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Oaked Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Oaked Arrogant Bastard AleOaked Arrogant Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

1,843 Reviews
THE BROS
100
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,843
Hads: 5,082
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 198
Gots: 518 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 03-15-2003

American-style Strong Ale aged on oak.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Oaked Arrogant Bastard Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,843 | Hads: 5,082
Photo of TheSSG
2.77/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

A: Pours a thick, soapy head. Deep, almost opaque burnt sienna color. Quite lovely.

S: Bright, sweet malt aroma with a hint of old wood. Extremely nice smelling.

T: Rich coffee malt flavor turns to a bitterness (the grapefruit comment is pretty spot-on). Finish is long and toasted malt, but also tastes like a bourbon finish (would assume this is the oak and grains reacting with each other). As I keep drinking this I find it's been WAAY too heavily hopped. After every sip, that lingering bitterness just stays. It's becoming a cumulative bittering. Which is turning unpleasant.

MF: Surprisingly liquidy, was expecting a thicker, more viscous beverage.

D: It's becoming a labor to finish this; every sip ensures more of this unpleasant bitterness that isn't going away. Too much roasted malt, too much hopping. I would like to try this again if they oaked it for several months or years longer. Needs to really mellow out for such treatment; with more aging the hop bitterness would subside. Then I'd have a beverage I would be in love with.

I decided to post up a review of this because I'm getting a bit tired of seeing the only bier getting play on Beer Advocate being ones that are over the top.
While I'm sure many appreciate taking roasted malt, hop bitterness, and oak all to the Nth degree in the same bier, I do not.

I am most saddened by this because it started off so well. But, 15 minutes later, I am struggling to finish this. Balance, balance, balance. Too much going on at once.
I'm sure the back of the bottle will insist I don't have a "good enough" palate for this or some silliness, but maybe 1/2 the folks on Beer Advocate are smokers and have a numbed palate that NEEDS a blitzkrieg of flavor to get through.

Too much for a full serving. As a 4oz sample, this bier is ASTOUNDING. Undrinkable after about 6 oz. (1,840 characters)

Photo of PorterLambic
2.77/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a beautiful clear reddish-brown. Nice 1" head, light tan with great retention. Thick and creamy leaving great lacing.
Smell is hops, a hint of grapefruit and the absolute faintest hint of malt.
Taste is hops, malt, grapefruit, faint oak note.
Medium body, medium effervescence with a crisp tingle up front and a smooth finish. ABV is not noticed at all. Mostly hops aftertaste with a slight caramel note. No oak noticed at all and little malt.
A decent beer but not up to the expectations of a Stone brew. (511 characters)

Photo of aaronh
2.78/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

When I popped the top of this beer, an evil looking vapor slowly crept from the bottle. Pours into the glass with a moderate tan head that quickly fades. Aroma of vanilla, damp malt, and a hint of bourbon notes. Flavor is dominated by the oak notes. Dry smoky flavor has very little malt sweetness to counteract it. Hop bitterness comes in eventually, but still plays second fiddle to the wood. For this size of a beer, the mouthfeel is a bit thin. Drinakbility is OK, but I'd take regular AB, DB, or really ANYTHING else stone has to offer over this. I think I can get a couple more if anyone's intersted in trades. :) Pretty much a disappointment. (649 characters)

Photo of Frozensoul327
2.79/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A: Ruddy red color witha small head of red/tan foam. Lower carbonation. No lace. Pretty clear through the glass.

S: Dense notes of vanilla bean and rich, heavy caramel malt. A woody note is present, likely due to the oak (duh).

T: Notes of whisky, grain, alcohol, wood and wine like fruitiness. Kind of sour. No vanilla note or sweetness as hinted at in the aroma. Not my bag.

M: Light. Slightly sour and a lower level of carbonation. Dry finish reminds me of a red wine.

