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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.
BA SCORE
87
very good

2,108 Ratings
THE BROS
87
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,108
Reviews: 952
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 10.62%
Wants: 49
Gots: 94 | 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: 2,108 | Reviews: 952 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of CityofBals
CityofBals

Illinois

2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

09-12-2013 18:50:44 | More by CityofBals
Photo of coldmeat23
coldmeat23

Oklahoma

2.8/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

GLASS: Imperial Pint Glass
TEMP: Cellared @ approx 50 degrees

Pours dark brown. Fluffy two-finger head of tan foam. Decent retention and pretty good lacing.

Nice roasted maltiness. Some coffee, chocolate and nuttiness. Slight notes of vanilla and hazelnut.

Roasted barley. Light chocolate and coffee notes. Toasted hazelnut.

Not quite hearty enough for my preferences. Medium bodied and slightly waterey tasting. Carbonation is too sharp, defeating any creaminess that might have helped this one out.

Would make an easy session brew, if only by it's inoffensiveness and lack of anything 'special'. I suppose, if I wanted to drink alot of these, I probably could.
Not my fave release from Bell's.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2009 05:01:21 | More by coldmeat23
Photo of jwinship83
jwinship83

Illinois

2.83/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- very dark brown with a head that is no more than a tiny bone white crown.

S- Not much here. very slight odor of lightly roasted malts, some chocolate, and maybe a bit of coffee.

T- roasted malt with a tiny coffee aftertaste and a little bit of chocolate. once again, not much here at all.

M- good carbonation and a light-medium body.

D- I probably wont ever consider buying this again. i had alot higher hopes for bells and this one was pretty disappointing.

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2008 04:00:24 | More by jwinship83
Photo of frankiepop
frankiepop

Pennsylvania

2.85/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I think this Porter violates the Porter rule, and that is a Porter comes with more smoothness and sweetness to the taste. This damn thing ends with some hoppy bitterness type flavor that just fails for me. Maybe its a coffee or hops to balance the products, but once again the Bell's company just doesn't meet my taste expectations. Thumbs down.

Would pair well with music from Earth Wind and Fire.

Serving type: bottle

02-15-2013 15:31:42 | More by frankiepop
Photo of Reaper16
Reaper16

Alabama

2.85/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

served from a 12oz. bottle into a tulip glass

Pours what initially appears to be very dark for a porter, but a hold up to light reveals it to be the color of a weak pot of Folger's. The head was nearly white, making for a nice contrast. It was generous at first, but quickly diminished to nothing, leaving minimal lacing behind.

A lot of coffee in the nose, some chocolate. Roasted malt & a touch of hops. Nothing surprising or unusual.

This was a disappointing porter in the mouth. Coffee dominates the flavor profile, but it was the taste of old, weak coffee. That this taste was coming from a cold beer made for the very-unpleasant "cold coffee" taste that overrides the hops and general maltiness.

This beer felt pretty darn thin for my tastes, with little carbonation, which only served to highlight the weaknesses in the taste. I suppose that this would be a sessionable porter, but not for me.

Overall, this beer has me mixing my tenses in this review and I don' care enough to sort them out. I'm used to enjoying nearly every Bell's product I drink; it turns out the a brewery that I love making one of my very favorite beer styles wasn't the recipe for success that I thought it was going to be.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2009 03:30:34 | More by Reaper16
Photo of TheBeerAlmanac
TheBeerAlmanac

Kentucky

2.88/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into a tulip

A: Pours a translucent dark brown and settles into a decently opaque black with a foamy tan head.

A: Aroma is light: faint roasted coffee, hints of chocolate, sweet malts, maybe even a touch of raisin.

T/M: Has a medium amount of carbonation and a light body. Flavors of mocha coffee mix with dark roasted malts and a slight bitterness similar to some nitrogen infused brews.

Not as full flavored as other, "better" porters, but decent nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2011 21:41:53 | More by TheBeerAlmanac
Photo of skrib09
skrib09

Missouri

2.88/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

poured out a coffee color with a rock-face like tan head. ok lacing.

smells roasty, i get some coffee flavors in there as well.

tastes more roasty than any porters or stouts i remember having recently. in the after taste i get some ground coffee grinds or coffee flavors. i get a "cold coffee" taste, maybe i should let the brew warm a little.

again with the coffee... a slight bitterness in the middle of my palate. a feeling of grainyness as well.

below average drinkability for me.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2009 01:55:24 | More by skrib09
Photo of Spica66
Spica66

Indiana

2.93/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown color, quickly disappating head. High carbonation.

S: Not very much nose at all to this beer. Even after it warmed up. Not like most Bell's beers.

T: Mild taste. Not "robust". Very strange. I have never had a Bell's beer seem so bland.

M: Watery, high carbonation. Felt like I was drinking a diet soda. Very disappointing!

D: This would be easy to drink, because there is not much to it at all.

This is the only beer from Bell's that I have ever had that did not meet expectations for the style.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2010 16:45:49 | More by Spica66
Photo of jucifer1818
jucifer1818

Florida

2.93/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Very very dark brown
Its lovely
4/5

Smell: not much smell at all....sadly. I expected more out of this beer
2/5

Taste: light caramel, light roasted barley, and just a little bi of coffee malt, with heavier hoppyness to roasty malts.

not too bad, but its not to my liking
I give this one a 3.5/5

Mouthfeel: way too watery for a porter. I give this one a 2.5/5

overall: idk, I didn't like this one much at all.
2.5/5

I expected a lot more from this brewery :(

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2012 03:18:29 | More by jucifer1818
Photo of RJBeverage
RJBeverage

Pennsylvania

2.95/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

This Bell's Porter was dark brown and had a tan head which went away. The smell was of roasted grains and tasted of toasted coffee beans and just toast. It wasn't a bad taste but not one I would do flips over. The mouthfeel was thin, much thinner than the taste or smell would suggest.

