The Oracle | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

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93
outstanding
786 Reviews
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The OracleThe Oracle
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our take on the West Coast-style Double India Pale Ale, The Oracle places hop intensity first and foremost, making only the slightest concession to malt and balance.

The fireworks start with the aromatic punch of dry-hop sessions with hop varieties from the Pacific Northwest. Resinous, citrusy hop flavors mixed with aggressive bitterness from a massive kettle addition deliver on that aromatic promise.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-04-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
786
Ratings:
2,714
Avg:
4.16
pDev:
10.58%
 
 
Wants:
453
Gots:
415
For Trade:
7
User Reviews
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Reviews: 786 | Ratings: 2,714
Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.21/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a slightly murky copper color. The head is a finger high, and off-white in shade. Retention is excellent, and the head manages to leave behind thick webs of lacing.

Compared to a lot of new-school DIPAs running around these days, this beer's aroma is classically old-school. A hefty backbone of caramel, brown sugar, and toffee is not only backed by an assertive pine bitterness, but also by some fruity ale esters and a touch of alcohol. It's a throwback, but is that bad? Everything seems to come together nicely, and that's what counts.

Tasting it, the malt comes across heavily like a barleywine - as does the finishing bitterness. It starts with plenty of crystal malts, meaning lots of caramel and toffee appears. Piny, grassy hops slowly build near the back end. Quite a bit of alcohol comes through at first. For better or worse, it's a textbook old-school DIPA - it isn't as delicately balanced as the nose suggested, either.

Despite the fairly full, heavy feel, it finishes quite dry. There is a mild burn, however. Nonetheless, the drinkability is surprisingly good for 10% (aided by gently rolling carbonation)

Hrm. I definitely don't think it's worth it's exorbitant price or mild rarity, but it's a fine DIPA taken in a vacuum. However, there are many superior examples of the style available locally (to me), and that makes this hard to return to at the end of the day.

3.21/5: I've heard your wisdom plenty of times before, Mr. Oracle

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Photo of StoutHunter
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a bottle of Bell's The Oracle a couple weeks ago for $3.59 at The Lager Mill. This is one of the only seasonal I haven't had from Bell's before so I'm ready to see what I've been missing out on, so lets how it goes. Bottled on August 10 2012. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a tulip.

A- I like the label on this beer it's simple but classy looking. It poured a slightly hazy darker gold color that took on a really nice orange hue when held to the light with two and a half fingers worth of creamy slightly off white head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and left some nice sticky lacing. This is a great looking beer, I have no complaints at all.

S- The aroma is all about the hops and it starts out with lots of citrus hops that imparts a tropical fruit aroma with some grapefruit sticking out the most. Next comes a resinous and piney aroma that is followed by some floral hop aromas that show up towards the end. This is a great smelling beer, the topical fruit aromas work nicely with the pine and floral aromas. I like it a lot.

T- Wow this is one intense tasting beer, it starts off with the hops right up front and hitting me with a pretty intense bitterness that is for sure on the high side and is pretty constant throughout the taste. First come some nice tropical and citrus fruit flavors followed by a very resinous pine flavor and lighter floral hop flavor. The malts impart a higher amount of medium sweetness, and very slight bready flavor that was quickly overpowered by the hops. Towards the end a get a little bit of alcohol that is a slightly warming and it had a floral and piney aftertaste. This was a great tasting Double IPA, it was full of aggressive and bitter hops, just what i expect and want from this style.

M- Smooth when cold, but it's isn't that smooth when it warms a little, crisp, a little sticky, on the lighter side of being full bodied, with a nice medium amount of carbonation. The mouthfeel was good and it worked well with this beer.

Overall I thought this was a great beer and a great example of the style, it had everything I want in the style, it was one palate wrecking Double IPA. This beer isn't the most drinkable, one bottle is pretty much all I would want, I think it would start to be too intense after the first one. What I liked most about this beer was just about everything, it smelled great, tasted great, and looked great. What I liked least about this beer was the drinkability, it was just a little to intense and one 12oz bottle is just enough. I would buy this beer again next time it's release, but I think I would only buy 1 or 2, I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys big and intense Double IPA's. All in all I was glad I finally got to try this beer and it lived up to my expectations, it was a big and intense Double IPA that just wrecked my palate, good job Bell's this beer is like Hop slams angrier and bitterer older brother.

