1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Bell's Sparkling Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Bell's Sparkling AleBell's Sparkling Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

518 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 518
Reviews: 364
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 11.81%

Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Tripel |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-13-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 518 | Reviews: 364 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of elNopalero


4.38/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This pours a cloudy golden straw color with a tight foam cap. The aroma is nicely spiced with yeasty esters. It’s floral with honey notes, along with some orange peel and coriander. The flavor has a light yet pleasing bitterness. I get orange peel coriander, yeasty esters and a light funk which I imagine might emerge as it develops in the bottle or over time. The effervescence keeps the flavors lively. This is by now a common style but under Bell’s craft it just stands shoulders above the majority. Good stuff!

Serving type: on-tap

01-20-2013 09:56:29 | More by elNopalero
Photo of tectactoe


3.86/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at the Oak cafe. Pours a vibrant, golden-yellow color; hazy, opaque, seemingly volatile with a large, fluffy, beige colored head, leaving plenty of large lace chunks on the way down. Bell's pulls off the typical Beligan tripel aroma quite nicely - the Belgian yeast is very noticeable and apparent; spices, cloves, white pepper, fruity esters, pears and apple skins. It hits the palate thin and highly carbonated, the beer almost disappears from your mouth. The high carbonation isn't stingy, and it really makes the flavors pop. Undertones of earthiness and bread are the playing field for more intricate tripel flavors, like the signature clove-banana-bubble gum combo, all of which are certainly present here. Alongside this tasty trio are some pears, white grapes, apricots, light white pepper, and another spice which I can't quite put my finger on, maybe coriander. The alcohol warms things up and rounds out the rough edges. Though it's definitely noticeable, it's pretty damn drinkable for 9% ABV. Aftertaste is full of fading, estery sweetness in the form of green apple skins and bananas, along with some clove for good measure.

Another tasty beer by Bells, proving that they aren't afraid of the Belgian yeast culture. High drinkability for a relatively high ABV brew - be careful or this one could sneak up on you quickly.

Serving type: on-tap

01-10-2013 13:23:28 | More by tectactoe
Photo of Knapp85


3.98/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured out as a nice slightly hazy golden color with a thin white head on top. The retention is thin and scattered. The lacing is minimal. The smell of the beer is bready, sweet and has a subtle spice note on the nose. The taste of the beer is sweet upfront and has a dry fruity spice finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a bit of an oily feel to it. The carbonation was pretty high but should be for the style. Overall it was a pretty good brew, I was glad to see it on draft in my area.

Serving type: on-tap

01-07-2013 01:28:45 | More by Knapp85
Photo of deebo


3.48/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at bulldog-uptown
Served in a pint glass this beer had a thin skimming of white foam leaving no lacing on the glass. Completely clear and golden. Aromas of phenolic clove and yeasty banana esters. Not unlike a hefe. Some spiciness here that would suggest a triple. Tastes like it smells. A spicy aftertaste with just a hint of bitterness. Medium bodied and carbonated. Alcohol is very well hidden. Overall a solid but not outstanding brew. A welcome brew from bells. Better than their dubbel.

Serving type: on-tap

12-29-2012 00:19:29 | More by deebo
Photo of jera1350


4.23/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at New Bohemia.

Slightly hazed pale gold with a frothy head of clean white foam. Smells very fruity and effervescent with some belgian type yeast. The taste is exceptionally clean and fruity with just a light belgian character to it. Some floral notes as well. So clean and flavorful with about a medium body that dries the palate but leaves no trace of residual flavors. A wonderful take on a tripel. I wish they would bottle this again, as I would love to have this on hand.

Serving type: on-tap

12-16-2012 19:23:45 | More by jera1350
Photo of TwelveOunces


4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a tulip

This beer is a deep hazy orange with a one finger off white head. The beer is undoubtedly a tripel. There is a slight bitterness up front. The beer sweeps over with a light dark fruit flavor, with figs and raisins. There is some flowery notes, a bit of wheat, a slight lemon grass, a little onion perhaps. This beer is spicy. The Belgium yest is obvious. There is a crispy spiciness, an earthy spiciness. Plenty drinkable for 9%, I do prefer bottle conditioning in my Belgian beers but tap is fine. A solid american take on a Belgian beer. A spicy and hoppier version.

