Punishment - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

325 Ratings

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Ratings: 325
Reviews: 61
rAvg: 2.81
pDev: 34.16%
Wants: 31
Gots: 81 | FT: 14
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Chile Beer |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: womencantsail on 02-06-2011

"What do you call it when Greg takes his entire harvest
bounty of chili pepper varieties from his own personal garden, take half of them and add to...and thus ruin...an otherwise beautiful oak barrel of Double Dry Hopped Lukcy Basartd Ale?"

A: "A Crime!"


Q: "What do you call it when you take a sip of oak barrel aged Double Bastard Ale that's had the other half of the bounty of chili peppers from Greg's home garden ceremoniously added in, resulting in a punishingly intense level of hot pepper heat to an already overly intense beer whose elevated alcohol level caused a significant transference of pain-inducing

A: "Punishment."

Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 325 | Reviews: 61
Reviews by ThreeWiseMen:
Photo of ThreeWiseMen
4.6/5  rDev +63.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

4oz. pour from tap during Stone's Winter Storm. The following review is based on notes taken Thursday, February 10, 2011.

Served in a fluted tulip.

Appearance: A huge layer of off-white, latte-like foam sits atop a hazy, orange brown body. Head retention and lacing are both fantastic - was not expecting that from a beer aged with peppers!

Smell: Serranos all over the place. I've really got to dig to find anything else. I get a little caramel and a touch of brandy. This nose shows no semblance of Double Bastard. It's all about the serrano oils, and I'm lovin' it! I can understand why others wouldn't though.

Taste: This is the best chile beer I've ever had! Brandy and serrano chiles meld beautifully midway through each sip and roll together into the aftertaste. As with the smell, the Double Bastard aspect has gone missing, only peeking through early on in the form of aged barleywine-like sugars. Very spicy and warm, although the chile oils do a great job of masking the ABV.

Mouthfeel: Lightly carbonated, resinous, warm, and spicy. Each sip coats the mouth in a fresh layer of serrano oils, which linger deep into the aftertaste. There's a good amount of warmth and dryness, but the spiciness really distracts the palate away from it.

Drinkability: If you're coming in expecting brandy barrel-aged Double Bastard with a hint of serrano, you'll be disappointed. I had no idea the serranos would play such a huge role, but as a hot sauce junkie I couldn't help but love this one. Greg, if you're having trouble selling this stuff, shoot me a BM! This is the best chile beer I've ever had!

More User Reviews:
Photo of smcolw
4.01/5  rDev +42.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange, dark amber color. Some spots for lace.

Scary pepper smell, like nuclear wings. Very dry.

Oh my God, this is the most extreme of extreme beers. It is actually hotter than buffalo wings. You may need a beer to accompany this one. The aftertaste is forever and hot as hell.

Be prepared for this one. I think it's one of the great unique beers. It's something special, but it's not easy to drink.

Photo of SanFranJake
2.04/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2

The worst beer I've ever had.
Such a waste of a good batch of Double Bastard and the barrels it was aged in.

Photo of SuperbikeShaun
4.24/5  rDev +50.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Let's be clear about something; if you can't handle heat, you aren't man (or woman) enough for this beer. 6 of us sampled this, and we all enjoyed it. I am not even a big fan of spice, and thoroughly enjoyed it.

A: Cloudy, murky and dark amber
S: peppers. Lots of peppers. It almost smells like a jalapeño pizza with extra jalapeños.
T: First, you're assaulted with a wave of intense heat. Take a small sip and swirl it just to coat your mouth and get the initial shock over with. After that, take the time to enjoy it. There is a lot of good in the taste, some caramel and roasted flavors, a little vanilla, and some buttery notes before being once again washed out by the heat. The finish is pure heat.
M: Dense and oily, this beer coats your throat the entire way down.
O: A rather enjoyable, if somewhat masochistic, brew from Stone. You will NOT want to finish a bottle on your own. I had about 4 ounces and was done. I could feel the capsaicin burn from my mouth all the way down into my stomach, and every burp tasted like jalapeño pizza afterwards. I'd honestly recommend anyone try this beer, just don't focus too much on the heat and it's pretty damn good.

