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Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,925 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,925
Hads: 10,056
Avg: 4.17
pDev: 22.78%
Wants: 407
Gots: 2,230 | 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: 2,925 | Hads: 10,056
Photo of Fatheranderson
4.88/5  rDev +17%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow. I just drank a 1 liter of this with a big juicy Tbone steak, and all I can say is wow, what a perfect match.

Appearance: Thick, dark, reminds me of a very good Porter.

Smell: Bitter hops, slightly burnt smelling which was absolutely the only complaint I had about this brew.

Taste: Arrogant, powerful, aggressive. Mildly sweet, but very bitter. It reminds me of a very good strong black coffee with about 3 teaspoons of sugar... add some 90% cocoa dark chocolate and you've got a decent approximation of the flavor (though that really doesn't describe the whole flavor... you've really got to try it to catch all of what I mean).

Mouthfeel: thick, hearty, slightly sticky. Very smooth overall with just enough carbonation to enhance the flavor without damaging it.

Drinkability: Wow... this is a hard one. It's definitely not an accessible beer (people that aren't used to IPAs or generally good beers need to avoid this one like the clap). That said, this beer deserves to be a fixture in the beer cooler/cellar of all true IPA lovers. This also isn't something you can just shotgun in 30 seconds and be done with it. The complicated flavor really demands that you slow down and appreciate every sip while you savor every new aspect of it.

Overall: This beer is just too complicated for anyone that isn't used to good beer. If you want a simple, easily drinkable beer, this isn't the brew for you, but if you want something to savor that will really make you pause and consider it's characteristics, this is definitely something to look into. I'd say it's a sterling example of the IPA style.

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Photo of diomz88
4.33/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

S-smells great! full of hops but at the same time fruity.
A-amber, hazy with one finger of whittish head that recedes quickly.
T-Boom! its bitter, very bitter, but in a great way! Spicy and sweet, like there's caramel in it. This will be a great beer to pair with so many foods.
M-medium bodied, hop will hit you right away but goes away smoothly. Can't even stop drinking once I took my first sip.
D-so drinkable, and will drink again.

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Photo of roundthewaygirls
3.76/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured into a tulip glass.

A: dark, hazy. appears brown. ruby tint shines through when held up to the light. got a little carried away with the pour. three fingers of frothy, off-white head. substantial lacing.

S: piney stone hop profile. caramel notes. burnt toast or biscuit. sugar or molasses. maybe something citrusy buried in the malts.

T: hops up front. malt bomb. mostly sticky molasses with a hint of caramel. more dimensional than the smell. The sweetness is offset by the burnt toast, bready character. there's a certain dryness to it that doesn't come from the hops. definitely burnt malts, but maybe wood notes as well. don't really pick up on the alcohol.

M: medium bodied. slight carbonation on the tip of the tongue. burnt malts and hops really resonate on the palate.

O: love stone. this one is a little deeper and darker than their ipas. complex malts. not particularly refreshing, but i think it follows through on its intention. bold brew for bold nights.

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Photo of eonbluekarma
4.15/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Feels like a kick in the mouth. At over 100 ibu's this is definitely a STRONG ale. A nice toasted malt flavor sneaks in just as the hop takes over your palate. The head cream color and amber beer color are immaculate. The 7.2% alcohol will leave you slow drinking this arrogant bastard.

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Photo of DrCDPriest
3.37/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Interesting name and imaginative backstory for the beer. I've tried it on different occasions, and have found it fairly consistent in what to expect from this brew.

Appearance - Pours a clear deep amber, more to the brown tint. In using a pint glass it had a nice head, about a finger an a half, and a small amount of lacing.

Aroma - You can smell the hops upon opening, very high hop nose with a bit of spiciness. If you love hops, the aroma won't disappoint you.

Taste - The taste truly follows the aroma. It tastes as it smells which helps you appreciate the distinct series of flavors. It begin with hops, a bit of spicy malt followed by what I'd describe as a bitter citrus grapefruit effect.

Mouthfeel - It is a medium body feel, a little on the flat side (on multiple occasions from different shops), and seems very light in the carbonation, a bit more might help those middle malt flavors pop a bit more.

Overall - This is a very nice beer for those loving a strong hop experience with bitter citrus after tones. Definitely an enjoyable experience.

Serving type: Bottle poured into a pint glass.

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Photo of Maracuja
3.53/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | 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.

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Photo of BigBen61
4.64/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this beer with my meal at Pazzo's in Lexington, KY not long ago. I think the ratings of all the other beer advocates speak for themselves but I just had to review this beer. If you have ever had the opportunity to try Stone's Ruination and thought...WOW...I love hops but that could be toned down just a bit then this is the beer for you. For my palate, very similar to the ruination with a bit more maltiness and a bit less of the piney bitterness.

