This is the first review I’m attempting to do while in a noisy bar, so we’ll see how it goes. Waiting for some World Cup action to start, so figured I might as well crank out a review in the process. This is a beer I’ve had many times before, but never got around to reviewing. I’d say I like a lot of what Bell’s does, but am certainly not a fan-boy. Let’s see where Two Hearted lands.
Taste: A By definition, Two Hearted is an IPA, and you certainly get that from the first sip. It certainly has the normal hops of an IPA, but it doesn’t blast you in the face like a lot of IPAs today. For me, that is a plus, as I’m a little over all the massively hopped beers that are just upping IBUs for the sake of it. Along with the initial hit of hops, you get a bit of citrus and a slightly lingering finish of hops. It isn’t too much that you assume your palate is shot to shit after drinking it and is a balanced flavor. This is what I think an IPA should taste like.
Packaging: B The Two Hearted packaging is fairly nice and depicts a fish for some reason. I’m not sure if it is saying you should drink this while fishing or what, but it looks to be some sort of trout with the words “Two Hearted Ale” and the Bell’s logo above. It is pretty typical of Bell’s, which is to say it is attractive, but nothing special. Side note: I used to think the Bell’s logo was some weird pilgrim hats and wondered how that fit in to their name. I finally realized it was bells (duh) and that makes a lot more sense.
Value: B- Among craft beers, Bell’s is at a slight premium in this market and comes in around $9.99 for a sixer. A lot of times, you can get craft beer for a dollar or so less, so this isn’t outrageous. I’m actually drinking this one as the draft version on special at a local bar for $4/pint, which is nice. One good thing about Bell’s is you can get them on pint special nights quite often.
Drunkenness: B+ Two Hearted comes in at 7% ABV, which seems to be middle of the road for the ridiculous values some IPAs are coming in at these days. Regardless, it will get you drunk fairly readily, with the only drawback being all the hops. For me anyway, too hoppy beers generally lead to a pretty shitty hangover if I indulge too much. Either way, put back a few of these and you’ll be feeling good.
Overall: A I really dig Bell’s Two Hearted Ale and it is at the top of my list as far as IPAs go. For me, a really hoppy-ass IPA isn’t where it’s at. I need something with some balance that isn’t just a hop bomb in my mouth. If you can give me that, then I’ll be loving your IPA.