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

Bell's Expedition StoutBell's Expedition Stout

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

4,114 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 4114
Reviews: 1856
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 11.11%


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

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Expedition Stout offers immensely complex flavors crafted specifically with vintage aging in mind, as its profile will continue to mature and develop over the years. A huge malt body is matched to a heady blend of chocolate, dark fruits, and other aromas. Intensely bitter in its early months, the flavors will slowly meld and grow in depth as the beer ages.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-10-2002)
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Ratings: 4,114 | Reviews: 1,856 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of FLima
FLima

Brazil

4.01/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pitch black not allowing any light to go through with a brown thin head.
Interesting aroma with notes of smoke, dark fruits and chocolate.
Bold fruity flavor with notes of Khalua liquor, dark fruits, resin, pine, dark chocolate brownies, light coffee, vanilla and charred wood. Dry aftertaste with strong roasted and smoky notes.
Full body with low carbonation. Alcohol of 10.5% abv is really not there.
Bold, malty and hoppy imperial Stout. A bit too sweet decreasing its potential drinkability.

Serving type: on-tap

02-26-2014 22:09:37 | More by FLima
Photo of Darkmagus82
Darkmagus82

Virginia

4.28/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served on tap in a 10 oz chalice glass

Appearance – Served a nearly pitch black color with a one finger tan colored head. The head fades rather fast leaving only a moderate level of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma was dark and roasty with lots of roasted malt, chocolate malt and coffee aromas. The chocolate is a mix of both bitter cocoa and sweet milk chocolate with aromas of vanilla and caramel adding to the milk chocolate sweet smell. Mixed with these aromas is a little bit of smoke and hop as well as some lighter notes of darker fruits giving a rather roasted and sweet aroma overall.

Taste – The taste begins with a nice roasted malt flavor with lots of chocolate and coffee upfront. The chocolate starts out a little more on the roasted/cocoa side but gains a sweetness as vanilla, milk and caramel come to the tongue. While a more milk chocolate flavor develops more toward the middle it is balanced by an increase in the coffee bitterness of the brew. Toward the end the sweeter flavors fade more while the coffee remains the same. With a lighter earthy and herbal hop flavor coming to the tongue at the end, along with a light alcohol flavor that comes to the tongue at the end, a nice roasted and moderately sweet and bitter (of coffee and hop) flavor is left to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the slightly thicker and quite creamy side with a carbonation level that was rather average. The feel of this one was quite nice and very appropriate and fitting for the roasted flavors and big feel of the brew.

Overall - A very delicious imperial with a good blend of roasted malt flavors, sweetness, a tad of booziness, and a nice bitter hop and coffee flavor mixed within. Definitely one to try.

Serving type: on-tap

07-09-2013 00:09:43 | More by Darkmagus82
Photo of downeyj4
downeyj4

Michigan

4.65/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is probably one of my favorite imperial stouts. It really has everything that you would want in an imperial stout, but isn't thick like oil sludge. All of the flavors balance out well. It has a great amount of roastiness and bitterness, but still finishes nicely. It surprised me when I found out the ABV, or else I would've had a few more pints.

Serving type: on-tap

04-29-2013 05:31:49 | More by downeyj4
Photo of LCB_Hostage
LCB_Hostage

Pennsylvania

2.99/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Came across this on the beer menu at a restaurant last night and was excited to give it a try. Bell's distribution around us is spotty at best, but I did see a couple Six-packs of this in a bottle shop recently and almost picked one up. The $20 price tag was a bit high for the moment, though so I held off. Now very glad that I did.

Served on tap into a tulip

A: Deep, dark black. Little to no head by the time it arrived at the table. No lacing to speak of.

S: Less than I would have expected. Alcohol was very present as was roasted grains and some sweet fruit. A bit of chocolate lingered, too.

T: Again, not quite what I was anticipating. Almost cloyingly sweet and relatively smooth upfront with some alcohol warming on the way down, but not that much given the 10%+ ABV. I guess I'd say this was very well balanced, because no individual flavor stood out (unless you consider sugary sweetness a flavor). It did leave a trace of rather unpleasant bitterness on the back of the tongue -- not in a hoppy way, but more in a "something burnt" way.

