Bell's Amber Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Bell's Amber AleBell's Amber Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

2,702 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,702
Reviews: 922
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 12.01%
Wants: 116
Gots: 311 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-12-2001

Amber Ale deftly balances a mixture of toasted grain & light caramel notes with a range of floral, citrus and herbal hop notes, capped by a clean bitterness. This balance of flavors makes Amber Ale quite versatile as a food pairing option, not to mention being rather tasty in its own right. Whether serving as a jumping point to other styles or as a familiar standby, Amber Ale is central to the Bell’s portfolio.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view more.
Ratings: 2,702 | Reviews: 922
Reviews by jadpsu:
Photo of jadpsu
4.15/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Hazy orange, light amber in color, with a slightly off white tiny bubble head that shows superior retention and leave some outstanding lace.
Smell: Sweet Malts, biscuits and some caramel. Citric hops, led by orange are evident.
Taste is of maltiness and roasted malts, not as sweet as the aroma. Has a lingering after taste that is dry and tart, very nice.
Malts are thick, chewy
A real nice brew to accompany a good evening meal.

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The flagship of Bells,pours a medium amber color with a nice medium sticky head,the aroma is is sweet with a good hop presence.A very nice balanced ale starts out malty sweet and fruity with a nice hop bitterness in the finish.A personal favorite and easy to find when Iam home in Michigan.

Photo of RoyalT
3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – This is a gorgeous Amber Ale. The body is deep, rich, and hazy orange and the head is huge. It came up with an easy pour, showed great retention, and left some cool-looking lace on the inside of my glass.

Smell – The light, grainy notes are quite nice. They are laden with an orangy sweetness and a rather impressive hop profile.

Taste – This is about as good as American grain gets. It is husky but smooth and complimented by a nice sweetness, which I have found to be quite repugnant in most other grainy ales. The grassy hops keep this one balanced.

Mouthfeel – Closer to medium-bodied than light, this crisp American Amber goes down well and even has a bit of dryness at the finish.

Drinkability – I’m not a huge fan of the style, but this is about as good as it gets. Or, I should say, about as good as I’ve had to date.

Comments – Thanks to feloniousmonk for including this in a nice trade package.

Photo of DaPeculierDane
3.27/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful bright orange with lots of yummy yeasties floating around to distinguish the men from the people who don’t like little white aliens floating aroung in their beer.

Thin beige head. Cool Bottle.

Overall, I dig the presentation both in and out of the bottle.

Smell is pretty sweet and not to exciting.

Pretty darn robust taste but it could be better. Lots of flowers and citrus, toasted grain, slightly bitter.

I bet it would be better on tap.

Very, very drinkable any time of the year.

Photo of SIRIUS2
4.18/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Medium amber color when poured into a pint glass. Small off-white head with several minutes of retention; good lacing.

S: Nice complexity of malts and hops. Not too aromatic but enjoyable.

T: Malts and hops blend together tipping toward the malty side. The flavors are richly married but not overwhelming. The finish allows the light bitterness of the hops to come through and allows it to be relatively quick and clean.

M&D: Light to medium body and fullness. Little to no separation on the tongue let the flavors stay together all the way down. Smooth.

I really like this one. If you are serving this to a squeamish friend, beware of the sediment on the bottom of the bottle. It made no difference to me whatsoever but there was no mention on the label or I would have poured more carefully. Beautiful ale!

Photo of skybluewater
3.2/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a very murky orange color, with the yeast I poured in accidentally. Smell is quite funky. I don't like it much at all (although I can't describe what it is I don't like...). Taste isn't all that bad (compared to other Bell's beers I've had), although I'm really not all that crazy about it. There's some malty, with a bit of creamy texture, and a little citrusy hops.

This, to me, is yet another disappointing Bell's beer. While it's better than some other Bell's beers such as Cherry Stout and Two Hearted (shudder), it isn't a beer I'd buy again. There are just too many good ones out there to waste my money on semi-drinkable brews.

Photo of orbitalr0x
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a nice golden amber color with a 1/2" think head. The head lingers for a bit, but dissipates pretty quickly. My nose picks up some malt tones coupled with hoppy undertones. Quite nice overall. There is quite a bit of yeast floating in the glass...and even more on the bottom of the bottle. The first sip comes with a strong sweet malty flavor and a bit of hop bite on the finish. Biterness is hardly there...mostly caramel tones and a bit of a bready yeast flavor. It's quite a tasty ale and goes down clean and smooth. This definetly would qualify as a quality session brew. Bell's produces some fine brews and this one is no exception.