Photo of knowitall
1.12/5  rDev -60.1%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Listen Guy, this is the worst beer I have ever had besides Crime. Do not waste your money, sobriety or time. The smell made me want to throw up. My 3 friends and I could not drink more than a sip each. We poured ours out and drank a Founders Backwoods Bastard to bring our palates back.

Photo of Franziskaner
2.06/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Confession: I'm not big on hot peppers,but in recent years I've gotten a bit more into spicier foods. I'm a bit intimidated by this one. Deep brown hued with a bit of light haziness. A quarter inch of khaki colored head rests on top. Odd aroma from the chilies and peppers almost gives it a cinnamon sweet aroma. Not inviting. Whoa! That first taste tells me all I need to know. I'm way out of my league. All I get is a burning sensation and a scorched palate. My tongue and especially my lips are burned. I think my chances of finishing this are zero. I can't recall the last time that happened. I honestly poured the rest out without another sip. FAIL!

Photo of ehammond1
2.49/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

On Tap

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

Dark amber and ruby with a thin light brown head and leaves spotted lacing down the glass.

A touch of caramel in the aroma and then lots and lots of face-smacking spice--smells like spicy jalapeno juice. Interesting, though perhaps even too powerful.

This beer starts similarly to the aroma: a faint hint of caramel and toffee sweetness, and then a stinging, spice flavor. This one seemed even more hot and spicy than it's little brother, Crime. This is Crime on spicy steroids! Tough to drink much, if any, of this beer, though it is unique and worth trying (once!).

Medium mouthfeel.

If given the choice, I'd drink Crime before drinking Punishment.

Photo of 01001111
3.25/5  rDev +15.7%

Quite hot but not overbearing. I quickly grew accustomed the heat but that made the flavor of the base beer more apparent which wasn't necessarily a good thing. This level of heat in a sour ale, like Upright's Fatali Four, would be great.

Photo of Gmann
2.62/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours a murky brown color with a smallish tight toasted khaki head.

The aroma is malty sweet. Big caramel and toffee notes. There is a strong vegetal aroma from the peppers. A little heat detected. Lots of vanilla from the barrel. Quite a strong aroma; the veggie notes is a tad too strong.

The taste is of a sweet brown malt along with caramel and vanilla. The heat from the peppers blasts through the sweetness. Again quite vegetal. It's quite sweet and the veggie flavor seems to bring the sweetness past cloying. The heat from the peppers is used as an offset. The heat doesn't bother me as much as the veggie flavor.

The body is moderate with soft carbonation. Quite sweet on the palate and sticky in the finish. Plenty of heat but I seem not to have too much of an issue with it. Sweetness is cloying.

Punishment didn't seem to bother me as much as crime. It is still too sweet and vegetal for my liking.

Photo of Lornee56
1.6/5  rDev -43.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

This was the most difficult beer drinking experience of my life. The first sip was ok for a second and then the intense pepper flavor destroys your taste buds. Why would you barrel age and pepper load a good beer in its own right? I paid $21 for this bottle and my best friend in the world paid $21 for the second worst beer of my life Crime. We drank them in one sitting together and they were almost impossible to finish. If I wasn't a border line alcoholic I would have poured them down the drain. I sucked it up and drank both my portion and my friend John/Jay's. Thanks a lot Stone Brewing. This one will haunt me.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.14/5  rDev +47.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

500 ml cork and caged bottle poured into a snifter.
12% ABV, 82 IBUs

A - Deep copper in color, Punishment is a hazed beer that's briefly topped by a light khaki head that settles to a ring of foam inside the snifter.

S - Mango and habañero are ripe in Punishment, reminiscent of zesty wing sauce with a follow up of semi-sweet caramel-drizzled toasted bread malt for a bold aroma that'll easily scare off the faint of heart.

T - Like Crime before it, Punishment shows it's true beer nature before the flavor and, subsequently, the heat rear their collective "ugly" head. Double Bastard provides quite the base for Punishment's excessive chili flavor and heat, wonderfully balancing them with alcohol and malty sweetness.

M - With a smooth and medium-full body, this chili beer has a soft opening that's quickly ripped from the tongue with brute force. Attacking chili peppers assault the taste buds with numbing spicy heat that, for this guy, slowly induces a lower eye lid sweat all the while maintaining the balance between flavor and heat.

