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

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BA SCORE
89
very good
1,138 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:
1,138
Ratings:
3,195
Avg:
3.96
pDev:
18.94%
 
 
Wants:
179
Gots:
425
For Trade:
11
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,138 | Ratings: 3,195
Photo of BenwayPHD
4.51/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with a cola brown around the edges. A one finger caramel head. The smell is good. Strong coffee up front faint caramel and vanilla notes. The flavor is more balanced than the smell. The coffee is there, but it has a good amount of sweet malt to smooth it out. The mouthfeel us a little smaller than i was hoping for at this abv. Overall a very good coffee stout.

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Photo of Brackh
3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours dark with a small head. Smells malty and roasted. Taste like the smell. A bit bitter though on the back end. Picked up some vanilla as it warmed. Love me some Bell's.

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Photo of crob3888
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a viscous black that lets no light through with a toasted brown head. Minimal lacing. Nose is immediate with notes of coffee and chocolate. Flavor begins with coffee and actually a lot of chocolate, reminiscent of mocha. Ends dry and costs the mouth. A nice dessert beer.

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Photo of mchegash
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - 4/5
Almost pitch black, except for some hints of red-brown around the edges of the glass. Light to medium brown head, about 1 finger.

Smell - 4/5
Very strong ground coffee smell, maybe some hints of chocolate and smoke. Some sweetness to the smell as well.

Taste - 4/5
A combination of coffee and smoke is the predominant flavor. The taste is fairly sweet. There are hints of hops, chocolate, and malts as well. Overall the taste is similar to Founder's Breakfast Stout, perhaps a little smokier though. The taste is nice overall, but I would have liked a little more complexity. Basically all you get is the smoky coffee flavor.

Mouthfeel - 4/5
In between medium and full-bodied. Moderate amount of carbonation. Fairly crisp, yet quite smooth, besides the carbonation bit.

Overall - 4/5
This is a good coffee beer, it's definitely in the same league as Founder's Breakfast Stout in my opinion. Would have to compare them side by side to say which I like better.

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Photo of JLaw55
2.75/5  rDev -30.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Not as good as I had hoped, I have had better coffee stouts. Also, the alcohol really comes through, which I do not care for.

Would Drink Again: No
Would Purchase Again: No

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Photo of mobrado
3.6/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Truth in advertising here. The coffee aroma and flavor is HUGE, it's just not a very interesting or complex brew. A sticky-sweet aftertaste lingers. It's priced in line with Bell's Expedition Stout which makes it horrible value in comparison.

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Photo of Catracho5
4.16/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into a Bell's shaker pint

A: Black, nice mocha head, dissipated pretty quick, not a lot of carbonation, little lacing, looks good.

A: Right up front, fresh ground coffee aromas, some slight chocolate malt aromas, mostly coffee, not picking up any alcohol on the nose.

T: Fresh ground coffee bitterness up front, bitter chocolate, like a dark cocoa flavor, very dry finish, some alcohol on the back end, love it, taste great.

M: On the thin side, comes off like a cold cup of coffee, dry finish, not creamy smooth, good none the less.

O: I really like coffee stouts and this one is great. I have had better, it's a little high on the bitterness, but still really good for my taste. I like it to have a more creamy mouthfeel but overall this is good. This could be a regular in the short winters we have in CA. If you like coffee stouts, this is definitely worth a try.

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Photo of dbl_delta
3.91/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle "pkgd 09/11/14" into pint glass. Opaque, dark brown to black. Huge, coarse, tan head eventually reduces to nice lacing.

Strong roast malt and coffee predominate. Not sweet, no hops bite, thick and creamy without going overboard. Quite drinkable, although you probably wouldn't want to make a session of this.

Another excellent offering from Bell's.

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Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.92/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served in a pint glass.

Appearance: Dark black body, but pours thin with an initially thick tan head rising to at least two finger's length.

Smell: Hardcore coffee and cream, also might I note before even tasting it it feels like it has cocoa automatically in it.

Taste: Strong mocha coffee feel, almost like a liquid dessert... not bitter at all in the realm of some other coffee stouts that I have had. Deep sugars and sweet molasses.

