While Bell's beers have built a cultish national following over three decades starting in their native Michigan, they've been just a tantalizing rumor in New York City. That changed last month, when the craft-brew pioneer rolled into town in a big way—not just at beer-geek hangouts but also at chain groceries, drugstores, and corner delis. "It is ridiculously good stuff," rose water writes on Chowhound, "and has quickly taken me from working-mama-who-is-too-tired-to-drink-alcohol-ever to let's-have-beer-with-dinner-again-tonight-shall-we?"
She's sold on the Smitten Ale, a seasonal rye beer. Other 'hounds recommend Bell's Porter, Midwestern Pale Ale, Kalamazoo and Cherry Stouts, and Two Hearted Ale, an intensely hoppy IPA that's on tap at Professor Thom's in the East Village, among other places. And later in the year, New Yorkers can get acquainted with Oberon Ale, a signature wheat beer that's long been a Midwestern summer favorite.
Photo from Professor Thom's / Facebook