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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

3,388 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,388
Reviews: 1,088
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 10.97%
Wants: 128
Gots: 609 | FT: 44
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: 3,388 | Reviews: 1,088 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ThisWangsChung
ThisWangsChung

Maryland

2.7/5  rDev -32.7%
look: 1.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip.

A: Pours a burnt sienna color with huge, oily-looking chunks of sediment plopping down into the glass. That plus very little head means this is one ugly-ass beer - almost to the point where I'm afraid to sip it.

S: Quite strong with molasses, mint, and caramel, while darker fruits help augment the malt backbone. Pretty nice smelling, and a lot more promising than the look of the beer.

T: The flavor is hard to describe. The first sip is loaded with caramel, dark fruit, brown sugar, and a little finishing booze; a few sips later, the profile changes to that of slightly burnt pumpernickel bread. Not as sweet as I expected, probably due to the age of the bottle and the yeast eating some of the sugar - despite that, it's still a bit cough syrup-y at times. Kind of boozy, also. Just a weird, strange beer, one that I'm struggling to finish.

M: Thickly textured, with tannins helping to neutralize the finish somewhat. Nice creaminess to start, before the body itself finishes slightly coarse and sticky. Rather boozy feeling on the throat in particular.

O: Meh. In fairness, this is not a good late afternoon kind of beer, but I still found it rather mediocre despite that. A rare misfire from Founders, but it's not completely irredeemable.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2012 22:13:16 | More by ThisWangsChung
Photo of CaptDavyJones
CaptDavyJones

New York

2.5/5  rDev -37.7%

08-03-2012 19:52:58 | More by CaptDavyJones
Photo of Brubaker
Brubaker

Virginia

1/5  rDev -75.1%

08-03-2012 18:22:28 | More by Brubaker
Photo of jonmorgan
jonmorgan

North Carolina

3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

08-03-2012 15:45:48 | More by jonmorgan
Photo of ryancl
ryancl

Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev +6%

08-02-2012 21:30:30 | More by ryancl
Photo of ferrettman687
ferrettman687

Massachusetts

4.25/5  rDev +6%

08-02-2012 15:40:00 | More by ferrettman687
Photo of jduprey007
jduprey007

Michigan

3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

08-02-2012 01:40:33 | More by jduprey007
Photo of agreenman19
agreenman19

Connecticut

4/5  rDev -0.2%

08-01-2012 00:59:33 | More by agreenman19
Photo of WDJersey
WDJersey

Colorado

3/5  rDev -25.2%

07-31-2012 04:00:34 | More by WDJersey
Photo of Steverus
Steverus

Louisiana

3.08/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Up front, I wish this beer had a stronger aroma to help prepare the pallet for the bourbon assault that's to follow.

Appearance is great - a dark, almost burnt looking caramel (which is A+ for a beer intended to seem like the type of beer an old sea dog would down in place of the usual swill).

I didn't catch a whole lot on the nose - some subtle vanilla and oak. Maybe chalk that up to allergies.

Taste is good, but because it comes up on you so unaware, it's a little more shocking to the pallet than I'd like. On second taste, the sweet, oaky character comes all the way forward, bringing this tasty beverage back in to the respectable range we expect from Founders.

Nice and smooth ale. Carbonation balances the rich depth of this beer.

Overall - Worth reaching for another, but one of those beers that, while it won't be forgotten as it is far from average, lacks some of the balance of Founders' other august beers.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2012 01:28:06 | More by Steverus
Photo of spark3148857
spark3148857

California

4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a murky burnt orange with minimal off white head. Carbonation streams off the bottom of the glass. Aroma is of rich, dark fruits up front. Plums, sweet cherries. Followed by vanilla, oak and bourbon notes. Rich caramel flavors up front give way to burnt oak and bourbon on the middle of the palate. Finishes sweet. While I don't actively seek out old ales, Founder's does a good job with this one. Worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2012 03:55:52 | More by spark3148857
Photo of PicoPapa
PicoPapa

Connecticut

4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle with Bottled 04/19/12 on the neck. Pours a rusty brown color with a thin layer of head. Some lacing. Aromas of booze, cherries, vanilla, and oak. A bit sweet. Taste is boozey oak up front with the cherries and vanilla. Some malts and breadiness. Boozey, oaky finish. Lightly carbonated. Overall, this is a solid Old Ale with nice Oak flavors to it. Well made.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2012 02:11:23 | More by PicoPapa
Photo of swetsastonic
swetsastonic

New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev +6%

07-29-2012 15:22:12 | More by swetsastonic
Photo of lilnicky068
lilnicky068

Kentucky

4.25/5  rDev +6%

07-29-2012 02:16:20 | More by lilnicky068
Photo of andrewjraab
andrewjraab

Michigan

3.64/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a hazy carmel dark brown with a tiny film of creamy head that quickly dissipated. Zero rentention or stick.

S - Sweet smell of caramel and malts. Oaky, and the alcohol is present in the initial whiff.

T - First thing that hit me was the high alcohol scotchy profile, followed by a nice mellowing sweet balance. It gets better as it comes to room temp. It is amazing how these beers change with temperature and you get so much more of the underlying flavors.

