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Bell's 25th Anniversary Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Bell's 25th Anniversary AleBell's 25th Anniversary Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

485 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 485
Reviews: 343
rAvg: 3.75
pDev: 12.53%
Wants: 22
Gots: 68 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: mcallister on 07-28-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 485 | Reviews: 343 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of sendbeer


4.25/5  rDev +13.3%

10-22-2012 21:15:15 | More by sendbeer
Photo of Tone


3.95/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy, dark copper color. 3/4 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and good lacing. Smells of sweet malt, slight citrus hops, slight floral hops, slight alcohol, hint of syrup, and a hint of wood. Fits the style of an American Strong Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of alcohol, slight wood, slight citrus hops, sweet malt, and hint of floral. Overall, good appearance, aroma, and blend.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2011 22:22:17 | More by Tone
Photo of zestar


3.75/5  rDev 0%

02-03-2014 08:34:19 | More by zestar
Photo of billab914


3.3/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Dogfish snifter. It poured a deep amber/orange color color with a thin white lacing barely covering the top of the beer. The head clung to the edges of the glass and left a bit of lacing as I drank it.

The aroma has a sweeter, malty flavor with some honey and caramel sweetness along with some nutty, toffee like flavors. A bit of a floral like hoppiness comes through in it as well.

The taste shows a lot of sweetness to it. I get a honey, malty sweet flavor throughout the beer. It has a lighter, more floral hoppiness with some citrus presence as well. A little bit of the caramel and bready flavors come through as well.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is decent but not great. It really showed off the malty Michigan barley, but could have been a little more balanced overall. It felt a little sweet at times, especially in the finish. Pretty good beer overall, but not a great one.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2011 02:56:19 | More by billab914
Photo of dirtylou


3.63/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz single - plenty of this around, though that didnt stop the hoarders from wiping out Star on the release day. sixers are stacked upon sixers elsewhere

congrats on 25 years.

appearance: served in my ale asylum chalice, glowing orange-amber body, light beige lace

smell: grapefruit and other citrus, caramel, brown sugar, malty

taste: hard to pinpoint - kind of a mild barleywine...sticky citrus hops, big caramel malt profile, caramelized brown sugar, rich dark malts, dark fruit, booze, spruce, orange rind. This doesnt seem like a 25th anniversary beer (neither did the 20th anniversary for that matter) - still enjoyable, but not of the most memorable bells offerings

mouthfeel: medium-light bitterness, decent amount of booze comes through

drinkability: ok

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2010 02:56:11 | More by dirtylou
Photo of TurdFurgison


3.85/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, $2.99 each in MI. No description of the beer on the bottle, cool label though.

The beer pours a dark orange-copper color with a thin off-white wet-looking head. It smells kind of IPA-ish to me, stronger in hops than anything else, strong malt in the background to contrast it. The beer tastes not at all like I expected from the aroma. Hops are there for sure, but along with that is some peppercorn and more noticeable ethanol than 8.5% ABV would indicate. Strongly bitter aftertaste, seemingly from hops.

The beer is thicker than usual, coupled with the ethanol flavor I suspect this might be >8.5% ABV. But who knows... Anyway it is more a sipper than chugger, but the glass is draining quickly nonetheless. Another great Bell's beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2010 01:26:24 | More by TurdFurgison
Photo of xnicknj


3.33/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into large snifter glass

Pours a very nice cherry auburn with a decent head. Frothed film retains well, leaving rings of lacing on the glass.

Plenty of caramel and dark fruit sweetness in the nose with crispy malt and some citrus hops.

Hop bitterness right up front alongside pine and lighter citrus tendencies. Sweetness slices through, almost unexpectedly, with figs and raisins. Hints of molasses and caramel are evident. Alcohol warms the palate towards the end, along with more piny hops and some lingering fruit.

