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

BA SCORE
87
very good
3,102 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:
3,102
Reviews:
967
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
11.95%
 
 
Wants:
155
Gots:
563
For Trade:
2
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,102 |  Reviews: 967
Photo of feelmefoam
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12-oz bottle into a shaped pint.

A nice looking beer, this pours an woody amber color (go figure) with a finger of off-white head that leaves some decent lacing down the glass as it dissipates. A moderate amount of carbonation running up the glass.

A toasty bread smell hits first when you put your nose in the glass. Some caramel malts coupled with an earthy hoppiness follows closely after.

This beer has a good, solid flavor, nothing outstanding, but it is tasty. Starts out with some bready caramel malts that are holding hands with some of the earthy hops present in the smell.

Just your normal medium body on this brew, it's smooth with a moderate amount of carbonation.

A very easy drinker, tasty and simple. Nothing to write home about, but a solid session beer for sure. My first Bell's beer, I'll try more of their offerings soon.

 863 characters

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Starts off pouring very blonde but that develops into a beautiful hazy, juicy light iced tea color (ambers, honeys, reds) and a head that doesn't quit. 2 fingers, popcorn colored, and slow to recede leaving lots of evidence of its existence behind.

A bit of caramel sweetness on the nose, with amber malts, a touch of honey. Faint to nose, otherwise pretty decent.

Taste overall, like the nose, is muted. It starts off with cereal grains, followed by a small dose of piny hop, and some brown bread crust, finally fading with some baked sugar sweetness.

Feel is creamy but still light enough to enjoy thoroughly. A semi dry feel permeates the whole profile, and it dries politely.

While I like this Amber and I feel it's a solid craft, I wish the flavors and aromas were louder and I could do with a bit more character overall.

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Photo of sd123
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of MrMcGibblets
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

an all-around solid beer from bell's. pours a hazy light amber, decent creamy head. this reminds me more of a bock than an american amber/red due to the malt/sweet balance of it. dough and toffee in the nose along with something i can't put my finger on. flowers? sweet caramel malts upfront with just barely enough hops to round it out before the sweetness comes returns on the back end. medium carbonation from the bottle conditioning, nice and creamy/crisp at the same time. almost medium in body. a nice session beer but for that i would prefer a pride and joy. sweetness can make this a little cloying after a while.

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Photo of joemama76
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Mistofminn
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap at Bryant Lake Bowl celebrating a friends birthday with some beers and a round of bowling.

Color is hazy reddish brown, otherwise known as amber. Thin half finger foamy off-white head. Decent retention, nothing impressive. Minimal lacing.

The aroma displays a nice battle of earthy and citrusy hops, with the earthy hops winning this time. Huge malt backbone, caramel and buttery.

Initial taste is citrusy hop bite that gives way to the malt backbone after a few seconds. Sweet malts, with caramel and a toffee like character, and a fair bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side of medium bodied with a nice carbonation. Nothing too impressive. Drinkability is good.

Overall, a solid beer. This is a beer I've passed up in stores since...well...ever, and that may have to change. Good stuff.

 823 characters

Photo of izzyismyrott
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of DoubleJ
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 ounce bottle received as a gift from Halcyondays. On to the beer:

A little hazed in this orangeish brown colored beer. The head drops to a thin creamy lace on top, leaving a little lacing on the glass. The nose is a little subdued. Faint fruity esters, a little toasted malt. A little warming up intensifies those aromas, and even brings out some butterscotch. That's better.

Bell's version of an amber ale tastes like this; it goes toasty and fruity, like strawberry. Not super hoppy, which with Bell's I though it would be. There are touches of pine though. Ok, tasting those resins, maybe it was hoppy once upon a time, and now the hop juice is gone. No worries, it's all good.

Expectations sometimes get really high with certain breweries. Although I was expecting something explosive, I shouldn't complain too much about this beer.

 846 characters

Photo of jeremyd365
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 8274, poured a very cloudy amber/copper with a thick, foamy head. It had a pretty strong malty and slightly floral smell. The taste is more of the same--a pretty strong malty flavor with a slightly bitter finish. Overall this one is a pretty drinkable beer. Not too bad at all.

