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

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

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

2,567 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,567
Reviews: 1,054
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 11.99%
Wants: 139
Gots: 207 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  7.50% 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: 2,567 | Reviews: 1,054 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Lnedrive14
3.6/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I am a huge fan of coffee stouts, especially big ones, so I was excited to see this at Total Wine and Beer in Midlothian.

My excitement grew as I poured a thick, jet black brew with a huge tan head. Kind of looked like the Southern Tier Jah-Vaa that everyone loves. Unfortunately, the taste did not live up to my expectations. Coffee/espresso flavors were present, but mild. Big alcohol presence. Mild hops. Kind of tasted like burnt malts in there. It wasn't necessarily bad, it just wasn't great. However, I will say that these were pretty cheap, so compared to other great coffee stouts, this isn't a bad option at all.

Lnedrive14, Apr 21, 2007
Photo of dherling
3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured out liquid black with no head whatsoever. The nose is big time fresh roasted coffee, some smoke, a bit of malt. There might be other stuff but the coffee is overpowering. The taste is like sucking on cold carbonated coffee. Has a medium bodied mouthfeel, a little slick, with good carbonation. If you like coffee, this is a nice beer with good coffee taste. If like me you don't like coffee, it becomes a less drinkable beer.

dherling, Apr 21, 2007
Photo of umustdrink
3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep mahogany brown color, mostly opaque but there is some color visible. Head fades rather quickly to a film. No lacing.

S - Light cream and coffee, grainy powdered chocolate

T - Starts off light and bitter which leads into a thin, bitter chocolate with espresso beans. Bitter, toasty, coffee aftertaste. Overall, taste is kind of thin.

M - Consistency is thin. Carbonation is slightly elevated.

D - Taking this for what it is, it's a pretty tasty beer, but there are much better stouts, even from Bell's, that are just as atainable.

umustdrink, Apr 20, 2007
Photo of brdc
2.85/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

This is a pitch black brew that generates a foamy brown head that unfortunately disappears quickly, although leaving some lacing behind.
Nose is pleasant, but unidimensional and even overpowering, coffee and more coffee.
The taste is slightly more balanced, with some other roasted malts barely discernible in there, but still overwhelming, overpowering coffee and more coffee.
Medium-bodied, drinking this brew is limited to one bottle (or in my case, less than half) given the overpowering excess of coffee that blunts everything else.
Will definitely not try this again.

brdc, Apr 16, 2007
Photo of beerphan
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle -> pint
batch id: 7768
packaged: December 21,2006 according to www.bells.com

Pours black with a couple inches of creamy dark tan head. Some clumps oflace cling to the glass

Nose: Seemed kinda muted, some roastedness, coffee, cocoa

Roasted malts up front with thickness but no real standout in flavor,a good mellow blend. The finish is where the 'java' in java stout shows itself most proudly. A thick coffee grind flavor lingers on the tongue long after the sip has been disposed.

Mouthfeel is sorta thin with a chewy feel.

A good stout to finish out a cold dreary day, but not something i can foresee for a session.

beerphan, Apr 15, 2007
Photo of mmmbeer
4.53/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle, batch 7768 - packaged 12/21/06, sampled after breakfast on 3/6/07. It's not the official Breakfast Stout, but it's a close enough cousin, so I figured why not. It pours black into the chalice, thins near the edges, and is topped with a 1/4" brownish head that reduces to a nice collar, leaving little lacing. The bouquet is complex and delightful, with rich, roasted coffee right off the bat, closely followed by charred malts and sweet milk chocolate. There are additional notes of powdery cocoa, sweet cake batter, Oreos?, blackberry, and perhaps some piney hops. Upon tasting, my first impression is that of a milk stout brewed with coffee, balanced by a touch of green hops. To elaborate, there are roasted, coffee, and burnt malts, a big blast of espresso, a medium hoppy/roasted bitterness, a dash of green apple, and maybe some lactic sweetness. The mouthfeel is amazing - smooth and silky (like a milk or oatmeal stout), quite dry, with a medium to light body that has fine, active carbonation due to the conditioning. This is a great beer - it is smooth and refined in both flavor and mouthfeel, and manages to taste strongly of coffee without overwhelming the palate. Will definitely revisit at some point.

mmmbeer, Apr 10, 2007
Photo of udubdawg
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Gotta say that until I looked up the profile I didn't realize this was 7.5%. Very dark color. Tan head leaves nice lace...

