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Short's Bellaire Brown Ale | Short's Brewing Company

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Short's Bellaire Brown AleShort's Bellaire Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Exactly what it says, “Brown beer.” This is beer fermented from wort extracted from the hearty pale ale malt, toasted specialties, chocolate and Munich selections resulting in a toasted brown color. Very light hop additions from the Cascade variety allows the sweet malty and caramel notes to shine through for duration of its time on your palette.
15 I.B.U.’s
12.8 deg. Plato
5.2% A.B.V.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-01-2005

For Trade:
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Reviews: 266 | Ratings: 744
Photo of LupulinDevil
4.88/5  rDev +28.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is one of my classic favorites from Joe. Rich malty american brown style with a bit of a larger body than you might expect. Great hop bite with a wonderful balance. Poured a nice dark malty body. Beautiful head and a nice lacing. This is one of those beers that I could enjoy any time!! If you haven't had the chance, search out this or any of the Shorts beers and try them!!

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Photo of Baileyuk
4.82/5  rDev +26.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The worst thing about this beer is that it makes me think I like Brown's and then i am sadly dissapointed with others attempts.
This pours a dark brown color that initially put me off as I usually do not like darker beers. However this beer was amazingly easy to drink and appreciate. I rate this as the best brown available. It has subtle hops and almost a faint nut quality. My mother in law (who is not a beer drinker loves this also). I will still go for the pale ales but this is in the rotation.

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Photo of Frosty80
4.65/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Color: sits clear, very dark brown with an amber hue

Smell: cool, roasted malt with some chocolate and just a tiny hint of hops

Taste: extremely well balanced roast, chocolate, caramel notes. just a little bit of alcohol and hops to tingle the tongue. sweet, brown sugar finish with just a hint of bitterness to balance.

Mouthfeel: med body. low carbonation. very clean and crisp. seems to go down effortlessly.

Notes: great brown. this is now my third and final shorts brew (for now), and honestly my favorite. just a delicious dark beer.

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Photo of GuyFawkes
4.65/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bottled 8/10/15; drank 11/10/15 @ the Yarchives.

Poured from the bottle into a glass.

Opaque brown appearance.

A rough pour yielded a decent tan head; strong lace.

Acorn, burnt leaves & sarsaparilla notes in the nose.

Medium mouthfeel.

Cream, autumn leaves & faint milk chocolate flavors up front; mild caramel & banana notes on the finish. A strong example of the style; complex & flavorful but very easy to drink. A fall classic.

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Photo of Beerzebub
4.57/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A nice extra from sarcastro. Thanks!

Poured in a big wine glass at 54 F/ 12 C.

Attractive deep reddish brown color, small beige head, nice blobby patterns of fine lace.

Rich malty aroma, caramel and toast, with brown sugar, some good fresh fruitiness, a bit of roastiness, and a bit of chocolate. When it warms a bit more, there's a fleeting savory note like ramen, in a good way, adding to the complexity.

Rich smooth malt flavor. Just the right modicum of sweetness, finishing dry and toasty, superbly balanced. Some fresh fruitiness, a bit like honeydew melon but I may be grasping at straws. Reminds me a bit of good English ESB, but with some darker malts thrown in to good effect. Tasty finish, toasty and fruity.

Great smooth juicy texture, extremely drinkable, difficult to put down.

Great beer, I was glad to have the chance to try this.

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Photo of SaucyA
4.52/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Pint glassed. Pours a clear, beer-bottle brown with firey amber highlights. The head is a nice froth of off-white cappuccino foam. A wee bit of lacing.

S - Hugely malty, not roasty. Sweet molasses/brown sugar and a nice light hopping. Classic brown with a little umph.

T - A lightly roasted malt comes through most in the beginning, but as opposed to finishing overly sweet, the delicate hopping manages to balance the robust malts. Many wonderful flavors, and nothing overdone.

M - Well done. Nice body and slightly crisp. Could stand a little bit less attenuation but then it'd kill the drinkability.

D - At 5.2% and the flavors involved, this is one amazing beer. I'm ecstatic about making it to bottles.

Notes: This beer has and will continue to convert the uneducated masses.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.5/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another 12oz received as a great extra in an incredible trade with kbeals.. Kevin hooked a brother up with some Short's brews...

