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Bell's Amber Ale | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

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BA SCORE
87
very good
949 Reviews
Bell's Amber AleBell's Amber Ale
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Amber Ale deftly balances a mixture of toasted grain & light caramel notes with a range of floral, citrus and herbal hop notes, capped by a clean bitterness. This balance of flavors makes Amber Ale quite versatile as a food pairing option, not to mention being rather tasty in its own right. Whether serving as a jumping point to other styles or as a familiar standby, Amber Ale is central to the Bell’s portfolio.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-12-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
949
Ratings:
3,021
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
21.3%
 
 
Wants:
150
Gots:
528
For Trade:
2
User Reviews
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Reviews: 949 | Ratings: 3,021
Photo of jayb
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

orangish red in color. Sediment throughout the glass. An off white head that settled quickly. Lacing was non-existant. Aroma was of sweet malts and a slight citrus tang. little bit of caramel as well. Taste was of sweet grains, herbal spice, slight roasted bitterness. Carbonation has a real bite to it. Very dry. Caramel and roastiness keick into full gear towards the end when the brew warms up. A pretty soild amber in my book.

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Photo of tpd975
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Cloudy amber colored hue with a nice thick off-white head. Moderate amounts of lacing.

S: Bready, sweet pale malt aroma with hints of brown sugar. No real hops noted.

T: Tons of malt up front. The malty is yeasty and sweet with some buttery tones as well. The hops are nearly non existant in the taste as well.

M: Light and refreshing.

D: Not a favorite when it comes to taste, but it is very sessionable.

Overall: A solid American Red. The taste is pretty solid and it is very drinkable. An Amber loving buddy of mine raves about it on draft.

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Photo of Shrews629
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Very nice amber, copper color showing some orange hues. Substantial off white head that hung around for a bit and left a solid amount of lacing. Mostly clear body.

Smell - Attractive caramel malt pulling its way to the front of the nose. I'm also detecting a bit of a peach smell. Seems to be a bit more fruity in the hops department than most Ambers I have encountered. Nice and well balanced in the nose.

Taste - Malty at first in the taste, but gives way to the fruit kick. The malt is still the main ingredient however. A nice stab of the alcohol comes in at the end and brings a bit of the warmth and toastiness.

Mouthfeel - Seems to me to be a little thin on the mouthfeel, but it does finish rather dry and crisp. Coats the throat and tongue delicately.

Drinkability - This, all in all, is not a bad little brew. Nice bit of warmth at the end. The beer looks great and is very enticing. I'm glad I gave it a try. It's a brew that I wouldn't have a bit of trouble quaffing for and evening.

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Photo of hardy008
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Amber color, somewhat cloudy. Pours a white, 1 finger foamy head which has nice retention.

Smell - malt and citrus.

Taste - Mildly sweet and malty, with a hint of citrus bitterness. Pretty good.

Mouthfeel - Creamy and light to medium bodied.

Drinkability - Easy to drink, would make a good session beer.

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Photo of JustinBathurst
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice bronze colour. The smell is excellent--a bit of sweet floral, some malt, well-rounded. A yeasty bread loaf scent is also there.

Mouthfeel is average, but not bad. Taste makes up for this.

Subdued sweet start, some orange peel taste, sweet kick without being too overpowering, bitter chocolate-roasted coffee finish. Bitter aftertaste that lingers for a little while. Some hops to make it worthwhile. This would be an excellent session beer, I think. High quality and easy to kick back while still enjoying the taste.

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Photo of JAA
3.59/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Okay, i really couldn't care less about a beer's label art, but a Heron? Come on, it doesn't exactly scream "Buy me". However, out of the bottle and in the glass, it appears more respectable. A good lookin' dark and cloudy amber with a nice and fluffy, one finger head. The head didn't stay long, but fortunately, neither did the beer. Probably due too it's outstanding drinkability. More on that later.

Kind of a let-down on the aroma. A faint cararmel note is about the only identifiable smell in there.

The taste however, did not disappoint. A good example of the style. Not overpowering in the hops department. A biscuity malt foundation, mild bitter hoppiness, and a clean white grape finish. Nothing overpowers.

Mouthfeel is, dare i say it(?), a little watery. Come on, it's one of their weakest brews, they can make a beer for a hot, sunny, sunday afternoon and not be called wimps.

This beer is exactly what i called it in the last paragraph. A five and a half percent amber ale, meant to be a refreshing, yard work beverage. The only shame that Bell's should feel is the similarity of Budweisers' American Ale. Or maybe, they should feel pride that a giant of the industry picked one of their products to clone.

Don't get me wrong though, this is a far superior amber ale when compared to Budweisers'.

