Stone IPA (India Pale Ale) | Stone Brewing

3,004 Reviews
Stone IPA (India Pale Ale)Stone IPA (India Pale Ale)

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by kbub6f on 01-25-2001

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Reviews: 3,004 | Ratings: 10,890
Photo of vikinggary28
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from bottle into glass mug. I don't know why I waited so long to try this one, I guess there are so many out there. It has a nice copper/amber colour and smells of mild hops with some citrus, very good because it was not overpowering. Taste is not overly hoppy, a perfect blend of hops, citrus, pine that is found in most west coast IPA's but done much better here. Goes down smooth. Prost!

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Photo of Pete_2112
4.51/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

At first sip I was a little worried that I might not like this one as much. But as I've gotten accustomed to the flavors and let the beer warm up a bit, I have come to really enjoy this beer. The smell is pretty dang hoppy in my opinion. I can smell the malt for sure, along with some earthy and citrus, floral hops. Now the taste is the best part. It's like the flavor just comes out of nowhere. The bitterness is there and delicious. You can taste hop resin, a little citrus, and again, the floral notes. The malt sweetness is definitely there as well. Mouthfeel is medium, carbonation is perfect. Overall, this beer is great and I will drink this resinous babe again.

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Photo of ckval1972
4.84/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The best IPA that you get nearly everywhere. Ruined all other mass available IPAs - if the store or restaurant doesn't have it - I get wine. Always check freshness date to ensure you're getting the best product.
L: Somewhere between quality honey and new copper with thin foamy head that persists for some time
S: Floral though a little boozy smelling
T: Words elude me to describe accurately - though having an ABV of 6.9 - you don't taste it. Citrus notes. Wonderful gulpability - if you don't like to sip. There's a faint residual bitterness but much less so than other West Coast style IPAs.
F: Slight residual stickiness that enhances taste. Satisfying and delightful feel going down throat and in gut.

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Photo of Marius
4.31/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had this on tap at Craft & Draft in Amsterdam.
A great beer, light bodied and heavy on the tropical fruit - pineapple and mango - plus a bit of grapefruit, on top of a bitter and refreshing body. The alcohol is quite well hidden.

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Photo of Kurqt
4.28/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

With a 94 on the BA score, a 99 on the Bros score, and numerous personal recommendations, I'm coming into this review with extremely high expectations.

A: First let me say how much I like the packaging: the black and green color scheme, the expertly done drawing of the gargoyle, the way the label seems to be ingrained on the bottle through some manner of witchcraft.

Thin, foamy white head upon pouring. Drank out of an off-brand clear plastic cup because I've got no class at all. A layer of foam stays for minutes on the surface of the drink and around the edges of the cup, while carbonation visibly bubbles in a continuous and slow-moving manner towards the top. When held up to the light, the color could be most closely compared to honey (when the honey's in a bottle, not when it's being poured).

S: I smelled right after opening and was bulled over for just a split second. I'm still refining my beer nose, I'd characterize the smell as hardy, as being full-bodied yet having a lofty component. Nothing unusual per se, but a strong, reliable, yet distant sort of effect that I found myself smelling over and over again as I tried to pin it down.

T/M/O: This one's a straight shooter, definitely right-handed. What makes this beer great isn't some unexpected burst of flavor or unusual ingredient; it's the overall quality, the competence of the execution; it's the graceful balance between substance and drinkability. This beer rides like a dream. I'm going to sound like a broken record, but it strikes a tasteful balance between being light and pleasant, while also being bitter and complex enough that I want to keep sipping on it over and over again.

This beer did meet the high bar I had set for it before sampling it, though not in the way that I'd expected. This is the beer that I will judge other IPA's against; it is the standard for a well-made, high quality IPA without frills or gimmicks. I'm excited to compare some of the more adventurous takes on the IPA formula, my previous favorites (Great Lakes' "Burning River," Jackie-O's "Mystic Mama"), to this classic.

Addendum I:
As someone who's always preferred things that were a little different, I don't think this could ever be my personal favorite beer. Stone IPA is like the girl your parents want you to marry: comforting and substantial, but nothing exotic or challenging, nothing to get excited or passionate about. I find myself wanting something a little bitterer (is that a word?), though I know that I'm an IBU fiend.

