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Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,926 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,926
Hads: 10,058
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: 2,926 | Hads: 10,058
Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.45/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy dark amber color with a small foamy head. Head retention is mild. Lacine is good. Has a nice, smooth, malty, piney aroma with some hints of tropical fruit and caramel. Very smooth taste. Malty and piney a the same time. Great malt to hop transition. Slightly fruity with hints of toffee and some astringency at the end. Pronounced bitterness that is very much appreciated. Medium bodied with low carbonation.

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Photo of kitch
4.15/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A 22 oz bomber with an enjoy by date of 9th October 2015 and poured into a snifter glass.

Appearance: Poured a very nice clear dark copper amber colour with a one finger tanned head with low retention but leaves spotty lacing.

Aroma: Strong caramel malt aromas followed by maple syrup, toffee, almond and pineapple. There were also hints of minerals and also piney hops towards the finish.

Taste: Sweet-ish roasted caramel malts mixed with grapefruit and pine hop bitterness. The finish is a very nice long lasting bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Mid to full bodied with medium carbonation and nice light alcohol warmth.

Overall: I haven’t had the chance to try many American Strong Ales, but this one was really good. Great balance and the lasting bitterness at the end along with the light alcohol warmth make it really enjoyable.

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Photo of Hahnin
4.82/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

This bitter fuck has no dad.
Fruity smell, large foamy head, bitter crisp taste with a hint of citrus(?) fruit(?), perfect color and awesome oily feel. Great drink ability and all around perfect beer for a Friday night!

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Photo of Strat58cat
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This is no pale ale. This is Arrogant Ale. Arrogant or confident? Is the difference whether you live up to it? Perhaps this ale is more confident than arrogant, since it lives up to the extravagant billing.

The color is a deep reddish brown. The head foams up without restraint and retains, leaving a lot of lacing down the glass.

The smell is neither overly fruity nor overly piney. It's simply right. This is an extravagantly hopped ale, but it's been hopped with the right hops! I'm looking at you Samuel Adams Hoppy Red. There's none of the stanky hops found in Sierra Nevada's Flipside or Hoppy Red. It's a delightful aroma blending fruit, pine, spice and ale.

With Arrogant Bastard Ale, the wildly extravagant hops are balanced by the extravagant malt. Nothing is out of proportion here. The hops bring the fruit, pine and spice with the requisite bite, but it's never unpleasantly flavored or oily feeling. (I'm looking at you Sculpin IPA.) The malt is powerful and stands up to the hops. The result is a balanced, very fully flavored ale. Yes, the ale is somewhat demanding but it's never unpleasant.

The malt has plenty of character and body. The feel is of a powerful, full-bodied ale.

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Photo of constantine_272
3.84/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful dark brown with a thick viscous dark tan head. Pretty good head retention as well. Slight murkiness. Smelled slightly mineral with a dark brown sugar sweetness. Taste start off with a light steel and mineral flavor but quickly turns earthy and malty. Dark roasted grains and minor molasses and coffee notes added a tich body through the midsection. A sharp dry bittering finishes the the beer. After getting into the second half of the 22oz bottle? The rich earthiness dry texture turned to more acrid dirtiness. What once stood out as the best quality to me slowly morphed into the Achilles heel. Maybe chalk it up to being an aggressive beer, but it built and built and ended up more than I wanted after 22 ounces. The feel is dry and slightly grain and sandy. Overal this is a great unique beer. A nice change of pace from the run of the mill ipa.

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Photo of stlfatguy
4.16/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Opened a bomber straight from the fridge and it fizzed over. Poured a great looking, dark, reddish body with a huge, tan head. Head was thick and creamy. This is a really good looking beer. Smell didn't hit too strong... light maple, and something roasted. Taste was not what I expected. It's like a stout, thrown into a Boston Lager, and chased with a hop bomb.

The carbonation kept a nice, thin head until the end of the glass, but it wasn't prickly on the tongue. Tasted smooth and thick. I swear i caught a chocolate covered cherry at the beginning of the sip, then caramel roasted malt, and on to a heavy, bitter hop taste. Aftertaste was a little too tart on the tongue, but besides that you wouldn't guess at the abv.

