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

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BA SCORE
89
very good
1,133 Reviews
Bell's Java StoutBell's Java Stout
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Java Stout uses a custom blend of coffee beans, roasted locally for us by Water Street Coffee Joint, to generate its intense flavor. Possessing an unmistakable aromatic punch, Java Stout has long been one of our most popular stouts.

Added by kbub6f on 12-11-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,133
Ratings:
3,177
Avg:
3.96
pDev:
18.94%
 
 
Wants:
181
Gots:
414
For Trade:
10
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,133 | Ratings: 3,177
Photo of atr2605
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-pours black with a thick foamy tan head with excellent retention and lacing
S-lots of roasted coffee, burnt chocolate, unsweetened cocoa, charcoal
T-more roasted coffee and unsweetened cocoa up front, followed by a more sweet milk chocolate in the finish
M-medium bodied and smooth
O-very good coffee stout. Wouldn't hesitate to have it again

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Photo of DaverCS
4.07/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours dark black with a finger of an off-white, caramel head. Decent lacing.

Aroma is an absolute coffee bomb! It's the totally dominating aroma; nothing else is able to come through. It's almost a blend of a more roasty espresso and a fruit-forward cold-brewed coffee. I also get a bit of oats.

Taste is much more tame than the aroma. A bit of citrusy hops comes forth first. A lighter, more crisp mouthfeel overall. On the lighter, more carbonated side of the stout spectrum. I prefer a more thick body. The coffee mainly comes through in the last 1/3 of the sip. Nice and roasty with negligible amounts of bitterness. The oat flavor is also present in the taste.

This beer reminds me of a less balanced, more coffee-forward, and bit thinner Founders breakfast stout. With so many great stouts, this stout is rather average in the mix. I see this pairing well with a charcoal grilled New York strip steak with a red wine sauce. It gets a 81.5/100.

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Photo of barnzy78
4.28/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle, Batch 15018 PKGD 11/03/15
A - dark brown body with a creamy tan head that holds unbelievable retention
S - big coffee aroma with chocolate and roasted barley
T - big coffee flavors to go along with that big coffee aroma; dark chocolate, caramel, roasted barley, black tea, earthy hops in there as well
M - creamy and smooth, fuller body, ample carbonation, roast lingers on the bittersweet finish
O - better than I remember! A very solid stout with coffee. Glad to come back to it for an official review. I'll be buying this again.

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Photo of CHickman
4.04/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottled 11/3/15: Pours so dark brown that it looks pitch black with a huge 3 finger foamy/creamy tan head that was full of tiny bubbles, dissipating extremely slowly; I had time to run my finger through it and it still stuck around for several minutes in it's whipped and frothy espresso-like form, leaving outstanding lacing coating the sides. It looked like moon craters after a while and was a great looking head overall.

Smells of burnt coffee grinds, black coffee, fresh coffee beans and grains up front, followed by burnt grains, cocoa powder, vanilla, roasted nuts, metallic yeast, toffee and espresso. Faint herbs or hops pop through, with earthy notes like and peat moss accents coming through.

Tastes like a burnt cup of coffee with a lot of char and smoked grains dominating. The bitter black coffee, fresh coffee beans, vanilla and chocolate notes follow the char/burnt flavors, but can't overtake the bitterness as the sweetness acts complimentary and not as the star. It seems like a burnt piece of wood from a campfire stirred the beer as the smoky flavors really take over the more it warms up. Some yeast and metallic notes trickle through as does piney hops and espresso or chocolate whipped cream, but this is so roasty that it tastes ashy - too burnt as I love coffee and would have enjoyed more coffee and less charcoal.

Mouthfeel is thin and watery, but it maintains a medium weight and slick feel as it slides down. As bitter as the boldest Starbucks, this is sharp and full of coffee notes that get lost in the roasted malts and burnt-ness. I enjoyed it and will seek it out again as coffee flavored stouts are some of my favorite beers.

