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Midwestern Pale Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Midwestern Pale AleMidwestern Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
78
okay

132 Reviews
THE BROS
86
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 132
Hads: 831
rAvg: 3.41
pDev: 12.32%
Wants: 7
Gots: 125 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: pschul4 on 11-06-2012

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 132 | Hads: 831
Photo of carlborch
4.51/5  rDev +32.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours golden-amber. Brilliant but with significant amounts of sediment, despite pouring with care. Yeasty film sediment left in the bottom of the bottle. Three-quarter inch , off-white, creamy head formed. The heads dissipated quicker than desired but retained 1/8 inch after a few minutes. Fresh malt and hop nose. Crisp palate and delicious modestly bitter lingering. Certainly moreish! Rather modest carbonation. Highly developed Belgian lace. A delicious ale! (463 characters)

Photo of schoolboy
4.37/5  rDev +28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I saw this at Save On and it looked new-to-me so I grabbed one. I'll cut to the conclusion - I would gladly grab some any time.

This pale ale comes out mirky. Very mirky, in fact. That was unexpected and interesting. It has great head and lace. The aroma hits you pretty quickly after opening - great finishing hops. Truly a first rate aroma for the style.

Next you taste it and you are treated to a dry, hoppy, mildly bitter (not over the top). It is extremely well balanced - perfect for the style. The aftertaste is pleasantly bitter but fresh.

I could see this as an outstanding session beer. I want more! (612 characters)

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.3/5  rDev +26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Bell's imperial pint.
5.2% ABV, 11511 PKGD 10/27/12

A - I have a Bell's bumper sticker which I've since turned into a magnet that reads, "If God wanted us to filer our beer, he wouldn't have given us livers." It comes as no surprise to me, then, for this bright pale goldenrod beer to be filled, bottom to top, with suspended particles. After all, I did dump the whole beer in the pint which produced a loose, tall white head. Plenty of lace coats the glass after said head disappeared.

S - Deliciously grainy pale malt does well to whisk one away to the scene of the painting; an open field of grain and light fall breeze. Notes of pilsner sweetness are tucked behind providing good balance to the light hop experience. Subtle floral attributes brush against the bigger herbal earthy notes for a laid-back, Midwestern aroma.

T - Malts and hops come together in mutual matrimony, celebrating each others presence without ever becoming dominant. Grainy pale malt gives this beer a nice farm feel, again, and the herbal, earthy hops mimic that notion while subtle pilsner malt sweetness and smoothness frolics with gentle floral attributes in the background.

M - Smooth feeling with a light carbonation prickle, this pale has a sturdy malty body but isn't sweet per se. It's also not bitter or hoppy, though it leans slightly in that direction, finishing with a kiss of dryness that brings you back for another sip.

O - A lawnmower beer at it's finest, Bell's Midwest Pale Ale perfectly captures the Midwest mindset in regards to drinkability and hop usage; easy going and balanced. The label captures the spirit of the beer equally as well; simple, steadfast, and free. This pale has nice flavor and nuances if you're looking for a "lighter" beer to kick back with and enjoy but it will also work tremendously well with a number of foods. Well done, very well done. (1,896 characters)

Photo of MUTINY
4.26/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Quick review. One of my all-time APAs. I love the slight haze, the subtle hops on the nose & the perfect malt bill to play off of the hops. I will say that a lot of the more individual flavor components tend to blend together, so it lacks complexity through the palate - for me this is not a problem (at least for this brew). (328 characters)

Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

My first bottle of this was 4 and a half weeks old and reeked of skunk. The second, purchased from a different store, was 3 months old and not light struck.
L: It pours hazy gold with a slight orange tint under a 2” cream colored finely bubbled foam collar that hugs the side of the glass.
S: The nose is a little muted due to age but clean rich malt aromas join with light caramel and a slightly sharp hop aroma.
T: Starts off like a liquid baguette with a light caramelly background sweetness and finishes with a big bitter emphasis that balances well with the well developed malt flavors.
F: Creamy, medium body and carbonation.
O: This is a well balanced, big flavorful midrange beer that is easy to drink. (718 characters)

Photo of secondtooth
4.23/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a cloudy golden with a superlative white head and attractive tree-line lace. Lovely!

Nose is crisp malts and a snappy citrus hops presence. Seems balanced and enticing.

