Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

9,803 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,803
Reviews: 2,966
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 12.26%
Wants: 374
Gots: 1,935 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9,803 | Reviews: 2,966
Photo of Foddz
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Orange-caramel pour, slight chill haze that faded quickly. Head is plentiful and off-white, very fine and frothly like a Tripel. Foam persists nicely and leaves copious thick lacing around the glass.

S: Seriously heavy malt- Caramel, maple syrup, candied fruit, prunes, raisins. Hops quite present and provide a lighter floral/citrus edge. Really just bursting with scent.

T: Almost as flavourful as it smells - a slightly different balance. Hops more pronounced and more grassy than citrus/floral. Plenty of malt still present. Caramel, raisins, fruit. The subtle tones are trampled by the hops - but really my only knock on the taste.

M: Smooth, palpable, velvety. A nice bite from the alcohol and carbonation. Leaves the palate pleasantly sticky and eager for more.

O: Fantastic. Lives up to its name - the taste is bold, brash, matching the bombastic self-promotion adorning the bottle. Wish I'd checked the review before purchasing - I would have come home with more as this isn't available locally.

Photo of Patrick2012
4.36/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in 16 oz tulip glass

A: Super dark cherry red color, dark blonde head

S: Not too much aroma but is warm smelling

T: Dark, round, Roasty, bitter taste, a little espresso or sumthin toasty like that. Simple but very tasty.

M: Bitter definitely but is a good aftertaste.

O: Kind of a classic ale the way it smells and tastes but the appearance blew me away the most, great cherry red color. seen this one a lot and finally tried it and liked it very much

Photo of pcguitarwzrd
4.02/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Appears stout-black at first pour but hold it to the light to reveal a deep reddish-brown. Head is khaki and dissipates quickly.

S: Deceptively mild. Some malty and chocolate notes. Can't pick up too much of the hops.

T: Hop explosion followed by baking chocolate, espresso, prunes and an aftertaste of chocolate milk. Alcohol is never apparent except to dry the finish nicely.

M: Rich and satisfying but never syrupy.

O: Even if I hated this beer I would give it points for the monologue on the bottle. In fact this is an excellent beer that may become one of my go-to's.

Photo of milesfan76
4.72/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

It's been a while since I've written a review. Now's as good a time as any to start again. This has always been one of my favorites, but for some reason I never got around to reviewing it. Had it on tap at University Pizzeria and Italian Eatery on the campus of YSU (this place is the single greatest reward to my recent return to school). In a pint glass.

A: Pours a darkish red with about a two-finger head that fades rather quickly (bottled version usually doesn't fade so fast).

S: Well balanced between the hops and the malts. Better than solid smell, but doesn't fully prepare one for the taste assault to follow.

T: According to Stone, "This is an aggressive beer." Yeah, that's a pretty good way do describe the taste. Hops are very present but not dominating, well balanced. (Of course, by balanced I mean both levels are equally overpowering, in a very good way.)

M: As close to perfect as I've ever had, especially given the strength of the taste.

D: Have to deduct half a point here for the 7.2%. On a Friday evening I might have a third. On a weekday between classes, though, two will have to do.

As I said at the beginning, this has long been a favorite of mine. It has not lost a bit of its appeal to me over the years. Gotta love Stone.

Photo of Epicedion
4.55/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into an oversized wine glass.

A: Dark translucent brownish. Very dark amber. Small head that hung around for awhile, nice lacing. It's a very nice-looking, darker beer.

S: Very fruity hops. Rich.

T: They got this right. The hops are fruity, strong, and bitter, but not overpowering. There's an undercurrent of sweet malt, almost caramel. There's some kind of strange spice to it, almost like cloves or allspice. The flavor is very bold, rich, and yet not overbalanced in any direction. I haven't had any of Stone's other offerings, but if this beer is any indication, they're a top-notch brewery. Truly outstanding.

M: Medium, good carbonation, smooth with a bitter finish. I like it. The mouthfeel doesn't do anything crazy for me, but I like it.

