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Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale) - Founders Brewing Company

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

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3,389 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,389
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: 3,389 | Reviews: 1,088 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of CellarGimp


4/5  rDev -0.2%

11-14-2011 16:40:07 | More by CellarGimp
Photo of SourNotes


4/5  rDev -0.2%

11-14-2011 16:07:05 | More by SourNotes
Photo of sbricker


4/5  rDev -0.2%

11-14-2011 16:05:13 | More by sbricker
Photo of ninner00


4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

11-14-2011 16:00:11 | More by ninner00
Photo of justintcoons


4/5  rDev -0.2%

11-14-2011 15:49:26 | More by justintcoons
Photo of thebouch01


5/5  rDev +24.7%

11-14-2011 15:29:13 | More by thebouch01
Photo of bpfrush


4.25/5  rDev +6%

11-14-2011 14:09:19 | More by bpfrush
Photo of slentz


4/5  rDev -0.2%

11-14-2011 12:34:32 | More by slentz
Photo of Brianito


4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

11-14-2011 10:22:40 | More by Brianito
Photo of Jspriest


4.25/5  rDev +6%

11-14-2011 08:22:07 | More by Jspriest
Photo of Litterbean

New York

4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ Mission Dolores (Park Slope, Brooklyn)

Dark brown beer with a foamy full head. Smells malty, sweet, alcoholic, and heavy.

Taste is sweet with a hint of bitterness but mostly a biting alcoholic note that really ends warm on the tongue. Makes my head fuzzy right away and fills me with warm cheer. Great brew!

Serving type: on-tap

11-10-2011 21:27:47 | More by Litterbean
Photo of TheDinger

South Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Murky brown with some sediment and a touch of light tan head that left pretty quick, perhaps cracked this a little too cold. Some spotty lacing and minimal retention. Smell is of dark fruits, raisins, carmel and burnt sugar. Taste follows more of the carmel/molasses that is very strong and a bit on the boozy end. Picked up a little fig note on the end, but reminded me of burnt carmel and hops bitterness. A decent amount of carbonation with a very thick feel on the tongue. Heavy with a hint of silk. Overall- Not my style I guess. Was wanting the booziness to give way to the rich flavors, but it was kind of over the top carmel with some hops on the end. Not sure I'll grab another. Shame because I like some other Founders offerings-

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2011 13:55:48 | More by TheDinger
Photo of cratez

Ontario (Canada)

3.83/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from International Beverage in Grands Rapids, Michigan.

Pours a murky copper-brown hue with amber edges, a sliver of eggshell white foam, and several dots of lacing on the snifter. Solid appearance, especially for a high gravity beer.

Smell is vanilla, molasses, oak barrel, brown sugar, hazelnut, English fruit cake, table cream, red apple, cinnamon, milk chocolate, nutmeg, spruce, hint of sherry, fig, and ethanol. Unbelievably rich and layered aromas.

Taste is good, but does not live up to the nose. I get dried fruit, toffee, brown sugar, milk chocolate, caramel, and raisin with an astringent bitterness and some oak wood on the cough. Decent enough.

Mouthfeel is thick, full-bodied, higher than average carbonation, a little foamy, medium tingly bitterness transitions to a drying finish. Alcohol warms the insides while eluding the taste buds.

Overall, Curmudgeon makes for a pleasant night cap, but I would probably buy Hibernation, the Ola Dubh series, and North Coast Old Stock before grabbing this one again. A serviceable Old Ale that falls short of the greats.

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2011 19:16:25 | More by cratez
Photo of ShanePB


3.53/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Having not had this beer in well over 1.5 years, I decided to give this another try. Served on-tap at, poured into a 12 ounce goblet.

A: Ruby copper colored body, fairly clear but definitely has a bit of haze. Small off-white head that didn't last too long, nor did it leave any real lace on the glass. To style, it looks alright; nothing spectacular but touches above average.

S: Deep dark, rich caramel malts, brown sugar, molasses and a definite boozy element. Not overwhelmed by any one quality but towards the end the oak is more noticeable. Fresh, matured oak wood creates an additional layer of depth but doesn't take the aromas deep enough, in my opinion.

