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Bell's Special Double Cream Stout | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
89
very good
1,417 Reviews
THE BROS
83
good
Read the review
Bell's Special Double Cream StoutBell's Special Double Cream Stout
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.10%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Double Cream Stout derives its name from its smooth, creamy texture, not the ingredients. Completely dairy-free, this stout blends ten different specialty malts to yield a remarkable depth of flavor. With only a touch of burnt notes, Double Cream Stout focuses on the softer, cocoa & espresso-like aspects of roasted malt.

Added by Mitchster on 12-30-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,417
Ratings:
3,685
Avg:
3.98
pDev:
17.09%
 
 
Wants:
219
Gots:
467
For Trade:
4
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,417 | Ratings: 3,685
Photo of SFLpunk
3.45/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to Thorpe429 for this one as a bonus!

12oz brown glass pry-top bottle. Batch code equates to being packaged Dec 18, 2009. Bell's is my new favorite brewery for having a proprietary code but having the Batch Finder right on the top of every page of their website. Kudos!

Appearance: Pours a slick black with cappuccino-like head that fades in under a minute with no lacing.

Nose: Lots of roasty coffee notes and some creaminess too. Smells like a rich, full Irish nitro stout.

Palate: Big and full up front but snapping drastically sharp with some acidity. Coffee-like flavors and bitterness, some smoky cream. But man, there's some acid there. Weird. Like coffee left on the burner too long. No sweetness or body that other reviewers talked about.

Notes: After tasting and re-tasting this beer, I'm not so sure about it. The acidity level is way too high for what I would expect from a Double Cream Stout. Wonder if it isn't holding up well, or if this was an off bottle. Bummer. Should try again.

Edit: Tried a bottle of Batch 10151 (aka 01/25/11) on 8/27/11 and there's no acidity at all. Just smooth and creamy. Score for taste and mouthfeel reflect this bottle.

 1,178 characters

Photo of TheSupremeAJ
3.44/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Smooth fluffy tan head. Dark stout appearance.

S- Sweet and boozey.

T- Very sweet, bitter, and creamy all at the same time.

M- Creamy and smooth

D- Easy drink, however it just doesn't taste good enough to earn a high drinkability rating.

Overall it has a very nice mouthfeel, however at this price point I expect it to be a lot more balanced.

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Photo of Bluesman2383
3.44/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I received this in a bottle from a Mix a Six pack at my local retailer.

It appeared with a dark brown color with a 1/4 inch head on top. It smelled very nice with hints of half & half cream (hence the name), malt, roasted barley, and coffee.

The taste was what one would expect from a decent midline priced stout from a microbrewery. Not underwhelming, not overwhelming.

Mouthfeel was creamy, cool and not real gritty. I was expecting a little bit more of a creamy texture but just received a typical stout taste.

Overall for price point, this one is a bit high. I've had better and far worse. This one is middle of the road for me. I wouldn't buy a whole pack but if offered to me, I wouldn't turn it down.

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Photo of gueuzedreg
3.44/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pretty dark, pinky head with legs.

S- Kinda bland, not much going on here. Burnt toffee, caramels.

T- I was hoping for more of a creamy taste. Thin, and not much cream.

M- Thin. If you are a fan of Black Note, it appears that Expedition is carrying the load on that one.

O- I was really hoping for more with this beer considering that I like batch 1 750ml Black Note more than Batch 2 and the 12ozers.

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Photo of breadwinner
3.43/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I honestly don't get any creaminess, no velvety texture, no nothing from this stout. In fact, it's generically roasty, maybe some stale coffee notes or some such, and not much else. Thought it was a dated bottle issue, but I tried with a freshie, and it still just wasn't especially good. Kalamazoo beats the pants off this thing.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.43/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a nice creamy head with better then average retention. Aroma of subtle chocolate and coffee. Taste is less pronounced then expected with some sweet chocolate malt and a very subtle coffee touch. No bitterness to speak of but a nice creamy well carbonated body. The finish is a bit too watery for my taste. Good but may be a bit overrated in my mind.

