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Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale) - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale)Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

3,280 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,280
Reviews: 1,083
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 10.97%
Wants: 123
Gots: 583 | FT: 42
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  9.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
50 IBU
Old ale brewed with molasses and oak-aged.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-31-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,280 | Reviews: 1,083 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of krl2112
krl2112

Illinois

2.75/5  rDev -31.4%

04-06-2013 01:17:49 | More by krl2112
Photo of vicsju1991
vicsju1991

Pennsylvania

2.75/5  rDev -31.4%

09-08-2012 01:42:52 | More by vicsju1991
Photo of chippo33
chippo33

Vermont

2.75/5  rDev -31.4%

12-04-2012 04:04:52 | More by chippo33
Photo of ScottStache
ScottStache

Massachusetts

2.75/5  rDev -31.4%

04-26-2013 02:36:47 | More by ScottStache
Photo of fullmoonbeer
fullmoonbeer

Ohio

2.75/5  rDev -31.4%

03-10-2013 01:08:41 | More by fullmoonbeer
Photo of Bloodbuzz99
Bloodbuzz99

Georgia

2.75/5  rDev -31.4%

04-22-2013 17:14:32 | More by Bloodbuzz99
Photo of DeltaGolfSierra
DeltaGolfSierra

Tennessee

2.75/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Color is a rather unattractive orange-brown, and the lack of any head or lacing doesn't help the appearance. Scents of dark fruits and molasses are nice if a bit weak, and there's a bit of a boozy smell too. Caramel and molasses are up front in the taste, with a punch of booziness in the finish that I don't find particularly pleasant. High pucker factor and plenty of burn going down the throat. This is not one of Founder's better offerings.

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2011 01:13:14 | More by DeltaGolfSierra
Photo of falloutsnow
falloutsnow

Illinois

2.75/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

From: Binny's, Champaign, IL
Date: None on bottle, spring 2013 release
Glass: Founders snifter

Founders' Curmudgeon is a rather disappointing old ale, featuring a good, but fairly uncomplicated dark brown caramel-like sweetness with a bit of oak, both of which are rather quickly subsumed by the ethanol content of the beer. The alcohol becomes excessively apparent with warmth, detracting from the overall experience and enjoyment of this beer. I find myself asking, "was this intentional, or just a too-hot and quick fermentation/bottling/shipping schedule?" Founders suggests that this beer is "deceptively smooth and drinkable," on the 4-pack, but I'd heartily disagree. Nowhere near comparable to the effortless smoothness (that is, non-ethanol-detectable) and more complex flavors in, say, Hair of the Dog releases. Not one I'd pick up again.

Pours a 0.5cm tall head of beige-colored, small-sized bubbles, with below average retention of about twenty seconds, barely enough time to register that the head looked a bit frothy. The head fades to a thin ring around the glass, and leaves good lacing, a more than moderate number of large dots cling to the glass' sides. Beer's body is a dark golden orange color, almost brown, with reddish highlights; light brings out brighter golden orange hues with yellow highlights. Carbonation visible through the slightly hazy (20-30% opacity) body, low in number and moderate in activity.

Aroma of fairly heavy caramel-like sweetness, ethanol, and oak, only moderately robust, not nearly as expressive or complex as I was hoping.

The most notable flavors of the beer are heavy/syrupy brown caramel-like sweetness, a touch of toasted bread and oak, and big ethanol, which becomes more apparent the longer the sip lasts in the mouth. The front of the palate tastes moderate oak, medium-strong brown caramel-like sweetness, and light ethanol. Mid-palate detects flavors of strong ethanol, heavy/syrupy brown caramel-like sweetness, a touch of toasted bread and oak, but the somewhat harsh ethanol largely steamrolls the other flavors. Back of palate is largely of heavy/syrupy brown caramel-like sweetness with a bit of oak, which is quite pleasant, but then the ethanol largely obscures this with its flavor and heat. Aftertaste is primarily of ethanol, with a bit of light caramel sweetness hidden in the background.

Beer's body is medium-heavy, with carbonation of medium-low intensity, resulting in a lightly foamy (1/4), mostly smooth (3/4) mouthfeel that is appropriate for sipping a beer of this style. Unfortunately, ethanol is easily felt as heat in the nostrils and across the palate, and as a burning sensation on the throat. Though "only" 9.8% ABV, this feels like a much stronger beer; ethanol not well-hidden. Closes dry, with heavy stickiness lingering on the palate and lips.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2014 04:09:35 | More by falloutsnow
Photo of jwhawkins81
jwhawkins81

Ohio

2.78/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Sampled Fresh

Aroma - Way sweet smell with no noticeable hop characteristics.

Appearance - Cloudy reddish brown with no I mean no carbonation.

Taste - Sweet cherries and then the bite of alcohol. This beer really needs to be shipped and also needs to hit the tip of your tongue. I got some raisin flavors near the end.

Mouthfeel - Not a light beer. Without carbonation this beer just lays there.

Drinkability - I can't imagine drinking more than one of these at a time. I hope this beers improves over the next three years in my cellar.

