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

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

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2,182 Ratings
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Ratings: 2,182
Reviews: 956
rAvg: 3.52
pDev: 16.48%
Wants: 91
Gots: 165 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
"A mysterious dance of tart Michigan cherries with the dark, roasted malts of a big and bold stout." and "Stout brewed with cherry juice."

(Beer added by: Mitchster on 01-09-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,182 | Reviews: 956 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Floydster
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle acquired in a recent trade with pimpp, thanks for giving me the chance to try this brew

Split with a friend tonight, poured into an oversized wine glass

Color was a deep dark brown that was almost black but definitely not when held up to the light, small 1/4 inch light tan head, not much retention and only small amounts of lacing

Smell had you guessed it lots of cherries, some cocoa, molasses, hint of coffee, dark roasted malt, and a touch of caramel, but the cherry scent dominated and was both sour and sweet smelling

Taste was tarty at first almost like a weaker wild ale, then the stout almost instantaneously took over, finished with a mild cherry tart though, the beer warmed as started to become smoother with some chocolate tastes and caramel as well, dark malt was certainly used in this one, cherry got sweeter during the last few sips, I liked the tartness at the beginning better even though it was harder to get down, not a bad stout overall, not so much a fruit beer like its style

Body was fairly thick with a nice level of carbonation, seemed very fresh, some bigger bubbles flowing through, tasted lasted fairly long too

Could not drink much more than another bottle, cherries would get the best of me, too sweet for me unless it is served cold and stays that way, also known as drinking it faster which is not really allowed to happen, pretty heavy and has a high ABV

Better than Kalamazoo and Java in my opinion but not their cream stout, worth a try, this was the first fruity stout I can remember tasting, recommended if you have access to it, pleasant surprise being that this was the one I thought I would like the least out of the Bell's stouts I tasted with my buddy Phil tonight

Photo of sleazo
4.72/5  rDev +34.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A_The beer pours an impenatrable black with a cafe au lait coloured two finger head. This disspates into a real nice cap. This is what a beer should look like.

S_A sweet dark roasted malt lingers with a sweet/sour cherry aroma. Mild alcohol there as well.

T_I have say, this tastes like a chocolate covered cherry. Rich roasted stout flavours mingle wonderfully with a tart and sweet cherry taste. the cherry doesnt overwhelm but really blendns in well with those stout flavours. Roasted malt bitterness up front, cherry sweetness in the middle and a bitter and sour aftertaste.

M_Thick and creamy without any oiliness. Mid carbonation but right on with what this type of stout should be.

D_I have to say this is wonderfully constructed. I have had a few other cherry stouts that didn't do it for me but this is a home run.

Photo of RustyDiamond
3.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Batch 8152, ABV 7% on bottle.

Poured dark black into my special Sam Adams Lager glass. Smallish beige head that quickly fizzled out leaving a reddish glaze on the lip.
Aroma of roasted malt and, you guessed it, cherries.
Taste starts out with cherries, then stout, finishing tart with cherries. As she warmed, the taste became more palatable.

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

12 oz. bottle into a chalice.

A fizzy, tan head disappears to nearly nothing within half a minute. Body is opaque and seal brown. Chocolate tootsie rolls out of the aroma, along with caramel, a touch of grenadine...pretty faint overall.

The flavor is intersting, borders on good. Dark chocolate & a roasted malt backbone combine with a sweet, tarty, aspirin-esque dark cherry note. Mouthfeel detects a medium body that's low in carbonation with a bittersweet finish of chocolate and coffee. This isn't something I'd ever flat out buy (luckily, I got my bottle as a gift), but it was an interesting try, and definately not terrible by any stretch of the imagination.

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.43/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz shared with Steven.. Mine in my Kasteel glass...

-Short lasting tan/brown head.. very brown/black.. no highlites.

Aroma is dark malts and prunes... no real Cherry aroma.. some light chocolate.

Medium body .. traditional stout flavors with a pronounced cherry flavor mid palate... really not a whole lot of cherry going on... Little bubble carbonation.

A novel stout. pretty good, but I would only buy it periodically if I had it available... Nothing is really wrong, but the cherry on this one really doesn't fit.

Photo of joekfsu
2.55/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle. Pours black with nearly no head, whats there is tan. Aroma of coffee, cherries and alcohol. Initial flavor is sweet cherries, followed by tartness that continues long after the beer is off the palate. Cherry throughout, no other flavors really show up. Light to medium body, no carbonation, no lacing. Not very drinkable and wouldn't get it again. Luckily there are more Bells selections in my fridge tonight.

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.03/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black and thick as can be. Very minimal tan head. Even without it, it still looks good. Nose is slightly syrup like with a roasted edge to it. Flavor is thick with a firm roasted edge to it. Minor cherry tones really. Seems to kick hardest on the back side, and does so rather quickly and then leaves. Feel is smooth with a nice carbonation. This is a pretty good stout. Nothing that will blow the mind, but still pretty nice all the same.