D: Not for me. Maybe i'm not "ready" for it. Don't know if I ever will be. This highly touted beer falls way flat in my book. When I think American Strong, this isn't what i'd like to imagine. I just don't care for this one. (708 characters)

Photo of zeledonia
2.79/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.25

I'll preface this by saying that I don't really like the Arrogant Bastard variations that I've had (regular and double). But I'm giving oak a try anyway. Tasted 19 June 2013, reviewed from notes.

Pours a pleasing mostly clear deep slightly reddish amber. Half-finger of orange-tan head, decent retention, okay lacing. Fine.

Smell is the best part of this beer, for sure. Comes through oaky, musty sweet, and deep. Like sniffing fruit (peaches, apricots) in a moist earthen wine cellar. Vanilla oak, stone fruit, and maybe a little mold. Quite nice, actually.

Taste has, unfortunately, most of what makes me dislike regular and double bastard. It's powerfully bitter in an acrid, unenjoyable way. Like aspirin crossed with onions. The first third is okay, deeply malty and semi-sweet, like a low-level doppelbock or something. But then the bitter kicks in, and the only thing that saves this from being a drainpour is the faintest hint of balance provided by the sweetness and fruit (which struggles to break through the surface).

Feel is fine. Medium-bodied, carbonation right where it should be. Lasting, which could be good, but in this case I want it to fade out more quickly.

I might finish this bottle. I might not. But I will definitely not be drinking another one. Whatever hops they put in this beer, however they add them, it doesn't agree with me. Turns out an oaky version of a beer I don't like is still a beer I don't like. (1,441 characters)

Photo of Avantyawn
2.91/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle poured into imperial pint glass

A: Amazing looking deep amber brown with a huge head. Truly excellent looking.

S: I initially thought it smelled amazing, but the woody grain oakness is turning me off a bit even though, the fresh hoppy oily arrogant bastard of course smells amazing.

T: You know, I absolutely love Arrogant Bastard, but I am not digging the oaked treatment. I feel like I am drinking Arrogant Bastard and then licking an oak barrel. I don't quite get it...It just does not taste good to me.

M: The beer has a great mouthfeel, but the chalkiness of the dry oak I do not enjoy.

O: Overall, I love Arrogant Bastard, but not this version. Sort of a weak review, but I've already reviewed Arrogant Bastard to much acclaim, and just am not digging this variation. (794 characters)

Photo of cbn
2.94/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Stone Oaked Arrogant Bastard pours mahogany-red in color with a massive beige head wich leaves a mess of lace on the glass as it retreats, clarity is unsurpassed.

Aroma is sweet, vanilla and alcohol.

Flavor starts bitter lemon with mild sweet tea middle, bitter spicy fade.

Smooth and fairly thin, the ale seems to lose every bit of carbonation about half way through .

Drinkability suffers, thin, lack of carbonation, flavors stacked to the bitter side. (462 characters)

Photo of ColoradoBobs
2.99/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Twelve ounce bottle, moderate pour into a tulip glass, yields a solid two finger off-white head over a deep amber-mahogany body. Extensive lacing. Pretty beer.

Smell is nice, though not very strong. Cracker malt, pine hops, floral hops, a bit of hay and grass. The oak is definitely there.

Taste is like the smell, although in reverse order. The hops hit first, then the malt, and then the oak vanillins come on good and strong. The oak is what saves this from being an altogether mediocre tasting beer.

Mouthfeel is enriched by the oak-chip smoothness. Nice and round. Good soft carbonation.

Drinkability -- what can I say? It's west coast beer, which means the hop-load is way out of line with the style. I couldn't have more than one of these, because the complexity of the malt and oak-chip flavors are simply smashed by the over hopping. Stone has done it again: taken what might have been a really good beer and made it average by overhopping it. Somebody tell me why Stone's beers all taste like a variation on an IPA! Somebody else tell me what the attraction to Stone beers might be.

