Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store

Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Red Ale - American Amber / Red
Ranked #13
Ranked #7,231
4.02 | pDev: 8.46%
Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store
Michigan, United States
Notes: Substantial amounts of late-kettle hop additions and dry-hopping yields a heady blend of fruity aromas of pineapple, peach and citrus. Those aromas continue into a crisply bitter hop presence across the tongue, but the judicious use of toasted and caramel specialty malts prevents the hop intensity from overwhelming the palate.

Locally sourced Michigan honey creates a smooth, dry finish that pulls everything together.

The India Red Ale style is a variation on the IPA, but with more caramel and toasted malt character and a reddish hue.

Roundhouse was first brewed at our original brewery in downtown Kalamazoo in 2009.
Reviews: 135 | Ratings: 600 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk from Minnesota

3.99/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes from 2016:

Deep crimson coloring, slim beige head.

Big, bold, juicy aromatics, brash hops, rich malts. Ripe fruit.

In the mouth: Hop, hop, hoppy, malt, malt, malty. Big on big and rough and ready. Vibrant hop attack on the palate, with massive malt backing it up. Boom, boom, boom. Tasty stuff, indeed. I like this.

Jul 04, 2021
Photo of rodbeermunch
rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.56/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Had this as the 3rd beer in a 6 beer taster flight at the source in Kalamazoo. Server got the order wrong and put this in the #4 spot. I always crack up when they try and fool you or simply don't give a shit.

Anyways, pours the expected reddish light brown auburn territory SRM color scheme, looks healthy, nothing chunky or floaties in it, 1/2" off white head, relatively dense. Aroma was hoppy. A mixture of Amarillo (heavier) and Citra (lighter) push weight, mostly the Amarillo, but enjoyable aroma especially for style. Mixture of caramel and citrus grove. Lands somewhere in the mind between Celebration, Nugget Nectar and Loakal Red.

Taste is also placing itself in the above average category, while there is definitely a caramel component to the malt bill, the honey addition like hopslam seems to give it a drying effect and keep it from being syrup heft thickness and stickiness all for the better. You gotta be a clown to think this is sweet. Every time I find myself knocking red/amber ales, something like this comes along and shows that there are about a half dozen good ones out there.

Sep 20, 2019
Photo of GuyFawkes
GuyFawkes from Illinois

3/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Canned 9/14/16; drank 10/11/16 @ the Yarchives.

Semi-opaque ruby red appearance.

A rough pour yielded a huge, noisy, khaki head; frothy tree-rung lace.

Honey, caramel & mild grapefruit notes in the nose.

Sticky, medium-thick mouthfeel.

Caramel & honey flavors up front; mild grapefruit bite on the finish.

A sticky, sweet American barleywine mess; insulin injection sold separately. I've had my last.

Sep 02, 2019
Photo of MikeWard
MikeWard from Pennsylvania

3.73/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz can into a pint glass. canned 8/3/17,so about 10 months old. do'h!

murky brownish red body with small off white head leading to decent enough lacing.

aroma is malty.

all malt on the taste, slight hop hit towards the end.

well above medium on the mouth, slightly bittersweet on the finish.

overall, given the age, drinkable and not unpleasant in any way. I'm a little ticked off at myself for picking this up at a trusted place and not checking the date properly. will re-review if i ever come across a fresher one.

Jul 05, 2018
Photo of Lahey
Lahey from Michigan

4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a pretty good red. Has a clear red/amber color. Light caramel and hop smell. Flavor is that of a hoppy red ale. Crisp and enjoyable. Mouthfeel is thinnish but appropriate for the style. Overall a good beer. I appreciate the hops involved, gives it a little more haracter to the beer. Worth a try by anyone interested.

Apr 21, 2018
Photo of BillRoth
BillRoth from Maryland

4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyable. Honey was an asset to a decent body, flavor and malt bill consistent with abv. Decent hoppiness..maybe more PA than IPA, but still very tasty

Jan 20, 2018
Photo of HorseheadsHophead
HorseheadsHophead from Colorado

4.06/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Hazy, dark crimson red that almost looks light brown in the glass. Topped by a big, creamy tan head that dies down after a few minutes, leaving copious lacing.

S: Sweet citrus; blood orange, ruby red grapefruit, orange peel, pine, earth, hop spice; caramel, honey, dark brown bread.

T: Lots of juicy citrus; blood orange, ruby red grapefruit. A lot of pine sap, and fennel/hop spice. Smooth caramel malt backbone, sweet, but not cloying. Honey adds extra sweetness, culminating in a nice cherry note on the finish. Mild to moderate citrus-pine bitterness provides balance.

F: Medium-bodied, moderately-carbonated. Smooth and slick with both residual sugars and hop oils. Finishes slightly sweet but with lots of balancing bitterness.

O: A solid red ale. I'm really enjoying it.