M: The only word I could think of as I was drinking this was "oily." I expected a syrupy character from a RIS, but this just coated everything and wouldn't come off.

O: I guess I'm just not in Bell's target audience. This is the second highly acclaimed Bell's beer (the other being 2-hearted) that seem seriously over-hyped to me. This wasn't a bad beer by any circumstances, but neither was it something that lived up to its reputation or pricetag. I know that "balance" is supposed to be a sign of superior brewing skill, but to me, if NOTHING stands out about a beer, it's balanced to the point of being boring. And I would have to say that for me, Expedition Stout was an $8 glass of Meh. Oh well, different brews for different crews.

Serving type: on-tap

03-28-2013 15:32:53 | More by LCB_Hostage
Photo of Maxwell
Maxwell

Massachusetts

4.19/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours dark and sludgy, like motor oil. A head forms of dark tan, almost chocolate brown, tiny bubbles that are very closely knit together and fade away quick, as might be expected at 10.5% alcohol. The beer’s lacing is nearly nonexistent due to the alcohol, but does live a few thin spots and some slight legs from the alcohol. The beer’s body is too dark to properly gauge. On the nose, this beer is thick with raisiny and plum malts, almost quad-like in intensity. Beneath the raisin sits a healthy cocoa smell that plays beside roasted coffee malts and thick creamy dark chocolate. The smell is boozy sweet, and stings the nostrils just enough to let us know there is thick sweet alcohol in this. On the tongue, the beer tastes thickly of bitter coffee roast with a light sweetness at the back of the tongue. The beer’s flavors begin with chewy thick almost raisiny sweet malts that move swiftly into chocolate and then into thick roasted smoky malts that bring lovely RIS flavors. The sweet malts briefly touch on a cloying level of sweetness, but are swiftly washed away by the bitter roast of the malts. The finish is fat with roasted coffee malts, char, and a slight sweet touch of raisin and dark fruit. The aftertaste is burnt char and light chocolate flavors. The alcohol of this beer, while briefly present with the cloying sweetness, is actually nicely hidden, and helps to mellow the bitter roast of the malts. In the mouth, the beer feels thick and chewy in body. The carbonation is light and nearly nonexistent on the tongue, leaving a thick creamy, velvet feel on the tongue. The mouth is left charred dry with saliva on the sides of the tongue from the light but not noticeable acidity. Overall, this is a lovely RIS. Great big flavors that are not overdoing it, and certainly seem ready to mellow into beautiful things with age. The raisiny sweetness is a little off putting at first, but works beautifully to prepare the tongue for the bitter roast of the middle and finish of the flavor. I’m excited to have tried this beer, and excited to see what it does with age. According to Bell’s this is one of the earliest examples of an American RIS, and I believe they did it beautifully. Try this beer for sure, and age it too, my bottle was a little less more than half a year old.

Serving type: on-tap

03-27-2013 20:21:53 | More by Maxwell
Photo of barczar
barczar

Kentucky

4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque black with a dense, frothy quarter inch cocoa head that slowly dissipates, leaving minimal lacing.

Cocoa, hints of plastic, sorghum, roast malt, figs, and dark berries are fairly subtle in the aroma by the time I get to the fourth in the flight.

Dark cherries and roast malt dominate the initial sip, finishing fairly bitter with coffee grounds and a bit of acridness. Molasses sweetness, dark chocolate, and nutty, toasted malt add complexity at the base. Plums, figs, and soft raisins emerge later, along with booze.

Body is thick, creamy, and smooth, with low carbonation and significant alcohol warmth.

Dark fruit, chocolate, coffee, and roast malt are well represented, but drier and more bitter at the finish than I prefer. Think majority of the bitterness is hop derived. Fairly complex. The nutty malt saves it for me. Wish the aroma were more pronounced and the finish were less bitter.

