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Bell's Kalamazoo Stout - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Bell's Kalamazoo StoutBell's Kalamazoo Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,496 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,496
Hads: 3,981
Avg: 4.03
pDev: 17.37%
Wants: 180
Gots: 517 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-11-2001

Stout brewed with Brewer's Licorice.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Bell's Kalamazoo Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,496 | Hads: 3,981
Photo of GreenWBush
3.78/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was the beer that turned me on to stouts, a style which has now consumed my already all-consuming beer passion. I remember oh so well thinking that a beer could not get bigger, or blacker. Time for a revisit, especially after the ass-kicker that was Batch 7000.

Just a few shades below jet-black. Glints of ruby, deep. Moderate tan head, great pasty lace rings.

The nose is strong, sweet. Malt extract, cocao, roasty chocolate. Vanilla. Powdered chocolate-milk mix. Oak. Port wine. Raisins.

Initially smoky with roasted malt; then intensely sweet, astringent, with hints of brown sugar and molasses. Bitter afterimage with caramel, too.

Amazingly Russian/Imperial at first sip, then gives way to a slightly watery characteristic I didn't care too much for.

Still, an amazing 'everyday' stout that is easy to forget in the Midwest with so many other good Bell's stouts.

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Photo of MuddyFeet
4.05/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Good stout. Thick and hearty.

Poured an extremely deep brown--almost black--in color. No light was penetrating. Thick bubbly head that was perhaps more foamy than creamy. Head was tinged a nice brown.

Nose was mildy of coffee and a little bit sour.

Sourly sweet. Kind of like milk that is about to go bad. Some cocoa powder and vanilla was coming through rather strongly. Plenty of sugar in this beer that was kind of cloying to the tongue and teeth. Little bit of a hop bitterness toward the back end. Roasted malts prevail through everything.

Mouthfeel was very heavy and dense. Definitely gut filling. Creamy but a bit souring too.

Nice stout for sipping but the sourness might be a bit too much after a while.

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Photo of cubedbee
4.26/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First Bell's Stout I've had the pleasure of trying, on tap at Klinger's in Hanover PA. Served in a pint glass, this beer is absolutely pitch black, no light at all coming through, a finger of beige head, nice retention and solid lacing. Smell isn't as strong as expected, a light roasted malt and some slight espresso. Taste is excellent, a nice roasted malt, cocoa, smooth milk chocolate, and a nice finish with some slight hops and a bitter lingering roast. Excellent balance between the sweet lactose and the bitter roast. Despite the thick chewey mouthfeel, I found myself downing this rather quickly. This is an amazing stout, I wish I could drink this more often.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.18/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The Bell's Kalamazoo Stout pours from the bottle a deep, menacingly dark onyx black with a two finger head of creamy tan foam that doesn't seem to want to go away. No light dares to attempt to get through my glass. Aromas of liquified milk chocolate are the first thing I notice followed by a wonderful roastiness with hints of ground coffee beans and a touch of burnt bread. Rich, deep and decadant.

First sip brings strong rush of dark roasted, burnt maltiness that carries a subtle smokiness. Creamy milk chocolate collides with a somewhat bitter coffee flavor. A touch of hops is there on the way down. Slightly lactic with a lingering burnt taste that follows each sip. This does a nice job of balancing the sweet and bitter. A wonderfully full flavored stout that doesn't hold back. Very nice.

Mouthfeel is big and viscous, it fills the mouth and definetly has a nice chewiness. However at the same time it is incredibly drinkable and I find my glass emptying rather quickly. A great stout overall, from a brewery that seems to never miss with the style. Put the words Bell's and stout together on a brown bottle and you'll undoubtedly see a smile on my face. Well worth seeking out if you're a fan of the style.

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Photo of carln26
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Dark brown in color with Mahogany highlights. This beer poured from the bottle and was topped by a bubbly tan colored head that leaves an intricate lace on the side of the glass as it settles. The aroma is more subtle than the Expedition Stout. Hints of roast malt, espresso, and just a touch of chocolate come across immediately. Just a touch of citrus on the back end. The flavor is again more subtle than the Expedition. Layers of chocolate, espresso, just a bit of walnut. Caramel in the finish. Nice touch of bitterness lingers as I contemplate the rich, full mouth feel. Nice beer, much more approachable than the Expedition.

