Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,889 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,889
Hads: 9,862
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 10.53%
Wants: 381
Gots: 1,990 | FT: 10
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: kbub6f on 11-15-2000

This is an aggressive ale. You probably won't like it. It is quite doubtful that you have the taste or sophistication to be able to appreciate an ale of this quality and depth. We would suggest that you stick to safer and more familiar territory–maybe something with a multi-million dollar ad campaign aimed at convincing you it’s made in a little brewery, or one that implies that their tasteless fizzy yellow beverage will give you more sex appeal. Perhaps you think multi-million dollar ad campaigns make things taste better. Perhaps you're mouthing your words as you read this.

At Stone Brewing, we believe that pandering to the lowest common denominator represents the height of tyranny - a virtual form of keeping the consumer barefoot and stupid. Brought forth upon an unsuspecting public in 1997, Arrogant Bastard Ale openly challenged the tyrannical overlords who were brazenly attempting to keep Americans chained in the shackles of poor taste. As the progenitor of its style, Arrogant Bastard Ale has reveled in its unprecedented and uncompromising celebration of intensity. There have been many nods to Arrogant Bastard Ale…even outright attempts to copy it… but only one can ever embody the true nature of liquid Arrogance!
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Arrogant Bastard Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,889 | Hads: 9,862
Photo of EvilKeith
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This was my first experience with an American Strong Ale.

Arrogant Bastard pours a deep ruby amber with an impressive chocolate milk colored head that slowly fades into a fine lace.
The nose picks up alcohol and citrus. Grapefruit and pineapple (yes, pineapple). It smells incredibly warm and inviting.
The taste is hard to describe. A full frontal attack on the senses.
Alcohols warms you going down. Bitter finish.

Perhaps I'm not quite ready for Arrogant Bastard. It is highly recommended by the reviewers at BA and I figured I'd try it.
I will continue to try the beers recommended by BA. This one was just not for me, yet. (650 characters)

Photo of birchstick
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - pours a brownish red with a nice head

S - loads of citrus and pine hops and cereal malts

T - Starts off with a ton of piney, bitter hops with a hint of citrus that is balanced a little bit by some cereal and caramel malt. Very bitter finish.

M - a medium to full body with perfect carbonation that goes down smoothly

D - I finally deemed my self worthy enough to bring this beer to my lips. This is pretty much how I expected it to be - a lot of hoppy bitterness without much balance. Pretty good, I don't know if I am worthy enough for it, though. I'd drink it again, but would much prefer something else from the Stone arsenal. (637 characters)

Photo of smtp4me
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

My only negative comment on this beer is regarding the hops. I enjoy beer with a strong hop taste and finish, however this one is overpowering, to the point that most of the other flavors are lost.

The color, head, carbonation are all good, however drinkability is low because of the extreme bitterness. (304 characters)

Photo of vette2006c5r
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Stone Arrogant Bastard Poured a very dark amber color, with a small head that didn't with the beer. It didnt have a very strong smell, but a very heavy smell. It tasted very strong, very heavy and very very bitter. It had a very strong flavor, and the bitterness made it hard to drink. Overall a very good beer. (311 characters)

Photo of IanCAnderson
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

A - Looks a gorgeous translucent brown-red as its pours into the glass. Big foamy head and lacing that LASTS.

S - Big, complex nose with hops dominating.

T - Flavor explosion. This guy earns his name. Again, the taste is pretty complex, but piney hops and the sting from the alcohol were dominant and fighting for my attention. As I swallow, the sweetness of the malt shines through, though it's still in the shadow of the huge hops. I wouldn't call this a balanced beer. Also, I tasted carrots after I burped. Not sure if that's relevant.

M - Pucker power. Feels thinner than I expected from the appearance, but it's not watery. Just enough carbonation for my taste. The alcohol and carbonation pair up to make for an exciting tingle factor.

