chicagobears (446) - Elk Grove Village, Illinois, USA - OCT 3, 2014
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a hazy amber into snifter. Aroma is full of toffee, orange peel, and molasses. The molasses is at the forefront in flavor. The oak also comes on strong which I like. This is initially sweet on the palate but is well balanced with a complex spiciness and slightly acidic. A vanilla richness lingers on the palate. This is a top shelf ale right here.
peter (445) - Normal, Illinois, USA - AUG 5, 2006
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Deep garnet with a thin oily head. Nose is alcoholic with woddy notes including vanillin and coconut. Flavour is slightly roast, both from malts and the wood, with a sweet vanillin, chocolate. Strong bitterness exists, but is detected not perceived. Some raisin notes appear with warmth.
kjc51478 (441) - Valparaiso, Indiana, USA - MAY 21, 2011
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
12 oz Bottle. Appearance is dark amber color with light, beige head. Aroma is of malty sweetness, toffee, dark fruits, and a slight boozy-ness. Taste is complex - it started off with a heavy character of toasted malts, sweet bread, and caramel. As the it warmed up, there was more and more strong dark fruit flavors especially plum, which combined with the alcohol gave it a somewhat boozy quality. As my palate grew more accustomed to the heavy malt bill, I noticed more of the subtle hop bitterness that was lying underneath. Palate was full-bodied, thick in texture sitting heavy in the mouth, light and soft carbonation, and a bitter finish.
lachrymalisis (440) - Washington, USA - OCT 26, 2011
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
warming, maple-roast sweetness, slight nutty but slight brandy-like flavors coming out in the finish. big flavors. very drinkable and smooth. almost no carbonation, which suits it well. one of my favorite Founders releases.
Philip (436) - Illinois, USA - MAY 29, 2006
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Sampled at the Corkscrew, Urbana, during their weekly Sunday tasting. I’m really taken by the notes of nutmeg and vanilla in this one, from the nose to the palate. The bourbon barrels add to a solid old ale rather than detracting. There’s a good hop finish. What’s lacking here is a heavy mouthfeel, and more candided fruit and spice that I might expect from an old ale. Its certainly doesn’t try to be a barleywine, so in some sense, its kind of a novel beer. One doesn’t see many bourbon aged old ales.
caralkaline87 (435) - Washington DC, USA - JUN 29, 2010
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Pours amber with a quick, fine, light brown head. Nose is very sweet and fruity. Taste is mostly a sweet, semi-citrusy malt with a touch of alcohol and hops on the backside. Finish is sweet and a little oily. Solid beer.
AndresTM (434) - Texas, USA - DEC 8, 2012
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: MAR 15, 2015 Beautiful aroma of eggnog, cinnamon, toffee, white chocolate fudge, vanilla horchata, brown sugar, old leather, and booze. The pour is deep amber with no head. The taste closely mirrors the aroma, being mostly sweet and mildly bitter, with a splash of alcohol. The finish leans dry and woody, with a slight oaky tartness that dies slowly. Syrupy palate with minor, prickly carbonation. Balanced, flavorful, substantial. Perfect for a winter evening by the fireplace. Oh, Founders, how I love you. Lovely!
fitwitchik (433) - Ohio, USA - APR 4, 2014
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Poured from a bottle into a Founders Brewing Co. snifter clear caramel.
Aroma is sweet-so sweet with some booze reminds me of maple syrup.
Flavor reminds me of a strong barleywine with more malt. Rich & thick. So nice and well done. Each year I look forward to this brew & each year I am happy to consume. Satisfied.
crosamich (433) - Twin Falls, Idaho, USA - MAR 31, 2012
3.8 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Has a distinct oxidized sherry, raisin flavor. The nose is a bit off-putting but flavor in the mouth is much more agreeable. Drinks very well for nearly 10%. Body is lighter than expected.
Jabic (431) - Brigantine, New Jersey, USA - OCT 20, 2012
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Ar: Raisins, sugary malt, ripe pineapple.
Ap: Copper, a little hazy - almost no head, just a wisp of foam.
T: Vinous and burnt caramel up front, fair amount of sweetness - firm bitterness with a pronounced herbal flavor - grape, orange peel, and raisin - noticeable, but clean, alcohol heat - finish is tannin and herbal bitterness.
P: Medium-full body with medium carbonation - finish is medium-dry.
O: Big, hearty beer - complex fruit and wine flavors mingle with a big grip of malt.