1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Two Hearted Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Two Hearted AleTwo Hearted Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

8,722 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8722
Reviews: 2963
rAvg: 4.27
pDev: 10.77%

Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
An India Pale Ale style well suited for adventurous trips to the Upper Peninsula. American malts and enormous hop additions give this beer a crisp finish and an incredibly floral aroma.

(Beer added by: Todd on 12-11-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Ratings: 8,722 | Reviews: 2,963 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of UnionMade


4.22/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a hazy, burnished gold, a thick, nearly white froth blooming with a vigorous pour. The yeast is well integrated, creating an even haze. The head settles into a large bubbled, splotchy mist, keeping all the way through. Large clumps of sticky lace cling to the glass.
The aroma is dominated by a greasy, oily hopping. Huge amounts of pine and grapefruit, similar to a double IPA in it's strength. Some floral and herbal notes, the hops almost sweetish in their juiciness. Plenty of toasty, sweetish malt bolster the hops, with a soft touch of floral and pear esters. A good deal of apricot, along with a touch of orange.
The flavor blooms with fruit and malt immediately, tons of peach and apricot sailing atop a base of toasty sweetness. A bit of cereal graininess right up front, along with powdery yeast, adding a slightly unrefined touch to the mouthfeel. The fruity sweetness continues into the middle, meeting the first traces of hop flavor, mostly a soft floral tone. Gobs of white grape and pear, sliding into an oily, rather piney hop finish. Grapefruity citrus, with a touch of orange juice sweetness, adding a moderate amount of bitterness. Certainly balanced. The swallow reveals a bit of alcoholic warmth, rather fruity in nature, completing the beer with a last bit of sweetness. A soft residue of sugar cookie dough-like yeast. A lingering apricot flavor, with piney hops clinging to the tongue for ages. Medium bodied, with a gentle, easy-going carbonation, just enough to move the brew across the palate. The mouthfeel starts out grainy, changing to an oily, soapy slickness, and dries out a bit in the end with a powdery yeast texture.
A splendid IPA, unlike any other I've tried, with it's fruity character. The balance is perfect, and the slightly unrefined feel adds to the beer's charm. Bell's makes some awesome beers, and this is one of their best. Do not go to Michigan without bringing home a sixer of this.
Thanks to Mikeys01 for the bottle!!!

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2004 02:41:14 | More by UnionMade
Photo of Gritsak

West Virginia

4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

medium hazy orange with a fluffy white head

smells is strong of hops and spices

taste is wow with hops..very strong up front and never lets down.

good amount of carbonation with a faily thin mouthfeel

pretty easy to drink one or two at a time...but anymore would sacrafice the unique taste for me.

pretty damn good, and definitely different. it takes similar to other IPA's that ive had, but stronger and more crisp.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2004 01:29:09 | More by Gritsak
Photo of TheOtherMike


4.72/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Be careful pouring this one and many (most/all?) of the Bell's. There's about 1/8 inch of sediment at the bottom of the bottle. I always pour very slowly and stop when the sediment is about to leave the bottle - it definitley spoils the appearance and (IMO) the taste as well.

Other than that - I love this beer! The smell is very much IPA, but it has a very unusual taste. Almost too strong - right on the border between great and bizarre, which makes it interesting.

The mouthfeel is a bit harsh - acidic? I don't know - but that's why I reduced the drinkability too. Smell & taste keep me coming back. Sediment and mouthfeel give me pause.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2004 15:47:43 | More by TheOtherMike
Photo of rajendra82


4.43/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Very cloudy golden color with a tall foamy heady that would do a Duvel proud. The underlying natural carbonation is steady and delicate. The aroma is fresh hops with pine resin and hay. The taste is that of pine resin and pepper like hop heat tempered with the flavors of mandarin orange, caramel malt, and the gritty, earthy yeast. The beer is creamy smooth like a stick of butter melting on your tongue. This is a very good and well balanced IPA that lacks a lot of complexity, but turns that into a strength rather than a weakness.

Thanks Foxman for making this one a part of the BIF 7.0 package. I owe you one.

