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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.

1,848 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,848
Hads: 5,113
Avg: 4.19
pDev: 19.81%
Wants: 207
Gots: 541 | FT: 4
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: 1,848 | Hads: 5,113
Photo of PhxHorn
3.23/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance is dark brown with a moderate amount of foam. Smells of oak and spices. Taste was somewhat disappointing; the oak flavor dominates everything else. There was a bit of spices, maybe some cinnamon in there, but overall the flavor was on the weak side aside from the oak. It's hard to believe this is the case with a Stone beer, who make some of the best I've tasted, but this one wasn't all that impressive. It was OK to drink while taking my time, but I wouldn't have wanted another one anytime soon.

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Photo of Higravity
3.23/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Yawn. What oh right. This beer is pretty much like the regular bastard which is ok in its own right. Nice amber hue small weak head, low carbonation. The smell is strong alcohol mixed with some malty profile that could be anything, there is a nutty woody presence with of course plenty of hops in case. The hops seem more toned down but the oak flavor is a little to bite-y with the alcohol. It is a decent blend but I think it might need more time to mellow. I could drink a 6 pack in a week, but not something I would get regularly.

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Photo of waughbrew
3.26/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

[3.75 for a 12oz picked out of a sixer at Downtown Wine and Spirits, Somerville a couple of days ago]

Ruby beer with a killer head - not overly huge, but very pretty and long-lasting and massive lacing. Aroma is very light, actually. Pleasant, perfumy lavender and pink grapefruit. A bit of a zingy chemicalness all the way through. At first the nice caramel malts (and a little roast too) help to cover it up, but it continues past when the malt is gone. Also leaves tobacco leaves on the tongue. Medium-thick body is kind of creamy, but also becomes a bit thin and sketchy towards the end.

Eh, one is enough. This is too mellow and the finish tastes a bit like household cleanser. Overall it is a real disappointment, considering how much I like the regular bastard and most of Stone's other beers. To be honest, I would not have guessed that this was a Stone beer if I did not pour it myself, since it is not up to Stone's standard of excellence.

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Photo of Boppar
3.28/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Substantially better than Arrogant Bastard.

Pours from a bottle into a snifter a nice brown color, with some red in there, too.

Smells mostly like beer. Also some non-descript fruity sweetness. Orange rind. Maybe maple syrup? Who knows.

The taste is not as complex as I had hoped. I enjoyed the woody dry finish and to a lesser extent, the nuttiness.

The mouthfeel tended to be thin and overly-carbonated, but thankfully the latter subsided over the course of the beer.

Sessionable? Absolutely not.

Interesting concept, decent flavor. Good, but I had higher hopes.

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Photo of sixerofelixir
3.3/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle. Beer was about a month past the drink-by date when sampled. Apparently this is not supposed to matter much..

Pours translucent ruby brown, good tan head. Smell is earthy malts, a bit of must; in fact, with nice sweet notes. First taste is a sheet of (one-dimensional) hops that turns into the customary AB fruity, butterscotchy, malty thing, followed by a super-dry finish that I can only liken to "sucking on a wood chip." Not my thing, but I'm glad I tried it once.

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Photo of marvin213
3.31/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

It's really brown. Browner, certainly, than your regular ale, but far from the reddish tone I might expect from an oaky beer. The head swelled nicely as I poured this into my Flying Dog pint glass, and a full layering remained as the beverage sat, waiting on my approach. All in all, it's a darker brown (not bronze) than I expected, and that disappoints me slightly. +0.5, however, for the Stone gargoyle.

I definitely smell the oak, but not as much as I had hoped. I don't know why, but this beer I have here is not very aromatic. The taste, I'm sorry to report, is also lacking. I taste an okay ale with a little oak chip flavor. It's okay, but it's not worth the hype and $17 price tag (sixer) it fetches around these parts. With no way to avoid seeing the high "A" rating this beer has before I produce my own review, I'm particularly disappointed that I don't regard this beverage more highly. With Greensboro's own Red Oak as my standard for a good oak beer, I must report that this beer is inferior to that and MAYBE slightly better than average. The gargoyle, however, won't save the rating this time.

The mouthfeel is purty good. Like I've communicated this far, I don't think this beer has a lot of character. Though I yearn for more flavor as I feel the beer, I can say that I enjoy the feel. Still, I'm determined to write an independent review. Mouthfeel is just better than average. The beer's okay, but I won't follow the first with a consecutive second. Stone is good and oak is good, but this beer is average.