Mouth: Smooth and sticky, more like a syrup. Carbonation is medium at best...you would think it would be higher considering how thick the head as but let's not assume.

Overall: Good brew, and better served with dessert than dinner or better yet make this 12 oz. your dessert. Salud!

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Photo of Tsar_Riga
3.94/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Black-brown, opaque, very little head, slight traces of lace.

S - Fairly quiet. What is there is roasted malt, in the form of toast (on the dark side), and a bit of ash. Coffee is way back in the mix...

T - ...until you get to the taste, where it is dialed forward. The coffee here is straight-ahead back, with a strong bitter bite. The malt softens things. By the close, the coffee drops back and you get hints of toast again.

M - Fairly thin for a stout, but very easy to tip back, with a soft close.

O - This is a stout made to drink, easy on the tongue, but not one to study. The elements are clear and present, and yep, coffee is at its core. Good. Very good.

 680 characters

Photo of tedvr
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a very dark brown, almost black with a medium creamy head that lingers. Has a nice malt and coffee smell. Tastes of coffee with a little burnt chocolate in the background. Mildly carbonated but very well balanced. Overall, a nice stout that has a coffee lean to it, but is balanced.

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Photo of Vogie
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served in a pint glass. Bottled on 10/17/14.

Pours a dark brown almost black with a fizzy cinnamon colored head that leaves some nice lacing. Aromas of dark roasted coffee beans, roasted malts, and bakers chocolate. Tastes of smooth dark coffee throughout intermingled with roasted malts. Mouthfeel is medium in body and not overly bitter.

A pretty good straight forward coffee stout. Nothing overly complex here. A bit pricey for a sixer. Glad I was able to pick up one bottle to try. If you like black coffee give this one a try...

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Photo of ribby
3.96/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Very deep red color, but not completely black. Pours with very little head. (Bottled in Oct 2014.) aroma is malt and coffee.

The taste is really quite subtle for such a stout. The roasted/coffee flavor lasts a long time on the finish. Not sweet at all, but i have a hard time attributing that to hops, or to coffee, or to overroasted malt. Overall a very good stout, not sure it earns the elite stout price.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.53/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

This pours a solid black with a cocoa colored cap of foam
The aroma is coffee and roasty, with a definite coffee character. The flavor has a touch of the coffee astringency with a big shot of coffee taste. Sharp and bitter on the finish, with a thinner yet distinct body. I feel like this is a wake up call in a bottle.

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Photo of derekgw123
2.88/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Other than the Expedition stout, Bells has really disappointed me. This beer had a bit of a tinny after taste and was not as full bodied as I expected it to be. I usually love dark beers with choco/coffee notes, but this was a dud.

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Photo of FriedSlug
3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Reviewing this again. Originally rated 4.63 with no review so my tastes have changed and I wanted to review it again.

Really dark beer with a tan head. The nose is a blast of coffee and lactose with some roasted malt sweetness. The taste is burnt, bitter coffee with a slight sweetness. There is more bitter to this than the aroma would lead you to believe. Not quite as balanced as I remembered.

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Photo of StrongRepublican
3.87/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

9/14 bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours dark and viscous with minimal traces of head or discernible carbonation. After pouring a very thin tan head forms but quickly fades. A slight collar is left behind and a small amount of lacing.
S: Baker's chocolate and medium-roast coffee aromas dominate with some hints of acidity and roasted barley.
T: Roasted barley and deep roasted coffee take the forefront, dark chocolate and black patent show some pretense,slight acidity/tannins from the coffee.
M: Full bodied and fairly viscous, well carbonated, but not overly done.
O: A bit too roast-forward for my taste, but definitely a drinkable coffee stout.

 656 characters

Photo of nawicks
5/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

If you prefer dark, strong coffee and dark, strong beer you will love this one. It's like drinking your favorite stout with the smell and reminiscent taste of a deliciously dark roasted coffee.

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Photo of Redrover
4.12/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My thanks to my buddy Jim for leaving me a 4 of these at the cabin. 12 oz longneck poured into a standard pint, the beer is dark, dark brown or is it black? It has a thick chiffon like brown head.