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

Sample through Brewfan and Secret Santa BIF 2007.

Dark black colored beer that I can't pass light through. Small dark brown colored head.

Smell is sweet and the cherry hits you right off the bat. Lots of chocolate and candy aroma this is very much like smelling a chocolate covered cherry candy. The type with the maraschino cherry in the center. Rich chocolate aroma and some patent malt bitterness too.

The flavor starts out a little sour with a roasted malt after taste. Sweetens up a bit as you drink it but those were some sour cherries. Pretty much all sour cherry and bitter chocolate flavor.

The Mouthfeel is good.

Definitely this isn't a beer that I need to stock up on. A different beer but I think I need not try it again.

Photo of sjohansen
2.13/5  rDev -39.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Pours extremely dark out of the bottle. It looks like motor oil mixed in with dark cherry paint. There is a very thin head that dissipates quickly. The head is caramel at the top, but shows some of the cherry redness as it gets closer to the stout.

I could smell the cherries as I was pouring out of the bottle. There is definitely chocolate notes on the first heavy sniff I give the pint glass.

I have not tried any Bell’s beforehand, and was expecting something sweeter. The first sip was kind of shocking. A brief sweet chocolate cherry up front, but then bitter. The aftertaste was sour Vicks cherry cough syrup. The 8.5% is disguised well, but the tartness of the cherries was way overpowering. I waited and let it warm. It got much smoother, and if you can keep it away from the sides of your tongue it was actually quite tasty. But… I was disappointed that the cough syrup aftertaste never went away, the extreme cherry tartness turned almost sour as it warmed.

The mouth feel was ok. Thick but it had almost a greasy feel.

I consider myself a fan of tart beers, even sour when it comes to lambics, but this is the first time I’ve had that taste in a stout, and I didn’t enjoy it. It doesn’t mean it’s not a complex beer, because it is, just means that it may not be for everybody. I’ll definitely try some of Bell’s other offerings as I have heard good things.

Photo of happygnome
4.1/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a:pours a very, very dark black color cant even see a hint of light through when holding when holding up to the light. With an eigth inch of head that dissapears fast leaving no lacing what so ever
s: sweet cherries, roasted malts no hop aromas to speak of smells very inviting
t: very nice roasted malt taste followed by a sweet and sour cherry flavor that i find extremely amazing, very little hop presence
m: medium to full bodied beer with little carbonation

I love this beer and will pick up more of it the future

Photo of kkipple
2.75/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Right. A cherry stout. Hmmnnn... but, it's Bell's, so I'll give it a shot. I'm shocked at the advertised 8.5% on the bottle as I uncap it. Someone at the brewery was having fun when they thought this up...

Goes into my glass an opaque black-brown with a dark tan head that fades quickly. Looks deep and thick.

Getting roasty notes in the nose (good), along with some earthy, dirt like smells (ok, I guess) and then the weird cherry tartness appears along with a coffee scent that teases the nose. Reminds me of chocolate covered tart dried cherries. Which ain't a bad thing, but I'm not sure I want to drink a glass of 'em, ya know? Anyway, this isn't an intense smelling brew, nor is it terribly pleasing, but it IS different.

After a few sips my suspicions are confirmed. This is a very tart / sour roasted stout with a good amount of booze that's hid behind a heavy, slick mouthfeel. Low carbonation adds to the feeling I'm drinking some bizarre watered down liquor. It just doesn't work well for me and I have to admit is a disappointment from a brewery I really do love.

So should you try it? Yeah, I mean, it's a 8.5% cherry stout. One bottle won't kill you and will be good for amusement when you tire of your normal fare. But I won't seek it out again.

Photo of NJpadreFan
2.45/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bell's Cherry Stout

A- Dull black with a small to no head.
S- Hardly anything detected, faint cherry and cocoa.
T- Big sickeningly sweet tart cherries with a touch of cocoa powder.
M- Syrupy sweet and cheak hurting tartness! Alc was quite hot.

Overall- To syrupy to sweet. I could barely finish the pint.

Photo of IPAcraig
3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Inky thick black body, with a deep brown one finger head.

Slightly roasty and chocolate aroma, with a ever so slight tartness.

The roasted malts show up first, nice but not overpowering. The cherry tartness explodes on your palate in the aftertaste. Fairly tart. It can be a bit much after a few sips though. But I applaud bells for making the cherries as bold as they are. An very slight metallic taste has crept into this beer towards the end.

Low carbonation, thick and creamy feeling.

A very nice beer that I will have again. The tartness can be a bit much at times though.

Photo of CoSMoSYS
3.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a 6 pack for myself while looking to find a friend's birthday gift.

