman200
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark amber ruby red color, 1 finger off white head.
S: Hoppy, with floral and citrus notes.
T: Little bitter, small malt presence.
M: Very light body, esp. for a 4.4% brew.
D: This is probably the best/most sessionable beer I have ever had. SN Pale Ale, you have met your match.

Great beer, highly recommended.

Photo of OakedCanuck
3.48/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into pint glass

A - Nice deep clear copper. Off-white, grayish fluffy head with decent retention. Minor lacing

S - Crisp caramel malts with a complement of grapefruit and lemons

T - Mild citric grapefruit hops blended well with a semi-sweet caramel sweetness. I find this to be quite grainy. Basically no alcohol flavour, what you'd expect in a "session" beer.

M - Thin and somewhat watery.

O - Overall an easy drinker. Not as much depth of flavour as I would have hoped and kind of grain flavoured. A decent session but nothing I'd plan a day around.

Photo of Spadoof
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased from: Vintage Estates (Boardman, Ohio)
Origin: 12oz Bottle
Bottled on: ?
Tasted on: 07-18-11
Glassware: DFH Snifter
Serving Temperature: 52 F

Notes: $1.99 a bottle.

I)Appearance: Clear, viscious deep red body. 1 finger of fluffy whit heas which falls at a moderate rate leaving a beautiful, sticky lacing on the sides of my snifter. A great start!

II) Smell: Plently of floral and piney hops. A mild sweet smell towards the back (caramel possibly?)

III) Taste: Wow that is a suprise. Such a distinct taste for only 4.4% ABV. Its starts off with a mellow, lightly roasted malt character which fades and is quickly replaced by bold hop notes toward the end. The hop oils give off deep foresty notes as well mild citrus taste. This beer finishes fairly clean, leaving behind some hop oils. Very well done!
A) Malt Intesity (1-5): 1
B) Hop Intesity (1-5): 3

IV) Mouthfeel: Medium (Kind of thin), with an acceptable carbonation. This is to be expected though, due to lightness of this beer.

V) Drinkability: Extremely! 4.4% ABV and still has a rich full flavor. This might just be my new, go-to session beer.

VI) Concluding thoughts: Stone, yet again, has really impressed me. I would and will return to this beer. Overall very well balanced and full of great flavor.

Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.55/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up in Totowa last week not quite knowing what to expect. This did not look like an American Amber Ale when I poured it out and although this was pretty hoppy, it was darker in appearance and taste than a beer of that style would tend to be. I'm not sure if my bottle was old or not, but this was certainly one of the tougher beers that I've had to pinpoint recently.

Sure enough, the pour was dark with a head that faded fast and some lacing to be seen. The frothiness was offset by the bread and malt that dominated up front. This tasted quite heavy with notes that reminded me of pumpernickel and earthiness. The sweetness of the dark fruits was in the back before the light citrus hops kicked in in the back. Part of this reminded me of an "imperial root beer/sarsaparilla" because of the sugar and carbonation similarities but of course, this was beer; even if all the components of it didn't quite mesh well together.

The alcohol also made me feel that this was more of a soda than an alcoholic beverage. Session beers don't get any more easygoing than this in the booze department and although it would seem obvious that a few of these could be consumed in one session, I would only have one of these at a time. Something was missing here and it seemed like this tried to cover a lot of bases at once. While this wasn't a bad choice, I almost feel that it's not in the right category. It's worth a try only because I haven't had anything like this and probably never will again. Like anything the levitates, this defied conventional wisdom and expectations.

Photo of FattyJLE
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A - Slightly hazy, coppery-brown with a white head.

S - Familiar Stone west-coast hop aroma. Citrus notes dominated by grapefruit.

T - Intensely bitter upfront with citrus hop flavors, especially grapefruit rind. Mild lemon zest flavor and piney hop bitterness on the back end.

M - Well carbonated making the body feel lighter. More watery than I would prefer in the style. Dry finish.

