Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine?

Learn more about beer and save over 53% with a 3-year subscription.

Subscribe now →

Arrogant Bastard Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arrogant Bastard AleArrogant Bastard Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,914 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,914
Hads: 9,984
Avg: 4.17
pDev: 22.78%
Wants: 397
Gots: 2,126 | 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: 2,914 | Hads: 9,984
Photo of TerjUGA
4.6/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a dark rustic color, darker than i expected, with a half inch pillowey off white caramel toned head with good lacing. smell of strong hops, citrus and very sweet aromas throughout. taste of initial strong hops and citrus grapefruit notes. finished with a slight malt, a very good blend and combination of flavors that go together very well. this beer is flat out great! everything blends well and its very smooth, i would recommend this stuff to anyone, Great brew!

 471 characters

Photo of johlendorf
4.63/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber in a pint glass.

This Beer Rocks!

A = Dark reddish brown. Clear. Two finger head with remarkable lacing. Nicely carbonated. If I saw someone with this at a bar I would ask what they were drinking.

S = Sweet malts, alcohol, faint citrus hops.

T = Complex. Sweet malts and alcohol before the Stone hops KICK in. Very well balanced. Dank pine and citrus hops throughout but they let other elements shine at the right time. Perfect representation of the style.

M = Refreshing. The hops and high ABV are noticeable but not overwhelming. Slightly thick and clinging aftertaste.

D = If you're looking for something to chill on for an hour or so, this is it. Not sure I would want more than one in a sitting.

One of my favorites.

 741 characters

Photo of rstone57
4.33/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz. torpedo into my Celtics Tervis Tumbler pint glass.

Pours dark red with a finger's thick head, which dissipates into a thin film of head which remained throughout.

Smell is very subtle, but malty if anything.

Taste is hoppy with maltiness. Medium bodied with a solid carbonation.

Overall a delicious American Strong Ale which is a year round offering from the guys at Stone Brewery down in San Diego.

 424 characters

Photo of BillHaverchuck
3.85/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

bottle poured into a pint glass

A - a whole lot darker than I had imagined it would be, deep chocolaty-orange, nice looking huge fluffy head of foam

S - deep malty caramel scent with a touch of pine, hardly smells like alcohol at all

T - fairly bitter fruity hop taste with a malty caramel bite to it

M/D - a little heavy for my taste, yet very tasty

 354 characters

Photo of SteveoNY
4.15/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P - 22 oz bomber, red/white silk screen print, no freshness date.

A - deep orangish red amber, 2 fingers of tan head, sticky lacing, good retention, visible carbonation.

S - strong citrus aroma.

T - follows the nose with toasted malts up front followed by bitter pink grapefriut flavored alcohol.

M - medium bodied, good carbonation.

D - high abv might creep up on you after a few,but a good brew to start the night off with.

N- reasonably priced vs. the other imperial Stones.

 483 characters

Photo of kcinlober
3.91/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: dark amber with a small head

Aroma: slightly hoppy and with a little citrus. not a strong smelling beer, i had to work to get a smell

Palate: grassy with citrus; floral; bitter finish that feels good on the ol' mouth. roasted malts are also available to the taste buds. very good tasting

 301 characters

Photo of LAMAGS
4.41/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep bronze color and massive head, fabulous retention and lacing, looks and behaves like a beer from an old cartoon. The nose is comprised of citrus, pine and oak with a floral hops, it is a little boozey but it adds to the character. The flavor is hops, and malt with a toffee sweetness, bitter bite at the finish. Medium body and carbonation, well crafted. One of the better ales I’ve had, really interesting and flavorful

 427 characters

Photo of Keithstone44
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had on-tap at the Indianapolis Colts Grille in downtown Indy.

A: pours a deep mahogany, almost black color with a silky 1-finger head that leaves behind admirable lacing

S: caramel, vanilla, and some toastiness are very evident here, with some hints of floral hops

T: At first taste, roasted barley hits like a ton of bricks. There's so much barley detectable that some of the other flavors have trouble getting through. There is some definite toffee/vanilla at the tail-end.

M: medium-bodied with a perfect amount of carbonation, this beer is silky-smooth and stays around for quite some time after drinking

O: fantastic beer, and one that I will gladly enjoy again, maybe next time I will try it from the bottle though

 726 characters

Photo of nklatt
4.11/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Deep, dark amber color with a cappucino head. Not strongly scented (out of the fridge) then BAM! take a drink. Strong malt taste but stronger hops - heavy on both, but perfect ratio. Gets slightly caramel sweet when warmer. Surprisingly, the name is not just a gimick - this brew lives up to its name.