Poured into my Delirium goblet.... 1" lite tan head leaves nice lace... but the beauty is in the brew.. the dark brown ale gives a nice hint of the goodness in my glass.

The nose is damn near perfect .... I love a good American Brown ale... and this is one of the most interesting ones I've had in a long while... toasty... a bit of chocolate.. but a pronounced, yet very well balanced blast of citric hops make the continent of origin known.

I'm gonna start with the finish... just because I am so very impressed with this one.. long and nutty.. toasty with some residual citrus hops.. out of the gates a very balanced dark brown maltiness pops up.. no where near "porter territory" yet a big "brown" maltiness is just everywhere from front to back.. I like that there isn't an abundance of darker caramel malts.. instead just enough touch from coffee and chocolate elements come as it warms... and as room temperature comes around, some biscuity maltiness rears its head... the body is a nice medium and carbonation is lighter than expected, yet still is very pleasing with a smooth mouthfeel.

This is every bit as good and probably better than most PNW brown ale's I've had over the years.. it seems a bunch of thought has gone into the recipe on this one... I've only had a few Short's beers... and this is pretty damn good and very sessionable.... I could put away a few of these and never get bored.

I would definitely recommend Kevin as a good trader.... but I want him all to myself... Don't ask kbeals to trade with you!! You're not worthy!! I just hope I am. :-)


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Photo of mikesgroove
4.5/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was easily my favorite of the day. A classic brown ale and another gem from Shorts. This one was served in a pint glass and consumed on 05/09/2009.

The pour was very nice. Rich dark brown in color with a huge head of tan coming up and over the top, just barely settling down into a thing veil that was just perfect across the top. Deep roasted malts and a nice hop not dominate the early aroma. As it warms some nice hints of light cocoa start to come through and really provide some nice balance to it. Really a very rich brown ale here as the feel was medium to full with lots of carbonation. Roasted malts, hints of light nuts, piney hops and a touch of chocolate made this one damn complex beer to say the least, smooth mellow, dry finish with a touch of sweetness, what more could I ask for.

Overall one of the best brown ales I have ever had, and I have no issue with that at all. This is a must get and something I will keep as a staple in my fridge.

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Photo of rtepiak
4.5/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

expectional brown ale with a complex malt arangement without the heaviness. toasted nose of apples. smokey, some earth. dark fruit... palate is a wonderful malt character with sweet caramel and smokey malt blend without make acidic conflict. good amount of black currant. mild porter fruit. earth but bright... if possible. alcohol is not detectable. pepper dry finish with a great body. simple but hits all the bases exactly without any fuss.

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Photo of movingtrain
4.48/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a nice dark ruby-brown color. Head is minimal, but sticking around and lingering on the top...and the lacing is pretty decent as well.

Smells of brown sugar, cinnamon, chocolate, molasses, plums, chocolate malts, vanilla (slight), oak (or maybe just a woody aroma), and some light hops, too.

Taste is remarkable. Sweet, but not overly sweet. Just enough bitterness to keep it afloat, and to provide a pleasant balance across the palate. Hints of cocoa, cinnamon, dates, and brown sugar linger in this one. The balance here is spectacular...very drinkable, and quite delicious. There is an undertone of hops, keeping the sweetness in check...but nothing seems out of line here.

Overall, an excellent example of an American brown ale. I have had the opportunity to sample three beers from Short's that my Dad brought back from a fishing trip up in Michigan...and each one is quite remarkable. Looks like a brewery trip is in order.

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Photo of dfillius
4.48/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass

A: Aggressive pour yields 1/2 finger of tan head with fair to good retention. Hazy brownish garnet liquid. Very pretty. I would have given it a 5.0 if it had better head retention.

S: Caramel, lactic sourness, bright citrus notes

T: Excellent all around flavor. Sweet start with a sour kick to balance it out. Chocolatiness in the finish ties it all together nicely.

M: Light but full. Good brightness in the middle, with a great sweetness and bitterness in the finish. Has almost a dry mouthfeel despite the sweetness.

D: Very high. I'd order a second and definitely buy six. A good go-to winter beer.

