Bell's Smitten Golden Rye Ale | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

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Bell's Smitten Golden Rye AleBell's Smitten Golden Rye Ale

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

Style: Rye Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
Drawn from one of our oldest recipes, Smitten Ale began as part of a series of rye beers at our Eccentric Café. The combination of sharp citrus & resinous flavors from the hops with the earthy, rustic overtones of the rye malt contribution yield an interesting take on the American Pale Ale.

Added by Biggness on 06-14-2008

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Reviews: 307 | Ratings: 1,690
Photo of jwc215
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Packaged on 01/13/15:

Pours slightly hazed golden. A thin lasting white head leaves lacing.

The smell is floral, slightly citric, bready. A hint of minty rye comes through.

The taste is floral, piney, citric, bitter, with a touch of sweetened bread to balance it. There is a subtle hint of minty/spicy rye in the dry finish.

It is light-bodied, a bit fizzy. Crisp.

An easy-drinking, balanced refreshing pale ale with a subtle hint of rye.

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Photo of lipster
3.47/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pour from a tallboy can into a 16 oz pint glass, with a fizzy, fairly short-lived craggy white head, some lacing. Transparent gold color with mild carbonation. Faint smell of pine and hop. Tastes of pine, resin, with tiny bit of fruit, a little watery at the front but with a citrus hoppy finish. Mouthfeel is pleasant, sticky. The relative thinness of taste might fool you into thinking this is a session ale, save for the tacky, slightly boozy aftertaste that lingers. It took a couple sips for me to get into this, and I still don't love it. I always have such high hopes for anything from Bell's so I was eager to try this. For this ABV, I think I'd rather something a little more complex or flavorful. Maybe I just do not appreciate this style.

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Photo of drpimento
3.81/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance has a large off-white head, some lace and a clear amber color. Aroma is malt, hops, yeast, and a little fruit. Taste is similar to nose, bittersweet with a little carbonic tang and lingering bitterness on back of the tongue.The flavor isn't bad, just not super interesting. Body is just right. One off for me I think.

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Photo of chopp02
3.9/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I was in the mood for something light one evening while working on a small project but still wanted some flavor so I decided to pull this beer out of the fridge and give it a try. It has a nice golden color to it and you can smell that rye flavor. Oddly, though, the aftertaste is more enjoyable than the taste of the beer itself. That's not to say it tastes bad, but it leaves me wanting an IPA. Again, though, the aftertaste is good so I enjoyed the beer overall.

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Photo of Tone
3.76/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear, golden color. 2/3 inch head of a white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of sweet malt, slight rye, slight pale malt, hint of honey, hops, and a hint of pine. Fits the style of a Rye Beer. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of hops, sweet malt, slight rye, hint of pale malt, hint of honey, and a hint of yeast. Overall, looks good, but body and aroma are weak and not impressive.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.76/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Light copper in color with lots of tiny sediment suspended within the body. A quarter inch off white head rests on top. Brussels lacing. I smell earthy rye and a bit of citrus hops in the background. The flavor is a blend of bitter citrus hops and earthy rye, but the hops dominate until after the fade. If it wasn't for the lingering rye I would bill it as a rye IPA. The mouth is moderately carbonated with some stickiness from the hops.

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Photo of Taybeh
3.93/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

from a single into an imperial pint

a: clear light orange and a huge 3 finger head
s: super smooth and light pungency, earthy toasty rye, a little gentle citrus hoppiness
t: follows nose but much more pronounced with a lot of good balance that ends with a definite though gentle resin and flowery bitterness.
m: pretty light and mild, moderate carbonation, pleasant spicy and aromatic bitterness.

great spring beer...very different than Deschute's Red Chair and much lighter, but I somehow think of these as working together to perfectly mark the transition from winter to spring.

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Photo of tigg924
4.2/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

In my opinion, what Bells does as well as any brewery is take ordinary styles and perfects them. They make super clean and tasty offerings of styles that I would not be as excited to drink a six pack of. Smitten is no exception. The beer tastes somewhat leafy, very citrusy, and has a touch of spice from the rye. Not the most complex brew, but wow is this juicy and drinkable. This is one that I will certainly revisit.

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Photo of everythingiszen
3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Full golden colored. Healthy ring of fuzz, lacing. Spicy pine. Tangy citrus. Take your pick. Definitely leads pine. Pinier than most ryes I've tried, an interesting combination. It's growing on me... fans of bitter IPAs will like this; fans of ryes with low IBUs will tolerate it I imagine.

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Photo of nickapalooza86
3.81/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a nice gold, finger of white head with great lacing, lots of floated

Smell is earthy piney hops, some spicy rye notes, bread, some lemon like citrus

Taste is quite heavy on the rye up front but then some very piney hop notes kick in, a light citrus quality, nice bready malt, a little orange

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side of medium, slight drying in the finish

Very unique beer, good, but glad I only grabbed a single. Not something I would drink on the regular. If you like rye, my guess is you will love this.

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Photo of Maxbier
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden pour with big off white head. Big citrus pine aroma. Flavor is light spicy rye malt with piney bitter and a citrus grassy hop finish. Tasty.

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Photo of sataylor888
4.25/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

one of the better golden ales that I have had, I am a sucker for rye at the moment though. If you sometimes feel golden ales are missing something, this may be it, a little more spice.

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Photo of megamick
4.5/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Honey colored, hoppy, citrus flavored 2 fingered head in a snifter was good for me. Rye is very understated, but Enjoyed immensely & would highly recommend!

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Photo of denver10
4.01/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours orange golden with a slight white head that quickly recedes. Aroma is toasted grains, honey, spicy rye, a little fruitiness and some grassy hops. Flavoris biscuit, honey, spcy rye, fruity, with a mild to moderate resinous finish. A crisp, medium bodied mouthfeel with a dry finish. Overall, surprised a little by how much I enjoyed this one. Dangerously "sessionable," because at 6% abv it is certainly no session beer.

