Stone IPA (India Pale Ale) | Stone Brewing

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding
2,969 Reviews
Stone IPA (India Pale Ale)Stone IPA (India Pale Ale)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States | website

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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
2,969
Ratings:
10,740
Avg:
4.23
pDev:
20.09%
 
 
Wants:
437
Gots:
2,814
For Trade:
7
User Reviews
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Reviews: 2,969 | Ratings: 10,740
Photo of BlackHaddock
3.57/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

One of the four taps at Pay and Take, Flagstaff.

Came in a pint glass, slightly cloudy and orange in colour, more orange than the amber body I was expecting, full white head at first, soon only a wisp and collar.

Very hoppy in aroma and taste, the citrus smells from the aroma hops disgiuised the bitterness that was to follow in the taste.

I quiet enjoyed the beer, the bitterness continued throughout the tasting, even the aftertaste was all hop and no hint of any malt content could i find anywhere within the brew.

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Photo of biegaman
4.24/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It almost seems funny to say about a beer from sunny San Diego, but Stone IPA leaves my glass looking like the scene of a snowball fight. There's spatters of white crystals formed everywhere... except, ironically, on the top of the beer. That is largely barren. Perhaps its beaming golden radiance melted it all? It otherwise does look like a warm weather beer.

This is a bold, characterful brew with a big hoppy bite - this aroma is like the ‘beware of dog’ sign on the gate. Bitter but tropical resins radiate from the glass; pineapple, grapefruit, papaya and tangerine are experienced in high-def 3D vision and full on Dolby surround sound. It's hops on the big screen! And to think the show has yet to really even begin...

There's plenty of toasty, lightly biscuity, underlyingly sweet maltiness in there but for some reason with each sip I can't shake the image from my brain of a bunch of bare-footed San Diegans in a giant wooden vat stomping on a mound of hop cones. The fruity and floral and grassy (and brutally bitter) hop oils are overpowering in both quantity and quality.

Stone hardly keeps it a secret that they revel in their love for big, characterful brews and, likewise, their beers aren't exactly discreet either about their big, characterful dispositions. Every single one of the 77 IBUs registers on the palate; it's as if Stone rung out like you would a wet shirt every last drop of bitterness from each individual hop.

Stone claims their IPA is a good example of a style that (they define) as being "highly hopped and high in alcohol". More accurately, it's the benchmark of a style that Stone themselves pioneered and popularized: a hugely hoppy ale that is stingingly citric, brutally bitter, tremendously tropical, remarkably refreshing and candidly characterful.

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Photo of tone77
3.58/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 22 oz. bottle. Has a golden/orange color with a 1 inch head. Smell is dominated by hops. Taste is also very hoppy, considerable bitterness, lacking in the citrus notes found in most IPA's. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall is a pretty good beer.

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Photo of plaid75
4.47/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a murky medium copper hue with a one finger pillowy white head. There was decent retention and very good lacing.

The smell was 100% resiny hop. A strong citrus and peppery aroma. There was a nice soft grain aroma as well.

The taste was a spicy peppery upfront hop bitternes. Hints of grapefruit and orange sweetness as well. A good biscuity grain bill as well. Mild alcohol burn detected.

The mouthfeel was full and spicy.

Overall a superior IPA. This beer is the standard for AIPAs. I am glad I finally tried it.

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Photo of Zorro
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy gold brew.

Smell is malt and sharp citrus like hops.

Taste is sweet from the malt and medium bitter. The hops level in this enough to start numbing your tongue. Tasty and not quite hopped to the point it is the only flavor.

Mouthfeel is good.

A drinkable brew it is almost too much in the hops department.

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Photo of stevoj
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hops at the forefront, in both aroma and taste. Piney aroma on top of hazy golden body with medium, creamy head. taste is astringent and bitter, and stays on the palate. Some lemony citrus notes are in the background. Excellent.

