Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA | Stone Brewing

BA SCORE
94
outstanding
5,925 Ratings
Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPASublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States
stonebrewing.com

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

BEER STATS
Ratings:
5,925
Reviews:
1,914
Avg:
4.2
pDev:
10.48%
 
 
Wants:
307
Gots:
817
For Trade:
5
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,925 |  Reviews: 1,914
Photo of themind
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of crookedhalo
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks like root beer, smells like hops. Nice fluffy tan colored head that sticks around for a good while. Good lacing. Aroma is mosty piney and sappy with nuances of caramel and suggestive chocolate. Some leafy suggestions as well. Very hoppy with bitterness throughout, yet some malty sweetness comes through, too. Pretty balanced and drinkable. The roasted malts make for an interesting twist on what would be, typically, an imperial IPA. Kind of feels like an "imperial stock ale". I like it, it reminds me of of an ale I brewed 10 years ago, except the Simcoe hop was not around then and Cascades were used and I, accidentally, used a bit too much chocolate malt in the grain bill. Anyhow, Stone's 11th is an agreeable ale worth checking out.

 746 characters

Photo of yelterdow
3.95/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The very last bottle in the coveted Andy's Corner beer fridge... purchased a few months ago and it's remained cold the whole time. Served in an imperial pint glass at just over fridge temperature for a nightcap.

A "black" IPA... nice. I remember being offered a sip of this brew when it was initially released, and was completely blown away. Now, with this single bomber to review and appreciate, I study it.

Appearance- Deep, deep reddish brown color... the head slowly builds from within and rises confidently to four full fingers, incredibly thick and soapy. After about seven minutes, the crown is still a half inch thick volcanic geoscape. Some sporadic, moderate lacing lines the inside of the glass.

Smell- The *instant* I cracked the bottle open, a blast of citrusy, wet hops flew across the room. No kidding, I can only remember one other time a beer's nose was so instant that it literally jumped out of the bottle.
Even after 11 months, we've got the boldest of hops melding with rugged, malty goodness. There's grapefruit, flowers, and pine needles tickling the nostrils along with a solid malt backbone.

Taste- No doubt the year in the bottle softened the riproaring hop attack I remember from last December, now the malts have come forward and really added dimension to it. I would also add that this is drinking more along the lines of a 10% barleywine at this point... I welcome any comments that might either support or refute this. The absolutely wicked bitterness stings the mouth like a cicada-killing wasp, leaving hop resin stuck to the walls.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Average mouthfeel, with its unremarkable carbonation. With the boldest character of hop and malt, this offering from Stone goes balls to the wall and back again... I still say that 8.7% is an understated number.

 1,808 characters

Photo of pwoody11
3.5/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of kmo1030
4.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

stout like in appearance with a nice thick creamy head that settles to a good size with soem lacing.
aroma: ctirusy floral-y piney hops over a layer of chocolate covered wood. notes of a rye-like character (think founders black rye for reference). molasses and caramel show up in small amounts, but a soft powdered cocoa vaguely woody chocolate that verges on cake-y dominates the malt side of things. hops run the show though. tremendous complexity, yet so clean and soft, not subtle, but pleasantly balanced. superb nose.
the taste is loaded with hops of the floral piney variety. they wash over the tongue and touch all other flavors experienced. they verge on minty. citrus is there but, not the greatest of the hop flavors. chocolated and caramel malt balance some but not much. bits of anise here and there. again rye bread fades in and out like i mentioned in the nose. nebulous dark fruitiness hovers towards the finish. i'm leaning towards 5 for flavor, but maybe it's not perfect.
the body is full and has a moderate carbonation. cloys a bit on the finish. though it doesn't feel like it should. nothing severe enough to complain or even critique over.
good drinkability, does a good job cleaning up after itself for a probably substantial malt bill. the total package is excellent though and if i had to give it an overall score it would probably be higher than how these ratings add up. expertly crafted. if i had a vote for one of stone's one shots to become a regular, this would be it.

 1,500 characters

Photo of Jtrigonis
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of Vogt52
3.75/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of Zraly
4.29/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Close to opaque black with a mocha head. Head holds and laces nicely. The smell is a wonderous whiff of hops. Smells like fresh, resiny whole hops touched leather-based perfume.

Deep roasty malts and sharp, juicy hops dominate. This is hefty but well-balanced. There is a slightly danky, earthy, perfumey undertone to the composition of this ale -- it's quite nice. I don't know that I've ever experienced that note with a darker ale. Full-bodied yet smooth. Beautiful dry finish that borders on chalky, which ultimately leaves but one impression: lip-smackin' good.

I had a 21st Amendment Back in Black before this and, even though they are both classified as American Black Ales, the comparison is night and day.

This would be a nice pairing with a variety of beef dishes, and would probably be wonderful with nicely roasted lamb.