Serving type: on-tap

03-27-2013 00:20:55 | More by barczar
Photo of joeseppy
joeseppy

Illinois

4.66/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Typical stout appearance. Nice fluffy mocha head. Btl 10/2012

Initial pour has cola aroma and as it warms, turns into a milky sweet coffee with roasty malts.

Chocolate upfront with a hoppy alcohol back. Coffee through the nose lingers. Milk chocolate, smoky malts, raisin, brown sugar and alcohol heat. Some bitter black licorice. Do get a molasses presence.

Mouthfeel of smoky malt, creamy pureed dark fruit and a burnt dry hop bitterness. Crisp carbonation.

One of the most complex of stouts. Craftsfully mastered. Age will gracefully transcend this to another level of greatness year after year. Will patiently age the rest of my stash. Yum-Yum.

*on tap November 2013
Freakin' Phenom---detect low alcohol levels. Damn near putting these down one after another. Bumping my score up a bit.

Serving type: on-tap

02-02-2013 05:26:58 | More by joeseppy
Photo of brewsclues
brewsclues

Pennsylvania

3.29/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at the Sharp Edge (Pittsburgh, PA).

Appearance: Pitch black, tan head. Pretty nice to look at. Stout-y!

Smell: Whoa, did we just sit down next to a campfire?

Taste: Did someone just throw dark, bitter chocolate and molasses on a campfire and put it in my pint glass? (Thought so.)

Not subtle. Too smokey. Too bitter at the end. Massive, bold tastes in all the wrong ways.

I'll admit: I don't get this beer. I'm sure the 2,602 people who have reviewed this as a 94 are right and I'm wrong. I think this is a slightly above average beer, even for a stout. Another example of an "extreme beer" that sacrifices subtle and complex characteristics that ease into your palette for an "in-your-face" marketing pitch. I enjoy stouts and I could barely finish this beer without a splitting headache - you know, the type you get from smoke inhalation.

Serving type: on-tap

01-25-2013 05:44:50 | More by brewsclues
Photo of DrinkSlurm
DrinkSlurm

Connecticut

4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from tap into snifter at holy grale in Louisville. Look is amazing...black with thick 3 finger tan brown head. Aroma is roasted malts and a bit of hoppy coffee
Taste is nice...bitter roasted coffee malts followed by a bit of sweetness. Its a bit over bitter but nice. Its a good brew especially for the price and availability.

Serving type: on-tap

11-28-2012 01:44:53 | More by DrinkSlurm
Photo of Mavigo
Mavigo

Michigan

4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this at the Red Haven in Okemos, a sort of Pure Michigan- haute cuisine hybrid restaurant, got this off tap and was served in a pint.

A: poured an opaque black with a quarter inch light-brown tan head that lasted like 10 minutes before shrinking but was basically present the whole time, had good amounts of lacing too.

S: smells woody, chocolatey, boozey, smoky

T: Tastes like chocolate, malty, a woody taste, strong booze, kind of bitter, its pretty thick, even kind of salty to me, taste some malts too

M: its a bit on the dry side, its thicker, lower levels of carbonation

O: Overall, I thought this was a stand up stout, it was pretty smooth and rich, agreed with me very well, tasted great with the steak I had.

Serving type: on-tap

10-26-2012 02:37:11 | More by Mavigo
Photo of GR_Rick
GR_Rick

Michigan

3.5/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Nice looking, thick, creamy stout with a khaki-ish head.

S: Smelled nice, strong, and complex. Roasty malts with a bit of alcohol and sweetness.

T: Nice initially, with the roast and a bit of sweetness. Ended a little harsh (alcohol or bitter, I couldn't exactly tell) for me.

M: Nice thick mouth feel and minimal carbonation, in line with the style.

O: Decent beer, but not as good as I had expected given the hype. It was a little too big and harsh for my liking (and I normally like big stouts). I've got a bottle sitting in the basement I'm going to age for a year or two and try it again to see if it mellows, as I've heard some age does wonders for this beer.