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Photo of TeamMathis
3.53/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Huge head. Cloudy orange liquid. Not a big smell, but it had orange and pine. The taste had a nice mix of sweet citrus and little bitterness to it. Very spritzy. All in all, I could drink it all the time just because it's refreshing.

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Photo of Floydster
4.25/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

16 ounce can

Appearance is clear yellow, moderate carbonation, one inch of off white head with tons of lacing

Smell is grapefruit, piney hops, rye, caramel, and

Taste starts off with a big orange flavor followed by other citrus like lemon peel and tangerine, fades into large amount of spicy rye flavors that linger in finish along with crisp hop bitterness

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, crispy with strong carbonation, rushes of bubbles keep this beer refreshing

This was very strong in the citrus department for a rye beer, spiciness provided balance and made this quite drinkable

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Photo of JohnnyI
3.35/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours from the growler in to an IPA glass with a light golden hue and just a kiss of red rye. The minimal white head settles quickly in to a thin collar, while the transparent liquid shows just a touch of chilled haze. The aroma yields bready pale malts and hops of the earthy variety. Only moderately aromatic, with just traces of rye discernible. The taste follows the nose. Mildly flavored and balanced, with a slightly drying finish. A bit of peppery spice from the rye and a lingering mild hop bitterness leave a lasting impression. A spritzy, lively carbonation helps give the impression of a fuller body, though it's mostly an illusion, and a good one. Overall, this is a pretty standard affair, and it makes me yearn for something more potent and flavorful, like a Ruthless Rye. When a pale ale takes on the same basic profile of an IPA, but tames all of the desirable characteristics down, it simply leaves me unsatisfied. It's not easy enough to be a session beer, and not bold enough to stand out. Perhaps a good bridge to better things if you're trying to ease in to the craft world.

 1,095 characters

Photo of Dave1999
3.58/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy golden color with a bright white foamy head.

The smell is spicy rye, earthy hops.

The taste is much like the smell, a little spicy rye and earthy hops.

The feel is light and refreshing.

Overall an easy drinking beer, nothing especially exciting though.

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Photo of larryarms847
3.37/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a slightly orange golden yellow with nice straight white foam.

Floral, lemony, and resinous hops met with a slight spiciness of rye.

Floral, earthy, herbal, citrus, and some rye spice.

Light-bodied, medium carbonation, floral bitterness, slightly grainy, and soft.

Overall, this is much better than I anticipated. Light and citrusy, but just enough earthy rye spiciness to balance things out.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.4/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Packaged 1/22/15.

Pours a murky honey orange with a foamy tan head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Tiny particles of sediment are seen floating around in the beer after the pour. Smell is of malt, grain, rye, earth, black tea, and slight herbal hop aromas. Taste is much the same with grain, spicy rye, earth, and herbal hop flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of rye and hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an above average beer that is drinkable, but the rye and herbal hop aspects mix together give this one a fairly assertive bitterness that make it a bit of a chore to drink in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of neenerzig
4.31/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured out of a 12 oz bottle into my pint glass, this beer pours a slightly hazy/cloudy, but mainly clear, medium golden color with a nice, fluffy white head about 1/2 to 2/3 inch thick when first poured. Has lots and lots of streams of little bubbles rising to the top of the glass. the head eventually settles to a solid 1/4 inch thick and has excellent retention down to the last sip retention, along with good lacing. Aromas of grassy, herbal, citrus hop notes and a nice rye presence upfront, followed by some bready malt notes. Has a good herbal, slightly grassy, earthy, citrus hop flavor upfront that gives way to the rye flavor that is rounded out with toasted bready malt sweetness. Good balance of flavors here. The hop bitterness and rye bitterness are certainly the dominant flavor profile here, but the toasted bready malt sweetness is not overpowered by the bitterness. It has a really nice balance! Has a crisp, yet quite smooth and frothy, almost creamy, medium to full bodied mouthful with moderate carbonation and a dry finish. Quite easy to drink in the way well crafted beer ought to be. An excellent offering here that is well worth a try.


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Photo of HarpuaCritz
4.36/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Golden with moderate head that dissapates slowly into a lacy white collar. Subtle nose with notes of grass and slight fruitiness. Medium bodied with nice complexity. Starts off slightly sweet and fruity and transitions to bready, then earthy almost woody hop notes. Well balanced and easily drinkable. Yum.

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Photo of ordybill
4.34/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 OZ bottle into a pint glass.
Aroma- Has a nice citrus and hop smell.
Appearance- The beer pours a clear yellow and has a small white head.
Taste- Has a nice blend of citrus, hop and rye.
Palate- This is a medium-bodied beer with moderate carbonation. It has a crisp fairly dry finish.
Overall- Bell's has once again formulated a very nice brew. I recommend everyone give it a try.

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Photo of breakingbland
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The aroma was slightly sweet with a hint of rye and hops. Fairly typical of an American ale. The taste followed the aroma but not quite as sweet. Refreshing.

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Photo of metter98
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is relatively clear yellow in color and has a light to moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high off white head that died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles on the surface, a collar around the edge of the glass, and lots of lacing down the sides.
S: Light to moderate aromas of citrusy hops are present in the nose along with notes of rye.
T: The taste starts out with some flavors of orange citrus but quickly transitions to a light to moderate amount of spicy rye flavors that continue to linger through the finish.
M: It feels just about medium-bodied and somewhat crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I liked the citrusy notes in this rye beer as they added complexity to the taste and helped take some of the edge of the spicy flavors, making this beer more drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

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Bell's Smitten Golden Rye Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.76 out of 5 based on 1,690 ratings.
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