Levitation Ale | Stone Brewing

very good
3,888 Ratings
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 Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,888 |  Reviews: 1,204
Photo of dmfrench
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dry, earthy citric resinous even a tad smoky Red

A: Hazy copper body with visible yeast chunks of varying sizes, topped by a fairly persistent one finger yellowed white head.

S: Acidic grapefruit hops, butter, hint of spice, perhaps cinnamon. Perhaps there's something wrong with me (or the beer) tonight, but I swear I can smell a bit of savory smoky meat, though perhaps nothing is wrong, as it is a pleasant aroma.

T: Thick, earthy feel here... definitely unique. Overall presentation is pretty dry, with respect to malt and hops. On the malt side we have a dray caramel with a hint of dirty smokiness, and on the hops side we have an equal blend of grapefruit and resinous species with the overall effect being one of drying. There is unfortunately something a bit hollow and metallic to the flavor, like the sound of a cheap condenser microphone.

M: I'd call it on the thin side, but it's only 4.4% for Christ's sake! I'd have to say it's pretty good for such a light beer.

O: Dryness is a useful plus, hollowness is a detriment. I think perhaps freshness is a bit of an issue here, so it gets the benefit of the doubt.

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Photo of cyrock1
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Medium to deep amber with a frothy 1" off white head.

Smell: Floral and citrus hops, almost as if ti were fresh hopped.

Taste: Very hoppy with barely a hint of malt flavor.

Mouthfeel: Despite the big hop aroma and flavor, it is mild on the finish.

Overall: Good solid beer but a little to one sided for me.

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Photo of JDFish
4.66/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: OMG. So much foam, 3 fingers at least of off white thick foam. Foam sticking to the sides of the pint glass. The color is a dark golden and it is cloudy.

S: Sweet malts, bready. Makes my mouth water

T: I didn't get too much hops, just a hint, sweet and malty, like a complex brown ale. One of the most delicious beers I've ever tried. Slight sour notes on the finish.

M: Decent mouthfeel, we'll say medium.

D: Off the charts. This is the best session craft beer in history! Day in and day out, this is my goto beer. I absolutely love it, especially if I am just chillin' and not feeling adventurous or in the mood for a fancier, less drinkable brew.

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

The bottle is of course in Stone fashion a beautifully silk screened masterpiece of Gargoyle fantasy. The beer inside was poured into a tall pilsner glass and is pretty good looking too. Dark, clear amber color. Big sticky tan colored head. As I type this review the creamy head is getting better and better looking.

For being such a small beer (ABV) it really has a nice nose. I can get a bright malt smell as well as some yeast and a faint citrus hop smell. Nice!!

The taste is malty and sweet. A little orange pucker-ish. I'm kind of the big over the top IPA kinda guy so it's pretty weak for me, but I must score for the style and I think it's a pretty good amber.

Mouth is great. Silky, well carbonated. Maybe a bit dry at the end. Surprisingly not as watery as I would expect for a beer with the alcohol content of a Bud Light. Goes to show you that great brewers can do the world with so little. I have had so many beers that are classified porter or stout with half the mouthfeel as this.

Overall I really enjoyed this single 12 oz. bottle. Thanks to Jeff from my favorite bottle shop for the sample. I have overlooked this beer for years because of the price for the alcohol. Maybe I should tuck my alcoholism in my pocket next time and buy this great drinking baby of a beer.

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

My favorite Stone drinking-session beer. Tons of hops without the high alc. by vol.

Pours deep amber with a 1-inch frothy white head that remains a nice slim roof throughout the experience.

Aroma is floral, slightly sweet from the malt, zesty, appetizing, hops. It reminds almost everyone of an IPA nose.

Taste is slightly malty, but with notes of red grapefruit, minute levels of lime, and the mouthfeel of carbonation bubbles. It's very nice, and very refreshing.

Overall, Stone Levitation proved that so-called "unbalanced" beers could prove balanced. Highly drinkable.

Never age. Drink now.

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Photo of Schneic8
4.09/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a mug.

Appearance: Bronze reddish color with a nice head and good lacing. Decent carbonation.

