Bell's Brewery (2020)

Discussion in 'Great Lakes' started by archiebunkerjr, Jan 4, 2020.

  1. archiebunkerjr

    archiebunkerjr Aspirant (216) Oct 25, 2010 Michigan
    Trader

    Bell's is my favorite brewer. I live an hour and half away but I'm always looking for excuses to travel to Kalamazoo so I stop by Bell's for a drink. The taplist always has something new and interesting on it in addition to the year round standards and seasonals. I never have to check the taplist before going to Bell's because I know there will always be plenty of winners to choose from.

    2020 will be the 35th anniversary for Bell's and they will celebrate it with their Funvitational in the fall. I missed out on their 30th anniversary Funvitational but I won't let it happen again.

    The (free!) tours that Bell's provide are second to none. And the General Store is always money in the bank for great packaged beer and other interesting beer swag. Especially if you are a home brewer.

    However, if there was one Bell's wish that I could have granted, I wish they could increase their growler system to more than 4 taps. I like to have options. Especially when I see their taproom has 20+ great beers on tap that I would love to have a growler fill but cannot. Although, I do have to admit one time I sent an email to Bell's a day before a visit and asked if they would put their Imperial Red on their growler system. The next day, it was there. Pretty damn cool if you ask me.
     
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  2. PapaGoose03

    PapaGoose03 Poo-Bah (2,711) May 30, 2005 Michigan
    Society

    Every time I visit Kalamazoo for shopping with my wife I end up at Bell's. I like most of the other breweries and good bars in town, but I still end up at Bell's. Kalamazoo Beer Week starts in another week or so, and I'll be in town a few days that week, so I'll be visiting other venues to spread the love a little bit. But I'll be back at Bell's too. :slight_smile::slight_smile:
     
  3. archiebunkerjr

    archiebunkerjr Aspirant (216) Oct 25, 2010 Michigan
    Trader

    I've never visited during Kalamazoo Beer Week. The weather usually isn't agreeable enough for my longer drive. If I can make it for a day, I will shoot you a PM. We cross paths on BA all the time. It would be nice to put a face to your name.

    Oh, by the way. I almost forgot. Hopslam will be in stores soon if it isn't already. And I see that Bell's has Hop Grandslam on their taplist. I have to try that one.
     
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  4. PapaGoose03

    PapaGoose03 Poo-Bah (2,711) May 30, 2005 Michigan
    Society

    I've been studying the event schedule for all of the venues but have not made a decision yet on what events/days my wife and I will attend. The snow is always a deciding factor even though I only have 20 miles from Battle Creek. PM me if you'll be going and I'll try to match your schedule.

    I had thought about going to Bell's yesterday for Hopslam's release but decided to wait until it's in stores. I've not seen Hop Grandslam before; must be new this year? They didn't even mention it in their social media. Otherwise I might have gone yesterday.
     
    archiebunkerjr likes this.
  5. WallaceMI

    WallaceMI Initiate (31) Mar 25, 2015 Michigan

    When do you think Hopslam will hit store shelves in the metro Detroit area? Wed 1/8?
     
  6. Cotton_27

    Cotton_27 Devotee (477) Feb 22, 2013 Michigan
    Trader

    Just picked up some 4 day old Hopslam, tasting mighty fine as usual!
     
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  7. core42

    core42 Zealot (540) May 5, 2010 Michigan
    Trader

    They have definitely gotten a LOT better with that! I remember a couple of years ago I was buying directly from the General Store the day it was released & the cans were dated 2 weeks old.
    This year I grabbed 1/2/20 dated cans on 1/3
     
  8. Zorak2

    Zorak2 Initiate (49) Nov 5, 2016 Michigan

    #8 Zorak2, Jan 7, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2020
  9. GuyFawkes

    GuyFawkes Poo-Bah (4,625) Apr 7, 2011 Illinois
    Society Trader

    First I'm hearing of it, but I'd love to try it!!
     
    lloydboss likes this.
  10. beardown2489

    beardown2489 Devotee (415) Oct 5, 2012 Illinois

    Interesting addition to the Heart family, but all of my excitement is on light hearted.

