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Smart People Like Good Beer: Arrogant Bastard Ale

If there's something smart people DO NOT like, it's shitty beer, such as and Budweiser, Miller, or Coors product. Those kinds of beer are best left for dollar beer specials and hunting trips with your cousin Jethro. Smart people DO like good beer though. They like beer that actually has the taste of hops and malts. To that end we'll be reviewing different beers, giving you some background on them, and then offering a rating. Our first rated beer will be Arrogant Bastard Ale from Stone Brewing Co.

Stone Brewing Co. is headquartered in Escondido, California. They've been around since 1996. Stone has been consistently rated as one of the top craft brewers in the US by such sites as and Arrogant Bastard is one of their flagship beers. It is characterized as an American Strong ale, or an ale that has an Alcohol by Volume (ABV) of greater than 7%.

Arrogant Bastard is approximately 7.2% ABV. It's an amber/caramel color and pours without a lot of head. The aroma is very hoppy with some citrus scents and a faint smoky aroma. You can definitely taste the hops, it's almost like a true double IPA in taste. The smoky flavor from the barley and malts comes out in the taste here, but not overpoweringly.Not too much carbonation, and it goes down pretty smooth. You get the hoppy aftertaste that lingers on the tastebuds at the back of your tongue, but it's a nice aftertaste.

All in all I'd give Arrogant Bastard an 93 on the 100 scale.

That being said, let's see how I stack up with other ratings.

BeerAdvocate has a rating of 94 based on 2694 reviews, with their experts giving it a 98. They also suggest food pairings of nutty cheeses such as Asiago or Parmesan. Maybe I would have rated it higher if I had enjoyed it with a hunk of cheese.

Ratebeer rolls in at 99 given 2863 ratings, although they use an adjusted performance compared to other beers on a percentage based scale, not merely an aggregation of ratings.

Still, looks like we are all in agreement that this is an upper echelon beer. If you don't like hoppy beers, stay away and refine your palate you neanderthal. If you're like me and love hops, grab some of this and enjoy. If you're like me you will also love drinking this beer because the name describes your personality. Until next time friends, friends don't let friends drink shitty beer.

P.S. If you have a beer suggestion for review, shoot us an e-mail or comment on these posts and we'll put it in the hopper.

This post originally appeared on Stuff Smart People Like. Subscribe to the Podcast.


  1. I went through a beer snob phase like yours when I was in my early/mid 20s. Since then, as I've gotten smarter, I realized that there's nothing wrong with Miller Lite. It's ball-game beer for sure, but there's nothing wrong or "stupid" about it. I actually like it quite a bit. I think that it's stupid to argue that there's a causal relationship between inteligence and taste in beer. Have you been to Oregon? You think all those homeless people commenting on how awesomely hoppy their beer is are smart?! I disagree.

  2. I can only hope that my beer snob phase lasts the rest of my life. But, you don't need to be a beer snob to realize Miller Lite is terrible. It's tasteless.

    And, if we want to be super literal, we'd go with wine as the drink of preference for people with high IQ's ala Mortensen et al., 2005. But that's besides the point

  3. Water is tasteless too. But it's high in drinkability. Do you not like drinking water? Both water and Miller Lite are vastly more popular than Arrogant Bastard Ale, aren't they? I glass of piss would have "more taste" than water or Miller Lite too. Do you prefer drinking piss to Miller Lite?

    I think most smart people realize that some things do not have an objectively right or wrong answer. Some things are a matter of personal taste... like taste.

  4. Now you're just mixing advertising campaigns. Bud Light uses the drinkability line.

    Now, just step away from the computer and take a couple nice big breaths to settle down.

    I'm not sure if you realize that this review is an opinion.

    Whew! I'm glad that we settled that. To be fair, I will concede that a small minority of smart people out there may in fact have a taste for shitty beer. I'm still waiting on the study results though.

  5. When I was in my 20s I was a caddie at a small golf course called brushwood. I was kind of a pretentious jerk who thought I knew everything. Then I became a laywer and then I knew I knew everything. Now I'm a judge and miller lite is all I'll drink. It's because I'm better than both of you.

  6. Well, the world needs us ditch diggers too.

  7. That comment is weird, your honor. It seems to be targetted at me (what with the Caddyshack reference), but it also seems to be referring critically to Jordan for writing a pretentious blog about how he knows everything. Like, I agree with the sentiment, but it seems a bit misdirected, no?

    Also, where did my last comment go?

  8. I would love to read the posts on Stuff Danny Noonan Likes:
    - The secret to making the perfect cup of coffee: after you make a cup, add three extra cups water. It will be much more drinkable!
    - I went through a music snob phase in my 20s, but since then, I’ve realized Nickelback really is the world’s best band.
    - I once saw a homeless person eating a Five Guys burger. Homeless people are not smart; therefore, McDonald’s is better.
    - I just started watching Last Man Standing, and it really is a pretty good replacement for Arrested Development.

  9. I drink a lot of coffee. Strong and black. I drink espresso a lot. But never cappuccino or latte or anything like that. I bet that's what the smart guys drink, pinky up as they sip.

    I can't stand Nickelback. But I do still like a lot of stuff that's frowned upon by the music snobs, like Dave Matthews Band and Pearl Jam. I've mostly been listening to indie/alternative rock these days (last 5 concerts I went to were Clap Your Hands and Say Yeah, Noah and the Whale, Frank Turner, Cut Copy, The Hold Steady).

    In my humble opinion, Five Guys and McDonalds both suck balls. Is Five Guys your example of a GOOD burger?!?! I mean, it might be slightly better than McDonalds but it's still fast food and it's still pretty gross. I kind of thought Five Guys had the reputation of being one of the culprits in the whole "this is why we're fat in America" thing. Is it popular with "anonymous" commentors on ego blogs too?

    I love Arrested Development and really hope the Netflix new episodes and movie actually happen. Never seen Last Man Standing.

    Maybe I should start a weblog...

  10. Dude, I wouldn't fuck with Anonymous. Those guys can hack anything and mess up your information. Oh, and smart guys drink with thumbs up.

  11. Also, Mr. "Anonymous", I never said I didn't like Jordan's "good beer" example. I actually kind of do when the occasion/mood is right. I'm a big fan of beer and generally have "good" taste in beer based on what I presume the "smart" guys like. I just also like Miller Lite and Schlitz and High Life. Those beers are great for certain occasions, like concerts or baseball games or if you just had a big meal and are too full for a Double Dead Guy, or if you just want to tie one on. I didn't take issue with what Jordan likes, I took issue with him saying I was stupid.

    Also, in my earlier comment that was deleted, I pointed out that "drinkability" isn't just an advertising compaign term like Jordan implied. It's an industry term that brewers and connoisseurs have been using for almost as long as people have been making beer.

  12. Dude, they have brewed beer since like 6000 BCE. So show me some cuneiform writing where they talk about the drinkability of their beer.

  13. Sorry, I should have known better than to use a little hyperbole with the smart guys. It's still way older than the Bud Light commercial you first heard it used on.

  14. Smart people hate hyperbole more than anything.

  15. Can we take a moment to go back to the original request for comments on the beer blog post? Specifically, beers that should be reviewed on the blog in the future.
    I would suggest Keith's Red Ale, Unibroue's La Fin Du Monde and Sleeman's Fine Porter. Though all three may be difficult to find as they are Canadian originals.

  16. Ayala, I know for sure that you can get La Fin Du Monde here. I'll check on the others.