1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Bell Ringer - RJ Rockers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Bell RingerBell Ringer

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

390 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 390
Reviews: 173
rAvg: 3.71
pDev: 12.4%
Wants: 6
Gots: 25 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
RJ Rockers Brewing Company visit their website
South Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Our high gravity offering weighs in at 8.5% ABV and is delightfully loaded with malt and hops. This is an ale worthy of your sturdiest goblet or most treasured stein. Ring it!

(Beer added by: mikesgroove on 08-16-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Bell Ringer Alström Bros
Ratings: 390 | Reviews: 173 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brew3crew
2.88/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

picked thia up on an in person trade in north carolina. Been meaning to try it for a while now

A-very murky in color. Hazy amber is the best I can think of.
S-I can't quite put my finger on it. Very sweet. On the nose
T-picking up some oaky flavors. Sweet throughout.
M-decent body with a smooth aftertaste
D-goes down smoother than the smell implys. Not too shaby.

Maybe I got an old bottle...willing to try again

brew3crew, Jan 14, 2011
Photo of MbpBugeye
3.48/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A nice little local extra from mikesgroove.

A- The color is ugly, its a muddy burnt orange, but the looks are redeemed by an awesome lacy foam that creeps up the glass.

S- Quite sweet on the nose. Its mostly toffee and caramel.

T- Nicely balanced between grassy hops and toffee.

M- Medium body with relatively high carbonation.

MbpBugeye, Dec 13, 2010
Photo of jsprain1
4.03/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a clouded copper with a two finger beige head that leaves webs of lacing down the glass. Absolutely splendid looking.
S- Smell is subdued, especially if we are scoring this as an American Strong Ale (I recognize imperial ESB is not a category here and there has been debate over what this should be characterized. this being said, I'll grade it as a Strong ale). The smell is biscuity, slightly doughy. Hop presence is earthy.
T- Starts with caramel and dough flavors, not ever really mouth shatteringly hoppy as some may have expected. Sweet throughout.
M- For a strong ale it may be a touch below average body. Same with carbonation. But neither of these facts detract from the direction of this beer.
D- For a strong ale, it's very drinkable. Not until it had warmed a bit did I notice any alcohol. A quality beer. Unique idea with Imperial ESB.

jsprain1, Dec 13, 2010
Photo of Tilley4
4.22/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm re-reviewing this after a bad experience with the first bottle.. Case from RJ Rockers read my review and offered to send me some known fresh stuff... Not only was that one of the coolest things ever, it made ALL the difference... A complete 180 on this beer...

Pours an orangish red appearance topped by a thick creamy head which is already a big difference from the first experience as that one was dead still and lifeless... Much different and looking good here...

Pungent piney sticky hops blended with pineapple juice and sweet caramel malts.. Damn.... This smells great. The pungency of the hops catches me off guard and now I'm getting excited.. This smells like Victory's Yakima Twilight, one of my favorite strong ales.

Sweet pineappley hoppiness mixes with caramel malts resulting in a sticky resiny hop experience... No trace of booze at all... Just creamy and hoppy and delicious.. What a turnaround!

I'm glad Case sent me another one of these as this brew went from a solid D to one of the better Strongs I've had... Intense and hoppy and scary drinkability... I'm hoping I can find some more fresh bottles in the future as I would make this a staple...

Tilley4, Dec 11, 2010
Photo of spartanfan
4.78/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Pours a clear clean orange color with a nice ivory colored head that sticks around and leaves good lacing.

S: Smells of citrusy hops and a bit of sweet malts.

T: Taste is quite hoppy. I think this must be a fresh keg because is it fragrant and very bitter as well. Nice clean flavor without a hint of alcohol.

M: Nice full mouthfeel. Good body with the right amount of carbonation.

D: This beer is very drinkable. My party went through 3 pitchers before we kicked the keg (the beer remained clear even on the last pitcher). The alcohol is deceptive and can creep up on you if you aren't aware of it.

spartanfan, Nov 26, 2010
Photo of rlshep
3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Hit right away with aromas of vanilla, caramel and chocolate. A little bit of alcohol.

Appearance is fairly cloudy. An orangeish amber color. One finger white head, some lacing.

