Levitation Ale | Stone Brewing

very good
1,202 Reviews
Levitation AleLevitation Ale

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by xlperro on 09-27-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,202 | Ratings: 3,886
Photo of Halcyondays
3.43/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle.

A: Copper-red/brown with white/tan head.

S: Piney hops basically, with some malt mixed in.

T: Piney hops, biscuit malts, really resiny, hops a bit too astringent for my tastes, but overall very nice.

M: Above average, medium-bodied.

D: Low in alcohol makes this a good session beer choice, but I found myself really not wanting more than one, a beer I'll have to revisit at some point though.

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Photo of Sammy
3.6/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Active carbonation, moderately hoppy amber. Nothing exceptional, but very drinkable at the end of a hot day.
Thanks Boutip for studying what I have not had, in our sixth trade.Citrus, and 4.4% sessioanbilty appreciated so that I could have a follow on beer.

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Photo of DrJay
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received from TheManiacalOne as part of BC2. Thanks!
This one poured a reddish amber colour, pretty clear, with a light beige head. Good head retention with some clumpy lacing. There was a pleasant caramel aroma that balanced the hops, which were a bit fruity, but mostly herbal, grassy, and woody. Solid bitterness with an herbal, minty hop flavour. Toasty malt gave a light sweetness and there was some fruitiness in the background as well. Nice balance. Medium/light body and carbonation, quite refreshing. I could see this making a great session beer. It's got a nice flavour profile that's not overpowering, but is still interesting enough for a few pints.

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2.87/5  rDev -26%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I'll start by saying that I am a fan of Stone. Not this Stone. Wonderfully striking in the glass. Nice dark brown that lets the light dance through, topped with a pale yellow head that outlasted the beer. Bravo. Then everything else. Smell was soft and hop forward with metal, citrus, and almost the smell of wet dirt (just before it becomes mud). Mouthfeel was ok, dry and lackluster. Taste was somewhat of a mouthfull. Blast of hops on the tongue mellowed slightly by caramel, stale bread, and citrus. Pretty bitter ending, not hops bitter ... (you ever spray stuff with "bitter yuck" you know to keep a dog or cat from biting it?) yeah .. weird bitter. Anyway ... ok beer. I wouldn't seek this one out.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
2.8/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of Naven: Poured a deep amber color ale with a small foamy head with limited retention. Aroma of light piney hops with some caramel malt. Taste is somewhat hoppy with some light caramel malt notes also noticeable. Body is fuller then average with some medium carbonation. I understand that the brewer wanted to have a session beer with limited alcohol but there also too much limited taste – not something I thought I was going to be saying about Stone someday.

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Split a cellar temp 12 oz bottle with Stopper. Poured into a tulip snifter the beer exhibits a clear amber to chestnut hue.
A soft fluffy off white head of 2.5 cm foams up easily and recedes slowly to a sturdy surface layer. Aroma is mild with some piney hops and caramel intertwined.
First sip reveals a lite body and fine spacious carbonation. The beer has a soft smooth textured average body.
Flavor is some caramel and citrusy hops that finish with a crisp bite. Very easy to drink. Seems almost like a mild ale not a red ale. Easy session beer. Wouldnt mind having a few of these in a sitting.

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Photo of geokills
2.68/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

This is not a beer for me. Disappointed, as I am an avid Stone fan and this being my first opportunity with the Levitation Ale. While the prose was sweet as ever, the brew itself was exceedingly oppressive, strongly hopped -- I would hands down prefer Ruination to Levitation when it comes to high hops from Stone. A pleasingly aesthetic amber red in a glass, this one just didn't have it in flavor to warrant another buy from me anytime soon.

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Photo of joecast
4.47/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

finally, the last of stones year round beers i have not tried. this is an occasion i have looked forward to.
12 ov bottle. enjoy by date 08 04 07

pours darker than i expected. deep amber and copper. very low carbonation. thin tan head leaves some lacing.

super hoppy aroma. spicy, peppery, a bit grassy. probably missing some malt presence, but i dont mind. puts other sub 5% beers to shame.

hmm, hop flavored mouth wash comes to mind. nah, actually, mouth wash made from hops. no flavoring added here. its the real thing.
starts with a light sweetness on the tongue before a flooding of hops takes over from my lips, passed the roof of my mouth and down the back of my throat. more please.

well, never had an amber ale like this! certainly punches above its weight, and does it well. more hops in this 12oz bottle than most cases of bmc.

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Photo of notoriousdav
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This beer is the worst in Stone's otherwise excellent lineup, which is unfortunate because those who try this beer first may get the wrong impression of this fine craft brewery. It looks right, and the smell is there with some piney, earthy notes, but this beer falls flat on its face when it comes to taste. Frankly, the taste is insipid at best. There's just nothing there except water and metal and lot's of carbonation. Maybe it's the low alcohol, but this beer has no character whatsoever, and is nothing to write home about.

