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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: 10,061
Avg: 4.17
pDev: 22.78%
Wants: 408
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: 10,061
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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Photo of GreenWBush
3.94/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hmm ... it appears that I do not have logged my original review for the Bastard, so I guess there's nothing to directly compare against. Alas:

Amber with tan creeping-vine lace. Settling quickly to wee carbonation with large, interspersed bubbles.

After a year or so this beer still reeks with malty-booze but the hop presence is clearly less at the forefront. The leafy, herbal qualities of the hops have quelled down to a harsh, weirdly scotch-like presence amongst the notably high prescence of alcohol. The citrus, grapefruit qualities are gone too, replaced not with any real rounded qualities except for a slight butteriness that was not there before.

This now seems kind of like a smaller, hoppier, strong ale. Slight metallic flavors abound, with no to little sweetness makes it lose points. Any bready or doughiness is burned off by that almost stale hop-kick.

Still, pretty smooth on the palate. Each sip gives you a nice little warm buzz in the stomach, and I could imagine how this on-tap would get really addictive. I'll stick with it fresh though, thanks.

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Photo of clvand0
3.82/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

This beer is quite different out of the bottle than it is on tap, so I feel compelled to write about it again. Comes only in a 22oz bomber. It pours a dark amber color with a large white head that doesn't ever go away and leaves lots of pretty lacing on the glass. The aroma is very strong with the pine hops, but has a caramel malt backing it up. The flavor is much more 'arrogant' from the bottle than from the tap. Less smooth. Very aggressive hop flavor that masks most of the malts. It's still really good, but if you can get this on tap, try that version.

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Photo of Maestro
3.58/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer is heavy. The head is quite thick and tan and stays for the whole pint. The beer is a dark red. Smell is fruity with lots of biscuit and toast. The beer is very malty. I would say that the hops are almost subdued, a nice change for a Stone Beer. There are hints of berries and slight dry wine characteristics. Mouthfeel is very chewy and a bit sticky. Drinkability, we'll just say pace yourself.

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

Pours a dark nutty brown colour, with a thinish off white head.
Smells like toffee and nuts, hardly an hops in the nose.
Taste is many things coming at you at once. You’ve got caramel, fruitcake, and some oily hops. Quite the blast from the past. Good complexity. Balance is there, but it’s still very hoppy. The malt is a bit underrepresented, but, that’s what this beer is all about. In your face action. Really lively taste, lots of busy flavours teeming about your palate to create some sort of bastardly tapestry. great mouthfeel.
Good beer, no kidding. Get it.

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Photo of oelergud
4.32/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark ruby body, light tan head, rocky in appearance with full range of bubbles, great retention and lace. low carbonation.
The nose is sweet spicy hoppyness, coarse and rough.
Increadibly sweet upfront, honey, brown sugars and molasses followed by a rush of hoppy spice rolling over the tongue. Very complex and very well balanced brew. Aftertaste is lingering sweet then a hoppy sensation.
Full body leaving some coating.
Great drinkability just watch the abv.


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

Clean, clear amber. No chill haze. Head is fine white, without much retention. Breath in, and your nose is filled with clean malty goodness and heavy raisin presence. Another inhalation brings piney, citric hops presence. Smells sweet and strong, with a gorgeous, ragged hop presence.

Medium bodied, with smooth light carbonation and a sweet caramel and raisin taste with some alcohol apparent. At first, the hop bitterness is subdued, keeping the pleasing brown ale-like maltiness at the forefront. As it goes, the hops become more intense, floral slightly, citric and piney. It gets harsher and more aggressive, finishing with an easy-going rasin and a lingering piney bitterness around the edges. Really a beautiful ale, all malt and hops, almost a defintion of what American microbrewing is about. Lovely.

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Photo of alexgash
4.43/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Deep, rich garnet body with a rabid, frothy, light-tan head.
Aromas of sweet, candy-ish malt are strong, but so are the piney, scotch-tape hops. Oh yeah.
Big sweet malt flavors up front. Pineapple and candied fruit set against a caramelly background. Huge hops come in midway to balance out the sweetness. Pine resin with deliciously spicy notes. Finish is bitter, with lingering sweetness. Big, bold body; chewy feel. It might destroy my palate (even though I think I’m worthy), but I don’t care. One of my favorites or one of my favorite styles.

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Photo of kmpitz2
4.58/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Found this on tap here in Lexington. What a treat. The beer was a deep ruby red color, with a 1.5 finger of headThe nose is very sweet grapefruit hops dipped in caramel. The flavor is sweet, very mellow hops that linger. The hop is nicely citrus. The feel is thick and the drinkability is not to be topped. What an easy drinking beer. I love it. Always have, always will.

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