A-Beautiful...poured from 22oz. bomber into a pint glass. Not a heck of a lot of head when poured correctly but it's wonderful reddish brown color more than made up for the lack of head aesthetically.
S-Again, Very Impressive with a pretty complex floral/pine/citrus hop aroma. I'm not expert so I can't pick out all the little aromas just yet but the hops are sure in full bouquet here.
T-Obviously, as with any great beer this is where it blew me away. Rich nuttiness to balance and intense (but not too intense) hoppy bitterness and as smooth a beer for the ABV and Hop content as I've ever seen.
M-The carbonation in my bottle was a bit higher initially than I preferred but I took my time with this one and it played out well within a few minutes of being in my glass.
D-More drinkable than it's big bro (Ruination) but still not a beer that you could knock back for hours on end.

Overall, If you haven't tried this...then what the heck are you waiting for.

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Photo of mightymoksha
4.75/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served in snifter.

Pours a beautiful amber/crimson color. Sticky, beige head which is very retentive and leaves intricate lacing.

Toasty grains, hops and alcohol make for a very aromatic nose. I think I smell plums as well.

In a one-two punch to the palate, a rich malt sweetness hits the palate, with notes of caramel and toasted malts, which is immediately supplemented with a big hop profile, with earthy, pine, floral and citrus notes. All underscored by a grainy alcohol prickliness. Lingering and flavorful aftertaste.

Coarse, full-bodied mouthfeel, with great carbonation level. Rich and decadent.

No pretenses to be found here; this is a 'big character' ale, indeed. Over-the-top and outrageously delicious.

A favorite.

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Photo of wesclaypool
4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Apparently Safeway carries this now.

a - Very dark rose-red color with creamy head that stays around. Almost looks like foamy, red wine.

s - Has a sweet, malty smell.

t - Again, very sweet and malty, with pretty prominent hints of chocolate and nuts.

m - Incredibly smooth, almost like cough syrup how it feels like it coats your mouth.

d - Usually these unique beers aren't very drinkable because they're so strong, but this one just goes down so easy. The flavor is so unique. Shame these are 5 bucks a pop.

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Photo of Jeebs
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a dark amber with 1.5 fingers worth of off white yellowish head. The head slowly dissipates and leaves GREAT lacing down the glass.

S: Smells of tropical fruits and hops with a hint of alcohol.

T: Starts off with a malty sweetness which turns into grapefruit and citrus, and ends with a nice hoppy bite.

M: Medium to full bodied with perfect carbonation! Bitter yet smooth.

D: Very drinkable beer! Great complex taste with perfect mouthfeel. If I could get this beer at home I would drink it all the time. I will definitely be picking a couple more bottles of this up before I head home!

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Photo of homersimpson67
4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a 22oz. bottle. Enjoy by 06.06.11 printed on bottle. And I definately did.
A-pours a beautiful dark copper/brown with about 1 finger of thick foam on the top. Excellent lacing in my Duvel tulip.
S-very subtle faint smell of pine and appricot? Just learning trying to imagine something clever but it just smells good.
T-nice balance that starts with a malty sweetness of cheries, that ends with a great hoppy bitterness on the tongue, love them hops!
M-feels just right, pretty smooth and light feeling at first but as it goes down you do appreciate the alcohol within.
O-very good to excellent, can't really define this beer type, sortoff a IPA but sort of a pale ale, not sure. Not unforgettable but will try again when the mood is right.

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Photo of rcairney1
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

I revisited this after a couple years. The older I get the better good beer tastes. Actually did the revisiting with my brother in law, who hadn't had it in a while either. We both found this beer outstanding, again. It is very good. I would recommend trying and re-trying. If you haven't had it in a while, do yourself a favor and get some of this arrogant bastard between your lips ASAP.

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Photo of BrewMakeMeFeel
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours a dark reddish brown with a small, short lived head and not much noticeable carbonation.

Smell: Strong hops aroma apparent immediately, with faint hint of malty sweetness.

Taste: Very strong bitter hops taste, but not overpowering. Giving way to malt and yeast flavors, with bitter hop flavor lingering on palate. Interestingly, the bitter hops are both the first and last thing you taste, with other flavor profiles (mostly malt, with a touch of yeast) cropping up in between. Makes for a deep, complex flavor profile.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, with just a small touch of carbonation.

Overall: A great beer, especially for lovers of hoppy ales. The hops flavors are very strong, but don't overpower the rest of the flavors. Not a good introduction for those not accustomed to this kind of brew, and not the beer to start the night out with if you're planning on drinking more than one.

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Photo of SeanMurray
1.25/5  rDev -70%

This has GOT to be the worst beer on Earth. WAY....WAY...WAY too much hops. It taste like you just poured a liquid lawnmower bad down your mouth. YUCK

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Photo of Ranger337
3.81/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4.5

Nice thick head that you can float a bottle cap on. Very strong malt smell and flavor, and heavy aftertaste. This is not a beer for beginners, nor the faint of heart. I am fairly new to the beer tasting scene, and this is very strong and defiantly way out of my league. I read the reviews and wanted to try it out. It's gonna be a while before I try this one again. But considering other reviews from the more experienced beer drinkers this is a great beer.

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Photo of Seumas
3.62/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I may not be worthy, but I've got this thing about sweet, high-test beers.

This was definitely a beer I wanted to enjoy more than I did. It has everything I like, big body and big hops. Unfortunately it also has a fair bit of residual sweetness, which I don't much like outside a Scotch or Old Ale.