Serving type: on-tap

11-15-2012 01:37:48 | More by TwelveOunces
Photo of Jamesthebrit


4.08/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Came out looking bold! Looks like a well aged white wine. Head is non-existant but it really worked with the look.
S: Smells like grape tires and wheat.
T: Grape flavor really comes through. Also wheat notes are very present.
M: Sits a little too carbonated but smooth. Medium body with a subtle fruit linger. Alcohol is well hidden.

Overall I was reluctant to try this beer because usually belgian styles are not my favorite. This beer really didn't bring the traditional flavors I had come to expect and it really came through like a nice sparkling wine.

Serving type: on-tap

03-27-2012 15:11:03 | More by Jamesthebrit
Photo of DrDemento456


4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Paid a bit too much for this but did get a 16oz pour for $5.50.

A - Color as expected is nice for a tripel light clear yellow with a nice 1/2 inch of sticky white head.

S - Smells nice a mix of hoppy bitterness, fruity yeasts, apple/pear, and a bit of sweet malts.

T - Well damn it's actually pretty good. Taste is fruity pear, then some sweet citrus hops, followed by fruity yeast which doesn't get too chalky, then the finish is quite sweet. Good take on the style.

M - Medium bodied and ABV is well hidden. Just like I like it.

Overall I would like to try it in a bottle again but sadly can't find any around my state. It's as good as many others I have tried and worth a second visit.

Serving type: on-tap

03-17-2012 00:38:33 | More by DrDemento456
Photo of iadler


3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Sheffield's.

A- Pours a light gold with a one finger head that dissipates into a thin cap leaving a few lines of lacing.

S- Light citrus zest, banana, clove, pear and peppery spice. The aroma is nice, but too subtle.

T- Similar to the aroma with citrus zest, grape, pear, peppery spice, banana, herbs and clove.

M- Medium carbonation and a light body with a crisp mouthfeel. The 9% is completely hidden.

O- This was very drinkable especially at being 9%, but the flavor and aroma seemed a little restrained for being a triple. Quite refreshing though.

Serving type: on-tap

02-13-2012 05:37:39 | More by iadler
Photo of Tone


3.33/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, gold color. 1/5 inch head of a white color. Slight retention and slight lacing. Smells of a hint of cinnamon, sweet malt, slight alcohol, hint of citrus, and a hint of hops. Fits the style of a Tripel. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of a hint of spice, hint of hop, sweet malt, and slight pale malt. Overall, lacking in appearance and body; good aroma and blend.

Serving type: on-tap

02-05-2012 15:05:00 | More by Tone
Photo of drabmuh


4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Churchkey, beer is served in a snifter. Beer is yellow, clear with nearly no head. Some lacing, low retention.

Aroma is a little yeasty and sweet.

Beer is medium to light in body, a little yeasty, grainy, I'm shocked that this beer is 9%. Amazing. Hides it well, good finish, not too dry. I'd have this again.

Serving type: on-tap

02-02-2012 19:39:16 | More by drabmuh
Photo of smakawhat


3.43/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured on tap into a tulip glass at Churchkey DC.

A creamy one finger head is produced, with a very bronze colored crystal clear body. While drinking there is some creamy lacing, but the most noticeable thing is how insanely carbonated this beer looks for a tripel. Lots of carbonation.

Nose has some mild malt, a little yeast and spice, kind of a dry sense, but not much really going on.

Palate upon tasting is sharply carbonated with sweet Belgian candy sense, but very crisp. This is slightly gaseous, even perhaps some hop bite strangely.

Overall for a tripel this is not what I look for. It's an enjoyable beer but I probably wont be wanting to try this again anytime soon. I prefer some creamyness.

Serving type: on-tap

02-02-2012 00:52:09 | More by smakawhat
Photo of xnicknj


3.58/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

on tap at khyber in philly

Pours a hazed golden yellow with a bubbly white head on top. Retains pretty well, leaving some patchy lacing on the glass.

Scents of clove and banana with some juicy citrus. A bit of sweetness and spice with cracked pepper and a touch of herbs.

Nice spiciness up front with pepper and faint herbs. Touches of clove with a solid amount of orange and citrus peel. A little juicy and sweet with some banana. Decent amount of malt on the backbone, giving the beer a decent body. Finishes with a soft warmth and more banana.

Fuller medium body, ridiculously high carbonation, very bubbly and tingly on the tongue. This is somewhat like a cross between champagne and a trpel, which has a pretty interesting result. Good, but not great.

