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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 delmarnate
2.44/5  rDev -41.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I waited a long time to try this beer, and it was not worth the wait. The appearance is amazing, with a deep amber burgundy color. The taste is overwhelming hop from the outset. The aftertaste is almost like sucking a grapefruit. There is no complexity. It is all hops. Not worth it, even for a hop lover.

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Photo of honeybrewer
2.46/5  rDev -41%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Quite an original looking label; it's nice to see something different. This beer poors a nice copper color, with a good white head that fades away pretty quick. Looks appealing.
The smell is nothing remarkable; moderate hop aroma in no way prepares you for what is coming.
Intense, hot, overpowering hop flavor. Very sharp, very bitter. As it warms this mellows just enough that I can get a taste of the malt behind the hops. Definetly needs to go with a big rare steak.
Definetly for the dedicated hop lovers only. From the arrogance on the label I was expecting a beer with big full malt and hop flavors, but all I got was the hops. I didn't really like this beer, but that does not mean it isn't any good. If you like to chew on mouthsfull of hops, this brew is for you.

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Photo of GabeBoise
2.5/5  rDev -40%

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.

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Photo of TechMyst
2.5/5  rDev -40%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I thought I was sophisticated enough to enjoy a brew like this. But I tried a bomber of this while vacatining out in Arizona (since I cannot recieve this in IL yet.) and I can't really say I like it. Too much going on , caramel, fruit, overload...I'd rather have an Eye of the Hawk by Mendocino.

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Photo of boxvic
2.5/5  rDev -40%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

I like a few ales, so I went into this expecting to like it (or at least tolerate it). It has a nice dark caramel color; and has a good hoppy smell. It poured with a creamy head. From there it went south for me. I don't want to totally dog the beer like most people do with the macro beers (which aren't all that bad); but I just cannot rate the taste for this very highly.

I'm sure most people will disagree with me, but I had to pour out most of this pint. The head hadn't even dissipated before my stomach started to hurt. I'm not sure if my stomach just didn't like one of the ingredients, or if the hops were just too strong for my stomach. All I know is I couldn't finish it.

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Photo of deebo
2.51/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I'm not much of a NW hop fan when done in arrogant fashion so didn't expect to care for this one-but gave it a try at a beer tasing.

A-light clear brown with a weak head
S-Yep its hoppy, citrusy/piney, touch of malted barley
T-Decent upfront malted barley flavor quickly taken over by grapefruit, resin like hops.
M-Decent, but lingers
D-I could drink one if in a pinch.

Definitely an arrogant bastard-me no like, but good for you hop heads.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.53/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

1 pt 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a generic hefeweissbier glass in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live.

A: Three finger head of good cream, nice thickness, and good retention. Colour is a dark copper colour. Semitransparent.

Sm: Musty caramel, nuts, and fair cream. A mild strength aroma.

T: Caramel ridden body alongside some very slight roast notes. A little cream is present. Generally, it's a bit simply built. The nuts don't come through. It's not really well balanced, but it could be worse.

Mf: Pretty smooth and pretty wet. Doesn't really suit the flavours of the body.

Dr: Too difficult to drink for the ABV. The flavours are a damned distraction. The price is higher than it should be. It's far from awful, but I wouldn't have it again.

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Photo of kaboose72
2.54/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3


A- A Clear deep red mahogany, copper color.

S- Smells of HOPS

T- HAs a long lasting after taste.

D- Very strong and distinct beer. This is the beer that turned me away from strong HOP beers.

guess i got drink if given again. but will not by ever

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Photo of Arbitrator
2.58/5  rDev -38.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Re-review because I never cared for my first review.

A: Pours a reddish mahogany with a well-retaining beige head.

S: Bitter, resiny pine hops, dark fruit, caramel.

T: As in the nose, bitter hops lead the way. The emphasis on bitter pine needles and resin is something I've never gotten accustomed to with this beer. Mild citrus elements in the mid-taste, which transition into caramel and dark fruit. The finish is a piney hop punch again.

M: Medium-full bodied with tons of sticky, lingering bitterness. I prefer a cleaner flavor profile, one that doesn't totally ruin your palate. But that's arguably my own shortcoming.

