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Bell's Best Brown - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Bell's Best BrownBell's Best Brown

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

2,141 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,141
Reviews: 782
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 11.52%
Wants: 66
Gots: 125 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
A smooth, toasty brown ale with hints of caramel and cocoa, the malt body has the depth to stand up to cool weather, but does not come across as heavy. This balancing act is aided by the generous use of American hops.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-10-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,141 | Reviews: 782 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jdhilt
3.43/5  rDev -10.2%

Pours a two finger light tan head that fades to a thin layer leaving some lace. Cloudy amber color. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Slight malty nose. Starts sweet with caramel overtones, becomes more balanced with smooth finish but somewhat bitter aftertaste. $1.89 for a 12oz bottle from Chalet Party Goshen, In.

jdhilt, Dec 27, 2006
Photo of mothman
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%

Batch 9339

Poured into Rare Vos glass

Pours 1 and 1/2 fingers of light creamy tan head. Head fades to a thin layer, but leaves amazing lace walls all the way down the glass. Color is a clear copper brown.

Aroma: Big malty nose with some grassy hops that are in the background but decently noticeable. Notes of caramel, nuts, and toffee present. Some dark fruits are also present.

Taste: Very malty with the grassy hops right in your face. Lots of caramel and toffee with nuts. A big roasted flavor to it. Some of those dark dried fruits are in the background.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly it is bitter and crisp. I really wasn't expecting this from a brown. Gets a little creamy at the end. Ends with a big roasted flavor and lots of hops. Very dry.

Overall, one of the better English brown ales I have had. Very nice flavors to it. Very hoppy as well so it was well balanced. Easy drinking beer. Gotta love Bell's.

mothman, Nov 10, 2009
Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%

12 ounce bottle into signature pint glass, bottled 11/14/2012. Pours fairly cloudy brown copper color with a nice 1-2 finger dense light khaki head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass. Aromas of caramel, toast, light cocoa, brown bread, floral, brown sugar, and light nuttiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance; but are fairly weak. Taste of caramel, toast, cocoa, brown bread, floral, brown sugar, light nuttiness, light pine, and light citrus hops. Lingering notes of caramel, toast, brown bread, cocoa, brown sugar, light pine, and light citrus on the finish for a bit. Nice balance and complexity of flavors with a fair amount of robustness; with zero cloying flavors present after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a fairly creamy and lightly sticky mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is very well hidden with hardly any warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a good brown ale. Nice balance with fairly robust flavors; and very smooth to drink. A pleasantly enjoyable offering.

superspak, Feb 10, 2013
Photo of Stinkypuss
3.7/5  rDev -3.1%

Bells Best Brown pours a light brown with a small off white head that recedes to nothing.

Aroma is of bready malts, touch of caramel.

Flavor consists primarily of caramel malts, vague roasted edge comes in as well. Sweet toffee comes to mind.

Mouthfeel is full bodied and somewhat smooth.

A nice sessionable brown ale from Bells. Was a perfect companion with pepperoni lovers pizza.

Stinkypuss, Oct 31, 2009
Photo of ppoitras
3.3/5  rDev -13.6%

12oz bottle obtained via Local BIF from twiggamortis420. Thanks for the opportunity.

Poured into an imperial pint, formed a 1/2" tan head above the cloudy orangey brown brew. Pillowy head fades slowly, with good lasting lace. Aroma is malts with a light earthy hoppiness. Taste is a touch tart to start, settle in with some rich grain character in the middle, and comes back to the mild tartness at the close. Mouthfeel is smooth, and drinkability is pretty good.

ppoitras, Mar 28, 2010
Photo of wrightst
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%

wrightst, Jun 13, 2014
Photo of mdaschaf
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%

Review from notes 4/22/11.

A: Poured a slightly hazy ruby/orange, not quite brown color. Carbonation bubbles were evident along the sides of the glass. A one finger head formed and left spotty lacing.

S: Nice combination of caramel and a nutty aroma. There is also some grain and bready malt.

T: Pretty solid flavor profile with a strong malt bill. Bready and earthy with caramelized sugar, some brown sugar, and nuts.

M: Light to medium bodied, nice carbonation, with lots of small carbonation bubbles. Crisp for the style.

O: Solid English Brown Ale, easy drinking and pretty sessionable. For a style that can be bland, Bells does a good job here.

mdaschaf, Apr 24, 2011
Photo of brandoman63
4/5  rDev +4.7%

brandoman63, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of biegaman
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%

Pours with bounteous head that would becalm into mere bubbles. A sort of glowing, umber colour. I couldn't see my finger through the other side. Aroma with cola-root beer like properties, smells sticky and syropy. Lots of hops too though. Taste far more subtle that aroma. Mouthfeel rounds out nicely, leaving a caramely roast. A lot of malts come through on the finish too. Not so much light nor dark malts, the sort of in between ones - not nearly roasty - maybe 'toasty'. Smooth and very enjoyable to drink. A well made American style brown ale. Thanks HogTownHarry.

biegaman, Oct 27, 2006
Photo of smakawhat
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass. Packaged September 7th 2011.

A good simple off caramel, light colored brown/white head foamy in consistency off the pour, sits on a standard light chestnut body with some minor light hues on the edges.

Mild nut on the nose, and a simple malt sweetness. Kind of muted not much else going on but nice simple good example of the style.

