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Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,901 Reviews

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Reviews: 2,901
Hads: 9,924
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 10.53%
Wants: 384
Gots: 2,054 | 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: 2,901 | Hads: 9,924
Photo of Beerwolf666
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This Ale is not for the faint of Heart,it is a very complex Brew,and if your average light beer drinker tried some,they would have their face ripped off,No this Beer is for people who enjoy Strong Ale's and full flavors,and Man OH Man,does this Brew have some gr8 Flavors!Nice and Hoppy,with a Medium ~Heavy mouth Feel,right off the Bat you get that awesome Grapefruit smell and taste,with a nice dash of Piney notes,along with tropical fruits,Carmel,toffee and so much other stuff going on it's as though you pickup something New every time you drink from yer glass,and while 7.2 A.B.V. is not really a high A.B.V. for this type of Ale,it is probably a brew you want to drink @ Home,or if you are out,make sure you have a designated driver or take a cab,because this stuff is so damn drinkable,tasty & plain Delicious,you will want to keep drinking it ,and that 7.2% A.B.V. WILL Catch up to you before you know it, now the double Bastard @ 11% A.B.V. is a real Ass Kicker,...and [IMHO] even Better~Cheers & Peace 2 all;] (1,021 characters)

Photo of CoffeePorter
4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

As soon as I crack open the bottle I instantly can smell the hoppy goodness that is within. As I sip the beer I taste notes of grapefruit. It appears to be a dark amber like color and it definitely goes down very smooth. This is one of my top 5 go to beers that's for sure. Very complex and very good!! (303 characters)

Photo of Stjimmy10_1
4.53/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Every time I feel that my tastebuds need their asses kicked, this is the beer that I buy. Intensely full flavored and hoppily bottled arrogance. I like to think that I am worthy of such a brutal beer from time to time. (218 characters)

Photo of LordofthePings
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Very coarse both in taste and feel. Heavy blend of both hops and malt. I see this one got some strong ratings but it's not for me. Given that so many people seem to like this one, maybe I'll try it again in a year or two as my tastes continue to change and re-rate at that time. (278 characters)

Photo of jcance
4.92/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I don't even wanna write a full review, I just want to say about this is like mana of the gods and every time I've purchased it I have been totally satisfied. I don't even flinch despite the price tag. Drink this (212 characters)

Photo of Doctor_Bogenbroom
4.7/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Okay, you Arrogant Bastard, it's time to get served.

Appearance: Pours a gorgeous copper/brown into a tulip glass. A nice, foamy tan head with decent lacing adorns the crown of the glass.

Aroma: Strong earth tones. A pungent smell, almost like being in a cavern. And there's a cedar-like, forest quality to it as well.

Taste: I was expecting to get knocked on my backside by the hops, but that didn't happen. Instead, the complexity of the flavors slowly rolled over me like a tide. This is a very well-balanced ale. Again, there's that earthy taste to it, along with a gentle carbonation that tickles the tongue.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied and bitter on the back end, but not overly so. A nice, almost sandy tingle all the way through.

Overall: "Complex" is generally a word bereft of true meaning, but if you want to get an idea what beer drinkers mean when they say it's "complex," then drink this. The tongue-in-cheek reference to being unworthy because you lack the sophistication to truly appreciate this beer actually comes through. I like it. I am very impressed. (1,082 characters)

Photo of SitkaSteve
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had this numerous times in pint glasses, snifters and tulips.
Today's review is in a snifter.
The appearance was a hazy golden orange color with a one finger white foamy head that dissipated within seconds leaving some light lacing running here and there around the glass.
The smell, wooeee, wow and hot damn, pure strong bitter hop oils of citrus and pine combining and doing this beer its due service of "strong" alright.
The taste was pure bittersweet bliss of combined citrus and pine. There's a nice big pine oil aftertaste leading to a dry finish.
The mouthfeel sat about a medium on the body with a decent sessionability about it. Actually, wait a minute, eh, perhaps closer to a decent sipping quality about it. Its just that this one really grabs your tongue for a good pummeling that its kinda hard to put down exactly how sessionable this one really is. Its definitely brutal like an AIPA.
Overall, in my opinion, this one does what I believe Stone meant to do, its "arrogance" is bitter but isn't exactly one I'd have with food. Just one makes a good session. (1,077 characters)

Photo of PostRockandCats
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber.

