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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.

687 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 687
Hads: 1,997
Avg: 3.67
pDev: 22.62%
Wants: 59
Gots: 277 | 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
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: 687 | Hads: 1,997
Photo of madeofsteel
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No matter how much I swirled the last third around, I couldn't get all that yeasty goodness from the bottom of the bottle. Oh well.

A - Poured into a tulip, cloudy golden wheat color with a foamy 1-2 finger head, not much retention but does leave some pretty lacing.

S - Wheat, spicy yeasty goodness. No hops. Kind of smells Belgian.

T - First thing I noticed was the yeast. spicy, fruity, funky. Then the wheat. It seems like the two are battling each other for dominance. I like that. The yeast seems to be a bit more in-your-face than in years past. Sour finish.

M - Pretty active carbonation, to be expected for a witbier.

O - While not the best winter offering from Bell's, it's still a staple. I try to pick up a sixer at least once a winter.

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Photo of nhindian
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a tulip.

A - Pours a light straw color with around 1.5-fingers of ivory-colored head with moderate retention. The body is cloudy and the lacing when the head dissipates is paltry with only a few flares of lace covering a small portion of the glass.

S - The nose is full of phenols and zest, bringing familiar traces of lemon, banana, grape bubblegum, and clove. It smells rather fresh as well with a substantial breadiness to it.

T - The yeast probably imparts the strongest flavor to this beer as the banana and bubblegum are at the forefront. There is a surprisingly potent wheat characteristic to this as well to complement the breadiness. In the finish, lemon zest and cloves battle it out and for all intents and purposes it ends up as a draw.

M - Mouthfeel is light-bodied with high carbonation. The carbonation helps the flavor pop a bit, and it finishes with a crisp, dry feeling.

D/O - Drinkability is moderate. A more phenolic take on the style, this isn't going to blow any minds, but it's definitely solid. I'm not sure how I'd feel drinking this in the dead of winter, as I seem to enjoy these beers more in the warmer months, but I guess I'll have to try it again later in the winter to find out!

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Photo of SolipsismalCat
4.27/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Extra cloudy yellow with one-finger, white head that lasted less than a minute. Not much lacing.

S: Citrus, wheat, and yeast. Belgian.

T: Moderate sweetness and light bitterness. Wheat, very grainy flavor. Belgian yeast is in there too, sort of spicy. Good.

M: Medium bodied with fizzy carbonation. Silky smooth and slightly warm.

O: The head was disappointing, but the nose and taste are solid. Nice alternative to other winter offerings.

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Photo of Dave128
3.72/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle with no actual dating into a unibroue snifter.

A - A medium to gentle pour yielded a finger of head that dissipated pretty quickly. No lacing and barely a ring of foam around the edge of the glass. Looks a little more like cloudy apple juice than beer. Cloudy yellow-orange in color.

S - Smells wheaty and spicy.

T - Rather plain on the tongue. Simple taste of a wheat ale that doesn't really bring out the best in the style.

M - lightly carbonated. Excellent for a winter beer.

O - Not too impressed, but its not too bad either.

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Photo of troysoy2
3.66/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Hello winter.
Looks like a pretty standard witbier to me. Nice and cloudy, has that ideal golden color. The head is nice and stays around for a long time, so props for that.

The smell is citrus fruit, but clouded by the wheat and a bit of spice. The words to describe it are elusive to me... There might just be the slightest bit of funk to it that I don't find all that enticing.

The taste is better that the smell, luckily. Very refreshing and drinkable. On the front of the taste, you have a very mellow orange taste. Not much acidic bite to speak of. The aftertaste may have a tad bit of wintery spices in it, but not too much going on here.

The mouthfeel, in my opinion, is the most disappointing aspect of this beer. There simply isn't much carbonation to speak of. I almost forgot that I wasn't drinking fancy orange juice.

Though it's a decent tasting beer, I think Bell's fell a little short of my expectations on this one. There are plenty of better witbiers out there, and I doubt I'll be clamoring to buy more Winter White for a while.

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Photo of Gatch
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Cloudy, hazy yellow with a thin white head.

S - A spiciness that I cannot pinpoint. The wheat is there.

T - Slight sweetness and fruitiness with a little zing in the finish. Wheat stands out and has a noticeable difference from malted barley.

M - Very smooth, sweet but not cloying, and enjoyable to drink.

