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Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

9,476 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,476
Reviews: 2,879
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 12.5%
Wants: 328
Gots: 1,550 | FT: 11
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

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9,476 | Reviews: 2,879 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Ghenna
3.56/5  rDev -14.4%
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.

Photo of vazy
3.47/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Drank this at Dinosaur BBQ the other day.

The appearance is a dark amber red color and is semi-clear. I pick up hops, hops and more hops! It has some malt to it, but not a lot. The taste is bitter and bright I get this buttery and biscuity flavor. Its heavy and somewhat chewy in the mouth.

This beer is full of flavor and deep. Its enjoyable and slightly refreshing.

Photo of AgentMunky
3.68/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from 20 oz. bottle into a pilsner glass.

A: A beautiful dark red amber. Magnificent head with surprisingly creaminess and retention. Good lacing.

S: Hoptastic! Crisp hops overwhelm my nose mingling with malty sweetness.

T: After such a strong start, I was a bit let down by the taste. It's not thin, exactly, but rather unsupported. It's a very nice ale with excellent hops undergirded by malt. Other than that, it's a very nice ale with excellent...You get the picture. Bitter aftertaste lingers, pleasant at first, but fading with time.

M: Average. I don't really have much to say. Hops have a mild drying taste.

D: Starts strong, but doesn't quite hold out. The more I drank, the less I liked it. Still, all around, a very solid choice. Avoid if you dislike hops. Not a problem for me though, and I think grab another someday soonish.

Photo of diabecktic
4.68/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This translucent, dark cherry-red brew yields ~3 fingers of frothy, light-tan head. Bubbles slowly rise, lending an airy weight to the aforementioned head. Retention (~1 fingers linger) and lacing are both excellent throughout the entire tasting.

The nose is extremely complex. I find that notes of grapefruit, pine-like hops are dominant to a toasted caramel malt. I can't quite discern which spices complement the product, but they are somewhat sweet and earthy (nutmeg and/or allspice?).

Much like the nose, the flavor is - as the bottle proclaims - aggressive and excellent. The bitterness seems to come before the malt character, but the balance is nearly perfect; flavors are as described in the smell portion of the review. As the beer warms, I find that the flavors become more well-defined as a subtle buttery taste makes itself known.

Given the variety and intensity of flavors, I'm suprised that this beer isn't too lively when sitting in the mouth. The beer is ever-so-slightly oily, but the medium body and restrained carbonation keep things from getting out of control.

The alcohol content is restrained fairly well for being ~7.2%. This beer is definately one to sip on for two reasons: the alcohol will creep up on you, and the complexity of the flavors are incredibly. You're missing out if you don't sip on this one.

This brew is simply outstanding. Though clearly a clever marketing gimmick, the folks at Stone Brewing Company have every right to be arrogant about this product. The diversity of flavors and aromas might not be for everyone, but if you appreciate extremely well-made craft beers, you will find this beer exceptionally enjoyable. I was thoroughly impressed and I will try more beers from this brewery in the future.

Photo of fropones
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasting from last month. Thanks Lucas

A - A nice reddish brown with one finger of khaki head with some nice lace.

S - Some nice malty flavors in here with a bit of hops.

T - More malts balanced with quite a bit of hops. Almost like a barleywine.

M - Medium bodied with nice carbonation.

D - Drinks well for 7%.

Photo of jmich24
3.66/5  rDev -12%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber

A: Beautiful two finger fluffy white head. Ruby red amber color. Lacing and head remains for the entire beer.
S: Hops!!! Very piney, slight citrus.
T: Wet, hoppy and bitter. Fairly high ABV is well hidden. Much smoother as it warms up a bit.
M: Creamy and bitter on the tongue.
D: Drinkability is somewhat difficult for me. The high ABV and bitterness would make this 22 bomber all I could handle or want.

I would purchase this beer again. It is the type of beer I can enjoy and relax with after a 12 hour shift at work.