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Photo of longarm
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thick brown head blankets a black brew. Decent carbonation for a stout that doesn't flatten quickly or overwhelm with too many bubbles.

Aroma has something that resembles nuts meshed with dark chocolate. Hops not noticeable, but roasted malt easily apparent.

Heavy, dark roasted coffee flavor reminds me of starbucks' mocha-chip ice cream. A little dextrinous and moderately chewy. While it has an initial hit of sourness, almost like an old-school porter, it finishes smooth with a kick of roasted malt bitterness. Somewhat out of balance, but still quite good and quite intriguing. Overall easy to drink.

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Photo of nlmartin
3.38/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from a bottle into a 20 ounce wine gobblet.

Appearance: Nice blackness with a coffee carmel colored head that was about half and inch high.

Smell: Smells of sweet burnt coffee and chocolate pronounced fruityness present.

Taste: Taste almost overly sweet. The coffee and chocolate stand out. There is some fruityness present.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: This is not a terrible beer I am just not impressed. The sweetness is not balanced by any other taste factors.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a medium brown color head with great retention. Aroma of roasted malt with faint chocolate in the back. Taste is very creamy-like with a nice dose of chocolate. Not a whole lot of hops but I think this is for the best. Very well balance beer.

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Photo of budsboy
4.04/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ozer. No dates.

Pours black and opaque with a tan head that runs away too fast.

Dark, roasty toasty malt aroma with bitter chocolate and hints of dark fruit. All very tempting.

Espresso, ash, sweet chocolate and a coffee bitterness. Bitter aftertaste hangs around. Malty character grows as it warms and it gets much better. The alcohol has a warming effect.

Somewhat chalky, full, yes, but a wee thin. Low carbonation.

A fairly straight-forward beer. Coffee flavors are most predominant, so if that's what you look for in a sweet stout, this is a great one. Otherwise, this is solid Bell's offering.

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Photo of blitz134
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nearly pitch black brew. Some brown around the edges. Medium brown head was small and fleeting. As expected this is a sweet smelling stout. Comes across with a bit of milk chocolate and some caramel maltiness. The slightest bit of charring in the background. This has a very pleasing flavor which isn't overdone at all. Again, slightly sweet to start. Some raisin, plum fruitiness. This fades to a sweet chocolate, toffee flavor, and finishes with a touch of bitterness from some faintly floral hops and dark roasted malts. Nice and crisp mouthfeel makes this one refreshing. Still has an oilyness to it as well. Drinkability is superb. A very well crafted beer.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.53/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz single from Riley's, Batch 7061...an old favorite

appearance: for the style, this is perfection...Bell's stouts are all beautiful looking beers. this pours near black, with dark brown highlights...a beautiful and thick tan/khaki head with rim lacing

smell: coffee, sweet dark chocolate, toast malts...quite heavy on the espresso...incredibly impressive

taste: God, this stuff is even better than I remembered. This stuff is by far the cream of the milk/sweet stout class. Beautiful smooth dark chocolate on the tongue, nice coffee/espresso roastiness, some fresh hops, some dark fruit, some nice oats...just wonderful

mouthfeel: super creamy, medium bodied

drinkability: incredible

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Photo of jasonpeckins32
4.51/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This one is black, and I mean BLACK. No light or any other color shines through when held up to the light. There is a somewhat small, yet brilliant dark brown colored head. Maybe the darkest colored foam I've seen on a beer. The smells are strong of sweet roasted malts and maybe a hint of chocolate. Quite sweet scents. The taste is gordgeous. Quite possibly the perfect balance of roasted malts and hops with a nearly citrusy-sweet finish. Wonderful tasting beer. The mouthfeel is full-bodied and nice. The carbonation is present, which I was hoping for. The drinkability is nice as well. Its a sipper, but you should'nt get bored with it. Definitly worth a try if you find it on the shelf.

