Stone Sublimely-Self Righteous Ale (bottle)
San Diego, CA
I've got to say I don't know a whole lot about this beer, except it's from Stone, is a seasonal release, and has a bitchin' bottle design. Will knowing little about the beer affect my review?
Pours dark brown, almost black, with a thick brown bubbly head that remains on the top of the beer for some time. Some lacing. Slight reddish tinge on the bottom of the glass. Great presentation. Smells strongly of fresh hops, high alpha acids, with a strong citrus note underneath. Hints of sweet nutty malt underneath, with some sweetness coming to light as the beer warms.
Flavor is very similar to the aroma but somehow... off. First of all, there's a strong alcohol astringency on display here that overwhelms the rest of the palate, making it hard to get the complexity of the flavors. There's still that nice alpha hoppiness, some notes of citrus and a whole lot of sweet malt, but it gets overwhelmed by the "heat" of the flavor and just turns into a bit of a mush. It reminds me a bit of an American-made Weizenbock in flavor, hoppier than a traditional German, but the alcohol just overwhelms in the end. It's still good, but a bit one-note.
Mouthfeel is moderate-to-thick, with moderate carbonation and heavy hops. Somewhat syrupy on the tongue.
Overall I don't have much more to add here. This is a good beer, one it might be interesting to age, but it doesn't quite hit that elusive sweet spot for me.
My overall BA rating: 3.95/5