The Oracle - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
The OracleThe Oracle

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

665 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 665
Hads: 2,249
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 9.52%
Wants: 454
Gots: 268 | FT: 5
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-04-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 665 | Hads: 2,249
Photo of ritzkiss
4.4/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle from Viggo - dude's a generous fellow.

Pours a beautiful caramel orange with 2 fingers of bone white/yellow foam that dies and immediately leaves sticky lacing on the glass.

Nose is lush and fruity - pineapple abounds, hints of orange and grapefruit, a hint of mango, a little pine resin - behind all that you can tell there's a good amount of sweet caramel malt.

Ridiculously drinkable DIPA. Tropical fruits up front, loads of citrus in the middle and a hint of oily pine resin thrown in for good measure. Nice but not extreme bitterness from the middle on. A sweet caramel blends with a hint of pale roast to give a substantial malt backdrop - very balanced. Just a hint of booze in the finish.

Could easily drink this all night and it would kick your ass. Extremely well made. Thanks Eric! (810 characters)

Photo of biggred1
4.62/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Jo from WCB for hooking me up with this sample bottle.

Hazed honey amber with a creamy eggshell cap that leaves sheets of sticky lace behind on the glass. This beer smells about as good as any I've ever encountered. Pineapple and citrus fruity hops with pine sap and caramel malt all in perfect harmony. This beer tastes ridiculously good as well, maybe even as good as fresh hopslam with resinous and potent hops up front with a smooth caramel malty backbone. Alcohol is well hidden for such a big beer. Medium full bodied and hop oily feeling with smooth carbonation. This beer is dangerously drinkable at 10+ ABV. A beer that is truly as good as advertised. Fantastic. (687 characters)

Photo of Beerzebub
4.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to gn0sis for this nice extra!

Poured into a big wine glass at 48F.

Rich golden-orange color, hazy, with practically no head, but a bit of finely patterned lace.

Aromas of biscuit, toffee, honey, and tangerine/peach/grapefruit/pine/spice hops, fresh and delicious.

Tastes immensely hoppy, even more than the aroma lets on. Full, fresh, juicy tangerine-peach hop flavor, with subtler grapefruit, pine and spice, backed up by a heavy but clean dose of bitterness. Clean sweet grain balances the bitterness very well. The bitterness grows, and dominates. Bitter citrus rind lingers for a very long, dry finish.

Fine cushy carbonation, restrained enough to avoid fizziness. Great drinkability, due to balance and a dry finish.

Absolutely killer DIPA! (759 characters)

Photo of Magpie14
4.77/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: a wonderful hazed golden tangerine body with sticky whipping cream colored top. In addition, the head is a reasonable sized layer off fluff with a surprising amount of "clingy" properties. I find the presentation has very admirable features, very nice looking

S: well...gee, this is as close as you can come to liquified hops. A hint of sweetness basks in the grapefruit, orange, and tropical fruit goodness. Malts are non-existent in the nose, as far as I can tell. This is what DIPA's are all about...this thing smells banging

T: the mouth does not disappoint either. Luscious hops permeate in every sip and a small helping of toasted pale malts is not far behind. The most notable hop flavor is the tropical laced juicy pineapple. This is augmented with some oranges, lemons, and grapefruit and a light wisp of pine characters, I like! After a few sips I must say that the hops are in a friendly assault type of mode, this baby gets a bitter snap as it warms
From my memory, due I dare say, that it seems it is not as balanced as Hopslam, or as good. Yet, the Oracle is better than the majority of other DIPA's I have ever had. Amazing!!

M: well, here we have a solid beer with medium body with mild carbonation. The balance between sweet and bitter plays nice in the mouthfeel. What is great is that it is not overly sticky or clammy and retains a hearty bitterness that bites but never scars the palate. This beer is just all that I look for in a hop ladened brew. As a result this is one of the better, for the style, drinking brews I have had

D: this has jumbo hops and jumbo greatness. Am I surprised that this beer is incredible? Not really, it is from Bells what do you expect. If you can get a bottle, get two.
Thanks to the beer wizard midnite2sixman for the bottle and his uncanny knowledge and connoisseur mentality. Most wizards carry a staff into battle...he carries beer (1,894 characters)

