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

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

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BA SCORE
89
very good

1,096 Reviews
THE BROS
85
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,096
Hads: 2,966
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 12.41%
Wants: 169
Gots: 315 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 12-11-2001

Java Stout uses a custom blend of coffee beans, roasted locally for us by Water Street Coffee Joint, to generate its intense flavor. Possessing an unmistakable aromatic punch, Java Stout has long been one of our most popular stouts.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,096 | Hads: 2,966
Photo of goindownsouth
4.39/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow. This is one really superb brew from what is coming to be one of my favorite microbreweries. This stout poured from the 12 ounce bottle with about a half-inch of a head, which was deep and rich looking in its own right. The aroma was a definite sign of things to come. The coffee aroma is impeccable. The first sip, much like the rest of them, was rich and smooth, with great roasted malt flavor and just the right amount of good high-quality coffee essence mixed in. This is one for the ages, in my opinion.

gds (519 characters)

Photo of GeoffRizzo
4.44/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown hue, dark tan head, sheets of lacing noted throughout. Some coffee, cocoa, roasted malts on the nose. Sweet, roasted malts, extremely thick, perhaps a full based body; definitive coffee beans, espresso notes, a touch carbonated; very creamy and rich texture. A mild bitterness, some chocolate should be noted towards the finish. Enjoyed a bit better when warmed to room temp; flavorful and unique, clearly a sipper to enjoy it's rich, creamy offerings. Bell's has yet to disappoint; once again they go outside the bottle with another fine dark brew! (560 characters)

Photo of winomark
2.96/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

2003 bottling.

Appearance: Pours a pitch black with a nice medium tan head with good lacing.

Aroma: Very bitter coffee hits first. And keeps hitting! Hard! Reminds me of my homebrew when I added too much coffee. Everything but the coffee is deeply hidden.

Taste: Palate follows the nose. Coffee bitterness controls the whole palate, allowing the roasted malt to sneek in the deep finish. All becomes more balanced in the lingering finish.

Mouthfeel: Very flavorful and strong, but not too heavy. Somewhat unbalanced in the mid-palate.

Drinkability: Not my favorite coffee stout. Too much coffee bitterness takes away some enjoyment, but oddly enough grows on me over time. Give this one a try when you can. (721 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.65/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Intense aromas of burnt coffee emanate from my glass, there is a bit of off-putting astringency & acidity, as well as a hint of chocolate as well. A deep dense dark brown color, approaching a deep black color. Fairly low carbonation, but when roused the beer produces a thick brow dense head. A thick creamy body. This beer is far better when it is on the warm side, when it is cold it is far to astringent & out of balance. When allowed to warm the sharp acrid roast coffee notes mellow & meld with the rest of the beer. Has a strong roast component as well as a bit of chocolate in the taste. Finishes with a bit of sharp acidity. Perhaps it could use a bit of malt sweetness to balance the roast component. This beer just seems a bit out of balance. (752 characters)

Photo of GreenWBush
4.45/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This one came jet black with no head whatsoever. Nice coffee and chocolate notes on the nose, as well as a nice hint of bourbon.

The taste of this beer is much aligned with imperial stouts like Stone's and Rogue's. There isn't a ton of "java"ness to the beer, it is just a big black huge stout.

The mouthfeel on this is amazingly thick, chewy, and tasty. I also noticed the way that the flavor sunk down into the pits of the mouth.

Overall, a great big stout - but lacking in the java department for me. I'd have this again, however, its ABV and flavor mesh perfectly for a winter beer. (596 characters)

Photo of jahred
4.17/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark, almost black with little-to-no head.

The scent is quite, quite strong. I smell stron, dark coffee without putting my face anywhere near the glass. I'm a bit tired - is there actually any caffeine in this thing? OK, so it doesn't smell like coffee. It smells like espresso. And dark malts. Wow.

The taste is like thick, sludgy coffee - and bar. It's good, but I'm not sure how, seeing as how sludgy coffee is usually bad. But I like this. It's chalky, powdery, and strong. Yum.

As it warms, there's more thick, rich malts, but I don't taste hops. Then the possible hint of some bitter chocolate - though that might be too good to be true. Chocolate, coffee and beer. A mocha beer - wow. The chocolate taste fades away, but the chalky, coffee sludgy taste remains.