Serving type: on-tap

07-19-2012 22:26:33 | More by GR_Rick
Photo of AgentMunky
AgentMunky

California

4.7/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Served in a pint glass at Mellow Mushroom in Charlottesville. From notes. Reviewed 9 July 2011.

A: Obscenely beautiful head. Very creamy, dense, and dark brown. Fades slowly. Great, comprehensive lacing. Black as emptiness and utterly impenetrable by light.

S: Sweet alcohol. Some fruit. Some coffee. Some vanilla. Deep, strong, and impressive. Boozy.

T: Pretty much one of the best beers I've ever tasted. Immensely dense and chock full of flavour. Fruit, roasted malts, meat, soaring alcohol. Smack-worthy and utterly magnificent!

M: Round, smooth, sweet, slinky, drinkable, and excellent.

O: Go as far as it takes to find this beer. You couldn't ask for a better imperial stout. Utterly marvellous.

Serving type: on-tap

04-14-2012 05:33:49 | More by AgentMunky
Photo of neckbracesub
neckbracesub

Indiana

4.23/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Only brewed in the fall & winter of each year, this is one of Bell’s Brewery’s most absolute potent stouts, and it has the flavor to back it up.

I had my first taste of Expedition last October and I have been in heavy search of it wherever I go since. Dark and complex, this is a near-perfect beer (aside from some of the bitter aftertaste) that will delight the senses.

Bell’s is one of the most diverse and consistent breweries in America, and this is one of their royalty.

Serving type: on-tap

03-09-2012 00:23:06 | More by neckbracesub
Photo of One2Remeber
One2Remeber

Florida

3.98/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass

A: Dark khaki tan head, rich in texture. Black body with a faint brown hue.

S: Black licorice, sweet juicy fruits (cherry), dry smokey chocolate powder. Tons of roasted barley. There is a distinct 'fresh leather' aroma.

T: Creamy up front, to a delicious floral hop presence mixed with a dark fruits. Finishes with a licorice candy/boozy finish.

M: Intense viscosity, turns to syrup on the back end. Silky smooth up front. Mild carbonation and no lingering alcohol taste makes for easy drinking.

O: Not crazy over the top with flavor making it more enjoyable than most; it is trying too hard! I would put this up against any RIS.

Serving type: on-tap

02-25-2012 03:44:48 | More by One2Remeber
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4DAloveofSTOUT

Illinois

4.08/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

had this on draft at the Oasis Brew pub in rockford. This beer is reivewed from notes taken on 1/27/12.

Appearance: black bodied beer with a dark brown head almost 2 fingers of head that lingers for a while and falls down to a ring around side of the glass. Lots of lacing on the side of glass.

Smell: heavy roast and lots of malt. smells good!

Taste: same as nose. Lots of big roast notes and moderate bitterness; tastes very similiar to coffee. Also in the mix is tobacco, tar, molasses and dark chocolates. The beer has a mild sweetness to it. The beer finishes moderately bitter and the flavors all just linger for what seems to be forever.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied beer with low carbonation. Its thick and chewy. It drinkable considering the big heavy flavors that are present in the beer.

Overall: This RIS by Bells is a Beast! Its a beer that would be more enjoyable for someone with a well tested palate. Not a beer for someone new to this style.

---

3/25/2012

serving: bottle

poured into snifter.

Vintage 2007(September 17th) batch number 8145

Appearance: black bodied beer with one finger of dark brown head. head drops to a ring and thick lacing on the glass. This beer still looks good after many years of age! 4.0

Smell: The nose is really subtle at this point. roasty malts and dark fruits. maybe a hint of sherry from oxidation. 4.0

Taste: This beer is now sweeter and less roasty. It still has got decent roasty notes and some smoke, but it got some serious milk chocolate notes. Little bit of raisins, fudge, molasses, and brown sugar. There is a hint of sweet cherries and bitter black licorice in the aftertaste; its aged fantastically. Still got lots of depth and compexity. 4.5

Mouthfeel: full bodied beer with low carbonation. The carbonation is still holding up well and the beer has become quite silky smooth. There is not any sharpness to this beer at all. Really nice and mellow stout after some time on it! Wow. 5.0

Overall: This beer does improves with aged without a doubt! I was skeptical, but now that I have tried some vintage Expedition stout, I think that its the only way that I want to drink it! Put some away and see for yourself...if you have the patience to wait 4 years and 7 months! This beer just made be a believer of aging big stouts! 4.5

---

4/21/12

serving: bottle

bottle into snifter.

