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Oaked Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Oaked Arrogant Bastard AleOaked Arrogant Bastard Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

4,860 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,860
Reviews: 1,836
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 11.88%
Wants: 155
Gots: 411 | FT: 7
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:
American-style Strong Ale aged on oak.

(Beer added by: Todd on 03-15-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,860 | Reviews: 1,836 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of errantnight
4.63/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought this puppy during my visit to Stone this spring. Finally served it up tonight opposite some homemade chili and cornbread.

What can I say. I could gloat about it's gorgeous deep brown color and frothy, billous head. It's alluring, and startlingly complex scent.

I could complain about the difficulty in pouring the first glass from this 3L monstrosity and about the disappointing lack of availability in bombers so that I could imbibe this bitch more frequently (although I hear it's on tap at the Publick House...)

But I'd rather wallow in the wonderful depth of character and flavor. I love big, bold, hoppy beers. And that's here... but it's not predominant. There's an alcoholic sweetness that stands out, the oak is mellow and distant. The distinct AB hops are right in the middle, not attacking up front or lingering behind. Superb balance... but it's not quite as astonishing as I was hoping for. Great, great beer, but between the anticipation and the pour and how it sat in the glass I expected this to be something I would be traveling back to San Diego this week for. It was worth it, but just shy of perfection.

That's faint criticism at best, and I can't wait to compare the on-tap variety.

errantnight, Apr 17, 2006
Photo of Prufrock
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

on tap into a pint glass.

clear copper amber with half an inch of white head.

caramel, vanilla, and floral hops in the aroma. much more balanced than the regular AB.

flavor is similarly balanced. grassy hops with caramel malts, vanilla and a bourbon soaked finish. medium-high carbonation and a medium mouthfeel. better than the regular AB, which is overwhelmingly hoppy in the flavor; the aging has mellowed out the hops and allowed the malts to shine through.

Prufrock, Apr 15, 2006
Photo of bignick
4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

On tap @ TPH in Brookline for $5 on 4/13/06. Served in a pint glass.

This beer is really all over the map. It is very good, no doubt. It is very attractive in the glass, with a supple head. The mouthfeel is very full and creamy, which I appreciate. Many beers sacrifice a full-body for the sake of drinkablility, but this is not one. The taste is a wonderfully complex mess. The bourbony oak flavor is pretty distinct, but far from overwhelming. The hops are very mellow, and I keep having to pinch myself to remind myself that I'm drinking Arrogant Bastard. The kick just isn't there; rather, there is a wonderfully complex taste that is nutty, fruity, and just overall delicious. While I'm not sure I could drink it all night, I consider this beer a treat. I have been very critical of the one-sidedness of regular Arrogant Bastard, but I find the Oak-Aged to be very good.

bignick, Apr 14, 2006
Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy brown with a modest bone white head. A decent patchwork of foam adorns the glass. The aroma is heavy on citrusy hops with an anchoring malt sweetness. The taste is, well, hoppy with lots of pine resin and grapefruit rind. A robust malt backbone brings cookie dough to the mix, which is just as quickly beaten down by the lupulin onslaught. Oak and vanilla notes are somewhat restrained, though they show more as the pint warms. The finish is bitter, resiny and long.

an exceptional beer, I was lucky enough to find this at the fantastic Linwood Grille in Boston.

CAMRAhardliner, Apr 05, 2006
Photo of phisig137
3.8/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a beautiful ruby color, with a substantial rocky head, that diapates slowy with tons of lacing.... Looks great in the glass, plus anything coming out of a 3 liter bottle wins points just for being cool.

Smell is malty, caramel, and hops. little else to speak of.

Flavor is surprisingly subdued... Malt up front, with hint of vanilla and oak, finishing solidly bitter from the hops. Oddly, I find this to be more bitter than the regular bastard, yet not have the same hop flavor or amora. Mouthfeel is rather thin, but still substantial. Drinkability is moderate.

