Bell's Wheat Four Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.
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Ratings: 95 | Reviews: 93 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by jamesdergen:
2.98/5 rDev -11.8%
Appearance: This is easily the largest most rapidly expanding head I have seen, ever. Explosive even. Other than that, pours a dense, cloudy orangey bronze with lots of sediment and bubbles constantly streaming up.
Smell: Strong aromas of wheat and some alcohol.
Taste: Up front, all you get is carbonation. Once you get through the wall of fizz, there are dry, nutty wheat flavors with some malt sweetness in the background. Some spicy hop notes linger throughout. Metallic aftertaste.
Mouthfeel/Drinkability: Like getting punched in the face with carbonation. Medium-bodied. I've got to sip this one and wouldn't want another one.
This is one unique beer, but not one I would recommend. Well, that is unless you want to experience the fabled exploding head...
04-16-2006 03:47:25 | More by jamesdergen
More User Reviews:
3.15/5 rDev -6.8%
Pours a muddled and murky, loaded with sediment like a river at flood. Yellow-orange murk in color. Heathy dollup of ivory white crème on top.
Smelled like Franzlite. Mildly citrusy and spicy. The nose is light and simple.
Tastes very dank and musty, very mixed up. It feels complicated but I cant quite distinguish one flavor from the next. Chocolate blends with moss which blends with citrus and then hay mold and so on. None of the flavors stand out long enough on their own to really discriminate between them.
Feels quite bitter and drying but not quite in a good way. Stringy like a fresh picked asparagus stock or the root of Queen Annes lace.
Not very drinkable. Cleanses and dries the palate well but doesnt leave me thirsty for more.
12-05-2005 04:48:24 | More by DaPeculierDane
2.5/5 rDev -26%
My second attempt at this brew as my first seemed to be infected. Pours from the 12oz bottle into my tulip glass a murky brown amber and immediately produces a freakin mountain of bubbly foam, nearly overflowing my glass and I was pouring carefully! After a good five minutes the head falls and I pour a bit more in. Aromas of big spicy yeast tones atop rotting apples. Cloves, a touch of citrus, wheat husks and pepper. Muddled and odd really, can't say it's enticing.
First sip brings a creamed wheat upfront with a splash of apple juice and light citrus. Cloves, pepper, banana and a strong yeasty flavor follow. Kinda chalky with the yeast that I accidentally let slip in the glass. It just fails to work for me on the whole. Unfortunately I can't say this is enjoyable.
Mouthfeel is a bit light with excessive carbonation that deters from the overall drinkability. Almost arid as it goes down. I don't think my stomach could handle more than one with all the carbonation. My least favorite in the wheat series by far...but hey, every experiment has to have a failure now and again.
06-16-2006 03:04:05 | More by orbitalr0x
3.23/5 rDev -4.4%
Part 2 of the Bell's Wheat series line up...thanks goes out to AKSmokedPorter...
I'm glad I wasn't the only one who had explosive amounts of head with this one. This is a bit ridiculous actually, 8-10 pours to get it in my glass isn't right. I don't decant wheat beers so the dregs were gladly added to my glass. Prior to the yeast addition the beer took on a slightly redish brown hint. With the yeast addition this one is a murky brown. Head is white, I won't comment any farther.
Wheat is noticable in the aroma as expected. Some banana comes through, but not as much as the Two. Thats really all I get. Its an Pale Wheat...what do you expect really...
A bit of spice on the tongue initially. Overall the flavor is muttled without much to it. Yeast and wheat are a bit flat tasting. The spiciness tries to bring it up, but to no avail. This lacks the lemon and fresh grass notes of the Two and not as clean and refreshing.
Mouthfeel is decent, probably medium in body. With a wheat beer with lots of yeast it is as expected. Coats the mouth well and lingers around. Drinkablity is okay. Nothing ground breaking here. It gets the job done but lacks what it takes. I understand this was an experimental beer, and I'm cool with the chance Larry took with trying this out and allowing us to taste his experimentations.
