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Double Bastard Ale | Arrogant Consortia

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Double Bastard AleDouble Bastard Ale
BA SCORE
4.26/5
Outstanding
6,793 Ratings
Double Bastard AleDouble Bastard Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Arrogant Consortia
California, United States
arrogantconsortia.com

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
First release: November 1998
Originally brewed to celebrate the one-year anniversary of Arrogant Bastard Ale, Double Bastard Ale debuted in November 1998 as an amped-up version of that already aggressive beer. A huge malt bill and an unreasonable amount of hops make this ale one that will be appreciated by only a few, and that’s just fine with us. We didn’t brew this dark amber monster to please anyone other than ourselves.

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#1,438
Reviews:
2,134
Ratings:
6,793
pDev:
10.8%
 
 
Wants:
525
Gots:
1,433
Trade:
35
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,793 |  Reviews: 2,134
Reviews by Douglas14:
Photo of Douglas14
4.58/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

What a mondo beer! It pours a deep mahogany color with a slight injection of rich, dark red. The head is phenomenal: tan, big, billowy, thick, and leaves a shit ton of lace. The smell is intensely of dark fruit syrup, oak, and of course hops! Alcohol and malt play a supporting role. The taste is similar. Tons of citric and fruity hops and a nice punch of pine-like resin. Oak, malt, and alcohol come next. Absolutely incredible. I feel this beer has a lot of characteristics of a big barleywine in the sense of the body and mouthfeel. To me this is the Barleywine/RIS of the American Strong Ale category. Stone loves going over-the-top and still kicking ass while doing it and the Double Bastard showcases just how awesome they are at doing that. Glad I have some bottles aging...I imagine this would be phenomenal after a couple of years.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Beef_Curtains
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Plenty of good reviews have already been written on this beer in standard beer-review format so I decided to write a haiku about this one:

beautiful red brown
bitter creamy malty booze
I am satisfied

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Photo of RoyalT
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Preparation – I popped an Arrogant Bastard for comparison purposes and thought it might be interesting to do the review in this manner. Not only is this my 400th review, but it’s also my 39th birthday. Cheers!

Appearance – This came out a beautiful brown, lighter than the Arrogant Bastard but with a bigger head. I knew after a few minutes that it was not going down for a while, so I left it for five minutes or so.

Smell – The sharp, complex hops come out slowly and very tight. I left it again to warm a bit and came back to a smack on the olfactory bulb. The toasted malt balance is there as well, but this is all about the awesome Stone hops.

Taste – This has a little bit more malt balance than the Arrogant Bastard. Otherwise, it is surprisingly similar. It seems a bit more refined, though. The extraordinary complexity of the hops is astounding. Every type you can think of sends a delegate to this gathering of electives.

The malts have to be huge just to get noticed, and they are. There’s actually some sweetness to this one, mostly caramel and table sugar.

Mouthfeel – Full-bodied and bitter, but with a touch of offsetting caramel on the cheeks. This ale is smooth, smooth, smooth. Not a hint of alcohol that I could pick up. Unbelievable!

Drinkability – What makes the Arrogant Bastard a shade from perfect, IMHO, is the lack of refinement and harmony of flavors (which could probably be relegated with a little cellaring). The DB has it all, and IMO can not be improved.

Update – The 2005s just came out (11/10/05) so I culled one out of the cellar box before tucking it away. It’s tight and not opened up yet, but man the hops are raging and the malts are in full effect. I put my ‘04s away for two years but I think this vintage will be best after just 1 year in the cellar.

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Photo of Todd
4.85/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

From the 2001 batch ... 750ml bomber = loads of brain rot and trouble.

Deep copper in colour with a magnificent and healthy looking off-white creamy head -- sticky and retains well.

Aroma ... pineapple, intense alcohol, loads of robust maltiness and pine-y hops in the nose.

Taste is so incredibly smooth that I might cry. Full-bodied, rich, robust, sugary/syrupy/sticky (carbonation seems suspended in the liquor) and extremely sweet. Flavours run all over the place: caramel, burnt sugar, chocolate, mega-fruity, pineapple, deep penetrating alcohol, pine-y earth/wood bitterness with an oily hop feel on the palate. Finish goes a touch dry with bready flavours and unsweetened chocolate notes.

