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

BA SCORE
87
very good
3,127 Ratings
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
Ratings:
3,127
Reviews:
975
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
11.95%
 
 
Wants:
158
Gots:
583
For Trade:
2
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,127 |  Reviews: 975
Photo of taylorhamrick
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out hazy, kind of golden, definitely not amber in my opinion, maybe copper at best. A massive head sits on top, and is slow to collapse, but still the color is getting me. I want to see more red/amber colors. The smell is of biscuit, bread very full, a bit of sweetness. Great maltiness in this one. Then there is this orange smell, with some resinous hops, bitter citrus rind. The taste really kind of stands out. There is a really pleasant tart cherry taste which I like, a great maltiness, thick and bready, kind of a powdery dry bread, like crackers. Then a herbal, leafy finish of hops. This is a bit like a soda, but I'm loving it. The fruitiness is very nice. I wish it were just a bit more beery. The taste is a little watery, less than impressive, particularly for a style than can be built up to be quite malty. The carbonation is nice, though. An enjoyable beer. I'd recommend it, though I'd also recommend a few improvements on this one - namely in color and mouthfeel. This one is very easy to drink and pleasant.

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Photo of UncleJimbo
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz, brown longneck bottle, capped.

This amber ale poured a hazy, amber-orange color with white foam that settled but clung to the sides of the glass a bit. The smell was malty with aromas of caramel and biscuit and hops. The taste was sharp up front but with a malty, very hoppy finish. In between were flavors of oak and caramel malt. The mouthfeel was crisp and initially slightly sweet but dry and hoppy at the finish. The body was medium with good carbonation. This was a nice amber ale with lots of flavor.


Thanks to feloniousmonk for this one.

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Photo of Pantalones
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

My third bottle of this one; bottling date is March 20th, 2017 and slightly above that the label mentions a 6-month shelf life.

Very nice dark orangey color to this beer -- always the first thing I notice when pouring one, honestly one of the nicest colors I've seen in a beer. Forms a decent little layer of off-white/very light tan foam on top upon pouring, which shrinks into a thin cap shortly thereafter and begins to vanish away as I drink some of the beer. Beer is mostly clear, a little haziness and a good number of bubbles rising up from the bottom.

The smell is kind of mild but it's pleasant, mostly toasty and doughy malt. On the back end the hops sneak in just a little, reminding you of their presence without standing out ahead of the malt.

Taste is similar, toasty and slightly doughy malt coming out ahead but the hops are also definitely present, maybe a little bit of citrus at first and then a bit of a bitter herbal/floral "bite" coming in at the end. Hop flavor and bitterness lingers a bit longer than the malty flavors, especially after a big gulp interestingly enough. Flavors are slightly sweetish but doesn't come across sugary or sticky at all, it's very nicely balanced. Leans toward the malt at the start of the glass, with the hops starting to assert themselves a bit more toward the end -- definitely keeps things interesting from one end of the glass to the other. Something about the way the flavors are balanced is almost reminiscent of Samuel Adams Boston Lager, I wonder if the hops jump out even more when it's really fresh on draft the way Boston Lager does.

Feel is fairly light and crisp, with just enough richness to it and some nice carbonation contributing. I did notice on my previous bottle that the feel seemed to thin out a bit too much if left to sit for a while (seemed like maybe the carbonation started to fizzle out?), but that's probably my fault more than the beer's since I was slowly sipping at one while cooking dinner over the course of about half an hour.

Overall this is a pretty simple beer, but a very tasty one, and one of those that I seem to find more to like about it the more I drink -- everything about it just works really well and it's so nicely balanced, there's really not anything less-than-positive I can say about it. Probably my favorite amber ale so far.

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Photo of nsmartell
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this beer from the comfort of my own living room after a long day at work. From bottle to pint glass.

Appearance: Dull copper with a thick-slow falling head.

Smell: Rich with a hint of hops.

Taste: Pretty malty and a good Red Ale taste.

Mouthfeel: Rich and smooth.

Drinkability: Nice and refreshing. Nice session beer. Another solid outing by Bell's.

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Photo of JRed
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours amber/muddy red with white misty head. Sweet aroma of grains, sugars, vague peach. Strong flavors of light fruit punch, frosted grains, peaches, acidity, hop dryness comes through in the end but the sweetness overwhelms. Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Sugars coat the palate and can get itchy but overall a good beer. One of the best amber ales I've ever had.

