1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

Not Rated.
Bell's Christmas AleBell's Christmas Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,222 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,222
Reviews: 461
rAvg: 3.57
pDev: 13.45%
Wants: 35
Gots: 58 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Scottish Ale |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BierFan on 11-06-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,222 | Reviews: 461 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Gtg642
4/5  rDev +12%

Gtg642, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of hyuga
3.5/5  rDev -2%

hyuga, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of scott2269
4/5  rDev +12%

scott2269, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of RandyJ
4/5  rDev +12%

RandyJ, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of dizztracted
4/5  rDev +12%

dizztracted, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of ithinkimasofa
3.5/5  rDev -2%

ithinkimasofa, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of OneEyedJack
4/5  rDev +12%

OneEyedJack, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of SrMonkey
4/5  rDev +12%

SrMonkey, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of Adamostella
4/5  rDev +12%

Adamostella, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of ej285701
3/5  rDev -16%

ej285701, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of SaintJonah
4/5  rDev +12%

SaintJonah, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of sbricker
3.5/5  rDev -2%

sbricker, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of freduardo
3.5/5  rDev -2%

freduardo, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of bpfrush
3.5/5  rDev -2%

bpfrush, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of Brent
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bell's does a nice job with this style interpretation. I didn't get much of the traditional peat note, but there was a nice caramel malt aspect which seemed to carry the barest whiff of smoke. Overall the beer was lively and consistent from front to back. There seemed a faint echo of a spice at the finish. Overall, a reserved seasonal offering, but hearty.

Brent, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of rsitarski
4/5  rDev +12%

rsitarski, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of cdrogers
4.03/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle to Pilser glass.

Appearance: Nice off-white head with a deep copper color.

Smell: Get a spicy-cinnamon smell, very earthy.

Taste: First off, it reminds me a lot of the Sam Adam's Winter, which is great. Some sweetness with a little bitter after, but very well balanced.

Mouthfeel: Bitter not overwhelming; crisp and clean.

Overall: Overall this is a good ale.

cdrogers, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of TheSarge
3.03/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured this brew into a standard pint glass...

Lots of carbonation, which make a solid two finger thick head of light khaki. The body is copper in color and is mildly hazy.

Not much in the way of aroma, except for some caramel from the malts, some metallic hops qualities, and a hint of pine.

Upfront there isn't much of a taste either, but middle to the end sweetness of ginger, nutmeg, and vanilla envelope the palate.

Feels medium in body with lot of carbonation, and an oily slickness in the end.

Overall a non intrusive kind of beer. Not really sticking out with any real certain qualities.

TheSarge, Nov 11, 2011
Photo of Hoptometrist
4.05/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served from the bottle into a nonic glass

A- Clear reddish orange color with one and a half finger foamy head left a little lace

S- Butterscotch, toffee, and a huge pungent citrus hop aroma

T- Super hopped up scottish ale. Big juicy citrus, butterscotch, toffee, caramel. Finishes with some graininess. Hop overshadows the malt quite a bit, but the presence is still there to make this very different than the average IPA. Quite sweet overall.

M- Starts of smooth, carbonation on the middle of the tongue, but the finish really lingers (not dry at all)

O- A really unique beer that sounds like a perfect combination for me, the sweet mailtiness of a scottish ale and a big juicy citrus hop presence. I really enjoyed it, but think the hoppiness took over this beer a little bit too much. I would love to try another hoppy scottish ale and could see myself getting this one again.

Hoptometrist, Nov 11, 2011
Photo of VncentLIFE
3.63/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours like a Christmas Ale. a mix of orange and red. orange-red crayon. decently thick head.

Smell is candy sweet. Hints of peppermints, gingerbread cookies, and caramels. smells like a holiday dessert spread in a bottle.

I wouldnt even describe the taste as caramelized sugar, its pure candied sugar. It feels like I just ate a caramel. I have never had anything like it. The grains feel dry, but still I feel candy everywhere. Hops are non-existent. Very malty and sweet. Im not real sure about how I feel about it. I like the interplay between dry grain and candied sugars, but not really a drinkable beer. I like it sips in place of a dessert wine.

It still leaves your mouth coated with a candy coated smoothness.

VncentLIFE, Nov 11, 2011
Photo of minterro
3.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sixer Mixer from Oades.

A & S: smell is a bit on the weak side but incorporates a piney scent off the bat and then turns into more of a subdued spiciness even though they claim to really not have much spice in this beer. Nice unfiltered elements to this copper colored beer. Head is white and fizzy and pours about a finger till it disappears pretty quickly to nothing but a thing layer in the center, not much lacing at all.

T & M: not as powerful as I expected seeing that it is a Scottish ale instead of a winter warmer as much Christmas ales are. A bit more hoppy then advertized, moderately spiced. Hints of cinnamon, berry and herbal elements. Medium to fully bodied (kinda buttery), carbonation on the high side but it fits well with this beer.

O: probably not as good as the famously overrated GLBC Christmas Ale, but it’s a good take on the Christmas Ale style, I really found it enjoyable and easy to drink. I would give this beer my recommendation, but it’s not in my top 5’s for bells.

minterro, Nov 10, 2011
Photo of dorianmarley
3.63/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is golden red, light head, nice lacing.

Nose is sweet malt with a nice dose of fresh hops; unique for a Christmas ale.

Taste is sweet malt with bitter hops. Defined maple flavor, with a biscuit finish. The flavors are hardy, fitting for cold months, but lacks the zest or spice usually associated with holiday cheer.

Mouthfeel is smooth with mild carbonation; refreshing.

Overall, not a bad Bell's brew, but it is not what I would look to first on a cold, Holiday night.

dorianmarley, Nov 09, 2011
Photo of Mdog
2.63/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Red-amber, good head.

Smell: Weird--cloves and upholstery? Slight grassy hop note.

Taste: Weird again, a candy sweetness followed a strange hop flavor like mint. Some spicyness shows up later.

Drinkability: I don't think I'll have this again.

Beer #2 of the winter mix 6 pack. I thought this was a winter warmer, but it's listed as a Scottish ale. In either case, it was strange smelling and strange tasting. Swing and a miss with this one for Bell's.

Mdog, Nov 07, 2011
Photo of wvsabbath
3.48/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Dark amber, tan/brown, 1 inch white creamy head, thick lacing.

Smell - Carmal, hops, malts, spices, nuts, a slight bready/biscuit aroma.

Taste - Very mild and biscuit malt flavor. Hops are present and add some bitterness, and a little floral flavor. Spices and carmal add some sweetness.

Mouthfeel - Its rather mild and light, tounge gets alot od malts, some hops, and a little sweetness from spices. Palette gets remaining malts and some bold nut. Aftertaste is really light.

Overall - Light, mild, smooth and easy to drink. Problem is theres not enough flavors, malts overpower everything. Its good but not what it can be. Its not bad but its forgettable, theres better xmas ales out there.

wvsabbath, Nov 05, 2011
Photo of MsRif
3.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a nice amber color with a bit of haze and a nice head that leaves a bit of lacing. Aroma is that of sweet malts, spices and an undertone of citrus. Tasted of spice, citrus and sweet malts. Very well balanced and a good seasonal ale. Could have been stronger in the spice for my taste, but still decent.

Mouthfeel was medium with good carbonation. A very drinkable brew that I try every time it comes around in the seasonal selection.

MsRif, Oct 29, 2011
Bell's Christmas Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
81 out of 100 based on 1,222 ratings.