O: I've never enjoyed this beer, and I can't figure out why. I like Stone, I like hoppy beers (is that redundant?), but the particular flavor profile here rubs me the wrong way, whether I have it on tap or out of the bottle. Ah well, more for everyone else.

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Photo of calise1122
2.59/5  rDev -37.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Man, It really has been far too long since I’ve had the beer. Like I said before – I got a bit annoyed from their beers a few years back and sort of stopped buying them. Not in any boycott or shit like that, just fell off my grocery list.

Anyway, I let the bomber get a little closer to room temp and poured into a skinny tulip. It pours a dark, mahogany brown with a frothy sweat stained white head that pours a few fingers thick and then dimples and craters quickly on the surface, but holds on tight to the sides of the glass leaving a nice lacing. 3 minutes go by and the head settles down to a nice foamy surface about a half inch thick with rings sticking around up north.

For a dark brown ale, it is crystal clear. Very filtered and I can almost make out Aceves’s beer gut through the glass if I hold still long enough. Held up to the light, you get a little coca cola ruby red/brown at the base of the glass. Nice looking beer – certainly looks like a strong ale.

Haven’t smelt this beer in a long time, but oddly enough it smells the same, familiar. A weird smell I think – very bitter, very hoppy… but the pine aroma is supported by the foundation of grain, caramel, toffee aroma beneath it.

Maybe it’s because I just had a DIPA… but I think it has a pretty “watery” mouthfeel compared to last time I had it. It finishes sticky enough… but I feel like it may have been “thicker” in my memory. Taste? Boozy, hoppy, grainy, chewy caramel – but a lack of balance if you ask me. The hops smack you around a bit with grapefruit/citrus… but its not that great citrus flavor that you cherish in a really well balanced and appropriately hopped beer. Just swinging its big grapefruit dick around with no abandon... I guess that's what an Arrogant Bastard does.

Wouldn’t say I’d get this again soon. I like a beer that is balanced – even when its high alcohol. There are plenty of 7+ ABV beers that are fantastically balanced… but this unfortunately (in my opinion) is not one of them. It doesn’t have much flow to it if that makes any sense… starts a bit watery in mouthfeel, ends very sticky. Starts out way to hoppy – filled with grapefruit.. ends with a not so great burnt caramel flavor. Awkward more than Arrogant... and I like big ass, hoppy, aggressive beers...

But it did look really nice.

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Photo of GOBLIN
2.6/5  rDev -37.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Stone Arrogant Bastard

I'm just not worthy !

Poured into pint glass

A: I'm just not worthy

S: Again, not worthy

T: Eh' . . . Still not worthy

M: I can't handle the worthiness

O: I sound like a Wayne's World episode I know. Maybe I'll come back to this one again someday. After all . . . There was a time that I could not stand ipa's either (parish the thought I know). But for now . . . Well, you guessed it, I'm not worthy and I'm ok with that.

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Photo of beertunes
2.63/5  rDev -36.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This is a beer I used to drink regularly, then one day I found myself bored with it and haven't had one in at least two years. This style doesn't have a lot of clear definitions, and versions vary greatly. Let's see what's up.

Served in straight pint glass. Poured an attractive mahogany color with about a half inch of light tan head that quickly dissipated and left minimal lacing.

A mostly bitter hop aroma wafts through the olfactory area, with just a touch of malt in the background. The flavors are the mix of sweet and bitter, with that harsh metallic taste I remember still dominant.

The body is decent, solid and not heavy. Drinkability is not good, this beer is just not very enjoyable. This beer is very popular so my opinion is going to be the minority, but I won't be seeking this beer out again for a while.

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Photo of Bagman007
2.65/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Served on tap in a pint glass.

A- Dark brown/black coloring with not a whole lot of head.

S- Strong hoppy scent. Can also smell the alcohol in this as well.

T- Tastes like pure hops and alcohol. Overpowering hop flavor. Very bitter beer.

M- Extremely bitter. Nothing smooth about this beer.

D- The extreme hoppiness makes this beer a little hard to drink.

Overall I like hoppy beers, but this one just seems a little too hoppy for me.