Medium bodied, but very chewy, and a little dry. Drinks okay, but I just don't know about this one. I love Bells, but this is my third time trying this beer and I cannot get into it. The sweetness feels a little off, and I was expecting a better hop profile.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2010 01:53:26 | More by xnicknj
Photo of harpus


3.75/5  rDev 0%

10-16-2012 17:22:12 | More by harpus
Photo of drummermattie02


4/5  rDev +6.7%

01-16-2012 15:50:20 | More by drummermattie02
Photo of ccrida


3.4/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into my Samuel Smiths Imperial pint, Bell's 25th is orangish brown with a small off-white head that leaves light, scattered lace.

Smell is sweet, fruity.

Taste is similar, a really interesting candy aftertaste, very familar. Kind of generic sweet strong all, some floral hop flavor but no bite or bittterness.

Mouthfeel is drier, medium bodied.

Drinkability is okay, but this is pretty uninspired for a anniversary beer. Very generic.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2010 00:09:38 | More by ccrida
Photo of Zaphog


3.75/5  rDev 0%

09-03-2012 21:48:07 | More by Zaphog
Photo of BeerFMAndy


3.13/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter. 8.5% ABV, Batch # 9871 (packaged Aug. 12, 2010)

Thanks to sweemzander for this brew!

A - 25 pours a beautiful clear crimson bronze color that's gorgeous and vibrant but topped by a weak bone-colored head. An arch of lace and ring of loose bubbles is left above the almost naked beer.

S - The immediately crisp, hopped-up aroma fades quickly into an amber malt and doughy-bread-based ale with subtle fruity esters. The once strong, citrusy American hops vanished quickly leaving the malt fairly balance-less in the aroma. Thin solvent alcohol notes in the back.

T - Some of the citrusy American hops pull into the flavor much more adding balance to the doughy, bready amber malt. Almost no finish or follow-through though which is largely my problem with it. It disappears very quickly.

M - While the flavor has a somewhat thin consistency, falling almost flat mid palette, the actual feel is rather thick and chewy. Smooth from very low carbonation on the finish. Retro-nasal alcohol warmth comes through.

D - For a 25th Anniversary brew, I find this lacking all around (for a Bell's product) especially the sharp drop-off in flavor on the tongue. No finish, odd feel, this is definitely a one-and-done for me. I wouldn't really want it again.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2011 04:00:17 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of jrallen34


3.9/5  rDev +4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a Bells tulip...What is this beer, a muted dipa, a hoppy strong ale? Who knows, but its pretty darn good. Its strong hops in the aroma and taste, a little malt but then a lot of alcohol. The alcohol comes through like a dipa, but there is a depth to malt that shows it not an ipa. Interesting brew, a little too strong but worth giving a shot.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2010 18:38:21 | More by jrallen34
Photo of Rhettroactive

District of Columbia

2.83/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From 12oz bottle to Bruges hybrid glass on 4/26/11
*From notes

A: Bleeding copper maroon in color. Cloudy - a two finger head yields some lacing, but nothing to write home about.

S: Raisins. Big time raisins. When I really stick my nose deep into the glass, I detect hints of salty parmesan cheese, which as you might imagine, isn't the most desirable quality in a beer.

T: Bready, almost like a cinnamon raisin loaf. It feels fortified, as the heavy dose of raisiny, pruney essence slaps me across the tounge. The alcohol is fairly well masked.

M: A bit thin, though the carbonation is reasonable.

O: A weird beer. Bell's 25th Anniversary Ale is certainly different, though sadly it's something I don't plan on returning to for quite a while. Looks like I'll lose that last bottle in the cellar for a few years and see what happens. As it stands now, it's unremarkable and a bit of a dissapointment.

Serving type: bottle

05-05-2011 23:17:11 | More by Rhettroactive
Photo of HuskyinPDX


3.7/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured on 1-20-12
Batch 9871

A - A very dark orange with a thin light tan head that fades fairly fast.

S - Very sweet and malty. Carmel, toffee, and oranges are all present.

T - Carmel, raisin, and slightly metallic.

D - Lower carbonation, a very heavy body.

