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Bell's Winter White Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Bell's Winter White AleBell's Winter White Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

706 Reviews
THE BROS
84
good

(Read More)
Reviews: 706
Hads: 2,124
Avg: 3.67
pDev: 22.62%
Wants: 59
Gots: 353 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Michigan, United States | website

Style | ABV
Witbier | 5.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: maxpower on 02-22-2003

Fermented with a Belgian ale yeast, this blend of barley & wheat malts yields a mixture of clove and fruity aromas, all without the use of any spices. Deliberately brewed to retain a cloudy appearance.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Bell's Winter White Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 706 | Hads: 2,124
Photo of scaliasux
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

L - Medium-light yellow. Hazy. Short and not persistent white head.
S- Fruity banana. Bubble gum.
T - Bready and fruity. Banana and sweet citrus. Some clove and banana. Mildly bitter citrus aftertaste.

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Photo of Jonoesh5
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

Appearance: opaque lemon yellow, cloudy, small white head with zero retention

Smell: biscuity, grains, oats

Taste: refreshing, floral, soda water, simple

Mouthfeel: light, watery, well carbonated

Overall: Drinkable session beer I'd return to someday, but not my favorite Bell's.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

An odd choice for a Winter Ale. Very wheat-ey. They upped the gravity to make a creamier and more flavorful Belgian Wit, but it still lacks the punch in malt complexity and alcohol for me to consider it for a winter beer. Having said that, it's a good beer. spicy, sweet, bananna-ey, citrucy, peppery, sweet, and subtle. Little dryness or lingering. Creamy and silky to the palate. I'd put another lable on it and drink it into the spring and summer.

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Photo of teovaldi
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear yellow with a small head that dissipates quickly.

Smells of wheat, citrus hops and spicey.

Taste starts out sweet with malted barley and wheat. Finishes slightly citrusy and spicey.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is alright, a bit too spicey for me. Could use some more carbonation.

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Photo of nmyers
3.24/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It poured a cloudy golden almost orange color. The aroma of this beer has hints of sweet citrus and bananas and some Belgium candy sugar. The taste of this beer was similar to smell hints of sweet sugars and citrus and banana notes were also present. This drinkable beer was smooth but had a slightly bitter after taste. Overall this was an average winter beer.

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Photo of soju6
3.24/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: pours a hazy copper color with a decent head that fades to bits of lacing.

S: Mild aroma of fruit with a bit of spice and hint of grain in the background.

T: Taste is a bit muted with a bit of fruit and malt sweetness. mild bitterness and a quite clean finish.

F: Light body, smooth and refreshing.

O: Nice beer that goes down easy. A enjoyable change of pace wit beer that compliments the seasonal offerings.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.24/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with appealing label art and white branded pry-off pressure cap acquired for $1.79 at Zipp's Liquor in Minneapolis, MN and served into a stem-tulip. Expectations are fairly high given the brewery. Reviewed as a witbier; it identifies as a white ale on the label. Packaged 10/18/13. 5.0% ABV confirmed per the label.

Served cold - straight from the fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a half finger wide head of white colour. Okay thickness. Not much creaminess. Retention is well below average - maybe 1 minute. No lacing sticks to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Body colour is a translucent semitransparent orange-copper of average vibrance. No yeast particles are visible.

It's not cloudy like every traditional witbier I've ever seen, which is a bit disconcerting. It's far from unique or special. No egregious flaws.

Sm: Belgian pale malts, flaked wheat, banana, clove, coriander, pilsner malts. Lemongrass. Faint lemon citrus. Light floral and fruity hops. A clean aroma of average strength.

No alcohol is detectable.

T/Mf: Lightly floral and fruity hop notes. Lemon peel. Lemongrass. Clean barley. Wheat - possibly flaked. Belgian pale malts. Banana. Clove. It's got a crisp yeasty character.

No alcohol comes through.

A clean balanced flavour profile which isn't quite gestalt, but is certainly cohesive. Not real complex or subtle. Not all that intricate or nuanced either, but then this style is about elegant balance and mastery of simple ingredients.

Smooth, wet, crisp, and medium-bodied. Nice thickness. Decent body. It's got a good refreshing presence on the palate. Complements the flavour profile well. A biteen overcarbonated.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, harsh, or rough.

Dr: A drinkable and enjoyable American take on a witbier, but ultimately it's not amongst the best in the style. Bell's has provided a solid go-to witbier for the local market, but it can't compete with the best traditional Belgian offerings - or even Allagash White, for that matter. I could easily session with this stuff, but it isn't world-class. Certainly likable, but I wouldn't recommend it to friends or buy it again.

