Friday, April 08, 2011

Beer of the Week (XCIV)

Another edition of Beer of the Week brought to you by the rock solid folks at Glen Lake Wine & Spirits who can help you explore the wide world of wine, whiskey, and beer.

There has been a lot of big news on the local beer scene of late. The “Surly Bill” to allow breweries to sell pints on-site passed its first hurdle in the Legislature. The owners of the Muddy Pig—a craft beer haven in St. Paul—are expanding by opening a new restaurant in Minneapolis. And beers from one of the most renowned craft breweries in the land-Stone Brewing in San Diego-are at long last available in the Twin Cities.

Our beer of the week is Stone's Arrogant Bastard Ale:

This is an aggressive ale. You probably won’t like it. It is quite doubtful that you have the taste or sophistication to be able to appreciate an ale of this quality and depth. We would suggest that you stick to safer and more familiar territory–maybe something with a multi-million dollar ad campaign aimed at convincing you it’s made in a little brewery, or one that implies that their tasteless fizzy yellow beverage will give you more sex appeal. Perhaps you think multi-million dollar ad campaigns make things taste better. Perhaps you’re mouthing your words as you read this.

At Stone Brewing, we believe that pandering to the lowest common denominator represents the height of tyranny - a virtual form of keeping the consumer barefoot and stupid. Brought forth upon an unsuspecting public in 1997, Arrogant Bastard Ale openly challenged the tyrannical overlords who were brazenly attempting to keep Americans chained in the shackles of poor taste. As the progenitor of its style, Arrogant Bastard Ale has reveled in its unprecedented and uncompromising celebration of intensity. There have been many nods to Arrogant Bastard Ale…even outright attempts to copy it… but only one can ever embody the true nature of liquid Arrogance!

22oz brown bomber bottle. Transparent label features arrogant looking gargoyle bastard hoisting a mug with the slogan “You’re not worthy.” We’ll see about that.

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by Volume: 7.2%

COLOR (0-2): Dark ruby brown. 2

AROMA (0-2): Caramel malt balanced with floral hops. 2

HEAD (0-2): Tan color. Decent volume and excellent lacing. 2

TASTE (0-5): Like the aroma a nice combination of caramel malt and citrusy floral hops. Also can pick up some nuttiness and hint of vanilla. Lots of strong flavor right off the bat that sweetens and mellows a bit but still has a solid bitter finish. The alcohol is certainly noticeable and it’s not a beer that you’re going to pound through. Medium to heavy bodied with an oily mouthfeel. 4

AFTERTASTE (0-2): Flavor lingers for an exceptionally long time. 2

OVERALL (0-6): Aggressive is a perfect word to describe this beer and if you’re not serious about your beer you probably want to stay away. But for those who like their beer to be bold and their taste buds to be challenged, Arrogant Bastard Ale is a welcome addition to local liquor store shelves. I also understand it’s going to become the official beer of the Nihilist in Golf Pants. 5

TOTAL SCORE (0-19): 17