Bell's Best Brown | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

BA SCORE
86
very good
3,007 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
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Bell's Best BrownBell's Best Brown
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
A smooth, toasty brown ale with hints of caramel and cocoa, the malt body has the depth to stand up to cool weather, but does not come across as heavy. This balancing act is aided by the generous use of American hops.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-10-2002

BEER STATS
Ratings:
3,007
Reviews:
888
Avg:
3.84
pDev:
11.2%
 
 
Wants:
104
Gots:
479
For Trade:
5
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 3,007 |  Reviews: 888
Photo of merlin48
4.69/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Yup. The 12 oz bottle with the inquisitive owl on the label. This is one of the few reviews I've written without knowing anything about the beer, or reading other reviews. It pours a muddy, dark, iced tea color with a tan head that likes to hang around and mingle, and sheds some lasting, patchy lacing. Nice aroma of dates, and a few other dark fruits....followed up by a shower of floral hops and some soothing pecan pralines. Wow...! Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, nutty, well carbonated, and has a mild hop bite. Taste is out of this solar system. Bittersweet spices smeared onto some banana nutbread, chocolate fudge, some smoked kalamata olives, and some pleasant bittering floral hops. Geeez..I wasn't expecting much to write about here, but this one has blown me off the planet. Beautiful and complex, it finishes with a bitter cocoa taste accompanied with a touch of mandarin orange rind burn. Also, there is a smoky, wood aged feel that is difficult to explain, but adds to the surprisingly noble character to this Bell's offering. Wow!

 1,047 characters

Photo of nrpellegrini
4.68/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I haven't reviewed a beer in months and I'm doing this from my phone so that right there says something about this beer.
Traveled from Baltimore to Philly to get some beer from The Foodery.
Dark caramel color with and thin tan head and smells of sweet caramel malts.
The taste is amazing. For a while brown ales where my favortire style but over the past year or so I haven't been able to find the right one that caught my attention. This is it. The smoothest, rich flavor... Sweet caramel flavors with some biscuity flavors in there too.

 538 characters

Photo of Schimms
4.68/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

L: Pours russet brown with thick 1" head. Clear

S: Sweet and malty. Slight hops.

T: Smooth, delicious toasty malt with a nice slight hop bitterness at the end. This is a great brown.

F: Very smooth, very nice.

O: Love this one - definitely one to buy again. I don't say that too often.

 290 characters

Photo of gmfessen
4.65/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured out of bottle into a pint glass, beer is really more of a deep crimson-amber color than brown. Beer had a very nice overflowing off white four finger head, with small amounts of lacing. Smell is of caramel and nutty chocolate. The taste is exceptional; pleasing with a malty start, perfectly balanced with a slightly hoppy and smooth finish. Never offensive throughout the taste, wonderfully balanced. The mouthfeel is full bodied, creamy and delightful. Overall I would have to say that this is an extremely drinkable beer and have to toast this one to Bells!

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Photo of cmsfish
4.65/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of welldigger888
4.65/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Ok, this little ditty was gravity poured from the cask into a 1/2 gallon growler
Very nice reddish hues on this purt clear elixer
minamal head with a huge difference in bubble size (pin piont to 1 cm)very minamal lacing but it has some that disapate fast
Very approachable malty aromas with nice light hop and sweet black bread notes
This is a very unasuming brew, blue collar to the core. My grandfathers would be proud!Nice malty up front graininess that yields to a very delicate mild hop. Earthy grain with hints of sweet elixer and hop balance, well done!
Very soft on the palate, I love this about the cask. Cask carbonation, meaning minamal but very pleasant. leaving the brew to stand on it's craft not hiding behind the bubbles.
Pours down the neck like honey dew vine water.

 784 characters

Photo of Monstar
4.64/5  rDev +20.8%

Photo of Radiosox
4.61/5  rDev +20.1%

Photo of UnderPressure
4.6/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A medium brown colored beer. Particles suspended throughout. Otherwise, relatively clear. Nice, rocky white head. Great lacing.

Chocolate and roasted grains in the aroma. An overall sweetness in the nose.

Fantastic flavor. More complex than I anticipated. The malt brings a sweet, chocolatey, roasted flavor. The hops provide a little bitterness, but this beer is very much on the sweet side. Yeast is clean.

