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The Oracle - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
The OracleThe Oracle

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

2,200 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,200
Reviews: 669
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 10.77%
Wants: 437
Gots: 268 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-04-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,200 | Reviews: 669 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cfrances33
4.46/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap at the Mark in South Bend, IN on 8/23/12. Served in a tulip.

Pour: Deep amber orange with a finger of tanner head. Recedes to a rim, not much lacing.

Smell: Lots of pine and grapefruit, with some lemon mixed in as well. Clear caramel sweetness.

Taste: Follows the nose with pine and grapefruit, with a fantastic balance. I was amazed at the balance this beer exuded, especially with the reputation of a "west coast style dipa." Like a slightly maltier Pliny.

Mouthfeel: Pretty light and drinkable given the huge body.

Overall: Great, and pretty tasty. Wish Bell's put this on rotation.

Photo of craytonic
3.63/5  rDev -13.2%
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.

Photo of Beertracker
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
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!

Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
1.75/5  rDev -58.1%

Photo of NateMac13
4.36/5  rDev +4.3%

Photo of jjayjaye
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
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!

Photo of pwoods
4.17/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Steve for sharing this bottle.

12oz. Brown bottle into a snifter.

A: Hazy golden orange. Moderate head with a bit of retention. Decent sticky lacing.

S: Lots of stinky, resinous hops. Somewhat catty. Plenty of citrus with enough malt.

T/M: Bitterness isn't huge and niether is the citrus. Plenty of the sticky stinky hop resin. Lots of malts, deep and rich. Pleasant spiciness in the back. Body is nearly full with good carbo. Sticky feel.

D: Drinks ok and pretty interesting.

Photo of PDXHops
3.34/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Ryan011235 for this 12 ounce bottled, poured into a Duvel tulip (note- this was fresh, back in September 2010). Hazy amber body with a frothy off-white head, the retention of which is pretty impressive considering the ABV. A thick ring of lacing up top, with drippy streaks down below.

The nose is richly malty with plenty of citrus and especially pine fighting through the caramel. The flavor is more or less the same story. There's certainly no shortage of bitterness, and the pine simmers steadily, but all the hoppy goodness is somewhat blunted by the malt. Some citrus juiciness approaching the swallow. Medium-thick bodied, with the booze showing up basically in the finish only. Very impressive job of controlling the booziness and sweetness at this ABV. Tantalizingly close to excellence, but simply too malty to merit bumping up to the next tier of DIPAs.

Photo of brycevolk
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of ArtZan
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

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

Batch 9901, bottled Aug. 23, 2010. I'm drinking it on Nov. 24, 2010.

Pours a medium amber/orange in color with a big sticky head that reduces to about a quarter-inch in my glass, leaving lots of lacing.

Hoppy aroma of tropical fruit like pineapple.

Big alcoholic burn and flavor with the first sips. Mildly bitter, with big resinous hop flavors. Bell's says this is their take on a West Coast Double IPA, and I think they've hit the mark.

Oily body, but what else would you expect with 10 percent alcohol?

Overall this is a fine Double IPA. However, Bell's HopSlam is even better.

Even though Bell's website says this has a shelf life of six months, I'm willing to bet that -- like HopSlam -- the hop notes fade rapidly. I look forward to having this beer again when it's even fresher.

Photo of JVan
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of BB1313
3.86/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

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 calcnerd
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of sammyg832
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of CityofBals
2.5/5  rDev -40.2%

Photo of cfinch2
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of ChrisMon02
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of MrMcGibblets
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of mattcrill
4.12/5  rDev -1.4%
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 taospowder
4.24/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of SuperHop18
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%

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%

The Oracle from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
93 out of 100 based on 2,200 ratings.