Photo of nycjag
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another yummy beer from my Bell's mixpack. Brazenly purchased in Harrisburg, PA, and stealthily brought back across the New York State border via an underground tunnel that was carved out under the Hudson River at least a half century ago. Maybe drinking Bell's in New York City makes it taste better because we vociferously aren't supposed to have it. If so, who cares? This is a great beer.

It pours a nice deep amber (duh) with about a one-inch head. The aroma hops aren't too far forward and the maltiness you get from quaffing this beer is also present in the aroma.

This is an Amber you could drink gallons of and not get tired of it. Some nice biscuity flavors going on here.

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Cigar City snifter (my all-purpose glass for vacation time beer drinking).
The beer was a hazy copper color with a small tan head.
Caramel malt aroma, sweet. Both floral and citrus hops.
Very much caramel in the taste, late hops, mostly citrus, but some piney hops also.
A little more depth in the mouthfeel than I'm accustomed to in this style.
Very sessionable.

Photo of warnerry
3.94/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cask at The Soup Spoon

Pours reddish brown with no head at all. Aromas of caramel malt, a bit of bread and maple, vanila and a faint nuttiness. Taste is similar with a bit of hops thrown in. Pretty nice. I've had this in bottles several times, and it is noticeably more enjoyable on cask. Very smooth mouthfeel with a faintly bitter finish. This is a style I normally don't enjoy that much except for hoppier ambers, but on cask this is pretty enjoyable.

Photo of Beaver13
3.54/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bell's Amber poured a golden amber with lots of big flakey particles, and a nice creamy thick head with nice retention - almost stout-like. The aroma was pretty underwhelming with some slight fruity tones. It was a nice tasting amber with a fruity initial flavor and a nice hoppy finish. Overall, a good drinking amber ale.

Photo of Guden
3.46/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Light amber color with a solid one finger head that sticks around.

S- Light citrus and a bit of malt. Very light.

T- A smooth refreshing citrus (lemon) up front with a bit of sweetness followed by a piney bitter finish that blends with a honey note. Not bad but could use some more maltiness for my tastes.

M- Fairly low in body, just enough to fill the mouth with a well dialed in carbonation level that's not too prickly but effervescent and refreshing.

O- A decent beer but a little lacking in the aroma and maltiness for the style.

Photo of Jason
4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: On tap, served in a 16 oz. American tumbler glass.

Appearance: Cloudy orange hued amber with a well dispositioned tiny bubbled lace leaving several thick rings on the glass.

Smell: Malty sweet with overtones of fresh toasted grain and a subtle flowery oily hop holding a citric nose.

Taste: Well formed malt sweetness within the medium body, moderate crispness from the carbonation. Faint buttery diacetyl, toffee and toasted malt make for the base of this brew, a tamed yet multi-layered hop runs through a pungent bitterness, an oily flower and a citric flavour towards the end. After taste lingers long and hard with more toasted and citric flavours.

Notes: This is an awesome example of the American Amber Ale Style, robust and very flavourful yet still not a problem having a few or even making it a session beer. Right up there with Full Sail or Anderson Valley in greatness in this style.

Photo of merlin48
3.6/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle pours a hazy, medium gold body(odd for an amber) with a skimpy offwhite head that quickly vanishes. Minimal lacing.
Aroma is initially hoppy, with grapefruit and orangerind. Caramel pale malt notes lurk in the background.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied with appropriate medium carbonation.
Taste is above average for an American Amber, but not spectacular. Hops are dry and bitter, grapefruit and citrus rind is barely balanced by the caramel sweetness. Finishes clean and even.
Well balanced, overall, and very sessionable. Just not one of my favorites for the style.

Photo of Billolick
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Typical 12 ounce bottle, w/o pours typical lighter amber, clear, light tan head, showing better then average retention and then leaving decent frothy lace on the glass. Faint malty, honey nose. Malty brew, smooth and balanced. Middle of the road style, and certainly not my favorites but this one is better then the rest. Balance is the central theme. Fine sessioner.

Photo of MisterDeeds
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a perfect pint glass. Thanks to Kidwell for loading up his trunk over Thanksgiving.

A nice cloudy orange amber. Thick hoppy looking head, that sticks around to lace the glass.

Smells a little Earthy-hoppy, with a bit on the floral side, and some citrus-fruity notes as well.

Great balance of a light citrus sweet kick and a very mild bittering hop. Not too overpowering in either direction.

Mouthfeel is a bit thicker, almost chunky for a Pale Ale, but it works. It seems almost creamy.

