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

very good
2,915 Ratings
Bell's PorterBell's Porter

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

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

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,061 | Ratings: 2,915
Photo of tugdriver7
4.02/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Compared in a 4x American Porter taste test featuring Bell's Robust Porter, Evolution Lucky 7, Yards Tavern Porter, and Yuengling Dark Brewed Porter. The color is dark brown to black in the glass with a subtle tan foam and nice lacing. Rich, sweet roasted malt in the nose, but a surprisingly sweet and balanced taste. A tad on the heavy side, in terms of mouthfeel, but easily the best of the bunch. Not something you could put down a lot of, but very enjoyable.

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Photo of jmarod7
3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Very dark in color looks as if coffee, also smells like coffee with dark chocolate aroma. The taste is smooth and definitely one of my favorite porters I have had.

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Photo of zhupengl
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown clear color with a smoke and coffee smell, really pleasant, there is a coffee and smoky flavor. And the dafter taste tastes like dark bread

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Photo of Hackattack
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This as good a porter as I have tried. All Bell's stuff compares with the best of brews out there. This is dark roasted malty and the hops is evident in the background. Very nice job as usual for this outfit.

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Photo of joaopmgoncalves
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured to a tulip glass.

A: The body is pitch black. The head, when poured, created a very thin beige head. After less than 30 seconds, the head disappeared totally, existing only in the sides of the glass.
S: The aroma is mostly of black roasted malts. In the back, there's a very thin hint of coffee.
T: The amount of sweetness in this beer is very low, it's almost like someone removed the coffee and barley sweetness and left only the bitter side of the beer. However, the bitter side of this beer is based on coffee and slight hoppy side.
M: Body is medium. Carbonation is very high but very smooth, giving it a very velvety touch. Alcohol goes unnoticed. Bitterness in the aftertaste is basically very low.
O: Was expecting a bit more but it's a regular Porter.

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Photo of mjurney
3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep brown, ruby red highlight. Thick creamy beige head.

Malty, dark roast, coffee, some pungent hops.

Semi-sweet, dark roasted malts, coffee, burnt toast, a little dark chocolate. Hop bitterness is mild. Finish is mostly dry. Medium bodied, dry, smooth, highly drinkable.

It's a very good Porter.

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Photo of Tripel_Threat
3.79/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Drank straight from the bottle with good folks. Hits all the right portery notes: Aroma is roasted coffee grounds and dark chocolate maltyness. Flavor rolls over the tongue with waves of roasted malt, pleasant coffee bitterness, and a touch of pure dark cocoa on the finish. Smooth and thin-to-medium feel. Solid choice.

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Photo of Amateurbrewmaster
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this beer on tap at a restaurant nearby. Was munching on a burger with smoked gouda and bacon and it was a perfect pairing.
The bartender served this beer in a pint glass and put on a coffee/chocolaty head. The beer itself has a small amount of visible light going through it.
Aroma: A bit of chocolate, lots roasted malts and coffee notes. No hop aroma
Taste: Follows the nose with an addition of a cocoa powder like taste. Not very bitter and as it warms up it goes to the sweeter side of town. Also gets a smokey characteristics as it warms up as well.
Mouth feel: thick, not syrupy or stout like, but it's got a good deal of body to it. Fine carbonation.
Overall: one of the best porters I've ever had if not the best. This was the first time I tried it. I would confidently buy a 6 pack of this. It may be a little bit thicker than what a porter should be, but I'm not complaining. This is an amazing porter

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Photo of Skrumpy
3.72/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Very dark, with a foamy, tan head. Solid retention and a fair amount of lacing. The aroma was very light. Toasted malt and cocoa. The flavor was mildly sweet, hints of coffee and dark chocolate. A bit of hops in the aftertaste, but overall this one is quite smooth. A decent, drinkable porter for sure.

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

Solid showing from Bell's highlighting dark, rich roasted malts with nice light hops flavor that's not dominated by the chocolate and coffee. Flavor was great but aroma slight. Solid and light. Poured dark brownish black with slight off white head. Made me crave their stouts.

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Photo of Zaktcc
3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A- Pours a pitch black color with a 3 finger, toffee colored head. Great head retention and lacing.

S- Roasted malts and nothing else. No notes of coffee nor chocolate as mentioned on the bottle. Smells like a plain, simple porter.

T- Sweet, roasty malts. The flavors are on par with the nose. Nothing too complex but a simple, yet very enjoyable flavor. It finishes with an ever so mildly sweet aftertaste.

M- Medium bodied with perfect amount of carbonation. Very smooth and drinkable.

O- Simple porter with an incredible mouthfeel. Not much in terms of complexity, granted, the brew is called "porter" which it fully embellished. Would certainly drink as my go-to porter if was more accessible in my area.

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

Poured black with a three finger tan head. Heavy lacing. Aroma is of dark chocolate. Thin body and carbonation. Chocolate and toasted malt flavor with almost no notable hops flavor. Better porter are out here such a Great Lakes.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.32/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I know I've already reviewed this; I just haven't typed up my notes. Anyway, here's an impression:

Whoppers-redolent malted milk balls give this an almost brown ale-like bend, lifting it out of square porter territory. Unconventional but not experimental or inspired. A bit too sweet, though not severely imbalanced. Taking the focus away from the chocolate/dark malts wasn't a wise choice, but it kind of plays in this enjoyable drinkable but not amazing stab at a porter.