Holy christ on a crutch!! Can you form a religion around a beer? This beer is everyting the name suggests, and then some. Extremely drinakble for a 10% beer, even more so as it warms up, and very warming. Treat this beer with respect and enjoy. -- thanks to Greg Koch for the sample, and for making this.

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Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Finally, I’ve found a bottle of this much sought after strong, hoppy monster. 22 oz, 06, bomber purchased from Chuck’s Fine Wines in Chagrin Falls, OH. Bought and consumed on 06-12-07.

Appearance: Crimson lava body. Tan head.

Aroma: All the good stuff. Plantation pine and apricot plantation. Cedar chips smoldering under a grill covered in hardened caramel that slowly melts and drips onto those hot cedar chips creating a flare up of smoky-sweet caramel aroma. Yum. One knows that this packs a lot of hops and at least a little strength.

Taste: There is a heck of a lot going on here. I’m first hit by juicy citrus and tropical fruit, especially mango and then grapefruit. Next I notice pine. Then the caramel brings everything together but it quickly melts under the pressure of some hearty booze esters that resemble brown sugar. That make way for toffee which turns to smoke, then tree bark, which finally brings me back to even more pine. As it warms it becomes hoppy port for a few seconds and then hoppy fuel. Finally we’re left with flavorful booze that is sweet and bitter at the same time and extremely warming.

Mouthfeel: Heavy and full but not filling or burdensome. There is an airy quality, perhaps from a relatively strong carbonation that helps to balance all of this out. The hop presence certainly does well to match the sugariness from the booze and the bountiful caramel sweetness. All in all this is really well balanced, complex, and delicious.

Drinkability: Very good. I relished this bomber and wanted another right away. At 10% or so, this could become a real dangerous brew if I had a lot of it.

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Photo of brentk56
4.55/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2004 release

Appearance: Pours a clear caramel color with a nice head that leaves plenty of lacing behind

Smell: Rich aroma, filled with caramel, butterscotch, candied apples, pears and chocolate covered cherries

Taste: Opens with a huge caramel flavor, that has plenty of fruity elements in there, too; while the bitter citrus has clearly been matured out of the mix, the caramel apple and pear flavors are very interesting; after the swallow, there is a hint of its bitter past, but the flavors are mellow, like a fine barleywine

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and creamy, with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Merry Christmas to me, having cellared this for four years; I didn't much care for the young Arrogant Bastard (puts flak jacket on), but this, with age, is sublime

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 release.

Pours a murky caramel color with a small 1 inch bone head that fades to an oily film on the top of the beer. Smells of caramel, toffee, sweet malt, and some dark fruits. Very inviting smells. This beer smells very much like a barleywine to me. Taste is very much like the smell and is of caramel, toffee, and sweet/brown sugary malt. Medium bitterness on the palate with each sip. There is a very good balance between the sweetness and the bitterness in this beer. A good level of carbonation leads to a creamy and smooth mouthfeel. Overall, a most excellent beer from Stone that I like much better than Arrogant Bastard. I am frustrated that I only got one bottle of this when it came out. I think that this will age very well and I will be on the lookout for more bottles for my cellar.

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Photo of sholland119
3.48/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a bomber into a Stone snifter.

A-a clear caramel with a small tan head. the head dissipates rather quickly with little to no lacing.

S-Very strong caramel sweetness and noticeable alcohol. Not much on the hop side.

T-Caramelly sweetness throughout with a noticeable alcohol warmth at the end. Again, less hop character than I am used to in a Stone beer.

M-Moderate carbonation, a little thick on the tongue.

D-Too much noticeable alcohol for me to enjoy more than one.

Probably the only disappointing beer I have ever had from Stone. Well maybe this and Vertical Epic '07.

And maybe I would have enjoyed it more if I had been expecting a barleywine style. This beer may be technically characterized properly as an "American strong ale" but that's not what it drinks like. To me anyway.