 395 characters

Photo of ppoitras
3.43/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle obtained via trade with CRJMellor. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a thick 1/2" light brown head above a dark, dark brown/black brew. Long-lasting head that laced excellently. Aroma is sweetly of dark malts, perhaps to a fault, with no balancing bitterness seemling present at all. Taste follows the nose, with sweetness dominant, to a fault, and ends up with a tinge of bitterness, but almost too little, too late. Mouthfeel is nowhere near as smooth as one would expect from a cream stout, kind of disappointing, and drinkability is a bit better, but one could certainly find a more desirable lot from Bell's stable.

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Photo of WeezyBoPeep
3.43/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I'll admit I'm not a huge stout fan, but I'm working my way through as many Bell's beers as I can get my hands on and this was next in line.

Poured a 12oz bottle into a crystal mug.

A: Pitch black with a dark tan head of froth.

S: A sharp character with lots of roasted malt and ground coffee. Notes of scotch and tangy mashed grains.

T: Creamy, but not as milky as, say, Left Hand Milk Stout. Slightly bitter, malty and with a sour middle. Bitter malty finish. I'd like it to be a little sweeter.

D: Just a trial beer for me, I wouldn't get this in a sixer or anything.

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Photo of Kkottonmouthkngz
3.43/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: rich jet black and yields a generous fluffy mocha colored head. appears as a nice stout should, inviting and warm.
S: chocolate and roasted malt. little bit of coffee but really just plays background to the roast. mild overall but pleasing for sure.
T: the overload of roasted malts gives it plenty of solid flavor, and quite tasty. my initial response is that it is a milk stout because i
get some of those familiar lactose qualities, but alas ive been proven wrong.
M: pretty damn creamy and smooth. it actually gets a little light on the back end where the roastiness dissipates just a little bit, but overall quite nice. i had this with some lamb and spicy rice and it really made the meal a totally enjoyable experience.
D: close to room temp this really just goes down so easy and i could see a future with a few more. its a nice break from the huge viscous stouts ive been settling in with so far this winter.

 919 characters

Photo of DavoleBomb
3.42/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter. Bottled 10/10/11.

3.5 A: Black color. Two fingers of creamy light brown head. Retention is about average or slightly better and a touch of lacing is left.

4.0 S: Mild roastiness. Layer after layer of sweet milk chocolate and cocoa. Light coffee aspect with light vanilla. Very subtle burntness and acridity (if that's a word).

3.0 T: The last time I had this I remembered it to be a lot different. This time, it is severly lacking in intensity with an undeveloped flavor profile. All of the pieces found in the nose are here, but are way more mild.

3.5 M: Lighter medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Reasonably creamy, but not as creamy as I thought this was.

3.5 D: I don't know if this batch is a bit off or if my bottle is, but this doesn't seem to be the brew I remember it to be. Oh well, I'll re-review if necessary.

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Photo of prdstmnky
3.41/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark dark brown color, with 1 finger of creamy tan head, leaving some slight lacing. Not a whole lot in the smell, some hints of chocolate and roasted malts is about it. The taste is similar to the smell, but there is also some tartness to this stout - maybe some dark fruits? Not exactly what I was expecting, just cant get over the tartness of this sweet stout. This is my 2nd time giving this Bell's offering a chance, and I don't think I would seek it out again unfortunately (definitely prefer their other stouts)

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Photo of mcallister
3.41/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this cask conditioned and must say I like it better bottled or just regular draft.

A beautiful pour. Good half inch of a slightly tan head. Jet brown color? Well very dark brown to say the least. Thick sweet aromas of choclate and vanilla, also some espresso.

Because of the cask it seems there is a sour component in the beer I'm not to fond of. Main tastes are burnt dark fruits, vanilla, espresso, cocoa and that sour taste.