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Photo of maggotbrain
2.97/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

The beer is a deep black color with a thick tan head, which has receded to a thin film. Each sip produces rings of lace down the sides of the glass. Attractive.

The beer has an odd sour smell, sort of like old milk.

In terms of flavor, this beer is okay. It has an odd mix of roasted bitterness against a mildly sour background. The flavor is a bit thin. This beer looks bigger than it tastes.

The mouthfeel is about right for a stout, a bit thick with low carbonation.

As far as drinkability goes, this beer is not the best. The flavor isn’t engaging enough for me to want another, and I have a feeling that the thickness of this beer would get to me after a while.

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Photo of battlekow
3.99/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Landmark 1850.

Starring Bell's Kalamazoo Stout as...Blacula! Big, rocky, determined chocolate-colored head--about as good as a stout can look. Smells fairly caramelly and lactose-sweet, but not really strongly of anything. Tastes strongly of toffee, a roasted, buttery sweetness, with a little hint of rotten prunes and raisins underneath. Yeah, diacetyl+roasted+caramel=toffee. Mouthfeel is nice and full, creamy. Overall, easy to drink, but not especially interesting. The Java Stout is better.

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Photo of ypsifly
3.98/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz pored into a pint glass. The lot# is 6927 which was packaged on6-21-05 as per the Kalamazoo Brewing Co website.

Damn near black with a light brown head that hangs for a while and leaves sheets in its wake.

Nice aromas of dark roasted malts, cocoa, chocolate milk, and something a bit sour and funky that's not out of place, but rather adds character. The roasty notes are the backbone how this one smells.

Again, the roasted notes are strong in the taste. The cocoa is there again but coffee comes through with a balancing dose of dry hops. Solid. I would like a fuller mouth, but the drinkability doesn't suffer.

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Photo of bahumutx
4.45/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Very dark brown in color. Has nice creamy brown head that is dissipating slowly.

Smell: Carmel, chocolate and coffee are the most apparent smells. There is also a strong roasted malt smell.

Taste: The first taste that comes out of the beer is a roasted malt and coffee flavor. There is also a slight fruitiness to this beer. Flavors of caramel and a slight vanilla also comes trough. It finishes with a slight bitterness that reminds me of a good coffee. Delicious!!!

Mouthfeel: Nice and creamy Mouthfeel. Hard to put this beer down.

Drinkability: I think I could have a couple of these in a sitting.

Another great beer from the folks at Kalamazoo Brewing Company. This was my first second stout and I think that it is delicious. This will definitely be in my fridge during the winter months. Keep up the great work Kalamazoo Brewing!!!!

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Photo of nota
4.05/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black in color with creamy brown head that gave way to good amount of lacing. Intensive roasted malt, along with carmael, chocolate, coffee are the dominant flavors. Somewhat bitter which I liked. If you like stouts you will not find to many any better than this one.

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Photo of Backer2004
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is one great stout that I will not get the chance to sample much since I'm down here in North Carolina. Great mix of chocolate, caramel, and coffee smell and taste. Beautiful head and lacing. Smooth and milky-easy to finish and ask for more. Not too overwhelming, could really enjoy in the winter months.

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Photo of crzyd12
3.76/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bell's has produced a very good stout with this beer. I served myself a bottle of the Kalamazoo stout in a pint glass and initially I thought that I had made a poor pour but after a second or two a strong inch thick head formed. I did not measure the temperature of the beer at serving but my best guess is that it was below the reccomended serving temperature.

Held up to the light this beer is nearly jet black, hardly any light makes it throught the full apperance of this stout. All I could make out of the smell was that of a typical stout but, personally I have a weak sense of smell to begin with and one nostril was clogged at the time of tasting. I enjoyed the taste of this beer right off the bat.

A smoky flavor is complemented by the malts which came through as the dominant flavor. There was also a sweet aftertaste left in my mouth, so I would assume this beer is a sweet stout. Mouthfeel for this beer can be described as confident. Not brash or cocky nor weak or feeble. The beer lets you know it is there, in your mouth, but it doesn't overwhelm your senses. As the I drank more of the beer, and the temperature increased the flavors seemed to become stronger and bolder, as one would expect. This, however did not affect the drinkability at all, as it went down smooth for the entire twelve ounces. I would reccomend this to anyone looking for a good regional stout in the area.