Vintage 2008(September 16th). Batch number 8728!

Appearance: Black bodied beer with one full finger of dark brown head. Head drops to a moderately thick cap with a few large bubbles. This beer looks very similiar to the 2007 vintage! 4.0

Smell: Huge dark fruits especially raisins. The beer is more smokey than roasty, but it got both going on in the nose. Some sweetness imparted from the malts. Black licorice is in there too. The nose is quite robust at this time! 4.5

Taste: Nice balance of smokey, roasty, and sweet. Dark fruits is the big player right now. Raisins, figs, and plums. A little chocolately sweetness with moderate black licorice notes. The beer finishes with moderate bitterness that overpowers the black licorice. 4.25

Mouthfeel: full bodied beer with low carbonation. The carbonation is still holding up well; the beer is silky smooth and mellow. There is not any heat from the alcohol. 4.75

Overall: Bells must brew Expedition Stout specifically for aging. My opinion after drinking/reviewing 3 seperate vintages of expedition stout... age or forget about this beer for a least 3 years; its really better with age than it is fresh. The beer really comes into its own with lots of time! 4.5

Serving type: on-tap

02-16-2012 01:54:57 | More by 4DAloveofSTOUT
Photo of elNopalero
elNopalero

Texas

4.68/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This pours a dark, thick black with a cocoa colored layer of foam. Intensely roasty, and sharply so. Dry and bitter finish. There’s all sorts of dark roasty delicious things coming across in this brew—espresso and coffee and dark chocolate. Thick and lasting. I enjoyed taking this expedition, sip by sip.

Serving type: on-tap

12-29-2011 18:19:07 | More by elNopalero
Photo of minterro
minterro

Colorado

4.13/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Not much notes, drank at Crunchys

Very full bodied very sooth and velvety. Jet black colored beer not much head to it, just spots of lacing that fall quick.

Bready and smokey malts in the taste.

Nutty in the aftertaste, alcohol has a great presence.

Big time smokiness. Warming but not too hot at least it was well masked.

4, 4.5, 4, 4.5, 4.5

---

Bottle tasting 03/12/14

Bought on my trip to Michigan over winter break. Bottling date 07/26/13 so we are looking at about 7.5 months aging. Poured into a snifter.

A&S: initially the aroma is a strong charred smokiness and dark chocolate. The body looks on lighter side when poured. Very minimal latte colored head even when poured viciously. Black, but not pitch black colored beer.

T&M: Upfront I'm mostly getting chocolate. About midway through it starts getting smokey. Very smokey (almost ashtray like, a bit too much) in the finish. I getting a tad bit of nuttiness in the finish like a previously noted. Alcohol isn't hidden but not unpleasantly apparent. More warming than I expected at just above 10%. Body is medium, while carbonation is low.

Overall: Great brew. With my limited beer aging space, I don't think I will be aging this one again until I get some more space, but nevertheless a good beer to age for a bit. Surprisingly a kinda straight foreword brew. A little too smokey for me, but if you are into that taste this beer would be a good one to check out.

3.75, 4.25, 4, 4, 4.25

Serving type: on-tap

12-23-2011 22:01:19 | More by minterro
Photo of quaybr
quaybr

Colorado

4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a tulip glass. Had a huge mocha head that dissipated after several minutes of extreme patience! Color a dark brown, nearing black.

Smelled of roasted and chocolate malts, quiet bitter hops, and alcohol.

Taste is amazing. A ten degree warmup result in a completely different beer. So you should let that happen (50 degree range). Right after the pour, it tasted like a slightly roasted, hoppy, thick ale. As it warms up, however, the coffee and chocolate undertones get louder and louder in a wonderful way. So damn good.

