Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA | Stone Brewing

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Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPASublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA
5,935 Ratings
Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPASublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.70%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Gueuzedude on 09-02-2007

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,935 |  Reviews: 1,916
Photo of Vengeance526
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown color with a foamy tan head that retains nicely and leaves a little lacing.

Aroma of citrus and pine upfront with some caramel malt also present. Some roasted malt is also found but the hops seem to be most prevalent.

In the taste, the caramel flavors are more noticeable upfront. The hops again make their presence known as a strong burst of grapefruit comes in the middle along with some lemon and pine. Towards the end, some darker flavors come out again as a touch of chocolate/coffee is evident in the finish.

Medium bodied witha creamy mouthfeel. Overall, this was very interesting to try and something I look forward to having again.

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Photo of drpimento
4.67/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Whoaaaa! This beer IS righteously titled. Normally I don't go too much for hoppy dark beers, but this one is GREAT!! Poured with a smallish tan head and a little lace. Color is a very dark almost black brown. Aroma is very hoppy, roasty, cocoa, malt, toffee, iron. Flavor's similar to nose. Hop is not fruity, thank goodness. Great body and carbonation fit the style perfectly. Finish (with good burps!) is like flavor, mostly bitter with a hint of malt sweetness to smooth it out and is of medium length. Session for sure, even though it's so rich. Excellent!

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Photo of AEK
4.47/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

650ml brown bottle poured into a Delirium Tremens snifter.

A. A black beer with a dirty brown coloured head.

S. Slight coffeeish notes, fruity malt, roast malt, over ripe bananas, hints of cigar smoke, the odd whiff of raisins and some nuttiness.

T. Coffee, roasted malt, dark chocolate and dark caramelized fruit. A good hop finish.

M. Medium, almost thick.

D. Surprisingly smooth. The alcohol content burn soon kicks in. Definitely an enjoyable sipper - not one to be rushed or you will be sorry.

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Photo of ChrisPro
3.76/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewery 07-10-09. Pours a beautiful dark brown with nice tan head. Great looking beer with a really unique aroma dominated with chocolate and orange. Would have love to tasted this blind as the aromas were a bit confusing to the senses. Pretty well balanced with a nice bitter chocolate finish. My notes are also saying that there was a nice woody aroma and touch of dry wood in the taste, though I'm not sure how that came about.

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Photo of buschbeer
3.82/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I poured into a pint glass to a generous two finger tan head. It is very dark in color. Very little light around the edges. It isn't quite black but it's as close as your gonna get.

The aroma is fresh grapefruit. The taste goes right along with the smell. It is a pretty intense grapefruit taste. I expected some more of the roasted malt to come through but the hops mutes that aspect. I just get a hint of roasted malt in the aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is medium. I am a little disappointed with this one. I've had other "black IPA's" that have been hoppy with porter or stout characteristics. This just tastes like an IPA. I prefer the melding of styles with my "black IPA's".

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Photo of AgentZero
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Looks kind of like coke. A pretty dark velvety brown color with a bubbley brown head.

S - Brown suger comes through with the requisit malts. Does not smell as dark as it looks, a lot of sweetness and some citrus and spice.

T - Caramel malts are the dominate flavor with some interesting bitter hops and citrus. Kind of like a hoppy big ale. Very nice.

M - Full body with a moderate amount of carbonation that helped lighten this beer up along with the taste.

D - Pretty nicely drinkable for the ABV, although the bitterness continued to become stronger and knocked it down a bit as I went.

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Photo of Manoftyr
3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance-Pours a rich dark brown into the glass and a sumptuous light tan head rises leaving very sticky lace all along the sides as it ever so slowly recedes. This is something of a lace monster leaving super-chunky lace all along the sides which is extremely impressive given its ABV, Stone rarely disappoints.

Aroma-Clean, fresh, rich west-coast hops dominate the aroma with a strong piny, woody scent followed by a smell of sharp citrus fruits; I can detect, tangerine, lemon, orange most outstandingly. The fruity hoppiness give way to an undercurrent of malts that smell reminiscent of sticky toffee on towards the finish. This beer has a really wonderful aroma.