Pours a velvety smooth black with a decent enough darkened tan head that said hi but quickly disappeared. There was a very good amount of light brown lacing as it followed til the drink was no more.

As its name states the smell of cherries is very profound with a good amount but not overpowering scent of honey. I can already tell this drink will be sweet.

The first thing I noticed was how tart the stout was and how I was smacked around by it. I was expecting a little bit more of a stout character, however, I wasn't disappointed. Followed by the tart was the taste of honey. I can also say a bit of chocolate was detected too.

The mouth feel was smooth but very light. Definitely a sipper!

I didn't expect the surge of tart when I first tasted this drink but it didn't detour me from finishing the glass, though it made it a little tough at times. I look forward to finishing the 6 pack!

Photo of jeffmonarch
2.4/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

12 oz. bottle in a pint glass.

A - Really dark brown. Light brown head that bubbles fast and disappears faster.

S - I can't get anything. There's a faint scent but it's so faint I can't make it out.

T - Wow, there's a cherry explosion as soon as it hits your mouth. It's hard to pick out anything else. I can't get past the cherry, it's good but a little overpowering.

M - It's has some pop with the cherry and some tingle from the carbonation.

D - Not impressed.

Photo of CWiggins
3.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is currently on tap at Tyler's Taproom in Durham, along with three other stouts from Bell's. They're certainly making an impact in this area; six of Tyler's taps are now from Bell's. It was served in a very fetching Bell's tulip glass. Near-black in color, this brew featured a dark-tan head with good retention. Smells of dark-roasted malts and sour cherry dominate the aroma. The flavor is really heavy on tart cherry, while most of the malts and hops lurk in the background. It's difficult to get a read on the stout characteristics here, as so much of the flavor is consumed in cherry notes. It's interesting, that's for sure. Some espresso notes peek through, which somehow clash with the cherry flavor. I'm not sure if I like this or not. It's certainly drinkable, but it may be just a little too tart for my taste. Having said that, it's more interesting than many fruit/vegetable beers I've tried, especially in the full-bodied texture and high alcohol. Therefore, it receives higher marks than others in that style.

Photo of Boto
4.25/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle: This one pours an opaque, deep dark almost black brown color. There was just a hint of a beige head on it. The aroma is good, but not overpowering. Chocolate and cherries up front, with some roastiness and coffee backing it up. The taste is very similar to the aroma. Just a touch of sweetness. Nicely balance by the hops. A nice stout.

Photo of BWH3
3.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cherry Stout Bell’s Brewery
Draft Pint

Appearance: Inky black brew topped with a cocoa head. The beer is visually stunning following the pour and is on par with the best American stouts I have sampled. The head retention may be a tad of a let down, but it did not diminish my thirst to plow head long into the foreboding abyss of a Bell’s Stout. (4.5)

Smell: Big bitterness and burnt aroma of roasted malt balanced by a sweet cherry scent. I really like a big stout that finds a good balance in the aroma and this beer is no exception. Additionally, the cherry sweetness is extremely unique. Unfortunately, even as I let this one warm to room temp, I did not find the depth and complexity I expected to find although some caramel notes do turn up. (4.0)

Taste: Well the taste is still good but not quite as good as the aroma. The big crisp ashy bitterness of the roast grain is up front and in your face. The cherry flavors are tart and sour on the palate and are less complimentary to the ash of the roast grain. (3.5)

Mouthfeel: Viscous, still brew. Body is placed neatly right between an American stout and a Russian Imperial. (4.0)

Drinkability: Enjoyable experience but one is enough in a setting. I will grab one of these again next fall but probably not until then. (3.5)

Photo of Foxman
3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It pours a dark, soothing brown, likely clear, and hinting at mahogany at the margins. A single finger of light brown head drops away promptly to very sparse patches of fine foam. Still, lacing is plentiful and frilly.

The aroma is a quick mix of roasted malt sweetness, chocolate, tart cherry, and toasty alcohol. It moves fast and extinguishes soon.

Upon sipping, the malt is roasted with a slight char and the pang of chocolate covered espresso beans, and is quickly undone by the tongue-curling sour cherry onslaught. The sweetness is at first prominent, and then is dried by the tartness and earthy component of the malt. The alcohol is wide open and throttled high, with a fair level of heat in play. Once the cherry slides away, some residual malt sweetness and a biscuit note lend the finish a decently balanced presence against a general dryness. There's a lot of flavor, but it's disjointed and unbalanced.

Full bodied, it has a slinky flow about it, with a nice glow once the cherry gives up the ghost.

For a brief moment, the flavor, with that initial jab of stately earthiness, made me think I had a winner, but then that tart cherry pucker made me rethink my stance, but quick. Cherry is fine, but this is like coffee cherry soda, and that doesn't work for me. It's not irredeemable, but the confusion pairs with a ballsy ABV to make it a last resort choice, when the only remaining options are watery macros. I wanted to like it. But then, I want to like spinach too, and that's not happening either.

