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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

3,337 Ratings

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Ratings: 3,337
Reviews: 1,380
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 10.86%
Wants: 192
Gots: 335 | FT: 2
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,337 | Reviews: 1,380 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of movingtrain
3.76/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a 12 ounce snifter.

This one pours a nice coffee-black, with a decent creamy head floating on top...which is keep up pretty well.

The aroma gives off some good black olive notes, chocolate, sour/bitter elements, brown sugar, and molasses.

Taste is solid...buttery, creamy, indeed. Hints of chocolate, coffee, some spicy notes, too. There is an interesting element in this one...the only way I know how to describe it is that earthy, summer pond smell. Not bad, but like cattails and seaweed. But it's good, that is just what is coming to mind.

Overall, a decent stout. Carbonation plays in well with the flavors, and helps to balance things out on the palate. A good example of a finely crafted cream stout.

Photo of Domingo
3.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep brown with only a tiny white layer of foam.
Smells like mild coffee with mocha overtones. Not too roasty either, which is good.
Initially you get some chocolate and bready character with a sweet/sour hit coming from the lactose. Finish is of a mocha dessert that fades slowly.
Good stuff with a nice texture, too.
Another winner from Bell's. Why is this available in Florida but not Colorado?

Photo of Lerxst
3.8/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a very dark brown with a fair sized creamy mocha colored head that has fair retention but left some nice lacing.

S-Malt, a bit of chocolate, vanilla and coffee. Smells good.

T-Roasted malt, some caramel sweetness, chocolate and vanilla, a faint coffee note.

M-A bit thin and prickly. Its not impressing here.

D-Mouthfeel detracts a bit from drinkability, but overall its not bad.

I looked forward to finally trying this one. It wasn't quite as good as I hoped, but it certainly is another respectable offering from Bells.

Photo of Soneast
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark, burnt brown color...just a shade or two under black. Develops a 2 finger thick, light brown colored head that hangs around for awhile, slowly condensing to a creamy mat.

The aroma is sweet and malty, with some dark fruits components, caramelized sugar, chocolate and very little roastiness. Also a touch of fresh baked bread yeastiness.

The flavor is chock full of malty sweet goodness, you have the sugary malt sweetness, the creamy lactose sweetness, along with some chocolate flavors and burnt caramel even a touch fo marshmallow. The roastiness is kept in check, and the finish is balanced well, not bitter nor sweet, just well rounded.

Great texture to the beer, creamy and not too heavy. The flavors are exactly what I like in a Milk stout with emphasis on the creaminess and overall sweet character. Just an awesome milk stout, IMO.

Photo of elgiacomo
3.82/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, batch 9513 bottled Dec 18, 2009. Pours very dark brown, black, medium body, large foamy light brown head that retains well and leaves rings of lacing.

Aroma is pretty potent, chocolate, coffee, smoke, roasted malts, and a lactic quality. Almost like cream cheese frosted chocolate cake. Hmmmm...and maybe some chocolate chip cookies, too. Interesting and unique.

Flavor is more coffee up front, some chocolate, roasted malts, and lactose. A bit watery. Bittersweet finish. OK.

Mouthfeel is pretty full, yet still a tad thin, medium carbonation.

The aroma > flavor in this one for me. If it tasted like it smelled, it would be an easy 4+. As it is, I prefer Bells Kalamazoo stout, which is also cheaper than this Double Cream stout.

Photo of drpimento
3.39/5  rDev -14.4%
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.

Photo of biglite351
3.8/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The brew looked great in the glass. The smell was great. Very full and it draws you in. The flavor is a bit odd. The first mouthful I actually did not like. It was a little like an odd cheese. But after that I really liked it. I wished that I had more than one bottle. I do think that I could drink this for a full evening.

Photo of beveritt
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a Shaker pint glass. Label is predominantly white and shows a leafless branch. Batch # 9376. Brewed on Sept 30, 2009.

Appearance: Pours with two fingers of medium tan head. This settles slowly to just a thin coating foam. Decent lacing as I drink it down. The beer itself is essentially black with just hints of brown around the edges. No sediment in the bottle.