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Photo of
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - slightly hazy bright copper with a solid finger of persistent rocky white head. Very fine carbonation bubbles. Great lacing.

Smell - Soft caramel, peach, mineral, floral hops.

Mouthfeel - smooth and mouth filling, but still somehwat crisp and refreshing.

Taste - Bready caramel, fruit, very subdued and integrated hops flavours.

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark amber and slightly cloudy with very little head. Nice nutty aroma with some citrus tones.

Nice sweet malty caramel flavors which give way to some creamy nuttiness. Some nice hop bitterness finishes it off. This is a very smooth and easy-drinking beer. The hops contribute, but don't bite too hard. There are no questionable off-flavors or odd qualities. A good session beer with a nice balance. If you're a real hop head, you might be a little disappointed. Sometimes I get tired of all my beers tasting like IPAs, so I will definitely buy this again. It's a great example of this style.

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Photo of Tone
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy amber color. One inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and good lacing. Smells of sweet malt, pale malt, caramel malt, hint of biscuit, hit of tea, spicy hops, yeast, and slight brown sugar. Fits the style of an American Amber / Red Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and clean with a high carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, pale malt, slight caramel malt, slight piney hops, hint of alcohol, slight citrus hops, and floral notes. Overall, good appearance, aroma, body, and blend. The feel is too carbonated, but the subtle citrus flavors blend well with the malt profile to cut the cloyingness.

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Photo of bruachan
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

from heinen's in hudson

copper color with some sediment in suspension, though it slowly settles out. i question the condition of my glass, so i'll give the head the benefit of doubt: i had a collar...sounds like others saw lasting foam. sweet caramel nose with some flowery hops and brown sugar
caramel taste, too. and a slight butterscotch finish to go along with the lingering bitterness. very little hop flavor

hopback is my existing benchmark for ambers, but this has a nice focus on the sweetness, with enough hops to show through. i love munich malts...mmm. i also love the texture of this beer: the munich gives it a great chance to stick around while your tastebuds do their thing

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Photo of deepsouth
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

this beer pours a nice clear amber with a thin pale head that leaves some nice lacing on the glass. the nose is surprisingly full. not sure why i'm surprised, but i am. citrus notes and floral notes abound in the nose. some faint malt notes as well. the taste is agressive but pleasing. this is really a full flavored amber ale. much tastier than i was expecting, consistent with the nose. the mouthfeel is what i expect from an amber ale and i could drink these all night.

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Photo of PaulyB83
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 12oz. bottle into a straight pint glass. Bottled on 05/22/14

A- Pours a hazy medium amber with a two finger slightly off white head.

S- Light spiciness, light banana, sweet bready notes.

T- Light flavors of sweet bread, light spiciness, very light pine, finishes with a light raisin bread flavor and a very mild bitterness.

M- Very easy drinking beer, a great beer to have 2-3 in a sitting, like I'm doing now. Still has some a nice full mouthfeel for a beer with a lighter flavor.

O- This beer is special to be as it is the first craft beer I was exposed to when I was a kid and saw adults drinking things that weren't BMC products. I really enjoy this beer as a nice sessionable malty beer and I also enjoy the history of this beer as it was Larry Bell's flagship offering back in 1985.

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Photo of Ristaccia
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Roman5150
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

bottle into Duvel glass

appearance: cloudy burnt orange with a dark amber hue, 1 finger white head, not too much lacing. very nice looking beer.

smell: bready, citrus, floral, sweet malt, some rye, subtle corn flavor (think macro lagers, but don't interpret that the wrong way, this actually has a somewhat decent aroma, albeit not superb).

taste: Has similarities to a lager or a pils, lots of bready notes, but with a sweeter more emphasized malt bill. The hops are pretty earthy and resinous, but takes a back seat to the malt profile. Very drinkable, highly refreshing and smooth, hardly any bitterness at all. The overall taste is a well balanced earthy, bready, malt favored brew that hit's the spot.

mouthfeel: medium to high carbonation, medium to thin body

overall: A highly drinkable beer from Bell's, also their first beer I think as well. Probably their most accessible, I'd find it hard for someone to not like this, yet it doesn't have any super complex flavor profiles to make it super interesting. But that's what their goal was, make a great well balanced beer that you can enjoy in almost situation. I wouldn't say seek it out, but it's widely available and cheap and you will not be disappointed. Perfect summer beer.

