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

Bell's Winter White AleBell's Winter White Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

1,444 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1444
Reviews: 636
rAvg: 3.64
pDev: 13.46%


Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Witbier |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: maxpower on 02-22-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,444 | Reviews: 636 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of orbitalr0x
orbitalr0x

Illinois

4.18/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy bright yellow/orange with a small head that rolls down to a ring around the glass. Spotty lacing lies in its wake. Nice big yeasty wheat nose with notes of cloves and coriander. Big and inticing!

First sip brings a nice citric, yeasty wheat maltiness nuanced by spicy cloves, coriander, pepper and a bit of banana as well. Tasty and well balanced...this is a fine wit right here.

Mouthfeel is good with just enough body to roll over the palate smoothly..good carbonation. Drinkability here is very nice...easily sessionable. I personally think this would be better as a summer seasonal. As a side note...the label picture is beautiful..kudos to Bell's on another tasty brew.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2005 03:08:09 | More by orbitalr0x
Photo of maxpower
maxpower

Missouri

4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy and hazy bright yellow-orange color, spicy, earthy citrus aromas, nice white frothy head that lasts and leaves some lacing in my glass.. Fresh tart citrus and mild spice flavors, crisp carbonated mouthfeel, finishes a bit sour, a very refreshing and drinkable brew.

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2005 01:30:11 | More by maxpower
Photo of deejaydan
deejaydan

Michigan

3.35/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bell's other wheat beer. Cloudy yellow, decent head that vanishes quickly to a thin blanket. Slight spice and orange peel aroma. Smooth taste, kinda bland. A lil full on the mouthfeel, light carbonation. Not a great beer, but not a bad one. Not something I'd look hard for, but something worth drinking.

Serving type: bottle

02-09-2005 01:34:04 | More by deejaydan
Photo of NeroFiddled
NeroFiddled

Pennsylvania

4.28/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bell's Winter White displays the typical appearance of a Belgian wit with a hazy golden-orange body through which very fine bubbles can be seen steadily rising. Its thinly-creamy head of bright white holds fairly well but leaves only spotty lace about the glass. The nose is also quite standard with notes of coriander over a wheatish malt base. In the mouth it's light/medium bodied and the carbonation lends a mild caress to the tongue. It has a lower carbonation level, and less effervescence than many of the better known examples from Belgium. The flavor delivers a delicate blend of semi-sweet wheatish malt; a delicate tartness and some fruitiness from the yeast; and a flick of spiciness and some flavor from the coriander. The low-key bitterness is propperly coralled, and it's immaculately balanced. It finishes with a touch of tartness on the front of the tongue and delicately spicy coriander at the back of the mouth. It lingers shortly and then fades, never building on the palate and lending greatly to its drinkability.

This one's a real winner; and if you think about it, it's not such an odd choice for a winter beer from a brewery that makes more than a half a dozen stouts year-round.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2005 20:51:27 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of GeoffRizzo
GeoffRizzo

Texas

3.9/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Throws a murky dark yellow; ¼ inch decent capped head. The nose mostly attracts wheat, Belgium spices and some citrus. First impression is nice, a very decent blending of pepper and citrus, yeast and some wheat crackers noted in the body. Very mellow and contained, but very well done. The palate is well rounded with wheat, which is the dominating feature of this offering; all in all, pretty solid and a nice ‘change of pace’ winter selection!

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2005 02:23:53 | More by GeoffRizzo
Photo of francisweizen
francisweizen

Arizona

4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy, wheat beer like yellow gold with a nice head of white froth. Aromas of wheat, coriander, lemon, orange, and your typical wit-like aromas. Taste is simple, one-dimensional and totally wheaty wit. Orange peel, wheat, a nice yeastiness, and citrus fruits. Mouthfeel is creamy and nce and the drinkability is good as well. A 4 star wit from bell's brewing.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2005 00:46:52 | More by francisweizen
Photo of sweethome
sweethome

Illinois

3.48/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very cloudy pineapple yellow, with a medium head of white. It dissipates quickly. The nose is yeasty out front, with some corriander in back. Fairly medium mouthfeel. Starts soft on the palate, but doesn't develop particularly well. Profound taste is the yeast mid-mouth. There is significant bitterness late that leaves a spritzy finish, with yeast, banana, and clove.

This does not seem to be just a winter packaging for Oberon. I prefer the depth of malts in Oberon to this - this beer is more in line with the Belgian White style.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2005 01:45:37 | More by sweethome
Photo of mobyfann
mobyfann

Ohio

3.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Paid $8.99 for a mixed 6'er from Wild Oats...

