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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

1,541 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,541
Reviews: 636
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 13.5%
Wants: 33
Gots: 69 | 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
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Ratings: 1,541 | Reviews: 636 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.63/5  rDev 0%
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.

Sammy, Dec 19, 2004
Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%

t0rin0, Nov 08, 2012
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev +10.2%

djrn2, Jan 10, 2012
Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%

zestar, Jan 05, 2014
Photo of spycow
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%

spycow, Mar 11, 2013
Photo of Thorpe429
3.9/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Orange-amber color; maybe more toward apricot. Decent head.

S: Lots of wheat along with plenty of spiciness--fits the winter theme quite well.

T: Lots of spiciness. Perhaps coriander, along with some citrus flavors.

M: Medium body with good carbonation.

D: Great drinkability when fresh. This is a solid witbier, and fits in perfectly with a roasting winter fire.

Thorpe429, Apr 23, 2009
Photo of nmann08
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%

nmann08, Dec 18, 2013
Photo of metter98
3.85/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is very hazy light pale yellow in color and has a high amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a half finger high bright white head that died down but consistently left a thin but dense layer of bubbles covering the surface along with lots of lacing running down the sides of the glass.
S: The smell has light to moderate aromas of wheat along with some hints of spices—cloves seem to stand out in particular.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and also has some notes of lemony citrus and hints of bananas.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. The spices in the taste seem to lend a bit of dryness to the finish.
O: This beer is rather easy to drink but lacks any refreshing and thirst-quenching properties. However, the added flavors of spices seem to make this a nice choice to drink if you want to enjoy a witbier during the winter.

metter98, Dec 16, 2012
Photo of Texasfan549
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Texasfan549, Dec 20, 2012
Photo of brentk56
4.33/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy golden color with a meringue of a head that leaves plenty of lace

Smell: Perfume of banana, bubblegum, anise and a dash of lemon pepper

Taste: Starts out with a banana bread flavor, that adds the lemon and anise flavors by mid-palate; after the swallow, the lemon fruit flavors build and there is a final dash of pepper in the finish

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with moderately high carbonation

Drinkability: Not a classic wit as I understand it is brewed without spices, this is nevertheless a tasty wheat beer that has elements of a wit and a hefe; nice job

brentk56, Jan 24, 2007
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.08/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Surprisingly unhazy amber with the slightest suggestion of orange. Maybe the yeasties will be added with the next and final pour, though I don't see much cloudiness in the few ounces left in the bottom of the bottle. The cap is lightly yellowed ivory, like old newspaper, and isn't up to Bell's usual standards. It looks a little mealy as it falls and isn't tacky enough to deposit more than a few stray strands of lace. Not bad, just not great.

The nose makes a spirited comeback, as I was pretty sure it would. There's a fresh wheaty bottom end, upon which the usual aromas of coriander and citrus are arrayed. I wondered whether a 'winter' wit would emphasize coriander at the expense of the more summer-like lemon and orange. I needn't have worried. The citrusiness that I love in this style is present and accounted for.

This is a wonderful witbier, even if it isn't as delicious as my favorite domestic versions (Allagash and Great Lakes). On the palate, coriander holds a slight edge over orange and lemon. Each provides a fair amount of flavor, although not an abundant amount. The mild sweetness of the wheat is perfectly countered by the bitterness of the hops, allowing the drinker to taste the best of both worlds. This really is a balanced, measured wit.

The mouthfeel is more full than average, but only slightly. A vigorous amount of carbonation keeps things light and airy without sliding over into an annoying fizziness. It seems to me that neither a more full nor a more light body would serve this beer as well as the one that has been provided. Drinkable? Absoposilutely.

Even though it isn't among my handful of favorite witbiers, this is still a fine effort from the master brewers in Kalamazoo. I continue to be impressed by the excellence displayed by Bell's across the entire spectrum of craft beer. Winter White Ale is merely the most recent example and is a beer that I recommend without reservation.

BuckeyeNation, Feb 07, 2006
Photo of BEERchitect
3.25/5  rDev -10.5%
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.

BEERchitect, Aug 05, 2005
Photo of kjkinsey
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%

kjkinsey, Dec 20, 2012
Photo of Phyl21ca
2.6/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle courtesy of Plucier: Poured extremely cloudy whitish/yellow color ale with a nice small pure white foamy head with good retention. Aroma of medium wheat with some very subtle spice note. Taste is lighter then expected with some wheat but no bubblegum notes that I usually appreciated in an hefeweizen and some very subtle spices and therefore no coriander that I usually like in my witbier. It appears that by mixing those two I am not getting the best of both word. This is probably one of the weakest offering from this fine brewer.

Phyl21ca, May 17, 2007
Photo of mikesgroove
3.68/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Believe it or not this was might nightcap of all things. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this was enjoyed on 01/01/2011.

