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Founders Black Rye - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Black RyeFounders Black Rye

Educational use only; do not reuse.

440 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 440
Hads: 1,527
Avg: 4.04
pDev: 14.85%
Wants: 109
Gots: 286 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Rye Beer |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: maxpower on 09-17-2004

78 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Founders Black Rye Alström Bros
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Reviews: 440 | Hads: 1,527
Photo of challenja
4.46/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

A: Dark caramel charcoal hue. Light fermented white lace coats the glass. Sticky white residue.
S: Sweet molasses, bright caramel rye mash bill, all spice, sweet 60% costa rican single origen chocolate, new French oak barrel.
T: follows the nose, light bodied sweet chocolate stout in style, charred French oak, astringent hops, tight clef pallet.
M: smooth, medium body, high acidity, astringent, rye mash, top pallet wash hog.
O: another unique winner from Founders. A delicious winner deserving of a nitro tap.

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Photo of lwillitz
4.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12-oz bottle into craft glass

A - a finger of dark tan foam over a black body

S - coffee, grapefruit, pine

T - bready dark malts, coffee, smoke/burnt flavor, grapefruit and pine from the hops, earthy notes

M - smooth, creamy medium body (lighter than expected), medium carbonation

O - Founders Black Rye is a very good rye beer. The taste is complex and very enjoyable. While it could have a little more body, the smooth creaminess is still impressive.

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Photo of UPMD_Bill
3.81/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I had a bottle that was left over from last year. Still good but some of the hop character is missing. Starts off almost like a stout with chocolate malt flavor. Sweet malt followed by bitter. Not getting the citrus or pine notes from the hops because it's an old bottle. Creamy mouthfeel and filling. Will try again to compare a fresh bottle.

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Photo of stephens101
3.97/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sleek and shiny black with a foamy, rolling tan froth. Fresh grain and caramel aroma with a bit of roasted malt down deep. Tastes of caramel, black licorice and dark fruits. Sugar and distant florals noticed later.

Simple and very efficacious.

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Photo of SometimesIfart
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Founders Black Rye.

I really don't drink enough Founders beers these days. Not because I don't want to, but because I've had a large majority of what they offer and I'm afraid that I may one day run out of beer to review since I don't ever foresee myself trading.

Look - Well it is certainly about as black as you're going to get for the style. A but of lighting can be seen through the glass. Head was half mocha and came in a fingers worth with turned to sticky cloud formations around the glass. Carbonation is unreadable due to the darkness of the body. Microscopic lacing is left after the drink is finished. 4.

Smell - There is a larger hop presence here than I had expected. Grapefruit juices and dark malts meet in conjunction and own everything in this department. Not picking up any stout like traces. 4.

Taste - A slow drinker as is typical of the style. Large dark rye bread is the first thing to smack your tongue and is followed by a sucker punch of dry though juicy hoppiness as the beer warms. Sweetness is at a medium level and not overbearing. The bread lingers for what seems like forever and fills up the stomach. I'm willing to bet this brew is over 500 calories haha. 4.25.

Feel - Body is farrr more watery than I expected out of such a filling beer. Carbonation is medium to high depending on the drink you take and the overall feel is fairly creamy. 3.25.

Overall - This is one of the better Rye beers I have had. I'm not a huge fan of the style to be quite honest. You either get too much rye and not enough hops ( IE Mutbrød or whatever that Bruery beer was called), something balanced though slightly lacking ( Bells Smitten) or something that is hopped well, but doesn't meet the style ( GLBC Rye of the tiger) . As is typical of the style, this is a slow drinker and not for somebody worried about a diet. It's good and I'd have again on a cold winter night in front of a fire. It's a meal in a bottle and I could probably fall asleep after drinking one. 4.

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Photo of Domvan
3.6/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark thin pour, medium bodied head
Smell of dark roasted malts and piney hops
Tasted spikey like I was eating pine cones
The rye may be too much for, it always seems to throw me way off

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Photo of jzlyo
4.2/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aroma is yeast, dark malts complex spiciness/rye. The flavor is dark malts, chocolate, grapefruit, citrus/fruit, tropical fruit, oily/slick and mix of sour/acidic/mildly tart in the finish.

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Photo of Tone
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black color. 3/4 inch head of a tan color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of piney hops, sweet malt, slight roasted malt, hint of yeast, slight alcohol, rye, and hint of wood. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with an average carbonation level. Fits the style of a Rye Beer. Tastes of roasted malt, sweet malt, piney hops, slight wood, slight rye, alcohol, and a hint of yeast. Overall, great appearance, good aroma, feel, body, blend, and complexity.

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Photo of MaximalC
3.97/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

*Bottled 12/30/14

Pours dark chestnut in color with ruby highlights and an inch of fine, khaki foam that settles into rocky terrain. Delicate aroma smells of chocolate and roasted malt with a hint of molasses or peat.