Taste is nicely hopped, but not overly so given the style. I get a complementary malt bill alongside the hops. Overall, a perfectly balanced and exemplary pale ale. Top marks for the style. (366 characters)

Photo of generallee
4.18/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. The label on the back has a brief description of the beer and it lists the abv at 5.2%.

Appearance: Midwestern Pale Ale has very thick and creamy off white head which hangs on well. It sits on top of a deep golden/light amber body with some hazing and yeast sediment floating around. As I drink it makes lots of cool lacing on the glass.

Smell: It has a sweet bready and malty character with a light herbal, almost mineral like hop note for balance.

Taste / Palate: Up front it has sweet honey and orange marmalade flavor with a smooth bready base underneath. Light herbal and floral hop notes move in and a good balance of hop bitterness to the finish. It has a solid medium to full body and the palate feels smooth and balanced with carbonation. (826 characters)

Photo of smcolw
3.98/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Cloudy, green hued gold color. Modest head that settles to a thin film of bubbles. Some spots for lace.

Pale ale malt base with a bit of sourness.

Well-balanced with a relatively dry pale malt start. Good hop kick in the swallow. Moderate aftertaste. Very pleasant. Appropriate body and carbonation. A classic tasting APA. (333 characters)

Photo of EvoRich
3.98/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: Dark yellow to orange in color. Pours with one finger of head which fades.

Smell: The smell seems very weak. It's very difficult to pick up much other than maltiness.

Taste: Very crisp and citrus like. A bit of malty goodness.

Feel: Refreshing. Nice carbonation and thirst quenching. (295 characters)

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.96/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a pint glass

Appearance – The beer is served a hazy orange color with a one finger white head. The head fades relatively quickly leaving a moderate level of lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell- The aroma is heaviest of an earthy and citrus hops along with a nice bready base. Along with these aromas are some lighter notes of tropical fruit as well as a little bit of apricot.

Taste – At the start of the taste a bready and grapefruit flavor greets the tongue along with some more grassy hop flavors. Some flavors of a light fruit flavor as well as a little bit of pineapple flavor soon come to the tongue. These sweeter flavors disappear soon however as flavors of grapefruit citrus hop grow stronger in nature with them being joined by some hop flavors of an earthy variety. When combined with the rest of the flavors, a bitter and dry, hoppy and bready flavor is left on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The beer was slightly on the creamier and thicker side with a carbonation level that was average. The thicker body was nice for the bready flavors of the brew as well as gave a chance for all the hop flavors a chance to e fully sensed by the tongue.

Overall –A pretty nice English style IPA. It’s on the drier side with a good blend of citrus, earthy and herbal hop. Well worth a try. (1,318 characters)

Photo of gogreen99
3.95/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The light golden color is nice in this pale ale. Very pleasant citrus notes with a yeasty bite to it. Minimal hoppiness is pleasant. Overall the flavors of this beer work well together to create one of the lesser known Bells Brews. I highly reccomend. (251 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
3.94/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

My local, in-person trader, tone77, dropped this off for me and I could not be happier! It gives me a chance to riff on a number of subjects, not the least of which being the American Midwest.

First, let's see what his eminence, Larry Bell, has to say - From the Bottle: "A blond ale reminiscent of the golden fields at harvest - made with Michigan-grown barley and a delicious blend of pale malts with a distinctive spicy, floral aroma and taste. We invite you to reap what we've sown." The label depicts a "Painting of Bell's Brewery Farm [in] Shepherd, MI.

I love the midwest! It is my last bastion of hope in a dying country which I defended until retirement from the U.S. Navy. We (surprisingly) do not have much of a naval presence in the midwest, hence my infrequent visitation, but every time that I have been, I wanted to stay. I enjoy the down-to-earth attitudes which convey a simple, no-frills mentality. The people are polite, but blunt in that if they do not like you or disagree, they will tell you so without beating around the bush. Back east, we tend to be blunt and impolite, leading to fisticuffs, while out west, I am not sure that people have opinions, just random thoughts in generalities. Some of my best bumper has come from the midwest, including The Hoosiette, The Old Lady, Doll Face, and Cowgirl. I am planning a joint 21st/50th birthday party with Val Midwest to be held in her hometown of Lincoln, NE on 28 Feb 2015 and people are welcome to join us. When I finally untether the blimp of PA, I am on a beeline to the midwest, never to be heard from again. Onward!

