Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

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Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

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2,914 Reviews

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Reviews: 2,914
Hads: 9,986
Avg: 4.17
pDev: 22.78%
Wants: 398
Gots: 2,129 | 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
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Reviews: 2,914 | Hads: 9,986
Photo of Troyone
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured with a two inch head with staying capacity and some lacing, the color is a dark tea with an orange hue, and the carbonation action is moderate.
The smell is a slightly nutty caramel malt; herbal pine, and lime hops; and hints of bubble gum and licorice.
The taste is a heavy sweet bitter with a slightly burnt, nutty, and caramel malt; the herbal pine hops has a finish of grapefruit and lime; and this has hints of bubble gum, butter, vanilla, and licorice in the background.
The mouthfeel has a light to medium feel, a dry minimally syrupy texture, and soft almost flat lively carbonation.
A smooth drinking session beer with 7.2%, another hit from Stone.

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Photo of CVC
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Came in a 22 oz. bomber; served in a pint glass.

Pours a hazy, dark amber/brown color with a two-finger off-white head. Leaves lots of lace. Smells hoppy, herbal, and piney, almost like Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, but more piney. Tastes strong--piney, bitter, hoppy, alcohol, and goodness. Has a medium-bodied mouthfeel.

Can't say too much about this beer--everything's been said. A kick-ass beer to say the least.

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Photo of sprackops
4.13/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 22oz brown bottle with white silkscreened arrogant gargoyle and lettering. Poured into a nonic imperial pint glass.

Appearance: Color is reminiscent of dark amber maple syrup with red legs if held up to the light. Abundant creamy head that lasts a long while, leaving impressive lace behind.

Smell: Pungent citric hops aroma coupled with fruity alcohol esters and scotch-like malt sweetness. Like the Double Bastard, this combination brings pineapples to mind.

Taste: Very complex. Massive piney hop bitterness mingled with dark malts bringing a wide array of flavors to the party. Orange peel and dark fruit seem to dominate, but this brew's all over the place. There is a touch of alcohol and perhaps a faint smokiness near the finish. Bitter hop resins linger on the the lips.

Mouthfeel: Velvety in texture with medium carbonation. Luxurious.

Drinkability: Dangerously drinkable to those who appreciate it, and I certainly do. Given the ABV I had to deduct a point in the interest of my brain cells.

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Photo of BeerFink
4.73/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Decanting my 22oz bomber reveals a cloudy deep red color brew. Pours with an honest two fingers of frothy head, leaving some nice lacing. Excellent head retention. Nice powerful smell. Hoppy characters dominate - plenty of citrous and pine, yet balanced with floral qualities. Some caramel and a dose of alcohol in the nose as well. Taste is oh-so-bold! Aggressive hop profile gives your tongue the boot, but is delicately balanced by sweet caramel and some smooth malt. Full mouthfeel leaves you satisfied. Finish is citrous and sweet at the same time, backed by warming alcohol. Cheers to Stone for quite the ale!

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Photo of Ave
4.83/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wow, what do you say about this beer? It is amazing in almost every way. Looking at it, it is a beautiful thing, deep amber, thick fluffy head. Smelling it, it smells like caramel, maple, bread & fruit. Tasting it… leaves me speechless. This is what beer aspires to be. Thank you Stone, & extra thanks to Mntlover for the trade that made this smile on my face possible.

If aged & served well, this could easily be a straight 5 beer.

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Photo of zacharius
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark reddish color with an off white head that sticks around for the whole glass. Smell is of citrusy hops with a malty backbone with hints of roasted grain. Beer has a malty sweet taste to it with hints of toffee and roasted grains. The malt is balanced with a citrisy hop flavor, and there is a hint of detectable alcohol. Nice thick bodied mouthfeel, a drinkable beer but not something you'd want to have all night long.

