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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

131 Reviews
THE BROS
86
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 131
Hads: 828
rAvg: 3.41
pDev: 12.32%
Wants: 7
Gots: 124 | 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: 131 | Hads: 828
Photo of RaulMondesi
1.83/5  rDev -46.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.25

This was a "throw in," but Raul wishes that it was a throw out. See what Raul did there? I'm tellin' ya, growin' up in tha hood does no harm! This thang had no redeeming qualities. None. Nasty nasty and ghetto ghetto.

Two words: drain pour.

Goodnight. (253 characters)

Photo of TimbeauGetsMoneyErrday
1.96/5  rDev -42.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Just wasted $9.99 on a sixer of this filth. Pours a hazy golden with nice white head. Smells like Oberon - macro hybrid with a hint of wonderbread and grass. No hops present at all. This is NOT a pale ale of any sort. It's a bland, blonde lager. Decent mouthfeel and carbonation. Offensively dry bitterness upfront and aftertaste. Tastes like I just chewed a Tylenol. Come on Bells. You can do much better than this. Scrap this brew and get back to work making the goods. I'd never buy this one again. The remaining 5 beers in my fridge will probably be consumed by unfavorable house guests. (591 characters)

Photo of SteveJeremy
2.34/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

Too much hop in this one for me, but then again, this is a style I'm not a huge fan of; this is Bell's first loser in my book after three marvelous offerings (Oberon, Two Hearted Ale, and Mercury, respectively). (211 characters)

Photo of facundoCNB
2.55/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

a cloudy orange with stuck carbonation.. i see about a million bubbles just hanging out in my glass. 2 fingers of head with great lacing. yeesh, all i really smell is yeast.. and it smells like lager yeast. no hops, no barley, nothing. ok, i get a nice caramel, burnt like bitterness out of this. not bad, but seriously what gives? this isn't what an APA is supposed to taste like. i don't get it this tastes like a lager. yeasty and malty. no hops. granted ofr a lager it's tasty, but for an expired ale (if there is such a athing which i believe this is it) it's still decent. medium body, moderate carbonation, refreshing, and sessionable.

i don't get what's going on with the taste. tastes like shit beer but good for the "genre". (735 characters)

Photo of stakem
2.73/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. The brew appears a hazed copper color with a white sudsy head that fades leaving a wall of lace on the glass. It is quite decent looking with fair retention. Some spots of sediment are seen throughout solution.

The aroma isa bit dusty with biscuit grain, sulfur, toffee, caramel grain and a hint of fruity to floral almost perfume aspect. Some almost like butter is noted towards the back and it increases in character as the brew warms up.

The taste is equally buttery as the nose suggests with bready to biscuit grain. Some sulfur, grass and herbs are thrown in the mix with hints of caramel but without the accompanying sweetness.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is a bit watery and well, just strange and not enjoyable enough to warrent wanting to have it again. Of all the stuff bell's makes that I had the opportunity to try, this is the biggest let down. (936 characters)

Photo of scruffwhor
2.73/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Some tiny sediment particles hang around this bronze and amber, slightly hazey APA. One finger of head and a thin layer of foam for most of the twelve ounces.

The aroma is very weird. I poured this beer into a clean pint glass. There's some citric hop aromas, alittle biscuity, toasty malt. But overwhelmingly vomitous!? There's a vomit aroma thats a little off puting to say the least. My guess is I got an unlucky bottle of some sort.

Crisp and grainy palate with a lighter than expected body. Biscuits, crackers, and bread crust with a strong funky orange and earth almost barnyardy flavor. I don't really know what to make of this beer. (643 characters)

Photo of magictacosinus
2.73/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Purchased today in my ongoing effort to try more beers by Bell's. Poured out of a 12oz bottle into a shaker pint glass. Bottled on "07/08/13."