A silky, velvety smooth mouthfeel. Medium bodied with a crisp, dry finish. The bitterness lingers, the sweetness does not.

Great beer. Definitely buy some if you have the opportunity.

 596 characters

Photo of carlborch
4.6/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Supposedly a seasonal fall-winter beer, but available mid-July. The brown ale pours a beautiful clear brown with a tan-colored, thick, mousse-like head. The head persists and leaves intricate Belgian lace when sipped. The nose is both delicate and noticeable with hints of toasted bread, toffee, malt and ginger. The malt notes are light and sweet but not cloying. On the palate the ale has a medium body, perfect balance and a wonderful lingering finish that wants you to go back for. This ale is totally moreish! The carbonation pleasant and the alcohol is not noticeable.

 574 characters

Photo of BeerMama2014
4.6/5  rDev +19.8%

Photo of qua17
4.58/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: This beer poured into a pint grass with a nice two inch head. It's a translucent brown.

S: Nice and malty

Taste: The name of this is the Best Brown Ale and the taste almost proves the point. Delicious. There is a lot of balance to this beer - not too malty and very flavorful. Nice carbonation.

Overall: I like Bell's but this might be my second favorite next to Two Hearted Ale.

 386 characters

Photo of drperm
4.57/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

You know, here's a beer that's neither flashy, nor pretentious, nor arrogant, nor boastful, nor rude. And so I give it quite a high score, because a) I love a good English Brown Ale, especially on a windy autumn night, and b) I could have this again and again when in a session mood and never complain a bit.

Appearance: It's brown. It's uncomplicated. It's lovely in the glass. It has a warm copper glow that says, "Come, be my guest."

Sm: Autumnal. Rich, malty, toasty with a hint of molasses and treacle, and perhaps even mild marmalade is hiding out in there as well. Take a further breath and capture wet autumn leaves, moss, and laurel blossoms.

T: It's beer. Everything the nose hinted at, plus a warming, comforting, easy-going sessionable taste with some nice hop notes turning up as well. This is a taste to associate with sociable evenings in front of a pub fireplace...or in front of a nice roast beef.

M: At first, I was afraid it would be a mite too sticky and sweet on the palate. Then I had some food with it. Problem solved. Mouthfeel excellent.

D: Perfect, as far as a simple, uncomplicated, sessionable ale is concerned. This is one to be admired, not in spite of, but because of, its simplicity.

 1,221 characters

Photo of DOCRW
4.56/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Brent
4.54/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

If there is a beer equivalent of "comfort food" - this is it. Brownish amber color with light tan head that quickly faded. Aroma of Hershey's chocolate milk wafts from the glass. Pronounced milk chocolate notes in the flavor, with deeply toasted malt flavors. For all the chocolate character, the beer was surpisingly moderate in sweetness and finished with a sharp bitterness that cleared the palate. This is a fairly subtile beer, and if you were drinking a variety of beers during a session, this would be the lead-off.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.53/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Comes out of the tap a semi-transparent chocolaty brown with a fine-bubbled pale tan head. Aroma is of average strength, malty and slightly chocolaty. Rich malty flavor has cocoa undertone along with nutty and caramel hints as well as just a whisper of fine coffee. Texture is thick, fairly smooth and nicely fizzy.

 315 characters

Photo of bdsmith1981
4.52/5  rDev +17.7%

Photo of Mubalzich69
4.52/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Great autumn beer!!! I poured from a 12oz bottle into a 16oz glass chalice. Smooth to pour with a nice head. Nice caramel flavor with a slight chocolate touch. Very smooth on the way down. Nice brown ale.

 209 characters

Photo of wattoclone
4.51/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Unfiltered and unpasteurized gets this sessionable brown ale a rating upgrade. Pours a cloudy brown, with a pleasant aroma of chocolate chip cookies. Easy drinking, smooth semi-sweet taste with a subtle complexity of B&M canned Boston brown bread. The finish has a mild bitterness of burnt malt. Another great dark beer from Bell's.

 332 characters

Photo of iparules
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of cynical1027
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of BDeHart
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of agentorangebitter
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of Norton21
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of wilfonzo
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Bell's Best Brown from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.84 out of 5 based on 3,007 ratings.
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