The beer pours a somewhat clear golden base with barely a head of white color, little to no retention and maybe a speck of lace, not impressive. The aromas start off with a medium-heavy malt smell followed by a mix of fruits and spices.

The taste makes more sense of the smell, it's cloves and bananas with a very nice malt taste for a Witbier. It's pretty light in the mouth and nice on the palette as well, the delivery is smooth, making this the high point of the beer. The drinkability is a bit skewed, it's a nice light Witbier at 4.8%, but I think one is enough.

Final Thought: This beer is everywhere, better in the middle of the beer than anywhere else, a solid brew from one of the best.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2005 04:00:05 | More by mobyfann
Photo of alexgash
alexgash

Connecticut

4.1/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bright, lemon yellow body with adequate yeast haze visibility. Head is cloud white, and started big, but didn't last long. Husky, yeasty wheat malt aromas dashed with lemony orange, clove, and light coriander. Smells how a witbier should, even if it is a little mild. Milky wheat malt flavors start out, but are quickly joined/overpowered by yeasty citrus. Tart, acidic lemon and orange juice refreshingly take us into the mildly candy-sweet, spice-tinged, yeasty finish. Medium bodied, with a milky, smoothie feel up front, followed by a refreshing, acidic bout of carbonation, and then back to the smoothie. Another good beer from Bell's.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2005 04:27:20 | More by alexgash
Photo of bditty187
bditty187

Nebraska

3.98/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy, white gold in hue, the color and appearance of the liquid is typical for a Wit. The head developed poorly; at the apex the foam was only a half finger in height. It didn’t last long, in a moment it faded to a fizzy cap before almost fading away. There was some subsequent lacing but it was spotty and it clung poorly. I’ve seen better-looking Wits but this offering is still improved over normal. The nose says “Wit” and I can’t ask for much more. Wheaty-malt backbone with a yeasty undercurrent that melts perfectly with spiced citrus zest. Coriander is clear and pronounced. Orange peel is equally easy to detect. Add in hints of clove and vanilla. Modestly sharp, the potency is moderate. I’d like it louder but there isn’t anything incorrect with the bouquet. I like it… but what is special about it? Should there be anything special about it? Typical. Pleasant. Inviting. I really like the palate; it is very lively and assertive. When I first noticed Bell’s brewed a Wit as a winter seasonal I thought it must be some huge, “Imperial” Wit. It is not. However, a Wit as a winter seasonal does make sense. OSA is spiced. Most Winter Warmers as spiced. What’s the difference? Back to this beer, if you’ve had a great Wit then you’ve had this one. It is textbook from start to finish and since it is well-done, “typical” works. Heavy spiced bill up front, coriander, ginger, clove. In the middle is a wheaty-malt backbone, blasts of citrus, orange, and more spice (subtle this time). The finish is soft, yeasty, wheaty, with a lovely juiciness about it. Similar aftertaste. This is a great tasting Wit. Lovely. This would be a perfect beer for a chilly Sunday brunch. A tickle fuller than medium in body; subtle, natural carbonation, the mouthfeel is very pleasant. It is extremely easy to drink, in a good way. I could imbibe in a few of these beers in one setting. It also helps the abv is low, which is something I don’t see much of in winter beers. I enjoyed this beer completely. I’ll get some more next year, I hope. I purchased a six-pack in Kansas City. It is worth a try, IMO.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2005 16:46:01 | More by bditty187
Photo of tar
tar

Bahamas

3.13/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A bit of a different winter time offering from Bell's. Nice looking in the glass with a hazy golden color and thin, white, bubbly head. Presents a pleasant floral aroma with hints of banana, oranges, and a bit of spice (coriander and maybe a bit of pepper?). A mild overall taste with a dry finish. The spiciness present in the aroma along with citrusy flavors linger and add some depth of flavor. A light bodied beer with a crisp dry feel in the mouth. Not a bad tasting beer, but not particularly exciting--I feel like I'm still waiting for something else to emerge flavorwise.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2004 16:51:23 | More by tar
Photo of oracle
oracle

Indiana

4.68/5  rDev +28.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle served in a tall pilsner style glass

This has long been one of my favorite beers to get growlered. I'm very glad to see it in bottles finally.

Like many other wheat beers, this is one where you want to swirl that last half ounce around in the bottle before you pour it into the glass. It picks up the sediment from the bottle, which enhances the flavor dramatically.