 1,322 characters

Photo of TheMultiYeast
3.59/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle ---> pint glass. Hazy dark orange with medium sized white head. Sticky walls of lacing.

Smell is mostly cereal grain and malted barley. A floral blend of aromatic hops add an herbal essence to this beer. A touch of fruitiness rounds it out.

Taste is mostly sweetened malts and grain with some light floral hop character and some wet grass in the middle with dried berries and nuts. Perfect amount of lingering bitterness in the aftertaste.

Slightly undercarbonated and smooth.

Recommended if you enjoy lightly hopped, sweet ambers.

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Photo of Sydney10
3.59/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Visual: Pours a clear amber color.
Smell: Malty with light fruit undertones of strawberry and lemon.
Taste: Bitter, smooth beer. A bitter taste of a green caramel apple.
Overall: Average beer that is light on the tongue.

 223 characters

Photo of tone77
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark caramel color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is dominated by malts. Taste is caramel malts up front, some hops, slight bitterness at the finish. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall this is a solid beer.

 252 characters

Photo of BierFan
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The bottle lists an abv of 5.8%. Batch number of 8869 tells me it was bottled on December 3rd 2008. Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Light tan head. Hazy amber. Pretty good head retention.

Smell: Bitter with some light citrus and grapefruit.

Taste: It's just a damn good amber ale. Bitterness and hop flavors are dominant. Seems more bitter from the bottle than when I had it on-tap.

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Photo of JunkYardJake
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Bulls Head Pub in Lititz.
First time having Bells Amber. Looks good sitting in the glass with a creamy off-white head and sharp clarity. Nose is subdued but smells fresh. Mostly caramel and bready malts but there is a bit of earthy hop aroma coming through. Palate is quite mild, even compared to the nose. Clean caramel malt flavor with a small hop profile. Moderate body with a proper level of carbonation. Easy drinking brew that could easily be sessioned. Although I enjoyed it, I was expecting a bit more from this beer in the flavor department. Nonetheless, worthy of a try.

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Photo of TheDoorman
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy translucent orange with minimal white head and little lacing. Aroma is floral, perfumy, and malty. Taste follows the nose. Reminiscent of spring flowers with a light spicey malt backbone. Carbonation is present in the body. Light, effervescent and sweet. A pleasant beer, but nothing special.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks for sending this one, Jeff.

A: The pour is a clear amber color with a finger of light khaki head.

S: An alright aroma to this one. Some toasted malt and bread notes with a bit of floral and grassy hops. Light sweetness with the caramel and toffee notes coming through.

T: There is quite a bit of grassy hop flavor with just a bit of bitterness. Most of the flavor comes in the form of toffee, toasted bread, and caramel sweetness.

M: Medium bodied with a medium level of carbonation.

O: An okay amber ale, but not really any better than any number of amber ales I've had.

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Photo of tronester
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy amber/brown with tons of yeast chunkies throughout. Aroma is of light grain. Taste is big toffee, toasty grain flavor up front, followed by some earthy, fruity flavors, and a bit of bitterness in the finish. Mouthfeel is rich. Overall a good Amber Ale that I would get again.

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Photo of DovaliHops
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a copper/amber, very lightly clouded color with a small white head that settles very slowly. Smell a bit of caramel and sweetness. The malt smell is present, but the smell is nothing to write home about. The taste is pretty much like a typical amber ale. A hoppy taste with a stronger malt presence, with just a bit of grapefruit. The mouthfeel is fairly typical for you average amber ale. The drinkability is very high considering this beer is extremely light and crisp.

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Photo of meatmallet
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Cloudy and orange in color with a thin white head. Lots of suspended sediment in here as well.

Smell: Malty and a little sweet with some grain and a little citrus. Rather week.

Taste: Good malty sweetness toffee and toasted malt and a slight bit of bitterness in the finish with some citrusy hops.

Mouthfeel/drinkability: Medium body with medium to medium high carbonation. Not much on the nose for a Bells beer but it makes up for it in flavor.

 460 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.57/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A good transition beer. Not a bold strong Bell's but a very decent brew, better than a national brand anything. Nice hops like a pale ale. Well malted. Very good after fish. I am a missionary in people dropping white wine altogether, particularly after fish when beer is an ancient companion.

 292 characters

Photo of UFGUY2122
3.57/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Let me premise this by saying that I will probably edit this review in the future when I have a fresher beer. As I was searching around Bell's website I noticed that I could look up my beer's batch number. I discovered that my particular beer is possibly old enough to have impacted the taste..

A-cloudy deep orange with a one-inch creamy white head. head disippated shortly after pouring but left nice lacing.

