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Bell's Special Double Cream Stout - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Bell's Special Double Cream StoutBell's Special Double Cream Stout

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BA SCORE
89
very good

1,382 Reviews
THE BROS
83
good

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,382
Hads: 3,476
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 9.77%
Wants: 209
Gots: 386 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.10% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Mitchster on 12-30-2001

Double Cream Stout derives its name from its smooth, creamy texture, not the ingredients. Completely dairy-free, this stout blends ten different specialty malts to yield a remarkable depth of flavor. With only a touch of burnt notes, Double Cream Stout focuses on the softer, cocoa & espresso-like aspects of roasted malt.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,382 | Hads: 3,476
Photo of Mikus
3.23/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

This poured a deep, murky black with a minimal head, and small bubbles throughout. Nice lookin'. Aromas of roasty malt, burnt popcorn (in a good way), and coffee hints. Tasted malty, a bit sweet (do I detect lactose sugars?), some roasty flavors, altogether rather light. Mouthfeel was a bit light and watery, clean aftertaste. Well-made, but I am a fan of bigger, badder stouts... good for the style. (401 characters)

Photo of righthereisay
3.25/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Little lacing on this very dark beer.

It had some coffee flavor, but I would say it tasted more like a milk stout than expected. This is probably why the smell wasn't as good as expected either.

With the name, I expected a more creamier stout. So I was a little dissappointed.

I thought it had a little too much carbonation, and thought it had a medium body at best. Again, expectations were a full body creamy stout.

Obviously it didn't meet my expectations but it was still a good beer. I probably wouldn't spend a night drinking these.. (543 characters)

Photo of ChadQuest
3.25/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pour is nearly opaque with a bit of dark brown around the edges. a thin band of dark tan lacing.
The aroma is roasty formost and really dark cacao.
Flavor wise there is a roast that is very espresso like in many ways, smooth and creamy with a tight refined roast. Very chocolate like, and some lactose flavors.
The mouthfeel is full for a stout this size, middle of the road carbination.

A solid stout. (405 characters)

Photo of chesapeakegoody
3.26/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: BLACK, with a small dirty head

S: Def. coffee, with a hint of sweet vanilla

T: Bitter roast, chocolate, almost burnt espresso taste

M: Very nice smooth finish but bitter taste was a bit overwhelming. The creamy texture is probably the best part of this beer. (264 characters)

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.26/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle, batch 8273 (12/19/07). Pours black with no head. Aroma of raisin and sweet malt, light chocolate notes. Flavor is sweet and raisiny initially with a roasty finish. Unfortunately this is past it's prime, but I didn't realize how old it was when I purchased it. It's decent overall though.
6/4/7/3/14 (3.4/5) (314 characters)

Photo of iron78
3.27/5  rDev -18%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

doesn't allow any light through. has a dark brown head that fades very fast.
the standard porter coffee and chocolate smell, but with a hind of tobacco maybe.
carries the coffee and chocolate into the flavor. the bitterness masked well by the cream, almostlike a latte.
very thick and creamy leaving the mouth feel coated.
very enjoyable. (342 characters)

Photo of SupaCelt
3.28/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This stuff is black out of the gates with a chocolate milk like foamy head. Head sticks around for a hot minute or two. Some lacing produced. I like the darkness. I have hope.

The smell is of malt and souring milk with some coffee and baker's chocolate notes. Nothing that makes my mouth water. Not foul by any means, just not all that exciting. Quite a neutral aroma.

This is milk stout. Some milky taste that stirs up a feeling of coffee and cream. Low hops profile. The body is somewhat thick but in more of a dairy sense than an oily sense. Quite sweet and dairy like. I can't really perceive any carbonation on my tongue. This is not a repulsive brew by any stretch of the imagination, but I would most likely not try this again. This style seems to lack the things I love about stouts. The milk factor seems to really dull things out. Namely the bitterness and roasted feeling of stout brews. Bell's has much finer drinks available in my opinion. (958 characters)

Photo of Zraly
3.29/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours opaque black with a tan head. Head doesn't retain for very long. Roasted malt nose.