Addendum II:
I've been sipping from bottle number two for a while now, and I keep coming back and lowering the score by intervals of .25. In the future, I think I'll try to rate beers blind, without any knowledge of the BA score, because I feel like knowing the BA score beforehand clouds my judgment.

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Photo of sgt_187em
4.12/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Very good IPA. Had this from tap at BJ's. Had about a 1/2" thick white head and a copper color. Hoppy taste from start to finish and a nice medium thick body. I'll try again.

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Photo of devo1980
4.42/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Awesome beer. Just fantastic. With so many junk IPAs out there - this sets the standard of what an India Pale Ale shoud be. Tons of flavor and the bite is just right.

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Photo of ddugan
4.27/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

One of my go to beers. Pours a very nice copper color with a medium white head. Smells like a west coast IPA should. Very hop forward with citrus, grapefruit, and pine. Taste is citrus/grapefruit and finishes with the hop resins. Medium carbonation helps balance the hops. Mouthfeel is good and surprisingly drinkable. I'll always have a soft spot for Stone IPA.

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Photo of Sandhollow
4.9/5  rDev +15.8%
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 Ferg
3.04/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bleh, IPA's just do not hit the buds right for me.
I will drink it, as I rarely toss a beverage.
I will not have another, luckily this one was a gift.

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Photo of gnumber9
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%
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 StoutElk_92
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours clear gold with a dense creamy white foam head. Smells of sweet lemon, orange and grapefruit citrus, some malt, tropical fruit, with dank resinous grassy pine. Tastes like grapefruit, orange citrus, some sweet tropical fruit notes, with mild malty cracker and dank resinous grassy pine. Well balanced and boasting with flavor. It has a good amount of bitterness with a nice malt backbone. Feels medium bodied, smooth with moderate low carbonation. This is a great IPA. Citrusy and almost sweet with a good amount of bitter hops to balance. Overall a really great IPA.

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Photo of CO-Bloom
4.19/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Passed by this well known and well regarded IPA for a couple of years now. What was I thinking?!?

One reason I love stone? They give you a brewed on and best by date and it is only 3 months apart! They really want you to drink it fresh, which I so appreciate them giving us that information (unfortunately many still don't)

L-Clear amber, off-white head, and nice sticky lacing.
S- a little muted, but with a little swirl in the tulip I get some really nice pine, citrus, spicy hops and a bit of sweetness from the malt.
T- follows nose but more intense. Big pungent pine, lemon, grapefruit and orange peel. Great amount of bitterness up front which lingers into a slight sweetness. The slightest bit of alcohol burn as it warms but nothing that detracts.
F- Good carbonation that allows it to be big and slightly sticky but also crisp and refreshing. It rides that line well for me although it has a higher ABV.
O- Wow, this holds up remarkably well in the almost 20 years it has been brewed (not sure how much they have tweaked the recipe, if at all). I can't imagine how much this blew away the taste buds of beer nerds when it first came out. A good standard barer for the piney, citrus west coast variety of the style. Really like it.

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Photo of mchegash
3.62/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L: Beautiful hazy orange, with a couple fingers of very light tan head. A good amount of visible carbonation can be seen rising up the beer.

S: Not a very strong smell, I am not detecting much, perhaps a vague piney hop aroma.

T: Floral and herbal hops immediately come to mind as I take my first sip. Perhaps some hints of fruit (grape?) as well. Overall, a decent taste, but nothing too complex or fantastic.

F: Carbonation is moderate light. Body is medium.

O: Overall a decent IPA, but there are many that I would prefer to this.

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Photo of gmoneyproductions
3.7/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

had this one many times and decided to sit down and write a review after having it last night
pours gold/amber with a thick white head
smell is initially malty and hoppy then slighty fruity
taste initially citrusy, then piney/resiny then better at the end
feel crisp, slightly astringent with a dry bitter finish
overall decent
not my go to by any means as i like many of stones other beers better but not bad

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Photo of Erlkoenig
4.65/5  rDev +9.9%
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 BeerANDvinyl
4.41/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is usually my go to IPA when I'm on a tight budget. My local liquor store sells a 6-pack for around $8.49, which is fairly cheap for a decent IPA. I wish it had a little more Alc % but otherwise no complaints here!