Stayed away from stone for a Long time. The bottles turned me off and looked a little too gimmicky... something I would have seen way back in my fraternity days just sitting on someone's shelf for decoration. Bombers were on sale so I gave it a try. Glad I did. I'll definitely be back to pick up a few more.

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Photo of 50wolves
4.11/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance - pours amber with small head that disappears quickly. Presence of astringency with lacing that does not hold. Cloudy. Aroma - smells of vanilla. Taste - mild sweetness that has a bitter lasting aftertaste. Touch - feels fresh with some astringency. Overall - would recommend. Easy to drink and the mild astringency compliments the flavours well. Does not feel like a 8% beer.

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Photo of beernewbie285
3.89/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The label is great and true to its warning.
I will say it is more bitter than i expected, but a great introduction to the american strong ale style. Loving stone and having many more other stones before having the original i still have a great love of this brand and will continue to drink this perfect sipping beer.

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Photo of mark5692
2.72/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.5

Slightly disappointed with this beer. Heard such great things but it didn't do much for me. The head was quite large and stuck to glass, color was dark brown and smelled overly caramel like. The taste was good at first but the sweetness and caramel taste was unpleasant. I could definitely taste the hops which were quality but it seemed to sweet and lacking much fizz. I'm thinking I got a bad bottle and willing to try again but first time was highly dissapointing.

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Photo of 81tillinfinity
4.29/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

What can be said that hasn't already been said about this beer. This is a brutal hop bomb of a beer and very delicious. Earthy dank hops with a nice maltiness that backs it up.

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Photo of Justin82
3.93/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a snifter from a 12oz bottle
Look: This honestly might beer one of the best looking beers I've ever seen. I hate to give 5s but I'm almost tempted. Deep, semi-clear mahogany in color. Not all light gets thru, but most. Pours with a beautiful 3/4 inch tight bubbly head that clears fairly quickly to a thin layer. I seriously wish i could stain my floors with this beer
Smell:Caramel and bread. Very slight pine and floral, but no distinct hop aroma considering how bitter this beer is
Taste: Very bitter, very bready, reminds me of bread crust. Was expecting maybe more toffee/caramel flavors but i really didn't get any.
Feel: Low to medium carb. More watery mouthfeel than i would've liked
Overall: Don't really drink a lot of american strongs, so i don't have much to compare it to, but an overall pretty enjoyable beer. I'll certainly pick this up again at some point when i feel like a variety pack or if its the best thing on tap somewhere i go but i don't see myself really seeking it out individually

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Photo of Wer34truh
4.06/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Arrogant Bastard has a distinct malt smell, with some underlying citrus present.

The taste reflects the small, with a lot of malt and hop flavor. A very subtle caramel/chocolate flavor in the aftertaste, otherwise the malt and hops dominate.

Great body with very mild carbonation. Just to my taste.

Overall a really good beer, which I'll gladly have in the future. Even though it's not the type of beer that pushes the frontier of brewing.

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Photo of mick303
4.18/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - from bottle (at LCBO) bb of sept 3. Dark mahogany brown with a really full initial head and good retention and film. Sticks around quite awhile and beer itself is quite clear and has a nice ruby hue.

S - rich aromas of sappy piney hops, sticky caramel malt, nutty, treacle fudge, maple syrup, all overlayed with really pungent hoppy aromas, lemons, strong florals.

T - fairly big body with lots of interesting malt flavours, munich malts and caramel, maple syrup, bready and slight roasty and nutty. Also a lot of really robust hop character, pine resin, florals, lots of aggressive hi-alpha hops, rich dried fruit cake, with raisin and prune notes. Finishing with a nice dry bitter finish.

F - nice initial prickle of carbonation, quite a smooth body with some malty sweetness and growing bitterness, finishes long with a substantial body.

Quite a well done and balanced ale. Interesting interplay between the competing malt and hop flavours, aroma is quite aromatic, while the taste I feel falls off a bit. Still this one was a nice treat.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.78/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A : Cherry-mahogany colored body with 80% opacity. The head is giant and popcorn yellow, with tons of IPA-like lacing left behind as it recedes slowly. Initial measurement is at 3 fingers. Simply stunning.

S : Some armpit-like smells, some aged mahogany, faint nut and cellared fruit. Definitely a cousin of the IPA from the aroma.