Oddly, I prefer the standard Arrogant Bastard over the oaked version. I had such hig hopes for this, but it just didn't quite deliver. A solidly good beer all around, but not nearly as good as I had hoped... IMO, save your money and stick with the standard A.B.

phisig137, Mar 23, 2006
Photo of audiojon
4.65/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Simply delicious. I picked up a growler of this from the new brewery and shared it with some good friends. They are both admitted foodies, and I have been trying to share some of my favorite beers with them. This one went down as a favorite amongst all. We've all had good old AB, but oaked AB is something special! It just goes down so smooth, the oak lends the perfect finish to the brew. We finished the growler within a couple of hours, and had a great time in the process.

Highly recommended.

audiojon, Mar 07, 2006
Photo of palliko
4.97/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The local rep for Stone is named Marty Saylor, and when he mentioned Stone had a keg of Oaked AB on tap at Kinfolk's in Manitou Springs, nearby, I was there!! Not sure I would ever have paid $70 for the mega-bottle it comes in had I not tasted it first, but now I am a believer! I met Marty there, and savored this beer (which no one would consider a session beer all day long. OMG.)

Appearance is a red-brown with ivory foam and lace that sticks around. Aroma contained a matrix of flowers, oak, grapefruit hops and spices. Initial taste possessed an awesome blend of massive hops, sweet malt, citrus, mint, mouthfeel is milkshake-creamy, perfect carbonation, balsam and is followed by a ingeniously crafted smoooth middle in which the oaking is present, and the finish is a crescendo that screams: MORE MORE MORE!

p.s. My friends at Stone in Escondido, CA have started making Oaked Arrogant available in six-packs!! Yay!! The price is about double for other beer, but then, the flavor is about double too...

palliko, Feb 28, 2006
Photo of MuddyFeet
4.18/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Apparently this has been on-tap at a Boston bar or two recently but my tasting was done from one of those large 3 litre bottles. my brother gave it to me as a graduation gift from law school this past spring and I have been sitting on it since. Really want to taste this beer on-tap.

Poured a deep =, burnt red in color that was leaning just a bit toward brown. The head with every pour was huge. I was afraid it was going to be flat even though it had one of those rubber swing-top stoppers. Sheet-like lacing all over the interior of the glass. Nose had hints of dark fruit (figs mostly) with molasses and just a slight tang of hops.

flavor is a very melllow complex. There is a whole lot going on but not too much of any one thing. The oak adds a dimension that really brings the flavor home and keeps everything subdued and enjoyable. More strong molasses andsome deep-woods piney hops give a nice sweet base with a just slightly bitter bite to it all. Got some black cherry, fig and raisin flavors out of it also. Full body that was extremely smooth and not-quite creamy. Absolutely amazingly drinkable and enjoyable.

MuddyFeet, Feb 05, 2006
Photo of Bierguy5
3.95/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at BW3 in Indy. A 10 oz. pour, served in a chalice. Mahogany in color and cloudy. Thin white head which disappeared immediately. Hop aroma is restrained by the oakyness. Good caramel and toffe like flavors as in the original AB, but the hops are much softer, along with a slight smoky flavor. This is much more smooth than the original. The body seemed a bit lighter to me. Still very good, but lost some of the in your face hoppy character that I enjoy from the original. All in all, a good treat, and a good chance to compare what adding some oak character does to an already great beer.

Bierguy5, Jan 29, 2006
Photo of orfeu
4.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

So I stopped by Cole's for a late lunch one day last week, and I see that they've got AB on the beer list. I order it, and the server comes back and says, "All we have is the Oak Aged Arrogant Bastard -- is that okay?" Is that okay? Hell, yes, lady!
Served up as a full pint, Oaked Bastard is a cloudier version of the garnet-brown hued "regular" stuff. 1/2" of thick beige froth. The nose, unfortunately, was a bit more subdued than I expected -- perhaps from being served a little on the cold side? Anyway, Chinook vapors and roasted caramel malts wafted up, just not as strong as the non-oaked AB I've sampled. The taste is certainly that of the Bastard I know and love, yet different: softer, rounder, fruitier, more vanilla hints (the oak probably?) -- yet the brutal hops and malts abide. The mouthfeel on OAB is creamier and smoother. Medium bodied and chewy. I went back for more the other day and it was gone. :( Blessed nectar.