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Photo of ChuckVee
4.47/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice murky brown color with a foamy tan head that did not stick around for long. The smell is full of sweet malt, dark spices,and gingerbread. The flavor matches the nose but with some really nice molases and chocolate in the mix. Mouthfeel is creamy and rich. A little bit of astringency followed by a mild dose of hops closes this one out. Hangs around for a while in the mouth, as do most of Short's beers.
One of my favorite brown ales and one that I often recommend to people who enjoy malty beers.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.47/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The third extra in an already generous trade. Thanks, Derek!

A: Hazy brown with reddish highlights. Thin white head, decent retention, some patchy lace

S: Lightly hopped with an absolutely delicious nutty, caramel backbone. Hops are moderately earthy and unobtrusive. The malt backbone is quite spectacular - soft, gentle and complex. Mildly nutty, mild toffee and caramel notes, this is beautifully balanced

T: Rich yet soft, this is a treat. Opens up a little hoppy but the malt takes over gently and unobtrusively. As with the nose, flavors of toffee, nuts, caramel and a faint hint of chocolate and coffee are present. Finishes dry and mildly bitter

M:Fairly light in body with ample carbonation and a complex finish. What strikes me about the finish is the dual nature - it starts and end bitter but there's a hint of chocolate that creeps through, making this doubly enjoyable

D: This is remarkably enjoyable, one of the better browns I've had

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Photo of awinckles
4.45/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Poured from a brand spanking new bottle into a pint glass. Pours a nice deep brown mahogany color - darker than most brown ales I've had.

S - Malty sweet, hint of spice, cinnamon, just a hint of roasty chocolate.

T - Think sweet caramel maltiness upfront, slight roasty chocolate flavor that is reminiscent of a good porter surprisingly. Kiss of cinnamon spice with the hops that perfectly balance this beer, stopping it from becoming cloying like many browns.

M - Terrific mouthfeel, feels thick and full in the mouth.

D - Well balanced and easy to drink, I could down a couple of these in a sitting.

Flat out well made beer - Shorts does it again. I'm generally not a fan of brown ales, but this is terrific, perfectly balanced and enjoyable. Thank you Shorts, for bottling your terrific beers!

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.45/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle bought in Detroit this week. The beer is dark translucent reddish brown with a thin tan fine-celled wet foam. The aroma is sweet and malty, maybe just a little fruit or esters. Very inviting, and the taste is much much richer than I expected, a sweet malt bomb with a long lasting ester flavor. Thicker than your normal brown ale, this hits the spot in a way I didn't expect. May be the best brown ale I've ever had, completely worth it.

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Photo of semibaked
4.42/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Pint Glass

A - Pours a murky dark brown with a little light shining through, with about a finger of light brown foam on top.

S - Great mixture of roasted malts, molasses, dark bread, and a subtle hints of hops.

T - I don't think I have had a brown ale with this depth of flavor, just explodes with nicely roasted malts, molasses, sweetness, breads, and some bitterness, very complex.

M - Better than most browns I've had, it has a syrupy quality to it and it very pleasant on the pallette.

D - I buy this semi-regulary and it is my favorite American Brown Ale for sure, definitely easy to drink at 5.2% and I think if you can try this you should.

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Photo of hopfacebrew
4.42/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle to pint glass. The beer pours a translucent deep brown color with a nice 2 finger light head with good retention and lacing. The nose is very nice with a mix of mildly bittern chocolate, roasted malt, chocolate, earthy hop character. Nice. The flavor starts off with a toasty cereal malt flavor mixed with chocolate. Very creamy. The earthy hops provide a mild bitterness and complement the malts very well. Finishes smooth and dry, very easy drinking. Lighter bodied with good carbonation. Overall, this is one of the better browns I've had, very easy drinking and creamy and delicious! Recommended

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Photo of GilGarp
4.39/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My first Short's Brew! I was very excited to see these come to Colorado - a special shipment of 6 packs for the GABF week.

Bellaire Brown is served cold into a pint glass. It has a nice deep brown color with very good clarity. The head is thin and settles quickly.

Aroma is sweet and malty with a little bit of caramel and chocolate.

The flavor is really well done. It starts of sweet with the same chocolatey caramel character. The middle is a little more roasty, more like an iced coffee. The end is bitter but balanced.

Mouthfeel is medium-light in body and nicely carbonated. Good balance and smoothness.

