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

Not Rated.
Third Coast Old AleThird Coast Old Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,273 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,273
Reviews: 1,006
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 10.22%
Wants: 224
Gots: 370 | FT: 23
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-28-2002

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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,273 | Reviews: 1,006 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beardown
3.71/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Phoneguy
4.29/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled on 9/19/13. Poured into a Duvel tulip glass. Beautiful reddish brown hue which is more red than brown when held in the light. One finger of head which faded quickly but never completely disappeared. Wonderful smell of malty sweetness, butterscotch & alcohol. Tastes of dates, alcohol. Initially sweet and finishes slightly dry. Light syrup mouth feel, low carbonation but not flat. Excellent Old Ale/Barleywine. I'm going to let the other 5 bottles age a few months to see how it mellows and probably pick up another six pack to age long term. Good show Bell"s!

Photo of jtholst66
4.36/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tastes like a strong Belgian ale. Brown sugar is the predominant flavor but the beer is not too sweet

Photo of prisdefer
2.95/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

ABV too obvious for my taste.

Photo of JGam115
3.9/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Maroon with laced off white foam. Candi sugar, crystallized caramel, toasted lucky charms. Light syrup mouthfeel, booze, well balanced.

Photo of mamj89
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Yummy. Good kick back sipper

Photo of greeniedgator
4.75/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of alexsergio
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Sazz9
3.87/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Chaz
4.32/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours what appears to be a jet-black to the eye, and what is in fact a clear deep, ruby color when held up to a direct light. Topped with a nice couple fingers of densely-packed bubbly foam for a head, and exhibiting most excellent lacing when that head recedes.

Nose is an explosion of rampaging malts and hops! Seriously, it is dense. Dark fruit and tropical fruits mixed with boozy rum and vegetal phenols, combined with anise and fennel and dark chocolate and mint - OH MY! Seriously, it's good. Jam-my. Plum-my. Red and blue grapeskins and yeast and raisins and a bit of toffee, too.

It is by no means as hop-forward as many of today's American-style barleywines, but it is very consistent with the beer I drank in the prime of my drinking years (circa the early Oughts), and it is a good example of a traditional aromatic profile for such a beer.

Holy sweet, booty-plundering and rampaging MALTS on the first sip, Batman! This is even better than I remember it. Brisk, scrubbing carbonation*, and an absolutely palate-coating presence. This beer has taken up residence and it don't want none of your organic Balinese java, or 'Uncle Chaz's Miracle Supper' (burned no less than fifteen minutes ago, dammit) to interfere!

Dates, plum, raisin? Check, check, check. There's another dark-skinned fruit in here and it is eluding me, but the anise/fennel seed combo (did I ever tell you that I like fennel seed thanks to my Italian-adopted Ma? It's true!) is all up in this hizzouse like there's no tomorrow, and I am loving it.

Some tart cherry, a little bit of citrus (orange rind/marmalade... ), and something akin to "Hi-C" tropical fruit punch goin' on in here. And if that latter descriptor makes you a bit concerned for the silverware and jewelry you keep on you nightstand, never you mind, I'll be washing it all down with some White Castle sliders, later tonight.

Mouthfeel? This one grabs ahold of you and don't let go until it's throttled the last bit of pork rind, shredded carrots, and (what the hell else did I put in that Fricassee?) organic brown rice from your memory. If "Heavier-bodied" is an adequate descriptor, then consider this the Webster's definition. It is a bigm rich, pungent beer, and the mouthfeel follows. It is not as dangerously-drinkable as some of the lighter-yet-stronger offerings I've had lately, but is definitely drinkable if a heavier, boozier concoction with a lot of character is up yer alley -- and I think that Third Coast Old Ale might be up yer alley!

In short, this is a good beer. I haven't sampled it in close to ten years, now, and I have never rated it beyond some scribblings on a napkin that I had at the bar with me on one particularly cold night in Minnesota winter when I spilled a full Libbey pint on Mr. Larry Bell while drunkenly gesticulating my day on the sales floor at the Polish Liquor Barn. Alas and alack!

Like I said: I think this beer might be for you...

*Bottle coding places this at September or October 2014. I forget the exact date, and the bottle's already clear across the living room, smashed into a million pieces next to the recycling bin. HUZZAH!

P.S. Thankstomodernchemistrysleepisnowoptional.

Photo of mchegash
4.05/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - 4/5
A deep red color, perhaps a hint of brown. It looks red-brown in soft light, but totally red in bright light. A small amount of head. Slightly clear, also the darkness of the color makes in harder to see through. A medium amount of carbonation can be seen rising up through the beer. Overall a good look, the color is the best aspect.

Smell - 3.9/5
Strong hops aroma (piney), along with sweet malts, perhaps resembling the malt smell of a quality amber. The malts smelled "red" to me, though this could just be my mind playing tricks on me, since I already know the color. The malts smells is fairly fruity, cherries being the fruit that comes to mind. There is also a discernable alcohol smell (not unexpected at 10.2%).

Taste - 4/5
A very nice balance between malts and hops. There is a piney, resinous hops presence, but also a taste of deep, dark, sweet, slightly fruity malts. The beer is suprisingly sweet. Some alcohol taste as well.

Mouthfeel - 4.1/5
Medium to full-bodied, perhaps leaning more towards the full-bodied side. The feel is slightly syrupy, but also fairly crisp. A moderate amount of light to moderate carbonation. Overall the feel is quite nie

Overall - 4.3/5
This is a great beer. Very nicely balanced between the hops and malts and fruitiness and alcohol. It has a nice fairly full-bodied feel. There is nothing really to complain about this beer.

Photo of skrabbenhoft
4.2/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Beerguy1969
3.78/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of bcsbeer
4.96/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

World class brew. The closer I got to the bottom of the glass, the slower I drank. Did not want it to end. Better than outstading!

Photo of Jho3325
4.18/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of tappangordo
4.06/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Nyczj
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of yaksurf
3.71/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Photo of PVMT
4.15/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BHopp12
3.89/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Photo of delta490
4.46/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep murky brown with a slight reddish tint. There is a thin cream-colored head that dissipates quickly leaving only the slightest soapy lacing. The aroma is rich, full of dark fruits and slight alcohol. The taste is equally delicious as it smells, with just a hint of hops to balance it all. There is a modicum of carbonation and there is a nice thickness to the body.

Photo of iatethecloudsfor
3.79/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of vermilcj
4.06/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of paulish
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of watermelon
4.21/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass bottled on 9/13/13

A: Dark clear carmel color with and off-white head.

S: Lost of malty sweetness and booze

T: fair amount of alcohol even though its been aged for over a year some dark fruits some hoppy bitterness and some molasses.

F: thick and viscous

O: Decent barley wine especially for the price, I've only had it with age so I would be curious to try it without.

Third Coast Old Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
92 out of 100 based on 2,273 ratings.