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

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

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

1,777 Ratings
THE BROS
84
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,777
Reviews: 660
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 13.5%
Wants: 43
Gots: 140 | FT: 1
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
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Bell's Winter White Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,777 | Reviews: 660 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of trbergman
3.98/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a shaker pint.

A - Cloudy, golden-yellow with one finger of bone white head.

S - Wheat, some lemon and orange-peel citrus, subtle spice.

T - Taste follows from the nose, with light citrus flavors and a light, peppery spiciness.

M - Medium bodied, the beer is both creamy and a bit effervescent.

D - Easy drinking, quaffable beer.

Received this as an extra from gratefulbeerhead. I'd tried this a few years back and was unimpressed, so it was nice to revisit.

Photo of teovaldi
3.28/5  rDev -9.6%
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.

Photo of stewart124
4.05/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy yellowish-orange with no head to write about.

Huge wafts of citrus and corriander in the nose.

The taste is sharp and has plenty of citrus to go along with the spicy notes. The mouthfeel is bigger than I anticipated.

Plenty of citrus and spice left on the tongue and loads of refreshment.

I look forward to this winter seasonal every winter because it is a change to the status quo.

Photo of JordanEllwanger
3.45/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

After a decent stir at the bottom of the bottle the sediment gives a nice semi-transparent pale yellow white cloud to the glass. A pure white head traps aromas of soft spices and wheat goodness. A good white ale taste slightly watered down. Overall a Nice white ale.
Cheers.

Photo of BrewerB
3.85/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cheers to TwinsDaddy for the hookup on this beer!

Poured into an Old Rasputin nonic pint glass.

A - Slightly hazy, medium gold. Thin white head dissipated quickly.

S - Lots of graininess in the nose - freshly baked bread, saltine cracker. Hints of orange rind.

T - Sweetly malty with a noticeable bready character. Moderate/moderately-low bitterness. Low presence of floral hops. Medium finish.

M - Moderately bodied/moderate carbonation.

D - Decent witbier. Could use more tart/spice.

Photo of abrand
3.4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a tumbler. Interestingly the batch area that is on all Bell's labels is blank. I may be drinking this shortly after this brews prime.

The Winter White pours a golden orange color with lots of carbonated bubbles that shoot up from the laser engraved hop at the base of the SN glass. A nice frothy clear white head sits atop with no visible lacing. There is a nice sweet malt aroma with a solid hop backbone. Taste isn't nearly as pronounced as the nose is. Sort of watery but still some citrus and hop notes. A little too light for me. Mouthfeel is thin and crisp and with this being a winter ale there should be a little more bit and thickness to the mouth. Drinkability is overall pretty solid. The nose is great, quaff is mediocre and with a nice 5% abv makes it sessionable.

Photo of DrDemento456
4.2/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Man bells is pretty awesome. I had their variety pack and didn't hate any of them so when I found an old winter ale I mixed and matched it in my sixer!

A - Hazy golden in color with a decent head. Hefeweizen?
S - Some banana, clove, and citrus sort of like a... Hefeweizen?
T - Sight bitters and citrus with a mild banana taste. decent
M - Light in fact too light for a winter ale.
D - I am not too sure. I like the porter or brown ale better but this one makes my bells top three (of five)

Overall I seem to wonder like everyone else why this is a winter ale? It's not a big beer or doesn't have any decent spice tones to it that makes it seasonal. I am so confused...

BTW it's 5 percent by volume not 4.5 someone should really keep track of the ABV...

Photo of baos
3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass.

A: Pale slightly hazy straw body over a three finger white head that leaves a bit of lacing here and there.

S: Nice wheaty bubble gum banana. Sugared lemon zest and coriander.

T: Nice wheat and pale malts on the get go. Bubble gum, banana and a bit of spice with coriander and bits of lemon and orange peel. Hops lend more spiciness get that clover beeswax cascade and some fuggles maybe. Nice beer that balances out the malts nicely. Ends a nice bitter-dry.

M: Light feel that's pretty good for this type.

D: Very drinkable witbier. This variety was one of the first brews I had other than macro brews when I was young. So it will always bring back good memories.

Photo of WwRGSwW
3.3/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: bright yellow color with a thick white foam head that quickly dissipates. little to no lacing.

S: Malt hits you first, followed by banana and a slight hint of nuts

T: A combination of banana and nuts. the after taste is nutty, but not offending.

M: Very light and crisp.

D: Very easy to drink. Mine was gone before I knew it. Nothing to really rave about, but good none the less.

Photo of irish
4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When reviewing a wit, you almost have to say "for the style", because it is above all a subtle style. Other reviewers seem to penalize it for being true to style. But I think you have to take the style as a given.

It pours plainly without a lot of fuss or head, and settles into a very clear pale liquid.