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Photo of nausicaa-taos
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I wish I could have this color painted on my living room wall. Complex, yet easy and not over imposing. A perfect amber in a world of very imperfect ambers.

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Photo of rangerred
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of LeftHanded666
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Red5StandingBy
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into standard pint glass. Bottled on December 6th 2016.

L: Cloudy amber, finger width off-white head that slowly recedes into a thin layer.

S: Well balanced aroma, caramely malts, roasted grains, floral and citrus hops.

T: Very well balanced, great rich malt sweetness and toffee, good citric and floral hop notes.

F: Medium bodied, good crispness.

O: It had been awhile since I had this beer previously. It is a lot better than I remember. Another great beer from Bell's.

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Photo of ParnellJoseph1138
4.01/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Pours easily and settles into a thin white head, prevalent lacing, is moderately carbonated,and It's nearly clear.

S: A good solid bready malt aroma with caramel and bready character. It also provides an alcohol smell to a small measure.

T: The malt just provides so much presence on my pallet, with smooth and rich spectrum of flavors. Those flavors include caramel, nut and some burnt flavors. A clean finish with only a hint of hop character.


F: A full malt body that provides depth and a mouthfeel that does not come up short.

O: Another great beer among many other great beers from Bell. It's hard to find a significant criticism of this beer, and certainly, if you like a full bodied malt beer with excellent smoothness, and isn't a stout or porter, you cannot go wrong with this beer.

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Photo of etenbus
4.01/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured 3/4" of pillowing head atop a copper-orange, hazy glow.

The aroma is appealing. There is plenty of fruit in there: raisins, apricots, and a little citrus, although the citrus (tangerine?) is not from the hop footprint. In fact, there's not a large hop presence here on the nose.

The taste backbone has some malt in the center. It goes down smooth, and, wham, there is a surprising hop bite at the end. The ale finishes very dry for an amber. Perhaps Bell's got some of the flavor hops for their super hoppy IPA (Two-Hearted) mixed in with this one; it's almost a hybrid. It almost finishes like one of the super dry Belgian ales, like Orval.

The mouthfeel is medium-bodied and, while this was a noisy beer on the pour, the carbonation is subdued. I rate the drinkability high due to the wonderful appearance, pleasant taste, and hop flavor.

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Photo of kevin3046
4.01/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Biscuity smell. Amber color with moderate head and lacing.
Super creamy mouthfeel with just the right amount of carbonation. Tastes of malts and citrus with moderate hops background. A good drinkable beer!!! Highly recommend!!!

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Photo of psmillig
4.01/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of lordofthemark
4.01/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of SolipsismalCat
4.01/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Hazy light amber with lots of bubbles and particles. Two-finger, creamy white head that lasted a few minutes. Nice lacing.

S: Malt, caramel, dark fruit, some hops. But, overall, it was difficult to smell anything.

T: Moderate sweetness and mild hop bitterness. Kind of a nutty, earthy hop finish, which I liked.

M: Light to medium bodied with soft carbonation. Kind of creamy. Very refreshing.

O: This Amber ale is really drinkable, and I loved everything about it, but I do with it had a bit more of an aroma. Still, one of my new favorites.

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Photo of Gemini6
4.01/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of mmmbeer
4.01/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle, batch 7713, which, according to the website, was packaged on 11/1/06. Sampled on 11/29, so it doesn't get much fresher than this. It pours an unfiltered caramel/amber with high carbonation and a voluminous head that is craggy as it recedes, leaving good lacing. It smells of juicy fruits (mainly white grapefruit) along with some sweetness, but it's a bit light. On the palate there are pale and caramel/toasted malts, grapefruit, mango, pineapple, oily/perfumy, pine, and possible Curacao hops along with a touch of yeast. The caramel quality really strengthens as it warms. It is tingly, yet medium and smooth on the palate, leaving a medium finish but thinning a bit as I progress. Overall a pretty good amber that would make for a good session.

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Bell's Amber Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.85 out of 5 based on 3,127 ratings.
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