Saturday, February 4, 2012

Stone Brewing Company - Double Bastard Ale

Brewed In: Escondido, CA
Serving Type: 650 mL bottle, poured into a snifter

The Double Bastard Ale isn't exactly a double up on the Arrogant Bastard Ale, but this American Strong Ale comes in a step up from its little brother at 10.5% ABV. The beer pours a cloudy, muddied brown body with a cherry-infused glow. The head, in this case, poured a paper thin tan foam with minimal retention and very minor lace-like spotting on the glass. The nose is oaky, but not oaked, and bready. Hops are very tight with a punch of pine. The beer stands out as clearly big and clearly alcoholic with a sticky sweetness.

Sweet molasses notes up front play off distinct woody notes. The beer is hulking and robust, but smooth and massively enjoyable. Sticky, resinous pine hops are potent, but do not overwhelm the layered maltiness. Sweet sugary malts carry deep woodiness and a candied dark fruit component. A spritz of subtle citrus rind adds another tone of the depth of flavor. The finish is dry and slightly vegetal. Throughout and lasting past the finish, the beer has a coarse maltiness with defined biscuity tones. An excellent beer that must be enjoyed and shared.

Final Verdict: A

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