O - Old ale that is sweet with a heavy fruity body.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2012 23:00:13 | More by HuskyinPDX
Photo of Bitterbill


4.18/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of russpowell. Thanks Russ!

Batch 9871, packaged August 12, 2010. Love the batch finder on Bell's website!

It pours a rather gorgeous a hazy brownish red, 2 finger head of foam that's backed up by very nice lacing.

The nose is dominated by bready malt, some sweet caramel, no bitterness at all and I wasn't hoping for any, given the style.

The taste is the same as the smell...no surprises. Big bready malt with a nice caramel sweetness that isn't over done. I can taste some notes of toffee as well. Again, no bitterness and that pleases me. If you like malty brews, this one is worth checking out. Another plus is the lack of an imposing alcohol presence.

Medium bodied, lightish amount of carbonation, and I have a very smooth brew. Love the mouth feel.

Drinkability is pretty darned good. The flavours seem to mesh very well and with the alcohol being pretty much a non factor, I'm flying threw the bottle rather quickly. I'm pretty impressed; thanks Bell's and thanks again Russ!

Serving type: bottle

02-25-2011 00:55:59 | More by Bitterbill
Photo of avalon07

South Carolina

4.2/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a somewhat cloudy consistency. There was a half inch of foamy, fairly long-lasting head. Pretty good lacing.

S: A fragrant, sweet aroma of hops, fruit, and malt.

T: Tasted of fruit and hops up front with a malty finish. An interesting, unexpected flavor. The fruit seems to dominate this category.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a slick finish. Medium-bodied.

D: An odd beer, but definitely drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2010 02:40:58 | More by avalon07
Photo of thagr81us

South Carolina

3.45/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from bottle into a Bell's stemmed tulip. Poured red-orange with a one finger off-white head that subsided to half a finger slowly. Maintained phenomenal lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, caramel, and sweet alcohol. The flavor was of sweet malt, caramel, sweet alcohol, subtle citrus, dark fruit, and very subtle citrus hop. It had a medium feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a fairly decent brew. The flavor was pretty well blended and smooth on this one. However with that said, it wasn't overly good nor was it overly bad. It was complex though which is always nice to see. The aroma wasn't very impressive though. Worth trying at least once, but I plan to leave it at that...

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2011 17:52:57 | More by thagr81us
Photo of Alieniloquium


3.48/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a CCB snifter. Batch 9871, bottled 8/12/2010.

Appearance - Deep amber with enough head to balloon at the top of the glass. I didn't leave it much space, though. Island of foam on top and some even sticks to the glass.

Smell - It doesn't smell very good. Cardboard aroma and some apples. Caramel and some paler malts in the nose as well. A touch boozy.

Taste - Better, I guess. Doesn't taste oxidized, maybe just a touch in the finish. Otherwise the apple smells persist along with the pale and caramel malts. Bitter throughout. Reminds me of a less impressive Fred. Biting bitter finish.

Mouthfeel - Quite drinkable, really. It's a well balanced beer, if that means anything at all. Boozy, but otherwise I don't have a problem drinking it.

Overall - It's just kind of unexciting and I think getting a little old. It leaves me with a sickly aftertaste also, though. Not sure why.

Serving type: bottle

06-27-2012 20:55:31 | More by Alieniloquium
Photo of OWSLEY069


4/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clean orange-ish to copper color with an off white head. In the aroma, faint grapefruity hop, hint of alcohol and a nice malt presence. In the taste, small black licorice, small hint of grapefruity hops, and a dry alcohol hint in the end. A small spice bite and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry hint of black licorice and alcohol in the aftertaste. Interesting licorice hint, nice ale. Congrats to Bell's!

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2010 12:57:38 | More by OWSLEY069
Photo of AgentZero


3.03/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Copper color with a finger of head on it that left a decent amount of lace. Not bad looking.

S - Lot of phenol qualities, stonger yeast presense than I expected. A bit malty with some candied fruits.