D: Very drinkable, but you should keep in mind that this beer is best served by slower drinking.

Photo of zplug123
3.68/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Maple-brown color, good head with attractive lacing that lasts for the whole time

S: Definitely strong hops aroma, pine/spice with a hint of malt sweetness

T: The hoppiness is apparent at the beginning, with a lingering mouthfeel. Subsequent sips exhibit a malt sweetness underneath, but overall strong and hop-bitter.

M: The carbonation lets it stick to the palette for a few seconds, definitely pleasant due to appropriate carbonation level. The hop resin feeling is definitely overbearing, but otherwise smooth.

D: I have half of a 22 oz bottle while I shared the rest with my brother, a good beer to sip and talk about, but definitely not anywhere on my top list.

Photo of shwhat
4.06/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from a bomber.

looks incredibly appetizing. such a deep red color. The head retention is pretty decent. Decent lacing as well.

the smell is very intense. citrusy hop aromas. a little along the lines of grapefruit...but there's certainly an orangey quality to it. Sharp alcohol aroma coming through on the back end.

the taste is just as intense as the smell. sweet up front, a hop assault as soon as it hits the back of the tongue. quite bitter indeed. there's a bit of an alcohol presence, as well as a very minimal roasted malt flavor. there's a huge presence of caramel. this is one complex beer...every sip you take contains a new element of flavor.

the mouthfeel is nice and rich. a medium, almost full body. the carbonation is pretty light.

it's not an intensely boozy beer, but you can certainly tell this beer is huge. i like it a lot, but i'm used to beers that are slightly less bitter. one of the most complex beers i've had. so intense, but i think i can tame it.
edit - by the end of the bomber, the edge has worn off of the bitterness and it's a lot more enjoyable. my palate has probably just gotten a lot more used to it.

Photo of Floyd12
4.83/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a mug.

A- Deep copper color beer with a large sticky and frothy off white head with great retention that left lacing all down the side.

S- STRONG hop aroma with fruity and floral undertones which attempt and almost succeed in masking the high alcohol content.

T- Very ful and rich taste witha medium body. A toasted and caramel undertone with a malty sweetness that balances the alcohol bite. Al matched with the fruity hoppy taste.

M- Very smooth with mild carbonation.

D- Very drinkable if you are sophisticated enough to enjoy it. Large bottle and high alcohol conent means you can't knock back 6 or 7, but you will greatly enjoy what you do drink

Photo of beerbellydaddy
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Arrogant Bastard Ale

This beer poured from a 22 ounce bottle provides a clear but dark reddish amber flow. It erupts into frothy 3 to 4 finger creamy foam, and leaves long standing lacing.

The scent is heavy malts balanced by hops, uninterrupted by much else.

The taste is reflective of the scent, but reversed with heavier hops, and a mild oak undertone. This is a straight forward ale taste, unencumbered by exotic extras.

A mouthful is creamy with just the right punch of carbonation. It is substantial but still refreshing.

Overall, this is another winner by Stone, and is an excellent example of a strong American ale.

Photo of JohnnysBarIsIt
4.65/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is definatly not a beer for everyone. It even says it on its label, Its a stron ale with lots of hops and malts a dark color with a aroma that tells you its an Arrogant Bartard. Worth a try if you are looking for something different. Has to be one of my favorite Stone Brew.

Photo of djjacobsen
4.16/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This is a fun one. AB introduced me to the craft beer world. I knew little about it all. The color is a gorgeous amber brown. the smell is of nothing but earthy hops and booze. The taste follows the nose...super bitter upon a canvas of earthy notes that are centered in this American Strong ale. It is a decent jump-off point and is always fun to revisit but the Arrogant Bastard is nothing more than a well-labeled, over-marketed beer beast. I guess I'm not worthy

Photo of LikeARollingStout
4.19/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bomber poured into a snifter

A - A beautiful red-brown. Darker than amber but still has that reddish hue. Not quite a fingers worth of head, which dissipated quickly.

S - Almost smells like a barley-wine. It's hoppier than it is maltier, but there's still a good biscuity presence. Hints of citrus. Also a good deal of booze smell for a 7.2% ABV.