Photo of farrago
4.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a solid finger of densely woven cream white foam with puddles of larger bubbles, good stickiness to the lacing and credible head retention. Strong cloudiness in the burnt orange to pumpkin colored liquid, for this sor of hue close to opaque, mild yellowing at the rims. The nose at first explodes almost purely with pink grapefruit and tangerine citrus, over time opens up room for mossy, wet herbal notes, pepper, pine resin softened by peach, mango, apricot fruit scents, the malts remain in the background, as it warms the hoppy earthiness grows in stature. Medium-bodied, the carbonation foams up a little too much at first, however, the power of the hops crush this swiftly. Sourness makes the grapefruit more white than pink, mandarin orange and a touch of lemon. Bitter herbs, grass and peat moss don't overplay their hand but keep the whole experience alert and erect, earthy and peppery. Lower dose of pine and flowers, pulls up the rear with the malts. The overall bite draws out more pineapple, papaya, green apple fruit than peach or apricot. As the bitterness recedes through the finish a touch of biscuit or cornmeal comes through. Makes a forceful statement but never raises its voice. (1,206 characters)

Photo of craytonic
3.63/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Sun drenched honey-tangerine head. Nice head and lacing, I was looking forward to this after I got it open. Thoughts of Pliny came to mind.

Smell: Big hops, malt, grapefruit, pineapple, orange.

Taste: Big hops, with pineapple, grapefruit, orange, pine sap, etc all in play. Alcohol is there as well, they did not quite mask it.

Mouthfeel: Full, but not as smooth as I expected.

Drinkability: If I hadn't had Pliny the younger and elder, I would love this one. (475 characters)

Photo of sprucetip
4.4/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Slightly hazy, active, pale golden/orange, modest white head fades gradually and leaves thick lacing. Gorgeous and inviting.

SMELL Wow! Peach and citrus hop notes prominent initially. Rich malty sweetness backs well but stays in the background. Booze is almost completely absent.

TASTE Piny bitterness is asserive but not obnoxious. Peachy and citrus hop influences balanced expertly, through the middle anyhow, by toasty caramel malty sweetness. The hops win the battle, ultimately, but it's a good fight for a spell. Just a bit of booze is noticeable.

FEEL rich, full body and luxurious viscous texture. Slight dryness in the finish, and a kinda harsh lingering bitterness.

OVERALL I am so very grateful (thank you BuckeyeNation!) for the opportunity to try this. Hop heads would be foolish to forego this one, and may even want to actively seek it out. Ranks right up there with the best of the style. (909 characters)

Photo of oakbluff
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle- pours a muddy mandarin orange with a soapy white head. Nose- a fruit cocktail of guava, pineapple, mango, etc. Taste- similar hopping to hopslam in taste except more earthy bitterness. Reasonable amount of malt sweetness and body help to balance out this hop bruiser. Mouthfeel is slick with proper carbonation. Finish is dry dry dry- the hops suck all moisture from the mouth. This is a no holds barred dipa. I can only imagine what it was like fresh. (469 characters)

Photo of cvaypai
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle to 12 oz snifter. Thanks to Portia99 for this one.

Appearance - Beautiful golden orangey amber color, shines when held up to light. Poured with a 1 finger creamy almost head with some large bubbles in the middle. Leaves a thick beautiful lacing down the sides.

Smell - Very floral and citrusy head, this smells phenomenal. I get some pine and other earthy scents. The smell is oh so clean. Maybe a little bit of sweet candy malt on the end, could be due to it being a few months old by now.

Taste - Very resinous and piney but extremely clean and bitter. The bitter is harsh in no way though, this is definitely one of the most bitter beers I have had. It is not overpowering though, it all works out nice. A small amount of booze and caramel malt can be detected on the end but it works so well together. Not much citrus to speak of in the taste, maybe a small bit of grapefruit. This beer is so dry and bitter, amazing, the taste lasts in my mouth for minutes after a drink.

Mouthfeel - Feels right there for the stature of the beer. Not light by any means, in fact pretty viscous for the style. It is not a bad thing though, it ties together well almost with it. In deed a very nice feel on the tongue, perfect carbonation and bitter bite.