If you don't like this beer, you are not worthy.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is dark crimson. Head is light brown and ample. Many rings are left around the insides of my glass. The aroma is nicely hopped with a citrusy smell. A little pine smell is in the mix too. The taste is big on malts and hops. Very complex. Caramel malty sweetness is balanced by citrusy hops taste. Hop flavor lingers of the tongue long after a sip is finished. Arrogant Bastard's taste smooths out even more after it has warmed up a little. There is so much going on here it is hard to describe, but one thing is certain this is a world class beer. However, if you don't like west coast hopped beers, you probably won't like this. After loving this, I must now get my hands on some Double Bastard and Oaked Bastard.

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

Pours with a big beige head that dissipates slowly leaving moderate lacing along the sides of the glass. A beautiful ruby-copper color, nice and clear.

The aroma is full of intense hopiness, lots of floral hops. Seems to be just a hint of rubber or plastic in the nose.

The taste is also intensely hoppy with just an underlying malt sweetness. Just a bit of dark fruits but lots of piney hops. A little more malts would be nice to balance out the hops...maybe i am just not worthy! Again the finish is...hops, hops, hops!

Good carbonation and a nice medium bodied ale!

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Photo of mhowell
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Wow. I received this as a gift from an aunt Christmas '03, and have stored it since then, probably not as well as I should have. I decided to open it today. I could smell the hops when I opened the bottle. It reminded me of opening a sealed package of hop flowers at brew time. It poured a reddish brown color, with a perfect tan head. The head held till the end. Lacing means nothing to me, but if it did, this beer would be the definition of 'nice lacing'. This beer tastes great. It goes in smooth, and finishes with a dramatic hop bite. I sampled it at about 58°, and it popped. I think I will call that aunt, and tell her I love her. I can't wait to taste this fresh.

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Photo of DFN
3.65/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Arrogant Bastard pours a nice coppery red in color, somewhere between the color of iced tea and Coca-Cola. The head is thick and creamy, tan in color, and lasts a long time.

Overall, the taste is nicely balanced, although more on the hoppy/bitter side than the malty side. Since I prefer a less-bitter brew, this is not a strong point for me. Mouthfeel is good, but there's a "puckery" quality to the beer that I do not find appealing. Overall, I'd rate this about 3.7 because I can tell it's a quality brew, but I won't buy it for myself again.

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

The beer poured clear deep amber golden brown. The head was tan, huge, and long lasting lacing the glass from the rim to the bottom.

The aroma was deeply malty with dark caramel and citrusy grapefruit aromas. The fruity aromas also contained some complexity of dark fruits.

The flavor was more even that anticipated. (This was most likely a somewhat aged bottle). The maltiness and caramel came with a nice hop backbone but not as assertive as with a fresher bottle. The grapefruit and citrusy flavors and bittering were well aged and interestingly complex.

The finish was not quite dry with a nice caramel impression lasting long into the aftertaste. The body was above medium and almost medium full.

22 ounce bottle. Mental note to not overly age the beer, it is nice, but nowhere as Arrogant as when sampled fresh.

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Photo of Tballz420
4.13/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This brew is a dark copper color, nice bubbly tan head. Sheets of lace follow the brew down the glass. Sweet malt and floral hop scent. There is a sweet caramel front, which is pulverized by intense bitter hops. Some spicy alcohol tones. Med mouth. My friend brough this and the Ruination, and out of the two, id take the the IPA over this. Still damn good.

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Photo of kaszeta
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poors with a medium red-to-amber color, with a darker almost-tan foam. Not too carbonated, and the head doesn't linger long. The aroma was fairly malty, with a good hops edge to it. The taste, however, was much heavier on the hops than the maltiness, but both were present in good proportion. The result was fairly hoppy, but nothing like the typical highly-hopped-so-it's-almost-an-IPA we've all grown used to. The result is fairly smooth, with a nice touch of sweetness to round out the flavor. Very nice, and very drinkable---I'd probably drink more of this if I could actually get it easily in my area. Almost lives up to the hype.

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Photo of Pegasus
4.2/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Apprearance: Light reddish-amber in color, quite clear, with a moderate off-white head and slight carbonation.

Aroma: Sweet, honey-like aroma with mild hops, not really all that pronounced.

Taste: Rich, but mild character, with an emphasis on the malts, rather than the hops, with the most notable flavor being caramel. Finishes with a mild and lingering hop bitterness.

