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Bell's Porter | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
87
very good
1,035 Reviews
Bell's PorterBell's Porter
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Michigan, United States | website

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
One of our many award-winning beers, Porter emphasizes the darker, roasted aspects of malt. Hints of dark chocolate and freshly roasted coffee provide the focus, while hops remain in the background. Not as full-bodied as a stout, Porter bridges the gap between malty brown ales and our more heavily roasted stouts.

Added by Mitchster on 02-06-2002

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,035
Ratings:
2,795
Avg:
3.88
pDev:
10.31%
 
 
Wants:
102
Gots:
362
For Trade:
6
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,035 | Ratings: 2,795
Photo of Tone
4.01/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a black color. 1/2 inch head of a tan color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of strong sweet malt, slight roasted malt, lactose/oatmeal, slight chocolate, slight alcohol, and slight hops. Fits the style of an American Porter. Mouth feel is sharp and clean, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of roasted malt, sweet malt, hint of hops, slight chocolate, and slight alcohol. Overall, well balanced, good appearance, aroma, and blend.

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Photo of jaypaul522
4.41/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark with average head. The smell is malt, with some coffee and maybe caramel. Taste is good, not too complex, and satisfying. Hints of chocolate in the aftertaste. The feel is medium bodied. Overall a good porter.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Dark brown, thin 1/6" lighter brown head on it. Aroma was of earthen malt, bitter c hops, mild cocoa presence.

Taste was that of a hoppy porter with more brown malt than chocolate malt. Not overly thick, alcohol in that nice and close to sessiony range. Coffee like flavors from the malt, same with some nuttiness. Carbonation on point. This is a solid beer that is consistent and reliable every time I've had it.

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Photo of musicsherlock
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 01/06/16
Reviewed 03/22/16

Pours a deep, dark brown not quite black that allows no light to pass. A 1" just off white head that fades to a film with good lacing.

Smells of mild roasted malt, cold black coffee

A nice thick malt that coats the tongue but doesn't overstay it's welcome. Roasted malt matching the smell. A bit more hops than it's English cousin without becoming a Cascadian Stout. Dark chocolate notes.

Good carbonation but not too much. Slightly sticky or creamy but not cloying.

Overall I imagine this being a fraternal twin to the English Porter from back in the day. Close enough but with the modern palette in mind. The sum greater than it's parts.

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Photo of SABERG
3.58/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle dated 1/06/2016 into the modified pint glass.
A - An aggressive pour yields , 2" mocha loose knit cap riding a very dark intriguing body.
Gentle carbonation relentlessly chasing the surface. Lacing clings creating a body of evidence.
S - Toasted malts, not roasted, a bit of cocoa powder, ash, oyster shell minus the salinity, and dried tobacco.
T - A nice blend of raisin, 50% chocolate, anise, cherry wood smoke and toasted sesame.
M - Body is English style, a bit dry, nice carbonation, with a quick clean up. Nothing robust here, just a tightly executed dry porter.
O - The aromatics are the high point, the body is welterweight, and the finish is quick. Easy drinking porter, mates well with food. A fine offering from a creative Brewery.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A tasty brew, as much in the brown ale range as a porter for me, lighter in color with some Indian red shades and raisin looking brown at the core, no darker. Head is fizzy and quite dark as well. Chocolate malt is there in the nose, and with what seems like some English malt, maris otter and medium crystal perhaps. Some bready yeast there too, which I always like in these styles for depth, but I was let down a bit to not have it transfer do well from the nose to the flavor, it's not really there. Nice nutty and toasty qualities the in flavor, I dig nutty in porter with the darker grain. Cocoa and almond notes late. Smooth in feel, medium in body, light in residuals, and quite actively car boned, definitely above the style norm, really pops on the palate. Everyone always raves about the whacky stuff bells does, but I for one am a fan of their most basic styles, this one included. It's a little something different as they go, and it's wide availability makes it easy to locate with a little effort. I enjoyed this thoroughly!

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Photo of jrschaef
3.36/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured out of 12 oz bottle. A nice deep dark look and and roasted porter smell, however the taste and feel did not live up to the pour. Very bland and uninspiring in the taste department proved ultimately disappointing. Not worth trying again

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Photo of KomodoDragon
4.33/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Half inch choppy head, mild activity

Smells of cocoa, tobacco, ashes

Smooth roasted, burnt malts. Some coffee, bit of nuttiness. Less sweet than most porters - but some hints of semi-sweet chocolate appears. Highly drinkable, Piney aftertaste. Dense from flavor, not alcohol, but well balanced with toasted malts and a smooth finish. Enjoyable to sip.

