1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

8,638 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,638
Reviews: 2,785
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 12.47%
Wants: 259
Gots: 941 | FT: 5
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 11-15-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Arrogant Bastard Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 8,638 | Reviews: 2,785 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BeerImmediately
3.98/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: poured a deep, deep amber color, with a milkshake thick head, and terrific lacing.

S: some sweet, fruity hops, but not a very strong smell overall.

T: noticed some orange peel up initially, with some sweet grapefruit, and a lightly smokey finish.

M: crisp and clean on the palate.

D: goes down quite easily, and had to force myself to take it slow.

Very nice beer. Not sure if it's worth $55/case, but it is a high quality example of a strong ale.

BeerImmediately, Dec 02, 2007
Photo of wiseguy142
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

(Reviewed while drinking)

Appearance: Purpley-brown with little visible carbonation (a minus in my book). Average head of about 1.5 inches in my glass and crystal clear for a darker beer.

Smell: The best aroma from a beer I've ever experienced. Pure citrus and grapefruit with something at that trails off the harder you breathe in that I can't pinpoint.

Taste: Much like the smell: pure grapefruit. If I were given this beer in a blind taste test I don't know if I would be able to tell between this and grapefruit juice itself. Still, there is a hint of alcohol and malt but very unorthodox for a beer. It's maybe a little weak for something called "Arrogant Bastard Ale" at only 7.2 % alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Light and acidic. Again, unorthodox. Very tangy, but you don't get sick of it.

Drinkability: I could drink more than a couple of these without getting tired of it. But then I would get tired of it.. because it's like slamming a grapefruit into your brain to get you drunk.

wiseguy142, Nov 29, 2007
Photo of bunnyhustle
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the Arrogant bomber (which is a treat in its own) into chalice. Pours a richp mahogany brown with a slightly off-white head. Not a huge head but not too small, not the greatest retention, some lacing. Smell is hoppy with some caramel and some alcohol. Taste is great, very complex so I'm sure I'm missing something here. Some citric notes, mainly pineapple with a touch of hops and some sweetness too. An almost chocolate taste as it goes down. Medium to almost thick mouthfeel I would argue and a slightly oily feeling left behind but its not necessarily unpleasant. Overall a good beer, ABV is a little high but for the most part easily drinkable and a real treat.

bunnyhustle, Nov 29, 2007
Photo of poriggity
4.65/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was lucky enough to have some of this stuff on tap at my local watering hole, The Belle.

A= Ruby red/brownish color, with a cream colored head, barely transparent when held into the light.
S= Smelled very sweet, with slight hopiness to it. It was very nice smelling, and made me want to drink it IMMEDIATELY!
T= Very nutty/sweet flavor, with lots of hopiness in it. It was very complex and changed about half way down the glass. It was OUTSTANDING.
M= When it hit my mouth, it was very heady, but also very nice feeling.
D= I am a lightweight, so I can only drink a couple of these at a time before I get my butt kicked. My biggest problem is, this beer is SO good that I drink it fast, and it goes straight to my head. Overall, I would buy this beer by the case if I could find it.

poriggity, Nov 27, 2007
Photo of fitzy84
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at Moan and Dove on-tap. A heavy head with a dark brown appearance. Very heavy on the malts when sniffed, however, it seems a little off-balanced with its other aromas such as citrus and caramel. This hinders it from being perfect. This had a decently bitter taste overall, some sweetness here and there with sips. High carbonation allows you to drink it with some refreshing-ness. In general, this was another great drink from Stone.

fitzy84, Nov 26, 2007
Photo of biggmike
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Has this from a 22 ounce bomber. Poured an attractive reddish-brown color with a good head that lasted a while. Aroma was fruity and very hoppy. Flavor was also a bit of citrus with very hoppy flavor. Very smooth and easy to drink. Mouthfeel was excellent. I would have again and again and recommend.

biggmike, Nov 26, 2007
Photo of stuckonhops
3.83/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

poured from 22oz bomber into pint glass

A--looks like iced tea that hasnt been watered down yet after it has steeped for a few hours. reddish brown almost chestnut but a bit lighter. Nicer thick head that retained fairly well off a nice pour and some sticky sticky lacing at the top of the glass.

S--smells sweet with hints of caramel maybe some citrus hops cut through just barely though. definetly sweet smelling though.

