The First Pour: Bell’s Porter

Cicero’s understands that when it come to beer, most people’s favorite is the latest and greatest new beer. Very few beer lovers drink the same beer over and over again. Sure, you might go back to an old standard, but you always try the latest beer first. For that reason, and others, Cicero’s changes their menu every week. When kegs kick, we change them up, unless we decide to keep it tapped for a while longer because it kicked so fast. With that in mind, we strive to keep you, our customers informed on our weekly changes. As this is a work in progress, I have decided to change the name of this series of blogs from “Just out the Keg” to “The First Pour”. This series of blog posts will highlight and review the newest beers we have on draft for you. Again, we have a happy couple writing these posts for us. If you see them around, make sure and thank them for their hard work.

By Alaina Kantner and Mike Vecchio

ABV: 5.6%

Bitterness: Unknown

Availability: Year-round

Kalama-what? Our thoughts exactly.

This next beer is brewed by Bell’s Brewery which is located in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Try saying that town name ten times fast after having a few of their brews – instant entertainment! We believe that there’s very little wrong that Bell’s can do and they did not let us down with this one. Bell’s Porter is a rich, roasted beer that’s well-balanced and flavorful.

The beer is a deep, dark brown – almost black – with a light head that dissipates somewhat quickly off the pour. Your nose will rejoice with this beer and the aromas it offers. The Porter aroma is malty with hints of chocolate and coffee; not brewed coffee though, think of opening a bag of freshly roasted coffee beans and that’s the smell you’ll find. The beer also gives off a bread-like, yeast smell that is very appealing. A toasted coffee taste blends together with chocolate notes and the faintest hint of brown sugar. The brew leaves the tongue feeling a faint hint of hops and hop oil which balances nicely with the malts this beer offers. This Porter is lighter in body than many of its competitors, but we still think that two might be our limit in one sitting as it might start to feel too thick. We really enjoy this beer, but don’t just take our word for it – go try a pint yourself.

About the Authors – Alaina and Mike moved to St Louis from Ohio in 2008 and quickly jumped into the craft beer scene. Alaina has gone from drinking light lagers almost exclusively to enjoying maltier beers – most notably porters and stouts – and hefeweizens. In her free time Alaina enjoys reading, running, and attempting to teach their dog tricks. Mike has evolved from drinking highly hopped IPAs to enjoying a wider range of pale ales and traditional hefeweizens. Mike enjoys trying to teach his dog not to bark at anything that moves, reading about crime and gangs, and home brewing with his co-workers. Both Alaina and Mike have been attending Cicero’s Beer School for a year and credit it to helping them expand their knowledge of craft brew and assisting them to take the plunge into home brewing with their friends. Hopefully, they will bring in some of their home-brew one day.

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