Recommended. Stays with the style.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bells Winter White

Pours a cloudy deep straw color. Unfiltered and bottle conditioned wheat beer. In the taste, wheaty almost hefeweizen like flavors with some lemon and clove, and orange peel leaving a citrusy burst. Light peppery spice is also noted. Crisp, clean, refreshing witbier with solid flavor profile. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, almost dry. Overall, a very nice option to have in your fridge this time of year, paired well with some chili/sesame chicken wings.

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Photo of MattyG85
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass. Bottled 10-28-11.

Appearance: Pours a very cloudy yellow orange with lots of rising bubbles. Solid four finger white foam head with good retention. Lacing is moderate around the glass.

Smell: Aroma of Belgian yeast with wheat, citrus orange, banana, and coriander spice. Also some clove, lemons zest, and pepper. Smells like a fairly good balance of fruity, spicy, and bready.

Taste: Upfront is a taste of Belgian yeast and wheat grains. Then come the fruit and spices. Some citrus orange, lemon, and bananas with some spicy coriander, clove, and pepper. Also a hint of nutmeg. Well balanced.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a medium to high level of carbonation. Very crisp and smooth.

Overall: A solid take on a Witbier and a nice change of pace for a winter beer.

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Photo of blackcompg
3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pouerd from their 12oz bottle...

Appearance - Poured about a finger of brite white head, color of the beer is a cloudy golden yellow beige. Very little lacing left on the glass.

Smell - Belgian yeast n spices, coriander, slight citrus, maybe a touch of nutmeg.

Taste - Definitely follows the nose, a very well balanced and complex wit - flavors are belgian yeast, coriander, dry orange, with white pepper long into the finish. This wit is definitely less sweet then most others I've had, very refreshing n flavorful though.

Mouthfeel - Lite mouthfeel, medium carb adds alot of crispness. Actually finishes very clean, and on the dry side.

Overall - This is a very far cry from your "blue-moon-esque" wits. This is a very complex, well balanced and flavorful witbier. This is a seasonal release from Bell's, get it while you can - and get Hoegaarden when you can't ;)

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Photo of wedge
3.52/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy orange-gold with a little white head that shrinks to a thin ring. Clove and subtle banana aroma. Perfumy orange and wheat. Coriander and banana with a bit of peppercorn. Tangy wheat and grain aftertaste. Smooth, floaty medium mouthfeel...prickly carbonation and fairly drying. A solid, drinkable wit from Bell's.

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Photo of eonbluekarma
3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Soft gold appearance with a hazy quality. Smell is ok. Hint of banana and lemon with a bit of clove. Taste is a nice crisp/sour spice. Very subtle compared to some other Bell's features. The mouth feel is light with decent carbonation. Overall this winter wit is very drinkable. A good beer for holiday meals as the winter spice will accent your meal and wont overpower any foods.

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Photo of yemenmocha
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice, luminous straw color with plenty of haze, and small white head. Nose isn't overly assertive, but pleasantly alive with some clean orangey yeasty bready notes. Palate offers a good dose of wheaty cracker, some nice sour flavors that wind into the coriander and citrus candied qualities (but not very candied overall). Good carbonation. Easy to drink, but just doesn't dance on the palate as vividly as some other wits that I really liked over the years.

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Photo of thain709
3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured a slightly hazy, dull golden yellow body...the head was one finger tall and white in color...it retained to a wispy cap and left decent lacing behind

S - Notes of wheat and yeast, mixed with spices (clove, coriander), and some lemon zest

T - The flavors are pretty basic here, but they do tie together nicely...the wheat presence lingers throughout...the spices give a little extra kick and there is some pepper coming in as well...the lemon zest calms the spices, but also adds a bit of it's own twist and pairs with the wheat base...the finish has lingering spices coming back

M - Light bodied...too light for a winter brew...lingering spices, more lemon would have balanced out the finish

O - This is way too light to be a winter seasonal...they could have added more body to this and it would have been a little better...I wish the finishing spices would have been balanced by the lemon zest like in the middle of the beer

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Photo of Teleweizen2
3.26/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - pours a completely clear bright golden color. no head to speak of.

S - nicely spiced with notes of cardamom and citrus with some bready undertones.

T - some bready malt character up front, bright citrus and spice character in the center which lingers on past the finish.

M - light bodied slightly watery, medium to high carbonation.

O - decent white ale. nothing is wrong with it except the lack of visible yeast but it is nothing that exciting.

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Photo of julian89
3.14/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance-A good orange yellow, slightly translucent with a minimal head and no lacing.

Smells: Citrus and wheat, weak smell, crisp though.

