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Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

9,489 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,489
Reviews: 2,882
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 12.5%
Wants: 332
Gots: 1,565 | FT: 11
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

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9,489 | Reviews: 2,882 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of akorsak
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap in a tumbler.

A: The darkest of the line-up, a rich dark caramel amber color. Still translucent, this beer has the visual heft an arrogant one needs. A white head laces in thick strata around the glass.

S: Very malty. Very hoppy. Plenty of both make this beer fire. The caramel is syrupy, a sweetly dry introduction that coaxes out the citrusy pine bitterness of the ale. Big and bold.

T: The caramel jumps out as the malts stake an early lead. That richness tends to linger throughout the ale. The hops, piney and citrusy, quickly come in to balance things out. They bring an intensity that is both hoppy and flavorful. A boozy warmth runs throughout the ale.

M: A delicious fullness that doesn't feel nearly as strong as it actually is. Plenty of hops but more than enough balance.

Photo of Zorro
3.88/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear very dark ruby brown ale.

Smells sweet and hoppy as hell, it's a hop monster.

There might be some complex flavors in here but the hops obliterates everything else. Bitter in the extreme.

Mouthfeel is ok.

Not really drinkable. Might be able to choke it down.

Flushed the rest of the bottle down the toilet.

RE-REVIEW, yes I am the guy who gave this an overall 2.0.


The first time I reviewed this.

Appearance is still a "Pours a clear very dark ruby brown ale."

Smell is sweet and malty with a banana scent that is rather nice. Nice malt and tutty fruity scent to this.

Taste is still super hoppy although I can taste the other good points mainly the malt and fruity flavors from the hops. Still this is a mighty bitter brew.

Mouthfeel is good.

I can drink this, maybe I just grew to like Hop Monsters? Who Knows?

Photo of rhoadsrage
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a tulip glass)
A- This beer pours a golden-brown body with a creamy thick beige head that last for a good bit and a slow carbonation of bubbles.
S- The full green citrus hops aroma has pineapple weed and resin aromas to it. As the beer warms up the caramel malt comes through and adds nice balance.
T- The green herbal and citrusy hops have green grapefruit zest notes and a nice pine bite to it. There was just a bit of grassy flavor but not much. The malt was a nice sweet malt with some toasted flavors and caramel qualities. The hop bitterness finished the beer and lingered a bit after each sip. M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a soft fizz that boost the hop finish and no alcohol heat noticed.
D- I'm not sure I could distinguish between this and the regular AB but it as a great beer. It would have been nice to have a full 12. oz glass but I'm not sure I could drink many of these in one sitting.

Photo of rab53
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Zaphog
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of BillRoth
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of KAF
3.5/5  rDev -15.9%

Photo of dmorgan310
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of HopHead84
3.8/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3


On tap at Stone.

A: Dark reddish brown with a creamy off white head. Good retention.

S: Caramel accompanies big pine resin notes. Grapefruit and earth are evident. Pretty aromatic.

T: Upper moderate bitterness with lots of resin and grapefruit. Caramel malt makes an effort to balance, but that tilts toward the aggressive hops. Alcohol is noticeable in the flavor.

M: Upper medium body with upper moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is sticky and dry with some astringency.

Overall: An aggressive American Strong Ale. Nothing particularly special about it.

Photo of billab914
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Alesmith pint glass. Poured a deep red in color with a very active off-white head. Very good head retention and lacing on the glass as I drank it.

The aroma shows a lot of citrus and pine hoppiness to it with grapefruit playing one of the bigger roles. A malty sweetness seems to come through a bit providing a nice base for the hops.

The taste also shows a bold citrus and pine hoppiness to it with even more pine coming through in the finish. The malty, caramel, sweetness helps it from becoming overly bitter in the finish. It's big and bold and has a great mix of flavors.

The mouthfeel is on the heavier side with carbonation being moderate. Drinkability is very good, it's an excellent beer with a lot of bold flavors. All the flavors really mesh well together though and make for a great beer.

Photo of biegaman
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Arrogant Bastard is of a beautifully polished cherry-wood colour that would look every bit as classy and handsome as a bar top as it does just sitting on one. Its leaking highlights broadcast the fact that this deep, darkish beer is actually spotlessly transparent and chalk full of fetching chroma. Its head is a tarnished ecru and leaves a sticky mess of lacing.

I'm sure Stone has already looked into whether it's possible to legally trademark a smell - this audaciously hoppy aroma is distinguished by the sheer pomposity of its wickedly bitter pithiness and unrivaled piny attributes. It smells like someone set a (Tim Burton-inspired) forest on fire and grinned the singed and seething remains into the bottle.

Imagine encountering a dark, sinister side to pink grapefruit, pine serum and toffee-coated wafers. In fact, Arrogant Bastard is kind of like a vigilante - not everyone will agree with the way it goes about things but few will dispute the overall good brought about. Do its flavours need to be this brazen and excessively bitter? Couldn't we have just had a bright and citric hoppiness without all these harassing, pithy, weedy herbals?

Couldn't we have a leisurely walk through the forest rather than death by a thousand pine needle pin-pricks? Couldn't we have a spritz of citrus rather than being gagged with a festering, entire grapefruit in our mouth? Couldn't we have sweet, toasty biscuits rather than having the sugar scorched directly onto our tongue? In so many words... no.

If you want all smiles and sunshine then look elsewhere because the experience here is not the sunshine, it's the storm weathered. And to hell with smiles. This is about being brash, impertinent, impudent, ill-mannered, unabashed and, in a word, arrogant. This may be the world's most deliberately unappealing flagship beer... which is exactly why it's so popular.