O - Punishment takes Crime and ups the ante slightly. To be quite frank, from their description, after enjoying Crime I was pretty nervous for the heat level of Punishment but, it's damn similar. Both beers convey a hear-burn inducing heat level that tugs at facial sweat glands while maintain a good flavor profile of chilies. While chilies are the focus, this beer keeps a clear "beer" base but it's futile time in bourbon barrels is identical to that of Crime; non-existent in aroma or flavor.

Photo of KCBeerNerd
1/5  rDev -64.4%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Not drinkable. Too spicy to take a second sip of.

Photo of Greywulfken
3.61/5  rDev +28.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is basically the same review I gave for Stone's Crime, and with all due respect, this beer tastes basically the same - the peppers will dominate your drinking experience. It has a higher abv, and some alcohol will express itself as an adjunct to the chile heat - and it has a thicker malt base; but, as was the case with Crime, this will not be a drinking experience many will want/need to repeat - certainly not at $20 for a 500 mL bottle.

A: dark amber brown, with a fat tan head that leaves ample thick lace behind as it recedes.

S: mild chewy caramel and toffee malts with airs of harsh whiskey and oak barrels; suggestions of the peppery heart contained within

T: the chile in the beer overwhelms all other flavors - the bourbon can't rise above the chile heat, and the malts are in the background; hops and yeasts overpowered by hot spicy pepper heat. As was not the case so much with Crime, some of the malts will assert themselves as you become used to the heat, and you may pick up a nuance of sweet bread or herbs. Alcohol is present but even it is subordinate to the chile peppers.

M: full-bodied beer, slick and smooth, but the heat from the chiles will light your mouth and lip on fire; chewier than Crime, it's sibling ale.

O: I liked the beer, but wouldn't return to it - a $20 bottle of hot sauce - the beer lacks nuance - and it's a shame, too - a bourbon barrel aged beer should have more say in the final flavor than this beer has. If you have any hesitation about heat in beer, avoid this beer without regret. It is for fans of heat - who will love it. No kidding, forget beer - if you like hot sauce, you will like this beer. Seriously. Probably fantastic as a marinade. As a fan of bourbon barrel-aging, I was not be able to appreciate the bourbon at all.
If you want a firebomb beer-drinking experience, or you like extreme beers with high abv, give it a try. If your budget doesn't allow for a very pricey purchase, you needn't worry to pass it over..

Photo of cindyjeffsmith
3.08/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

appearance: murky golden brown. Not much head to speak of.
smell: Getting a bit of actual beer smell in this as opposed to Crime. Still, very similar in that it smells mostly like uncooked hot peppers. not much happening actually.
taste: Not sure if i'm informed by my not so pleasant Crime experience, but this seems to have a little more going than just pepper juice. Still hot as hell and peppers dominate but there's a little of the actual beer holding up in this one.
overall: not a great beer and a novelty to be sure, but Punishment pulls this off better than Crime imo.

Photo of angrybabboon
2.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing the pain

Consumed 1/15/13

Appearance: Medium amber, definitely hazy, kind of murky - pours with a small, light beige head, fades to a wispy cap, leaves some nice spots of lacing

Smell: Smells like ouch - this is utterly packed with peppers, crammed with capsicum - the scent of peppers is definitely reminiscent of Stone Crime, but it's also more intense - fleshy peppers, hot pepper seeds, and hot sauce - the peppers here are so potent that I can't quite discern anything else, except for some sweetish malts at the base

Taste: Ow, that's my mouth - this is brutally, unforgivingly hot - I gave Stone Crime a relatively good score because it was somewhere between hot and really hot - Punishment is somewhere between really hot and genuinely undrinkable - there is a lot of pepper flavor, and the Double Bastard cooked malts actually shine through, but any and all flavors are blown away by the finish, which is literally fire and pain

Mouthfeel: Medium body, low carbonation, finishes with burning agony

Overall: Quite literally for masochists

I love spicy foods. I love hot sauce. I enjoyed Stone Crime. But I don't enjoy this. This hurts. This is interesting, but I'm quite seriously thinking about not drinking the rest (but saving it and using it to cook with some beans or something).