    I’m a big fan of half acre tuna (centennial and mosaic) I’m imagining this beer but with galaxy replacing mosaic and probably a pinch more malt backbone. It should be new school but classic as hell.
     
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  11. Number1Framer

    Number1Framer Initiate (142) Mar 13, 2016 Wisconsin
    Trader

    Hell yes been too damn long since I had a good BIPA!
     
  12. ChangSing

    ChangSing Initiate (164) May 5, 2013 Illinois

    I'm looking forward to Hopslam. As are many. But, I really can't wait to see what concerts they'll have at the brewery this summer. I went to the Langhorne Slim show in Sept and it was a blast.
     
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  13. detpizzaboi

    detpizzaboi Disciple (321) Feb 10, 2019 Michigan
    Trader

    2020 Hopslam is as good as I can remember. Had it on draft on release day, and again in cans yesterday. Rich juicy, piney, malty, nice honey sweetness, so great fresh.
     
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  14. mbockstruck30

    mbockstruck30 Disciple (325) Dec 31, 2010 Illinois
    Trader

    Really wanted to go to that show but couldn't pull it off. Did get to see Frank Turner though, which was awesome. With these shows plus Conor Oberst and Lucero over the past couple years, it's really awesome to see them pulling in some bigger (relative) name bands.
     
  15. Sammonsd

    Sammonsd Initiate (40) Aug 13, 2015 Michigan
    Trader

    Weird observation:
    Blackbeard's makes a great pairing with Garrett's popcorn...
     
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  16. PapaGoose03

    PapaGoose03 Poo-Bah (2,711) May 30, 2005 Michigan
    Society

    I just picked up a 'hint' from Bell's Instagram and their website that the 5th release of the Leaves of Grass series will be a winter warmer @ 8.5% abv. Coming "soon." It looks like from their BA page that they have never produced a winter warmer, so this should be interesting. https://twitter.com/i/web/status/1215774853682356224
     
  17. Number1Framer

    Number1Framer Initiate (142) Mar 13, 2016 Wisconsin
    Trader

    When is Light Hearted going out to distro? Is 'early 2020' all anyone knows?
     
  18. beardown2489

    beardown2489 Devotee (415) Oct 5, 2012 Illinois

    Should be right after hopslam
     
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  19. SpunkyHopslammer

    SpunkyHopslammer Initiate (71) Jan 18, 2011 Illinois

    Woah, lets not get out over our skis just yet:stuck_out_tongue: Need some Hopslam NOW!

    Two Hearted is my go to IPA, I'm really curious about the Light. I can't help but think it's going to be just another session beer that I'm not a fan of.
     
  20. PapaGoose03

    PapaGoose03 Poo-Bah (2,711) May 30, 2005 Michigan
    Society

    I saw somewhere on social media that it will be released on tap at the cafe and in bottles and/or cans (I forget that part) at the store. I think it went on to say distribution to stores soon after. So it's close to happening.

    EDIT: I forgot to give the date: Monday, Jan 20th.
     
    #20 PapaGoose03, Jan 12, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2020
  21. Number1Framer

    Number1Framer Initiate (142) Mar 13, 2016 Wisconsin
    Trader

    I'm as intrigued by the lo-cal aspect of it as the 'sessionable' abv. I don't know if the session IPAs of yesteryear were of a significantly lower calorie count beyond the lower alcohol content, but these days I could use something easier on the waistband. I've seen the lo-cal/abv Goose Island IPA around but want to hold out for Light Hearted since the original it's based on is so tried and true.

    HopWhat? Gotta say I'm over 10%abv IPAs. It's an okay beer, just can't do it anymore.
     
    #21 Number1Framer, Jan 12, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2020
  22. SpunkyHopslammer

    SpunkyHopslammer Initiate (71) Jan 18, 2011 Illinois

    I'd love a lower cal option, we'll see. Seems Hopslam has become a dinosaur for most, so many new breweries and flavor profiles...that's why I appreciate it when Hopslam shows up, it's a good change of pace style.
     
