Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 8,416 | Reviews: 2,767 | Display Reviews Only:
4.75/5 rDev +13.9%
I have always said it, Arrogant Bastard is the best invention in beer that has borne a true American Signature.
Malt!...Hops!....I might have given it back right then, right there if the bottle had not taunted be so. Bold aromas of caramelized malts, sweet dark fruits. Toasty and complcex. Waters the palate.
Deep mohogany in color. Ultimately clear. Dense tan head falls to about 1" and remains. Very nice lacing. A thick pour with medium carbonation.
Imediate assault of an aggressive malt and hop blend. Sweet caramels, figs, dates, a bit of licorice, vanilla, cherries....and a kitchen sink. (it's all in there). Agressive hop flavoring quickly rounds out this full-to-thick bodied delight. Bittering is well within balance of the malt. Complex through the body and gaining through the finish with the higher detection of alcohol. Viscosity to the mouth is not as great as I had expected from the appearance. Finishes nicely, not too drying or tacky for a high gravity or high alcohol beer.
Bittering hops dominate and mask subtle sweetness left in the background. Flavors of those dark fruits linger for quite a while. Well attenuated, melanoiden laiden, yet creamy and full-magical!
The malt bill seems characteristic of a bold Dopplebock, yet hopped with a ton of Chinook- much like an Imperial IPA. A monster yeast gives a complex and rich fruit flavor. It's not a sipper, but we won't be doing keg-stands with this one either. A beer that has won my respect, regardless what the bottle might say.
06-10-2005 14:26:03 | More by BEERchitect
4.35/5 rDev +4.3%
Poured a deep brown with a nice creamy head and thick lace throughout. Smell has a definate nuttiness as well as some hops, smells very thick. Taste is caramel and nutty as I expected from the smell, but has a nice dry hopped back. Very nice and smooth, leaves you wanting more. This is a definate keeper and a good way to welcome myself back home from vacation!
12-09-2006 03:07:28 | More by mikesgroove
4/5 rDev -4.1%
Awesome brew that tasted better than expected and went down smooth.
Poured from 22oz bottle into pint glass.
A- Large off-white head and beautiful copper color
S- Strong complex smell I can't put my finger on
T- Carmel and malt with hint of hops
D- Extremely smooth but has a nice kick. Drinkable for a strong ale.
Bottle had 10/24/10 drink by date, drank on 10/03/10 and beer was still extremely fresh.
I'm trying just about every Stone beer this month. So far everything has been excellent.
10-03-2010 23:13:15 | More by acurtis
4.08/5 rDev -2.2%
Bottle: Poured a deep opaque brown colored beer with a medium head with standard retention. Aroma is very powerful and consist mostly of what I think to be hops, a sweet and bitter type of hops though. Taste is quite unique for me (I think this is my first foray into the strong American Ale type) and consist mostly of some strong bitter hops and underline by some very subtle sweetness. Wow, this is like being hit on the head with a brick plainly lots of malt and hops are included in here. The alcohol is a subtle but complement very well.
08-09-2004 14:42:22 | More by Phyl21ca
4.15/5 rDev -0.5%
A: Very dark brown with some reddish tints (in the right light), "off-white" foam.
S: Not as intense an aroma as you might expect. Some dark fruit, caramel, and hops.
T: The first thing you notice is the intense bitterness, which I love. There are some subtler caramel flavor.
M: Great mouth feel: good amount of carbonation. The bitterness comes into play here as it lingers.
D: A great beer, but I would not call it very "drinkable". Something I'd recommend trying, however.
06-22-2009 21:45:07 | More by womencantsail
4.03/5 rDev -3.4%
Appearance: Pours a clear, reddish-amber body with a medium, lasting, off-white head.
Smell: Sweet-smelling maltiness with a sprinkle of gooey brown sugar. There's a slight oxidized quality present, leading me to assume this bottles a bit on the older side. Dark fruits smelling of golden raisins. Pine-scented, woody hops.
Taste: Toasty, bready malts with a medium sweetness and taste of brown sugar. Slight dark fruitiness. Hoppy pine wood flavor, a bit of fresh mint. Medium hop bitterness, though it holds on through to the bittersweet finish.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.
Drinkability: A really delightful beer fresh or even with a bit of age on it.
