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

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Bell's Amber AleBell's Amber Ale

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BA SCORE
86
very good

2,729 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,729
Reviews: 933
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 12.01%
Wants: 117
Gots: 342 | 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
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Ratings: 2,729 | Reviews: 933
Photo of Gusler
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A vaporous orange on the pour with a bubbly and light tan head that is portly in size with a thin curtain of lace. Nose is butterscotch sweet, fresh and quite clean to the senses, the start quite sweet, nice malt profile and the top a light to medium feel. Finish is brisk in its acidity, hops mellow and pleasant with the aftertaste desert dry and long lasting, quite nice Amber Ale, from a “World Class Brewery”.

Photo of claspada
3.47/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aromas of bready, caramel, biscuity, nuttiness and a hint of spice. Nothing too complex; some light indistinguishable hop notes.

The taste begins with some light spice and caramel maltiness, followed by some decent hops bitterness. As you re-examine you can detect some lesser toffee and toasted breadiness.

The mouthfeel is light-bodied with moderate, soft carbonation. Pleasant, finishes crisp and clean.

Overall this is a decent example of an amber but nothing too extraordinary. I want to give it more credit than it deserves but find it just too plain. It is was it is supposed to be, a sessionable Amber/Red ale. I just wish it had more memorable characteristics.

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

Bottle from good ta go beer store in PA for 1.99 - thanks to jfam for this

Appearance - Slightly hazy ambercolour with a large size fizzy/frothy beige head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some fairly good lacing. The head lasted for over 5 minutes. There are also some particles floating around.

Smell - Malts, caramel, dark fruits, light hops

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel, fruits (apples/grapes?), and a bit of hops. There is also a bit of a floral flavour to it. It ends with a sweet caramel/malt flavour with some light fruitiness.

Overall - While tasty, it's pretty run of the mill as far as ambers go. I'd take a stone levitation over this. Still worth a try though.

Photo of DrDemento456
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this in the variety pack some time ago.

A - Pours well a very nice amber brown color with an inch of bubbly head.

S - Caramel and biscuit malts dominate the nose.

T - Very smooth. Comes off sweet but simple with a caramel like sweetness and slight hops with a sweet biscuit, bready finish.

M - Light to medium body. Succession-able.

D - I can actually find six packs of this which is great but since I am more of a stout kind of guy, I really would like more for my dollar. Very nice beer for the variety pack though. Simple and delicious.

Photo of jrallen34
3.86/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I drank this from the tap into a pint glass.

It pours a clear dark amber with a huge white head that lasts several minutes with decent retention.

The aroma is light not a whole there with a little hops.

The taste is pretty good, overall very drinkable for an amber ale.

Photo of dirtylou
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i am 90% positive that Bell's Amber was the first Bell's beer i ever had when i moved back to the midwest...i think i bought some cheesy midwest microbrewery sampler that was probably quite overpriced

anyways, batch 8023, single, riley's

appearance: poured into a Bell's pint glass of course...copper-amber body with a foamy beige head, strong stream of bubbles throughout, lots of yeast also present

smell: aroma is that of which an amber should be - fruity and bready, caramel, apple cider

taste: the "flagship" of bells - maybe so, maybe not. sweet apple, caramel malts, toasted nut. still one of my favs of the style

mouthfeel: smooth, medium body

drinkability: pretty good

Photo of avalon07
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a cloudy consistency. There was a big, foamy, long-lasting head and good lacing.

S: Smelled of sweet malt, a bit of hops and fruit.

T: Taste consisted of fruit, sweet malt and some hops. A mostly bitter flavor, but generally well done.

M: A well-carbonated beer with a dry finish. Light-bodied.

D: I'm not the biggest fan of ambers, but this one is a pretty drinkable example of one.

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

Poured into my Schell's shaker pint, Bell's Amber is amber with an egg-shell head leaving clingy lace.

Smell is sweet, a little citrus hops.

Taste is similar, a really nice sweet malt base here, with just enough fruity hops to provide depth, but not bitter, with a clean, quick finish. I consider Amber Ales to be a bit of a benchmark of a (US) brewers ability, and Bell's is really showing off their ability here.

Mouthfeel is pretty well carbonated, medium light bodied.

Drinkability is high, this is a really tasty Amber Ale, just sweet enough to satisfy but not get cloying, the citrus note of the hops keeps it interesting, very well made. I'll have another!

Photo of markgugs
3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from a 12oz bottle into a nonic pint glass

A: Pours a sparkling clear copper with a large, frothy head of off-white foam and leaves some thick, sticky lacing. Looks good.