I initially netted just over a finger of dense, tawny head with good retention, but as I noodled around in my usual inimitable fashion, it slowly fell, leaving dense, sticky lacing in its wake. Color was a slightly hazy honey-yellow (SRM = > 7 < 9). Nose had a distinctive spiciness, almost like pepper, definitely from the hops. Mouthfeel was silky smooth, notable in the style when so many try to emulate a hoppy AIPA. The taste was evocative of midwestern ladies' hips, lips and fingertips - tangy with an earthiness that can only be developed on the farm. Yum. Ah, languorous nights in coupling like freight cars ... Big, corn-fed gals who would purr like cats and give off heat like human generators. Thankfully, no corn was evident in this beer, but the hops were definitely there in force. The finish was minty, almost tea-like in its mellowness, very much peppermint and spearmint and I was suddenly rendered very sleepy. May I wake up in a barn or atop a haystack reprising Cowgirl's action. (2,604 characters)

Photo of burnstar
3.84/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a slightly cloudy orangish gold with a small head but with nice persistence and lacing. Very mild aroma. Citrus hops. Great bitter hop taste. Clean. Citrus and spices. Dry finish and lingering bitterness. Fantastically drinkable. A really solid APA. (255 characters)

Photo of MattyG85
3.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams "Perfect Pint" glass.

Appearance: Pours a pale and hazy golden orange with lots of rising bubbles. Big four finger white head with good retention. Leaves a lot of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A bready malt forward aroma that is fairly floral. Sweet pale malts and wheat grains with hints of biscuit, yeast, hay, and crackers. Lightly grassy scent with lemon zest but the hop presence is pretty light. There is a nice floral aroma mixing with the malts. Laid back but decent Blonde style aroma.

Taste: Like the smell indicates, a malty and grainy pale taste. Pale malts and wheat grains with a taste of biscuit, yeast, hay, cereal grains, and crackers. Fairly musty and grassy with some citrus lemon zest. Floral with a very laid back hop bitterness. A nice taste for a lighter wheat style beer.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a medium to high level of carbonation. Crisp, smooth, and slightly drying.

Overall: A decent beer, but its a lot more in the Blonde wheat style than American Pale Ale. Nice floral taste. (1,074 characters)

Photo of Donnelj
3.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A - pours a golden straw color with a small white head that falls to a film fairly quickly. Lacing is sparse.

S-smell is floral and grassy with a slight funkiness

M - mouthfeel is thin but crisp with medium high carbonation.

T - taste is slightly grassy with slight maltiness. Hops are slightly present at finish. Finish is dry and crisp.

O - overall impression is good. I feel that bells accomplished what they were after with a nice refreshing summertime beer. (469 characters)

Photo of Tone
3.82/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a slightly hazy, golden/copper color. 5/4 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of hops, hop oils, slight floral hops, sweet malt, hint of pale malt, and a hint of earthy malt. Fits the style of an American Pale Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of hops, sweet malt, slight pale malt, hint of citrus (grapefruit?), hint of nuts, hint of roasted malt, and a hint of floral hops. Overall, not complex, but good appearance and session-able. (524 characters)

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.8/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

From BeerAdvocate Magazine #74 (Mar 2013):

Brewed with barley from their own farm, it has a noticeable terroir of sorts—a trend that we hope sticks, as it’s adding dimension to the beer world. Balance and dryness amp up the drinkability to 10. The Earth doesn’t shake, but we’d make this a mainstay in our beer fridge. You can’t get much more American than this.

STYLE: American Pale Ale
ABV: 5.2%
AVAILABILITY: Year-round

LOOK: Hazed pale amber, amazing lacing

SMELL: Orange pith, Asian pears, cracker graininess, mineral, floral, grassy

TASTE: Crispness pops; smooth, grainy, medium body, ample hop bitterness, herbal, dried hay, nutty, dried apricots, peppercorn, very dry finish (698 characters)

Photo of Mojo
3.77/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce bottle -> Samuel Adams Perfect Pint Glass

A - slightly hazy medium gold with some suspended yeast particles, one and a half finger soapy head, pretty good retention, and great lacing.

S - pine, floral, and resin, weak notes all.

T - caramel malts dominate with mild citrus flavors. Finish is mild bitter.

M - great carbonation with a slight bitter aftertaste

O - okay beer if somewhat unremarkable. (415 characters)

Photo of slusk
3.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a golden hazy yellow with a dense white head . Very nice head retention and lacing. Appears to be an unfiltered beer or has some wheat... or both.

S: Sweet grainy almost corn like aroma with a nice balance of mild citrus, earthy hops. Has a pit of a pilsner like aroma with maybe some wheat mixed in. Ever so mild creamy caramel in the background.