D - Not exactly a session beer... I'd say it's a good beer to start off a night with, before switching to something a bit less arrogant. Though depending on the next beer, you might mistake it for water after tasting this beast. (975 characters)

Photo of LordofthePings
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Very coarse both in taste and feel. Heavy blend of both hops and malt. I see this one got some strong ratings but it's not for me. Given that so many people seem to like this one, maybe I'll try it again in a year or two as my tastes continue to change and re-rate at that time. (278 characters)

Photo of TimZebGir
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%

A: Deep ruby brown with light foamy head(3/3)
S: Light fruitiness...cherry?...citrusy hop notes (8/12)
T: Fruity notes on tip of tongue blend toward malty and bitter finish. Strong hang, like unripe grapefruit or strong coffee in the after-taste. I detect wood?(14/20)
F: Medium body and carbonation with very dry finish (4/5)
O: Really hard to pin down the subtle notes in this one. Drank it with a friend, and we both had a hard time finding words. (7/10)
36/50 (472 characters)

Photo of htomsirveaux
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Watch out, this one will smack you upside the head if you're not ready. Pours with a big tan head, the beer is ruby brown in color. Smells sweet, citric, alcoholy and slightly musty, which is odd beacuse this beer should have been fresh (I ordered it online at Beer on the Wall and tried it three days after receiving it). Almost no carbonation. From the first sip the alcohol makes its presence known. Bitter throughout with a nutty-bitter slightly astringent aftertaste, which really lingers. A faint mustiness can be tasted, which seems odd and out of place. A real hoppy kick in the crotch. I wanted to like this beer more, and I consider myself a hophead, but it was a little too bitter/astringent without enough balancing maltiness for me. (753 characters)

Photo of Shiloh
3.59/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is not a pretty brew, arrived a hazy medium brown with a very short crown of less than one finger which quickly disolved into a centre island lace.
The carbonation is lacking.
Mouthfeel is exceptional, nice fuzzy, warming feeling and very smooth going down.
The taste is well balanced to the hops, roasted barley seems prevolent,some sweetness to back, but limited.
Aroma is a little grainy, corn like.
Drinkability for me is limited due to the high ABV, but is rewarded high marks due its unique taste.
Very nice. (519 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.59/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

1 pint 6 fl. oz. poured into a nonic pint glass.

A - Pours a really beautiful dark amber color with a 2 inch khaki color head that shows very nice lacing.

S - Very malty with hop essence.

T - VERY BITTER. Left a very bitter hop taste in my mouth for some time after each sip. Almost like pure grapefruit extract. The malt taste is present but the bitterness takes a front seat.

M - Left a creamy feeling in my mouth with good carbonation.

D - I can recommend this being good with a heavy meal. I had this on St. Patrick's Day with my corned beef and potato feast and it was still quite something. This beer is not for everyone. (632 characters)

Photo of BigDaddyWarbuxx
3.59/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

There's really no aroma to speak of, but it looks beautiful. It's a fine ale with a roasted bitterness, but it's not nearly as potent in flavor as I was expecting. (164 characters)

Photo of chOAKbarrell
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I hate to say it, but I am just not blown away by this beer. I guess all the hype just sends your expectations far too high to be met.

Arrogant Bastard pours the darkest amber color with a creamy, almost Guinness-style head, that does not die away.

The smell is a lot like a barleywine, with a lot of malt & hops, and a strong alcohol scent underneath.

I find the taste to be very similar to a barleywine as well. Very strong alcoholic finish that I am not into. You can taste strong hop characters after the alcohol flavor washes over your tongue. Dry and bitter.

The mouthfeel is very smooth and full, which is nice. A pleasant creaminess is found as well. Very strange how smooth the mouthfeel is, when the actual taste & finish of this beer is rather harsh.

I don't think I'd be too interested in drinking multiple bottles of this in a row. It's just too rough, alcoholic, and pricey. And as far as I know, it only comes in 22 oz bottles. (958 characters)

Photo of Melchizedek
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Deep ruby with a solid tan head that dissipates rather quickly but hangs around as a nice sticky lace. Sexay.

The aroma's fruity, sweet and tart at once, with some raspberry/blueberry scent, maybe grape too. In the mouth the fruitiness is subordinated to the aggressive sweet/bready malts and yeast character, not to mention harsh, strong hops. A bit of anise, resin, and some vanilla and cinnamon-apple flavors join in the fun. The body's not heavy, and the carbonation's solid; the bitterness of the hops and spicy alcohol all create a rather harsh mouthfeel. Caramel and bready flavors come back stronger in the end, though the bitterness from the hops is most lingering.