I can see how some might not like the Java Stout, but I found it quite tasty. I can't drink it too quickly, but I can still see consuming several in an evening. I wonder - is there actually any caffeine in this??? (1,000 characters)

Photo of Finn
4.17/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours jet black with a small creamy, tan head on top. Smell is mostly pure coffee! But there's a hint of some sort of creamy smell though. Smells great. Taste is of coffee mainly and roasted malts, but the coffee flavor dominates the roasty stout flavor more according to my palate anyway. This stout is fairly bitter, but I think a lot is due to the coffee. The finsish is kind of acidic/ harsh. The mouthfeel is slightly creamy and thick. Very nice. The overall drinkability is good, but not great. This beer seems to be inconsistent, or maybe my palate is, because I bought a case of this and i've had several on different occasions and sometimes it's an amazing coffee stout, and other times it is just too harsh and acidic. Overall, I'd definitely give it a try to see what you think. (789 characters)

Photo of CortexBomb
3.87/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Vicious killer of a stout...

Pours out nice and dark with an overwhelming aroma of coffee on the nose and a goodly amount of carbonation.

The taste though, the 'coffee' used tastes more like espresso made with chocolate covered dark roast beans, in a word, aggressive! The coffee flavour is so dominant that only a midly malty flavour is allowed to come through with it however, which lowers the score a skosh. The hops manage to combine with the coffee to make a remarkable and unique bitter that hangs around on the back of the tongue throughout though.

The mouthfeel is decent, but a bit thin for a stout while the finish is as strong as the start. Not only does the taste linger, you can feel it hit bottom, just like drinking espresso.

More than any other Bell's offering I'd label this one an acquired taste, many people I know have never been able to finish a bottle of it as the taste is so dominating. If you normally like espresso you'll probably like it, others are urged to buy a bottle before a 6 pack, as it's usually either a home run or a complete strike out in my experience. (1,105 characters)

Photo of Gusler
4.48/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It’s been quite sometime since I reviewed this beer, much to long I’m afraid. The beer pours a piceous color with the head a chocolate brown crown on that ebony body, the head is creamy in texture and the lace a fine curtain to drape the glass. Deep roasted grain, coffee, sweet malt, fresh and clean to the senses, start is lightly sweet, thickly malted with the top full in its feel. Finish is masterfully hopped, moderately carbonate and the toasted grains leave a bit of bitterness on the palate, dry and a really nice stout, one I enjoy, and wish were more available. (574 characters)

Photo of aaronh
3.47/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Deep dark beer with reddish highlights. Dark tan head completes the presentation. The aroma is pretty much all coffe. Maybe a bit of hops, but more likely just some extra roasted grains. But the smell was pleasing. The taste was strong on espresso flavors, with a slight bitterness on the finish. Almost overpowering in it's assetive coffeeness. Mouthfeel is a bit thin, lighter than a cup of cappuccino. Drinkability was OK, but this is not a favorite. A little more chocolate, a little more sweetness, and this would be good. As it is, its coffee for drunks, or those of us that may want an excuse to drink a beer with breakfast. (631 characters)

Photo of clvand0
3.15/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer poured a dark color with a small tan head and left a little lacing on the glass. The aroma was mostly comprised of a coffee smell. Nothing much else in the aroma. The taste is totally dominated by the coffee - very strong blend of coffee at that. There is a hint of a roasted malt but it is well covered by the strong coffee. Not being a coffee fan, I found this beer to be OK. It is a well made beer if you're a coffee fan. (434 characters)

Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
4.22/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

"Voom!" That's what my bottle did after opening. About 1/4 of it exploded out of the top....lots and lots of brown foam.

Appearance: Poured a very, very dark brownish-black in color. Nearly opaque. Thick and creamy brown head foams up nicely, lasts forever, and does a decent job of coating the glass.

Smell: Whoo-doggies! Fresh roasted coffee mixed with some bittersweet chocolate and roasted nuts. Nothing like some bottled Starbuck's to liven things up. Some smoky malt lies in the background. Excellent.

Taste: Nice and dry on the flavor. The coffee flavor really comes through. Not overpowering, this flavor is mixed nicely with the chocolate and toasted nut flavor. Wonderfully-blended. Finishes on the slightly dry and bitter side. Kind of like how fresh black coffee would finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full in the body. Nice dose of creamy smoothness on the palate.