O - A very good amber/red ale. My only knock on this beer is the light body. Would seek out again, if only to see if they characteristics change on tap as opposed to bottle.

Photo of mdwalsh
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: a slightly oversized head, but it's fluffy and attractive. Amber/red body with some suspended solids.

S: Hoppy. A strong grapefruit-citrus aroma as soon as I opened the bottle, pretty much the dominant aspect here. Too dominant maybe.

T: Still quite hoppy, but less so than I imagined from the aroma. Some light, mild malts come through with just a hint of caramel or baked bread. Flavorful, but not intense.

M: Great. Lighter with good carbonation.

D: Fantastic, as great a session beer as I've found, but I think there are better out there.

Photo of Natural510
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, BBD 6-23-2011

Pours a dark, amber-brown with nice head and fairly strong lacing on the glass.

Scent mainly consists of a well-toasted, biscuit malt with a hint of pine from the hops.

Flavor is up-front with the toasted malt and herbal notes from the hops. A bit of cinnamon to the flavor, with a dry, tea-like finish. Slightly watery toward the end. Notable in the flavor is devoid of sweetness, which is common in most American amber ales.

Body is a bit thin, which may add to the "drinkability" for some but be too watery for others.

Unique amber ale both in flavor and composition. Nice "sessionable" ale which may be an acquired taste with its dryness and non-sweet character.

Photo of Jason
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

Thick dense head, a head to be proud of. Color talks of tawny and is very clear. Delicate but pronounced citric piney hop aroma, bit of caramel and breadiness as well. Smooth, bit of crispness and a bit creamy. Caramel is quick, more of a toasted brown bread flavor. Clean citric hoppiness drops ample bitterness and a flavor that lingers for a long time ... caramel tone stays around as well but not as long as the hops.

A great session brew, amped up flavor. Good drinking for sure.

Photo of ChopperSmith
3.42/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. long neck bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Hazy brown in color, some slight ruby color when held to the light. Two finger tan head receded quickly to a tan frothy cap.

Smell: Pine and Grapefruit hops and some sweet malts beneath. Hoppier smelling than most American Red ales. Inviting.

Taste: Not what I expected. A bit thin and watery with a blast of bitter pine hops up front, and very little malt presence or sweetness for balance. Finishes with a bitter hops tang on the tongue. Not really your typical American Amber or Red flavor...I'm not sure what this reminds me of. I guess a watered down and weak Arrogant Bastard is a good description of what it is...and I'm not sure that's a very good thing. Just makes me want a more flavorful Arrogant Bastard instead (the only other Stone beer I've tried).

Mouth feel: Watery and light-bodied with a lot of carbonation. Not what I would expect from the style.

Drinkability: A very hoppy Red ale. One is plenty for me. I need more malt to balance out all that hoppiness. It also needs less carbonation and a little more body. I probably wouldn't seek this one out again, but it's not horrible either.

Photo of damndirtyape
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a shaker pint glass. No freshness date on bottle.

Appearance: Dark orange amber on the table, slightly hazy dark amber red when held up to the light. Beer poured a 1/3" off-white foam initially, which died down to a thin skin across the top and thick ring at the edges. Good lacing noted.

Smell: Citrus and pine. The pine is much stronger on the swirl.

Taste: Citrus and pine. I think this is the first time I've had a beer that tastes exactly like its smell. Well on the bitter side - the hops are not overpowering, but there is a lack of malt here that is noticeable.

Mouthfeel: Plenty of carbonation on the tongue, but not fizzy. Hop oils stick to the teeth a bit. A bit - well, quite a bit.

Overall / Drinkability: A very hop-forward ale. One is enough for me with this one - I need more malts to balance out all that hop flavor. Not bad, just a bit unbalanced in my opinion - great if you're a hophead though.