Smell: Roasted barley with undertones of toasted marshmallow.

Taste: Decent roasted bitterness upfront, balanced with a semi sweet, and very smooth lactose creaminess.

Mouthfeel: Average carbonation level. Body is very good.

Drinkability: I have been seeking out rare one ofs much less lately and just grabbing a six pack here and there. it is nice to relax and have some solid, well produced craft beer without breaking the bank or feeling the need to review. Definitely a hit.

Photo of GRG1313
2.71/5  rDev -31.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed again a year later 02/04/11 - almost to the day.

Pours Pours black with a dark tan/brown head.

Nose is pure simple black chocolate. Mouthfeel is thin and watery.

Flavors are weak and watered down bitter black chocolate and thin bodied black coffee.

Finish is actually a very nice chocolate coffee character with some appeal -finish isn't sufficiently appealing to try this on another time.

I like Bells but this one taste like a carbonated light cup of coffee; about it.

Original Review: Pours dark brown black with a nice firm tan head;

Nose is sweet black chocolate with undertones of sweet coffee; simple but very pleasant;

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a lighter "fizzy" carbonation and while not thin, initially appears thin.

Flavors are all simple coffee and simple dark chocolate with a bit of a synthetic chocolate character/flavor.

Some hoppy bitterness in flavors and finish. All around pretty average.

Photo of yemenmocha
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark brown to near black that allows some light to pass. Head is light tan, and the nose has a caramel-cream sweet aroma to it. Roasty flavors are noted up front on the palate as it moves towards some general malt sweetness, some traits from the milk components, and a sweet to somewhat tart finish.

Photo of Ryan011235
3.85/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter on 12/5/09

A - Pours a very dark brown, settling near-black. ¼ inch head of tan foam dissipates quickly. Swirling revives & it holds better, though retention is generally thin. Spotty lacing.

S - Smooth, complex malt aroma. Coffee, cream & vanilla. Hints of cocoa & caramel. Very mellow. No particular hop presence that I can pick out.

T - Roasted coffee offers a slight bitterness which is accentuated by a subtle hoppiness, which is balanced by cream & vanilla sweetness. Other sugary malts seem to meld together in a supportive role with undertones of caramel & maybe a spot of toffee.

M - Full bodied with carbonation that has a good counterbalance between smooth & prickly (the former being the most notable). Residual notes of roasted malts linger. Slightly bitter finish.

D - Very easy to drink; it's quite tasty. Definitely worth a shot. I'd love to run across this on draft.

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

Poured extra vigorously into a shaker to raise up a 1+ finger of rich brown head composed of a bit large bubbles, but it did last very nicely for a long time.

Aroma is sweet & roasty. Some molasses in there too. Nice for style, not much hops.

Flavor is good, though more muted than I expected. The aroma was more robust for me than the flavor.

Pleasant, easy to drink stout with a good full mouthfeel. Nice beer!

Photo of ocelot2500
3.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a jet black with a thick tan head that leaves plenty of lacing on the glass.

Smells of coffee, chocolate, and a little molasses.

Tastes of roasted malts up front with a small bitterness on the back end. Notes of chocolate, coffee, and brown sugar are evident with a small roasted bitterness on the back end.

Mouthfeel is medium with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Photo of apbarwood
3.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black with some brown/red highlights. The head is a wet-sandy color and manages to stick around for a while. Nice roasted malt aroma with a delicate vanilla sweetness. Roasted coffee flavors that's countered by a nice, creamy vanilla flavor. The sweetness is more restrained than some other milk stouts I've had but still very nice. Perhaps more of a compromise for those who don't like super-dry or super-sweet. This one lands squarely in the middle. The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy but there's still a pleasant carbonated quality that lifts the sweetness of the palate. There may be better milk stouts out there, but this one is pretty drinkable and has great balance to it.

