From the stools, booths and chairs of Santa Monica, Bobby Bodell and Michael Roach review the best catalysts for inebriation that this town has to offer. This week their
Stone Sublimely Self Righteous Black IPA
Coming out of San Diego Stone is a rapidly growing microbrewery that is known for its sarcastically named brews that are never shy in hops. This week's selection was no exception. Stone makes no apologies for their intensely designed flavors, and anyone who has tried their Arrogant Bastard knows this to be true. As they say "This is an
aggressive beer. You probably won't like it."
Stone's Sublimely Self Righteous is similar to Arrogant Bastard in the sense that it also has an incredible overdose of malt and hops, and if you can't appreciate that type of thing, you probably wont like this one either.
The name can be a bit misleading due to the fact that an IPA is short for Indian Pale Ale. During the colonization of India by the British Empire, ales would be sent out to
troops stationed abroad. But in order for it to keep from spoiling it was necessary to add more hops. This created an entirely new
blend that avid beer drinkers have sworn by for years.
However, as the name would suggest, this IPA has one distinct contradiction in that it keeps a dark color while still having enough hops to make Sam Adams taste like apple
juice. The complexity of this ale and the immense volume of flavor is something that is noticed right from the get go.
When lifted to ones lips, the dominant scent is definitely hops, however the large amount of malt that is contained in this ale also comes to the senses making the source of its
dark color evident. Another large section of the flavor comes from the oak wood casks that it is stored in at a variety of venues.
It is generally served cold, like most ale is in America. One would think that this would make ale taste better, but it is a common misconception.
This unique ale, like a red wine, truly opens up, and is much easier to appreciate when at room temperature, rather than a standard brew that is typically kept around 40 degrees. However since ours was served cold it created an awkward transition
period where the ale was nearly undrinkable.
But once we moved passed this we discovered an even smoother drink that made the second half go down more easily, which some may
find relieving after their mouth and stomach have been abused by an ale who's strength in flavor, and alcohol content dance on a very
fine line between the enjoyable, and repulsive.
Stone's Sublimely Self Righteous can be a meal in itself due to its heavy, thick, and overall earthy continuity. If you were to pair this ale with food, we would suggest something hearty, deep-fried, or salty to accompany this heavy blend of malt and hops.
After reviewing this ale it was apparent that it came with an entangled medley of the flavors that have been perfected over centuries of consumption. Stone has put their
intense flavor first, and when stone puts a flavor first they do it without apology.
However unless served warm, initially it is likely that you would be in for a love-hate relationship with this brew, and for that reason we give this ale three out of five bottles. Cheers and good health.