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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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,382 Reviews

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Reviews: 1,382
Hads: 3,483
Avg: 3.98
pDev: 10.8%
Wants: 211
Gots: 388 | 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: 3,483
Photo of Crosling
4.35/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black with a thin head that appears light tan in color. Deep aroma highlighting decadent malts (chocolate, coffee, roast) along with a touch of cream for coffee and gingerbread. Rich and chewy malt flavor with notes of chocolate, coffee and brownies. Another very special Bell’s stout.

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Photo of bjohnson
3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Received in a trade from zrrbrrt.

A: Pours a jet black color with a one finger caramel colored head that has good retention.
S: Aromas of chocolate and caramel malts with a dry finish.
T: Tastes of dry sweet chocolate hit the palate first followed by a nice blast of carbonation that tingles the tongue. Nice faint sweet aftertaste on the back of the tongue--almost of licorice.
M & D: Nice smooth taste. Slick going down. Not as heavy or coating as I thought it was going to be. Sweet aftertaste is very appealing. Drinkable dessert beer, but I wouldn't have more than 2. Definately a tasty offering from Bell's. Would have again if I can get it.

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Photo of Dithyramb
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Black with tan head. Loads of retention and lacing. This is followed by raw coffee and caramel aromas. Mix of flavors that are expected, some chocolate, bitter coffee, and some light floral hops. The problem was that it came off muddled and not the cream/milk stout flavor or smoothness that I expected. Not bad, just not great.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.43/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a nice creamy head with better then average retention. Aroma of subtle chocolate and coffee. Taste is less pronounced then expected with some sweet chocolate malt and a very subtle coffee touch. No bitterness to speak of but a nice creamy well carbonated body. The finish is a bit too watery for my taste. Good but may be a bit overrated in my mind.

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
4.37/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - pours very balck, impenetrable to light even when held up to it, wells up a dark brown short-lived head

S - more hops in the bouquet than i thought, there is the definite espresso majority, with some dark chocolate highlights as well

T - the flavor is the revers from the aroma, the chocolate flavor is predominant with the coffee/espresso flavor the background, very crisp and refreshing

M - smooth and sweet, slightly acidic, well balanced bitter/sweet and medium bodied amkes it...

D - highly drinkalbe, easy to pound, but hard to chug, a great stout, even the girlfirend liked it, which has been a theme for Bell's so far, but then again i picked ones she would like.

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Photo of mcallister
3.41/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this cask conditioned and must say I like it better bottled or just regular draft.

A beautiful pour. Good half inch of a slightly tan head. Jet brown color? Well very dark brown to say the least. Thick sweet aromas of choclate and vanilla, also some espresso.

Because of the cask it seems there is a sour component in the beer I'm not to fond of. Main tastes are burnt dark fruits, vanilla, espresso, cocoa and that sour taste.

Besides the sourness the brew is almost too smooth. Very easy to drink despite the sour tannins. Makes this beer less than perfect.

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Photo of JiminKY
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this from a cask at Buffalo Wild Wings in Indianapolis, during NCAA Final Four weekend. This was only the third beer I'd tasted from a hand pump, and it was my favorite.

A - The lovely black of a good stout. Decent head upon pour, but it quickly dissapated.

S - Lightly roasty and sweet.

T - Sweethess in the forefront, subtle roastiness, vanilla and caramel blended in well. None of the bold coffee or chocolate notes found in some other stouts. Just a nice taste sensation that lingered for a while and was gone.

M - Smooth and creamy as a milkshake.

D - Hard to believe it is 7.5% alcohol. I never would have believed it, had I not read it here. It seems I could have drunk this all day long.

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Photo of bearrunner44
3.97/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Black sludge. Dark and (very) viscous. Thin, extremely bubbly cappucino-brown head. The head disappears quickly, with no lacing.

Smell: Heavy molasses, with notes of vanilla bean and mocha. Alcohol floats around inconspicuously.

Taste: Smooth coffee and vanilla. Heavy and sweet. Molasses/brown sugar sweetness floods the taste buds in the middle. The finish is equally heavy, tasting of tangy rum-raisin flavor and a gentle splash of hops. Some oxidation spoils the fun a little towards the end.