06-09-2008 02:02:09 | More by ChainGangGuy
4.43/5 rDev +6.2%
Fell in love with Stone after having this beer. I loved everything
about it, The bottle was awesome looking the name was great. The story on the back was also very cool. This beer was just a really good starting point for me when venturing out into the beer world. Had my first bottle on 4-17-2008. The beer poured out as a deep amber color. The head is pretty thick looking and white. head that laces the glass really well. The smell was stronger than what I was used to at the time, It was big and hoppy, a subtle sweetness on the nose as well. The taste has a strong pine flavor to it. The hop character of this beer is very good. The other tastes were of some caramel malts that gave is a slight sweetness and a light wooden flavor too. The mouthfeel is medium and had a good drinkablity to it. Overall, I think this beer is a classic in it's own way. As long as Stone makes this beer I don't see them going out of business anytime soon. It's a beerthat's got the balls to stand up against all the others out there and say "I'm better than you".
06-15-2011 22:25:21 | More by Knapp85
3.98/5 rDev -4.6%
Pours a medium brown with medium sticky head,aroma is somewhat hoppy and maybe a little orange-like.Taste is pretty hoppy and zesty to begin with,with some nutty tones as well as caramel tones on the palate.Wow this is a complex brew,have heard alot of stuff about this one,now I know why.
07-06-2003 15:16:04 | More by oberon
4.1/5 rDev -1.7%
Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.
How has it taken me so long to review this bastard? It pours a translucent dark tawny brown, capped by a finger or so of ecru foam. The nose comprises a good amount of citrus, grapefruity, and piney hops backed by a strong backbone of solid caramel. The taste holds similar characteristics, though all elements are taken to a higher level: hops are large, the maltiness is large...maybe I'm not worthy after all, as I'm not sure how else to describe this flavor combination. The body is a hefty medium, with a moderate carbonation and a smooth feel. Overall, a beast, yes, but not as beastly as it would have me (or you) believe.
06-28-2010 07:45:34 | More by TMoney2591
4.35/5 rDev +4.3%
A - Poured out a dark amber/burgandy color with a foamy, tan, two finger head. Left huge rings of lace.
S - It smelled of malt and powerful hops.
T - It tasted of grassy hop bitterness. The malt flavor is toasty and burnt. Also, a warm alcohol flavor.
M - It was crisp and sharp. A medium to heavy-bodied beer.
D - Great in so many ways. The description on the bottle was hysterical. The taste is outstanding. I am very pleased with my first beer from Stone.
06-27-2007 02:00:56 | More by zeff80
4/5 rDev -4.1%
Can't believe it took me so long to review this beer; it's been a staple in my diet for years.
Appearance: A body of reddish-amber with an off-white two finger head served in a 16 oz mug. Clarity is excellent.
Smell: Earthy, piney hops, a touch of citrus and caramel.
Taste & mouthfeel: An utterly unique and instantly recognizable combination of caramel and toasted malt flavors and intensely bitter resiny/earthy hops. Hops come out with even greater presence in the finish, drying the palate with flavors of pine and bitter lemon peel. Body is on the fuller side of medium.
Drinkability: High, though the aggressive bitterness can take its toll on the palate after a couple of pints.
Notes: I never seem to get sick of this beer; an absolute classic of American craft brewing.
05-10-2008 23:43:59 | More by largadeer
4.25/5 rDev +1.9%
First ran into this bad boy at a Shell gas station (!) in Sandpoint, Idaho. Not knowing what it was, sitting in a standard cooler next to the gargantuan BMC offerings, the anti-marketing on the bottle had me at "Bastard". That first bottle was unfortunately consumed out of hotel room tumbler, with predictable results - under-appreciation and a fuzzy subsequent stroll by the lake front...
Now, poured into an American pint glass, this beer exhibited a dark-hued and somewhat cloudy cola colour, with a reddish tinge. Two fingers of soapy-looking beige head, that disappears momentarily, leaving practically no lacing. This beer looks mean. It smells primarily of sweet malt, molasses, and raisins, but with a pine hop essence lurking just under the surface. The taste is big and malty, to be sure, but the oily hop bitterness asserts itself a whole lot more, to balance things out, leaving a nice mellow hop kick in the finish. There is moderate carbonation, and the malt presence is far from cloying. The elevated alcohol is a no-show, until you've finished the bottle, and then you know. This wonderful strong ale will put hair where there wasn't hair before, as evidenced by my girlfriend giving me her share of the bottle, in exchange for some nice tame Belgian ale, after a few sips. And due to its in-your-face nature - one bomber at a time would be plenty.
(trying not to mouth the words as I re-read this...)
