Oarsman Ale | Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store

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Oarsman AleOarsman Ale
BA SCORE
3.53/5
Good
2,301 Ratings
Oarsman AleOarsman Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store
Michigan, United States
bellsbeer.com

Style: American Pale Wheat Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Kettle-soured wheat ale.

First brewed in 2008 at our original brewery in downtown Kalamazoo, Oarsman Ale grew out of our desire to explore the tradition of session beers and to create a unique, flavorful experience for everyone, no matter what the occasion.

Tart and refreshing, this sessionable, bright Wheat Ale exudes citrus and lemony aromas from Cascade hops and trades sour intensity for finesse. A perfect companion for any occasion, Oarsman Ale is a beer based in tradition, but with that distinctive Bell’s twist.

A perfect beer to compliment any menu.

Added by Thorpe429 on 04-12-2009

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#42,686
Reviews:
646
Ratings:
2,301
pDev:
15.58%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
85
Gots:
364
Trade:
2
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,301 |  Reviews: 646
Photo of ichorNet
3.71/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I haven't had a beer from Bell's in like five years (since I went to South Carolina where they were distributed), so I picked up a single of this one today to try since we now get some distribution from them in MA! I like the idea behind a tart wheat ale that isn't explicitly defined as being part of the revival "Berliner weissbier" style. Somehow this feels more honest to me or something. Anyway, I kind of have an idea of what to expect going into this one, but I'll try to remain as divorced from preconceptions as possible.

Pours a light, hazy straw-gold color with a nice dense, retentive head that leaves a little bit of spotty lace as it fades out. This is a really, really light colored beer; almost pilsner-like by SRM but the translucency makes me think wheat beer for sure. Pretty good looking stuff, actually.

The nose is chock-full of funky lactic lemony twang with a little bit of a sulfur note hiding behind a wheaty complexion. I'm not sure I really fully-appreciate the almost-rustic funk going on here... definitely doesn't smell like a "clean" sour, somehow. Slightly vegetal at times with some minerality as well. Hmm... not really sure where this one's gonna go on the palate, but I'm not really sold by my first impressions at all.

Okay, the flavor profile is nice and thirst-quenching... a big change from the kind of uninviting nose, for sure. "Lemonade/iced tea mix" is the first thing I think of when this hits my tongue, and it follows through with grainy, snappy wheat and a touch of light herbal/grassy hops toward the finish. Solid tartness, but it doesn't come across as sour. Each sip ends with a rather big hit of wheat which gives this a smooth and surprisingly heavy body for its 4% ABV. Pretty good balance of flavors here, and drinks pretty easy. It's a pity the nose has that sulfuric smell to it, as I was pretty turned off by that in the first place.

 1,896 characters

Photo of Holderness
3.64/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

L — Not the most visually appealing of brews: slightly hazed urine-hued yellow body with two fingers of white head produced with moderate pour. Some retention and lacing
S — Wheat, lemon, sulphur, hint of grainy breadiness
T — Wheat, lemon juice, mild floral, perfume, touch of hop bitterness. Slightly drying on the tail end
F — Very refreshing and quaffable. Light mouthfeel, medium carb. The touch of tartness really ups the drinkability
O — Reminds me a lot of some goses I’ve had, maybe turned down just a notch on the tartness. Great general-purpose summer beer, in particular beach and barbecue. Good value

73/100

 638 characters

Photo of tbeer40
3.75/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of chuckgietzen
3.02/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of MKrauss
3.93/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of nicholas2121
4/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Oarsman Ale brewed by Bell's Brewery with an ABV of 4.00% This American Pale Wheat Ale pours out a hazy light amber color with a small white head. Mirror spotty lacing to this brew, it does stick to the side of the glass. The smell is bitter Sweet with grains and malts. There is a touch of mirror hop bitterness in the smell as well. Now for the taste, it is light with mirror tart citrus flavors, with grains and malts. The body of Oarsman Ale is a light medium. There is nothing overpowering about this brew, it has a nice light balance to it. The mouth feel is Nice, Light, Smooth, Clean, and Refreshing. Overall I'm going to give Oarsman Ale a soild 4 out of 5. This brew would go nice on a hot summer day. Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store, did a nice job with this American Pale Wheat Ale. If you are looking for something light , I would recommend this one to you. I would definitely look this brew up again giving the opportunity to.

 958 characters

Photo of Chilmer
2.13/5  rDev -39.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2

Photo of DigitGrowler
3.66/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of csfcmitchell
4/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Giggy
3.43/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of mmmbeer89
3.13/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A little on the tart side (well A lot on the tart side) but still a decent beer. It's more of a sour beer than a wheat beer, It has a very sour smell to it.

 156 characters

Photo of LXIXME
3.35/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Photo of joran
4.29/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of andrewh995
3.68/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a very pale and very clear yellow/gold with a small white head. Smells of lemon and with a touch of sourness. Tastes of slightly tart lemons, wheat, some very light sour funkiness, and maybe some other citrus. Light body and medium carbonation. Overall a pretty good 'sour' beer. Not really a berliner but that doesn't mean it's not good.

 344 characters

Photo of Beerbuddha
3.75/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of GarrettB
3.32/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

March 20th, 2015 - The Oarsman Ale is an odd duck, with all kinds of curious and head-cocking eccentricity. The aroma is both buttery and wheat, but there is also a sheen of steamed artichoke that takes me off guard. And the flavor is tangy and acidic, with a lighter palate and very fine sweetness, with a touch of white grape. The acidity defines the flavor, but the artichoke aroma keeps knocking it out of focus.

 416 characters

Photo of BubbleChamber
3.75/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Straw colored. Fizzy head dissipating quickly. Some tart citrus in the nose. Also citrus and wheat in the mouth, balanced by mild sweetness. Drying finish. Quite highly carbonated. A fairly simply, refreshing, light ABV brew. Not outstanding, and less tart/sour than some of the others out there, but good. —Reviewed 2018/01/04

 336 characters

Photo of BenHoppy
3.52/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of ArnoldBlumenthal
4.25/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Not too tart, just right. Very sessionable.

43 characters

Photo of AyatollahGold
3.25/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of IckyT2012
3.68/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of JoeLev
3.57/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of jeschaefer
2.3/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Photo of Strohm
3.61/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of wjbent
3.6/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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Oarsman Ale from Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store
Beer rating: 3.53 out of 5 with 2,301 ratings