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

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.

5,298 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 5,298
Reviews: 1,979
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 10.61%
Wants: 447
Gots: 1,291 | FT: 93
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-10-2002

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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,298 | Reviews: 1,979 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Lambocalrisien
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of Alextricity
4.31/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 8/22/13 and poured into a shaker pint :| ... I wanted to age this one, but decided to drink it now, and then age any bottles that I get later. $2.99 single.

Appearance: I poured aggressively thinking this wouldn't give me much of a head, boy was I wrong. I got about 90% of the beer poured and the glass was full, almost half with foam. Gorgeous beer, and one of the best RIS's I've seen. As you'd expect, the beer's an abyss. The mocha (almost orange) three finger or more of head dies down to about half of one. Lacing is phenomenal.

Smell: Quite good, but just not quite what I was hoping for. Has a very nice aroma to it, but it's not as pungent as I was hoping for. Maybe it's the thick head I have on top that's blocking out some of the notes. Roasted coffee, deep, dark chocolate, a hint of smoke/ash, and a bit of soy sauce. As Expedition Stout warms, nondescript dark fruits come out to play.

Taste/feel: First off, the feel. It is every bit of what an RIS lover would hope for. Super thick and creamy, with a subtle carbonation. The taste is fabulous, though, like the smell, not killing me with gigantic bold flavors, and the bitterness isn't nearly as harsh as I was lead to believe. Like the smell, roast, coffee, chocolate... there's also a pretty big ash sort of flavor on the finish. There is an alcohol warmth (surprised, surprise!), but there doesn't really seem to be an alcohol flavor... maybe slightly.

Overall, I actually want more out of this. It has a big body. It has a really bold "feel" to it, but the flavor isn't reeking of coffee or chocolate like I thought it might. Still, I'm ecstatic that I enjoy RIS's as much as I do now. I'm really enjoying this beer... I couldn't ask for more from the appearance and mouthfeel, as they are truly flawless.

Photo of APH
4.48/5  rDev +5.7%

Photo of buzzy
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of SportsandJorts
3.64/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: a motor oil black with some brown on the edges. Opaque. A tan head that fades slowly and leaves a nice lacing

Smell: bitter chocolate, roasted malts, some cocoa. Slight sweetness that is ver subtle compared to the bitterness in this bad boy.

Taste: chocolate, some sweet some bitter. Cocoa. Roasted malts. Bittering hops aparent throughout. Alcohol in the backend

Mouthfeel: heavy. Bitter lingers a bit. Hot alcohol kick

Overall: good. Not my favorite. Will keep you warm on a cold one. I think I will through one in the cellar to see how I like the age on this one

Photo of StoutItOutLoud
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of beersvh23
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of JoeLacy
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of catboy
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of hmich176
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of bca115
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of MNBeerGeek
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of CaptFrothy
2.94/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

9/26/11 date on the bottle, so this is better than 2 years old, cellared.

Looks the park, dark and menacing with not much beyond a thin white ring of head.

Smells decent, but I can smell the alcohol, that's not a good thing for me.

Taste is burnt coffee, bitter chocolatey with some alchohol on the back end.

Overall, I'm disappinted, this has been conditioning in the basement for over 2 years, mouthfeel has no silk at all, somewhat prickly, the bitter chocolate/coffee taste with alcohol isn't working - ten tidy, old raspution lost abbey serpent stout, BCBS all vastly superior tasting imho.

Photo of RobinLee
4.49/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of Jakep2021
3.75/5  rDev -11.6%

Photo of TheCuriograph
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of Thishops4u
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of DerrickW
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of FriedSlug
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of MoreAbv
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of jburd19
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of Bandi
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of deadonhisfeet
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2012 batch reviewed in 2013. Poured from a bottle into a Founders snifter. Very black, thick, viscous pour but the carbonation is extremely low. A rough pour produces a very thin head. The nose is really nice. Lots of char notes, dark fruit, and espresso. The rich dark chocolate notes I sometimes find are not here. Perhaps more time in the cellar is needed.

The beer has a full body, a somewhat oily feel, and a big roasty flavor. Some creamy malt up front is punctuated by intensely bitter roast and coffee notes, dark fruit, and burnt, crusty chocolate cake soaked in rum. The bitter roastiness lingers a long time in the mouth. It's pleasant, but a little one-dimensional. I don't detect any rich complementary flavors to go along with it.

Bought this 6-pack last year and this is the first bottle I've touched. You can spare me the ``drink one fresh'' speech. I've had this beer fresh many times, I was never impressed, and I don't think the brewer intends for you to drink it that way anyhow. Since its reputation as a good cellar beer is undeniable, I plan to re-review it at 12-month intervals. This one is about 14 months old and, while good, still has lots of room for improvement. At present, it can't hold a candle next to my favorite RISs. I look forward to someday trying one of these that's 4-5 years old. Consider this review a work in progress.

Photo of rxeight
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of Dcunicelli
3.75/5  rDev -11.6%

Bell's Expedition Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
94 out of 100 based on 5,298 ratings.