Drinkability: Very. I really liked this combination of flavors. Reminds of the Mocha Java Stout from Z Street Brewing that I had at the AOBF in May. Excellent finish. Alcohol is barely noted. Short aftertaste leaves you reaching for more. Very well-done. I'd love to try this on cask. Bell's deliver again.

Big thanks to Winomark for this one! (1,233 characters)

Photo of chilidog
3.46/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The name well fits this beer, as dose the label. As soon as its opened the aroma of coffee bean hits you on the nose. The appearance is good. Black as black coffee can get. No light through this beer. The pour, I admit was impressive. Its a thick, full bodied beer so the dark tan head bellows up slowly and cascades as it grows to a very nice frothy top. Lace is ringing, thick and sticky,very cool! The taste is at first, almost sour, but soon the mouth feels a smooth, mellow dark roasted balance of malt and a bitter hop. The mouth is left tart or with a bean bitter aftertaste. The mouth is dry but left with a slight oil feel. A dark, stout, busy beer. Alot going on and abit much for its not an easy drinker. (715 characters)

Photo of kwalters
3.44/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

First, let me start by saying Bell's Java Stout is more like coffee brewed with a bit of beer rather than beer brewed with coffee.

Java Stout pours a dark dark brown to pitch black with an average head. It looked really deep and inviting in the glass. I'm not a big coffee drinker, but I sure love the smell of freshly gound beans. That's the smell that wafts upward from this beer.

Java Stout feels very smooth and full inside the mouth. I must admit however, that for a non-coffee drinker the taste is a bit overpowering. I'm glad I tried one, but it's too roasty and Java-infused for my tastes. (605 characters)

Photo of Skidz
4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

On the pour, this beer came out dark brown and finished nearly black. A good one and a half finger, light tan, head to start, lasted all the way down, with good lacing on the glass. It really remined me of a good mocha latte from starbucks.

Speaking of coffee, this really smelled of so much coffee that you'd think the first taste would be of coffee...and surprise, surprise, coffee it is! Deep rich roasted beans really speak out in this brew. I expected nothing less from it. This is a very smooth stout, I could keep it in my mouth forever, but it goes down too easy.

A wonderful stout. Very rich, well built and the taste is all there. If you can't stand the taste of coffee howevery, you would want to steer clear of this one, but otherwise, you definately should try this one out. Like most any stout, I could only drink a couple of these at a time, there is just so much to them. If you haven't tried this out yet, put it on your list, and enjoy. (960 characters)

Photo of soulfly967
4.02/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This stout poured a nice brownish black with a tan head. All I could smell was coffee, which didn't bother me one bit, I think that I enjoyed the smell more than tasting the it! The tase was of very strong coffee, just as I had expected. I'm not sure if I could drink more than one of these at a time, but it was pretty decent. I would drink it again, if I was in the mood for coffee. (384 characters)

Photo of Brent
2.42/5  rDev -38.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I love stouts and porters that feature coffee flavors. I like coffee. I like most of Bell's products. But I did not like this beer. Poured an oily, inky black. Aroma was like cold used coffee grounds. Flavor was that of a pretty good dry stout with a 50/50 mix of extra-strong Columbian coffee. Unlike malt-derived coffee flavors, here the real coffee used in the brewing process imparted a thin, harsh cold coffee flavor. For me, this was like their Cherry Stout - a beer that was an interesting exercise and worth having tried, but not one I care to have again. (563 characters)

Photo of beergeek279
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in the 12 oz. bottle. The color is dark brown, with a foamy tan head. The smell is coffeeish. The taste is dominated by the coffee taste...tastes like a very, very strong blend, and there is very little other flavor coming through on this. Mouthfeel is creamy. Drinkability-wise, could probably have a few, but would get to me

Though not my favorite of the Bell's stouts, this coffee taste appeals so much to the geek in me...personally, I like a little water with my beans, and the jolt of caffiene that follows. I'm just surprised that I'm not feeling that jolt now! Still, a decent beer, and certainly will look forward to it in the future. (653 characters)

Photo of stoutman
4.52/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I like coffee and stout so this is a match in heaven.. Super dark, near-black body and a mountainous, rocky, tan head. Silky, rich body. Perfect equilibrium between beer and coffee. No one taste seems to dominate the other. A nice roasted malt taste marries well with a light coffee flavor. A brief bitterness is left in the palate along with the java presence. The typical Bells aftertaste is somewhat masked with the java.. (425 characters)

Photo of marburg
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Now from Starbucks: Roastabeerachino.

