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Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA | Stone Brewing

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Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPASublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA
BA SCORE
4.22/5
Exceptional
5,929 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
Ranking:
#918
Reviews:
1,915
Ratings:
5,929
pDev:
10.43%
Bros Score:
4.2
 
 
Wants:
309
Gots:
817
Trade:
5
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,929 |  Reviews: 1,915
Photo of mactrail
3.25/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Dark bitter ale with no hint of fruitiness.

Very dark brown, looks inviting. Doesn't taste dark, however. Very austere, no hint of sweetness in the malt. more like a hint of soy sauce. Hops jump right on without much aromatic foreplay and keep at it. Seems surprisingly light-bodied for a strong, dark ale. Has a very odd taste of metal at the end, an edge on the teeth.

I think this is one of my least favorite Stone ales. For the hard core IPA drinker, for sure.

 466 characters

Photo of Ciocanelu
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%

Photo of dcmchew
4.49/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Rifugium
3.88/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Miller's Pub, Chicago, IL

Poured into a pint glass a coffee brown with a nice, foamy, beige head that retained and laced decently. I really love this style of beer. Dark malts and dark fruits in the aroma, but a definite citrus hop presence like you'd get from your typical IPA. Smooth dark malts in the taste, molasses, brown sugar, quickly overcome by lots of citrusy hops, though the maltiness lingers on in the background. Flavorful and medium-bodied. Another highly drinkable beer from the consistently excellent Stone Brewing Co.

 557 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of Kegatron
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap @ the Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens on 11/9/09. There were a lot of great beers to choose from on tap here but I wanted to try one of my Stone favorites right there at the source.

Pours black, with the just the tiniest bit of ruby coming out along the bottom, and a 1/4 finger of creamy mocha colored froth. Retains with a soft and creamy look, just completely coating the sides of the glass with thick rings of lacing. The aroma is fresh and floral in the nose, with a nice hard edge of spice and pine to it. A blast of citric hops rolls in next, backed by a nice crunchy mix of coffee and roast, as well as some softer cocoa and toffee character. This sits with a bit of heft in the nose as well. Smells like a dark Porter oozing with American hop attitude.

The taste is pretty spot on with the aroma, as heavy rich notes of chocolate roast and coffee flavor are right at the forefront of this. Luckily, they are more than an equal match for the aggressive resinous bite of the hops, which is just dripping with juicy & bright citric character. This is overall very roasty, bitter, and intense, with burnt notes that really hang around for a while. The mouthfeel is medium to maybe a bit fuller, with a sharp prickly nature that matches up well with those bold hops. There is some heft here to the body but the alcohol is kept to a minium in the taste, allowing it's presence to just add even more to the overall bigness of this beer.

Hands down on of my favs from these guys and probably my favorite example of the "Dark IPA" style. I've really enjoyed this out of the bottle several times but it seemed just so much more intense here on draft. Great stuff!

 1,687 characters

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

- Pardon the abbreviated review, this was sampled at a free Stone tasting. Special thanks to Big Z's in Huntington NY -

A - Deep cola.

S - Beautifully flora. Light citrus hops. Rich malt backbone.

T - Woody hops up front with some deep toast and rye bread. Great balance.

M - Smooth with a bitterness that doesn't overpower.

 328 characters

Photo of billab914
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from a 22oz bottle into my Russian River tulip glass. Pours nearly black with a thick tan head. Very good head retention a d lacing on the glass.

Aroma is hoppy, much like a DIPA. It's citrusy with grapefruit and orange but the dark malts also come through with a slightly sweet presence. Taste also has the citrusy hoppy flavor, but the dark malts come through more in the taste. There is a slight sweet caramel and chocolate flavor going on, it's nearly hidden behind the hops though. This takes on more properties of a DIPA but there is still that dark, sweet, chocolate and roasty flavor going on in the background that adds to the complexity.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good, a very complex and tasty beer that I really enjoy every time I buy it.

 804 characters

Photo of smithj4
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of atrocity
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of Gkruszewski
3.92/5  rDev -7.1%

Photo of nathanmiller
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of paulish
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

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

Nearly black in color--no light shines through. Nice, tight beige head. Spotty lace.

Very strong grapefruit hop aroma. Reminds me of Double IPA. Given the darkness of the brew, I'm surprised not to smell any burnt or roasted malts.

Tastes like super-hopped IPA. Relatively thin body. There's a mild level of roasted malt in the aftertaste, otherwise it is all bitter, bitter hop.

 381 characters

Photo of XmnwildX12
3.75/5  rDev -11.1%

Photo of mendvicdog
3.5/5  rDev -17.1%

Photo of russpowell
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours mahogany with 3+ fingers of rocky mocha colored head. Very good head retention & lacing

S: Piney & citrussy hops with a little malt lurking in the background.