I could probably give this beer two entirely different reviews. The everyday review would have a lot of 3's and 3.5's. I don't usually drink coffee/expresso, but enjoy the taste and smell and sometimes make desserts with it too. So on most days, this astringent/roasty coffee-dominated stout is about the last thing I want.

However, there's the other times...on a guys weekend of travelling to the NCAA tournament, visiting brewpubs and bar after bar, waking up whenever, finding women that look like trouble, etc, etc, I've found myself rolling out of bed and seaching for this beer. Breakfast beer? - sure, but only when I'm reliving my college years.
There's some chocolate noted, and the beer is a bit drying in the finish, and could use a bit thicker mouthfeel, but make no mistake - this is mostly about coffee. If ya can't stand coffee, no need to bother. Otherwise, give it a shot.

udubdawg, Apr 08, 2007
Photo of BitteBier
3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Ominously dark in the pour with seemingly little head at first but then a good finger's worth of toffee/bronze-colored bubbles that mostly fall away to a persistent lace. The smell is predictably studded with coffee, though some roasty notes are present as well. Until this one sat and warmed a bit, there was an unpleasant note of cigarette smoke in the mix. The mouthfeel is as smooth and creamy as I remember it being--very drinkable. Coffee and chocolate complement the roasty grains with a nice touch of almost spicy bitterness thrown in. Not too shabby.

BitteBier, Apr 07, 2007
Photo of philberinghele
4.72/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

cold winter wind
brew for dark winter mornings
espresso arouse

The perfect beer for mornings or evenings when you want a cup of coffee but a beer just seems more appropriate. I'm not sure if it's quite as good as goose island's black cat, but it's close. My only complaints would be that the head was a little thin. I would prefer a thicker, more espresso like crema. I need to try this on tap.

philberinghele, Apr 04, 2007
Photo of AltBock
3.23/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. bottle with a cool looking label that depicts a cup of coffee that's jacked up on caffeine. He's jumping around like a mad man while holding up a wood sign that says the name of the beer, "Java Stout." He or she is so jacked up on caffeine, that they don't realize that most of their life blood, the coffee, is coming out its head. He or she is jumping around with a million dollar Joker like grin while their eyes are spinning around like one of those disks that are made to hypnotize people. I thought I've seen some big noses in my life, but this cup of coffee takes the cake. It's so big that it covers up over half of its own mouth. The neck label has the same picture, but just a small variation of it. The back label has a little blurb about the beer, Government warning, and a batch # that you need to go to their website to see when it was packaged. Mine was 7768 which means it was packaged on December 21, 2006. I just found out that if you look closely at the bottom of the picture, you're going to find who drew this very interesting label picture. It was done by someone named Coverly. Served in no other than a Bell's Brewery American pint glass.

It poured a straight up (coffee without milk or sugar) coffee ink black with a few murky brown and ruby red highlights here and there. You straight up coffee drinkers will notice the similarities between the color of your coffee and this beer. It had a thin layer of tan colored foam that dissipated away in a matter of a few seconds and into a few tan rings and tan colored bubbles that acted as its lace around the glass. The beer smelled like you've walked into your favorite coffee house while they were brewing a chocolate flavored coffee or espresso. No malt, no hops, just a straight up chocolate flavored coffee or espresso aroma. It tasted like your favorite coffee house has just added a shot hazelnut flavoring to your chocolate flavored coffee or espresso. Like the aroma, no hops, no malt, just a straight up chocolate flavored coffee or espresso with a drop of hazelnut added to it. The label said that it was brewed coffee, but I think it was brewed with way too much coffee. They don't call it a "Java Stout" for nothing. The mouthfeel was medium bodied with a thick aftertaste that's reminiscent of the aftertaste you get after drinking down a cooled down cup of Joe. I know they call it "Java Stout," but it's really just a one dimensional beer. I would have liked to taste more than just coffee. While I was drinking this, I questioned if this was really a beer. About half way through, I found myself bored of this beer. I doubt I'll drink this Bell's beer again because it's a tad boring and I already know what black coffee tastes like.

AltBock, Apr 03, 2007
Photo of emerge077
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Fresh batch #7768.

Pours black with tan foam, stays for a good half-hour.

Aroma of fresh-ground coffee beans, chocolate malt.

Medium acidic coffee bitterness, almost fruity and green. Rich and still approachable, a shade under Breakfast Stout and other "big" coffee stouts. Roasted malt in the middle, milld hop integrated with the coffee, bitter but not herbal or harsh. Fairly sweet, but mild with a residual caramel aspect.