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Photo of masterbruewer
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a cloudy amber-gold color with moderate tan head and steady carbonation with little bubble clumping on the bottom. Solid lacing but the head fades fast.

The smell is sweet and malty, faint hop presence. Maybe a hint of citrus.

A mix of malty sweetness and faint citrusy tartness, no real hop kick to speak of. Not a flavor I expected, but not a bad flavor at all.

Mouthfeel is a little creamy and smooth.

Very drinkable, not a bad beer at all.

 462 characters

Photo of mklinger
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vigorously poured into a shaker pint glass.

A: About a half inch head that quickly dissipated. Slightly hazy due to somewhat poor pouring on my part. I didn't leave enough of the yeast behind in the bottom of the bottle. Color is a nice coppery orange.

S: Mostly malt coming through in the aroma. Mostly caramel with some toasty, bready smells also in there. Not much hop aroma.

T: Nice amber ale flavor profile. Lots caramel malt flavor, rich and sweet. Some hop bitterness comes through in the finish, not a lot, just enough to balance things out a bit.

M: Nice mouthfeel for such a sweet beer. It doesn't come across overly thick or sweet.

D: Easy to drink, but not a flavor profile that makes me want another right away. Don't get me wrong -- I like it and would be great to drink another, just not something I'm craving

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Photo of beerquestman
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: limited head and a hazy amber look.

Smell: I could smell berries and a fruitiness, specifically cherries.

Taste: I could taste the hops, caramel, a bit of plum skin, a bit of peach and a tart cherriness.

Mouthfeel: Very well balanced and soft not he tongue.

Drinkability: Fairly drinkable, but a bit too sweet for me. I think I could only have one per sitting and no more than that.

 398 characters

Photo of antman27
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of scruffwhor
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very clear rusty hue enteers my glass with some friendly bubbling. The aroma is a slightly thick amber malt with some real subtle English hopping. This mix gave the aroma a very biscuity aroma. The taste is equally biscuity that takes on a more sweet Hawaiian bread profile. A little grityy on the tongue but good carbonation to clean that up.

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Photo of atsprings
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Batch 7779. Had this one right after the Bell's Pale at Flying Saucer and reviewed from notes. This is one of the palest ambers I have ever had, not much redder than the pale ale. The head was rather thin and diminished quickly leaving a small amount of spotty lacing on the glass. The aroma was of caramel malts and some very subdued hops. At least is was more noticeable than the pale. The taste was a good balance of caramel malts and subtle citrus hops. The mouthfeel had a slight alcohol bite, more than I would expect for a 5.5% beer. Decent carbonation. This would perhaps make a good nightcap, but it is not really something I would buy regularly.

 655 characters

Photo of orcasteve
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

this starts out with sweet carmal malt then gets a tuch sour befor finishing with a mild hop flavor, this one also has a fair amount of yeast to it that makes it heaverer and cloudy. this is a nice beer that drinks smooth, this isn't my stile of choise but for a stile i dont care for, this is a deacent repersation.

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Photo of CHSLBrew
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into a pint glass.

A-Tan head, fluffy with ok retention. Amber brew, somewhat hazy with small-particle floaties.

S-Toasty and bready, light.

T-Moderate bitterness over a toasted malt and bread flavor base, with just a hint of semi-sweet malt. Hop character is minimal, perhaps a hint of spiciness. Slight caramel character.

-Medium-high carbonation, gives this medium-bodied beer some pizazz.

D-This would be a great session brew; its smooth flavor and ease of drinking makes it so. Complexity isn't necessarily high, but the quality of the characters that this beer has is good.

