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Bell's Porter - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Bell's PorterBell's Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

2,104 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,104
Reviews: 952
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 10.62%
Wants: 49
Gots: 92 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Mitchster on 02-06-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,104 | Reviews: 952 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of shuajw


4/5  rDev +3.6%

11-14-2011 14:09:52 | More by shuajw
Photo of mater


3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

11-14-2011 12:15:59 | More by mater
Photo of Jspriest


4/5  rDev +3.6%

11-14-2011 07:32:26 | More by Jspriest
Photo of tbeq00


4/5  rDev +3.6%

11-14-2011 06:50:08 | More by tbeq00
Photo of Thedaver4220


4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an almost black with a small tan head. It smells of roasted coffee with hints of chocolate. Smooth brew and very easy drinking with roasted chocolate after taste that doesn't linger in your mouth. Very nice porter all in all. I like Bells and this lived up to my expectations.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2011 06:28:00 | More by Thedaver4220
Photo of rundocrun


4.4/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours very dark brown--almost black. Very few highlights, even when held to the light. Looks more like a stout to me! Has a finger of dark tan head with tight bubbles and decent retention. No lacing.

S - Lots of caramel and rich, smooth coffee. Hints of toasted bread and very mild fruity esters.

T - Sweet and silky up front. I'm immediately hit with a smooth, voluminous malt body and a sharper roasted espresso flavor. A subtle and pleasing tang hits the sides of my tongue as the espresso bitterness continues and melds with very earthy hop flavors. The smooth, toasty malt predominates through the finish and mixes nicely with notes of bitter cocoa.

M - Perfect for a porter. I'd say this is somewhere between thin and medium-bodied, but leaning toward the latter. Carbonation is present, but only a minor player--lending to the overall smoothness of the beer. The finish is velvety smooth and sweet making for one damn-quaffable brew.

Overall-Excellent, excellent porter. This will be joining my regular lineup for sure.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2011 03:26:41 | More by rundocrun
Photo of madeofsteel


3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured into a pint glass, it pours black, except on the edges where a little light is able to get through it seems to be dark brown. Almost non-existent head, dark tan ringlet. Little lacing to speak of.

S - Very warm roasted malts, and possibly molasses? Kind of sweet smelling.

T - Very roasty, but also has a fairly prominent licorice flavor. Molasses is also present, but sort of takes a backseat to the licorice. Normally I don't like licorice flavorings, but the bitter it lends to this beer balances it out quite nicely.

M - Kind of dry finish, minimal carbonation.

O - Bell's rarely disappoints me, and this is no exception. I can see coming back to this beer, especially during the winter.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2011 03:20:30 | More by madeofsteel
Photo of BennyL1


3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 4/29/11 and poured into a NB globe.

Bell's Porter pours a deep black with a very slim tan head. Traces of lacing are left on the glass.

Aroma is mostly of roasted malts, maybe a touch of burnt coffee. Pretty standard but solid.

A bit of sweetness up front but taste is roasty as well with a good amount of malt. Hints of dark chocolate too.

Smooth bodied, medium carbonation.

Enjoyable and drinkable porter. There are probably some better ones out there but solid all around.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2011 03:21:30 | More by BennyL1
Photo of claytri


4.55/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The beer poured a pleasant black with a nice tan head. The aroma was of caramel malt and a delightful hint of cherry. The taste was of toasty caramel malt and tart cherry. The feel was medium and dry. This was an excellent and interesting beer, combining toasted malt and tart flavors to give a unique porter experience.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2011 11:22:59 | More by claytri
Photo of brown2cu


4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a seemingly black but when light passes through it, hints of ruby are present. There was initially a half finger of head but it quickly dissipated into a ring that sticks around; no lacing.

S: The nose is primarily chocolate not a lot of complexity.

T: Again, primarily chocolate. There is a pleasent hop bitterness that balances out the profile.

M: perfect balance! nice and smoothe

O: Really solid example of a porter. Nothing over the top but a wonderful brew nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2011 02:34:26 | More by brown2cu
Photo of oline73


3.55/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Pours very dark brown with some red coming through when light hits the edges. There is a half finger of tan head that goes away quickly.

Smell: Roasty with hints of coffee and some dark chocolate. There is a very mild malty sweetness in there as well.

Taste: Roast up front, a nice amount of bitterness. Mild malt sweetness with some hops showing up in the finish to mingle with the roast.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with intensely tingly carbonation and a slightly dry finish.