Pours an amber golden color that's actually pretty hazy, as well as filled with light bubbles overall. A fizzy off-white head about a half finger tall lazily dies down to about nothing but a ring at the top of the glass. The carbonation goes pretty quickly as well. Not much lacing or viscosity on this. A simple, golden pale ale. Nothing more, nothing less.

Smells of cracked barley flavors, dirty straw, light malted bitterness, and some floral hops at the finish. Ridiculously simple, almost to the point of feeling empty. Not fruity or sweet, or complex by any means. Only cracked toasted barley and light earthiness. I suppose this is supposed to be as simple as the style gets, but knowing its potential (as well as, *ahem*, Bell's potential), it could use some pruning.

The flavor is awash with bittered cracked grainy flavors, light earthy hops, and slight notes of stale stonefruit. Nothing more comes in, other than a plain, barley predominant flavor that reminds me of stale toast and dry straw. There's a bit of a sweetness at the finish, but it doesn't do much else. Slightly thin in feel, and definitely not creamy or carbonated enough. Definitely simple, but not the most pleasing thing to sip on.

Not much to say about this other than the fact that this is as basic as an APA can get. I do wish it didn't taste so barley forward and faded in terms of providing more complexity to the choppy bitterness, but it is what it is. I passed it over to someone else, but this could hit the spot if I needed something of its type. When, I've no clue, but it shall exist for that special point in time. (1,755 characters)

Photo of tectactoe
2.76/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

One that I've been reluctant to purchase... or even try, just based on the relatively poor reviews it has. But hey, it's Bell's, so it can't be that bad, right? ....Right?? Midwestern Pale Ale pours out like a foggy pear skin; muddled and overrun by a jungle of small and sifting sediment particles. The porcelain head looks like a cloud, overcasting the unfiltered brew and taking its sweet ol' time to finally settle itself.

The aroma is kind of confusing. And not really in a good way. Mildly sulfuric, toasted bread, pale malt, and a touch of meek, musty hops, reminiscent in my mind of Saaz, or at least some kind of Noble hop. I get a chunky, crisp lager whiff, too, very akin to lagering yeast. Really, this smells like more of a lager than an ale, but not even a *good* one at that. Kind of boring and plain, and not really fitting of the "American Pale Ale" namesake.

Equally disappointing is the flavor, starting off with a combo of light DMS, sulfur, and off-beat graininess - this beer almost tastes like it has been sunstruck... so much for the brown bottle. Metallic notes, musky, and earthy hops that are far too faint with a finishing sucker punch of dirt, crisp yeast, and unexciting pale malt. Light bodied, not a whole lot in terms of palate presence, though the carbonation is crispy and dry, again, giving me that "lager" feel.

Bleh, wow. I'm pretty upset with Bell's on this one. Not at all what I think of when I hear the term "Pale Ale". For a brewery that has released stuff like Two Hearted, Hopslam, and Expedition Stout, you kind of expect more out of their constant rotation pale ale. Instead, we have this boring, bland, mildly off-putting, almost lager-ish but not as good, confusing mess of a beer. Good thing they have so many other great offerings - this one won't be missed. (1,812 characters)

Photo of Ryan011235
2.82/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

Poured into an Olde Hickory glass on 1/20/13

11639 Pkgd 12/19/12

Golden yellow with a dulled cloudiness to it. Two fingers of foam are topped by loose bubbles. The head recedes slowly leaving ample lace across the glass.

Aromas of grass, honey suckle, flowers, pollen, biscuit and orange peel. Toasty and very slightly herbal. More layers of grass as it opens up. The taste and feel are both succinct. Very grassy with a hint of herbal twinge on the finish. Mild bitterness. Toasted grains throughout. The body is light, though somehow kind of syrupy. Carbonation is sharp. This beer is not one to dally.

Overall, this is drinkable but I made the right choice to hold out for a single bottle. (696 characters)

Photo of HarrySTruman
2.84/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Hazy, golden, almost orange. Big, fluffy head with strong lacing.

Smells of wheat and grass. Smelled like a wheat beer from the first whiff. Smell isn't that powerful.