High C+

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Photo of Spica66
3.24/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed cold from a bottle to a glass

A - Hazy yellow color, thin foam, decent lacing ring, llots of carbonation

S - Malty, citrusy, not a lot of hops here

T - Has a sweetness (almost citrus sweetness) that does not agree with me. It is as if whatever was used to flavor the beer has taken over the malt and hops finish that I expect.

M - Very light beer.

D - I expected something heavier or creamier because of the Winter in the name. I would not buy this again.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of sisterofba
3.23/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Bought in April on clearance, so wasn't expecting much (but I have to rate what I tasted). Decent, per previous reviews, but probably better when fresh, obviously.

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Photo of Viggo
3.23/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Picked up by Lexx on her way through Michigan!

Pours a cloudy yellow/golden, one finger bone white head forms, settles down to a thin ring pretty soon, no lacing. Smell is malty, some wheat, sweet, clove, banana, citrus, touch of yeast. Taste is malty, bit lemony, vanilla and banana, bit of spice, bready yeasty finish. Mouthfeel is light bodied with medium carbonation, pretty smooth, moderately refreshing, pretty mediocre example of a witbier though. Thanks Lexx!

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Photo of dfuller
3.23/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: cloudy yellow with a fine white foam that laced the glass nicely for a light brew.

Nose: fairly clean, with a light whiff of citrus.

Taste: Light, crisp hops are obvious right away. The citrus notes are light, but present after the early hops and through to the aftertaste. The finish is clean, leaving a bit of citrus behind.

This is a bit cleaner beer then I had anticipated, but it would make a good session beer when in season. Oddly enough, though, with its clean nose and finish I think I would rather drink it on a hot day than a cold one.

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Photo of BlindPig
3.23/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Thin white head on a cloudy golden body.
S- Big banana with orange peel come through right off the bat. Some spices like cloves, pepper, and maybe even a hint of cinnamon.
T- Kind of mild in flavor. Flavors match well to the aroma just if you tone everything down by quite a lot. The bitterness is on the bigger side for this style. Leaves a nice little bite with orange peel.
M- Medium/thin body with low/medium carbonation.
D- I think it is decent but nothing outstanding. I'm not sure how old this beer is so not sure if it is past its prime. I would think its a few months passed it's peak and starting to show signs of oxidation.

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Photo of Mdog
3.21/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Slightly cloudy yellow with good carbonation.

Smell: Yeasty, clove aroma.

Taste: Wheat, clove, a little citrus.

Mouthfeel: Good for the style.

Drinkability: It's strange for me to have a witbier in winter, but this would be a decent choice if I wanted one.

This is a decent beer, but nothing too special. It just feels weird to drink this in the middle of winter.

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Photo of bunnyhustle
3.2/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle into tulip glass. Pours hazy yellow (mainly) with 1 finger white head. Poor retention and lacing. Smell was strong of yeast, some spice and a little bread. I thought this beer had a unique taste, I think it tasted a little like a spicy hefe. Some banana and bubblegum with some corriander and other spices. Yeast and dry malt as well. Mouthfeel I felt was a little water and slightly undercarbonated. Overall not a great beer but not bad, I should note I'm not a huge Witbier fan though.

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Photo of Applesauce1
3.2/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I picked this up at the Pit Stop in Nelsonville, OH.

Appearance: yellow with a 1/2" white head on the pour....decent appearance

Smell: lemon and clove

Taste: clove, slight citrus....thats all i'm really detecting

Mouthfeel: light bodied

Drinkability: could do 2 in a night cause it's light, but overall not that great of a taste

This is one of the less impressive Bell's beers I've had....could be a bad bottle also though...or that i'm just not in the mood for this style in february

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Photo of lwillitz
3.2/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12-oz bottle into Snow Cap nonic

A - enormous head of white over a crystal-clear body of golden yellow; initially crystal-clear, but cloudy after I finished pouring the bottle; high in visible carbonation

S - lemon, Belgian yeast (notes of bubblegum, clove, banana)

T - lemon, clove, Belgian yeast; quite funky; fairly boring

M - sticky medium body, highly carbonated

O - overly carbonated for my taste, smells and tastes funky, Belgian yeast is the main feature here with nothing to keep it interesting; unimpressive

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.2/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

The first beer I have ever had from bells that was a let down, and honestly one of the few that wasn't amazing. This pours thick and murky tired yellow with basically no head from the tap. It's got a ton of viscosity and minimal carbonation, the opposite of what I look for in the style. Banana yeast and spice and orange esters in the nose, some citrus to the taste, but way too much grain here, especially the wheat. It lacks all the delicate features of the bets wits, and warms up ugly. I'm surprised this came from bells. It's not a bad beer, but it's nowhere near their full potential. I see the winter side of it, and appreciate the attempt, but I just doesn't pan put here

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Photo of beagle75
3.18/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a becker glass.