S: Gives off a moderately nutty, toasted aroma, with perhaps a dash of yeasty doughiness.

T/M: Initial sips produce some light citrus notes, then bigger, bolder flavors of toffee, butterscotch, and even milk chocolate take over. A very nice sweet, malted finish. Beer features a medium-bodied, slightly oily mouthfeel and is carbonated well.

D: This is a very solid beer, I could drink large quantities of this with ease and would do so if I could find them more regularly!

Photo of DefenCorps
4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
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.

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

12 oz bottle poured into a Bell's imperial pint.
5.8% ABV, Batch #10141 (Bottled Dec. 15, 2010)

A - The color plays the part as this brew pours a faintly cloudy amber orange color. The off-white head doesn't last long but leaves some fingers of lace behind.

S - Slightly fruity yeast esters certainly proclaim that it's an ale. Hints of buttered popcorn are disheartening but with a brewery of Bell's caliber I'm not thinking anything is off here. Musty old liquor store and earth with a small toasted amber malt backing.

T - A more playful malt flavor elevates this brew a bit. Toffee and caramel poke out of the toasted wheat bread background. Earthy hops balance well and join the yeasty esters up front.

M - Smooth, medium-bodied and almost creamy, the mouthfeel could use just a touch less carbonation I think. The tingling finish distracts from the balancing dry bitterness.

O - A pretty solid amber all around, it's unique from others in that the yeast notes play a bigger role than other brews. It challenges the drinker with something other than a hop-loaded amber like the rest of the world produces. Well-balanced here.

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.91/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Comes out of the tap a hazy dark honey-amber with a thin but fine-bubbled off-white head. Appetizing malty aroma has fruity and hoppy hints. Thick, malty flavor has a hoppy undertone and a touch of banana. Texture is thick, smooth and fizzy. Definitely worth seeking.

Photo of Durge
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Discovered at an obscure little airport cafe in Minneapolis this brew poured a cloudy amber color with a modest light tan head and outstanding lace. The aroma was mild roasted malts and peanut butter toffee. The taste was crisp grassy hops and sour malt, medium body, melon hints and a good peppery bite on the tongue. Not my favorite Bells but a good quality brew none the less.

Photo of clayrock81
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a amber tinted brown, or I should say copper tinted red, with good carbonation although the head dies quick. Caramel malts on top of floral hops; textbook red ale smell. A lighter bodied red, the hops are rather subdued as this beer passes smoothly and slickly over the tongue, leaving off sweet malt tastes as it goes does. Caramel and roasted/toasted malts mostly, along with some other bitter sweet (chocolate) vibes are balanced (not evenly) with citric hops and the beer finishes w/ a crisp, hoppy backbite. This is a very good red anyone should try, but for some reason it seemed a tad for me. Coulda just been one of those days.

Photo of tbeckett
3.34/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Bottle from Sunoco in Lake Placid. Packaged 7/12/14.

A - Nice golden colour, close to an amber-ish. Good carbonation and some bits floating up. One finger of white head on top. Good lace wall and a half finger of retention.

S - Nice maltiness. Toasty and biscuity. Raisins and a small hop note that's barely there.

T - Rich and malty with a bit of a twang. Sweet with biscuit notes and some caramel/toffee. Not much in the way of a hop presence.

M - Good carbonation, medium body and a sweet toffee finish. Clean.

O/D - While this is a good amber, it's certainly nothing to write home about, especially given the reputation of the brewery. A decent kick at the can, but lacking in depth and hop character for sure. Not worth seeking out.

Photo of champ103
4.17/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a clear copper/reddish color. A two finger white head forms with good retention. Some light sticky lace is left behind.
S: Sweet malt up front. Lightly toasted with some caramel. A unique dark fruity aroma as well. Some plums, pears, even apples.
T: Again, sweet caramel malt. Lightly toasted. Some fruity flavors of pears and apples.
M/D: A medium body that is a little under carbonated for my tastes. A bit thin and watery. Really easy to drink. This is an easy chose for a session beer.

One of the better Bell's offerings that I have had. This is a top notch Amber. Highly recommended.

Photo of thagr81us
3.62/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Served from tap into a standard pint. Pours copper with a minimal white head. There was no apparent lacing present. The aroma was comprised of only subtle hops. The flavor was of small hops and subtle sweet malt. It was light on the palate with low carbonation. Overall this brew was really smooth and was stupidly drinkable. It did not have the greatest flavor and could have been more complex, but it was still enjoyed and was really refreshing.