Chocolate and espresso upfront. Dark fruits mid to late palate. A bit of sour twang. I pick up on more twang than creaminess. Not a bad thing, but this is also not what I was expecting. The mouthfeel is good overall. Carbonation is sufficient for style. Medium-bodied.

A decent American stout. Given the ABV isn't as high as what most people reach for in the autumn/winter, you could likely have more than one without running into too much trouble. (541 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.29/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a deep brown, almost a black, color. It forms a thick brown head when swirled in my glass. The aroma is of a buttery roast malt. The butter seems to dominate the aroma. The butter component is in the taste as well. This beer is creamy in consistency. It has definite roast character as well, though befitting a cream stout, it is a soft roast flavor. The stout is fairly thick bodied, with notes of coffee and chocolate. The butter flavor seems to dissipate with time, though I could just be getting used to it. I am not sure if the butter character is supposed to be here (my guess is that it is not), but it is no so strong that it horribly detracts from this beer. It even helps to boost the perceived fullness of this beer. Though in the end this beer would be much better without the butter component. (822 characters)

Photo of lunarbrew
3.29/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

A- The beer poured a very dark black with little to no head or lacing. I wasn't blown away with the beer's color, and would have really liked a richer head with a cream stout. Still, the appearance was definitely one of the beers nicer features.

S- Wasn't a huge smell, but I did pick up some nice notes of roasted grains and red fruit. I was expecting a very sugary presence in a double cream stout, but the beer didn't smell very sweet

T- Nope, it doesn't taste that sweet at all. The beer didn't have the typical milkstout lactose flavor either (which I understand was the intention of the brewery). I was really expecting (and craving) a deep, rich, creamy beer. Unfortunately I didn't really get that with this beer. There was a bit of dry malt on the finish with a lingering taste of cherry, fig, and acidic coffee.

M- I was quite disappointed with the feel of this beer. One of my favorite characteristics of a cream stout is a rich, full-bodied, creamy texture. The texture of this cream stout was closer to a medium body and generally, it felt a little watered down. The creaminess just didn't follow through.

Overall an ok beer. While it was fun to try, I would prefer more depth and creaminess in a double cream stout. I did appreciate some of the roasted subtleties here, but I doubt I'll be buying this one again. (1,331 characters)

Photo of enfield249
3.3/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark black, light tan ring of foam. Looks thick, but doesn't cling to glass.

S - Sweet smelling, chocolate up front, and then some coffee.

T - Strong coffee flavor, some sweetness, bitter roastiness.

M - Full, astringent. Drys out the middle of my tongue.

D - Pretty good, a nice cream stout, but tastes at lot more like a coffee stout. (344 characters)

Photo of Metalmonk
3.31/5  rDev -17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Opaque fudgy blackness with an enormous head despite an easy-handed pour. The head is bumpy and creamy, retaining very well. Thick lace forms a kind of honeycomb pattern on the glass. This looks, as the English say, "the business."

Aroma of sweet cream and milk chocolate shavings, also lightly fruity and a slight hint of mineral in back.

Flavor is somewhat of a letdown, if I'm comparing it with any other Bell's stout. Even for the style it seems merely okay. Watery chocolate, coffee bitterness, fruit zing, and the sweetness of fresh cream. Mineral rides through in the finish.

Heavily carbonated, and too much so. There's a smoothness in there, I can feel a nice velvety texture, but I found it too tingly. It's certainly not due to excessive coldness, as I'm drinking this just barely below room temperature.

Easily my least favorite Bell's beer so far (I've tried 14 to date). It's not at all bad--I don't think even the worst Bell's beer would be terrible--and it won't be a chore getting through the other 3 remaining from the 6-pack. But I probably won't return. And, yeah, we should review to style, and I believe I am, but this has never been my favorite style, so... (1,185 characters)

Photo of Erdinger2003
3.32/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

The head falls fast, but leaves a good sticky lacing. The color is crisp black and inviting.

Sweet black fruit, molasses, chocolate and coffee flavors with a slight creamy feel in the smell.

Not thick, but watery with coffee and cream flavors with very little body and only a slight aftertaste.