T: nice sweet somewhat grainy malt up front balanced with a gentle citrusy floral hop. A little but of orange zest with a semi dry tart finish. I get a bit of wheat in there as well.

M: Medium light body with a slight oily mouthfeel followed by an ever so mild astringency. Moderate carbonation and a crisp finish.

O: This is a nice brew. It's fresh and crisp, not quite a lawnmower beer but close. Reminiscent of pilsner hybrid beer with a bit more hop presence. Goes down smooth and the aftertaste is fleeting which means session ale to me. Not the greatest beer ever, but certainly one I would not hesitate to order in a restaurant. (996 characters)

Photo of TwelveOunces
3.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served o tap in a pint glass

A hazy lighter orange color. This beer is very floral and earthy. The hops in this beer provide a bright and pungent citrus of mostly oranges and lemon. The hops are somewhat soapy and remind me of lysol (in a good way). The beer isn't quite a farmhouse style but there is a lot of wheat in this beer, It's a borderline whear beer. It's got a ton of wheat and is very grassy and floral. This beer has a light feel and is rather easy drinking. This is a solid session able brew. (507 characters)

Photo of Dave_in_GR
3.74/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a pint glass from a 12oz bottle.

Appearance is a light amber with lots of white, foamy head. Nice lacing as well.

Smell is a bit surprising, not a lot of citrus in this, but some floral notes from the hops.

Taste combines floral and spicy flavors with some sweet malts.

Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with medium carbonation, but there is an unpleasant lingering aftertaste.

Overall this is a surprisingly flavorful ale, the spicy and floral hops are really pleasant. (482 characters)

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.73/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Clouded golden hue, snowy white head, settles to a slim collar.

Aroma: Large citric notes, some spice, plenty of yeast. Hops and yeast, that's what we've got.

Taste: Full-bodied, full of yeast-y goodness, with plenty of vibrant, citric hop notes bouncing on the palate. Much maltier than the average pale ale, and as it's unfiltered, so much more yeast-ier. I have to wonder, though, if this is different that the other Bell's Pale Ale? Is that retired, and this is it's replacement? Good questions. I'm searching for answers.

Without those, I'm still enjoying it for what it is. Hey, there's gobbledygook on the label, and as it's Bell's, it's probably terse, mysterious, perhaps poetic? Here it comes: "A blond ale reminiscent of the golden fields at harvest--made with Michigan-grown barley and a delicious blend of pale malts with a distinctive spicy, floral aroma and taste. We invite you to reap what we've sown." (922 characters)

Photo of dbossman
3.71/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Light apricot hue with a large 2-inch, foamy head; nice retention and decent lacing

S: Some floral and citrus hops but mostly loads of bready and toasty malts; they (hops and grains) play well off each other but it's pretty subdued overall

T: More citrus hop bitterness in the flavors--lots more--lemon rind especially; the bready slightly sweet malts them come in and balance things out

F: Medium body and fairly creamy

O: A decent, easy-going pale ale; nice amount of hop bitterness to balance the malts but I wish there was more aromatic hops to put this over the top and make it more than what it ends up being: a decent little beer that is easy to put down and non-offensive but nothing that turns heads either (722 characters)

Photo of nUgZ
3.71/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours a hazy orange color with a half finger head, a ton of suspended sediment, and some lacing.

S: Malts up front with a nice floral hop balance.

T: The taste is very much like the smell. Nice bitterness. A little watered down though.

M: Medium bodied with good carbonation.

O: Not bad, but not one I would seek out. I'm glad I tried it. (389 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
3.71/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I picked this up at Giant Beer Garden & Eatery. Poured chilled into a tulip.

The color is hazy light peach color with thick head of white that settles to a ring with small bead and sporadic lace sticks. The smell is slightly fruity with some apricot/peach type odors with a mild sweet malt odor and light pine essence. The feel has a decent amount of bitterness with a moderate amount of carbonation and gentle malt sweetness with semi-dry finish.

The flavor has a semi-sweet presence on first sip with slight piney hop taste and mild toasted malt in the middle with spice from the hops balancing the gentle sweetness with a semi-dry finish and mild yeast tanginess in the last sips. Overall a drinkable pale with nice hop content -fairly balanced. An easy drinking but simple as a pale ale should be. (807 characters)

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Midwestern Pale Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
78 out of 100 based on 132 ratings.