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

BA SCORE
87
very good
958 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:
958
Ratings:
3,073
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
11.95%
 
 
Wants:
151
Gots:
554
For Trade:
2
User Reviews
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Reviews: 958 | Ratings: 3,073
Photo of claspada
3.47/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aromas of bready, caramel, biscuity, nuttiness and a hint of spice. Nothing too complex; some light indistinguishable hop notes.

The taste begins with some light spice and caramel maltiness, followed by some decent hops bitterness. As you re-examine you can detect some lesser toffee and toasted breadiness.

The mouthfeel is light-bodied with moderate, soft carbonation. Pleasant, finishes crisp and clean.

Overall this is a decent example of an amber but nothing too extraordinary. I want to give it more credit than it deserves but find it just too plain. It is was it is supposed to be, a sessionable Amber/Red ale. I just wish it had more memorable characteristics.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a 10 oz chalice glass

Appearance – As the name implies it has an amber color with a light haze. Upon serving there was a one finger off white head that faded quickly to leave only a light amount of lacing.

Smell – The aroma was of caramel and toasted bread. Mixed with these were some lighter notes of citrus and some nuttiness.

Taste – The taste starts out as a mix of roasted malt and caramel. While sweeter in the beginning, it some dries out and bitters some as some citrus and pine hop tastes enter the flavor profile. While these never get too strong they do a nice job of balancing some of the sweet in the beginning. Toward the end of the taste some nuttiness comes to the tongue and overall a very nice roasty flavor is left to linger.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is smooth but not thick and the carbonation is on the average side. The creaminess is very nice and helps accentuate the nice more roasted flavors of the brew.

Overall – A pretty tasty amber Well worth a try.

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Photo of rlee1390
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Cloudy orange/amber, carbonated with a two finger heads that fades.

S-Lots of malt, caramel along with bread notes.

T-A malt forward brew, caramel and bread balance well with each other. Citrus and floral notes come out as well. Little bitterness.

M-Medium bodied, velvety in the carbonation.

O-A nice easy drinking American great. Not great but an easy drinker.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Cigar City snifter (my all-purpose glass for vacation time beer drinking).
The beer was a hazy copper color with a small tan head.
Caramel malt aroma, sweet. Both floral and citrus hops.
Very much caramel in the taste, late hops, mostly citrus, but some piney hops also.
A little more depth in the mouthfeel than I'm accustomed to in this style.
Very sessionable.

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Photo of cosmicevan
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A - Poured a clear...well...amber. Had a thin bubbly head and no lacing. Subtle carbonation.

S - Earthy malt. Little roasted, little caramel. Nothing too wild.

T - Malty. Roasted. Touch sweet. Nice amber.

M - Smooth and silky. Biscuit-like.

D - Very easy drinker. A bit earthy/malty, but could drink these all night. Not my favorite bells offering, but a good amber none-the-less.

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Photo of glid02
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is the last of my haul from the Liquor Loft in Tallahassee.

Pours a nice amber color with some orange tint when held up to the light. A one-finger white head recedes into a light layer of bubbles on top and a thin ring around the glass. Lacing is not very sticky.

Smells good. There's a solid light hop smell - mostly floral, and some malt aromas, both sweet and bready.

Tastes a little better than it smells. There's a floral taste up front, followed by a sweet malt taste. The taste transforms into a breadier taste with a hint of caramel as the beer warms. A mild amount of bitterness comes through at the end.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's thicker than most other Ambers, and it's almost creamy. Very smooth.

Drinkability is good. This goes down very easily with a pleasant aftertaste.

Overall I was once again impressed by Bell's. Hopefully they'll make their way to GA soon. Until then I'll seek them out anytime I can get my hands on them.