This lives up to the excellent text on the back of the bomber. It's complex, and while I appreciate it, I don't see myself making this a real fridge regular. It's definitely got potential to compete with the IIPAs in my diet, though, and as a sort of indulgence to my inner geek, it succeeds quite well. (984 characters)

Photo of peabody
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours out like ice tea with 1/2 finger of off-white foam which dissapates quickly. No lacing to speak of.
Has an orange/apple peel smell with yeast and malt evident.
First taste is dark and bitter. Very little alcohol is present and the hops are in rare form. Reminds me of a bitter coffee aftertaste.
Mouthfeel is rather bland for a Stone offering. Only the hops remain in the mouth. Other than the hops it remains a very clean aftertaste.
I couldn't see myself drinking too many of these at one sitting but I can see where you might get addicted to this bitterness. (572 characters)

Photo of huhl23
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was one of my first ventures into craft beers. Before I discovered the IPA I was recommended to try Stone Pale Ale and this Arrogant Bastard. This is definitely not a pool beer, which I tried to make it at first. I was told later that to truly experience craft beers they should be drank out of a glass. So I did just that.

I can't say I love this beer but I can say that I liked it. It is pretty good, but almost peculiar at first taste. I detected a strong taste of grapefruit in this brew coming from the hops yet has a strong malty backbone to balance it out. It has a very nice appearance of caramel color brew with a 3 finger head that shrunk down but lasted to the last drop. Good beer but not something I'll seek out. (731 characters)

Photo of RBorsato
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Chocolate brown, mahogany, bronze (to light) with a full brown head, sediment floaters, good carbonation, and little lace. Nice balanced malt and hop aroma; chocolate malt notes and piney hop aroma. Tastes much like it smells with an overly bitter finish; not pleasantly hoppy. Full bodied and creamy with a harsh bitter finish.

I definitely do not understand the hype behind this one and I have tried it many times; not a recurring purchase from here on out.

($3.99 / 22 oz.) (482 characters)

Photo of Hoagie1973
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Came with a respectable tan head that retained well leaving perfect rings of lacing around the glass with each sip. Dark amber-brown body.
Smelled and tasted the same: like hops. Very fruity and citrusy hops. A caramel malt sweetness bobbed its head up and down every so often like a man tossed overboard into a sea of hops. Finish had more hop bitterness.
Not a bad one if you're in the mood for a hop bomb, but way out of balance. I can tell that the malts would be flavorful if not completely overpowered by the hops.
Still I enjoyed it. (541 characters)

Photo of Toddzillamz
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Strip off your clothes, wrap yourself in an american flag, and listen to me you beer swillin' fools. Let me take you back to a time when this great country of ours was feared. When we kicked ass and took names. When we shot first and asked questions later. We created something great and nobody could take that away from us. No brits, no commies, no nobody. Well, it's been re-created in liquid form. It's legal, it's readily available, and it's bangin' good! It's called Arrogant Bastard. This brew should be sitting on every table in the good 'ol U.S. of A., and should be the beer of choice for any redblooded American from the east, west, north or south. Stone Cold Steve Austin should be entering the ring with a bottle of Arrogant Bastard in his hand, a good buzz on, and smash the bottle right over the face of his opponent. We need more scars. He should then shank the ref, and then drop the Stone Cold Stunner to the ghost of Randy Savage as he misses his mark from the top turnbuckle.

Do your duty to god and your country. Fight hard. Stay strong. Be true. Be just. But always be a bastard. (1,102 characters)

Photo of Maestro
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer is heavy. The head is quite thick and tan and stays for the whole pint. The beer is a dark red. Smell is fruity with lots of biscuit and toast. The beer is very malty. I would say that the hops are almost subdued, a nice change for a Stone Beer. There are hints of berries and slight dry wine characteristics. Mouthfeel is very chewy and a bit sticky. Drinkability, we'll just say pace yourself. (405 characters)

Photo of AustinBeerLvr
3.57/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Had this on tap at the Draught House in Austin.

A: Beautiful dark, mahagony, red color with a good amount of head and lacing on the glass as it's consumed.

S: Without a doubt, one of the biggest complextity of hops and malt flavors I have every experienced in a beer before I even tasted it. I don't even know where to start other than I got a wonderful array of fruity hops and sweetness throughout the sniff.

T: A huge amount of flavor hits the tongue right up front including, the incredibly fruity hops and malt all seem to blend together into one. Most of the taste seems to have kind of a cherry like sweet flavor that stands out more than the other fruity flavors. Alcholol comes through and warms the throat some as it's fairly potent, but not excessive. One good thing that Stone Brewing Company did was not overdoing the bittering hops on this brew, as they are defenitely there, but don't overwhelm. At the end of the sip, there is a huge sweetness that comes through that leaves a long sweet aftertaste.

M: The body of this brew is very good, not watery, plenty of mouthfeel, just a tad on the sticky sweet side.