Photo of gkunkle
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a brown color with a visible carbonation near the edges of my glass, the dark color does not permit me to look all the way through. When held up to light it shines a beautiful redish hue. Head is a nice tan hue and about one finger tall, retention is pretty decent and it slowly dissipates to a splotchy foam atop my beer. Smell is of caramel malt, also I smell some grassy hops. Taste is thinner than I expected considering the color and fullness of the smell. The beer hits the tongue with a taste of light malts, then it fades into some hops. Aftertaste is slightly piney and bitter. Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated, it seems a little bit watery, but I have to remind myself this is a session beer, not a double IPA. Overall, this would be a great sessionable beer for those who enjoy slightly darker beers. Drinking this on a warm fall day sounds just right.

Photo of centbeerfest
3.3/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Served cold, but not ice cold. Head was unimpressive and shortlived. Color was a tinty amber coca-cola look.

Inital piney hops with a bitter bitter finish. As the bottle suggests there is a lot of flavor for a relatively low alcohol beer. I'm just not sure I like the balance of hops and bitterness.
Dry from start to finish.

It was alright. On the take home scale, I'd leave it on the shelf.

Photo of herman77
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Reddish brown with a decent khaki colored head. Good retention. Nice lacing.

S: Light pine and citrus/grapefruit hops. Faint toasted malt.

T: Pine and tart grapefruit hops right off the bat. Not too strong, but definitely the focal point. Light carmel and toasted malt round it out and then the lingering hop bitterness sticks around in the finish.

M: Light body, as expected. Softer carbonation.

O: A very sessionable beer for hopheads. Very surprised how much flavor can come out of a 4.4% ABV beer.

Photo of secondtooth
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours red, with lots of sediment. Bottle's not dated, so can't be sure of freshness. Nice head of soapy, off-white bubbles. Impressive spider-web lace.

On the nose, I get some citrus hoppiness.

Taste is mild - but with a definite hop bite. This one bills itself as a "red/amber", but I'd consider it more of a lighter pale ale with a stronger malt backbone.

Very delicious, and surprisingly session-worthy.

Photo of yusef
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a British nonic pint glass. not sure of the bottling date

A: pours a brown red color with a big head due to my aggressive pour. carbonation bubbles shooting up and sticking to the side of the glass

S: hops, also pick up some citrus and sweet malt

T: taste is right on with the smell i picked up. lots of hops, some citrus(grapefruit), and a sweet malt backbone.

M: good amount of carbonation, which i tend to like.

overall a great beer and one that i would buy regularly. if you are looking for a great session beer this is it, very little alcohol and a great smell and taste.

Photo of CaptDavyJones
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a hazy reddish brown from a 12 oz bottle with freshness date on the label. One finger head that dissipates slowly to a thin film that stays. Good carbonation.
Aroma upfront, as soon as I opened the bottle was all hops. Once poured in my pint glass there were hints of caramel, herbal tea blending with the floral hop aroma.
Taste upfront is slightly sweet and malty with the bitterness making its presence felt in the finish. The hops were not as prominent in the taste as they were in the aroma. I am assuming since the bottle was almost at the end of the "best-by" date, the bittering components of the hops were either oxidized or had lost the taste over time. I would surely like to try a fresh bottle of this ale. Great lacing throughout though.
Overall I think it is a very good ale and can make for a perfect sessions beer. Definitely worth a try.

Photo of Aircow86
4.19/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served cold, poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Disappointing head, not sure what to expect from a 4.4% beer from Stone (who knew they made such a sessionable beer?) Color, however, is perfect for an amber. This looks like a tamer version of Arrogant Bastard.

Smell: Wow, hops! Guess I should have expected this from Stone. Much hoppier smell than your average Amber (this is a good thing). A sweet malt backbone goes nicely with the hops.

Taste: Strong hop bitterness for an Amber (again, this is a good thing in my mind; it may not adhere fully to style but it's damn tasty). Perfect amount of malt. This would be a fantastic session beer, it hits a perfect medium between packing lots of flavor but still being drinkable and refreshing.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly smooth, a nice carbonation. I've never tasted such a thick amber.

