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Bells Black Note Stout

 (RETIRED)
overall
100
100
style
Formerly brewed at Bells Brewery
Style: Imperial Stout
Galesburg, Michigan USA
Serve in Snifter

bottled
available

on tap
unknown

Local Distribution

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RATINGS: 861   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.32/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 315   ABV: 10.5%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Black Note blends the complex aromatics of Expedition Stout with the velvety smooth texture of Double Cream Stout. The combination is aged in freshly retired oak bourbon barrels for months. The result is a malty harmony of dark chocolate, espresso and dried fruit notes, all buoyed by the warmth and fragrance of the bourbon barrel. Aimed squarely at the stout aficionados, Black Note makes a grand statement about the art of the dark.


4.4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
Imperial_Scout (363) - Illinois, USA - JAN 27, 2013
Poured into 12oz stout glass. Smells of Bourbon, Barrel, and some prevalent vanilla notes. Very silky and smooth not much by the way of bitterness, but very well balanced. I compared this against Bourbon County and felt that it was smoother but not quite as boozy. I would say BC is better but this is extremly good and well worth the hype.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
hamilton23 (619) - Alpine, California, USA - JAN 26, 2013
Poured from 75oml bottle. Bottle No. 978 of 1081 from Batch 10136. Pours nearly black with just a whisp of tan head. Aroma is smoke, bourbon, chocolate and a bit of dried fruits. Taste follows pretty closely. There is a touch of stale coffee in the back end of the flavor. I was expecting a bit more sweetness, but it is pretty well balanced really.

4.4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
zathrus13 (1761) - Mount Laurel, New Jersey, USA - JAN 25, 2013
Bottle 1291/1524, batch 11620. Pours dark brown/black, with a brown head. Aroma is roasted malt, bourbon, dark fruit, vanilla, molasses, raisins, and some smoke. Can’t sense any alcohol in the nose. Flavor is bourbon, vanilla, roasted malt, molasses, dark fruit, and just a touch of alcohol. Medium to heavy, creamy body. Glad I finally got to try this.

4.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
mikediesel124 (4) - Michigan, USA - JAN 24, 2013 does not count
Appearance: Jet black. Poured with no head. Aroma: Fruity nose. Bourbon sweetness. Taste: Smoky, roasted, sweet, bourbony. Mouthfeel: Surprisingly medium body for a stout. Simply amazing. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

4.5
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
wickster (85) - fort wayne, Indiana, USA - JAN 24, 2013
Poured from 12 oz bottle. Nice and dark, very little head at all. Strong aroma of Bourbons, chocolate and other dark goodness. I have to admit, while delicious, i think Expedition is much better... i like my stouts bolder and a solid kick to the chin and nose. This is a subtle treat.... but I’m not convinced it holds up to all the hype.

4.7
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
timc100 (314) - Park Ridge, Illinois, USA - JAN 24, 2013
UPDATED: MAR 2, 2013 2012 Vintage Pours nearly pitch black - into a snifter. Surprisingly there is a dark brown head that sticks around for nearly the entire 50 minute duration of enjoyment. In the glass it is black as an eighth note (sorry). Gorgeous The aroma is incredibly enticing, bringing you in with intensity and balance. Very prominent bourbon barrel characteristics - sweet vanilla and coconut, oak, and heat. Rich dark and milk chocolate and fresh coffee nearly dominate the dark fruits lying beneath. Tastes just as good as it smells. Big bourbon, chocolate, coffee, and sweet dark fruits. It is not a sweet bomb of a beer, there is some dryness. The mouthfeel is nearly full, soft carbonation and incredibly smooth. Very drinkable, do not feel the 11.8 abv at all, just a nice soothing warmth from the bourbon. This is a fantastic BA stout and well worth the effort to seek out a few 12oz bottles.

4.8
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
ianhuntley73 (22) - - JAN 21, 2013
(Bottle 750 ml) Completely black, opaque, and beige head sticks to the sides of the snifter. First smell I get is of dark dried fruits, which I find interesting since it’s bourbon barrel aged. Of course you get the bourbon on the nose, but also you can smell sweetness. Alcohol is also evident in the nose. Tastes of coffee, dark dried fruits, chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, oakiness. Very well balanced and smooth. Not harsh at all, especially for being 11.5%. Nice aftertaste of vanilla that lingers in the mouth. Mouthfeel is full-bodied, velvety smooth and lightly carbonated. A world class beer from a world class brewery.

4.1
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
ICEatALAMO (1262) - Troy, Michigan, USA - JAN 21, 2013
12oz bottle. Finally able to get my hands on this with their new larger release of 12oz bottles. The pour is dark with a nice rich carmel head. The aroma is laced with bourbon, along with tons of malt and some dark fruits. The taste gives a little but burn up front, and really throughout the drink. A little thinner than I was expecting. Can taste characteristics of both beers in here as well. IMO a little disappointed given all the hype, but if it ages anything like Expedition Stout, this beer will only get better. Just much better BA stuff out there.

4.4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
trumpetskid (106) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JAN 20, 2013
Pours a dark brown with a mocha head. Smells of bittersweet chocolate and vanilla. The taste is quite sweet, but not as much as the aroma. A lot of vanilla and chocolate. There is a small amount of roast on the back end so it finishes slightly roasty and dry. The beer is medium bodied with a creamy mouthfeel. There is no alcohol detected in the aroma or the taste. There is a slight warming in the throat. Great beer.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
wheresyourball (572) - El Cajon, California, USA - JAN 20, 2013
22oz bottle, obtained in a trade, poured into a tulip. Pours opaque black with minimal head. Nose is roast, dark fruit, chocolate, bourbon. Taste follows; medium bodied. A bit disappointing that the flavor isn’t more complex (to my palate anyway). I would not say this is in the same league as Black Tuesday or BCBS.


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