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

very good
52 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Bell's Trumpeter's StoutBell's Trumpeter's Stout

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

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Mitchster on 12-11-2001

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 52 | Ratings: 82
Photo of granger10
4.14/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

At first sight it seems a bit thin for a stout. The head is also lacking somewhat. But the aroma of coffee and chocolate draws me in. The taste does not lie. I taste a solid coffee flavor that sticks with me the whole way through including the finish. Other flavors also come into play: a subtle dry woody flavor, some milk chocolate, and ever so slight amount of fruitiness (raspberries). The body is thin and so is the finish but this is still a great brew from my favorite Michigan brewery.

 493 characters

Photo of TheDM
4.06/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew pours with a very small light brown head. The body is very dark almost pitch black in color. It has a very strong coffee aroma from which you can almost smell the thickness. It also has a very strong coffee flavor. With in a few sips, you can feel the alcohol content in this brew.

 291 characters

Photo of jcalabre
3.77/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Originally sampled on 8 November 2002.
Appearance: very dark brown/black, however, the body is very light
Aroma: A schauzola full of coffee is what you whiff
Taste: The flavors are very dry, w/ coffee overtones. This is very drinkable.

I think that it is an interesting version of a stout.

 297 characters

Photo of elmocoso
3.42/5  rDev -10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is a very dry stout. And one of the most translucent stouts ive come across. It's black, alright, its just shows more light through than most of the stouts ive rated.

There is a thin blanket of head on it and a little lacing.

A very roasted nose with a hint of chocolate? I'm not sure but there is also a little sourness present that is kind of intriguing.

There is also a sour twang to the taste. There is also a very malty chocolaty flavor to it. It is pretty good and gets better as it warms.
I changed my #s by the end of typing this.

The website mentions using 3 different yeast strains in this beer. maybe that is why it is so unusual.

This beer is growing on me and i wouldn't mind another.

thanks to FM

 735 characters

Photo of Wildman
3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a dark amber color, almost black and formed a off white foamy head that let circular lace as is subsided. An aroma of malt, coffee and chocolate. It has a flavor of malt, burnt coffee and chocolate. Some of that burnt aspect comes through in the astrigent finish, which is fairly light for this style.

 318 characters

Photo of JohnnyDuvel
3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Upon my first sip, a very familiar flavor hit me. It took me a while to get it, but it reminds me of a coffee blend that I buy, where they mix chocolate and almond roasts. The other flavor, strangely enough, is kind of like slightly burnt popcorn. Quite unique, and not as overwhelming as thier Java Stout. Somewhat thin and carbonated, definitely not a heavy stout. Very dark brown, Small head, little lacing. Somewhat bitter, but not prevalent. This is a cool beer to try (thanks, Al), and I really enjoyed it as a follow-up tonight to McEwan's Scotch Ale and Lion Stout. The flavor grows a little tiresome towards the end (as is the case with many "flavored" beers). Bell's seems quite experimental, and if I lived up there I would love to be sampling these "off-beat" beers. Trumpeter's is not a classic, but if you love coffee (as I do) give it a shot!

 857 characters

Photo of Sixpack595
4.4/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I found this to be a very easy stout to like. Strong coffee aroma suggests a harsh bitterness, that never rears its head. Very smooth, easy to get a handle on. Pours a dark red brown. Head was thick, dissipated quickly to a ring, but laced nicely. Mouthfeel was a bit thin compared to Bell's other offerings. Great session beer, ABV seemed fairly low.

 351 characters

Photo of AudioGilz
4.17/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

pours almost black, not too thick, with a small head that doesn't last long at all. I really enjoy the strong roasty/chocolately aroma. Flavor roasty and nutty, then slightly sour in the finish. Mouthfeel is pretty thin for a stout, but it's very drinkable as well.

 265 characters

Photo of Dogbrick
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This exceptionally dry Stout pours a dark mahogany color with a thin but dense beige head and thin lacing. Aroma of chocolate, coffee and roasted nuts. Flavors of coffee, dark chocolate, roasted grain/nuts and a little malt. The finish is a little thin, especially for a Bell's Stout and is mostly coffee. Still another good Stout from Bell's.