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Photo of mrfrancis
3.53/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clear, deep golden orange with a tight, creamy white head.

S: Aromas of pine, citrus, biscuits, brown sugar, and alcohol are present on the nose. This smells a little boozier than I would like.

T: Notes of brown sugar, biscuits, sage, pine, mint, bitter orange, kumquat, lemon, and grapefruit assault the palate. The finish is bitter and fruity with lemon, grapefruit, bitter orange, and alcohol notes.

M: Full-bodied and sticky. Carbonation is firm and prickly. There is a slight alcohol presence in the mouth, but it isn't too overbearing.

O: As is, this is a very solid American DIPA, but if the alcohol presence were masked a bit better, it would be truly outstanding.

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Photo of jera1350
4.62/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Holiday1072 for this outstanding brew.

Pours a foggy golden burnt orange into a snifter. Nice fluffy head with lots of tiny cascading bubbles adding to the mix. Lacing all over the place.

Outstanding smell. Like a bushel of extremely ripe pineapples just split open. Sweet and juicy, I can't wait to taste it!

Wow, this is packed with flavor. Huge and sweet, the bitter hops catch the attention right off the bat. Plenty of sweet malt to add backbone. Good amount of alcohol is present. Lots of citrus and pineapple. Grapefruit finishes it off.

Medium bodied, smooth with plenty of tiny bubbles in the carbonation the keep flavors rolling on the palate. Very juicy feel.

I call this an Imperial HopSlam. Simply amazing. A must have for every hophead. Bell's knows how to use hops probably better than any other brewery. Great beer!

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Photo of dirtylou
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on-tap, maduro, pre-great taste party

cellphone notes

appearance: pretty dark for a dipa - rich garnet-amber body, foamy tan head

smell: strong malt body, grapefruit peel, bitter citrus, lots of pine

taste: oracle comes through a bit boozier than hopslam with a bigger malt punch - pine is rather intense along with bitter grapefruit.

mouthfeel: relatively large body, high bitterness, alcohol present in the finish

drinkability; good

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.92/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle poured into a Unibroue tulip. 9306 Batch number. (Packaged Aug. 28th '09). No info. Part four in the "Birthday Beer Extravaganza"

Thanks a TON to Sweemzander for two bottles of this glorious beer!

A - The color is an impressive clear golden honey yellow color with a moderate two-finger, slightly off-white head. I noticed right away I could see right through the bottle. The head had moderate retention and left some good, sticky lacing to the sides of the glass. A thick ring hung around to make it look taller than it was. That was followed by thick lacing down the glass as it started filling me with joy as it entered mah belleh!

S - The nose is immediately well-balanced and not overpowering as I expected. Tons of floral hops with a tiny bit of grapefruit and pine resin. A good lemony citrus splash follows with an impressive fruit medley; a big pineapple-mango juicy nose. The malts do a great job of staying in the back as support while providing a nice, low-level sweetness. One of the most perfect DIPAs I've had the pleasure of smelling.

T - Holy Shit. This, with in sips, could be one of my favorite DIPAs, if not beers, ever. The hops overpower the malts but in all the right ways. The hops give off a lot of fruitiness. Like the aroma, it's got pineapple, mango, a drop of lemon, and a kiss of grapefruit bitterness. There is also a pine resin that pops in and lingers through the finish with a dry, almost astringency to it. The malts let the hops do all the work being there only as moral support. Much less balances than the aroma, but rightfully so. The pale malts provide a low sweet background with a slight dab of honey on a thinly sliced wafer of toast.

M - Smooth and creamy with a great carbonation feel that just blends in, it's a superb feeling beer that lacks only in being a bit too dry and resiny on the finish. Great level of bitterness and sweetness that play well together. A very nicely balanced body that teet-or-totters between medium and full bodied. Also very crisp and refreshing.

