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Founders Devil Dancer - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Devil DancerFounders Devil Dancer

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

4,325 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,325
Reviews: 1,367
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 13.85%
Wants: 296
Gots: 767 | FT: 30
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-17-2004

Triple IPA. Dry-hopped for twenty-six days straight with a combination of 10 hop varieties. 112 actual IBU; although it calculates to over 200!
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,325 | Reviews: 1,367 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beerdrifter
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear copper-orange pour with quickly fading head and decent lacing. Big hoppy, floral, citusy nose that reminds me of a barley wine. Lots of orange and caramel with a hint of pine. The taste is huge, sticky, resiny bitterness right from the start. Tons of grapefruit and pine with sweet caramel malt trying to emerge, but it's quickly overcome by the puckering bitterness of this awesome hop bomb. Slightly syrupy, sticky and oily and the warmth of the alcohol is definitely present, but it's disguided really well for a 12% brew. It's about as drinkable as a beer this big can be. It's a sipper for sure, but I almost wanted another when I was finished. Once again, Founders doesn't disappoint!

Photo of xnicknj
3.18/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into large wine glass

Pours a clear auburn orange with a thin off white head. Fades into some film with a few streaks of lacing around the glass.

Crazy amounts of caramel malt and heavy alcohol in the nose along with flairs of piny hops and toasted bread crust.

Puckering bitterness right up front with boatloads of piny, resiny hops. A wave of intense malt rushes through, with plenty of caramel and biscuit, alongside a hit of molasses. More bitterness ensues as the alcohol burns through with near-astringent qualities. Some oxidation also becomes apparent with some sweet touches. Finishes with lingering flavor, heat, and overly bitter hops.

Fairly full bodied, very sticky and syrupy, wraps around the tongue and refuses to let go. Very slow and almost tough drinking throughout, as the 12% seems highly apparent and overdone. I love founders but this is just too much.

Photo of KickInTheChalice
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: This pours an angry, fiery reddish orange color that almost jumps out of the glass. A generous level of creamy off-white foam rests on the top, gradually coating the glass with sticky lace.

Smell: Not surprisingly, the nose is loaded with hops. The hops manifest in a relatively simple combination of grapefruit and sticky pine. Caramel malt, some general sweetness, and some light alcohol fill out the aroma.

Taste: The taste just clobbers my palate. Everything about this beer is huge. The taste starts out with a large malt base; caramel is in charge here but it does not go over the top. There is some biscuity malt in there to keep it malty without creating too powerful of a flavor. With the huge hop bill and the different varieties used, it is not surprising that it was a little trying to distinguish all of the flavors in here. Juicy grapefruit hops prime the tongue, with pine stepping in as well. It finishes bitter with a touch of sweetness and alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Huge body, rich and sappy. A bit grainy, but it also stays sticky on the lips. The carbonation is creamy, not at all fizzy.

Drinkability: I like the fact that it was more balanced than hop bomb, but by making it so huge I think some possible complexity was lost. Even with all of the different varieties of hops used, I was only able to extract a few flavors. Also, it goes without saying that at 12% ABV, this is a sipper.

Photo of paulozanello
4.17/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at a Founders event at The Big Hunt in DC.
Pours a hazy/translucid orange and brown color with little head and fairly good lacing.
Smell is very sweet and fruity/citric, mainly grapefruit, oranges and tangerines. You can definitely sense the sweet malts too.
Taste is a hop bomb. Pretty much this is all citric hops: orange, grapefruit, peach, and other tropical fruits. It ends with a grassy note. Malt is very present making this beer very sticky and not too bitter.
Body is heavy with mild to low carbonation. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.
Great triple IPA from Founders.

Photo of kingcrowing
2.15/5  rDev -44.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

12oz bottle poured into a duvel tulip.

Well, this is underwhelming. It's a very cloudy amber/brown with no head to speak of, and the nose is more of an old ale or barleywine, it's boozy and malty, there's some rasin notes to it as well, pretty off-putting for an IIPA.