Photo of stoutfiend27
4.47/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into pint glass....bottle received from ottovon..thanks again

a-black cola color...quickly fading khaki colored head....leaves a little lacing...no bubbles in the darkness..

s-sweet rich roasted malt and chocolate or cocoa...faint aroma of coffee....smells a tad bitter as well..very aromatic..

t-a lot like the nose...the sweetness rushes up front and is then pushed back down by the roast,chocolate,cocoa and coffee...the rich sweet malt lingers up the middle before a bitter sweet chocolate finishes this one off

m-thick and chewy and also creamy....lingers around the mouth forever and the bitterness stays on the tongue a while...just enough carbonation to make this one stand out

d-could have several of these in a night although i wouldnt want too many due to the sweetness...

overall another impressive brew from bells..and another solid bottle from ottovon...

Photo of icetraxx
3.7/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a two finger extra creamy head into my Guinness tulip. Extra dark and black as the night, with a slight ruby hue if you force light through this one. The head slowly dissipates to a one finger head after a minute or two, clinging to the glass. Massive lacing. The head sticks around, looks like a stout should.

S: I'm pretty sure I served this too cold as the aroma was lost, especially true as I just finished eating spicy food. Even though I let myself cool off and the beer warm, there was only a hint of caramel, molasses, and sweet malt, all very faint.

T: Yes! A sweet stout that didn't make me gag from sweetness on the first sip. Roasted malt, a hint of bitter chocolate, earth, and a hint of sweetness. Not hoppy or very bitter, the flavor profile sort of reminds me of Guinness in a way (though much more hoppy and bitter compared to Guinness directly). The spicy food I ate is definitely masking some flavor here. The flavor is nearly balanced, though definitely more so on the malty-sweet side of things. The flavors seem right, but there isn't anything really popping out at me or all that complex. As the beer warms up there is definitely more bitterness, but no floral hops to be found. The flavor of the malts, without a cloying sweetness, is very nice with the hint of chocolate.

M: Best mouthfeel of any beer I've had 1-28-2010. Creamy and super light on your tongue, possibly creamer than cream, not oily or syrupy either. Perfectly carbonated, overall just a perfect mouthfeel.

D: I could drink this all night, though I may get a little bored after a couple due to a lack of any flavor pop.

O: The perfect pint of Guinness happens to be Bell's Special Double Cream Stout. Drink this one as fresh as possible as this one is already smooth and it's flavors are already on their way out.

Photo of Bitterbill
4.01/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle provided by the generous trader known as russpowell. Thanks Russ!

It's been a while since my last Milk Stout.

A very nice black looking brew with over 1 finger's worth of tannish foam. A great looking brew in my New Belgium goblet.

The smell *is* milky and of chocolate but very mild in character. The maltiness is obvious but a stronger nose would help a bit, I think.

The taste is great. This is a great milk shake for grownups! Wonderfully malty with heaps of chocolate malted flavour and a nice cocoa like bitterness about mid palate on that shares some duty there with good roasty tones. Very tasty.

The mouthfeel is on the high end of medium...very darn close to full bodied, with light carbonation; wow...silky smooth mouthfeel overall.

Drinkability? Not a scary abv here to contend with so I say, drink away, as I'm doing. Very easy drinker.

Photo of mtnbikerpa
3.68/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A 16 ounce draft. Good foamy head mocha in color. Little lacing. Looks black in color with the carbonation making very pretty lines on the glass. Deep mocha smell. The heavy but smooth creamy mouthfeel I was hoping for. Strong malts with a bitter sweet end. Nice aftertaste.

Photo of teovaldi
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark black with about a fingers worth of light brown head.

Smells of dark roasted malts with hints of coffee. As it warms the sweetness of the beer comes out in the nose.

Like the smell, roasted malts, coffee and sweetness. Actually quite good, a bit sweeter than I expected but still very tasty. I was also surprised at the slightly bitter almost hoppy lingering aftertaste

Very smooth and well, creamy...no where near as vicious as some stouts I've had.

Overall this is a very drinkable stout, I had 4 of them before I knew it and had to slow down a bit. Could easily have finished off the sixer.

Photo of kbeals
4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a black color with about a figner of brown head. Head sticks around resulting in good head retention and decent lacing.