L- Nice dark amber with a creamy, tan head. Heavy lacing tendrils.

S- Mild nose. Hops up front with a malty, dry yeast note.

T- Resiny. Sticks with you. Starts with a spicy caramel note and goes into citrus peel and vanilla. Hard, piney hops everywhere. I can still taste them 5 minutes after my last drink. Not a bad thing.

F- Smooth yet viscous. It's not heavy, but it sticks with you. Medium carbonation.

o- Pleasant and complex. This is why I drink beer. (491 characters)

Photo of getatmeimevil
4.54/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I love this beer!

But it's what got me started on craft, so I'm as biased as possible...

Pours a beautiful deep redish brown with a very light tan head. Smell is much more subtle than the name would imply but it gives you just enough hint at what's to come. Taste is where this beer makes its kill move, so smooth yet all the qualities that you want from a complex brew. As an IPA guy I love ther bitter bite at the end. Overall, this is my favorite beer, it's the beer I would constantly have fresh on tap in my house if possible. (533 characters)

Photo of car2052
4.68/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from 22 oz. bomber to pint glass.

A: Clear, deep garnet/ ruby appearance. Big head that is tan. Not incredibly carbonated.
S: Piney hops and sweet bready malts. Notes of clove and cinnamon.
T: Up front there is dark toasted malt with coffee note, but is balanced by intense hop flavor of pine and grapefruit. Other citrus flavors like orange and peach come through in the middle of the palate. Ends with a powerful finish and aftertaste where you can taste dark grains and soapy hops. Very nice.
M: Medium. Hops and toasted malt really stick with you throughout the taste.
O: Great beer. Not for everyone. Essentially a Red IPA with powerful hop presence. Love it! (672 characters)

Photo of markshhaaefer
4.31/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I was at an italian restaurant when I saw this name on the menu!... I had to try it. The alcohol content on this one must be high, because one of these big bottle s and i was G to the O-N-E. I just remember it tasting really awesome. I have had more and plan to drink more when I can. I'm sorry, I don't have any better details then this, but that's all I remember! (370 characters)

Photo of LampertLand
4.16/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stone Brewing 'Arrogant Bastard Ale' @ 7.2% , originally tasted on tap @ GCBF'11 , this review from a 650 ml bottle purchased for $7.50
A-pour is a golden/brown from the bottle to an amber in the glass with a medium size beige head leaving a streaky lace along the VBW sampler
S-earthy hops ,
T-big tasting ale with a dry finish
MF-ok carbonation , feels full bodied
Ov-good beer , almost great , & I AM WORTHY
prost LampertLand (429 characters)

Photo of ryan1788a5
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle poured into a globe.

A: Very dark ruby/Garnett color. Clarity is very good. Two fingers of beige head show excellent retention. Lacing sticks in wispy patches.

S: Hops are forward on the nose with an overall earthy and resinous aroma. Subtle whiffs of tangerine and tropical fruits are there too if you let them come out. Big malt backbone isn't bashful either. Heavy toast, caramel, brown molasses. Perhaps slightly candied too. Suggestions of red berries. Well balanced. Over the top in general, but in a good way.

T: Big piney and resinous hop bite. Very earthy. Pine, leaves, bark. Flashes of orange and other citrus fruits. Hardcore bitterness. Malts are equally abrasive. Heavy, heavy toast. Crusty. Burnt caramel. Flashes of berries. Clamping earthy and resiny bitterness never relents and owns the finish. In fact, forget the finish, you'll still taste it when you wake up the next morning.

M: Full medium body. Very smooth and even velvety in texture. That is until the hop astringency cuts through and clings to your tooth enamel. Moderately carbonated.