Drinkability - I could attempt 2 of these but it is a hell of a beer, a few would be enough for me I am sure. This glass will not last long, but with this bitterness and abv you have to be careful.

Another great Bell's beer. They make all my favorite IPA's. I hope they make this one again. (1,559 characters)

Photo of RedHaze
4.48/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From notes 14-Dec-09

12oz into bell's pint glass.

Pours a mildly cloudy orange, with a two finger head that settles to a nice cap. The lacing is very sticky, leaving a thick and chunky lacing behind.

Smell; tons of citric and tropical fruits going on here. Oranges, Tangerines, Mangoes, Pineapple...I'm not sure if the list is going to end. Underneath it all is a solid caramel and bread dough maltiness.

Taste; The fruity hops are even more pronounced in the flavor, but I can't figure out if they are more citric hoppy or or not. Orange peel, grapefruit, pineapple, mangoes and pine needles. Full lingering bitterness, coming close the crushing, but thankfully falling a touch shy of that.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability; mouthfeel is full bodied and viscous, almost oily due to the hop resins. The hops hammer your taste buds, and then coax them back from the brink of the abyss just to pummel them a little bit more, and leave you asking for another bottle.

This is one outstanding beer, but I'm very happy it only comes in a 12oz bottle. Otherwise it my really show me who's in control. I've been on a bit of a hop hiatus lately, but this one may have just set me back on track again, WOW! (1,193 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
4.23/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a goblet. beer is orange and hazy, forms a thin white head of tiny bubbles that breaks and moves toward the glass. The diffuse broken head reasonably covers the top, there is lacing on the glass.

Citrusy hops and a hint of malt backbone in the smell. I was expecting more, maybe this is slightly old.

HOLY HOPS BATMAN. This is one of the most heavily hopped beers I've ever had. Glad I'm drinking this last because it just destroyed my palate. Beer is medium in body, surprisingly drinkable, overall a great beer. Hops are present throughout there is a nice malt sweetness in the front of the mouth but its quickly overwhelmed. I love this beer. (673 characters)

Photo of Beertracker
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bell's The Oracle (DIPA Ale) [Batch #9306] pours up with a soapy, off-white head that persists above the slightly hazy, orangish-amber colored body. The hop accenuated aroma is mildly pungent with fresh citrusy Pacific Northwest hops. The overall character is quite fruity (apricot, grapefruit, pineapple) with some spicy piney undertones. There's a sweet underlying graininess with hints of biscuits, crackers & clover honey. The flavor starts off very cloying with lots of caramel & honey sweetness followed by some complimentary toasted character that's eventually underscored by a marked bitterness. The finish is bold, fruity & noticeably warming. This full-bodied DIPA is a bit syrupy with a touch of grassy hop astringency which are really the only minor detractors. My interpretation is that The Oracle delivers a plethora of flavor and she's certainly worth seeking coucil with. Here's to crew from Kalamazoo & their all knowing Oracle!

CHEERS! Beertracker

*Taster's Note: Thanks to thehand for the opportunity! (1,022 characters)

Photo of Viggo
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, HUGE thanks to the ever generous hoppymeal for the hookup. He is a star.

Pours a hazy orange, some amber highlights, big and thick off white head forms, slowly settles to a huge layer and ring, tons of lace sticks to the glass. Looks pretty nice.

Smell is wicked hoppy, huge pineapple and grapefruit notes, lemon rind, caramel, pine, tons of fruit and citrus, biscuit, massive hops in this one, pretty intense.

Taste is similar, big pineapple and tropical fruit, caramel sweetness, good malty middle, citrus and orange, pine, huge grapefruit hoppiness, biscuit, a bit buttery, really intense and herbal bitterness, but still balanced.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation. Hugely hoppy but still balanced, alcohol is non existant, this is much too drinkable for a 10%+ ABV brew. Great stuff, thanks again Derek! (843 characters)

Photo of jera1350
4.62/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Holiday1072 for this outstanding brew.

Pours a foggy golden burnt orange into a snifter. Nice fluffy head with lots of tiny cascading bubbles adding to the mix. Lacing all over the place.

Outstanding smell. Like a bushel of extremely ripe pineapples just split open. Sweet and juicy, I can't wait to taste it!