Photo of beerad666
4.07/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The Arrogant Bastard pours a deep amber color with a two finger creamy beige head that sticks around for a while and leaves a nice thick lacing on the glass. A sweet floral aroma comes up from the glass along with toasted malts and toffee notes. A wonderful balanced nose. When you finally take a drink you get a big dose of hops but they are not overbearing. Backing it all up is some nice caramel malts. A strong bold aftertaste that leaves your mouth sticky and dry for a long, long time. Drinkable yes, sessionable maybe not. At 7.2% it's a great beer to sit down and split a bomber with a friend. It's an aggressive beer so it's not for everyone.

Photo of Flashsp2
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Arrogant Bastard into medium goblet (best by 12/27/09). Sampled 9/29/09

Pours a deep blood red with perfect clarity, deep gold highlights, and a puffy two finger beige head that leaves the typical stone super-lace. Retention is moderate, leaving a moderate patching on top.

I am always dumbfounded by the nose of this beer. It's hard to pin down because it's kind of all over the place. Sticky pineapple chunks, pine needles, grapefruit, lemon/lime (think Sprite), resinous hop oil, spice, faint caramel malt.

The body is raw and vigorous, starting with a mellow caramel malt sweetness, then pineapple, pine sap, toasted whole wheat bread, citrus, grapefruit, and salty/oily hop leaf. The finish is stupid long on this beer, with an intense salty/oily hop bite that seems to never go away.

The mouthfeel is medium with a low-medium carbonation and an oily, lingering hop finish.

This beer is aggressive. I can't think of any other word to accurately describe it, and the brewery said it best. This should really come in six packs.

Photo of ghostee
4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, enjoy by 06/03/10 printed on it.

Pours an amber color with a good creamy 2 fingers worth of head which fades quickly.

Smells mainly of hops, with some citrus coming through.

Taste is creamy and sweet, yet hoppy and bitter. A definite grapefuit taste comes through, along with sweet malts. The taste upfront is sweet and fades to a bitter hoppy taste that lingers on the tongue.

Mouthfeel is substantial. Feels creamy on the tongue, and the bitterness bites nicely.

Drinkabilty would be medium. A bomber of this is perfect. I could drink more, but the 7.2% makes it less than sessionable for me. However, the bomber that I drank went down wonderfully.

Overall, this is my first Stone beer, picked up during a trip to Wisconsin to restock on New Glarus. This is complex and delicious, and I'd love to have it again.

Photo of AleWatcher
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured bomber into Duvel tulip.

Pours a deep clear color that has hues of deep amber, plum, and woody brown. Tan head sticks around for a good length of time and leaves thick lacing.

I smell sweet malt... Piney hops... And black cherries? Maybe some citrus in there too. It reminds me a little of a scotch ale!

Taste seems to follow nose pretty well. Certainly some sweet caramel malt, then a pine and earthy hop note. Some big bitterness is hiding here though!! I do also get
some dark fruit notes. Finishes dry and a little earthy.

Good carbonation. Nice mouthfeel. Not chewy. Not watery. Not bad at all.

This is a pretty decent brew by the stone boys... I can't wait to try the oaked version.

Photo of ThreeDimesDown
3.36/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A dark cherry, clear pour with a nice beige head that dissipates to a lingering remnant providing nice lacing till the end.

Aromas of hops, citrus and pine are most powerful with hints of caramel.

The taste is bigger than the nose with hops (citrus and piney) up front but not overbearing. Caramel maltiness mellows the hops a bit. Bittering hops are strong leaving a dry, sticky finish.

For a higher ABV, the mouthfeel is smooth with the constant small bubble carbonation. Light to medium with an almost creamy feel.

Drinking this one that is two weeks from "best by" date, so the hops are in the forefront. It's a good drink and can imagine it pairing nicely with a big flavor meal. But not necessarily a brew I'd have a session with.