Jan 06, 2018
Photo of PA-hunter
PA-hunter from Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured 12oz can into snifter glass. 7.5%

Appearance- Pours a dark amber with a noticeable red tint. High, fluffy light tan head. Low clarity

Smell- Dark grainy, aroma similar to dark bread. Hops and honey linger in the nose as well.

Taste- A dark malt base, rye like. Builds sweeter, some caramel as well. Honey is another taste that comes in, adding more sweetness. Hop bitterness mixes, more of a grassy bitter hop rather than grapefruit or pine. Ends with an earthy bitterness, still retaining some of that honey taste.

Mouthfeel- Medium in body with active carbonation.

Overall- An interesting red ale. Smooth, subtle flavors that blend well. NIce addition with the honey. Nice rye like malt profile as well.

Jan 04, 2018
Photo of NathanBeets
NathanBeets from South Dakota

3/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Without a doubt my least favorite brew from Bell’s.

If you see it, I guess I would buy a can just to give it a shot. But I regret buying the six pack.

Dec 27, 2017
Photo of TheRougeBastard
TheRougeBastard from North Carolina

4.06/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

interesting this one...I swear I'm tasting apple, and liking it! Roundhouse is a very unique spin on the IPA, if that's what is it is (India Red Ale???) . Extremely drinkable even at 7.5%, does Bell do anything that's questionable...haven't found one yet!!

Dec 10, 2017
Photo of mntlover
mntlover from Tennessee

4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a a deep amber color with a very light tan colored head thumb sized with descent lace.

Aroma is nice caramel malts smells a little chewy with a good dose of citrus hops mango, orange and sweet honey.

Taste is like the nose good rich amber ale, caramel malts, sweet honey and hop grapefruit rind bitterness with some citrus flavor.

Mouthfeel is solid medium or a touch more with fairly level carbonation.

Overall a good solid drinkable amber ale from a good dependable brewery, can't go wrong here.

Dec 08, 2017
Photo of twage04
twage04 from North Carolina

4.18/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep copper with medium carbonation. Aroma is of malt and hops. Lots of fruity hops and malt in the taste. Reminds me more of a hoppy amber than a IRA, but this was a good thing! The malt profile was robust with a hint of toffee or chocolate without being sweet.

Nov 28, 2017
Photo of andrewh995
andrewh995 from Arizona

4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear dark amber with an off white head. Smells of honey, malt, and hops. Tastes of citrus, honey, sweet caramel malt, and bitter hops. Medium creamy body with medium carbonation. Overall a very delicious red APA but in my opinion it’s definitely more of an IPA due to the heavy hop profile.

Nov 24, 2017
Photo of BlackBeerPirate
BlackBeerPirate from Illinois

3.53/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Taste: crisp, pineapple fruit, caramel malt, slight hop to clean finish. Same with the nose. Mahogany/Red hue, semi clear, delicate lace to smaller head. Medium body. Balance for most part, maybe a bit on the sweet side.

Nov 19, 2017
Photo of HipCzech
HipCzech from Texas

3.98/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Serving: 12 oz can (“PKGD 091217”) poured into a 7 oz Libbey Gibraltar glass.

Appearance: Clear amber brown with a foamy head of khaki bubbles; nice, patchy lace.

Smell: Mellow caramel malt, slight citrus and spice.

Taste: Warm, toasty malt body with rye spice, caramel malt, toffee, citrus and earthy hops. Finishes with herbal bitterness paired with pleasant honey notes.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: Nicely hoppy red ale with a good balance of malty warmth, rye spice and hop bitterness.

Nov 13, 2017
Photo of JayQue
JayQue from Virginia

4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very good Amber/Red Ale. Pours an almost clear amber color from a 12 oz can into a pint glass. Big khaki head frothy head with excellent retention and thick partial bands of lacing on the glass. Aroma is citrus and floral hops with caramel malt. Flavor is more of the same. A nice level of bitterness blended skillfully with sweet caramel malt ( and perhaps the honey) that provide a good balance. Very tasty. Mouthfeel is rich and smooth. The bitterness is fairly substantial but the sweet maltiness provides a perfect balance. A very drinkable ale.

Nov 12, 2017
Photo of DavidRandall
DavidRandall from Michigan

4.13/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am not a huge Bell's fan. Many of their beers are average. This is well above average. From the first hoppy sniff to the last drop, a very good beer. Congrats Bell's for getting back to making beer that Budweiser wouldn't make

Nov 01, 2017
Photo of mothmanscott
mothmanscott from Georgia

4.02/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a clear deep amber/pale brown producing 3 fingers of somewhat lasting, frothy, khaki head that leaves scattered streaks & motes of lacing. Aroma is caramel, toffee, toast, nuts prominent followed by tropical, citrus & earthy hops. Taste is less hoppy being mostly toffee, honey, toast & nutty notes with more intense earthy hops than in the nose but ghosts (for Halloween) of tropical & citrus haunt this brew deep in the background. The sip finishes with caramel, toast & nuts, fruit, some pepper & a light hop bitterness. Afrertaste is malty but dry & slightly bitter. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation, wet & juciy with very little prickle & drying in the aftertaste.