Mouthfeel is ultra smooth, even carbonation that lasts. Very easy to have several in a sitting. My favorite session coffee stout.

emerge077, Apr 01, 2007
Photo of adams82
3.2/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours an opaque black with a rocky dark tan head which leaves light lacing. Smells of bitter sweet chocolate, strong coffee with a sweet backbone. Obviously, big tastes of coffee/espresso and some dark chocolate, a slight smoky hint is in there somewhere too with maybe some raisens, some residual sweetness lingers as the slightly spicy hopfinish takes over. Just the right amount of carbonation gives this a silky mouthfeel, medium bodied and fairly drinkable.

This is made for a coffee drinker, hence the name, so if you don't like coffee, stay away! Otherwise, this is a nice Java Stout and a fairly solid offering.

adams82, Mar 24, 2007
Photo of dogger6253
4.4/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very dark and opaque with a nice light tan head, incredibly foamy and beautiful to look at. Lacing is present, but not very consistent.

Smell is exquisite, extreme coffee grounds, espresso and roasted malts. I pick up bits of burnt wood in the background and a little chocolate, even whiffs of oatmeal, wonderful aroma.

Taste is quite understandably coffee grounds, however not as dominantly as I would assume. The coffee blends fairly well alongside milk chocolate, dark chocolate, and espresso. There is also some molasses-sweetness and a chocolaty aftertaste.

Medium to full bodied, but quite smooth with alcohol completely hidden. It would be hard to drink several of these due to the infusion of coffee, but something I would drink again. I'd even recommend this to coffee-haters thanks to its balance.

dogger6253, Mar 23, 2007
Photo of happygnome
4.4/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: pours a dark dark brown almost black color maroon hints on the edges eigth inch of head dissapears fast little lacing
s: roated malt smell little hop presence deffinate coffee aroma
t: wow deffinate coffee flavor nice bitter hop finish
m: medium to heavy bodied beer very smooth very nice wow

overall this beer is really realyl nice I enjoyed around 55 degrees very nice wow

happygnome, Mar 21, 2007
Photo of Wasatch
4.47/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to JohnnyM2002

Pours a nice clean dark brown color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy tan head, nice sticky lacing afterwards. The nose is of sweet roasted malts, slight hops, nice coffee/caramel. The taste is delicious of sweet roasted malts and coffe/caramel, the finish is slightly dry. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is an awesome ADS, very tasty indeed.

Wasatch, Mar 20, 2007
Photo of OStrungT
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours an inky black color with a thick, fluffy brown head. The head fades slowly, leaving a massive lacing.

This beer has a strong coffee aroma. I guess that is why they named it Java Stout. It has a slight bittersweet chocolate aroma. It has a slight tobaco aroma also. I have read reviews mentioning a tobaco aroma, but I have never actually detected it until now. It is different. Some dark fruit is also present.

This beer tastes like all the fine things in life. It tastes like drinking stouts and smoking cigars. Tobaco is present. A strong coffee flavor is also present. The tobaco flavor is overpowering any other flavors I might have been able to detect.

This beer goes down smooth, leaving a cigarlike aftertaste. It is very unique. It is perfectly carbonated.

I dont think this beer would be the worlds best session beer. It has a strong, but good flavor that might become overbearing fast.

Overall: I think this might be one of the most unique stouts I have ever had. I liked it and would drink it again, but definately not all the time. Thanks go out to ggaughan for yet another great Bells beer.

OStrungT, Mar 19, 2007
Photo of BMoney575
4.35/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on 3-10-07
Batch 7706
Bottled on 10-26-06

Pours a very smooth pitch black with a thin tan head that sits there.

Smells like coffee. Not like coffee malt but like a freshly brewed cup of coffee. A slightly sweet malty aroma is in there too.

Taste is very malty with a huge coffee finish. There's no mistaking what the theme of this beer is. The hop bitterness complements the coffee bitterness perfectly.

Mouthfeel is good, very thick with low carbonation.

Drinkability is surprisingly good. I expected this to really build up, but it drinks very easily.

Overall a very good coffee beer. If you like coffee flavors in your beer, you'll like this.