D - Wow. I think this has to be my favorite DIPA to date. Nothing has rocked my socks this hard or inspired such a long review out of me since my first encounter with the Pumking. It's an absolutely fantastic beer that's brewed to near perfection. The fruit bouquet is absolutely delicious and blends so well with the hop and malt flavors. Almost in the same way the simple yet ornate label can enjoyed in layers. The alcohol isn't even noticeable in this beer at all, not even in small traces.

I can't say enough thanks to my friend Sweem for hooking me up with two bottles of this outrageously good beer!

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Photo of xnicknj
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

thanks to biglobo8971 for this sweet extra - 12 oz bottle poured into tulip glass

A - Somewhat hazed golden orange. A smaller head fades to a filmy layer with a smaller amount of streaky lacing.

S - Slightly sweet bitter hops and a dash of fruit with malty caramel.

T - Plenty of bitter, juicy hops which explode onto the palate. A somewhat sweeter fruit center dotted with honey peeks through before the malt backbone rises up, delivering a different, darker sweetness. The hops return during the finish with more popping bite, along with a touch of alcohol.

M - Medium bodied, slightly creamy, avoids becoming too dry while remaining balanced.

D - For a boozier DIPA, this goes down way easier than some of its contemporaries.

Superbly delicious beer, I just wish there was a bit more excitement in the nose.

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Photo of Pencible
4.79/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: This poured a clear dark gold with moderate light tan head.
S: It smelled like mango and pineapple with some grapefruit and honey, and a bit of peppercorn.
T: It tasted like sugary sweet honeydew melon and mango, with pineapple and grapefruit. The aftertaste started sweet, then became very bitter and lasting.
M: It was slick and oily with moderate carbonation.
D: This was a phenomenal IPA with wonderful tropical scent and taste, along with a smooth body. The alcohol was hidden very well also, so it was too easy to drink. But delightful to sip and savor. Instantly one of my favorite IPAs ever. Boo yah!

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Photo of cpetrone84
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A-pours a deep transparent amber color with a dirty off white head.

S-the aroma is a hop explosion, a strong caramel and brown sugary malt foundation have a good presence up front but the hops dominate the nose. Tons of pine citrusy hops with a good bit of grapefruit and appricot in the back.

T-the taste is slighlty more balanced but still a hop focussed brew. the caramel and brown sugar are up front showing the true size of this beer as the malt foundation can still show under a hop blanket. Resinous piney hops take over, lots of bitterness setting in. the back end brings the sweet citrus with tons of grapefruit and the bitterness keeps hitting, its moderate in strength but long in duration lingering for some time.

M-the body is syrupy and a little grainy on the palate, falls off a little in the back making it slick on the throat.

D-huge beer, lots of balance but definitely a hoppy brew. there is definitely a nice tropical fruity sweetness in the back but the caramel, brown sugar and pine work together to transition the malts and hops. tasty stuff!

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Photo of warnerry
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 8/12/11

A - Pours a clear deep copper with one finger of off-white head. Head doesn't have great retention, but leaves a sheet of lacing.

S - Big aroma of pine and grapefruit hops, along with some candied fruit. Nice amount of caramel malt and a faint alcohol presence.

T - Big grapefruit pith and resinous pine hops up front. A bit of sweetness, but bitterness predominates. Also some orange pulp and caramel malt. Very nice .

M - Medium resinous mouthfeel. A but sweet in the middle but finishes dry and bitter.

O - A very good DIPA and a nice contrast to Hopslam. I look forward to this one every year.

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Photo of tectactoe
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a golden yellow color, looks very thick, lacy white head that is easy to rejuvenate with a little swirl of the glass. Smells of deep hop oils, spices, alcohol, with a tad of grapefruit and pine tree. The taste is right behind it, tasting of lots and lots and LOTS of hops, resin, pine, with just a bit of grapefruit sweetness. Lots of spice and alcohol, especially in the aftertaste. It has a bit of malt in the finish as well. Very, very high bitterness with low carbonation. Very heavy on the mouth and leaves a very sticky feeling.