Mouthfeel: This one's thick as a milkshake. The carbonation leaves light smacks of bubbles on the tongue as the beer passes by, keeping it from feeling like motor oil. Big, and very smooth.

Verdict: I can't understate the bulk of this brew. The mouthfeel is as good as it gets. It knocks some points off of drinkability, but I love a good, chewy stout. This one's solid, with reasonable complexity and a pleasingly sweet personality. It's not perfect, but stout lovers should seek it out.

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Photo of clabaugh
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Black as night body with a bubbly, ruminating head colored like clay and earth. Beautiful coloring on a head of a solid two fingers that retains acceptably. Lacing doesn't stick, but coats the glass with a swirl.

Smell: Chocolate, coffee bean, and floury malt. Caramel and sticky sweetness in the nose as well. A flowery hop character that wafts in a gentle bitterness into the nostrils.

Taste: Chocolate, warming liquer flavors, and coffee. Wine-like properties emerge, or at least a distinct taste of grape or raisin. Floral hops with a slight bitterness. Pronounced alcohol presence. Sweet fruit flavors tempered well by just the right amount of hops.

Mouthfeel: Seductively creamy. Wonderfully caressing on the tongue. Full bodied, with faint carbonation. Almost a melting sensation as one partakes.

Drinkability: Exceedingly so. A lot going on, but everything is very compatible. ABV not too overwhelming, but pleasingly warming. Pleasurable experience.

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Photo of ski271
3.87/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark copper-brown, almost pitch black, with a medium-sized, tan, pillowy, slowly diminishing head. Some light lacing. The smell is of nice big, woodsy, roasted malts. Chocolate, toffee and… saltine cracker? Hey, whatever, it works for me. More dark roasted malts dominating the flavor. Coffee, bitter chocolate and brown sugar along with a slightly sour taste. It has a medium-full body, creamy texture and low carbonation. It was good and a little different. For Bell’s this is just an average beer, but Bell’s average beer beats many other brewers’ best beers. Pretty good.

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.06/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Pour leaves a wafer thin, beige head that quickly recedes to a ring around the edge of the beer. Color is a very, very, very dark brown. Almost like brownie mix.

Smell- A great sugared cream aroma mixed with melted milk chocolate mixed with some slight, dry acidity to the finish.

Taste- Starts out warm milk sweet and hot chocolate. This leads too a more easily defined roasted malt character. The sweetness slowly trades with a dry bitterness. Like a drop of hops was added to my goodnight milk.

Mouthfeel- Very smooth to start but finishes a little and acidic.

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Photo of NClifestyle
4.11/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm not sure how old my bottle is. It doesn't look like the one pictured, and has the code 7143 on the back.
Poured up as the thickest, blackest beer I've seen in a while. Almost no head, about 2 cm of tan cream, that dropped to just a ring in no time.
Smell is not that strong, I expected more. Although, what is there smells pretty good. Almost like chocolate cotton candy. All malt.
Taste is up there in the grand scheme of milk stouts. An outstanding array of malt flavors from dry to bready to sugar sweet to chocolate. They're all in there. When cool, you only really get the sweet and earthy malt. When room temp, it starts out in a spicy sweet manner, but drops to roasted and bready. Nice!
Full bodied, smooth, with almost no carbonation. Aftertaste is sharp and roasted, but the beer leaves a lingering effect all over the mouth.
If I could find this beer in N.C., I would gladly have more of it.


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Photo of whartontallboy
3.83/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out brownish black, with a creamy tan head that held pretty well.

Smell is very malty, with a lot of chocolate and caramel rising out the glass, and a pronounced roastiness as well.

Flavor is sweet chocolate malts with hints of caramel and espresso and a very slight fruitiness. Finish is dry with a little coffee bitterness.

Not as good as Expedition or Kalamazoo, but still another solid stout from Bell's. You can't go wrong with this one.

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Photo of Ricochet
3.2/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Poured black, good head that lasted, looked like a milkshake, no light came through. Check. Smelled like burnt malts, coffee , with a winey note at the end. Check. Creamy mouth, mild bitterness, with heavy coffee aftertaste and dry. Check.

