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

Bell's Black Note StoutBell's Black Note Stout

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

2,234 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2234
Reviews: 440
rAvg: 4.55
pDev: 8.13%


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

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  11.80% 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: 2,234 | Reviews: 440 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of CFHMagnet
CFHMagnet

Ohio

4.46/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes taken 10-24-13.

I went to Deagan's in Lakewood with my wife and some friends for Cleveland Beer Week. We got there as soon after 5 pm as we could because we heard that they were tapping this beer at 5.

The beer was brought to me in a snifter. I got a thin ring of rich brown head over a beer that was as black as night.

The smell was malt and dark fruit, with strong notes of chocolate and a good whiff of booze.

Roasty and malty made up the first impressions of flavor in this delicious beer. Milk chocolate soon turned up and made a good show through most of the rest of the tasting. Vanilla, wood and a hint of bourbon came in and finished it off beautifully.

This beer was smooth. It was almost Fonzie smooth. It felt like silk going down, and was the most enjoyable beer I had that evening.

Serving type: on-tap

10-29-2013 01:47:39 | More by CFHMagnet
Photo of taylor714914
taylor714914

Pennsylvania

4.94/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow. Just Wow. Was excited to see this on tap at Thirsty Monk in Asheville, so I drove over hoping the keg would still be dispensing this delicious nectar.

Pours a pitch black color with a thin brown cap of foam. Smells of sweet oak, whiskey, bittersweet chocolate, and oak tannins.

Taste is marvelous. The seamless meld of imperial stout and whiskey barrel could not have been more perfect. The taste follows suit with the nose, with the mouthfeel being rich, thick, and chewy. The carbonation is just enough, but not overdone.

An outstandingBA stout, damn near perfect.

Serving type: on-tap

10-24-2013 22:07:42 | More by taylor714914
Photo of superspak
superspak

Michigan

4.33/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 12/28/2012. Pours dense pitch black color with a small tan head with decent retention, that reduces to a spotty lace cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big dark chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt, toast, vanilla, toffee, bourbon, oak, clove, raisin, licorice, light coffee, cream, light char, and roasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of roasted malt and barrel notes; with good strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt, vanilla, toast, toffee, bourbon, oak, clove, light coffee, cream, raisin, licorice, light char, and roasted earthiness. Minimal bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt, vanilla, toast, toffee, oak, bourbon, clove, light coffee, cream, raisin, licorice, light char, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity and balance of dark/roasted malt flavors with very balanced barrel complexity; with zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Light carbonation and full bodied; with a very creamy and slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a fantastic barrel aged imperial stout. All around fantastic complexity and balance of dark/roasted malt flavors with barrel character; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2013 04:11:56 | More by superspak
Photo of SadMachine
SadMachine

New Jersey

4.43/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

'12 vintage

A- Pours black as night with a finger of tan head that recedes to a collar. Very little lacing, but it does leave nice alcohol legs when swirled.

S- The aroma explodes with bourbon, dark fruits, and oak. Sweet figs, dates, raisins, and prunes. Vanilla, grains, perhaps some sweet chocolate, and definitely a good bit of booze round out the nose.

T- This beer is both bold and subtle at the same time. Focused, yet complex. There's a lot of bourbon, and that makes it mellow, smooth, and boozy. Then there's plenty of the fig/date/raisin flavor. This is all complimented and rounded out with touches of vanilla, vinous flavor, oak, and a surprising bit of dry roastiness in the finish. Quite complex and delicious.

M- The mouthfeel is moderately thick, and very smooth/creamy thanks to the barrel. Lightly carbonated, and a good bit of warming booze.

O- This is a very nice representation of the BBA stout style, and I look forward to trying my other bottle with more age on it.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2013 05:08:33 | More by SadMachine
Photo of CMUbrew
CMUbrew

Michigan

4.56/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: As you might expect with the style and the name, this beer is black as night. A tiny, dark head manages to appear for a few seconds before subsiding into a faint and incomplete ring around the glass.

S: Mellow bourbon, roasted malts, perhaps a hint of chocolate. Aroma really isn't that potent, but it is certainly appealing.

T: Just hit the bourbon barrel stout jackpot. Front end hits with a mellow, but firm, bourbon punch. The flavors radiate over the palate as I get whiskey, woody notes, and vanilla. The stout flavors come in on the finish with darkly roasted malts and hints at bitter chocolate.

M: Not as viscous as I would like, but not thin by any means. Soft and silky. Only slight alcohol warming. The ABV is well hidden.