Somewhat similar to Bell's Hopslam with a bit more of hops and grapefruit, sans the honey induced sweetness. A very good brew, but definitely one you have to sip.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.23/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into Duvel tulip. Big thanks to jbck109 for the trade.

A: Dark glowing golden with a couple fingers of oily khaki colored head that faded into a greasy film that left big rings of sticky lacing down the glass.
S: Big piney hop scent that is very resinous and oily smelling. Notes of tropic fruits and citrus as well.
T: Notes of dominant pine and citrus. Malt is overshadowed by the huge hop profile. Finish has a pretty powerful bitter punch with light, lingering alcohol. Tobbacco and fresh cigar in the aftertaste.
M: Medium-full body with a viscous and thick mouthfeel. The alcohol is masked extremely well but the thick mouthfeel let you know it's there. Low, even carbonation.
D: This isn't a DIPA for the faint of heart. Powerful flavors with a big bitterness and big alcohol. Not an everyday beer but one to seek out. Thanks again Jay for the awesome brew!

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Photo of Brenden
4.46/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

The Oracle is a thick burnt gold-orange color, technically translucent but very nearly opaque. On top rests a head that's one finger tall and shows incredible strength, heaviness and thickness. This thing looks almost solid. It immediately leaves a ring of lacing, even before it's possible to really anything has settled. It eases up on the heaviness, but continues to cling almost to the bottom of the glass.
The aroma pops out of the bottle even before it begins to pour, and it's all orange and grapefruit with some tropical fruits as well, pithy and zesty with a supporting juicy sweetness. Malts provide a bit of support, but there's a whole lot of bitterness here.
I've rarely been hit with bitterness like my palate does with this beer. The tropical fruits and citrus are here, but the first slap is pine, leaf and raw pith all the way. There's a complex texturing of flavors as the juiciness comes out and the various aspects of the malts lightly support but are strongly overshadowed by the hops. It's all resinous after that, going into a lingering bitter and dry finish.
It has a soft crispness in its medium body, and a little creaminess to start, but it goes pretty quickly to the dryness that pulls it into the finish. It does remain smooth for the duration.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass. Bottled on 8-12-11.

Appearance: Bright golden amber orange with lots of rising bubbles. Solid three fingers of off white head with good retention and lots of lacing around the glass.

Smell: Strong aroma of citrus and piney hops. Good amount of grapefruit, pineapple, mango, and resin. Also a little orange and honey. Also a solid presence of bready caramel malts and toffee. Light hints of spice.

Taste: Huge taste of fresh and lively citrus and pine hops. Fruity taste of grapefruit, pineapple, orange peel, and mango up front gives way to a bitter piney resin. Big backing of caramel and toffee malts give a nice balance to the hops. Light hints of spice and honey.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Thick and bitter but still fairly smooth and creamy.

Overall: Another great IPA from Bell's. Not quite on Hopslam's level but very good.

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Photo of morimech
4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

07/10/15 Bottle date so getting a little old.

Hazy orange color with two fingers of head that settled to a thin cap. Heavy lacing is left down the glass during consumption. Sure is a looker.

Good hoppy aroma of citrus. Notes of orange, grapefruit, and possibly pineapple. There is a malty component that gives a bit of a toffee note.

The hops are strong in the flavor. I get a lot of orange, little bit of grapefruit, pineapple, tropical fruit like mango or passion fruit. Enough malt sweetness is present to not make this a punishing bitter DIPA and one dimensional.

Lovely body and carbonation. Full body and luscious texture.

Very enjoyable DIPA that I find harder and harder to enjoy. I liked the hop choices and the little bit of malt that dampens the massive bitterness.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch #9901. Served from bottle into a Duvel tulip. Pours red orange with a one finger off-white head that subsides quickly to a minimal amount. Maintains excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma is comprised of sweet malt, grapefruit, slight citrus hops. The flavor is of sweet malt, citrus hops, earthy, and green onions. It has a medium feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this is a pretty good DIPA. The green onion flavor is a little off-putting but is not that bad. It actually works quite well with the other flavors going on in this one. This brew has a nice balanced flavor and a good aroma to it. This is a must try for any hop-head out there.