Serving type: on-tap

12-10-2011 15:01:35 | More by xnicknj
Photo of MarkBlackout


3.53/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This stuff is just OK. Not much aroma, at least at the cool temperature at which it was served to me. That's OK, I'm not much of a beer huffer. I tend to smell once and go right for a gulp. Looks nice enough, amber ale appearance with average but adequate head. I like a good looking beer, it adds to the appeal. Lacing, etc., whatever. Nothing special.

Taste is good, but not anything that really stands out. I'll leave it to others to suss out the nuances, but this is more of a belgian pale ale than a tripel. Alcohol is nowhere, at least after a 20oz. Alpha King. I'm at MacNiven's on Massachusetts Avenue in Indianapolis, for the record. I like this place, and they have wireless! It's a bit bourgeois for my taste, but not horrible. They play music, its busy, the beer isn't THAT costly, and they have good stuff on tap. Bombers are prohibitively expensive, though. Oh well, I drink bombers at home, I come here for stuff on tap. But I digress. Pretty one-dimensional ale. Not much of a yeast presence, but its there, sort of a sour-sweet thing going with it. Not a heavily spiced or really heavily flavored ale to speak of. I can appreciate its simplicity but its hardly worth having as a special. Glad I got to try it as I probably never would have bought a six pack of it. Malty. Some hops. You get it.

Serving type: on-tap

12-08-2011 17:47:34 | More by MarkBlackout
Photo of Crossmd


3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a tap into a shaker pint, probably 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

Pours a lucid copper with a thin white head, quickly dissipating.

Smells of some slight pilsner skunk, some florals and weak yeast. Not overly well projected.

Tastes to me like a smoother, maltier, even buttery pilsner. Feels like an effervescent, but malty blend of both a pils and a Belgian style dubbel, or tripel. Smooth and relatively enjoyable, if not with a ton of personality.

Overall, I think an excellent food beer, supremely drinkable, with some of the robustness of a Belgian tripel. I wish for a little bit more finish, but overall an interesting blend of different styles that are rarely mixed. Worth grabbing on a whim, IMO.


Serving type: on-tap

11-28-2011 03:41:37 | More by Crossmd
Photo of Dreadnaught33

District of Columbia

3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap at the brewery in early April 2011.

The beer pours a copper semi clear color with no head or lacing, has the look to me of a lighter spirit. The smell has a nice white grape smell with sweeter yeasty notes to back it up with classic belgian style ripe fruit.

The taste is better than I expected from Bell's, as I never had anything else that was Belgian style from them. True to tripel style with yeast and malt reminiscent of classic tripels and fermented grape flavors and spice. Some farmhouse dry straw like flavors mix with a honey sweetness, something I'm starting to see as a signature from this brewery.

The mouth is brisk and crisp with a lighter feel and no alcohol. Just overly bubbly for me, which gets annoying.

Overall the beer is good, though I get tired of it after a awhile. Nice.

Serving type: on-tap

05-16-2011 01:20:21 | More by Dreadnaught33
Photo of jsanford


3.7/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Brewvival 2011.

Pours a clear golden color with a lovely creamy, fluffy white head. Smells and tastes of sweet bready malt, bananas, cloves with a nice peppery Belgian yeast. Banana really dominates the flavor, which is ok in my book. Slightly peppery and spicy. Medium-light bodied with moderate carbonation. Nicely drinkable, I wish I had bought bottles of this when I had the chance.

Serving type: on-tap

03-30-2011 20:59:15 | More by jsanford
Photo of thagr81us

South Carolina

3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had while at Brewvival! Served from tap into a sampler Brewvival imperial pint. Poured golden yellow with a half finger pure white head that subsided to a minimal amount slowly. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, wheat, subtle banana, and just a hint of alcohol. The flavor was of sweet malt, wheat, banana, and grain. It had a light feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a pretty decent brew, but not very memorable. I had forgotten that I had tried this one until I found it in my notes. After all of the other great brews I tried, this one just wasn't very memorable. Still had a nicely balanced flavor, just not very robust. Worth trying at least once, but that's about it.

Serving type: on-tap

03-01-2011 15:11:00 | More by thagr81us
Photo of BARFLYB


3.53/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On Tap at City Tap House for beer week 2010. I love this city!