A: Opaque, pale golden color with one finger of diminishing white foam head. Light lacing remains on the glass.

S: Generally mild but appropriate; clove is most apparent, followed by delicate lemon and baker's yeast.

T: Begins off-dry, with pasty wheat flour, mild clove spice, and citric acidity. Flavors simplify during the middle, tasting a bit like dilute powdered sugar solution soaked into Wonder bread. A mild thread of bitterness stands out in the finish, suggestive of juicy green plant stems.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, acidic on the palate, with brisk carbonation.

D/O: This American-brewed wit brings a minimalist impression, seeming held back by it. The smell works, but could be more intense, while the appearance is pleasing in its luminous impenetrability. The flavors seem underdeveloped, which doesn't really elevate this beer over notables of the style. It is refreshing, but not at all memorable.

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Photo of Frozensoul327
3.18/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Wasn't all that impressed with this seasonal offering from Bell's. Poured out to a hazy yellow color with a big white foam head. Medium level of carbonation. Aromas were of grains, yeast and some farm straw and hay. Taste was slightly odd... overly spicy with citrus tones and minimal malt. Mouthfeel was almost biting, with some acid like qualities battling with my tastebuds. Only fair drinkability. I'd go for something else from the Bell's line-up first.

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Photo of mikeal1917
3.18/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was at a bar in East Lansing when I got the chance to taste this brew. Let's just say the beer was better than most of the bands.

Appearance- It was lowlight in the bar, but I crowded around a window to look at it. Beer has a light amber, with wisps floating around the middle of the glass, typical of wheat beers. Didn't keep much of a head.

Smell- Had a decent smell, evidence of of that yeast smell. Smelled similar to Blue moon, which is also a Belgian style wheat beer.

Taste- Smooth refreshing wheat beer, bread like aftertaste from the yeast

Mouthfeel- Thinner beer than other wheat beers I've had. Smooth feel

Drinkability- Goes down easy, mild bitterness that goes a long way in terms of taste. Not to much, not to little

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
3.18/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I got this beer from landrewg, thanks!

12oz bottle served in a pilsner glass.

L - slightly hazed yellow color with a short white head that thinned to a ring.

S - wheat beer aroma with a little lemon scent.

T - light lemon zest but mostly malted wheat.

F - light bodied with good carbonation.

D - it goes down easy.

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Photo of jdoherty
3.17/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured this beer into a small white sampling glass. Pours very fizzy and seems unfiltered, yeast is visibly noticable.

It smelled almost entirely of yeast, there were other subtle smells but I couldnt put my finger on.

Tastes identical to hefe-weizens with a lot more of the yeast taste.

The carbonation really tingles on your tongue, (the fizz came from somewhere) and it had a very light bodied feel.

Not exactly the winter warmer I would have expected, not many spices or strong taste in any way, but it is still rather pleasant served ice cold.

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Photo of Shumista
3.16/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pilsener glass.

A- Poured a hazy yellow with a fizzy white head. Also, off white cloudy swirls were present in the beer that slowly dissipated as the beer settled in the glass. I've never seen anything like this before and really have no idea what was going on. I can say that it did not make the beer appear appetizing though.
S- Smells like a witbier, maybe a little light on the typical witbier spices.
T- Tastes like a witbier. Like the smell suggested it is less spicy than others that I've had.
M- Smoother, creamier and less crisp than other witbier's I've had. To me it had a mouthfeel that bordered on slick.
D- About as drinkable as others of the style.

I was very surprised to see that Bell's releases this as a winter seasonal as I typically don't associate wits with cold weather. Kudos for trying something different I guess though.

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Photo of rickenclacker
3.16/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The strongest hint here is the clove...way too much. Others have reviewed saying banana, or bubble gum taste....not too off the mark with that comment.
i live in Kalamazoo and am a Bells fanatic...as are alot of others I know.
Oberon, Two Hearted, etc...they all love these...but the Winter Lager, I have not seen one person drink this.
(other than me)
This one needs a little adjustment.

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Photo of waughbrew
3.16/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

[generously received in trade with ghostwalker 3/2006]

Very hazy very pale yellow with a big-bubbled ugly head with little retention or lacing. Smell is pleasantly interesting, with light lemon-banana, white pepper, bitter orange peel, and rubber. Taste is surprisingly similar, though adds a significant honey component. Feel is medium body with carbonation that, although it is at low levels, feels big bubbled and sizzly. Finishes sweet and coating. Pleasant.

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Bell's Winter White Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
83 out of 100 based on 706 ratings.