O - This is a very well crafted beer. I was disappointed in the lack of head, but pleasantly surprised at how much I started to like it the more a drank it. It took me about two hours to sip it down and I would actually open and pour it and let it sit next time before I even had a sip.

Edit - I just had one of these that is aged about 6 months. The boozy taste has mellowed quite a bit. Lots of whiskey still in the nose, but not as much bite in the actual drink. This is still a sipper, but a good one at that.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2012 00:09:45 | More by andrewjraab
Photo of TheRealBigC
TheRealBigC

Nevada

4.68/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was an instant favorite. Almost like a cognac - heavy vanilla and alcohol flavor, but there's more depth than that. A bit of oak and cinnamon, for instance, linger somewhere in there. The bar served it in a rocks glass which was disappointing as a snifter would have been perfect for this ale. I got plenty of enjoyment in the smell as it was, but a snifter likely would have made it even better. I really have to look into more old ales because if they are anything like Curmudgeon, it's a style perfectly tailored to my tastes.

Serving type: on-tap

07-28-2012 21:07:16 | More by TheRealBigC
Photo of cfrances33
cfrances33

Illinois

4.03/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (April 2012) poured into a tulip on 6/27/12.

Pour: Completely hazy reddish brown with barely any head.

Smell: Really get a ton of woody oak up front followed by cinnamon, clove. Some chewy raison in there

Taste: Spice keeps up front with some cinnamon, clove, vanilla. Raisons next. Oak rounds everything out.

Mouthfeel: Chewy but drinkable. Little bit of heat on the finish.

Overall: Really great. Not surprised that Better Half came out so well with this base. Would LOVE to see what regular bourbon barrel aging would do to this.

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2012 01:49:38 | More by cfrances33
Photo of dbossman
dbossman

Nebraska

4.03/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A fairly deep red hue with a thin head that has decent retention before falling to a thin film ;lacing is very intricate and delicate

S: The aromas begin rather subdued and seemingly simple: some faintly toasted malts, subtle herbal and grassy hops and then the aromas seem to come alive--cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, caramel, bourbon, figs, raisins, maple syrup, brown sugar; it is still somewhat subtle and not in-your-face but it is still quite complex

T: The spiciness is the first thing I notice: cinnamon, nutmeg, etc. on top of a dark fruity backbone--raisins, figs, etc.; lots of subtle boozy, semi-sweet undertones from the maltiness; it does end up being balanced in the finish but the spiciness is a tad overwhelming on the onset

F: Medium body with some residual stickiness that gives the body more texture

O: I really like this beer though I want to see what a couple of years will do to mellow some of the spicing and molasses flavors

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2012 18:53:37 | More by dbossman
Photo of JVan
JVan

Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

07-24-2012 20:45:28 | More by JVan
Photo of Kadonny
Kadonny

Pennsylvania

4.23/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle dated in mid April of 2012. Poured into a tulip tasting glass.

A: A medium to dark amber color with a one finger eggshell colored head. Not much glass lacing.

S: Loads of brown sugar, caramel, earthiness, oak, maple syrup and some dark fruits.

T: Loads of brown sugar start off that is sweet, but not overly so. The brown sugar mixes with caramel, vanilla, maple syrup, molasses and some slight dark fruits. Some nice earthy woody tones come in near the finish but stay sweet. Slight floral hop, but barely there. Sweetness lingers, but it's far from cloying. Alcohol is tasted, but not overly so for the abv.

M: Full, coating, sweet, smooth and some alcohol.

O: A real nice old ale that is different from the rest. The beer is on the sweeter side, but not cloying sweet, it's just right. Very drinkable for the ABV and I really enjoyed it.

Another winner from Founders, like I expected anything else. I'm surprised it took me so long to review this since I'm a huge Founders fan. I really enjoyed this one as a change of pace and it will be in my fridge in years to come. I'll let one age, but I have a feeling this one is better fresh as the sweetness may intensify.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2012 20:28:32 | More by Kadonny
Photo of asafarc2
asafarc2

Rhode Island

3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

07-24-2012 00:11:13 | More by asafarc2
Photo of Trevdawg
Trevdawg

New Hampshire

3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

07-23-2012 20:13:06 | More by Trevdawg
Photo of mpit11
mpit11

Iowa

4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

07-23-2012 03:25:33 | More by mpit11
Photo of rodlavers
rodlavers

Pennsylvania

4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 vintage poured into founders snifter

Two finger off-white head dissipates over several minutes to a very fine layer and bubbles relegated to the ring around the glass -- what's there is a bit fluffy, but minimal. Red/copper coloring, with floating particles. Smell is delicious -- vanilla, molasses, malt, and hints of the oak in which it was aged. Love the smell. Taste follows the nose very similarly, except for sweetness. It's very sweet and for me, not particularly drinkable, meaning I don't think I can drink this every day. Vanilla is prominent, with malt and molasses; the sweetness somewhat masks the oak. Mouthfeel is smooth, syrupy, medium bodied, with some carbonation. Aftertaste is sweet and vanilla. Over I really like this beer -- it gets better with age. I look forward to tasting my 2011 vintage later this fall when it has 18-20 months on it.

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2012 02:44:56 | More by rodlavers
Photo of sabitu
sabitu

Kentucky

4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

07-21-2012 23:12:31 | More by sabitu
Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale) from Founders Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 3,388 ratings.