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

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
87
very good
936 Reviews
Bell's Amber AleBell's Amber Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Michigan, United States | website

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:
936
Ratings:
2,972
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
21.3%
 
 
Wants:
147
Gots:
493
For Trade:
2
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 936 | Ratings: 2,972
Photo of markgugs
3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from a 12oz bottle into a nonic pint glass

A: Pours a sparkling clear copper with a large, frothy head of off-white foam and leaves some thick, sticky lacing. Looks good.

S: Gives off a moderately nutty, toasted aroma, with perhaps a dash of yeasty doughiness.

T/M: Initial sips produce some light citrus notes, then bigger, bolder flavors of toffee, butterscotch, and even milk chocolate take over. A very nice sweet, malted finish. Beer features a medium-bodied, slightly oily mouthfeel and is carbonated well.

D: This is a very solid beer, I could drink large quantities of this with ease and would do so if I could find them more regularly!

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Photo of Applesauce1
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a six-pack of the Amber Ale at The Happy Cat 2 in Athens, OH.

Appearance: hazy orange-copper color (not much of an amber color); nice 1" white head on the pour
Smell: maybe some citrus, a little bit of hops
Taste: nice; a nice balanced flavor; a decent amount of hops with some citrus flavor
Mouthfeel: medium bodied
Drinkability: very good, you can have a few in a night

Overall, an impressive beer. This would be a great session beer.

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Photo of Schwarzbart
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: I tried Bell's Amber Ale from a bottle that noted that this was there flagship beer, so this set the standard high. First, the beer is an apricot color with lot's of debris that holds its place giving it a thick appearance. The light covering is foamy and yields a small amount of lacing. There was also a bunch of debris at the bottom of the glass.
Smell: Bold caramel malts and hops.
Taste: Rich malts and mild hops balance out decently. A slightly sweet taste that is of caramel and a hint of alcohol. Bold taste backed with and earthy hop quality.
Mouthfeel: Medium to heavy mouthfeel.
Drinkability: A decent beer, but not what I'd consider a flagship beer. Never the less, it is one of the better ones in this style.

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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.

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Photo of BlackAngus
4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Cloudy, orange color. Large tan head that lasted all the way down.

S - Sweet, malty aroma, with a light hops character.

T - Sweet and malty, definite hop bitterness, but very well balanced.

M - Nice carbonation, light-medium body, clean and crisp.

D - I can drink this often...very well-crafted beer.

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Photo of arguemaniac
3.38/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Whoa, out of control head, it’s one of those situations where there is initially ten times as much head as there is beer and it takes a while to reduce down to a manageable size. Other wise, the beer pours an attractive orange amber with a nice haze. Sweet grain in the fairly mellow aroma. Bready malt sweetness and rounded grain along with a touch of caramel in the palate. A mild citrus hop spice balances to a fair extent. Somewhat thin mouthfeel.

It’s solid and nearly flawless (except for the mouthfeel) but it’s a bit watery and unremarkable. Still, it’s very drinkable with clean, easygoing flavors, which makes it a good session beer. Recommended, but just barely…

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Photo of RBorsato
3.08/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bronze color with lots of tiny suspended sediment, a full pillowy light beige head, decent carbonation, and decent lace. Light spicy malt aroma. Spicy malt flavors on the forefront; almost a bit like it was oxidized or infected but I doubt that. A bit on the sweet side. Medium-light bodied with a decent balance; not too sweet.

Not a rebuy ... bland.

Per Bell's website:
Mostly Pale Malt with some Munich and Caramel Malts
OG: 1.056
ABV: 5.8%

Batch # 7757 ('6329' lasered on bottom)
Tasted: 01/20/07

($7.99 / 6-pack)

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Photo of daliandragon
3.71/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a bright copper coor with decent off-white head and strong lacing. Nose is faint malt. Body is translucent and not easy to peer through, which is a plus.

Broad, refreshing flavor with copious but unoffending biitterness from a surprisingly robust hop presence and a medium malt profile. A little metallic and tinny tasting in the finish. Mouthfeel could stand to be a little thicker but this still is a fairly solid amber ale (though the hoppiness almost makes you think it's a pale ale) with highly drinkable qualities, although maybe moreso in summer than in winter.

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Photo of BeerHonky
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy orange/amber. A bit of very fine sedimet is floating around. Bubbly white head, about two fingers worth.. Smell's of faint hops and sweet malt. Very refreshing smelling. It makes me want to take a huge gulp as the first taste. Fairly sweet malt flavor with well balanced hop flavor. Very little bitterness. It seems like the sweetness might be sticky, but a nice crisp carbonation seems to scrub it clean. Excellent smooth, but crisp mouthfeel. You can easily drink three or four of these. After drinking so many stouts and IPA's this winter, this has been an awesome change. A perfect example of a simple beer that can please any craft beer enthusiast.