HV

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Photo of metter98
4.1/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is hazy coppery amber in color and has no visible carbonation. It poured with a thin off white head that quickly died down but has excellent retention properties, consistently leaving a thin film of bubbles covering the surface and a thick ring of large bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: The nose has aromas of caramel malts along with notes of brown sugar and citrus and pine resin hops and hints of alcohol.
T: There are definitely a lot of malts in a beer this strong and flavors of caramel malts are very prominent. A moderate amount of bitterness from the hops is present, as well as some hints of alcohol, brown sugar, malty sweetness and toffee. The taste seems to become more complex as the beer warms up.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied and slightly sticky on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. The finish is rather dry.
O: This beer almost tastes like a “lighter” version of an American barleywine but has rather intense flavors of malts and hops. It is definitely a beer that needs to be slowly sipped.

Note: 2011 release

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Photo of Nietzsches_Horse
3.21/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

I've really enjoyed everything I've had by Stone--a lot--except for this beer, which I've now had once several months aged, and once very fresh. I will give it credit for being a unique experience, and certainly an arrogant one (even doubly arrogant), but it's a bit like drinking watered-down caramel syrup mixed with Robitussin and ethyl alcohol. I finished it, and certainly preferred the fresh version, but it was more a chore and duty than a real pleasure. I've had bigger beers, even a couple much bigger beers, and I found them easier to drink and tastier than this one. I've also had Stone's IRS, Old Guardian, Ruin 10, which are similar, at least, in terms of their size; and enjoyed them all vastly more. Indeed, one or two of them are among my very favorites. But this one's just a little too much (of syrupy medicinal malts) for me.

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Photo of Decrypticshadow
5/5  rDev +17.4%

As a former resident of Southern California, now living in New York City I can't believe I waited so long to try this phenomenal ale. These World-Class ratings are spot on by both the Bros and the BA score. So smooth, yet it tastes fresh with hoppy flavor. This beer leaves my mouth watering for more and more with ever sip I take.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 Release.

Appearance: Pours a clear, reddish amber body with a well-formed, sustaining, off-white head. Copious amounts of lacing on the way down.

Smell: Aromatic hoppy nose, some sweetish hints to it, and smelling of fresh orange peel, exotic flowers, pine resin, and a splash of pomegranate liqueur. Caramel-scented maltiness underneath. Very, very minor wafts of alcohol.

Taste: Sweet caramel-laden maltiness with a pinch of light brown sugar and a quick drizzle of simple syrup brace themselves for the impact of hops. Quick montage of fruit flavors - oranges, grapefruits, pomegranates, even sweet cherries. This precedes a solid jolt of straight-up citrus and pine hoppiness with a full, sturdy bitterness. Definitely a warming beer, but not quite hot or bracing for me. Drying finish with a touch of booze and more than a touch of bitter hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Recommended! I'm ashamed to admit it's been more than a few years since I've had a bottle of this to myself, but I'm more than pleased to be having a fresh bottle and am happy they're finally, at long last, distributing to the state of Georgia.

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Photo of FLima
4.24/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Brown orange color with a thick beige head with good retention and leaving laces.
Aroma full of berries, plums, toasted malts, smoke and American yeast.
Flavor with notes of smoke, toasted and some roasted malts, caramels, mild coffee, dry and dark fruits, earthy hops, wood, muffled pine, run, maple syrup, resin and American yeast. Dry aftertaste with a long lasting bitterness.
Full body with appropriate carbonation. Alcohol of 11.2% abv just shows up as a flavor component.
It felt to me as a mix of Scotch ale and a Barley Wine. Very complex and hoppy. Great beer, though I prefer their regular version. Although the name is similar, they ended up to be different beers.

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Photo of laglocal
2.55/5  rDev -40.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Honestly, I had to double check this beer was fresh I found it so unenjoyable. But being bottled on 9/06/13 an 11% ABV beer should be fresher than fresh. Just a gross alcohol malt bomb with hardly any hop bitterness that isn't just completely burned to shit by all the alcohol taste. Sort of syrupy, and I have no idea how this is classified as ASA rather than a Barleywine. This almost makes me not want to try to the Southern Charred that should be hitting shelves soon.