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Photo of Beaver13
3.33/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle. Pours a deep murky red with a frothy light tan head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is caramel, fruits and raw hops with some woody vanilla.

The flavor is sweet caramel and melon with a strong harsh grassy (almost medicinal) bitter finish that lingers into the aftertaste. The bitterness mellows as it warms and becomes more vanilla oak. The mouthfeel is medium and kind of watery.

Overall, more one-sided and harsher bitterness than I remember the regular Arrogant Bastard.

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Photo of Hullabaloo2
3.33/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma - A mild aroma with citrus and floral hops. The oak comes through in the aroma.

Appearance - Deep copper in color with a light tan head. The head poured 1 1/2 finger widths, but dissipated to 3/4 finger widths. Slight haze. Good lacing.

Flavor - Some citrus hop flavor. Caramel. Malty, but not sweet/cloying. Smokey? Has malt backbone, but bitterness dominates. The bitterness lingers on the finish.

Mouth feel - Medium body. Average carbonation.

Overall Impression - A drinkable beer. The oak is interesting. It seems the oak subdues the hop flavor making it bitter with out the nice hop flavor.

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Photo of hombrepalo
3.33/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Expected more from this beer being oaked age. Poured light body, smells of malts and oak. Taste is thin with hints of vanilla with a burn from the alcohol at the end.

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Photo of TheRealBigC
3.33/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at St. James Infirmary

Very dark, opaque color. Some head that retained for a couple of sips.

Smell is not too noteworthy, but there is some wood in there.

Taste is a huge slap on the tongue. A "strong" ale to be sure. The oakey finish is cool, but overall it feels very dry and bitter. It was hard to finish my 13 oz. glass because it's such a bastard! The flavor is complex and commendable, but it's just not easy to enjoy.

It's been a while since I had a regular Bastard, but if my memory serves me right, I prefer that one to this. The OAKED is a cool beer to try because it is unique and complex, but at the end of the day, the regular one is less expensive and still quite tasty. I'll be trying the Double Bastard this week and I'm excited to see how that compares.

I'm also wondering if the batch the Bros. had from 2003 is substantially different from the one I tried. I'll never know!

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Photo of mdagnew
3.35/5  rDev -20%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

355ml bottle bought from Beersofeurope.co.uk...

Poured a deep coppery orange colour. Mocha tan head poured tight, thick and foamy with a meringue like top then faded slowly to wispy covering... barely any carbonation... lots of sticky lacing lines...

Aroma - Lots of toasted toffee and caramel maltiness followed by noticeable oakiness, strong citrusy and peppery hop notes, dark fruits (strong blackcurrents, figs, some cherries), some booziness, toasted nuts, earthy, light liquorice, some orange, malt loaf, burnt sugar sweetness, some faint coffee traces...

Taste is a bit of a let down after the good aromas - nothing seems to meld very well... Strong and harsh oaky notes to the fore followed by toasted bready and toffee malts, noticeable alcohol burn, piney hop resin, fruit cake notes, light treacle sweetness, ripe fruits (raisins, spicy apples, bitter oranges), butterscotch and vanilla, metallic traces, some medicinal notes...

Feel - Sharp initially then a little smoothness comes through... medium... too harsh and boozy to be very drinkable..

Overall - A bit of a disappointment this one... i love AB but this just wasn't for me...

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Photo of kojevergas
3.35/5  rDev -20%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a N'Ice Chouffe stemgoblet in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are moderately high, but Stone has disappointed me a bit in the past.

A: Pours a three finger head of decent cream, fair thickness, and pretty good retention for the above-average ABV. Colour is a nontransparent dark copper. It leaves a bit to be desired.

Sm: A musty mixture of hops, oak, and yeast. A moderate strength aroma.

T: Pleasant hops balance with the surprisingly restrained oak tone and the welcome yeasty notes for a pretty good balance of flavour. No alcohol is detectable. That said, it's pretty simple - an unexpected characteristic considering Stone's preoccupation with appearing to be the big bad bastards in the room. It's good but boring, and the oak aging doesn't seem to significantly alter the beer in comparison to the regular version.

Mf: Smooth and wet, capitulating to consumer interest yet suiting the flavours. All in all, it's well made.

Dr: While it won't satisfy fans of complex, intense beers (contrary to Stone's marketing), it remains a good beer I'd have again on draught. Don't expect anything incredible; you won't find it here. It hides its ABV well. The price isn't bad here in California, but I imagine this is far from the truth in other states.

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Photo of Kelp
3.35/5  rDev -20%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Darker red than the arrogant bastard. Also a bit darker head that doesn't grow as high and very little lacing to it.