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bell's Oracle DIPA on tap at The Sugar Maple in Milwaukee, WI, poured into a snifter. A special tapping for a Bell's Event celebrating their anniversary!

Appearance: Beautiful cloudy orange, nice fluffy head. Thick lacing.

Smell: Hops, citrus aromas. Very light considering the heft of this brew. Some sweetness. The booziness is well hidden, unlike in the bottle version.

Taste: Fruity. Sweet-to-bitter buildup. Floral overtones.

Mouthfeel: Nice, pleasant. Fine carbonation. Medium to full body, creamy as it goes down.

Drinkability: High! This is a big beer that -on draught- drinks easy and doesn't show the brutal ABV. I find the bottle version to be harsh, bitter, cloying and not exactly drinkable. The tap version is much easier and balanced and, while not my favorite DIPA, Oracle sure does work.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.68/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy orange-ish color with an off white head. In the aroma, orange citrus hops. In the taste, dry orange citrus hops, with a nice malty backing, but huge in hops. A small hop bite, and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a dry citrus hop in the aftertaste. WOW! Hides the 10%, big hops, great sweet to dry flavors of citrus.

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Photo of AgentZero
4.39/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Big burnt copper color with a nice white head that foamed up to about three finger. Soap left on the sides, huge sudsy sheeting that was too thick to be called lace.

S - Fantastic, one of the best IPAs I have ever smelled. Great hop profile including touches of pine and grass, little citrus. Bitter resin, but the think about this one that makes it great is a beautiful pineapple smell that comes through exceptionally strong once you start looking at it. Awesome.

T - Great taste, the pineapple is there alone with the usual hops suspects, little citrus, little pine. Bitter finish that lingers and turns sweet after it leaves the mouth. Get a good deal of alcohol burn on it, just a little too much for me to rate this a 5.

M - Medium bodied and fairly syrupy. This bottle was slightly old, which would explain the lack of carbonation. Still a good feel.

D - Good for 10%, although the burn begins to get to you after a while. Did one bottle fine, two might get to be a little bit of a chore.

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Photo of tavernjef
4.17/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"We can never see past the choices we don't understand." - The Oracle: Matrix Reloaded

I choose this beer to drink because I understand Bell's makes some good beer...

So with that: The Oracle pours a darker honey pale gold hue in a medium fogged body capped delicately with a small cap of ivory creamy foam. Plenty of lacing is sheeted about with a speckled spottyness.

Peachy tropics stand ripe and raw in the nose with a slender pineapple/melony core and caramel tow mushed into a soft pastry doughyness. Timidly schnappy warmth in bigger wiffs.

A smooth darkly sweetened, lightly candied, tropical ride on the taste buds with a nice mushy melange of peaches, oranges, green grapes, pineapple, apricot all blended together in a jam with a light toasted pastry doughyness. Malt is there only in check of the hops, which there is plenty of. Spread across its lentgh is a well placed touch to its beefy 10% that is nearly an afterthought until you get just past midway where it grows quickly with heat like a fruity Kamakazi shot. Leftover, after the heat resides, is a small burp of warm peach cobbler and dryish bittering hop fuzz.

Nicely bold, beefy, and quite forward nearly full body of rounded smoothness of malty creamyness with a nice buzzing fuzzyness of tropical hoppy bitterness that encompasses a whole bunch of peach and apricot skins. Warmth settles in very well and with a slow bruteness that takes control immediately. Making you slow down and really take this one in. As apposed to the HopSlam, which is much more slammable. Both Bell's brews are a dangerous tandum of hops to behold. I favor the HopSlam. But Oracle is no side show of a DIPA.
One that's a bit more of a sipper.

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Photo of pkalix
3.96/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

there is no smell or aroma that I can detect....
glad it's a 12oz'er....... so tired of these "bombers" I have to finish even after they are warm.
lots o' malt, biscuit, honey. lots o' bitterness.... typical 10% IPA... I believe I have met the best and there is nothing to get better. this one is pretty good. nothing other than that which is "special" to report... Bell's has done better...