Taste-The first thing that assails the palette are the hops and burnt malt and...unfortunately that's it. I hate to say it but the flavor is a little underwhelming, it almost tastes as though they were trying to balance the dark malt and the hops a little 'too' much and ended up watering down both flavors. The hops could be tweaked a bit to give it more of that grapefruit/citric character and the malts turned up to get more of that dark chocolate taste which would make this beer really amazing. It's still a good beer, just not as good as what I've come to expect from Stone and what could potentially be an amazing beer.

Mouthfeel-The mouthfeel is quite nice, thick and rich; just like it should be.

Drinkability-Decent, it's not up to Stone's usual standards though; it's a tad of a chore to drink.

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Photo of deereless
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Lots of frothy to espresso like head, dark brown to black in color, slight viscosity is noticeable from a swirl of the glass - 4.50, S: Quite a contrast in aromas - loads of charred grains and ash mixed with some citrusy hop aromas, burnt cherry, possibly some anise on the nose - 4.50, T: Dates and figs which add significantly to the sweetness factor, lots of specialty grains - especially chocolate malts and also some coffee grounds, alcohol is noticeable but not disruptive - 4.25, M: Creamy mouth feel - 4.50, D: An very enjoyable and drinkable beer - 4.25

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Photo of goldbot
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 6/4/2010. Bottle says to enjoy by 6/23/2010.

Pours very dark brown to black with thick, creamy tan head that persists. Nice lacing on the glass.

Aromas of roasty black malt, bready and pleasantly nutty. Great balance of citrus and pine hop aroma with some herbal notes. Interesting complexity and interplay.

The taste comes on with mild bread and roasted malt. Quite bitter throughout, some chocolate and coffee notes. Turns hoppy at the end with citrusy brightness and some earthy pine flavor. This subsides to leave a bitter, dry, dark-roast coffee aftertaste.

Fully bodied, bitter, and a bit on the dry side, but overall seems balanced. Overall this beer has a very rich complexity and is very interesting to taste due to the interesting combination of flavors. Still very hoppy, and very balanced, considering it was reviewed so close to the best by date.

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Photo of HosP
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bought this with an Arrogant Bastard.

A- Pours a dark brown, almost black color. light brown head that stuck around for awhile

S- Strong roasted malts with a caramel smell to it.

T- Pretty much like the smell. Had a crisp yet citrusy lemon and pine bitterness that meshes into the darkness within.

M- At first tasted closer to a stout or porter, but nice and with a hoppy citrus bite like an IPA. Quite a bit more smoother than would have thought

D- An interesting beer for the style. Malty, yet heavily hopped which I liked. Tastes good and is easy to enjoy. Very Good beer that I easily enjoyed

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Photo of afausser
3.8/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours an extremely bubbly dark chocolate with about a finger for near mocha head, which is frothy and doesn't look like it's going anywhere. Looks kind of strange and reminds me of a soda pour.

Smell: The color makes me think I'm about to drink a RIS or something, so it's almost like this brew is playing mind games with me when I get to the nose. Quite aromatic and strong. Piney and a bit citrusy and quite light overall. Some definite sugar notes. smells cold and refreshing.

Taste: The taste isn't as good out of the bottle as it was on tap. That said, it's an interesting brew. Chewy and sticky, with maple, pine sap, and caramel. The bitter hops really bite quite a bit. Pairs well with cashews.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is tricky. This brew seems pretty undercarbonated. That said, I can't really think of what would happen were the carbonation higher. I think the brew would become overly abrasive. That said, the bubbles that are present are pretty big and result in this strange type of foam. It's not frothy, but it lingers well past the sip and really affects the brew. I think that if the bubbles present were finer and crisper, all the other elements of this brew would be elevated quite a bit. As it stands, it's this odd mix...maybe I got a bad bottle?

Drinkability is low for the style. I'm not impressed, which is frustrating because I remember it being pretty decent when I tried it as a sample on tap.

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Photo of Keffa
4.17/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a Unibroue tulip.

Didn't notice any freshness dates.

A: Dark brown, almost black body, lets no light through. Nice thick tan head that stays around for about 5 minutes. Turns into small ring that leaves lacing on the sides on each drink.

S: Amazing mix of resinous, piney hop with a slight citrus hop and a whiff of sweet malt and dark fruit. At the very end, I noticed deep roasted peanut butter. Weird, but made me want it sooo much. Chocolate in it as well.