Besides the sourness the brew is almost too smooth. Very easy to drink despite the sour tannins. Makes this beer less than perfect.

 575 characters

Photo of billshmeinke
3.41/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a nonic.

Pitch black with some ruby highlights. Three fingers of off white head that dies down to a layer of foam on top. Good lacing left behind.

Smells of chocolate, cream and caramel. Not much else.

Taste follows smell. Chocolate, caramel, roasty char. The finish is bitter smokey and roasty. It gets a little overwhelmingly bitter.

The mouthfeel is full, rich not well carbonated, and creamy.

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Photo of phichifiji00
3.41/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Dark brown, subtle tan head, subtle lacing.

Smell: Chocolate, roasted malt, cream.

Taste: chocolate, malty, licorice.

Mouthfeel: full bodied, moderate carbonation, silky.

Overall: A tasty stout. well balanced. good drinkability.

 272 characters

Photo of dwren89
3.4/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: pitch black and opaque with dark tan head that disappeared quickly

Aroma: chocolately, a little bittersweet, not a very potent aroma

Taste: bittersweet chocolate, slightly silky with a little lactose character, smooth finish

Mouthfeel: silky but not overly so, medium-full body, great balance

Overall: a good but not great milk stout. Bittersweet chocolate with a silky mouthfeel make for a good cold weather sipper

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Photo of robwestcott
3.4/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

in a word - very sweet... well, that was two words i guess.

a very very dark brown / to black? - poured into a dogfish head signature glass with an almost imperceptible beige head that may have lasted a few seconds or so.

very sweet, almost cloying upon the first drink with a sour finish. however, i soon realized it had been served much too cold. after sitting for 15min or so, more of the flavor opened up and the sweetness receded (though only slightly).

no bitterness to note, maltiness is way up front. i should note that the longer this one lived in the glass and the closer it came to room temp, the more enjoyable it became.

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Photo of rel
3.4/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hands: Bottle

Eyes: Pitch black with a very little tan head, no retention and decent lacing.

Nose: Lots of sweet malts, some roasted notes and vanilla.

Tongue: Little hops, lots of roasted malts, and a lingering sweetness accompanied by some coffee-like bitterness.

Mouth: Its quite creamy...maybe even double creamy. Appropriate carbonation.

Mind: A nice stout. Other than a slightly higher than normal creaminess out of a bottle, pretty standard, but well executed.

 472 characters

Photo of JRed
3.4/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours black and bubbly in body with light tan head that sticks around. Hefty aroma of butterscotch, cream, light cocoa, and vague hop presence. Tastes of smooth milk chocolate, cream, light butter, cola, roast comes in towards the finish along with a hop bitterness and leaves a faint tobacco finish. Pretty heavy carbonation in the mouthfeel and medium bodied. The flavors are welcomed but the carbonation turns me off. Wish it wasn't as fizzy on the palate and thicker in body.

 479 characters

Photo of drpimento
3.39/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Odd duck. Seems to vary a little in its characteristics. This time, I don't think I'm imagining it and don't know how it could be possible - but it seems to me like the "cream" qualities, i.e. the lactose, is spoiled. I pick up some sour milk aroma and flavor. Other than that part the flavor is spot on and ditto aroma. Body is creamy and is, for me, one of my favorite kinds of beer: milk/cream stout. So easy drinking. Don't pick up any alcohol in this at all, so it's a sneaky one. Carbonation is perfect. Head is tan, fine and medium size. Nice lace. I'd give it much better rating except for the sour thing. And, admittadly my sensory apparatus is defective, soooo... I leave it there.

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Photo of AdamMY
3.38/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The color is black, with only the slightest hint of transparency around the rims.

It poured a nice sustaining head which was slightly dirty . The aroma is great, lots of coffee and chocolate malt. The aroma also has a slight hint of a burnt popcorn like aroma.

The taste is definitely "Interesting". It has Its like a smooth and creamy coffee with chocolate undertone. The Burnt popcorn comes out in the finish. But there is an overwhelming bitterness and sourness to it that I notice as I drink it more and more.

