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

very good
3,794 Ratings
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Bell's Special Double Cream StoutBell's Special Double Cream Stout

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

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

For Trade:
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Ratings: 3,794 |  Reviews: 1,442
Photo of Thur123
3.8/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This brew pours a nearly opaque ruby black color with a small amount of medium khaki head. The smell isn't too strong, with lots of sweetness as well as a bit of toasty malt smell. Smell not too strong  

Glug glug glug

The flavor is big on the lactose. Creamy sweetness thy almost reminds me of ice cream. There is enough sweet and surly malt to balance the whole thing very nicely. Mouthfeel is fantastically smoky and creamy. Drinkable as well...doesn't feel too heavy or boozy. A dessert stout if you will.   

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Photo of busternuggz
3.88/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.
Opaque brownish black with a creamy, foamy, mocha colored 1" head. The head settles gradually to 1/4" but persists until the end. Leaves thick lacing.
Smells creamy and roasty, a touch of molasses, some mild coffee.
Tastes of dark chocolate, dry molasses, creaminess, nice rich roasted malt, a little toasted oak. Nice mild bitterness with a touch of coffee beans in the finish. Just a little ashiness in the aftertaste, like a cigar. The tastes mellow and blend more as it warms up.
The texture is smooth and creamy but kind of thin, more like a porter than a stout.
One is enough but I drank it pretty quick. The bitter and ash notes take down the drinkability for me a bit.
Rich and complex, a dry but creamy stout. Very nice.

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Photo of arboristfish
4.32/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a black color with a tan head. The aroma smells of roasted malts, sweet malt, almost like cream or milk, and a little bit of a coffee smell to it as well. The taste is smooth, creamy with a roasted malt character. The mouthfeel is medium thick, and is drinkable.

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

A - Poured with a deep dark black body topped by a rich tan one finger head. Chunks of sediment settled to the bottom of my glass after pouring it. Head retention was decent and it left some nice lacing down the inside of the glass.

S - Dark malt and bitter bakers chocolate dominate the nose.

T & M - Dark roasted malt and chocolate with just a touch of dark fruit to make things interesting. Just a very small amount of hop bitterness at the back end. Medium bodied with a creamy mouthfeel.

D - An easy drinking sweet stout, Bell's has done well with this one. If you like the style (as I do) it's well worth a try.

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Photo of PDXHops
3.59/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap in a shaker pint. Oily black body with hints of brown highlights and a modest tan head that disappears in short order, leaving scattered sticky lacing.

I was interested to try this on tap after having a teeth-rottingly sweet bottle. Interest turns to confusion right away, as this smells like an entirely different beer. Rather strong roasted fresh coffee aroma with chocolate milk lingering underneath (compared to Snickers sweetness from the bottled version).

Upon first sip, confusion continues to reign. This is a much drier and roastier beer than the overwhelmingly sweet brew I had from the bottle. In fact, a hefty bitterness plus a burnt/dark roasted/tangy malt combo beat down the sweetness. Tastes pretty good, but somewhat lacking in the sweetness of a top-notch milk stout (unlike the bottled version, which was way too sweet even by the style's standards). Lingering burnt finish with the somewhat tart sweetness of chocolate chips. Lacking the residual sweetness typical of the stle.

Overall impression: Color me confused. The bottled version was crazy sweet, but the tap version is (for the style) not sweet enough. Either this beer is an entirely different animal on tap, or it was mistakenly served under this label, and was in fact a different beer altogether (maybe Kalamazoo?). It's somewhat of a puzzle rating this serving; it's certainly enjoyable, yet fails to fully satisfy the requirements of the style.

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Photo of ryanonline
4.28/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Opaque black with a standar tan stout head and moderate lacing.

Coffee and cocoa. Maybe a wee bit of espresso. Not as aggressive as a RIS. I think I smell toasted marshmallow.

Smooth roasty coffee and some strong chocolate notes.finishes out a bit bitter but has a sweet malty backbone throughout.

The mouth feel is amazing on this beer. So creamy and smooth a nice not to thick residual sweetness on the palette and finish clean and dry. Only some very sought prickly carbonation on the front end.