D: This brew would get an good rating for drinkability from me if it weren't for the excessive sweetness at the end. In my opinion, the sweet finish just sticks around too long, and I found myself wanting a glass of water by the time I finished the pint. I know it seems kind of strange to have such a large gap between dinkability and flavor, but this brew is defenitely not meant to be a session beer. That said, the complexity of this beer is defenitely something that should not be ignored. Also, watch out for the kick of this brew, as the ABV is nothing to sneeze at. (1,704 characters)

Photo of dougbassett
3.57/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

One of the "1001 Beers You Must Taste Before You Die" -- #43 of the ones I've reviewed here.

This is a very odd beer. Some things it does remarkably well, other things come out quite poorly.

Aesthetically it looks right -- Stone Brewing beers always seem to look fantastic in the glass and this is no exception, a really beautiful mahogany brown topped up with a light brown head that, if you pour it right, will linger forever. They also nailed the mouthfeel -- this has the "sticky", substantial feel that you would want in a beer advertising itself as an "Arrogant Bastard".

The nose is usually described as dark fruits and pine and that's true, but a little deceptive. It's a fairly weak hit of that, even when I let the beer warm up in the glass it never got much beyond "pretty light". I'm reminded of Stone's Smoked Porter, which would have been a better beer with more of a smoky nose. What is really surprising, though, is how out-of-balance this beer is. The light fruit on the nose is even lighter to taste, the flavors are mostly centered around a gigantic hop blast. It's not a bad hop blast but it's pretty one-dimensional, just a slap of piney hop bitterness that slowly fades away.

I confess I don't get this beer -- the hops are too one-dimensional for it to be a hop monster, and there's not enough fruit in here to make this a really good strong ale. What you end up with, actually, is something like an overhopped American Pale Ale -- not exactly bad or undrinkable, but certainly nothing all that amazing, either. (1,542 characters)

Photo of masterbruewer
3.57/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured a reddish brown with steady carbonation. Thick off-white head, good lacing.

The smell is sweet malt with a hint of grape Kool-Aid. A little creamy smell as well.

The taste starts with a hop wallop and malt slap. Then other flavors waft in and out. A carmel cream flavor, grape Kool-Aid, and chocolate liquer, are floating about in there.

The mouthfeel is a little harsh. A strong alcohol taste and a good hop bite. This one's not for everybody.

Drinkability is low, by design I think, there's a lot to this beer, and most of it is in your face. (563 characters)

Photo of BethanyB
3.57/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: A dark, clear amber with strong ruby highlights, and a smooth and creamy tan head with moderate retention.

Smell: Gently roasted dark malt, with a subtle chocolate quality. Hop aroma is light and earthy.

Taste: The taste is in line with the smell: Roasted nuts, light mocha, and resinous hops. The bitterness is strong, and lasts well into the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light mouthfeel, with a crisp, carbonic bite. It's the type of mouthfeel I would expect from a light lager, and it seems to thin out the taste. Alcohol warming is light.

Overall: Like a stronger, slightly less flavorful, highly carbonated porter. Well done, but not an ale that particularly peaks my interest. I was expecting more, due to its popularity. If I wanted this level of bitterness, I would go with an IPA. (805 characters)

Photo of BeerandWhiskeyHQ
3.57/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Deep brown/ copper with plenty of lacing
Smells of hops and malt, they are prominent and dominating
Theres a big hop profile to this beer, much more then I was expected. It’s a pretty heavy beer to drink and very malty, the alcohol presents itself fairly strongly at the finish
I think this is good but its rated 93/100 on BeerAdvocate and I don’t understand why…l Its good, but there are much better ones out there in my opinion. I have had almost every single Stone beer that I can get my hands on in this area and I think it;s overpriced and often times lets me down. Get one and try for yourself, if I were you I would skip to their Double Bastartd which is probably trhe best out of their line. (759 characters)

Photo of Ghenna
3.56/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I feel weird reviewing this beer. I'm not awful in to big hop beers, which this sort of epitomizes, but then again I'm sure that there are plenty of malty types that might be interested in this beer- so there is my preface.

This my second experience with this beer, the first of which was on tap at a local pub. Pours a ruddy amber with ~2.5 fingers of off white head. The nose speaks to the heavy hop experience that is on its way. Flavor follows nose, though as the beer sits out a bit and warms the malt makes itself known, in a little way. Medium carbonation with medium body. Not a bad beer, if you can stand the hops. (624 characters)

Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,889 ratings.