Craft Beer of the Week: Bell’s Winter White Ale

In Michigan, winter is everlasting. Therefore, a beer created just to embody all the wonders of these brutal months that winter brings, was a good move by Bell’s Brewery of Kalamazoo.

Bell’s Winter White Ale is fermented with a Belgian ale yeast to create an aroma of clove and fruit. However, when taking a sniff, it smells more like a pine tree. I guess pine trees are a large aspect of the winter scenery, but this created an instant displeasure.

Nevertheless, do not be discouraged by the original scent. This winter ale is stimulating and has a hint citrus and orange. The balance of the lingering lemon in the ale is paired with hints of herbs and pepper, which was a surprisingly tasty mixture. The beer is light with a frothy texture and bitter aftertaste. But it isn’t all fun and games.

One main drawback to Bell’s Winter White Ale is how carbonated it is. The overwhelming amount of bubbles clouded the taste and my overall impression. The long-lasting white head foamed over almost every time I took a sip, and the carbonation got to be overbearing. Imagine all the carbonation of soda bottled into what is supposed to be a smooth tasting beer.

If you’re into a semi-sweet but mainly dry beer, you will enjoy Bell’s Winter White ale. The golden-colored wheat beer is balanced in flavor and will leave you feeling crisp and refreshed. Compared to other winter ales, Bell’s Winter White Ale is not as spicy and has more dominance in the lemon grass and orange peel, which in my opinion is better.

The winter blues may leave you down but this wheat ale will burst your spirits into a golden spring.