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

The color is a hazy copper. The head pours pretty nicely and retains itself well, leaving patches of sticky lacing in rings.
The first thing on my nose is malt, then I get some toasted grains followed by hops. Citrus notes finish.
The taste really follows suit. It's a well-balanced brew that incorporates some complex hops flavors with some malt and natural malt sweetness with a little citrus bite and even some nice buttery biscuit notes come out in the toasty grains. Nice.
The body is medium with a nice crisp carbonation. Pretty smooth.
A great brew and a great option for a sessional.

Photo of ZAP
4.27/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An exciting amber ale....a nice spicy hop nose...also some malt sweetness on the nostrils....orangish in color...cloudy...chunks of stuff flloating all over...beautifull!! The taste is definitely dominated by the malt sweetness...but it is more of a Belgian style hard candy sugar type sweetness...the herbal hops lend a nice balance...I've had many "amber ales"...most are OK but not real interesting...this one is veritable adventure in tasting...another dandy from one of the top breweries in the U.S.

Photo of Dogbrick
3.45/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice surprise for an Amber Ale. I was expecting something along the Killian's line but this produced a hint of hops flavor I was not expecting, which made it taste like a hybrid of some kind. Very interesting. Rich color and good aroma. I am anxious to try Bell's other offerings. The only downside was a faint metallic taste toward the end. Not sure what that was about.

Photo of ColForbinBC
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap, served in a pint

Appears a medium amber with a fluffy light khaki cap. The head fell fairly quickly and left some mild lacing along with spotty patches along the top of the beer. A moderate amount of bubbles are seen shooting upwards.

Leaning in, this guy has a caramel malt dominant aroma with an earthy, grassy undertone that lays very low. Pretty straightforward.

A sweet caramel malt flavor with a toasted bready character quickly in tow. Some light hops come through for a muted, earthy finish.

Light medium body with carbonation right where it should be. Lightly sweet up front with a dry, crisp finish. This is very easy to drink with no off-flavors. Definitely enjoyed this more as I worked my way through it. A solid example of the style.

Photo of AgentZero
3.43/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Orangish colour, very cloudy. Decent 1 1/2 finger head on it that quickly dissipated leaving behind no lacing.

S - Malty, but not really a whole lot going on there. A little bit of hops, somewhat biscuity.

T - Sweet with some caramel malts. Little touch of citris hops, finished with a bit of a bitter bite.

M - Carbonated, medium-light bodied. Fits the style, but not really doing a whole lot here.

D - Pretty easy to get down, the bite at the end gives this beer a little bit of character.

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

Another fine beer by the Bell's brigade. Man, I really loved this amber, I thought the taste was amazing and everything about it just says impecably yummy.
Color is cloudy/creamy pale yellowish amber gold, very gem-like, never have I seen an amber like this. Head was small and off-white, faded slowly leaving some tight lacy patches.
Smell is faint, very clean, a bit sweet and fruity, very soft and pleasant.
Taste is very crisp and clean with a perfectly balanced combo of mild fruity hop and sweet malt. Oh, the finish is what got me going and wanting more, its a deep, earthy, even smokey, little pleasure that just gets slightly dry, and is just so smooth the whole way through its amazing. I just wanted to keep drinking it. Feel is a full-medium bodied delight, very nicely light and clean with that spectacular finishing quality I just had a weakness for. Great stuff!

Photo of RBorsato
3.08/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bronze color with lots of tiny suspended sediment, a full pillowy light beige head, decent carbonation, and decent lace. Light spicy malt aroma. Spicy malt flavors on the forefront; almost a bit like it was oxidized or infected but I doubt that. A bit on the sweet side. Medium-light bodied with a decent balance; not too sweet.

Not a rebuy ... bland.

Per Bell's website:
Mostly Pale Malt with some Munich and Caramel Malts
OG: 1.056
ABV: 5.8%

Batch # 7757 ('6329' lasered on bottom)
Tasted: 01/20/07

($7.99 / 6-pack)

Photo of sweemzander
3.3/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle poured into a nonic. 09/27/11 packaged date.

(A)- Pours a hazy amber color. A small cap of white froth & lace.

(S)- A nice malty backbone with some subtle fruits; grainy.

(T)- Similar to the smell. A nice malty backbone with some subtle grainy fruits.

(M)- A good carbonation level and balance. Simple and straightforward, but smooth and malty.

(D)- A solid, straightforward amber. Malty, but smooth and easy drinking.

Bell's Amber Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
86 out of 100 based on 2,729 ratings.