Better than the regular Arrogant Bastard, which is just one dimensionally hop-dominated. At least this has the vanilla flavors of the oak to save it from totally mediocrity. This would be a really good beer if Stone could just have held back about half the hops they put in. (1,372 characters)

Photo of JBogan
3.02/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

After enjoying the "regular" Bastard and completely disliking the Double Bastard, I wasn't sure what to expect from this Oaked version.

It poured a dark ruby/brown color with a slightly off white small head. The head dropped off to a thin film which stayed throughout and left an average amount of lacing.

Smelled of malts and hops, with some pine and a small alcohol presence.

Tasted of hops, with nary a sign of the pine that I detected in the scent. I was a bit surprised how one dimensional this beer tasted. No complexity at all, at least to my taste buds.

Mouthfeel was slightly thick and flat. Really was quite disappointed in this department.

Overall this was to me, an average beer at best. My review for the Double Bastard was well below the "average", and I'm sure this one will be as well. I just didn't get much enjoyment out of this beer. Adding to that, it's about twice as expensive as their "regular" Bastard, so I'd have to say I found it to be one of the worst "bang for the buck' beers I've had in a long time. To each his own I suppose. (1,063 characters)

Photo of Vanlingleipa
3.03/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a Bruery snifter, the darkest of ambers. Small head with a thin film of frothy bubbles covering the brew. Slightly sour aroma, maybe black malt? Would account for the darkness of the beer. Thick lacing

First sip different from the second sip. Bitter hops dominated at first, more palatable the second time around, partnering with the flavors of oak and malt.

Once I could look past the bitterness, there was a creamy mouthfeel that was pleasant. Too much hops, too much lingering bitterness on the tongue for me to try this one again. (549 characters)

Photo of tmcelvain
3.04/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Hazy rust coloured beer, with a musty, slightly off smell. The smell is not hoppy, or malty, or even oak. More like mildew. Tastes of celery. A very dry taste, and not a lot of oak flavor. This finishes with full hop bitterness, but without a spice, or floral, or fruit taste that makes other hoppy ales so appealing. Nothing memorableon the tongue, and this has a very low drinkability for me due to the dry and mustyness of the beer. This has a good look and feel, but does not otherwise impress me. I would try it again, just to make sure I did not get one that had been mishandled, but otherwise would not seek it out. Overall I was pretty dissapointed after really loving Double Bastard. (692 characters)

Photo of Bighuge
3.05/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Hazed dark mahogany/ruby red appearance. Thin and bubbly dirty white head. Lacing is minimal. Aroma is all that goodness I remember from AB with just a hint of woodiness in the aroma. That pineapple tropical fruit melange brings back memories. I also get a little caramel/nougat thing going on. Taste is fairly bitter and actually a little harsh and abrasive. I'm not sure I like the effect of the oak chips here. Cuz I remember loving the hell out of the real thing. I think the chips bring a little astringency to the mix. I don't dig the aftertaste at all. All that tropical fruit goodness that I remember takes a backseat now unfortunately. To the over-riding oak chip quality. Too much for my liking.

I guess they're right about this one. I'm NOT worthy.

Thanks for the brew Darren. (795 characters)

Photo of Rastacouere
3.06/5  rDev -27%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Cloudy beautiful orange-copper pour that displays a huge dark beige head. Balanced and complex americanized hop-malt monster surprises with powdered cocoa notes amidst the bready and thick malts, fully letting the way to the heavily earthy, rooty, soily hops bearing a bite of citrus. Mango fruitiness, well contained oak and pepper peak through, but it fails to really impress due to a pronounced astringency and more acidity than I’d like. Dry medium body, powdery texture, not too bitter, quite alcoholic. (509 characters)

Photo of sabinelr
3.06/5  rDev -27%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I'm sorry.
For someone who described Arrogant Bastard Ale as "the Owsley acid of beer," I feel like a traitor doing this review. I fear that the oak flavoring has changed this to some strange hop-flavored bourbon stuff. All I could taste was bourbon. I don't like bourbon at all, so maybe that's why I was disappointed. Oh well, it's still better than Rainier and definitely better than Fischer. If you like the bourbon smell and taste, I'll bet this will be good for you. (472 characters)