BMoney575, Mar 11, 2007
Photo of bluejacket74
3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass, the beer pours very dark brown, with a half inch tan head. Whoa, you can really smell the coffee in this beer. I can also smell some malt and a bit of chocolate, but coffee is the main smell by far. Taste is mostly coffee, with some malt/chocolate sweetness at first. Then the coffee taste kicks in, and finishes with a slight lingering bitterness. Mouthfeel is a bit slick, and the body is medium but a little thinner than I expected. Drinkability is good, it's nice and smooth and goes down easy. If you like coffee, you'll like this beer. I think it's pretty decent, but I don't think I could drink more than 2-3 in a sitting, but it's definitely worth trying.

bluejacket74, Mar 10, 2007
Photo of Cresant
2.83/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured this 12 oz. brown bottle into a pint glass. Dark, dkark brown body let zero light through. Three fingers of creamy tan head eventually faded to a ring.

Smell was ashy and powdery. Freash coffee and cocoa powder.

Taste was Creamy sweet and brightly hoppy. Nicely balanced.

Mouthfeel was smooth and rounded. Medium to full bodied.

Cresant, Mar 09, 2007
Photo of Onibubba
3.13/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Black pour. A thick 1" beige head is gone before you know it. Faint coffee aroma, more about burnt sugar and...band aids? Bleh. Taste is ye olde soy sauce stout with a touch of coffee maybe. Not in your face coffee taste like Speedway, more of a "it says java on the label, so I must be tasting coffee" taste. Carbonation is high, mouthfeel is thin. Alcohol is a bit more noticeable than it should be. Not going back to this one.

Onibubba, Mar 06, 2007
Photo of neonbrown82
3.23/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Bell's batch #7822, packaged on February 8, 2007. I was hoping for a better coffee flavor in this beer, but as it turns out it tastes like Folger's. Not very pleasant. Looks great, smells ok, tastes like low-grade cold coffee.

The beer pours to a nice solid black color with a huge toffee colored. Great retention and nice layered lace. Looks great.

The smell, on the other hand, is where things start to go downhill for this beer. Has an ashtray coffee aroma, like crappy freeze dried folger's coffee and cigarette butts. A little bit of chocolate and malty sweetness.

The taste is very similar. Namely the cigarette butts, but also the same stale coffee flavor. Seems like it has some oils and tannins extracted from the coffee. The stout that lies beneath the horrible coffee and ashtray seems an awful lot like the Bell's Special Double Cream Stout, which is a plus... but it's hard to tell because it tastes like I just smoked a cigar.

The mouthfeel is probably the worst aspect. Has a grainy bitterness from the coffee, and in addition it is almost completely and utterly lacking in carbonation. Thus it seems even more like I'm drinking cold, stale coffee. The body is nice and thick, however, though this sensation could be aided by the lack of carbonation.

As if you couldn't tell from my review heretofore, it is not too particularly drinkable. I will not buy any more of this after my six pack is finished. I knew I should have topped off my case with an additional Hopslam or Expedition... :-/

neonbrown82, Mar 06, 2007
Photo of Higravity
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark as concentrated coffee with a tan head that leaves some lacing. The smell is of old coffee gone cold with the mix of choclate tones and some pleasent soft sweetness. The flavor comes out strong of coffee but fades to roasty burnt flavors with a lift of malt. The body is a little thinner than most stouts but it works with the coffee premiss. Truly a better option than redbull and vodka to get a little perk in a session.

Higravity, Mar 05, 2007
Photo of flexabull
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep black color with a decent tan head that quickly faded.

Aromas are quite nice. Smells are of dark coffee, cocoa, and roasted malts.

Beer has a very dry character. There are flavors of dark roasted coffee, and wa somewhat bitter chocolate quality. This finishes crisp and tart.

Mouthfeel seems too watered down for a stout. It's not bad, but it just seems too lean.

Drinkability is good. I prefer more creaminess, and a thicker mouthfeel to stouts, but this is pretty unique tasting and interesting.

Bottle courtesy of JohnnyM2002.

flexabull, Feb 28, 2007
Photo of BillyB
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep black, opaque with a rocky, tan head.

Aromas of coffee, brown sugar and roasted malt dominate. Also a hint of whiskey-ish alcohol.

Tastes of coffee, toasty, roasty malts. Chocolate, nutty with a German chocolate cake-like flavor to it. Very rich.

Full bodied with a creamy but slightly oily mouthfeel.

BillyB, Feb 25, 2007
Photo of granite
4.53/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A---It poured a dark mahogany with a rocky tan head.

S---Mocha, roast and brown sugar.

T---Nutty with French roast coffee in the front. Grainy roasted malt. It finished with a heavy dose of chocolate malt.

M---Medium bodied with a creamy mouth feel.

D---The ultimate coffee experience. Now this is a beer to start your day off on the right foot.

granite, Feb 19, 2007
Bell's Java Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
88 out of 100 based on 2,567 ratings.