Packaged in this Bell's beer bottle for your convenience.

Black, black, black. Smells like soggy old coffee grounds above all else. I could argue that I get a little chocolate in there too. Similarly, this thing just screams coffee from the first sip to the last drop and everywhere in between. A more discerning approach yields the satisfaction of plucking out some sweet roasted malts. Any chocolate in this is fucking bitter, angry, dark chocolate that was left at the store by the little kiddies looking for that sweeter, milkier stuff. This beer is flavorful nearly to a fault.

I wonder if they even used many hops in this, other than some weak ones for preservative character? This thing derives its bitterness from itself.

Java. Yup. (790 characters)

Photo of BeerBuilder
4.22/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Blacker than Black. Your aren't gonna see through this one! It also has a creamy, light bronw head. The aroma is like a freshly brewed pot of coffee with just a slight bit of roastiness. The flavor is like a pot of black coffee, with a burnt coffee flavor upfront, a bit of roastiness in the middle, and a burnt bitterness in the oily, creamy finish. This is definitely the coffee drinkers beer. I would love to have a pot of this at work in the morning. A full-bodied, drinkable stout. I love it. (497 characters)

Photo of nomad
3.81/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured black as usual, with a thick and tight mocha-colored head. It bubbled up very slowly, and fell slowly to create a crowned shape, leaving behind a true lattice of stain, which in turn rolled out great lacing.

Smelled of overpowering ground coffee: that granular, slightly chalky, woody, and full of coffee bean smell. Some roasty malt accents slowly poked up beyond the coffee deluge, but it was a hard fight. Talented use of coffee beans, but a bit strong.

Tasted like grainy black coffee, not roasted, on top of a smooth, silky, and slightly sweet dark malt. Also had a small amount of dark chocolate notes. Spicy Sumatran bean notes toward the end, the finish tasted like an espresso straight-up, with some latent creaminess late in the lingering finish. Had a relatively thin mouthfeel but with a silky smooth texture - this nicely rounded out the beer.

A tasty beer but not one I could have more than once in a night. Nevertheless, its easy to see the talent it takes to brew a stout with coffee this well. (1,027 characters)

Photo of bigbubba
4.11/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer is very dark black with a thick light brown head. The smell is not strong, but chocolate and coffee are evident. The taste of coffee, chocolate, and dark roasted malt is well balanced with the malt sweetness and warming alcohol. There is some slight bitterness but it isn't a hop bitterness, it must be from the coffee, chocolate and dark malt. For a beer this dark, and at 7.5% it is surprisingly drinkable. The only thing keeping this from becoming a favorite of mine is the price. (493 characters)

Photo of mikeys01
4.22/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap at the BW-3 in downtown Indianapolis. My glass of Bell's Java arrived at my barstool an extremely dark brown to black coor with a nice thick tan head topping it off. Aroma is very bold coffee and chocolate, these dominate anythign else. Tastes like a dark roasted coffee at first then blends into chocolate and becomes quite sweet through the middle to the finish where just a bit of hop bitterness is detectable. Body is very full and thick, and it's quite smooth. In my opinion this beer is a good beer to finish a meal with or even drink with (or as) dessert. Not a beer you could drink a lot of in one session, but definitely worth enjoying a pint or two. (673 characters)

Photo of frank4sail
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Roasty big time coffee grounds nose. Dark black opeque look in the glass with a nice sticky rich off white slightly tan head. The taste is dominated by coffee. If you are not a coffee fan don't even try it... if you are ... man enjoy the ride. It a coffee lovers dream. Inital flavors of bitter coffee and this then mellows into a slight hazelnut, smoke, and slight hops finish on the tongue. The mouth is smooth but seems just a slight bit flat on the tongue. It's drinkability suffers slightly for me just due to the total coffee experience. It is very good.. i just could not imagine more than two of these in a session. (623 characters)

Bell's Java Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
89 out of 100 based on 1,096 ratings.