T : A robust roasted maltiness out front, followed by a fresh slap of wet hop, mixed with grapefruit rind and lemon rind, and then...metallic diarrhea. The finish is slightly smokey but tastes like a blended sweat sock and crushed aluminum pop cans. That finish is...well, it kills the beer. But the more I drink it the better it gets?

F : Dense, substantial, creamy...with moderate carbonation underneath and a dry finish.

O : An interesting tryout, although I wish I could have bought a smaller bottle. I can respect it, but that finish is pretty awful.

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Photo of SLeffler27
3.78/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

SRM 17-20 (deep rich copper) clear with a modest creamy off-white head that lasts, while dispensing a fine coating of lace on a Cisco fisheye pint glass.

A good balance of caramel and pine resin with earthiness and dried hay in the background.

Quite bitter through and through as expected. Caramel mixes with pinesap and grapefruit. This one lacks layers of complexity and is best at proper temperature. The finish is long and tasty.

A medium body with creamy texture punctuated by modest carbonation and light astringency. Alcohol is as expected.

This is an iconic and certainly enjoyable beer. However, it has never been, for me, a standout as the hype would lead one to believe. I find it enjoyable after a long day while talking with friends and eating fried food.

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Photo of Mike_Aguirre
4.85/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Looks deep copper with red highlights. Thick yellow foam head. Smells like american hops, citric, pineapple, some yellow fruits. Taste is intense, complex, malt and hops character are there and balanced, but bitterness is high. Very good beer for usual craft beer drinkers.

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Photo of DaveBar
3.93/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Purchased at the LCBO for around the $9.00 mark for a 650ml bottle. Served at 6deg C in a draught glass

A- Opens well and pours a huge light brown head that lasts forever. Very dark almost brown color. Filtered clear

S- Light character. Clove, pepper.

T- Very mild compared to the double bastard. This one is mild and easy going. Nice overall brew but mellow and subdued.

M- Average

O- Pretty good. Not a huge fan but would drink if I see it on tap. The double bastard is something completely different. I thought this one might be something like it but it's not.

Food Pairing

This nice brew went very well with....... BBQ's eggplant and zucchini. Just a touch of a glaze using soy sauce, brown sugar and olive oil to coat


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Photo of thehyperduck
4.4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

650 mL bottle from the LCBO; best before Sept 3 2015 and served slightly chilled.

Pours a murky copper-amber colour with a brilliant ruby-red look under the light. It is initially crowned with just over one finger's worth of frothy, yellow-beige coloured head, which proceeds to seep away steadily over the next couple of minutes, depositing a smooth, uninterrupted ring of lacing as it does so. A bubbly cap and foamy collar are the eventual remnants. The nose features an aggressive, no-holds-barred onslaught of rich, bold aromas - toffee and brown sugar sweetness, prune/plum, raisins and even a touch of cocoa. The hop contribution is similar robust in scope, showing off some intensely dank, piney, resiny bitterness, as well as plenty of pithy citrus. The booze also opens up a little as the glass has time to warm.

This is a goddamn delicious beer. Rich with malt flavour from the start - I can pick out some toffee sweetness, bready malt and some lightly toasted biscuit flavour. The dried dark fruit notes (prune/raisin) from the nose are less prominent here, but still detectable mid-sip before being washed away by a tsunami of hops. It is eminently piney, dank and resiny, with a lot of grapefruit citrus and some vaguely floral qualities. This one finishes on the bitter side, with a lingering mixture of resin and pith in the aftertaste, as well as some restrained residual sweetness. On the lighter side of full-bodied, with low levels of natural carbonation that gently agitate the tongue - which allows this strong ale to possess an impressively silky-smooth mouthfeel. This is a truly outstanding beer, and I now understand the hype behind it.

Final Grade: 4.4, an awesome A. It's not hard to see why Arrogant Bastard has remained relevant for more than a decade now. The craft beer scene has been moving onwards and upwards ever since its release, and while some relics from that era don't quite hold up these days, I'd argue that Arrogant Bastard is one antiquity that continues to stand the test of time. My main regret is that I didn't try this beer years earlier - because it probably would have REALLY blown me away back then, before the force of 1000+ reviews numbed my palate. Glad to see it finally available in Ontario (though I wish they could have brought it in before the currency exchange rate went to shit - 9 bucks a bomber is pricy).