T: Initially there's nothing on the front of the palate, instead it's consumed by the boozy bite from the swallow. Another sip, along with some palate adjustment, brings forward the dark and rich flavors. Molasses, burnt sugar and dark fruits (fig, raisin) are halfway in. The back end and finish leaves with a strange astringency from the oak. Overly woody and a bit out of place it seems. The alcohol doesn't fuse with the wood notes like other great wood/barrel-aged beers do.

M: Fairly well carbonated and a bit thinner on the palate than I would have recalled or liked. Not watery but not the feel I was hoping for in an Old Ale.

For me, this style is certainly hit or miss and while I don't think this was a complete miss, it wasn't a dead-on hit either. There are some really nice complexities in the beer but also some very tangent flavors. There doesn't seem to be a mastered balance in the flavor profile, but it still does have qualities that make it enjoyable.

Serving type: on-tap

11-03-2011 12:40:31 | More by ShanePB
Photo of tfratzke


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

Pours a deep orange/brown. Opaque with a small tan head the quickly disappears. Smells of sweet syrup, caramel, maple syrup, brown sugar. Ting of grapefruit.
Taste is of brown sugar, caramel, maple and pretty boozy. Very sweet. Mouth-feel thick and syrupy. Alcohol is very present. Not in a bad way, just definitely a nice warming/sipping brew. Overall this is really good and enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2011 01:36:50 | More by tfratzke
Photo of DrewZ926

New York

3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: pours a deep, opaque, almost ruby orange. no head to speak of. bright lighter shades around the rim, very rich golden amber throughout

s: deep, syrupy sweet malts. caramelized hops. notes of orange grapefruit citrus peak through. picking up faint golden raisin

t: very complex malt bill. a lot of sweet biscuit with resonating caramel from the nose. faint hop bitterness on the finish. very full and well rounded

m: surprisingly thick, though admittedly my first old ale. nice carbonation upfront, smooth finish

d: slight bit of heat upfront, though mellowing as it warms

o: great selection for a chilly night. cant compare it to other old ales though. enjoying the subtle use of hops--contrasts the upfront sweetness of the malt

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2011 02:21:48 | More by DrewZ926
Photo of samie85


4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on date is 2/04/10, so this one is a over a year and a half old.

A-Pours a light, tawny port with half finger of white head that dissipates to a thin ring around the inside of my snifter.

S-The nose is comprised primarily of big oak notes, vanilla, rich toffee notes, and a bit of plum with some earthy hops.

T-Oak and dark plum with some toffee, and a bit of vanilla with a earthy bitter hop finish.

M-Very light carbonation with a medium bodied and a drying, woody finish.

D-This is a very nice and intriguing brew. I like it quite a bit as is, but now I have to try it fresh to compare. ABV is very well hidden; be careful!

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2011 02:56:15 | More by samie85
Photo of Fenris244


4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured into my Duvel tulip

Pours a deep reddish orange, thin white head, little retention, good amount of lacing though. A little hazy but looks great none the less.

Smell is of dark fruits, plum and cherry with, boozy sweetness and some brown sugar and toffee like aromas.

Plum and cherry flavors are there as well, little bits of hop bitterness. Has an earthy quality too it and some sweet toffee and booze on the finish. The flavors balance well and it's never too sweet and the hops never overpower the other flavors, very satisfying to drink
Heavier in body, booze heats up the palate and you can definitely feel it, very enjoyable.

Overall, I'd love to be able to get more of this brew, I look forward to seeing founders in Texas one of these days!

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2011 00:22:35 | More by Fenris244
Photo of Jules11788


3.93/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2009 bottle opened in 2011

A: Pours a cloudy mahogany-red; pinky-width head that fades quick; medium lacing

S: Tart raisins and figs, sweet malt

T: Like the nose -- sweet malts, raisins, figs, toffee; finishes with a tart maltiness

M: Medium thickness, lightly carbonated

O: This was a really good Old Ale, not as good as Old Stock but still delicious nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2011 17:48:45 | More by Jules11788
Photo of Bendurgin


4.2/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Centennial sent me this one. Thanks Steve, you're a stand up dude. Poured into a snifter. This one pours a clear maple brown with a finger of white head.