T- Roasty maltiness composes the first phase, followed by a good deal of bitter hops to balance. Again, almost like a barley-wine, but not quite. If you took a barley-wine and mixed it with an IPA, you'd get Arrogant Bastard. It finishes noticeably sweet, with notes of caramel and toffee, taking the edge off of the booze/hoppy bitterness. There's kind of a nuttiness throughout the whole taste experience that I throughly enjoyed. This is a well balanced Strong Ale.

M - Medium bodied and perhaps just a bit too much carbonation. Wet/oily from the hops.

O - Very impressed with Stone's take on the Strong Ale. Will probably be adding this into my rotation.

Photo of LordofthePings
3.6/5  rDev -13.5%
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.

Photo of countrocula
3.72/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Gonna make this sort and sweet. Sort of like my last experience whit the BASTID

Sniffer gets hop, decomposing leaves on the forest floor, booze, malt

Nice hop bite. Leaves with a charred sugar caramel sting.

Good carbonation for an ale of this type. Fluidity is good. Cuold be the state of my mouth but by the end of the bottle I had a pooling of Bastard essence on the back pf the palate.

Goes down easy. I'd like this with some sweet BBQ like dripping ribs. So dripping I call them REE-YIBZ. I could also kill about 4 bombers of this and pass out very happy.

Photo of Upgrayedd
1.56/5  rDev -62.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

The label said that I probably wouldn't like this beer and it was 100% accurate. What an alpha acid bomb! I think I actually lost my taste buds for a few hours after forcing the entire 22oz helping down my throat. I could not detect any hint of malt, but that could be because it was a bit overcarbonated and of course because of the hops.

I don't mind hoppy or strong beers. However, this was way too bitter. Maybe they should have shifted that huge hop addition a bit later into the boil so as to give a bit more flavor and less bitterness.

I'm no wimp. I like spicy foods and hoppy beers, but Arrogant Bastard is definately not for me.

Photo of Ryanbob
4.62/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hmmmm. I've had this beer a few times before and I have always enjoyed it, but tonight its just not as aggressive as I remember it. Still very good, but not as insanely hoppy as I thought it was.

Appearance is a nice dark brown almost reddish color with a huge three finger head. It smells great with a strong hoppy, floral and sweet aroma. This ale is clean and fresh tasting with plenty of hops, however there is less residual bitterness than in Stone IPA. The hoppy freshness is balanced with some malty sweetness and hints of toastiness. There is some fruity (perhaps grapefruit rind?) taste mixed in there as well. While there is a significant hoppy character to this brew, it is a delicious beer I could drink often. There is no need to be intimidated by the label or the name, if you enjoy Sierra Nevada Pale Ale or Liberty Ale you will probably like this one as well. Cheers!

Photo of delmarnate
2.44/5  rDev -41.3%
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.

Photo of vazy
3.47/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Drank this at Dinosaur BBQ the other day.

The appearance is a dark amber red color and is semi-clear. I pick up hops, hops and more hops! It has some malt to it, but not a lot. The taste is bitter and bright I get this buttery and biscuity flavor. Its heavy and somewhat chewy in the mouth.

This beer is full of flavor and deep. Its enjoyable and slightly refreshing.

Photo of jballeng
3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Draft pour at Grotto Beer and Wine Bar in DeLand, Florida.

Pours a burnt amber with a moderate head and retention. Light lacing.

Aromas of piquant hops, bitter citrus, orange peel, coriander, singed toast, and dry spices.

Big hoppy bite in the front with immediate notes of toast and grapefruit rind. Finishes smooth with some residual hop dryness. Distinct blueberry and blood orange back-note.

Photo of CLBizzle
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a square mug.

Thick, toffee colored head with a little lacing. Nice dark color with bold smell, taste starts as a slight bitter coffee taste that turns an almost sweet finish. After the beer breathes for awhile other spices start to develop. A complex beer that is up at the top of my list for sure.