T--initial overwhelming sweetness but quickly gives way to a nice hoppy finish. fairly balanced i would say although not at once...first very sweet with caramel malts and a citrus blast..then divebombs into some serious hops with piney tastes and some floral hint rushing over your tounge all the way to your throat. a hint to roasted barley?? makes me want more

M-- very clean begining that gets thicker and a bit sticky due to sweetness but overall clean and not to much "tongue coating"

D-- well from a bomber i would have to say limit to two bombers as that is a big amount of beer for yourself. but i could also drink this all night long but only if i could break that taste with something a lot more hoppy...which would be hard considering the blast of hop finish..

nice job stone... i like how it starts you off thinking it will be sweet all the way through than explodes the bitterness on you like a timebomb...did not expect this one to be so smooth though..not that its a bad thing...and like they say you really have to appreciate what they were trying to do to understand this so many people "probably won't like this beer" but i do recomend it to hop lovers and sweet malt lovers...it goes both ways which is very impressive on both ends.

stuckonhops, Nov 25, 2007
Photo of CDBeerDisappear
4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Translucent medium brown an initial half inch of head that dissipates to a thin layer. Good lacing. Hoppy aroma that doesn’t mask the rich bready malt. Plenty of carbonation, a little swirl of the glass visibly thickens the head. Taste begins with pine and citrus that is follow by a rich malt that is slightly sweet and finishes dry and bitter. This is a good ale with nice balance (for my tastes anyway). I could drink this all night, there is always something new in each sip.

CDBeerDisappear, Nov 24, 2007
Photo of hiikeeba
3.9/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours up light brown with reddish highlights and a thick creamy head.

S - Smells of sweet malt, with a hint of hops

T - Starts of slightly sweet, then roast flavor develops and finishes with hop bitterness on the back of the tongue.

M - Full mouthfeel

D - The hop finish could quickly overwhelm my palate, but the malt flavors balance it well.

hiikeeba, Nov 22, 2007
Photo of champ103
2.15/5  rDev -48.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

A: Ruby/red/brown in color. One finger white head that fades fast and leaves some spotty lace. This turned out to be the best part of the beer. I thought I was in for something special.
S: Lots of pine and citrus hops. A little malt, but very faint. No balance.
T: Overpowering hops, no malt balance at all. Don't get me wrong, I like hops, but some balance needs to be meet. Very dry and bitter. I can also taste a lot of alcohol.
D: Not good. A lot of alcohol burn and very bitter. The high ABV is very noticeable.

The bottle says that many people may not like this beer. They are correct. Not a pleasant beer to drink. I agree, in principle, with what this beer is trying to do (educate people on the difference between macro lager crap and big business), but they failed in my opinion. The key is balance. There is just too much hops and nothing else. Try something else.

champ103, Nov 21, 2007
Photo of ralree
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Deep red but still barely transparent when held to the light. Head is a beautiful 2-finger showing with excellent lacing and retention. A very good looking beer.

S: Pine hops, malt, and a bit of fruit. Strong showing here too.

T: Strong pine hop flavor with caramel malt in the first wave. After swallowing, bitterness begins and secondary flavors of coffee, some fruitiness, and perhaps a bit of chocolate. Bitterness isn't overpowering, but is a little too much for my palate. Alcohol is very well covered up - almost undetectable.

M: Pretty astringent, and sticks to the tongue long after swallowing. Doesn't leave the mouth feeling clean. Carbonation is perfect. Medium-bodied.

D: This is very drinkable except for the bitterness in the aftertaste. I will probably end up drinking this again, but it is not my favorite.

ralree, Nov 17, 2007
Photo of breadnerd
3.9/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep, dark amber, with head that just won't quit. Nice clarity.

Based on what I remember from this beer the last time I had it, I as expecting more hop aroma. Notes of bread, caramel. I say the hops are there, they just don't jump up my nose. Nothing spectacular here.

Ahhh.... There's the hops! Beautiful. Resiny and spicy. Citrus notes slice through the sweet backbone.

After the 3rd sip or so, I notice malty sweetness. A bit sticky on my lips. Spicy counterparts of the hop character balance it out, but not quite enough.

Overall, great work from Stone. I look for this beer whenever I can, but I can't find it in Kansas. A real treat indeed.

breadnerd, Nov 12, 2007
Photo of FightingEntropy
4.68/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Presentation: bottle from Village Bottle Shoppe in W. Lafayette, IN poured into a goblet

A: beautiful dark bronze beer with lighter ruby highlights around the edges, and a thick off white head on top that persists for a long time, leaving a very solid lace from the top down.

S: an aggresive, sinus clearing hop and massive malt backbone to support it. Strong biscuity and sweet malt hop without any roast or toast in it---just malt. Bitter hop on top, resinous pine on pine action, some fruity but not floral underneath, but you have to dig for it.