Overall: This is a solid porter. I'm not sure I'll pick this one up again, but I might.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2011 02:23:22 | More by oline73
Photo of chickenflea


3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark mahogany brown. The tan head is fairly large, lasts a while and leaves broken sheets of lace on the glass. The nose is of roasted black malt, dark chocolate, vanilla and dark red wine. So far, so good.

The flavor, like the aroma, is considerably roasted malty with lovely bittersweet chocolate notes. Notes of cordial cherries are present as well, but chocolate shares equal billing.

There's also a restrained hoppiness that balances the finish which is long and increasingly bitter, especially as the beer warms. Firm, not quite full body with a lively carbonation. Good mouthfeel overall; a little fizzy for a porter, but it is tolerable.

Bell's Porter is a quality brew like all their offerings. It's carbonation sets it apart from others and its noticeable hoppiness sets it apart from the others. These qualities neither detract of add to the quality; they just make it uniques.

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2011 22:16:03 | More by chickenflea
Photo of littlelorib


4.43/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Again, a recommendation for a porter from the sales clerk was this porter from Bell's.

Nearly black in appearance with a tan head of less than an inch. The slowly dissipating head left lacing on the glass and surface of the beer.

My mouth started salivating at the smell. Hints of coffee and chocolate along with a floral scent and i'm already expecting a balanced beer.

Chocolate at the front of the taste with some coffee bitterness following. I'm in heaven. Mouth feel showed a medium body.

Overall a very good beer. Not too alcoholic and very pleasant. I'm already looking forward to my next one.

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2011 00:17:05 | More by littlelorib
Photo of isualum12


4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bell I have wanted to try a Bell's for a while. Well I don't see it here in Boise Idaho. I ended up getting this beer via a trade.

appearance: pours nice but didn't roll out much head like I wanted to see.

Smell: Smells good. Classic stout with a little whiskey and a little chocolate.

Taste: This was nice but had an odd roll of the tounge. I enjoyed this taste overall though.

Mouthfeel was great

Overall I liked this stout. It wouldn't rank in my top 5 stouts but it is good.

I am glad I got my hands on a Bells

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2011 03:39:12 | More by isualum12
Photo of tlazaroff


3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Light mocha head tops a nice dark brown ale sporting ruby highlights and nice lacing.

S: Immediately I get a nice robust slightly roasted chocolate scent. Slightly astringent and bitter but no coffee.

T: I found the coffee! It's in the flavor! Its completely not astringent at all, but rather very roasty. The closest thing I could equate this to would be eating a chocolate covered espresso bean. There is a slight sweetness and then the punch of big roast that hits you when you finally bite into the bean.

M: Feels a tad thin, I'd say its light-medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Overall not bad, but could benefit from a little more body.

D: This drinks nicely, it's smooth and the alcohol is in a range that isn't session able, but it won't prevent me from drinking a few of these.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2011 01:03:43 | More by tlazaroff
Photo of agomega


3.13/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle served in a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a black color with a huge light tan head. Tons of lacing left behind.

Smell: Smell is a little faint. What smell there is consists of roasted aromas and a faint hint of chocolate.

Taste: Some roasted flavors - but in general it is kind of like the smell - just not much there. Overall the flavor is fairly blah and kind of disappointing. It is almost a watery flavor - not really much bitterness or sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Medium body.

Overall: Only a so-so porter. It could be that I just got a bad bottle. The date was 8/30/11 so it shouldn't be past its prime. However, for now I will be sticking with Founders Porter which I enjoyed much more.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2011 00:09:57 | More by agomega
Photo of tykees88


3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a- A little lightly colored black brown here. Not a very great head or lacing though. But still looks nice.

s- Smells roasty nice. real nice. There is a super present hop aroma. I like where this is going.

t- A nice coffee up front flavor. Followed by a floral hop flavor. The roasted malts are very nice as well. A tasty porter.

m-Medium to lighter bodied porter. I am becoming more and more fond of this style

o-very nice very drinkable. should be a go to porter at my place now.

Serving type: on-tap

10-13-2011 00:07:55 | More by tykees88
Photo of Ehrnstrom


3.63/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

appearance: dark pour, tan head. not quite the deep black of a stout, but a rich, glossy dark brown. good lacing.

smell: malt character to the smell. nothing too overwhelming.

taste: malt character comes through, but less roasted than for a stout. creamy texture allows the beer to be both drinkable and not too watery. aftertaste is modestly sweet, like bitter dark chocolate.

mouthfeel: smooth, refreshing even for a porter

overall: I've gone back and forth with Bell's Porter for a few years, but this latest bottle is much better than I remember. Definitely a great 6 pack to try.