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Photo of BeerManDan
3.15/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

After awhile, all of Stone's ale taste about the same. This one was no different. Poured a medium dark brown with some white foam. The smell of Piney hops was all I could get out of the aroma. As far as the taste, it was average with the tart piney flavor of the hops and that was about it. Not impressed, just average at best.

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
3.2/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I should have tried this before the Arrogant Bastard, IPA and Ruination...

Looks like an amber ale... amber!

Smells like malt, not much hop aroma.

It tastes ok, I won't call all my friends, but I think it's all right.

it's cold, it has alcohol, it's a beer... average beer.

well, regardless of the taste, appearance, smell or mouthfeel, 'overall', I think it's an average beer, but then again, 'overall', I think my boss (Ray) is an asshole!*

*NOTE: my co-workers (former and present) also think Ray is an asshole...

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Photo of ArrogantB
4.48/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This has got to be my favorite "session" beer and it is perfect for poker night. It is orange in color with a decent head. It smells hoppy and grassy. The taste is grassy and delicious. I can't believe it has this much flavor for such a low ABV beer. It also tastes a little like Bastard.

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Photo of flexabull
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beers pours with a cloudy copper color and a decent head.

Aromas are bread like, sweet dough, and a hint of pine from the hops.

Flavors are slightly sweet, tea like, and creamy. You really notice the nice mouthfeel as this beer really coats your mouth well, and the carbonation is right on as well. Finish is a bit tart and crisp. I would like to have tasted some more hop flavors from this.

As mentioned before, the mouthfeel is quite good.

Drinkability is very good. This is a solid Amber Ale. There are some others out there that I prefer, but this is a nice easy drinking sessionable beer.

Many thanks to mymrngjckt for throwing this beer in as an extra from our recent trade.

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From the Town and Country liquor store in Fullerton, on to the beer:

It pours dark red into a chalice. The head that froms sits on top of the beer the whoe way through. The smell is crisp and sweet, with caramel, hoppy, and vanilla flavors rising from it. In the taste, it's bready, mostly with a hoppy taste goes from start to finish. A hint of sugar cookies sneaks into play towards the end. Not much of an aftertaste. This beer goes down nice, easy, and creamy. This beer's a little deeper in flavor than what I expected from a 4.4 ABV beer.

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Photo of guinnessfan
3.03/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into Das Festhaus pint glass.

A: Nice amber color, absolutely no head, even with an agressive pour. Little lacing, nothing fantastic.

S: Slightly sweet, piney hops.

T: Bitter, reminds me of an ESB. Not much sweetness, like there was with the smell. Completely 1-dimensional. Not bad, but not good.

M: Thin, carbonated, prickly bite.

D: Easy enough to drink if you can stand the bitterness. It's not a good hop-bitterness, it's just plain bitter. I normally like Ambers, but I will NOT buy this again. Wayyy overrated.

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Photo of rkuhnel
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stone makes some incredible brews, but I am beginning to think Amber Ale might be one of the most challenging types to make really well. This poured a dark amber with a fat, slightly off-white head that left sticky-looking lacing in rings around the glass. Nose of malts, hops, citrus, flowers, and something else I cannot quite get to. The hops dominate and so you have to look for everything else. Mouthfeel is very smooth and better than most ambers. Flavor is of malts, caramels, and of course hops. Finishes smooth . At only 4.4 % you could knock back a few of these in an evening, and enjoy every bottle. Interesting and well done.

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Photo of jeffjfindley
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The gargoyle brings forth session fare, and it works. Appearance is a rusty amber with considerable transparency. Smell is very potent for a beer of diminished gravity. Great blend of caramel & coffee malts. The taste follows suit, bringing forth a predictable dose of hoppage, and leaving a slightly unfortunate aftertaste of cold coffee. The mouthfeel is thin for obvious reasons, but I still really dig this beer. The complexity they managed to squeeze out of a beer with 4.4% abv is pretty astonishing. They could rename this beer Unassuming Co-Dependent Bastard. Or maybe The Bastard Who Loved Me.... Accomodating Bastard? The Kinder, Gentler Bastard? I'll stop this now, and I apologize.

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Photo of ruinationation
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a light shade of amber with a less than one finger head. Nice lacing, more than I would of expected for this beer.

Nice hop smell with molases coming through.

Very tasteful, good hop and malt balance. A little watery for a stone but no doubt enjoyable. Reminds me of a lite Arrogant Bastard, kinda sorta. Good beer for any occasion just make sure you have enough sixers.

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Photo of Enola
4.21/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Obtained in the Double Trouble BIF.

