Serve in Thistle


on tap

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RATINGS: 586   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.17   SEASONAL: Autumn   EST. CALORIES: 174   ABV: 5.8%
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The basic inspiration for Bell’s Christmas Ale was to create a sessionable holiday beer, using locally grown malt, which would stand apart from the array of spiced winter warmers that are typically introduced this time of year. In contrast to many other seasonals, Christmas Ale doesn’t contain any spices: all of the dry, toasted notes & subtle toffee flavors come from the 100% Michigan-grown barley, custom malted by Briess Malting, while a blend of hops from Michigan & the Pacific Northwest lend earthy, herbal aromas. At 5.5% ABV, it stands as a smooth, highly drinkable beer intended to complement holiday menus, not overshadow them.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
blutt59 (6020) - Dallas, Texas, USA - DEC 19, 2008
bottle, thanks to bu11zeye, orange brown color with no head, aroma of movie popcorn butter, flavor is toffee, buttery with a bitter watery finish

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
1FastSTi (3336) - Glendale, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 18, 2008
Wow am I going against the grain on this one. I had this on cask at Romans Pub. Ridiculously smooth body with an extremely balanced spiciness from the hops. Nice copper body with a velvet texture. This was really good. Very nice malt.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Hank1980 (942) - Athens, Georgia, USA - DEC 18, 2008
Bottles shared. Pours copper brown with small head. Aroma of bread malt, light hops, sweet malt. Taste is a very malty and a little spiced. Finish is smooth. Body is a little sticky. Overall, not very memorable. Glad I tried, but not a beer I would seek out.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
stankenk (130) - Maplewood, Minnesota, USA - DEC 18, 2008
Pours a copper color with beige head. The nose is malt, caramel, and hops. Comes across the palate rather weak with malt and light caramel. Also a bit over carbonated. It was a little disappointing.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
demitriustown (1070) - Sterling Heights, Michigan, USA - DEC 17, 2008
12 oz bottle. Aroma is malty, caramel, bready, and little bit of hops in the backing. Pours a translucent amber color with a thick tan head that lingers. Taste is got some of malt in there, roast, caramel, and has really nice carbonation. It is slightly heavy on the tongue, then goes into a bubbly aftertaste. Overall, Not the best representation of the style, but another solid beer for the good old brewery in Kalamazoo. Cheers!

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Darkover (1517) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - DEC 17, 2008
Clear brown color with a small beige head. Aroma and flavor of malt, peat and some spices. Disappointing for Bells.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
nearbeer (3745) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - DEC 16, 2008
12 oz. Copper-brown with a small head that persists. Aroma of spiced candy apple. Flavor is the same, with some wood and toasted nut shell on the finish. Maybe some faint smoky caramel, but then again maybe I only wished it were there. Almost-medium body is a little too fizzy and finishes dryish.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
NobleSquirrel (3437) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 16, 2008
Draft at Eccentric. Overall not an inspired beer. Quite fruity tasting, some caramel notes, but I do not get any of the smokey undertones that one get from a typical scotch ale. Pours a dark amber with a dissipating head. Nose is also a bit fruity, though kind of light and candy. Meh.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Tmoney99 (10708) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - DEC 16, 2008
Poured dark hazy brown color with an average frothy white head that was lasting and produced good lacing. Good moderate chocolate, spice and malt aroma. Medium body with a smooth sticky texture and soft texture. Moderate bittersweet flavor with with a moderate bittersweet finish of average duration.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 8/20
BlackForestCO (977) - Aurora, Colorado, USA - DEC 16, 2008
Bottle from LeopoldStoch, thanks Brandon. Poured a clear amber color with a thick, rocky off-white head that slowly faded to a thick layer and left some spotty lacing. Faint aroma of caramel malts with just the slightest hint of peat and some light fruitiness, with hints of red apple and some raisin. A hint of butter also. Abrasive, moderately bitter entry with some faint hints of dirty water and an attempt at some peat that tastes more like plastic with some failed undertones of fruit that more closely resemble a a sour infect. Over carbonated. A surprising, utter failure from Bells. Wow.

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