 305 characters

Photo of mherring
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pretty much the only reason I bought this was because of its name and the design that was on the bottle. I guess you could say I'm a sucker for their marketing scheme. The Arrogant Bastard poured out a brilliant dark shade of red, and I do mean dark. As far as color and appearance goes, this is one of the prettier beers I've ever seen. I could definitely smell the hops on this one, along with something else that could maybe be described as fruity, but the hops are prevalent for sure. The mouthfeel was a very pleasant sensation, very smooth, and the overall taste of the beer is like a swift kick to the taste buds. It comes on at first with a kind of sweet taste which is quickly followed up by all the hops that you got from the scent. On the whole this isn't a style of beer I'm particularly fond of, I can appreciate it for a beer or three, but not much more than that.

 878 characters

Photo of shredsofautumn
4.79/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bomber purchased from Kappy's Liquors in Chicopee, MA by my fantastic girlfriend on 10/19/2010.

Appearance- Lots of amber and orange colors in the brew. Poured aggressively, the beverage achieved a massive 3-finger head that's taking forever to dissipate.

Smell- Just like another guy said, Pineapple! Lots of pineapple, citrus...an extravaganza of potent pine hops. This smells beautiful. Second ONLY to Troegs Nugget Nectar.

Taste- Year after year, this beer never ceases to amaze me. I taste so many different things in this beer. Everything from medicinal & rejuvenating spicy citrus hops to the delicate taste of raisins, the finish is very nice- bitter & decent warming sensation from the alcohol.

Mouthfeel- Not too slick & resin-like, like many high hop beers seem to have. Great consistency- exactly what I look for in a badass hoppy beer.

Drinkability- Only let me have one double deuce. Cause I could put these down all night long. They just taste so amazing. One of my top three American brews of ANY style.

 1,036 characters

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.

 776 characters

Photo of sensorglitch
4.37/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured beer into glass. Color was very good. The odour was very nice, it implied that there would be a hoppy bite to it, however when I drank it, the hops were not really overtly there. There beer had a smooth finish to it, and definitely tasted good. I had it in a comparison to the oaked arrogant bastard. I found this beer to be better than the Oaked Arrogant Bastard, but that just may be a taste preference.

 412 characters

Photo of BatsforBeer
4.14/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful 3 finger head, caramel, frothy and persistent, reddish mahogany nice stream of bubbles, good lacing ; if this didn't look so inviting I would put it on a shelf and leave it there forever!

Citrusy hops sweetness

Mildly sweet, a hint of caramel, overwhelmed by piney, herbal, hops, hint of grapefruit

Quite neutral at first, a bit frothy, nicely carbonated; Finishes extremely bitter, bit of mouth pucker

This is defiantly a "hey guys try this" beer, if you know what I mean. This one is best left for the hop heads, but it I really do appreciate it, and will enjoy this bomber to the last drop.

 609 characters

Photo of bravejoejoe
4.56/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance - Deep amber color, nice 1 finger head. As the head retreats there is a nice lacing on the side of the glass.
Smell - I smell oak maybe, lots of malt that is balanced by hops.
Taste - Very strong, Malt upfront followed by hops on the backend. Overall a very strong great flavor, it seems really well balanced.
Mouthfeel - Seems full.

 347 characters

Photo of mzrebiec
4.13/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The arrogant bastard is an all around great beer. It is well balanced with plenty of hops for bittering, yet a lot of malt to balance it all out. The mouth feel is right on par and is not anything close to a pale or "yellow fizzy beer."

It is not particularly drinkable because of its strong character. It is however, a nice beer to split amongst friends whilst BS ing.

The arrogant bastard is just what you would expect from Stone. A good go-to beer when you need one, the AB will never let you down.

 505 characters

Photo of 6thomas3
3.91/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Bold and frothy, tan eggshell sea foam head that has copious retention with robust lacing; wicked dark coloration with limited light penetration and mickle carbonation bubbles that are raging upwards in my glass near the outer edge

Smell - Faint hints of bread with an all most sweet floral aroma

Taste - As the beer warms it has a sweeter flavor and a less dry finish that is loaded with appealing complexity; magnificent combination of hops, barely, and yeast to formulate an exquisite beer that is extremely drinkable and zippy

Mouthfeel - Impeccable density with a uniform and smooth start and finish

Overall - "You're Not Worthy" Perhaps not, but it's 1 Pt. 6Fl. Oz. of 7.2% ABV ale that is both invoking and satisfying

 742 characters

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.