Watery and unlike most stouts with a very little body.

Overall it was less than expected from Bell's, it would take a special case the next time I try this one. (467 characters)

Photo of 88blkiroc
3.33/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a dark black with a thin tan head that disapates quickly. No light gets through this bad boy. Leaves some slight lacing on the glass with each sip.

Smell: Not what I was expecting, I smell soy sauce. Very salty smelling. Also a slight smokey peat smell like a good single malt scotch.

Taste: Good carbonation, smooth and salty tasting. A faint sweetness to it but I can't really call it chocolate tasting. There is definitly a creamy feel to it though. The saltiness is somewhat off putting.

Being a WMU grad I feel it my duty to get my hands on all the Bell's products I can. I have a love hate with Bells in that everyone I talk to loves it but I really cant say any of their beers have been life changing for me. I really want to love them but I haven't found anything that rocks my boat yet. This one is another "eh" beer, I could take it or leave it.

P.S. This beer is rated at 6.1% ABV on the bottle, not 7.5% like it states above. (963 characters)

Photo of boilermakerbrew
3.33/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours almost black, only hints of brown around the edges. A short-lived one finger foamy head that laces decently.

S- Lots of deep roast scents. Hints of sweetness are also present. Somewhat faint and less pronounced than other stouts.

T- Can't say anything really sticks out here. Typical American stout. Big roasted malts right up front. Only a little sweetness for the double cream claim. Ends cleanly with a small bite form the heavier malts.

M- High carbonation, but thick and creamy otherwise. Weight is fairly light, but not out of the stout range. Could sit down and have a few of these.

Overall, I love sweet stouts, but this one left me pining for more in the sweet and vanilla flavor regions. If you look really hard, there might be a little vanilla sweetness, but otherwise, this is just a solid American stout. (830 characters)

Photo of JEngler
3.35/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Pouring aggressively resulted in a tiny head. It was almost midnight black after the pour.

S - It had a gentle aroma of burnt malts and caramel.

T - This was a complex taste but the malts and hints of caramel in the background we there at each drink. It was surprisingly smooth, despite it's think and dark appearance.

M - I found this to be lightly carbonated and lighter tasting then I anticipated.

D - I think this was pretty good for a stout but was expecting a bit more richness.

I enjoy most of the product's by Bell's and this is also very enjoyable. (566 characters)

Photo of skrib09
3.35/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

nicely cascading, tan colored head.

really dark appearance which invites you to smell and sample it.

smells roasty, complex, sweet.

surprisingly roasty taste. a slight finish of sweet coffee. good taste.

good mouthfeel, average drinkability for me. (253 characters)

Photo of jpkoch1962
3.36/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

While I want to give this famed stout a higher score, I just couldn't. This stout has a lot of pluses. A very nice deep ebony presentation -deep red hues can be seen if held against the light. The head was a dirty brown and long lasting. However, the aroma was somewhat muted. Could only detect slight hints of roasted barley. The taste was dominated by dark roasted malts -very little complexity. I was expecting something a bit more diverse. Perhaps more chocolate, carmel, and crystal malts would have added character to this stout.

While I plan on drinking this again, I was expecting a bit more. (601 characters)

Photo of swizzlenuts
3.36/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black and a small head. There is a slight roasty smell to it, but not much else. The beer has a slight sweetness with a lot of roastiness. There isn't much much flavour in this beer, which is disappointing. The beer is roasty and slightly sweet, but nothing much else. The mouth feel is good, and it's drinkable. I'm quite disappointing with this beer. (352 characters)

Photo of AdamMY
3.38/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The color is black, with only the slightest hint of transparency around the rims.

It poured a nice sustaining head which was slightly dirty . The aroma is great, lots of coffee and chocolate malt. The aroma also has a slight hint of a burnt popcorn like aroma.

The taste is definitely "Interesting". It has Its like a smooth and creamy coffee with chocolate undertone. The Burnt popcorn comes out in the finish. But there is an overwhelming bitterness and sourness to it that I notice as I drink it more and more.