Might be a tad filling as this seems to have a lot of lactose. But otherwise very drinkable.

Awesome brew from bells, what more would you expect. I just bottled a milk stout that I think will taste very close to this but less abv and probably more carbonation.

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Photo of Thanby
4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Looks like a pretty standard coffee stout. Very light chocolate nose over the maltiness. Surprisingly light malt for a stout, mellowed by cream flavors. Full, smooth body with a faint malt stickiness in the finish. Incredibly light and mellow flavor, very easy to drink. Definitely try it out if you can.

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Photo of Vdubb86
3.88/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass

This beer pours a nice deep dark brown topped with over a finger of tan foam. The smell I found to be slightly coffee and mostly malted sugar with a decent amount of vanilla. The taste is pretty decent mix of vanilla and coffee but it wasn't too bold on either. The mouthfeel was pretty good everything seemed to be in order. There was nothing outstanding or spectacular about this beer, but it was pretty solid and enjoyable.

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Photo of thegodfather2701
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours very dark, nearly pitch black. It has a nice mocha colored head that hangs round for quite some time.

S-Chocolate and coffee dominate the nose. It also has some roasted malt and hops present as well.

T-Very much like the nose with chocolate and coffee leading the way and a nice balance between hops and malts. As it warmed it opened up and was quite delicious. Near the end of the pint it was very chocolaty, creamy, and sweet.

M-Decently thick and creamy.

D-Very drinkable, especially when it warms. I could definitely drink some of these in one sitting.

Overall, I have never been a huge fan of this style, but I could see myself drinking some more of these.

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Photo of witster18
3.9/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nose is macadamia nut, vanilla, coffee, and alcohol. Ruby edges and little head that doesn't retain. Smells good.

Taste is great. FOr 6.1 this is fairly smooth with very high drinkability. This would be a serious cold weather sessioner, but with a disclaimer. *DOnt start before 9AM!* Bed by 5.

CHewy with some woody/oaky notes, and evaporated cooked down milk caramel with a little alcohol bite, but smooth as silk. A little dark fruit... t his beer comes off as a more high grav beer... it's just 6.1, but tastes more like 7...

Looks average, tastes good, very chewy and drinkable for its abv. Bell's has some good beers and this is one of 'em.

SOme heat here, and every sip seems to offer something new - and very temperature sensitive, complex.

WIll revisit.

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Photo of bfflo
3.64/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour: Opaque chestnut brown-black, nice tanned head but it fell fast.

Smell: Very bready; cream notes; roasted. Grainy/spicy. A little odd, or musty-ish; something in the scent makes me think of an old carpet, a slight turn-off. Maybe a slight note of alcohol heat, too, like you might expect of a Russian Imperial, which surprises me as it's not very high ABV.

Taste: Warm, cola-like sweetness up front, followed by a buttery mouthfeel and a drier-than-anticipated finish. The creaminess here is more in the body and mouthfeel, and only one of many aspects of the taste. There are some low, dark fruit notes in the background of this one, and the dry finish has a grainy, coffee-like feel. I'm not sure all the elements here add up as ideally as desired, for me, though at least it's interesting. The cola-feel contrasts a little strangely with the buttery cream notes, and the fruit notes a little strangely against the coffee finish. It's a decent enough sipper, not one I'd turn away by any means; but it's not an absolute home run either. Unlike the Bros., I noticed zero lacing and poor head retention in my glass.

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Photo of Duhast500
4.2/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch # 9985

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a Playboy Pint glass.

The color is a dark black with a maroon highlight and two fingers of foamy brown head, with a little lacing left on the glass.

The smell is a little chocolaty with some creamy boarders that are trying to keep a malty flavor in check. There is a milky flavor that comes out while you least expect it. A back ally whiff of this beers aroma, gives off a complex stove burning flavor.

The taste is like a chocolate milk shake mixed with a shot of rum. Some hotness is present in the back-end, but smooths out with a creamy flavor that is reminds me of a half and half.

