Stone IPA
Stone Brewing

Stone IPAStone IPA
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Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
American IPA
Ranked #67
ABV:
6.9%
Score:
94
Ranked #1,310
Avg:
4.22 | pDev: 10.66%
Reviews:
3,146
Ratings:
11,514
From:
Stone Brewing
 
California, United States
Avail:
Year-round
Wants
  489
Gots
  3,414
SCORE
94
Outstanding
Stone IPAStone IPA
Notes: One of the most well respected and best-selling IPAs in the country, this golden beauty explodes with citrusy flavor and hop aromas, all perfectly balanced by a subtle malt character.

The IPA That Launched Generations of Hop Fanatics
First Release: August 1997

By definition, an India pale ale is hoppier and higher in alcohol than its little brother, pale ale—and we deliver in spades. Now one of the most well-respected and best-selling IPAs in the country, this golden beauty explodes with citrusy, piney hop flavors and aromas, all perfectly balanced by a subtle malt character. This crisp, extra hoppy brew is hugely refreshing on a hot day, but will always deliver no matter when you choose to drink it.
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Reviews: 3,146 | Ratings: 11,514
Reviews by Fluteswell:
Photo of Fluteswell
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

More User Reviews:
Photo of mick92627
4.75/5  rDev +12.6%

Outstanding everyday go-to beer. Hoppy and bitter. GF hates it.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.65/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Stone IPA is a real looker. Gauzy medium amber with a large, eggshell colored, slightly lumpy head that has good retention and leaves copious rings and sheets of lace.

This is the most amazingly fragrant beer that I've ever smelled; it hit with both barrels as soon as I popped the cap. Its room-filling bouquet even elicited a comment from my wife. The nose is abundantly citrusy, with grapefruit zest leading the charge. So this is what hops smell like!

The flavor is out of this world. Is this what people mean by a 'wow' beer? Grapefruit, lemon and pine, with a tantalizing hop bitterness. The mouthfeel is ultra-smooth and is full and rich without being heavy. Drinkability is superb. Oh how I wish that I had easier access to this amazing IPA.

It was with some trepidation that I popped the cap on this bomber of Stone IPA today. I've been reading on this site about how it's an incredibly hoppy, bitter beer and that beginners (namely me) should tread carefully, perhaps starting with more gentle, less hoppy styles. I think of bitterness as something unpleasant. Well if this is bitterness, give me all you've got.

Far from being unpleasant, this is the best beer of any style that I've had yet. I struggled with whether to assign such high scores since there aren't too many craft beers under my belt at this stage of the game. In the end, though, I have to go with what I feel. I can't imagine that anyone brews a better IPA, or that there are many other beers (of any style) that are better than this. And so.... a hophead is born.

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I'm not going to re-review, but I am going to re-score now that I have quite a bit of IPA experience to reference. The taste score--I really hate to do this--falls to 4.5. (5/21/04)

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Photo of Dave97
4.99/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poor - From a 12oz bottle - Nice frothy poor. Nice 2 finger frothy head that settles down to a thin top lining. Very nice lacing.

Appearance - Nice 24k gold/amber. Nice haze, no particles. A Gorgeous beer. Not a lot of carbonation.

Nose - Beautiful nose. Not huge like some DIPA's, but very nice nonetheless. Dank, tropical, pine, resin, citrus. Very nice.

Mouthfeel - Nice medium body, Not fizzy, dry and crisp. Very easy drinking.

Taste - Loads of spice; nutmeg, ginger, cardamon and clove. Very nice sweet malt backbone, but not too much. And of course tons of hop bitterness. Might as well just be chewing on some hops; Sour, bitter, herbaceous, piney and resiny.

Finish - When closer to room temperature, there is an actual crystallized sugar/malt on the finish and taste. This is a personal distinction I've made about this beer only. The main reason that keeps me coming back to this one over and over. The finish is long and delicious. Sweet/sour on sides of tongue and nice granny smith sour on the back of the throat. Overall a lasting sour lemon.

