Short's Bellaire Brown Ale - Short's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Short's Bellaire Brown AleShort's Bellaire Brown Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

634 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 634
Reviews: 250
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 12.2%
Wants: 23
Gots: 79 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-01-2005

Exactly what it says, “Brown beer.” This is beer fermented from wort extracted from the hearty pale ale malt, toasted specialties, chocolate and Munich selections resulting in a toasted brown color. Very light hop additions from the Cascade variety allows the sweet malty and caramel notes to shine through for duration of its time on your palette.
15 I.B.U.’s
12.8 deg. Plato
5.2% A.B.V.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 634 | Reviews: 250
Photo of Thorpe429
1.54/5  rDev -59.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Thanks, Short's--another infected beer. Served in a tulip. I'll say from the start, I had thought that the Short's infection issues were pretty much limited to beers with weird ingredients. Apparently this is not the case.

The beer starts off fine, pouring a moderate brown color with a pretty good off-white head with a bit of lacing. The nose is slightly sweet with some dark fruits along with a bit of an acetic character in the background. The taste is just downright awful. This is essentially vinegar at this point and really disgusting. Not much else to say about it. The mouthfeel is puckering and sour, burning my throat. Drain pour to the max.

Photo of bamadog
2.07/5  rDev -45.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I received this bottle as an extra in a trade along with some other great looking Shorts and regional mid-western brews and unfortunately, this one did not strike my fancy. I'm hoping it was actually a bad bottle or something, as I would be more than happy to try it again and edit this review. Pour is from the bottle to a pint glass and split with beeerman207. Review is from notes taken on 2/13/2010.

Appearance: Pour is a deep toffee brown color and starts with a very short 1/2 finger head that fades quickly to a thin and uneven skim; body is semi-opaque and looks like a thick iced tea; a few spots of lacing are left behind.

Smell: Here is where it all starts to fall apart for me -- the smell is like woody and vegetables and that's it. It comes across as very unappealing.

Taste: Much like the smell, there is a nutty woodiness and that vegetative quality that is reminiscent of cabbage. Frankly, and sadly, it's a drain pour.

Mouthfeel: Moderate carbonation and a smooth and moderate thickness and weight for a brown. The mouthfeel is alright, but the unpleasant flavors make it nearly unpalatable.

Drinkability: I really can't get past the flavors and their unpleasantness. Like I said at the beginning of the review, I would gladly give it a shot again and edit this if it comes out better.

Photo of cbbjr
2.15/5  rDev -43%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A-Brown and fairly easy to see through. A small amount of white head that disappears quickly with little lacing.

S-First thing I sense is a bit a caramel. But then I picked up a surprisingly sour smell. Not sure if it is intentional, but it could be the reason this was on sale for $6 a sixer at Whole Foods in DC (regularly $11).

T-Like the smell, a bit of caramel up front, and again like the smell, it is a bit funky. And not in a good way. Not even a trace of hops.

M-Fairly thin. Not very carbonated. Regardless of whether you swallow quickly or let it sit on your tongue and let it swish around in for a few seconds, nothing changes.

Overall-I am pretty disappointed. I have had a couple of other Short's beers and loved them. Brown ales aren't my favorite style, but I do enjoy them, and this isn't a great example. Not sure if the sourness is intentional or not. If so I will give them credit for trying something different, but it doesn't float my boat.

Photo of BennyL1
2.18/5  rDev -42.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Found a leftover single of this in the fridge so even though its a bit warm out for a brown I figure why not. No freshness date - poured into a perfect pint glass.

This brew pours a nice chestnut brown color with a thin off white head. Minimal lacing on the glass.

Pretty malty aroma, caramel mostly. Some other kind of odd roasty scents in there as well. Not really feeling this so far.

Taste is not what I expected at all, and that isn't a good thing. Caramel malt and dark fruits but overall a watery feeling to it. This beer just tastes off - maybe because of age but I can't quite put my finger on it.

Medium in body but watered down. Not much carbonation which leads me to think that this beer is past its prime. Oh well, that's why breweries need to put some dating info on the bottle. So it goes.

Photo of papat444
2.23/5  rDev -40.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Thanks to grub for this one.

Poured from a 12oz. bottle.

Appearance: A very thin head, half a finger at most but it does have a better body with an almost opaque brown body that provides a bit of a saving grace.