Serving type: bottle

06-06-2004 02:50:16 | More by rajendra82
Photo of aracauna


4.1/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy amber with tiny suspended particles. A good sandy head. The aroma starts off a ragged tangle of citric centennials. The hops mellow as the beer warms, letting a soft fruitiness through in the aroma and an off dry maltiness through in the flavor.

Serving type: bottle

06-05-2004 05:31:21 | More by aracauna
Photo of studentofbeer


4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Today I pulled out a Bell's Two Hearted Ale, which is labeled an "India Pale Ale style well suited for Hemingway-esque trips to the Upper Peninsula" in the description on the back of the label. The beer is apparently a reference to Hemingway's "Big Two-Hearted River"—a story I've never read.

Still, I had the beer, and that might be enough.

The pour produced a giant foamy white head, flat and dense, that made its way most of the way to the top of the imperial pint glass. The nose is all Centennial (I orginially thought Cascade) and has grapefruity, citrus scents. You get a hint of bready malt, but whew, those hops knock you out.

As for color, it's a hazy, dirty yellow when you look straight through the glass, and a light, nice burnished brass color when you look down through more liquid.

A sip reveals a substantial but relatively relaxed bitterness, with some lemon, fruit and bread providing a backbone. Nonetheless, the hops are the star of the show, and leave a lasting hop-flavor bitterness in the aftertaste that doesn't go away. The beer laces beautifully.

The beer weighs in at 6 percent, but the body feels rather light. The beer seems to just slide happily down my throat, a tribute to its superb balance of hop flavor, bitterness and malt, as well as a soft carbonation and lasting creamy head that keep the beer very smooth.

The body of the beer and the seductive creaminess are what set this beer apart. The flavors and aromas are rather straightforward—strong hop flavor and bitterness with a bready malt background and a burst of fruit sweetness. That direct appeal and the subtle, creamy texture make this a great choice for a warm day.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2004 12:59:12 | More by studentofbeer
Photo of nortmand


4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Fluffy, "marshmallow" head on top of a cloudy yellow-orange body.
The scent is dominated by grapefruit hoppiness, but a hint of malt is there too.
Very hoppy in the start of the drink, but a malt presence becomes more pronounced on the back of the tongue.
Definitely very smooth and drinkable, one of the gems in the Bell's line of beers.

Serving type: on-tap

05-27-2004 13:33:06 | More by nortmand
Photo of ngandhi


4.33/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pretty much exactly what a pale ale should look like. Like holding a glass of solid amber covered in snow. Great lacing.

The smell is hoppy and tropical. Hints of mango, cotton candy, and a lot of pine.

Obviously hoppy and remarkably comlex with a wonderfully rich malt profile to back it up while never taking the focus away from the hops. It seems that only one hop was used, but its use, in different stages of brewing, is first-rate and really shows how far you can push the most basic of things. The bittering is perfect, just barely smoky at the end, and quite calm on the back of the tongue for an IPA. The flavors are endlessly developing, Cascadey, but far, far more refined. Sugary, floral, and delicious. There's faint rose in the background on the tongue and palette. I really love the rose finish. Candied lemon. If you compare it to something like HopDevil, this is in a league of its own. HD has similar qualities, but nothing in terms of balance. Here, the multitude of hop and yeast fruitiness combine to make a new flavor unto itself.

I appreciate the maltiness of this brew. It mellows out the flavors and gives us all the bitterness and aromatics an IPA should have, without the pain. Two Hearted goes down the way really fresh apple juice does and has, indeed, many juice-like qualities including its body.

Relax, relax.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2004 16:42:03 | More by ngandhi
Photo of Soybomb


4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: Pours a nice gold color with a 1.5" fluffy head that drop but sticks around for a while and leaves a nice lacing. I did expect it to be a bit darker given its an IPA.

smell: Hops, hops, and hops. I kinda wish other aroma's jumped out at me here.

taste and mouthfeel: Delicious. Starts out with a bit of sweetness then you're hit with hops and citrus flavors. Medium-high carbonation makes a nice crisp finish with lingering cirtusey after taste. Probably just getting into the medium bodied catagory.

notes: My first IPA was Samuel Smiths and I thought I liked it. Since then I've tried others but the blend of flavors in this just really won me over. I love it and so far its my first choice in IPAs.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2004 06:29:10 | More by Soybomb
Photo of blitheringidiot


4.4/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dang near a perfect pour into my English Beamish pint glass. A hazy golden orange pour with a perfect 3” inch head that is so high and tight that it made a cone shape when I poured the beer through it to fill the glass. This deserves a 5/5 pour, leaving a total lattice head coating.