Photo of bamadog
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Here's a beer that I've had multiple times in the bottle and have typically always enjoyed it, and this is the first time I've ever had it on tap and this a great example of a time when the tap KILLS the bottle! Reviewed on 4/2/2010 and poured from the tap to a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep woody amber/coppery color and starts with a one finger off-white head with great retention that eventually fades to a thick and uneven skim; body is dark and hard to see through, but it's clarity is still quite solid and it shows strong carbonation; big thick curtains of puffy lacing hold strong to the sides of the glass.

Smell: Not especially strong, but there are definite scents of just flat-out bitter hops bubbling up and into the nose. Piney and a bit of a citric characteristic. I wish the nose was a bit more potent, but as Frank the Tank said, it's all good when it hits your lips!

Taste: Hops abound and they are bitter and piney with some strong hints of grapefruit flavors as well -- really dominant; surprisingly, there is a fair caramel malty backing for just a bit of balance, but it really allows the hoppy profiles to dominate; alcohol is masked to near perfection with just a slight hint.

Mouthfeel: Tons of hop resins leave the mouth very sticky; the stickiness is very dry and cottony; a bit of warmth is left in the belly; carbonation is very present, but the body is still very smooth as the body of is rather significant weight; quite nice and nearly perfect.

Drinkability: It's a little big, but everything is going right with this beer on tap! Great on a nice warm night as the bitterness is refreshing and it's a tad filling, but it's not going to slow me down. I could drink this all night.

Photo of Sean9689
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the Twisted Spoke for the Stone Chicago Release. Poured into a beautiful plastic cup!

A - Pours a dark reddish/browish color, off-white head.

S - Nice hoppy aroma with a nice malt backbone. Very well-balanced.

T - A nice meld of hops and malts balanced perfectly. There's a bitter finish that makes you want to come back for more.

M - Light bodied, good carbonation, clean and crisp.

D - Very easy to drink. I had a couple of these and really enjoyed this beer more than the Double Dry-Hopped IPA.

Photo of Eisen
4.68/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I have had this beer sitting around my apartment for awile and decided it was time to finaly open it up. I picked up a bomer at Pike Street Beer and Wine in seattle for $4.69. I may not be worthy but I definatally was impressed.
The appearance is a nice red/amper toped of with a gostly white, fluffy head, of which leaves a thick and scatered lacing. The smell is alchool and a tuch of hops; I will admit my sense of smell s not very good. The taste of the beer itself is wonderfully balanced palate of alchool fussle oils. I searved it at room temp. and that may be why I get mostly alchool, but that is not bad. This is a strong ale. Even if I cannot taste the hops or grain, they are there working together to balance the beer as a 12 year casking would for wiskey; I suppose that is why the barrel aged version is acclaimed strongly. The mouthfeel is slytle sticky but not unplesant at all. I am not a fan of strong ales but I could drink this from sun rise to sun set.

Photo of generalnotsew
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Nice fat even head that decides to stay around til the first sip. There is a very deep mahogany color. Quite nice to look at.

S: Very sweet caramel maltiness. Have to say the best by date was 3 months ago so I detect none of the hops. Quite frankly I think I prefer AB without the hops. Maybe a touch of fruit.

T: Sweet sweet malts. A touch of maple. The hops are still present but very weak and only come through in the aftertaste. Also get a touch of coffee here.

M: Very creamy and rich. Not aggressive but very mellow.

D: Easy to drink while fresh or a bit of age.

I have had this so many times. I was drinking it before I even started pouring my beer and loved it every time. This is a good go to beer and a go to beer you can rarely beat. Thanks Stone!

Photo of dedrinker
3.87/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Yup, this one's a really arrogant bastard alright, to get such an overall high score.

Chestnut color - is it on fire with ironic back label marketing strategies?

Aroma of floral and piney hops.

With the hops carrying over on the taste, add a sweet malt backbone. The finish is a little more bitter than is usual for these days, attesting to the early days of A.B. extremity in brewing - before all the hops were up front on the nose and pallet with only sufficient bittering hops to balance the malt.

I drank it on the go to wash down a hastily eaten turkey wrap. I'm busy and self-important. It's the arrogant bastard in all of us I guess.