Smell: A bit of roasted nuts with some dark fruits tinged with a bit of sourness.

Taste: Dried fruits but the major overtone is sourness. it's not in your face but it is present and distracts a great deal from the flavor. Has a bit of harshness in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Practically no carbonation to speak of and watery a bit.

Drinkability: Unfortunately, this was a drain pour.

Overall: I did not enjoy this brew very much and i like brown ales. Sorry but i'll pass next time.

Photo of womencantsail
2.24/5  rDev -40.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Thanks for sharing, Dan.

A: The beer pours a light brown color with an off-white head.

S: Typical: sour. Lemon, lemon zest, and straw are the main aromas here. There is a bit of toast and roast to it, perhaps some bread and a bit of chocolate. But, it's mostly tart.

T: The flavor is a bit watery, but unmistakably tart/sour. It's actually got a weird watermelon flavor to it as well. Very little brown ale flavor to be found here.

M: Medium bodied with a high carbonation.

O: Short's just needs to get their act together.

Photo of Beaver13
2.33/5  rDev -38.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12oz bottle. Pours dark brown with a medium creamy tan head that retains well and leaves a little lacing.

The aroma is sweet roasted malts and chocolate with some molasses.

The flavor is very sweet and sugary malts, molasses, nutty chocolates and some slightly tart fruitiness. The mouthfeel is light bodied and a bit watery.

Overall, too sweet and thin. An OK brown.

Photo of GONZALOYANNA
2.56/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

355ml bottle. Tumbler glass. From my notes (mar´11). Light reddish brown color. Close & lasting crown. Light aroma profile: toasted malts & herbal hop touch. Sweet upfront. Medium body, watery texture. Quite flat & boring. Smooth bitter finish. Unexpected from Short´s.

Photo of steve8robin
2.56/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Decided to try some more Shorts while it's coming to my area. 12oz bottle...

A: A deep clear red with hints of brown. A small light off white head that fades quickly to minor bubbles atop the brew. Ok.

S: Faint hints of some chocolate malt upfront with a mild vanilla in the middle. A slight coffee on the backend. Blah...

T: Some watery chocolate malt blended with a minor hop bite. A creaminess in the middle with a faint black licorice on the back. Ok.

M: Medium body with a heavy carbonation. A dry watery finish. Eh.

O: All in all, this beer kind of blows. This one is ok, but nothing worth buying again. Don't bother with this brew. Not a good representation of the style and not a good beer. Rethink this one Shorts.

Photo of JustAnotherGalen
2.6/5  rDev -31%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz into a Tulip

A: Poured a transparent light brown out of the bottle. In the glass has a crystal clear brown/red color and a surprisingly white head that quickly recedes. The head formed with extremely small bubbles, leaving some thin lacing on the glass, and a thin white rim of head.

S: Hard to make much out. No hops. Some malt, more bread crust than anything else, and a little of something bright and sour.

T: Watery, sharp acidic carbonation up front, some sweet malt flavor, but overwhelmed by the carbonation. little after taste beyond a bit of lingering bitterness

M: Thin, highly carbonated.

O: Light bodied, too highly carbonated, lacking complexity. Not something I will seek out again.

Photo of Rhettroactive
2.64/5  rDev -30%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

From 12oz bottle to Bruges hybrid glass on 9/19/11
*From notes

-- The wifey generously picked this sixer up at Rodman's in DC on 9/18/11 --

A: Like homemade apple cider. It's unfiltered and rustic brown. A decent pour yields a one finger head that doesn't stick around, and minor lacing rims the glass.

S: A generous amount of past-ripe plums. There's also an odd twang of rusty copper piping.

T: Absent of any hops. I mean zero humulus lupulus. Kinda funky-sweet. Something doesn't seem quite right here. Is it slightly infected? Possibly a bit oxidized? Regardless, I can't say this is something I've found in many other browns, so calling it a "classic brown" would be stretching it.

M: Thin up front. As I violently swish this around in my mouth, it begins to perk up a bit, and a tad bit of creamy froth shows up, albeit a bit too late.

O: Short's Bellaire Brown is, literally, one funky brew. Either they're intentionally brewing one off-the-wall brown ale, or this is slightly infected. Either way, this wasn't my cup of tea, and was quite happy to have shared the rest of these with unknowing friends.