T: bit caramel and sweet malt stands out with the massive hop fighting for your attention. Semi-dry finish that bitter but the sweetness if trying to fight through but dying in the effort. Lingering dry puckering in the mouth from big hop, piney and aromatic. As it warms, dark fruit, raisins, plums come out, and it has a very earthy, woodsy, almost oak flavor underneath.

M: chewy. Won't go away. Aggressive.

D: for me, no worries. It could be a very overwhelming beer for some, and unique compared to a double red or a DIPA. Some of the integration of taste that is come along for DIPAs is completely absent here, and just big on big fighting it out, and you need to be ok with that to have it linger in your mouth. If not, lower this score.

Overall: I'm a bit nostalgic about this beer, as a draft of this in California was really my introduction to extreme beer. Granted it's not that extreme today, but still a fantastic beer that is a joy to drink .

FightingEntropy, Nov 10, 2007
Photo of MikefromDormont
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Arrogant Bastard was my introduction to Stone Brewing. We had never heard of Stone Brewing until a few years ago. At that time my friends and I spotted a bottle of this beer sitting on the shelf in Washington DC's Chevy Chase Wine and Liquors. The silkscreen gargoyle and the "You're Not Worthy" statement caught our attention and made this beer a must buy, just for its packaging. After tasting several bottles of this beer, I am sure happy that we decided to try this beer. It's my opinion that this beer is not for every beer drinker.

The beer poured dark brown with hints of ruby showing. There was a tan head and bits of yeast "floaties" suspended in my glass. I was expecting an onrush of hop flavors, but was surprised that I initially greeted with a sweet malt flavor. However, the hops soon dominated the beer's flavor and the finish was bitter. This beer was full bodied and had a smooth, oily mouth feel. I would not recommend drinking Arrogant Bastard on a hot sunny summer day, but for a chilly autumn afternoon, it is a great beer.

MikefromDormont, Nov 09, 2007
Photo of cswhitehorse
3.9/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The arrogant bastard pours a deep red with a huge foamy head and aggressive lacing down the side of the glass. I didn't see a freshness date. The smell and taste were malt dominated with some hops on the side. It had a in your face spiciness at the finish on the palate. This was one bastard of an ale that I would recommend.

cswhitehorse, Nov 08, 2007
Photo of PhageLab
3.85/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

1pt 6oz bottle with a hilarious bit of text on the back. Poured into a standard pint glass.

A - Light brown hue which fades to a deep chestnut. Produced a fingertip of head that stuck around for a while. Appears to be very full bodied.

S - Complex to say the least, there's a bit much for me to distinguish, yet it comes across very sweet. A mildly toasty character finishes it off.

T - Very robust and potent yet managable profile with an apparent alcohol flavor. A bit of hops show through in the aftertaste, and I swear I can pick up a bit of caramel as well. Mellows out a bit as it warms.

M - Full bodied yet has a surprisingly clean finish. Near flawless level of carbonation.

D - Suffers a bit here, for me at least. I doubt I could put back more than two. Overall a powerful punch and another great brew from Stone.

PhageLab, Nov 05, 2007
Photo of JamesS
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A great beer, it pours out a nice dark caramel color with a great head and very nice lacing. It has a wonderful scent, not overly bitter at all, just a nice clean and crisp ale aroma. A wonderful taste as well, an excellent balance of malts and hops, leaning towards the former, with a nice, but not overpowering, hoppy aftertaste. Goes down fantastic for such a high ABV beer, and good in its comparison to all other ales. An excellent brew.

JamesS, Nov 05, 2007
Photo of jbphoto88
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another beautiful beer. This rubyish beer pours real nice with a good finger's worth of head. It smells clean, crisp and hoppy. The taste? Well lets just say you should try some yourself its worth your time. If you can't wait and need a spoiler then here it is. First taste is slightly sweet and malty, not fruity but a good ale flavor. This is what beer should taste like. From there the hops creep up your tongue and do a little dance on your taste buds. After you swallow the bitterness of the hops stays with you for a few moments. It doesn't leave a bad bitter taste in your mouth but it does whet your appitite for more. This beer doesn't suck.

jbphoto88, Nov 02, 2007
Photo of brantadid
3.68/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a brownish red color into a pint glass. Not much head or lacing. Head was a light tannish color.

Smells of grapefruit and that is really the only smell I get.