orfeu, Jan 20, 2006
Photo of DrJay
4.78/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A few of us (including grub, Wintermute, and TheBeerFruit) shared this one on New Year's Eve alongside the standard Arrogant Bastard. It was quite an educational experience, as far as what using oak can do to a beer. You could pick out all the character of the Arrogant Bastard, but with a little something extra. Our bottle poured with just a bit of haze and the lacing was thick and clumpy throughout. There was an earthy woodiness that melded nicely into the aroma and flavour, kind of filling in the gaps between the other characters. There was also a light vanilla flavour that was quite nice. The texture was creamy and smooth as silk. Overall, this is just a little better balanced and more complex than your garden variety Bastard (and I'm not knocking the original here) and definitely a treat.

DrJay, Jan 07, 2006
Photo of mitchfor3
4.88/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured from growler into a tulip glass which showed off this beer's beautiful garnet, deep dark cranberry color - it's redder than I expected. The head maintained itself well, a very light cream colored delight that left tenacious lacing and ultimately subsided into a sticky collar.

Smell: The aroma of this beer is simply stunning. HUGELY fruity, but in a good way! Almost no alcohol present in the nose, impressive for upwards of 7%, leaving a delicious hop bouquet undisturbed for my nose's pleasure.

Taste: Wow. Wow wow wow - stuningly smooth considering what this beer came from - the original Arrogant Bastard. The oak aging has worked wonders here smoothing out the harsher, more savage elements of the original into a truly refined delight for the senses.

There's no doubt about who's boss - it's the hops! Still, in a strange way this beer achieves balance. As the brew warms up, the alcohol becomes slightly more present, but it's never overpowering owing to the fact that it could never outshine the delicious hops in this brew. Alcohol is most noticable in the aftertaste, which by the way is delicious - appropriately bitter and woody - and lasts for about 10 minutes if you let it.

Overall: This was without a doubt one of the best beers I have ever tasted. Everyone and their mother is "wood aging" everying these days, but the tecnique was put to perfect use in this brew. I'm really not a fan of the original Arrogant Bastard, but the Oaked version seemed to take out all the flaws and accentuate all the positive attributes.

In conclusion - this beer is quite rare, but if you ever have the opportunity to try it, DO IT!

mitchfor3, Dec 18, 2005
Photo of Gritsak
4.28/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- dark brown with mohogany highlights..huge billowy tan head. Retention is awsome.

S- sweet malty aroma with a definite alcohol presence.

T- This beer was cellered for over a year, so the hop presence wasnt very strong. Instead of the in your face hops there was an extreme smoothness. The oaky flavor is subtile, but definitely noticeable. Vanilla and a sweet malty character blend together into a strong but balanced feel.

M- fairly thick and silky smooth body. Carbonation was almost non existent.

D- Three of us polished off one of the huge 3L bottles with no problem. The taste is strong, which is something you expect from anything stone brews, but still retains a good level of drinkablity.

overall- This is a big and flavorfull beer. Compared to regular arrogant bastard, oaked has a much smoother feel and a little more depth in the flavor.

Gritsak, Dec 18, 2005
Photo of Gueuzedude
4.22/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a frothy, amber-tan colored head that is a bit on the thin side. The beer is a hazy orange-amber color when held up to the light, otherwise it is a straight up amber color. The aroma is herbal and citrusy with notes of tangerine, orange, perhaps a bit of mint, lemon basil. The oak is really not all that noticeable in the nose at this point. There is some woodiness up front and it seems to be interacting in interesting ways with the hops, creating aromatics that I can't quite put my finger on, but they are definitely not in the regular Arrogant Bastard.

The taste has a nice full mouth-feel to it an the hops are still quite raw and aggressive. Underneath this though is the oak; most notable as a tannic and astringent note in the finish. The beer is perhaps a bit too cold right now, but the flavors I can taste are orange, grapefruit, a sort of raw grassy herbal note, sweet caramel malt (which accentuates the citrus notes), menthol in the finish, and even a bit of tobacco.