Flavors are caramel, dark fruits, a bit raisony, some brown sugar. High amount of residual sugars and sweetness. At 8.5% this is expected, but maybe not this much. Bitterness is medium-high, but not enough to counteract the sticky sweetness. No noticeable hop flavor.

Medium-high mouthfeel from sweetness and high carbonation. Alcohol very noticeable.

Overall not a bad beer. I'll age some of these and drink the rest. However, sweetness and alcohol turn me off on this beer. I don't see me picking it up again.

rlshep, Nov 18, 2010
Photo of Cyberkedi
3.43/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very attractive golden amber with a decent, persistent pale beige head that leaves a fair amount of lacing. Aroma is not strong, but it is quite hoppy with an undertone of grapefruit. Flavor is hoppy, somewhat bitter and a little fruity, mostly sour orange and grapefruit. Texture is smooth and fairly fizzy, leaving a bitter and slightly tingly finish.

A toast to our veterans! Happy Remembrance/Veterans Day!

Cyberkedi, Nov 12, 2010
Photo of Bierguy5
3.8/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle, 8.5% abv. Code on the label leads me to believe it was bottled on 6/21/10. Cloudy, orange-amber color airy off-white head. Retention and lace are nice.

Lots of caramel malt up front in the nose. Citrus and stone fruit. Maybe an earthy component to the hop aroma as well. Just a bit of a yeasty note. Aroma seems a bit subdued.

Lots of caramel up front, followed by some citrusy bitterness. Almost toffee-like, as the malt is rich. Some sweetness left, but it is balanced pretty well. Bitterness stops short of being harsh, but is certainly there.

Medium body, with an almost chewy feel at times. Decent carbonation. Some alcohol is felt, but not overwhelming. Pretty nice to sip on.

Bierguy5, Oct 31, 2010
Photo of katan
3.83/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz into a goblet

A - Pours a deep and hazy orange, to orangish brown. Little head formation, with only a film forming, which then breaks down to just a few bubbles. Bubbling is light.

S - Some malty sweet notes, caramel comes through as well. Hopping is subdued. Some alcohol is detected.

T - Starts off with a light 2 row sweetness, caramel and crystal malts. A huge grapefruit hop whammy comes in, bittering out the beer significantly. Orange hop notes continue through to a rather bitter finish. Yeasty/peppery finish.

M - Thick and solid beer body - creamy at times. Carbonation is light, but to the level to consider it flat. Alcohol warmth lands on the tongue.

D - Moderate drinkability - abv is rather potent, and not really that well hidden. Flavors are rather potent, not considered a session beer.

katan, Sep 06, 2010
Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a snifter) Thanks to cbak999 for this brew
A- This beer has a hazy orange body with a bubbly yellowish -beige head that stays creamy for a good while. There are a few tiny bubbles gliding up the side of the glass.
S- The rich citrus hops blends with caramel malt and some rich graham aromas come through as the beer warms.
T- The pungent quality of green hops mixes with the soft orange hop flavors. This blends with the caramel malt that has some softer biscuit malt qualities to it. There is a dry finish with a pungent note that lingers.
M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel that is creamy as long as the head last and doesn't have any alcohol heat. There is a gentle carbonation prick in the finish.
D- This beer has a full pungent hop flavor with support from caramel malt and other softer hop flavors. This is really easy to drink especially for 8.5 %. It would be nice to taste this with a bit of age as I suspect the hops would soften and the malt would grow.

rhoadsrage, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of CJfromPhilly
3.6/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours from the 12 oz. bottle a hazy, iced tea-ish color with a one finger head that quickly settles into a light collar. There does not appear to be much carbonation in the murky haze. Aroma is sweet with a slight hint of citrus fruit. 1st sip is smooth and sweet, with some of the citrus flavor in the aroma present in the flavor as well. Mouthfeel is of medium heft. I don't really notice much of a hint of the 8.5% abv, so these are nicely drinkable, but be careful as they could sneak up on you. Overall, an OK, but not great brew. The type of beer you'd get if they were out of your favorites.

CJfromPhilly, Aug 22, 2010
Photo of cbak999
3.58/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A : Poured with a 1/2" of head that quickly dissipates to a ring around the glass. Color is deep orange to amber.