Bells produced a full flavored American porter with loads of interesting discoveries inside. Probably my favorite porter.

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Photo of Crubbsy
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Very dark brown, approaching black. Opaque. A somewhat small light tan head formed after pouring, and about 1/8 inch head remains in the glass.

Smell: The first thing that came to mind was the unforgettable smell of combusted gunpowder and bore cleaner (like at a shooting range). Brought great memories to mind. Once I got past that, I got mostly straight-forward roasty malt notes.

Taste: First is the roasted malt flavors, which are pretty strong. Then the roasty flavors turn into a bitterness, which is rounded out by a fairly sweet finish.

Mouthfeel: Pretty good weight to this one. Might be because I've been drinking some lighter-bodied beers lately. Liked the little bit of chewy heft that this one held.

Overall: Not a terribly special porter. Kind of a straight-forward safe-bet porter. Not bad, but not a stellar offering either.

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Photo of Czequershuus
4.28/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This beer pours a clear brown-black with a smallish but lasting head. The aroma presents dark chococlate, smoke, and cinnamon. The flavor leads with very gentle smoke, as well a chocolate, maple, rasin, and cinnamon. The mouthfeel is neither thick nor thin, but very smooth and drinkable. Overall this is a super pleasant porter with a simple but deep flavor.

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Photo of BillHodson
2.7/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Out of a bottle into a 12oz. glass.
My daughter bought this for me to help me on the Michigan Beer Cap display she got me for Christmas. I've had other Bell's products, and have not been impressed. This, to me, is an average porter; nothing to rave or write home about.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.84/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a nutty brown color, develops into a coffee brown with 90% opacity leaving just enough transparency to let light highlight the edges of the silky body. Head is beige and 3 fingers, recedes slowly and leaves mild lace.

Aroma is like Stover chocolates with the white cream inside, spiced barley, some cherry notes, brown bread, rice, silk chocolate, ash.

Taste is both burnt and chocolaty at the same time. Dark cocoa malts behind that, with a sharp coffee-like hop bite behind that. Feel thins out towards the end. As it warms a bit of ash comes out.

Feel is well-carbonated and nicely condensed with creaminess throughout. A mild semi-dryness at the end.

Overall it's not quite in the same league as my favorites (Deschutes, Founders, Central Waters) - reaching towards it but barely touching. I'd have it again - it's a decent porter but not really fantastic.

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Photo of 1000lbgrizzly
3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown body, fluffy creamy light tan head, sparse lace. Aroma is wonderful, lots of raw cacao bean, pulpy wood, mild hop bitterness. Flavor has more hop bitterness, acidity and some mild earthiness, dark malt (dark, not toasted/roasted) and chocolate has taken a step down. Slightly sweet, well balanced by bitterness. Medium body, love that fluffy head.
Great presentation, including the nose, hops and their bitterness had too much sway on the flavor for my tastes. Otherwise a great, expressive, balanced beer.

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Photo of NateDyk47
4.02/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L- black, thin tan lacing
S- dark chocolate malt
T- dark chocolate, espresso, smoky flavor... hint of bitterness at the end.
F- medium-bodied and lightly carbonated. very smooth.

Another good beer by Bell's. Will definitely buy again.

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Photo of psycHOPathy
3.26/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Tan head that gets a little mashed potatoey after a second. Oil black body

Burnt coffee, chocolate, vanilla, malts, cherry pits. Smells sweeter as it warms

Chocolate, coffee, smoke, malts underneath. More complex at the very front, but follows up pretty woody and bitter. The sort of beer you only want to drink with the front of your mouth

Slick, coats the mouth. Very light carbonation

Not outstanding. Though when I drink a porter I basically just want a chocolate milkshake, so,

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Photo of HamdenHector
3.6/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: dark brown - cola colored with ruby accents at the edges; with a fairly aggressive pour, a 3 finger light brown head that receded to a thick collar; OK lacing;

S: roasted grain with dark chocolate in the background;

T: follows the nose from start to finish; mostly dark chocolate at the end; mild bitterness on the finish;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation;

O: not all that complex, but nice flavor and enjoyable to drink;

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Photo of q33jeff
4.07/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle to pint glass, shared with the wife, she cooking for Turkey day. Look is Dark brown, nice tan head. Large bubbles. Aroma is toasted barley, bread, brown sugar, Taste is cocoa, fig, raisin. Feel is light, a little silky. Nice porter. Bells does their dark beers like champions.