04-11-2006 03:35:44 | More by blitz134
3.73/5 rDev +10.4%
Very sedimented, ranging from orange at the bottom to brownish near the top. Fat, big-bubbled head that stays put at about 1/4 of an inch in height. Laces are fat strings and dots. Aromas are estery, but stronger than typical bubblegum, more of a heavy yeast backbone. Mouthfeel is close to thick but countered by plenty of carbonation. Yeasty and almost sulfurous flavor early, mixtures of unripe bananas and grape with a sunflower seed oiliness and shell bitterness. Overall impression gets thicker and thicker on warming. The aroma, also, comes more into play, somewhat similar to unsweetened cocoanut milk used in tiger prawn noodle recipes (as an alternative, think burnt pasta water on an electric stove). Big and solid, but not ringing a "bell" for me.
11-13-2005 00:32:21 | More by ADR
3.6/5 rDev +6.5%
Vesuvius! A massive, chunky off-white head over a very hazy orange-amber body. Great retention and clinging lace. Aromas of hay, saw dust, banana and other fruit, hints of cloves, and a touch of yeast. What in the gods' names am I tasting? Flavors of banana, citrus (but not bitter) and wheat? A tad sweet and tart. Medium bodied with moderately high carbonation. Crisp up front in the mouth (nips the tongue), but mellows toward the finish.
The biting mouthfeel wasnt exactly to my liking, but apart from that this is an intriguing brew. Its hard to grasp everything that is going on in here. It doesnt seem to be out-of-balance, just hard to pin down. I guess this means Im really going to be in trouble when it comes to reviewing Wheat Ale #6.
11-15-2005 21:42:53 | More by Shovelbum
3.9/5 rDev +15.4%
(Served in an American pint glass)
A- This beer has quite a carbonation when I opened it and it poured a deep copper colored body with a thick creamy head that last and last. The body is very hazy but I can see lots of tiny bubbles racing to the surface. I think the yeast is a bit more stirred up than normal.
S- When I pour the beer I could smell roasted wheat and a slight yeasty perfume right away. The smell is more German wheat beer and not so much Belgian wheat beer. It has a good whole grain bread aroma with a very faint sulfur note. As it warms more rich malts or malted wheats come out but starts to smell more sulfury.
T- Very smooth balance flavor of malt, bread and yeasty characters with an almost carbonic acid note in the beginning. No real banana, bubblegum or clove notes at all. It does have a nice tartness to the finish that has some faint hop spice to it.
M- This beer has a medium-light body but all the carbonation makes the body feel bigger. No alcohol warmth or astringency.
D- This beer is very smooth and has a nice balance of flavors. The roasted wheat started to smell a bit musty and almost barnyard like but I think it was just the sulfur and roasted notes combined. The taste was nice but the strong carbonation seemed to get in the way a bit. I will have to review this beer again as it still has a bit of mystery to the taste/smell. Could there be some Brett or other beasties at work in this beer?
11-08-2005 22:51:39 | More by rhoadsrage
3.88/5 rDev +14.8%
A fairly repulsive, clotted brown mustard body is partially saved by a stately spume of nicotine-stained ivory.
Nutty banana bread nose with pricks of hardpan dirt, clove and white peppercorn.
Into the mouth, it's all almond-banana-bran muffins. At first, it is almost literally, like Larry Bell pureed some, cut 'em with water and bottled the end result. Toasted hues grow, as does a vague nod of vanilla. At this point, it is pretty damn tasty. Some clove esters are noted, along with quarry, and Bell's blanketing doughy house yeast. For a series that is supposed to show the intricacies of wheat and yeast interplay, Bell's yeast is just to much of a monolith...it's just too easy to recognize it and stop there. It concludes with further rock note and a vacillating vegetal bitterness somewhere near artichoke and carrot (though it dies down as the glass empties, and that's a savior). Hops add a mild but adhesive bitterness, though only a wavering brown stalk/wintergreen flavor.
The mouthfeel, though half congealed by the yeast, works better here than in the 2. The flavors are heartier, bringing the heft into congruence.
All in all, I prefer it to 2. This has some strange intervals, but there is a rugged charm here too.
11-15-2005 08:17:49 | More by cokes
3.53/5 rDev +4.4%
Wheat 4 is made with four different wheats and four yeasts. Wheat Four Wheats: White, Victory, Toasted sprouts, Torrefied Yeast: WLP550 Belgian, WLP570 Golden, Wheat Two blend.