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Photo of Px2GrafX
4.47/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

presentation: 12oz. bottle with the bell's logo and an illustration of a bald bearded man on the old paper colored label. a teaser by bell's is printed on the back and what i assume to be a batch number or something is 6314. nice, simple presentation.

appearance: pours a black no highlight with a tan 1 inch tight thick head into a tulip glass. head drops to a thin capper and sticks and laces very well.

smell: sweet with an extreme caramel aroma. there's also chocolate milk. excellent caramel mocha. i absolutely love the aroma of this beer!

taste: sweet chocolate and milk with hop bitters and espresso. the dominant caramel aromas unveil a caramel flavor as well. more chocolate milk. there's also some faint mollases and nuttiness. finishes semi-sweet/dry and lightly bitter.

mouthfeel: nice carbonation, smooth swallow and medium body. creamy but just a tad light for my tastes. good for this style, though.

drinkability: very drinkable stout. lightly dry and bitter finish entices for another delicious sweet start sip. alcohol is well hidden.

overall: tastes wonderful and the aroma is to die for! very balanced milk stout, but the roasted flavors and sweet malts take charge. many thanks to skyhand for this brew!

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Photo of Frozensoul327
4.71/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wow. This one is really amazing. Poured out to a really nice black color. Really, it was totally black, couldn't see through it.Perfect carbonation and an nice 2 inch head ( I poured it with the intent of creating a large head). Some minor lace was noted around the glass. Aromas of sweet cream and earth are present, albeit very light. The flavor is phenominal; smooth cocoa and chocolate, caramel, coffee bean, raw sugar, and an earthy roasted taste. Very well balanced. Not much of an aftertaste, but this brew went down with a very creamy mouthfeel, making the glass quite hard to put down. Finished like on a roasted nutty note. This is a top beer for me, I just wish I had bought more. Highly Recommended for all BA's.

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Photo of tjthresh
3.58/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle enjoyed at Waldo Pizza in KC,MO. Espresso, dark chocolate, and some hop aroma. Pitch black with a brown head. Some lace. Looks pretty think. Very sweet. Reminds me of like chewing on a coffee bean. Bitter enough to balance sweetness. Quite full bodied an silky smooth.

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Photo of twilight
4.48/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black as night with a dark brown head floating atop the beer. Aroma is of roastiness and this nice smoothness- I know, I'm surprised I can smell it. It smells good, like milk, a bit?

Taste is smooth and creamy- no, mouthfeel is creamy. Nevertheless, you get this nice roastybitterness in the aftertaste and very much a bit of that coffee/chocolate lingering. Tastes upfront are a bit of sourness, a bit of sweetness and this really nice creaminess, almost like a round feeling. Mouthfeel is good, bonus points for spilling over onto taste. Although this is a great beer, I'm not sure I could session on this one. Another excellent Bell's overall.

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Photo of burnstar
4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with a very small brown head that dissipates quickly leaving a small ring of foam around the edges that sticks to the glass. Smells fantastic - dark chocolate, caramel, and fruit. Taste is dominated by the roasted malt. There are definitely some chocolate, molasses, espresso flavors lurking here too. They aren't quite as noticable as the wonderful aroma would suggest but they do emerge as the brew warms. Very tastey but maybe slightly off balance - not quite as delicious as it's aroma would suggest. It's medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation and definitely not a chore to drink.

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Photo of Jacobob10
3.74/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Because of the ridiculously hot and humid weather here lately, I've been in the mood for lighter bodied beers. But, the temps have cooled down for a few days and I need to experience a good, solid stout. This one pours as black as midnight with a small dark head, but poor retention. Nice roasted nut aroma. Slight hops can be detected upon tasting, but nothing too hoppy, this was all about the malts. Black coffee overwhelmed the taste. Bitter aftertaste hurt the mouthfeel a bit, as well as the drinkability.

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Bell's Kalamazoo Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
90 out of 100 based on 1,496 ratings.