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Photo of gandres
4.65/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Taster Glass from the Escondido 4.25 Color/Look: light amber 4.75 Smell: Hoppy 4.75 Taste: nice bitter bite usual in IPA, well balance 4.50 "
Feel: really creamy" 4.50 Overall: Excellent beer, something to look forward to

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Photo of Dave97
4.99/5  rDev +18%
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 Ksmoove27
4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours a pale goldish color; one finger head; good lacing

A - Aroma is not strong; resiny...I've started this review 5 times expecting to catch something I'm missing

T- resiny with a strong floral aftertaste

F- Medium body and medium carbonation

Overall - It's a good IPA. I like the flavor and floral notes. I am always a little disappointed when a beer doesn't have a strong aroma and this one definitely is not strong; however, there is no discounting the drinkability, can definitely have a few each time.

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Photo of thepenguin
4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Reviewed 3/22/12

L: Pours a pale goldish color. This beer is rather opaque.

S: Resinous and citrusy hop aroma with a bit of malt to back it up. Although faint, the smell is rather pleasant.

T Pretty hoppy and dry upfront, with a surprisingly malty finish. The hops are citrusy. Despite the lofty commercial description, this brew is pretty damn smooth; I could easily see myself drinking a few in one sitting. Stone’s website lists this as 77 IBUs; I wouldn’t have said more than 65 or 70.

F: Medium body and medium carbonation. Some warmth from the alcohol.

Overall Impression: A very solid IPA and with Stone’s freshness policy you can generally expect it to be real fresh. It’s really one of the best widely available American IPA’s though it's gotten pricey in recent years.

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Photo of kitch
3.64/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A 12 fl oz bottle with a bottled date of 21th July 2015 and an enjoy by date of 19th October 2015. Poured into a Spiegelau IPA glass.

Appearance: It poured a clear golden copper colour with a one finger white head that had good retention and leaves nice spotty lacing.

Aroma: Fainter than I expected but starts with tropical mango and pineapple before turning to pine, grass and citrus lemon zest.

Taste: There was none of the tropicalness from the smell, but strong lemon zest, hop bitterness, floral and grassiness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with medium to high carbonation.

Overall: This was only just ok for me. It wasn’t bad and I would drink it again but for example I prefer Stone’s Go To IPA.

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Photo of 50wolves
3.99/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - pours golden straw, minimal head that does not retain. Lacing holds well along the sides. Extremely minimal bubbles. Aroma - floral. Taste - bitterness present however not overwhelmingly so. Mouthfeel - cool and refreshing, astringency almost completely absent. Overall - fairly basic beer with minimal other elements beyond the bitter element. Refreshing and simple.

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Photo of SaltofOH
3.83/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled on 8-10-15, enjoy by 11-8-15. Tulip.

A: Pours a clear, orange-tinged gold with ample carbonation and a one finger foamy and rocky just off-white head. Nice spotting, but not much true lacing.

S: A bold, but vague citrusy tartness. Some ale yeast esters. Some mild resin. A little disappointed in this department, actually. Bottle's only 33 days old.

T: Dry, clean arrival, balancing malt across the middle with moderate bitter pine and resin; closing out to a dry, lingering medicinal hop finish.

M: Lighter side of midweight, less carbonation than the appearance suggests; quite slick on the finish.

O: Now THIS is what I consider a West Coast IPA. There is very little fruit on the nose, and very little sweetness on the palate. It is clearly imbalanced in favor of hops, but strangely, it works. Though so many try to do this and fail, Stone succeeds. Is it a go-to IPA for me? No, I was disappointed with the nose; I like more than just a little vague tartness; I also like more fruit-forward and sweeter/maltier IPAs. Not offputting at 70-some IBUs. But I could definitely see this being a regular buy in the summertime.

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Photo of Tom_Banjo
2.92/5  rDev -31%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

My search for an IPA I like continues. Purchased a non-refrigerated 22 ounce bottle of this one from Whole Foods, chilled it to what I believe was a couple of degrees below 50 and poured it into a pint glass. Found the beer to be overwhelmingly hoppy. I see the beer is dry hopped. Maybe I need an IPA that's not dry hopped, if there is such a thing. Maybe it's California IPAs that I don't enjoy. I believe that's all I've tried so far. Maybe I ought to try a "session IPA". If I am anything, it is persistent. I will keep looking.

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Stone IPA (India Pale Ale) from Stone Brewing
4.23 out of 5 based on 10,890 ratings.
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