S-bready malts, slight hint of hops if you're really smelling for it.

T/M-smooth and malty up front with a nice balance of carbonation. finishes crisp with the slight hint of hops detected in smelling.

D-Mouthfeel of this beer probably makes it pretty drinkable. However, I am not a big enough fan of the taste to turn this into a session beer.

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Photo of beerhawk
3.57/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I guess Bells is big on bottle conditioning. I don't think I am a fan for that in this type of beer. The bottle poured with a cloudy amber color. Head was good and lasted most of the way. The hops were notable but nothing over the top. Taste was good and very fresh, but the yeasty notes just don't need to be there. I really think this might be a better beer if it were not bottled conditoned. Worth a try, but I think it could be better.

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Photo of barnzy78
3.57/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, Batch 15051, PKGD 11/11/15. It has to be at least 5 years since I had this beer. Amber ale - what ever happened? Now they're all overly hopped IPA's and "Session IPA's". Nice to come back to reality, thanks to my friend, Ken, for buying and sharing.
A - amber colored ale with a creamy ivory head that slowly fades to a foam
S - earthy, floral, and very herbal hop aroma coupled with caramel, grain, and pale malt
T - earthy and herbal again here with yeast, caramel, toasted grain, toffee, faint fruitiness and some tea-like notes
M - medium body, ample carbonation, finishes semi-bitter
O - not my favorite amber ale and always seems to be one that I want to love more; either way this is definitely a trip down memory lane. It reminds me of when I first started out rating/trying/reviewing beers. I've never been crazy over herbal hops, and this one is no exception. I always end up liking this one less than I feel like I should, and it ends up being just mediocre for me.

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Photo of zoso1967
3.56/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber pours a deep bronze amber color and has very nice clarity. The head is parchment in color and has pretty nice retention and lacing qualities.

The aroma is pretty subdued. It is slightly malty with some caramel and a touch of fruitiness, as well as some herbal hop aromas.

The flavor is pretty similar except that I am able to pick up a bit more of the hoppy character. It is nicely fruity with hints of apple, a bit if caramel and a slight toastyness.

The body is medium with a bit too much carbonation for my taste and a pleasant finish that is nicely dry. The finish is pretty nominal leaving a good mix of the malt and hop flavors on the tongue.

Bell's Amber is a classic, but I don't find it to be one of their better offerings. I could drink a lot of these and have at parties down in K-zoo when my friends were going to Western for college, but it is not really a beer I ever buy anymore unless it is the only Bell's available. If you are a big fan of ambers though, you may think differently

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Photo of Tonmeister
3.56/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Bottle poured in Goose Island Glass

Appearance: murky, brownish with a thin white head with a lacing that breaks when tilting the glass

The aroma contains a slight hopp presence, somewhat citrusy, but more earthly. I can smell the malts, but it;s hard to distinguish the specific details.

The taste is very smooth, almost tastes like water, but still contains a slight hop presence.

The mouthfeel is thin, with not much carbonation, very smooth and easy on the tongue.

Overall, this is a great breakfast beer. It's light and it goes down smooth. It doesn't feel like I'm drinking a beer. This is not one of my favorites, but for its style, I dig it because it's simple.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.56/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 5/12/08. Bottle. Pours amber with a white head. Aroma of floral hops. Flavor of floral hops (light), light fruits (especially apple), sweet malt, and a bitter hops finish. As the beer warmed, it got a bit sweeter. A pleasant beer, but nothing special.
6/4/7/4/15 (3.6/5)

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Photo of terrabyte
3.55/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly cloudy copper color with a short white head.

Aroma was a sweet buttery malt. A little sour.

A sweet caramel or toffee flavor that is smooth and silky. There is a lot of toasted breadiness to it which isn't a bad thing, but soaks up some of the flavors. It blends well with the caramel. The aftertaste is just a little bit sour for my liking, and has a small enjoyable bitterness.

Mouthfeel is well carbonated and smooth. No complaints.

I have mixed feelings about this beer. But only because of all the other great choices from Bell's.

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Photo of offthelevel_bytheplumb
3.55/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Samuel Smith's pint glass. Pours a clear copper with a finger and a half of creamy, white head that dissipates quickly and has a lot of visible carbonation. Smell is malty, but not strong. I do get buttery biscuits and light caramel, but there is not much to this. Taste is malty and light, and it drinks very easily. Leaves behind a beady aftertaste that lingers.

Overall: Not much too this one, but that doesn't make it unenjoyable. It's light and sessionable, so it has it's place in the beer drinking world.

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Bell's Amber Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.85 out of 5 based on 3,021 ratings.
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