  23. core42

    core42 Zealot (540) May 5, 2010 Michigan
    Trader

    I missed Light Hearted as a general store beer so I'm interested in trying it even though I generally abhor session IPAs
     
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  24. Wolvmar

    Wolvmar Devotee (435) Jul 2, 2014 Michigan

    I’ve had a couple 2020 Hopslams so far and I still think it’s a great beer. Sure there are many more similarly great beer choices than years ago but Hopslam has stood the test of time. And I always have a bias for such beers.
     
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  25. mbockstruck30

    mbockstruck30 Disciple (325) Dec 31, 2010 Illinois
    Trader

    I completely agree. That said, over time my palate has evolved, and these days I prefer drier, less sweetened, beers in general. So I don’t think I love it quite as much as I used to. But I still really enjoy it and look forward to its release.
     
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  26. Junior

    Junior Crusader (710) May 23, 2015 Michigan
    Society Trader

    I’m doing a dry January this year so no Hopslam for me. I look forward to having it in 2021.

    Looking forward to Light Hearted though.
     
    #26 Junior, Jan 15, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2020
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  27. PapaGoose03

    PapaGoose03 Poo-Bah (2,711) May 30, 2005 Michigan
    Society

    Oh, c'mon. How about on Feb. 1st? :wink:
     
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  28. ClarkstonMark

    ClarkstonMark Initiate (88) Feb 21, 2016 Michigan
    Trader

    I am too (dry Jan), but I made an exception and had a Hopslam on draft last Friday night which I enjoyed.
    Made another exception last night for an ON Pils (excellent btw).
    Hope I make it through the next 2 weeks
     
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  29. mbockstruck30

    mbockstruck30 Disciple (325) Dec 31, 2010 Illinois
    Trader

    That's how it starts...
     
  30. Wolvmar

    Wolvmar Devotee (435) Jul 2, 2014 Michigan

    Sort of dry January??

     
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  31. Number1Framer

    Number1Framer Initiate (142) Mar 13, 2016 Wisconsin
    Trader

    By then the hops have completely faded and it's already turned into barleywine. :stuck_out_tongue:
     
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  32. SudsSavant

    SudsSavant Aspirant (244) Jan 9, 2007 Minnesota
    Trader

    Does it still count if I gave you one of my Hopslam's from last year that's buried in the back of the fridge?
     
    Junior likes this.
  33. flat_lander

    flat_lander Crusader (703) May 11, 2016 Illinois
    Society Trader

    See, the trick is, you just don't start Dryuary at all. Works every time!
     
  34. Junior

    Junior Crusader (710) May 23, 2015 Michigan
    Society Trader

    An arid January.
     
  35. Cotton_27

    Cotton_27 Devotee (477) Feb 22, 2013 Michigan
    Trader

    My January has been quite moist.
     
  36. GuyFawkes

    GuyFawkes Poo-Bah (4,625) Apr 7, 2011 Illinois
    Society Trader

    Sopping wet over here.
     
  37. Nickapalooza1986

    Nickapalooza1986 Initiate (5) Aug 17, 2019

    I loved Hopslam the first couple years I had it but the years and years in between I just thought "meh?" When I got my usual 6er... Just got done in western Wisconsin dated 6 days ago and after all these hazy beers this is blowing my mind.
     
  38. croush

    croush Crusader (784) Mar 20, 2015 Illinois
    Trader

    I saw somewhere on social media that Bell's is going to be introducing a canned hazy double IPA in 2020. I can find the post now to remember the name of it, but it definitely has me intrigued. I think they did a good job with Official as a mass produced version of a hazy IPA, so I will definitely want to check out the DIPA once it comes out.
     
  39. PapaGoose03

    PapaGoose03 Poo-Bah (2,711) May 30, 2005 Michigan
    Society

    I'm thinking the same thing. It must be the freshness, so it will be interesting to see if it falls off. We can only hope that Bell's has somehow conquered the rapid 'freshness-to-barleywine' issue that we all complain about.
     
    Nickapalooza1986 likes this.
  40. ypsifly

    ypsifly Meyvn (1,077) Sep 22, 2004 Michigan

    2020...the year Hopslam became a "shelf turd". The wife and I did a lot of shopping over the weekend and I was shocked to see stacks of it at every place we stopped at that sold beer. One place by my house had KBS by the front door, bottles of CBS on the counter right across from a healthy stack of Hopslam. In 2017 my head would have exploded.....