The pour was nicely done, albeit very light and a touch overcarbonated for me, I still think it fit rather well. Light yellow in color with tons of carbonation and a huge fizzy white head that let down quickly. Aroma is light banana, clove and citrus, nice and light and airy with touches of lemon zest and fresh spice as it warms. Very clean taste, perfect hints of citrus and spice layered on the banana based malts. Quick, clean, light and very drinkable. This one was gone like a flash.

Overall a very solid little ale and one that I needed to take a break from the rest of the evening!

mikesgroove, Jan 12, 2011
Photo of ygtbsm94
2.5/5  rDev -31.1%

ygtbsm94, Dec 27, 2011
Photo of womencantsail
3.45/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Jeff for sending me this one.

A: The beer pours a pale golden/yellow color with a minimal white head, but plenty of carbonation.

S: Some wheat, but a bit of a corn type smell and mustiness. Light spice notes, coriander is certainly prominent and there's a bit of orange peel. Sort of sweet, overall.

T: The flavor is significantly better. Nice wheat and bread flavors providing sweetness. The typical spice of coriander, which is probably the best part about this beer. A light peppery note on the back end.

M: Light in body with a medium level of carbonation.

O: A pretty middle of the road and mediocre Witbier. Not my favorite.

womencantsail, Jun 17, 2011
Photo of kylehay2004
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%

kylehay2004, Mar 17, 2013
Photo of Knapp85
3.38/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours out as a hazy yellow color with a fluffy white head. There was a slight amount lacing on the glass. The smell was a little spicy and had some wheat aromas. The taste has a light spice to it with a kind of refreshing lemon zest. Mouthfeel is a little light and is a little watered down. Overall I've never understood why a white ale would be a winter release. I prefer the dark winter brews personally. This is an ok brew.

Knapp85, Jun 05, 2011
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.33/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tried during a recent trip to the Brick Store Pub. Suspiciously, there was no batch number listed on the back in the white box allotted for it. I briefly considered signing my name in it.

Appearance: Pours out a near clear, pale yellow body with a smallish, brief, white head.

Smell: Bell's WA doesn't offer a particularly aromatic bouquet, with only mild notes of barley and wheat with some perfunctory citrus and spice thrown into the mix as well. A bit of a wimpy wit, to be honest.

Taste: Sweet tastes of malted barley and lightly tangy wheat lazily bathe the tongue. Mild flavors of citrus peel and coriander. Faint bitterness. Lightly tangy, lightly citrusy finish; there and gone in a flash. It's one of those simple beers with little to really say about it.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-plus carbonation.

Drinkability: Well, for starters, it could benefit from a bit more effervescence in the mouthfeel department, but even still, it's just rather mild and bland and doesn't really deliver in terms of a fine, refreshing witbier or a winter-based anything.

ChainGangGuy, Dec 03, 2009
Photo of oberon
3.65/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the tap a hazy lighter yellow with some peach colored hue a thin quick to fade head atop.Toasted wheat clove and some bannana reminisentmore of a Bavarian style sheat than a Belgian white in my mind.Pretty standard wheat flavors somewhat clovey and toasty with a faint hint of citrus in the back end.Decent and basic beer, my wife would enjoy this, me well I thought it was ok.

oberon, Mar 03, 2008
Photo of TMoney2591
3.9/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Chicago Bears shaker pint glass.

Figured I'd take this one down now, seeing that Winter is in its death throes 'round here (knock on wood). It pours a thoroughly hazy pale straw topped by a finger of white froth. The nose comprises lemon zest, coriander, mint, pine, orange peel, and wheat. Honestly, the sharp bit of mint I get does nothing good for the smell, but it's luckily not enough to sabotage the entire occasion. The taste, though, does away with this unpleasantness, while straying none too far from the path already laid out by the smell. The orange peel, though, is a touch stronger than before, and a pinch of black pepper is thrown in there as well. The body is fairly light, with a moderate carbonation and a kinda dry finish. Overall, a nice wit. 'Nuff said.

TMoney2591, Mar 12, 2011
Photo of zeff80
3.88/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out am orange/golden yellow color with a small, fizzy, white head. It left a few small rings of lace.

S - It smelled of coriander, orange zest, lemon, clove and some wheat.

T - It tasted of wheat, yeast, citrus and a little caramel malt. Some spices and there was a slight licorice flavor , as well.

M - It was fizzy, crisp and sharp. A light bodied beer.

D - This is a pretty good wit. I really liked the blend of fruity flavors with some spice and licorice flavors.

zeff80, Nov 04, 2008
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.28/5  rDev +17.9%
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.

NeroFiddled, Feb 06, 2005
Photo of nickfl
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%

nickfl, Mar 17, 2013
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Bell's Winter White Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
82 out of 100 based on 1,541 ratings.