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Bell's Black Note Stout | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

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Bell's Black Note StoutBell's Black Note Stout
BA SCORE
4.54/5
World-Class
4,469 Ratings
Bell's Black Note StoutBell's Black Note Stout
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
One of the most sought-after stouts in Bell's history, Black Note Stout blends the complex aromatics of Expedition Stout with the velvety smooth texture of Double Cream Stout and ages the combination in freshly retired oak bourbon barrels for months. The resulting harmony of flavors captures the finest features of all three components: malty notes of dark chocolate, espresso & dried fruits, all buoyed by the warmth and fragrance of the bourbon barrel. Aimed squarely at the stout and bourbon aficionados, Black Note makes a grand statement about the art of the dark.

Added by mcallister on 06-16-2007

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#68
Reviews:
704
Ratings:
4,469
pDev:
7.93%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
2,708
Gots:
1,243
Trade:
130
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 4,469 |  Reviews: 704
Photo of cmcquirk
4.65/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of andrewh995
4.44/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark black with a very dark but small brown head. Smells of whiskey, vanilla, and French roast coffee. Tastes of dark coffee, rich chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, wordiness, roasted malt, and very light anise. Medium-heavy body with light carbonation. Overall an absolutely incredible bourbon barrel aged stout. One of the better I’ve had.

 346 characters

Photo of scream
3.74/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Have read many reviews of this one here, but it just did not do it for me

Look-fine 4
Smell-Smells decent w a hint of sweetness 3.75
Taste is just average, not picking up any barrel notes
Feel - I think the carbonation is a bit too much for the style-3.5
Overall- 3.75

 269 characters

Photo of classixIII
5/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of RochefortChris
4.15/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Mindcrime1000
4.52/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a single-serve bottle into a stout glass

The look is classic stout in every way. A thick, viscous pour results in a thick, opaque brew with a two-finger tan head and excellent lacing.

The aromas are complex, varied, and inviting. Classic char aromas mix with coffee, chocolate and dark fruit in a spectacular bouquet.

The flavor mirrors the nose. Complex and nuanced, with plenty of coffee, chocolate, and dark fruit, with hints of herbs (anise?) in the background.'

The mouthfeel is classic stout. Thick, viscous, and chewy, but with a dry finish.

Overall, one of the best imperial stouts I've ever had.

 628 characters

Photo of bnewt21
5/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of beerman2017
4.39/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of tmcarter23
4.5/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Miguy
4.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

This is the best BA stout I've ever had. 11.2 % abv is masterfully masked in amazing malty chocolate. Another amazing offering by the masters over at Bells!

 156 characters

Photo of BenHoppy
4.18/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A good beer with flavors of chocolate, coffee, dark fruit, vanilla cream, and bourbon but with the bourbon barrel craze it no longer carries that amazingness. Sure it's flavorful and good but it's not outstanding. I'd prefer both barrel aged and non barrel aged expedition over this. It's a great beer but won't probably buy again. However maybe it's the freshness? Perhaps with some age I'll enjoy it more, only time will tell. But nevertheless definitely glad to have tried it. It is good but my palate has been spoiled and know there is better barrel aged stouts in existence.

 585 characters

Photo of travelguy
4.63/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Grovejr20
4.49/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of HopHunter19
5/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - nice pitch black beer with a mocha head that sticks and leaves a nice lacing.
S - big bourbon, oak, cream, milk chocolate, dark roasted malts, umami. Vanilla, toffee, caramel, coconut.
T - big bourbon, oak, cream, milk chocolate, toffee, caramel, coconut, Vanilla, dark roasted malt.
M - heavy mouthfeel, alc present but appropriate, aftertaste is bourbon, some milk chocolate
O - this is a really good beer. Very good bba stout, but original. I would love bba expedition but this is the original Bells BBA Stout

 518 characters

Photo of mamaraza
4.83/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of pirmannt1
4.86/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Gooseman80
4.17/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of dwilrigs
4.6/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of TooGood
4.59/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of miniditka77
4.51/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

L: very dark with a tan, fizzy head, not as thick looking as some BA stouts
S: awesome - chocolate and a little bit of coffee, with a definite scent of bourbon
T: same general qualities but not quite as good as the smell, a lot of oakiness in the flavor that covers up other flavors and makes them difficult to pick out. May be better with a little bit of age. Very tasty though.
F: a little bit more carbonation than I expected from a BA stout. I like BA stouts to feel thick, and this one feels surprisingly light and fizzy. Some people may actually enjoy that more, but not me. It is pretty drinkable for an 11-12% beer though, that's for sure.
O: Very good BA stout. Like I said, may improve with age. I would definitely buy it again if I saw it, but I don't know if I'll spend time seeking it out. It's not really much better than some other good BA stouts that you can find on the shelves fairly easily.

 921 characters

Photo of adipilla8708
5/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of Rebrown221
4.5/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of argock
4.22/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bourbon dominant with not a lot of stout character - covered by the barrel notes. Looking forward to trying this in a few months when the barrel has dropped away some.

 167 characters

Photo of Evilyak
4.44/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

welcome to the big room.

bell's really knows how to play these big, bold stouts and still make them available.

unlike a lot of barrel-aged beers, this one embraces the barrel without getting lost in it. definitely get hit with the oak and bourbon, but there are notes of cocoa and vanilla behind it that shine through. nice, roasted element to the stout. mouth is thick and creamy and viscous - not going to fade away easily, but the alcohol is shockingly well masked.

i had a bottle of 2017 darkness two nights ago and i would take this one over it any day of the week.

 575 characters

Photo of GreenBayBA
4.75/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bell's Black Note Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Beer rating: 4.54 out of 5 with 4,469 ratings
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