The drink-ability is only moderate, as it is enjoyable but I do not know if I could drink these one after another all that easily, especially with the sour aspect to it.

Batch #9513

Acquired from a PA Store.

 726 characters

Photo of 99bottles
3.38/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I had to bump this guy's appearance because the bottle is so good looking. It reminds me of some really great pen and ink drawings of loney oak trees where I grew up. The beer pours a dark brown (not black) and has a inch head with some really nice retention. It stuck around.

The smell is oh so sweet. Double cream? You bet. Sweet milky sugars and cake batter crawl out. Light choco but not exactly.

Taste is good. There's an ease with drinking this, and it goes away pretty fast. Very sweet aftertaste. Creamy for sure. Tiny roast notes in the aftertaste. If there are hops, they didn't send me the memo. Here's a metaphor: I like my coffee black. This reminds me of when someone goes out to get coffees for everyone and fucks up and brings mine back with 2 creamers and sugar in it. It's rich and sweet, but that's really not the way I take it. The depth of the alcohol is so hidden though, it needs props for the mystery they've created in that department.

Mouthfeel: Ok. Not real thick, nor should it be. Nice weight and minimal cloying after the sip.

Drinkability: Again, just ok. Beers like this let the taste dictate their drinkability. There's nothing wrong with it, maybe a little heavy in the gut afterwards, but it goes down easy and is satisfying. I just think I'd keep myself to one a night, or a year. Try it, at least it's different.

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Photo of trbergman
3.38/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured into a tulip.

A - Very dark brown beer with one finger of clinging tan head that leaves plenty of lace.

S - Subdued aromas of roast barley, coffee, and chocolate, with hints of molasses.

T - Rich milk chocolate mixes with coffee-and-cream. There's a slightly acrid roasted flavor lingering in the background that I don't entirely like, but it's mostly covered up by chocolate. Hop flavor is practically nonexistent, though the beer has significant level of hop bitterness for the style. It's good, but given the name, I was expecting a more straightforward sweet stout.

M - Full-bodied; rich and silky.

D - According to the bottle, Bell's Special Double Cream is "brewed with a blend of 10 different malts." To me, it felt like the brewery was trying to do too much with this beer, and a little restraint would go a long way. It wasn't altogether unenjoyable, but this isn't one that I'd go out of my way to get.

 936 characters

Photo of jpkoch1962
3.36/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

While I want to give this famed stout a higher score, I just couldn't. This stout has a lot of pluses. A very nice deep ebony presentation -deep red hues can be seen if held against the light. The head was a dirty brown and long lasting. However, the aroma was somewhat muted. Could only detect slight hints of roasted barley. The taste was dominated by dark roasted malts -very little complexity. I was expecting something a bit more diverse. Perhaps more chocolate, carmel, and crystal malts would have added character to this stout.

While I plan on drinking this again, I was expecting a bit more.

 601 characters

Photo of swizzlenuts
3.36/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black and a small head. There is a slight roasty smell to it, but not much else. The beer has a slight sweetness with a lot of roastiness. There isn't much much flavour in this beer, which is disappointing. The beer is roasty and slightly sweet, but nothing much else. The mouth feel is good, and it's drinkable. I'm quite disappointing with this beer.

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Photo of JEngler
3.35/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Pouring aggressively resulted in a tiny head. It was almost midnight black after the pour.

S - It had a gentle aroma of burnt malts and caramel.

T - This was a complex taste but the malts and hints of caramel in the background we there at each drink. It was surprisingly smooth, despite it's think and dark appearance.

M - I found this to be lightly carbonated and lighter tasting then I anticipated.

D - I think this was pretty good for a stout but was expecting a bit more richness.

I enjoy most of the product's by Bell's and this is also very enjoyable.

 566 characters

Bell's Special Double Cream Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
89 out of 100 based on 1,417 ratings.
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