Smells of a grand IPA. Lush floral bouquet erupts to my nose delivering various juicy fruits and spicy cloves interspersed. You could even say that there is a strong lemon in the nose.

Flavor flows quite freely with fruity hoppiness and spices. Rich mature full spices and zesty acidic feel. This has a top quality IPA candy like aftertaste similar to a nice Sweet Tart (in a good way) The finish is dry, tart and lasting, reminding me to have some more. A great tasting IPA, retaining a solid foamy coating that looks good enough to eat with a spoon. This offering lasts in the glass with zip and zest to the hoppy bitter end.

Last swigs: Reminds me of STONE Ruination IPA most of all. Orangey hoppy zest and looks tastey too. Built like a champ.I finally snagged a mixed case of BELLS thanks to Beeryard, for a reasonable $58. The mixed case had 4 x 6 different strong BELLS beers. Awesome deal. Two Hearted ranks up there with VICTORY Hop Devil and 3FLOYDS Alpha King. Nice!

Wow! this is tasty! And a well hidden ABV ta boot.

*** UPDATE ***
Thanks to SkinnyElvis for the offering. Second pour in a pilsner is just as good. I mean Goood! Standing by my prior review.

Beer is good. Happy & hoppy beering.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2004 03:44:56 | More by blitheringidiot
Photo of soilguy


4.93/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

WOW. This beer pours a beautiful cyrstal clear orange hue. Immediately one is struck by the strong, floral hop aroma. It is but a sweet segue into the awesome taste experience. Initial hop bite, followed by a citrusy hop flavor, backed up with just enough malty sweetness to be noticed but not enough to intrude on your hop experience. I could drink way too many of these at one sitting. This ale has displaced the Hopdevil as my new favorite IPA.

Serving type: on-tap

05-10-2004 01:13:33 | More by soilguy
Photo of Trentonator


4.05/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber/orange with a nice white head, and a long lasting lacing that coats the glass nicely. I give a perfect 5 for the appearance of this unique brew. It's fascinating, it has hues of gold, orange, copper and white, it's almost like looking at a sunrise-beautiful! Smell is very fruity, lots of hops, maybe some floral undertones. Taste has a definite IPA bite to it, coppery, bitter, but yet still a nice mouthfeel. I could knock back a few of these, I think this is my new fave IPA.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2004 23:04:55 | More by Trentonator
Photo of ppoitras


4.4/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle obtained via trade with CRJMellor. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 3/4" bright white head above a slightly (but only slightly) copperish golden brew. Head had reasonable staying power, and laced excellently. Aroma is about spicy hops, and there's probably some malt in there, but that's not the point. Smells like what I would imagine something out of the DFH Randall would. The taste is as well all about the hops, but there is enough pale malts to round the corners and keep the taste buds alive. Also slight citrus notes are present. It impresses me that such a hop monster remains quite smooth and imminently drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2004 20:47:43 | More by ppoitras
Photo of Redrover


4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this beer at the Matchbox in Chicago. This has got to be one of the smallest bars I have ever seen. I’m guessing the “official” capacity must be about 20 people.

Beer poured a lighter than expected gold with a thick head and great lacing. I was expecting a slightly darker beer given that it is an IPA.

Nice pine & citrus aroma. Clear use of quality ingredients.

The taste was fine, but seemed a little on the light side for an IPA. Still it is a very tasty beer with a bracing hop bite and nice puckering citrus taste. The beer also seems to posses a nice malt backbone to keep things balanced.

Mouthfeel and drinkability are both fine. I was expecting something different, but was not disappointed by this one. It is a keeper and one I would love to try on tap.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2004 15:36:56 | More by Redrover
Photo of koolkat

United Kingdom (England)

3.8/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It pours a nice blonde with a minimal head. The Hops are rather noticible, but it isnt all that aromatic more of a nice bitter twinge at the end of the gulp.

here is a very slight DMS smell present but it isnt tastable possibly due to the hops. The hops are very well pronounced, but mostly in the bittering department.