Mouth feel: Smooth and full, with just the slightest hits of carbonation.

Drinkability/notes: A rich and elegant beer, to be consumed with reverence.

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Photo of makoshark
4.83/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I liked this beer so much I got the appropriate glassware from Stone Brewing. Of course the marketing is a great starter for this beer, but there is much more to this beer than just the marketing!

It pours a clear amber beautiful tan head. The aroma is a very strong hop and malt smell. I love strong hop beers, and this one gives you the hops along with very complex flavors. This beer is not for people who don't like full flavor in their beers!

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Photo of neonbrown82
4.87/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Wow! I could swear that every time I picked up my class for a sniff or a drink, I was drinking a different brew. The first sips were quite hoppy, though not overbearing. The next few drinks contained caramel and toffee, and the next few drinks after that contained orange and other fruity tastes. This is a very complex brew. It is a shame that the text on the label is true for the majority of beer drinkers, at least in the U.S. I particularly loved the following: "Questions or comments? If you don't like this beer, keep it to yourself -- we don't want to hear from any sniverling yellow-beer-drinkin' wimps, 'cause this beer wasn't made for you."

Anyways, back to the review... the beer poured a dark nutty brown color. The head wasn't nearly as impressive as the Stone IPA I sampled the previous night, though it seemed to leave at least a quarter inch of foam throughout the whole 22 ounces, so the beer was at least protected from the O2. The lacing was unlike any I'd ever witnessed, however. The smell, as I mentioned earlier, seemed to change from time to time, though it always kept a pleasant hoppy aroma.

The taste was so dynamic I couldn't not give it a 5, along with the complexities of the mouthfeel as the brew is swished to different parts of the palate. Although I wanted another one immediately after finishing, the drinkability isn't quite perfect for such a heavy and complex brew, but it is damn near. I only wish I didn't have to order Stone brews off the internet to enjoy them from home.

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

This poured to a great glowing dark red with a nice big head that lasted fairly well. The lacing looks good too.

In terms of flavor, this isn't one to disappoint. There's huge flavor everywhere, delivering layers of potent taste. The hops are huge and completely dominating in the finish. The mouthfeel is a little bit harsh but still good.

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Photo of apintofknowledge
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The ale poured a deep dark coppery color, with a creamy head. The aroma was earthy, in a good way. All good so far… Now for the taste – Rich sweet toasty malt while at the same time I tasted the spicy hops. Definitely nice when both flavors come through at once, when one doesn’t linger longer or overpower the other. Very rich in flavor, complex but very drinkable… nothing bland about this brew. A definite beer to have on hand for any occasion.

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Photo of Dithyramb
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Had the big bomber bottle with the uniquely arrogant creature on the label. Paid just $5.99 for it in PA this last week. Has an interesting description on the back, with a definition of arrogance. No born on or freshness dating, but the top of my bottle top had “8 years” on it.
Pours a thick and cloudy dark brown with a dark tan head formed by slow rising carbonation. This would epitomize what my macro friends would call “dark beer.”
Smells like a caramel covered pinecone.
This is a chewy beverage. The initial rush of hop residue is subsidized with a thick caramel maltiness. Coats and smoothes as it flows down, finishing hoppy and sweet. The great flavor is held up with an excellent body and mouthfeel.
I wouldn’t have too many, but drinkable nonetheless.

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Photo of BrewMaster
4.65/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from the usual 22 oz bomber into an Arrogant Bastard flute-like glass. It has a nice creamy head that cascades beautifully down the sides. The color is a mild reddish amber with a very slight orange tint. The aroma on this beer is simply beautiful. Very sweet with an abundance of floral hoppiness and some earthy, pine scent from the hops as well. Very inviting. The flavor is splendid with a sweet hoppy bitterness from the start. It is very aggressive on the palate with the pine flavor of the hops leading the way. It is not offensive, but strong in a good way. The malt is very clean and crisp with notes of cherry, caramel and berries. The beer is very well hopped but it is not overdone. There is definately a great malt/hop balance that makes this beer splendid.