 343 characters

Photo of marc77
4.24/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Deep brown hue, w/ slightly hazy garnet around the edge of the glass. Creamy, dense, sticky light tan head leaves countable rings and lace. Nutty, toffeish malt and mellow dark chocolate dominates the aroma, with lightly burnt roasted barley notes adding a coffee impression. The depth is aroma is widened by a mild hint of diacetyl. Perhaps the most aromatic dry stout I've encountered thus far. Aromawise, it's akin to their Third Coast Old Ale in aroma, albeit with smooth roasted character. Snap of roasted barley bitterness initially in flavor yields to bittersweet chocolate and dark caramel malt notes. Subdued peachy fruitiness complements malt sweetness. Mild, Goose Island like impression of unfermented, hopped wort partially due to the relatively low hop bitterness appears mid palate. Moderate in body for style, with a smooth, dextrinous mouthfeel that needs no doctoring from nitrogenation. Finishes lightly chocolatey, with a mild and pleasant lingering berryish fruitiness. An odd, uniquely Bell's take on the style. Trumpeter stout is fruitier and lower in hop bitterness than the norm, but consequently possesses greater overall character and quaffability. Thanks, Feloniousmonk, for sending this tasty stout.

 1,228 characters

Photo of Mitchster
4.32/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is quite a bit lighter in color than other KBC stouts, closer to a KBC porter, in that it's a dark brown-burgandy, and quite clear at that, yeast bits frolicking with the bubbles..the yeast was actually ionically attracted to the wall of the glass and conglomerated on the wierd! (looks like a sea-monkey show!). You can see through the brew in a tall thin glass, and it forms a light-colored, yellowish head. The head tends to dissipate quickly, even with an aggressive pour, sitting on top tiny bubbles. The aroma is unique...predominately whisky with notes of oak, grain, vanilla, coca-cola, and distant lambic yeast strains. The taste is also quite unique from KBC's others...a smidge of sourness, but not as much as Susie's sweet stout, lots of oak and woodiness up front (which I haven't experienced in other KBC brews), but not so much in the finish, which is mostly light roast coffee, distant cloves and semi-sweet chocolate. The hops are very well balanced, letting the complexity of the whisky flavor, grains and yeast shine through. The finish is also drier than usual with more woody sour notes, as well as a hint of dry nutmeg and a brief light sweetness. Bell's makes some unique & great stouts, and this is another good example. Cheers!

 1,274 characters

Photo of aracauna
3.51/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Probably the palest of the Bell's stouts since you can actually see through this one. Great big roasty aroma, a bit of chocolate. Same in the flavor but a bit sour. Would be better if a bit richer and less sour.

 211 characters

Photo of inebrius
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

You want roasted barley? Take a whiff of this stout, straight up roasted barley with a wisp of mocha. Spouts a thin headed deep brown. Flavor is a bed of roast with a few nuts finished off with a couple slices of tang. A hair too spritzy and fluid, nevertheless a fine, drainable brew.

 285 characters

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.17/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Again, the Kalamazoo company confounds with their meager facts about their unusual brews. What makes this a "Trumpeter's" stout? Was it handed down from an old New Orleans recipe favored by Buddy Bolden? Was the brewmaster scared by a swan? Does it make you feel as cool as Miles Davis when you drink one? Will anyone tell me?
Totally black, with thin, tan head. Potent aroma here, very roasted, plus? smokey, figgy, raisiny...Acceptable texture, though not too complex on the palate. Smokiness carries through, though. Very pleasant, reminds me so much of the classic Irish dry stout style. I'd have one anytime, especially 'Round Midnight.

 642 characters

Photo of BitteBier
3.87/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very dark brown with amber highlights at the edges. Abbreviated tan head disappears quickly and laces only slightly down the side of the glass. Appealing nose with light roasted notes being overtaken by an interesting coffee-with-cream aroma. Taste is less interesting than the smell, though it shows the same mix of roasted and creamy flavors. Some dryness at the onset gives way to the roasted tastes; this beer finishes better than it starts. Mouthfeel is good but would be better if the end notes didn't persist for so long. Quite a drinkable stout.

 553 characters

Photo of zerk
4.17/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black, but not quite enough to block all light... with a quickly dissipating head. Aroma of coffee that is slightly astringent. Flavor begins as bitter coffee with hints of chocolate... a touch of sweetness. The hops are barely perceptible, and add a bit of spiciness to the finish. Body is medium... maybe a bit light for the style. Mouthfeel is a bit prickly. A very well done Irish-style stout. Sláinte indeed!

 414 characters

Photo of maxpower
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Muddy dark brown-black color, with a small tan head. roasty nutty, smokey aroma. Burnt malt, nutty roasty flavor has a sharp dryness in the end., has some sourness. medium body with a creamy, silky mouthfeel.