Wow, this is not good. It's very alcoholic, it's sweet and syrupy. No idea why this has such a high rating? It's got a very sharp bitter bite, but it's not floral, fruity or even vegetal it's just abrasive and uninspired. Carbonation is low and because it's so thick it's hard to drink. I wish I hadn't of bought this, it's taken Founders down a notch or two in my book.

I can't read the bottled on date as it's a bit screwed up, it looks like 11/10, but that's clearly not the case as I bought it on the 6th of november in MA.

Photo of coldmeat23
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

GLASS: Snifter
TEMP: Cellared @ approx 50 degrees

Pours a lightly amber tinted, medium shade of crimson/ruby. A head of almost two-fingers worth of tan foam forms, then dissipates to a nice edge-to-edge surface film. The lacing is rather impressive.

Lots of hops notes come forth from this one. Big hints of pine resin, along with citrus notes and light tropical fruit hints. Nice bits of floral and grassy elements. Surprisingly, there seems to be a decent hint of background maltiness, as well.

Okay....it's not as out-of-balance as I expected, given it's reputation, but it's still nowhere near balanced. You can tell that Founders tried to balance it out a little bit, the hops are just too overwhelming. A good amount of grapefruit and citrus zest comes through and mixes with big notes of sticky pine resin and oil. Some mild hints of malt sweetness is on the tail-end and buried underneath, trying to bring some balance, but not quite getting all the way there.

This has a medium-to-full body and a light-to-medium level of carbonation. It is very smooth and has a nice touch of creaminess.

The out-of-balance hop presence, combined with the 12.00%abv will keep you from reaching for this one over and over. A very great every now and then kind of beer.

Photo of Arbitrator
1.83/5  rDev -53.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Chilled bottle into a glass. A generous extra from Alen. Thanks man!

A: Pours a murky, unfiltered amber color with an inch of off-white head and fairly short retention. The remnant is a collar around the brew, which leaves register marks as I sip.

S: Way better than last year's, which was very solventy (at least the bottle that I had was). Caramel, toffee: sweet dark crystal malts remind me of a barleywine. It's still hoppy, with a nice grapefruit aroma, some herbs and grass. It also seems to have some English hops in there; I'd recognize that stale, sweaty towel aroma anywhere.

T: A citrus salad of pineapple, orange, tangerine, and lemon. A pine and grassy herbal note are found in the mid-taste, giving way to old towel hops in the finish. There is an undercurrent of toffee throughout with some caramel, reminding me of a barleywine -- but the hops definitely dominate. A drying finish (could just be the alcohol burn) with some lingering resiny bitterness and chalk.

M: Slightly heavier than medium bodied. While the ABV is not burning, you definitely feel its warmth, and it forces you to slow down. The carbonation is moderate, and it cleanses the palate decently well. Points off for the chalky aftertaste though.

D: I told myself last year that I should try it again before writing it off for good. I did, and I have. I don't know what people like about this beer, but it's not for me.

Photo of Docer
3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received as an extra in a trade from PDXhops .. a big thanks for filling many of my wants.

- Pours a nice slightly cloudy orange caramel... frothy finger of head down to a nice lacey ring and scattered fizz on top.

- Big caramel malts, floral and citrus hops... grassy, earthy, sweet... barleywine'ish. Just smells sticky sweet!

- Creamy caramel malt madness... bitter punch of floral and grassy hops... slight pine and citrus touch... big roasty candy-like flavors with some biscuit and bread. Overall not overpowering... and this puppy masks the alcohol very very well indeed.

- Slightly sticky and dryingly sweet, a little chewy.. resinous hops....

- Overall very hoppy.. very malty, and super drinkable... the heat is no where in sight.. a very strong brew... with the ability to sneak up and knock you on your ass. Very good.

Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.67/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: A slightly hazy peach with a big foamy head that recedes fairly quickly. No surprise with a 12%'er. Beautiful.
smell: Oh man, this Dancer smells more like a buttery barleywine or an old ale, but there's definitely a muscle bound IPA in there too. So this is a TIPA? I want more.
taste: Damn...ok the muscle bound IPA makes it's move, a haymaker to the kisser. In a good way.
mouthfeel: velveteey cream. A can't imagine a more luxurious way to deliver an explosion.
drinkability: Amazingly drinkable for a beer that is far more subtle as you can get....well I guess there are more radical beers, but this is so unique at least in my experience, a high class barleywine and a hop bomb that somehow works together.
Can Founders make a bad beer?

July 7 2012
Back to previous glory. The 2011 I drank fresh was awful. Thought I had a bottle infected with garlic and onions until I saw similar responses from many ba'ers. To be fair it settled down and was a fine beer after a few months. This year is great fresh.

Photo of woosterbill
3.63/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: A slow, straight, high pour yields a hazy, dark reddish-amber body with a finger and a half of nicely persistent white foam. Maybe not a great-looking DIPA, but definitely a great-looking 12% beer.

S: Very Barleywinish here, with sweet, toasty, caramelized malt underlying a huge wave of candied-grapefruit hoppiness. Lots of everything, but far too sweet for my tastes.

T: Starts out with a hop bite, but quickly melts into a cascade of rich caramel malt. The sweetness seems to last forever, but is finally overcome by a stunningly bitter finish. Plenty of booze on the aftertaste, but less than I'd expect from 12%. Absolutely huge, and fairly well-integrated - for an American Barleywine, that is.

M: Full, viscous body with plenty of fine, soft carbonation. Extremely sticky, but otherwise lovely.

D: It's not too bad for the strength and intensity, but it just can't get high marks for the style. Way, way to sweet for a standard DIPA - even too sweet for a TIPA if you ask me. Now, if this were classified as an American Barleywine, I'd give it significantly higher marks - it's very tasty.

Notes: Whoa, Nelly. I expected this to be huge, and it did not disappoint. I was hoping for a more distinct, complex hop presence, but the interplay of gigantic sweetness and equally gigantic bitterness was more than enough to keep me interested. Memorable beer.


Photo of donkeyrunner
3.2/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

"Don't you dare look him in the eye as we dance with the devil tonight." - Breaking Benjamin

I was hoping for something epic for my 700th review. My first ever triple IPA sounds as good an idea as any.

Thin, white, bubble bath head that fades and collars into a a fat bubbly crescent. Crystalline amber color.

At first pour I'm greeted with a cacophony of citrus hop jubilation. Such jubilation cannot last however as the hops fade and fruit malt candy takes over. Peach fuzz and cherry wood. I'm even picking up a little raisin, I'm guessing from a pinch of dark crystal?

Gooey thick malt that sorta tastes like drinking dark honey. Not that bitter initially Devil Dancer has a slowly expanding bitter aftertaste. Barleywine-esque with some stuffy booze.

Tastes more like an American barleywine to me.

Photo of ianmhall
4.7/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

a- dark amber, slight haze, deep and burnished orange with red highlights... very little head dissipating to the slightest ringing

n- a bit alcoholic and fruity in a chemical sort of way with tropical and caramel/butterscotch tones

t- pure wow... earty, piney, fruity, and full bodied... woody and resinous, vanilla, cedar, and fig... caramel, butterscotch, and molasses a bit floral and yeasty with a bright citrus twang

m- full bodied and heavy on the palete, reminds me of swimming in heavy water... this is a beer that pulls you in

d- it took me more then an hour to finish, the weigh and depth tickling my brain... i could drink this beer until my eyes closed... absolutely dreamy!

Photo of bnes09
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I love hoppy beer so I was pumped to give this one a try. Its a deep, orange amber in color. Thin, off-white head forms from a gental pour and sticks around forever. Smooth lacing coats the glass. Excellent head retention for such a big brew.

Tons of spices in the nose. Cinammon and nutmeg come to mind. Delivers an overload of piney hops and a moderate alcohol burn to the nostrils. Smooth maple sweetness also. As it warms it gives off a butterrum kind of aroma.

