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
87
very good

895 Reviews
THE BROS
97
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 895
Hads: 2,749
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 10.13%
Wants: 119
Gots: 351 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Bell's Amber Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 895 | Hads: 2,749
Photo of Beerlover
4.93/5  rDev +28.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

appearance is good, color is off for an amber, more of a hazy golden yellowish color instead of an amber reddish brown. unfiltered. Smell is balanced, more on the malty side with minimal hops aroma and some carmelyness.

taste...is amazing! wow! this is the first beer thats really surprised (in a good way) me in a while! initially its pretty sweet and malty, almost to the point that you'd think it was going overtake the beer, but then after a second or two the sweetness completly dissapaits and you get some caramely malts and a very easy to drink smooth well rounded balaced beer. there is also this carbonated tingling... that is unexplainable but great, never expierienced that before but loved it! Move over alaskan and full sail this is my new favorite amber! Sessionable! (783 characters)

Photo of Guden
3.46/5  rDev -10.1%
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. (542 characters)

Photo of DefenCorps
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 28 June 2012. The back label mentions this was first brewed in 1985!

A mildly hazy amber with a dense, off-white head with excellent retention and great lacing, this is beer is a looker. The nose is great. A moderate, complex malt character is present, with a blend of caramel, toasted bread, a little bit of a grain character, and even a little bit of dough. A mild hop character is present, pairing really well with the malt profile. A little bit of citrus, a hint of pineapple are the most prominent notes.

The palate opens with a nice blend of toasted and caramel malt with some cotton candy, brown sugar and bread notes, all light and in great balance. The is accompanied by the hop character, which is soft and resplendent, with a blend of sweet grapefruit, pine and oranges. Medium-light in body with a mildly chewy feel and mid-palate, this beer is moderately carbonated and is a treat on the palate. This is a pretty excellent amber if you ask me. Highly recommended. (990 characters)

Photo of WastingFreetime
3.52/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from session notes.

Pours out a hazy amber color with a short lived but pretty-while-it-lasts head, no lacing. Smells of biscuit dough and a touch of caramel apple with just a whispered hint of pie spicing. Tastes about evenly of bready notes and fruity esters, with a clean bitter finish, crisp texture and medium carbonation levels. (344 characters)

Photo of ninaturner
4.34/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Caramel color, somewhat chalky, unfiltered.

Aroma: You can smell a hint of caramel malt and some yeast, but there is little aroma.

Taste: You can definitely taste the caramel malt in the beer. I love the kick of bittering hops at the end. Probably my favorite part of the beer.

Mouthfeel: Great mouthfeel; somewhat thick but not too thick--similar to other amber ales.

Drinkability: Mouthfeel and overall flavor make this beer highly drinkable.

Overall: You can't go wrong with this Bell's Amber Ale! (517 characters)

Photo of Jamesthebrit
4.16/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: I was very impressed when I poured this one which I guess I shouldn't have been. This one is amber for sure. Not light or weak but a nice solid color.

S: Probably the weakest point of this beer. A little malt comes through but that's about it. Maybe a little bit of yeast but... Rather light here.

T: Good malty note with a hint of yeast and hops and a nice smooth finish. Brings more than a lager while still being pretty easy to drink.

M: Sits medium light but the carbonation turns it into something very smooth and creamy rather than harsh. Very nice.

A very nice light beer here. Brings some nice flavor to the table but does not overwhelm. Should be good for the average beer drinker as well as people with a more refined taste. (743 characters)

Photo of rlee1390
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Cloudy orange/amber, carbonated with a two finger heads that fades.

S-Lots of malt, caramel along with bread notes.

T-A malt forward brew, caramel and bread balance well with each other. Citrus and floral notes come out as well. Little bitterness.

M-Medium bodied, velvety in the carbonation.

O-A nice easy drinking American great. Not great but an easy drinker. (368 characters)

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a 10 oz chalice glass

Appearance – As the name implies it has an amber color with a light haze. Upon serving there was a one finger off white head that faded quickly to leave only a light amount of lacing.

Smell – The aroma was of caramel and toasted bread. Mixed with these were some lighter notes of citrus and some nuttiness.

Taste – The taste starts out as a mix of roasted malt and caramel. While sweeter in the beginning, it some dries out and bitters some as some citrus and pine hop tastes enter the flavor profile. While these never get too strong they do a nice job of balancing some of the sweet in the beginning. Toward the end of the taste some nuttiness comes to the tongue and overall a very nice roasty flavor is left to linger.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is smooth but not thick and the carbonation is on the average side. The creaminess is very nice and helps accentuate the nice more roasted flavors of the brew.