Cloudy, nice big white head, lace. Strong carbonation. Bold wheat taste. Good ideas but doesn't all integerate too well. Thanks Dr. Jay for sharing.
11-21-2005 05:03:03 | More by Sammy
3.3/5 rDev -2.4%
Picked up a single at Riley's here in Madison. Reviewing Wheat Two and Four in succession while watching my Badgers suck it up.
Pours a dark murky brown with several fingers of off-white head. Nose is....wow....this one caught me a little off-guard and makes me wonder what my fellow-BAs (minus Skidz) are smoking while drinking this stuff...diapers...dirty, rotten diapers and manure - with a hint of citrus. So diapers with a wedge of lemon. Mmmm. So I was real afraid to try this stuff after whiffing that stuff, but a few minutes later I collected myself and bit the bullet. Surprisingly the taste was much more benign, earthy wheat, citrus, and some faint choco/coffee. This is really a tale of two beers, the smell is really godawful, but the taste is subtle and kinda tasty. As far as overall drinkability, I had to put it somewhere in the middle as that nose is really bad. Quite an interesting brew here. This truly is an experimental series. Can't wait to try Six.
11-14-2005 00:49:14 | More by Golden2wenty1
3.08/5 rDev -8.9%
Aroma: Sweet Belgian Aroma, Alcohol is present, Chocholate, Yeasty and Slightly Metallic.
Appearance: Brilliant Copper. Huge Creamy White Head like a cloud in the sky that lasted a half an inch till the last drop. Racing carbonation bubbles.
Flavor: Sweet Maltiness followed by a huge alcohol flavor mixed with an earthy/spicy bitterness. Very dry finish. Slight hint of vegetal (Cooked vegetable is an off-flavor described best as cooked corn, cabbage or broccoli. It is caused by low levels of sulfur-based compounds primarily perceived in aroma and to a lesser extent in flavor. Primary source is from malt).
Mouthfeel: Medium-Full Body. Overcarbonated.
Overall Impression: This beer is part of Bell's Brewery Wheat Project and is number 4, check this link - www.bellsbeer.com/wheat.asp. I let this beer sit in my fridge for about 8 months and didn't change much. This wasn't my favorite beer from the project. I thought it wasn't balanced with the malt flavors and was too over carbonated. If you read up about the project I think there was too much going on.
08-04-2006 23:11:21 | More by sullysbeer
3.75/5 rDev +10.9%
12oz, sadhanna has 6 packs of it
appearance: pours a cloudy and murky amber/bronze, an obscene level of off-white head follows and laces...looks kind of lake apple cider
smell: pretty heavy on the wheat, some yeasty aromas, apples and spice, interesting
taste: very malty, toasted wheat bread, apples and cinnamon, hefe-like banana...lots of things going on and i'm not sure i like how they mix in this one
mouthfeel: light-med body, decent carbonation
I think I like wheat two better...this is definately completely different so i am interested in drinking the rest of the line!
11-10-2005 01:09:08 | More by dirtylou
3.23/5 rDev -4.4%
Got this one in a HUGE BS BiF box from mlh1227! Thanks! I decided I had to open it after it fell from a chair and landed on hardwood, causing a tiny bit of the beer to spew forth at high pressure. I immediately stuck it in the freezer for a few minutes (cold seems to retard some spewing properties), even though the spewing stopped after just a second or two...didn't want it charged any more than it already was, I guess.... So after a little time in the fridge, here we go...
Seems to still have carbonation present...and the fill line is behind the neck ring, so obviously not too much got out.
Pouring it into the glass, it;s a creamy white stream as it leaves the bottle. Almost instantly, my pint glass fills more than halfway with a foamy, thick off white head. It loosens out to big ass bubbles, revealing a hazy peach coloured liquid underneath. Time to pour a bit more in...This time, there is actually beer coloured liquid coming from the bottle.. ;)
We'll work on aroma while it settles out.. It's a spicy mix of wheat and yeast, with some banana-orange whip thrown in, and just a note of hop throughout. It's very pleasant, and is wafting around my computer desk, competing only with (through the open window) the faint aroma of the urine that spews forth from the homeless men in my downtown neighbourhood.