T: Deep, sticky, piney, resinous hop, little bit of a flowery hop, and a very faint citrus hop. Roasted malt, very little sweetness, then back to the hops. This is the epitome of a hop forward beer. It is the star, and rightfully so. Great flavors in the hops, and the malt, once it comes out, makes this one I will drink A LOT.

M: Oily, slick, little bit creamy, not bad, but not the best I have had.

D: If you like hops, very. If not, not so much. This is a hop forward beer. You know it as soon as the bottle is opened. If the aroma is offputting, you might want to stay away because it is a perfect indicator of the flavor.

Very good beer. I love it. I am hoping that next year I will be able to put one up side by side with a fresh HopSlam.

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Photo of Chizoad
4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is like a combo beer. Hoppy, resinous, malty and thick.

Came out way darker than expected, with a clear, deep brown appearance and a fluffy tan head that had huge bubbles in it and excellent retention. Reminded me a little bit of the Duvel head, almost 50-50. Could be the glass I poured it into, one of those tall narrow ones designed to display the head.

Smells very bitter and hoppy. Doesn't promise a huge amount from the nose, and doesn't deliver something extraordinary in the taste. But the malt manages to bleed through, giving a stout-y richness, while the bitter hops dominate and leave a lingering resinous sensation on the tongue. As it warmed I could sense a bit of coffee and chocolate up front (I would love more of this! Could they make a beer that was *just* the amazing malt/coffee/stout that starts this beer off?) before the bitterness came back to dominate. All in all, pretty good. One complaint is that the more I drank it, the more the bitterness built up. Thankfully not overwhelming. I liked the mouthfeel for a while, but eventually it got a bit too much.

Enjoyed it while it lasted, but wouldn't open another one immediately afterwards.

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Photo of pecochran1
4.6/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I bought this not knowing what it was only that it came from Stone and I trust them.

After drinking, I still trust!

Much darker than expected, excellent head that lasted just long enough. THe nose was far hoppier than expected but not as malty as the color would lead on. It warmed up and bit probably to where it should be consumed and became more balanced.

I would love to find a clone recipe, for this was a great beer.

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Photo of Spica66
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Very dark brown color. You can have as much head as you would like to pour with this beer. Leaves nice lacing on the glass.

S: Mostly hops in the nose.

T: When it was cold, all I could taste was hops, so I left it for 15 minutes and came back. Now we have a rich, malty taste to go with the hops. Much better!

M: Full body, good carbonation.

D: As soon as it got warmer, I drank the bottle right down.

Very cool brew. I am not sure that I even would compare to anything that I have had before.

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Photo of obywan59
4.2/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours opaque for me. Except at the very base of my Old Guardian glass, where it narrows down. Substantial tan head that leaves nice thick lacing.

Major hops!! In your face, citrusy, fruity hops. Tropical even. Maybe overripe oranges?

Really bitter at first, not much sweetness at all, with a taste of coffee and burnt malt. Nearer the end of the bottle I get more of the sweet malty flavor up front soon replaced by a lasting bitterness.

Great creamy mouthfeel. Very smooth. Drying in the end. Nice alcohol burn in the throat.

I think the bitterness slowed me down a bit, but it mellowed out in the end. I wouldn't hesitate to try this again.

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Photo of BuffaloTapHugger
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Deep dark black with a tannish tint in the light, sick off white lacing and killer lacing found on the pint glass. Admired for several minutes in aw, I did.

S: Great aromatics to be had as well. Chocolate, licorice, raisons all give way right off the bat. Followed by earthy tones and some sweetness in toe. 5 star

T: Has a bit of a chocolate taste in the front and some sweet molasses characters in the back. Good hit of the hops visible in the confines and a pronounce presence of malt to wash things out.

M: Medium body, low carbonation, ABV hidden to some extent.

D: Overall, I like this as a slow sipper. A lot of things are going on in this beer and I"m overwhelmed just thinking about it. Didn't get a chance to try this as an anniversary brew, but sure glad I got to sample it as a fixture. CA here I come...

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Photo of vkv822
4.37/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bottle into snifter.

