1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

The Oracle - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
The OracleThe Oracle

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,151 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,151
Reviews: 662
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 11%
Wants: 439
Gots: 262 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-04-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 2,151 | Reviews: 662 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Klicky
2.48/5  rDev -40.7%

Klicky, Yesterday at 03:40 AM
Photo of Hrdqore
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Hrdqore, Yesterday at 03:21 AM
Photo of DCLAguy11
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%

DCLAguy11, Yesterday at 12:42 AM
Photo of SurlyUtopia
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

SurlyUtopia, Friday at 04:05 AM
Photo of kojevergas
3.25/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

BOTTLE: 12 fl oz. Brown glass. Appealing classy label art. Branded pry-off pressure cap.

Brewed 08/08/14 - well within Bell's 6 month timeframe. Expectations are high; this is currently #20 on the Top 50 Michigan list. 10% ABV. Served cold into a Jester King goblet. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated. Reviewed live as a DIPA per the label.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: One finger wide. White colour. Nice creaminess. Good frothiness. Nice thickness. Has an appealing smooth, even consistency and a soft complexion. Leaves light consistent lacing on the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Retention: average - about 2 minutes.

BODY: Murky orange-copper of average vibrance. Translucent and glowing. Nontransparent. Clean; no yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible.

Overall, it's a nice looking imperial IPA but isn't unique or special.

AROMA: Fruity. Peach, apricot, ripened fruit, pale malts, floral hop character, more tropical pineapple hop character (a note I've never liked in beer), citrusy zest, and some tropical mango. Hints of grapefruit are present, but I don't get grapefruit's signature dominance or punch. Tangerine. A kiss of pine. Grassiness. Caramalts. Mild resinous character.

Overall, it's a fresh ripe fruity aroma with plenty of interesting hop character, but it could be juicier, and the tropical leanings have me worried...I usually prefer a more citrusy, piney, resinous hop character. Nevertheless, it's pleasant and inviting. Above average in strength, with no overt booziness. Critically, the hop bitterness seems well tamed by the pale malts. I hope the taste is as balanced as the aroma.

No yeast character or off-notes are detectable.

TASTE: Loads of hop character: floral hops, some pine, tangerine citrus and accompanying zest, mango, peach, boozy orange, and hints of grapefruit. To balance the bitterness from all those hops, it employs a bit too much caramalt, which makes it overly sweet and lends it a boozy undercurrent. The pale malt foundation gets lost in the mix. I do pick up on the dreaded pineapple hop note, unfortunately. I'd like a juicier more resinous and more citrusy hop emphasis, but this isn't bad.

While I do find it fundamentally imbalanced, I think it's decently built. Nice depth of flavour. Average flavour duration and intensity for the style. It boasts plenty of complexity, but it's not enough to truly compete the big dogs in the style. And there isn't much nuance or subtlety here; it commits to a lot of big flavours without regard for fine-tuning or intricacy.

MOUTHFEEL: Smooth, wet, creamy, soft enough, and fairly refreshing. But the booziness holds it back, and it does have a thick heavy feel on the palate, with a somewhat overbearing presence. Full-bodied. Coating.

Overall, the warmth of the mouthfeel coupled with the tropical fruit from the taste lends this brew a booze-soaked fruit vibe which isn't all that pleasant. This texture is a decent companion to the taste, but fails to elevate the beer.


Not oily, gushed, hot, astringent, harsh, or rough.

OVERALL: It's too boozy to be all that drinkable, but I'll enjoy working my way through it. With a myriad of superior beers in the style available on shelves, I wouldn't pick up The Oracle again, but I'm glad I tried it once. Bell's own Hopslam is a much better (and even more balanced) brew, and this veers too far into tropical hop territory for my personal tastes. The boozy pineapple really turns me off to this, and the overdone caramalt sweetness is equally problematic.

Huge thanks to Duff27 for the bottle!

High C+

kojevergas, Thursday at 05:16 AM
Photo of alcohline_trip
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

alcohline_trip, Wednesday at 04:09 AM
Photo of EDubLovesBeer
3.5/5  rDev -16.3%

EDubLovesBeer, Tuesday at 11:57 PM
Photo of dheldman
3.5/5  rDev -16.3%

dheldman, Tuesday at 04:31 AM
Photo of RebornStussy
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

RebornStussy, Tuesday at 12:11 AM
Photo of russwilliam
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

russwilliam, Tuesday at 12:11 AM
Photo of McBAINx
3.92/5  rDev -6.2%

McBAINx, Nov 16, 2014
Photo of smi69
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

smi69, Nov 16, 2014
Photo of chrismattlin
3.7/5  rDev -11.5%

chrismattlin, Nov 16, 2014
Photo of Thereformedtheo
4.8/5  rDev +14.8%

Thereformedtheo, Nov 16, 2014
Photo of onefiveseven
2.6/5  rDev -37.8%

onefiveseven, Nov 16, 2014
Photo of Cbmccarthy
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Cbmccarthy, Nov 14, 2014
Photo of lovethebelgians
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%

lovethebelgians, Nov 14, 2014
Photo of Grantotx
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%

Grantotx, Nov 14, 2014
Photo of EuphonicHops
3.5/5  rDev -16.3%

EuphonicHops, Nov 13, 2014
Photo of Merl77
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%

Merl77, Nov 13, 2014
Photo of MTLansing
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

MTLansing, Nov 12, 2014
Photo of ksi4077
3.5/5  rDev -16.3%

ksi4077, Nov 12, 2014
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
The Oracle from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
94 out of 100 based on 2,151 ratings.