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Photo of Kelp
3.4/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A hazy yellowish color with a decent amount of head to the beer. A nice white head with a bit of lacing left behind.

Floral hops smell dominate some citrus smells to it grapefruity. A malt and pine smell on the end.

A hoppy, bitter taste to the brew. Very one sided and ends with a citrus/grapefruit finish that lingers for a while on the tongue. Definitely has a better smell than taste to it.

A smooth beer with a medium body to it and a bit underwhelming carbonation.

This is a decent IPA at best to me. Too bitter for my tastes. I can drink, but usually would chose not to if I have any choice in the matter.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: cloudy golden-straw color with a two-finger foamy white head and a nice lace.

Smell: big hops; earthy and a little floral. I quite like it.

Taste: super hoppy. There is no semblance of balance here and I'm sure that's the point. Hops are very fresh tasting; grassy, earthy, spicy and floral all at the same time. Malt is imperceptible under the hop assault.

Mouthfeel: medium body with nice carbonation; not bad but I'm not crazy about it.

Drinkability: quite refreshing, actually, despite the somewhat high ABV and large hop presence. I'm sure it would go great with a steak.

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Photo of John_M
4.23/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a glass of this on draft at Max's the other night.

The beer pours a solid orange color with a very creamy, persistent white head. The beer has very good head retention and excellent lacing. On the nose one gets a lovely aroma of orange citrus with just a hint of ginger in the background. This smells very, very nice. On the palate I immediately think "West Coast" IPA. The beer has very nice orange citrus with above average bitterness in the finish. The beer is not overly sweet, and the finish is light and fairly dry. The beer comes across as light, crisp and refreshing, just the sort of IPA you could sit down and pound a couple of pints. The beer has a nice mouthfeel, coming across as light and airy.... the finish is just seamless. Abv. is very unobtrusive, though you know the alcohol is there. Drinkability is quite good.

This is a very solid IPA.

Edit from 12/12. Tasted again recently at Piper's pub and Smokin Joe's in Pittsburgh, and as it has been over 5 years since I reviewed this beer, I figured an update was in order. What amazes me about this beer, is how consistently good it is. Even 2000 miles from where it was made, this beer was light, crisp, slightly tropical, yet refreshingly dry and bitter. This is a beer that is easy to take for granted (especially given all the other great beers Stone makes), but it's really something pretty special. Just an altogether excellent, well made IPA.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light golden with a frothy white head that leaves some decent lacing. The smell is of orange and grapefruit citrus with a little bit of spiciness. The taste is mostly spicy hops up front and some attenuated malt at the finish. A bit grainy, but fairly balanced. The hop profile doesn't blow me away,but its solid. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and with a good carbonation level. Its a little rough in the mouth, it could stand to be smoothed out a bit. Good solid IPA, quite drinkable.

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Photo of tobelerone
3.84/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was looking forward to trying this one for a while but have to say I was slightly disappointed. Nice beer but doesn't really stand out for me amongst a crowded IPA field packed with great beers. This one looks nice, cloudy light amber color and modest head; smell is slightly floral hops, continuing in the taste. Bitterness is pretty restrained for a west coast IPA. Mouthfeel is thin enough, medium carbonation, definitely highly drinkable.

Perhaps I got an old bottle; there was no dating but I did buy it from a very solid store that keeps the product moving. Overall the flavors were a bit more muted than I would have liked but this is a solid B IPA nonetheless.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2/24/2011

On tap at Stone. Forcefully paired with the plaintive wail of a female Irish folk singer.

A: Transparent yellow gold with a big creamy two finger white head. The head is long lasting and leaves a lot of lacing when it recedes.

S: Redolent of grapefruit flesh and rind, and orange pith. Grassy and herbal notes are detectable. Malt provides light cracker notes. It's all hops, though more subtle and restrained than your average San Diego India Pale Ale. Light pine resin notes are revealed after the beer warms to an adequate temperature. This gets much better after it warms up a bit. It was very cold.