Pours a dark brown, almost black color with deep red accents and a frothy tan head. It has a surprisingly hoppy aroma despite the dark appearance, with notes of citrus and pine. There is a nice bready malt backing to the nose as well.
The flavor is a very pleasant mix of juicy, citrus and tropical fruit and roasty malts, though the hops are dominant. There is also a slightly boozy warming finish, while the mouthfeel is a medium to light body with decent carbonation.
This beer is very drinkable, especially considering the ABV. I particularly enjoy the balance of hops and malts.

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Photo of wahhmaster
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 1 pt. 6 oz. bottle into a Corned Beef & Co. shaker pint.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown, almost black color. Has a large tan head that dissipates quickly and leaves impressive lacing.

Smell: Cascade hops almost completely dominate, giving it a very grassy, earthy smell. Slight bready smell in the background.

Taste: Hops overwhelm at the front. As it develops, it gets slightly more malty. Tastes like a slightly maltier DIPA. Very tasty. Leaves an earthy, piney aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied and reasonably well-carbonated.

Drinkability: A damn fine beer and another win from Stone. While I don't think most people could handle more than one of these at a time, it is definitely still a world-class brew.

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Photo of Tucquan
4.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this in a 22 oz bomber on 2010-06-12 in Lynchburg, VA

A - Coffee color with a generous, light tan head

S - Fresh bread, lemon, mild pine, hop resins

T - Roasted grain, coffee, raisin, smoke, molasses sweetness, chalk, nice and strong bitterness and some astringency. Alcohol is camoflauged. Finishes dry.

M - Light to medium with light carbonation. Not particularly creamy.

D - Light enough to quaaf but the really interesting flavors keep you coming back for another sip. Nice.

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Photo of sweemzander
3.79/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint. No bottled date found.

(A)- Pours a super dark brown, almost black color that actually cascaded for a few moments too. Produced a great light brown head that stuck around for awhile before leaving big clumps of lacing behind as it dissipated.

(S)- A light roastedness of bread and nuts with a piney lemon and lime citrus background. Weird and different, but good.

(T)- Pretty much like the smell. A good roasted profile with a bread, nut, and molasses character. Combine that with a crisp yet citrusy lemon and pine bitterness that meshes into the darkness within.

(M)- A good carbonation level and balance. Roasted like a stout or porter, but crisp and with a hoppy citrus bite like an IPA. An interesting yet different beer unlike most in the style.

(D)- An interesting beer for the style. Malty, yet heavily hopped which I appreciate. Tastes good and is easy to enjoy. A relative easy drinker with a tamer ABV level than usual. Another solid beer from one of my more favorite breweries.

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Photo of rtepiak
4.2/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

pours a dark brew just sort of a stout. not opaque but damn near with a smallest head that fades. nose is that of an IPA with some earthiness and coffee in it. palate is surprisingly bitter. peppery but nice. come chocolate and coffee. a mild smoky quality. fruit is raisin that isn't overpowering in comparison to the bitter. a great balance. probably fantastic after a year of cellaring. has a very delicate liquored cherry qualitied that seems like its hiding in the finish that would mature wonderfully.

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

Pours a deep dark brown with thin cap of khaki head, leaving decent lacing. The scent is mild, muted hops combined with a muted earthy and muddy backbone with hints of chocolate, nuts, carmel. The taste brings a nice citrusy hop flavor the the front, followed my a smooth and mellow blend of earth, wood, carmel, nuts, dried grain and dense bread. Lighter side of medium bodied, lower carbonation, slightly dry. An all around nice beer whcih doesnt attempt to overpower the senses with any one ingredient.

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

S: Dark, sweet roasted notes boldly contrasting against bright, pine-y floral hops. Not unlike the distinct smell of weed :o Strong, potent, and intriguing.

T: Full bodied and sweet upfront. Three quarters through the hoppy bitterness starts to breakthrough and explodes with full blown, tongue-cripplingly effect. Hours later the bitterness does not leave your palate.

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

Very dark pour, opaque except when held to bright light; it presents a nearly inch-thick head of tan foam on top. The nose is really dominated by hops, earthy and resinous, though lurking underneath is some roasted malt. The flavor, likewise, is mostly hops. There's a good quantity of black patent malt as well, and a touch of roast, but typical of Stone, the emphasis is on the hops. The finish is dry, of course.

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Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 4.22 out of 5 with 5,935 ratings