Hops unload and never let up with an intense grapefruit and pine bitterness that dominates from beginning to end. A dense, maple malt sweetness creeps in mid-drink to balance but, in all its strength, is still overpowered by the hops. Spices are there too, cinammon and nutmeg. Its like a hopped up eggnog beverage or a syrupy apple cider. Let it warm up a bit and it has a more mellow and smooth character but is still not enough to tame the massive hop army. Aftertaste is bitter, bitter, bitter!

Dense, syrupy body. Sticky on the lips. Low to moderate carbonation. Very drying on the palate. Alcohol warmth hits your throat a second or two after each sip and seems to intensify as you drink.

The complexity of flavors are so interesting that you can't help but want to take another sip. However, the intense hops and dense body make it difficult to drink more than one bottle. All I've got to say is savor it with the utmost care and respect as it could very easily kick your ass. Definitely a must try for adventurous hop lovers. I would love to try it one tap.

Photo of plaid75
4.32/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at the blind Tiger, NYC.

Poured a medium amber hue with a one finger off white frothy head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured an earthy caramel and a resinous hop sppice.

The taste consisted of a full on crystal malt, peppery and herbal hops, a resinous citrus and a light alcohol.

The mouthfeel was full for the style.

Overall, complex, sinister, abusive and delicious.

Photo of OakedCanuck
3.43/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz poured into a GD cervoise. From notes.

A - Dark copper, small, dirty yellow head with small bubbles, minor lacing.

S - Bitterness on the nose with some citrus. You can smell the alcohol

T - Tastes almost like a fruit juice hopped up on hops! Some caramel and the faintest hint of shallot.

M - Resiney, sticky, creamy malt and alcohol heat.

D - I wouldn't be able to make it through a second, but not too bad for one. It's a little bit of a mess but has a bunch of flavor.

Photo of bonkers
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a SA perfect pint glass. Clear copper with a sticky 1 inch head. Ton of pine on the nose, also some alcohol and caramel. It has enough malt to make it balanced, even a bit sweet. Lots of piney resin, nice long bitter finish. Definitely full bodied, the mouthfeel is very sticky and resinous. A damn fine beer, thanks to bauermj for this one.

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.6/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a translucent, somewhat hazy orange amber with a minimal head - which may be an artifact of the pour - and just a little lacing. Fruity aroma has undertone of malt and a hint of caramel. Flavor is fruity and citrusy with a malty tone and a caramel hint. Texture is fairly smooth and subtly fizzy.

Photo of Baraka
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark gold with a thin head. Smells like booze and resiny, dank hops. This is a huge beer. Very molassesy with a monster hop bitterness that leaves a lasting aftertaste. Some brown sugar flavors provide a bit of contrast to the hop assault. Significant alcohol bite is present, which limits the drinkablilty somewhat. Definitely interesting and a bit like DFH 120 (although not quite as intense) in its complexity.

Not something I'd want all that often, but I have to give props to Founders for such an intense, extreme IIPA varient.

Photo of MetalHopHead6
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Founders Devil Dancer is salty, roasty, and dry.

It poured a near-perfect dark cloudy copper with just a little white foam on the rim. The color was fabulous--deep, dark, and inviting; however, the head was weak. The smell and flavor were salty, nutty, smoky, and dry-roasted. It was very bready, filling the mouth and leaving a long-lasting bitterness. It was super-dry and super mouth-filling.

Devil Dancer tastes and feels like a smoky camp fire on a beautiful cool autumn evening

Photo of GeezLynn
3.6/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

A: Cloudy orange/cider appearance. Not much of a head and little there is is gone quicker than a Twins lead vs the Yankees.

S: The hops - they've faded a bit since this was released this summer so that there's now a nice balance in the aroma. Pine, grapefruit, green apple and a big, sweet caramel base. Smells like a big barleywine.

T: Resinous pine. Grapefruit rind. Turpentine. Well, I'm guessing at that last one but this is just tongue-strippingly harsh. Even the huge sweet caramel easily apparent in the smell is mostly obscured by bitter hop flavors, except for in the finish.

M: Thick and chewy, with plenty of fine carbonation. Light alcohol burn, but not bad considering the 12% abv.