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Photo of tomghiley
2.66/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

looks great, smells okay, tastes not too good :( thoroughly disappointed with this beer, considering Stone have put out some far superior products. I've got to say, I think the best thing it has going for it is the label that attempts to make you feel bad/stupid for not liking this beer, unfortunately, I've had way too many good and great beers to appreciate this one, and for that, I just can't say that I was too impressed.

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Photo of London1985
2.66/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

What can i say?

I wasnt impressed with this whatsoever.

After being put onto it by some friends of mine i decided to give it a go. I went to my local beer importer who was selling it by the bottle for £12 British Pound Sterling!

The Arrogance!

Anywhoo, i nabbed a bottle along with some of my preplanned Belgian buys and got on the London Underground home. I chilled it for an hour in the fridge so it was a little below room temperature but not freezing cold as i wanted to taste what it had on offer.

When i poured it looked like my type of drink, but it all went downhill from there. The bitterness put me off straight away and i found it to be nothing like any type of 'Ale' ive had. It was more like an English bitter but with more carbonation, and i am not a fan of bitters. I actually didnt even want to finish it.

Glad i tried it. I wont say id never drink it again but at £12 for one bottle, i definatly wont ever buy it again.

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Photo of chinchill
2.72/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

I remember having this beer many years, before I started taking notes and entering reviews. I didn't like it then but was still surprised to find I don't like it now either. In general, I'm a big fan of Stone Brewing and my tastes have expanded to include many 'extreme' and big ales. This revisit started well enough, with an attractive red-amber ale topped by a small but durable tan head. The aroma was a slightly boozy mix of medium malt and herbal/earthy hops. The main impression made by the flavor is, unfortunately, the overly bitter aftertaste.

M: medium body and carbonation.

O: too challenging.

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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 avillax
2.72/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

I'm a bit surprised about the positive reviews on this beer. I hope they didn't fall for the legend on the back of the bottle.

A- Nice caramel color, seemed to need a bit more carbonation
S - lots of hops, pine, hoppy, hoppy
T- All I could taste was hops, it was so strong that at the beginning I had half a pint alone and then had it with steak, just like I thought, the taste of the steak was completely masked by the bitter hoppy flavor of this beer. It definitely didn't pair up with any food and at time had an unflavored cough syrup after taste, so bitter like gin. Completely out of balance.
M - good consistency, but extremely strong bitter hoppy flavor, long lasting.

I didn't know if I had a bad batch, however when I was choosing at the supermarket, I was aiming for the one with the least hoppy flavor since I had tasted other beers from this brewery and always thought the hops were out of balance, and surprise!, I got something really out of balance on hops.

The Stout and the one they brew on oak barrels are the best out of this brewery, but a total let down, if the hop is so strong you can't pair it up then that's telling you something.

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Photo of Rudgers73
2.73/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served cold on-tap at Fat Heads in Pittsburg.

A- Red and caramelly. Frothy head that settles to nothing but a ring of bigger bubbles.

S- Wow this is gonna pack a punch... Hops, hops, and more hops. Is that a faint roasted smell?

T- This is a tough beer. Light and smooth but oh man does it slam you with hops. Dry, bitter, grapefruit, dark cheeries, hoppity hop hop.

M- Leaves your mouth dry as a bone. *Gasp* This sure is a bastard...

D- I didn't really enjoy this beer. I'm glad I got to try it at a bar for $5 a pint instead of buying a 22 oz bomber and suffering through it. I don't enjoy this beer much at all.

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Photo of hossua34
2.73/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

A - Dark mahoganey wood brown with a dirty tan head, medium in size. Good lacing. This beer lost a whole point from me in this category because of labels on the bottle, which basically insult you and say that if you don't like this beer it's because you aren't sophisticated enough. For questions and comments, it basically suggests you go **** yourself. I am not overlooking the whole "Arrogant Bastard" theme here, but I just spent over five bucks on this one tall bottle, so this type of self-important crap is pretty annoying.

S - Pure hop oil. Tart, piney grapefruit smell and something like celery (???).

T - Holy bitterness. Tons of hops, little else. Not that I know, but this is what I imagine pine tree sap would taste like. Aftertaste = grapefruit. A hint of malt sweetness is almost detectable for just a second, then it's gone. Almost zero balance; just tons of hops.