T: Grassy, with notes of orange, pine, and grapefruit. Malt is faint and crackery. Bitterness is at a moderate level. There's a bit of grapefruit rind in the dry finish.

M: Upper light in body with upper moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is dry, crisp, and sticky.

Overall: Strangely enough, I rarely drink Stone beer when I'm at Stone. This is the sort of beer that's always there and is often overshadowed by flashier offerings. However, this is definitely a good IPA, and sadly one that I probably won't drink again for some time. Still, tasty stuff.

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Photo of jdhilt
2.78/5  rDev -34.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a white, two finger-head that vanishes slowly leaving a good lace. Clear light amber color. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Nose is a strong hop. Starts with hops, somewhere there are malts - there is a trace of sweetness but the hops dominate, bitter finish that lingers. $2.30 for a 12oz bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, Ma.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've actually had this once before—it was a grey import to Australia, however, so I thought it would be better to review it fresh, close to the source, as Greg Koch intended. This one was purchased from BevMo in Sunnyvale, CA. Let's see how it matches up.

Pours a hazed and bright pale golden-orange colour, with a full and frothy head of meringuey foam. Lacing is sudsy, but quite pleasant. Body is relatively heavy—weirder is the fact that there's very little carbonation noticeable when tilted, or when the beer is static. I'm interested to see how the mouthfeel relates.

Nose is crisp and pleasant, with very classic citrussy hop characters dominant. Sharp and fresh for the most part with a crushed lemon leaf type of pungency. In some respects, it's a little one-dimensional, but it's rather unapologetic about what it's doing, and you have to respect that.

Taste is crisp and light, with a nicely balanced, but not dominant hop character through the centre of the palate. Moderate feel gives off some mild light malt notes that meld with the citrus to give a honey-and-lemon melange. All over, nicely balanced—not overly complex, overly aggressive or assertive.

This is a good IPA, and a good benchmark against which to measure others. I'm pleased to say that I would have said similar things about either version I've had, whether in California, or grey-imported to places it wouldn't have been seen otherwise.

Yes, this is a good beer. And so was the one I had in Australia.

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Photo of puboflyons
4.17/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 22 fl. oz. bottle. Sampled on July 2, 2011. This is an pour with a touch of cloudiness and a thin head. The aroma is not quite as full as I anticipated but there is definitely a noted floral hoppiness as is to be expected. The body is creamy and medium. Oh, but the taste really makes up for any flaws (as few as they are) that may be noted at first. Bitter hops with a fruity sweetness on the side.

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Photo of corby112
4.97/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Another brilliant brew from Stone. Pours a hazy amber color with a frothy white head. This beer is dominated by hops but is balanced out by a sweetness that doesn't make it too bitter. Not as good as their Ruination IPA but excellent for a single IPA.

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Photo of Derek
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Golden-bronze, quite clear, with an off-white head. Not much retention, but it leaves a little lace.

S: Citrousy, floral, fresh hop odour over a hint of bready malt.

T: Predominantly hop flavour (west coast citrous & pine). Balanced to the bitter side, but relatively smooth & crisp, with a slightly assertive aftertaste. Bready malt, with some alcohol warmth (more-so as it warms from cellar to room temperature).

M: Moderate body is a little acidic and oily, carbonation is also moderate.

D: It's quite drinkable, especially considering the strength.

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

A bombardment of hops, sweetness and malt. What a beer!! The best IPA I have ever had and I have had over 100 easily.The only thing that touches this is Harmon IPA Tacoma. It literally was the best of the best. Poured golden, yellow a thin head, excellent stuff!!!I had this bottle and I can only imagine how it tasted on tap.

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

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer pours a nice golden-orangey crystal clear body with a nice creamy off-white head. It has a rigorous carbonation of tiny bubbles.