Smells like hops, pine,caramel malts, and a hint of bourbon at the end.

Tastes a lot like the original at first. The hops right up front then a caramel flavor followed by the piney taste. It finishes however with a weird bourbon flavor. Somehow it just doesn't taste right to me. Like they used pressboard bourbon barrels or something.

Medium bodied decent carbonation to it. Nice and smooth right up til the end when the wood chip flavor kicks in.

I truthfully wouldn't ever get this on my own. I just don't like the flavor that the "oaked" adds to it. I'll drink, but only when I am not the one paying for it.

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Photo of harrymel
3.36/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bb: 05.18.11

A: Pours dark brown when held to the light reveals beautiful cherry tones with excellent clarity. Single finger toasted peanut head falls to a quilt of the same. Persistent lacing.

S: Earthy hops, hints of vanilla from the oak, sweet backbone with sweet malts. I'm surprised by this, but so far, I'm not sensing much difference from the flagship version.

T: Now I get it! Theres so much oak sweetened vanilla, cola tones on this. It's a completely different beer. Nice surprise. Sweet, dry, fun. Not much hop presence. Earthy tones.

M: Medium to syrupy body with low carbonation. dry and....dry on the finish.

O: well done, prefer the flagship, but not bad either.

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Photo of TheAlamoWrocker
3.36/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed January 5th, 2012. Poured a 12 oz bottle into a JFF is my BFF novelty pint glass.

A: Poured a nice one fingered creamy head. Rusty Maroon that laces nicely.

S: A slight alcohol comes through. The head that is present almost gives this a soapy smell. I really can't smell oak coming off of this, but instead its more pine. A tree is a tree though.

T: This is presented similar to a traditional Arrogant Bastard with a malty sweetness with a bitterness (citrus) coming throughout. The oaken taste comes right before the pine hits, but then the pine flavor takes over.
Instead of pine coming though more as this warms up instead the citrus is sadly more present.

M: Because of its head a creaminess comes though. Feels full body and the carbonation is decently there.

O: Sadly the taste of this drink doesn't stay the same throughout. It starts off tasting similar to a barleywine, but then it changes to a DIPA back and forth. Even though I loved this drink the first time I had it I can't say that I would pick it up again especially since its price tag.

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Photo of sstackho
3.36/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle purchased from Claredon Wines in Boston for $3.25. Pours a ruby brown with ample head but little carbonation. Surprisingly little aroma. Flavour is of nice roasted malts. But I'm not getting much oak in the flavour. Sure, it's a nice beer - but at its price, I am hoping for something more special. I also wasn't enthralled with the regular Arrogant Bastard, so maybe I'm just not programmed right for this beer.

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Photo of Murrhey
3.37/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass in high elevation Libby, Mont. Reviewed live.

A- One-finger off-white head. Several minute-long retention. Nice lacing and good carbonation. Auburn color with low clarity. Hazy and appealing.

S- Strong dark smells, yeast and some booze scents. Definitely some wood chips.

T- Bitter, deep and aggressive. Definite wooden taste that fights with the booze for control of the bitterness. Not an ideal taste, but I suppose I knew what I was getting into.

M- Smooth and very dry. Malty feel in the end.

O- Meh. Not my preferred style, but not as bad as some of the recent offerings I've had from Stone. Maybe I'm just not in the right mood to enjoy it to the extent it seems most people have.

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Photo of far333
3.38/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reddish copper colored with a head of off-white foam that rises up thickly and then settles out to a thin cap of uneven soapy bubbles.

Low aroma of floral and citrus hops, faint maltiness.

Flavor of muted malt upfront, citrus hops, and strong woody, earthy flavors. Hints of vanilla poke through, but it's mostly woody. Not so much oaky, just woody and becoming more one-dimensional as I sip.

Moderate carbonation, full mouthfeel, but very tannic and puckery. Average drinkability, I don't think the oak does anything better for an already very good beer.

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Photo of JohnnyChicago
3.38/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a deep reddish-brown with a sticky one-finger of head.

S: Smells like the regular version + week old coffee and lumberyard.

T: A bit harsh. The classic Arrogant Bastard seems choked and stifled by the oak. Charred notes finish the beer harsh and the beautiful dance of sweet and bitter that I expect from classic AB is lost in sweaty wood notes.

D: Despite disliking this more than regular AB, this isn't a pain to finish at all. I even begin to enjoy it a bit towards the end.