Beer poured a very cloudy golden/yellow with 2 inch bubbly sticky head. Like most wheat beers I've tried, the head left very little to no lacing.

Smell was wonderful. golden ripe banana and warm bread.

Taste was very clean and simply delicious. ripe bananas and sweet apple. Strong yeast characteristics.

Mouthfeel was good. Minimal carbonation. This beer feels light and airy on the tounge.

Still one of my all time favorites.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2004 15:17:09 | More by oracle
Photo of TastyTaste
TastyTaste

Minnesota

4.4/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A great example of a witbier. Very spicy and citrusy, with hints of coriander. Color is a beautiful golden orange hazy color that is a treat to the eye. Good hop presence, perfect carbonation for a beer such as this. An unusual selection for a winter beer, but a good one anyways.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2004 17:55:01 | More by TastyTaste
Photo of Dithyramb
Dithyramb

Maryland

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

One of the many midwest brews obtained through BIF14. Finally starting to review these goodies.

Very nice winter scene on the label, with white-capped trees and a snowy knoll.
Beer pours a dark straw color with only a bit of carbonation. A very weak off white head quickly trailed off.
Initially smell all the right esters, banana, and medicine. As it warmed, some very earthy and musky smells were evident.
Very smooth and creamily wheat controlled brew. All the usuals are in there (citrus, banana, spicy yeast, etc.) but they are well controlled and almost muted by the wheat.\
Finishes very clean and refreshing. Didn't wow me, but I wouldn't mind another.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2004 14:00:20 | More by Dithyramb
Photo of rajendra82
rajendra82

Georgia

4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A curious choice of style for this season, especially from a brewery in frigid Michigan. The Winter Wile Ale poured with a delicately pale straw colored, cloudy, fizzy body. The head was thinner than a Barbie doll suffering from anorexia, and did not stick around too long. The aroma was nicely estery with the appropriately anticipated banana, lemon, and clove flavors. Taste was creamy, tangy, and spicy with a fuller mouthfeel than the looks suggest. Very easy to drink with a low ABV, this is a very nice Witbier on its own merit, and quite a departure from the other winter seasonals that are around.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2004 04:30:39 | More by rajendra82
Photo of ppoitras
ppoitras

Massachusetts

3.6/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle obtained as part of BIF 12 from Ngandhi. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed 1/4" bright white head over the light straw brew. Head fades down to a thin layer of bubbles, not unexpected for the style, and lacing is minimal. Aroma is slightly earthy wheat combined with a citrus sour twang. Taste is a pleasingly sedate wheat character, sharing the stage with a slight sour aftertaste. Mouthfeel is okay, and drinkability is a bit better. Worth a try, but not one of their best offers, in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

12-21-2004 23:17:55 | More by ppoitras
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.63/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

An OK wheat, rating lower than this brewery's standard. Sweet with cloves, ginger and orange from yeast. Combo winter warmer spices and wheat. Reminds me of herbal tea xmas stuff. Brought by contributing Yankee to Doug Shoemaker's All Star Beer Tasting.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2004 02:37:00 | More by Sammy
Photo of chilidog
chilidog

Ohio

4.1/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The bottled version was not what I expected, but still very nice. I had thisone ( I think ) on tap with a different appearance. Thisone however poured a hazy yellow with a nice, average, soft white head that left little lace in spots. The aroma was grass like with a hint of citric. The taste carried that citric zest of lemon while a good blending dose of carbonation cut through a thick wheat base. Leaving a crisp mouthfeel alittle tart. A nice beer that is refreshing and quenching. It would be nice to see thisone, say; Christmas in July. It would fit very well that time of year as well.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2004 13:40:34 | More by chilidog
Photo of benmiliron
benmiliron

Ohio

3.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Paid $8.99 for a six-pack. Light in the glass, yellow with a slight of orange. Frothy white head on top. Taste is wheaty, spicy, and caramalized orangey. I'm not sure how the hell they do that without any spices. Overall not THAT impressive on taste, but still an enjoyable brew for it's other characteristics.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2004 02:59:48 | More by benmiliron
Photo of IrishRedRock
IrishRedRock