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Photo of Globetrotter
4.17/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sure wish the arrogance would stretch all the way to Moscow. Procured in Tennessee, shipped to Russia via air, opened on 12/8/04, my bomber looks and feels just like the picture - pure attitude. Label professes ingredients purely in conformance with the purity law. If there is freshness info here, I'm not smart enough to find it. Not worthy!

Pours a clear dark copper/pale brown under a 1.5 finger off-white head that fades fairly quickly to slightly chunky film leaving some OK lace. The nose is flowery hops, mollified slightly by some sweet grain. The mouth is very prickly and fairly heavy, with asyrupy consistency I'm not sure I like. Pretty complex taste profile, with plum and grain prominent early, followed by lots of truly aggressive hops, coming on flowery, then coniferous, drowning out the malt and burying the fruit. The finish comes on espresso bitter, completing the survey of hops flavors. I'd say the arrogance is justified.

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Photo of GeoffRizzo
4.72/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanksgiving evening treat. A deep amber hue, with a thin and reserved tan head. On the nose are the ever-present left coast hops, some fresh fruit to include grapefruit, these are sinus-cleansing aromas. The taste is more of an experience – thick and chewy off the cuff, rich and massively hopped up; caramel and licorice are noted up front. The citrus hop offerings come to life as she warms, just a touch dry, the body is very sweet and oh so smooth; the palate is cleansed by this massive brew! In addition, some sugary and cotton candy tastings left to graze the palate, add some raisin and oak flavorings – yeah you’ll find them all. Roasted malts and were hops mentioned? A massive beer, a huge beer, and a dang fine creation to be savored by many!

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Photo of HochFliegen
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice redish brown color with a good tan creamy head.
Smell was dominated by the spicy hoppness with a clean citrus or pine like scent in there as well. Nice carmel sweetness of the malts as well even some toast or bread like scent. The taste was full of malt flavor right off the bat. Then the hops hit and mellows the sweetness. Its sort of a rough transition when I first had the hop taste but it mellows and adds a degree of complexity to the beer that is amazing. This beer was very complex and full of flavor and body. Just hope I can find some more.

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Photo of garymuchow
3.93/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Jeez, I'm only the 490th review. It's about time I showed up. And that is only thanks to Gueuzedude who so kindly provided a sample for me. Thanks to a great BA.
Aroma is a wonderfully spicy hoppiness with a shot of citrus and more grassiness. A bit of sweet malt and oxidation with a hint of alcohol.
Pours clear amber of reds and brown. Large tan heaad that recedes slowly to form a rocky cap. Leaves lots of lacing and that cool line of foam after every drink.
I served this a little warm which I think ended up being good. Hop intensity noted first and throughout the drink and a very long finish. The malt forms a base, but isn't all that flavorful. It improves in time with an ever increasing sweetness as it warms. This is pleasing. There is an oxidation taste that hints at sherry flavors.
Really nice ale smoothness that helps buffer the sharpness of the hops bite. Adequate carbonation to create some fullness. Medium thickness.
This is really quite good. I'm to sure why this isn't a double IPA. The slight oxidation seems to be the only thing that makes it a strong ale, but it really is slight. Nonetheless is deserves the accolades and the high BA ranking. A hop lovers delight.
"I'm not worthy."
As an addendum, the intensity of the hops seemed to have a negative effect on my well-being the next day. It's different than a "hang-over" from the alcohol. I've had it with other highly hopped beers before, but this one seemed the worst.

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Photo of KroMagnon
4.48/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer has a nice head, a rather unusual shade of yellow - almost like a butterfinger bar, and it looks particularly striking over the very dark shade of amber for the beer itself. The head lasts and subsides lightly. The aroma features a heavy dose of malt along with some caramel notes and a slightly cooked syrup note - strangely I had trouble detecting much in the way of esters or hops. But flavorwise, I get a great thick maltiness coupled with a huge hop flavor, and a great complexity with nuances of cherry, chocolate, and toffee blending with clear malt presence and sharp bitterness. Again, though, the beer surprises me because I don't get quite a strike of bitterness at the end - overall the flavor is much more balanced and the hops seem more for flavor than bitterness. Awesome!!

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Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,914 ratings.