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

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

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very good

410 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 410
Reviews: 316
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 9.25%
Wants: 59
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 12-11-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 410 | Reviews: 316 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of nortmand
3.6/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Dark brown copper pour, almost no head.

Roast in the nose, but like virtually every other Bell's beer, yeast is dramatically dominate. Stale popcorn.

Astringency throughout. Sweet in the front of the tongue and in the aftertaste. A little but of that metallic rye character in the back of the tongue. Other than that, rye takes a definite backseat.

Medium body, but king of greasy on the tongue, fairly drinkable. About what I've come to expect from Bell's. Average.

Photo of Skidz
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out bright copper brown and sits deep rosewood in the glass with a thick creamy brown head, fading to a light skim with some nice lacings around the glass.

Smells of rich caramel and coffee with spongy, acidic hints of rye. Deeply roasted and gives off light hints of cocoa.

Tastes mildly sweet up front, caramel flavors dominate. Roastiness sets in, providing some flavors of coffee, chocolate and rye. Hop bitterness is mild to moderate, providing some balance overall. Finishes with mild peppery flavors and a faint alcoholic warmth.

Luciously smooth in the mouth with a light and fine carbonation in a full body. Really pads down in the mouth.

This is solid drinking all the way. Can't put down the classicly smooth mouthfeel and totally balanced flavors.

Photo of DrJay
4.15/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very dark, nearly black, but really more of a clear, deep ruby. A short tan head of fine bubbles appeared after a fairly aggressive pour. Great lacing. The aroma is very roasted with a bitter coffee character. Kind of caramel sweet and chocolatey too. Milk chocolate and roasted flavour, mild bitterness, with a bit of spice and a hint of alcohol warmth in the finish. Full, creamy body with low carbonation. Luxurious texture. Another high quality stout from Bell's.

Photo of jaluria
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a black, opaque color with a cream colored head that was covered with small, clear bubbles. Aromas of dark chocolate, alcohol, grains, and roasted malt. The taste followed the scent with a semi-sweet chocolate flavor that melted into grainy, hoppy flavors. Hop bitterness is apparent throughout each and every sip. Subtle sour & bitter tastes in the finish. Quite flavorful and drinkable. Somewhat chewy texture with added thickness in my mouth.

Photo of Frozensoul327
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another Great Stout from Bell's. Right up there with the Kalamazoo Stout. Pours out to a dark as night black color with a nearly violently formed head of brown / tan foam. Medium low carbonation. Lots of lace. Aromas of rye, wheat, grain, malt and roasting meat are unique and enjoyable. Taste is medium full bodied and totally quaffable; dried sugar cane, roasted malt, grainy rye, some bread and biscut notes, touches of dark chocolate. Best flavor in an American Stout i've had. Mouthfeel was medium bodied but quite creamy. Very smooth going down. Very drinkable at 6.7% ABV. Could be a sessioner. Definitly Recommended.

Photo of doubleshovels
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The first time I had this Rye Stout I thought it was ok. I found its sharp rye notes haunting me. I had to go back for a second. It pours a brillant cocoa from the bottle and rest a rusty black in the glass. Besides the distinct Rye flavor upfront, I truely enjoy the alkaline mouthfeel and clean finish.

Photo of Mitchster
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The last time I tried this was in 2003 and with the brewery location change, thought I would give this another try. I don't know if they brew this in the Kzoo or Comstock location...I was told at the brewery about 3 years ago that the seasonals would still be brewed at the Kzoo location but I don't know if that's true anymore. Re-reviewing it in 2009, I don't feel the need to change my review. It's still accurate.

At any rate, this one pours out a little lighter in color than the Kzoo stout, with some mahogany accents at the margin of the glass, requiring a steep pour to achieve a soapy dark khaki head with average retention and mild lacing. The aroma is punctuated by espresso, wheat bread, black walnuts, chocolate and a touch of sour house flavor and cigarettes. The mouthfeel is much thinner than kzoo stout but also smoother, giving it a deceptive medium-light body. The taste has a brief flash of dark bread, but not "bready" in the negative sense. The rye lends a surprising acidity, but it's never irritating. Chalk lingers in the finish...I would guess that they have to add minerals to offset the inherit difficulties of brewing with rye. I pick up some of that "Wheat Love" burnt rubber sourness in the aftertaste. Bitterness is mild and earthy and barely noticeable. The finish is exceptionally clean and brief for a stout. Chocolate is the overwhelming character throughout, although mild.