As far as drinkability goes if you're a hophead this would be excellent as it has a nice bitter twinge and isnt heavy but if youre not a hophead I think that the hops might become overpowering after a bunch.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2004 00:38:25 | More by koolkat
Photo of Rastacouere

Quebec (Canada)

3.65/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

So in my glass is the famous Two Hearted IPA. It looks good, potent dark sun yellow, lightly hazy, with a great very foamy and rocky white head, highly carbonated in appearance. Acute citrusy C-hops nose, very flowery, sweet, sour, hints at lemon pie, lilac (orval anyone?), grapefruit, grass. Solid toasty/cookie malt attack early like a good pils, quickly complemented by the direct floral and citrusy hops. Great flavor development for an IPA, but you know where they're from, hophead's neck of the wood and always lacking a touch of "multidimensionality". Tremendous velvety texture, less carbonated than anticipated. Clean and long oily bitter finish. Quite good, but top 100 in the world? I think not. Maybe a top 10 IPA though. Thanks Jeff.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2004 03:00:56 | More by Rastacouere
Photo of Crosling


4.78/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear Light peach. The head is dense, creamy and rocky but subsides to a thin layer of cream floating on the top.

Huge vibrant and bursting aroma of candy sweetness, kettle popcorn, cotton candy, wet oak, bright fruitiness, vacumm cleaner mustyness, pine oil, grapefruit, caramel and tangerine. Quite simply, an astonishing aroma.

After an aroma like this I am a little skeptical when I first sip the beer. "How could the flavor outdue the aroma, it's impossible," I say to myself while putting the glass up to my mouth. I taste it. Then a look of complete shock consumes my facial muscles and I look straight down in awe at the beer sitting in my Duvel tulip. I stare at the beer, not momentarily, but attentively, like a pre-teen boy examining his first vision of female breasts. “Wow,” I whisper to myself.

The hops are sharp, pungent, bitter and very powerful. Sweet fruitiness first, slighty tart with lemons, grapefruit and other citrus notes. Caramel corn, tangerine and a hint of the alcohol come through on the finish.

What makes this beer even more appealing is the fact that they mention Hemingway on the label. He is one of my authors and was a brilliant brilliant man.

Did you know that Hemingway killed himself with the same shotgun that his father killed himself with and guess who has the shotgun now? Hemingway's son. Weird huh?

This beer blew me away.

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2004 06:57:46 | More by Crosling
Photo of garymuchow


4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

New bottle as compared to the picture. Current one has a fish on it. Looks like a lake trout maybe.
A really nice mix of malt and hops with a pleasing sweetness of fruity peach combined with a flowery grassy hops.
Orangish amber slightly cloudy. Head settles to a white layer that leaves plenty of lacing.
Starts with a bitingly strong hop bitterness, but moves very quickly to a softer bitterness with more citrus and just before finish a very light sweetness appears that lasts just for a moment before finishing with a long somewhat sour and slightly citrus conclusion.
Feel is nice and soft throughout.
Masala Mama has strong similarities to this. The hops here are more grassy and a little more biting, and the malt isn't as prominent and not quite as tasty. However, this is a beer deserving of its ranking.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2004 19:55:39 | More by garymuchow
Photo of soper2000


4.33/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Notes from my Bell's tasting:
Poured a nice golden orange with a medium sized white head. Aroma is very interesting. Hops are abundant, plus there is a hint of some spice maybe. Taste is very well balanced. I half expected a massive hop hit, but the hops were well constrained by a nice malty base. The finish shows off the IBU's of this baby. It's a very well crafted brew and super drinkable as well.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2004 22:02:54 | More by soper2000
Photo of cerevisiaephilus


3.98/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is certainly an interesting beer. I liked it a lot better on draught, here I'm having it from the bottle. Maybe its an older bottle?? I have no idea. I'm not getting any of the centennial hops that people claim are in here.

