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The Oracle - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
The OracleThe Oracle

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,181 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,181
Reviews: 663
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 10.77%
Wants: 438
Gots: 269 | FT: 10
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
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Ratings: 2,181 | Reviews: 663 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mattcrill
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Map props to malty for allowing me to sample this.

Aroma: Big orange citrus notes up front. Carmelly sweetness well knit into the floral and citrus-like hop notes. Clean ale characteristics.

Appearance: Slightly hazy amber pour with a thick sudsy white cap.

Flavor: More floral hop bitterness up front. A light, bready malt backbone that supports the hops but the balance is decidedly bitter. Finish is clean and dry.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body with medium carbonation. Slight hop astringency and background alcohol warming.

Overall impression: A dangerous, drinkable, well balanced DIPA. Bell's has another winner with this one. Thanks again to malty for the chance to try this.

Photo of MrMcGibblets
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of JVan
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Floydster for sending one of these my way. I realize this is not optimally fresh, but it should still be ok.

Pours a very seductive murky orange with a stark white pillowy head that retains extraordinarily well and leaves optimal lacing.

Nose is full of west coast hop resin, grapefruit, citrus, pine, with a lingering malt sweetness lurking in the background.

Hmmm. I don't know if this is just slightly too old or what, but it tastes like it has just a touch more age on it than i thought. There is still some nice bitter hop presence, and the resinous hop flavor is trying hard to hang on, but the malt sweetness quickly becomes slightly dominant. Sweet bready malt profile. The finish brings alot of bitterness, but again the hop flavor is more subdued than it should be to balance out the malt sweetness. The aftertaste lingers with some really dry hop bitterness and malt stick.

Mouthfeel is pretty good, but it is a tiny touch thick, but still quite dry. Carbonation is about where you'd want it, maybe just a tiny tad low.

Drinkability is good, but would be better if the bitterness was kept in check by some good resinous flavor (which it may have been a month ago). As far as the abv, i dont know what it is so i can't really say, but it seems like about 9%

Overall, an enjoyable beverage, but a bit of a mess at this point. It is certainly still hanging on to its bitterness, but there is not enough hop flavor to make the bitterness worthwhile. The malt profile would be ideal if there was some resinous hop profile to balance it out, but as it sits it appears to strongly in the taste, but not by much. I would be willing to bet this is a shadow of its former self, and this is yet another Bell's DIPA that ages way too quickly. Maybe could have compared to the standard west coast offerings at one point, but as it sits now its just too messy. Hopslam remains my favorite bells hop bomb, assuming, like all Bell's (apparently), its less than 6 weeks old. A nice beer all the same.

Photo of sideshowe
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of ortie
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of ShogoKawada
4.83/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A big nod to ThirstyBird, who met me for an in-person hook-up. Thanks!!!! My first Bell's beer, totally unexpected, wholly appreciated.

Going into this beer, I had no idea what to expect. I've only had a handful of midwest DIPAs.

A- Pours a nice orangey copper with a moderate head, eggshell-white, pretty complex structure. Not the biggest but not going anywhere, either. Scratch that, 3-4 mins has left the head all but gone, with significant lacing.

S- Complex. Deep hop essence, aromas, oils, resins... Almost peppery. I know I've used peppery as a hop descriptor before, but never has it had as much meaning as it does now. These hops are intense. Almost a medicinal quality, although in a good way. Really resinous.

T- Follows the nose. A completely unique DIPA. Taste is deep, resinous, peppery, intense, yet not overpowering. This passes my test for a great DIPA- the hops were blended in a precise fashion, not 'kitchen-sink-hopped' like SO many DIPAs are. I cannot get over the raw hop power of this beer.

M- Drying, a bit hot, peppery (for a third time, I've used that word)... fantastic. Good carbonation, enough malt to give it some heft yet without the cloying sweetness that's oh too familiar. Amazing.

D- For me, an admitted hop junkie? 5/5. Your mileage may vary. Doubt I'll see much more of this soon, but this beer will forever be ingraned in my taste memory books as an amazing, outstanding, unique, and fantastic beer.

My first Bells, couldn't have been a better experience.

I'd rank this in my top 5 DIPAs easily. While hard to compare to Pliny, Squall/90 min, or Hop Rod, it certainly can hold its own. I am blown away by this one.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of cfinch2
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of TwelveOunces
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle poured into a tulip
Bottled 8-9-13 (1 month old)

A- A bright hazy golden orange color. A one finger of a quickly dissipating off white head.

S- Pungent peach, papaya, grapefruit, grape. Very citrusy. A more of a west coast take on an IPA.

T- A relatively modest bitterness at first. A strong hop flavor sweeps over. A pungent papaya and grapefruit. A ripe peach. An oily hop profile to this beer. With lasting pungent resinous flavors. Not much on the malt end here. This beer isnt a hop bomb per say but the flavor is all hops. The malts are very neutral and let the hops do the work.

M- A bitter beer. An appropriate feel for a beer this size. ABV is better hidden then this beers brother Hopslam.

O- A very solid DIPA. This is a textbook DIPA. A different hop profile then its brother and a more plain malt profile but a great beer never the less. This beer was much better then the most recent Hopslam batch in my opinion. What I cant figure out is why this beer is much more limited, Hopslam sits around by the case where I live and I was only able to grab a single of this beer. Produce more Bells!