Photo of Fatheranderson
4.88/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow. I just drank a 1 liter of this with a big juicy Tbone steak, and all I can say is wow, what a perfect match.

Appearance: Thick, dark, reminds me of a very good Porter.

Smell: Bitter hops, slightly burnt smelling which was absolutely the only complaint I had about this brew.

Taste: Arrogant, powerful, aggressive. Mildly sweet, but very bitter. It reminds me of a very good strong black coffee with about 3 teaspoons of sugar... add some 90% cocoa dark chocolate and you've got a decent approximation of the flavor (though that really doesn't describe the whole flavor... you've really got to try it to catch all of what I mean).

Mouthfeel: thick, hearty, slightly sticky. Very smooth overall with just enough carbonation to enhance the flavor without damaging it.

Drinkability: Wow... this is a hard one. It's definitely not an accessible beer (people that aren't used to IPAs or generally good beers need to avoid this one like the clap). That said, this beer deserves to be a fixture in the beer cooler/cellar of all true IPA lovers. This also isn't something you can just shotgun in 30 seconds and be done with it. The complicated flavor really demands that you slow down and appreciate every sip while you savor every new aspect of it.

Overall: This beer is just too complicated for anyone that isn't used to good beer. If you want a simple, easily drinkable beer, this isn't the brew for you, but if you want something to savor that will really make you pause and consider it's characteristics, this is definitely something to look into. I'd say it's a sterling example of the IPA style.

Photo of diomz88
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

S-smells great! full of hops but at the same time fruity.
A-amber, hazy with one finger of whittish head that recedes quickly.
T-Boom! its bitter, very bitter, but in a great way! Spicy and sweet, like there's caramel in it. This will be a great beer to pair with so many foods.
M-medium bodied, hop will hit you right away but goes away smoothly. Can't even stop drinking once I took my first sip.
D-so drinkable, and will drink again.

Photo of roundthewaygirls
3.76/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured into a tulip glass.

A: dark, hazy. appears brown. ruby tint shines through when held up to the light. got a little carried away with the pour. three fingers of frothy, off-white head. substantial lacing.

S: piney stone hop profile. caramel notes. burnt toast or biscuit. sugar or molasses. maybe something citrusy buried in the malts.

T: hops up front. malt bomb. mostly sticky molasses with a hint of caramel. more dimensional than the smell. The sweetness is offset by the burnt toast, bready character. there's a certain dryness to it that doesn't come from the hops. definitely burnt malts, but maybe wood notes as well. don't really pick up on the alcohol.

M: medium bodied. slight carbonation on the tip of the tongue. burnt malts and hops really resonate on the palate.

O: love stone. this one is a little deeper and darker than their ipas. complex malts. not particularly refreshing, but i think it follows through on its intention. bold brew for bold nights.

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

Feels like a kick in the mouth. At over 100 ibu's this is definitely a STRONG ale. A nice toasted malt flavor sneaks in just as the hop takes over your palate. The head cream color and amber beer color are immaculate. The 7.2% alcohol will leave you slow drinking this arrogant bastard.

Photo of DrCDPriest
3.37/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Interesting name and imaginative backstory for the beer. I've tried it on different occasions, and have found it fairly consistent in what to expect from this brew.

Appearance - Pours a clear deep amber, more to the brown tint. In using a pint glass it had a nice head, about a finger an a half, and a small amount of lacing.

Aroma - You can smell the hops upon opening, very high hop nose with a bit of spiciness. If you love hops, the aroma won't disappoint you.

Taste - The taste truly follows the aroma. It tastes as it smells which helps you appreciate the distinct series of flavors. It begin with hops, a bit of spicy malt followed by what I'd describe as a bitter citrus grapefruit effect.

Mouthfeel - It is a medium body feel, a little on the flat side (on multiple occasions from different shops), and seems very light in the carbonation, a bit more might help those middle malt flavors pop a bit more.

Overall - This is a very nice beer for those loving a strong hop experience with bitter citrus after tones. Definitely an enjoyable experience.

Serving type: Bottle poured into a pint glass.

Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 9,803 ratings.