Love it or loath it, this beer does capture a great deal about its brewer: loads of brash character and plenty of clever marketing. And you may be hard-pressed to find a flagship offering with better value, more distinctiveness and this level of decadent maltiness and brimming hoppiness. Love him or loath him, Arrogant Bastard is one cool bad-ass.

Photo of Kelp
3.7/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A nice ruby red red hue as it pours into my glass. Two fingers of head grow. Fades at a decent rate slight lacing.

Medium hops smell, along with pine and light caramel finish.

A quick hop bite right off the bat. Followed by the maltiness of the beer and finishing with a piney after taste.

Medium body to the beer smooth across the tongue. Good but not great feel to it.

I couldn't drink more than one, maybe two. Not really my cup of beer as they say. Good once in a great while.

Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of Wasatch
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a extrodarie beer. Pours a dark amber/red. Not much of a head and leaves a small trace of lacing. Scents of hops and malt in a sweet surrounding. Medium body with a great sweet taste with a little hop bite at the end. I really like this brew and would make a great session beer.

Photo of ppoitras
4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle purchased as a single from Yankee Spirits, MA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 3/4" dark tan head over the clear burgundy red brew. Hearty holds on well, with ample lacing. Aroma is dominantly hoppy, with citrus and pine powering the experience. Taste starts a bit lacking in my mind, not as richly malty as I would expect. But never fear, the hops kick in a take over, with bursts of bitterness that impress, without making you cringe from overdoiung it. Mouthfeel is smooth for such a hoppy offering, and drinkability is dangerously good. Had this many times, just never got around to reviewing, reminds me why I keep coming back.

Photo of sendbeer
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%

Photo of Cynic-ale
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of rolltide8425
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of plaid75
4.23/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep amber chill hazed hue with a finger and a half pillowy off-white creamy head. There was very good retention and excellent sticky lacing.

The smell featured a strong oily citrus hop with a mildly sweet caramel malt aroma.

The taste was very well balanced. A solid sweet grain was perfectly balanced by the resiny citrus and peppery hop. Mild warming alcohol as well.

The mouthfeel was full and slightly chewy.

Overall an excellent ale. Worthy of all the hype. Potent and drinkable.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Miller's Ale House in PBG. Finally, they serve something drinkable.

Appearance - Dark amber body. I didn't really check for clarity because this beer just isn't much to look at. It's gotta be said that it isn't pretty. It looks the way it's supposed to, I guess. Imposing.

Smell - Strangely, I never seem to get a lot of aroma from AB. I get the hops first. Mostly grapefruit. Maybe a bit floral. Behind that I get roasted malts with some caramel. It's not a strong or complex aroma.

Taste - This is where the goodness is. I get just a bit of grapefruit hop at the start, followed by some malt. Caramel malt, but not sweet. The bitter finish is when I love and what steers the feeble drinkers away. The bitterness lasts and lasts until you take another sip to get just enough malt for a brief reprieve.

Mouthfeel - Well carbonated. Enough body to help the malt flavor linger until the finish. Not syrupy, though.

Overall - It defies comparison and it's a beer that grows on you. I'm thrilled that I can finally go to the Ale House and get something decent. It's not a beer I go out and buy, but it's a beer I'll always get when I'm out at a restaurant.

Photo of PEIhop
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of liamt07
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Whole Foods Union Square. 22oz into a tulip, best before June 6, 2011.

Pours a dark mahogany, huge dense cream coloured head. Super thick and creamy. Leaves a helluva lot of lace. Medium retention. Nose is hopped to high heaven, lots of tropical notes with a sturdy malt base to support it. Taste kicks off with a blast of hops and massive malt backbone. Citrus and tropical notes contend with and intense bitterness imparted by the alpha acids. Huge caramel toffee base giving this loads of body. An interesting cinnamon spiciness comes out here as it warms, along with some dark tea flavours. Great bitterness here and a full, hefty feel. A suggestion of the alcohol is made, but that only adds to how good this was. An off center imperial red, methinks...

Photo of Latarnik
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of beerthulhu
4.23/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a deep crimson red, clear, with a thin frothy khaki colored head. Retention was better then average yielding a sparse covering with a thin stratified layering for a lacing. Visible carbonation appeared moderate.

S: The nose yielded fresh pink grapefruit with fresh green pin needles. Some sugary notes sweetens things up a bit.

T: The initial flavor was fresh pink grapefruit, pine resin, with a nice dry maltiness similar in nature to rye. Some dry booziness of whiskey cask notes with a moderately strong and pungent grapefruit hoppinesss that was flowery. Some sticky pine resin and dry boozy alcohol finishes things up here.

M: A rich, boozy nature and dry palate leaves the tongue perched from the massive helping of Chinook hopping contributing its big pungent grapefruit hoping and fade on the tongue. A nice full viscosity, oily, with a very light carbonation factor. Malty, smooth with a big boozy finish.

D: At first tasting it lives up to its name but seems to continuously get smoother with every sip there after. You may be taken aback at first by its arrogant nature, but deep down you will find this a boozy, dry hopped treat that gets progressively smoother with every sip and will grow on you.

Photo of GarthDanielson
4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured on-tap at the Stone Brewery. The beer is a beautiful red-copper color, with a thin ring of head. It has a malty smell with hops undertones. The flavor is initally a spicy-malt blast, followed by light bitter hops. The flavors are very strong and full, and very well balanced. There is a spicy, bitter aftertaste to the beer, with a hoppy finish. Great beer with heavy, non-apologetic flavors. Kudos!

Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 9,489 ratings.