O: The craft beer scene has changed so much since this beer first came onto the market, but it still feels as relevant today as it did back then. This beer helped define the new era of craft beer. To hell with all those breweries in the early going that were content to churn out some safe "fizzy yellow lager". This was brewed in direct opposition to those beers. In fact, it is so ridiculously aggressive that I still find it miraculous that it caught on at all. We all love it today because the context in which we drink beer has changed. Big, aggressive, hoppy beers are now more or less the norm. I wish I could go back in time just to watch people's faces contort as they tasted this, when the wildest beers they'd tried to that point were a pale ale and some mundane amber. We've come a long way.

As an aside it's nice to see Stone pumping the core brand again. With all the one-offs and special releases they've been doing it's easy for the consumer to overlook Arrogant Bastard. The value of this new Bastard Box bomber four pack is so ridiculous that it's a no-brainer buy for the consumer. Hopefully it brings some attention back to this great beer. (2,243 characters)

Photo of Stevedore
4.02/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Stone World Bistro in Escondido, CA. Served in a stemmed glass 12/14/14.

A- Dark reddish-brown body. Copper hue. Half finger white head, good retention time, nice collaring. No lacing.

S- A blast of piney hops and sweet syrupy malt. Extremely potent stuff. Rich, intense and pine-forward with some grapefruit that is barely detectable underneath an incredibly strong malt sweetness that does not let up. Wow.

F- The malt sweetness comes out more as a mild caramel, heavy resin type of sweetness that just somehow works quite well with the amount of hops used here. On one hand, it tastes quite malty, but on the other hand, my palate is being blown up by the sheer pine bitterness of this beer. This is what I think Stone set out to accomplish and while it's not my thing, I do have to respect their intention.

M- Thick bodied, syrupy and dry. Bitter pine forward finish that makes this one a bit of a sipper. In some ways tough to drink, but in other ways, so easy to drink due to how flavourful it is. The bitterness can be well above what most people would be used to.

O- Very nice strong ale with a crap-ton of hops in it. The description and the story behind this and Double Bastard is quite novel and I have to give credit to Stone for coming up with these beers, even if they are not my favourites. Well worth trying at least once for the novelty, history and respect for Stone and what they've done for craft beer.

Final score: 4.01 (1,456 characters)

Photo of Swettenham_Shire
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Acquired as part of the 4-pack Arrogant Bastard set.

I wasn't worthy enough to drink this beer 10 years ago in college as I specifically remember the drain pour. Now I understand the words spoken on the label; Stone pretty much nailed the strong ale style here. (262 characters)

Photo of Ozzylizard
2.93/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Bottle dated 10/13/14 at 45 degrees into snifter
Aroma of resinous hops
Head average (3.5 cm, aggressive pour), light brown, frothy, slowly diminishing to 3 mm ring and layer
Lacing poor – few islands of tiny to small bubbles
Body deep amber, clear
Flavor begins with hop bitterness and ends with a short hang-time bitterness; no malt, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate full, watery, lively carbonation

Appearance 3, Aroma 3, Flavor 2.75, Palate 3.25, Overall 3 (461 characters)

Photo of apollutedmind1990
5/5  rDev +19.6%

This beer is fantastic. Dark and flavorful, the way i like it. A tad bitter, but the bitterness accentuates the dark coffee/chocolate notes. A great beer overall. (162 characters)

Photo of SeanMurray
1.25/5  rDev -70.1%

This has GOT to be the worst beer on Earth. WAY....WAY...WAY too much hops. It taste like you just poured a liquid lawnmower bad down your mouth. YUCK (150 characters)

Photo of contraster
5/5  rDev +19.6%

this is my absolute favorite beer, prior to drinking this i was a conossour of liquor and had only drank beer as an alcohol delivery system, this beer is singlehandedly responsible for expanding my interests and turning me into the beer snob that i am, as such i have to give it a perfect rating as no beer i have ever had has topped it to this point. its taste isnt very sweet, its fairly bitter, and its a dark amber color with a small head and not too agressive carbonation. mouth feel i found was consistent and somewhat chalky, but not enough to reduce the experience, though someone i introduced to this beer said he found it was like drinking charcoal. If your into dark ales this is a must try! (702 characters)

Photo of Redneckwine
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

22oz bomber into tulip

Appearance - Murky, murky dark brown body. 1.5 finger tan head seems to linger eternally, awesome retention and lacing

Smell - Toasted maltiness very prevelant with ample dark fruity alcohol ester goodness, piney/citrus hop resin, and subtleties of toasted spice.

