mixmasterob (983) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - FEB 21, 2012
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Had on tap @ Leonís last night, just cracked a bottle for this review. Been looking forward to this for a long time, huge fan of the regular stuff. Hazy amber pour with just about no head. A bit darker than Curmudgeon but overall very similar in appearance. Aroma was hot and boozy. Getting past the booze, lots of caramel and maple sweetness, light notes of bourbon and wood. Flavors were a wonderful mix of sweet caramel, bourbon, maple syrup and toffee. Huge warming finish. Mouthfeel was incredibly smooth and decadent, oily, slick. Some time in the cellar with do this guy wonders. Maybe just a tad too boozy at the moment but overall this is another winner from Founders, no doubt.
cosmicevan (1) - New York, USA - FEB 20, 2012 does not count
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
bottle picked up locally. pretty sure this was billed as Kaiser Curmudgeon at one point in time. i had that on tap at rattle n hum at a founderís event and was blown away...hereís hoping this is it.
a - filled my cbs snifter. poured a ruby chestnut that was semi-transparent. nice frothy thick head that left big streaks of lacing on my swirled glass.
s - strong sweet maple syrup. brown sugar to the max. definitely has that same old curmudgeon crossed with backwoods that i picked up in the draft version, but way more maple. sweet potpouri.
t - wonderful sweet caramel brown sugar. the barrel and maple syrup really take the old ale on a wild ride. this is the treatment that was needed for this beer. really well blended. if anything, a bit sweet, but super palatable. dare i say that this might be better than BB4D.
m - extremely smooth and easy to drink for the intense booze and sweetness that youíd expect.
o - overall, this is amazing. founders does it again. this was the sleeper as kaiser curmudgeon and a treat. i had heard black biscuit would be next, but super pumped for this one. glad it fell a bit under the radar for these releases...at least wasnít as crazy as CBS. a winner and a half. fantastic brew. as world class as BB4D...and the only old ale that should be mentioned in the same breathe.
craftycarl21 (2302) - Washington, Washington DC, USA - FEB 20, 2012
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
On tap at Churchkey. Lighter than expected clear amber pour, minimal head. Nose and flavor are absolutely rife with maple, wood, molasses, caramel, and big booze presence. Lighter than expected, slightly oily mouthfeel. Good, but not amazing, and certainly nothing close to CBS (same barrel treatment).
bigtaster (831) - Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA - FEB 20, 2012
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Snifter on tap. Pours hazy Golden yellow with red brown hues. Somewhat muted nose with lots of fruit. Very thick almost like syrup, very little carbonation. It it a big his of sweetness and complex flavors all over the board, fruit, grapes, apricot, lots of caramel. Another great beer.
socaltay (204) - Ventura, California, USA - FEB 19, 2012
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Aroma is full of sweet maple syrup and bourbon notes that seem to get more syrupy as the beer warms. The appearance is amazing it ruby red color that has some brown in it. The taste is pretty spectacular also. It starts off with the flavor of curmudgeon on the tongue but the middle of the mouth is wear much more complexity from the barrel aging come in. The finish has a bit of alcohol on the tongue yet it is very well hidden for an 11.9% abv beer. Overall this beer is wonderful.
Ontbeertaster (2348) - Ontario, CANADA - FEB 19, 2012
4.7 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Tap, just happened to walk into a bar this and thought I would see what all the buzz was for. I donít usually like barley wine like ales. But wow. This one is worth the buzz I would say. It was quite amazing. It had a light head. The colour was fairly dark. Didnít look filtered. The aroma is bourbon, a bit mapley. Taste is very complex, lots going on. Lots of bourbon lots of sweet dark fruits lots of heavy malts. All blending very to make a very smooth tasty tasty beer
Holtguy (135) - Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA - FEB 19, 2012
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bought this bottle and the cashier asked me, "What are you going to do with it?" I must have looked at him askance, because he then said, "Drink it? Age it? Sell it?"
I said, "Oh, Iím going to drink it."
I guess if this beer is hard to find, itís because of the black market. Not unlike trying to get bleacher tickets to Cubs - Cardinals game at Wrigley on a Saturday in June.
Anyway, this beer starts off hot. Alcohol in the aroma and a strong alcohol flavor upon first sip. My taste buds puckered initially, which is odd because this beer is not sour.
Anyway, this beer turned out to be quite awesome if I do say so myself. Once it warmed, the flavors came through. Sweet bourbon flavors melded perfectly with the base of Curmudgeon Old Ale. I didnít notice any maple flavors, per se, though the sweetness probably had something to do with the maple. I would go so far as to say this beer is great. It could be greater though, and I guess thatís why the guy at the beer store asked me what I was going to do with it. This one probably could use a little aging to soften it up.
574deadzone (1253) - North Central, Indiana, USA - FEB 19, 2012
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JAN 9, 2013 On tap at Founders, because where else was I going to get it? Deep brown color with almost no head. Nose was a lot of maple and bourbon, very sweet and boozy. Taste was quite sweet, with some bitterness. Palate was a little hot, not as sticky as I thought it would be, and pretty smooth. Overall, Iím glad I got a chance to try it. I donít feel like itís entirely my bag, so Iím not so disappointed that I didnít get a bottle of it. Still, for fans of bourbon barrel stuff, and really sweet beers, this would be one to try to find if you can.
Update: I actually did snag a bottle somehow, and sat on it for about 9 months. Aged mellowed the harshest of the alcohol notes, bringing to the fore a lot of the maple and bourbon and making for a really nice experience. Adding a couple points to reflect this.
polomagnifico (1202) - Saginaw, Michigan, USA - FEB 19, 2012
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Hard as hell to get bottle. Aroma has notes of molasses, bourbon, maple syrup, caramel, toffee, vanilla and cream. Deep hazy med/dark amber hue with a small off-white head that mostly diminished and left good lace. Flavor is very sweet and medium bitter. Palate is very full bodied, oily with medium soft carbonation. Overall a very sweet and decadent brew. Should be classified as a dessert beer instead of an Old Ale. I did enjoy it.
sherm1016 (1250) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - FEB 18, 2012
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
750ml bottle, labeled Curmudgeonís Better Half, split with dwm1034. Pours a deep amber color with an off white head and some lacing. Aroma is maple syrup, bourbon. A little heavy on the palate with light carbonation. Flavor is sweet, malty, bourbon, vanilla, oak, with a sweet, maple finish. This beer highlights the maple bourbon barrels very well, but the bourbon overwhelms the base beer. The maple sweetness makes up for it though. Very easy drinking at 11%+.