Tasts is slightly malty and sweet on the front palate but transitions quickly to a dry, hoppy, bitter flavor. Quite refreshing. Very long finish with this beer. Flavor goes on and on.

The surprising low carbonation and not overblown hops make this a very drinkable beer. Moderately creamy mouthfeel

brantadid, Nov 02, 2007
Photo of jdubjacket
4.18/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this in a trade with limesmut.

Poured out of the badass bottle into a pint glass. Has a very nice color with a good head that dissipates fairly quickly. This beer is very unique - but definitely tasty. It certainly lives up to its name as it is very in your face with all of the hops. I can't quite put my finger on any particular flavor in the taste, but it is relatively complex. Definitely glad I got my hands on this. An excellent brew.

jdubjacket, Oct 28, 2007
Photo of tkarsies
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from bomber into my pint glass around 45 degrees. The second glass was closer to room temperature.

Pours a dark coppery orange transparent liquid. Tan 2 finger head that fades to lacing that lasts and lasts. A good-looking beer.

Smell of piney hops. Maybe some malt and alcohol but nearly all hops.

Tastes of Hops and more hops. This is drinking a pinecone. Some malt backbone that provides some balance, but the piney, hoppy bitterness goes on and on. After warming, there is not a lot of difference—maybe the malt is a little more noticeable, but that is it.

Slight carbonation and creamy mouthfeel. Leaves an oily feel.

This is the beer that opened up hoppy beers to me, and I have not looked back. The hops numb the tongue and I love it. Alcohol adds spiciness and warming but never gets in the way. It is in your face, and I could not drink more than a bomber in one sitting. I do like year-old Oaked Bastard better than this, but this is definitely a staple for me and a new classic beer.

tkarsies, Oct 28, 2007
Photo of arizcards
4.4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle from Sprouts back in May.

Beer poured an amber red color with a strong off white head that is well sustained. Nose is a pleasant boquet of floral hops, a hint of what is about to hit the palate. Taste is a hint of caramel malts and a blast of those floral hops. Mouthfeel is full bodied and very smooth. Drinkability is very good. I have always looked at this beer as a junior version of the barleywine style but a much more drinkable one. Definitely worth a taste!

arizcards, Oct 27, 2007
Photo of Upgrayedd
1.53/5  rDev -63.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

The label said that I probably wouldn't like this beer and it was 100% accurate. What an alpha acid bomb! I think I actually lost my taste buds for a few hours after forcing the entire 22oz helping down my throat. I could not detect any hint of malt, but that could be because it was a bit overcarbonated and of course because of the hops.

I don't mind hoppy or strong beers. However, this was way too bitter. Maybe they should have shifted that huge hop addition a bit later into the boil so as to give a bit more flavor and less bitterness.

I'm no wimp. I like spicy foods and hoppy beers, but Arrogant Bastard is definately not for me.

Upgrayedd, Oct 26, 2007
Photo of OKCNittany
4.65/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: 1" off white head with good retention leaving sheets of lacing all along the glass. Reddish brown body. Looks like a hearty brew, but certainly not as menacing as the gargoyle on the bottle.

Smell: It's Christmas in October as pine hops fill my nostrils. Citrus hops & a sweet caramel malt also make their presence felt.

Taste: A quick touch of caramel malt up front & a taste of alcohol chased away by the onslaught of citric, bitter hops. Simply fabulous.

Mouthfeel: Near full body w/ light carbonation - very smooth with a warming finish from the alcohol. Somehow all flavors are present in the aftertaste (though again bitter hops are strongest) & the hop burps follow.

Drinkability: This one's not for children, but as long as you're a hop-head, the abv (7.2%) is the only thing that would keep you from drinking mass quantities. A truly excellent brew - and an absolute bleeping crime I can't get this in Oklahoma.

And if things weren't good enough, this was a perfect compliment to a cannoli & a 1-0 Pens victory over the Rangers. P-E-N-S Pens Pens Pens!!!

OKCNittany, Oct 24, 2007
Photo of jdmorgan
3.9/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The appearance was a brown color with a medium, lacy head. The smell had a strong hop aroma as well as some malty and piney scents. The taste was very full. There was a strong malt presence as well as a bite of hop flavor and bitterness in the finish. The mouthfeel was medium/thick, with a medium carbonation.

The bottom line is that this is a well-brewed beer that is very "arrogant" indeed with it's presence. I enjoyed it, and suspect that others who appreciate a full presence and hop flavor will as well. I don't believe I could drink these all night, but I'm sure some could!

jdmorgan, Oct 23, 2007
Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 8,638 ratings.