Update: I couldn't drink this. I enjoy spicy foods that literally make my eyes water and my nose run. But this crossed some kind of line. A line that I didn't even know I had. But I did save it, and I added it to some rice and beans. The result was stellar. I thought about upgrading my score, but this is a beer, not a hot sauce...

Photo of mfnmbvp
3.08/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

500 ml bottle, with 2013 vintage date., Acquired this bottle along with Stone Crime at the local Binny's with a giftcard. Stone Crime was hot as hell, but tolerable at least. I'm expecting similar results here, but I'm expecting the unexpected. Shared this bottle with a friend (mfndsvp).

Poured into a miniature Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale snifter.

A - Pours a dark reddish caramel colored body with about a finger of fluffy khaki tan head. Looks like how Stone Crime looked. Some nice thin khaki lacing. Looks pretty nice, in all honesty.

S - Smell is of fruity and vegetal peppers. Some cucumber, mango, and fiery jalapeno / habanero peppers. Mild caramel and oak wood is definitely noticeable when you look for it, but the peppers dominate. Mild heat noticeable also, but the smell is actually quite pleasant, again much like Stone Crime.

T - Taste is much in the vain of Stone Crime. The sweet caramel malts, tea leaves, and oak wood are apparent, but the hot fiery peppers take over fast and hard.

M - Feel is hot and fiery, well built with good carbonation, but the heat from the peppers makes the beer nearly undrinkable.

Overall, just like the Stone Crime, I'm sweating and my tongue and mouth are on fire, but it was a unique drinking experience. I feel like this one was hotter and more intolerable than Stone Crime was, but that could be my imagination. Glad I got the chance to try these and share them with friends, but I would not try these again, especially for the high price tag.

Stone Punishment ---3/5.

Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.09/5  rDev +45.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

500 ml bottle poured into small snifter. No head. Very little clear lacing. Cloudy copper body. Aroma includes notes of cucumber, fresh peppers, cayenne, sriracha. Taste is all heat, tongue tingling, lip numbing. Hard to pick up other flavors beyond the heat but I feel like my taste buds are stimulated and now I will probably enjoy my dinner even more. Pairs well with chicken wings. Unique experience. Share with friends because I don't think you should drink more than a few ounces. This beer delivers on its promises and after all, isn't that all you can ask for in a beer or any other consumer good?

Photo of Hophead717
1.34/5  rDev -52.3%
look: 2.25 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Absolutely disgusting. Peppers don't work.

Photo of cbutova
4.18/5  rDev +48.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Going into this beer I had heard a lot about the heat and how intense it truly was. The bad reviews only made me more interested. Opened and reviewed live at our Strong Ale/Barleywine tasting last week.

A- Somewhat hazy and dark red/brown murkiness like the original Double Bastard. Small creamy white head to half a finger or so but it falls quickly to a ring of foamy bubbles. Some decent spotty lace but mostly legs and bareness.

S- Pure fresh cut habanero and similar ghost peppers, just that fumy spicy capsacin doom. Maybe a tiny bit of malts but mostly just that fresh fruity habanero doom. Seriously this smells better than most hot sauces.

T- Opens up just a bit but the base beer is pretty much nonexistent again and the barrels are not here either. Again, habaneros and ghost peppers are pretty much dominant, fumy fruity pepper flesh is 95% of the flavor or more with just a bit of the malts and base coming through, barrels...? Charred, dried pepper skin and painful spiciness, I LOVE Habanero hot sauce as much as anyone but damn.

MF- Moderately highly carbonated with a medium thickness body. Hot, spicy peppers dominate the feel and ignite the palate. 12% is nothing in the shadow of the spiciness. Just an awesome habanero spicy lingering on the palate.

Habanero 100% to the max, like fumy fruity greatness extracted from chiles. The base beer is gone but this re-invents chili beer and 12% ABV is a joke in this case. If you have ever sliced habaneros, try this beer. Took off some overall points because this could have been a GEM if there was any Bourbon Double Bastard left to be found. IF YOU LIKE HABANEROS TRY THESE BEERS!