While I would drink this beer again, if it was the the only dark offering, there are many better porters that I would take gladly in it's place.

Serving type: bottle

11-02-2010 23:20:57 | More by RJBeverage
Photo of psinderson
psinderson

Pennsylvania

2.98/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass.

Appearance: Very dark, almost black. Thin light-caramel colored head with no distinct lacing. There are little floaters swirling around. Could be yeast remnants, but I'm unsure if Bell's bottle conditions.

Smell: Definitive chocolate aroma with a roasty background.

Taste: The chocolatey aroma did not carry over much to the taste. Mostly roasted grain and hop bitterness with a strange acidic "twang" that I didn't really like. There's a bit of coffee flavor aftertaste with maybe a hint of choclate. I like the roastiness, but was expecting more chocolate flavors and some greater complexity of flavors.

Mouthfeel: A good medium, but maybe a little thinner than expected. The acidic taste hurts the mouthfeel.

Drinkability: If it wasn't for the acid taste, this would go down better.

I'm beginning to wonder if the floaters have anything to do with the acid taste. Perhaps infection?

EDIT: After having read the other reviews, I really think my bottle was not fresh. I hope to review this again at some point.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2006 21:47:29 | More by psinderson
Photo of AlexanderSelby
AlexanderSelby

North Carolina

2.98/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Looks kind of cloudy when held up to the light as the amber edges seem like they are struggling for air. Smells of coffee, chocolate, sweetness and...just about every other dark flavor. Taste is a touch muddy. Just like the nose, there are plenty of things going on at once that are seeming to fight for top spot. Roasty flavors up front get dominated later by buttered bread sweet tones, and in the middle the battle for nut or dark chocolate is raging.

Overall, I think this porter tries too hard.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2011 21:33:37 | More by AlexanderSelby
Photo of magictacosinus
magictacosinus

California

2.99/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Poured into a shaker pint glass from a 12oz bottle. Bottling date is printed as "06/03/13."

Darkened in color, with nothing but reddish and brown tones circling the edges of the glass. An off-brown, 2-finger large head tops the glass, but soon dissipates to a modest ring overall. Can't tell if there's much carbonation on this, but it seems relatively balanced. Definitely not showy, but stands as a well made porter, if only a bit average in appearance.

The aroma consists of a predominant roasted barley character, with notes of coffee, dark chocolate, and dried dark fruits. Definitely not as complex as you might think, but not offensive by any means. The roasted character is very upfront, with earthy notes and floral flavors from the hops, and bittered coffee and chocolate flavor still follows, albeit a bit subtle. Not much else, but seems like a standard porter flavor with me - not as refined, nevertheless.

The flavor is awash with an astringent, biscuit-y roasted bitterness, as well as faded notes of old coffee beans and old chocolate. Tastes rather stale than vibrant and warm overall. There's a bit of dried fruitiness, but it's too subtle to make out any flavors overall at the finish. A little bit of brown sugar and spice linger as well, but the entire flavor profile is dominated by roasted barley and light coffee. Not very creamy or chewy, and slightly watery at the finish, which gives the impression of old chilled brewed coffee. This gets a little better as it warms up, but it's not very refreshing or comforting - I'd imagine it would be better on tap.

Another disappointment with Bell's - knowing what these guys can do, I realize this is a more crowd-pleasing, less diverse offering. Mind you, I love the taste of basic American porters, but this one feels too one-dimensional in the long run. Worth a try for Bell's completionists.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2013 03:08:44 | More by magictacosinus
Photo of jferrara35
jferrara35

Pennsylvania

3/5  rDev -22.3%

01-13-2014 17:13:02 | More by jferrara35
Photo of GRE680
GRE680

Michigan

3/5  rDev -22.3%

04-20-2013 22:30:09 | More by GRE680
Photo of mtparty37
mtparty37

Illinois

3/5  rDev -22.3%

01-25-2012 19:32:29 | More by mtparty37
Photo of beergorrilla
beergorrilla

Michigan

3/5  rDev -22.3%

01-02-2013 10:08:28 | More by beergorrilla
Photo of oso
oso

Illinois

3/5  rDev -22.3%

03-22-2014 04:55:38 | More by oso
Photo of AndyTaylor
AndyTaylor

North Carolina

3/5  rDev -22.3%

02-13-2012 23:44:06 | More by AndyTaylor
Photo of DubCo21
DubCo21

Virginia

3/5  rDev -22.3%

04-16-2014 02:42:57 | More by DubCo21
Photo of Markus98
Markus98

Michigan

3/5  rDev -22.3%

04-21-2014 21:31:48 | More by Markus98
Photo of ThatsThatDude
ThatsThatDude

New York

3/5  rDev -22.3%

02-10-2014 21:32:41 | More by ThatsThatDude
Photo of J2t645
J2t645

Michigan

3/5  rDev -22.3%

02-27-2014 03:13:39 | More by J2t645
Photo of CU570M
CU570M

Washington

3/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance was dark as night. Light tan foam lingers around the edge of the glass the whole time. Alcoholic kind of smell along with hints of malted barley. Same dark malted barley taste. Rich! Taste is average for a dark beer. Mouthfeel is nice with smooth low carbonation. Not bad, but not great either.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2007 19:14:46 | More by CU570M
Photo of BrewtalHonesty
BrewtalHonesty

Michigan

3/5  rDev -22.3%

05-04-2014 14:00:52 | More by BrewtalHonesty
Bell's Porter from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
87 out of 100 based on 2,108 ratings.