IMtheOptimator (1161) - Bethel, Connecticut, USA - DEC 6, 2004
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: NOV 12, 2005 Poured a mostly-clear mahogany with an off-white head that left a very attractive film on the beer. The never-fading aroma is a magnificent mix of sweet fruit and a malty spiciness. Taste starts off with a malty sweetness with a mildly vinous character, fading into an intense hop bitterness that dominates the palate. The alcohol is virtually undetectable in the beer, but makes its presence known as it warms the stomach. The buzz from this stuff is nothing short of incredible. All-around a magnificent beer. Every possible detail that I enjoy in beer has been thrown into one marvelous package and amplified. I hereby raise my trappist glass to Stone Brewing!
Smacky (71) - San Clemente, California, USA - DEC 5, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Dude, all I can say is, "Gnarly." This beer is pissed, and loves it. So do I; it is sweet, hopped all to Hell, highly alcoholic, and is dark as a stormy sky at twilight. If you love hops and aggression, this is your beer.
KAggie97 (3529) - Ugly, Hot, and Humid Spring, Texas, USA - DEC 5, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: APR 14, 2005 Disregard anything negative regarding ’Arrogant Bastard.’ I hated the aforementioned; I love this stuff. Much more drinkable than its predecessor. Sweet, malty, and hoppy with a strong bite of alcohol in the finish. Palate is deceptively thick, but scrumdiddlyumptious. Highly reccommended.
AleDrinker (1089) - Sunnyvale, California, USA - DEC 4, 2004
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
2004 Release: Pours light brown/red with tan head. Immediately smell citrusy hops, sweet malt and lots of it without bringing my nose close to the glass... my mouth waters. Body is thick but smooth. Flavor is so rich yet so balanced. Nice and bitter but also perfectly sweet. Warms the belly nicely but the alcohol doesn’t overwhelm the flavor. I’m in heaven and this beer is my nectar. This beer has a lot of everything but in just the right proportions. I’m going back tomorrow to buy a case (or two?) I’m going to venture to say that this is probably my favorite beer of all time. Wow, I’m simply awestruck here. Props out to stone- they never cease to amaze me.
estoppel (1028) - Buffalo, New York, USA - DEC 3, 2004
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Am I worthy? Is this ale? 2004 bottling. Clear reddish body, sparse rising carbonation, small light-tan head receding quickly, sweet nose. Lots of brown sugar, bitter but not excessively so. The bitterness lingers for a while. Alcohol well-hidden. Not worthy of the high price I paid for one bomber ($6.99).
meathookjones (245) - Sterling, Virginia, USA - DEC 3, 2004
4.8 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
2003 edition in the 22oz bomber. The bigger brother to Arrogant Bastard pours a brown color with reddish highlight and a minimal tan head unless poured very aggressively. The head drops quickly to a bubbly ring leaving a nice lacing around the glass. Quite the strong aroma on this one, with plenty of sweet malts, earthy hops, fruits and a touch of alcohol. This one definitely brings a big taste to the plate with a sweet fruity malt upfront that settles into a bitter hop bite. This one has a similar taste to arrogant bastard but upped several notches and a few more complexities are thrown in. A very complex tasting beer indeed, maybe having a 3 liter at one sitting can help unravel some of these complexities. Mouthfeel is amazing, full and creamy with perfect carbonation. Drinkability is perfect, there is only slight alcohol tastes and scents so that never slows the consumption. This is a near perfect beer in my opinion and I look forward to this years release as this was my last bottle. Highly recommended to all except people new to craft beer because this will knock them on their arse.
jeffin7 (612) - Silver Spring, Maryland, USA - NOV 30, 2004
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours dark rusty red with a medium tan head that fades to a thin layer and remains. Aroma of slightly sticky sweet malt and piney hops. Flavor is caramel, maple syrup, toffee, all cut by bitter piney slightly citrusy hops. The flavor qualities are pretty standard for american strongs; however it is near perfectly balance and it has a excellent layered depth making it not a standard american strong but the standard/quintessential american strong ale.
hopdog (9189) - Lansdale, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 30, 2004
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: NOV 5, 2005 Poured a medium Mahagony color with an averaged sized off white head. Aromas and tastes of caramel, molasses, and brown sugar. Lightly sweet with a bitter finish (nice balance). You could definitley smell and taste the Alcohol in this one.
Styles (2014) - Lincoln Park, Michigan, USA - NOV 29, 2004
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pours dark amber with a decent white head that lasts awhile. Malty caramel aroma up front. Initial taste is malt fading to caramel and hops. Flavors twist and turn. Agree with a lot of people that has some barley wine characteristics to it. Shared bottle with a couple people. I am going to buy another for myself.
Pailhead (5097) - Brownstown, Michigan, USA - NOV 28, 2004
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: DEC 17, 2005 Bottle: Real sweet and fruity malt aroma. Citrus and caramel. Some grapefruit hops in there, but real sweet grapefruit. Pours a dark reddish-brown with a off-white head that is short lasting. Kind of like a barley wine up front with the malty banana bread flavor and ends with a real nice citrus hop finish. Real thick and syrupy. Alcohol is covered up real well. Has a little warming affect, but not an alcohol taste. Kind of like a barley wine and a IIPA in one. I like this much better than the regular AB (by 1.2 points to be exact). This is great!!! The more you drink the more the barley wine characteristics increase as the IIPA finish characteristics decrease. Okay, I take the back. The flavors have a way of just flowing as they please. One minute it’s the barley wine flavors taking over, the next it’s the IIPA flavors jumping in.