The taste follows the nose quite closely, with a blend of both dark and milk chocolate, mild, roasty bitterness, and enough rye to make its presence felt without being overbearing. I find the bitterness to be very low key, though that may be due to the fact that this bottle is nearly 6 months old. Whatever hop bitterness exists is earthy and largely ensconced in the bitterness of the roasted malt, which is perfectly fine by me. The medium body and carbonation facilitate a very smooth and drinkable mouthfeel, almost like an oatmeal stout.

Well, this was a pleasant surprise for an unheralded beer in an unfamiliar style. It’s smooth, chocolately, balanced, and dare I say highly sessionable. It carries on Founders’ fine tradition of brewing delicious dark beers.

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Photo of TH28
3.72/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle. No code date. Appearance: Jet black and opaque, with a thick creamy tan head. Aroma: Roasted coffee, toffee, hint of caramel. Also some resinouse hop notes. Taste: Sweet roasted malt and toffee dominate, a slight peppery rye bite, and strong hop bitterness with hints of resin and pine. Mouthfeel: Medium body with light carbonation. Finish: Roast lingers long past swallow, along with some bitterness. Overall: Drinks like a Black IPA. Aggressive hopping is evident in the aroma and taste, but to me the balance of roast against the hops isn’t as balanced as I’d like.

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Photo of jmasher85
4.52/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

As soon as I open the cap, the toffee hits me. Some burnt brown sugar comes next, once I start pouring this molasses-brown, mildly heady ale into my tulip glass. Smells both sweet and bitter, with a slightly sour rye flavor in there too. A bit of pine and some scent that I can only place from certain cleaning fluids, which doesn't sound like a good thing except that I rather enjoy using that particular cleaning fluid. Later sniffs unlock a bit of chocolate chip cookie - go figure, right?

The taste is impressive as well. Bitter hops and and sweet malts meet once again on the front of my tongue in a smooth, lightly carbonated mix. The strong-ish alcohol presence is there too, but works in concert with the flavor rather than against it. Still heavy on the burnt toffee and some tootsie roll, but without the sugar. I'd say the taste and color suit each other well in this situation - it really does have an almost ashy quality to the bitterness. A bit of a smokey flavor in the hops is probably at work there.

Overall, this is a wonderful beer that's a delight every time I drink it. Just the smell of this one is enough to stop me in my tracks and make me want to drink it every time I see it, like when I see The Godfather on TV and have to sit down and watch the rest.

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Photo of NCMatt
3.08/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

I got this because I found it marked down ridiculous. My local shop had a 4-pack for $5, and while I know rye beers and black beers each aren't usually my forte, I decided to get it anyways, because how can you pass up a deal like that? Well, it's certainly a black rye. That's for sure. For the style, especially considering the ratings on this site, obviously it is amazing. For me however, it was just too much. Too strong on the rye / spice for me personally and has a strong black malt taste as well.

If you like rye beers, you'll probably dig this beer. For me however, it's not one I plan to purchase again.

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Photo of BrewUSA
4.31/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Founders Black Rye

Look 9/10
Smell 17/20
Taste 37/40
Feel 9/10
Drinkability 20/20

Overall 92/100

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Photo of HamdenHector
3.77/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: deep brown with ruby accents; 1 finger medium brown head that receded to a wispy cap; very nice lacing;

S: citrus and piney hops; some coffee; a hint of molasses;

T: rye spiciness is noticeable from start to finish; pine is evident through mid-palate; a touch of smoke in the background; very little aftertaste; moderate bitterness on the finish;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation;

O: an interesting combination of flavors and aromas;

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Photo of mfnmbvp
3.88/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, with no apparent bottled on date present. A new one to me from Founders; acquired a single bottle of this stuff from the local beer store.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter.

A - Pours a dark cola brown, near opaque in the glass with just a bit of cola brown showing near the surface. About a finger of solid frothy tan head that leaves good scattered lacing. Looks nice.

S - The aroma is a bit tame / simple, but it hits it's mark. Black malts / rye is apparent, with a touch of smoke / peatiness. Piney resinous dry-hopping is also apparent.

T - Taste is the same, only less smoke in the flavor, and more of a sweetened caramel / toffee malt presence is apparent. Melds nicely with the piney, bitter, resinous flavors imparted from the dry-hopping. An earthy, semi-roasty dark malt presence.

M - Smooth & creamy mouthfeel. Piney & bitter. Very easy-drinking for the moderate 7.50% abv. Borderline Black IPA-ish in terms of flavor.

Overall, a nice rye beer offering from Founders. I'm not normally a fan of this style, but this one kept things interesting. Would recommend.

Founders Black Rye -----4/5.

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Photo of M_C_Hampton
4.06/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass, dark almost black with a tan head that lingers leaving good lacing, clear

S: pine hops and peppery spice, nice malt character in the background

T: heavy on hops up front, middle shows the presence of the rye, peppery, spicy, finish is bitter citrus and pine hops

M: thick and slightly sticky

O: nice rye that is heavily hopped

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Photo of drunkenmess
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

I recently tried this brew again. But due to my palate change and my maturing taste for beer. I gave it a poor review... ex: "Way too bitter for my taste... rye beer was never my forte. Too much rye, hops, sourness. Idk no good, at least I tried lol."
Since then I've broaden my horizons and opened my mouth to many delicious offerings. Hence my revised review!