 467 characters

Photo of NickLovesBeer
4.7/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Anam Cara

Arrogant Bastard pours a deep red pint with medium sized tan head, and great retention and lacing. It smells extremely hoppy but infinitely more complex with citrus overtones. The taste? Talk about arrogance, this brew is so complex I almost don't have the vocabulary to describe what I'm tasting. It has a big malty sweetness which masks the alcohol content really well. Smooth, warming, and complex, Arrogant Bastard lives up to its name and is utterly amazing.

 486 characters

Photo of dave750
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Clear dark amber in color with a medium height and thick head that dissipates quickly. The aroma is fruity, green grapes and dried apricots with a nice chocolate aspect thrown in.
A bold minty roasted malt initial flavor remains to the finish. Chocolate and bitter, herby hops join in at mid-taste and continue to the end.Fades as a bread-like flavor rounds out the taste. Leaves a lingering minty chocolate taste on the sides of the mouth. Thick body with excellent carbonation and a very good balance.
Very enjoyable beer overall. Heavy on the hops, with just enough malt to balance it out.

 594 characters

Photo of shark262
4.05/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Slightly hazy ruby/amber color with a thick, creamy head. Nice lacing on the sides of my pint glass.

Floral, citrus, semi-sweet caramel and grainy notes come through in the aroma.

The taste comes in pleasing waves: a gentle sweetness hits the front of the palette first, followed by an earthy and gradually strengthening malt/hop combo. Perfumy hops fill the nose while roasted, almost vegetal flavors give way quickly to an aftertaste with a slight alcohol bite and lingering hop bitterness.

Medium-bodied ale with medium carbonation.

Complexity and drinkability in the same package. Great offering from the craft beer world.

 638 characters

Photo of Kreuger
3.98/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a tall 22 oz. brown bottle. No date.

A - Poured a dark ruby brown, with a thick rocky head that slowly settled down to a patchy lace, and continued to leave lacing down the glass.

S - Smells of roasted malts and dark fruit . . . raisins and maybe a touch of licorice. Oh wait, and alcohol - which is a tad astringent.

T - More dark fruits and roasted malts, a touch on the burnt side, but not as burnt tasting as a stout or porter. There's a solid hop kick going on here, but the bitterness seems pretty controlled by the malt flavors. The hops definitely show up in the aftertaste, which seems to linger for a while. And oh wait, the alcohol! Which definitely makes itself felt in the warming and some what astringent finish. this reminds me of Spaten Optimator only with more of a kick. Similar taste in the malts.

M - This is definitely a full bodied ale. This is one your mouth will be talking about for while. The carbonation is nicely controlled and works well with the alcohol, malts, and hops.

D - This is a juggernaut of an ale. Big bottle. Big Taste. Big Alcohol. A beer this big just can't be consumed in quantity. Ah, if only . . .

This is a fierce ale. One to be treated with respect. I'll reach for Stone's IPA first but this is still an excellent beer. And I think my favorite part is the note on the bottle that reads "Keep Refrigerated Numbskull!!" Stone's sense of humor isn't necessarily a selling point, but it definitely adds to such good beer.

 1,494 characters

Photo of JohnY
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Tastebuds be warned, this beer has an incredible kick. For true hopheads. I found this beer on tap at a local pub. Poured with an adequate tan head that left small amounts of lacing on the glass. Fresh hops on the nose. Grapefruit and hop resin on the front, backed by a rich caramel maltiness. Finishes clean, leaving you refreshed. Good by itself but but with food. Especially something that has alot of Garlic. Yum.

 418 characters

Photo of morayeel
4.77/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I loved this ale. It’s like Stone Brewing advertises most people would not appreciate an ale of this quality and complexity. I fond this ale to be very satisfying in taste with a nice grapefruit flavor and a very nice citrus aroma. This is one of the ales that the dryness at the end really stands out and is appreciated. Pours a nice dark amber color with a nice semi thick head. This is one of the most amazing ales I have had in a long time. GREAT job Stone Brewing.

 470 characters

Photo of steamingheap
4.65/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance - Deep red in the glass with a quickly collapsing head.

Aroma - Piney hops and roasted malt with the hops dominating. Strong aroma - no need to bury your nose in the glass to get a whiff of this one.

Taste & Mouthfeel - Full mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. The flavor keeps your mouth busy. Starts with malt and some sweet caramel with roasted flavors. Then for a half second, you notice that this one has some alcohol right before the hop flavor takes over thorough a dry finish and into the aftertaste. Every time I take a drink, I notice some new detail, but the general description above holds true.

Drinkability - I am not worthy, but fortunately they still let me buy a bottle and taste this fantastic brew. I wouldn't want this at a summer picnic after a day in the sun, but fortunately for me it is February. This is highly drinkable and enjoyable as there is nothing about the complex profile that isn't incredibly enjoyable.

 1,008 characters

Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,914 ratings.