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Bell's Pale Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Bell's Pale AleBell's Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,174 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,174
Reviews: 620
rAvg: 3.41
pDev: 14.66%
Wants: 21
Gots: 53 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

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

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,174 | Reviews: 620 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of chilidog
3.85/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One nice Bell. It pours a hazy dirty gold with a nice white inch high head with plenty of lace. The aroma is soft floral hop. The taste is also soft, crisp, floral citric with a hop note that sticks around in the mouthfeel. A buttery oil feel coats the mouth while the final finish is abit dry. A nice, easy drink'n Bells. Great on a hot day or with a meal.

Photo of jimdkc
3.05/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Hazy yellow pour... looks almost like a wheat beer. Small white head leaves random small patches of lace. Smell starts similar to a wheat beer, too... grainy with a bit of lemon, but followed by floral hops. Taste is dominated by piney hops with a little grapefruit bitterness. Any malt flavor gets steamrollered by the hops... not very balanced! Medium body. Kind of middle-of-the-road: hop-haters would think this is too hoppy, and hop-heads will want more hops!

Photo of pezoids
3.74/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This poured a hazy pale yellow with plenty of suspended particulates and fine static bubbles. The aroma gives off a grainy sourness along with something like a sweet lemon cough drop. A pleasant yeastiness rises to meet the nose.

The taste is light and flavorful. A very soft floral hop bitterness laps over the tongue and remains in the back of the throat. Solid body of pale malt sweetness is evident. This beer grows on you. I wasn’t that impressed at first, but am enjoying it more as I drink. Butter candy texture starts to come through as the beer warms up.

A nice pale ale. Nice blend of bitter soft hops and sweet malts and has a candy like quality about it.

Photo of GuinnessSmurf
3.97/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My first beer of the evening and anxiously anticipating it. Something there is about a nice bitter beer after an air flight. Arrived in my glass as the last of the head melted into the golden yellow beer. The head that remained did a good job clinging onto my glass - some stayed on the glass from my first sip. Flavor is a nice balance of sweet (mandarine oranges) and hops with a refreshing bitter finish.

Photo of merlin48
3.77/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, golden yellow color, with a small, offwhite, frothy head that is billowy, and retains well. Some nice sheet lacing is noted. Body has an odd appearance, as if bubbles are in suspended animation. Actually, closer examination reveals these to be "floaties", and they're everywhere. A few bubbles fight through the mess, as they surge to the top. Aroma is lemonrind, with some peppery spice. No floral hops are noted, in spite of the label's claims. Carbonation seems weak for style, but some herbal hops bite the tongue. Floral hops(lavender) show up in the taste, as well, but it's pine cone that runs the flavor profile. This has a fresh green hoppiness that I like, and the finish is dry and bitter.
Very flavorful, overall, with pine cone hop flavor obliterating the pale malt. I enjoyed this quite a bit, but found all the "floaties" a bit disconcerting.

Photo of silenius
2.22/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Geez, why did I buy a whole six pack of this before trying out one first!?!?

Bell's is so good with anything but pale ale it seems. I was disappointed with their Third Coast and I'm disappointed with this beer.

The beer pours with a short-lived head and so many yeasty floaties that at first I thought they were carbonation bubbles in the glass. The beer itself is a light brass.

I smell barnyard on the nose and some citric hops. I don't find barnyard offensive since I drink enought Cotes-du-Rhone to find it "interesting."

The taste is underwhelming with mostly an off-bitter component that fails to satisfy.

Mouthfeel is fine, nothing notable about it really.

I certainly won't be buying another one of these. This is better than, say, Coors, but that's about all the compliment I can give it.

Photo of Bierguy5
3.27/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours a very pale straw/golden color with a white foamy head. There was some lace throughout on the sides of the glass. Smells slightly grassy, with a hint of grapefruit also. Tastes slightly sweet, with some hop bitterness mainly citrusy tasting. This was pretty drinkable, but overall not very impressive. There didn't seem to be very much malt character in this brew, and the hops did not taste very fresh. I guess this was an ok beer. I will stick to stouts from Bell's.

Photo of yankeeheel
3.5/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a murky light blonde with a small whit ehead. I tried to keep the yeasties at bay but I was overrun.

Smells quite tart with a fair amount of lemony hop citrus.

Tastes very hoppy. Just a hint of malt and bam, you're up to your oropharynx in hops. This to me is bordering on IPA territory. Finishes with a bit of mouth puckering twang.

Mouthfeel is moderate and carbonation is acceptable.

Pretty drinkable, but it's not really my thing.