Serving type: bottle

05-16-2009 16:54:13 | More by jwhawkins81
Photo of kohoutek
kohoutek

Michigan

2.8/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a deep ruddy amber without filtration. This bottle sat for three days in the fridge and it is still very cloudy. Head is light caramel in color with a short life and little persistent lace.

The aroma is wild: overoaked, over bourboned, malty, wheaty sweetness with a touch of fresh morning urine. Where is the piss coming from and why won't it leave?

The beer is large, sweet and boozy with an oakiness that would make a late 90's Cali-Chardonnay jealous. This is an oak bomb!
Butter, Bourbon and a sweet malty mess.

Mouthfeel: Well, for a 9.3% beer, I would understand sweet, but everything about this beer is over the top. Bittering hops perform like an underly confident supporting actor in the middle school production. They try, but they cannot step up to the immensly expulsive and overconfident quickly maturing and painfully overcompensating female lead(s).

After 20 min of swirling and smelling the urine is beginning to subside but the bourbon sweetness is increasing.

Edit: I stopped swirling for two minutes and the urine is back.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2006 21:56:53 | More by kohoutek
Photo of Krakistophales
Krakistophales

Connecticut

2.8/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 1 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours a nice ruby red color with lively carbonation and no lace...but there's a glob of sediment/protein/whatever it is floating around on top, and that's just disgusting. Had to remove before I could start drinking.

S: Not much going on here. Some malt sweetness, the slightest hint of dark fruit, not much else.

T: Better than the smell, but still pretty average. Malt sweetness at first, with a touch of tartness of what might be cherries, a zing of some other dark fruits, and a slightly hoppy aftertaste, but underwhelming all the same.

O: Probably the worst I've had from founders. I've had KBS and Dirty bastard, which were both fantastic, so this one must be a hiccup.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2011 02:54:18 | More by Krakistophales
Photo of ummswimmin
ummswimmin

New Jersey

2.8/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I had this on tap at a special Founders event at the local bar.

The bar served this in a mini goblet. This beer is the proper tan/brown that you would expect from an old ale. The head was minimal and there was nice alcohol feet.

The foam yielded down to a simple scum on the glass. You could see minimal carbonation on this, which isn't a surprise for the style.

I smell tobacco, caramel, yeast, and some malt. It smelled very rich.

Curmudgeon really fell off with the first taste. There was a ton of alcohol in it. It really wasn't pleasant. You get a little bit of scotch. I had a ton of burn from the alcohol and visibly winced with each sip. The after-taste was all alcohol throughout my mouth.

I really didn't care for this beer. It was surprising since I enjoyed so much Founders in the past.

Serving type: on-tap

10-05-2011 00:04:20 | More by ummswimmin
Photo of seedyone
seedyone

New York

2.83/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

05/19/14 From bottle. As I'm on a barrel aged kick lately, no stone shall go unturned. Here is a fine example of how pervasive oaking can be..until, of course it meets something just as persuasive as the molasses used here. Not a lot on the nose & no head to speak of so that leaves the battle on the tongue between the oak & the treacle. Each as it's moment but neither comes out a winner. I enjoyed it but could not get past the novelty effect. I suspect a draft portion...or better yet, a nitro pour could lift this to another level.

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2014 05:01:43 | More by seedyone
Photo of Itoclown
Itoclown

Michigan

2.85/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Purchased from Ladd's in Muskegon. Drank on January 28th out of a Duvel tulip.

Look: Dark red with lots of haze. No head.
Smell: Malty. Also, light hints of scotch whiskey.
Taste/Mouthfeel: The longer this one cools, the more it tastes like beer mixed with whiskey. It's thick and heavy. Hints of caramel and dried fruit... maybe some raisons? Smooth on the tongue.

Overall/Notes: This beer was difficult for me. Not used to this style. Plus the smell and taste weren't very apparent for a while. The scotch whiskey taste was overwhelming after the beer warmed up. And after a while the alcohol came out as well.
Not a fan of this beer and I think I will avoid it in the future. Least favorite Founders brew.

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2009 23:10:53 | More by Itoclown
Photo of bjoyce12
bjoyce12

Massachusetts

2.85/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Overpowered by the bourbon taste. Not much carbonation, which could have offset the high ABV. Maybe I got an old bottle, but alcohol burn very present. Can't get past the bourbon taste, both in the initial flavor and aftertaste. Very much like Old Grand Dad. Founders must use some of their bourbon casks in the brewing process.

Serving type: bottle

02-08-2009 05:00:31 | More by bjoyce12
Photo of maxpower
maxpower

Missouri

2.85/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle pours a dark amber color with a nice off white head with large bubbles that leaves some lacing in my glass. Strong bourbon aromas, vanilla, oak and bourbon flavors, a bit to strong for me. Full bodied with a soft and creamy mouthfeel, finishes dry. The whiskey flavor is about all I get from this.