Modest nose. It sips easily, with a moderate bitterness afterward, but subtle. Here's a beer that really IS "less filling" and "tastes great. It could easily qualify as a session beer.

As long as I am mentioning that horrid ad's phrase, I should reiterate that this beer falls heavily on the "less filling" side, although it really DOES taste great. A nice change from other monstrous, super-hopped and -alcoholic winter beers.

Photo of archiespeck
3/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had this out of a bottle and it just left me cold (no pun intended). I'm usually the biggest Bell's cheerleader around, but this is a massively disappointing beer. The smell and taste are extremely average. That's all you can really say about this beer. It's not terrible, but the 9.99 price tag is not justified in the least bit. You can do better than this, Bell's.

Photo of jrallen34
3.93/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

I drank this from a 12oz bottle into an Orval chalice.

The beer pours a light clear gold with a light white head. The head is gone quickly with light retention.

The aroma is sweet with a little bitter hops.

The taste is ok, nothins special. This is not a winter beer. This is a generic beer, not to say it isn't a good sessional but this is more of a summer beer.

Photo of Bitterbill
3.25/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of russpowell. Thanks Russ!

5.0%abv listed on the label.

It pours a cloudy yellow colour with about an inch of foam. The lacing is ok for the style.

The smell is...funky and yeasty with good notes of banana and anise with a lemon hop aroma bringing up the rear. It smells inviting to me.

The taste is of wheat, bananas, light lemon zest, and a bit of bread. I like the smell more than the taste for some reason. Maybe the overall flavours come off to me as being bland.

On the low side of medium bodied with low levels of carbonation. At this time, the foam is gone and no more lacing.

Drinkability? It drinks ok but following one bottle with another, if I had one, would not be something I'd do.

Photo of Sallerj
3.98/5  rDev +9.6%
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.

Photo of Gehrig
4.08/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at Jupiter's.

Cloudy orange with absolutely no head at all. Nice color, anyway.

Fine and moderately aromatic nose, plenty of citrus and a little yeasty in the smell--good. The taste is as Witbier should be--light, fruity, malty--with plenty of citrus and a decent dash of coriander and ginger. While I'd like a little more spice, this is undoubtedly taste. Smooth, too, malty and light in texture. Delicious.

It's a nice representative of the style--not the best I've had, not exactly complex, but tasty and accessible. I won't hesitate to order it again.

[Second review, 11/7/10: Enjoyed from a bottle]

One key difference between the first time I had this, and today, is how much more well-rounded I thought the mouthfeel was this time. I would give this session's score, from a bottle, a 4.5 for its smooth texture with a good degree of spicy bite that I find a welcome improvement.

Regardless, a delicious Witbier that is well worth enjoying multiple times, as this review hopefully showed. More good stuff from Bell's, one of the very best breweries that the US has to offer.

Photo of VaTechHopHead
3.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Pours a straw yellow/light brown hue with a quick fading white head. Leaves a good amount of lace down the glass and it is, obviously, unfiltered.

S - Lots of scents of lemon, wheat, and coriander... more so than an average witbier. It has a pleasant sour/spicy aroma at the end coming from the blend of spices and/or yeast strain used in the brew.

T - It was a little watery, which was unexpected from the aroma, so the flavor didn't pop like the smell did. The lemon and sour notes come to bat first and the yeasty esters hit clean up. There are light hints of spices throughout the entire palate.

M/D - Had a light body with lots of small carbonation bubbles. No traces of off flavors or too much tannins either. Refreshing and easy to drink, which is a bit different than most winter beers but it works.

Photo of webmanspidey
3.43/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a chalice. Cloudy light orange in color, sparkling with minimal head. Smell is sour lemon, musty oranges, and pepper. Taste is loaded with lemon with some mixes of other spices. Not that complicated or interesting, but light and very refreshing.

Photo of crossovert
3.43/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle purchased at Bell's General Store.

It pours with a thin quickly dissipating white head and a golden body.

It smells wheaty and yeasty, there isn't too much by way of scent here.

The tast is lemony, whaty, and lightly spiced, somehting you would drink in summer not winter.

This beer screams average.

Photo of thekanna
4.43/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch #9472.

A: Pours a nice, slightly hazy gold with a thin, foamy head and large, effervescent bubbles.

S: Strong bready yeast flavor and thick, wholesome wheat malts, reminiscent of Ayinger Brau Weisse.

T: Strong wheat malt that's slightly sweet around the corners, bananas, and a faint hop bitterness.

M: Slick and juicy with strong carbonation.

D: Although I still enjoy this brew more on tap, it's amazing how much freshness they were able capture in this bottle.

Photo of afausser
3.98/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one on tap at Wild Wing Café in Charlottesville watching the Orange Bowl.

A: Pours a very hazy amber orange, if a very pale one. The small amount of head present quickly turns into uneven foam and then a sheet of fine lacing.