The drink-ability is only moderate, as it is enjoyable but I do not know if I could drink these one after another all that easily, especially with the sour aspect to it.

Batch #9513

Acquired from a PA Store. (726 characters)

Photo of 99bottles
3.38/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I had to bump this guy's appearance because the bottle is so good looking. It reminds me of some really great pen and ink drawings of loney oak trees where I grew up. The beer pours a dark brown (not black) and has a inch head with some really nice retention. It stuck around.

The smell is oh so sweet. Double cream? You bet. Sweet milky sugars and cake batter crawl out. Light choco but not exactly.

Taste is good. There's an ease with drinking this, and it goes away pretty fast. Very sweet aftertaste. Creamy for sure. Tiny roast notes in the aftertaste. If there are hops, they didn't send me the memo. Here's a metaphor: I like my coffee black. This reminds me of when someone goes out to get coffees for everyone and fucks up and brings mine back with 2 creamers and sugar in it. It's rich and sweet, but that's really not the way I take it. The depth of the alcohol is so hidden though, it needs props for the mystery they've created in that department.

Mouthfeel: Ok. Not real thick, nor should it be. Nice weight and minimal cloying after the sip.

Drinkability: Again, just ok. Beers like this let the taste dictate their drinkability. There's nothing wrong with it, maybe a little heavy in the gut afterwards, but it goes down easy and is satisfying. I just think I'd keep myself to one a night, or a year. Try it, at least it's different. (1,361 characters)

Photo of trbergman
3.38/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured into a tulip.

A - Very dark brown beer with one finger of clinging tan head that leaves plenty of lace.

S - Subdued aromas of roast barley, coffee, and chocolate, with hints of molasses.

T - Rich milk chocolate mixes with coffee-and-cream. There's a slightly acrid roasted flavor lingering in the background that I don't entirely like, but it's mostly covered up by chocolate. Hop flavor is practically nonexistent, though the beer has significant level of hop bitterness for the style. It's good, but given the name, I was expecting a more straightforward sweet stout.

M - Full-bodied; rich and silky.

D - According to the bottle, Bell's Special Double Cream is "brewed with a blend of 10 different malts." To me, it felt like the brewery was trying to do too much with this beer, and a little restraint would go a long way. It wasn't altogether unenjoyable, but this isn't one that I'd go out of my way to get. (936 characters)

Photo of drpimento
3.39/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Odd duck. Seems to vary a little in its characteristics. This time, I don't think I'm imagining it and don't know how it could be possible - but it seems to me like the "cream" qualities, i.e. the lactose, is spoiled. I pick up some sour milk aroma and flavor. Other than that part the flavor is spot on and ditto aroma. Body is creamy and is, for me, one of my favorite kinds of beer: milk/cream stout. So easy drinking. Don't pick up any alcohol in this at all, so it's a sneaky one. Carbonation is perfect. Head is tan, fine and medium size. Nice lace. I'd give it much better rating except for the sour thing. And, admittadly my sensory apparatus is defective, soooo... I leave it there. (691 characters)

Photo of dwren89
3.4/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: pitch black and opaque with dark tan head that disappeared quickly

Aroma: chocolately, a little bittersweet, not a very potent aroma

Taste: bittersweet chocolate, slightly silky with a little lactose character, smooth finish

Mouthfeel: silky but not overly so, medium-full body, great balance

Overall: a good but not great milk stout. Bittersweet chocolate with a silky mouthfeel make for a good cold weather sipper (432 characters)

Photo of robwestcott
3.4/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

in a word - very sweet... well, that was two words i guess.

a very very dark brown / to black? - poured into a dogfish head signature glass with an almost imperceptible beige head that may have lasted a few seconds or so.

very sweet, almost cloying upon the first drink with a sour finish. however, i soon realized it had been served much too cold. after sitting for 15min or so, more of the flavor opened up and the sweetness receded (though only slightly).

no bitterness to note, maltiness is way up front. i should note that the longer this one lived in the glass and the closer it came to room temp, the more enjoyable it became. (636 characters)

Bell's Special Double Cream Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
89 out of 100 based on 1,382 ratings.