Photo of Rodekill
2.83/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I'd heard about this brewery in the past, and was impressed that their booth at Great American Beer Festival had such a long line whenever I walked past it.

They just started distributing in Colorado and their six packs are pretty expensive, coming in at one to two dollars more than most craft beers.

I picked up one bottle as part of a mixed six pack rather than plunking down $10.99 for a sixer.

I'm glad I just got one bottle. It's a decent brown ale, but nothing special, and not as good as others I could mention, but won't.

Average appearance, nose, mouthfeel. Slight diacetyl notes, which is always off-putting for my palate. Not overpowering, but there nonetheless.

The beer tastes fresh enough, so I don't think it's an old batch. I might try another of their beers in a mixed six pack, but this beer doesn't make me want to run out and get more.

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
2.83/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 6/29/2010. On tap at Shorts. Pours a dark brown with a small white head. Aroma of super sweet malt and raisins. Flavor of very sweet malt, almost juice-like due to the sweetness, with a thin palate. It was a pretty disappointing brown ale.

Photo of gfreed
2.86/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

If brown ales were little children in a swimming pool, this one would bob at the comfy, safe shallow end, afraid to move for fear of... of... I don't have any idea. It just seemed like a good metaphor for this beer. It's nice and safe, not too bitter, not too sweet, not too smelly, not too tasty, not too much of anything; yet it still manages to be pleasant to drink. It has the round non-grapefruity citrus zing of a good UK ale, which I find appealing, but it doesn't have much else. Brown ales need not be as dense as a stout or a porter, but they ought to have more umph than this.

Photo of beagle75
2.95/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a nonic glass.

A: Clear, light brown color with less than one finger of diminishing light beige foam head. Light lacing remains on the glass.

S: Caramel and cooked mixed fruit are at the center of this beer's smell. Lesser chocolate is also detected, as well as very discreet carbon dioxide.

T: Begins off-dry, with mixed fruit and mild roasted malt that is made unfocused by carbonic acidity that shows up almost immediately. The latter half of the flavor profile is saved by intensely toasty Munich malt that follows the eventual decline of the acidity. Hop qualities, including bitterness, are largely absent although a phantom of acidity lingers on the palate.

M: Thin viscosity, watery and slightly acidic on the palate, with moderate carbonation.

D/O: This ale is a mediocre effort from a brewery that is known for putting quirky and unique twists on traditional beer styles. Although the texture is unconvincing in general, it is the early acidity that holds this beer back from being a better example of its style.

Photo of LiquidBread219
3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A=The beer is dark brown, with a thin head that falls away quickly, leaving faint traces of lacing on the snifter.

S=The nose is rather weak, with faint traces of smoke, light roast, and perhaps a mild chocolate presence.

T=The taste is pretty bland and uneventful. Light roast, mild bitterness, hints of chocolate. Easy to drink but nothing really stands out for me.

M=The body is thin to me, with moderately light carbonation
Overall, a basic example of a brown ale.

O= Overall a average beer there wasn't a lot going on in it. I just basically had it in a mixed six pack so it was worth a try not something I would seek out.

Photo of beerman207
3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Bamadog for sharing a bomber of this with me that he got as a trade

A: ice tea color and decenmt skim

S: Wow - vegetables, not what I was hoping for from a brown ale

T: Cabbage and corn? Not a good thing

M: Mild

D: Pretty low - can't say that I'd try this again.

Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.04/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

A 12oz bottle with no visible BB date. Purchased from a webshop quite a while back and stored in my garage.

Poured into a straight pint glass. Bottle conditioned. A dark reddish-brown hue with floating sediment and low carbonation. Yields a large head of creamy white foam with decent retention; this slowly subsides to a surface layer. Aroma of sweet, grainy malt with notes of caramel, chocolate, mild roasted malt, dried fruit, faint brown sugar, tea and earthy yeast. There is also a strange sour overtone that seems out of place.

Tastes of caramel malt with a sour character and a dry finish. Notes of lactic acid/mild vinegar, caramel, dried fruit, brown sugar, faint biscuity grain, mild roasted malt and earthy yeast esters. Surprisingly acidic - I assume this is infected or has deteriorated. A mild, dry quality upon swallowing. Mouthfeel is smooth and tingly with good body, but flat and undercarbonated. Lacks texture, though slightly astringent. Aftertaste of sourness and caramel malt.