Overall: This one didn't really do it for me. I mean, its base beer is basically too good to screw up, but the oak seems to detract from the base instead of add. I always avoided this one because the sixers are so damned expensive. I found it sold by the bottle and bought one...so glad I only bought one bottle. Stone, put regular Bastard in sixers and this one in bombers!

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Photo of Brew33
3.38/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I was really looking forward to drinking this beer, especially after seeing all of the reviews. I was disappointed.

It is a nice red color with a puffy white head that laces all the way down the glass. It smells great, the oak really comes through but it also smells very sweet.

The taste in one word.... boozy. This beer tastes more like 9.5% than 7.2%. Don't get me wrong I like strong beers with an alcohol kick occasionally but this is not boozy in a good way. Strong alcohol bite, very subtle smokiness, strong, sweet malts, not too hoppy. Not very smooth.

It is very oily and thick beer and stays with you. Strong aftertaste that isn't great.

All in all I may drink this again, but I won't pay for it. I hear it is much better on tap and I may be persuaded to try it on draft but the bottle was just mediocre.

I don't know why these guys of the Arrogant line are so Arrogant, I've never had a beer of this line that was anything better than okay.

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Photo of Chaney
3.38/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I had this on tap at Hard Times Cafe in Woodbridge, VA. I usually try this one at least once a year, but this is the first time I've reviewed it:

A: Dark caramel color, a bit cloudy, moderately carbonated, and about an inch worth of head.

S: Bouquet of flowers, however, there is a bit of earthiness to it also. On second thought, is that earthiness or staleness?

T: Not the most refreshing thing I've tasted. There is a kind of unsettling, sour taste to this brew. I notice the same thing in the Sublimely Self-Righteous. The finish is nice and smooth though and this, in my opinion, is where the Oaked AB differs from the regular flagship version.

M: The hoppy sourness clings to the taste buds like crazy and just lingers! I noticed quite a bit of frothy lacing.

D: I always want to route for this beer (as I do many of Stones IPA and "Strong Ales"), but every time drink this brew, I notice the same unpleasantness time and time again. I'm sure others with disagree and that's fine, but this beer just doesn't do it for me.

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Photo of katan
3.41/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. no date to be found.

A - Pours an amber color, leaning more towards the red side. Head formation is light, but what was there had a pleasant looking mocha color. Head similar to a porter. No hazing of note.

S - An unusual head. Most a phenolic flavors, with some kind of edgy background that I assume comes from the oak aging. Some fruitiness that at times as been associated with oxidation.

T - Starts off with a light smoky flavor that moves into a very potent phenolic flavor. Finishes with that rough edginess of the wood. The particular wood would be hard to discern, but it is certainly there. Continues big time in the aftertaste.

M - Oily and edgy. Biting and acidic. Alcohol is very warming. Carbonation is noticeable.

D - More of a one off beer. The notes from the wood aging begin to dominate the taste buds. Alcohol, both in flavor and in content, are strong enough to reduce sessionability.

All and all a good beer. Glad I tried it, but I'm guessing this just isn't my style.

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Photo of enfield249
3.41/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a clear deep reddish brown with 1 fingers worth of light tan head.

S - Not getting much off this. Slight malt maybe.

T - First I get a nice clean flavor, hard to believe. Then some good roast and malt followed up by hoppy finish. I don't get any alcohol from this, which is surprising.

M - Full and slightly astringent.

D - A bit much for daily drinking, and I don't really taste much if any oak. Worth a try, but not anything supper special.

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Photo of opwog
3.42/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

This was cask conditioned "American Oak." I have to say that I was not a big fan of the Oaked Bastard when I had it in the bottle, but I thought that I should still give this one a shot.

Alas, I am still not a fan of the Oaked Bastard on cask either, but for completely different reasons. Where I found the bottled version to be too tight and overly strong with the wood taste and feel, I found the cask to actually be a nicer balance of wood to hops and malts. The head was better and lasted quite a while for a cask. But the biggest problem here is that I think that Bastard is a a beer in any form that has to be served cold. Many beers are fine (or even better) at room temperature, but Bastard is not one of them (IMHO). Overall, as I said before, the balance of elements was better on this one than other Bastards, but that still doesn't mean that it is well balanced across the horizon of all ales.

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Photo of bruachan
3.43/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

nice-looking head. deep red color

i think i smell NW hops, but just maybe. i don't smell much evidence of the oak, however

the oak comes across strongly in the flavor. it's a woodiness that is hard to ignore. robust malt profile, featuring that brown-sugar-and-port-and-butterscotch sweetness that stone is so good at. bitter

not very dynamic, not that i didn't see that coming

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Oaked Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 1,848 ratings.