Tastes floral and malty, the wheat taste from the smell is there as well. Beer reminded me of some Czech Pilsners brewed in the US without the crisp finish. Certainly not what I would expect from an APA, also not a very big flavor. Lacked the citrus and hops that most APA's are going with today. Probably a bit too muchc wheat and floral flavors.

Easy drinking, smooth, not too crisp, light carb. Would be easy to put back a few too many of these, but with the low ABV I wouldn't feel too guilty of it.

Hard to describe overall. Not a great representation of the style. If I were in the mood for an APA, this wouldn't be my choice, but if I were in the mood for something a bit different, this could be a great choice. For how cheap and easy it is to get, I'll probably buy it again.

I'm reviewing this after drinking three over two weeks. It isn't quite as good as I thought it was the first time I had it. (1,082 characters)

Photo of kojevergas
2.85/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with appealing label art and branded pry-off pressure cap acquired at Zipp's Liquor in Minneapolis, MN for $1.79 and served into a stem-tulip. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given the brewery. 5.2% ABV confirmed. Packaged 07/29/13. Reviewed as a pale ale because of the name, though the label description calls it a blond ale.

Served cold - straight from the fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a one finger wide head of white colour. Disappointingly thin. Lacks creaminess and frothiness. Consistency is smooth. Complexion is decent; not particularly soft or supple. Head retention is average - about 2 minutes. Little lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Body colour is a hazy nontransparent translucent mango colour. Sort of a reddish orange - kind of hard to pin down. Average vibrance. No floating yeast particles are visible.

Overall, it looks a bit off for a pale ale. Not as light or clear as I'd expect.

Sm: Honey, caramel, pale malts, fruity tones (mainly mango and vague tropical character), a hint of graham cracker, clean yeast, sweet bready malts, and some doughiness from the yeast. Not as hop-forward as you'd expect (and want) in a pale ale.

I'm looking forward to trying it, but it's far from unique or special. I'm a bit concerned at this point.

No alcohol or spices are detectable. A clean inoffensive aroma of average strength.

T: Mango fruit, light pine, and some biting grapefruit citrus notes comprise the bulk of the hop profile. Pale malts, some caramalt, and a light doughy character provide the simple foundation. Lightly resinous. Hints of lime. Decently balanced, with a cohesive but not gestalt build.senses at different points in the structure. The bitterness/sweetness is off, but in different Very simple, lacking complexity, subtlety, nuance, and intricacy.

The doughy yeast character doesn't fit the clean feel you'd want in a good pale. There's even some (admittedly light) alcohol presence here too.

Below average depth and duration of flavour. Average intensity of flavour.

Decently put together, but ultimately quite underwhelming. I'm not a big fan and I'm not sure what they're going for with this one.

Mf: Fairly clean. Crisp, smooth, and wet. Too filling for a pale ale. A bit too heavy on the palate, with too full a body. Doesn't suit the flavour profile or the style all that well. Unrefreshing. Overcarbonated.

Not oily, astringent, harsh, gushed, hot, rough, or boozy.

Dr: Nowhere near as drinkable as a pale ought to be, but fairly downable. I'm glad I just got a single; I wouldn't want another and wouldn't recommend this to friends. A simple swing and a miss from Bell's. Very average.

(2,871 characters)

Photo of cityofFestivals
2.88/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Full disclosure, I am a huge Bell's fan. In my opinion, every thing they ever do is exceptional. That is, until this.

A - Hazy, golden, almost orange. Big, fluffy head with strong lacing. I was actually pretty stoked to give this a rip.

S - Wheat. Not too strong, some floral.

T - Floral and malty, and obviously wheat. Big disappointment in lacking citrus and hops that are often found in current APA style. The floral presence is a little annoying. There comes a point when too much floral seems perfumey.

M - Easy drinker but not very crisp. Average.