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.06/5  rDev -27%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle. Pours a deep somewhat murky brown with a ring of off-white head. Aroma of raisins and sweet caramel malt. Flavor is very sweet and malty. No oak. No hops. Very underwhelming. It's a shame because regular AB is so good. Not a good beer to oak age apparently.
Aroma: 6/10
Appearance: 4/5
Flavor: 6/10
Palate: 3/5
Overall: 13/20
3.2/5 (339 characters)

Photo of LuDookie
3.07/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Poured this from the bottle into a mug.

Looked and smelled good, dark.

First taste was bitterness, and water. I hate when I can pick up on the water in a beer. Besides that it did have a decent body, and I appreciate dark beers, but I have just never been able to appreciate any of the Arrogant Bastard brews.

Mouthfeel was pretty carbonated and bitter. If you like bitter, you will like this one, but not the most bitter I've had.

Overall, I finished it. That's about it. (476 characters)

Photo of jpittman80
3.08/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Beautiful reddish-bronze with a lasting off-white head.

S - Nice pine, pineapple, and citrus hops, woody oak, caramel malt.

T - Way too woody in the taste, making this overly bitter and astringent, way off from the normal AB. Pineapple and pine hops are there, as is a surprising fusel alcohol presence. There is nice caramel malt presence that saves the whole thing from being turpentine.

M - Astringent and very dry, with plenty of alcohol burn.

D - I'll get through this one 12, but only because it ain't cheap.

Man, what a letdown. I am a big fan of Arrogant Bastard, but this doesn't do it justice. It tastes over-oaked, almost fake. The appearance and aroma were really promising but it really went downhill from there. (734 characters)

Photo of kvgomps
3.08/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Pours a rich mahogany with a ton of effervescence when held up to the light. A 1 inch head with good retention and a ton of wood on the nose. I'm gonna guess that's oak.

The taste is sort of flat and undefined upfront but this gives way to a strongly overpowering bitter oak profile. This isn't all that different from chewing on tree bark. Even has that sort of medicinal bitter pine flavor on the tongue minutes after the sip. Almost feels like whatever little balance was present in the original has now been sapped out.

Well, I don't care for the taste but it has some things going for it - the appearance and mouthfeel do win it some points. Unfortunately these pale in comparison to the taste for me. I enjoy barrel aged beers so I'm a bit surprised at this one. I'm guessing this is a polarizing brew. Still though, worth trying once. (844 characters)

Photo of Offa
3.08/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I love regular Arrogant Bastard so had high hopes but was disappointed. After tasting this, I compared the two closely.

Compared to the regular, this looks similar with about the same colour it's more murky & less bubbly. The head is the same but bigger and lasts much longer.

The aroma is similar, but with dusty-woody element.

It has a fuller body and richer more oily mouthfeel, with more caramel and body in the aroma and flavour. However, the malt is more subdued and the hops become less flowery and flavourful but significantly more bitter and astringent. it actually has less overall flavour but more bitterness and more prominent alcohol. (652 characters)

Photo of Doomcifer
3.09/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

The six-packs have come!!!

Pours a fairly dark reddish/amber color with a nice light tan head that sticks around for a while. Terrific lacing to speak of as well.

Smell is of maltiness, some muted hints of oak, and spicy hops.

Taste is of biscuity malts up front and transforms into a huge rush of astringent and aspirin-like bitter hops. Huge notes of oakiness in the finish and some vanilla up front. Like the original Bastard, it isn't very smooth of a beer, which does negatively affect it.

Mouthfeel is very velvety with decent carbonation.

