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Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,915 Reviews

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Reviews: 2,915
Hads: 9,990
Avg: 4.17
pDev: 22.78%
Wants: 398
Gots: 2,133 | 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
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Reviews: 2,915 | Hads: 9,990
Photo of TerjUGA
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a dark rustic color, darker than i expected, with a half inch pillowey off white caramel toned head with good lacing. smell of strong hops, citrus and very sweet aromas throughout. taste of initial strong hops and citrus grapefruit notes. finished with a slight malt, a very good blend and combination of flavors that go together very well. this beer is flat out great! everything blends well and its very smooth, i would recommend this stuff to anyone, Great brew!

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Photo of ndekke39
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I drank a bomber of this to celebrate passing my dissertation defense. I figured that now I've got the Ph.D., I can act like an arrogant bastard, and should therefore drink accordingly.

I've heard a lot about this beer, so I was excited to try it. I eventually drank the whole 22 oz by myself. Pours a delicious reddish-brown, nice and clear, with a thin, off-white head. Very good retention, some lacing on the pint glass. Smells and tastes of toasted malts, caramel, toffee, nuts. I thought this was a strong, chewy Brown Ale at first. Good balance with some mild hops. A bit of warming alcohol. Excellent mouthfeel for the decently thick flavors - I think this was spot-on; I've had far too many watered-down "Strong" Ales. Overall, an exceptional beer. Great body, wonderful balance of flavors, all the elements work together to make this a highly drinkable beer. I can see why so many people consider this a standard in the American craft beer repertoire.

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Photo of Doctuh
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Beautiful amber red with a thick head that never loses its glory as it clings after the brew. On each lift the carbonation parts along the bottom of the glass as if part of a miracle. Superb mouthfeel, the carbonation expertly dissipating against the lips. Grapefruit is the dominance at the moment, both in aroma and in linger at the top of the throat post swallow. Strange forebodings of overpowering hops never impude, rather moving beyond strength and presence towards transcendence. Only with some lingering moments around the tongue do the hops truly reveal to us, bare in essence.

Arrogance if as the outward projection of fear in ones own ability: proceed without, well performed.

- Bomber pour, cellar temperature, into a pint glass -

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Photo of Winter
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a clear ruby-brown with a thick light brown head. Thick sheets of lacing down the side of the glass. Aroma consists of citrusy hops, malt, some dark fruit, dark rum and has a sweetness to it. Medium-bodied mouthfeel. A firm bitterness is present throughout. Nice caramel malt background. Hop bitterness and malt flavor seem to balance each other out rather well. Warming alcohol effect is noticed as the ale goes down. Excellently crafted. I only wish this was available in Wisconsin on a regular basis and that I didn't have to travel 2 hours to track down a bottle.

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Photo of latackbeer
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I think this was my first of this style! Awesome, I had one bottle and went back for more. Poured a finger head with bright red body!! Color was awesome and the taste was even better. The smell of dark fruit and smoky!! Taste the same as smell with a great hop presence of grapefruit and zesty lemon. The smoky flavor was the last to leave. I could drink this all day!!

Next is the double Bastard and if it's anything like this I'm doubly excited!!

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Photo of Otsaika
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've heard about this beer for a while, but never gotten around to trying it. I wish I hadn't waited so long!

A: Pours thick. A darker caramel color, with a larger head that lingers.

S: Hops, hops and more hops, and a bit of citrus.

T: Delicious. A nice grapefruit taste to start off, then a big hit of the hops, finishing with a bit more grapefruit and maybe a hint of pine.

M: A bit thick, but very enjoyable. Definitely not something to chug down at a frat party.

D: Because it's so big, I don't think I could drink more than a couple of these in a night, but boy does it go down smooth.

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Photo of ryalmighty1
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle slowly poured into a pint glass (a few times to get it all)

Got this beer at the local liquor superstore. A little pricey, but they can get just about whatever you want.

Appearance: Very dark amber/kinda chocolatey in color, large head about a a finger and a half that persisted for quite a good time. Good lacing. Looks thick as pine tar

Smell: Hops, hops and more hops. Fruity, citrusy esters present, most definitely piney.

Taste: Now for the good part. This beer is stout, hoppy, citrusy and piney. Absolutely wonderful. Very warming as well. Bitter, yes, but so full of flavor it would be worthless if not for the bite it has.

Mouthfeel: Very, very creamy and a little fizzy at times. Easy to drink for how stout it is. Full bodied.

Drinkability: Rather easy for what it is, but if you are looking for a session beer, unless you like full bodied kick you in the shins ales, then this beer isn't for you. It will make you appreciate the subtleties of strong hops though.