The beer is quite tasty, but the oak is fairly subtle at this point. In the end this is a good thing, because if the oak was heavy handed it would really clash with the fresh, vibrant hoppiness that is characteristic of this beer. When paired with some Mexican food the Oak character really starts to become noticeable; it becomes much more woody with a pronounced buttery-oak type note in both the aroma and taste. But it still does not dominate the overall hoppy quality of this beer. This is a solid beer all around, and one which I enjoyed trying.

Gueuzedude, Dec 06, 2005
Photo of Rastacouere
3.03/5  rDev -28%
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.

Rastacouere, Nov 08, 2005
Photo of meathookjones
4.05/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

3 liter bottles shared with myself. Dark brownish red with a huge fluffy tan head that seemed to stay around forever while covering the glass was thick lace rings. Sweet caramel and fruits with that arrogant bastard hoppiness backing it up. Very light woody notes as it warmed but they were minimal. Sweet caramel covered dark fruits over some bitter citric hops. Nice balance overall. Some woody notes were more apparent here than in the nose and seemed like it came out more than when I tried it fresh. Dry citric bitter fruity finish that sticks with you for awhile. It seemed a bit to mellowed at this point though. Pretty solid mouthfeel with good thickness and creaminess. I find the regular version to be more drinkable but this was still fairly easy to get through a bottle that big. Glad I drank it now because I can’t see this getting better with more age.

meathookjones, Sep 30, 2005
Photo of PatandDavid
3.95/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at 'bones. Dark amber, low head. Aroma was of that coveted candied hoppiness that I really like. What I like about this one was the prefect balance of malt to hops...neither overpowered the other, nice job. Oakiness wasn't that detectable, although I thought perhaps it added some dryness to the taste/mouthfeel.

PatandDavid, Sep 13, 2005
Photo of TurdFurgison
4.33/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Drank on tap at Naja's in Redondo Beach, served in a pint glass.

Appearance: Extremely dark opaque brown, with a 1-finger whitish tan head.

Smell: Hoppy, malty, and inviting.

Taste: Strong and delicious. I guess I'm not experienced enough to tell the difference between this and the non-oak version. This tasted the same to me (although to be fair, it's been about a month since I last had arrogant bastard). Very very nice.

Notes: No problems recommending this to anyone. Very strong and addictive.

TurdFurgison, Sep 06, 2005
Photo of warriorsoul
4.4/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap today at Redbones...it was this or Smutty's Wheat Wine...I believe I chose wisely.
Arrives a bit too chilled in a standard shaker glass...dark copper color w/ a full finger of fluffy off-white head. It does not remain long, but the lacing produced is phenomenal.
Aroma is nothing over the top...a great malt presence w/ a hint of wood and floral hops.
Taste is great...all I could expect from this one. Just when you think AB coudn't get any better and then comes the oak flavor...subtlely added, but complements this brew so perfectly.
I believe it adds to the lingering bitterness, as the hops are dominantly featured, but the oak carries all the way through the finish and quenches so nicely.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied and the carbonation if divine. Drinkability is through the roof...hard to go to anything else after tasting this one from Stone.
Really psyched to finally get to try this one...and especially on tap.

warriorsoul, Aug 23, 2005
Photo of DogFood11
4.7/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

If your a fan of arrogant bastard this is a must try. The oak ageing adds a whole new level to an already fine brew. Appearance was the same as the original but when I leaned in for a whiff it was a whole new brew. Woody, hoppy, with a heavy malt body that seems to be the boss. It is actually a settled down version of the original...all the tastes are a bit more subtle and add in a richer body and the wood and you have a gem. Had this at Naja's at a beer advocate social after hearing the guys talking about it. Thanks for the heads up...great great brew.

DogFood11, Aug 14, 2005
Photo of coasterfreak75
4.78/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The pour was dark copper-red with a thick creamy three finger head that very slowly dissapated and stuck to the glass throughout the drink.

The smell was full of strong hop spice with a hint of malt and slight floral overtones.

The drink started with a kick your teeth out kick of hops the middle was all sweet heavy malt with oily lingering hops at the finish and just a slight hint of oak to hold you over until the next drink.