Overall - This is my double IPA. I'm not a double IPA drinker, they are all too over the top for my personal taste. I also don't like a total grapefruit bomb. This definitely has a little grapefruit but not ALL grapefruit. All in all just a juicy, dank, piney, delicious IPA. This one of my all time favorite beers.

Food pairings - hot red curry. Pizza with sardines, Clam bake with chorizo sausage, Spicy Mongolian, and most especially without a doubt mussels and pasta in red pepper and garlic sauce.

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Photo of VegasBrewer1
3.26/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I tried this thinking it was considered a great IPA. I didn't get that at all. Extremely bitter, no hop aroma and very little flavor. As if all they added were the bittering hops. Consumed about 1 month after being bottled, perhaps that explains the loss of hop aroma and taste. Not for me, despite the rave reviews.

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Photo of Sandhollow
4.9/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

I am at a loss to think of how you improve on this IPA. Delicious, balanced, spicy. The Bros. got this one right. To those that are rating it low because you don't like IPAs, Get off my lawn! This is an excellent IPA with 6.9 ABV, but it doesn't taste like raw alcohol. I'll have another!

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Photo of Todd
4.72/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Presentation: 12oz brown bottle. Fancy painted label with loads of definitions and the usual (nice bottle), but no freshness date. Poured into an Imperial pint glass.

Appearance: Clear, but thick looking, brillian amber with a good 2-3 finger clumpy, fluffy, creamy, sticky white foam lace. Excellent head retention! I recommend that you pour this beer hard, but controlled for max. eye candy.

Smell: Hop aromas are off the hook! Wonderfully aromatic, a bit pungent, with strong herbal / spice characters. Loads of thick fruity esters join the fun, too. I think Stone should bottle this scent and market it as a beergeek cologne.

Taste: First thing that hits the palate is hop spice. It's herbally and there's lot of it -- a bit piney, too. There's a background peak of grassy hop flavours, and a near puckering effect -- I know George Carlin hates this word (screw him), but this beer is "zesty!" and one hoppy-ass beer, to say the least. (drink this beer and burp ... gotta love that)

Mouthfeel is so damn smooth, very creamy, a bit syrupy and big all around.

Malt-wise, things get nicely balanced with a very full and rich body and moderate sweetness, in comparison to the hops. Middle fruity flavour, akin to pineapple. Big bready and yeast-like finish (a tad too much, but forgivable), going dry with residual hop flavours still kicking ass all over your palate.

Notes: Simply put ... this is one insane IPA, and not for the weak palate. To compare it to other IPAs would be silly, however I think this sums it up ... Once Stone comes into a new market it's like a challenge to other brewers in the area: "I know my big beers are bigger and better than yours, but let's see yours anyway. I promise not to laugh." Oh ... and this is just their standard IPA doing the speaking.

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

Presentation: 22 oz brown bomber with a silk screen painted label of the "Stone Brewing Gargoyle" which wards off impurities that would otherwise taint the sanctity of the brew.

Appearance: Rich golden hued brew that has a very frothy white lace which sticks all over the glass.

Smell: Very aromatic ... raw hop and hints of fruity ester. Nice dry-hopping!

Taste: Intense hop character, both flavour and bitterness. A bit smooth and a bit crisp with some malt flavour ... a little biscuit and grain, some malt sweetness and fruity ester. Though the hops are very dominant and push their sweet and bitter oils onto the palate. Amazingly the after taste cleans up a little leaving some grain and hop leaf flavour in the finish. Gulp after gulp this brew seems to warm the body more and more.

Notes: Wow now this is an IPA! Well attenuated and very bitter, yet still a little malt character to balance. Seriously ... if you don't like hoppy beers than this one might not be a good pick. If you are a hophead ... than buy a case! There was only one thing this beer said to me "Don't be a whimp, drink a hoppy beer!" Also this a quite deceiving brew topping out at 6.9% abv.