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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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Photo of tastybeer
3.87/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Color glows a deep orange brown with some added copper-like hues. White head is existant but easy going. Retention is a ring. Smells sweet with mild pine and more steady citrus. Aromas come together rather smoothly, and likewise with the flavors. Bitterness is thorough and entertaining. Malts hold up just right and flavor hops come along for the ride. Citrus and other fruit mainly with an earthiness too. Entertaining amber and one of the better. Mouthfeel is smooth with prickly carbonation. Very nice. Quite drinkable too.

A good one for getting again. Certainly sessionable.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.91/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful orange amber with alittle haze a short head, and pretty good lacing. The residual head sticks around for a while. The nose has some cereal grains up front and some malt in the background. The taste is very balanced and very nice. Creamy and spicy with mild but noticeable hops, and some fruit on the finish. Nice balanced mouthfeel and quite a session beer. Good solid standard.

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Photo of Frozensoul327
4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Foggy amber orange color with a small, yet consistant head of white foam. Medium level of carbonation. Minor notes of lacing inside the glass.

S: Wow. Strong buttery malt and yeasty bread dough. A hint of fresh, earhty hops thrown in for good measure. Not overly complex, but damned nice.

T: Rich, sweet, fruity notes of citrus are noted from the initial taste, with developing flavors of roasted caramel malts and mild grain. Nice.

M: Very smooth, rich and easy drinking. Like liquid velvet mixed with the texture of half and half cream. I could've been more into it with a tad more bubbles, but i'm not complaining, as this is the first amber beer i've had that really impressed me.

D: Good. I will be back. Would like to see this perhaps on a nitro version, with the creamy factor kicked up even more. A great brew from Bell's.

Notes: First good amber i've had. I would buy this again, hands down, no questions asked.

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Photo of nicksta
4.57/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer poured a very nice, very cloudy amber orange. A really big head sits on top of that dissipates quickly into pillowy froth on top of the brew that has nice layers upon layers of lacing.

S: I approached the smell like I normally do an amber brew. I can never dicpher the scent of ambers from one another EXCEPT for this one. It started out like a normal amber. It had some toasty caramel smoothness and started to turn metallic, but instead of finishing like I expected it to it became an extremely sweet. It was as sweet as tasting caramel. It actually tickled my nose and relaxed my whole face.

T: It starts out really smooth, but a little light. After that sweetness starts to come out of the corners of my mouth. The beer then moves into ultra-smooth caramel toasty malts. The beer then ends with a kiss of roasted hops that at first are very floral and then end bitterly. Awesome.

M: It is really really good. The beer is ultra smooth and has just the right texture. Unfortunately, it is quite carbonated which tends to sting the mouth. Just let it sit a bit.

D: A really great session brew. Heed the carbonation and sip don't chug, but as the carbonation settles more and more, you can chug more and more. I am not really recommending chuging though; (even if it is good enough for me to want to) take the time to enjoy it.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured into the glass lightly hazy pale golden amber with an off-white head which rose well and fell slowly to lace the glass.

The aroma was citrusy with an orange peel hop aromatic. Also the aroma was floral and contained a light bit of caramel.

The flavor was citrusy with more orange and some caramel. The floral aroma carried through the the flavor. The bittering was not strong, but just enough to balance the malt which was on the lighter side.

The finish was dry with some lasting citrus and floral hops lightly into the aftertaste. The body was medium with a moderate carbonation. Not feeling this one as an Amber. It seems to be more of a fruit with the orange character. Pretty easy to consume and non-offensive.

12 ounce bottle.

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Photo of TexIndy
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle with a batch ID on the back label that when entered on the website tells you when it was packaged. The odd thing is that the batch ID indicated that this was the Winter White and not the Amber though. Was a hazy copper color. Had a decent head that quickly dissipated but left some lacing throughout. The mouthfeel was nice and creamy - more creamy than I expected for an amber so a good surprise. The aroma was average - not really strong in any area but had sweet malt to it. For the style though, you don't really expect a strong aroma though so met expectations. The taste was excellent. Started strong and finished strong. Again, since an amber, there was no overriding theme just a solid great taste. This could easily be my session beer if available where I lived which sadly it isn't. Strongly recommend. (4, HR, T, Y)

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Photo of wedge
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

What better way to start my Bell's experience than with their flagship beer? Pours a slightly clouded orangey amber with a fluffy, lumpy head that retains well. Sweet malts, fruit, and mellow citrus juice in the aroma. Tastes flowery, powdery malts, finishing with a mostly sweet hoppiness. There's a nice graininess that supports the oily hops. There's a slight British flair to it actually. Medium bodied and appropriate carbonation.

Might be a little too oily sweet for my personal preferences to make me a regular buyer, but its still a quality amber.

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Photo of Grundle20
3.89/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance:
Pours a hazy amber in to a pint glass. There is a sticky white head with some great retention.

Smell:
The scent is a little on the detergent side with a mild English hop profile. It's not very strong, it's not very bad, it's not very great.