S : Very bready and doughy, with some sweetness, almost like a honey bread. Yeasty smelling.

T : First tastes are of caramel, honey, and nuts. It's very sweet....too sweet. There is a bit of hop in the taste, but not much. I think it could use some more hops, maybe a dry hop or hop back.

M: The carbonation is right on.

D: Personally, I think this is more of a sweet stong ale, not really a IIPA. It lacks the hop character necessary for a good IIPA. However for a sweet, high alcohol, brew, it's not bad at all!

cbak999, Aug 14, 2010
Photo of bucklemyshoe
4.15/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. poured into a snifter. This pours a cranberry red with one finger of foaminess (not too carbonated). The aroma is of dark malts, caramel, honey, and a decent lode of hops (70 IBUs?). The taste is dark candied fruit, caramel, and clove. It leans a little toward the sweet side but not unbearably so, with some bitterness at the end. It's the best that South Carolina has to offer.

bucklemyshoe, Aug 05, 2010
Photo of CampusCrew
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: amber-hued body with a thinnish, near white head. decent lacing.

Smell: toasty amber malts, sublte citrus fruit, herbaceous hop notes.

Taste: sweetish caramel flavor of amber malts, hops not that dominant. might not be really fresh

Mouthfeel: Medium body.

Drinkability: not a bad beer, but I thought it would be bigger.

CampusCrew, Aug 04, 2010
Photo of FickleBeast
4.2/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Reviewed on my droid

Pours a brilliant orange red color with two fingers of sticky foam. Aroma is a nice malty sweetness.

The flavor backs up the smell. This is a sweet malt bomb with minimal hoppiness. Nice crystal malt flavor, the sweetness is reAlly smooth.

I am really pleased with this beer. Hadn't heard of the brewery and bought a single on a whim. Very pleasantly suprised.

FickleBeast, Jul 31, 2010
Photo of thagr81us
3.9/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap into a Dogfish Head tumbler. Pours a hazy red-orange with a one finger white head. Maintains excellent lacing throughout. The aroma was comprised of malt and orange peel. The flavor was of malt, oranges, and chocolate. It had a light feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a very nice brew. All of the aspects of this one seem to be very nice. If it were perhaps a little more complex it could be even better. I am glad I have been sending this out as an extra in some of my trades.

thagr81us, Jul 30, 2010
Photo of oberon
4.18/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Its to bad I cant find RJ Rockers stuff around here anymore, I think they make some quality stuff.Poured into a pint glass a clear amber/bronze with a well defined 1/2 finger white head atop,it held very well for a long time.Aromas are a mix of sweet malty caramel and sweetish dough,with a shot of piney hop that comes out more as it warms along with more present alcohol.Love the complexities on the palate,its quite toasty and warming with a big amount of caramel and sweet breadiness,there is a nice shot of piney hop in the finish.Its warming and basically a double ESB in my mind,a little light in the feel, but I really liked this beer.

oberon, Jul 28, 2010
Photo of MetalHopHead6
3.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

RJ Rockers Bell Ringer is earthy, sweet, and smooth.

It poured a beautiful dark cloudy copper, with less than a finger of head and it left no lace. The smell was malty and sweet, and the flavor was earthy, with a great deal of pine resin followed by caramel sweetness. It had a clean watery feel and left very little behind. As Strong Ales go, it was extremely refreshing and smooth, with the drinkability of a session ale.

Considering the high ABV, Bell Ringer is dangerously smooth and easy-drinking, with a nice rich earthy flavor. It's simultaneously, a rich and smooth experience.

MetalHopHead6, Jul 18, 2010
Photo of wcudwight
3.9/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Copper and caramel colored with a nice thick sticky cream colored head that last until the glass is empty. Lot's of sticky lacing on the glass.
Sweet smelling with some candied apple. Nothing really stands out.
Balanced flavor. Maybe too much so. Grassy, piney, and citrus hops but nothing really stands out. Oatmeal cookies and orange marmelade.
Medium to thick mouthfeel. Not a lot of carbonation but I like that.
It's kind of funny. What I don't like about this beer (too balanced) is what I like most about this beer (it's wonderfully balanced) and very easy to drink for a strong ale. I'd like to see RJ Rockers tip the scale to one side or the other and still keep the great drinkability. WIth all that being said it's a good beer that I'd recommend.

wcudwight, Jul 17, 2010
Photo of mgbickel
3.53/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a large, plastic cup...drinking this one pool-side! A pretty thin layer of sandy white foam formed on top of the brownish-amber body. Man...I wish this one was in a glass, the color looks pretty sweet!