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2006 20:22:24 | More by maxpower
Photo of brewmudgeon
brewmudgeon

Wisconsin

2.88/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

curmudgeon

a 4-4.5 generally clear rosy amber. one inch creamy head slowly settles to a cap, decent lace. a very typical founders look.

s 3-3.5 rather gentle on the nose. cherries, light breadyness. the cherry unfortunately has sort of an artificial, cough drop quality. also a fair amount of alcohol in the nose.

t 2.5-3 for a big beer this is very delicate, kinda belgian trippel-like. that applies mostly to the mouthfeel, really, but the mouthfeel dominates the flavor in this one. if it weren't for the ultra creamy mouthfeel, the alcohol notes would boldly overwhelm, not being accompanied by other bold flavors to tame them. there is a hint of toastyness, a touch of the cherry coughdrop essence, not a lot going on. pretty disappointed in this one.

m 4-4.5 delicate and creamy, so soft it's like a latex pillow. not what i was expecting from an old ale, but nice in its way. if only it had better flavor embedded in it.

o 2.5 had hoped for much more. not expecting age to work miracles, but i will wait and see with the other bottles.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2011 03:09:27 | More by brewmudgeon
Photo of ahking
ahking

Michigan

2.93/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cloudy copper - raisins and malty yeast aroma, so nice and comforting - quite hoppy for the style making it a unique ale - rich and complex - boozy in the middle - dried cherries/raisin/touch of vanilla/bourbon - finishes a little too sweet for my liking

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2012 00:39:54 | More by ahking
Photo of godfathermg57
godfathermg57

Florida

2.93/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

On tap at hunahpu's day

A: Deep red with a thin head. Looked like it should have been a good drink...

S: Lots of honey and alcohol. Little hints of fruit

T: Not very good. I definitely taste honey but also wood, alcohol, and viney taste that does not taste good.

M: I guess it's good enough. Not enough to make up for the taste though.

D: If you like the taste then I guess drinkable. For me I had to labor.

Serving type: on-tap

03-14-2011 00:46:44 | More by godfathermg57
Photo of LilBeerDoctor
LilBeerDoctor

New York

2.93/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 06/05/2009. Bottle at PPRBSG09. This beer pours a cloudy orange. Aroma of sweet malt and vegetal notes. The flavor is equally gross (although slightly mellower) but still lots of sweet sticky malt and vegetation. This beer was not my thing at all...

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2009 17:23:25 | More by LilBeerDoctor
Photo of gatornation
gatornation

Minnesota

2.95/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

pours a dark orange thick looking brooding ale with minimal head and lacing..the smell is strong its malts and caramel with some banana and vanilla bean smells the taste is strong its a malt driven ale with a strong alcohol taste almost to me like a liquor i detect some bourbon and toffee its thick ..the mouhfeel is full bodied malty and sweet with the b4 mentioned tastes and smells.founders is an outstanding brewery with many on my rotation.. this old ale is a sipper and not my style or preference..all though i can tell its well made its just not my thing low scores are due to this not the quality of this ale or the brewer

Serving type: bottle

07-17-2009 21:57:41 | More by gatornation
Photo of albern
albern

Massachusetts

2.98/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This beer has its virtues, but it is not an enjoyable experience. The appearance is a nice cloudy amber brown with lots of yeasty bits floating about. The head is off white, retains a bit, not much lacing. The aroma is profoundly whisky alcohol, dark and heavy fruits, such as fig, rind, apricot, raisin. This is a full bodied beer, quite syrupy in consistency, and just plain thick and overly sweet. There is also an oaky aged quality to the beer. The taste mimics the aroma. You'll get the full gamut of heavy fruit flavors, a cloying candied sugar sweetness, and a syrupy thickness that is just over the top, and that oaky aged quality that is more apt in a bourbon. The killer for me is the alcohol throaty burn. I feel like I'm drinking a sweet whisky drink and it just burns on the way down. This is the type of beer that leaves me with a heartburn afterwards. It's just not drinkable as a beer. For a 9.3% ABV, this tastes like it is thrice that much. Way too much alcohol, and not my cup of tea at all. It's too bad, because the beer does have its virtues, just not as it is presently consistituted. The aftertaste is just doing me in. If I wanted a sweet whisky concoction, I would have mixed one myself.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2008 21:18:27 | More by albern
Photo of jrallen34
jrallen34

Illinois

2.98/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

On tap at Haymarket into a 4oz tasting glass...Pours a deep amber with orange notes, a decent tope head, looks good...The aroma is pretty good very sweet with lots of caramel, honey, spice and a little oak. Good start...The taste just doesn't translate, this is borderline horrible. Almost all bitter alcohol from start to finish, oak, and honey try to help out but they can't do enough. I had a hard time finishing this. I just can't believe how bad this is.

Avoid for me.

Serving type: on-tap

01-08-2011 01:03:39 | More by jrallen34
Photo of Mikkiicky
Mikkiicky

New Jersey

3/5  rDev -25.2%

06-15-2013 18:02:53 | More by Mikkiicky
Photo of jminch
jminch

Ohio

3/5  rDev -25.2%

04-01-2013 17:26:40 | More by jminch
Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale) from Founders Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 3,280 ratings.