 208 characters

Photo of MJR
2.21/5  rDev -41.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a dark, cloudy brown. There's no head to speak of, even with an aggressive pour...just a tiny ring around the top. This is a stout?

Smell: The main smell that hits me is that of buttered movie popcorn! Tons of diacytel. A touch of roasted grains, perhaps a bit of chocolate, but not much else.

Taste: Imagine buttered movie popcorn...roasted, with a touch of weird sweetness. A hint of chocolate is in there. One of the most unusual flavor profiles I've ever encountered. A diacytel bomb...

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin...very surprising considering it's a Bell's stout.

Drinkability: It would be seem to be high, considering it's surprisingly thin body and easy-going character. I could put down many of these, but with the strange flavor, would I want to?

My third of the November stouts, this one's quite a disappointment... Either all of the other reviewers for this one are nuts, or my bottle's 'off.'

 933 characters

Photo of Realale
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep dark brown - surprisingly light for a Bell's stout. Head dissipates quickly and completely.

Nose is bitter coffee, with a nice supporting cask of roasty-malt aromas. On the palate, its quite thin (again, for Bell's), bordering on light, with a brisk acidity. There is not a lot of malt on the palate, but there is good bitterness, and nice dark-roasted coffee flavors. Very easy to drink, but definitely a much lighter style for Bell's.

Sample purchased at the brewery two days before tasting.

 504 characters

Photo of mjohn27603
3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured with a good sized head. Dark opaque in appearance. Aroma of chocolate and roasted malts. Taste matches aroma with chocolate and roasted flavors. A slight bitter aftertaste. On the dry side. Very drinkable and goes down quickly. Pleasant aftertaste remains on the tongue for a while. Kind of interesting to taste a K-zoo entry into the same style as Guinness.

 365 characters

Photo of Murph
4.72/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a very dark brown with some light seeping through the sides of the brew with a nice big brown head on top that gets bonus points for sticking, pun intended, around. Nice aromas of big roasted malts and lots of chocolatey aromas in there as well which leaves the aroma less astringent than most of the style. Taste starts off very roasted with some nice bitterness on the tongue. Then the chocolatey sweet maltiness of the brew comes through and balances things out very nicely. The brew smooths towards its finish riding the chocolate and maybe caramel? or some other sweet flavor through before a quick bitter-roasted flurry in the finish. Amazing smooth and creamy characteristics considering that this came out of the bottle, nice full roasted/malty body makes this beer a joy to drink. I absolutely love this brewery. Thanks to Proc for the sample.

 858 characters

Photo of ADR
3.97/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown, not completely opaque. Nice 1/4 head, somewhat lacy (more head than a lot of Bell's). Real coffee-like aroma, a little sharp as well as deep. Sturdy and strong malt, very roasty and verging on burnt, approximates java but longer and with husky qualities. Light-medium bodied mouthfeel. Finishes dry with a bitter tang and a hint of butterscotch in mid mouth. Satisfying, hits my flavor buttons well. All hail Kalamazoo, the "czars" of Stout diversity.

 470 characters

Photo of proc
4.23/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another excellent stout offering from Bell's. Pours out to a jet black color in the glass with virtually no head. Taste is that of roasted malt, with slight coffee overtones. A wonderful smooth, yet lightly hop-laden finish.

 227 characters

Photo of cokes
4.02/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Very dark brown, approaching black. Thin tan head fades out to an edging.
Wonderful aroma or charcoal, cocoa, mild-roasted coffee and earth.
Starts off with very bitter chocolate hues, before turning more roasted and leaning towards coffee. Continues to smolder, and ends up with some lingering charred flavors. A touch of organic earthiness in present towards the finish, as is some trace milky sourness (from the yeast).
Thin bodied, but very drinkable.
This must be very solid when fresh, considering the bottle I am reviewing has likely been mishandled for the past 10.5 months.
Another nice one from K-zoo

 625 characters

Photo of Viking
4.14/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark, almost black body with a thin cream-colored head. Good head retention. Rich aroma of roasted malt, chocolate, and oak-like earthiness. Wonderful roasted malt flavor with hints of chocolate. Taste is bitter at first, but finish is very smooth and balanced. Nice, creamy brew. Too bad this is only a 'November' stout. A great choice anytime for a stout lover.

 370 characters

firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Bell's Trumpeter's Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.8 out of 5 based on 82 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

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