Taste and Mouthfeel:
There is a familiar flavor of orange tootsie pops to this beer. The body is light and drinks smoothly with little bitterness to speak of. The finish is a little grassy, but crisp with an orange zest aftertaste.

Drinkability:
There really isn't much playing against this beers drinkability aside from it being a rather full flavored brew that I really don't see myself drinking more than a 6-pack of.

Bottom Line:
Another shining brew to Bells' repertoire. I would snag this if you are a big fan of the style.

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Photo of OSUbrewman
3.31/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance -This beer poured a cloudy golden amber (like aged apple cider) with a 2 finger off-white head that exhibited great retention and some lacing.
Nose- Some citrus was detectable in the nose, and some hoppiness, but noting too special.
Taste- Crisp and refreshing, this is definately a very citrusy amber. There were some hops, but not as hoppy as I would have liked. The taste in thirst quenching and has a clean finish with very little lingering on the palate.
Mouthfeel- Crisp carbonation, not very heavy at all.
Drinkability- Highly drinkable and a good session amber,
Bell's Amber would go quite well on a warm summer day, as it is definately a thirst quencing and refreshing offering of this style. However, while it wasn't bad, it definately left something to be desired.

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Photo of MuenchenerKindl
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle to a pint glass. The liquid it a cloudy orange color good carbonation. The head is 2 finger thick bone white and fades leaving little lace.

The smell is afresh & fruity sweet malt aroma.

The taste follows just a pain but pleasant sweet malt, lightly roasted to a mild carmel.

The mouthfeel is good, nice carbonation and a thinner then medium body to make it quite sessionable.

The drinkability is good pound a few.. No Problemo. Prosit MK

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Photo of blackie
4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

first purchase after Bell's unexpected arrival in NC...haven't tried one of these since the Slint attempt in Chicago

appearance: Pours a low, eggshell white head that has decent retention of the thin layer left behind. The beer is, well, a bright amber in color with a few yeasts floating about.

smell: Grainy pale and light caramel malts. A moderate, papery green hop aroma. Light fruits and light whole grain bread.

mouthfeel: The carbonation is medium and smooth, and the body a lighter medium.

taste: Flavors of pale and lightly toasted malts give some grainy notes. Not much malt complexity, but distinctly grainy with a touch of sweetness. Light, nondescript hop flavor and a light, cleansing bitterness lingering with some grain in the finish.

drinkability: easy...not an exceptional amber, but rock solid

batch #7748

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Photo of becktone
3.27/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

When poured into my glass all I can say is wow, the head is perfect. It pours two and one half fingers in height and is a creamy egg white in color. As it recedes to a stable one finger size it leaves a fairly good amount of lacing along the sides of the glass, though I have seen better lacing characteristics. Color is orange dark yellow and the beer is not very clear, cloudy-overcast.

There is a deep sweet malty caramel aroma to this beer. The nose also picks up citrus hop tones. Aroma is nicely balanced between malt and hops. Fruity esters and clove and banana phenols are present in small amounts.

The beer is fairly well balanced in flavor as well as aroma. Its got enough bitterness and hop flavor to off set the caramel, phenolic, and ester flavors of this brew; but it could use more hop bitterness and flavor. There is also a bit of a grainy/huskiness flavor in this beer. I also notice a wheat characteristic to this beer, reminds me a bit of Oberon and it just doesn’t seem to fit here. Definitely wasn’t expecting any yeast phenol and ester characteristics, however it does make for an interesting interpretation of the style.

In the mouth this beer is creamy, that much became evident when I burped and some of the beer came up with the burp-very creamy. Carbonation is subtle and is not really noticed unless specifically focusing on that aspect of the beer. It does not interfere with this beer’s flavor profile and actually accents the malt characteristics of this beer’s flavor. Does not have a dry finish, and goes down quite easily. I probably won’t buy this beer again(in the near future) just because there are so many other interpretations of this style. I am also not a big fan of banana and clove phenols in an American style.

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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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Photo of gmfessen
3.52/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer is a murky golden amber color with a slightly carbonated head. Smell is of amber and caramel malts, sweet. Taste is initially sweet, followed by a nice balance of hops that finishes dry. Beer is medium bodied, chewy, with creamy carbonation. Overall I would have to say that this is definitely a drinkable beer, but it doesn't really stand out to me as anything too special.

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Photo of dedrinker
3.15/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

At first sip, there were some lightly caramalized malts, and a nice fresh yeasty aroma, but by the end of the bottle it had become just another decent amber ale in a sea of amber ales designed to be friendly and approachable to those who are new to craft beer. Nothing wrong with that, but I can save a buck and support my local brewer to boot by drinking regular Dominion Ale, which is more of a British Pale Ale, but has more character. So yeah, Um, I'll just go an do that I guess.

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Bell's Amber Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
87 out of 100 based on 936 ratings.
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