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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:
#922
Reviews:
1,915
Ratings:
5,929
pDev:
10.43%
Bros Score:
4.2
 
 
Wants:
308
Gots:
816
Trade:
5
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,929 |  Reviews: 1,915
Photo of smithj4
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

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 atrocity
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of paulish
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of Gkruszewski
3.92/5  rDev -7.1%

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 nathanmiller
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of ZEB89
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of XmnwildX12
3.75/5  rDev -11.1%

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 mendvicdog
3.5/5  rDev -17.1%

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 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 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%

Photo of mdfb79
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass.

a - Very dark brown color with hints of red. This had moderate carbonation and about 1 finger of head that looked great.

s - I definitely smelled some roasted malts, and also smelt some coffee, toffee, and chocolate. Smells great.

t - Wow, really liked this taste. Tastes of roasted malts, some chocolate, but also some bitter hops. A nice contrast of sweet and bitter tastes.

m - Full bodied with small carbonation, this beer feels very creamy and smooth.

d- I really liked this strong ale. I thought the taste was very complex and interesting, and I really liked the roasted malt and chocolate flavors. I would definitely buy this again.

 684 characters

Photo of Zaphog
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of mikesgroove
4.92/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A – Now this one was truly unique. Poured a jet black as night opaque liquid. You could tell it was not that thick though as there was some light getting through on the sides and bottom. Very unique to say the least. A nice off white head formed on the top, maybe about two inches in height. Sticky and foamy it gradually relented and rested back down to about a half inch layer across the top and this hung around for the rest of the session. Very nice side glass lace presentation on this throughout. Now overall I have to admit the look was very intresting considering this was an IPA. I was really looking forward to having a crack at this one.



S – Aroma was extremely hopped, which is about what one would expect out of it. Lots of very fresh and crisp pine aromas, typical of the Stone hop varieties, but very strong. Almost ripping the nose apart, very good indeed. Now there was some underlying roasted malts in there as well. Some light sweetness, possibly even the slightest touch of a nutty characteristic, but the floral fresh hops tore it to shreds and let you know exactly what this one was and where it came from. I was really getting to like this one already.



T – Now to be honest this was nothing extraordinary, nothing really new, and nothing really absurd if you have had say Ruination before. But there was something very unique about it. It was very fresh, almost sticky with hop resin and very floral. Lots of flavors of orange, and tangerine, grapefruit with pine, just a full on hop assault and no letting up. Somewhat sweet in the finish at first, but that lasts for all of about two seconds before your lips stick to your teeth and the dry bitterness kicked in. No hint what so ever of the ABV, very well hidden here and the overall mix of the hops was actually quite nice as it really wasn’t tearing up your mouth as much as one woudld think. There was definitely a touch of malt in there, especially after it warmed up a bit as a subtle sweetness, and earthy type of flavor started to work its way it. Very nice here indeed, this was something that was really finely tuned before being let go and that was very obvious.



M – Wow, very cool here. Lots of carbonation which always helps in these situations, now the other side to this was that it was jet black. Now this automatically turns your mind and makes you think that this is going to come off thick, maybe even syrup like, however that was not the case, It was very light and indeed quite refreshing in that sort. It never got dull and lifeless, always staying crisp, even up until the very last drop.



D – Perfect as far as I am concerned and I will give this one a five here. It was perfectly balanced, lots of carbonation, not too high in ABV, very crisp, and just a great feel overall. All of these things add up to about perfect for me and it was a no brainer to just keep going on this one.



Overall I was not sure what to expect when going into this one. I knew I would be happy, being an IPA I very seldom am not. I was just pleased that it stayed true to the stone routes and was a nice hugely hopped vehicle. I love that about the stone products and really do appreciate it. I would love to see something like this on tap, or heck dry hopped on tap. This was a really great offering and something that I look forward to having a couple more of. Definitly have to give this one a try if you can.

 3,413 characters

Photo of jgunther71
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of Slatetank
3.78/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Decanted this cool from a brown 22oz into a goblet, purchased this at Thirsty's in York, Pa.

A - Black as cinder w/ a tall, 3 fingers of rocky tan head w/ an ultra-fine bead. Moderately full coating of lace on the glass.

S - A huge citrus aroma w/ totally hop dominant nose. Tinges of malty toasted and creamy notes peek out from behined the NW hop aroma.

M - Rich, acidic feel w/ leafy resionous pungency, bitter upfront w/ notes of sweet dark malt in the finish.

T - An intensely flavored ale w/ a nod to the IPA, very citrusy w/ grapefruit and tangy citrus notes w/ mango and sweet subtle flavors that have a gentle dark malt influence w/ hints of molasses and dark sugar w/ caramel and roasted flavors. The acidity is present in each sip as the citrus hop flavor makes its potency known. Sip after sip says Grapefruit! There is a ruby red note w/ a turbinado sugar topped flavor, very zesty the taste reminds me of a grapefruit winter warmer I brewed w/ actual ruby red fruit years ago. I find it unique that this should bring back that one-off memory. I like how the malt is in the taste kind of cushioning the high vault of hops, a very nice effect.

D - This beer is impressive in craftsmanship. Nice black color, all IPA in flavor. It is not something I could see myself drinking many of, but is tasty-it kept me coming back. This ale isn't what I consider complex, but makes its point well and is very drinkable. Shame it is only around for the Anniversary.

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