05-25-2008 07:04:54 | More by biboergosum
4.5/5 rDev +7.9%
Easily one of the best beers I've ever had. A really unique beer utilizing a heavy charge of dark crystal malts and hop flavor. Highly hopped and luxuriously malty. The balance is clearly toward the bitter & hoppy side, but the malt balances perfectly! It's this razor sharp balance that allows the beer to finish clean and dry - not too flabby from alot of malt, and not too grating from back-of-the-mouth hop bitterness. Precision!
The body is a hazy orangish-copper with crimson highlights, and its full and foamy tan head holds quite well. It drops to a thin 1/4" that remains throughout the first half of the glass, and it leaves dense, clinging rings of lace.The beautiful colr and head make up for any distraction that the haziness might cause the inexperienced taster. The bouquet wafts from the glass loaded with fresh hops (somewhat earthy and leafy, but also clearly citrusy... Goldings and Cascade?) over rich caramel malt. The firm body is accentuated by an exceptionally fine carbonation and it's smooth and creamy in the mouth. The flavor is rich and fairly complex with a sweet caramel and lightly fruity malt note up-front that combines with earthy and citrusy hop flavors as it crosses the palate. It finishes with a firm, drying bitterness and residual earthy and leafy hop flavors. If there's anything that hinders it's drinkability (apart from the fact that it's a full-charged malt & hop attack!) it's the 7.2% alcohol by volume. I may not be able to drink more than two, but I want to drink more than two! Well worth seeking out!
07-25-2002 06:04:33 | More by NeroFiddled
4.38/5 rDev +5%
Pours a cherry brown with a lingering massive head that leaves a fair amount of lace on the way down. Nose at first seemed like blueberries, but calmed down after a minute. Taste is massively complex and thorough. Sweet edge follows a burst of hop flavor with a deep almost oaky presence, which turns into what I want to say is a slight alcohol presence on the end. Not for the faint of heart, or palate. This beer is complex and lacks mercy for those who are immature in beer.
12-30-2007 05:27:59 | More by RblWthACoz
4.63/5 rDev +11%
Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass. The bottle tells me that I'm not worthy.
Let's find out.
A: Nice deep brownish-crimson color with thick, even tan head and leaves a thick lace on the glass.
S: Strong hoppy smell that lets you know your drinking a beer that doesn't mess around. There's also some malt and a bit of sweet fruitiness in the smell as well. Nice combination.
T: A heavy, bitter hop flavor hits you right off-the-bat, but it's not the "Eew, this beer tastes awful" kind of taste that you get with some beers. It's more of a "Yeah. This beer is hardcore!" I'd call it a "kick" but it stays throughout each and every sip and in the after-taste as well. So, by definition, it's not really a "kick" it's more like a "strangle-hold." The strong hop flavor is complimented very nicely by the same malt sweetness that you get in the smell.
M: Crisp, smooth, medium-bodied. The carbonation is just right.
D: This beer is most certainly drinkable, but only for one who appreciates good beer. I could go with this stuff all night long, but that wouldn't do the beer justice. After a couple of 22oz bottles, I would switch to some other "buzz maintainer" that I won't need to taste.
If you're used to drinking the common beers of the big 3 (Miller/Bud/Coors) don't try to broaden your experience with this stuff, because it will probably turn you off, but if you're reading this review, you'll be fine. Just below the "Arrogant Bastard Ale" on the bottle you see the quote "You're Not Worthy" and they were RIGHT. I was NOT worthy before I became a beer advocate.
01-15-2006 03:08:17 | More by TheManiacalOne
3.95/5 rDev -5.3%
A - One and a half fingers of off-white head on a reddish brown body with good clarity and ruby colored highlights. The head reasonable retention and leaves excellent lace. An unusually nice looking beer.
S - Spicy, floral hops and a strong backbone of caramel and malt.
T - Strong, smoky hop bitterness, supported by dark caramel malt and a hint of roast barley. The hop flavor has a secondary role with spicy and floral flavors and a bit of citrus. Strong hop bitterness and dark malt characterize the finish.
M - A thick, chewy body, moderate carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.
D - This is a pretty intense beer, but as every word on the bottle indicates, they were not trying to make a session beer. The hops are very aggressive and while the malt does its best to keep up with them, they dominate the flavor profile. Personally, I would prefer less emphasis on bitterness and more complex and subtle hop flavor, but that might also require less dark malt to let the hops shine through. Overall, this is an enjoyable and interesting beer, but there are better west coast hop-bombs out there.
12-12-2008 04:40:35 | More by nickfl
Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 8,416 ratings.