Black Note - Vanilla
Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store

Black Note - VanillaBlack Note - Vanilla
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Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store
Michigan, United States
American Imperial Stout
Ranked #216
Ranked #573
4.42 | pDev: 6.33%
Dec 17, 2023
Jun 29, 2019
A malty harmony of dark chocolate, espresso, and dried fruit notes, aged in freshly retired oak bourbon barrels. Aimed squarely at stout aficionados, Black note makes a grand statement about the art of the dark. This version is aged with Madagascar vanilla beans for a sweeter, creamier twist.
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Rated: 4.5 by AngusOg from North Carolina

Dec 17, 2023
Rated: 4.46 by petrusek23 from Ohio

Aug 27, 2023
Rated: 4.79 by thedifferencemaker from Ohio

Feb 25, 2023
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Reviewed by chinchill from South Carolina

4.6/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
12 oz bottle with a bottling date of 19 November 2019 stamped on the back label. It was served in a Belgian snifter so 7th a full pour bringing out some rather thick liquid at the bottom of the bottle. In the glass this is opaque but has a thin ruby colored edge. The head is both thin and short lived.

The aroma provides an exquisite mix of bourbon, dark roasted grains, vanilla, oak, and chocolate. The same elements are found in the flavor along with creamy coffee. As noted on th tree bottle's label, this is a sweeter version of Black Note. I found it to be slightly sweeter than optimal.

Overall. Excellent, if not actually better than regular Black Note.
Apr 29, 2022
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Reviewed by fujindemon74 from Pennsylvania

4.78/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
L- pitch black

S- subtle roast, barrel & vanilla notes pair well

T- vanilla note is there but not obnoxiously so, roast and barrel complement one another well, nothing cloying about it at all

F- a luxurious creamy medium mouthfeel

O- a finely crafted BA Imperial Stout with vanilla, would purchase again
Jan 01, 2022
Rated: 4.45 by chrismattlin from Ohio

Oct 09, 2021
Rated: 4.59 by dtm426 from Michigan

May 30, 2021
Rated: 4.48 by goleeoh from Michigan

Mar 04, 2021
Rated: 4.37 by Can_if_you_can from Minnesota

Feb 02, 2021
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Reviewed by NCSapiens from Indiana

4.26/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Pours black with a tin ring of tan head. Aroma is straight bourbon barrel oak and vanilla. The taste is an unhappy clash of bourbon barrel, vanilla, dry roasted malts, fig, raisin, burnt coffee, cocoa powder. Tastes good, but the mediocre bourbon barrel detracts from the subtle deliciousness of the dark fruits. Too many cooks in the kitchen in this one. The vanilla is in the bourbon barrel and on the finish, but not a dessert vanilla that was expected given the name of the beer. The creamy mouthfeel is the single best attribute. Overall it is very good beer worth having, but at the price point and in comparison to the original Black Note I can’t help but be slightly disappointed.
Dec 26, 2020
Rated: 4.74 by Blogjackets from Ohio

Dec 19, 2020
Rated: 4.24 by Knapp85 from Pennsylvania

Nov 28, 2020
Rated: 4.31 by Jcarriglio from Florida

Nov 22, 2020
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Reviewed by bret27 from California

4.64/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5
2019 version thanks to NolaHopHead.
L: black, minimal dark brn head.
S: Chocolate, licorice, bourbon, vanilla.
T: roasty chocolate malt, vanilla, bourbon, oak. Not boozy at all actually.
F: fairly viscous and creamy.
Overall: very nice. No heat. Just nice and creamy without being overly sweet.
Nov 16, 2020
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Reviewed by WunderLlama from Massachusetts

4.44/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
Received from foundersasap in bif#12

bottle poured into a teku . Black motor oil liquid capped by a pencil thick brown cap that quickly recedes to a dense creamy ring and a small island. Numerous streams of Tiny micro carbonation . Some lacings . Finally settles to a ring

this is a barrel aged stout . Fragrant waves of dark fruits, raisins , figs, molasses, bourbon , tobacco
And roast malts. I cover the glass with my hand and I get a whiff of dark chocolate. Bourbon !

The taste is bourbon and no heat from the alcohol. Roast malts, hint of char. Dark fruits . Fig. Raisins. Delicious

Smooth and creamy, chewy , velvety smooth . I think this beer has a high abv but it is well crafted and expertly hidden . More sweet that astringent but not overly sweet

I like this beer , tastes great . The mouthfeel is the best aspect of this beer followed by the taste and then aroma
Oct 11, 2020
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Reviewed by CraftFan5 from New Jersey

4.06/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
4 October 2020 - Beer #191

Price: $8.99 at Food Emporium on 8th Avenue in Manhattan

Appearance: 5 - all black, and lovely, but small, dark head. Nice lacing.

Nose: 4 - mostly stout, not much vanilla. Very malty.

Taste: 4 - not much vanilla, if any. Not much barrel, if any. Just a basic, decent imperial stout.

Mouth: 4 - thickens as you chew, but somewhat dead. Maybe a bit of a tingle.

Overall: 4 - doesn't hold a candle to the OG Black Note, but certainly not bad.

Oct 07, 2020
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Reviewed by hoptheology from California

4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5
12 oz bottle from Jay, dated 11/18/2019.
Into Boulevard smokestack snifter.

Pours a really wonderful silken black with a tall creamy cap of beige, 2 fingers, receding to 1/2 in time. No lacing, but the head looks marvelous.

The stout aroma is just impeccable. It's like the perfect imperial stout aroma. Tons of heavy silky roasted malt, dark roasted coffee, tons of vanilla, hints of tobacco, leather, and a little bit of hazelnut. It's just fantastic.

Flavor is of roasted malt, caramel, caramel malt, a little bit of vanilla, a little bit of burnt coffee, some wet bourbon oak, a touch of smoke, and a little bit of ash and more caramel.

The first thing I noticed when I put this to my lips was how unbelievably creamy this beer is. It's just otherworldly. So soft, so supple, and the roastiness comes in and gives it a nice acidic bite. Alcohol heat is surprisingly hidden for a beer of this calibre.

Overall, an absolutely wonderful beer that I'd be glad to find again. I have my reservations about Bell's publicity stunts, but I really do enjoy offerings like this and would like to think I'd seek it out again.
Aug 16, 2020
Rated: 4.83 by TP2MSU from Michigan

Aug 16, 2020
Rated: 4.64 by GreatStoutman from Texas

Aug 14, 2020
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Reviewed by beersampler6 from Michigan

4.27/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Delicious vanilla-hinted imperial stout. 11/19/19 date printed on bottle. Pours a slightly thin dark black opaque color with a little tan head and spotty rings of lingering lacing. Smells of dark roast coffee, dark chocolate, vanilla, caramel, malt, fainter nuttiness, a little fig. Taste follows the nose - the vanilla was quite light and subtle but I really enjoyed it. Smooth, sticky mouthfeel, just a little coating of the palate, good carbonation. A great beer.
Aug 13, 2020
Black Note - Vanilla from Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store
Beer rating: 97 out of 100 with 126 ratings