Photo of ToasterChef
4.7/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from my notes. Served on-tap in a PBR pint glass (a nice touch). The beer has a translucent brown hue and a small, bubbly tan head. There are tiny bubbles rising within the glass. As I drink, it leaves behind some great lacing. The aroma is equally impressive. There are a lot of musty, grain-like fresh hops. Yum. The AB has an intense hop flavor on top of a good, slightly sweet malt base. It's an all-around excellent flavor. It has a medium body and an excellent level of carbonation. The chill of the serving temperature and the carbonation bubbles are very playful; almost too much so, but not quite. Generally, I like the AB just a bit warmer, but this still feels great. This is so drinkable, considering what a strong, offensive beer this is. I could drink it all day.

Photo of Jeffo
4.02/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Got this at the Cracked Kettle

From a bomber into a snifter

APPEARANCE: Pours a three finger thicker looking beige head with great retention. Deep auburn brown with next to zero carbonation and perfectly clear. Head slowly fades to a decent foam cap leaving some immediate lacing. Splotchy film remains until the end, leaving some splotches of lace down the glass.

SMELL: Pale and toasted malts with some nice caramel and toffee notes. Touches of bread and some pine and floral hops as well. Quite a balanced and bold nose.

TASTE: Pale malts up front and some caramel as well. This is soon brushed aside by a wave of piney and floral hops and hop bitterness. A very strong and bold long lasting aftertaste is plenty bitter with lots of pine notes. A very bitter and lingering finish, which was a bit of a surprise given the nose. Still, tasty stuff.

PALATE: Medium body and slightly light on the palate. Higher end carbonation. Semi-creamy on the palate, goes down smooth and finishes slightly dry.

OVERALL: Definitely a bold and aggressive beer, just like the label says. I enjoyed this one, but one bomber is enough for sure. The bitter aftertaste was impressive for sure, but perhaps a little out of place given the big malt profile up front. Regardless this is a tasty and enjoyable beer, and one that I'll definitely revisit, but not something I'll go out of my way to aquire.

Photo of tubacharlie
4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Flowery hop aroma. Poured aggressively it produces a big, beige colored, four-finger head with staying power. Large bubbles migrate to the side of the glass while the middle develops a silky smoothness in a boulder-like formation.

The brew is a strong reddish-brown amber color with a touch of haziness that increases when the last of the bottle is added after swirling around to catch the yeast in the bottom.

Big fresh hop flavor up front, in the middle and the back palate with a strong malt component to balance. Notes of caramel, brown sugar and roasted barley. Lingering hop and yeast flavor with bitterness across the palate.

Excellent brew that would pair well with roast beef and horseradish (wish I had some right now to be sure!).

Curious note: enjoy by 3-2-10 is printed very lightly near the bottom of the bottle - I almost missed it and had to look very hard. But of course, a beer of this gravity will age well for years, so I wonder why they are dating them so young? (A good topic for the Beer Forum). I certainly enjoyed it, even though it was three weeks past the "Enjoy by" date.

Photo of billshmeinke
4.46/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bomber into a large mug. This is the beer that started it for me, so I'm surprised I haven't taken the time to review it until now.

Fairly aggressive pour yields a monstrous 3 finger light tan head, one finger of which is actually above the rim of the glass. Amber/brown in color (reminiscent of the color of the brown glass of the bomber it was just poured from) with brighter amber hues towards the edge of the glass. The head retention is quite nice as a significant layer of foam hangs around all the way through, and coats the sides of the glass with lacing.

Smell is dominated by a citrus/pine hop aroma. There is a pleasant bready yeast in there too as well as a faint caramel malt.

The flavor packs a punch. Intensely bitter and hoppy. The hop flavor manifests as bitter pine, resin, dank, and a hint of citrus (lemon/orange rind/grapefruit). Also in there is a biscuit like yeast flavor and light sweet malt that comes through as caramel/toffee. There's also a light fruit flavor in there as well that I can only describe as strawberries. The bitterness of the hops linger in a very satisfying way. Truly a complex and aggressive beer.

