I’m back again this week with another tasting to tell you about. It’s been pretty bitter and cold around here and I thought maybe I would try a beer with that same description. I’m not usually one to try hoppy or bitter beers, so maybe I should broaden my horizons and shoot for a Pale Ale.
This week I tried Stone Brewing Company’s Arrogant Bastard Ale. Being so unfamiliar with Ale’s I let my friend Jon talk me into this one. Simply put, he wanted me to write bastard in a blog post a bunch of times. But in all seriousness, Stone Brewing has a great reputation. I was excited to give this one a try.
Arrogant Bastard is described by Beer Advocate as an American Strong Ale. This is a broad term used to describe Ales with an ABV (alcohol content) over 7%. When people hear the term Ale, they always think of India Pale Ale or IPA. IPA’s are named as such because they were British made beers that were exported to India during that country’s occupation of India. Today there are dozens of different Ale’s, which are just beers that are warm fermented. The true fun with Ale’s comes with the hops. There are so many different types of hops, the combinations are endless.
This beer is listed to have an ABV of 7.2%. This makes it stronger than your usual pilsner, but not as heavy as a stout or porter. It’s a nice starting point if you are interested in heavier beers with a bit more complexity. Ale’s tend to be a bit lighter which is why they are good to use different hops and yeasts with. Introducing hops can up the bitterness, but also have an effect on aftertaste and mouth feel.
To begin, this beer had a very nice appearance. It had an amber color, which I thought was different as Ale’s tend to be golden in color. However, this is a stronger American Ale so the color is darker as the malts used are darken, and sometimes this are fermented in oak giving them a deep texture and color. The head was a bright white and was surprisingly very thick. My five year old son got a kick out of that as he told me I had a beer moustache.
The taste was certainly strong. This was different than the malt-forward lagers and stouts I was used to. It took me a few sips to really understand what was going on. It was complex. There was a different initial taste than the finish and the bitterness came through in the after taste. I’m not a fan of bitter beers but this was a nice smooth complexity. Nothing was terribly over powering, but the malt provided a nice taste and the hops gave a kick at the end. The bitterness was evident, but I also picked up a bit of a caramel and coffee taste acheter cialis en andorre. The smell was fantastic and had a bit of citrus to it.
What was surprising was how drinkable this was. Normally stronger Ale’s are heavy and over powering. They are usually enjoyed by themselves and you should probably not drink too much of any one. Arrogant Bastard was still very strong, but smooth enough to keep you coming back for more. I could drink this all night, but probably wouldn’t be able to drive home after two or three. A word of warning, that 7.2% ABV is stronger than you think – drink responsibly!
I would pair this beer with a burger or a steak. It seems only right to eat a manly meal with a strong, manly Ale like this. Not to mention the flavor is not so bitter and overpowering that it would take away from the meal. It was a delicious and hearty drink that I would definitely recommend. Stop by the store and pick some up this week!
Thanks for reading!