(OK, I was kidding about the urine. Really. Can't smell it at all.)
The flavour, unfortunately, does not live up to the smell. It's thin and woody, with some spice icing on the proverbial cake. However, those flavours are rather thin. Near the end, the frutiness does pop in high and airy.
Carbonation is a bit over the top for me (even after the drop)...but the liquid saves the rating from below average, by staying nice and hearty.
Drinkable? Yes. My first choice? No. This falls intot he vast category of beers I would not turn down if offered, but also would probably not pick from the menu.
09-06-2006 07:44:40 | More by UncleFlip
3.2/5 rDev -5.3%
Pours dark amber, with a huge! white head. Lots of lace.
Earthy yeast smell. And that's it.
Almost smoky bitter flavor. "Stony" upfront, end bitter.
Light bodied and well, just not that interesting of a beer I guess. The two was OK, hopefully after Oberon, winter wheat, 2 and 4, by 8 they'll successfully use yeast.
11-07-2005 23:19:01 | More by nortmand
4/5 rDev +18.3%
Poured a cloudy light brown color with tons and tons of thick and fluffy tan head that laced very well.
Smell contains some sweet fruit notes that blend nicely with some toasty bread odors.
Taste has a nice toasted wheat bread flavor with a nice crisp hop finish with an ever so slight tin flavor on the finish as well.
Mouthfeel is very crisp and dry with nice carbonation.
Overall a very good and drinkable wheat, I liked it a little better than the two and am definitly looking forward to the next three.
11-12-2005 22:20:19 | More by bashiba
2.15/5 rDev -36.4%
The pour on Wheat Four is remarkable in comparison to Wheat Two...I don't know what the difference is, but the colouration, while similar to Two, has added a substantial head that was absent from #2. This gets a mark up to a 4 from me.
The nose however...oh god, what everyone else is saying is true, this is not pleasant at all. I am getting the lovely aroma of lightly scented skunk and that's about it...this isn't the worst beer I've ever smelled, but it certainly doesn't smell appetizing.
The flavour...not dissimilar to #2 initially...malty, yeasty...the cloves seem to be more pronounced though and I feel they dominate the flavour too much here. There is also a citrus in the background ala 2, but there is something wrong about it in 4 that doesn't sit quite right with me. The finish is softly bitter...but not much there. I have to mark this beer down vis a vis #2 because the flavour is just becoming harsher, and not more enjoyable.
The mouth stays at about 3.5 though, it is still thick for a wheat and still provides some good bitter sensations. Drinkability suffers though, the beer is just doing something that I don't care for, and the drinkability is suffering for me as a result.
I was really digging the idea of the Wheat Project after #2, but I'm starting to get concerned here at #4...I hope the #6 and 8 that I have in my fridge manage to drown out whatever went wrong here because #4 is not that good at all.
11-19-2005 21:07:25 | More by CortexBomb
2.95/5 rDev -12.7%
Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a cloudy dark copper color with a huge head. This beer is extremely carbonated. It smells like wheat, citrus, and a little bit of banana. The taste is of wheat, citrus, pepper, and even some sourness. There isn't much of an aftertaste. Mouthfeel is just way too carbonated to enjoy the beer, it makes it a bit too hard to drink. Take away the carbonation, and it's not a bad beer.
08-11-2006 23:17:06 | More by bluejacket74
4.03/5 rDev +19.2%
Aroma: smoky / fruity. Banana is somewhat prominent; this one is reminding me of the real German weizenbiers.
Taste: Fruity, full of esters. Smoky! Just tastes "dark" somehow, but dry. Some hoppiness at the end of the sip.
Appearance: HUGE off-white head, maybe overcarbonated even. Head lasts forever. It's a couple shades darker than the Bell's Wheat 2; amber leaning towards copper. This makes it seem a bit cloudier. High score on appearance because the huge, durable head is so appropriate for hefeweizens.
Mouthfeel: Round and full-bodied, but VERY carbonated finish.
Overall, this beer made me think of real hefeweizens like paulaner more than the Bell's Wheat 2, I'm kind of surprised the scores are actually lower for this one. It is less drinkable because it feels a bit fuller and the taste is deeper and darker, but the one or two I do have at a sitting, I will definitely relish. Interestingly, a flyer I picked up at the brewery claims that all the Wheat 2-8 series have the same OG, so I'm a bit surprised that one seems so much fuller than the other.