This beer poured a cloudy red and there was a fair head. The smell is wonderfull. Hops, brown sugar, maple syrup. Mmm. The taste is smooth with just a little bit of a watery finish. Bitter, this seems to flirt with pale ale. The mouthfeel is smooth and drinkbility inviting. As a lower abv brew, several of these could be consumed easily. This is the shy nephew of an arrogant uncle.

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Photo of akorsak
3.82/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 12 oz bottle shared with Phatz.

A: The ale has a true-to-style amber red color with a decent head that comes close to 1 finger in size.

S: The aroma is grainy caramel and biscuit malts that are highlighted by a citrusy hop aroma. Unlike all other Stone brews that I've had, the malts are the shining point here.

T: The amber ale has a strong malt presence. The flavors are caramel and biscuit malts, strong but not to the point of sweetness. The malts are chewy and provide the significant component in the taste. The malts do pop up intermittently, having a grapefruity, citrus element that nicely compliments the strong malts.

M: The mouthfeel is more malty than hoppy, a first for Stone ales that I've had. I like that the hops take a back seat, they pop up when needed and are a nice secondary element.

D: The closest that I've seen to a session ale from Stone. The malts are strong and well-represented, taking control of the ale from start to finish.

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Photo of mithrascruor
3.15/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into a mug.

Appearance: Pours a fairly bright & clear amber color. Lots of visible carbonation. Has a foamy off-white head that eventually lingers as a foam, but laces the glass a bit.

Smell: A fairly sweet scent of malts, bread; some hops and grasses become more noticable later on. Rather different; I'm not sure if I like it, but it's interesting.

Taste: The hops are more noticable here, together with citrus, but there's also a lot of malts -- they seem to switch off as far as which is the most dominant flavor. But there's nothing really interesting in the taste, and it's a bit monolithic.

Mouthfeel: Semi-smooth and medium bodied, but a bit too grainy (in a slightly grating way) and carbonated.

Drinkability: No problem drinking one of these (unless you're averse to strong hops), but it feels like one is enough and two would be too many (as far as the taste, etc. goes).

As usual, Stone goes for an over-the-top beer, rather than an interesting beer. I'd rather get their pale ale and skip the malts here that are a bit too sweet. (This almost seems like their pale ale with malts dumped in.) It's not a bad beer, but I can't think of a good reason to get this again.

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Photo of velo343
3.27/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance - Pours a dark amber/orange from the bottle with a lacey off-white head that is retained very well.

Smell - A pleasing smell of citrus hops, pine, grass.

Taste - A mild bitterness that ends in a bit of a sour note. There is some taste of grapefruit that shows itself. Not too much malt characteristic.

Mouthfeel - Fairly watery.

Drinkability - A somewhat disappointing beer from Stone. Not at all undrinkable, but it lacks a lot of complexity in the taste. The smell seems to promise a lot that just isn't followed up once it is drunk. Decent, but probably won't be having this one again.

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Photo of zuggy9
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This ale pours a nice rich amber brown with a nice off-white head with good head retention and lacing. The smell is rich in malts, grains and hops. A bit earthy and tree-like. The taste has some nice caramel qualities to it, with a bit of a piney bite and a dry finish. Very tasty and it drinks quite soothly. Rather drinkable and easy to down a six-pack with friends.

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Photo of Phatz
4.21/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Oh my Oh my. Where to begin. This is a session beer If ever I tasted one. I love the super-tasty hops and the beer just goes down so easily it is ridiculous. I was sad that I only had one. I could use a case of this stuff.

Appearance: Pours a beautiful luminescent amber brown with a creamy off white head and has quantities of attractive lacing.

Smell: Caramel and malts and bread and fresh fresh hops. Pine cones surrounded by sap, sweet sticky sap.

Taste: The pine hop is right on. Sweet to start like a toasted caramel malt, followed by a bold pine bite and then a light lingering citric bite and a dry finish, that leaves every one of my taste bud calling for more and my mouth salivating profusely.

Mouthfeel: Malty and smooth and hoppy and lively enough but not too much to slow the pace of the beer that slide quickly through the mouth.

Drinkability: This has become an instant party beer for me. It is full of flavors and yet it won't kick my ass. I love it.

[EDIT - I found a sixer of this as quickly as I could, love it]

Hope this is helpful.

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Photo of theopholis
3.62/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Dark amber/copper. A small beige head that disappears fairly quickly and leaves very little lace.

Aroma- Lots of malty sweetness. Little hop aroma, but what is there is very nicely balenced. Maybe some caramel and dry bread to. Smells great.

Taste- Nice malty sweetness with a nice blend of bittering and floral hops. Hints of spiced apple. Good aftertaste, tho it's exactly the same as the fore-taste.

Mouthfeel- Medium body. A tad over-carbonated; but not a deal breaker.

Drinkability- Not bad, not great. Most people will like it as long as they don't have some bizaar averdsion to hops.

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Levitation Ale from Stone Brewing
3.88 out of 5 based on 3,886 ratings.
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