Sweet and delicious smelling. Toffee and maple aromas with hints of cinnamon and some spices like cloves. Hints of cedar and honey. Sweet maple flavor here with cinnamon. Sweet and malty here.

The body is heavy and sticky with soft carbonation. A little bit coarse on the finish. Overall this one is pretty outstanding; as are most of the Founders line up.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2011 02:46:31 | More by Bendurgin
Photo of TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured in to Founder's tulip glass.

A - Medium translucent amber colour with one finger of bubbly off-white head.

S - Caramel, raisins, toffee, brown sugar. Not getting any oak.

T - Caramel, toffee, oak, brown sugar and a touch of vanilla.

M - Medium to full body, chewy. Light carbonation. Great mouth feel.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2011 04:00:10 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of BarryMFBurton


4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Alright, I’ll be honest…I have no idea what an Old Ale is. One thing I do know, though, is that Founders probably does it well. Cheers to trying new styles!

Bottled a little over six months before the date of this tasting (“BOTTLED: 04/09/11”).

A: Cool color; a bright, carrot-juice orange. And with a mostly opaque body, it actually looks like carrot juice. Silky, off-white head with light retention. Lacing is sparse, but creamy. Looks thick.

S: Dark fruits first: raisin, peach, and apricot, all in front of a mild alcohol aroma. Malts are big and caramely, with an inescapable undercurrent of grain husk. Breads on the end, mixing with the fruits to form a lovely toast-with-apple-butter scent. A strong, pleasant nose.

T: Syrupy-sweet fruits, dark and strong, lay smooth on the tongue with each sip: fig and raisin on a caramel backdrop. The taste of vanilla and toffee sprawls out in the background, as well as a grainy, hoppy bitterness; it’s a smooth husk and a slight pine tart that comes in quite nicely. A darkly malty, slightly dry flavor drives this aftertaste to a mild end. This is an excellent beer – the flavor combinations are right up my alley.

M: Usually, Founders has some very bubbly brews; luckily, this isn’t one of them. Smooth and thick, this has the perfect drinkability without drawing any attention from the palate.

O: This is an awesome style; some of my favorite flavors in one bottle. If this particular beer is a good representation of an Old Ale, I can assure you that I’ll be attacking this style with full force. Can’t wait for Kaiser Curmudgeon!

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2011 20:03:38 | More by BarryMFBurton
Photo of Erish


4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this 12 oz. bottle into a nonic pint glass. No freshness date.

A: cloudy cider-colored, pours a caramel-colored head that quickly falls into a thin head with scant lacing. About what I expect from a wood-aged beer of this strength.

S: molasses, vanilla, toffee, dried/ripe fruit; apples, figs, raisins.

T: the caramel sweetness and fruit are thick up front, and the woodsy/vanilla character slowly reveals itself, and finally a lightly mineral bitterness opens up with an herbal and floral hop character, and a slow, boozy alcoholic heat also emerges.

M: Full-bodied, velvety, almost syrupy texture, light carbonation.

O: Is it an Old Ale or Barleywine? Who cares! It is tasty, tasty stuff.

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2011 02:44:18 | More by Erish
Photo of DeltaGolfSierra


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 Amesjeep


4.43/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Dark Copper in color with a slight head.

Smell - Amazing smell, light molasses smell, followed by caramel malts, and finishes with an almost Belgian yeast aroma.

Taste - Well balanced flavor, sweet yet defined. Finishes like and old ale should.

Mouthfeel - Smooth with some bite, just the right amount of carbonation for this style of ale

Overall - Well Done!!

Poured into a snifter from 12oz. bottle on 10/7/11, bottled on 04/09/11

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2011 05:29:17 | More by Amesjeep
Founders Curmudgeon (Old Ale) from Founders Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 3,389 ratings.