Pennsylvania

3.88/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I expect to see this style as a warm-weather seasonal, so kudos to Bell's for changing things up a bit. It is, however, a pretty typical American stab at this style. Pours a hazed gold with a minimal thin lace. Aroma is fresh and grassy, full of yeast and citrus. Flavor shows some fresh floral notes as well as some solid citrus and earthy hops to balance the cloves 'n' bananas spice. Mouthfeel is crisp with a rush of carbonation, though not overdone. All in all not mindblowing, not one I would seek out, but a pretty standard interpretation, and a refreshing one at that.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2004 02:08:32 | More by IrishRedRock
Photo of shippos
shippos

New York

4.53/5  rDev +24.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

courtesy of clvand0 via bif-xmas

poured a very pale hazy yello-orange color with a froathy head that lasted for awhile then dissappeared. yesty corriander and orange aroma, fruity. good amount of carbonation that cuts through the thick wheat malt body leaving your mouth very refreshed. excellent wit.

Serving type: bottle

12-13-2004 22:40:17 | More by shippos
Photo of garymuchow
garymuchow

Minnesota

3.63/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aroma is somewhat complex noting yeasty, phenol, sour , sweet and light fruitiness.
Cloudy yellow. Big full white head. Leaves rings after each drink.
Nice array of flavors giving off a sense of refreshing complexity. Wheat is notable as is phenol (clove), sweet light fruit, a touch of sourness. Finishes with a somewhat heavy bitterness through a medium length.
Doesn't feel as light as could. Carbonation doesn't feel as soft as it could either although the malt feels soft.
An interesting concept for a winter ale. Not quite sure why it qualifies as such (the very white head?, or just a contrast to the summer wheat?). Anyway, nice enough.

Serving type: bottle

12-12-2004 03:42:35 | More by garymuchow
Photo of bashiba
bashiba

Iowa

3.95/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very cloudy yellow with a very small white head that disapears to a thin white line immediatly.

Smells of sweet Citrus flavors and a slight hint of wheat and yeast. Very strong and nice odor.

A very fresh tasting crisp wheat flavor with hints of lemony zest and orange peal. Just a hint of hops compliments this very well. Light and refreshing, sort of the opposite of what I think when it comes to a winter beer, but very good none the less.

Mouthfeel is suprisingly full and creamy for such a light tasting beer.

Another very enjoyable drinkable beer from Bell's.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2004 22:36:25 | More by bashiba
Photo of trancefishy
trancefishy

Colorado

3.4/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a very bizarre, hazy, milky yellow. very small head that disappears quickly.

Aroma is that of citrus, and something of a cross between a belgian yeast smell, and a heff-weizen smell. a bit of bread as well.

Taste is all wheat flavour, which take a while to get up to full flavour in your mouth. Has a tart kind of snap to it, very much like a grapefruit and lemon. i almost wonder if there is lemon juice in this beer. aftertaste starts off sweet, but then turns citric tart. the more i drink it, the more this sour off taste of lemons-gone-bad comes out. i've noticed that once the beer warms up a lot, the off flavour turns inot more of a creamy lemonade thing, which is actually quite tasty.

mouthfeel is fine, but i'm still stuck on this weird taste. drinkability i fear is going to be low, as this aftertaste is getting to me.

I do not especially care for oberon, and thought this would be entirely too simliar for me to bother with. I gave it a go, it's nothing like oberon. at first i thought it was worse, but now i think it is a bit more flavourful, and I guess a good way to do a wit for the winter. an alright beer, worth trying if you haven't.

Serving type: bottle

12-08-2004 22:01:09 | More by trancefishy
Photo of Mitchster
Mitchster

Michigan

4.15/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out to a milky pale golden with orange accents, forming a modest rocky white head with average retention and fair lacing. Carbonation is mild to moderate. Aroma is punctuated by mild orange peel, bready yeast and coriander...very distant banana and cloves if one concentrates very, very hard. Mouthfeel starts kinda zippy with a medium body and a semi-tart wet finish. Taste begins with mild wit yeast funk with a slight cheesiness, coriander, orange peel appears in the middle, and lingering notes of cloves and light bananas are suggested in the finish. The bitterness is right in balance and rather mild, letting the yeast flex it's muscle. Lemony bitterness is predominant in the finish compared to most other wits. Slight metallic off-note and "macro wheat" peeks through in the middle. No other off-flavors and alcohol is imperceptable.

This is an interesting hybrid between a hefe-weizen and a wit. I think this brew is actually much better out of the bottle than it was the few times I've had it on tap. If I couldn't find Holy Moses or Celis White, this may be an acceptable alternative.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2004 00:01:58 | More by Mitchster
Bell's Winter White Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
82 out of 100 based on 1,444 ratings.