O - Pretty disappointing offering from a world class operation like Bell's. It's a non descript sessionable beer that doesn't differentiate itself from others in it's class. Bland and way too safe; memorable for all the wrong reasons. Just way too many other beers in this style/class that are better buys and much more enjoyable. (890 characters)

Photo of jucifer1818
2.9/5  rDev -15%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.5

a: best part of the beer, indictive of the style
5/5

s: soft wheaty smells. nothing too special
3/5

t: didnt like it too much. Strangly yeasty and off tasting
2.5/5

m: slick and light
3.75/5

wasnt a big fan of this one. one of the weakest brews from Bells.
2.5/5 (266 characters)

Photo of BrewMaven
2.91/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Last of the mixer sixer pours a nice looking hazy deep gold. Minimal head that regressed to a ring after a minute or so.

Smell was primarily husky grain and a bit of skunk..Old bottle?

Taste wasn't much better than the smell. Musty with a bit of grainy sweetness and some skunky hops tailing off at the finish.

Medium bodied with pretty dense carbonation.

Not a beer I'd seek out again but still better than the macro garbage. (430 characters)

Photo of Omnium
2.92/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Bottle > Pint Glass

A - Hazy gold, 1 finger soapy white head, little lacing.
S - Very little aroma, some bready malt, a little pepper.
T - Watery taste, some bread and biscuit malt, rye, pepper, some other spice, very little hop character.
M - Very thin, watery, forgettable.
O - This is a really lame APA, no good display of hops, weak flavor. (348 characters)

Photo of macrosmatic
2.93/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

Reviewed from notes. Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a CCB pint glass.

A: Hazy deep gold with a finger's worth of creamy eggshell head and tons of visible carbonation made of tiny bubbles.

S: Pilsner malt; floral, herbal and grassy hops; hints of sulfur and spiciness.

T: Pilsner and light cracker malts, mild grassy and floral hop bitterness, and a touch of almost astringent sulfur. The mild hop bitterness with the creamy sweet malt flavor lasts into the hang.

M: This actually has a creamy mouthfeel, and I don't think that's good here. No alcohol presence to speak of, but a heavier body for an APA.

O: Yeah - don't know if I got a bad bottle, or if this was just a bad beer. There's some lager and APA characteristics mixed together, but it misses the style for both. I've had Cream Ales with less of a creamy body than this one. So many tasty, refreshing summer APAs out there, but unfortunately this isn't one. Sub-par. (931 characters)

Photo of AgentMunky
2.93/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.75

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a BrewDog cervoise glass. Bottled 26 November 2013.

A: Hazy brown-yellow; darkly translucent. Very little head. Gentle lacing.

S: Lightly sour fruit...citrus? Spoiled tropical fruit? Lightly lagery yeast.

T: Hugely disappointing. Bell's is my favourite brewery, but this is a miss. Light, bland, lightly sour, lagerish. I imagine it might be good on a very hot day as a lawnmower beer.

M: Pretty refreshing.

O: I didn't like it :( -- not recommended. Will not have again. (511 characters)

Photo of CHickman
2.94/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Pours sparkled gold color with a ton of sediment floating around in it like a snow globe and a thick foamy 1 finger eggshell color that was full of bubbles and faded slowly, leaving very nice lacing coating the sides and rings as it went down.

Smells of malt, light caramel, corn or wet brown rice like a macro lager, grass and mild spices; nose did not match the looks and was quite boring, which surprised me.

Tastes of malt, lemon zest, light caramel, faint piney hops, very light coriander, biscuit and then like the nose there was corn or like a macro adjunct lager, grass and herbs; easy to put down and sessionable if you’re not looking for flavor, but damnit this is a Bell’s brew and I expect it to taste very good if not great.