Photo of jscondon
3.08/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass with a discernable head, which ringed the glass throughout the tasting. Its nose had the expected stout roasted barley smell, with little to no cherry scent. The taste was not exactly as I had expected. I was looking for more of a sour flavor (which comes though a little in the finish), and upfront it was too sweet for my liking. Even though I found the taste to be a little off the mouthfeel of this beer was excellent; it was very creamy and balanced. I thought that the beer finished much better than it started.

Overall this was a nice beer to try, but it would not frequent my fridge due to its sweetness.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
2.88/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Acquired via trade from WeisGuy, so a big “Thank you” goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a very thin brown head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of cherries, chocolate and dark malts.

T: The taste is fruity and malty, with strong flavors of cherries & chocolate and a dry sweetness. There’s not much of a hops presence but you don’t really expect it in this type of beer anyway. The after-taste is slightly sweet. It seems like someone decided to take the chocolate-covered, liqueur-filled cherries and make them into a beer.

M: Smooth with a little crispness, medium-to-heavy body, light-to-medium carbonation, finish is very sticky.

D: A little tasty, goes down ok, slightly filling, nice kick. This beer didn’t exactly get a ringing endorsement form a fellow BA that I talked to before I traded for it but, I wasn’t as bad as he made it out to be. However, this really isn’t a beer that I would want to drink more than one of.

Photo of daliandragon
3.75/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It was hard to decide whether this should be reviewed as a stout or a fruit/veggie brew so I kind of aimed for the middle ground. The pour is a pure jet black without so much as a cap of head. Roasted malt with sweet chocolate is the main player in the nose but some balance is evident. Cherry is almost completely absent from the equation.

Sour cherry is a much stronger player in the taste, which can be quite overpowering, especially intially. The texture is luxuriously thick and silky, which also results in a satisfying, melty, lactose covered aftertaste. There's a lot a flavor here, which is a plus, but I get the idea this one could stand some altering or ageing or something to reach its full potential.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.65/5  rDev +32.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A – Poured a very very dark brown, essentially black except for some slight reddish tinting around the sides of the glass. Completely opaque with no light at all passing through. A nice tight two finger head formed on the top and gradually settled down to just a layer of lace across the top but not before depositing copious amounts of side glass lace.

S – Very full thick smell loaded down with chocolate and coffee. I detected a nice hint of dark fruit, cherries naturally as it warmed up and even a touch of lactose sugar. The aroma was heavy, easily detected from a foot or more away.

T – The flavor was wonderful. Very robust and long-lasting, the initial wave of chocolate rolled over you on the first sip, balanced against it was a tight hint of sugar and caramel which gradually faded into a long cherry tart finish. Very well crafted nothing on this one was over the top or dominating of the other flavors. Definitely tasted like a good dessert this one was one of the fullest flavored stouts I have had in a while

M – Very very full bodied. This had the feel and consistency of a shake. Really very full with a great creamy like quality to it. It was very filling and never really got dull.

D – This was the perfect cold night, by the fire, sipper. I mean it really does not get better for that scenario then this. It was just so full and robust and filling you was not drinking this one fast, this was meant to be enjoyed over the course of a good long while.

Overall I cannot believe I had not tried this one sooner. This was a really great stout and something I would like to get more of. Perfect for after dinner or a cold night it just had a great deal of presence to it. I would have to recommend this to any fan of both fruit and dark beers; this is the best of both worlds here.

Photo of BeerSox
3.35/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into nonic.

Deep black color with no light getting through. A light brown thin head develops then settles to a bubbly rim along the glass.

Roasted malt sets up the brew with dark chocolate and black coffee aromas coming in. Some cherry aroma is in there, although it's somewhat muted. The cherry aroma is very natural and sweet.

The bitter malts are there, but I'm distracted by the cherry flavor which comes through somewhat unpleasantly. It adds a bit of a plastic-like taste from the middle to the end. Full bodied and very thick. The finish is bitter with some of the cherry-ish flavor lingering.

This one is a good concept that just doesn't come through. The cherries seem to come out the wrong way. Not recommended.

Photo of weeare138
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears an opaque black with a 2 finger tan head that quickly fades into a mild cap of silk. Scattered lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of tart cherries with some acidic and astringent notes flowing up through my nose. Hints of charred caramel, and dark chocolate. I've tried this both fresh and aged with the same result.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with the standout mix of black cherries, and tart montmorencie cherries sprinkiled with some nestle quick powder.
Mouthfeel is med-full bodied, with tartness and sweet cherries up front and a hint of roasty bitterness creeping through.
Bell's is the king of stouts, IMO, but this one needs some tweaking.

Bell's Cherry Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
80 out of 100 based on 2,182 ratings.