Drinkability is middle of the road. One or two 12oz bottles or a single bomber is enough for me. I actually prefer the original Arrogant Bastard to this, which I even feel is overrated a tad. (755 characters)

Photo of ken2cart1
3.09/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

served in my dogish head pint glass

A- dark amber, hints of red and brown, 1/2 inch frothy head, good retention, sappy clinging that will not disappear

S- malty caramel sweetness, smells of very harsh high alpha-acid hops...does not smell to pleasant

T- just as the bottle states, a very aggressive beer. Slight juicy citrus hops upfront, then harsh piny hops kick in from there on out. Oak is subtle and can be tasted at the end and in the after taste as woody...i was waiting for vanilla to come through but it never came.... oak probably would be misrepresented as hops if it was not stated. good bready, caramel malt background. Hops are definitely the center piece of this beer and it is an onslaught of high alpha acid, harsh piny bitter hops....arrogance indeed..maybe too arrogant. Beer has a puckering bitter after taste...yet you want more arrogance.

M- creamy, smooth, finishes dry from hops and oak

D- not too drinkable...bitter aftertaste from hops would become cloying after a while...WEIRD for me to say since i am a hop head...just not my style of hops.

O- taste is quite complex i am must say, but just not my type of beer/hops....Although I do have to say this beer tastes better as it warms...wish the oak flavor was more apparent

If you want an unreal oak aged beer go with the oak aged unearthly DIPA from southern tier!....good shit (1,362 characters)

Photo of jcdiflorio
3.1/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

served into a pint glass from a 12oz. brown bottle with crimped-on cap,painted on logo on bottle.

Good moderate aroma,citrusy,piney,earthy, smokey,roasty,a smell of fresh cut wood,a pleasing,fresh,complex aroma.

Very citrusy taste,also piney,burnt carmell,with a taste of wood. A tart,acidy flavor a bit to my disliking.Finishes with a very sharp and bitter citrus rind note also a bit to my disliking. Too much of an acidity taste for me.

A creamy mouthfeel,medium body,prickley with tongue swelling bitterness.
The drinkability a bit down just because of all acidity,not all bad,I'd say this beer is a bit over-hyped to me. Just wasn't all that impressed with this beer. (682 characters)

Photo of n1ckels
3.12/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 2 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

First impression: Is this Kool-Aid? Damn, this beer looks red and clear, you'd almost think it was a wine cooler.

Smell: Ok, I think I've nailed it: fresh cut lumber. Yes, this beer smells like sawdust, Home Depot, and all the good memories you have from your days with a circular saw.

Taste: I almost grimaced at first, because it was so oaky and bitter, it really cuts your tongue. You wonder for a second if you just put varnish or turpentine in your mouth. The more you drink it, the more pronounced the oakiness becomes, and the beer cuts less.

This beer is one of the most unique I've ever come across. It is so oily, it really looks like a wine or some sort of wood stain. If you've ever wondered what wine afficionados mean when they note a wine as being "oaky", look no further. This beer is like the crazy uncle of the tamer wood product- maple syrup.

I paid $15.99 for a six pack. Yes, cheaper than a bar, but still a costly endeavor. (950 characters)

Photo of airheadmtrcycle
3.12/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served on-tap to a medium wine glass at Taco Mac in Austel, Georgia. Earlier today from notes.

Looked great. A deep mahogany brown with orange highlights. A short but stunning caramel/creamy head. By the time I was finished there was lacing from top to the bottom of the glass.

Smell was malty, sweet and boozy. Tastes sweet from abundant malts with strong bitterness, particularly on the finish. A little booze. I didn't pick up on any wood whatsoever.

The mouth feel was sharp and not at all smooth like I would expect from a barrel-aged beer.

I did not want another when I was done. I switched to something else.

What a huge disappointment. Not a bad beer, but I expected something great. I'll try it again, maybe from the bottle next time. (748 characters)

Photo of tjthresh
3.18/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Same cough syrup red color with a decent tan head. I honestly do see my difference between this the the regular stuff. Lots of spicey and piney hop aroma. Huge bitterness. Long agressive finish. The oak here is subtle at best. For some reason, I am enjoying this more that the regular bottle I had a couple of weeks ago. (320 characters)

Oaked Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 1,843 ratings.