Smell: Nice semi-sweet caramel smell. There are citrus and floral tones.

Taste: Very nice taste. It has a slight bitterness toward the beginning that fades and finishes smooth. It is clean and crisp.

Mouthfeel: It has a nice crisp feel that goes down smooth. There is a mild carbonation and it leaves a mild bitter after taste.

Overall: Very good beer that I would drink again. It has a nice complexity and is easy to drink. It was a little pricey but I would definitely drink again.

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Photo of Daniellobo
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice session ale with a flavorful profile.

Presentation: 12 oz brown capped bottle. Perfunctory screen-printed gargoyle design in light grey noting name of the brew and with a couple of golden seals to highlight awards. Back narrative brags about the nature of the brew, the quality of their craft, and intent towards flavor. Notes enjoy by date 03/23/11. Shows 4.4% Alc. by Vol. Poured into a tulip glass.

A - Deep amber to amber brown clear pour with a towering frothy head, good retention, surface memory, and small touches of lacing.

S - Nose is soft if nice, with toasted malt, a bit of caramel, and hint of hops with a light citric touch.

T - Soft maltiness, nice light caramel and bready touches, with soft bitter dash of hops sealing the flow. Bitterless bite that adds to the return of the malty dash with a nutty hint.

M - Medium/light body with small carbonation, tad thin at points but held nicely by the sweet range with that soft lingering bitterness pointing to a small dry touch.

D - Flavorful session brew.. This is a nice brew. I wonder if fresher the hoppy side would be a bit more prominent.

Notes: Almost like a watered down Bastard but in a nice way. i.e. making a good session brew out of it. Not one that I will look out for particularly, but would not mind grabbing and is a good choice for an informal social gathering.

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Photo of goalie33
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into 16oz pint glass. Best by 5/3/11.
A) Pours a brick red color, fairly clear and highly carbonated. One finger of off-white head on top.
S) Very hoppy smell, although not quite at ipa level. Pine and earthy notes, with a nice malty base.
T) Hops upfront. Malty middle and then the hops return with some bitterness along with bready malt in the finish.
M/D) Medium body, slightly carbonated but relatively smooth mouthfeel. A bit of a lingering bitterness. Very easy drinking beer. A nice, crisp, hoppy session beer from Stone.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.84/5  rDev -1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

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

A - Light maple syrup.

S - Bright citrus, grapefruit, orange zest. Touch of pine.

T - Cedar, pine. Light malt. Touch of sweetness. White sugar.

M - Light. Touch watery. Pleasant carbonation.

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Photo of afksports
3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Yum. This baby looks and smells wonderful. And it's so light that I can enjoy it at 11:30pm as my first beer after class on my way towards S P R I N G B R E A K!

Of course, if I weren't a 29 year old undergraduate that might be more exciting.

The beer pours out of the bottle dated 10/12/10 (eek, I'm a bit late... will have to update this review) a lovely deep amber to brown clear bubbly drink with great clingy head. It still has a freshly hopped aroma, with a malt component that's both complex and I bet a touch more present than it would be if I hadn't let this one sit for too long.

The taste has that characteristic hops to big malts mix that good ambers carry, and although that's a positive, it sadly finishes a little astringent and not with a good bitter. The drinkability remains high though, because the low 4.4% alcohol and the balance the start and middle of the taste carry bid you to drink more.

And drink more I shall.

Wait, why is my glass empty?

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Photo of Dubber55
3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best before 05-03-11
Consumed 3/7/11

Poured into my Founders snifter. Caramel/orange/red color with some orange highlights. 1 finger of white head.

Smells like hops and pine. There is also a grassy/herbal type aroma with some grapefruit as well.

I taste herbal tea and pine. Citrus rind as well. Seems to have a similar hop profile to arrogant bastard and its other iterations.

Mouthfeel is light to medium. Seems to be a bit sticky as well. The finish is kind of watery but I guess that is to be expected from a 4.4% abv libation.

Drinkability is ok. The abv isnt high so I could drink a bunch of these. However, this beer isnt really all that complex to make me want to come back and keep drinking it. Im not loving the watery finish either. Within the style, this is a pretty good representation.