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Photo of Erlkoenig
4.65/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

L: Burnt orange/gold, a little hazy with a finger or so of bubbly head. Good lacing. Very appetizing.

S: Orange, candied sugar, grapefruit, sweet malt. Very nice set of scents.

T: Oh gods yes. The fruit from the nose returns up front, but soon opens up into a spectacular array of grassy, resiny, sharp hop flavors and spices. Bitterness is high throughout, but the fruity and malty sweetness balances it rather well while still allowing it that nice "sting". Very drinkable.

M: Mid-light bodied and nice carbonation. Pleasantly sticky. Goes down smooth.

O: Yes yes and more yes. A fantastic example of what an American IPA can be.

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Photo of MFMB
4.19/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Seaworld pour! Pours a translucent copper color with a creamy off white head. Nose is gummy, pine gum and crisp grapefruit peel. Taste is well balanced. I miss a great balanced IPA and this is one! Nice mild bready malt presence, crisp clean hop profile that mixes pine/earthy with crisp citrus seamlessly. Medium body with a nice sticky mouthfeel.

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Photo of ElJacobian
4.63/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Grapefruit, pine and dank. Just a tad bitter on the aftertaste for me, but an incredible beer nonetheless.

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Photo of DarkSideOfTheMoon
3.84/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a case of cans from Costco - was on sale for a pretty good deal. Poured into a pint glass - huge foam slowly dissipated away. Still a good layer on there after downing about a quarter of the beer. Definitely pine, maybe apricot, grass - maybe a hint of citrus. Unfortunately there seems to be a bit of a metallic taste - imparted by the can perhaps? Mouthfeel is light in comparison to similar IPAs. Overall, this is a solid beer but, IMO, there are better examples out there now (Racer 5, BP Sculpin, etc). Would like to try from a clean tap.

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

Almost hard to believe I've never said anything on this beer until now.
I've always had this in a pint glass and for today once again, yes in a pint glass.
The appearance was a nice looking hazy orange color with a one finger white foamy head that dissipated within less than a minute. Light foamy lacing clings but trickles after a while.
The smell had a sharp pine assault of bitter hops with a light spice intertwining in and out on the aroma.
The taste copied the smell and carried a nice bitter pine into the spice of this beer. Light pine to spicy aftertaste lead to a dry finish.
The mouthfeel had a light to medium bodied sessionable dry spiciness rolling over my tongue.
Overall, I say this has and always will be a go to for me as an AIPA. Its hard not to find practically anywhere.

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

Look: Clear light amber; 1 finger of dissipating white foam on top; lacey.

Smell: earthy, pine, pineapple / mango

Taste: Opens with sweet citrus / tropical fruit that transitions to a lingering grapefruit pith at the close.

Feel: smooth; silky; welcoming

Overall: A classic IPA with all the components of the style very nicely represented; unassuming and
highly drinkable.

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Photo of MoreBeer4me
3.75/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Its okay. Nothing I would be doing back flips over. Its just another decent IPA in a gigantic sea of IPA's. If you have some, drink it. If not, no big loss. Just drink another IPA.

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Photo of jribeiro025
4.41/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dank smell to it. Definitely floral notes and citrusy. Great 1 inch head that returns when agitated. Great IPA.

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Photo of mentor
4.68/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a strong two-finger off-white head over a crystal clear brilliant gold-sunset liquid. Smells pith grapefruit with some pine. Beneath is pickled pineapple and cotton candy sweet. Tastes hop bitter with grassy hop flavor with some grapefruit. As strong as the hops start the taste, the malt rises to dominate and provide a cool ending. An interesting transition. Late flavors are light caramel, canned pineapple, mild pear & apricot, and although I doubt there is any chocolate malt in here, I do find some chocolate flavor.