12-27-2005 22:38:09 | More by PeatReek
1.55/5 rDev -54.1%
Appearence: Pours a disgusting, murky orange with a ridiulously huge head. What's up with this beer? There's huge chinks of yeast, it takes ten minutes to pour because of the head, it looks like dirty dishwater. Or fresh mango juice....
Smell: Holy shit. This smells just as bad as the Wheat Two. Popcorn, diapers, kitty litter, and many other foul stenches greet my nose. But at least I can smell a decent wheat character.
Taste and Mouthfeel: Dry, crisp, and nasty wheat flavors are what I taste. Phew!! This is bad stuff. It's not like Bell's to release such a shitty beer. And the Wheat Two wasn't bad. This one tastes like garbage. Sulfer notes are all over, stale, rotten eggs as well. The mouthfeel is dry and thin.
Drinkability and Overall: Ok, so Bell's missed on this one. Oh, well, no brewery is perfect. I know this isn't had a bad bottle because I've had a few before this and they were all just nasty. Take this beer, tweak the recipe, make it a Weizenbock, and it'll be wonderful. But, as it is, BOOOO!!!
Glass: Standard weizen glass
Music: "Beautiful Morning" by LIttle Brother
12-30-2005 18:55:45 | More by santoslhalper
3.18/5 rDev -5.9%
appearance: The head is about 1.5" deep and off white in color, composed of large bubbles. The beer is a very milky light brown in color, pretty dark. Clouds of yeast slowly stream toward the bottom of the glass.
smell: Smells of dark wheat bread, yeast, dark wheat, and some light hops. Maybe a little banana.
mouthfeel: Carbonation is very high, too high, and the body is a heavier light. Somewhat chalky.
taste: Pretty strange. Somewhat yeasty, wheat bread, light fruit (maybe banana). Hop bitterness is considerable for a wheat. Bitterness lingers with a chalky feeling in the mouth.
drinkability: Not the best wheat I've had and the drinkability takes a fall due to the, in my opinion, excessive carbonation. CO2 forces its way out of the stomach often.2oz poured into a pint glass.
The batch # 7104 printed on the back label indicates that my Wheat Four was bottled on October 18, 2005. Obtained this bottle from CRJMellor as part of SS '05.
12-17-2005 05:37:08 | More by blackie
3.3/5 rDev -2.4%
I sampled this in a weizen glass to see if the aroma/taste benefits. It was a dark, hazy gold topped with a huge clumpy head. The clumps were left on the side of the glass as I drank. Just a ton of banana and clove on the nose. A bit of light citrus on the finish, not much malt to detect. The flavor is a little muddled. There is some of the banana and clove, but the malt almost disappears. There is a little caramel, but some alcohol comes across on the finish and lingers. Light mouth feel, and a decent drinkability. Interesting beer. I need to do a side-by-side with the Wheat 2.
11-22-2005 18:54:27 | More by carln26
3.38/5 rDev 0%
Pour a pale, golden, almost light copper that ends in a thick head, and pleasant cirtus aroma. For an American Wheat Ale, this beer lacks tarness, but makes it up with a smooth malty body. The citrusy hops give this beer a nice balance. I really enjoyed the crisp, clean finish. This ale may be lacking in tartness, but it is a nice summer session beer.
07-03-2006 18:44:54 | More by jpkoch1962
2.88/5 rDev -14.8%
Appears a hazy, cloudy, orange toned light brown with a huge 4 ginger off white head that slowly fades into a small, clumpy head. Spotty streaks of lace are left around the glass.
Smell is of dusty cocoa, caramel, funky yeast, and hits of citrusy hops.
Taste is similar to the aromas but a dull, yeasty wheat fill out with some cocoa, caramel, and toffee notes. Weirdness that I'm on the fence about.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, spritzy, bitter, slightly sweet, and orange peel bitter sweets.
Drinkability...strange brew with funk. Not my cup of tea for wheat beer.
08-21-2006 02:04:53 | More by weeare138
Bell's Wheat Four Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
78 out of 100 based on 95 ratings.