Wow, this is packed with flavor. Huge and sweet, the bitter hops catch the attention right off the bat. Plenty of sweet malt to add backbone. Good amount of alcohol is present. Lots of citrus and pineapple. Grapefruit finishes it off.

Medium bodied, smooth with plenty of tiny bubbles in the carbonation the keep flavors rolling on the palate. Very juicy feel.

I call this an Imperial HopSlam. Simply amazing. A must have for every hophead. Bell's knows how to use hops probably better than any other brewery. Great beer! (846 characters)

Photo of jjayjaye
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy amber tinted pale peach color with a HUGE almost stiff white foamy head that resists fading, leaving sheets of Belgian lacing behind. The smell is great; aggressive sweet fruity tangerine and piny resin. The mouth feel is lightly carbonated full bodied, bright hops balanced by the creamy thickness with a tang and slight warmth of the alcohol...really compliments the drinkability. The piny resin lingers appropriately. The nicely balanced characteristics of the nose and mouth through the full fruity tangerine pineapple grassy pine and sweet malty flavors. This one is outta there...where did it go???? One really fine drinker!! Highly recommended. Many thanks Pops! (682 characters)

Photo of buschbeer
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I poured my 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass. I poured down the center of the glass and got a towering, offwhite, foamy head. Large deposits foam form beautiful lacing as I consume this ber. It is a deep amber color.

I smell citrus and pine.

I taste grapefruit with some alcohol burn followed by a bitter pine aftertaste.

I think the mouthfeel is perfect. It is medium bodied.

I'm not a huge IPA of DIPA fan, but this is exactly the change of pace that I look for when I stray from my porters and stouts. The aromas and flavors are wonderful.

Cheers! (560 characters)

Photo of Gtreid
4.02/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. Bottle curteous of mothman. Thanks again Ben.

A: Hazy burnt orange color. The pour produces one finger of eggshell white head, that recesses to a thin rim and leaves some spotty lace.

A: Big citrus. Grapefruit, orange, and mango. The crystal malt give it a suprising balance.

T: Again, big citrus. Everything I got in the nose. This is just a sweet, citrusy monster of a brew. It finishes super dry with a very pronounced alcohol heat.

M: heavy body, aggressive carbonation. This one coats the palate with a resinous sweetness.

D and overall impression: Drinkability is somewhat subdued due to the high abv, but not bad. Overall, a good brew that I would have no problem taking down again. Skal. (707 characters)

Photo of Anthony1
4.12/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a slightly hazy deep golden, orange-tinged amber with sparse amount of carbonation and almost a finger's worth of frothy off-white head that settled into a thin, creamy patch and deposited thick, mesh-like lacing all around the glass. Pungent fume of pine needles, grapefruit, citrus rind, boozy alcohol notes and burnt caramel malt. Aroma is quite strong and fragrant, brimming with hops and beefiness. Aggressive hop assault right off the bath with plenty of sticky sweet pine, followed by a fairly pronounced alcohol presence and decent backing of sweet caramel malts and burnt sugars. Juicy citrus character. Thick and syrupy texture, definitely a beefy medium-bodied DIPA . Finish is slightly dry with a long-lasting, lingering bitterness. (751 characters)

Photo of mentor
4.14/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to GbVDave for the opportunity. Batch 9306. Pours a thin layer of tan head over cloudy rich peach liquid. Smells piney and pink grapefruit. Muted wood, orange oils, canned pineapple, cream, tangerine.

Tastes piney hops with rolling fruitiness playing beneath. Grapefruit pith, dull oranges, lemony freshness, with a dash of pepper zip. Drying due to the crisp hop bitterness and clean alcohol. Some fruity esters, but way beneath the hops. Berry and pear. Very dry beer with little malt flavor or sweetness. Yummy.

Smooth, almost silky mouthfeel. Light carbonation is appropriate for how dry and bitter the beer is. Wonderful lacing to ponder. (652 characters)

Photo of bobsy
4.57/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

"She came from Greece, she had a thirst for knowledge".

How the hell does one man in Toronto end up with this much Oracle in his apartment? I'll tell you how - because of an insanely generous Kalamazoo BA. Cheers to viggo for a good evening of drinking, and mad props to hoppymeal for hooking him up.