Taste - Starts of with toasty, doughy, nutty malt that brings a dark fruity, semi-sweet quality with it, fruity + peppery alcohol esters and subtle spice notes (cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, anise). Hops are definitely here with a lot of pine resin action and some moderate citrus peel mid-palate, then this brew shifts gears BIG-TIME and dries out VERY rapidly, coating the entire mouth with a strong, assertive, hop resin bitterness that lingers and actually builds well after the swallow. A touch of fruity, dry maltiness also lingers in the long finish. Very complex.

Feel - Just absolutely spot-on medium body with plenty of scrubbing carb to get the job done, making this beast feel light for its substantial body and flavor.

Overall - Stone isn't yanking your chain with the narrative found on the bottle: this sumbitch is one hell of an aggressive beer: a big flavor and sensory bomb with a truly assertive bitter bite on the finish that kicks you in the mouth. Maybe the greatest feat is how this brew still feels balanced after the flavor onslaught. I love it, but obviously this brew ain't for everyone. (1,401 characters)

Photo of Franziskaner
4.17/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Deep brown in color with a half inch of khaki colored head. Brussels lacing. I get biscuity malt in the aroma. The taste is plenty of biscuity malt with a touch of bitterness from piney hops. There's a copper penny malt note in the fade. The mouth is bone dry and slightly chalky. (285 characters)

Photo of ONUMello
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle enjoy by 1/6/15 poured into a pint glass
A: Reddish amber color with a solid 1+ finger head that lingers quite a while
S: A nice blend of toasted malt and pine/citrus hops. More subtle earth/spice and a sweeter fruit I can't place
T: Largely matches the nose. Nice malt/hop/earth mix
M: Medium-bodied, somewhat bitter
O: Very solid beer. I often overlook it because it's such a mainstay but every time I drink it I enjoy it (435 characters)

Photo of GabeBoise
2.5/5  rDev -40.2%

This beer showcases the ultra bitter approach to hops that was popular in the late nineties. This is the kind of beer that caused me to switch to wine and other beverages. The new school of hoppy beers showcase flavor and aroma elements to balance the bitterness. In the bastard, bitterness is forefront and dominant. A very unpleasant beer to drink. (350 characters)

Photo of Double07Inc
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Appearance: Medium brown in color

Smell: The aromatics on this beer are great you can smell the hops, a slight pine, with an orange grapefruit appeal.

Taste: This medium bodied beer is great. Good hoppie bitterness and you can taste the chocolate malts and roasted flavors.

Mouth feel: it goes down smooth, if your not use to hoppie beers, keep to your fuzzy wussies beers like the bottle say, cause your not worthy.

Overall: This is my beer of choice. This is the beer that got me into craft beer and ultimately brewing. With this beer your either a fan or you don't know what real beer is. (596 characters)

Photo of cjgiant
3.81/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Review on 11/15/2014 from bottle enjoy by 1/11/15:
Pours a deep reddish amber color with a small amount of reddish tan head on a light pour (first half of a 22oz). The beer appears pretty clear, but color prevents much light through. Lacing is decent. Nose is grapefruit rind and light pine bittering notes. I get some fruit notes, pitted in nature, and maybe even some cranberry.

Taste is more centered on the bitter, but there is a bit of maltiness to supply some balance. The base reminds me a bit of an English bitter beer, a clean cereal like base, some copper, but with the addition of a hint if fruit (again I get cranberry or maybe white raisin). The hops are what this beer prides itself in, and they definitely pack a punch. Grapefruit and orange hints, pith-based to be sure. Even though this isn't a barrel aged version, there's is a woody to piney flavor and feel as well. The hops seem to provide more bite than the carbonation, and the beer is fairly dry, more so than you might initially think from a clear amber beer, but not enough so to make the beer too one-sided.

Had numerous times before. A very nice beer, and a classic in the craft beer world. A must try once if you haven't had it yet. I only need to grab it once in a while, that's enough for me. (1,287 characters)

Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,901 ratings.