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Photo of HopHunter19
4.09/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 4.5 - nice dark brown/black beer with a nice mocha head that leaves great lacing
S 4.25 - hard toasty coffee smell, green/red peppers, mostly roasted coffee which is exactly what I'd expect
T 4 - still toasty coffee. But also some oats and milk flavor in there. I wish it was as robust as the smell.
M 4 - medium mouthfeel, alc covered, aftertaste is coffee
O 4 - it's better than the double cream stout, I would and will buy this one again. I like the strong coffee smell.

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Photo of cyclonece09
3.99/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the tap into a pint glass. Pours pitch black with a small light brown head. Smells of coffee and slight fruit. Tastes of coffee, but with slight chocolate. Beer is light bodied, good carbonation, nice finish. Overall, a very good beer.

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Photo of ccg
3.79/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

It's a good-looking stout. It's opaque black, and it keeps a ring of foam around the edge with some tiny bubbles in the middle.
The smell is surprisingly spicy. It's definitely coffee, but it also smells like freshly cut green and red peppers. Not really what I was expecting from a coffee stout, but it's interesting.
The taste is largely coffee and roasted malt. There's a bit of spicy bite, but it comes across more like hops than peppers.
It's a little light on the tongue, but the crisp carbonation goes well with the peppery smell and the bite in the flavor.
Overall: a solid coffee stout with an interesting, if unusual, scent.

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Photo of gibgink
4.24/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is an excellent coffee stout, but the downfall of the beer is the price point. Originally saw it priced at $15.99 for a six pack. Otherwise, a very creamy, full bodied brew with an excellent coffee flavor.

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Photo of stortore
4.04/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into a snifter.

Pours a chocolate color, somewhat opaque. Not much head, some lacing. Smell is a vibrant dark roast coffee, roasted malts, some chocolate, some vanilla, a little coconut when fully warmed. Taste also leads with dark roast coffee, roasted malts, a light vanilla. Chocolate mostly fades. A nice coffee bitterness throughout. Smooth, a little creamy, slightly thin for all the hearty aroma and taste, but that's fairly minor.

Great coffee flavor, very appealing and easy to drink. An above average coffee porter, with a good price point for what you get. Well worth a purchase.

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Photo of HopsAreDaMan
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

(Review written 5 days later). 12oz, dated Oct. 2014.

Had this with a friend in the park (while dark) with a three other coffee beers, and we thought this was a great beer (perhaps the best of the four), mostly because the flavor and aroma were more complex than the others, namely that there were dark fruits in the aroma, and a nice bready feel to the taste and texture of the beer (although the coffee has almost completely fallen off). If the price is right (this beer is expensive, and goes for about $14 a 6-pack), I would buy it again.

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Photo of SometimesIfart
4.28/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bell's Java Stout.

Yet another stout out of my favorite brewery. Yeah yeah guess I'm a Russian Judge for giving a homestate brewer so much love. Oh well blow me meat stick like your wife did a few nights ago while you were outta town. Anyway, no hype around this one and I've only seen it mentioned a few times. Enough talk, let's drink.

Look - From the twelve ounce bottle poured hard into a pint glass. This brew pours blacker than a silverback gorillas hair with the densest, frothiest, and creamiest looking head I have ever seen on any brew in my history of drinking beers. Carbonation is impossible and a half to get a read on due to the depth of this beer. I have a feeling this one should be great. Let's see if the other aspects follow the looks. Remaining lacing is very sparse.

Smell - Would you even imagine that a beer named Java Stout would possibly in any, way, shape or form could possibly smell like coffee? Well if not you need a dictionary. The nose really is dominated by a medium roast coffee with just a slightly noticable tint of the darkness mentioned. Espresso creamy and vanilla also show their faces. Smells quite well balanced and I'm hoping the flavor profile can exceed or at least match it.

Taste - Everything I mentioned in the nose makes up the entirety of the flavor profile. Some of the smoothest and most balanced coffee I have ever had with the espresso and cream levels. The hops play a good number in the taste profile as well which is very welcome on terms of balance. Needs a bit of warming up. Warm up completed. Some nice chocolate notes come through with a touch of caramel. Very tasty and very well balanced.