Sparkling ale pours out a bright golden color with bright penny highlights. Some rising bubbles but nothing producing a head or a cap. Not all that sparkling. Smell is pretty weak all things considered. Getting some faint fruits apples, pears, and plum, but they are very light. A sweet malt hit and just a bit of sugars. Corn. Taste is a step up with the fruits souped up with pears coming out on top with apple and plum after. I do get some corn/ adjunct flavor, light but noticable. Some yeasty bread in the back. Not memorable. This was good but does not hack it style wise. Im a De Dolle guy myself, but I've had better american triples.

Serving type: on-tap

06-12-2010 20:51:39 | More by BARFLYB
Photo of rfgetz

New Jersey

4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice, bright gold color with low, yet spritzy carbonation, minimal head and lacing. Scent is very floral, rose water, pear, apple and fresh grapes. Taste is unique for a tripel, slight candied sugar taste accompanies the rose water, hibiscus, vanilla, pear, apple and grape flavors. Somewhat creamy body, dry finnish and moderate carbonation. A unique beer for the style with a lt of nice floral and fruit notes.

Serving type: on-tap

06-08-2010 14:39:40 | More by rfgetz
Photo of pzrhsau

District of Columbia

4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap at the Brickskeller in DC
Appearance: Nice bright golden color with lines of bubbles dancing in the glass. Decent finger measure of head.
Smell: Has a slight malt and hop aroma combined with a subtle sweetness/fruitiness.
Taste: The bubbles really dance on your tongue and deliver a nice fruity orangish flavor coupled with nice undertones of hops and malt. Slightly sweet but very clean.
Drinkability and Mouthfeel: The carbonation is what this beer was about to me. It is very crisp and clean. This beer really has a stunning appearance.

Serving type: on-tap

02-19-2010 13:10:29 | More by pzrhsau
Photo of Brettster


3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at a microbrew fest. This pours a light golden color with lots of carbonation. Smells quite citrussy with hints of hop. This had a very crisp mouthfeel with a citrus bite. Tasted a little fruity but not too much. Tastes very good, easy to drink. Hard to believe it is 9%.

Serving type: on-tap

01-31-2010 02:57:58 | More by Brettster
Photo of adamette


3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from notes. Enjoyed by me on tap 12 23 09 into a clean, clear oversized (about 16 ounce?) wine glass with my brother in law Steven and my wife at Fat Head's brewpub.

A Translucent very light caramel body under a brief, creamy head. A little bit basic for the style really. 3.0

S Sweet light roast malt and Belgian yeast, sugars. I love this smell (my favorite style) and this one is done well. 4.0

T Sweet malt, no hops in a nicely made tripel. Some citrus notes in a nice, light tripel and the ABV is hidden very well indeed. 4.0

M Medium feel with the malt, yeast sweetness. 3.5

D Good drinkability for the style. I finished the somewhat large glass within about 10 minutes. 4.0

Serving type: on-tap

12-28-2009 03:55:55 | More by adamette
Photo of dedrinker


4.38/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Light straw color with a thin white head. Pleasant aroma of yeast, sugar, bubblegum and coriander. Flavor is the same, but this is not as sweet, which is great - it has more body and silkiness, leaving more complex and lush flavors without the extra sugar rush. This almost reminds me of a cross between a Saison and a Tripel. I actually went into this with a skeptical attitude ("sparkling ale" huh?) but this here is proof that serious quality can overcome prejudice when it pleads its case well. Some prophecies are not always fulfilled by the self.

Serving type: on-tap

01-09-2008 07:55:50 | More by dedrinker
Photo of AltBock


3.38/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I got this Bell's offering on tap at the Brew Kettle on 12/28/07. It came to me a bit on the cold side and in a cool looking tulip glass. This Bell's was a hazy tangerine color with a small tint of amber. It could have been the shape of the glass, but it had a minimal head of white foam with decent retention that left behind a hand full of small white rings and few small white streaks of lace. The smell was heavy with Belgian yeast. Behind that heavy yeast aroma was some juicy fruits, floral hops, and a slice of banana. The taste was very Belgian like. The taste was fruity with juicy fruits, Belgian yeast, dry citrus hops, a pinch of toasted malts, and just a dab of sweet banana. The mouthfeel was very slick! It completely masked its 8.2% ABV. The aftertaste was that of bitter citrus hops and Belgian yeast. This aftertaste was not long lasting, but still very good. It's not my favorite Bell's beer, but it was a nice take on a Belgian style of beer.

Serving type: on-tap

12-29-2007 06:05:32 | More by AltBock
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Bell's Sparkling Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
86 out of 100 based on 518 ratings.