A good beer, but it doesn't knock off my socks like the last time I had it. I wish it had a heftier body. A 6-pack will be plenty for me. Absolutely must be drunk out of a good glass. Drinking it in the bottle, so much is lost. I'll stick to the Kzoo stout!

Photo of brewcrew76
3.73/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a black/very dark brown with ruby highlights and a 2 finger brown head.

S - Chocolate, roasted malt, hint of spicy rye.

T - Chocolate, sweet, malty, there is a spicy rye flavor that seems to fade as I drink and the chocolate becomes more prominent.

M - Medium body with a creamy mouthfeel. Not quite as think or chewy as other Bell's stouts. Slight lingering sweetness.

D - Enjoyable stout. The spice of the rye is nice but seemed to fade too quickly.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.68/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bell's delivers again. Very sweet, smooth, creamy, and characterful. About as black as you get with very little light permiating. A thin, dense head remains to the bottom of the glass. Smooth and sweet in the same Oatmeal Stout sort of way. Sweetness depends on big barley additions, roasted grains, and lactose. Smoothness depends on oats and milk sugars. Rye (pumpernickle rye bread) flavors add a grain, earthy, dusty character. A grain-husk bitterness rides into the finish. Lowly hopped and to offset the sweetness only--contributes little to the finish brew. Quite clean in the finish with a light residual milky flavor and texture.

Photo of ypsifly
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz batch #7235 which was bottled on 2/9/06 purchased at Cloverleaf in Southfield and poured into a pint glass.

One finger of tan over blackness. Good retention with a ringed lace effect.

The nose has a nice balance of rye (duh), cocoa, and dark roast coffee, burnt wood, roasted nuts and some leafy hops sit way in the back. It also seems to have a somewhat lactic aroma. Very interesting.

The mouth is velvet like. Smooth but not particularly as full as expected.

The roasted rye malt flavors come through very well with a bit of chocolate and bitter hops. Roasted almonds and cashews. Malty finish with lingering roasted notes. Tasty.

I could see myself drinking a few of these when I'm in the mood for something with such a roasted malt profile.

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 7235. Packaged on February 9, 2006. Hooray for fresh beer. Pours from the bottle a deep dark charcoal black with a big foamy two finger tan head. Some nice lacing on the glass as well. Aromas of spicy, roasted rye entangled with dark chocolate and a blast of bitter ground coffee that I wasn't expecting, yet enjoy. Burnt rye bread that was left in the toaster a bit too long.

First sip brings a deep roasted maltiness that has a slightly gritty rye spiciness. Mellow slightly milky chocolate tones along with a bitter coffee flavor that runs through the middle of each sip. Finishes with a burnt, bready malt aftertaste. I really enjoy the rye flavors that come through here.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a tingly carbonation. Goes down easily, however I could've gone for a little more body here. Seems a bit on the thin side to me. Drinkability is good. The fairly low abv would make it easy to have a few in a sitting. Yet another tasty stout from one of the masters of the style! Bell's puts a smile on my face yet again. Now quit reading this and go get some :-)

Photo of dirtylou
3.8/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz single, Riley's, batch #7235

appearance: pours a dark mahogany, bordering on black...opaque appearance, bubbly-foamy tan cap with just a little lacing around the rim

smell: roasty, dark roasted malt, roasted barley, smoke, burnt rye loaf, hints of cocoa powder, coffee grounds, light molassess perhaps

taste: interesting stout from bell's and this is my first tasting of it...I didnt even know they were still brewing it....big bready rye presence up front provides an interesting spin on thier normal stout direction...hints of cocoa powder and medium roast still found throughout, sweet caramel

mouthfeel: creamy yet chewy, medium-full body

drinkability: somewhat hindered by the nature of it, but still solid

Photo of clvand0
3.7/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a brown color with a small head that falls fast and doesn't leave much lacing on the glass. The aroma has some spicy notes and quite a bit of roasted and chocolate hints as well. The flavor has a lot less rye character than expected, just a little rye spice. The chocolate and the roasted notes bring things around for a smoothness. Not being a huge fan of rye, the low rye profile was nice for me. The body is moderate and the drinkability was pretty good.