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

An exciting amber ale....a nice spicy hop nose...also some malt sweetness on the nostrils....orangish in color...cloudy...chunks of stuff flloating all over...beautifull!! The taste is definitely dominated by the malt sweetness...but it is more of a Belgian style hard candy sugar type sweetness...the herbal hops lend a nice balance...I've had many "amber ales"...most are OK but not real interesting...this one is veritable adventure in tasting...another dandy from one of the top breweries in the U.S.

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Photo of AgentMunky
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pilsner glass.

A: Amber-esque until held up to the light, which reveals translucent yellowish colour. Decent head and lots of bubbles.

S: Unexpected. Instead of a sweet, malty scent, I'm getting hops and a tinge of skunk. Malt does lie underneath, a bit concealed. Beery, overall.

T: Good, and a beer that is balanced, rather than tilted towards malt, as many amber ales are. The main taste is dry but full, with a slightly toasted feel. Rather carbonated. The aftertaste is pleasantly round and malty, with the hops running underneath. Mostly sweet but dry. A very interesting brew, but not my favourite.

M: Watery-smooth meets spicy-tingly. It's alright.

D: Honestly, I was expecting a lot more from this beer. It's a more than decent, but not anywhere near outstanding. I've had much better brews from Bell's and better amber ales than this. Drinkable, but not recommended.

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Photo of BMMillsy
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle pours a deep reddish brown color with a cream colored head. Aroma includes a little funk, some floral notes, light bready malts, and a bit of fruit. Light mouthfeel with medium carbonation. Flavor is somewhat watered down for my tastes, light bready malts, just a hint of sweet fruit and caramel. Something about this just didn't seem right. Certainly drinkable, but nothing special.

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Photo of Gusler
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A vaporous orange on the pour with a bubbly and light tan head that is portly in size with a thin curtain of lace. Nose is butterscotch sweet, fresh and quite clean to the senses, the start quite sweet, nice malt profile and the top a light to medium feel. Finish is brisk in its acidity, hops mellow and pleasant with the aftertaste desert dry and long lasting, quite nice Amber Ale, from a “World Class Brewery”.

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Photo of ccrida
4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my Schell's shaker pint, Bell's Amber is amber with an egg-shell head leaving clingy lace.

Smell is sweet, a little citrus hops.

Taste is similar, a really nice sweet malt base here, with just enough fruity hops to provide depth, but not bitter, with a clean, quick finish. I consider Amber Ales to be a bit of a benchmark of a (US) brewers ability, and Bell's is really showing off their ability here.

Mouthfeel is pretty well carbonated, medium light bodied.

Drinkability is high, this is a really tasty Amber Ale, just sweet enough to satisfy but not get cloying, the citrus note of the hops keeps it interesting, very well made. I'll have another!

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Photo of StoutHunter
4.46/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a six pack of Bell's Amber Ale last week for $8.99 at Krogers. I have drank many bottles of this beer in my life, but for some reason I never got around to reviewing it, so since I was in the mood for a well made Amber Ale I decided to pick up a six pack and give it a proper review, so here it goes. Batch# 10624 bottled on August 16 2011. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A- The label is simple yet classy looking, I have always thought it was pretty classic looking. It poured a hazy orangish amber color with three fingers worth of fluffy white head that died down to a thick layer that stayed till the end and it left some nice lacing. Now this is a proper looking Amber Ale.

S- The aroma starts of with lots of sweet malts that impart a nice slightly toasted grainy aroma. The hops are the other half of the aroma and at first smell pretty floral with some citrus at the end. The aroma is a nice balanced mixture of malts and hops.

T- The taste is pretty similar to the aroma. The first thing I pick up is a good amount of lightly sweet malts that have a nice amount of toast to them and impart some nice caramel flavors. The hops are on the light side but still retain that nice mixture of hops with the floral hops showing up the most and just a little bit of citrus that shows up more towards the end and in the the after taste which has a very light amount of bitterness on the finish.

M- Really smooth, slightly crisp, medium bodied, and it had a high amount amount of medium carbonation. The mouthfeel was spot on for an Amber Ale.