Four for four on good looking beers tonight. The bottle goes into the glass, kicks up a sticky white head that laces a dream, and positively glows a radiant amber. The aroma is insane. The nose practically screams pineapple, and clubs your round the head and into a delicious coma. Its sweet, big and juicy. God, and so much citrus too... its like a whiff of hop heaven. Tangerine and orange are the Apollo Creed and Mickey to pineapple's Rocky. Its not a beer you can smell for long without pulling it to your lips. Seriously, get this into department stores in perfume bottles.

Unlike the pythoness of Greek history, this beer does not speak in riddles. In fact its ridiculously simple, but manages to succeed on the basis of doing simple very, very well indeed. Huge, juicy hops dominate from start to finish. Grapefruit leads off, and is joined in the party by tangerines, candied lemon and mango. Sweet pale malts provide the merest of support roles, and I'd usually criticise this as demonstrating a lack of balance, but the hopping is so excellently executed that my criticism is moot. You can't help but dwell on the hops, because they last long after the sip is gone, and the resiny finish is epic, with a well-delivered bitterness. The body is just shy of perfection, and its full, chewy and slick texture is an excellent compliment to the vibrancy and intensity of the hops.

Delightful. (1,702 characters)

Photo of MPLS
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I genuinely like the name of this beer. It has a great historical name referencing Greek culture, on the bottle is a picture of the Delphic Oracle sitting atop the cauldron.

Big thanks to Chris for throwing this one into a trade! I decided this beer and all big hop profile beers should be enjoyed sooner than later, so here we go...Bottled on August 28, 2009 I am certain not all hops are lost.

A: Neon orange colored body, 3 cm woven cloth looking head that won't leave, slug like lacing, and lively carbonation.

S: After almost inhaling the head from enjoying this citrus bomb I get whiffs of the big hops making the Oracle so well received. It seems less citrusy than Hopslam (judging from memory), but that could be the result of not drinking the beer as freshly. I get the typical big ADIPA citrus fruits: Grapefruit, Orange, and hint of pineapple. I enjoy it when haters of IPAs say it smells like cat piss! HA

T: Almost everything in this beer's flavor spectrum is dominated by hops, from start to finish. Up front is a very prickly grapefruit bite in this beer. The middle of of the Oracle is a pleasant tongue watering orange and lastly there is a pressing citrus peel flavor. Alcohol is discernible through a lot of the beer, good hop profile on this beer.

M: Perfect mouf for this style. Absolutely silky smooth with enough of an oily hop constituent making matter even better.

D: Good drinker for the hop lover, although I find the taste to be really up to snuff I'd favor other DIPA/IPA offerings. I would prefer a little bit more of a malt profile to balance things out. A great DIPA from Bell's though. (1,624 characters)

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.92/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle poured into a Unibroue tulip. 9306 Batch number. (Packaged Aug. 28th '09). No info. Part four in the "Birthday Beer Extravaganza"

Thanks a TON to Sweemzander for two bottles of this glorious beer!

A - The color is an impressive clear golden honey yellow color with a moderate two-finger, slightly off-white head. I noticed right away I could see right through the bottle. The head had moderate retention and left some good, sticky lacing to the sides of the glass. A thick ring hung around to make it look taller than it was. That was followed by thick lacing down the glass as it started filling me with joy as it entered mah belleh!

S - The nose is immediately well-balanced and not overpowering as I expected. Tons of floral hops with a tiny bit of grapefruit and pine resin. A good lemony citrus splash follows with an impressive fruit medley; a big pineapple-mango juicy nose. The malts do a great job of staying in the back as support while providing a nice, low-level sweetness. One of the most perfect DIPAs I've had the pleasure of smelling.

T - Holy Shit. This, with in sips, could be one of my favorite DIPAs, if not beers, ever. The hops overpower the malts but in all the right ways. The hops give off a lot of fruitiness. Like the aroma, it's got pineapple, mango, a drop of lemon, and a kiss of grapefruit bitterness. There is also a pine resin that pops in and lingers through the finish with a dry, almost astringency to it. The malts let the hops do all the work being there only as moral support. Much less balances than the aroma, but rightfully so. The pale malts provide a low sweet background with a slight dab of honey on a thinly sliced wafer of toast.