Photo of aforbes10
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 7235. Single bottle bought at City Wide in Mishawaka.

Pours very dark, almost black but you can see some light getting through.. no head even though i poured from quite a distance. Smells like dry rye wafers and roasted malt. Dry, smooth coffee taste, very subtle in tone. Some chocolately notes. Rye taste is faint and i wouldn't recognize it if not for the beer's name. Finish is coffee-like. Smooth, dry mouthfeel. good drinkability. not an overbearing stout, probably a good session beer for me.

Photo of BigDaddyWil
3.48/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass.
Label has 7235 batch date, not yet in Bell's website database.

This stout pours a deep dark brown color with some ruby highlights. Absolutely, no head, just a thin cream colored line on the outside of the glass. Very little lacing. Strong smell of coffee and malasses, with a smoky background to it. Taste does mimic the smell leaving a slighly dry feeling. This brew has quite a sour and bitter feel, with some carbonation. Not my favorite stout from Bell's, but worthy of a try.

Photo of Jredner
3.5/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is a little spicy with chocolate and dark karo syrup notes. Deep black with a quickly fading tan head. For is spicy and tobacco tinged with the flavor what I imagine hot water that had had rye seeds steeped in it would taste of. Spicy pepper notes tickle the tonsils as I swallow. A smooth choclate malt flavor runs through all ranges. The finish kind of reminds me of a very toned down version of the Stone 03 03 03 and its lingering spiciness. Interesting, but it gets thin and the lack of any real head hurts the visual appeal.

Photo of kmpitz2
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Filled about 2.5 hours ago. Pours a deep brown color with ruby highlights at the bottom of the glass. A 2 finger light tan head falls to a quarter inch over top of the beer. Its pretty dark, but clarity is still easy to see. A nice clear brew. Nose is definately rye spicey. This is balanced by a very deep roast, but not overpoweringly strong. There are lighter chocolate notes playing behind the sharper and stronger rye and roast. Flavor is nice. The spicey rye hits initially and stays with through the duration of the taste. This melds very well with a more subtle roasted character, with a sweet caramel and very light chocolate undertone. I think the flavors in this one really work well togther. Nothing is too strong, and I think the balance is done well. The feel is thick, with a light carbonation, giving it a very chewy feel to it. This also works very well with the other characteristics of the brew. I think this beer is very well built. Even though it is a substantial beer, it doesn't sit overly heavy, and nothing keeps me from wanting to put this one away with ease. I dig it. I'd like it to have been a shade darker, but that may just be me.

Photo of KarlHungus
4.18/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This brew pours an opqaue black color. The head is mere lacing that recedes into a thin ring around the glass within seconds. The aroma is ever so chocolaty with a lot of roasted malt. It reminds me a lot of Bell's Porter's aroma. The upfront taste is of roasted and chocoalte malt, while some spicy rye comes through in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, but is perceived as being a bit lighter due to its medium level of carbonation. Overall, this beers seems to me like a cross between a porter and a stout. Nothing in it really stands out, but everything in it works well and I can't help but like it.

Photo of jasonpeckins32
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Batch # 7235

This one pours thick and syrupy. Looks like used motor oil running out of the bottle. Very dark brown, pretty much black, in color with a tan layer of head, leaving lacings all up and down my glass.

The nose is roasted and sweet. Smells of molasses, maple syrup, coffee, and carmel seep out of the glass.

It is quite malty in the taste with a bit of coffee ground flavor here and there. Finishes with tastes of carmel and fresh cut grass.