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Photo of neurobot01
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%

This beer is a revelation. Tons of caramel/butterscotch, and tons of hops. If someone told me this had been barreled, I'd believe it—it's got pronounced alcohol notes, but is incredibly smooth, and there are definitely hints of what could be (but aren't actually) oak and bourbon. Incredibly solid.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a globe. 2014 vintage is exactly two years old at this point.

A: Deep red-brown color with orangey hues. Fairly hazy. Cream -colored head settles shortly. Specks of lacing.

S: Loads of toasty bread crust. Chewy caramel. Deeply toasted biscuits. Scones. Big raisin and date fruit character. Hops still retain a fair amount of earthy and spicy pull, though they've subsided a bit.

T: Chewy caramel leads. Subtle hints of toffee. Aggressive toasty character. Heavily toasted crust. Scorched pizza crust. Raisin, fig, and date fruit. Hops are still pretty aggro, retaining a lot of bitterness and spicy, oily, and earthy flavor. Alcohols pick it up and spike hard toward the back end. Almost vodka-like. Oily hop finish leaves a strong trailing bitterness.

M: Big, thick, and weighty. Round and chewy in texture with a mild coating feel. Abrasive hop astringency dries things out. Medium-low carbonation.

O: This strong ale is very American Barleywine-esque, and quite aggressive. Huge, overly toasty, bitter, and boozy. Untamed and unashamed. It takes the palate a good while to get used to the beating this beer dishes out, and even then it's still a slow sipper. It's a weird sort of beer in that it's kind of too much and a part of me thinks I shouldn't like it, but yet I somehow still do enjoy it.

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Photo of stortore
4.26/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22 ounce bottle into a snifter. 2014 edition, imbibed late December, 2015.

Pours a deep ruby, opaque, with a one finger head and a good amount of soapy cling. Smells great, lots of malt and caramel, some herbal hops, some brown sugar, slight whiff of vanilla. Taste follows the nose with the malt and caramel. Some citrusy hops to go along with the the more dank, herbal ones, some brown sugar. Good amount of bitterness beginning midway, through the finish. Smooth for the ABV, well carbonated, really good body.

Great beer, have had before but first review. Not overly complex, but well blended and flavorful. Waiting a little more than a year to drink this probably dulls the hops a fair amount, but they're still kickin'. This is one everybody should try.

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Photo of leantom
4.49/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Whoa. Talk about a huge malt backbone. Here goes:

A: Dark amber - plenty of black, but plenty of red tint as well. Big head and a ton of lacing.

S: Very complex. Some piney hops, but some caramel malt as well. I expect this to be both very malty and very hoppy.

T: Piney hops give way to a ton of malt. Tons of caramel and honey sweetness. This is an absolute malt bomb with some bittering hops. I love it, but be forewarned - this beer is a malt bomb. Lots of toffee, brown sugar, caramel, honey and overall malt sweetness.

F: Thick and creamy. Very delicious.

O: A great beer. Malt totally overpowers the hops, but it's still good.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep amber color ale with a small foamy head with minimal retention. Aroma of heavy sweet malt with a strong dose of bitter hops. Taste is really sweet with a heavy dose of sweet malt plus a strong bitter hops presence. Body is above average with no discernable trace of alcohol. Very good try at bringing a lot of extreme side to a beer while conserving some balance.

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Photo of womencantsail
4.15/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2009 bomber poured into a snifter and shared with the roommates.

A: The pour is a clear, dark copper color with a lot of red notes to it. The head is about a finger's worth of cream colored foam.

S: The nose has a nice sweet caramel, toffee, and fruit background. A lot of raisins and oranges, and a touch of floral hops.

T: The flavor is very interesting and while it has the trademark Stone hoppiness, there's a lot more going on. The flavor starts off very sweet with caramel, toffee and perhaps even butterscotch. The raisins and oranges again make an appearance in the middle and are followed by a bitter, piney finish. The biggest flaw is that the beer is a bit hot.

M: The body is fantastic. Very full with an almost chewy texture and a moderate level of carbonation. The finish is surprisingly dry.

D: As I mentioned before, the biggest flaw with this beer is the alcohol presence. And as the glass warms up, it comes out a bit more. This is a big, big beer, and one you can't drink too much of in a sitting.