Oct 30, 2017
Photo of TheSixthRing
TheSixthRing from California

4.07/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

From tasting notes 10/07/17

Appearance - Served up in a 12oz glass, copper red in color with a thin, sandstone colored head floating atop. Lacing can be found decorating the glass in broken lines and spotting.

Smell - Moderate aroma, hitting lightly on hops with a floral note and underlying citrus and spice. Malts come through with a bit of caramel character.

Taste - Nice balance on the tongue with the spice, floral and citrus hoppiness marrying up nicely to the caramel malt base, delivering a pleasant drinking experience. A hint of tangerine brightness in there. Light spice and a hint of pith lingers in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation. Slick, slightly silky texture before a crisp, slightly dry finish.

Overall - Nice, easy drinking IRA with great flavor. I should have grabbed a sixer, but so many beers to try while I'm here in the Midwest on business. I'll keep my eyes peeled next time I'm in SoCal or Vegas.

Oct 29, 2017
Photo of WunderLlama
WunderLlama from Massachusetts

4.09/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can fated 9/12/17 poured into a teku glass

Translucent reddish orange liquid , thick, billowy , frothy two finger off white foam cap , good lacings

Aroma of pineapple, citrus, peach

Taste of tropical hops over malts

Good sudsing

Good beer

Oct 28, 2017
Photo of Sabtos
Sabtos from Ohio

3.84/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Burnt hazy red, with a darker hue at the top and a dense, khaki foam that recedes slowly.

Smell is mildly dank with pine and orange.

Taste is sweet orange, grapefruit and lemon at first, followed by woody pine and faint toast. Toasty nut emerges more with time.

Frothy and nicely crisp with a full body and semi-dry finish.

Oct 27, 2017
Photo of reitzbrewing
reitzbrewing from Pennsylvania

4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

darker than expected color. smell is piney bitter hops. the head lingered and made thick rings on the pint glass (draft pour). not getting any honey taste. think amber mixed with a lot of bitter hops. Nice beer!

Oct 24, 2017
Photo of moundbz
moundbz from North Dakota

4.28/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Nice thick caramel pour with a foamy head, partially my fault on head size. Easy smell, nothing super dank. Real smooth taste with not much aftertaste. Great beer out of a can!

Oct 15, 2017
Photo of drtth
drtth from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The clear reddish amber colored beer pours out into a Duvel glass with a 1 1/2" light tan fluffy head with lots of bubbles that merge to become larger ones while leaving behind a ring and a few long leggy patches of lacing as it recedes to a thick ring around the glass and some persistent foam on the surface. Sipping clears the side of the glass leaving a few small scattered patches of lacing.

The aromas feature the citric hops with some additional fruit such as pineapple supporting the citrus. The malts are in here as well with a nice caramel and toasted character.

The flavors are much as expected from the nose with some bitterness along with the citrus and pineapple. Some sweetness from the toasty caramel malt softens the bitterness a bit.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a touch of slight prickliness from the persistent small bubbled carbonation. The finish begins as the citrus, pineapple and toasty malt sweetness move to the back of the palate and fade away leaving the persistent bitterness that becomes a nicely dry ending that goes on for quite a while.

On the whole a well made beer that is enjoyable to drink and I'd like to have it again. However, the flavors are just intense enough that I'd probably not have more than one an evening.
Worth a try.

Oct 09, 2017
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler from Pennsylvania

4.14/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I am on a CANQuest (tm) for a little while to give myself a break from eradicating The Bottle Backlog here at Chez Woody. I've been away for so long that it's good to be back.

From the CAN: "India Red Ale Brewed with Honey"; "This IRA frestires bright, juicy, tropical fruit and citrus aromas balanced with a judicious amount of toasted and caramel specialty malts."

I am becoming accustomed to a gentle Glug following the Crack! since I just do not feel like ChANcing a mess that I will have to clean up afterwards. My in-glass swirl led to the creation of two fingers of puffy, foamy, light-tan head with decent retention. Color was Deep Amber/Light Copper to Copper (SRM = > 13, < 17) with NE-quality clarity. Nose was an interesting mélange of caramel & honey sweetness, tropical fruitiness, light citrusiness and an AmeriCAN hoppy bitterness. Mouthfeel was medium. The taste began with a honey & caramel sweetness, but slowly, the tropical fruity & grapefruit hops flavors began to assert themselves. I liked the way that so many varying flavors worked so well together. It was a really interesting take on a passed-over style from the early days of microbrewing. Finish was semi-dry and it was an eminently drinkable beer. I could see this being kind of dangerous in the cooler at the beach, given its ABV and drinkability.

Jul 17, 2017
Roundhouse from Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 600 ratings