Feel - Well the feel is also exactly as you would expect. The body is on about moderate and the carbonation is on tgmhe higher end of medium. Where this mouthfeel really shines is in the creaminess department. This beer is creamier than a cream pie in your wives vajayjay. Surprisingly swallows with a touch of alcoholic warmth on the back end.

Overall - This beer is a perfect example of a near complete 4.25. Thicker and more consistant than the porter thought it dropped the easy going chocolate dominance and did a bit better in the feel department. A very solid beer, surely in the great category and probably drinkable for about 2 or 3 at a time but it won't blow your mind completely. Overall, I'd have it again at $2.99 a single. As always, try it for yourself and come to your own conclusion.
.

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Photo of delta490
3.72/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours deep black with a thick cap of dark brown head. There is good retention and dots of lacing. The aroma isnt huge but it has nice coffee and roasted malts with just a little earthiness to it. The taste though is washed-out in comparison and the body is thin and too carbonated.

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Photo of hman43
4.18/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: It pours black with a dark brown head.

Smell: It has aromas of coffee and chocolate.

Taste: It has flavors of coffee, chocolate, and roasted malts.

Feel: It has a high level of carbonation with a light heavy rich texture to it. It has a coffee like bitter finish.

Overall: This is a classic stout with coffee, chocolate and roasted malt flavors, a somewhat creamy texture.

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Photo of Neorebel
4.61/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bell's Java Stout pours an exquisite shade of deep brown... topped by a khaki colored, frothy head encircling the glass. A fair amount of lacing is left on the sides as one drinks, a visually interesting addition. What a wonderful, robust aroma we are treated to here! Roasted malt, dark fruits, caramel, and freshly brewed coffee. I am very pleased to find that the flavor is so fine, it even outdoes the already extraordinary aroma. I am a coffee geek, and this is one out of the top 5 or better examples of coffee use in beer that I have ever sampled. Rich and full-bodied dark roast, married to semisweet cocoa! A slight bitterness adds punctuation to the experience in the finish. A malty sweet backbone holds it all together. The perceived alcohol content is just right - not too weak, not too strong. All this - from a year old bottle too. Can't even imagine it being better.

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Photo of hardysf
4.06/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good coffee taste, surprisingly not much coffee aroma. Little head or carbonatin. Really dig the coffee flavor with some chocolate in there too. Mouthfeel is excellent and has some nice bitterness customary to bells.

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Photo of teromous
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

From the bottle: PKGD 10/29/15 so this was bottled just over two weeks ago.

Appearance: Black body with a short khaki head that shortly fades away. It produces some lacing.

Aroma: Coffee with a slightly acrid note, but definitely no mistake that there is coffee in here.

Taste: Coffee appears in the forefront but it is supported with some roasted and charred wood character. It leaves the aftertaste of coffee in the mouth.

Mouthfeel: It has the perfect full body without being too thick or syrupy.

Overall: If coffee is what you are after then this is it. It really gives you a good coffee flavor that is enjoyable. The 7.5% doesn't show at all in the beer. It's a really excellent beer. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys a beer that has a very strong coffee presence. The bottle simply says "Java Stout" and that is exactly what it is.

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Photo of mlockman
4.02/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on 9/11 of 2014, drank in late August of 2015. I read some folks claiming a six month shelf-life per the Bell's website, but I'm seeing it's shelf-life listed as 12 months therein. That being said, not too forward on the coffee, I found this brew to be a perfect balance between roasted coffee flavors and mild malt sweetness.

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Photo of woemad
4.14/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz bottle courtesy of LehighAce06.According to the label, this was bottled on October 17, 2014.

Poured into a St.Bernardus goblet, this was a viscousy, blackish color, with a decent-sized mocha colored head that dropped quite quickly. Spotty lace.

Roasted malts and somewhat bitter coffee notes greeted the schnozz, along with a subdued, molasses-ey sweetness.

The tastebuds are hit with an initial coffee and roasted dark malt blast, but there’s an almost immediate follow up of a subordinate, chocolaty and molasses-like sweetness that keeps the beer from being a one-dimensional, bitter coffee bomb. Good balance of coffee, char and sweetness, ending on a dry note.

Fairly full bodied, but with a slightly watery mouthfeel.

