Bell's 30th Anniversary Cherry Stout Reserve

Discussion in 'Beer News & Releases' started by Junior, May 25, 2018.

  1. Junior

    Junior Disciple (342) May 23, 2015 Michigan

    This has started to hit distribution in Michigan. Has anyone tried it yet? I am curious to know if the cherry flavor is tart or sweet.

    From the Bell's website:
    This version was brewed in commemoration of the 30th anniversary of our Cherry Stout, another specialty beer that was first brewed in 1988 as a nod to a local homebrew club in Kalamazoo, Michigan. It has grown to be one of the most anticipated beers we brew at the brewery every year.

    We brewed a version of Cherry Stout in 2001 using oak chips and cherry pits. This time around, we decided to brew with whole cherries and oak chips. Coming in at 9.0% alcohol by volume, this commemorative batch is a celebration of what Cherry Stout means to us.
    SugarbearYaz and Beer_Economicus like this.
  2. Zorro

    Zorro Poo-Bah (4,357) Dec 25, 2003 California

    The regular Cherry Stout is sour cherry.
    Gemini6 likes this.
  3. Billet

    Billet Initiate (197) Dec 17, 2013 Michigan

    Sounds pretty excellent to me. The regular Cherry Stout has some tartness, but has good balance between cherry tartness and bittersweet chocolate flavors.
  4. mt817

    mt817 Initiate (32) Mar 31, 2015 Michigan

    Picked up a four pack today. $13.99/4pack. Will be cracking one open tomorrow.
    SugarbearYaz likes this.
  5. SugarbearYaz

    SugarbearYaz Initiate (42) Jul 15, 2016 Michigan

    The oak chips are a bit more pronounced in this variation, leaves behind that oily slick mouthfeel of a true barrel aged brew. I absolutely love this version.
    archiebunkerjr likes this.
  6. darklord2011

    darklord2011 Initiate (149) Nov 18, 2011 Indiana

    I'd be curious to know how this compares to the BBA version I have from earlier this year.
    AyatollahGold and Gemini6 like this.
  7. SugarbearYaz

    SugarbearYaz Initiate (42) Jul 15, 2016 Michigan

    That one was whiskey barrel, I thought it was overpriced and a little thin.
  8. bbtkd

    bbtkd Poo-Bah (2,166) Sep 20, 2015 South Dakota
    Premium Trader

    Still, the whiskey barrel aged version was better than their regular Cherry Stout, and probably better than this oaked version, though I will give it a try.
    SugarbearYaz likes this.
  9. mt817

    mt817 Initiate (32) Mar 31, 2015 Michigan

    I preferred the 30th anny version over the whiskey barrel version, although both were very good.
  10. brentk56

    brentk56 Poo-Bah (8,955) May 13, 2004 North Carolina

    Anybody know whether the Whiskey Barrel version is the same as the Bourbon Barrel version that has been released in the past? Despite the name change I don't see that it has been listed as a new beer on this site, though on Rate Beer it is listed as a different beer.
  11. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (10,435) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    I figured... I saw it at my local in Philadelphia for $32.29+TAX. It's amazing the kind of price gouging that's going on.
    FatBoyGotSwagger likes this.
  12. Mr_Abner

    Mr_Abner Initiate (99) Aug 22, 2014 Michigan

    Had a bottle last night. Thought it was ok, but glad I only purchased a single bottle. The oak (and dryness from the oak) was definitely prominent. Haven't had their regular cherry stout for years, so I cannot compare to that one.
  13. Prince_Casual

    Prince_Casual Aspirant (299) Nov 3, 2012 District of Columbia

    I thought that beer was quite good but not nearly worth the $8 I paid for it. Kind of like Velvet Merkin, great drinkable brew, but not at the asking price.
    SugarbearYaz and bbtkd like this.
  14. mamaraza

    mamaraza Aspirant (293) Jul 6, 2014 Texas

    I picked up a four pack of the 30 year anniversary version for about $15. I have to say it’s a solid deal if you find it in that range. I’ve paid more for less.
    Gemini6 likes this.
  15. kojevergas

    kojevergas Poo-Bah (8,058) Aug 15, 2010 Colorado

    $13.99 USD for a 4-pack in Austin, TX.
  16. Junior

    Junior Disciple (342) May 23, 2015 Michigan

    Got one from a friend and drank it tonight. It’s good but a little too sweet for my liking.
  17. pond77

    pond77 Initiate (65) Jan 22, 2011 Michigan

    $4 for a single. I think you have to be in the right mood for this one.
  18. johnnybgood1999

    johnnybgood1999 Disciple (322) Oct 31, 2008 Virginia

    Love their cherry stout and love beers aged with just oak-there are too few of them. I'll pick it up if I see it.
    Gemini6 likes this.
  19. dvmin98

    dvmin98 Site Editor (2,747) Nov 1, 2010 North Carolina
    Premium Trader

    Got mine down in SC yesterday. Unfortunately, Im on a self-imposed beer hiatus for another 3 weeks...ugh, why do I do this to myself? Looking forward to trying.
  20. CaptainHate