Mouthfeel is thick and relatively smooth, not quite silky. Good level of carbonation.

Visiting Ohio for Christmas. I have spent that past few weeks hoping this beer would be accessible once I got back into the distribution area. Quarter Barrel in Oxford did me one better. This is a great beer. Well balanced and consistently delicious.

Serving type: on-tap

12-21-2011 19:32:01 | More by quaybr
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Rhettroactive

District of Columbia

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

From 12oz bottle to Bruges hybrid glass on 11/15/11
*From notes

-- Vintage 2010 --

A: Dark, brooding black. A generous pour yields a killer 2.25 finger cascading mocha head. The retention is top notch, as is the lacing which rims the glass.

S: Dried and candied dark fruits with just a touch of smoke.

T: Really a massive dose of char up front. Yeah, this is aging beautifully. Though it's rather roasty, there's still a solid hop kick on the mid, even after it's been in the cellar for a year. Black coffee runs from the mid to finish, and it lingers for some time.

M: Just over the top. It's silky, creamy and velvety. It feels like a penthouse suite in mouth.

O: Bell's Expedition Stout is easily one of my favorite non-BA RIS's. It's big, bold and brash, yet deceivingly elegant and easy to drink. This has aging potential unlike many others. Though a bit pricey, it's worth every cent you'll pay.

A hearty recommendation.

Serving type: on-tap

12-15-2011 00:46:07 | More by Rhettroactive
Photo of LittleDon
LittleDon

Texas

3.93/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A pint at Harrison's in Cary, NC on 12/13/11.

Black with decent lace until the head disappeared about 10% into the beer. Aroma is dark roast coffee, raisins, and a whiff of alcohol. Soft mouthfeel, possibly a bit too soft (on the flat side). Oily rich body. Flavor makes me think of rum-raisin ice cream with a fair amount of sweetness, dried fruit, and a noticeable alcohol presence. Finish has a healthy bitterness to it.

Serving type: on-tap

12-14-2011 12:06:32 | More by LittleDon
Photo of blackcompg
blackcompg

Illinois

4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed in a 5oz glass as part of a 6 beer flight at Bell's Brewery...

Appearance - Poured a deep dark opaque brown/black color, thin brown head which left some nice lacing.

Smell - Molasses, dark fruits and dark chocolate, with faint vanilla and cream.

Taste - Starts semi-sweet coffee n cream with some carmel which quickly lends to burnt toffee, dark fruit peels and licorice, drying to a nice roasty finish. Alcohol is well hidden, and adds warmth between sips. Very nice.

Mouthfeel - Medium to full mouthfeel, very substantial, heavy and mouthcoating, carb is somewhat low which gives a fuller mouthfeel but adds a nice crisp nuance to the drying finish.

Overall - Great depth and complexity here, wonderful balance, rich and silky smooth. Two thumbs way up, and a case in my trunk to bring home. Will age a least a 6xer of this.

Serving type: on-tap

12-10-2011 17:01:10 | More by blackcompg
Photo of climax
climax

Missouri

4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had it at the Flying saucer, early December. When the waitress brought the black beast down, and the head was incredible. The fluffiest pillow of dark tan would not sink until I started mucking it up. It notched with every sip, perfect start.

The aroma was as astringent and hoppy as it was sweet. Pure chocolate, coffee, and leafy hop flavors hit the nostrils relatively gently for the style.

Alcoholic phenols are definitely evident in the mouth especially as it warms. It's got commanding bitterness from extremely roasty burnt espresso flavors and intense hop additions. Fleeting dashes of sweet chocolate and caramel lighten things up briefly.

This is among the thickest, chewiest, densest body I have experienced. It's almost like melted marshmallows in the mouth. It finishes brutally dry which makes it easy to keep sipping, emphasis on sipping. Substitute it for a meal.

It's definitely kicks you in the taste buds fresh from the tap.
I would like to try one that has been aged for a while to see how it mellows out. That my make this one a little bit less hot to handle.