Dry it out a bit and it'd be magnificent.

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Photo of swhitt
3.78/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Boom, this is a well known strong and taste-full beer. Pours deliciously red into my pint glass. Head about 1/4" but quickly dissipates, something that I see a lot in higher alcohol beers.

Taste is good, a little too much alcohol from my taste. Orangey and fruit.

The drinkability rates high for this much alcohol but low in general simply because

Double Bastard is way better. A lot of this guy is hype.

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Photo of rick0776
4.12/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle.

a - thick, tan head. nice lacing throughout. dark, reddish brown color.

s - citrus, hoppy smell. stonger after getting closer to the bottom. grapefruit, pine.

t - first impression - hoppy. some sweetness, molasses. dry, hoppy aftertaste.

m - chewy, think feel.

d - like it. aftertaste left me wanting more. probably drank it too fast, cause the abv is hidden fairly well.

great marketing though. def makes you want to believe that you like it, otherwise you must not like beer. nonetheless, this is a great beer. would def have it again. now i need to check out the double and oaked bastard.

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Photo of travisd13
4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is review #1 for me!!

What’s left to be said?
This is old faithful. When in doubt the Bastard will always treat you well.

Served from a slightly-chilled 22oz bomber into a snifter.

Pours a very dark red color, with a thick tan head about two fingers deep.

The smell is complex, citrus, caramel malts, and a light hint of hops.

The flavor is as good as the smell. Not an IPA. A bit of a tease to the taste buds between hops and malt. Get ready for a ride!

The mouth feel is clean and carbonation levels are first-rate. For the strength of this beer it is very drinkable!

Enjoy it if you get the chance! Cheers

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Photo of auburngrad82
4.12/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased at Whole Foods in Durham, NC and poured into a pint glass.

A- Nice dark red color with a tan head and lots of lacing.

S- Hoppy but not overpowering.

T- You can really taste the hops in this one. Also quite fruity. High alcohol content but doesn't negatively affect taste. Very good.

M- A nice chewy feel to this one.

D- Very good ale. Looks as good as it tastes.

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Photo of adamhdv
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle poured into a nonic glass.

Pours a very nice dark amberish-brown color. One and a half to two finger head that leaves an impressive lacing.

Smells sweet, you can pick up the malts right away. At the same time, the hops are definitely noticeable too, great balance.

On taste its slightly bitter, with some citrus notes added. Good roasted malt also. Seems to be medium bodied and overall the perfect balance. I really enjoyed drinking this.

The 7.2 abv is hidden very well, could drink many of these. Don't let it sneak up on you though, as I picked up a hint of the alcohol near the end.

Awesome brew, highly recommend it!

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Photo of ambluhm
4.11/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The appearance of this beer is gorgeous. It pours a rich reddish/amber color. The head was thick with a coffee colored deliciousness... mmm.

The nose of this beer definitely shows a strong presence of hops. There is some citrus and floral notes as well as a faint, faint hint of sweet caramel smelling malts.

The mouthfeel is definitely bitter. The first sip will put a wallop on your tongue, but there is enough malt character to balance the bite. A real nice texture.

Overall, this is most certainly a beer I would drink again. It won't be something you could have a bunch of, but is certainly a well-crafted and delicious brew.

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Photo of SteelerNation
4.33/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lets see if this lives up to the name.

This brew eminates a strong aroma of hops that I can smell a few feet away from the glass. Has a sticky sweet malty smell. Lacing and head are both pretty sick and beat everything but nitrogen carbonation. The beer pours a dark bronze color. There is still foam left 15 minutes after the pour.

Citrus American hops dominate the palate for most of the taste. The hops taste of pine and grapefruit. Roasted malt makes up the malt backbone with a dark chocolate-like aftertaste. Tastes very much like an ESB, only with more punch.

The mouthfeel is thick and heavy, which is a big plus for me. I can hardly feel the alcohol content, even after drinking 22oz. The aftertaste isn't overly dry either.

This beer packs a punch and puts light beers in their place. I was skeptical from the big talk marketing campaign, but this beer lives up to its own smack talk. I cannot see any flaws in this brew.

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Photo of MisterTiat
3.78/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Beautiful amber color, creamy thick head, off white, little yellowish brownish, lacing is good, not fantastic.

S: strong hop, piney smell. Balanced with some roastiness

T: Complex. Earthy hop notes at the back of the tongue and throat, sweet maltiness at the tip of the tongue, roastiness comes in along the sides. Taste of hops lingers long after finishing.

M: Feels good, rolls around of tongue pleasantly, not fantastic but good

D: With such full flavor it is hard to drink a bunch of these, and also dont expect to be able to sample other beers after this one, the hops stick to the mouth

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Photo of JHamm
4.23/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Smell: Slight piney smell with floral and caramel notes.

Taste: More malty than I'm used to in an IPA but the hops balance well. Again, piney hop flavor that is balanced well by the hops. Nice after taste.s

Mouthfeel: Nice smooth mouthfeel. malts and hops both linger in good balance

Drinkability: One bomber will do the job well but I have to convince myself to stop there. Excellent job Stone.

Serving type: bottle

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Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,925 ratings.