M - Smooth and creamy with a great carbonation feel that just blends in, it's a superb feeling beer that lacks only in being a bit too dry and resiny on the finish. Great level of bitterness and sweetness that play well together. A very nicely balanced body that teet-or-totters between medium and full bodied. Also very crisp and refreshing.

D - Wow. I think this has to be my favorite DIPA to date. Nothing has rocked my socks this hard or inspired such a long review out of me since my first encounter with the Pumking. It's an absolutely fantastic beer that's brewed to near perfection. The fruit bouquet is absolutely delicious and blends so well with the hop and malt flavors. Almost in the same way the simple yet ornate label can enjoyed in layers. The alcohol isn't even noticeable in this beer at all, not even in small traces.

I can't say enough thanks to my friend Sweem for hooking me up with two bottles of this outrageously good beer! (2,647 characters)

Photo of marcpal
3.73/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First review in a while and had to given the high expectations for this and having traded for a four-pack.

I have had the lovely Hopslam and it is among my favorite, have had the Big Head SD style by Bells and loved it, but this did not meet my high hopes.

I thought the first could have been due to the beat up bottles that came in the trade but the second had a similar taste. It wasnt't skunked or anything, just overdone and not well mapped out in my opinion.

A: Poured into oversized Portsmouth brewing goblet. Dark orange color with a nicely capped head and serious lacing for such a high test brew. Nice start.

S: Citrusy and earthy hops but the burn of the alcohol resides right in the nose. The smell is nice but not anything that would leave me drooling (see the great Hopslam)

T: Nice hit of bitterness florally in the front but that kind of gives way a bit too easily. More bitterness dissipates in the finish but not drinking like a true imperial. Mango and pineapple are the high points for sure but the overly sweet malt backbone didn't do wonders for these guys.

M: Pretty darn thick with not much lingering bitterness. The sweetness came through more than one would hope and would have asked for some more chew.

D: I will surely finish and enjoy the rest of the pack, it was not worth the trade. It may not be fair to compare directly to Hopslam and SD style, but thats what Im doing and this doesnt match up.

Thanks Brewdan for the chance. (1,468 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
4.02/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks very much to tenderbranson69 for sharing this gem by way of FooFaa- poured chilled from the 12oz into a flared pint

A - A very hazed appearance -like fruit nectar with frothed creamy white foam which clings well in web-like patterns

S - A sweet tangerine + floral hop aroma w/ mild candy-like malt scent. There is a slight grapefruit element in the aroma w/ mellow lemony aspect but only mild nutty and spiced tinges accent the nose

M - The feel is very crisp, dry and bitter w/ citrusy acidity and mildly sweet finish w/ lingering bitter bite and a alcoholic finish

T - The flavor while juicy at first leads to a light pithy and gentle sweet malt flavor w/ bitter grassy hop flavors that combine w/ slightly alcoholic taste. There is mild grapefruit peel notes which give an astringent aspect to the ale and an almost medicinal taste w/ midl grainy tinge in the back

D - The Oracle is very bitter, a hop bomb if you will- the effect is that more than 1 would not be pleasant. The astringent pucker inducing nature makes the palate dry and comes off almost salty after 1/2 a bottle. I think palate fatigue would set in fast for me, but the aroma and taste were very good overall-it just lacks a taste more than 'bitter (1,230 characters)

Photo of bonsreeb85
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Extra special thanks to pochman for hooking me up with this unexpected present. May the beer gods smile upon you Ed.

The appearance is that of a slightly hazed tawny bod. with a nice looking creamy off white head.

Holy smokes! this aroma is amazing...boatloads of fruit, everything from berries to mangos and pinnapple. I sniff the slightest amount of booze too. to sum up: fruity w/ hops in abundance!

The hop's bitterness grabs hold and stangles the taste buds leaving a dry but fruit like after taste. the alcohol is a bit too much on finish. I expected more balance and sweetness after such a great nose.

The hops oils make this one a bit on the slippery side. big-ol'-body!

Too hot but better as it warms. I want to give this one another try, I was really dissapointed, perhaps my senses were off. I hope to revise this review if I can get my hands on more. Send me more someone! (889 characters)

The Oracle from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
93 out of 100 based on 665 ratings.