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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.

675 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 675
Hads: 1,962
Avg: 3.67
pDev: 13.35%
Wants: 53
Gots: 248 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

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
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Reviews: 675 | Hads: 1,962
Photo of bigeyedfish
2.73/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle, containing "a seasonally nuanced wheat ale that is both stylish and refreshing" poured into a pint glass.

Light orange color, with 1/2 a finger of head that vanishes quickly. A ton of carbonation; some sticks to the outside of the glass and there is still a lot bubbling up from the center. Almost a nice beer to look at.

Smells of mainly orange peels and to be honest, not much else. Not enough alcohol to be present on the nose and for the most part it's just orange.

The taste is mostly lemon-juice like, which is weird since there is no lemon on the nose. Kind of a chalk-dust taste that seems to be the product of lemon meets a sickly amount of carbonation. Yeah, this beer is slightly off-putting.

The mouthfeel leaves a lot to be desired. It's a very carbonated beer- as in the first sip, mid-palate and finish are all full of carbonation. To be honest, this is dissapointing.

Drinkability? You could drink it all night...but why would you. This, especially coming from Bell's is a disappointing beer. I don't see how this is a winter ale (when i let my roomate sample this he remarked that it 'tasted like something we had in the summer'), nor a white ale. Nor a Bell's beer. This beer leaves me confused, about most things except my liking for this beer. Which is almost non-existent. It even starts to look like Tang after awhile. I'm almost afraid to write this, but I kind of like Tang more. Blah.

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Photo of HappyBivouac
3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Got in a mixed 6 pack just for the hell of it.

a- Pours a hazy golden yellow with a decent bubbly white head that dissipates a little too fast, leaving an unattractive cloudy white film of bubbles for a while.

s- Pretty bland smell of wheat and maybe pine hops. Nothing much comes through.

t/m- Well this is a decent taste but maybe a bit too light for me. Strong bread dough flavor and light spices right up front and throughout with lingering pine hops. I tad bit of banana-y sweetness is hinted at in the middle. I like that the wheat presence is delicious-- probably the most satisfying thing about this beer. It is overall fairly light-bodied.

d- this drinks almost like it was aimed directly at "less filling" folks, so if that's your thing you might be able to put away several of these. It doesn't compel me personally to try another.

I might be being a bit unfair to the style I'm sure, as lighter beers generally don't satisfy me as much. I've liked bell's other beers and so I picked one of these up on a whim.

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Photo of icemonkey908
3.36/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy, pale yellow into a pint glass. Smell is not very strong, overpowered by wheat with some hints of banana. The taste follows as slightly tart, dominated by wheat with hints of banana and maybe some spiciness with a moderately carbonated body.

I guess I don't usually see this style called a winter ale... Seems more like a spring/summer offering, but that doesn't matter too much. Overall a decent witbier.

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Photo of granite
2.83/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Compliments of Lackenhauser

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A--- Poured a pale straw with lots of yeast in suspension. A thick creamy head collapsed in a couple minutes.

S--- Sweet smelling tropical fruit with clove and vanilla.

T--- I wish it tasted as good as it smells. It was very acidic and flavorless. My tongue hates me right now

M--- Good carbonation and to style.

D---A little disappointing flavor wise but I’m happy I got to try it.

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Photo of crazybrody06
3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap. poured a cloudy orange color with small head and no lacing. Smell was wheat with some coriander and clove. Taste is wheat, orange peel, corinander, clove, banana.
Mouthfeel was light with a good amount of carbonation. Drinkabilty was high if you like wheat beers. Not really my favorite style to drink in the winter. Feels like more of a summer beer except for the spices.

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Photo of mrquartetman
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - It is as it says: white, or really a light straw color. It pours with a small head that disappears fairly quickly.

S - Very citrusy and yeasty, fruity, a hint of banana

T - It looks like a witbier. It tastes like one too, but with a more aggressive and persistent flavor. Lots of citrus and yeast spice across the palate. The follow is lemony and sweet at the same time.

M - Full bodied and refreshing, estery.

D - A most drinkable beer, even more so than the Bell's Christmas

I've seen some critiques of this beer that ding it for being atypical with respect to winter styles. I don't recall seeing a rule that a white ale could not be a winter beer. This kind of innovation in the winter line is very welcome. Sort of an, um, winter welcome.