I had been wanting to try this for a long time, so I’m very grateful to have received this. This went well after a light breakfast, but would work equally well as a dessert or nightcap. It moves into my top 5 coffee stouts for sure. Thanks, Kevin!

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Photo of HorseheadsHopHead
3.74/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 bottle into a wine glass. Bottle is around nine months old.

LOOK: Black, but not quite pitch black; brown around the edges, with a half finger of tan head.

SMELL: Dark roast coffee, roasted barley with a hint of smoke, and dark chocolate sweetness.

TASTE: Dark chocolate, black coffee, and smokey roasted malt with notes of burnt wood, charcoal, and earth. A nice balance of sweet and bitter; very roasty. The coffee seems a bit faded, but that might be account of the age.

FEEL: Medium-bodied, finishes a little bit lighter than I would prefer, but at 7.5% abv that's understandable. Light carbonation.

OVERALL: A solid coffee stout. A decent alternative to Founders Breakfast Stout if you can't that. Worth drinking.

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Photo of JamesMN
3.47/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Packaged on 10/16/14.

Appearance: Very dark brown body with a dark tan head.

Aroma: Dark malt, coffee, cream.

Taste: Pretty much basic american stout territory. Roasty malts with a nice cream flavor coming through to soften the harsh char flavor. Just enough bitterness for balance purposes. Some brightness in the finish and an aftertaste of coffee and char. Slight metallic off-flavor. Decent depth for 7.5% ABV.

Mouthfeel: Just above medium in body with smooth carbonation and average drinkability for the style.

Final Thoughts: Unfortunate that this wasn't a fresher bottle. However, the beer was good and would probably be excellent fresh on nitro. Would I drink it again? Sure, if I ever find myself at the brewery.

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Photo of miguelager
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

this is quite delicious. It pours out of the bottle very dark...looks like motor oil. smell is kinda roasty. Obviously taste a lot of coffee, also pick up on some chocolate. Overall, I like it a lot.

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Photo of FaradayUncaged
4.63/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

As an avid coffee drinker this one blends two of my favorites: bold coffee and a rich, thick stout. I would go as far as say it's on part with whatever base beer is used for BCBCS. Delicious and quickly becoming one of my favorite non-barrel aged stouts. Well done, Bell's!

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Photo of MikeReserva
4.31/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A. Pours very dark brown / black. Beer has a nice thick head that dissipates slowly but not completely. lacing sticks around.

S. Lots of coffee, roasted malts, light licorice.

T. Lots of roasted malts up front, followed by a huge coffee kick. Little tobacco. Almost goes to being just too bitter, but stops at the edge. Very tasty beer, not too complex but very rich, big roast and lots of coffee, I like it a lot.

F. Thick mouthfeel, feels like a 10%+ beer, suits the style and bombastic taste very well.

O. A very stellar coffee stout, not for the faint hearted.

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Photo of Rutager
4.47/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cheers, buschbeer!

Just below cellar temp. Pours a very dark brown, pretty much black in the glass with half a finger of tan head. Plenty of coffee with a little milk chocolate and vanilla on the nose. Tons of coffee flavour with some nice dark chocolate and roasty dark malts underneath. Decent sweetness and a nice creamy feel. Fantastic stuff.

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Photo of drunkenmess
4.52/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Love coffee beers. Had to try this one even if it was bottled on 10/09/14. Found it at a local beer store.
Pours like a cup of Joe right out the pot... Dark, very hard to see thru this one. Light bodied, dark brown head that faded quickly as I drank. Minimal lacing. Smells like dark roasted coffee for sure with a hint of sweetness like a black cup of coffee with alot of Splenda in it. Also some burnt malt or even toast Yummm. Taste is superb! Even for a 7 month old beer sitting on the shelf. Definitely strong coffee taste at first with a bit of sweetness in there, finishes slightly bitter but not over drawn. Low carbonation. Not as thick as I was hoping but still very nice! Delectable Bells. Keep up the good work and I'll keep drinking Pure Michigan. CHEERS.

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Bell's Java Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.96 out of 5 based on 3,177 ratings.
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