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Bell's Oarsman - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Bell's OarsmanBell's Oarsman

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,839 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,839
Reviews: 549
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: 16.29%
Wants: 71
Gots: 150 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Berliner Weissbier |  4.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Thorpe429 on 04-12-2009

Sour mash wheat ale.

"Designed as a flavorful session beer, Oarsman Ale uses a classic German brewing technique to impart a light, refreshing tartness. Oarsman Ale grew out of a desire to explore the tradition of session beers, trading intensity for finesse while still creating a worthwhile experience for the taster. The grain bill includes a healthy portion of wheat, while light hopping lend citrus & herbal notes to the aroma. Fermented with Bell's house ale yeast, Oarsman comes in at 4.0% alcohol by volume. Rather than being the dominant flavor note, the tartness in Oarsman takes on more of a palate-cleansing role, making it perfect with meals or purely on its own."
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,839 | Reviews: 549 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of whitekiboko
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Hopman1985
3/5  rDev -14.3%

Photo of danedelman
3.35/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-very clear pale yellow with a nice white fluffy head.

S-small funky sourness, lemon juice, wheat, peach, apricot Very clean.

T-slightly tart with lemon and some grass. Wheat adds some body. More of a malty berliner and can tell it needed to sit longer to allow the lactobacillus to sour this one a bit more.

M-very light and refreshing. I am brewing this to be enjoyed in the heat of summer. Can't wait!!

Photo of senorscientist
2/5  rDev -42.9%

Photo of Vicsvapo
4/5  rDev +14.3%

Photo of tone77
3.28/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a golden/whiteish color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is very mild, some lemon notes. Taste is tart, lemon and wheat, has my lips puckering. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is worth maybe worth a try if you are looking for something different but this beer is not really my thing.

Photo of bhawks1706
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of chinchill
3.63/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle packaged 19 Sept., 2011 and served in apint glass.

Pours a yellow gold tone; clear with visible carbonation and an average white head. Head quickly reduces to a lasting ring.

The lightly fruity aroma is not displeasing, but it is mild and not interesting, attractive or enticing. Luckily, the flavor is much better than the nose indicates, and the beer has a very fine, light and dry mouthfeel too. It certainly has the "light, refreshing tartness" claimed by Bell's, with a very noticeable citrus aspect over a subtle and vague herbal/grassy background. Although a Weissbier, there is no strong wheat component in the taste and one might not even notice the departure from barley.

O: excellent choice as a session beer or replacement for one of those light, watery, tasteless Mexican brews. While far from flavorless, Oarsman has a modest strength and a nice palate-cleansing effect; as such, it should work well with many lighter -flavored foods.
Revisited in June 2013 on tap: surprisingly tart'

Photo of PhineasGage
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of thecheapies
3.55/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into the pint glass.

Lemonade pale yellow with an almost yellow-green tinge. Hazy, but glowing. Half-an-inch of bleachy, soapy head that went away quickly.

Mild aromas. Sour funky lemon juice, wet cloth, wheat malts, crabapple, mildew.

Not sour, but tart. As in, that it's short-lived and smacking. Sour mix, tangy wheat, Country Time lemonade, lactose acidity. The finish shapeshifts into one of a lager. Slightly bitter and much drier than the initial sip and mouthful.

Supremely refreshing and easy to drink. Thirst-quenching and with even consistency. A little thin and very flat. The carbonation is a flash on the tongue but not much at all on the back of your throat. Still a plus.

Bell's is going for a session beer here. They nailed that. I'd like to try more Berliner Weisses to compare, but I'd certainly go after another six-pack, especially when the weather warms.

Photo of mtparty37
3/5  rDev -14.3%

Photo of bsuedekum
2/5  rDev -42.9%

Photo of CarolinaKev
3/5  rDev -14.3%

Photo of postnothing
4/5  rDev +14.3%

Photo of JohnnyChicago
3.44/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a weizen glass.

A: Pours lighter than straw and very clear with a fading white head.

S: Light sourness and fresh-cut grass are the biggest aroma. Salt and citrus are present in the background.

T: Sourness is too restrained. There's that tangy wheat presence and some hop bitterness, but everything is remarkable weak and bland.

D: Mouthfeel is far too thin for this style (drinks like flat 7up) and the boring-ness of this beer cannot overcome the ease of drinking.

Overall: I know this is a tough style to do, and I really enjoy most of Bell's products, but this one isn't that good. Far too weak and one-note for a Berliner. There are better beers out there.

Photo of Strix
3.52/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear straw, little head.

Definitely a sour note in the smell, lemon zest.

Crisp green apple, lemon, sour funk, and sour cherry. Wheaty finish with a mineral water aftertaste.

Bubbly carbonation.

Very different. Not a real big sour fan, so that was a turn-off. Interesting though.

Photo of deuce9259
3/5  rDev -14.3%

Photo of greenbeer29
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of teromous
3.81/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: A pale yellow color, slightly hazy with a small white fluffy head. The head dissipates to a thin layer of white bubbles on the surface. It represents the style well.

S: There is almost no scent at all. The only thing I smell...is a lemon zest scent.

T: Light sourness, with lemon and lime types of flavor. It has a light mustiness. I can pick up very very light wheat flavors in the aftertaste.

M: It's a light airy beer, that is quite refreshing. It has very good mouthfeel.

O: Overall it's a good beer. It makes a good light beer for Spring or Summer, or when you're just feeling for something refreshing. It's a good tip-of-the-hat to the Berliner style that I think many people would appreciate. I'd recommend it.

Photo of bcal16
2.5/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of Microbrewtaster
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of schopenhauerale
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of justinm4bama
4.5/5  rDev +28.6%

Photo of fluidmotion
4/5  rDev +14.3%

Photo of gafferjohn
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Bell's Oarsman from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
80 out of 100 based on 1,839 ratings.