The body of this is on the fuller side of medium. Tiny bubbles, medium carbonation. Glides over the tongue. Quite smooth.

A beer I can easily drink all night. This is one of those beers that I keep coming back to. No matter how much I explore new and strange craft beers, I can always crack open an Arrogant Bastard and know that I will be satisfied.

Photo of Pittsburgh
5/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Definitely quality, pretty much right up my alley, puts other ales to shame in my opinion. Color is great, it looks like it's going to taste amazing and it does. I could drink this all the time and never get tired of it. Dark reddish-brown, good flavor, strong, subtly tart, and rich for a beer of this type. Complex as well, smooth and easy drinking yet complex and feels thick at the same time. I love that it has a hoppy quality but is also very malty. Tastes like an IPA/red ale combo that is perfectly mixed. The bitter flavor tops it all off.

Love it. I don't know if I'll ever have a better beer. I hope I do.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.59/5  rDev -13.7%
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.

Photo of cpetrone84
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-pours a slightly hazy deep ruby red color. Tons of head, tan in color, quite thick and fluffy on top. Great retention here as it lingers for quite some time and leaves a thin broken lacing all over the glass.

S-the nose isn't very big but it is balanced. Caramel malts and bread give a light lead in but must take a back seat to a strong hop profile. Pine resign leads into a citric hop of tangerine.

T-this is extremely bitter. The malt base is strong and present but the bitter hops are the centerpiece. Sweet caramel and burnt brown sugar meld together with big resigny pine. Citric hops and herbal notes are light in the back, tangerine, and the hop bitterness is all that stands at finish.

M-medium bodied, smooth, and a thin syrupy feel. The carbonation holds throughout the drink and finishes crisp. This is actually a little dry on the palate as well.

D-very tasty brew, a classic. Finally got around to reviewing the bitterness makes me call it a night on reviewing beers. Very nice balance and pretty big flavors. Everything transitions well and it is a great drink.

Photo of happilysurly
3.71/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a deep reddish brown. Minimal head with tight bubbles. I noticed it was pretty thick as I poured and it has some legs to it, taking a bit to settle back down.

S: Its beer like this that are flavorful but not overly aromatic that make me wish I had a better sense of smell. I'll give it a 3.5 because I imagine that a more distinguishing nose would pick up on more than the "fresh" smell I get. Though I will say this: as I get about half way through the glass of beer I feel like I get a better sense of the aroma and can definitely pick up on sweet, malty and burnt caramel smells.

T: Very malty upfront with a bitter finish. Not subtle, but also not over the top. Very little alcohol taste, though, it is only 7.2% ABV so that is to be expected.

M: Beers like this are a bit more difficult for me to enjoy after the first half. The combination of rich malt and bitter finish leave a taste in the back of my mouth that will not go away unless I have some really salty snack foods.

D: Again, I wouldn't want to drink a lot of this in one sitting. I respect this beer for what it is, but there is no getting around the fact that I simply would not want to drink more than a single bottle in a month.

Photo of eyeheartIPA
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First craft beer I tried back in my early drinking days. The bar had it on tap, and being a bit of an arrogant bastard, I had to try it. Couldn't really take much of it then, but now it's one of my favorites. Drinking from a growler filled at the brewery last night, poured into my AB pint glass.

A - Clear dark brown with slight reddish tint. Good thick head that hangs around for a while. Lacing on the glass sticks around until the end.

S - Smells like malt. Sweet, with maybe a hint of caramel.

T - I'm not very good at picking out individual flavors. Starts sweet and then the hops come through for a bitter finish. The taste lingers on the tastebuds for quite a while.

M - Beer goes down smooth and wets the palate, no drying effect here. Not a heavy beer despite the intense flavor.

D - Very drinkable. High alcohol content might limit you to one or two, but doesn't sit heavy and I never get tired of the flavor.

Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 9,476 ratings.