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Third Coast Old Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Third Coast Old AleThird Coast Old Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

2,045 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,045
Reviews: 970
rAvg: 4.12
pDev: 10.44%
Wants: 208
Gots: 290 | FT: 17
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
From Bell's website:
"Third Coast Old Ale is a cellerable American-style barleywine that has notes of dried fruit and caramel embedded in a rich malt background that will grow more complex over time."

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-28-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Third Coast Old Ale Alström Bros
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Ratings: 2,045 | Reviews: 970 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of icecreammatt
1/5  rDev -75.7%

icecreammatt, Nov 13, 2012
Photo of mwar
1.75/5  rDev -57.5%

mwar, May 19, 2013
Photo of logicalparadox
2/5  rDev -51.5%

Not for me.

Deep reddish brown, it's rusty, almost bloody. Good head that leaves beautiful lacing and sea foam like stickiness. it looks pretty.

Bitter and roasty to the point of reminding me of grilled chicken gone wrong. The alcohol is right up front, only subdued by the astringency of the brew. Boozy, to be sure. Warming on the way down, but harsh if you're not into that sort of thing (which I'm not).

Highly rated, so maybe I'm just not a fan of the style. I've not had many barleywines that I've enjoyed, so I'm not shocked, but disappointed nonetheless. This is the first barley wine that I've had that packed this kind of intense roasted character, though. While I'm not a fan, I can see how that might be a bonus if you're into it.

logicalparadox, Oct 17, 2014
Photo of spamages
2/5  rDev -51.5%

spamages, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of DavyJones
2.25/5  rDev -45.4%

DavyJones, Apr 13, 2012
Photo of mwbrady12
2.25/5  rDev -45.4%

mwbrady12, Jul 17, 2013
Photo of alysmith4
2.45/5  rDev -40.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Not uaually a fan of the Old Ales, and this beer just confirms that. Very syrupy sweet and thick with low carbonation. Lots of cherry flavors came through, and it reminded me of a cough syrup I used to have as a kid. Similar medicinal notes as well.

I only had one, but it was hard to finish. The high ABV set the night off right, and made it easy to graduate to a lighter, more complex beer. Would not try this one again though.

alysmith4, Feb 25, 2007
Photo of ambiguousfigures
2.5/5  rDev -39.3%

ambiguousfigures, Jul 22, 2014
Photo of Josbor11
2.5/5  rDev -39.3%

Josbor11, Feb 13, 2014
Photo of mmulebarn
2.5/5  rDev -39.3%

mmulebarn, Nov 15, 2013
Photo of nickfl
2.5/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A - Dark reddish brown, pretty much opaque. Good sized tan colored off white head.

S - Nutty and malty. Lots of brown, caramel notes and maby a little bit of wild funk or possibly a butter aroma. I wish I had someone here who could recognize diacetyl as I think that may be what I am detecting, but I have never been able to pick it out.

T - Buttery. Lots of hops, almost fatty and greasy flavor. Makes me wonder if I had poor luck and got a really oxadized bottle.

M - Very slick and mouth coating.

D - Not sure what to think about this. Right now I feel like this beer was a horrible mistake. I don't know if it was infected, abused, or just bad but I got this one from the Bells Store in Kalamazoo so it shold be as good as it gets. Maby with a few years of ageing it would turn into something a bit more satisfactory.

nickfl, Jul 13, 2007
Photo of innersanctum
2.53/5  rDev -38.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

My neighbor was awfully kind to offer me a bottle of BB's old ale, "Its like an amber ale on steroids!".

Let me offer the fine folks at Bell's the dignity they deserve and mention this just isn't my type of ale. Mouthfeel on this one had a definate sense of burnt carmel and raisin with lots of alcohal. The lack of head and lacing did not bother me, but it might bother you. Sediment is very obvious at the bottom of the bottle.

In all fairness, Bells recommends aging the ale so that could have voided the warranty right then and there, but I did sleep very well last night. Also, pay attention to the review conducted by Alström Bros and suggest following their leed, after all I did drink this at the end of a hot August day so a little bit of willpower could have helped.

This one is my own damn fault, and oh neighbor please don't forget about me with your wonderfully aged old ale in the depths of winter.

innersanctum, Aug 02, 2010
Photo of rockwell
2.53/5  rDev -38.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Bottle has #7695 on it which I assume is the batch number.