It went astray in the taste department. Yes, it was heavy on the coffee flavors and sweet like a milk stout, but seemed a little thin , with burnt malt flavor seeming to take away from rather than adding too. Still a good stout, but price/taste means I can get better/cheaper. This was 2.50 for 12oz-- Maybe $7 for a 6 would be better.

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Photo of Schooly
3.58/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Black and opaque. Thin ring of foam around the glass. Leaves some lacing behind as I swirl.

S: Burnt malts and caramel. A slight hint of milkiness. Not too strong or overpovering, but inviting.

T: A bit of metallic at first sip (maybe that's due to having a clear palate) leaving me with the taste of roasted coffee beans and malt. Finishes somewhat dry. As my mouth warms up to it, I can taste a bit of fruitness and alcohol in the background letting me know to watch out or this stuff could sneak up on me.

M: Not too thick, not too thin. More creaminess than the others I've tried (maybe it's the milk :-). Lets you know there's something behind this one.

D: I could put away a few of these without realizing it. But by then it'll be too late...

I Haven't had too many of this style. Seems to taste like most other stouts but a little creamier. I would revisit this one.

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Photo of kohoutek
3.83/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass @ 58 degrees F.

Poured a nice rich, opaque black with tan lacing that quickly dissipated.

First sniff tells me this beer has a malt aroma that I don't find particularly appealing. There is something about the grains used - I am guessing special roast and some flaked barley? I can only descibe this as being like vegetal matter that has slightly turned - compost? It never does blow off with time.
I have had this beer many times and from differnt batches and I get this stinky smell everytime.

However, I do love the characteristic Bells vinous notes that always accompany their stouts - fruity, dark stone fruits: cherries, plums, prunes, currants. This is pleasantly balanced with a nice smooth roast profile. Not too sharp. A well balanced stout.

This beer tastes very similar to the aroma profile above. I can taste the vegetal thing interwoven with all of that nice fruit and chocolatey roast. The bitterness is subdued and well integrated. If that vegetal thing was gone this beer would display superb balance and finese for such a robust concoction.

The mouthfeel is rather thin for a beer of this size. I will keep drinking K-Zoo stout, Expedition, 7000 and quit complaining!

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Photo of sleepingbear
3.72/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bell’s Special Double Cream Stout

Holy Larry! This is why Bell’s is loved so much by Michiganders- great beer for the Great Beer State.

What a gigantic Johnson this Bell’s Special Double Cream Stout is!

Rich decadent darkness yields to deep coffee and cacao nib spice laced perfectly on a robust rich body.
I can only compare this beer to the likes of Trappistes Rochefort 10 meets Lion Stout.
Thank you Larry for making it easy for me to be proud of my state’s beer!

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Photo of jasonpeckins32
3.78/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a solid jet black color with a magnificent burnt sienna brown colored head that thins out after a minute or so.

The nose is roasted and full of chocolate and raisins.

It has an earthy/hearty taste. Heavily roasted and it reminds me of dry leaves or sand or something. Flavors of coffee grounds, honey, and prunes are also found.

The mouthfeel is unbelievably smooth. Very comparable to a nitro-beer, only this one has reasonable carbonation and doesnt taste overly flat. Maybe the smoothest non-nitro that has ever graced my palate.

Drinkability is okay. This one went down quick, but I imagine after 3 or so the flavor would get a little worn out. Definitly a good beer and one I would reccomend to any craft beer fan. Cheers!

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Photo of beerinator
4.08/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Black dark with fairly retentive head that dissapeared quickly. This one is deep black, allowing virtually no light through at all.

Aroma: Roasty burned bitter aromas. Their is a hint of sourness that accompanies the roasted caramel smells. Very pleasant to sniff.

Taste: Full mouthfeel. The roasted somewhat bitter flavors are pleasing on the palate, and they linger for a bit after the beer passes down the tongue. Their are notes of cake-y sweetness that balance some of the coffeeish flavor.

Notes: If you like stouts then you'll like this one. Very solid, very drinkable big stout. Splitting a six pack of this on a cold winters day is good for the spirit. Trust me.