O: Simply outstanding. This is certainly a top tier BBA stout. Hopefully we'll see this again from Bell's sooner rather than later.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2013 01:17:03 | More by CMUbrew
Photo of biegaman
biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

4.43/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Trivia Question: What do you get when you blend Double Cream and Expedition Stout? Answer: A beer with a head that's darker than most brown ales. Bell's Black Note is black on black, that's for sure - it's darker than deep space. Almost amazingly, the foam never collapses.

Did I mention the blend is also aged for a few months in bourbon barrels? This fact isn't apparent at first but comes clear in due time. There develops so much vanilla flavour that it smells almost like cream soda (but has enough roasted malt to avoid seeming artificial or candy-like).

The taste resembles an iced coffee of sorts but also contains rich notes of fudge, vanilla, chocolate macaroons, treacle and a bit of fig too. It offers an unrivaled combination of sweet malt, bitter espresso and dried fruit qualities. The bourbon barrels work behind the scenes to add complexity but don't feature much in the spotlight.

The mouthfeel is super lush and surprisingly light; it's not often you find the phrase "goes down easy" used in reference to an 11% stout. But there is a good amount of brown sugar in the mouthfeel and a vein of red wine astringency that brightens this very dark beer.

Bell's Black Note is definitely a product of the black arts - it's wickedly good and somehow manages to balance delicacy and density. Unlike most bourbon barrel stouts, this one derives more from rich, chocolatey malts than it does barrel aging or bourbon. It's a big beer but not the kind to put hair on your chest; this is one to cuddle up to.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2013 03:25:28 | More by biegaman
Photo of tut2528
tut2528

Illinois

4.78/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

first and foremost... huge shoutout to Match1112 for this one!

A: typical… body is black as night, created a slight film of head that was dark tan in color. Big alcohol legs. Not much lacing.

S: a phenomenal balance of chocolate, bourbon, oak and vanilla gets my loins moving. some faint espresso/coffee is also detectable... and becomes more noticeable as the brew warms. balance is unlike any other I have previously had. BCS is much more bourbon forward for comparison purposes.

T: following the nose. Big chocolate, bourbon right up front. The oak creates a bit of a dryness mid way through and the finish is an awesome vanilla creaminess that brings the entire brew together. As this brew warms I am picking up more licorice and an ever so slight smoke/burnt presence with slight espresso character.

M: full body, chewy, it leaves a terrific slight heat on upper gums, with a lingering chocolate, bourbon presence on the palate.

O: my God! I cannot thank Match1112 enough for this one. It’s definitely one of my favorite brews, and I wish I had a bomber of this! The balance of this brew is fantastic.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2013 01:10:33 | More by tut2528
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep black color stout with a nice large dark brown color foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of bourbon with some vanilla notes and black chocolates. Taste is also dominated by a well-balanced mix between some vanilla, bourbon, creamy black chocolates and light bitterness. Body is thinner then I had anticipated with good carbonation and no alcohol was apparent. Very solid barrel-aged stout but I would have loved a bit more of body to this beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-21-2013 01:30:15 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of Mrappinin
Mrappinin

Virginia

4.49/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Just popped the 2012 brew. Poor's a deep ruby only noticeable when held up to the light. The head is a thin dark brown mocha color that dissipates quickly. Heavy vanilla on the nose with slight coffee and bourbon to follow up. Rates of vanilla creamy chocolate and coffee and bourbon to finish it all off. Light carbonation make this a very creamy enjoyable BBS. The best BBS I have ever tried hands down sat this on the shelf for about ten months a very smooth blended flavor, it all works togeather.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2013 02:41:00 | More by Mrappinin
Photo of PaulyB83
PaulyB83

Michigan

4.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On- tap served in a snifter

A- Jet black with a millimeter of mocha head that quickly dissipated to a ring.

S- Coconut, vanilla, alcohol, coffee, chocolate, slight raisin

T- Smooth, tastes like a Mounds bar, dark chocolate, vanilla, coconut, very similar to the nose

M- Creamy, surprisingly easy drinking for such a big beer, it's a good thing the flavors are so big or you'd be in trouble. Not as thick as other bourbon barrel aged stouts, but I kinda like it. Bourbon County stout was pretty thick and actually took me a while to get through just one bottle. I think this it perfect mouthfeel for a 12oz. serving of this weight of a beer.

O- Living in Kalamazoo, I'm lucky to find this on draft somewhere every couple of months. This hits everything on the head and is the benchmark for me in BBA stouts. I tried KBS a few weeks after having this and thought there was no comparison, this is the better beer. If I could have one more beer before I die, this would be it.