Pours a deep, cherry-oak color with a almost burnt-orange head. Also has two-fingers of solid foam, with intricate lacing.

Roasted notes on the nose, with hints of cherry and tobacco.

Something is very unbalanced in this beer. First few drinks are very hot. The malts seem to be fighting with the hops and not balancing each other out. Very resiny, lots of herbal, earthy undertones. But the finish has a very weird, alcohol/hop kick to it that is throwing the whole thing very much out of balance for me.

I had very high hopes for this after the initial pour, but overall seemed to be unbalanced. I'll revisit this with another batch to make sure I didn't get a mistreated bottle.

rockwell, May 13, 2007
Photo of froggyfrog
2.58/5  rDev -37.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

12 oz. bottle packaged Feb. 8, 2006. Beer served in a snifter glass Nov. 17, 2006.

A: Floodwater mud and rust with a 12 iron head composed of silken web-like threads of viscous fluid which slather the glass and adhere to the walls when swirled.

S: Brown sugar and alcohol prevail.

T: Unexpected. Still somewhat sharp in flavor, this beer is overwhelmed to a degree by hot alcohol. Thin caramel and earthy hop oils argue for time. There is also a spot of sticky dark red fruits like plum or cherries.

M: Slightly conflicted. Weight is thin yet lips are left sticky with a dry alcoholic finish.

D: I like a strong beer but this felt overpowered by raw alcohol and not balanced by an appropriately aggressive flavor profile.

While obviously a well-made beer, this Old Ale really didn't hit on any of the flavor components that I was looking for. To echo the advice of previous reviewers: Cellar this beer - 9 months is not enough.

froggyfrog, Nov 18, 2006
Photo of jackieT
2.75/5  rDev -33.3%

jackieT, Jan 01, 2014
Photo of marcb105
2.75/5  rDev -33.3%

marcb105, Nov 09, 2013
Photo of udfan07
2.75/5  rDev -33.3%

udfan07, Aug 10, 2014
Photo of plinythederek
2.75/5  rDev -33.3%

plinythederek, Feb 25, 2013
Photo of Jade
2.75/5  rDev -33.3%

Jade, Jun 21, 2013
Photo of RMelyon
2.75/5  rDev -33.3%

RMelyon, Jun 22, 2013
Photo of Minnesota_beer_guy
2.75/5  rDev -33.3%

Minnesota_beer_guy, Feb 15, 2014
Photo of B967ierhunter177
2.76/5  rDev -33%

B967ierhunter177, Aug 17, 2014
Photo of CraftAle
2.8/5  rDev -32%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I didn't enjoy it. Taste was all sweetness and alcohol. Tasted some hops early on, but sweetness completely hid them as I drank more.

I'm a big fan of Bells, especially Two Hearted Ale, so I don't mean to say that this is a poorly done brew. If this is typical of Barley Wine, then I won't be trying others. In my opinion, it needed a lot more hops to balance the malt sweetness.

Double IPAs can have the same malt and alcohol, but offset it with hops, and be more drinkable.

CraftAle, Aug 02, 2006
Photo of gtmitchem
2.8/5  rDev -32%

gtmitchem, Aug 16, 2014
Photo of CWiggins
2.88/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is one of the six Bell's taps at Tyler's Taproom in Durham. I've now sampled them all! Old Ale is one of my favorite styles; I try each new version I come across. Bell's Third Coast is served in a Bell's tulip glass with approximately ten ounces at a time.

It's dark brown with nut-brown highlights, and the foamy head is tan and short-lived. Aromas of dark, sweet fruit and roasted malts rise up from the brew during a deep sniff. The flavor is sweet and malty with a surprisingly hoppy finish. Upfront, the malts are heavy and complex, and the fruity esters are certainly noticeable. When those characters mellow just before the finish, hops takes over and provides a very bitter finish. The mouthfeel is thick and a little chewy. This makes for a great stand-alone drink for a cool/cold evening.

My only complaint about this brew is the intense hops at the finish. I prefer Old Ales that are malty, smooth, and well-balanced.

CWiggins, Dec 19, 2007
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Third Coast Old Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
92 out of 100 based on 2,045 ratings.