Overall – A pretty tasty amber Well worth a try. (1,019 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle pours a deep reddish brown color with a cream colored head. Aroma includes a little funk, some floral notes, light bready malts, and a bit of fruit. Light mouthfeel with medium carbonation. Flavor is somewhat watered down for my tastes, light bready malts, just a hint of sweet fruit and caramel. Something about this just didn't seem right. Certainly drinkable, but nothing special. (390 characters)

Photo of tdm168
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - pale, transparent amber with a thin, loose layer of white head that fades away quickly

S - faint bread, caramel

T - caramel, faintly herbal, faintly citrusy, sweet

M - medium bodied, sticky, well carbonated

This is a decent beer, but simplistic. The caramel takes the forefront with a subtle hop character. It's easy to drink, but ultimately boring. (357 characters)

Photo of BeerCon5
4.17/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a slightly cloudy, bright amber color with less than one finger of bubbly white head that disappeared quickly.

The scent was pretty spicy, toasted grain, and notes of floral hops.

The taste was of moderately bitter floral hops, toasty grain, notes of citrus, and spice.

Medium body, smooth and kind of oily feel, moderate carbonation.

Overall a pretty nice, easy drinking beer. Very tasty and well balanced. (422 characters)

Photo of KajII
3.36/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

[Best served in a Shaker glass]

The pour was a cloudy medium amber with an average sized (1-2 finger) off white creamy head that reduced to a thick film with a large collar and had excellent sheets of lacing.

The aroma was of a light toasted grain malt, light floral hops and a mildly sweet doughy yeast with notes of caramel, honey and citrus (orange).

The taste was quite malty with a nice caramel sweetness from the onset with the finish being lightly hoppy with a slight bitter citrus peel presence and just a touch of honey at the end. The flavor lasted an average time with a good light bitter sweet taste left to linger for just a while longer.

Mouthfeel was a bit beyond light in body with a watery yet still slightly creamy texture and a nice mild carbonation.

Overall a smooth easy to drink brew with a nice light sweetness, that is offset by the mild hoppy bitterness... (886 characters)

Photo of AleWatcher
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle into tulip pint.

Orangey amber body with a small tan head. Incredible retention. Thick lacing is virtually opaque before it slowly rides the legs back into the body.
Smells of toffee, caramel, and a pleasant, though surprising, note of something reminding me of coffee.

Wow is this drinkable. Without paying much attention I've sucked down 3/4 of my glass... Nice little hop note at the back providing a punchy little dry bitterness. Roasty malt with some sweet caramel and toffee up front. Very nice for an amber ale.

Feels medium bodies, well-carbonated, and a little oily.

Overall- this really is a great amber ale. It won't ever get the love and praise it deserves: it is just a solidly well-made beer... Of course, coming fr Bell's I would expect no less. (776 characters)

Photo of srv33
3.63/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Amber pour, hah, thin head, a little medium-fine lacing. Smells of pine, honey, sweet light citrus, bread. Taste is solid and has a non-overpowering balanced malt-hop ratio, excellent session brew, great signature, very solid taste, would buy again. One of my favorite non-ipa ales from Bells. (293 characters)

Photo of tone77
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark caramel color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is dominated by malts. Taste is caramel malts up front, some hops, slight bitterness at the finish. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall this is a solid beer. (252 characters)

Photo of superspak
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled 3/22/2012. Pours a very hazy orange amber color with a nice 1 finger dense off white head with good retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Some decent spotty lacing clings to the glass. Aromas of biscuit, toast, caramel, light citrus, floral, and nuttiness. Some pretty good well balanced aromas that are a bit muted. Taste of caramel, biscuit, grapefruit, orange, floral, toast, nuttiness, and light pine. Light bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, grapefruit, toast, floral, and light pine on the finish for a short bit. Slightly dry on the finish. Good balance of citrus hop flavors with the malt backbone. Medium carbonation and body; with a fairly creamy and slightly crisp mouthfeel. Alcohol is well hidden with pretty much no warming noticed at all on the finish. Very easy to drink as expected for 5.8%. Overall this is a very nice amber ale. Nice flavor balance and smoothness; very sessionable and enjoyable. (994 characters)

Photo of lwillitz
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12-oz bottle into small mug

A - massive off-white foamy head over a slightly-cloudy amber body loaded with carbonation bubbles; patchy lace

S - malty caramel sweetness, floral hops, touch of vanilla

T - caramel-sweetened malt balanced well by bitter notes of pine and citrus from the hops and a suggestion of burnt malts; lingering finish grows increasingly bitter as it fades away

M - oily light/medium body, average carbonation

O - a decent amber, but nothing remarkable (477 characters)

Photo of Murphious
2.94/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one by Bell's is a typical amber ale---well, typically good. Nothing really bad about it, but nothing stands out as better than the rest out there. Good balance of malt and hops, no bitterness, caramel smooth finish, and the cloudy appearance makes it somewhat different. (276 characters)

Photo of augustgarage
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Central Waters shaker pint.