Serving type: on-tap

09-13-2013 14:37:38 | More by PaulyB83
Photo of Damian
Damian

Massachusetts

4/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Drank from a 12 fl oz (355 ml) bottle acquired in a trade with surge1311
12/28/12
Served in a snifter

Review #825

The beer poured a dark brown/black and a touch thinner than expected. A mass of tan colored bubbles topped the liquid, but they quickly dissolved into a small ring.

The nose was amazing. Bourbon notes dominated. Boozy, but in a good way. Vanilla came through strong. Raisin and dark fruit notes were evident as well. Good dose of molasses and brown sugar sweetness. Dark chocolate notes appeared as the beer warmed.

Like the nose, the flavor profile was very bourbon forward. Tons of fresh vanilla bean. Sweet up front with brown sugar notes. Raisins and plums were also noticeable. Lots of espresso in the center. The finish was disappointing however. It was excessively roasty and tasted somewhat ashy. Bitter, earthy hops came through as well. Toward the beer's end, the finish turned acrid and rather unpleasant.

The liquid was medium bodied for the style. Slick, rich and creamy with a fine, mild effervescence. Quite smooth and supple.

Bell's Black Note Stout started out so strong, but the bitter and charred tasting finish was really disappointing. When fresh, perhaps the sweetness of the Double Cream Stout would help even out some of the harsh aspects of the flavor profile.

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2013 22:17:10 | More by Damian
Photo of HoppyKilaMonster
HoppyKilaMonster

Pennsylvania

4.15/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter

A-dark black in color, with a head that quickly dissapates.

S- molasses right away, followed by darker fruits, and a hint of toffee.

T- a nice subtle bourbon undertone at the first sip. This becomes more pronounced as it warms.

M- the body is a little on the lighter side IMO. I would like a barrel aged stout to be a little thicker.

O- A good overall BA stout, but I think there are a lot easier to find, and at least equal in taste stouts out there.

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2013 21:40:54 | More by HoppyKilaMonster
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

4.55/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black and completely opaque with a half finger beige head that quickly settles into thin, lasting ring.  Spotty lacing and legs coat the glass.

Incredibly inviting nose with sweet and spicy bourbon barrel notes excellently integrated into the elements of the base beer.  Spicy whiskey/bourbon with toasted oak and vanilla.  Toasted coconut and vanilla notes really stand out along with the dry, earthy  oak presence.  Underneath, there's some luscious chocolate, licorice, vinous fruit, oatmeal and toast.  Smells amazing!!!

Viscous and full bodied with a strong bourbon presence that is perfectly integrated into the flavors of the base beer.  Some dry toasted oak and spicy bourbon along with smooth vanilla bean and roasted coconut.  Again, the toasted coconut flavor is realy prominent and the vanilla rounds out the hot booze.  Great bourbon flavor.  Underneath, there is a nice combination of sweet and roasted malt notes with hints of dark chocolate, burnt sugar, toast, oatmeal and coffee bean coutered by licorice and vinous fruits.  Slightly dry in the finish with a good amount of boozy heat and warmth in the chest.  Abv not masked very well but the base beer flavors aren't obliterated and it's still somewhat easy to drink.  Very nice.  

Serving type: bottle

09-09-2013 02:11:50 | More by corby112
Photo of soughtbygod
soughtbygod

California

4.55/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

About to try my first black note: 2012 poured from a 12oz bottle,

I am a huge fan of BBA stouts, I have had CBS, CW BBA stout, KBS, Class X kern River, BCBS, Parabola etc, some live up to the hype and others fall flat, I am about to test drive Bells Black note:

Appearance: Opaque black no like gets through as you pour it almost no head forms and the head that does form is dark dark tan with fine bubbles.

Smell: Wow interesting, this has dark plum, raisins, black licorice, the bourbon is there but very muted and hidden, I also get almost a sweet coffee on the nose.

Taste: The taste is very good this is definitely a top 5 for me, the hidden bourbon is no longer hidden that is the first upfront flavor, but even though that is the upfront flavor it is not hot like one would expect for 11.8 %, as it continues to ease over my taste buds the other flavors emerge vanilla first, then a touch of sarsaparilla, and finally on the very back of the tongue coffee candy that reminds me of loomis coffee candies in the gold wrapper my mother used to eat them when I was young.

Mouth feel: not much to say here this was very typical, smooth and creamy not the best mouth feel I have had but not the worst.