If you can still find it buy it now, this is by far the best incarnation of Arrogant Bastard.

coasterfreak75, Jul 17, 2005
Photo of BuckSpin
4.55/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My 100th BA Review.

I have been thinking for weeks which beer to review, and the opportunity to sample this came up, so it seems appropriate to let this stunning beer be my "Beer Benjamin", so to speak.

First, any beer in a bottle that big that even comes with a lock...whoa. Like most Stone offerings, this is a beauty to see. A striking ruddy-orange with an amazing clarity in its crystal ability to refract light. A 1/2" head of mixed cream colored foam never quite disappered - nice.

Oh, the nose. One word - OAK. Un (expletive) believable! Just outrageous. Its like a freshly split section of seasoned oak is under my nose. There are some malt and fruit qualities but who are we kiding? Amazing.

Taste? One word - OAK. Again, amazing. The barrel and Arrogant Bastard have played well together. The usuallt strong hops have been tamed to a pleasing bitterness that dance atop the usually fruited but now more wine-like tones. Malts and oak play like old friends - this is a fantastic experience that taste like no beer I have ever tried. Ironically it finishes very light, some bitterness, and some vanilla like sweet tones.

This was simply one of the best and most unique beers I have ever tried. If you have the opportunity, do your tongue a favor and try this. Outstanding.

BuckSpin, Jun 26, 2005
Photo of ManekiNeko
4.13/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big ass honkin' 3L bottle shared with some NoVA BAs. Gently chilled. I used a Maudite tulip cuz the demon iz badassz.

Appearance: Clear cherry red topped by a tannish frothy head. A thick blanket of foam was retained for quite some time and left strong lacing and massive blobs on the glass.

Smell: Restrained AB hoppiness with a strong caramel malt backbone. Whiffs of oaky vanilla and smoke. A brooding, dark smell, perhaps like damnation?

Taste: Odd cedar/woodchip flavor on the outset. Bittersweet malty caramel kicks in accompanied by vanilla sweetness. Bitter hoppines pervades the entire experience. Woody flavor well integrated, though it takes the hoppiness down a notch or two.

Mouthfeel: A real solid medium body. This sucker has been working out and it shows.

Drinkability: I'm worthy, but I think I'll stick to normal AB unless this comes out in bombers (not bloody likely I hear). A good Stone effort.

ManekiNeko, Feb 24, 2005
Photo of donnebaby
4.65/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Dark ruby color is covered up quickly by a dense foam that dies to a filthy haze.

Nose is full of fresh hops and sweetness, and orange spice. Where is the oak?

Taste evolves as the brew warms, into a sweet orange, spiced with cloves. Very sweet, strawberries and cherry. A heavy sweet layer of vanilla adds to the already smooth mouthfeel, that is only interrupted by a spicy grating of hops and booze. Something grahamy and toasted develops. Overall, a little on the sweet side.

Excellent drinkability. Alot more force and stuff going on in this beer than the -- dare methinks -- "low" ABV.

donnebaby, Feb 18, 2005
Photo of tjd25
4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

As I poured the first glass, I had the impression that there would be no head, but it ended up forming a nice light and velevty head on an intense opaque amber brown color body. The smell is extraordinarily fresh and shows a great bouquet of red fruits with a very enjoyable sweetness. Also lighter hints of citrus, with a grapefruit character appearing slowly and getting deeper in the taste. Yeasty notes of vanilla appear after a while. The taste is way more aggressive than the smell. The very dry hoppiness invades and conquers the mouth with together with some oily notes. As for red fruits and citrus, their influence switched from the one they had in the smell: the once dominant red fruits notes are more subtles in the taste, as the grapefruity character took over. The aftertaste gets quite dry and grassy. The oaked aspect appears together with notes of cherry that create a slightly floury feeling on the tongue. Mouthfeel is enjoyably lighter than expected. Its complexity stimulates all the parts of the mouth and of the tongue. This surprizingly soft mouthfeel contributes to the great drinkability of theis character brew.

tjd25, Feb 18, 2005
Oaked Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 4,860 ratings.