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

Not Rated.
Bell's OarsmanBell's Oarsman

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

1,682 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,682
Reviews: 538
rAvg: 3.51
pDev: 16.24%
Wants: 64
Gots: 104 | FT: 1
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:
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 added by: Thorpe429 on 04-12-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,682 | Reviews: 538 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of chanokokoro
chanokokoro

Illinois

3.38/5  rDev -3.7%

12 oz. bottle poured into a Bell's tulip glass

Pours a hazy pale straw yellow with a bright white one and a half finger head which quickly dissipates. Grass and flora, light sour citrus notes, and a very light accent of funk on the nose. Green tea, fresh grassiness, slight tart light lemon and bready yeast midpalate that finishes dry slightly tart and refreshing. Light body, mild carbonation. The concept behind this beer seems to be a less intense Berliner weiss-style beer. Bell's is successful in accomplishing that. Oarsman Ale is a good introduction beer, however it may seem to be a bit lacking to those fairly familiar with the style and other sour styles.

10-04-2012 05:18:29 | More by chanokokoro
Photo of mikeburd1128
mikeburd1128

New Jersey

2.95/5  rDev -16%

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass. Bottled on 8/13/12. Batch 11404.

A - Pale golden color with almost a finger of head that's gone in seconds. No lacing whatsoever.

S - Lemony citrus scent. Wheaty. Some tart and funk to it also.

T - Heavy citrus from beginning to end. And I mean HEAVY. You get the wheat again in the finish. This is almost to the level of a shandy.

M - Very light. Moderate carbonation. Finishes very clean.

O - I guess this is well done to the style, but it's really just not for me. Probably a good introduction to craft beer for some people. Sessionable but too tart to really be all that sessionable.

10-04-2012 00:09:52 | More by mikeburd1128
Photo of MatthewBair
MatthewBair


3.5/5  rDev -0.3%

10-02-2012 22:27:21 | More by MatthewBair
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk

Minnesota

3.5/5  rDev -0.3%

Bell's Oarsman Ale, Brewed and Bottled by Bell's Brewery, Comstock, MI. "Buoyant, tart and refreshing from using traditional sour mash methods. Great for you and your crew." 4.0% ABV.

What does this tell us? How it tastes, how it drinks, how they made it, and what activity it's use is best with. What if I'm not in a boat. And would I like it with a goat?

Clouded, golden, small head, lasts as a thin, white ring.

Aroma: light citrus, light hops, a touch of sourness, a smidgen of sweet. Bit of a funk effect, too. Pleasing enough.

Taste: Brisk, tart, and, yeah, refreshing. A little tingle on the palate, a bracing quick minute of sour, a squirt of citrus, the flash of wheat texture and mouthfeel, and nothing but smoothness and extra-easy drinking.

One thing very much missing in the information given to us by Bell's Brewery is the style of this brew, or even what general area it's shooting for. Not a hefe weizen, not quite a Berliner Weisse, either. Maybe a mix of the two?

I'm also puzzling over the meaning of the name. Why Oarsman? Is there a fondness for rowing at the brewery? Is it an alternative to a "lawnmower beer", a "rowing ale"? So many mysteries.

Another conundrum is how long it took me to take notes on this Bell's beer, having come out so many years ago. It was draft only for years, and I sampled it now and then, but it never quite grabbed me. It's a well-made beer, certainly quaffable, with enough of a tartness to keep it interesting. It's fun, and tasty, and the 6-pack will be done quickly enough. I probably won't return to it very often, though.

Although… although…I am liking it more, at the end of bottle #2. Maybe I'll be a rootin' tooting' booster before too long.

10-02-2012 07:07:31 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of mikeradebaugh
mikeradebaugh

Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -0.3%

09-27-2012 02:46:05 | More by mikeradebaugh
Photo of hyoung41
hyoung41

Virginia

3.5/5  rDev -0.3%

09-27-2012 00:55:15 | More by hyoung41
Photo of GossageBrewery
GossageBrewery

Missouri

3.5/5  rDev -0.3%

Poured this 12 oz Weissbier into a pint glass. Poured a cloudy straw color, and produced an average white head. Featured average retention and it left a nice amount of lacing on the glass. The aroma had a base of malted wheat, lemon rind. Medium in body, this brew had a classic malted wheat base, and the tart flavor of lactic acid due to the sour mash process that was used to brew this beer. By far, not the best sour beer that I have had, but is an excellent gateway into the category. Nice session beer. Excellent summer beer. I would order this again.

09-26-2012 22:18:06 | More by GossageBrewery
Photo of 6demonbag
6demonbag

Missouri

3.75/5  rDev +6.8%

09-23-2012 02:36:22 | More by 6demonbag
Photo of ryancl
ryancl

Minnesota

3.75/5  rDev +6.8%

09-23-2012 02:35:26 | More by ryancl
Photo of DaveOB
DaveOB

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +14%

09-22-2012 18:39:29 | More by DaveOB
Photo of JPortillo
JPortillo

Illinois

2/5  rDev -43%

09-21-2012 23:19:25 | More by JPortillo
Photo of JamesShoemaker
JamesShoemaker

Michigan

4/5  rDev +14%

09-21-2012 21:18:05 | More by JamesShoemaker
Photo of BeerHunter76
BeerHunter76

Texas

3.75/5  rDev +6.8%

09-19-2012 01:14:46 | More by BeerHunter76
Photo of PaBeerLover
PaBeerLover

Pennsylvania

3.25/5  rDev -7.4%

09-18-2012 15:12:36 | More by PaBeerLover
Photo of Rmatuszak2
Rmatuszak2

Illinois

2.5/5  rDev -28.8%

09-17-2012 02:31:12 | More by Rmatuszak2
Photo of kjkinsey
kjkinsey

Texas

3.75/5  rDev +6.8%

09-15-2012 15:03:19 | More by kjkinsey
Photo of wethorseblanket
wethorseblanket

California

3.55/5  rDev +1.1%

Thanks to whoever shared this at Benny's tasting.

A: Pours a hazy very pale yellow with a thin white head having little retention and leaving a few spots.

N: Lemony, minerals, grainy wheat and some tartness.

T: Follows nose with some grassy notes.

M: Light body and carbonation. A tiny bit thin on the finish.

O: Refreshing. No notable metallic notes here. Pretty basic Berliner.

09-15-2012 01:10:43 | More by wethorseblanket
Photo of grumpygerman
grumpygerman

Alabama

4.25/5  rDev +21.1%

09-14-2012 02:31:32 | More by grumpygerman
Photo of Brewsed
Brewsed

North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -0.3%

09-11-2012 12:42:19 | More by Brewsed
Photo of heddar33
heddar33

Pennsylvania

3/5  rDev -14.5%

09-09-2012 05:03:39 | More by heddar33
Photo of Joel12
Joel12

Illinois

3.75/5  rDev +6.8%

09-09-2012 02:09:56 | More by Joel12
Photo of mychalg9
mychalg9

Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -0.3%

09-07-2012 21:41:16 | More by mychalg9
Photo of bradfordjohnson
bradfordjohnson

Kentucky

3.75/5  rDev +6.8%

09-05-2012 12:36:59 | More by bradfordjohnson
Photo of Revenant
Revenant

Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev +21.1%

09-04-2012 21:40:19 | More by Revenant
Photo of


3/5  rDev -14.5%

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09-01-2012 03:07:57 | More by
Bell's Oarsman from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
80 out of 100 based on 1,682 ratings.