Overall I thought this was an excellent Amber Ale. This beer is exactly what a great Amber Ale should be light, great balance between malts and hops, great looks, great mouthfeel, and great drinkability. I could have drank a six pack of this in a sitting, its got good flavor and it goes down so smooth that I can't help but want to grab another one. This is also a great beer to have with dinner and goes great with a steak or a bratwust. What I like most about this beer is pretty much everything, it looks good, it smells good, it tastes good, and it feels good, its firing on all cylinders. There isn't really anything I don't like or would change about this beer, it is fine just the way it is. I will be buying this beer again as I have for a while now, it's a great example of it's style and I will always have room in my fridge for a six pack. This beer should be tried by everyone, and if you love Amber Ales, this is one of the best widely available ones. So far this has been the best Amber Ale I have had, it has the right amount of balance that to me makes the perfect Amber Ale. Bell's really does a great job at making a beer to style with great balance, I find a lot of Amber Ales are either malt forward or hop forward, but this beer was right in the middle and that is how it should be done, other brewers need to take note.

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Photo of dirtylou
3.97/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i am 90% positive that Bell's Amber was the first Bell's beer i ever had when i moved back to the midwest...i think i bought some cheesy midwest microbrewery sampler that was probably quite overpriced

anyways, batch 8023, single, riley's

appearance: poured into a Bell's pint glass of course...copper-amber body with a foamy beige head, strong stream of bubbles throughout, lots of yeast also present

smell: aroma is that of which an amber should be - fruity and bready, caramel, apple cider

taste: the "flagship" of bells - maybe so, maybe not. sweet apple, caramel malts, toasted nut. still one of my favs of the style

mouthfeel: smooth, medium body

drinkability: pretty good

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Photo of jera1350
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep amber color with lots of bits swimming about. Thin layer of suds on top.

Light roasted malt. Pilsnerish, followed by some fruity and citric hops.

Rich and semi-sweet malts followed by some lighter citric hops. Clean and slightly complex.

Maybe a bit over medium bodied which was unexpected. Pretty thick and smooth with some moderate carbonation.

Absolute session beer here. I could make a night of this. Really well crafted beer that's available year round which is a bonus.

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

12 oz bottle poured into a Bell's imperial pint.
5.8% ABV, Batch #10141 (Bottled Dec. 15, 2010)

A - The color plays the part as this brew pours a faintly cloudy amber orange color. The off-white head doesn't last long but leaves some fingers of lace behind.

S - Slightly fruity yeast esters certainly proclaim that it's an ale. Hints of buttered popcorn are disheartening but with a brewery of Bell's caliber I'm not thinking anything is off here. Musty old liquor store and earth with a small toasted amber malt backing.

T - A more playful malt flavor elevates this brew a bit. Toffee and caramel poke out of the toasted wheat bread background. Earthy hops balance well and join the yeasty esters up front.

M - Smooth, medium-bodied and almost creamy, the mouthfeel could use just a touch less carbonation I think. The tingling finish distracts from the balancing dry bitterness.

O - A pretty solid amber all around, it's unique from others in that the yeast notes play a bigger role than other brews. It challenges the drinker with something other than a hop-loaded amber like the rest of the world produces. Well-balanced here.

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Photo of FLima
3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Amber color with a thin off-white head with low retention.
Light aroma of honey and caramel malt.
Flavor of papaya, apple juice, American yeast, toasted malts, fresh oranges and earthy hops. Dry aftertaste with a medium bitterness.
Medium body with low carbonation.
I had high expectations on this, that is a very good beer, but far from blowing my mind.