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Photo of colts9016
4.16/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a samuel smith glass at 43 degrees.

Appearance: A monster three finger head that has really good retention. The color of the head is a light tan color that is foamy creamy, and bubbly. The color of the beer is a deep reddish cherry hue with garnet highlights. The clarity of the beer is near opaque, except there is some visibility. The head left a lot of lacing on the glass.

Nose: A very rich grapefruity, floral and lemon aromas. There are other aromas of toasted malt, phenols, and pine.

Taste: A very balanced rich grapefruity, floral bouquet, lemons, orange, toasted malt, and pine. There are notes of alcohol yeast, and phenols.

The mouth feel is astringent, carbonated, and coating.

Overall: The body of the beer is medium and the finish is medium full. This Stone beer is done really well. Great flavor well balanced and very easy to drink. This is why I am a loyal Stone follower, no real let downs in their brews.

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Photo of Kooz
3.31/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a cool looking bottle into a Sam Adams pint glass. Amber colored with some quickly-dissipating head.

Smells overpoweringly of hops.

Very hoppy, somewhat boozy, but not bad. Fairly mild considering how hoppy it is.

Mouthfeel is okay. It's a little watery, and has some bite, but neither one is bad enough to take points of. Almost tastes a bit gritty in the aftertaste, buts is smooth of front. This is a solid 3.

This is a very drinkable and enjoyable beer.

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Photo of EricCioe
4.07/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This has poured usually very, very bubbly, overly carbonated, hard to control head. Once it dies down a bit it's a nice looking beer, deep copper, blood reddish, a big frothy white head that leaves really sticky lacing. On the nose, I'm getting a big hit of piney hops, surprising given the style and ABV, and beneath that are caramel, bready malts, and some yeasty note. In the mouth, the bready and nutty note is foremost, but as that fades a nice, big pine bitterness hangs around for a long while. This beer is proof that low ABV does not mean low flavor, and I wish that there were more such beers on the market.

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Photo of brew3crew
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Part of the stone tasting at jungle jims with Greg Koch

A-nice amber color with almost no head
S-no suprise that it is a hoppy beer being from stone. Not much else there.
D-nice hop profile. Hoppiest session beer beer I have ever had before
M-light bodied and crisp
d-very drinkable and enjoyable. Nice session beer

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Photo of bubseymour
3.44/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance - Pours a murky copper color with lots of floating yeast throughout, very similiar to some Belgian Strong Ales I've sampled. Head was quite nice 2 finger and some lacing present.

Smell - Pleasant balanced smell with some maltiness and caramel but also slight hint of hops to the nose.

Taste - Much hoppier and bitter than expected but still not overpowering. Kinda watery and not anything noteworthy or original in the flavor. Tastes like a very ordinary run-of-the-mill American Ale to me.

Mouthfeel - watery

Drinkability - Its very light in alcohol so it could be sessionable, however the bitterness prevents that.

Overall - Aside from a unique appearance and pleasant smell, this doesn't bring any unique or exceptional tastes to the table. I can find 10 other American craftbeers in my liquor store that are close twins to this brew and probably $1-2 less a 6-pack as well.

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Photo of andrenaline
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nice amber colour, thin layer of head with some retention and some sporadic lacing.

S - Sweet citrus hops backed by a solid offering of earthy caramel malts, though comes off a bit mild.

T - Very unique flavour on this one. A strong hop bitterness off the top followed by the caramel malts. Very earthy with a leafy presence that lingers on the tongue. The hops are quite citrus-y in nature, but are not overpowering. Has a bit of an earl gray tea flavour that lingers.

M - Medium bodied ale that is a bit prickly going down and finishes with a touch of dryness.

D - Overall a worthy offering, and definitely worth a try. The flavours are quite unique and provide for a memorable amber ale.

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Photo of notchucknorris
3.38/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A: Chestnut brown with some hints of red.

S: Has that characteristic Stone hop smell. Slight floral scent to the hops. Not much else in here.