The feel of the beer is medium bodied and is smooth going down but has a fierce character that can jump out at you at any time.

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Photo of MbpBugeye
4.23/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Yet another one that Ive had a few times, although still havent had enough of this, that I havent reviewed.

A- Super nice head. Equal parts lacing and retention create one hell of a dirty class when this beer is finished.

S- Nice smelling stuff but its a little on the weak side. Roasted malts, coffee and milky smooth chocolate strike a balance in the aroma.

T- The finish is where this beer gets delicious. Its were all the lovely creamy chocolate and velvety vanilla hide. Before that though, there is a pretty good level of roast in this beer.

Damn good stuff. I dont know why I dont get this stuff more often.

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Photo of FourBetter
3.05/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark black with barely any head which clings to the glass only slightly.

OK aroma of roasted malt.

Mildly sweet when at first sip, some bitterness hiding in the background. A smoky malt flavor remains behind on the back of your tongue.

Fine to sip on a cold night, but not overly rememberable.

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Photo of Morey
3.83/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This winter seasonal from Larry Bell and folk pours pitch black in color and is topped with a two finger brown head. Moderate head retention, but it slides back down the glass rather quickly.

Smells of roasted barley with a hint of semi sweet and dark chocolates.

A smooth stout to be sure. Slightly sweet, but not too sweet. The roasted flavors balance this beer out nicely.

A little thinner than I expected, but I'd still have to go with a medium mouthfeel due to the creaminess that this beer possess.

I could drink a couple of these before switching things up.

Morey's Bottom Line: A solid stout from a solid brewery. There's no WOW factor with this beer though. It's good, but not outstanding. It's pretty easy drinking as far as stouts go.

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Photo of Swill5786
4.07/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured almost opaque black with one finger tan head. Nose of a good stout: malty, chocolatey, coffee. Taste is medium carbonation and sweet malt start, coffeelike bitterness at the back, bittersweet chocolate and smoke in the aftertaste. Leans toward the taste of an imperial stout. Medium heavy mouthfeel. Decent drinkability.

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Photo of Spider889
3.56/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Review from notes, on tap @ Mad Mex.

Very dark beer, but thin and watery in consistency. Excellent tall creamy head on it, but it left no lace.

Smells roasty but pretty subdued, would have enjoyed an aroma I didn't need to work so hard for. Some coffee notes and burnt toast and heavy roast on the barley.

The flavor is very malty with lots of bitter coffee flavor. Slightly sweet milk chocolate is hidden benath the heavy malting.

Probably too carbonated, almost prickly on the palate. Tons of tiny bubbles began churning in my gut. This is a thin bodied beer, and other from the carbonation it goes down easily enough.

Drinks easily, and while not cravable, certainly a solid beer.

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Photo of daledeee
4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A single bottle from Bells. I poured this into my usual glass.

Got a nice 1" head that was light tan. The body was very dark brown and opaque. The lacing stayed around until the very end.

Nose was slightly charcoal with malt and vanilla

Taste is sweet, roasted malt, chocolate and vanilla.

Mouth feel as you would expect is very creamy. This is a very nice beer. Drinkability is held back slightly due to sweetness.

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Photo of SolomonGrundy
3.95/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks again to Brian44556 for this extra...Pours dense ultra-dark brown. Not much of a head forms, but what does is creamy and persistent. Leaves excellent lacing. Can't tell how carbonated due to dense dark color. Wonderful dark chocolate nose, with hints of vanilla and espresso. Lots of roasty malt in there, too. Not much else, so this isn't super-unique thus far. Wonderful tangy stout flavor right upfront: tons of malt, full bodied so I suspect some oatmeal is used. Not too sweet, not too dry. Well-balanced in the sugar notes. The middle melds from tangy and malty to a much smoother malt character, and this quickly moves to the finish, which is super-roasty and has a tiny hint of hop bitterness. No idea how exepnsive, so I'll guess middle range. Great drinkability for a stout - I could session this in Winter. Good beer, but not unique. Worth trying for sure.

What I like most: The wonderful balance in the sugars of the flavor.

What I like least: The lack of unique qualities all the way around.