The nose has sweet caramel malts, some piney hops, a hint of woody spice and an earthy character (barley maybe?).

The taste follows the nose perfectly...a little grainy up front, some sweet characters take over the middle and the finish finds a tiny, hop bitterness. Hmmm...getting a little alcohol burn in the aftertaste...oh...8.5 ABV explains things a little...

The mouth feel is on the heavier side of medium, drying with very mild carbonation.

Not the easiest beer to drink, but still tasty and complex. Would like to see the booziness hidden better, worth a shot, but I will probably not buy this one again.

mgbickel, Jun 30, 2010
Photo of jhammel01
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep cloudy copper with an eggshell white head. Keeps a good creamy head that sticks to the side of the glass. The beer keeps a solid white top on the beer the whole drink...Very nice looking! The beer is cloudy, Like I said but very hazy. Almost unfiltered looking. Looks like tea!

Smells mainly of caramel, malt and slight spiciness of hops.

The taste is very reminiscent of an American Barley wine. The hops bite in, earthy, oily and fresh tasting citrus spiciness. The bready background, malt and caramel help balance it out. The beer does taste a bit "warm"

The mouthfeel is a bit chewy and thick. Very Creamy.

jhammel01, Jun 25, 2010
Photo of CHADMC3
3.63/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This lively brew filled my goblet with an opaque orange/copper body and a thin off white head that leaves just a touch of lacing floating atop the beer.

The aroma is a bit mild, but features sweet malt and perhaps fruit, and a root like spice similar to ginger.

The flavor consists of sweet malt, brown sugar, perhaps black pepper, some toasted notes, and some earthy hops at the finish.

This brew is medium in body and carbonation with a slightly drying finish.

Pretty good brew for the catch all category of Strong Ale. No one feature sticks out too much, which I am on the fence as to whether this is bad or good.

CHADMC3, Jun 14, 2010
Photo of Mora2000
3.68/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to blutt59 for sharing this bottle. This is my first beer from the great state of South Carolina.

The beer pours an orange-amber color with a white head. The aroma is very malty with caramel and toffee notes. The flavor is lots of caramel malt but not too much else. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Mora2000, May 18, 2010
Photo of ghostmech007
4.43/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a wiezen glass. It's not the proper glass but sue me.

Beautiful deep red / bronze coloring. Great head with foamy bubbles. Head clings the glass like it's holding on for dear life.

Smells like a fruit orchard! Apples, peaches, apricots and I think a bit of berries as well. Smells delicious.

Tastes is sublime. Full body with a sharp carbonation. You sip the alcohol everytime but you really get the rest of the flavors as well. Caramel cross with a very heavy yeast. Hop balance is superb with a slight citrus flavor with the finish. Very nice brew.

This is the first strong style ale that I will stock permanently in my collection. Very drinkable with a nice kick, right up my alley.

ghostmech007, Apr 22, 2010
Photo of marvin213
3.83/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It looks like a barleywine, but I guess a lot of strong ales do. Dark brown, with only the slightest head. Really--it looks pretty normal.

It's got a caramely vibe to it, and both the malts and the hops are aggressive on the nose. The smell--with all that malty hoppiness--is more aligned with a strong ale, but this toffee-like edge still leaves me thinking barleywine.

Malts dominate the taste, but I'm fairly certain it was hoppier the first time I tasted it. It's still like a barleywine, with a malty sweet mouthfeel countered by a bittering hop presence. Oddly, this is like an Arrogant Bastard Ale mixed with its more potent brethren, the Double Bastard--and the 8.5% ABV is probably spot-on for such a mixture! It's a pleasant enough beverage, and one I'll likely pick up again when I come across it on the shelves.

marvin213, Apr 07, 2010
Bell Ringer from RJ Rockers Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 390 ratings.