Overall: Initially I doubted Stone's ability to brew a sessionable beer that would live up to the standard of their other big brews. Plainly put, this was stupid. For those who are sticklers for drinkable, sessionable beers, this is one area where Stone delivers. One of my new favorite ambers, no question.

Photo of Illtryit
3.09/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I'm not overly impressed with this beer, although I was excited to try it based on the high esteem Stone carries around here.

Pours a clear but dark amber with lots of tan head which clings nicely with lacing.

Smell citrus and hoppy...very hoppy.

Taste falls in line with the smell. A little citrus and a LOT of hops. Too much for me.

Robust feel.

Overall, I can't say I'll ever buy this brew again.

Photo of lechroy
3.71/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle in Redlands.

A - Definitely the hi point of this beer. Rich amber color w wonderful 2 finger head.
S - Delicate sweet hints tinged with caramel and the slightest aromatic hops.
T - Tasty brew with a warm finish. Smooth and pleasing with lots of malt to enjoy. Hops and body are light. Good for summer.
M - Smooth, yet surprisingly somewhat syrup-y.
O - Very tasty beer. Definitely will drink again, but will search out a known fresh source. Recommended red.

Photo of SuperStory
4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a reddish/amber, mostly clear with a slight haze.

S: Light aroma, hints of caramel at first and then a little pine comes through at the end.

T: Very balanced flavors throughout. Enough malt and caramel to balance out the hops. Finishes a little metallic but not too harsh and adds a crisp departure before setting down the glass.

M: Much lighter mouthfeel than most Stone offerings. A medium consistency with just the right amount of carbonation.

Overall one of the most flavorful American Ambers that I have had in a while. Truly qualifies as a good/drinkable/flavorful session beer at 4.4%.

Photo of wino47
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Always looking for a great session beer and this one fits the bill for me. Great bitter citrus aromas with just enough malt balance on the taste to keep the acidity in check. Great piney hop character with a nice citrusy finish. My only complaint on this one is the price, for $11.99 a six I would prefer Stone keep the etched bottles and give me a 4% abv beer at a more reasonable price.

Photo of bashiba
4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a very deep clear red with a nice light sticky off white head, decent lacing and retention.

The smell is very citrusy, the amirillo really shines in the nose.

The flavor has a nice blend of toasty Englishy malts with enough hops to balance it out nicely, flavor rich for such a light beer.

The mouthfeel is light with a hint of hop resin and a bit of dryness in the finish.

Great Light Ale, easily one of the best sub 5% beers out there. I especially like the English Malt quality of this beer.

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 zimm421
3.46/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Appears a dark amber color, almost bronze. Has a tan, effervescent head that has great stamina, demonstrating the appropriate protein levels in the brew. The head also leaves an alluring lacing after each sip.

The nose consists of caramel malts, as well as some pine aromas. There is a respective balance among the aromas, but nothing overwhelmingly impressive. The taste is also well balanced, with a sweet malt at the beginning of each quaff. The taste then moves to a nice grapefruit flavor, but it is only there for a fleeting moment. At the end of each indulgence there is an overwhelming pine flavor continuing into the aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is medium to light bodied with a low carbonation level. There is also an unwelcoming film left in your mouth after each sip. Overall, this is another respectable brew from Stone. I really didn't find anything overly impressive here, but it is definitely a sessionable brew.

Photo of Holland
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: dark brown with a tan head. The lacing sticks for some time.

S: malt, burnt sugar, citrus, floral hops. Very complex smelling.

T: the taste is as complex as the smell. the malt and hops come out quite a bit, and there is some sweetness but it is well balanced with the bitter hops. Very well put together.

M: very smooth, with just enough hops to put in a crisp kick. Medium bodied, which felt much better than expected.

O: I had never had this beer, but friends raved about it. I finally had the chance and was not disappointed. The low ABV scared me off for some time, but I went to a bar where this was the only decent beer on the menu so I was forced into it. Glad that happened.

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Levitation Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 3,799 ratings.