    CaptainHate Devotee (499) Apr 22, 2006 Ohio

    I'll pick up a single of this tomorrow. Frankly I've seen too many conflicting reviews to start off with more than that, including a lukewarm account from the guy selling it.
    dcotom likes this.
  21. dcotom

    dcotom Poo-Bah (2,037) Aug 4, 2014 Iowa
    Premium Trader

    I suspect that the conflicting reviews may have something to do with the temperature at which this is sampled. To me, there was a world of difference between fridge temperature (boozy, harsh, lots of char) and just above cellar temperature (pleasant, warming, cocoa, espresso, lots of Montmorency cherry). I think I'll grab a couple more for the cellar. It really is an exceptional beer.
    Billet, IceAce and CaptainHate like this.
  22. stevepat

    stevepat Devotee (404) Mar 12, 2013 California

    Well the good news is, some of us can't even get this (stupid bell's say they distribute to california but I've not heard of it north of sacramento), and from other posters comments it sounds like it's a beer that could stand to sit for a couple weeks. I will definitely be on the lookout when I'm visiting in MI in a few months.
  23. IceAce

    IceAce Savant (905) Jan 8, 2004 California

    Bells California distribution footprint is currently from the Mexican border to Santa Barbara. They’re looking to expand the territory, but nothing finite has been announced.
  24. needMIbeer

    needMIbeer Champion (885) Feb 5, 2014 Tennessee
    Premium Trader

    I’m a total Michigan homer but never loved the regular cherry stout. I was however pleasantly surprised with the BA version so I’ll likely end up seeking this one out.
  25. bbtkd

    bbtkd Poo-Bah (2,166) Sep 20, 2015 South Dakota
    Premium Trader

    I finally had this tonight, and it's outstanding. Much less sour than their regular cherry stout, more cherry, nice roast malt. If they barrel aged this, man-o-man it would be killer.
    mt817 and Billet like this.
  26. ovaltine

    ovaltine Poo-Bah (2,354) Apr 6, 2010 Indiana
    Premium Trader

    I had it last night and really enjoyed it.

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  27. mt817

    mt817 Initiate (32) Mar 31, 2015 Michigan

    The did age it in whiskey barrels. I prefer this over that one. The whiskey seemed to highlight the sharpness of the tart cherries.
  28. bbtkd

    bbtkd Poo-Bah (2,166) Sep 20, 2015 South Dakota
    Premium Trader

    No whiskey/bourbon barrel aging in the 30th Anniversary Cherry Stout. It is soaked in oak chips, so it just gets the dry oaky taste.
    #28 bbtkd, Jun 16, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2018
    needMIbeer likes this.
  29. bbtkd

    bbtkd Poo-Bah (2,166) Sep 20, 2015 South Dakota
    Premium Trader

    Okay - I see what you meant. I like the BA Cherry Stout more than either the non-BA original or this 30th anniversary. It was still tart, but the BA was great. BA 30th would be even better.
  30. CaptainHate

    CaptainHate Devotee (499) Apr 22, 2006 Ohio

    I appreciated the feedback and am drinking it now under your suggested conditions. I think you like this a bit more than I do. It's not bad by any means but it's already very well balanced and the only reason to cellar this imo would be to drink it in a cool crisp setting.
    dcotom likes this.
  31. beerhan

    beerhan Zealot (568) Apr 28, 2010 Ohio

    Tried this a couple days ago-better than regular cherry stout but still not something I would seek out again. I drank a bottle over a couple hours and will say it definitely tastes much better as it warms up but I do not find the cherry flavor very appealing.
  32. HorseheadsHophead

    HorseheadsHophead Poo-Bah (1,524) Sep 15, 2014 New York

    I like it much more than the Whiskey Barrel Aged Cherry Stout. It's a solid beer.
    BrandonK likes this.
  33. Alefflicted

    Alefflicted Initiate (78) Dec 2, 2017 Minnesota

    I have tried and enjoyed a couple bottles of this brew.

    Cherry and dark chocolate flavors still dominate, but this version is a bit sweeter and slightly less tart then the original. There is more of a roasted malt quality, with oak, vanilla, and espresso flavors also appearing more prominently.

    Overall I thought it was a solid brew worth seeking out, it should cellar quite well.