Overall, I LOVE THIS BEER! First time I had it was at the Beer Sellar (actual spelling) in Newport, KY on tap, and it only keeps getting better every time I drink it. A definite A if not REALLY close to an A+

By the way, the warmer it got, the better it got. This beer really has it all...

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Photo of 2Cents
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a large tulip.

A: Nice head that sticks around a while. Its a dark amber, quite clear.

S:Malt, yeast esters, pine needles, caramel and alcohol.

T: Caramel, coffee, pine needles and grapefruit-rind at the end.

M: Almost creamy with some carbonation and alcohol bite.

O: This is a really good American beer. It's not to west-coast hop dominant; and that's coming from a California brewery, a good one at that.

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Photo of ectomorph
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I compare all ASA's to this beer.

Poured from the bottle into a tall pilsner glass.

A - Held up to the light, this rich deep ruby/burgundy color is quite nice. Full finger head that LASTS with the lacing that covers every inch...

S - Grapefruit? I swear I smell grapefruit and something else. Really nice, must have taken 10 sniffs and wanted more. ;)

T - The grapefruit again with a great balance to be a 7.2%'er.

M - Great body, not too rich but far from watery.

D - If I ever win the lottery, I doubt I'll ever drink anything else.

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Photo of mjryan
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep copper with an outstanding tight white head. Great lace and retention. Smells a bit like plums and roasted malt with a great fruity hop undercurrent. It has a very elusive aroma profile. Not too malty, yeasty or hoppy. They all meld very well. Flavour is way hoppier than the aroma would lead you to think. Again kind of elusive. Bitter hops, some plum and then an almost chocolate like malt presence. Dry and bitter and slightly roasty on the finish. Mouthfeel is full but not heavy or oily. Carbonation is medium. Wow what an interesting beer. Unlike anything Ive ever had. It is like they took the best aspects from a bunch of different beer styles and fused them together into one glorious beer. Highly recommended.

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Photo of CCStix
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Growing up in San Diego and going to Cal State San Marcos, Stone has been a staple in my life. There once was a time back in my freshman year of college (2002) when I was not worthy. My Fraternity insisted on kegs of arrogant bastard and my palate was not adept to the wonderfulness that is this beer. These days all I got to say is damn I love this beer. Over the past decade I have always looked forward the to malty, burned sugar, and hoppy nose. The color is a fantastic deep red. The flavor is plenty malty, with nice caramel tones, and a nice strong bitterness. Think a Doppelbock DIPA. It's rad! The mouthfeel is a little over carbonated but I won't dock them any points for that. Give it a try!

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Photo of dcook11
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours athick three finger brownish head. Forms a sort of iceberg in the pint glass. Sticky sea foam lacing across the side of the glass. The beer itself looks similiar to iced tea, but with visible carbonation. The smell is of hops, carmel, and just a touch of malt at the end. Also another smell i cant determine...maybe cotton candy? The taste is strong, but smooth. Heavy, yet balanced. Hops and bitterness take the lead followed closely by a touch of alcohol and a slight candied sweetness. A classic and always a go to beer.

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Photo of barknee
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Arrogant Bastard pours a deep burnt caramel color with an impressive chunky-foamy tan colored head. Aromas of fruitcake, pine, juniper, lime zest and candied fruits soar from thy glass. The taste is rich and flavorful, having a warm roasted malt and bitter hop lip-smacking interaction that is truly outstanding. Dangerously easy to quaff, the embedded natural carbonation creates the perfect atmosphere for this turbo-enhanced brew, as this active and dense carbonation carries itself onboard in a perfect way. I have tried a few of Stones’ products and I’ve always felt that they lacked an element of profound complexity. This ale stands out as my favorite to date, having many more layers of complexity, much better in proportion, balance and just a better synthesis of its total parts creating one. This is a fantastic presentation of the style, perhaps the icon.

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Photo of govtmule
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had my first AB at Monk's in Philly. I have to say that is a good beer. It was too dark to really get a good look at the appearance, but from what I could see it was a nice cherry or mahogany wood color.
Nice frothy head.
The taste is the best part of this beer. I'm still working on how to describe beers, but all I can say is that this beer is pretty intense. Lots of flavor. I couldn't drink 'em all night, but I could drink 'em every night.

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Photo of shandy
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

There's nothing I can say that hasn't been said before and I rarely, if ever, post a review.

Last night however we flooded in our street after storms that haven't been seen in this area within living memory. Our house escaped thankfully but I spent the day clearing out the one room that flooded and the garden which was shot to shit and, of course, helping the neighbours with whatever needed doing.

