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

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Bell's Expedition StoutBell's Expedition Stout
BA SCORE
4.26/5
Outstanding
6,279 Ratings
Bell's Expedition StoutBell's Expedition Stout
BEER INFO

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

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

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#707
Reviews:
2,169
Ratings:
6,279
pDev:
10.33%
Bros Score:
4.41
 
 
Wants:
564
Gots:
1,810
Trade:
126
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 6,279 |  Reviews: 2,169
Photo of pstam87
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of rsquared59
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of maxpower
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Dark black color, pours like motor oil, sweet fruity aroma of raisons, plums and chocolate, hardly any head, a few bubbles and they are brown, huge roasty malty and fruity flavors, has a thick, full mouthfeel, leaves deep roasty flavors on my tongue, this is one hell of a stout.

 279 characters

Photo of Fievel
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of Brushkanna
3.25/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of tillmac62
4.19/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 7/26/13. Pours black as a starless night with a lasting head. Subdued nose of roast. Nice creamy mouthfeel, light carbonation and with the 10.5% alcohol content well covered by the malty sweetness, hops and roast. A strong, but pleasant, aftertaste of roast and malt sweetness with that alcohol "burn". For such a "big" stout, this is exceptionally well balanced. One of the best stouts I have ever tried and this one struck me as smoother than their Kalamazoo variant. Smooth finish with the chocolate malt asserting itself.

 533 characters

Photo of Stillmakingnoise
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of danwho
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Jason1337
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of pjkelley82
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of sjones5045
4.24/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BuckTuckian
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of Josbor11
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of williahd
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Beersnake1
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of PsilohsaiBiN
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 8/22/13.

Appearance: Pours jet black, as expected with a small khaki head that collars quickly.

Smell: Cocoa, graham cracker, roasted malt, dark fruit and some booze heat. Kind of reminds me of Marshal Zhukov's aroma, in that the aroma is nice, but not overwhelming.

Taste: Begins with rich dark chocolate paired with an element of soft cocoa. Middle of the mouth is hop bitterness with nice roast. Finishes pretty bitter with detectable but not by any means overwhelming heat.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, velvety, silky. Very full feel, though not in the realm of Hunahpu viscosity.

Overall: I can see the influence this has on Black Note and am glad I finally got to try it. Can definitely see this getting amazing with age as the bitterness subsides, but it's still not bad at all in its current state.

 815 characters

Photo of Powderhornphil
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of sammyg832
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of mwilbur
1.9/5  rDev -55.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Poured from bottle into pint glass.
A: Thick and black. Minimal dark tan head with no carbonation (a little odd since I just bought this bottle).
S: Roasted malts and chocolate. Can smell the high ABV...too prominent.
T: Completely unbalanced. Very weak malt can't offset the very high ABV. Roasted malt, chocolate...but not enough of it.
M: I hate to harp on it, but the high ABV distracts too much. Weak body and no taste to linger...just the alcohol.
D: Undrinkable...I hate to do this, but I'm not even going to finish this. I love high ABV beers, but they have to be balanced and have enough malt, flavors, etc. to hold up. This doesn't cut it. I see that others had difficulty with no carbonation. Either this is a major bottling problem or Bell's needs to rethink their approach here.
Definitely the worst russian imperial stout I've had in a long time...and I doubt this will age well as the bottle suggests.

7/26/10: Well, let's check on this one again...cellared for about 2 1/2 yrs. The appearance is actually nice. Thick black-brown with super dark brown head. Looks like you could chew on it (4). Dark chocolate, molasses, and piney hops. Decent (3.5). Dark chocolate syrup, blackstrap molasses, and piney hops. Follows aroma pretty much on cue (3.5). Thick, smooth, oily. Faint alcohol burn and hop bite. I like it (4). OK, so I was wrong. This one does age well, but starts off terrible. It ends up as an ok RIS, but you gotta be patient (3.5).

 1,461 characters

Photo of mattsucks
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of CityofBals
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of soulgrowl
3.87/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Tamari-thick blacker-than-midnight opaque black. Spotty mocha latte brown head with poor retention.

Smell: Smoked cherries - does that make sense? Because that's what comes to mind. Extremely roasty and deeply fruity, a massive malt anvil. Light soy sauce, sherry with lots of warm alcohol, honey graham crackers, sweet caramel, apple jelly, brown sugar on toasted wheat bread. Moist, molassesy gingerbread and lots of raisins, Cracklin' Oat Bran... I could go on. Insanely complex, and in a somewhat atypical way - low on chocolate and coffee aromas, high on grain aromas. Clean, acidic, oily hops add a fine, pointed spice, distilled by the volatile alcohol.

Taste: Weird - spicy as hell from the alcohol and hops, with burnt coffee, 90% cacao chocolate, tangy sherry, aniseseed spice. Aggressive alcohol impedes the full development of the malts' nuances (if they're there) on the palate, which is sort of a shame. This could probably improve with a year or two in the cellar. Piney, Goldings-esque hops stoke the flames of alcohol for a hot, spicy finish with a blossom of chocolate and tannic nut notes, similar to an Snickers bar laced with rum.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and very, very thick - yet somehow, not syrupy at all.

Drinkability: Aggressive as hell, and in my opinion, not complex enough to warrant it. Not bad - try it if you like Stone's RIS - but not my favorite.

 1,391 characters

Photo of kornkid8600
3.74/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of GTJayG
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of JRed
3.28/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours black in body topped by coffee-with-milk head that stays. Mildy offensive aroma of bitter chocolate, earth and vegetation, booze, slight hazelnut. Tastes of cola, bitter dark chocolate, earth, a grapefruity hop presence, and booze with subtle cocoa nibs. Heavy in body with light carbonation. Offensive in almost all aspects.

 331 characters

Bell's Expedition Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Beer rating: 4.26 out of 5 with 6,279 ratings
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