S- Lots of roasted aroma coming out of the glass. Coffe, roasted adn sweet malts. As it warms it lends itself to a sweeter smell. Very pleasing overall, a bit one-dimensional but I don't expect much else from a Sweet Stout.

T- Very similar to the smell, although it tends to be sweeter throughout the duration of the session. Definitely a pronounced roasted flavor of coffee and malts. A bit of spice to it also, sort of unusual.

M- Velvety smooth and very creamy. One of the best mouthfeels out of all the sweet stouts I've had. Good amounts of carbonation.

D- Definitely drinkable. The creaminess of it makes it worth drinking. For sure a recommendation to any fan of stouts.

Photo of WeezyBoPeep
3.43/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I'll admit I'm not a huge stout fan, but I'm working my way through as many Bell's beers as I can get my hands on and this was next in line.

Poured a 12oz bottle into a crystal mug.

A: Pitch black with a dark tan head of froth.

S: A sharp character with lots of roasted malt and ground coffee. Notes of scotch and tangy mashed grains.

T: Creamy, but not as milky as, say, Left Hand Milk Stout. Slightly bitter, malty and with a sour middle. Bitter malty finish. I'd like it to be a little sweeter.

D: Just a trial beer for me, I wouldn't get this in a sixer or anything.

Photo of techfed87
3.53/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a big, mocha head to it. Smell is very much spicier than what I would have imagined.

Taste is of dark roasted malts. Mouthful is average, with the feel and consistency that you would expect from a beer with an ABV that this one holds.

Taste is initially sourly bitter, but mellows off as the aftertaste hits you, pointing towards the effect the cream is having on the overall flavor. It's a pleasant add on to what could have been a much rougher stout.

For not being an Imperial Stout, this one holds its own surprisingly well. A nice winter warmer indeed.

Photo of mdfb79
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours black, letting no light through it. Had a half inch of off brown colored head and a little bit of carbonation.

s - Smells strong of coffee, also chocolate and vanilla.

t - Again, has a strong coffee taste that jumps out right away. Also chocolate. As it warmed up and as I drank more, I started to taste the cream and vanilla. Very enjoyable.

m - A little big of carbonation and a medium body. It is actually lighter than I thought it would be and is pleasant. It got smoother the more I drank it.

d - Overall I thought it was a pretty good milk stout. At first it tasted strong of coffee to me, but I definitely thought it improved as I drank it and began to taste the cream flavor. I would definitely try this again.

Photo of hardy008
3.73/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark black color with a 2 finger tan head with large bubbles and decent retention. Smells of dark roasted coffee and sweet malt. The taste is the same. The bitter coffee and the sweet malt balance each other out. there is also some vanilla flavor present. Medium bodied, low carbonation, and has a sweet sticky aftertaste. A nice drinkable beer which I would buy again.

Photo of Clydesdale
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep, barely translucent dark brown, with ruby highlights when held up to light. The tall, medium brown head has a densely whipped, creamy texture and solid retention. Lacing is impressive.

S: Some dark roasted malt, with latte-ish coffee hints. Definite notes of vanilla and lactic sweetness, along with milder whiffs of cocoa and a subtle fruity (cherry?) tanginess.

T: A firm dose of dark, roasted malt flavors that is initially accompanied by a healthy sweetness. Lactic notes are joined by a firm coffee and dark chocolate flavor. Hints of vanilla, bourbon, and lightly tangy fruit are present into the finish, which is also quite roasty and spicy.

M: A medium-heavy body. Carbonation is lush and creamy, leading to a roasty-dry finish and a lengthy aftertaste lingering on the palate.

D: I'm a bit conflicted on this one. I love sweeter, lactic stouts and this definitely fits the bill. The bittersweet aftertaste (tasty as it is) seems a bit oafish, and slightly overstays its welcome. I'd say this beer may be a victim of its own hype. I routinely see this selling for ~$15/sixer; I expected something excellent, but this falls just short of that.

Bell's Special Double Cream Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
89 out of 100 based on 3,337 ratings.