The mouthfeel is much thinner than the pour led me to expect, but definitly not thin at all. I've had much heavier stouts, but nothing wrong with this one. Adequate.

Drinkability is great on this one. It goes down smooth, there's nothing crazy about this one that makes it difficult to suck down. Damn good beer here.

Photo of beerinator
3.83/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark blackish brown beer with a grayish tan head. Stick to your ribs retention on the side of the glass.

Aroma: Burnt roasted nuts swimming in black coffee smells. A bit nutty and a bit sweet in the nose, with maybe a slight hint of spicing from the hops.

Taste: Upfront roasted burnt caramel. Followed by some bitter chocolate and a touch of sweetness. The mouthfeel is good, but not as solid as I was expecting. The finish is dry enough, but there is still some lingering sweetness.

Notes: Solid beer. Definitely not my favorite Bell's stout, but this one is very drinkable and it certainly isn't obvious that it is almost 7% abv. Seems almost sessionable.

Photo of putnam
2.68/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Burning rubber scented dark brown liquid. Alfalfa sprout, over roasted coffee, over extracted cocoa, until these are sharp and intensely sour and resinous. Smoky like the butt end of a good cigar. On the palate it's sweet and simple with burnt earth flavored structure underneath. Oddly vegetal. Wilted lemon essences on the finish. Charmless/boring to drink.

Photo of mcallister
4.15/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Another great stout by Bell's. This beer gives an enveloping amount of rye in the nose with hints of choclate malt and caramel. Very easy to drink not a big bold imperial. Can definitely drink a few of these babies. Same taste as smell with an added hint of vanilla.

Photo of CortexBomb
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fascinating, I didn't realise that Bell's still bottles Rye Stout, but here one is, with a recent batch is good!

The pour on Rye Stout is what you would expect, stouty black. The head is a little more white than tan, but the beer still has the appearance one would expect.

The smell is very heavy on the malts with some chocolate aspects also present. Appealing.

Flavour starts out softly sweet, malty and it never seems to let up in that department. Chocolate also fades in and out of the flavour, and some of the coffeeish tones that one expects in a stout, but neither of them ever really diminish the softly roasted backbone. A certain spicy aspect is also present throughout, and is particularly noticeable on the tip of the tongue after the swallow. Quality.

The mouth hits the notes that one would expect, some tingle is present, and the body is reasonably full. Drinkability, quite solid. Because the main character of the beer is that soft, malty aspect it is quite drinkable.

Overall, yet another interesting beer in Bell's vast stable of stouts. The spicy character in the finish is what makes it unique, and this beer is pretty close to the Kazoo Stout / Special Double Cream league for me. All of those beers are closely related, they just showcase slight variations, the Rye is just another good option if you're looking for a stout from the guys in Kalamazoo.

Photo of mattcrill
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Barley's Smokehouse

Appearance: Dense black with chocolate edging. A tight and fluffy tan head developed.

Smell: A little disappointed in the aroma but I think it was served too cold. As it warms I pick up wheat bread and some solid roasted barley notes.

Taste: Roasted barley, a nuttiness, maybe some coffee bitterness, a bit of a lactic twang, and just a hint of the rye that kind of puckers the lips at the end. Very dry and high on the roast. This reminds me of a very well done Irish dry stout. The rye really makes for an interesting bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied and slightly creamy.

Drinkability: Immensely enjoyable. Nothing over the top here. Just a very well made stout that would be strongly recommended especially for the non-stout drinker.

Photo of ahking
3.48/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Found a bottle of this beer in my basement from several years ago. So I am reviewing this beer now after about 3 years of cellaring. I don't really remember what this beer tasted like when I first had it, but I will say that cellaring must not have changed much with it. First of all, it survived the time well, no off flavors, nice carbonation. Aroma is nice and full, roasted coffee, caramel, dark chocolate, and fresh baked bread. Rye is one of my favorite malts and it works well here, adding a spicy edge to the malty stout. Hops are well balanced and go well with the slightly smoky flavor. Overall this is quick drinkable, but nothing special (even after aging it).

Bell's Rye Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
87 out of 100 based on 410 ratings.