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Photo of mfnmbvp
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, vintage 2014, bottled on date 10/14/2014 printed on the bottleneck. My first encounter with the Stone Double Bastard. A long ridiculous nonsensical rant printed on the bottle, as always. My bottle lists an 11.00% abv. Not entirely sure what to expect here.

Poured into a Duvel tulip glass.

A - It pours a muddled ruby reddish colored body. Less than a finger of soft tan head that goes down quick. Some minor spotty sticky lacing on the glass. It comes off in appearance as a thick and heavy beer.

S - The aroma is sweet and malty - caramel, toffee, and brown sugar, with dank resinous hop notes - pine, grapefruit, tea leaves. Some mild solventy alcohol presence is

T - Sweet & herbal. Tea leaves, caramel, toffee, brown sugar, pine, resins, grapefruit, notes of wood & vanilla present themselves.

M - The feel is fairly smooth and creamy, mildly bitter, resinous, and piney on the finish. Semi-dry. Very easy drinking though, despite the high 11.00% abv. Full-bodied with good moderate carbonation.

Overall, a tasty, layered, rich, and complex beer that grows on me more as it warms. Definitely recommended drinking, and I would for sure be interested to see what some serious age would do to one of these bottles.

Stone Double Bastard Ale -----4/5.

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Photo of BrotherDylan
4.36/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2011 from a Double Bastard Whiskey glass


Sound: The beer sounded like a gentle, rolling stream of bubbles. Small waterfall-esc. (In honor of Fred Eckhardt)

Appearance: Slight haze from proteins that fell out of suspension over the 5 years of aging. Beautiful deep amber orange glow

Aroma: Roses, with peaches and cream. Carmel and burnt molasses. Sourdough bread.

Taste: The beast has mellowed beautifully in both body and maltiness. The bittering hops still leave this beer with a firm bite. The alcohol heat is gone.
It is juicy, slightly sweet, and it finishes bitter. Probably past its peak but still great.

Mouthfeel: On the thinner side from a big beer like this. The age shows in the mouthfeel but it still has a stickiness to it.

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Photo of Svendozen
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Waaay malty, waaaaayyy syrupy. Don't get me wrong, it's very good, but Holy Moly.

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Photo of Homers_Beer_Odyssey
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

APPEARANCE - Orange with no head.

AROMA/SCENT - Hoppy, piney. Not sweet.

TASTE - Hoppy, dry, bitter. ABV well-hidden.

MOUTHFEEL/PALATE/TEXTURE - Pleasant, dry, little carbonation.

VALUE - Reasonable.

OVERALL/DRINKABILITY - Great beer, almost chuggable.

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Photo of TCHopCraver
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes on 8-6-10.

A: Pours a dirty, murky brown-amber into my snifter. A medium pour yields a tiny head that leaves behind a clumpy, long lasting beige film that cover the majority of the beer. The carbonation bubbles mosey at a medium march. A parabolic arch of lacing is left behind with each sip, which breaks into dots and snaky lines. This beer looks mysterious.

S: A thick, musty caramel malt scent is the biggest player in the smell play. This is very sweet smelling with some raisin, fig, and plum notes also prominent. A banana breadiness is also climbing into my nose, along with a slight citrus hop presence. DB smells huge and delicious and it makes me very excited to drink it.

T: Musty, sweet caramel malts are also the dominant taste, but there is an earthy hop bitterness accompanying the malts that I did not pick up in the smell. This hop presence certainly does not balance the sweetness, but it does add a wonderful cleansing of the palate at the finale of each pull. The raisin, plum, fig, and banana bread notes that I found in the smell add a nice complexity to the overall taste and round out a big and phenomenal beer.

M: DB is creamy and full bodied with an appropriate hop bite at the finish. The sweetness really coats the palate with a nice film and then the hop cleansing dries off the film nicely.

D: Well, it took me the better part of two hours to drink this behemoth, so I'm not sure how "drinkable" is really is, but do know this: it's damned good and I really enjoyed exploring its nuances.

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Double Bastard Ale from Arrogant Consortia
Beer rating: 4.26 out of 5 with 6,793 ratings