Tastes: Very light citrus, strong wheat taste, kind of grainy.

Mouthfeel: Very light almost watery.

Overall: I generally really enjoy Bell's but this one didn't do it for me.

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Photo of Crossmd
3.08/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured 40 degrees Fahrenheit into a Sam Adams pint glass.

Pours a hazy golden yellow with a one finger white head after a vigorous pour.

Smells of wheat, some coriander and a hint of urine?

Tastes of a relatively thin, effervescent light or mass-produced Belgian style wit-beer. A hint of soft-lemon at the beginning of the finish turns into coriander and a relatively non existent finish. Tame and relatively uninspiring.

There is really relatively little difference here for me next to Hoegaarden. I think it looks, smells tastes, almost identical and I think I prefer the Hoegaarden even while it's cheaper. A good offering, enjoyable, but not really anything to write home abount. I was expecting something really more unique from Bell's.


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

The respected Bell's presents their venerable Winter seasonal here, and it's a Belgian-style wit beer. This one pours a hazy yellow-orange with plenty of fine, white carbonation and a little retention.

The aroma is definitely spices (I get a little clove) and citrus (namely orange).

The taste is balanced and mild, with sharp wheat notes and orange zest playing leisurely with a little spice for warmth. Pleasant and enjoyable.

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Photo of BeerBuckeye
3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a very hazy bright orange/yellow with fizzy 0.5 finger head. Lots of carbonation rising up from the bottom

S - Very pale smell, notes of zest, lemon, and orange peel, a touch of spice.

T - Taste is very mellow, notes of orange and lemon come through with a light kick of sweet spice at the end. Good amount of balance, pretty flavorful, but a little surprising taste for a wit.

M - Very smooth, lots of carbonation.

Overall - Actually pretty decent. It's not groundbreaking (though it doesn't taste like most wits I've had), it's less spicy but nicely balanced.

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Photo of jsprain1
3.77/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Quite pale. Very light yellow with a thin long lasting white head. Very hazy.
S- Aroma is very pleasant but at times it comes across more like an American Pale Wheat than a wit. Lemon, wheat tang and a touch of spice.
T- Wheat tang with a lingering sweetness. The spice is mild.
M- Pretty big body, quite light carbonation. Sits a little heavier than most wits.
O- This beer seems like a good merger of the American Pale Wheat with a witbier. Worth a try.

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Photo of lurpy1
3.74/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a somewhat murky peach, with not much head, or carbonation, seemingly. Very alluring aromatically, strong bakery smell, quite yeasty, some wheat a little bit of sweet and citrus thrown in. Similar taste. But the spice I was expecting was entirely absent. Lightly carbonated, easy to put away quickly.

A dilemma of a beer to rate. If this is a Witbier, it missed the mark. Simply not enough spice and off-kilter flavors. Then again, maybe it's us, and not Bell's that think it's a Witbier. Fair enough, but that leads to the next problem; As far as I can tell, Winter White is completely indistinct from Oberon. Would love to drink them together, because I think there's no more than a whisker difference. Lastly, there's really no seasonal panache to this. What's winter about it? At the end of the day, though, this is a tasty, if unremarkable beer, and that's what matters most.

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Photo of boilermakerbrew
3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at a local bar at $2 pint night.

At first sip, I thought Hoegaarden. Came to me with an average 2 finger foamy head and looked like a glass of orange juice with a slightly lighter color.

Smell and taste were vary similar. Definite orange peel flavors along with coriander and clove. Finished clean with the typical wheat ale semi-bite. No hops bitterness here. Fairly creamy on the palate, definitely one that would fill you up after a few.

Overall, its not among the styles I prefer, but a good branch out and overall solid brew.

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Photo of ocelot2500
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy pale yellow with a fizzy white head that leaves a ring of lacing.

Smells of citrus and wheat with only a bit of spice.

Tastes of some wheat tang and some spice counterpoints. Grainy sweetness leads into citrus rind. Some banana comes through as well. Spice notes of coriander come in the end and liven things up.

Mouthfeel is medium with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Overall, a pretty good attempt at witbier I wouldn't mind having again.

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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 wingman14
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark yellow with a frothy white head. Smell is dominated by the yeast, with a nice dose of wheat. Flavor follows suit, nice yeast and wheat flavors. A nice medium mouthfeel, smooth, well balanced and nice depth of flavor. Overall a great witbier, great flavor, and an easy drinking beer.

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Bell's Winter White Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
83 out of 100 based on 687 ratings.