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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

3,057 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,057
Reviews: 496
rAvg: 4.56
pDev: 8.11%
Wants: 2,075
Gots: 781 | FT: 76
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: 3,057 | Reviews: 496 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Kerrie
3.5/5  rDev -23.2%

Kerrie, Jan 22, 2013
Photo of eschmitt777
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

eschmitt777, Jan 21, 2013
Photo of danoeltico
4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

danoeltico, Jan 21, 2013
Photo of pmoney
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

pmoney, Jan 21, 2013
Photo of YogiBeer
4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

YogiBeer, Jan 21, 2013
Photo of kipp
5/5  rDev +9.6%

kipp, Jan 21, 2013
Photo of jtingue
4.55/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottle dated 12/28/12. Poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance. Pitch black. Pours with a finger of hazelnut colored head. This dissipates quickly, but there is a nice ring around the top of the glass.

Smell. That now familiar bourbon aged smell permeates the nostrils: buttery, sweet and vanilla. An underlying layer is implies creamy milk chocolate. There is something about bourbon aging that give the smell a certain softness, a softness that expedition already has in its chocolate notes.

Taste. Starts out with a strong punch of bittersweet chocolate. Some vanilla tinged oaky sweetness permeates the whole experience. It occasionally becomes dominant, being manifested as a toffee like flavor. Other times it fades into the background, allowing the chocolate notes of the stouts to dominate.

Mouthfeel. Excellent creamy body is broken up just enough by tight carbonation.

I just had to review this one after having the first few sips. A very refined bourbon barrel aged beer. It gets to the level of KBS as far as balance goes, something that BCBS doesn't do for me.

jtingue, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of founder26
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap before and after this bottle they are quite similar. This review is from the 12oz bottles dated 12/29/12, poured into a snifter

A- black with a little red around corners. Not much head at all.

S- this is the second best part about this beer, it is intoxicating. First smell is of light bourbon and chocolate, middle you get some oak, vanilla, and caramel, finishes with coffee.

T- to me this is where I dont like this beer as much as bcbs or kbs. It has too much sweetness and bitterness, not enough chocolate ot bourbon.

M- this is the best part about this beer, so creamy and smooth. Not much carb but thats ok.

O- I like how drinkable this is, I just wish it had more of a roastyness and less sweet/bitterness. I hope some age will help that.

founder26, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of jeremiahoden
5/5  rDev +9.6%

jeremiahoden, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of seanwhite
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

seanwhite, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of NSK79
5/5  rDev +9.6%

NSK79, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of Honus1
4.79/5  rDev +5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is what bourbon aging should do to a solid blend of base beers in my opinion. On par with BA BORIS, KBS, BCBS. This pours black as night into my snifter with a slight chocolate head that dissipates quickly. Smell is intoxicatingly good, obvious bourbon, malt. The taste is what we are all here for, and this rare one actually doesn't disappoint. I I had to go to Bell's to get it, and was ready for some letdown. Clearly not the case! Let this beer warm up some, as the smooth bourbon finish really gets better as the temp rises. Caramel, and vanilla dominate the drawn out finish. Well done Bell's, well done.

Honus1, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of Spectre
4.34/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A. Black body with a thin dark brown head.

S. Strong Bourbon with a hint of coco.

T. Similar to the smell you get a lot of bourbon and finish with a taist of black coffee and dark chocolate.

M. Not too thick or smooth but still goes down fairly easy.

Overall this is a great stout definitely above average.

Spectre, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of webmanspidey
4.76/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is a typical dark black color with medium head. The smell is really heavy on bourbon, with some other hints of vanilla and cherry. This smells like a really amazing fancy dessert. Taste has a nice blend of bourbon, buttery heavy cream, cherry, chocolate, and coffee. The alcohol isn't overbearing at all and it maintains a pretty easy drinkability.

This is very delicious and I think it definitely lives up to the immense hype surrounding it.

webmanspidey, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of JALIEN
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

JALIEN, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of RyanBeer13
5/5  rDev +9.6%

RyanBeer13, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of Christov
4.25/5  rDev -6.8%

Christov, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of SteelersX
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%

SteelersX, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of jplopez21
4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

jplopez21, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of swimfire
4.25/5  rDev -6.8%

swimfire, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of broodog
4.56/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2012 Black Note Stout Batch 11620 (I think, A little hard to read) Bottled 12/28/12 - Into a Bell's Tulip

Appearance - Pours jet black - 1 finger tan head which dissipates rather quickly into a ring. Lacing is nice

Smell- Bourbon, Coffee, roasted malt

Taste - Wow - In a class by itself. A rush of flavor. Bourbon followed by coffee, followed by roasted malt , molasses. Blend together perfectly. Alcohol is there, but not overwhelming.

Mouthfeel - Not as thick as some other BB stouts at this ABV. Feels great going down.

Overall - A wonderful experience. If you can get your hands on a few, try one now. Save a few for aging.

broodog, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of Mai
4.75/5  rDev +4.2%

Mai, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of Steimie
4.25/5  rDev -6.8%

Steimie, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of 33nickadams
4.66/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Completely black, opaque, and beige head sticks to the sides of the snifter. First smell I get is of dark dried fruits, which I find interesting since it's bourbon barrel aged. Of course you get the bourbon on the nose, but also you can smell sweetness. Alcohol is also evident in the nose. Tastes of coffee, dark dried fruits, chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, oakiness. Very well balanced and smooth. Not harsh at all, especially for being 11.5%. Nice aftertaste of vanilla that lingers in the mouth. Mouthfeel is full-bodied, velvety smooth and lightly carbonated. A world class beer from a world class brewery. I'm not sure that this could improve any more than it already is. Unless its better with age. I think I may keep some around for that.

33nickadams, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of jmich24
5/5  rDev +9.6%

jmich24, Jan 18, 2013
Bell's Black Note Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
100 out of 100 based on 3,057 ratings.