T: Malt and caramel with a ton of hops that are a little unbalanced. This beer ends up being bitter and not in a good way. The worst part for me was definitely the mouthfeel, which was waaaay too thin.

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Photo of Rutager
4.42/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance. Pours a deep copper brown. Nice finger and a half of creamy tan head. Pretty lacing here too.

Smell. Sweet caramel malt and piney, tropical fruity hops. Yum

Taste. Roasty malt, piney, herbal hops with a nice long bitter finish that brings out grapefruit and orange rinds.

Mouthfeel. Medium bodied with nice prickly medium carbonation.

Drinkability. Great drinker. I could drink a bunch of these ...and will do the first chance I get!

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Photo of HopHead84
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4


On tap at Stone.

A: Looks like cola with a fizzy white beige head. Lots of bubbles.

S: Notes of caramel with a little toasted bread balance grapefruit and pine. Some floral notes. Pretty nice aroma when it warms to an acceptable temperature.

T: Light grapefruit and a valiant hop bitterness for such a meager beer. A little backing malt with a slight breadiness, a subtle toast, and a dash of caramel. Some pine notes. Packs a decent amount of  flavor and almost displays an equilibrium but for a slight tilt in the favor of the hops.

M: Upper light body with upper moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is sticky, smooth, and a touch thin.

Overall: A beer I rarely drink, but it has a lot of flavor for the low ABV and is pretty tasty. There are simply too many other options.

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Photo of kbrady9
4.27/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Very nice pour with an amber color. Not much of a head.

S-A wonderful, deep hoppy aroma. No one makes a better smelling brew than Stone.

T-When it first goes down, it is slightly sweet with a bit of a caramel, piney flavor. The flavor of the beer does not become distinct until it hits mid palate. Hoppy, but not overwhelming.

M- It goes down extremely light for a hoppy beer. I would prefer it be a bit stronger on the front end.

D- One of the most drinkable beers I have had from Stone.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
3.87/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - slightly hazy deep amber, one thumb of head retained at a solid covering with respectable lacing up the glass
S - caramel and toffee, light perfume, fruit and raw sugar, slightly phenolic, very interesting
T - prominent herbal hops with lemon zest, butter toffee maltiness, with a woody/piney and astringent
D - prominent carbonation, thin with a bitter spicy finish
M - light and refreshing but herbal and astringent makes for an interesting brew, very drinkable

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Photo of kbutler1
3.78/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Poured into a DFH tulip glass a pretty dark, but still clear, copper orange color with a large antique white head that is rather slow to settle but as it does leaves some lace on the glass. The is made up of rather tiny little bubbles and makes me be patient to take my first sip. Nice hoppy citris/pine aroma in the nose but not overpowering. Some biscuit like notes as well. Medium mouthfeel. The taste is rather nice, slightly bready sweet beginning gives wasy to hoppy and floral notes that linger on. Very refreshing.

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Photo of KomodoDragon
4.82/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

'Defying Gravity" - apparently, original gravity with its modest 4.4% ABV, Stone Levitation is a change of pace to its Stone brothers. Perhaps in ABV, but not in taste.

A - poured a deep amber color into a 25th anniversary Bells pint glass. Perfectly clear with no troubles seeing thru to other side. Modest head, but fantastic lacing.

S - Earthy and pine smells with a floral hops pressence.

T - Rich carmel and roasted malts introduce a hoppy dry finish. Hop characteristic very similar to Stone's self-righteous ale.

M - perfect carbonation and very crisp.

D - This seems like a toned down version of the self-righteous ale. And at 4.4% ABV, I'll definately have another.


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Photo of rdilauro
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another success with Stone Brewing Co. The pour was a light golden brown with a very small head. The aroma had a nice hoppy nice like almost every Stone beer I have had.

It was very easy to taste, nothing really pronounced. The hops were there, but didnt hit you in the face.

I picked up some citrus, but nothing to overpower the beer.

Easy to drink, a bit timid in terms of mouthful and the aftertaste was almost non-existent

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Levitation Ale from Stone Brewing
3.88 out of 5 based on 3,888 ratings.
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