Overall: I am very impressed with this beer, I still give higher rating to my all time favorite CBS, but this is def in the top 5 for me and worthy of seeking in the future, cheers fellow BA's

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2013 19:35:18 | More by soughtbygod
Photo of facundoCNB
facundoCNB

New Jersey

4.69/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a thick black pour with less than a finger of tan head. lots of bourbon / vanilla in the aroma, pecans, brown sugar, coffee, cocoa. wow - this is a deliciously sweet yet dark stout. reminds me of peruvian morning with its nutty sweet pecan/brown sugar flavor overtopping everything.. the bourbon barrel taste is there but blends ver nicely with the chocolate/coffee/sweet notes of this that it doesn't become overwhelming like a lot of BBA stouts tend to do. this is everything i want to taste in an imperial stout. medium to full body with low carbonation and a silky smooth mouthfeel. the alcohol is present, but is not overpowering.. it's masked fairly well. honestly, this drinks way too easily.

one of the best stouts i've ever had by far. for those looking for a subtle roast, subtle sweetness, lots of chocolate and coffee taste - this is the one to go for.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2013 16:15:59 | More by facundoCNB
Photo of draheim
draheim

Washington

4.54/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle (bottled 12/28/2012 - thanks again Hoptologist!) into a snifter. Pours oily black w/ a very thin tan head that quickly dissipates to a narrow collar. I know it's not supposed to matter with big stouts like this, but I still like to see a little head+retention.

Aroma is big powerful bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, rum-soaked tobacco, toffee/molasses, and caramelized dark fruit. Fresh-baked sticky buns. Smells phenomenal.

Taste follows nose. Dark bitter chocolate, coffee, bourbon, dried figs/dates, vanilla, caramel, and more bourbon. Nice boozy heat warms the throat. Everything very nicely balanced, maybe just a touch sweeter than I like my BA stouts.

Mouthfeel is sticky, chewy, a little syrupy.

Overall, a solid barrel aged stout, in the same league as Parabola and KBS and better than BCBS. I'd buy this every year if I could.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2013 20:42:51 | More by draheim
Photo of Rutager
Rutager

British Columbia (Canada)

4.46/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

2012 12oz bottle, thanks mrbubbler!

Appearance. Pours black with half a finger of nice brown head.

Smell. Smooth bourbon with tons of oak, vanilla and sweet chocolate, and a little molasses.

Taste. Sweet dark creamy chocolate, smooth bourbon and oak barrel, a bit of vanilla and molasses. Very nice.

Mouthfeel. Full body with creamy smooth lowish carbonation. Great stuff.

Overall. A bourbon barrel imperial stout done right. I should probably crack my 750 from the original bottling soon. This is drinking very well right now and that one is probably at its peak.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2013 01:43:18 | More by Rutager
Photo of alpineclimber
alpineclimber

Alberta (Canada)

4.39/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A 2012 bottle poured into my favourite chalice. A two finger frothy mocha head forms on an impenetrable black brew.

Nose is of the bourbon barrel and chocolatey black malt, fairly sweet.

Taste is of dark chocolate, blackstrap molasses and the bourbon barrel. The bourbon barrel is very apparent in this brew and is very appealing. A thick mouthfeel, very fitting.

Overall very excellent and highly recommended for the bourbon barrel aged stout connoisseur.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2013 03:46:14 | More by alpineclimber
Photo of WankelEngine
WankelEngine

Illinois

4.55/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter

A: Pours a dark, black coffee color with just a touch of mocha foam. Oily legs when swirled.

S: Opens very sweetly with coconut, maple, and vanilla. As it warms an oaky bourbon flavor joins the initial sweet scents. Complemented by aromas of fig, plum, hazelnut, and brown sugar. A little bit of warming booze. Near the end there is some milk chocolate.

T: Bittersweet chocolate is more potent here. In combination with oak, cappuccino and a hint of smoke, this nicely tempers the remaining sweetness. Dark fruits show through and blend nicely with the chocolate. The finish is all bourbon and mocha.

M: Medium thick and very smooth/sticky. Almost no carbonation.

O: A wonderful beer. Undeniably complex and well crafted. Up there with Parabola and BCBS. I really love the aroma, very sweet but interesting.

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2013 00:51:08 | More by WankelEngine
Photo of JohnnyBarman
JohnnyBarman

Ontario (Canada)

4.41/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Michigan Craft Beer stand at Comerica Park, during the Tigers-Sox game. Was about to order something else, but the bartender told me they just put this one on. Score!

Poured into only the finest plastic cup. Nearly black, caramel around the edges. Carbonation is visible here, and there was only a thin head that didn't survive long. Chalk that one up to the serving vessel, I suppose.

Smells fantastic - rich chocolate, caramel, booze, bourbon, oak and milk/cream. Smells like a top class bourbon barrel imperial stout.