S: Pale, citrusy, and slightly spicy. Light tropical fruits--coconut and banana in particular, and white pepper are clearly present.

T: Lemons and heavy, very juicy orange citrus, coriander, cloves, pepper, and spicy crisp green apples.

M: Good crisp bubbly mouthfeel.

D: Pretty drinkable and a solid brew, but not my favorite Bells.

Photo of RockyTopHeel
3.9/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had this on tap at Whole Foods, then finally found a 6-pack.

Pours a nice hazy yellow in color with a pillowy white head. Aroma of wheat, lemon, and slight whiff of spice. Taste is similar - wheat, lemon, much more spice, and a nice huskiness compared to other white ales. Starts and finishes nice and dry, like a crisp winter wind.

Certainly, this isn't groundbreaking, but I really enjoy it. Heartier than a summer white, it's a nice quaff on a snowy day. I like it - there's more to it than most white beers I've had.

Photo of jlindros
3.28/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Got this one in a great trade with Noslenwerd. I wanted to help out his cause for 365 beers in 365 days. For those who haven't heard of his quest, try this website:
http://365beers.wordpress.com/

Anyways, he sent me a bunch of stuff I can't get here, including a slew of Bell's beers, and I decided to review a bunch tonight. This is the next on the list, and helps me to go through a bunch of winter beers that I'm questing to do as well.

A: Has a light airy and fluffy 1/2 finger head that keeps itself well. It's an incredibly hazy, so much so I almost expect the blob to step out of this thing. It also has a murky pale bright yellow color.

N: Nose is loaded with wheat, banana, and spices. It has a lot of reminiscence of a Belgian wit beer. Lots of wheat as a base, then a nice creamy banana flavor, and some spices, perhaps clove, coriander, and hints of yeast. And even some hints of orange peel but very light.

T: Very similar to the nose, but the spices come out a lot more. This is now loaded with clove, coriander, orange peel, and other winter spices, but its not overbearing, just over the top. The some wheat and banana try to come through on the back end. A very light sweet malt flavor.

M: Semi thin, decent carbonation but I would expect more for the style, a little spicy.

F: Comes off pretty dry on the finish, with a big load of banana and more spices. It has a touch of spicy heat, some acidity. The spices seem to linger for a while, with even more orange peel this time. Its not a bad beer, a decent Belgian wit crossed with winter warmer, which is starting to become commonplace. This goes a little heavy on spices but not too much to still enjoy it.

Photo of stoutfiend27
3.83/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into pint glass

a-hazy orange color..one finger foamy white head that fell quickly..nice floaties...ok lacing..tight cap

s-bready and yeasty...a bit of banana and clove...faint pale malt smell..

t-much like the nose..some spice in the forefront...followed by some yeasty notes and some banana and clove...pale malt holds this together and fends off some spiciness..

m-creamy and smooth...not over the top and nothing offensive...a good session beer

d-will have no problem putting away the sixer

bought this to have something to session on tonight before i hit the heavy hitters up later...hears to a new year starting

Photo of icetraxx
3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on-tap last night.
A: Looks like Hoegaarden but without any head to speak of. Swirling the glass produced a head that quickly dissipated. No lacing. I've seen many better looking wits.

S: Coriander, yeast, and wheat malt. Not much else. Smells exactly like Bell's Oberon with coriander.

T: Similar to the smell: a decent malt backbone with an aggressive dose of coriander. Hops and any orange/lemon peel are lost in the background and are even unusually weak for this style. Tastes like Bell's Oberon with less citrus and with more coriander/spiciness. Flavor seems a little too light and watered down compared to the best Wits I've had.

M: Somewhat starchy with good body. Yeast adds a certain thickness comparable to Bell's Oberon, Hoegaarden, or even Allagash White. Served on-tap so I will not comment on carbonation.

D: True to the style, it would be very drinkable in the summer. It is less drinkable in the the Michigan winter.

O: While I like drinking summer-syle brews here in the Michigan winter, I felt this beer was almost too light for the season. I prefer a heartier yet summmer-like Weisse for winter drinking.

Comparisons: I would rather drink both Hoegaarden or Allagash White over this brew, but I would take Bells Winter White over a Blue Moon any day.

Photo of ZimZamZoom
3.88/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to BA dmamiano for kicking this down to me!

Poured into a pint glass. A very light yellow-gold color, pure white head rises to a couple fingers and then settles quickly. Beer is slightly hazy.

Citrus and spice aroma. Very pleasant, with some tangy earthy wheat notes as well. Taste is a nice citrus and coriander blend, wheat comes through as well. A mildly bitter hop finish, though the fruity flavor lingers through the end as well.

Light and crisp, well carbonated. Easy drinker of course. Not sure what this has to do with winter other than the name, but it is a great witbier in my opinion. I would love to hit this on a hot summer day,

Bell's Winter White Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
82 out of 100 based on 1,777 ratings.