Flame tinged amber liquid with a delicate creamy layer of ivory up top. Sticky yet pasty lacing, decent retention.

Caramel apple, berry-like esters, and cake-like malt in the nose.

Sweet honey-drenched palate entry offset by mild cutting bitterness with hints of white pepper. The yeast brings to mind a lager rather than an ale. Medium-dry, but perfumed finish.

Light bodied, creamy and well carbonated.

A uniquely flavored amber ale - refreshing on a warm day, and well paired with a strong cheese. (567 characters)

Photo of dbrauneis
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a crystal clear deep amber in color. The beer has a two finger tall tense beige head that slowly reduces to a thick film over the entire surface of the beer with thicker patches and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant lacing is observed.

S: Moderate aromas of caramel malts with light hints of nuttiness and light hints of citrus hops.

T: The taste follows the smell, with a body of bready and caramel malts giving it light sweetness upfront. This is followed by some light nut flavors and moderate citrus hops that have a light lingering bitterness.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Smooth.

O: This beer is easy to drink and enjoyable. The beer is well balanced and could be sessionable (though it is approaching a touch too strong in ABV to have more than a few). (816 characters)

Photo of warnerry
3.94/5  rDev +2.3%
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. (455 characters)

Photo of BarryMFBurton
3.62/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I have a soft spot for Bell’s, but mainly for their big beers: Hopslam, Expedition Stout, The Oracle. It’ll be interesting to try one of their <6% ABV beers, then…

Brewed within the last few months before this tasting (can only make out the /12 of the year on the Packaged On date).

A: This Amber Ale is…well, amber. Slightly red, and with a sizeable white head of creamy bubbles. Retention is thin with slight, spotty lacing.

S: Sweet, satisfying malts first: creamy caramel candy, maple oatmeal, and cookie dough. It’s a subtly earthy graininess mixing with the sugars – cinnamon-sugar and clarified butter on slightly toasted bread – and just a hint of floral hops. Malty, but thin.

T: Leafy malts: maple, cashew, caramel, and toasted grain come together in mild, creamy fashion. Peaches and cream are notable, as well, before the tastes of mild bitter herbs take over. These hops are just a tad astringent and only slightly juicy – characteristic for an amber ale – just prickly enough to be a sizeable part of the palate. It’s a nutty, creamy vanilla aftertaste.

M: A little silk on the tongue and some bubble on the back end. As far as texture goes, it sits quite idly on a medium body.

O: An amber ale that’s all about traditional flavor, not bold, unique character. And in that way, it’s all that it can be. Quite sessionable. (1,367 characters)

Photo of kylehay2004
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: single finger off white head on a slightly hazy near pure amber body.

S: caramel malts, toffee, brown sugar and light hops.

T: sweet caramel malts and toffee are the major players. grain and earthy hop notes.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: One of the more full flavored amber ales and very drinkable. (326 characters)

Photo of hmbrewer336
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: rich amber color with an off-white head about 1 finger thick spotty lacing down the glass.

S: Malt and Biscuit dominate the nose a slight fruity tone come through as well

T: Bready and Biscuit up front with a slightly bitter and fruity hop finish.

M: Medium in body with a moderate amount of carbonation that bites the mouth and is refreshing.

O: Nice beer I can drink this any season and really enjoy Bell's interpretation of this style. I also like the new label (472 characters)

Photo of maleman
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Poured true to its name...with a thin head that receded into a thinner cap and oily lacing. Some sediment and better than average carbonation. Very nice nose of malt and resin with a touch of caramel. Taste followed the nose with good bread and some grass. No aftertaste to speak of from this light to medium-bodied brew, tasted toward the back of the mouth. One of the better beers I've tasted recently. They call it the flagship of Bell's and while I haven't had the coveted "HopSlam" yet, it's the best Bell's offering I've had. (576 characters)

Bell's Amber Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
87 out of 100 based on 895 ratings.