Overall a really nice brown ale. This is a style that is perfect for the season and really doesn't get enough attention from American brewers. Nicely done Short's.

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Photo of nickadams2
4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Ashley's Westland.

A_Very dark brown with a thick khaki head. Good retention that eventually settles to a thin cap with plenty of lacing.


T_Very nutty sweet caramel malt up front. Hint of dark chocolate.Very bready with a hint of spice. Nice brown ale.

M_Thick and creamy. Coats the mouth.

D_Very drinkable. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of carlborch
4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a very nice dark brown with a light brown, creamy head. The color is so dark it almost appears murky but upon closer inspection is actually sparkling clear. The Belgian lace is well formed and attractive. Rich malty notes with hints of toasted cereal, chocolate and nuts. Smoky? Restrained, yet balanced hops. Layered flavors. Lighter body than the color suggests. Highly refreshing. Rather moreish.

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Photo of sonicdescent
4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very nice pour with some decent head, great lacing, and nice carbonation in what looks to be a rather viscous liquid.

Smells of caramel, light bread, roasted malt. Unexpectedly nice here.

Tastes of caramel, bread, sweetness, very light on the hops, no bitter sensation or alcohol presence. Very good.

Medium in both body and carbonation.

Such an easy drinker and a solid beer. Very good stuff.

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Photo of B0bD0bbselbock
4.33/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into glass tumbler.

A-Pours a mildly opaque amber brown, with about 1 finger tan head with mild lacing that receded to a thin, whispy layer that hangs around.

S- Sweet, malty, and caramely with hints of roasted nuts, like pecans.

T- Nice sweetness and malty flavor abound, along with caramel, and notes of toasted nuts.

M- Smooth and crisp with a mild-medium body that is bit watery.

D- I find this one highly drinkable, as it seems smoothness and straightforward in it's nature.

I enjoyed this beer for its smooth, crisp, and flavorful qualities, and high drinkability. For an american brown ale, this beer has some unique elements to it. Further, this one seems like a worthy candidate for a session beer. I will buy this again. That's the long and Short's of it all :)

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Photo of indiapaleale
4.32/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bellaire Brown pours a murky, chestnut, dark amber color with a very thin head. I am guessing that might have been different if I had let it warm a little bit before I poured...I guess I am a little impatient.

The aroma is a lot of sweet malt upfront, it smells like a brewery does when you know they are brewing (sorry if that is too broad of a statement). Some nice roasted coffee flavors and some milk chocolate come out as well. Lots of toasty smells, like brown bread or even better yet, like BM bread in a can!

Talk about flavor! Initial sip is a big bold mouthful of malty goodness. Lots of toasted malt flavor, more brown bread and coffee. This has to be one of the most flavorful brown ales I've had, so much packed into each sip. Wow! As it warms the flavor just improves even more, I am really, really impressed by this beer. Brown ales tend to be a style that really doesn't blow me away since most times they taste relatively similar. Not this, its on a different level.

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Photo of Gear54
4.31/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pour is medium brown with 1/2 in of kaki foam. On tap at Johnnys pour house in Flushing MI

Smell is chocolate, roasted malts, Carmel, and a bit of burnt toast.

Taste follows the smell well with nice nutty roasted malt flavor and an underlying sweetness. Very sight hop bitterness helps to give near perfect balance.

Mouthfeel is slightly thick with medium carbonation. Good middle ground between a sipping beer and a beer you drink several of.

Overall one of my favorite brown ales available in my area.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.3/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer pours a clear but dense body of brown with a creamy light tan head that sticks to the glass with each sip. There is a gentle carbonation of bubbles gliding up the glass.

S- The light aroma of roasted malt has a brown malt aroma behind it with some darker roasted notes coming through. The finish has a light tartness more from roasted malt and not funky.

T- The roasted brown malt flavor has some nice toast notes and a roasted chocolate flavor that grows as the beer warms. There is a cream flavor to it that leads to a finish of soft roasted bitterness and a light green hint to it.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with no alcohol heat or astringency.

D- This is a really drinkable session beer that has great malt flavor and depth to it. I would love to try his on cask but it already has great qualities in the bottle.

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Short's Bellaire Brown Ale from Short's Brewing Company
3.8 out of 5 based on 744 ratings.
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