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Photo of jimdalton
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Dark chocolate brown (nearly black), non-transparent that pours a one finger head with quite a bit of lacing.
Smell: Malt backbone with a hint of smoke and roasted coffee
Taste: Malt and roasted coffee are up front with some citrus hop presence. Smoky flavor is very subtle, but not overpowered.
Mouthfeel: Medium-heavy body with a smooth milk texture. Moderate carbonation.
Overall: Bell's Porter is a wonderful porter that brings a smooth feel and great flavor. Well executed!

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Photo of JJKBeerLvr
4.09/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into pint glass in November 2015. Liked to see the bottled date on the bottle, and drank it 1 month after the bottling.

Appearance: Deep black with dark tan head. Beer color is opaque but not cloudy. Head is thick, and leaves a thick film on the glass.

Smell: Aroma filled with mix of roasted malt, coffee, and some chocolate. Nice variety and balance, with a little hops aroma.

Taste: There is a nice mix of sweetness from the malt and bite from the hops. There is a strong roasted coffee flavor, and I also a little chocolate flavors, balanced with a bit of hops. This was done in a nice combination with the other flavors. There is a nice variety of flavors in the aftertaste too, that lasts for a minute. I like how the flavors vary overtime with the aftertaste, and end with a bite from the hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium alcohol, which confirms the 5.6% on the bottle.

This is a smooth full-bodied Porter. It is an interesting combination of flavors, and I would definitely drink this again.

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Photo of GeorgiaFunkadelic
3.65/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Tasty little Porter. Dark & malty...oh how I desire hops.
A little rich, and clean.

Bought this in a six-pack bottle. Bell's beers are of good quality. Glad to add this to my fall Porter list.

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Photo of jimboothdesigns
3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a nice deep redish brown with a nice frothy head. Smell is a nice deep chocolate coffee with a hint of malt. Perhaps some cocoa as well. A bitter coffee taste at the start but not at all harsh. Very smooth and creamy. Good solid porter.

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Photo of Marraybay
2.68/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Look: Black; one finger of head; noticeable lacing

Smell: Roasty coffee; smoke; booze; Some fruit.

Taste: Roasted coffee; Not overly bitter per se, but without any sweetness or any other flavors present, what bitterness there is becomes elevated. Bit of a bite in the finish.

Feel: Thin; fairly carbonated.

Overall: Meh....Had heard some good things about Bell, but not a fan of this offering; Pretty much one dimensional watered down coffee. Disappointing.

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Photo of Bluegrass49
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle to a 16 oz altbiers glass. Dark brown with a tan 2 finger head with moderate lacing. A typical porter with hints of chocolate, roasted malt and coffee. Hops bitterness is very moderate. Overall a very enjoyable beer experience. I'll have another, please!

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Photo of uccle81
1.91/5  rDev -50.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 1.75

Thick and syrupy. Tasted like burned caramel and grain alcohol. I like some of Bell's products, but this was rough. I opened the first bottle, tried it and then poured it out assuming that it was skunked. Tried the remaining 5. Same result. Other than the nasty Michelob Amber Bock, this is the ONLY beer I've ever poured down the drain. Sorry Bell's, I may buy a single one day to give it another shot.

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Photo of SometimesIfart
4.23/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bells Porter.

Now this one outta be some fun. Thr legendary Porter from my favorite brewery. Grabbed a single for $1.89 at my local Meijer. No time for cooling, I wanna drink NOW!.

Look - From the bottle into a pint glass. Pours a very deep brown with hints of ruby if held up to the light. The head is massive, very frothy and very bubbly, standing nearly half the glass in height. Carbonation is tough to read due to the darkness of the beer. A large amount of sticky lacing is left all around the glass as though building a stairway to * insert your religious afterlife of choice here *.

Smell - Nose is very roasted malt forward with an odd, almost metallic twang I guess you could say as it embraces your nostrils. Hop levels are kept to ablut moderate and there is also a large medium coffee aspect due to the beer being nearly room temperature.

Taste - The roasted malt and moderate level of medium coffee are the star players on this brew. The metallic twang ks there though not bothersome. Hops are very crisp and refreshing and nearly grapefruit like in nature.

Feel - The feel is absolutely perfect for the style. Body is very full and coats the mouth in rich roasty goodness and it is highly creamy due to the beautifully retained head. Carbonation is minimal and the beer swallows like a dream. Flavors lean more towards milk chocolate as the brew sits.

Overall - A very solid Porter. Great, actually. Probably one of my favorites out of the specific style. Very easy drinking aslnd sessionable to high hell. This would make a fine introduction porter for somebody just getting into the style. Bell's really cannot do much wrong. I'd have again for sure..

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Bell's Porter from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
87 out of 100 based on 1,035 ratings.
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