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Photo of JLaw55
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This was interesting. Not really a mind blower, but I do have quite a bit of respect for this beer. There are plenty of layers of complexity behind this brew and it hides it's higher ABV very well. The malt is the most dominant flavor here, with the rich, slightly sweet roasted flavors staying front and center. Layers of caramel, oak, and earthiness popping up as it settles on your tongue. Hints of coffee and hops begin to pop up toward the end. The hops give a slight balance to the carefully crafted layers of flavor put forth by the malt. This beer has a certain level of drinkability that keeps you coming back for another sip. There is a slight carbonation that prickles the tongue throughout and keeps this brew dancing on your tongue.

Not going to knock your socks off, but it is a pleasant experience and a great example of balance between malt and hops, while still keeping the malt in the forefront. I think it may be a bit over rated here, but is still worth a try and a possible revisit.

Would drink again. May even seek this one out from time to time.

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Photo of BigGold
4.21/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had most recently poured from 22-oz. bomber into pokal. Apparently, Mississippi is still "not worthy," but at least Liquid Arrogance now surrounds our borders.

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Photo of CNoj012
4.12/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look is a maple syrup color with amber hue. Head is very thick and frothy with a khaki color with excellent retention throughout and also huge amounts of lacing. Smell is very in your face, pine and grapefruit hop aroma with sweet and bready smells from the malts. Taste is as aggressive as the smell. Sweet malts up front that fade to a nice citrus and piney flavor with a nice bitterness on the back end. Feel is medium with good carbonation. Overall a very complex beer that is very enjoyable and readily available.

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Photo of DrifterBrew
5/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Gave it all 5s because Im partial to this one for a reason. This was my first IPA / Heavily hopped beer. Fast forward MANY years later, and I brew this kind of stuff every other month. Cheers to you Stone! Love the brewery too, much love!

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Photo of hopphead31415
4.06/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I vaguely recall trying this beer a few years ago, but wanted to remind myself of how good it is. It boasts the amusing angle of it being too good for you to try which is summed up by its catchy name and the iconic demon smirking at you with his own glass of this excellent beer. It has 7.2% ABV and lots of flavor.

Look-It pours a beautiful mahogany amber ale color with deep copper read hues. The head is very thick and is probably about 3 fingers and settles to 2 fingers. The head is tinged with an off-white brown color. It leaves thick creamy lacing on the glass.

Smell-This one smells of sweet bourbon barrel malts and a spicy hoppiness to follow.

Taste-You first taste the sweet malts that taste like this beer was cellared in a bourbon barrel to give it the oaky flavor and the dark color. There is a noticeable yet subtle spicy hop component that follows and the carbonation mixes well with these flavors.

Mouthfeel-It feels of silky sweetness and a pleasant coating on the tongue.

Overall-This is a delicious beer that deserves its world-class rating.

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Photo of CantankerousCaveBear
4.14/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

(On Tap)
Pours mahogany, almost garnet. Rich thick head, light tan colour.
Hops immediately discernable in the nose. Hop aroma largely composed of stone fruit, grapefruit and pine. Huge malt presence, large dose of caramel is apparent.

Tastes as it smells, brash and in your face. Features the cavalier and unapologetically aggro Stone hopping style, wherein everything is amped up several notches and unflinchingly in your face. Mouthfeel is medium, with a crisp and dry character. Balanced and smooth yet an aggressive ale. Nice trace bitterness in the finish. Sweet bready malts fade without being cloying.

Extremely potent collision of hops and malt, that balances out enough to allow for a showcase of caramel, biscuit, breadiness, citrus notes (especially grapefruit and blood orange), and all of that dank, dank, piney, resiny goodness. Yum, extremely tasty and satisfying.

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Photo of Danmullens1
4.16/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can't believe I've never had Arrogant Bastard before now. A malt-hop collision of delicious proportions. Into a snifter, poured a beautiful mahogany with a thick off-white head. Smell is hops. And malty goodness. What a great beer, can't wait to try the barrel aged variety.

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Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,926 ratings.