T - Chemical phenol on the end kills this one for me. It wasn't bad, there was a decent fruit taste with moderate yeast, but the chemical nature of it made it a strong ale that had too much bite. Was not a real fan, average.

M - Sugary, medium bodied, syrupy, moderate carbonation.

D - Gets a little hot, not great tasting enough to get down easily.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2010 03:43:39 | More by AgentZero
Photo of DrDemento456


4.43/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - I get an inch of head and a nice dark amber color. Pretty.

S - You get slight hops, yeast, along with some dark raisin and plum. This should be interesting.

T - Starts off fruity with a hint of plum and hops (which balanced pretty well) and then rounds out to a little yeast and sweet semi bitter finish. Nice!

M - Very medium bodied. If I didn't know any better I would suggest 6 or 7 tops.

D - Well it really was good and a shame a four pack is around 14-15 dollars. I really think PA affects my drink-ability for the prices but I would drink this again with some age but overall great beer!

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2010 05:39:36 | More by DrDemento456
Photo of tavernjef


4.05/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Great color of rusty amber with a slumbering dark golden edging thats dully lit. Slim yet firm and healthy capping of medium ivory foam sits well on top. Slippery lace of spots, dots, and thicker strings coat the glass sporatically.

Aroma is clean, sweet and a bit slim at first, but gains some boldness as it gains air. Slender sweet and soft tones of orange, tangerine, raisin, and plum parade with a nice malty presense as it melts together with caramel and a lighter puff of molasses and a stronger poof of etH.

Taste is a well molded tone of sweet, semi darkened maltyness. Moderately plump and fruity with darker nuances of plum, raisin, and starfruit with just a nudge to some darker orange and burntish/toasted grapefruit. Caramel and molasses is buried underneath. All very soothing and malty big. Doppelbock comes to mind...

Great chewy-esque tone and medium bold, nearly full body. Smooth, soft, chewy, malt laden tone with a soothing hint to it's 8.5%

A solid brew to be sure, but was hoping for something a little more over the top for the 25th. As is, this is a yummy malty treat that sure grows on you as you go. A very relaxing and enjoyably easy going brew!

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2010 02:16:38 | More by tavernjef
Photo of TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

3.58/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to ewright for sending this bottle to me in a trade.

Poured in to Duvel Tulip. Batch #9871

A - A nice dark amber colour with a small amount of cream coloured head.

S - Sweet caramel malts and some earthy hops. Overall a very sweet nose.

T - Sweet caramel malts dominate. Some nice bitter hops come through in the background with some light earthy and citrus notes.

M -Medium body, slight chew, lightly carbonated.

Serving type: bottle

10-23-2010 00:12:19 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of DefenCorps


3.58/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Kudos on making it to 25 years, Larry. It couldn't have been easy.

A beautiful bloody red with a dense, light brown head with excellent retention and lacing, this is an excellent looking brew. Steady streams of carbonation rise from the etched D of my Duvel tulip.

I wonder if they were going for some version of an aged Double Bastard with this brew. Plenty of fruity sweetness is present, along with caramel, toffee and rather surprisingly, a touch of stale-smelling malt as well. Hop character is light, there's some pine, a little mint and some alcohol. Solid stuff.

The palate opens with a blend of pine hop flavor, juicy bitterness and sweetness. The sweetness is fairly complex, with plenty of caramel, tropical fruit (papaya? pineapple?) and some brown sugar. There's a slight sharpness that reminds me of burnt sugar as well. Alcohol appears towards the finish. The finish is a little disappointing, having some of the stale malt character I picked up on the nose, reminiscent of mildly oxidized crystal malt (think aged Bigfoot that time hasn't been kind to). The mouthfeel, however, is sublime. Medium-full in body with a light carbonation, this feels decadent on the palate. Ultimately, though, this is sweeter than I care, and even though this 12oz bottle went down quite easily, it's not something I'll reach out for in a hurry. A solid effort.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2010 03:04:53 | More by DefenCorps
Bell's 25th Anniversary Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
85 out of 100 based on 485 ratings.