Photo of stewart124
3.58/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Blonde ale with a creamy white head topping it off. Nice floral aroma along with a spicey note of hops. The spices standout and are quite noticable without being overpowering. The taste is again a nice blend of floral and spicey hops with a dry pale malt bite. Very good taste. The aftertaste is a lingering spice that remains tasty. Not an exceptional beer but still a one to enjoy.

Photo of TastyTaste
3.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazy gold color, with a big white head that quickly dissapears. Smells of hops, but nothing that strong. This is a pale ale that is not nearly strong enough for my tastes, I need more hops. Not that bad, but nothing to write home about. Maybe it's because I just had chili, who knows

Photo of ngandhi
3.66/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

American wheat nose. Lightly citric taste. Calm bitter orange rind (and pith) finish. Touch of sweetness, yeast (very minimal esters), and a hint of pilsenery grain. A great session ale with some very interesting qualities. At times, you can see where Amber, Oberon, and Two Hearted (there's an afterthought of roses to this brew) come from.

Relax, relax.

Photo of beergeek279
3.48/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in the 12 oz. bottle. The color is golden, with a bit of white head. The smell is very slightly hoppy. The taste is a very dry hoppiness, with a slightly off bitterness in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is smooth. Drinkability-wise, could have a few.

Not bad, but defnitely not amongst Bell's best. Still, a decent if uneventtul pale ale, and I'd probably have one again.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.22/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy golden yellow tone with a vibrant white two finger sized head, leaving fine scattered lacing nice appearance. Aroma: Grapefruit in nature with underlying floral, spiced hops mild grassy malt notes very mellow but nice. Taste: Up front bitter with a bread malt tone, a bit one dimensional with the upfront zesty bitterness but overall a decent brew from Bell's. Mouthfeel: Is medium to light bodied steady carbonation, a bit oily from the hop resins. Drinkability: Not overly impressed by this pale golden ale from Bell's it's alright just not something I would crave.

Photo of Ellbert
3.91/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The appearance wasn't that good for this brew. It wasn't just couldy it had a bunch of chunks from the yeast floating in it. it was like a speckeled yellow wonderland. It may have been my pour but I made sure to be delicate in my pour, especially since it was my first beer of the night.

The smell was very good and hoppy.

The tast was the same as the smell. Very good.

The mouthfeel was good, nice and thick with a very good amount of carbonation.

Very drinkable, especially at 5.0, another please.

Photo of Gusler
3.92/5  rDev +15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a somewhat nebulous golden yellow with a persistent frothy white head that erodes and leaves behind a fine sheet of lace. Sweet and kind of biscuit like aroma at the front, crisp, fresh and lightly hop floral, appealing this nose, sweet malt start, top moderate in body. Finish is pesky in its acidity; hops are delightful in their muted presence with the aftertaste dry and lingering. I certainly wish we had a local source for this great breweries beer, maybe I need to lobby the distributors here more than I already do.

Photo of ManekiNeko
3.53/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served chilled from a bottle at a Bell's beer tasting held at the Brickskeller. Approx. a 4 ox sample, but I finished off my girlfriend's cup.

Appearance: Hazy honey color with a frothy white head. Well carbonated, helped keep a small film of bubbles at the top of the beer. Great lacing, and on plastic no less.

Smell: Sweet pale malt with some herby/grassy hops on the background. Slightly grainy smell.

Taste: Pale malt sweetness with some pronounced grassy hops on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium in body, slightly astringent.

Drinkablity: Hops on the taste, but not the nose. A nice little beer. Great prelude of what was to come.

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.44/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 12 ouncer, long neck brown bottle. The single obverse main label is a Brown Café ‘orange’ color intended to imitate a wall, which in turn has an arched window that reveals a Monk swinging on a rope. No freshness date or strength listed.

Appearance: This immediately reminded me of a Belgium Tripel. Hazy golden color, lots of streamers fill the Goblet and rise to the underside of a frothy, pillow like bleach white head. Immense carbonation lends excellent conditioning to the beer & a swirl soon induces a chaotic mass of small bubbles, that soon settle down into an ordered “whish” that continue to support the velvety smooth head. Very good appearance!

Nose: I expected more spices here, but they were very restrained. In fact the nose as a whole was very restrained - Shame. Some toasted Pale Malts and a light hoppiness, but I did not get much else.

Taste: Slightly Bitter, Slightly Citric, Slight Hoppiness, Slight Spices –
- Just too many “Slights” for me, don’t get me wrong this is a quality made brew, which drinks well, but it is just far too restrained to convince me to open my wallet to part with the green stuff. Sure it’s only 5.0%, but there again, so are many tasty UK Cask beers. Needs an injection of strength or elevation in the taste department.