Competent fare from Bell's, but the malted milk ball flavour dominance isn't ideal.


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Photo of The_Kriek_Freak
4.19/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great tan head that lingers and leaves lovely lacing. Roasty aroma, reminiscent of coffee. The flavors are of toasted bread and coffee. Great smooth mouthfeel. A really nice example of a Porter overall!

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Photo of crwrunner
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Probably my fsvorite easy to find porter. It has just the right amount of roasted chocolate. Pretty mellow actually. I could go for just a bit more. The taste is pretty similar but you get more of the roasted character in the aftertaste than Choclate which I like. Very easy to drink porter.

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Photo of SaltofOH
3.87/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 7-11-16. Michigan craft pint.

A: pours a dark brown, almost black, with ruby highlights at the glass edge, with 1 finger of thick, sandy head that retains like crazy. Really an excellent looking beer.

S: dark, roasty malt. A decidedly roasty and not terribly sweet aroma.

T: arrives with the same roasty, and not too sweet profile with mild dusting of cocoa powder. Restrained sweetness. Mild bitterness on the finish with a light, lasting roastiness.

M: lighter side of mid-weight, fairly highly carbonated. Very clean, very drinkable.

O: amazing I've never reviewed this. Really awesome, drinkable beer. Less hoppy than Edmund Fitzgerald, with fewer fruity undertones. Also quite dry, and comes across as very light, as porters go. Will need tonrevisit for a sixer. A good early season and very late season porter.

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Photo of Jeffsta1
3.71/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown pour, black in the glass. Pale, manila-tan colored head.
Smell is malty, roasty, earthy, a bit dirty.
Taste is more bitter than malt. Want more malt, coffee, cocoa flavors. Not this hoppy stuff, not here.
Mouthfeel is super, a bit richer than moderate, nice carbonation, not overdone.
Finish is distinctly bitter. Not rich: bitter. Huh.

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Photo of BigGold
3.86/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

First had this beer poured from 12-oz. bottle into faceted mug. Bell's has a very solid porter here. There was no need to rebrand it as a "Robust Porter."

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Photo of Guppy314
3.82/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

From a bottle, pours an almost opaque black with a thin tan head. Aroma is of roast malt. Taste is a creamy malt-forward with chocolate and coffee. The finish is where the hops bitterness come out. Mouth feel is decent, but - sadly - flavors fade quickly.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.52/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a nonic pint glass.

Look: Pitch black body, dark cream colored head that recedes to a healthy film. World map lacing.

Aroma: Rich dark chocolate, subtle sucrose sugar, charred grain, lightly roasted coffee.

Taste: Burnt malts and charred grains, touch of charcoal, bitter dark chocolate.

Mouthfeel: Medium to thin, perfect for the style.

Overall: Excellent in all the categories. Smells good, tastes good, feels good.

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Photo of Andrewharemza
3.52/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a 355ml bottle, pours a dark brown colour with a creamy beige coloured head.
Aroma roasted malt, chocolate, coffee.
Taste creamy, coffee, roasted malt, chocolate.

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Photo of Pankenstein
3.89/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Dark, with a quick-sinking head.
S: Faint coffee scent.
T: Prominent chocolate, with an aftertaste of something smoky that I can't quite place (this is only my second real tasting/review, after all).
F: A bit... I'm not sure if this makes sense, but "chewy" springs to mind. Coats the mouth, but the taste doesn't stick around as long as the feel.
O: I like it. Definitely drinkable. I could see myself having this with a nice cigar on a summer night.

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Photo of Rock_Glenn
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Dark Mahogany, decent head. Smells slightly of coffee and caramel. Tastes excellent, but a bitterness lingers; by the end of the glass the bitterness is a bit too much. Seems heavy on chocolate malt. Overall a beer that I would gladly drink again, but certainly not the best porter I've ever had.

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

L: Very dark cola brown with fluffy, creamy, tan head. Excellent retention and lacing.

S: Dark chocolate, toasted bread, caramel, coffee, subtle smoke.

T: Dark chocolate, darkly toasted, almost burnt bread, black coffee, hints of vanilla and creaminess, caramel, cola, light smoke. Grainy on the finish, with lingering burnt and roasty coffee.

F: Medium-light. Not quite watery, but leaning towards light. I would like to see it a little thicker. Quaffable, though.

O: A solid porter. It's definitely nice-drinking.

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Photo of GrumpyGas
4.04/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle (pkgd 03/01/16) poured into a tulip.
Deep dark cola-brown colored body briefly floating a 1/2in tan head.
Roast malt and coffee aromas dominate. The flavors match with a touch of dark fruit and dark chocolate.
High carbonation prevents a silkier feel, but it is medium-full. Almost a stout.
All it needs is a fire and a high, clear ceiling of stars.

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Bell's Porter from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.88 out of 5 based on 2,915 ratings.
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