Pours heavy black with off white minimal head. Very light lacing. Smells of bitters and slight dark fruits with hints of burntness. Taste is strong yet delicious and inviting.
Strong up front dry hops with actually suttle hints of rye. Also little boozy on the tongue. Light cocoa and slight burnt fruit of some sort? After taste is very well balanced. Overall I'm glad I tried this again. Amazing!

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Photo of kbwalters
3.89/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured cold into a UK style stout glass. Bottled on 12/5/14, consumed on 1/9/15.
Look = 3.75 Pours brown into an opaque black in the glass with brown highlights. .5 fingers of brown head quickly fades to a ring. Spotty lace.
Aroma = 4.0 Hop hit me first, citrus notes, balanced by roasted malts and rye. The roasted malts dominate the aroma. Coffee notes come through too.
Taste = 3.75 Rye flavors upfront, a little spicy, with roasted malts on the finish that linger into the aftertaste. Moderate bitterness. There is a little bit of citrus hop flavor too.
Feel = 4.0 Medium bodied with light to medium carbonation.
Drinkability = 4.0 Standard drinkability for a black IPA, the rye neither adds or detracts here.
Overall = 3.875 A pretty solid black IPA and the Rye adds a second interesting dimension.

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Photo of titty_mcbitty
3.59/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Looks great like a hearty stout - black with a finger of tan head.

The aroma carries some rye and spice as well as some malt.

Rye, malt, leather, some smokiness or char, coffee, and hints of chocolate shine through the most. I expected more of a spicy rye taste (almost like hop rod rye).

I also expected a more viscous mouth on this beer. It was not disappointing, but could have been better.

Overall, this beer was okay. Not bad by any means, but not my favorite.

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Photo of far333
3.71/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown and opaque with ruby highlights around the edges. A half inch head of rocky light brown foam lingers long.

Low aroma of roasty malt and hops. Rich flavors upfront of dark malt with notes of cocoa, espresso, and leather. Well balanced, no particular flavors dominate.

Rich and full mouthfeel, round and creamy. Very tasty beer.

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Photo of Chico1985
3.82/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

12oz single dated 12/6/14. Had this once before closer to the initial re-release.

A - Dark brown/not quite black with a small tan head. Decent retention and some lace.

S - Pretty roasty with coffee tones, woodsy piny spicy hops, slight citrus, licorice.

T - Less hoppy than expected after the nose, but really an impressive balance of flavors. Some cocoa joins the roasted coffee malts, I never quite get rye but rather a general foresty citrus spiciness. Again some licorice coming into play.

M - Very smooth and crisp feel to it, not too heavy and a very good body overall, a fair amount of bitterness but never comes close to overpowering. Classic Founders great mouthfeel.

O - Not big enough to feel like a stout or porter and not hoppy enough to be mistaken for a black IPA, this finds a nice comfy in between, though the rye flavor is somewhat lost on me I think it did good things here.

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Photo of mdcrouser
4.23/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark chocolate to the eye, refined for purity. An inch of tan head fades away before the first drink.

Chocolate, coffee and a faint whiff of citrus on the nose - enough nose that one might mistake it for a stout.

The rye is immediately prominent, spicy as any rye beer I've had. Coupled with an undercurrent of of chocolate and pine, it's a curious concoction and one that is as unique as they come.

Prickly on the tongue, with a big hops, booming from the tongue.

Good beer, unique in many aspects.

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Photo of brewskifan55
4.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Enjoyed in a tulip glass. Thanks, Darren.

A: Black with a one-finger tan head that lingers. Curtainy lacing.

S: Dark chocolate and rye with light hops.

T: Follows nose with a robust charge of dark chocolate and heavy rye. A nice hoppy backbeat. Warming only makes it better.

M: Medium to heavy with medium carbonation. A dry finish.

O: A terrific rye beer. One I would drink again. I bet it's great on tap.

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Photo of arizcards
4.12/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Picked up a single the first of February from TW Arrowhead for $3.39, Bottled on 12/17/14.

Beer poured black with a beautiful tan head that is long lasting.

Nose is rye bread, citrus, and a hint of cocoa.

Taste is full of different flavors that meld well together. There is a slightly roasted malt with light cocoa, touch of rye, and citrus hops.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, somewhat smooth yet decently carbonated.

Overall another winner from what is seemingly been my favorite brewer over the past year since entering the Arizona market!

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Photo of predikit
3.6/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Been awhile since I had this, but I didn't get any rye notes whatsoever.

It was pretty much a stout with a different name, coffee and chocolate notes took most of the spotlight, smooth and creamy. Medium bodied.

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Founders Black Rye from Founders Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 440 ratings.