Mouthfeel is very light and almost watery, with mild to average carbonation, a thin, slick feel and a slightly grainy bitterness to end it. Overall it was nothing special and actually went downhill after the pour. Not sure why it’s so dull, but it is and seemed like any old lager that you could grab at a 7-11. (1,061 characters)

Photo of TheSSG
2.96/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a big, dense, resiny, white head. Soft malt in the nose, with a nice floral hoppiness. Straw colored. Starts tart, almost. Bright, bitter hops with a citrus note. A medium-high bitterness, moves into a malty finish.

This isn't horrible, but not as good as I've come to expect from Bell's.
The hop profile is just not very good; low aromatics, mostly bitterness, not a lot of hop complexity. (397 characters)

Photo of SometimesIfart
2.98/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A - Pours a dark murky gold with a slowly dissipating head standing two fingers in height. Left a small amount of lacing.

S - Creamed corn and pilsner malt.

T - Creamed corn and pilsner malt followed by a small about of bitter hops that I can't quite put my finger on. A bit of citrus comes through as it sits.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

O - Overall, this is probably the worst beer that I have ever had from Bell's. It's a decent beer overall, But definitely Bell's worst. (493 characters)

Photo of beergoot
3.04/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Golden amber body with a thick, creamy head; loads of foam rings on the glass. Fully roasted grain smell with a pinch of ripe apricot floating about. Mild grain flavors carrying a soft, sweet maltiness with a dirty hop bitterness underneath it all; cardboard. Soft and smooth feel with a medium-light body; dry.

A fair brew with an overall weird (if not disagreeable) flavor. The malt sweetness is underwhelming while the hop bitterness is too sharp and the overall feel seems overly dry. In many ways it comes across like an astringent slice of semi-dessicated tangerine. I'd give it a second shot, but I'm in no hurry to revisit this beer anytime soon. (655 characters)

Photo of hackmann
3.04/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: hazy golden orange body that has tons of plankton (super fine sediment) floating around – that is from all the sediment on the bottom of the bottle. Two finger white head that leaves tons of lacing on the glass. Tons of lacing on the glass during the first ¼ of the beverage – spotty thereafter.

Aroma: light bouquet overall; light spice, hint of floral, not much else

Flavors: spicy, semi-sweet grains, earthy, little bitterness, mineral water around the edges

Mouthfeel: light carbonation feel, spicy, light to moderate bittering on the mid palate, medium body, light aftertaste – just a touch of spice … nothing special

Overall: average to slightly above average; doesn’t have character – missing distinct notes and depth; easy to drink (768 characters)

Photo of utopiajane
3.06/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This pours golden with an orange blush on it. It has quite a bit of sediment and it's very cloudy. The head is fat and off white and fell slowly to a ring and film on top. Left soapy lace. Nose is citrus and a sweet malt. The citrus is faded a bit but it's orange peel and stone fruits. The malt is biscuit and honey on the nose. The taste is muddled. It's got a body that is a bit thick and it travels the palate slowly because of that. It's not crisp or light. The carbonation is prickly and that's a good thing and adds to the drinkability. The fruits combine for an all over citric taste that has a bit of pith and hop floral . The cracker malt starts out strong but then that taste flattens out in the drink and there's hardly any finish. Spice doesn't come forward until mid glass and by then there is a bit of hop oil to add to the slow body. Has a some herbal in the finish. It's just ok. (896 characters)

Photo of MattSweatshirt
3.06/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottled 11/26/12

Pours a hazy bright golden orange body with a white head that leaves lace sticking around.

The aroma is malt with floral and spicy hops.

The taste mimics the aroma with those same three components.

A little watery, light bodied, refreshing, and hits with a little hop bitterness.

An enjoyable beer. Not much to write home about though. (361 characters)

Photo of Huhzubendah
3.06/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer is golden hued with a half inch or so of head. Scents of bread, grain, mild hops. Pretty clean and easy drinking, though a bit bland. Not a lot of hop character here, though perhaps that is intentional. A bready, grainy beer that may be a nice counterbalance to some chili or spicy wings. Middle of the road. (317 characters)

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Midwestern Pale Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
78 out of 100 based on 131 ratings.