I've been abstaining from beer for Feb Fast which, given that we're only on the 5th, means I haven't gone too long although today also marks my 1 week without beer anniversary.

Anyway, after a truly awful 24 hours I decided a beer was in order and where did I turn? Arrogant Bastard. It's been over a year since i tried this beer and tonight there could have been no better beer I could have selected. It was all in one package. The malt, the hops the mouthfeel. Everything hit the spot and funnily what I'd actually been craving over the past few days was a real citrus driven IPA. This wasn't it but it was the better for it. I made the right choice putting those other beers back. The gargoyle spoke to me.

The rain has been off today so I'm going to have another beer.

Oíche mhaith

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Photo of Westsidethreat
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I go back and forth wether I like this or Ruination more. RARELY does a beer come along that is new and original. Something that hasn't been done yet. Hoppy and bitter, alcoholic and deep. Color is somewhat amber and non flattering, hiding the truth. Head holds its own thru the entire course

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Photo of Avantyawn
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22 ounce bomber into pint glass. My first try of this beer and boy am I impressed...

A: Deep translucent brown with reddish hue, thick head with large bubbles, tons of lacing down the glass as I drink more and more.

S: Sweet caramel and some sweet floral fruitiness, strawberry jam, sweet tarts, gentle malt presence and a touch of alcohol at the end.

T: What a nice surprise this beer is. I am getting more and more into Stone with each beer I sample. Tastes like a rustic deep strong IPA. Slightly sweet and salty, sour, bitter, fruity. Very dry bitter ending but there is enough of a nice oily taste here that the bitterness is not overwhelming. It just borders on that aesthetic.

M: Delicious fresh hop oils. Strong but not overpowering carbonation. Medium thick but with a light smooth finish. Excellent!

D: I am pounding this bomber, it just hits the spot amazingly well after walking around the city for a few hours. I had a slightly rough throat, I would say this is an excellent beer for allergies or a slight sore throat form a cold. When I have a cold I like bitter soothing hoppy beers , this would fit the bill. Exceptional drinkabilty. Amazing beer.

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Photo of MSchae1017
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer was tasted in a snifter from the 22oz bottle.

This beer pours a brownish ruby amber with a frothy tan head that holds quite nicely with an even film and plenty of lacing. The smell is of toasted malts and HOPS! The taste is also fantastic. Its malty up front with the toasted malts and then it hits you afterwards with a huge amount of flavorful hops. The mouthfeel is a great body and has a nice carbonation. Overall, a great beer.

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Photo of boulevard2
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber with no freshness date

Pours thick carmel colored almost looks like iced tea. Smells sweet and delicious so many characteristics I don't know where to start, grapes, malt , hops and caramel. The taste is smooth and creamy with hops , malts, caramel and honey . This is a stellar beer and I would put this beer up against any other and be on top .I now understand and deem myself worthy ...thank you Stone Brewing!

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Photo of tai4ji2x
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

yes! this is the reason i came back to the states for a visit!

dark, DARK amber, pretty gem-like clear despite the bottle conditioning. awesome head and lacing.

great citrusy, fruity, piney hop aroma, almost perfume-like. hint of toasted malts.

hearty, malty flavor, with a nice strong kick of hops. really well balanced and amazingly smooth. i just can't get enough of this!

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Photo of KKB
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A – A gorgeous deep copper/ caramel with a tight-bubbled light beige head. A good looking beer, it starts leaving lacing around the edges from the get go as the head recedes.

S – Am I worthy? If ever a head could smell intimidating this is it: Over-hopped, ridiculous amounts of malt—arrogant indeed. The smell contains sharp, citrus hops as well as a concrete malt overtone that probably should clash, but doesn’t…at all. One of the best noses out there, IMO.

T – It’s a meal, you know? It’s an experience, it’s a delight, a lark, a song, an adventure. The taste is just so bold, and in a way typifies Stone brewery in my opinion. This beer should be an overwrought undertaking—it’s too much—so many hops, so much malt, so much character, it ought to overwhelm. And yet it does not, it is simply… great. One of the best things out there. Beautifully sweet and caramel-esque from the malty goodness, powerfully bitter and floral from the huge hoppy content, and these two super powers balance one another out. It’s very impressive, it’s very good—I see where the arrogance stems from.

M – The mouthfeel is just like this strong ale, it is bold, it is concrete, but it is just right for this beer. It has a medium body, very light carbonation with a bitterness on the palate due to the hops

O – This aint my first rodayo kid, I’ve been drinking his arrogance for a minute now. And I must say, that this is one of my favorite brews, from one of my favorite breweries on the planet. It is not nearly as intimidating as you may think it is, it just has so much flavor, and it is beautiful thing. Go beer, go, stone, go arrogance. DELICIOUS!