 598 characters

Photo of macpapi
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bell's Amber begins a nice dark-amber color. It is somewhat opaque, with a fine half-inch white head. There are sediment particles discernable through the hazy aura of the brew. It smells crisp and fruity. Malt and citrus notes are there right off the bat, followed by a light floral aroma. The taste is pleasant, but not terribly complex. There is little hop action. The taste of malt and fruity elements are there. Sweetness level is high, but overall the flavor is not exceptionable. In the mouth there is a tart feeling on the tongue. Not offensive, but the relatively high level of carbonation and lack of fullness make for a less than substantial beer. Overall this is a decent beer that is drinkable to a degree. It is not, however, the most flavorul or easily appreciated. While above mediocre, and certainly session worthy, it is not the best that Bell's has to offer.

 877 characters

Photo of kplooki
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden tangerine with quite a bit of suspended yeast. The head is off-white, soft yet dense, falls to a barely covering film and doesn't leave a whole lot of lace. The nose is a combination of sweet, biscuity malt and earthy hops.

The flavor is of bready caramel malt with a solid undercurrent of earthy-spicy hops. It's also a little fruity; spiced apple perhaps. The finish is long, bitterish and dry. Solid mouthfeel for the style.

Amber Ale is another tasty beer from Bell's. Although nowhere close to their best effort, its balance ensures that it will be enjoyed by malt lovers and by hop lovers alike. A good session ale that I wish was available in the Hawkeye state.

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Photo of Kips
3.66/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of burntoutphilosopher
3.66/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance:
great filtered beer. i expected unpasteurized. mildly cloudy. nothing like if it were on Lees

Smell:
sharp but good

Taste:
Really top notch. surprisingly so. great amount of bitter for a neutral Ale. and has a perfect balance of malt and sweetness that is still tastable.

Mouthfeel:
on par with killian's or Sam Adams.

Overall:
A Very Good beer. taste is king to me and this has it. two layers of bitter and sweet. not a bit watered down like Goose Island or Sam Adams hopology.
For what you get though, i felt overpriced. not on any lees, says unpasturized but mine pours very clear.

 601 characters

Photo of homebrew311
3.66/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: pours a orangeish amber, somewhat cloudy with a fluffy 2 finger head, great retention

S: biscuity malts up front which are undercut with some citrus hops with some lemon and grapefruit character

T: nicely balanced between the malts and hops. Malts provide notes of bread and caramel while the hops provide lemon zest, and some spicy earth tones, the finish is slightly bitter

MF: medium body and appropriate carbonation

D: nice full flavor and good balance, good for a session

 483 characters

Photo of Fish113d
3.66/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice amber color (obviously) with an orange-rind-colored head that billows to the top about 2 fingers thick, but starts to dissipate while leaving a lot of cling on the glass.

Aroma is mostly of a mild, biscuity malt, along with some slight toffee notes. A bit of floral hops also come in on the "under" side of the brew. NOthing spectacular; solid.

Rather sweet at first, but quickly the hops comes and turns much of this into a biscuit flavor along with some toffee. Aftertaste is rather boring, but okay flavor.

Body is medium, while carbonation runs quite high, tingling my tongue. Slightly dry finish.

Fairly drinkable in that it's easy to drink. Not the BEST flavor and not the best I've had, but just sticks solidly to the style.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
3.67/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A 12 oz bottle- a gift from a good friend who had received it from friends travelling from Michigan (he and I both used to live in separate towns near Kalamzoo, but long before Bell's existed). He gave it to me with the statement that this is one of the best beers he has ever had.

Pours a hazy murky orange, It's very different from a "typical" amber ale in that it's actually amber. Most amber ales I've had are much more in the brown shades. The minor white head disappeared in a hurry.

Aroma of honey, butterscotch, and some grassy/herbal hoppiness. Decent enough.

Flavor continues the flavor profile, but the hops and acidic ending are much more pronounced, very much overtaking what is typically a more malty beer (in my understanding of the style). Probably why my friend likes it so much. Mouthfeel includes a nice creaminess.

I finished this, and thought, this is a decent, but different, amber ale. Good. Would be happy to drink it again (maybe fresher?), But I can't agree with my friend- it doesn't blow my socks off.

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Bell's Amber Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.85 out of 5 based on 3,102 ratings.
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