Rando7 (776) - Iowa, USA - MAR 3, 2012
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
(Better Half) bottle pours clear amber brown with brief bubbly white head. Aroma malts, maple syrup and slight bourbon. Taste sweet with Old Ale overtones, maple syrup and bourbon. Finish slight hops and prolonged sweet maple. Palate medium with not much carbonation. Alcohol very apparent with a nice alcohol burn on the finish.
Glad I tried it, nice beer but not up to the level of other Founders limited editions. Maple syrup comes through here even more than with Canadian Breakfast Stout, I enjoyed the maple flavor but it wasn’t balanced by the other flavors.
Hair6a11 (1428) - Illinois, USA - MAR 3, 2012
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle: pour is garnet Brown with a fine bubbled beige head in this snifter. Modest retention, and light lacing is present. The nose is pretty booze dominant, with molasses, caramel, banana, dark fruits, and bready malts. The flavor profile is more interesting, but I keep thinking some age could vs beneficial. The maple syrup definitely comes through, and the body of this beer is a little viscous. More caramel and molasses; some bitterness but more sweet. Booze is present , with more fruits rounding it out.
Reynolds314 (2915) - Connecticut, USA - MAR 3, 2012
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pretty nice stuff here. The bourbon is a bit overwhelming in this one which is not usually the case in founders barrel aged offerings. The beer improved as it warmed and I got light spicyness, dark fruits, and caramel with the strong bourbon/vanilla notes. Overall good.
bosendorfer (40) - Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 2, 2012
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
I finally had the opportunity to sample this beer on tap at a local pub downtown. Given how much Canadian Breakfast Stout absolutely lived up to the hype, at least for me, I figured this beer was more than worth sniffing out. Luckily, my palate did not have to wait long. The beer was served to me and my friend in two bulbous little 6 ounce snifters. A deep, opaque amber color let little light through as the head spillled over and ran slowly down the glass, leaving a snalelike trail of sticky lacing. Rounded notes of powdery malt, syrup, treacly vanilla and muted whiskey rose slowly from the glass to greet the nose. The bourbon barrel flavor in this ale is nowhere near as prevalent as in Founders other BA breakfast stout offerings, KBS and CBS. In those beers, the maple/bourbon barrel created a synergy with the chocolate and coffee that was astonishing and rich. With the Kaiser, the maple barrel turned the beer more into a confection than anything else. As soon as this syrupy treat hits your lips, its like you’ve slapped on your bib and are about to dive into a decadent pancake breakfast with LOTS of dripping, oozing syrup. The syrupy sweet character of this beer is reigned in a bit by some flowery hops and drying vanilla notes from the barrel, but it almost goes beyond cloying. The maple and vanilla from the barrel really come through together and finish the beer with a sticky smack, leaving some toasted malt notes to linger a while in the mouth. Two 6 oz. pulls of this dessert in a glass were enough for me; I don’t know if a third would have been worth the diabetes. Overall, this a very comforting, warm and delightfully sticky beer with plenty to offer. However, it doesn’t round out the sweetness as much as I wanted it to and also doesn’t deliver entirely on the complexity. Perhaps my expectations were to high and inconsistent with the other Backstage offerings. I’m left wanting more out of the beer and needing to brush my teeth from the sugar.
wxman (1589) - O’Fallon, Illinois, USA - MAR 2, 2012
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours an amber color with fairly vigorous carbonation and a minimal off white head that does lace the glass. Aroma is buttered rum and maple syrup. Interesting balance of rum, brandy, butter, maple, brown sugar and some hop bitterness at the close. Alcohol is present as well, but not offensively. Warms the tummy after the swallow. Quite busy, but also quite delicious!
drfabulous (5048) - Lexington, Kentucky, USA - MAR 1, 2012
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
750 thanks to Dana at Shenanigans. Molasses. Bourbon. Barley wine. What’s not to like? Really well done.
MrChopin (3727) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - MAR 1, 2012
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Founders Curmudgeons Better Half - tap at smokin joes. hazy red-tan translucent, thick lasting cream head, small bubbled. Nose of orange toffee and molasses, quite sugary and rich. Flavor shows orange candy and sugar at front, mid is more barrel and stale malt, very sugary with creamy marshmallow body, stinging sweetness in the finish accompanied by bitter heat when warmed. Nose was mediocre, flavor likely tooth rotting, creamy body compliments fruit-sugar combo but it never gets off ground.
Ernesto987 (4802) - Arizona, USA - FEB 29, 2012
4.2 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
I love this barrel treatment. Sweet molasses aroma, maple syrup, and great old ale background
Smeade (80) - Illinois, USA - FEB 29, 2012
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Tasted side by side with Curmudgeon
S: brown-orange, white head, looks like curmudgeon, some floaties
A: a little sweet booze, mild vanilla, caramel
T: slight burnt flavor, sweet whisky, vanilla caramel, medium finish
O: very good, delicious, awesome beer
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
jar72404 (426) - USA - FEB 29, 2012
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
750 ml bottle. Pours amber with cream head. Aroma is maple syrup, molasses and bourbon. Flavor is all of these with brown sugar. Superb.