T: Grapefruitty & piney hops, with a little chalkyness & cakeyness up front. Some boozey warmth, tangerines, chocolate, husky grainyness, vanilla, oaky dryness & coffee as this warms. Finishes dry, with cherry, coffee, tanic & resiny hoppyness, but suprisingly no booze

MF: Chewy & oily with moderate carbonation, balanced great

Drinks pretty good considering the complexity & abv, Reminds me of a Black IPA Bristols produced, just not the same hop profile as I try to recall...Worth the hype, the wait

 673 characters

Photo of ZEB89
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.85/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a dark brown body topped with one full inch of fizzy, beige-colored foam.

Smell: Dark malt aroma of chocolate and cola nuts with notes of licorice, Fruity Pebbles, and aged pine needles.

Taste: Plenty of dark maltiness upfront tasting of chocolate and a bit like a blend of cola and root beer. Some sweetish hints throughout. Faint touch of black cherry and orange zest fruitiness. Definitely a slackened hop character, with flavors of citrus (particularly lime) and pine. Only barely a medium-high amount of bitterness remains. Tiny hint of tar on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: My, how this has progressed in just a year's time! I dare say I like it much better this way.

 739 characters

Photo of woodychandler
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another limited release! I guess that these are to make up for all of the canned swill that I was downing for a while.

The pour produced a finger's worth of light brown head with good retention. The color was cola-like with ruby highlights. The nose had a malty sweetness to it, underlain by hops. The mouthfeel was medium with a licorice-like bitterness on the tongue. The finish had a chocolaty taste, but also smoky with a bit of bitterness. Mole, anyone?

 460 characters

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

Review from notes 1/22/11. Thanks to THECPJ for the share.

A: Pours very dark, no light passing through at all. Two fingers of off-white lacing form on top which stands on top for most off the time I drink the beer. Very nice lacing remaining on the glass.

S: Lots of floral hops and citrus. I also get a little bit of malt and some chocolate and toffee, but really dominated by the hops.

T: Extremely hoppy, but still balanced by the malt. The hops have nice citrus and herbal flavors while the malts are dark and roasted. There is also a chocolate flavor similar to the aroma.

M/D: Very smooth. Medium bodied with light carbonation. Extremely drinkable. One of the best in this new category.

 701 characters

Photo of duceswild
3.91/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

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

Charred walnut with dark copper trim that extends a short distance into the liquid rather than being a mere sliver along the edge of the glass. The golden brown sugar colored head is the usual beauty from the boys at Stone. It produces numerous bridges of foam that result in sticky splotches of lace when they eventually break. We're starting things off on a high note.

I love the aroma! It's hard to get the beer's color out of my mind, but I'm not sure that I could have identified this as anything but a hugely resinous DIPA. A whiff of black malt would be welcome. However, when a beer smells this sensational, it isn't essential. Pineapple and grapefruit in brown sugar syrup explode out of a glass that is begging to be upended.

11th Anniversary Ale tastes like a black IPA. In other words, it's an IPA that happens to use some quantity of dark malt. Actually, Double IPA might be more accurate given the ABV. I was expecting something along the lines of Three Floyds Alpha Klaus, but that beer is, at heart, an Imperial porter that uses more hops that I've ever tasted in a 'dark' beer.

Maybe it's the muddying effect of the roasted malt, but the hoppiness isn't as bright and as vibrant as it could be. The citrus zestiness (almost exclusively white grapefruit now) is front and center, it's just that the bitterness digs in harder than the hop flavor. I feel like I'm nitpicking because 11th is clearly delicious beer... that could be even more delicious with a tweak or two.

I understand the brewery's desire not to do yet another C-hop IPA/DIPA, even though they do them very well. What I'm trying to say is that if you're going to brew a black IPA, then make it unquestionably BLACK. Give me roasted barley and bittersweet chocolate right alongside the grapefruit. Those flavors work well together, as Alpha Klaus, Rogue Black Brutal '07 and Bear Republic Big Bear Black have shown.

Despite my ever so slight misgivings about the flavor profile (which are really nothing more than wanting a good beer to be a great beer), drinkability is right up there. I was shocked when I picked up the bottle and found it to be almost empty. The mouthfeel is much closer to an IPA than a DIPA and is part of the reason why this sucker is disappearing like nobody's business.

I've been drinking the Stone Anniversary Ales since 7th and haven't been blown away by any of them. Keep in mind that this is in comparison to Imperial Russian Stout, Ruination IPA, IPA, et al. 11th is probably my favorite and is a beer that deserves a repeat purchase if I'm lucky enough to run across a few bombers again. Don't age this one. Drink it now.

 2,640 characters

Photo of drewone
3.5/5  rDev -17.1%

Photo of Jason
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 4.22 out of 5 with 5,929 ratings
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