Mouthfeel: It’s a 3.5, mainly because there is a very nice lingering bitterness with a feint spicy feel, which appeals to me. The body is average.

Drinkability: Well, this is a palatable beer, which is easily imbibed, but I feel as though I am always searching for the tastes to break through at any time. With its Belgium Tripel looks and so many hints at Spices, Hops and Pale Malts that are basically too weak to ever fulfill my expectations. In turn, this leads to a beer that is always “wanting”. It is basically a one bottle every now and again type of beer - rather than a session beer.

Overall: A decent drinking beer, more of a Pale Tripel Ale to me, but I wish it had a little more in the taste department, especially spicy hops, it wouldn’t hurt at all if it had.

Thanks to FM for supplying this one, much appreciated.

Photo of maxpower
3.8/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy and hazy light orange color, has a decent white creamy head that leaves a sticky lacing in my glass, light citrus and bready aroma. Medium body with a creamy mouthfeel, flavors of bread, butterscotch and grapefruit, finishes clean with a light bitterness.

Photo of AtLagerHeads
3.65/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Bell's Pale Ale was disappointing in appearance. Although the body was a clear light amber/gold the head was less than one finger high anf the lacing was virtually nil. The nose was light but gave botha small hop sense and then a stroger malt backbone was revealed as the brew warmed. The taste was OK, but not impressive, being bitter without a nice cirtrus sense nor other discernible flavor. The feel was good and the drinkability was quite obvious although more from the feel than the flavor.

Photo of budgood1
3.63/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours out a very cloudy and very pale straw yellow....thick and rocky head....lots of lace after the fact. yummy aroma of heavy juicy fruit hops. big hop bitterness in the taste. a sparingly light malt body...yeast kicking in. as far as being bitter...this is a big and bold pale ale....not sure what all the hating is about in some of the reviews. seems to me that this brew is all about the hops and the zesty bitterness that accompanies it. bitter from start to finish...it could use a little more malt balance....not the best pale ale i've tasted, but if you like your hops citrusy and bitter to boot...this bell's is a good choice. i liked it a lot!

thanks go out to feloniousmonk for the sample.

Photo of cerevisiaephilus
3.77/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew was a little disapointing, I had heard so much about Bells, I guess I should have got one of their bigger beers. It was awfully pale in color. The smell was nice, with the hops sneaking out to say hello. The hops come through in the taste as well, with a nice yeasty flavor to balance it out nicely. Bottle conditioned too, which I thought was a little odd for such a light beer, but I guess SN pale is as well.

Photo of dmarch
3.92/5  rDev +15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pale golden-orange in color with a white head that diminishes into a thin lace. Lots of sediment floating around in the glass (ok, so I can't pour. I won't blame them for that.) Lots of citrusy hops in the aroma, but not overpowering. The taste is citrusy and yeasty. I didn't expect all the yeast flavors from a pale ale, but it still tastes good so I'm not complaining.

Photo of indiapaleale
4.2/5  rDev +23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very drinkable, smooth and perfectly hopped pale ale. It does not jump out as too hoppy and has a clean light orangish color to it. The light citrusy cents blend well with the hops. Smooth and not too carbonated but enough to be refreshing. Bells does a great job with their beers and the Pale is no exception.

Photo of Morris729
4.15/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden orange color with a tall pillowy white head that leaves spider webs of lace across the glass as it slowy dissipates. Very aromatic with notes of floral hops, citrus zest, and a touch of spice. Taste is dominated by bitter grapefruit rind hops with some biscuity malts in the background. As the beer warms, some notes of grain husks become apparent. Solid mouthfeel. This was a nice pale ale and good choice as a session beer. Just don’t let it get too warm or the grain tannins become overpowering. Thanks to feloniousmonk for the sample!

Photo of Bruiser81
3.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Color was a murky orange-gold color with a small white head which was quick to dissipate. Minimal lacing but not totally void of decoration.
Smell consisted of citrus, grass/hay, and floral hops. It seemed as though some alcohol was trying to peek through but was having a tough time.
Taste started out with a minute amount of pale malt followed by a big hops bitterness. I've had pale ales that were big on hops but not bitter, this one was the opposite. There was not a strong hop flavor just a large amount of bitterness. A little bit of grapefruit was discernable amidst all that bitterness but not much else. It wasn't bad just different from what I'm used to in a pale ale.
Sharp mouthfeel especially in the back of the throat. A pretty drinkable beer overall.

Bell's Pale Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
78 out of 100 based on 1,174 ratings.