Chewy dark malt and nutty feeling hits the palate. A simple light bodied and just a hint of creamy texture compliments the feeling with hints of nut. A little carbonation takes away some of the wonderful play, but taste on the finish still remains.

Overall, basic, simple, but enjoyable all around. A good beer to dig into no complaints I could have another anytime.

smakawhat, Nov 03, 2011
Photo of rab53
3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

rab53, Nov 25, 2011
Photo of Latarnik
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%

Latarnik, May 27, 2014
Photo of beerthulhu
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%

A: Pours a dark roasted caramel color with a cherry tan head.

S: nice roasted malt and nuttiness

T: For flavor there is a rich nuttiness and some alcohol warming along with some dark and warming hazelnut. The palate is very warming, yet soft roasted and nutty with a creamy texture and mouthful. There is a touch of molasses but is the lingering dark caramel lacing on the finish that best highlights this beer. There is a slight woodiness, and vanilla bean notes as well . Overall a very nice and nutty brown. The grain bill seemed more American then an English brown along with the hopping but was still a very good beer all around.

M: medium-full bodied, soft, creamy and lustrious.

D: a great drinking english brown by style.

beerthulhu, Jun 15, 2008
Photo of tdm168
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%

Pours a dark, brownish amber with 1/2" of off white head that has decent retention. The nose has notes of caramel sweetness and toast. The taste is burnt toast, roast, caramel with a faint hop bitterness in the finish. It's medium bodied, lightly carbonated and very smooth and drinkable.

This beer is well balanced. The subtleties make it complex. There's a good, strong malt character. It's a little sweet at times, but good overall.

tdm168, Oct 29, 2011
Photo of Viggo
4.1/5  rDev +7.3%

Pours a hazy red/brown, thick tan head, settles to a ring, nice lacing and great retention, head really sticks. Smell is sweet, toffee, grains, roasty chocolate, very rich flavour, little bit of floral. Taste is toffee and chocolate, grainy, some floral and citrus in the finish, nice roasted dry finish. Mouthfeel is light bodied with low carbonation, very smooth and enjoyable. A nice brown ale. Thanks biegaman!

Viggo, Nov 16, 2006
Photo of sendbeer
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

sendbeer, Oct 22, 2012
Photo of billab914
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a perfect pint glass.

Pours a caramel color with a tan head that settled to a a thin layer covering the beer.

Aroma is strong with roasted grains. Malty sweetness with some caramel and chocolate.

Taste also has some roasted flavors, chocolate, coffee and caramel with a bitter finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is good, not overpowering in any flavors but yet very flavorful.

billab914, Dec 06, 2009
Photo of Bighuge
3.88/5  rDev +1.6%

This beer's a ruby color with a nice rocky head that has great retention. Very nice nutty/caramel tones on the nose with sticky molasses making its presence known also. A bready yeastiness is present on the palate. Some of that trademark lactic sourness as well. Seems to fit alright however. Some slight chocolate tones also. Very subdued roasted nut taste is also making an appearance. Pretty unique tasting Brown.

Bighuge, Jun 10, 2002
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.3/5  rDev -13.6%

Man if this isn't run of the mill I dunno what is. Looks decent enough, a little thinner than what I was hoping for. No detectable aroma.

Taste is a little thin for me. Nutty. I'm just not a brown ale guy. The ones I tend to like have a bigger malt bill, coming closer to being a porter moreso than the actual traditional brown style. A little more gritty than I expected.

Mouthfeel, nothing much, some brown colored beer, so surprises, no letdowns. A little costly for what it is.

Beerandraiderfan, Apr 29, 2010
Photo of DrJay
3.7/5  rDev -3.1%

Brown beer with a reddish hue, the dark cream coloured head was very fine and showed a bit of lace. Malty aroma, some nuttiness with a bit of toffee. Same in the flavour along with mild bitterness and muted hop flavour towards the end. Bitterness really lingers in the finish. Dry overall, medium-light bodied and decent texture. A solid brown ale.

DrJay, Jan 08, 2006
Photo of dmorgan310
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%

dmorgan310, Feb 04, 2012
Photo of Zaphog
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

Zaphog, May 26, 2012
Photo of PEIhop
4/5  rDev +4.7%

PEIhop, Dec 28, 2011
Photo of glid02
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%

Got this on-tap at Axis in Washington DC.

Pours a clear dark brown color with a one-finger light tan head. The head dissipates into a wispy layer of bubbles on top and a thin ring around the glass. Lacing is decent.

Smells good. A good amount of hazelnuts and kind of a buttery smell backed up by a bready malt aroma.

Tastes similar to how it smells. There's a good amount of buttery taste that's pretty smooth, backed up by nutty and malty flavors. There's a tiny amount of bitterness at the end.

Mouthfeel is good. Maybe it's because the taste is buttery that I think this, but it goes down very smoothly.

Drinkability is good. The buttery taste is nice at first, but I could see it wearing on me halfway through another of these.

Overall this is a solid brown ale. It's not as complex as others that I've tried but it does what it does very well. Worth a shot.

glid02, Oct 19, 2008
Photo of rolltide8425
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

rolltide8425, Jul 11, 2012
Bell's Best Brown from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
86 out of 100 based on 2,141 ratings.