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Photo of Goldopelgt
3.63/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a hazy golden, straw hue with a decent white head and a good amount of lacing...

S: Yeasty, citrus notes up front with some spiciness and banana that follows...

T: Similar to the nose...citrus-y, yeasty, a little spice...very well balanced, everything you would expect from the style...

M: Crisp, well-carbonated, refreshing...very nice

D: A very enjoyable and easily drinkable brew, what you come to expect with most Bell's products...I would definitely recommend this brew, but my only knock would have to be that a winter 'white ale' seems slightly out of place for the season, albeit delicious...

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Photo of Shibbykaiyai
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

All around well crafted ale.

I had the Bell's Winter White at a local bar on tap via a pitcher (not my choice). It pours nice and orangish with a some cloudiness to it.

Taste was quite good. I liked it off the bat and after a couple more tastes, grew to like it more. I have since purchased it in bottle and enjoyed it at home as well.

On tap or in bottle (tap better of course), I recommend this seasonal ale while you can get it.

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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 BrewStoutMagic
3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hey its Saturday night live with a great wheat beer.The aroma is fruity with a hint of yeast. Full of flavor. With bananas, cloves,and a bit of lemon too.It has a nice golden haze.As far as drinkability I could easily drink these all night. All were missing for a winter ale is more alcohol.The label says abv. is 5.0.The label is nicely designed with trees and snow.Makes me feel like taking a winter walk through the woods to grandma's house.I hope the beer at her house is this good. Other than that this is a very smooth tasting beer.I will be buying more soon.

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Photo of dnrobert24
4.62/5  rDev +25.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My typical standard of measurement for wit beers is Hoegaarden. Bell's Winter White might be my new standard. First off, I love that they used the white winter theme to brew a beer like this out of season. Typically, wheat beers can only be found fresh during the summer. It is nice to know you can find one light and refreshing in the winter too as a six-month old wit beer sipped in January would almost certainly be stale. Not this--it had a crisp clean freshness that comes only from hefty doses of wheat played against the musty phenols of the belgian yeast. I could not smell or taste any orange or coriander, lemon or lemongrass, just nice round full bready yeast. Even the color was pale yellow, though not as white as Hoegaarden. It did not feel overly fizzy or thin, as can sometimes be the case for this style. Excellent drinker. High marks all around.

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Photo of PorterLover83
3.93/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Came slightly cloudy gold with not too much head. Had a pinch of banana smell to it. Had some orangish hints in there too. Taste was kinda like bananas in the background too. little bit of spice as well as a light malty finish. Medium to light mouth feel. Very drinkable in my opinion because its a great brew and a lower ABV. Recommended.

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Photo of CochonKing
3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a clean gold with an excellent long lasting 3 finger head. Aromas of banana and bubble gum followed by malt are present on the nose of the beer. Malt and lemon rind on the palate with a watery finish. Small bubbles and and a light body with a medium finish. An ok beer

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Photo of inhoc00
3.77/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bells winter white pours a straw yellow with small head and minimal retention.

smell is of yeast with nice lemon. good smell.

taste follows the smell, nice nothing really special.

mouthfeel has a bit of carbonation. crisp and refreshing.

Drinkable for the style and in general. I must say I really don't get this release. this would be a fine beer to have six months from now in 90 degree weather. in chicago tonight its single digits with six inches of snow. why would i want a light crisp refreshing beer with no complexity? i am not trashing wit, i actually love the style - in the summer. still its a good wit. maybe there will be some available in the summer.

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Photo of Sallerj
4.02/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer will satisfy seasoned beer snobs and newbies alike. The smell is my favorite part, with an almost-aggressive phenol funkiness, with sweet grassy floral notes. After that, it's solid but unremarkable. It has all the right flavors in all the right places, and a little lingering orangy citrus at the end. It's ever-so-slightly thin in a way that makes me unsure whether to knock a half point off of taste or off of mouthfeel.

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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 TheStig
2.73/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This is a decent, inoffensive and light tasting beer that isn't very complex. I'm a little disappointed because seasonal beers tend towards possessing attributes that fit with the season-- halloween gets the crop of pumpkin flavored beers, summer sometimes rustles up some sort of jalapeno-flavored creation and so on. This *winter beer* has nothing "wintry" about it apart from the name and the label artwork-- certainly nothing that suggests the scents and smells of winter (cinnamon, nutmeg, pine, chocolate, burning wood or even a decade-old, rock hard fruitcake.) The scents are typical average witbier: bread, wheat and yeast. There's a slight hint of citrus but it's gone quickly and doesn't translate into taste-- which is similarly average. So, why am I paying 11 bucks for a six pack of this when I could be trying that Allagash Dubbel I passed over?