 836 characters

Photo of lccrunchy
5/5  rDev +19%

Photo of ale207
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of gpawned
3.75/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of xacidx
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of carlmoberg
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of akttr
3.5/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of BKBassist
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Griggsy
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of joecast
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

american strong ale. such a broad category. one that stone knows very well. however, as the bottle states, this is a dark ipa. and i think the beer fits that category better than the more generic strong ale. but this isnt a debate on style, its a beer review. so here goes.

very classy appearance. clear near black color with some nice red hues when held to light. the ample head, which never quite settles completely, is lightly tanned but not much. good lacing. low carbonation.

the aroma is where this beer stands apart from most strong ales. certainly leans towards ipa with its super hopped nose. a blend of citrus and floral (dont think i can tell them apart any more to be honest) with a backing of alcohol.

bitterness seems to be the focus of the taste, dont let the dark color fool you. very little influence from the malts. well, other than providing food for the yeast. the start shows a good portion of hops. as they fade i expected some sort of dark sweet malt flavor that never really arrived. even as it warms, it seems that more hops come in to round out the flavor. not that this is a bad thing. just my reasoning to this beer being more an ipa than strong ale. but anyway.

mouthfeel seems a bit heavy suffering the same fate as the 10th ann. too sticky sweet. this also hurts drinkability.

overall, a big beer to celebrate another year for stone. well done to them. and a beer for the rest of us to celebrate with. hmm, what will i celebrate tonight?

 1,475 characters

Photo of NODAK
3.93/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Aroma starts out very hoppy, with loads of grapefruit and citric hops...as it opens up though, more malt comes out...specifically what seems to be chocolate and roasted malts.

Pours absolutely black in the glass with a nice brown head.

This is definitely a hoppy beer....every bit as hoppy as their IPA, if not more so. It tastes like somebody took a pine tree and some grapefruit and threw it in the beer. This is especially true of the grapefruit, which really asserts itself in the finish as the dominant taste. There just isn't a lot of malt, save for a roasted note that shows up in a fleeting fashion. The bitterness lingers a little bit after the swallow...though not all that strong...along with a note of chocolate peeking through. But boy is it small...doesn't show up on every swallow for me. I'd love to say that I get the malt in this beer...but I think it's been slapped aside by the hops. It's basically a pretty powerful IPA that happens to be black in color.

This isn't to say I didn't enjoy it. Sure I may have wanted more balance...but when I'm in the mood for something nice and bitter, yet clean...this is a good option. The searing grapefruit bitterness of this beer really hits the spot.

 1,213 characters

Photo of Quackus
3.75/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of jmich24
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of danthehopslamman
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Cook82
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of becktone
4.72/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

After talking from reps from Stone at Stone Pint Night at the Comet I learned that they (I'm assuming that this is Stone's POV) classify or consider this beer to be a Dark IPA (perhaps it was a "Double Dark IPA" don't remember exactly which-given the ABV I'd say most likely Double Dark IPA).

Eye: The brew pours a very dark brown or black if you like. When the light strikes it just right garnet highlights appear at the bottom of the glass. The head is tan in color and leaves some nice lacing, retention is stable, but a large head would be nice, looks very much like a stout except for the fact that the head isn't as creamy.

Nose: Great nose on this beer. Lots of things going on in the aroma of beer. First aroma to hit you is the hops, lots of hops...citrus aromas emanate from the bottle and glass once opened and poured. I'm guessing that there are some cascade hops going on in here. After that there is a very fruity aroma that blends very nicely with the hops. Took me a minute to determine that what I was smelling was pineapple. These two aromas pretty much dominate the brew but there is a bit of a malt backbone in there to support it all, I get a very faint chocolate malty type aroma deep within the aromatic profile of this brew. (or I could be imagining its there). Very unique aromatic profile here.

Tongue: Definitely would classify this one as a Dark IPA myself. The flavor of hops dominates the profile of this beer, makes up the majority of what I'm tasting here. Citrus and floral, citrus and floral... Once the beer is swallowed after a few moments that pineapple comes back just enough to hint at a pineapple flavor. Once the beer starts to go down the throat the hop flavors drop off giving way to malt flavors, as I mentioned with the aroma there is a bit of chocolate in there and also some toasty/lightly roasted flavors-more so the tell-tale bitterness from them, though it is not as nearly as strong as it is in a stout.... all pretty faint though. A slight spiciness from alcohol also adds to this brew's flavor.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: Kudos to Stone for the Mouthfeel on this brew, I don't think that I could imagine it any other way. The beer is incredibly smooth, has low carbonation-which one doesn't notice until one thinks on it, then realizes that it is the perfect amount. This is a beer I'd drink all night, alcohol is hidden pretty well, slight spiciness as formerly mentioned and a slight warming in the stomach. This is a beer I'd definitely buy again, think that I'll grab another bomber next time I see one. Too bad it is a limited release, I'd like to see something like this around more, seems to me that Dark IPAs are pretty rare.

 2,691 characters

Photo of zenwatts
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of JizackFH
3.98/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - This pours a very dark brown color, with a huge than head. The head left some lacing on the glass as it fell.

S - The smell is very citrusy. There are notes of hops, pine, chocolate, and coffee. It smells like a good blend of an IPA with dark malts.

T - The taste follows the nose. It has dark roasty malts, and a nice bright hop flavor. The hops are the dominating flavor, but the dark malts definitely makes their presence known. The finish has some roastiness and a touch of alcohol presence.

M - It has a medium body with a good amount of carbonation. It is very smooth and has a silky feel to it.

D - The drinkability is good. It goes down easily, and has a lot of flavor. This was my first black IPA , and I think it is a good and interesting style. I can't wait to try some more. As for this beer though, I would pick it up again for sure.

 854 characters

Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA from Stone Brewing
4.2 out of 5 based on 5,925 ratings.
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