Brew and Booze News

Celebrate #IPAday With A Comfort Beer Review: Stone India Pale Ale

Since today is International #IPAday (click here to read more about it), I thought that I would write a review of a beer that most Craft Beer drinkers know very well: Stone Brewing Company’s India Pale Ale.

Actually, #IPAday is my second reason for writing this review. My first reason is because of a Twitter conversation that I had last night concerning the subject of Comfort Beer. Here’s a brief snippet of what was said …

Brewniversal: Would you rather sit at a bar that has 100 different basic #craftbeer taps or a bar that has 10 special/limited taps?
Ryanhudak: I’d go with the special/limited at this point. The basics you can find anywhere anytime.
Boozedancing: New phrase… #ComfortBeer
Brewniversal: I like that… #beersecurityblanket
Boozedancing: Good, but a bit tough to say when your done with a few elusive #CraftBeer and need a #ComfortBeer.
Ryanhudak: What are your #ComfortBeers? Great Lakes Eddie Fitz is definitely one of mine.
Boozedancing:  #ComfortBeers : @oskarblues Dales Pale Ale, @GLBC_Cleveland Eddie Fitz, @smuttynosebeer Finest Kind IPA, @BPbrewing Sculpin, @greenflashbrew West Coast IPA, #SaisonDupont, @VictoryBeer Prima Pils.

So what is Comfort Beer? Comfort Beer is the beer that you select when you don’t want to take chances on a new beer, and instead pick something that you are familiar with, and that you KNOW will be good. Stone IPA definitely falls into the Comfort Beer category.

Here’s what I think of this beer…

  • Appearance: Cloudy, pale orange color. Fluffy one inch head that dissipates slowly. Lots of fast rising bubbles. Very little lacing.
  • Aroma: Big dose of orange and grapefruit. Honey. Piney hops.
  • Taste: Medium carbonation. Starts off with some citrus and honey sweetness. The hops take over at mid-palate and lead you to a pleasant and lingering bitter finish. Thanks to a solid malt backbone, the bitterness is never overwhelming.
  • ABV: 6.9%

Since this is such a well known beer, I was a bit hesitant to write this review. What could I possibly say that hasn’t already been said? It has been reviewed 2,440 times on Beer Advocate and has an A for its overall rating. It has been reviewed 2,515 times on Rate Beer and is currently ranked #6 against other IPAs. Although I will occasionally go against the crowd, this is not one of those occasions. Stone’s IPA is a delicious and well balanced beer that does a really good job of hiding it’s relatively high alcohol content. Although you could probably drink this all night, I wouldn’t recommend it. This beer will definitely creep up on you.

What will you be drinking to celebrate International #IPAday? Let us know in the comments below.

24 replies »

  1. Whether you call it a#comfortbeer, a #beersecutityblanket, or a #gotocraftbrew (that one’s mine, BTW so don’t Hoover it lest I unleash ghastly and noxious drain pours – i.e. Natty Light, Old Milwaulkee, Keystone at you), Stone IPA is a flat out world class IPA and icon of the West Coast IPA style. The fact that it’s reasonably priced and available at virtually every servicable craft brew shop or liquor store is a huge plus as well.

    I also like the fact that it is such a wee-balanced and arrogant brew that it refuses to be poured into a pilsener or Wonder Woman glass.



    • Big Smuttynose fan! Will be in New England in a little over a week. Hope to pick up some “local only” stuff that I can’t get down here.


  2. +1 Nice, I like your idea of the #ComfortBeer. I’ve often gone into a small brewpub and tried their local brew, got turned off, but still wanted to order a second beer. Then I may notice that they also have a Stone or Sierra Nevada tap so I order up a #ComfortBeer for round two. I really like to step outside my comfort zone and explore craft beer, but it’s nice to have a #beersecurityblanket as well. Cheers!


    • I totally agree! There are hundreds of beers out there that I want to try, but sometimes you just need something solid. #ComfortBeer it is!

      Thanks for the comment!


  3. Thanks for alerting me to IPAday. Not that I needed a reason to drink a good IPA tonight but now I have one. Stone is definitely one of my comfort beers but perhaps tonight I’ll try an IPA that I’ve never had. We’ll see.


  4. Comfort beer? I like it. These are usually go-to’s in my neck of the woods, but your term is more specific. I also find that I (regrettably) forget about comfort beers until I’m left with few decent or safe choices. In that case, I go with a Two-Hearted, Boulevard Tank 7, or any number of Stone brews. I may have to steal this.


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