This is my third time drinking this beer (one left). I respect the effort and it's alright if you're in the mood for extreme. On the other hand, for me it's nowhere near being good enough to justify the high price. No thanks.

Photo of wvsabbath
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Thick brown, golden tan nice 1 inch creamy head.

Smell - Hops, grapefruit, more hops, malts. And i think i smelt some more hops

Taste - Very strong and bold. Hops just crush you. You basically get hops and alcohol with this. The malts are limited, its all about the hops

Mouthfeel - It will burn your mouth if left sitting to long. Its bitter as hell, will crush and destroy whole mouth. Eat something or go to bed after drinking this.

Drinkabilty - You cant drink this every day. this would ruin you for sure. And, there are better High end ipa's out there. This beer sacrifices taste and flavor for just extreme hops. I would like to drink this with less alcohol and hops, and more malts and spices. And, its expensive on top of it

Photo of joefuzz
4.42/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Just received as a extra in a trade with a very generous BA, poured into cigar city snifter.

A - pours a strong copper with some red hints. Not much head to speak of.

S - a strong sweet citrus hop smell fills the nose.

T - just as the smell lets on there is a very dominate hop flavor. Big hop bite on the aftertaste with the malts coming through.

M - Not much carbonation, leaves a mild oily consistency in the mouth.

D - Something i could sip on for a while but a very good beer.

Photo of Kadonny
4.65/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Finally, Devil Dancer on tap at Capones in Norristown. Nice an fresh too! Poured into a snifter glass.

A: A clear dark orange and almost light brown color with a minimal slight white head. No glass lacing.

S: Wow, just popping with earthy piney hops. Some slight citrus on the nose and a deep sweet bready caramel malt. This is a hop bomb waiting to happen.

T: Hops assault the tongue immediately. Huge hop flavors of pine, earth, a bit of floral tones and a bit of citrus. The bitterness jumps in right away. The huge caramel malt tries to subdue the hops but they have no part in this. The massive bitter hops dominate the end and finish with a punching blow to the mouth. Wow, this beer if freaking incredible from tap when fresh. Bitterness pounds the mouth long after the beer is gone. Wow, just wow.

M: Full, massive, prickly, sweet, bitter. Did I say bitter? Yes! Alcohol is very noticeable but not overly intrusive. Crazy good.

D: For 12%? Insanely good. Get this straight though, this is a beer to be enjoyed over a good period of time, not a beer to pound down.

Overall I can't believe the difference in this beer from tap (fresh) to bottle. The tap version just pops so much more with flavor and raw hops bitterness. The beer is crazy good and I have become even a bigger fan of it. I am still shaking my head as to how good this was. If you like it from bottle, I beg of you to get it on tap. Incredible. Mindblowing.

I bow to Founders once again.

Photo of Macky20
4.02/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this in a package from gratefulbeerhead, thanks Eric!

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a Stone stemless snifter. Not an overload of head, but what's there is solid and has good retention (sometimes hard to pour into a good head in a snifter anyways...)
Appearance is dark burnt orange. Smell is a great deal of hops with a good combination of piney sweet malt character and a small hint of alcohol.

A sweet tartness overloads the tongue on the first sip, not bad at all! I would characterize it is as a huge hop bite well balanced with a pine/molasses taste. I will admit though, there is something there I just can't identify. There is an alcohol taste left on the tongue.

Mouthfeel isn't bad for the style, could use a small amount more carbonation. Even when I poured the last one into a full pint glass it was hard to generate head into the pour.

Drinkability suffers here because of the alcohol on the tongue. Honestly is just overloads your palate with so much, that I have to carefully sip my way through one of these! For a Trip IPA and 12% ABV though.... I would put it above average though...

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle. Bottled June 28, 2010.

The beer pours an orange color with a white head. The aroma is a mix of flowery and pine-scented hops. The flavor is more complex and is very hoppy. I get a lot o citrus and pine notes as well as some caramel malt. The bitterness is about medium and is not as bitter as I was expecting. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Founders Devil Dancer from Founders Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 4,325 ratings.