Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

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

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
Bell's Best BrownBell's Best Brown
BA SCORE
3.83/5
Very Good
3,094 Ratings
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
Ranking:
#11,946
Reviews:
916
Ratings:
3,094
pDev:
11.23%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
104
Gots:
513
Trade:
5
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 3,094 |  Reviews: 916
Photo of Blueribbon666
3.76/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes taken. Mild scent of malt poured into pint glass 1/8" head dissipates quickly w/a rich brown color. Well blended malt flavor w/an initial hop flavor in the front, good mouthfeel and decent drinkability. Bell's w/another solid entry w/o being an average kit beer wrapped in a pretty label. I buried Smuttynose for their brown ale, I much prefer the Bell's entry

 380 characters

Photo of hopnado
4.14/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of divineaudio
4.29/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a pint glass. batch#9403.

color is a deep reddish amber with some sediment particles floating around. a thin tan head forms quick and calms down to a thin film. lacing is spotty at best.

smell is rich with toasted and carmel malts and some mild fruitiness. taste-wise, malt sweetness hits you first with a bit of a nutty character, then mild hop bitterness on the sides and back of the tongue, then a long semi-sweet finish. definitely has some raisin or fig in there somewhere but i can't quite put my finger, err, tongue on it. pretty well balanced for being so malt forward.

mouthfeel is smooth for being a heavier bodied ale. carbonation gives the flavors enough pop without being too fizzy.

very drinkable and a good contender if you're looking for a malty session beer. seems very true to style. yet another quality beer from bells.

 860 characters

Photo of Chief99
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of russwilliam
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of jadpsu
4.14/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours reddish brown with a tan head that has decent lacing but not even average retention.
Smell is of molasses, maybe some vanillia and some definite coffee notes.
Taste has much of same with some roasted malts and earthy hops.
A little thick on the tongue but creamy as well.
Very good English Brown Ale, my favorite style.

 325 characters

Photo of Profchaos20
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of Flight317
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of Steve_Studnuts
3.96/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of wingman14
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish caramel brown with a white head. The smell isn't too powerful, but is mostly malty with some sweet and nutty notes. The taste follows the smell with the nice malty backbone, some sweetness and a subtle hint of smoke. This one has a nice medium body, and is smoother than most. This is a good brown ale, the flavors are interesting and well done. A nice offering that I would have again, but not seek out regularly.

 430 characters

Photo of bret717
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of Ludwigkpa
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of mchegash
3.89/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - 3.75/5
Dark brown-red, fairly hazy, can see some small particles. A small amount of head. Moderate amount of carbonation can be seen rising up.

Smell - 4/5
Toasty, chocolatey malts, moderate hops presence.

Taste - 3.75/5
Roasty, maybe a little chocolatey, a little smoky. Minor hops presence. Lightly sweet

Mouthfeel - 4/5
Medium-bodied, light carbonation, very smooth.

Overall - 4/5
A well balanced beer. Has a nice level of toastiness balanced with some hops.

 478 characters

Photo of gafferjohn
2.5/5  rDev -34.7%

Photo of mpyle
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

app - rich brown color, decent sized, off-white head, moderate retention.

aroma - malty/chocolatey, a small whiff of alcohol. Some hop as it warms.

flavor - chocolately, but not sweet. Sufficiently bitter from the start. No sharp bittering break, but finishes with a lingering malty bitterness. Sounds like a contradiction, but that is what it was like. Hops stay just beneath the malt, but they're definitely there.

MF - medium body and carbonation, some very minor alcohol warming.

d'ability - A rich, malty brown ale. Would like a little more hop flavor for further distinguish it from a porter. But still very drinkable.

 628 characters

Photo of aklude
3.47/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of nortmand
3.21/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a bit red for a brown, let alone a best brown. Some brownish foam as well.
I had the damnedest time getting a scent off this beer, but maybe a bit of raisiny chocolate? In fact, I think I smell Raisinets.
Taste is a bit of raisin, a bit of chocolate. Some roast as well I suppose.
Mouthfeel, some CO2, a little creamy. Appreciable.
I mean, I guess I could drink a few, but if my review wasn't any indication, I wouldn't be too excited to.

 448 characters

Photo of yuenglingfan101
5/5  rDev +30.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I love this brown ale. It isnt my favorite but a close 2nd and you will understand why if you had koko brown by kona. Simply the best that Bells has to offer. Nice brown color and a nice tan lace. Taste is irresistable only the koko brown hais more of an addictive flavor and i consider best brown and koko brown in the same category. the taste is so similar its uncanny but i love coconut. i want to people to know thiese two beers are almost hand and hand and bells in my area is big. I live in Indiana. not too far from the Michigan line. Kudos, Kudos, Kudos

 561 characters

Photo of a_beckman25
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of erushing
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of mcphish22
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of kshankar
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark red with a decent head with okay retention.

Aroma is of caramel, malts, some hops as well.

Its a great balance in the taste. There is the sweet malt flavor, but not too overbearing, balancing well with the hops, which again, are somewhat minimal. For a brown ale, this is done very well.

Mouthfeel is light to medium with good carbonation. Drinkability is high. Brown ales aren't something I crave often, but I can easily throw back a couple of these. Recommended

 480 characters

Photo of waston
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of sisterofba
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of bmoney
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Bell's Best Brown from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Beer rating: 3.83 out of 5 with 3,094 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.