Verdict: Great, well-made stout that makes up for its ubiquitous nature by being damn excellent and tasty.

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Photo of micromaniac129
4.58/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep dark very nearly black beer with a big tawny colored head that lingers on for quite awhile. It appears to be well carbonated.
Aroma is that of sweet roasted malts also chocolate and coffee.
Definitily has a sweet roasted malt character to it. I get a nice complex roasted malt flavor upfront. then turns mellow and sweet.
A very nice mouth feel with a smooth soft mellowness and a dry finish.
Nice lacing from the sticky foam head.
I taste tasted this beer waiting for my kids to come home from school. It was a cool blustery day with clouds in the sky.
My flag was waving in the breeze in front of a brillant red maple turning quickly in the autumn sky.
That was a good beer.
Drink well my friends

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Photo of chickenflea
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Absolutely opaque black in color. A simple dark tan head holds for several minutes and then drops to a thin surface covering and very nice collar. The aroma reveals licorice, sweet milk chocolate, creamy coffee, mild buttery biscuit, and a touch of raisin. Roasty. An interesting fruity tasty up front becoming quickly mildly sweet and creamy like a rich sour cream. The bitterness deepens as the beer warms and breathes on the palate. There is a touch of alcohol but it burns off quickly leaving a dry finish that's loaded with lingering bitterness, dry coffee-like roastiness, and a light touch of mildy tart dark fruitiness. The body is medium. The texture is softly fluffy as the beer seems to expand on the palate. Oily on the finish. Drinkability is high, because this beer invites you back with the promise of another intriguing sip. One of the best I've had. A very nice stout.

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Photo of terrapinfan88
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Burnt umber with tan one finger head.

Smell: A little smoke, Dark malts, some booze that is not as apparent in the taste.

Taste: Some semi sweet smokey dark malts, chocolate

Mouthfeel: Really creamy, light carbonation, slight earthy dryness lingers for a few seconds after the swallow.

Drinkability: I really liked this beer not a heap of complexity great mouthfeel, a seasonable cream stout to say the least. My first bells offering and certainly not the last.

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Photo of Beertinez
4.23/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours like motor oil. Thick and pitch black. One finger mocha color head.

On the nose, im getting chocolate, coffee beans, and roasted malts.

The taste is very nice! Bittersweet dark chocolate and roasted malts. Light hops and coffee bitterness on the finish. Lingers for a second or 2.

Thick mouth feel. Reminiscent of a milk creaminess.

A very nice beer to sip on and savor. The thickness makes it kinda of weird to down one after another.

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Photo of orangesol
4.05/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served on cask at Al's of Hampden into a nonic pint.

A - Pours dark as night with a solid one finger, creamy, tan head that leaves thick lacing down the entire glass.

S - Strong sweet aroma right off the bat. Hints of dark roasted malts, espresso, chocolate, and cream. The sweetness overpowers nearly all of the smaller aroma's in this one.

T - Quite sweet up front quickly giving way to a creamy mix of coffee, chocolate, and other rich earthy flavors. Finish is a strong roasted flavor that is a bit overpowering. A fairly well put together cream stout.

M - Heavy flavor and feel with moderate carbonation. Very smooth with rich, roasted, flavors clinging to the pallet long after consumption.

D - I am sure I could drink a few of these, just maybe not all in one sitting. A very nice cask offering from Bell's.

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Photo of NODAK
2.7/5  rDev -32%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Aroma has strong roasted dark chocolate malts on it...but there's also a hint of sweetness in there, separating it somewhat from a regular stout.

Mouthfeel seems pretty thin for a stout. Taste has a body of predominately roasted malts and bitter chocolate..the sweetness I was expecting doesn't seem to translate. There's a hint of coffee on the well as a pretty good bitterness for style. I wasn't expecting the hops to be as assertive as they were.

I'd love to say I'm more impressed, but I suppose I'm not. Just seems like another run of the mill stout to me. Not really sweet at all per style, and kind of thin.

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Bell's Special Double Cream Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.97 out of 5 based on 3,794 ratings.
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