Photo of JessHubbard24
3.68/5  rDev +31%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This beer has a mahogany red-brown color with a nice thick head initially. The smell is a good indicator of how spicy this beer is. It smells savory and the burn from the combination of chiles hits you from your nostrils to the back of your throat. The taste.....initially this beer is sour and has a very strong chile taste. Then the heat kicks in. It hits your tongue and throat with a slow burn that lasts. To experience more of the spice of this beer I would recommend stirring up the bottle a bit before pouring. The dregs carry a decent amount of heat. If you are a fan if spice, this beer is delightful. It's pretty enjoyable to drink but it is a beer that is good for sipping or having with a meal, perhaps some fresh greens with a heavier protein. Overall, I really enjoyed the experience of this beer. I would definitely get it again.

Photo of sweemzander
2.68/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 2.25

Corked and Caged bottle poured into a snifter.

(A)- Pours a hazy caramel color with minimal off-white froth.

(S)- An enormous blast of capsaicin from the hot peppers. Seriously, not much else.

(T)- Again, just a massive burn from the hot peppers. Hotter than Crime, but better flavor.

(M)- It is just plain hot as hell. Massive heat to this. Too much heat actually. You start to lose any taste, and just feel a burn.

(O)- Simply nuclear. While I simply adore hot and spicy food, I think I draw the line when it comes to having it in my beer. It tasted fine starting out, but quickly changes to just start tasting like burning.

Photo of Docrock
2.32/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

Shared with 6 friends....

We all knew what we were getting into. Poured small amounts at first.

A: murky brown, minimal head but nothing that was unappealing.

S: very little presence of the base BA Double Bastard. Just a confusing blend of peppers.

T: there is a mild pepper burn in the center of the mouth, nothing at the tip of the tongue or in the throat. It's not overpowering or painful just a mess really. There is no distinct pepper flavor profile, just the mild heat.

M: as above mild heat only in the center of the mouth, it killed all attributes of the base beer.

O: about the only positive aspect would be to use this in chili or some other dish that can utilize both the beer and spice.

Photo of womencantsail
3/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

On-tap at Stone

A: The beer pours an ominous murky amber color with a barely-there ring of tan foam.

S: You can smell the peppers before the glass even gets near your face. The heat is quite intense and the pepper smell is very, very green and fresh. I can't really even smell anything else, actually.

T: It starts off hot with a lot of chile flavor. There's a bit of chocolate and oak that come through, but before you can enjoy them, the intense heat comes back and sits on your tongue for quite some time.

M: The body is medium and the carbonation is on the low end of medium. And the heat burns the back of your throat a bit.

D: This was pretty tough to drink. I would say even if you're a big chile beer fan this would be painful.

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
1.68/5  rDev -40.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Appearance - pours a murky caramel/brown. A finger of light mocha look a little thin around the sides but creamy on top. Pretty good resilience, stick, lace.

Aroma - sweet and malty at first, peppery on setup. Green, herbal, spicy...smells anything but refreshing, punishment is certain.

Taste - a brief sweet open, and then...wow, what a hot ass beer. Green, herbal, freaking spicy, that's it. A long fiery finish. I have already jammed the cork back in and re-caged the rest, but how in the hell am I going to finish the glass? Brutal, not enjoyable at all.

Mouthfeel - too hot to detect.

Overall - by far the most expensive drainpour ever. Actually, no, I'm still too damn cheap for that. I poured what I could back in the bottle, maybe an ounce less than full. It is headed for a brutal entry into the next beer tasting. I love Stone but this is one of the 5 worst beers I've ever had. Yikes, I'm feeling a little nauseous after that.

Photo of TrackZero
1.96/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Holy hell. I usually love Stone. But this...this is aptly named...Punishment, for being a loyal consumer. I like spicy foods...always like to chase them with a nice, cold beer. But this...what do you chase with when it's the beer that burns you?

It looked great. It smelled interesting, definitely had some crazy pepper in there, a bit of a raw edge to it...

Taste, though...How do I even sum it up?

My wife looked at me after my first sip and asked what was wrong. I think my unprepared response is the best review for this beer:

This...this beer tastes like drinking liquid heartburn.

Mouthfeel...like swallowing your own stomach acid...at least the burn subsided quickly.

I'm not one to drain pour a full bottle, especially one this expensive, but wow, short of using it to marinate some steaks, I can't see any other way I'm going to get through this bottle.

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Punishment from Stone Brewing Co.
66 out of 100 based on 325 ratings.