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Photo of cjgiant
4.4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review after initial rating (fall, 2013:4.25 straight rating).
Bottle date 08/08/2014:
I had this about a year ago and really enjoyed it. I was still experiencing the cast array of good craft beers, was more of a ticker, and figured I'd be able to get it more often (I had yet to really understand seasonal brews). I can't believe I turned down a chance back then to get more of it.
Another revisit in Aug 2015 of bottle dated 7/10, adding category ratings.

A: almost perfect translucent-to-hazy golden orange. Beautiful foamy head grows nicely and sticks around. The lacing is copious on this one.

S: nose is a tad grainy, but sweetness is honey in nature. I actually expected more hops in the nose, but maybe it's a bit lost after 2 months. What I get is more floral than fruity, more meadow than farm, but distinguishing the scents is hard (3.75)
2nd revisit: with some warmth I get some tropical notes and something like honeydew.

T: classic grapefruit rind and pine IPA to me. Bitter from the get go, even for a DIPA. There is an underlying sweetness that I usually like more up front, but works for me in this beer just fine. The sweetness is more raw sugar-based to me than any beer I've had before, but again, isn't the focus of the taste. This is more dry hop-bomb, west coast-ish in nature. The combination maybe brings some tropical hints, but I feel I am stretching a bit on this. (4.25-4.5)
2nd re-visit: when colder, the sweetness almost overwhelms. At a more proper temp the grapefruit rind comes out, but the tropical notes are there a it more obvious than I indicated before.

M: very smooth, carbonation obvious in appearance is just there to enhance otherwise dry feel. Body is medium, alcohol is pretty well hidden (4.75)
2nd revisit: the alcohol heat is a bit heavier than I noticed before.

O: this did live up to my anticipation even if it didn't exceed it. Given how that usually works, that's a win. A bit more bitterness than I expected (I really didn't recall the taste profile, just that I liked it), but well done to me as I have grown away from this profile over the year. (4.5)

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Photo of argock
3.9/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a Duvel tulip. Batch number 9901 on back label (August 23, 2010, bottling date). Single purchased at Beer Run (Charlottesville, VA) for $4.

A: Hazy orange-tangerine with 2-finger, off-white head with good retention for the ABV and a wide band of crusty lace.

S: Crisp, bright hefty West Coast hoppiness with pineapple, grapefruit, and pine resin mingling with light aromas of pale malts with a bit of toasted caramel malt as well. Not a balanced beer.

T: Hops, hops, and (thankfully) more hops with this very good brew which features big tropical fruit flavors cut with resinous bitterness and enough pale malt to hold it together. Bursting with pineapple, orange, resin, and pine, the only trouble spot is the not-so-well hidden alcohol which enhances the harshness of the hoppiness (not a problem) but does present some faint fusel qualities. All in all, though, The Oracle hits all the right notes for a big-time West Coast DIPA.

M: Full-bodied and it mixes just the right amount of stickiness and smoothness. Aftertaste is pineapple and resiny bitterness.

D: I really liked this brew a lot -- it is a lot less subtle than Hopslam or Hop Wallop, but the brashness of hoppiness it represents is done very well. A must-have for hopheads out there.

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Photo of Sabtos
2.71/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Light copper with a thin khaki ring.

Aromas of pungent, almost catty hops, with hot grapefruit pith, and a grainy malt background.

Taste is real hot and spicy hops and booze, yet softened by frothy grapefruit rind and zest, and pine.

Devil Dancer light, if that's anywhere remotely possible as a thing.

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Photo of buschbeer
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I poured my 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass. I poured down the center of the glass and got a towering, offwhite, foamy head. Large deposits foam form beautiful lacing as I consume this ber. It is a deep amber color.

I smell citrus and pine.

I taste grapefruit with some alcohol burn followed by a bitter pine aftertaste.

I think the mouthfeel is perfect. It is medium bodied.

I'm not a huge IPA of DIPA fan, but this is exactly the change of pace that I look for when I stray from my porters and stouts. The aromas and flavors are wonderful.

Cheers!

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The Oracle from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
4.16 out of 5 based on 2,714 ratings.
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