One hell of a tasty stout, and by a very wide margin the best - and strongest - beer I've ever had at a ball game. Despite the plethora of bourbon barrel stouts out there, I really never get tired of the stuff, and this one is no exception. Similar flavors as in the nose - robust whisky and cream notes, as with some nice vanilla and rich chocate-caramel. Damned tasty stuff.

Mouthfeel is a little thinner than I'd like, with zesty carbonation. Still, a creamy, silky beer.

Hats off to Bell's for this terrific stout, and to Comerica for putting this one on tap. Made my night!

Serving type: on-tap

07-11-2013 06:51:42 | More by JohnnyBarman
Photo of PlinyBeMiney
PlinyBeMiney

California

4.15/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Excited to try this highly regarded Midwest stout. Looks fairly standard for the style. Smells amazing. I love the smell of bourbon on a stout. This has the perfect mix of malt and bourbon albeit a little less sweet than I'm used too. This beer showcases how a well integrated barrel character can affect a moderately low abv (for an imperial bal aged stout) can be. It's not sweet like Black Tuesday or BCBS which is nice for a change. I personally don't mind those diabetes bombs, but these guys do a great job while keeping things moderate.

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2013 05:29:38 | More by PlinyBeMiney
Photo of chinchill
chinchill

South Carolina

4.44/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap at NOC.
Black with brown edges. The head is not durable but the ring is.
Very, very rich aroma and flavor. Mildly sweet with fairly well hidden ABV.
Barrel aging is obvious.Dark infused fruit.
Very smooth feel, with a good bit of warming.
Indescribably delicious.

Serving type: on-tap

06-30-2013 02:06:54 | More by chinchill
Photo of Spica66
Spica66

Indiana

4.78/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A - Deep mahogany/black in color with an off-white head with great formation and retention. Thick pour with lots of legs.

S - Deep roast coffee, dark chocolate, bourbon, oak, and some vanilla. This beer is a nose full!

T - This is a Mack Daddy imperial stout. Loads of rich barley with deep fruits and some caramel/vanilla. Slightly sticky finish with plenty of oak and bourbon coming through.

M - Creamy and rich and very slightly sticky on your lips.

O - This is what a bourbon barrel aged imperial stout should be. One of my favorites - EVER!

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2013 12:12:03 | More by Spica66
Photo of jzeilinger
jzeilinger

Pennsylvania

4.59/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Rich black in color with a toffee/molasses colored creamy head, thick and viscous looking.

S - Rich caramel cream, roasted toffee, dark chocolate malt, vanilla, bourbon, and some oak.

T - Rich and flavorful with vanilla, some traces of dark chocolate, oak, and bourbon. Ends with a sticky oak, vanilla, bourbon finish.

M - Luscious and rich velvety texture, thick, and slightly sticky on the lips.

O - An outstanding barrel aged stout.

Serving type: bottle

06-24-2013 21:33:22 | More by jzeilinger
Photo of nrs207
nrs207

Pennsylvania

3.63/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Let's be real, this beer is all hype. It's not really that good. It has a hint of bourbon barrel, some decent roasty notes, but every time I have it, I expect it to be pretty good. It never lives up to any of the other beers I've had that night. BCBS is in another league, and even just an above average beer like KBS kills this. If you've gotten this far, here is my full review.

A - Fairly dark, not the darkest stout out there. Decent appearance overall.

S - Pretty dry, doesn't smell very sweet. Has a hint of bourbon barrel there. Some chocolate notes.

T - Fairly dry in the taste as well. Doesn't have a lot of bourbon. It tastes like an OK roasty stout got thrown in a bourbon barrel for about 2 weeks. I'm not sure what Bell's is doing, but they're doing it wrong. It's truly not that good. There are an incredible amount of bourbon barrel stouts I'd seek out over this.

M - It's fairly smooth, but nothing too incredible. The best quality of this beer is that it's not very boozy. It's a bit thin for the ABV, but at least the booze is well hidden.

O - This beer is not worth seeking out. If it was on the shelf at $3 a bottle, I probably wouldn't buy it. That is NOT good for a bourbon barrel stout, let alone a very good one. I actually would for trade value I guess, but definitely not to drink. Skip this one unless you just want to tick it. It's like Hopslam, just a tick. Nothing special. It's outdated, and many many other breweries have caught up and surpassed Bell's. The only beer I consider worthwhile from them is Two Hearted. For the price, it's the only beer they make that's worth buying imo.

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2013 23:37:46 | More by nrs207
Bell's Black Note Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
100 out of 100 based on 2,234 ratings.