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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

2,647 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,647
Reviews: 898
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 12.01%
Wants: 110
Gots: 281 | FT: 2
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
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Ratings: 2,647 | Reviews: 898
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3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

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3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

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3/5  rDev -21.7%

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4/5  rDev +4.4%

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4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of psuKinger
4.04/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch #11288, bottled July 2nd, 2012 (about 2 months old). Bottle into nonic.

A: Classic hazy amber hue, with a big frothy 2-finger off-white head on top. Near-perfect.

S: Lemon grass and herbal notes. Sweet bread. Perhaps a touch of pine resin and a twinge of alcohol.

T: Lemon zest is present, as the nose indicated, but there's also a bright grapefruit flavor with a pale malt twinge here that I didn't really pick up on in the nose. I'm not picking up on much in the way of a classic caramel/amber malt profile, which is suprising based on the name of the beer. Pine-bitterness arrives at the finish to round things out.

From the nose I feared that this beer might run overly sweet. But no, this has been healthily-hopped, keeping everything in balance.

M: Light and lively, with decent carbonation and a good dry finish.

D/O: Goes down smooth. Easy-drinkin'. I could knock this back in large quantities. I'm attributing a significant percentage of the flavor here to hop addition, and therefore I do believe "freshness" would be a concern here moreso than for many other "amber/red ales". If fresh, I could blast a six-pack of this.

Photo of ChickenBugg
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

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3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

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3.5/5  rDev -8.6%

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4/5  rDev +4.4%

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3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

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

This beer pours up a nice coppery amber color with a small white head, decent retention and decent lacing. The nose is fairly subtle. To my nose I could really only pick up what smelled a little like cinammon. Mouthfeel is medium with average carbonation. Taste is nice. Kind of grass, biscuit, and hops. The malt upfront is kind of buried in the mix though. Not too bad. About what I expect from Bells.

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3.5/5  rDev -8.6%

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3/5  rDev -21.7%

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4.5/5  rDev +17.5%

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3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

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4.25/5  rDev +11%

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2.75/5  rDev -28.2%

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3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

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3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

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4/5  rDev +4.4%

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3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of jimmah120
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

quick review here: this a great looking beer; unfiltered amber gold with a small white sudsy head. smell and taste is dry leaves, apple, grain, buscuits, lemon pepper, clove. not overly bitter but pleasantly so.

Not being a big fan of ambers, I enjoyed this immensely.

Photo of TheBigLebrewski
4.55/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bell's' flagship. Bell's, Bell's, Bell's. And no brand-whoring about it, Bell's gives what you want from a brewery. In the interest of full disclosure, I wear their belt buckle.

Bottle to pint glass. Moderate mostly white head with a touch of brown. Excellent lacing retention. Damn near perfect color for an Amber; a tiny bit less color than the subjective amber idyll. Very good smell, though pretty subtle.

This is amber ale. Not 'an' amber ale. If you want to drink a straight up amber ale, this is it. The taste is spot on. Leaning towards sweetness, as ambers do, but not at all overly sweet, as is far too common for the genre. Mouthfeel is perfect. This is very good beer.

Here I will qualify: I, personally, would prefer a more balanced ale; in particular, a touch of hop in the finish would make this beer incredible. And, in truth, there is a lack of hop in the finish. (See Stone's Levitation - an American Amber Ale - for a comparable beer of a different genre that I personally prefer).

Overall, I will say it's not my favorite beer. Not even close. But it is as close to the perfect straight Amber Ale as I've ever tasted. And according to the way we try to rate beers here, this deserves one of the best ratings I've given. Again, there are dozens of beers I personally enjoy more, but, that being said, this is far and away the best straight amber I've ever had.

Photo of JamesShoemaker
3.7/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The Bros have this one scored really high. The problem with Amber is that it tastes different batch to batch, sometimes bottle to bottle. I would recommend having one and then a few months later having another one. Maybe I'm crazy.

The times when it's been good, this beer is super drinkable and very tasty. When it's not good, it honestly doesn't taste a whole lot different from Michelob Amber Bock. Sacrilege!

However, this beer is ridiculously popular in the upper Midwest. Chances are, if a store carries Bell's, they carry this brew and Two Hearted (a beer which the Bros have ranked very low, surprisingly).

Give it a try if you find a single, pass on a six pack though.

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Bell's Amber Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
86 out of 100 based on 2,647 ratings.