Bell's Expedition Stout | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Bell's Expedition StoutBell's Expedition Stout
6,214 Ratings
Bell's Expedition StoutBell's Expedition Stout

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

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Expedition Stout offers immensely complex flavors crafted specifically with vintage aging in mind, as its profile will continue to mature and develop over the years. A huge malt body is matched to a heady blend of chocolate, dark fruits, and other aromas. Intensely bitter in its early months, the flavors will slowly meld and grow in depth as the beer ages.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 01-10-2002

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,214 |  Reviews: 2,154
Photo of CGMLS3
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of ginemesis
3.2/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- It appears to be a stout. Very little head, but even the head is dark

S- Chocolate and coffee with an oatmeal taste

T- No oatmeal in the taste. Chocolate and coffee are both obvious. The coffee flavor is a main part of the aftertaste, but is "burnt"

M- buttery and heavy

O- It tastes like someone burned popcorn and then tried to brew coffee, but burned that, and then put it in a beer.

(this is a 2 year old sample, from 2010)

 437 characters

Photo of KVNBGRY
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of ryancl
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of socon67
4.13/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

At Hackney's in Chicago

A - Black pour with a mocha colored foam. Settles quickly and has an inky look to it. Looks ominous and so inviting.

S - Smells of cocoa powder, and currants. Also has a lingering scent of molasses that reminded me of a cruise to Barbados.

T - Sweet and heavy on the malt. Strong flavors of chocolate and brown sugar.

M - Syrupy thick, but maybe a bit to slick. Makes for a stout that is nice but not sessionable, and more for the feel and chalkiness than the ABV.

O - Enjoyable stout that is great to sip after a good meal. A good showing by Bells

 578 characters

Photo of mcintire78
3.84/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep brown to black. Developed a good head over a soft pour, which slowly dissipated. Noticeable carbonation along the sides that gradually fades.

Smell: Strong smell of soy sauce, with malty sweetness.

Taste: Gentle, sweet caramel taste up front, with a bit of a harsh finish.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth and thick, amazingly so given the 10.5abv.

Drinkability: The main limiting factor of knocking a couple back is the sweetness of the beer, not the abv. Great for a (1) after dinner drink.

 505 characters

Photo of thebigredone
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of C2H5
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of beergorrilla
4.29/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of sukwonee
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch #9459 - 2009/2010 vintage according to the website. Thank you hansgruber for throwing this bottle as an extra among other extras (this was a want of mine).

A: Black/dark brown, very thin mocah head, some lacing.

S: Coffee, Chocolate, molasses, caramel, some bourbon aroma(??), hops

T: Quite hoppy. Chocolate, coffee, brown sugar, vanilla... quite roasty and sweet. I am not sure why but I actually taste some bourbon. Maybe they poured some bourbon into this. Finishes bitter with hops.

M: Smooooth, thick, syrupy. Slight alcohol burn.

O: Very very solid stout. Wish it was a tad bit less hoppy, but I really enjoyed this one.

 642 characters

Photo of hopsolutely
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a silky, inky near-black with brown highlights at the edge of the glass. Impressive head off the pour dissipates quickly, leaving little lacing, but still a pleasure to behold. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy without being heavy or overly oily.

Fulsome aroma of roasted chocolate malts, oak tannins and smoked peaty whisky. These intertwine and transition directly into the flavour, which lingers for an impressive length of time. Multi-layered and complex, there's a lot going on in this taste portfolio - and I was oblivious to the almost over-the-top 10.5% ABV until the burn at the finish (and reading the label).

I'm no expert, but view this as a stunning example of this particular style.

 701 characters

Photo of GR_Rick
3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Nice looking, thick, creamy stout with a khaki-ish head.

S: Smelled nice, strong, and complex. Roasty malts with a bit of alcohol and sweetness.

T: Nice initially, with the roast and a bit of sweetness. Ended a little harsh (alcohol or bitter, I couldn't exactly tell) for me.

M: Nice thick mouth feel and minimal carbonation, in line with the style.

O: Decent beer, but not as good as I had expected given the hype. It was a little too big and harsh for my liking (and I normally like big stouts). I've got a bottle sitting in the basement I'm going to age for a year or two and try it again to see if it mellows, as I've heard some age does wonders for this beer.

 675 characters

Photo of danp14
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of avaldivia
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of superspak
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled 11/11/2010. Pours very dense pitch black color with a nice 1-2 finger dense brown head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Some nice soapy lacing clings to the glass. Aromas of huge very dark chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, caramel, biscuit, toast, char, molasses, vanilla, toffee, earth, wood, and light herbal hops. Fantastic aromas with great complexity, balance, and strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, roasted malt, char, coffee, molasses, caramel, toast, tobacco, biscuit, earth, pine, citrus, and light herbal hops. Decent amount of roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, caramel, toast, molasses, citrus, and herbal on the finish for a while. Fantastic roasted flavor balance and complexity. Medium carbonation and very full bodied; with a very nice creamy, slick, thick, and lightly chalky mouthfeel. Alcohol is very well hidden with almost no warming noticed at all after the finish. Very smooth to sip on. Overall this is a fantastic Russian imperial stout. Huge complexity and big robust roasted flavors; and very smooth to sip on. Extremely impressive.

 1,189 characters

Photo of CSFerrier
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of boonejag75
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of dp0074
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of BilbosNuts
3.6/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to mjw52 for this one.

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a deep brown color with an 1/8 inch, mocha colored head. The head eventually dissipates to a thin ring around the top. Minimal lacing is left behind.

S: Dark roasted malts and a touch of coffee. A molasses-like sweetness comes through towards the end.

T: Similar to the aroma with typical roasted malts with a touch of coffee and molasses-y sweet notes.

M: Medium to heavy bodied with minimal carbonation and very smooth. It has a syrupy like feel to it with a touch of sweetness lingering on.

O: I was a little disappointed with this one. Maybe my expectations were too high, but it seems kind of one dimensional and a bit bland. I'm glad I tried it, but I can find other local RIS's that are equal in quality.

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Photo of dumptruck81
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of IPAFrankieH
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of Jfriz25
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Pitch black with a little brown head that quickly disappears.

Smell- Big roasted malt with a nice chocolate sweetness. Faint alcohol at the end.

Taste- Rich roasty flavor with chocolate and a bit of bitterness that I perceive as coffee. A decent amount of alcohol but not unpleasant.

Mouthfeel- Medium carbonation, maybe a little too much but it is thick and creamy.

Overall- This was the 2011 version. I bought a 6 and stashed them so this is the first Expedition stout I've had. Looking forward to getting some years on this to see that alcohol mellow and the chocolate come out even more.

 607 characters

Photo of BFro
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of MaineMike
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of JAHMUR
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Bell's Expedition Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Beer rating: 4.26 out of 5 with 6,214 ratings
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