This is a wonderful beer. An up front struggle morphs into a reasssuring base that leaves me begging for more. Hops return in the aftertaste to dry the throat. The finish is just divine. Md body and moderately carbonated. If I had another I'd drink it right now. Sad to see my my glass holding just one more gulp.

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Photo of RyFikes
2.29/5  rDev -45.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

It makes me feel like a pussy because Stone prides themselves on having aggressive tasting beers, but this one is not for me. It has no balance whatsoever. It seems like Stone purposefully made it unbalanced so that it would be as hoppy and bitter as possible.

Maybe I got a bad batch, or maybe everyone else is playing follow the leader with this one.

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

Poured from a growler into IPA glass
A: Transparent orange with a one-finger head that slowly settles
S: Comples and pure with some stone fruit, tropical fruit, caramel and hints of citrus and pine
T: Tropical fruit, stone fruit, citrus, and a bit of earth
M: Medium-bodied, dry
O: Definitely a solid IPA. For being a CA beer this isn't the usual west-coast style but is complex, tasty and recommended

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Photo of codekiln
4.84/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Purchased at Trader Joe's, poured into a 4-inch snifter

Look--
Bright, yellow, transparent, clear; very few bubbles, not much lace, barely any head

Smell--
sweet, resinous

Taste--
The hops throws you a curveball but it doesn't strike you out! Hops are more present on the tongue after the beer is downed... an incredible floral taste unlike anything... so flavorful you just want to keep drinking to reaffirm the experience

Feel--
Carbonation unzips your tongue

Overall--
An exemplary beer! Will go out of my way to have it again.

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Photo of Wassup_Wassup
2.48/5  rDev -41.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Disappointing. I bought this based on a recommendation, but far too bitter.

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Photo of gnumber9
4.75/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

as close to perfection as i can perceive (in this class). are there better beers? well always. however, this is a jewel. balance is an understatement, it's everything coming together. the look, nose and taste are like mortise and tenon. oh yeah, a citrus bitter that doesn't pucker, as clean a finish as a tight super model's skin. obviously words destroy this experience. a smidgen pricey (near 11 bucks in my area), but how can you argue, when this drink is such a fine work.

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Photo of justintcoons
3.94/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stone IPA v1.1
12 oz bottle poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass.

Appearance
Blonde. Good clarity. Medium-light carbonation.

Nose
Grapefruit, papaya, lemon, navel orange, dough, honey, and caramel.

Taste
Grapefruit zest and white grapefruit juice. Pine needles, navel orange, and lemon slices. Hints of papaya. Firm caramel, doughy bread, and honey maltiness.

Mouthfeel
Medium-plus bodied, oily, crisp, off-dry, and moderately bitter.

Overall
I like the new iteration of Stone IPA. It adds more fruit juiciness while keeping some malt complexity.

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Photo of NolaHopHead
4.17/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle. Pours medium bright golden color, finger white head lasts leaving coating lace. Toasted malt aroma with some piney n grapefruit hop notes. Taste starts with lightly toasted malt sweetness which is met immediately by big bitter hops. Pine and grapefruit peel dominate, some floral notes in there. While bitter overall, the flavor is not harsh. Medium crisp mouthfeel. Been awhile since I'd had this one and it's just as good as remembered.

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Photo of kscaldef
2.85/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

A: Clear golden, with minimal head

S: fairly minimal aromatics in this stemless wine glass, I'll have to revisit as it warms a touch and there's a little more room in the glass... nope, never really develops.

T: A bitterness assault, resiny and piney in a particularly woody/vegetal way, like chewing on a sprig.

F: A little heavy bodied for a regular IPA. Lots of heavy, mouth-coating bitterness. Induced almost a bit of post-nasal-drip feeling in the throat.

O: In the classic style, no doubt, but not really what I feel like the modern IPA drinker is looking for.

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Stone IPA from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 11514 ratings