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Photo of BigDaddyWil
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 120z. bottle into a pint glass.
Batch date on back is 7143. Put this number into the Bell's website and came up with "batch date not in database"

Dark, black body with a thin tan colored head. Semi-thick motor oil consistency, with no lacing whatsoever. Average amount of carbonation. The smell is not strong at all, mostly of dark roasted malts with a hint of chocolate milkshake. Heavy bitter, roasted malt taste. Creamy, slick feel to this brew. Alcohol is hidden very well. This is a great dessert beer, but it leaves me with a heavy feel in the stomach. A decent offering from Bell's, one that I would try again. Recommended.

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Photo of danielocean03
3.97/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle, batch 7186. Appearance is midnight black with a thin dark brown head that faded away quickly to light tan lacing. Aroma is sweet, chocolaty and malty, smells slightly milky as well. Taste is big, roasty malts well blended between a creamy sweetness and bitter chocolate flavors. Slight hopping present, mostly pine along with some citrus. Mouthfeel is lighter bodied, hides it's 7.5% abv quite nicely, hardly noticeable at all. Carbonation level is moderate, assists in thinning the beer out some, finishes with a slightly bitter aftertaste, refreshing. Easily drinkable, good complex malting, coats-the-throat smooth. Would purchase again.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours an opaque black color. The haed is two-fingers in height, and tan in color, but recedes fairly quickly. The aroma is amazing. Chocolate, cream, cookie dough. The taste is great too. It is not huge, but it is flavorful. It is sweet and creamy, but with a nice bitterness that keeps it from being too sweet. The mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with ample carbonation. Overall, this is a really good brew.

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Photo of Shovelbum
3.58/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a generous mocha head over a black body. Head recedes leaving chunky lace gripping the glass. Aromas of faint roasted malt and is that a bit of lactose?… it is “double cream stout” but hard to say if that is what I’m smelling. The flavor is rather subdued. There is mild coffee character, a bit of roasted malt, a light sweetness and perhaps a very faint trace of vinous fruit as well. The hop bitterness is similarly mild. Very full-bodied, smooth in the mouth and lightly carbonated. The finish is fairly clean with very little residual flavor or dryness.

Not my favorite beer from Bell’s. This is a fairly bland stout that isn’t necessarily bad, it just isn’t very exciting. I expected much more sweetness, but I guess if I wanted that I should have grabed a K-zoo stout (oh, right that was all gone).

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Photo of karst
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cleaning carboys and kegs on a windy bright January day 60° on the porch. Pour was 48°F a respectable temp for this time of year. Its monolithic black hints of the dark roasting of some of its 10 malt blend. Holding the Grindstone pint glass directly inline with the low afternoon sun - there are no glints as the uniform fine brown bubbles fall from their child's 1 finger height to a ring of meneniscus lace struggling to reach up the sides and sliding back with the rise and fall of my glass as I breath in lightly aromatic esters of the Bell's yeast that suggust fresh fruit - and hide the cornucopia of grain in sweet milk chocolate.

Lactose softens the dark roasted malt bitterness and combines well with a balanced hops. All the elements are truely fused into a single satisfying goodness that is medium bodied and has an expanding velvety satisfying mouthfeel. Clean aftertaste suggest some alcohol and hop bitterness and the higher that usual CO2 ( only my 6th example of the milk / sweet stout style) level that works well with the tart fruity esters from Bell's yeast strain - that clings tightly to the bottom of the bottles.

This carbonation starts a tingling acidity that rounds in the middle milky sweetness of chocolate and caramelize malts. Holding this as long as possible you still cant completely fathom the rich complexity of malts. A woody bitterness adds to the excellent hop/roasted malt finish.

Warming to 60 °F long after the pour the malts remain a single unitary rich taste. With the nose becomming more chocolate and hints of coffee. Amazingly still not flat but the tartness has softened. Your not going to believe how delicious this Double Cream Stout is - truely elegant!!

Batch 7186 from Springfield's International House of Wines.

Thanks to Jennifer, Jason, Hanna and August.

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Photo of Sephiroth
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours with adequate carbonation. Body is dark brown, near to black. Smell of dark, roasted malt. Hint of coffee.

Taste is pretty mild. Flavor isn't lacking, it is just understated. Mellow roasted malt, hint of sweetness in the middle, and a bitter finish. Thick mouthfeel, with the right amount of CO2. Very drinkable, but not something I would want to drink all night.

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