S- The aroma of freshly crushed green hops with some hints of citrus and pine are very nice.

T- the initial taste is a nice pale malt that is quickly followed by the taste of big juicy hops with some notes of citrus and pine. Those juicy green hops last and last through the finish. They are balanced with a bold hop bitterness that finishes of the taste.

M- medium mouthfeel but with a big fizziness in the finish. No alcohol warmth or astringency.

D- This is a nice hop beer with a good base of pale malt grain. This bottle seems a bit over carbonated but it doesn't get in the way of the flavor.

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a coppery-orange with a solid 1 finger foamy white head that retained well leaving a fair to good broken sheet lacing behind.

S: citrusy with grapefruits and fresh flowers against a semi-sweet toasted caramel backing.

T: nicely balanced in regards to the malt and hops with some spicy citrus and grapefruit notes more focused more on flavor then tongue numbing bitterness. The hopping was sharp and clean in nature with light sweet toasted caramel. The finish was very smooth, even toned thoughout and pleasant as it faded off the tongue with a slight dry flowery presence.

M: crisp, dry and felt very nice.

D: Classic example. A good solid example and hard to go wrong here or find reason to fault. A worthy recommend and nice try.

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Photo of kscaldef
2.85/5  rDev -32.6%
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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Photo of akorsak
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at the Brewhouse Grille in Camp Hill, PA.

A: The ale is an amber color, almost a pale orange, with a small ring of head (1/2 finger) that does not retain for long.

S: The aroma is a grapefruity hop and grainy malt combination.

T: My initial review of Stone IPA slammed it (relative to Arrogant Bastard and Ruination). In hindsight, it comes across as Stone's easiest beer to drink. The hops are citrusy and strong, but not too strong. They allow the a biscuity malt body to shine through (one of the rare times that I've encountered the malts in a Stone ale).

M: The ale is well-balanced, allowing both the hops and the malts to have their time on the sun.

D: Stone's most drinkable ale, this one does not overwhelm the tastebuds or wear you out with an intense abv.

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Photo of clayrock81
4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An organish-tint that is somewhat seethru and carbonates greatly. Received a rocky, two-finger head that dies quickly but leaves sticky lace patches. An unbelievable floral and earthy hop smell complete with fruits and spices mixed in. One of the few beers to actually make me turn away to catch my breath (it was like I had put my nose in a peanut butter jar; my breath was literally taken away). The hops dominate the tastebuds while only being slightly spicy and mildly bready, and this beer actually has a smooth finish. Don't know why exactly, thought I tasted caramel and/or butterscotch and the hops gave off some fruitiness (like apples), but a great finish to a great beer. Considering I can get this on the cheap at my local grocery store, this is a must redrink and I recommend it to any IPA drinker.

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Photo of cjgator3
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours a golden orange color with a nice sticky white head. The aroma is oily fresh citrusy hops with some malt. The taste is dominated by the bitter citrusy hops that are quite puckering and last well into the finish. There is a mild malt presence in the background, but it is hard to even the slightest attention to the malt before the hops demand your full attention. Overall, this is a fabulous West Coast IPA that I would highly recommend. If this was available here in FL, it would be a staple in my fridge.

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

Served in straight pint glass. A beautiful bright, clear gold color. Minimal head that dissipated quickly, leaving a very sticky lacing. Pleasing floral hop aroma. Flavor has a strong, smooth, even hop presence. This is not a bitter IPA, but still delivers a strong hop blast. One of the strongest points with this IPA is balance. The body is just slightly on the thin side.This beer has the backbone to stand up to the hops. This a very drinkable IPA that, due to the smoothness and balance can truly be sessionable. This is not a tongue-burner, you won't suffer from palate fatigue as with lesser IPAs. This is a go-to beer for me, it can always be counted on to deliver a great beer experience.

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Stone IPA (India Pale Ale) from Stone Brewing
94 out of 100 based on 2,969 ratings.
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