elektrikjester (90) - Marietta, Georgia, USA - DEC 15, 2012
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours a deep, coppery orange with practically no head. Looks just beautiful in the glass. Minimal lacing. A sweet, aroma of brandied fruit, oak, vanilla, and leather. Taste is quite sweet, with an even mix of maltiness and alcohol that does call bourbon to mind (albeit far more drinkable). Mouthfeel is slightly thick with a light, fizzy carbonation. Despite the high alcohol content, there is a rather tame finish to this beer, deceptively masking its potency. In sum, a fine beer that will appear to those who love scotch ales, old ales, and barleywines due to its oak-aged nature and alcoholic sweetness.
coachd (89) - Missouri, USA - APR 18, 2014
3.4 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
The aroma is hard to place - sort of like a scotch ale with its maltiness, but a little more spicy. Pours a great amber color with a surprisingly large off white head that takes a while to dissipate. The taste is malty but not sweet, instead bitter with some boozy undertones. Very drinkable for 9.8% ABV. Call me crazy, but I found it to taste like an imperial IPA crossed with a coffee stout. I don’t always like oak aging, but it really comes across nicely in this one, enhancing the aftertaste considerably. The palate was slick with a bitter and slightly oaky finish that lasts until your next sip. I was reluctant to try this because it says it is similar to a barleywine, which I am not a fan of. The barleywine characteristics in this one are slight, and overall it’s a must try. Founders, you have impressed me once again.
MacDouglass (88) - Illinois, USA - NOV 5, 2010
4 AROMA 3/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Aroma: being as the rating guide indicates that "aroma is one of a beer’s most complex features," I wish I were better at rating an aroma, unfortunately, even with the appropriate glassware, I had tremendous difficulty getting any strong whaft whatsoever, only subtle sweet, it is as if this beer holds in its aroma in exchange for its wonderfully complex taste; Appearance: hazy, light brown bordering on tan, looks rather unfiltered, thin tan head on pour that quickly dissipates; Taste: just fantastic, right off the bat, it reminded me of the Chimay series, but I think this one has a better balance between the up front sweetness and the bitterness that lingers on the palate only after the swallow, also, it is easy to pull out the bready, more doughy actually, aspect that the malt gives it; Palate: as said, the bitterness lingers in a wondeful way, it hides and waits its turn, in no way getting in the way of the sweetness and maltiness that you get to enjoy with each swallow; Overall: this beer is wonderful, as my first beer from Founders, I must say I am absolutely impressed, after inspecting the ratings given to several other Founders offerings, I am eager to give this line of brews more attention, find a curmudgeon and share a draught of this fine beer with him!
Jvezp (86) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - OCT 19, 2011
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
I was very pleased with this beer, I could smell the alcohol right away so i wasn’t sure what to expect being 10% ABV. But it’s a great ale, you don’t taste the alcohol that much, it’s a nice malt bomb. Taste like caramel and ripe dates with a smooth likeable alcohol finish. Very drinkable!! I’m gald i’ve got 2 left!
BayAreaBeers (85) - Fremont, California, USA - DEC 18, 2011
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle. Pours a great dark ruby red with a off white head. The aroma is of dark fruits, vanilla and oak. The taste is very rich malt with a lot of sweetness. It really is almost Barleywine’ish. It very smooth with a touch of alcohol. Thank you to Rael at Mission Liquors for the share.
wickster (85) - fort wayne, Indiana, USA - AUG 21, 2010
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Now this is a sipping beer! Fantastic aroma, almost a charred wood smell to it with a sweetness rivaling a barleywine. Pours a dark amber with lots of sediment floaties (this was sitting in my beer fridge for a while I must admit)
Personally I find this one best after sitting out in its glass for about 10 minutes so it warms up a tad.
JugOPunch (83) - Nashua, New Hampshire, USA - JUN 10, 2006
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
12oz bottle: A cloudy brown pour with a slight head that dissipates. A lush aroma of sweet malt, cream, coconut, bourbon and slight alcohol. The flavor is mellow sweetness with the bourbon aging blending and melding very nicely. It’s not obtrusive at all. In fact, it gives a nice complimentary sweet and creamy coconut like flavor. A slick creamy mouth feel and full body make this very drinkable despite the 9.3 ABV. This is an excellent beer. I think I"ll grab another.
Chrisxx25 (82) - - MAY 29, 2012
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
I smell cherry, alcohol, oak, whiskey, plenty of malts and a little funk. Taste is caramel, light pine hops, a bit of whiskey, cherry, melons, brown sugar and bready malts. Alcohol is noticable but incorporated well. Palate is medium with some carbonation. Overall a little harsh but it was very different and interesting. Would age well for sure.
suchen (81) - , Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 15, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours a deep amber/mahogany with very little head. Smelled like oak or bourbon aging malty goodness. Taste was the same with a surprising bitterness which I learned afterward was due to blending e.s.b. type beer and barleywine. Thick beer but very drinkable. Yum.
slipy120 (81) - Michigan, USA - AUG 1, 2009
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 19/20
The aroma is strong of grain and you can smell the alcohol (seeing as this beer is 9.8% ABV that is normal). The color is almost red and the when poured there is a very small head that disappears almost immediately. It is sweet with a bitter finish but not as bitter of a finish as in stouts. Overall good beer and another reason I am happy to have Founders in town.