Photo of Phigg1102
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of zrab11
3.68/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a orange color with a nice 1 finger head. Great lacing all the way down.

S- Has a nice citrus aroma , also get some hints of carmel and pine.. with some hop aroma as well

T- Starts off with a nice citrus carmel flavor followed by a grapefruit middle and a strong piney bitter finish.

M- Medium body with good carbonation

D- Overall it was a nice ipa. Im not a big fan of overpowering grapefruit flavors in DIPA and this one had it. So its not my cup of tea but many of you will prob like it.

Photo of EB1
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of SPRichard
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of TheBeerdedCharmer
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of BB1313
3.8/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch #: 9901. 12oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass. Pours a very pretty hazy golden color with a nice white head that sticks around w/ sticky lacing. Nice looking beer! The aromas aren't bad, lots of orange and pine. I pick those up in the taste, along with alot of resin. There are slight hints of caramel and toffee, slight. Finishes juicy, but hot. This one's pretty sweet and malty. Tastes pretty sticky as well. Mouthfeel is nice, rich, smooth, creamy; full-bodied. Drinkability isn't bad, alcohol is slightly noticeable, but drinks pretty well.

Pretty enjoyable, I'll have to seek it fresher next time. Although I liked it, I'll take a HopSlam over this any day of the week.. no disrespect to The Oracle.

Photo of cestlavie
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of Kubrickx
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of BeerTruth
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this one on my 'wants' for a while. Just did a trade with iceicebaby and he threw this in as an extra, holy balls in my mouth. Thanks dude!

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

Pours a hazy rustic orange hue with a two finger off-white head. Thick, chunky lace holds on to the sides of the glass and it's probably gonna stick there for a while. Smell is dominated by dank grapefruit and brown sugar and lots of it. Underneath that is some spruce and a touch of bready malts...just a fantastic nose with this once. Taste is pretty similar to Hopslam minus the honey. Pink grapefruit up front with a biscuit undertone. Midway some pine and earth emerge on the tongue. Aftertaste is sweet with caramel and orange peel, yum city. Creamy and rich medium to full body with a beefy feel. Carbonation is nice and soft which fits perfectly. Uhhhh, just realized this was 10.4%...seriously? Probably a good thing I don't have another bottle of this in the fridge or I'd be drunk dialing tricks and hoes like a champ. Delicious and smooth, deadly combination. Another killer hop-bomb from Bell's.

Photo of doughanson78
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Big thanks to storminspank for this want.

A: Medium orange color with a slight haze. Half finger off white head with great retention and lacing.

S: Big citrus. Pineapple and grapefruit. Light floral and pine presence. A pretty strong caramel malt backbone.

T: Tons of sweet caramel upfront. Big citrus and floral bitterness in the middle. Finishes with a bit of an alcohol bite.

M: Light to medium body. Medium carbonation. Slick and oily. Very dry finish.

O: A very solid Double IPA. A touch hot in the finish but the caramel sweetness upfront is awesome. Definitely a sipper.

Photo of BuckTuckian
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.93/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this as an extra in a very recent trade with fogdog. Thanks a lot Kevin! Poured into a 12oz. Cigar City snifter (also a gift from fogdog). Batch 9901 - bottled August 23, 2010.

Appearance: Lightly hazed, orange-gold body with a short, sticky, cream-colored cap. Looks gorgeous when illuminated. Goopy, cobweb-like lacing all the way down. The appearance radiates elegance. I'm excited!

Smell: Tangerine, mango, caramel, pine resin, and sugar. Alcohol peaks through as it warms, bringing a definitive end to each sweet whiff. Sweet and malty, but still very hop-forward. Nicely put together.

Taste: Caramel, grapefruit, pine, lime, melon and earth all atop a doughy malt frame. Bittersweet herbal hops, residual sugar, and alcohol create a bold, yet enjoyable, finish. On par with the better imperial IPAs out west (not Pliny).

Mouthfeel: Dry and warm, but also full and sweet. Hop-forward with a fairly aggressive malt component, too. Big.

Drinkability: This is my second time tasting The Oracle Double India Pale Ale Ale (DIPA Ale). In my opinion, the residual malt sweetness and alcohol presence are a bit too obstructive. Otherwise, this is a very tasty imperial IPA.

Photo of ChrisMon02
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of Roguer
3.23/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25

Slightly hazy, just enough to keep it from transparency. Orange amber brew topped by a nice flat white head with decent retention, and very nice lacing.

Huge caramel malt and brown sugar aroma, with a slight hint of stale cardboard sneaking in. Bottled 48 days ago, so freshness really shouldn't be that big a factor.

Flavor follows: big, malty DIPA, with a huge emphasis on caramel (and pale) malts, a touch of brown sugar, straw, and grainy bread. Beer is hugely bitter with little in the way of hop flavor. Pine definitely stands out, and some non-specific citric acid. It doesn't really hit as stale; it hits as drily malty.

Mouthfeel is fine; beer is very lively, with little sting, and despite the very high ABV, there's only a tinge of heat on the very back-end.

I don't quite get the hype. It's impressively bitter, and some malt-forward DIPAs work out well, but this one doesn't have enough sweetness to carry that task.

Photo of KG710
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of oso
4/5  rDev -4.3%

The Oracle from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
94 out of 100 based on 2,181 ratings.