Very drinkable, though the heavy creamy feel might get in someone's way (not mine).
As always, I find myself impressed with Bells, and wishing it were easier to get in Massachusetts.

Photo of tigg924
4.53/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: amber, medium carbonation, cloudy, with a small head

Smell: sugar, malt, and a bit of citrus

Taste: hops, malty bread, and caramel

Mouthfeel: smooth, light, small hoppy taste in the middle followed by a semi-sweet finish

Drinkability: With apologies to Nugget Nectar, I think I may have just found my favorite version of this style. Perfectly drinkable this beer seems made for me and may have been my favorite from my Philadelphia trip. An awesome mix of malt and hops. I could easily session this...Now if only Bells would ship to Massachusetts.

Photo of bsp77
3.65/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into 2009 PGA Championship Pint glass (pretty sweet).

Appearance: Just slightly hazy light amber with small white head and minimal lacing.

Smell: Smells fairly dry (especially in comparison to the taste), with toast, caramel and citrus fairly evident.

Taste: Somewhat sweet upfront with a nice mix of caramel, toast, fruit and citrus. Turns slightly bitter toward the end with a mix of citrus and spice. Very well balanced overall, but still slightly too sweet for my liking in a session ale.

Feel: Moderately high carbonation with a light-medium body. Finishes quite dry.

Drinkability: Pretty high. While the American Amber Ale category is quite broad, I think of this as the prototypical example of the style. However, it may be slightly too sweet for my taste.

Feel: Moderate

Photo of capilial
4.48/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I don't generally like amber ales but I thoroughly enjoyed this beer. It has citrusy undertones and it was very smooth and refreshing.

Photo of jsolack
3.92/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance:
Amber (surprise) and misty. Nice head with mild lacing.

Smell:
Sweet molasses with orange accents. Mildly spicy smell.

Taste:
Hoppy sweet with slight bitter finish Wheat flavor is mixed nicely with slight orange flavor. Overall a nice complex flavor.

Mouthfeel:
A crisp feel in the mouth. Light but not watery.

Drinkability:
A very drinkable beer with a nice even flavor. Definitely could have a few more!

Photo of pat61
4.75/5  rDev +24%

A toasty malt nose with a hint of vegetal.
Pours amber with an off-white foam cap.
Palate: graham cracker, caramel, with a moderate hop accent on the finish.
medium body and carbonation.

Photo of dogfishandi
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle at fridge temp poured into a standard pint glass. batch number 10154 (bottled 1/4/2011, roughly 3 months in the bottle)

pours out a fairly clear reddish bronze color with a nice 2 fingers of creamy off white head. held some very nice retention, slowly faded to a thick layer with some sporadic lace.

kind of a sweet malty nose. some toasted grains in there as well as an earthy herbal aroma and maybe a slight hint of citrus hops.

sweet toasted grains, herbal citrus hops, a nice balance, a simple beer, but quite tasty. finishes bitter sweet.

medium to light in body, adequate carbonation. some light hop oil bitterness noticable on the palate after each sip.

super sessionable and easy to drink. i very much enjoy this style, mostly for its tasty simplicity. the aroma doesnt suggest a whole lot of flavor, but despite the lack of complexity, its quite tasty. i would drink this again if it was available to me, just not something id really go to much out of my way to try again.

Photo of ehammond1
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle (2011)

Acquired via trade
Thanks sendsilk!

Orange amber with a quickly forming light khaki colored head. Spotted lacing down the glass.

Bready aroma with caramel and toffee (even honey-like) sweetness pushing through along with a touch of earth and grass.

Simple, bready flavors with a distinct, though light, caramel and toffee sweetness.

Thin to medium mouthfeel with moderate carbonation.

A good, classic amber ale.

Photo of MattyG85
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: A deep and cloudy reddish gold. Very small white head that slowly fades. Not much lacing.

Smell: A strong sense of caramel malt sweetness with earthy bitterness and a hint of fruit.

Taste: Tastes like it smells with sweetness from the caramel and fruit. Hop bitterness is very light.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with light carbonation.

Overall: A decent version of a red but a little too light.

Photo of far333
4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Now appearing in a kitchen near me, thanks to Brent. Hazy, opaque apricot color with a thick orangey-beige head that settles in for the duration. Interesting aroma of sweet malt with a distinctive banana smell. Some hints of candy as well. Very thick and creamy mouthfeel, with big fat rings of lace stuck to the inside of the glass. Flavor is full, but balanced with malt, a bit of hops, and lingering pine and orange peel. Excellent beer, with lots of character for an amber.

to view more.
Bell's Amber Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
86 out of 100 based on 2,702 ratings.