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Photo of tjacobs610
2.73/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: A very hazy yellowish amber color, with a thin white colored head that has no retention and not much lacing

Smell: Very fruity and citrusy aromas, has a bit of a musty smell to it as well. The citrusy aromas are very prominent

Taste: Very fruity and spicy taste right up front. Followed by a citrusy orangeish taste that leaves a little bitter taste in your mouth. Overall has a very strong taste

Mouthfeel: Very light body with very minimal carbonation. Very thick on the palate but not thick enough for its class

Overall: Very poor example of a witbier. Doesn’t seem thick enough but it does have good smell and great appearance

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Photo of GrizzlyBrew
3.4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Straw to pale golden, very hazy, nice white head that seems to stick around

S - wow! I'm picturing a lemon with cloves stuck all over it ( like something your mom might use as a decoration at... well... xmas), nice yeast character, some clean malt laying around in the background

T - hmmm... a fair amount of spice bouncing around for its malt support base to get to the party, but it never shows up. a very mild malt character fails to provide the counterpoint to the spice. It just seems too soft overall. I'n not sure if this is what a "winter wheat" is supposed to taste like, but it's just not as refreshing (or spicy, bold, filling) as I would have hoped

M - again, not enough punch for me. I want bubbles, large ones even. There is a neutral balance of malt and bitterness and it's pretty smooth, maybe just not appropriate for style, doesn't scrub my palate like I'd like

O - confuses me, plenty of other white ales I'd rather have

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Photo of jeffmart22
4.02/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy nearly opaque yellow with a one finger head that dissipates to just a thin film. Very little lacing on the glass.

A - Strong citrus zest and a peppery spice aroma. Nice farmhouse type of funk from the yeast. Nice smelling Witbier.

T - Very easy to drink. Starts a little sour with some citrus flavor that leads into a slightly sweet mandarin orange flavor. Very refreshing.

M - Light in body, Flavor duration is short to moderate.

O - Nice and refreshing Witbier. Would be great in the hot summer weather.

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Photo of Sconnie
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pale in color, with a light haze. Very little head. Smells more like a hefeweizen than a witbeer, with banana and clove overtones sticking out. A tasty beer, crisp and smooth with banana and clove like the smell, and some light malty sweetness. Not a lot of hop flavor. Nicely drinkable; wouldn't mind kicking a few of these back in front of the fire on a cold winter night.

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Photo of BeerHistoryGuy
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%

I know this often gets rated lower than most Bell's beers, or many beers in general, but I like it. To me, it's a simple, refreshing, everyday winter beer that's goes down easy. I can drink it with dinner or while watching the ballgame. I like the fruitiness and the spices. I will admit that it borders on a summer beer rather than a winter, but I truly enjoy it. It's one of those beers I try not to overthink -- I just like it as a solid, simple, balanced beer.

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Photo of EORS
3.92/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a hefeweizen glass. Next in the tour of Bell's that started at their brewery and continues through this mix and match 6 pack...

A: Hazy orange yellow with a thin white head. Low carbonation, no lacing.

S: A bit of musty yeast, citrus, spice, and a banana sweetness.

T: Mustiness and spice more dominant than in the aroma. Good citrus flavor, and an overall sweet finish.

M: On the heavy side for a wit, so medium. Could use a bit more carbonation to liven it up.

O: I was pleasantly surprised by this beer - it leans toward the sweeter side of wits without being syrupy or sickening. Emphasizes citrus and spice over must and tartness. Not the best example of the style, but very drinkable.

Winter, though?

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Photo of latackbeer
3.47/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is pretty good Witbier. No head what so ever, it looked like it was forming and then quickly dissipated. Great straw color and very hazy with plenty of carbonation. I get a little lemon but more orange peel.

I could throw back a few of these but there was nothing special about it that I would get another 6pk. Great Taste just a little on the boring side!!

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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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Bell's Winter White Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
83 out of 100 based on 675 ratings.