Serving type: on-tap

12-04-2011 17:16:47 | More by climax
Photo of tsauce2
tsauce2

Indiana

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

P: Tap pour in to Bells tulip glass

A: SRM is black/dark brown. Opaque. Head is deep tan, 1/2 in, dissipates to rim of glass. Medium carbonation. Heavy lacing.

S: Deep dark roasted malt and brewers licorice.

T: Follows smell. Deep roasted malts coat the palate, with brewers licorice noticeable but very well incorporated. Alcohol is noticable, but not overpowering. Aftertaste is deep roasted malt.

M: Full bodied. Heavy viscosity from heavy malt use and carbonation.

O: A classic RIS. Masterfully balanced; bold and complex yet very balanced. I do not like licorice, except for when Bells uses it in their beers.

Serving type: on-tap

12-02-2011 06:01:12 | More by tsauce2
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Pintofbrown

Iowa

4.45/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- On-tap at the Sanctuary. The opaque dark brown body of the RIS family is here. There is at least two fingers of milk chocolate head. Yeah, it looks nice.

Smell- There is a really nice candied cherry and raisin sweetness on the nose. It also has that caramel malt hint that I'm sure will come off as "roasted" when I take a sip. This also brings to mind just general dark fruit sweetness. I'm not sure how the boozy aspect of this nose will come off in the drink, but it is appropriate for the style.

Taste- Great boozy bourbon Batman! Just a silly amount of booze in the drink, even more heat than Old Raspy. Thankfully it doesn't bury the molasses, cherry, raisin, and dark fruit that churns over the tongue. You have to wait until the finish, but boy, the roasted coffee comes on strong in the finish and lingers, along with the heat!

Mouth feel- This could be chewier, and I'm not sure I dig the carbonation or not. I mean, you could call it appropriate, and it certainly doesn't take away from the full body and pretty smooth finish. It's not as dry as such a boozy RIS usually is.

Overall- I dropped an F bomb in my notes to describe how much I thought of the "awesomeness" of this stout. So yeah, I guess I really liked it. Just age the crap out of this thing and I have no doubt it could rival the whales at the top of the RIS list. A must try stout, from a must have brewery.

Edit 11/25/2013: Had 2010 vintage bottle. Notes: Nose not nearly as boozy and dark fruits take center stage: fig, some black cherries, brown sugar as well. The palate has much more dark chocolate now that rides forever and ever, long after the swallow, still getting the fig and dark cherry flavors, only much stronger. Again, the booze has backed off considerably. Mouth feel is all liquid velvet, rich. Amazing with three years of age, and honestly, could be laid down for another three years. Wow. Score Edit: A-4.5 S-5 T-4.75 MF- 4.5 O-4.75

Serving type: on-tap

10-30-2011 17:16:06 | More by Pintofbrown
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mocktm

Virginia

4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer #2 at World of Beer in Fort Myers, FL - 9/28/2011

Into a snifter, this appears thick and impenetrably black, used motor oil with a large cap of espresso colored head that quickly fades away with some light lacing.

Nose is dark roasted malts galore: dark chocolate, heavy coffee, and licorice with some earthiness in there as well. Abundance of sweetness with some underlying booze presence.

This is like drinking a spiked coffee chocolate milkshake, but I mean that in a good way. Malty and rich all the way with some woody/herbal undertones, this finishes with a mild alcohol burn in the back of the throat, evidence of its 10.5% ABV.

Monumentally thick and viscous, chewy and complex, this is a mother-load of a stout. Although most would consider this a sipper, its surprisingly smooth and slick, and thus quite easy to drink.

Some stouts get talked up a lot, and thus leave some others behind, but for my money, this is a phenomenal effin' beer that is as good, if not better than most of those aboard the hype train. Throw in that it's still available in six packs for a reasonable price, plus ages incredibly well - I just have to ask you, how can you go wrong?

Serving type: on-tap

09-30-2011 01:05:33 | More by mocktm
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Bell's Expedition Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
94 out of 100 based on 4,114 ratings.