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2011 01:52:14 | More by Ehrnstrom
Photo of FanofHefe


4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on 8/04/11. Pours a deep brown color, nearly black, with very little light getting through. Small tan head that leaves a very small amount of lacing.

A bit of a sweet aroma for a Porter, but I like it. Milk chocolate, coffee, and a bit of roasted malt. Not much else going on here but a good set up.

The taste is not too far off from the aroma, with a good, smooth, chocolate flavor blending very well with the dark malt. Less coffee flavor than I would have expected but it's still there, providing just a touch of bitterness.

Light mouthfeel but it's not too distracting. Overall, a solid Porter and one that could be enjoyed regularly.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2011 23:36:32 | More by FanofHefe
Photo of ehammond1

4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (2011)

Acquired via trade
Thanks sendsilk!

Dark brown with a thin light brown head. Not a huge amount of stick to the glass.

Divine, sweet yet balanced, aroma. There's lots of milk chocolate aromas pushing through, especially as the beer warms. This is balanced nicely by roasted malts, a touch of coffee, and some earthy and even piney hops. Very nice, full, complete aroma.

More sweet than bitter in flavor, though this beer has been sitting around for about 8 months now. The chocolate and roast shine, creating a balanced, drinkable porter. A classic.

Thin to medium bodied.

A classic porter. I would love to have this in my fridge at all times.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2011 22:56:31 | More by ehammond1
Photo of RocPorterFanatic


4.38/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours nice rich opaque brown with garnet around the edges. Rich creamy head caps this beauty off.
S - First aroma is of roasted nuts, cocoa, a bit of tobacco.
T - Rich and roasty, a hint of milk chocolate, even a hint of fig.
M - Smooth and creamy.
O - Amazing beer, staple in my fridge. Everyone needs to try this.

Serving type: bottle

09-29-2011 22:24:12 | More by RocPorterFanatic
Photo of xnicknj


3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on tap at khyber in philly

Pours an opaque brown color with a beige head, retains pretty well with some filmy notes resting on top and some patchy lacing on the glass.

Plenty of roasty malt in the nose with nuts and sweetness. Hints of caramel and coffee beans with chocolate. Faint hops as well.

Slightly bitter up front with a blast of roasted malts. Pleasant wave of coffee beans with lighter chocolate notes. Bready malt with roasted tones and decent sweetness. Finishes a little bitter and sweet.

Medium body, nice carbonation, chewy and slightly dry on the tongue. Drinks nicely with a solid balance between coffee and malt, another hit from Bells.

Serving type: on-tap

09-29-2011 05:12:19 | More by xnicknj
Photo of paperbackfoster


3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - A dark chocolate pour with a surprisingly active one finger head. It stays foamy, leaving a heavy retention.

S - Dark malts with a sharp, not quite burnt roast character. Plenty of coffee notes. There’s a dark sweetness, like black currant or dark cherry.

T - Dark caramel and toffee notes. The coffee is more of a quality than a flavor - it’s a vehicle for other flavors, like the roast and dark fruit notes. This is a sweeter porter, as opposed to smoky. Nicely hopped, creamy finish.

M - A little on the thin side. Given the sweeter flavors, I think a little bit of zing from higher carbonation could do it some favors. Still, not at all bad.

Overall: Definitely a session porter, but I’m inclined to like it. It goes down easy and keeps the palette light without lacking. It’s not a beer that really develops with time or temperature.. It’ll be the same quaff from first sip to last, and I imagine from beginning to end of a session. Take that as a pro or con.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2011 23:11:44 | More by paperbackfoster
Photo of voyageurs60


2.5/5  rDev -35.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

As part of a "Tap Takeover" by Bell's at the Harris Grill during Pittsburgh's Big Pour Week this porter was tapped. Visited the venue 1 week later and it was still on tap.

The pour was delivered to the table with 1/2" head in a shaker pint glass. Color was black as I would expect from a porter. Smell was a nice caramel. Taste was disappointing. No smokey, carmamel, coffee flavors at all. Very thin mouthfeel. Very little to no aftertaste.

Overall impression, a very forgettable beer. If this were my only choice against the big brewers, I would be drinking water instead.

Serving type: on-tap

09-18-2011 00:45:19 | More by voyageurs60
Photo of WeedKing4

Ontario (Canada)

3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark black with a decent amount of caramal like foam. Tastes of slight dark roasted malts, with a very faint chocolate like finish. The mouthfeel could be a bit thicker, but its a decent session porter overall. Would have no problem having this as a go to beer if it was available here.

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2011 06:25:05 | More by WeedKing4
Bell's Porter from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
87 out of 100 based on 2,104 ratings.