Meh - not brilliant, although the aroma gives the impression that it could have been. There are some nice malty hints that suggest a decent brown ale lurks underneath the acidic off-notes. Not sure what happened here; the sourness is quite clean, almost like yoghurt. Bacteria perhaps? Or maybe it's just age - without a BB/bottled-on date it's impossible to tell. Oh well, I review it as I find it (though I'll re-review if I get a fresh one someday). Disappointing.

Photo of gogreen99
3.07/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

This beer has a hearty malt flavor and exactly as the label states BROWN. A medium brown color. There is a hint of chocolate flavor with minimal presence of hops. a hint of light roast coffee and a mild bitterness in aroma. not one of my favorite beers but also not the worst.

Photo of dougofthefuture
3.09/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Shockingly, brown. Actually darker than expected, but still brown. Very little head, and it's gone quick.

S - The first thing I get is a stale, plastic-like smell. There are some burnt malt notes under that, but overall, I don't like it.

T&M - Bitter burnt malt flavor up front, with a kind of sickly sweet stale sugary aftertaste. That sounds awful, but it comes across as average. I do like the intensity of the roasted flavor, but the complete package just isn't my style.

D - I bought a single, and I'll drink it. I won't be sad I don't have more, and I won't seek it out any time soon.

Granted, bitter dark beers are not my favorite style, but this one really let me down considering the reputation that Short's has. I'm looking forward to trying the rest of their lineup soon.

Photo of ahq514
3.11/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle into tulip

Pours a beautiful deep mahogany with a thick head that slowly fades to a one finger head. Moderate lacing occurs.

Smell is weak, but I pick up some roasted qualities and some light fruit. A toasted chocolate aroma is also present.

First thing I pick up on is the slight roastiness, and a little bit of nuttiness too. A little bit of sour fruit comes through (although I can't really tell what kind, perhaps apple?). A little bit of a caramel and chocolate flavors round out the end of the taste. Kind of on the dry side. Very similar to the aroma.

Carbonation is pretty good for this beer, but I thought it was a little on the light bodied side. Some of the dry roastiness sticks in your mouth.

Overall, this was a decent beer. I would drink it again, but it just blends in with a lot of the other browns I've had. Nothing overly special about it.

Photo of divineaudio
3.12/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

pint glass.

a - pours a deep chestnut color and forms a thin cap of tan head that dissipated quick. spotty lacing.

s - nutty malt with notes of grape, fig, faint spice, sourdough bread.

t - nutty malt character with pungent, earthy hop notes. has an almost rye like sourness and a few dark fruity notes. kind of an odd combination of flavors.

m - medium bodied with finer carbonation.

o - not really sure how i feel about this one. easily drinkable, but with an odd flavor profile. certainly extends the range of the style.

Photo of sjverla
3.13/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nose: Caramelly and a little grassy. Molasses. Mildly astringent. Almost leathery. Definitely hearty.

Appearance: Small, short-lived head. Rich, deep hazelnut color.

Taste: A little tart and sweet. Mild roastiness, but the tartness dominates. Similar to Newcastle in that regard. Faint hints of caramel.

Overall: It's probably a little old (dated 1/17/11) Not something I would otherwise revisit.

Photo of jrallen34
3.18/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into my De Struise glass...Medium dark but clear brown, ugly. A really nice big light tan head, good retention at first. Quickly, this starts to look watery light lacing...The aroma is pretty boring, very light roasted coffee on the front after that a touch of hops. Plain. Gave this quite a bit of time to warm up, no change...The taste is not much better, coffee again is the main player. Light coffee, grass, chalky, boring hops. Easy to drink but I'm not inclined to drink more than half the bottle.

Pass.

Photo of corby112
3.21/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From notes:

pours a very dark amber/chestnut brown color with mahogany edges and a thin beige head that quickly settles into a thin ring. Minimal lacing left behind.

Slightly roasted malt aroma with some chocolate, caramel and nut countered by a subtle earthy hop presence. Smells kind of bland and one dimensional really.

On the lighter end of medium bodied with a decent balancenof sweet and roasted malts. Toasty with hints of caramel, hazelnut and toffee complimented by some zesty spice notes, especially cinnamon and brown sugar. The hops provide a nice dry, bitterness that balances out the sweeter notes and linger into a dry finish. Nothing out of the ordinary but pretty quaffable.

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Short's Bellaire Brown Ale from Short's Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 634 ratings.