Cold pressed coffee and roasted malts in the nose.

The taste is in interesting mishmash. At first it is coffee than some dark roasted malts, followed by something earthy, then something sweet that is almost like vanilla. I like this beer as it is true to its style and has some really nice facets.

The mouth is nice but for some reason, I wish it was thicker and more coating. This may be because I want the taste of the beer to linger.

Another great beer from Bells. I had two fantastic coffee stouts in the last week. This one and the Whole Hog Expresso Stout from Point. Well done!

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Photo of humuloner22
3.96/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love Bell's don't get me wrong. I have passed on this one for several rounds now. But I have begun to appreciate the coffee stout this year so I figure now would be the best time to evaluate this beer.

Look: Pretty much your standard stout. Very dark, very little if any light penetration and a mellow layer of head lingering over the top of the beer.

Smell: Coffee hits you immediately, more of a coffee grounds aroma than a fresh brew aroma. Some malts but pretty much a one hit note here.

Taste: Coffee, bland not much else going on really.

Overall: For the price this is not that good. If this beer was about the same is Two Hearted then I would consider it a better option. But, considering other breweries are putting out better beer in the same category for less money then this beer doesn't get the rating from me. I think price is what kills this one most of all, otherwise its an alright beer.

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Photo of TheArtOfWort
3.03/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Bought a six pack, drank two beers on three separate occasions. First two at average fridge temp, tasted soapy.
The next two at room temp, soapy and very boozy (?)
The last two at freezer temp for an hour, not bad overall. Low carb, bland malt taste and less than average coffee flavor. Maybe i was unlucky

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Photo of TX-Badger
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown with tan head. Coffee, espresso, raw dark cocoa, and roasted malt on the nose; follows onto the palate. Finishes with a nice lightly sweet chocolate and coffee note.

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Photo of Jack_Malts
4/5  rDev +1%

Nice dark brown pour with a 1 finger chocolate milk head.
This goes dark chocolate and freshly ground coffee for broke! Not particularly complex but really nails the coffee flavors, and the chocolate flavors are a nice backing. If you're a coffee stout fiend, this is something to seek out. If not, grab a bottle anyways, just know what to expect. Very delicious!

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Photo of mr-jj
3.06/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a snifter from a 12 oz bottle. Brought back from a friend on his trip to Ohio. Bottled date is 8/29/13.

Color is very dark brown with a one finger tan head. Good lacing. Smells like dark roasted, almost burned, coffee. Flavor follows the nose - lots of dark roasted coffee with a little roasted caramel malt. Finish is bitter coffee. Body is medium with good carbonation.

Overall, lots of coffee, not much stout.

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Photo of biegaman
3.89/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've tried so-called "blonde" coffee beers and I'm still unsure what to think about them. Something as dark and inky-black as Bell's Java Stout, however, instills complete confidence - reason dictates anything that looks this much like coffee will likely strongly resemble it in other ways too.

We often say that beers have suggestions of coffee or "coffee-like" qualities, but there's no mistaking the literal addition of actual coffee in this one; it's like pressing your nose straight up against the filter while it's still dripping. I can't even detect the malts.

Same goes for the taste. Talk about 'fresh-pressed'! This much roasted coffee bean flavour doesn't leave much room for malt to make its impact. Overall, there are traces of dark caramel and hazelnut-chocolate fudge that add some buttery richness and dimension, but they're easy to dismiss amidst such a formidable, pronounced coffee character.

The best coffee beers manage the impressive trick of balancing roast coffee with roast malt flavours. This one does no such thing. Normally I'd be tempted to bash such a recipe for tasting only like flat coffee, but since I made sure to wait for a night I was craving coffee, I've actually enjoyed it. Make no mistake, however: this has no more depth than a kiddie pool.

Bell's Java Stout is a total delight – but only if you like coffee. And even then it's not a beer for wimps; you can appreciate the 7.5% alcohol of this stout even if you can't all its other qualities. This mouth-drying, fully saturated, intensely coffee-toned beer is a demanding ordeal so know that before opening. A caffeine addict's dream - no more needs to be said about it.

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Bell's Java Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.96 out of 5 based on 3,195 ratings.
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