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

Comes out of the tap a hazy dark honey-amber with a thin but fine-bubbled off-white head. Appetizing malty aroma has fruity and hoppy hints. Thick, malty flavor has a hoppy undertone and a touch of banana. Texture is thick, smooth and fizzy. Definitely worth seeking.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours a hazy, yet clear amber color. The head is one and a half fingers in height, creamy, and recedes slowly. The aroma is a lot more complex than most amber ales. It is mostly malt, but there is a hop presence which makes it so the beer doesn't smell sugary. The taste is incredibly balanced. Niehter bitter nor sweet stand out, but they are both there playing with my taste buds. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, and most importantly it isn't sticky the way most amber ales seem to be. Overall, amber ale isn't one of my favorites styles. This brew is an exception. It is what I would like all amber ales to be: a beer than is less hoppy than a pale ale, but not so sugary that is it sticky.

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Photo of Durge
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Discovered at an obscure little airport cafe in Minneapolis this brew poured a cloudy amber color with a modest light tan head and outstanding lace. The aroma was mild roasted malts and peanut butter toffee. The taste was crisp grassy hops and sour malt, medium body, melon hints and a good peppery bite on the tongue. Not my favorite Bells but a good quality brew none the less.

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Photo of warnerry
3.94/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cask at The Soup Spoon

Pours reddish brown with no head at all. Aromas of caramel malt, a bit of bread and maple, vanila and a faint nuttiness. Taste is similar with a bit of hops thrown in. Pretty nice. I've had this in bottles several times, and it is noticeably more enjoyable on cask. Very smooth mouthfeel with a faintly bitter finish. This is a style I normally don't enjoy that much except for hoppier ambers, but on cask this is pretty enjoyable.

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Photo of Brenden
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is a hazy copper. The head pours pretty nicely and retains itself well, leaving patches of sticky lacing in rings.
The first thing on my nose is malt, then I get some toasted grains followed by hops. Citrus notes finish.
The taste really follows suit. It's a well-balanced brew that incorporates some complex hops flavors with some malt and natural malt sweetness with a little citrus bite and even some nice buttery biscuit notes come out in the toasty grains. Nice.
The body is medium with a nice crisp carbonation. Pretty smooth.
A great brew and a great option for a sessional.

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Photo of morimech
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a wonderful looking amber ale. The color is dark amber with a two-fingered head that had excellant retention. It eventually settles to a very thick cap. Large amounts of lacing left on the glass surface. Very small particulate matter slowly settles to the bottom of the glass. I don't mind an unfiltered beer when the brewer does it in this manner.

I think there are a couple different hop varieties used in this beer. A combination of citrus and pine aromas with the sweet malt results in a wonderful smell.

The taste doesn't disappoint either. Perfectly balanced between the malt flavors and the hops makes this a great tasting ale. It leaves the mouth with just a hint of pine. It has a light body with well suited carbonation.

The best amber ale I have had and an overall top 10. Sessionable, affordable, and great tasting, just what I like.

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Photo of MattyG85
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: A deep and cloudy reddish gold. Very small white head that slowly fades. Not much lacing.

Smell: A strong sense of caramel malt sweetness with earthy bitterness and a hint of fruit.

Taste: Tastes like it smells with sweetness from the caramel and fruit. Hop bitterness is very light.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with light carbonation.

Overall: A decent version of a red but a little too light.

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Photo of thagr81us
3.62/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Served from tap into a standard pint. Pours copper with a minimal white head. There was no apparent lacing present. The aroma was comprised of only subtle hops. The flavor was of small hops and subtle sweet malt. It was light on the palate with low carbonation. Overall this brew was really smooth and was stupidly drinkable. It did not have the greatest flavor and could have been more complex, but it was still enjoyed and was really refreshing.

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Photo of Dogbrick
3.45/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice surprise for an Amber Ale. I was expecting something along the Killian's line but this produced a hint of hops flavor I was not expecting, which made it taste like a hybrid of some kind. Very interesting. Rich color and good aroma. I am anxious to try Bell's other offerings. The only downside was a faint metallic taste toward the end. Not sure what that was about.

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Bell's Amber Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.85 out of 5 based on 3,073 ratings.
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