M - Thick and warm, due to the high ABV.

D - Between the extreme dose of hops, and the sharp bite of the relatively poorly-hidden alcohol, I'm ready to switch to something else after about 8 oz. Not my style whatsoever.

This ale was way, way, way too hoppy for my tastes. Evidently - or according to the packaging - this is because I am a giant moron and a sissy when it comes to beer. I know I'm probably taking the damn label WAAAAY too seriously, but in my eyes if you put statements like that on your bottle, your beer sure as hell better deliver. And Arrogant Bastard simply did not deliver. It reminded me of the compressed pellet of hops I tasted when I toured the Anheiser-Busch brewery in St. Louis. I had some other Arrogant Bastard beers on my to-try list, but I will cross them off unless someone wants to throw a bottle my way for free.

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Photo of Mitchel
2.73/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This ale will put hair on your chest (I’m talkin’ to you ladies)! Initially I want to tell you to watch out. This is for real beer drinkers who like BOLD tastes. Aside from the cool silk-screened logo and the huge bottle, it has interesting flavors and smell.

This is a very complex beer but is also reasonably smooth. Very fruity (orange) in the bouquet and also a huge occurrence of alcohol tang is present. This is an exceedingly hopped beer with plenty of toasted grain. I would suggest one bottle of this mixed in with other types of beer for the night. Don’t try and drink this all night long. You might grow horns or turn into a hairy beast (more so than you already are).

Try it. Have an open mind and buy other beer just incase.

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Photo of mactrail
2.78/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Hops wrestle with the sweet malt for a long, long time. Eventually the malt gives up. Oddly light bodied. Oily pine on the lips followed by grapefruit pith. Carbonation lasts well if your tongue can take the workout. Pleasing head on the amber brew with nice lacing.

From the cask at The Linkery in San Diego. I thought it might be interesting to try the cask version, but I wish I hadn't. The unfortunate part is the warm cellar temp accentuates the astounding excess of bitter hops and makes the whole concoction harsh and and brutal.

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Photo of Jwale73
2.79/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served in my Delirium Tremens tulip. Poured a translucent mahogany; excellent clarity. Rocky, off-white head. Good retention that eventually coalesced into a dollop of white in the center. Head was reconstituted with a light swirl and completely refreshed with each pour. Scent of hops, hops and more hops, as well as a hint of pine and citrus that lent a medicinal quality to the nose. Also thought I detected some dark-skinned fruit in there. Taste was consistent with nose and flavors seemed a bit muddled. Lingering bitterness between quaffs left a bad taste in my mouth. Mouthfeel was medium-bodied and lightly effervescent with a mild burn up front. Bottle was right; I didn't like this one. Not at all what I expected. Probably won't bother trying the oaked version.

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Photo of AtrumAnimus
2.8/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

This is definately a hop head beer. Very hoppy with a bitter finish. Rather ropugh on the pallate too. I love their logo though. Just not a very clean finish either. Drinkable but definately not on my list of favorites. The aroma is deceptive. Perhaps that is the real problem with this beer. You get the aroma of Hops and are probably expecting more than you get from the taste. Also tastes a lot like it was allowed enough fermentation time. PErhaps if they bottle fermented this beer it would smooth out and be excellent then.

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Photo of Optimat0r
2.81/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

appearance - comes in a big 1pt6oz bottle. the bottle is plain but has lots of fun writing on it. it also informs me that i 'probably wont like it'. color is a deep reddish-amber.

taste - when Stone hops go bad. i love Stone's IPA, their hops are the best. but here they go waaaay overboard. this beer tastes like a copper metallic penny. tastes like metal. gross, horrible aftertaste.
i first tried this as a total novice so i thought id give it another shot, but it was even worse the second time around. i cannot make it through the bomber, i still find it hardly drinkable. i guess im not worthy.

drinkability - terrible. its a quality beer for sure, but just too relentlessly hoppy bitter. should maybe be called Bitter Bastard. certainly a must-try, but i dont think ill be having this again. unless you like the taste of metal, you probably wont take it past your first try. good for the experience though...what novice beerfan could resist that bottle's appeal?

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