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Bell's Black Note Stout - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Bell's Black Note StoutBell's Black Note Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

2,829 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,829
Reviews: 491
rAvg: 4.56
pDev: 8.33%
Wants: 2,008
Gots: 720 | FT: 69
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  11.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
One of the most sought-after stouts in Bell's history, Black Note Stout blends the complex aromatics of Expedition Stout with the velvety smooth texture of Double Cream Stout and ages the combination in freshly retired oak bourbon barrels for months. The resulting harmony of flavors captures the finest features of all three components: malty notes of dark chocolate, espresso & dried fruits, all buoyed by the warmth and fragrance of the bourbon barrel. Aimed squarely at the stout and bourbon aficionados, Black Note makes a grand statement about the art of the dark.

(Beer added by: mcallister on 06-16-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,829 | Reviews: 491 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Rupert50
Rupert50

Ohio

4/5  rDev -12.3%

11-11-2012 17:18:54 | More by Rupert50
Photo of EricCioe
EricCioe

Montana

4/5  rDev -12.3%

11-11-2012 16:07:44 | More by EricCioe
Photo of rodkin
rodkin

New York

4.05/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Got a pour at the STLhops anniversary party.

Looks like a stout. Black, smallish head. Poured into a tasting glass so I couldn't get a great sense, but it's nothing special.

Smell is vanilla, coffee, bit of chocolate, some oak, roasty bitterness, some dark fruits. It's pretty good, but it's a bit muddled. Not a lot of balance.

Taste gets better as it warms. Vanilla, coffee, bourbon, oak, caramel. Really rich, very tasty.

Mouthfeel was too thin and flat. I don't want it to be hypercarbonated, but more than it has would be good. It's also too watery. I like my stouts to be thick and chewy, which this was not.

This is a solid stout. However, the mouthfeel was really lacking, and it was a bit unbalanced. A bit disappointing. I'd like to try it again sometime, maybe get a better experience.

Serving type: on-tap

11-11-2012 04:15:13 | More by rodkin
Photo of Tiger33
Tiger33

North Carolina

4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

11-09-2012 14:32:39 | More by Tiger33
Photo of pixieskid
pixieskid

Germany

3.58/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to Fux for sharing this bottle last night. Has been on my list of rare Imp. Stouts for some time, glad to cross it off. Unfortunately, I didn't have the same experience...

Pours an almost black color with a thin white head, dissipating quite quickly.

Nose; bourbon, oak, charcoal, and some dark fruits.

Taste; bourbon upfront with a touch of bakers chocolate, I too got peanut butter, finishing with a ton of burnt malt and a slight salinity (reminiscent of soy sauce but not like 09' Abyss).

Mouthfeel; oily and surprisingly thin. This can happen with barrel treatments (i.e. Boris vs. BA Boris is the best example off the top of my head) but I think it comes from the Double Cream Stout aspect of the beer as well.

Overall; I wasn't a fan but I will admit, I have been a bit under the weather lately so I know my palate isn't quite up to par...

Retried a bottle of 2013 and can say that the initial review was so low because of the fact that the beer was oxidized. This recent bottle was much better but still not very impressive. The thin body and overly boozy aspect from the barrel aging didnt do much for me. Decent example of the style but over rated and no better than any other barrel aged imperial stout out there.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2012 07:56:43 | More by pixieskid
Photo of Fux
Fux

France

4.5/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From the bottle (234/1081). Batch #10136
A: Pitch black with a thin mocha head that leaves some lacings.
S: Smell is mainly of heavy dark chocolate with dried fruits (currants, figs) and some dark fruits. Some roasted aromas (almonds, espresso). Vanilla comes after.Some nuts also (cashew nuts, peanut butter). The presence of alcohol is noticeable butnot overpowering (notes of sherry). Deep but not aggressive. Elegant.
T: The taste mainly follows the nose with a lot of dark chocolate and roasted malts (coffee flavors). Some vanilla. Warming alcohol but without booziness. The aftertaste is on sweet chocolate and bitter chocolate.
M: Medium to high body. Almost flat. Quite velvety. It could be thicker and a bit smoother. A bit sticky on the length, but very drinkable.
O: A great, elegant imperial stout, with an excellent nose, flavorful and deep, still sober on the palate.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2012 23:36:47 | More by Fux
Photo of Auztan
Auztan

Illinois

4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

11-06-2012 17:48:10 | More by Auztan
Photo of sjstraub
sjstraub

Wisconsin

5/5  rDev +9.6%

11-06-2012 03:38:01 | More by sjstraub
Photo of Westmi
Westmi

Michigan

4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

11-05-2012 00:15:59 | More by Westmi
Photo of Samwhyz
Samwhyz

Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev -6.8%

11-04-2012 20:52:38 | More by Samwhyz
Photo of rlcnmeyer
rlcnmeyer

Missouri

4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

11-04-2012 18:36:37 | More by rlcnmeyer
Photo of PatrickKlopfenstein
PatrickKlopfenstein