Anyway, little disapointed with the appearance of this beer. Its bottle conditioned and the yeast isn't very flocculant...pretty powedery actually. There was definately a ton of very fine particles in the beer even after careful transportation and pouring. The nose is nice...quite spicy, can't put my finger on the type of hops used, but nice and spicy. Taste is nice as well. A little something weird going on, not quite sure what it is. The hops are quite spicy and bitterness seems quite high, but there might be something else in there as well...can't put my finger on it...wheat maybe?? I doubt it.

Pretty drinkable beer all in all.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2004 00:51:46 | More by cerevisiaephilus
Photo of RedDiamond


4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is a fantastic beer, a creation of unique balances and style. The only unanswered question this beer suggests is whether or not it should be defined as an IPA. Some of its properties are inconsistent with a strict interpretation of the style. While I have a lot of respect for defined beer styles, I also just like a well proportioned beer of any design. I drank this beer on tap and never saw a bottle, so I can't say whether or not this beer chooses to define itself as an IPA. Regardless, this review will emphasize content over category.

Bell's Two Hearted is pale and clear, almost lager-like with its sunny gold color and nice thready lace. The pint I drank had a thin head with sustained carbonation and good head retention. But the standout feature is a creaminess, not so much to the mouthfeel, but to the taste. This, combined with a fruity malt profile, creates an ale with an abundance of character. There is a tremendous amount of flavor here, an unusual measure for a brew this pale.

This is a highly drinkable beer with a soft mouthfeel and a bright citrus-hop aroma. I'd call it a pale ale and not an IPA, but no matter. I'm told the creaminess is derived from a unique strain of yeast.

Special thanks to Felonius for pouring me this one when I visited Minneapolis.

Serving type: on-tap

04-07-2004 17:58:46 | More by RedDiamond
Photo of LuckySevens82


4.55/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First, thanks to Feloniusmonk for hooking me up with this among several other Kalamazoo brews.
12 oz bottle with a fish on the label.
Pours a fairly clear (I've seen much clearer IPAs), light golden orange. At first glance I thought this was an odd color for an IPA, but the more I think about it the better it looks. THe head was nice and thick, leaving good lacing along the glass.
The smell is just fantastic. Piney, citrusy, and floral. The smell just screams IPA--Drink me!
The taste is mellow, very smooth, but you can certainly tell that this is no ordinary brew. Huge hops from beginning to end, there is some residual bitterness, but the sweetness from the malt undercuts it nicely without overpowering it.
There isn't much carbonation in this one, there is some but not enough to make it really pop for me.
I could see myself having more than one of these in a night and probably would if it were available around where I live. THis is a great IPA. I would very much like to have another...and another...and....

Serving type: bottle

04-06-2004 02:03:49 | More by LuckySevens82
Photo of Bierguy5


4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a gold clear liquid with a white foamy, fluffy head. Smell is one of the best ever, strong flowery, grassy smell. Slight grainy smell also. You know what is about to happen. On the taste, you get a quick sweetness and then you are bombarded by bitter flowery goodness. Somehow this is a crisp and refreshing beer. Medium body, but this bottle had too much carbonation, as it felt a bit prickly. Very drinkable, I would certainly enjoy this again. I believe that this is the best IPA I have sampled yet.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2004 02:19:32 | More by Bierguy5
Photo of freed


4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yet another Bill Import. Bell's has classy labels, and this is yet another example. Poured from a 12oz bottle, yielding a gorgeously clear straw colored ale with active carbonation and a wonderful crown of pristine white foam.

The aroma is a pleasing mix of grass fields and flowers, and does not overpower in any sense. In fact, its a bit of a job just getting a full whiff.

The taste is crisp with bitterness and carbonation, sweet with maltiness, and satisfying in its balanced delivery. The bitterness accumulates on the palate, demanding your mouth have more. Who am I to argue?

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2004 02:37:04 | More by freed
Photo of HopHeadKen


4.13/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle offered a lot of 'Fsss-s-t' when the cap came off.

Clear golden color with thick creamy white head;
A definate clean hop aroma when poured into the glass.

First flavor was citrus hop, with a smooth lingering clean hop aftertaste. Not overly hopped, easily drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2004 16:38:43 | More by HopHeadKen
Two Hearted Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
95 out of 100 based on 8,722 ratings.