Ps. Ignore the 4 for the overall. I am only giving it that to balance it out to the score that I think this beer deserves. A 4.63 is utterly appropriate, and I think I gave each of the categories an accurate score, but with the overall being 4.5 the score for the beer was somewhat too high, so I lowered the overall.

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Photo of wl0307
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Purchased from the BSF bar of GBBF 2008; coming in a 1 Pt. 6Fl. Oz. brown bomber bottle, served cool in Tripel Karmeliet's branded long-stemmed, tulip-shaped goblet;

A: pours an ultra elegant dark mahogany hue, coming with fairly good clarity and moderate, fine fizziness; the dark beige creamy froth comes thin but tight and creamy, lasting loyally throughout the drink.
S: tell me what's the difference b/w this and an "American DIPA"?... maybe the colour and (by inference) how much dark malt takes up the overall percentage of the ingredients. Apart from that, the aroma here is just as marvellous as any heavily hopped American ale - the creamy malt, sweet nutty, sweet coffee-ish, raisiny and longan-fruity façade cannot prevent the rich, spongy, thickly aromatic hoppiness from sneaking through. The fantastic lychee-ish hops are truly pleasantly pronounced but not quite as sharp or lively as other heavily hopped ales by Stone, maybe due to the equally assertive presence of complex and oily maltiness.
T: simply sublime - the lubricating hoppy swallow of grapefruits and lychees fruits along with lots of mixed dried fruits is never far from semi-toasted walnuts and jammy malts; the aftertaste develops seamlessly following the tail of the main flavour, not so sharp but rather 3D-structured bitter, as a sign of interaction b/w dark/lightly-toasted malts and quality hops. The finish goes especially enticing but deep, where the chewy part of the almost roast tea-ish hops creeps down the palate and renders a dry but soothingly bitter finish down the wings of the tongue. Not to be ignored is a delicate touch of black cherry, licorice and spice that adds to the overall complexity. This is an Anglo-American hybrid ale at its best, I reckon.
M&D: due to successful bottling, the palate is really fresh and helps to lift the weight by a good margin with only the necessary dose of soft carbonation; the flavour profile is balanced, deep, yet overall surprisingly approachable - I find myself in deep thought about the structure of this ale and blissful imagination of how it might have tasted on the cask-conditioned form... Truly, a "well-hopped premium bitter" like this (this is how I appreciate this ale, regardless of any self-acclaimed beer style imposed here or by Stone, which it hasn't) shouldn't be an "Arrogant Bastard" in any sense. Frankly, I've never been able to grasp the humour (or pretentiousness) of Stone's beer-naming "strategy" (on top of lines and lines of unnecessary/redundant/quite uninformative explanation on the back label for many ales they bottle), which is quite a failure; but, I loyally love their beers. This AB is firmly on my top 3 from this brewery (so far) without a doubt. Being this drinkable and approachable, I almost feel I can stick to this ale the whole night...

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Photo of jasonpeckins32
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer is amber in color with some extreme red notes. One of the reddest beers Ive ever seen. Small khaki head layers the top of the glass.

The nose is very piney and citrusy. Awesome hop aroma.

A thrashing amount of citrus and bittersweet hops make for quite a bold taste. Earthy, piney, resiny. A welcomed kick in the palate with this ale.

The mouthfeel is soft and creamy, yet still decently carbonated.

The drinkability is decent, but the heavy flavor would make it difficult to enjoy several of these.

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Photo of jtw5877
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to Xlperro for the sample. Nice dark color with a thick tanish head. Nice hop smell. I first notice the citrusy grassy hops, yet the maltiness is right there too. Great drinkability, I could drink this all night, if it wasn't for the 7+ alcohol. I love it.

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Photo of BigDRS
4.61/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a pint glass. ... am I worthy?

A - Color is a deep amber with a rich, thick tan head. Tons of tiny bubbles linger in the head and retention is awesome. Lacing is also top notch. A suburb visual specimen.

S - The nose is very interesting. Lots of caramel notes up front, with a little roasted/nutty character and some hops in the background.

T - The caramel and nuts from the nose are there, with a nice hop bitterness on the back end. There's a nice bit of sweetness right in the middle of everything on my palate with just a bit of dark fruit. This is a really, really great tasting beer.

M - Mouthfeel is good, but I'd like just a bit more carbonation to make this a 5/5. There is a slight syrupy quality to this beer that I really enjoy.

O - This is an awesome beer for anyone who thinks they're worthy.

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Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,915 ratings.