Iowa

4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

11-02-2012 03:09:19 | More by PatrickKlopfenstein
Photo of vobr0002
vobr0002

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

10-30-2012 19:45:23 | More by vobr0002
Photo of JJWIGHT
JJWIGHT

Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev -6.8%

10-30-2012 05:04:48 | More by JJWIGHT
Photo of EROCK75
EROCK75

Illinois

5/5  rDev +9.6%

10-29-2012 18:52:31 | More by EROCK75
Photo of CJS
CJS

Florida

4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

10-28-2012 17:01:28 | More by CJS
Photo of Luk13
Luk13

Quebec (Canada)

4.63/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from tom10101 obtained via sarro, thanks to the both of you. Thick black brown pour with no head. Very intense and complex aroma: molasses, lots of bourbon, charred wood adds some smokiness (nice twist!), some caramel and ripe fruits (plums, figs). Awesome. Taste is very rich, lots of roasted malts, bourbon, vanilla and chocolate. Flavors are enhanced by the sublime creamy mouthfeel and low carbonation. Intense and refined. Side-by-side with BA speedway with BA speedway being a close winner. Although I prefered Black Note's palate and aroma, BA speedway's flavors were out of this world.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2012 16:31:31 | More by Luk13
Photo of cfrances33
cfrances33

Illinois

4.73/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

On tap at Bell's Eccentric Cafe, served in a snifter.

Pour: Pitch black, with a half finger of deep khaki head. Nice legs, and this beer is a little more splashy than the pitch black body would tell you.

Smell: Really nice vanilla bourbon, with a distinct roastiness, and creamy milk chocolate. A touch of dark fruits.

Taste: Wow. Bourbon vanilla bomb up front. Nice sweet milk chocolate creaminess, which mixes with roasted malts. Creamy vanilla bourbon finishes.

Mouthfeel: Not too heavy, and just a touch of bourbon heat. Really nice carbonation, which play well with the creamy flavors.

Overall: Awesome beer, definitely looking forward to having this again.

Serving type: on-tap

10-27-2012 17:28:26 | More by cfrances33
Photo of AdOculos
AdOculos


4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

10-26-2012 04:43:48 | More by AdOculos
Photo of coreyfmcdonald
coreyfmcdonald

Georgia

4.03/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Porter Beer Bar, re-reviewed from a 2012 12oz bottle

A: Pours pitch black with two fingers of off white head. Retention is decent.

S: Strong bourbon upfront, I get dark chocolate, caramel, and licorice behind. Dark fruit in the background adds to the complexity. The aromas mix very well together.

T: Again, strong bourbon and caramel upfront, this time there is more coffee and roast to balance. I get a bit of lactose sweetness to give a bit more sweetness. I also get quite a bit of dark chocolate, intensifying as the beer warms. The beer always stays on the roasty/coffee side, but is very well balanced.

M: A bit on the thin side for the style with low carbonation. Definitely the worst part of this beer, but not terrible.

O: With a bit thicker mouthfeel, this would be significantly better. It still balances roast, bourbon, and chocolate extremely well, better than just about any other barrel aged stout that I've had.

Serving type: on-tap

10-26-2012 00:34:08 | More by coreyfmcdonald
Photo of fredmugs
fredmugs

Indiana

4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

10-25-2012 17:09:45 | More by fredmugs
Photo of flipdog0
flipdog0

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev -6.8%

10-24-2012 22:07:04 | More by flipdog0
Photo of AleApostle
AleApostle

Illinois

4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

10-24-2012 15:12:19 | More by AleApostle
Photo of Samichlaus82
Samichlaus82

Germany

4.9/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours oily pitch black with a small dark mocha head that slowly dissipates without leaving much trace on the glass. Smell is slightly sweet and malty with roasted malts, quality dark chocolate, dark bread, burnt caramel, charred wood, black pepper, bourbon, coconut, vanilla fudge, asphalt, toffee and hints of sweet liquorice. Taste is sweet and malty with roasted malts, roasted coconut, quality dark chocolate, sweetened dark roast coffee, vanilla fudge, charred wood, lactose, bourbon, toffee, nutella and hints of alcohol. Mouthfeel is soft, creamy, smooth, balanced, silky and full bodied. Finish is slightly sweet and bitter with roasted malts, quality dark chocolate, dark roast coffee, vanilla fudge, roasted coconuts, charred wood and bourbon. Great balance and smooth silky mouthfeel adds up to a great experience.

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2012 09:11:51 | More by Samichlaus82
Photo of mcphish22
mcphish22

Maryland

5/5  rDev +9.6%

10-23-2012 12:16:15 | More by mcphish22
Bell's Black Note Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
100 out of 100 based on 2,829 ratings.